- "When I looked at Jacob's father, I always felt like I was seeing two people rather than just one. There was the old man in the wheelchair with the lined face and the white smile that everyone else saw. And then there was the direct descendant of a long line of powerful, magical chieftains cloaked in the authority he'd been born with."
William "Billy" Black, Jr. is the father of Rachel, Rebecca and Jacob Black, and father-in-law of Solomon Finau. It is also possible that he is the father of Embry Call. His wife, Sarah Black, died in a car accident when Rachel, Rebecca, and Jacob were young. He resides in La Push, Washington, but is confined to a wheelchair due to diabetes. He is Charlie Swan's best friend.
Billy's grandfather was Ephraim Black, a former elder of the Quileute tribe. He inherited Ephraim's place on the tribal council and knows the tales of the origins of the Quileutes. Since no vampires were around when he was young, he never phased.
Billy Black has lived in La Push his entire life. One of his earliest childhood memories is being held in his father's arms while he watched his wrinkled, stooped grandfather explode into a giant russet-colored wolf along with his two best friends, Quil Ateara II and Levi Uley. All three seemed ancient to Billy; their wolf forms were ancient, too, with grizzled muzzles and stiff joints. Yet Billy remembers them making a noise like laughter as they went for one last run through the woods.
Because of this experience, Billy grew up in a different world than most - a world where magic was absolutely real and lived in his blood. It was a world where evil was real, too. As a teenager, Billy always hoped a vampire would be foolish enough to cross Quileute land. He dreamed of being a powerful wolf, a savior to his tribe. Around the time he turned twenty he realized that he would never have the chance to be a superhero, and for many years that was hard thing for him to accept. Most of the time, however, he was happy. After all, it was a good thing that vampires had learned to stay away from La Push. He became a man with a family, and he learned to treasure the peace of his small town and the safety it promised his wife and daughters. When Jacob was born, he saw the curse of his wolf heritage for the first time, he fervently hoped that vampires would never trouble the Quileute tribe again. He wanted his son to have the same peaceful life that he'd had.
His wife, Sarah, died in a car accident 9 years later. Rachel and Rebecca had a very difficult time living around the memories of their mother, and both of them found ways to leave La Push as soon as they were old enough. Billy wouldn't leave; he felt like his children, his young son particularly, needed the stability of the place where they'd grown up. Billy was away working on his fishing boat so often, and he wanted Jacob to be with people he could trust. In the back of his mind, Billy always worried about accidentally taking Jacob away to a place where he might encounter vampires. The same thing could happen in La Push someday, of course, but at least then Jacob would have the support of a pack, and tribal members who understood. A few years later, Billy had to quit his job because of the progression of his diabetes. It was difficult for him to lose mobility, but it gave him more time with his children. With his daughters more active socially, it was Jacob who cared for his father most often. They became very close.
Billy was always a social person; he had many friends. Harry Clearwater and Quil Ateara IV were his closest friends, almost his brothers. They, too, grew up in a world with magic, and also spent a few years wishing for the chance to be superheroes. If the vampires had come, Harry and Quil would have been his packmates. When Quil's small boat was destroyed in a storm, killing Quil, it was hard for both Harry and Billy; if Quil had been a shape-shifter, he would have been able to survive the accident.
Billy was also close with Charlie Swan, despite the fact that Charlie could know nothing about Billy's secrets. Charlie did know about losing a wife, though not in the same circumstances, and they both had daughters who were often mysteries to their fathers. Billy and Charlie also shared a love for fishing.
When the Cullens returned to Forks, it was a dark time for the tribe. Billy knew exactly what this would mean for his son, and he mourned for the safe and commonplace life Jacob would lose. The elders had taught the histories to their sons, but the entire tribe had begun to believe that the stories were only legend. Billy had warned Jacob about the signs of the werewolf - the heat, the growth spurt, the anger - but Jacob had totally ignored him, thinking Billy no more than superstitious. Billy knew that his son was unprepared for what was coming.
Billy knew the Cullens were vampires. He had no history with them, only the takes of his grandfather, as passed to him by his father. He did not believe that the Cullens were as harmless as they presented themselves to be. He feared that without a strong pack to enforce the treaty, the Cullens would take advantage. He worried for his tribe, and for his friends in Forks. He tried to warn Charlie to stay away from the Cullens, but his warning backfired. Charlie had already taken a liking to Carlisle, and he was upset about Billy's prejudice against the newcomers. When Charlie learned that members of the Quileute tribe were boycotting the hospital, it caused a rift between Billy and Charlie for a few years.
Watching Sam deal with the blows his werewolf heritage had forced upon him, Billy was even more concerned for Jacob.
Billy is first mentioned in Twilight as having sold his old pickup truck to Charlie so that he can give it to Bella. Charlie and Billy have had disagreements over in the past, and seem to agree to disagree. After he becomes aware that Bella is dating one of the Cullens, Billy stops by on the pretense of dropping off fish fry for Charlie. When he gets a moment alone with Bella, he tries to talk her out of her relationship with Edward, informing her that the Cullen family has an "unpleasant" reputation on the reservation. Bella counters that the Cullens have done nothing to deserve it, as they have never set foot on the reservation. Her knowledge on the subject takes him off guard, and Bella says that she may be more informed than Billy himself is. He agrees this is possible, but is concerned for Charlie. Bella says that it is her business whether or not Charlie needs to be informed. Billy agrees to this, and is then forced to change the subject when Jacob enters the room.
According to Jacob, Billy reacted "over the top" after Bella became injured in Phoenix, since he assumed that Edward had something to do with Bella's injuries. At the end of the story, when Bella is at prom, Billy pays Jacob $20 to talk to her. Jacob tells Bella that Billy wants her to "please" break up with Edward. He also asks Jacob to tell her that "we'll be watching." Bella, not liking that Billy bribed his son into talking to her, but knowing that Billy means well, thanks him.
After Jacob's transformation into a wolf, Billy constantly lies to Bella on Jacob's whereabouts to protect the tribe's secret. After she realizes that Jacob is a werewolf, Billy is once again polite to her, and, during the crisis with Victoria, helps the wolves in protecting Charlie by frequently inviting him and Bella over to his house for dinner.
In Eclipse, Billy plays a larger role, since Bella desperately needs an escape and comes over more and more often to visit Jacob. She also finds out that Billy is the chief of the Quileute tribe council.
While learning the tribe's oral history at the secret bonfire, she sees in him a certain majesty and power she had always missed before. During the confrontation with the newborn vampire army, Billy keeps Charlie safe by orchestrating a fishing trip. In retrospect, Charlie comments to Bella in retrospect that Billy was very worried and distracted during, betraying Billy's concern for Jacob and the rest of the pack during the battle. His prejudice against the Cullens lessens after this allegiance.
Billy later attends Bella and Edward's wedding, and appears to have gotten over his warnings to Bella. He even seems fairly content to be there, despite considering the wedding "the worst thing that could happen to his son's best friend", as Bella puts it. He also unsuccessfully tries to talk Jacob out of attacking the Cullens. Later, Jacob, Seth and Leah break off from Sam's pack to join the Cullens when he decides to kill Bella and her unborn child. When Sam reports this, the Quileute Council, specifically Billy and Sue, support Jacob's actions, forbidding Sam and his pack to try to kill Bella. Despite this, Jacob and his pack refuse to return to La Push until Bella gives birth. Everything is resolved after Bella becomes a vampire and Jacob imprints on Renesmee Cullen, thus freeing him from his heartbreak.
It is hinted that Billy's friendship with Charlie has drifted off course after Charlie became romantically involved with Sue, the widow of their deceased best friend Harry.
Billy is heavyset, with a deeply wrinkled face and dark russet skin with black eyes. He is currently wheelchair-bound as a result of nerve damage due to complications from diabetes.
Billy is a wise Quileute elder who takes his tribe's history and legends much more seriously that some kids in the tribe believe it. He is very mistrustful of the Cullens due to the previous encounters between the Quileutes and vampires, and tried to talk Charlie and a few people out of being near them. When Bella became romantically involved with Edward Cullen, he also tried to talk her out of it without telling her how much he knew. None of his attempts succeeded.
Aside from his role in the tribe, he is a family-loving father who cares for his children more than anything. He is also mentioned to be good at carving wood figurines.
- Main article: Jacob Black
Jacob Black is Billy's only son and the youngest of his children. After his wife's unexpected passing and Rachel's and Rebecca's moving, Jacob became his sole caretaker; however, he had no complains; he enjoyed spending time with his father.
Ever since Jacob was born, Billy and his wife worried that he would become a shape-shifter like his grandfather; he expected him to phase when the Cullens moved to town.
- Main article: Charlie Swan
Charlie Swan had been Billy's longtime best friend, along with Harry Clearwater.
When Charlie married Renée, Billy was one of the few guests invited to their private wedding. They were there for each other when their wives died and left, respectively.
Their friendship seemingly took a strain when Billy tried to warn Charlie about the Cullens being dangerous. When Charlie's daughter Bella became involved with the Cullens as well, he felt it was his duty to protect her and tried to give the same warning.
His friendship with Charlie seemed to have taken a permanent change after Bella became a vampire and mothered a hybrid daughter with Edward, one of the Cullen vampires.
- New Moon
- Breaking Dawn
Behind the scenes
There has been some speculation that Billy is really Ephraim Black. Stephenie Meyer, however, has denied the truth of the idea, confirming that Billy is Ephraim's grandson.
|Ephraim Black's pack||Ephraim Black • Quil Ateara II • Levi Uley|
|Uley pack||Sam Uley • Jared Cameron • Paul Lahote • Brady Fuller • Collin Littlesea|
|Black pack||Jacob Black • Leah Clearwater • Seth Clearwater • Quil Ateara V • Embry Call|
|Ateara family||Quil Ateara III • more...|
|Black family||Billy Black • Rachel Black • Rebecca Black • Sarah Black • more...|
|Clearwater family||Harry Clearwater • Sue Clearwater • more...|
|Other characters||Kaheleha • Taha Aki • Taha Wi • The Third Wife • Yaha Uta • Yut • Utlapa • Tiffany Call • Kevin Littlesea • Emily Young • Claire Young • Solomon Finau • Kim|
|Locations||La Push, Washington • First Beach, Washington|
|Tribes||Makah tribe • Quileute tribe|
|Shapeshiftrs||Astral projection • Imprinting • Pack structure • Shape-shifter • Treaty|