Cas Blackburn

A recent arrival to Dornie from the south, unaware of a lot of the politics of the town, but has started working for the local horse lord. This marks his allegiance loosely with Rowntree, though he's ignorant enough of the politics he doesn't really know what that means yet.


Full Name: Casper Blackburn
Age: 27ish
Hair: Brown
Eyes: Brown

Status: Alive
Occupation: Stable Hand and Horse Trainer
Origin: Keighley, England (in West Yorkshire)
Allegiance: Clan Rowntree

First Seen: Common Problem
Last Seen: None

No one would ever consider Cas Blackburn to be tall and threatening. He's only of average height, standing just at 5'9", and despite obvious work in his hands and the tone of someone who works outside, he is still rather lithe in build. The strength he has is in his youth. Wild brown hair likes to stick up no matter what he does with it, but it can occassionally be tamed to lay flat. Brown eyes brighten with a common smile that dimples a cheek. That smile shows front teeth that seem to stick out a little and are too big to go unnoticed. At least they're more white than not, and they don't take away from his boyish face anymore than the stubble that is there more for lack of time to shave than anything else.

When at work, he dresses more ruggedly, in clothes with patches and stains from work and sweat. He wears a set of gloves at work, most of the time they have the fingers cut off. The smell of horses is on him even when he's not working most of the time, but his off work clothes are a drastic difference from what he wears while working. A colorful shirt of paisley design is his favorite and nicest, with a descent fabric and cut to be worn about town. If it wasn't paisley. He also has a fondness for a nice hat and scarves, and he has one nice brown leather jacket as well, but even that show wear.


  • Melcor Blackburn - older brother
  • Elizabeth Merryweather (née Blackburn) - older sister
  • Balthazar Blackburn - younger brother
  • Priscilla Ryall (née Blackburn) † - younger sister
  • And the rest of the Blackburn Clan in Keighley, England

Portrayed by: Andrew-Lee Potts


The Blackburn family of Keighley were only famous for one thing, really. Producing a great deal of children. Casper, the third child of the family that was great at producing labor and girl-children who could be traded once they reached a certain age, was kind of a rarity in the end, but his upbringing was the same as the rest of his male siblings and cousins. The Blackburn family were farmers by trade, with a few other crafts appearing occasionally, but all of them worked the land. Cas, who always hated his name Casper, did too for the first fifteen years of his life. But he was not really interested in farming so much as the mares that his father owned.

Mules and donkeys were more common on the farm than horses, but they did have a a handful of tame, well-minded mares, and it was the horses that Cas fell in love with. Strong and gentle and beautiful, the beast of burden was used for various tasks. Not the least of which was producing mules for more labor horses with the male donkeys that they owned. The grown mules were traded as often as the girl-children once they reached a certain age, and helped keep the family in a middling degree of success.

The farming, while he learned it, was not his favorite trade. He rather liked helping with the breeding of the mares and the jacks, as well as learning how to attend to the baby mule and make it more compliant and friendly and train it to work the farm or carry burdens. The mules had the advantage of being stronger than horses of the same size, with more endurance, making them perfect for burden and assistance when compared to their parents. The fact that the weaker jack could produce a child with the gentle mare that was even stronger than the parents always fascinated him. Even if the family considered them less useful because they could not produce more themselves.

When it became clear that his parents were looking to arrange a marriage so that he could keep on the tradition of brothers and sons working the land together and selling off their female children, Cas decided to run away. Farming just was not his thing, nor was he particularly interested in getting married only to sell off his daughters like property. He'd actually liked his older and younger sister quite a bit, and didn't think they were any less than his brothers. He didn't like that they were treated essentially the same as the mules his family traded off. That wasn't a favorite view in his family and caused friction anytime he brought it up. It was the main reason his family decided he needed a wife to settle him down before he was even sixteen.

Preparing for travel

With a few token belongings stuffed into a pack one night, Cas stole away with one of the many mules that he helped raise. He couldn't leave a note, but he did kiss his younger sister goodbye and told her to tell them that he was leaving. He knew his family wouldn't chase after him. It would be even more of a resource drain for them to do it than him leaving, even with one of the young mules. At least they didn't have to pay for his bride now, either.

He had intended to keep the mule, but by the time he made it as far east as he could go trading off small items in his possession along the way and even, occasionally, stealing, he needed a more permanent home— and he had to do what he hated his family doing so much. He traded the mule for room and board until he could find work.

Luckily, there was a horse lord in the town of Grimsby in the Hutton family. With his working knowledge, it didn't take too much to get a job in the lowest part of the ranch, doing the mucking and the various dirty jobs that no one wanted to do. It took showing his knowledge of the mares and foaling (even if he only handled mules before) to earn him a place in the actual breeding. Foals required different handling than baby mules, but he paid attention and learned from the masters, and added his own gentle hand from the mules to the work as well. His knowledge of mules also helped, as well. The horse lord didn't like donkeys or mules much, but he knew they could fetch a good price, so with the son of a mule breeder on hand, he made a side business with mules.

Life seemed to be looking up for young Cas. He was getting to be more and more important over the first five years with the horse lord, and he loved working with the animals. But there was more in the "rich" man's household than horses. He also had a young daughter. When Cas first came to live among them she was only seven, many years younger than him. A sweet girl who liked horses and books, who was the apple of her father's eye. Isadora was a cheerful, smart and sweet kid. She helped keep him childish and friendly when she visited the stables and wanted to ride. He helped train her horse. Over the next ten years of working for her father, though, their relationship changed.

After a long journey.

Slowly at first, but more dramatically just before it ended abruptly.

Isadora had far more education than Cas, with tutors and book learning, but Cas had more knowledge of labor and work and the world than her. She wanted to know about all the things going on outside her lands her father owned, which her father sheltered her from, and he wanted to know more about history and books. At first it was the small things. Asking questions while he introduced her to the mare that her father had him breed for her, and while he trained the mare to respond to the girl's voice. She was sad to hear about his family life growing up, and he was amazed at the stories of science, which seemed on the same vein with magic to him.

As she grew older, approaching the age of womanhood, it became known that her father had intended to marry her off to a prosperous local merchant's oldest son, once she turned eighteen. The delay had more to do with the fact her betrothed's age than her own. He was quite young, only ten when the betrothal was decreed, and he would only be fourteen when they were to be married.

As the girl became older, Cas' feelings toward her changed from a gentle, brother-like affection to something more heated. And quickly awkward. He started stumbling over his words with her more, but as much as it felt awkward and embarrassing to be around her, he wanted to be around her more and more. Her questions also became far more embarrassing, and detailed. When it became clear she was to be married and the year approached closer, she wanted to know more about other things. Over the course of the last year with the Hutton family one thing led to another, and eventually led to them in bed together, but he knows that she kissed him first.

A few liaisons followed. They didn't get caught on the first time, but they did get caught within a month of it. Her father went to go get his gun, already calling him a rapist, and he stole away for the second time out of a window. At least one shot was fired into the night after him, but he made it to the stable, found one of his favorite horses that he'd trained to respond to specific whistles and sounds, and ran away.

One thing of the world he'd never shared with her was what he father did to people who shortchanged him in a trade, or stole or hurt things that belonged to him. Cas rather loved his own life as much as he liked the girl, but he knew it would be suicide to go back. For the second time he road into the night, though this time he had even less than before. Again, he had to trade the animal he left with. To get rid of the evidence of horse theft as well as get smaller things to trade for the journey. For food and clothes and a place to stay.

By the time he made it to Dornie, he had only a few things to his name (some stolen), but he had his knowledge of horses, and near twenty years of work behind him to prove it. And Dornie had something many towns behind him did not— a horse lord Edmund Rowntree, with whom he found work, though he has to start all over again.


Childish is what most people equate to Cas upon meeting him. He's got a ready smile and a laugh that sometimes dissolves into what could only be described as a giggle. He also seems oblivious to some things, socially clumsy in many situations, but he's sharper than many people give him credit for. He likes to learn and pays close attention to details, and is good at things he puts his mind to (and usually things he enjoys). He can be quite loyal for a time, and will follow orders he doesn't like for a while, but that time usually doesn't last forever. While he's loyal, he seems to be willing to do anything asked of him and when it goes, it goes completely. In the end, he has abandoned his loyalties for his own personal freedom. Or at least he that is how it has always been before.

Boyish smile.

The last time left a dark mark on his heart, making him both love-sick and less desirous to run away again. More out of the fresh pain and guilt of having just done so, to someone he was really quite fond of. Because of his experience with first love, he can be a bit of a romantic, if an awkward one, wanting very much to feel that way again, but at the same time fearing feeling what happened after. She wasn't his only experience with women, at least. Older stable hands had taken him to a whore house when they discovered he'd never been with a woman, and he could always funnel his emotional needs through such an establishment again. It would certainly be safer.

He's not a fighter, and despite working labor much of his life, he likes dressing up when he's not covered in muck. The girl he left behind to deal with the wrath of her father was at fault for that. She liked to dress him up when they were together, and her taste in clothes could leave something to be desired. A paisley shirt is his favorite, because he doesn't know any better.

Magic and guns are all held in much the same status in his mind. To be both in awe of and wary of all at once, and not at all understood. He tried to understand it, too! And it interests him when he comes across it, but he doesn't get it, really. He'd rather have it a good distance from him, even if it's harmless. He'd sooner consider having magic near him than a gun, too, under most circumstances.

Generally, he likes horses more than people. And with both he tends to avoid violence in any form. Some of the horse hands he worked with made fun of him for coddling and spoiling the horses and mules he raised, but the end result was rather well respected for all but warhorses. He never did well at training war horses. He may have to adjust his disposition towards horses in this new land.

The people he likes associating with are usually nice, but he'll be polite with most anyone he meets. He doesn't tend to fight with men verbally or physically, and he avoids brawls. He's slow to anger and rarely displays it except when horses or women are physically abused or threatened. But even in those extreme situations, flight is his usual choice when it comes to whether to fight or not, and he's more likely to be punched than he would ever be to punch someone. But he's never really been pushed into a corner with no way out, either. And while he avoids physical confrontations, he is not above theft. He just tries to do it when there's no one watching.

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