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Nathaniel Branwell is one of the few Warlock-Shadowhunters.

Biography Edit

Nathaniel's father was one of the most promising Shadowhunters of his age. While he was out on a demon hunt, his wife, Sonja Fairchild, was visited by the Prince of Hell Lucifer, disguised as her husband. Thinking her husband had safely returned, Sonja welcomed him in bed. When Johan returned hours later, it became clear what had happened.

The couple was devastated and consulted the Silent Brothers. They were assured by Brother Zachariah that nothing could've happened, because Sonja was marked. Sonja however, feared something was wrong. It soon became clear that she was actually pregnant. Consulting the Silent Brothers again, they could only conclude that the pregnancy was only possible because of Lucifer's former angelic blood.

Birth Edit

When Nathaniel was born, his warlock mark had already developed. His blue skin confirmed Sonja's suspicions. Sonja feared what her family and her husband would think, but although it wasn't his real son, Johan took care of Nathaniel as if his own.

Nathaniel was raised in a loving family and had a very strong bond with his grandfather, Roger Fairchild, head of the Institute. Therefore, he spent most of his time in his grandfather's study. This changed when a demon nest was found nearby the institute. Nathaniel's grandfather led the hunting party sent to deal with the demon. The creature was killed, but took Roger to Hell with him.

The family was devastated, and his grandmother and uncle left the Institute and retreated to the Branwell Mansion in Idris. This left the institute without a leader, a role Niel's father took upon him after the Assent Conclave deemed him the most suitable candidate.

The Dark War Edit

When the Dark War broke out, Niel's family wasn't spared. His grandmother and uncle were killed in the attack on Idris. Luckily, the rest of the family didn't suffer any more loss. Niel's mother and her sister-in-law reconciled and she and her daughters, Elisabeth and Phaedra, joined the family in the Institute. Nathaniel took care of his cousins like as they were his little sisters. Some time later his aunt remarried and had a son, Emile, with whom Niel spent a lot of time.


The Clave-In-Exile Edit

When they turned 15, Nathaniel and Pauline decided to go to the new Shadowhunter Academy, founded by the Clave-In-Exile. Because his family never treated him any different, Nathaniel had never felt like his demon heritage was a problem, until his first day at the Academy. He was afraid that his fellow students would mock him for his blue skin, but he soon realized that the world of the Nephilim was changing. The newfound Clave existed mostly of Downworld sympathizers who had left Idris after the rise of the Cohort.

Personality and traits Edit

Nathaniel does not quickly show emotion, except for when he's laughing.

Physical description Edit

Nathaniel has a casual and relaxed air. He has multicolored eyes and always appears to be smiling. He is not as long as most of his fellow Shadowhunters, but has the same thin build. Nathaniel has three unique, signature warlock marks: light blue-tinted skin, charcoal black hair and black pointed horns. Over time, Niel learned to glamour his marks and appeared to have a slightly tanned skin and dark brown hair.

In daily life, Nathaniel switches between his Shadowhunter look and his Warlock look to accommodate the situation. However, when he is extremely focused on fighting, his two appearances seem to melt together into one.

Niel shares a startling resemblance with his sister Catelyn Branwell and his grandfather Roger Fairchild.

Skills and abilities Edit

  • Nephilim physiology: Being Nephilim, Nathaniel possesses a variety of enhanced physical and mental abilities granted to him by the angel blood of Raziel in his veins and also by the angelic Marks of the Gray Book. This includes enhanced strength, speed, agility, stamina, and coordination, which continue to improve over time and practice.
    • The Sight: As a Shadowhunter, Nathaniel is naturally and easily able to see through most magical illusions and layers of glamour over reality.
    • Runic magic: Due to the angel blood in their veins, all Shadowhunters are able to apply runes on their skin without any real danger. These Marks, in turn, give varied effects that serve to benefit the wearer.
    • Use of heavenly weapons: As a Shadowhunter, Nathaniel is also able to perform tasks unique to their species, such as the ability to use and call on the power of angels for their seraph blades, as well as to handle any heavenly weapons or objects with effect, which would normally not work for other species. In particular, these are tools made of adamas and forged by Iron Sisters.
  • Parabatai bond: Due to his parabatai bond with Pauline Carstairs, Nathaniel is able to call on more strength in battle. The runes drawn on him by Pauline also give a considerably stronger effect.
  • Combatant: Nathaniel is a very skilled fighter. He is a skilled fencer and sword fighter, especially with his kopis. Other Shadowhunters have described Nathaniel's fighting style as if he appeared to be dancing through the battlefield.
  • Warlock powers
    • Immortality: As a warlock, Niel was granted immortality. However, it is not yet known when Nathaniel will stop aging.
    • Magic: Nathaniel has access to magical powers that often manifest themselves as blue and orange flames or sparks at his fingertips. Niel is capable of casting spells and performing summoning rituals. He is particularly skilled in combat magic.

Possessions Edit

  • Kopis: just before he died, Nathaniel's grandfather demanded that his kopis, a single edged cutting sword with a forward-curving blade, would be given to his grandson. Niel has since carried the blade with him wherever he goes.
  • Hunting knives: Niel utilizes a set of hunting knives as a second choice for a weapon in battle
  • Bow and arrows: Nathaniel also occasionally uses a bow and arrows, or a crossbow.
  • Branwell ring: Niel owns a Branwell ring, given to him by his sister, which first belonged to their father. He wears the ring, inscribed with waves of water, on a chain around his neck.
  • Other basic Shadowhunter gear, including: a Sensor, steles, seraph blades, and witchlight.

Former Edit

  • Witchlight: Niel got his first runed stone when he was young. This had been passed down through the family, together with a sister stone. His sister got the other half of the stone. When his nephew was born, he passed down the stone to him, as a sign to welcome his not blood-related nephew to the family.

Etymology Edit

The name Nathaniel is a Hebrew name meaning 'Gift of God'. 

Relationships Edit







Trivia Edit

  • Nathaniel is a dog person.
  • Niel's favorites bands include Years & Years, Imagine Dragons and Bastille.
  • Niel can't sit still and hates doing nothing. This slightly irritates his friends.
  • Niel has a habit of biting his nails due to stress.

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