Kit grew up being called Kit Rook, and it was his name, until it wasn’t and everybody was calling him Christopher Herondale. But that didn’t feel like his name, not really. It wasn’t the name of a boy who grew up running around the shadowmarket, using his “quick hands” and fast talking to help his father out.
Parents are a complicated subject for Kit. Johnny Rook was hardly a father to Kit, he found that role filled by James Carstairs, Jem, who had told him that gratitude wasn’t a requirement to receive love. Tessa Gray, sometimes Herondale or Carstairs, was his wife and she was the first person to show Kit what having a mother was like. Of course he had a mother, Rosemary, but he didn’t remember her, and even though Jem and Tessa said over and over again that she loved him, how could she? She never knew him beyond a baby and if his own father couldn’t love him, why would she?
Rosemary also gave Kit his name, Christopher Jonathan Herondale, even though he preferred just plain Kit. It was a name that had no expectations tied to it, no grand legacy to live up to. Even Rook had it’s own connotations, none of them good. When he began living with Jem and Tessa, he had been happy to have a home, even if was just because of his last name, he thought. Later on he realized that Jem and Tessa, his new parents considered him as much a Carstairs as they did their daughter Mina. Kit’s sister, his little Min-min.
His cousin Jace was great, but given his reputation Kit still felt that he could never live up to the Herondale name, a name he never truly wanted in the first place.
As Christopher Herondale, he was unwillingly brought to the LA Institute, a refuge from his fathers home, but not his after Johnny was murdered in front of him. It’s not that he truly missed his father, for how can you miss and mourn what you never had, but he missed his old normal, and he was sorry that no one would mourn Johnny Rook. No, what Kit truly missed was a normal where he was relatively free to do as he pleased, where he wasn’t told to be someone he wasn’t. A place where he wasn’t an outsider, but even his old home had turned him into an outcast...without Johnny Rook, Kit with a Herondale name was no longer welcome in his first home, the LA Shadowmarket.
It was Ty who reached out to Kit, who wanted him to know that he was never alone, who slept outside his door at night, just in case he felt lonely. It was Ty, and later Livvy who would help him feel truly at home for the first time in his life, who would open their family to him, open their private circle of Ty and Livvy to him, who would teach him and help him accept his family name. It was Ty who kept him from running away, who Kit ran from, who Kit was drawn to like a magnet, that would show Kit what real friendship was. It was Ty, who Kit knew and somehow recognized in his heart the moment they met, that would help him to understand what love was.
Ty, who was the first person to call him Kit, instead of Christopher, the first person to show Kit what having a family was really like, the first person that Kit could remember loving him, even if he didn’t realize it at the time. Was it any wonder that when they decided to marry Kit chose to take Blackthorn as his last name.
To Kit, Tiberius Nero Blackthorn was home, and Kit could finally choose a name instead of being told what his name was. He could choose who he wanted to be, where he wanted to belong.
To Ty, Christopher was one of his favorite words and Christopher Blackthorn was who Kit chose to be.