|“||My biggest secret is you.||”|
Johnny was a Shadowhunter who belonged to the "lost" Herondale line originating from Tobias Herondale—particularly, through his son with Eva Blackthorn. For some reason, he developed a fear or dislike of Shadowhunters and their ways and kept his nature a secret.
When he was a teenager, Johnny opened a booth at the Shadow Market in Los Angeles. Initially dismissed, he was soon accepted into the fold for his determination and uncanny knack for gathering information. For most of his life, his business revolved around being a reliable informant, giving away whispers and rumors to anyone who asked—at a price. He was assumed to be a Sighted mundane by his patrons and colleagues at the Market, an assumption he eagerly supported to hide his true identity.
Johnny's main goal in life was to hide and keep his son, Kit, safe and hidden—particularly from the Nephilim. As an extra measure for protection, Johnny provided his services to Malcolm Fade in return for the warlock's help in installing wards around his house. With his connections, he was able to constantly hide his and Kit's identities, barely using their real names and even having his name legally changed several times.
At one point, Johnny involved himself in sorcery. Additionally, because he was not selective when it came to whom he had business with, he had connections with most species and dealt even with faeries. In light of the Cold Peace, this put Rook on the Clave's watch list and outside their protection; officially, no Shadowhunter should be in business with him.
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One of his many regular customers was Emma Carstairs, a Shadowhunter. Emma often employed his services to aid in her investigation into her parents' mysterious deaths. He gave her information and potential leads, and was the one who told her that the mysterious killings of mundanes were worth looking into because faeries were also being murdered in the same manner, and that the bodies were covered in writing, much like Emma's parents when they were found five years prior.
Once, Malcolm gave Johnny a batch of Atropa belladonna to distill. He kept the leftovers, and when the Centurion Diego Rosales came to his stall, he gave him arrows laced with the poisonous compound, knowing that the plant was illegal and could get him in trouble, simply because Downworlders and Market-goers generally disliked Centurions. The arrows later fatally injured Julian Blackthorn, angering Emma.
Rook was killed by Mantid demons in his home in Los Angeles in August 2012 when the residential protection provided by Malcolm wore off and allowed the demons to come through, leaving his son in the care of the Blackthorn family at the Los Angeles Institute after they were tracked down by Tessa Gray and Jem Carstairs.
- A History of Notable Shadowhunters & Denizens of the Downworld
- Lady Midnight (first and only appearance)
- Lord of Shadows (mentioned only)
- Johnny often wore black.
- His Shadowhunter heritage may not completely be a secret among the Clave because he has at least once met with Silent Brothers.