Arthur Banes

A newcomer to Dornie, Arthur Banes appears to be a simple travelling teacher in search of his next job, bringing along with him his “sister”, Patience Banes-Saxon for the trip. In reality, he is a conman who uses a mix of smooth talking, lies, and Patience’s assistance to swindle people out of money, goods, and more, and only he knows exactly why they’ve come to Dornie. Amusing and gregarious on the surface, something more sinister sits beneath his seemingly happy grin, waiting for an opprotunity to act.


Full Name: Arthur Banes
Age: 30
Hair: Brown
Eyes: Blue

Status: Alive
Occupation: Teacher and Con Artist
Origin: Frodsham, Cheshire, England
Allegiance: Independent

First Seen: An Intriguing Proposal
Last Seen: None

Tall and thin, Arthur looks like your average fellow, really. Despite his lankiness - he stands at just under six feet - and his often awful posture, Arthur is a man who always carries himself with confidence, a sort of swagger in his step. Brown hair often falling mopishly around his head, his face is often framed with a pair of black glasses. It is up to speculation if they’re actually needed, however, since there is a small, just noticeable crack in the corner of one that has never been fixed. Often adorned in a simple jacket and a scarf, Arthur rarely dresses to stand out. In fact, he often seems to aim for just the opposite.


  • Penelope Alden - mother
  • Damon Alden † - father
  • Marcus Banes - adoptive father
  • Kiley Banes - adoptive mother
  • Patience Saxon-Banes - adoptive sister

Portrayed by: Matt Smith


Born on a crisp winter day in the parish of Frodsham, Arthur Alden’s life seemed unremarkable as they come. Unremarkable, but not particularly good. His parents never really paid much attention to their boy, they had honestly never wanted him to begin with. The family was poor, and his mother was often left tot ake care of him while his father way away. However, events would force the Aldens to pay attention to their child when Arthur’s father was caught stealing to feed his family.

These unfortunate times continued, Arthur’s father dying while in prison. His mother was not the nurturing type, in fact, she hated that she now had to look after a child who was more interested in sitting in the backyard talking to birds about his day. She never seemed to notice or care that spent a lot of time in particular talking to one bird, a sparrow he called Fake. He stopped attending lessons, and before long his mother began to use him and the situation they were in to talk people into free goods and services, all while teaching the boy to follow in his father’s footsteps of stealing what they needed, and talking people out of everything he wanted. The boy learned many lessons from his mother, and none of them were good. And many times he got caught as well, sometimes written off as a young, frustrated boy either trying to help, or acting out his frustrations on the world around him.

One day, things took a bit of an odd turn. He began to take things more constantly, seemingly mundane objects he would claim had “interesting stories”. It was his mother who first realised the truth one evening when she saw her song talking to the sparrow – that he was a mage, and that to him, the walls could literally talk. It was also at this time that Arthur began to resist his mother, at the behest of Fake. But this only created a cycle, verbal abuse leading to resistance, then escalating to physical abuse that only led to more resistance. His mother wanted to use him and his magic, and Arthur was sick of it.

Things came to a head when Arthur turned thirteen, and he and his mother got into a heated argument that ended with her screaming at him as she lay on the floor bleeding from where a cup had hit her, and him running away. Just a child, he was able to make his way on to a caravan easy enough, but was kicked out when it reached Kingsley for trying to steal someone’s food while they weren’t paying attention, despite having plenty for himself. It was then that he met the Banes family, and being just a poor kid, alone on the streets, they took him into their home, for what was originally simply going to be the evening. But after surprisingly engaging their otherwise reclusive daughter Patience, two days later the Banes surprised them both by inviting him to stay with them. He agreed without hesitation.

Living in a more nurturing environment didn’t last. Arthur had grown up, and so had Fake, now taking the form of a sparrowhawk, but he still found himself getting into trouble in school and with other boys, often in defence of Patience. And then, like many others, the Banes family fell on hard time. But there was surprisingly little hesitation form him as he fell back into a swindling and stealing lifestyle, often away from home, so that he could support the family. And once he discovered that Patience was adept with illusions, will, that only made his schemes grow. It worked out well, since she wanted to keep her family afloat, and he needed all the help he could get.

In the end, they were just successful enough to keep the Banes family afloat. But that wasn’t enough for Arthur. He felt he held an obligation to those that had been willing to take him in and try to make sure he grew up teh rest of his life decently. So he hatched the biggest scheme of his life – one that would set the Banes for life. All Patience had to do was marry Byron Saxon, the son of the local wealthy caravan runners. Then, once they had secured a tidy part of the fortune, they would engineer an event would give her reason to leave Byron, and take part of that money with them. He wasn’t surprised when Patience agreed.

He was surprised when she made a demand of her own – that Arthur would give up his cons, forever. She would stay with Byron, and they would never have to worry about getting by again. Arthur was hesitant to agree, and didn’t actually do so until the eve of her wedding. But he did. Unfortunately, it was not a promise he ever entirely kept. There were still deals he had to see through, and normal life was boring. This led to, every now and then, he would backslide on his habits, and find himself in a neighbouring parish swindling something expensive out of someone’s hands. In large part, though, he did try. He even went as far as to become a teacher, using his flair and charisma to enrapture the kids.

The worst of these backslides came at the most inopportune time – Arthur was out of town when Patience had her first miscarriage. Engaged in a quick con two parishes over, he wasn’t able to tell her where he’d been when she confronted him, and to this day still has not. But the lowest point, though, came six years into Patience’s marriage. Arthur had never actually liked Byron, and always had a feeling that something wasn’t right with Patience. In an unfortunate turn of events, his own magic would prove him right one evening, when a bowl treated him to a heated argument between his sister and her husband, one that had ceased on the verge of getting physical. After a bit of information gathering and snooping, Arthur confronted Patience.

Arthur was furious, and it was only a bit before Patience broke down and told him the truth. His anger only growing at the treatment of his sister, Arthur tried to think up a plan to take revenge on Byron. In the end, he settled for something he rarely engaged in – direct confrontation. Perhaps predictably, though, things went awry. The argument went awry. Patience was away, and it gave him liberty to be as angry as he wanted to. But after accidentally being treated to a vision of Byron and Patience’s worst fight – and the worst beating she had received – Arthur lashed out in rage, beating Byron mercilessly. By the time he was finished, his face was barely recognisable. Really, the three gunshots in the chest were just to make sure. And then he fled, only hesitating when he heard Patience’s scream upon her arrival back home. He never did tell her what happened that night.

Arthur had an alibi in place, though not the most elegant one. A prostitute had owed him a favour, and it worked in a pinch, but the rumours and talk and whispers made him nervous, so when Patience came to him suggesting they leave town Arthur quickly agreed. Once it was a sure thing that their parents were taken care of, the pair set off, up north. They both knew that, with so little to their name, it would mean a return to how things had been before Patience’s marriage. Arthur didn’t mind in the slightest. Besides, he had a plan. He had heard of a place up north in his travels, during his cons. A place with a hydroplant. A place where he had heard they could find something that, if they played their cards right, would set them for life. And that was all they really need, anyway. After that, they’d be done forever. At least, that’s what he told her. If that was actually the case, they’d have to wait and see…


In many ways, Arthur is the exact opposite of his “sister” - outgoing, boisterous, and often times seemly quite gregarious. Always quick to engage in conversation, and never one to shy away from a social situation. And in truth, this is one of the few things about him that is entirely genuine. Though he may sometimes be lying, he’s not known as being the reclusive type.

What he can be, sometimes, is quiet and thoughtful. For every few nights spent out listening to people talk in the bar, or drinking with ‘friends”, there is a night spent at a desk as he taps his fingers across a table, thinking up what, exactly, he is going to do next - whether it’s the next step in a con, the lesson plan for the following day, or just what he’s going to do with that sister of his.

While he may be an outgoing person, Arthur is by no means a nice, or good, person. Behind his smile lies a darker, sinister person. Arthur has absolutely no compunction with lying to a man’s face, stealing from him while his back’s turned, swindling him out of all his riches, or in the worst of situations, bringing physical harm to him. At least once he has killed a man in cold blood, and several other times he’s come close.

In general, survival is the most important thing in Arthur’s life. There’s few people he’s seemed to genuinely care about. Even the Banes family, sometimes it appeared he simply felt obligated to them because of how they took him in when he was otherwise on the street. Despite this, on multiple occasions he has proven to be fiercely protective of Patience, even going so far as to murder her abusive husband. Whether this is because he actually, deeply cares for her, or because he doesn’t want to lose the most valuable component of many of his cons… well, only Arthur knows that for sure.

For Arthur, cons have become about more than simply making money or getting by. They represent a thrill and a challenge to him, a feeling which is the source of his inability to complete abandon the practice even when he promised his sister he would go straight, and even while he was working as a teacher. iIt could be said he’s addicted to the practice, but he would dismiss without a thought.


Arthur's magical ability is a rather peculiar one indeed. Since he was a young boy, Arthur has claimed that the strangest and most random of mundane objects have “interesting stories”, stories they tell him themselves. This, unlike many things that Arthur may say or do, is not a fabrication. Arthur’s magic possesses the ability to literally make everyday objects speak and animate as though they were alive, even if briefly.

When used in its typical fashion, it does just this - inanimate objects can suddenly gain a voice, often reflective of the owner with which they’ve had the strongest resonance, and in some cases if the object in question is designed in a manner that allows for it, can even move in some fashion or another. Books flap pages like mouths, a doll may get up and move around, and sometimes the memories these objects possess reflects in how they move as well. A necklace or choker may suddenly tighten or a chest may clamp and a chest or box may slam itself shut and lock closed if it carries particularly negative memories, while something patterned after a bug or a bird may animate and take flight happily.

The object’s voice works just as any normal living person’s might - anyone who can hear and is within distance is more than able to hear the object speak. Most often, these objects will tell Arthur of the things they’ve seen, the memories they hold. When Arthur touches or takes hold of an object, he can inherently tell if there’s any sort of particular event or memory that has occurred in it’s presence. Not everything holds a memory of this sort - only highly emotional, tense, dramatic, or memorable moments are held by such objects. Sometimes, objects will take on aspects of the memories they posses as well. Objects without strong memories can still be animated, however they will remain silent, as they have no stories worth telling.

It is possible, however, for Arthur to simply converse with an object. Such things know little more than the world around them, what they’ve “seen” and “overheard”, and sometimes express confusion over the newfound ability to speak. This magic is sometimes used when Arthur is teaching, either to spice up a presentation, or to let the school aids do some teaching for him - a boon for someone who never had a ton of schooling.

When Arthur was young and had no real practice or control with his magic, animation was the only way he could work his magic. As he grew, however, he learned how to “hush” the voices of the objects he animated. In some cases, a variation of his spell may be cast that still allows the object he enchants to speak, but the difference that only Arthur can hear it in his instance, the words echoing within his mind. Useful when he needs information for a con or blackmail, he can do this secretively or furtively, though he does seem distracted while he listens to what something has to say. Otherwise, the spell is the same - the object may or may not be fully animated, but it only knows what it knows from it’s period of existence, nothing more and nothing less. However, if Arthur finds a particularly chatty object, things can become problematic as more and more of his concentration is needed, and he seems to become more and more spaced out as he “listens” to it speak to him.

This ability was not always voluntary, when first discovered Arthur had little control over when his magic worked and when it didn't, which led to many odd discoveries and strange moments. Even now, when Arthur is highly emotional, nor not entirely in control of himself physically (such as when intoxicated), his control over this magic slips.

His familiar most often takes the form of a sparrowhawk, and is named Fake - likely because it is an appropriate descriptor of so much Arthur does.

For more, see: Character Notes for Arthur Banes