Knight of Hell
|Episode(s)|| 5.13 The Song Remains the Same (mentioned)|
6.20 The Man Who Would Be King (mentioned)
9.11 First Born
As a human, Cain was an ancestor of Henry and John Winchester, and thus of Sam and Dean Winchester. He and his younger brother Abel passed onto the Winchester their ability to successfully bear the archangels Michael and Lucifer as vessels. Lucifer tried to corrupt Abel to turn him into his "pet." In order to stop this, Cain made a deal so that Abel's soul would go to Heaven and in exchange Cain's would go to Hell. Lucifer agreed on the condition that Cain kill Abel. Cain did so with an animal's jawbone, which became the First Blade. Lucifer then marked Cain with a brand that gave the First Blade its power, and made Cain into a demon, the first of the Knights of Hell. Cain trained and led his fellow Knights, and they wrecked havoc on Earth.
Eventually, Cain fell in love with and married a woman named Colette. She forgave him for his past misdeeds, only asking that he never kill again. The Knights took Colette prisoner in 1863 in attempt to goad their former leader back into his old ways. This back-fired when Cain killed all the other Knights, save Abaddon, who possessed Colette and damaged her body in front of Cain by repeatedly snapping her neck. In a fit of anger, Cain tried to kill Abaddon with the First Blade as well, only for Abaddon to vacate Colette's body and trick a horrified Cain into murdering his wife. With her dying breath, Colette reminded Cain of his promise not to kill anymore, not even to gain vengeance on Abaddon. As the First Blade was indestructible, Cain threw the weapon into the ocean to honor Colette's final wish.
Powers and Abilities
- Invulnerable to Ruby's knife.
- Superhuman strength
- Can kill demons with a touch
- Can render someone mute
- Ability to transport other beings
- The First Blade
- Eating corn
Cain is first mentioned by the archangel Michael, who takes John Winchester as a temporary vessel and explains to Dean that while he is Micahel's true vessel, he has many potential vessels that are suitable to hold him because of their bloodline: "Stretching back to Cain and Abel. It's in your blood, your father's blood, your family's blood.
Castiel, when reminiscing on the early beginnings of man, mentions Cain and Abel in passing.
Crowley asks for Dean's helping in finding a weapon called The First Blade, which reputedly was sued by the archangels to kill the Knights of Hell, and is the only weapon which can kill Abaddon. Crowley knew of a demon who had located a protégé of Abaddon, who may have had information, but apparently that protege was killed by John Winchester. Searching John's Journal, Dean finds a reference to the incident and a case stored in John's Lock-up.
They find a file that indicates John was working with a hunter called Tara, when they captured and interrogated the demon. Dean and Crowley track down Tara, who reveals that the demon did mention the First Blade and the Knights of Hell. She searched the world for the blade but never found it. She has a location spell which could find it but needs Kraken essence to complete it, which Crowley is able to provide. The spell indicates the blade is in Missouri.
In Missouri, Dean and Crowley meet Cain. Cain tells them that it was he who used the First Blade to kill the Knights of Hell, and tells them to leave. They do but return when Cain is out. However, he returns just before some demons associated with Abaddon arrive, having killed Tara to find the house. Cain lets the demons inside the house, and Dean has to battle them all.
Cain decides that Dean is "worthy" of carrying the Mark of Cain in order to wield the blade. Cain transfers the mark to Dean, where it appears on his right forearm. Cain asks Dean to promise that if he gets the blade, Dean will kill him.
Cain in Lore
Cain and his younger brother Abel are the sons of Adam and Eve; Cain was a crop farmer and Abel was a shepherd. Both make offerings to God - Cain of grain and Abel of a lamb. God accepts Abel's offering, but rejects Cain's, this angers Cain and he kills his brother. When God asks Cain where Abel is, Cain replies "Am I my brother's keeper?" When God discovers the murder he puts a mark on Cain so everyone will know he is a murderer, but so that no one will kill him. Cain is banished.
Why God rejected Cain's offering, and whether Cain killed Abel out of jealousy, are subjects of much theological discussion. In some versions of the story, it is actually a dispute over who they are to marry that causes the fatal argument.
Cain in Other Media
Cain appears as a minor character in Neil Gaiman's The Sandman. In the series, Cain and his brother Abel both reside in the Dreaming, where Cain continuously murders Abel; however, Abel's death is not permanent.