Hayley Marshall entered The Vampire Diaries on a mission to learn about her birth family and why she was adopted, and the details of her hidden lineage ended up being critical to her position in the New Orleans supernatural community. Though her daughter, Hope, was the key to launching the spinoff The Originals, Hayley was frequently the most motivated, active figure, tracking down anyone who knew about her background. As Hayley learned more about her birth family, she consistently used the information to fight for her family and build a place for the werewolves in New Orleans.

Set during and after The Vampire Diaries‘ timeline, The Originals used Hayley as a way to explore both the inheritances of blood family and the strength of chosen family. While Hayley kept her adoptive name and embraced her space in the Mikaelson family, she never forgot the potential life that she would have led as Andrea Labonair, honoring both parts of herself. Because supernatural status is an inherited trait for seemingly every species except for vampires, Hayley’s lineage becomes one of the most important parts of her character arc, as well as factoring into the threats that her daughter faced.

RELATED: Every Character Who Appeared In All Three Shows In The Vampire Diaries Franchise

Who Were Hayley’s Birth Parents?

Hayley Marshall, flashing her werewolf eyes, on The Originals

Although they were never actually named, Hayley’s birth parents were werewolves from the Labonair line, one of two ruling families among the Crescent wolves. What that meant for Hayley was that, due to the massacre of her family around the time of her birth, she was the last member of the Labonairs and therefore was an Alpha werewolf by birth in the TVD universe. It’s not immediately clear whether Hayley would have been guided to trigger her werewolf gene or would have remained human unless and until she was forced to kill someone, but her name alone, and the Crescent birthmark that proved it, held a great deal of power.

The other Crescent wolves quickly devoted themselves to protecting her when she first came to New Orleans, in large part because she held symbolic power as the last descendant of the rulers who had kept them on top of the New Orleans hierarchy. As Jackson explained in The Originals season 1, episode 13, “Crescent City,” Hayley represented “a time when things were different. When our people fought back.” This gave Hayley an immediate family in the bayou, although her association with Marcel Gerard and the Mikaelson family made some think of her as a traitor to her species and her bloodline.

The final gift Hayley received from her birth parents was a betrothal to Jackson Kenner, who was the Alpha of the other dominant werewolf line in New Orleans. Although he didn’t force Hayley to live the life that had been established for Andrea Labonair, Jackson did remain fiercely devoted to his intended wife, particularly as she put herself in harm’s way to fight for the other Crescent wolves. The greatest consequence of this betrothal was Hayley and Jackson’s eventual marriage, which was combined with the Unification Ceremony to give all Crescent wolves the ability to turn at will thanks to Hayley’s hybrid status.

Why Was Hayley Adopted?

Hayley Marshall on The Originals looking up at someone

Shortly after her birth, Hayley’s birth parents were killed by Richard Xavier Dumas, leaving Hayley an orphan who needed protection. According to Jackson in season 2, episode 12 “Sanctuary,” Dumas was “a militant radical hell-bent on raising war with vampires,” which led him to kill the reigning Alphas and their families before they could attempt to establish peace among the New Orleans factions. While Marcel argued that the Labonairs had a tendency for picking fights and finding enemies, Hayley and the Mikaelsons would later learn that Dumas had been influenced by the Hollow.

RELATED: Every Time An Original Vampire Was Killed In The Vampire Diaries

Although it’s unknown why Andrea was not killed, Marcel found her and took her to Father Kieran to ensure she got out of New Orleans safely. He shared this information with Hayley in season 1, episode 19 “An Unblinking Death” as a way to prove his dedication to protecting children, which served as an important moment in Hayley learning to trust Marcel’s intentions. In addition to making sure that Hayley got safely adopted by a family outside of New Orleans, Marcel ensured she was not impacted by the curse he put on the Crescent werewolves, allowing her to become a woman without suffering for the crimes of her parents.

While Marcel’s plan made sense under normal conditions, Hayley suffered because she was not raised with the knowledge of her werewolf gene. Hayley triggered her curse at only 13, at which point her adoptive parents threw her out for being a monster. By removing Hayley from werewolf communities altogether, Marcel made it so she had to learn about her nature without anyone to guide her or tell her she was still worth loving. This was a major factor in Hayley’s decision to keep and protect Hope, as she never wanted her daughter to have to feel as lost and unloved as she did.

How Does Hayley’s Lineage Connect Her To The History Of The Supernatural World?

Hayley and Hope sleeping, with their Crescent birthmarks visible in The Originals

One of the most important trends in The Vampire Diaries and The Originals involved establishing origin stories for each supernatural species, and Hayley became a part of that due to her connection with the first werewolves in history. The Labonair bloodline went back to a tribe of Native American witches who had formed by joining their two most powerful members through marriage. The product of this union was named Inadu (or the Hollow), a witch who seemed to be unstoppable in her own time and was nearly as invulnerable when she found a way to come back in the modern day.

When the tribe managed to take Inadu down, she cursed all those involved, who became the seven werewolf bloodlines. These werewolves far pre-dated the Original vampires, and as a hybrid, Klaus must have also descended from the same original tribe. Of those seven bloodlines, four were tasked with protecting the Hollow’s bones and keeping them apart to prevent her resurrection. Hayley’s parents were killed, not just for their policies, but because they were protecting one of the four bones. This explained how Hayley’s status as werewolf royalty began, why her parents were really killed, and what her role was in preventing the Hollow from rising.

RELATED: Can Hope Create More Tribrids In Legacies?

In addition to preventing Inadu from rising, the Labonair line could kill the Hollow if she did rise, as they descended from Inadu’s mother, who had killed her the first time. This led the Hollow to target Hayley and Hope to limit her weaknesses. However, while Labonair blood hurt the Hollow, it had to be coupled with the death of an immortal to either trap her or release her fully. While this was incredibly important during season 4, it was largely abandoned during season 5, as Klaus defeated Inadu with just the death of an immortal, not needing Hayley or Hope’s blood to finish it.

Hayley’s connection to Inadu and her family was instrumental in establishing her place in supernatural history. Hayley’s lineage made Hope’s triple nature stronger, as well as explaining why she would be such a desirable target for the Hollow. Both Hayley and Hope were directly connected to the Original werewolves, and both were descended from witches, which helps explain why Hope kept her magic after becoming a vampire. The Originals often focused on the Mikaelson bloodline, but Hayley’s background provided the family with allies and enemies the same way, which should be acknowledged by viewers who tend to see Hope as her father’s daughter without acknowledging Hayley’s influence.

MORE: Legacies Completely Failed One Of The Originals’ Most Important Characters

Source link