Lovecraft Country opened the premiere episode with Atticus, known as Tic, on his way home to Chicago. After spending a few years hiding down south in Florida, a mysterious letter from his father, Montrose, brought him back. Montrose claimed he was off to find "Tic's birthright," in Lovecraft Country, in a place called Ardham. Tic's suspicions were high, not just because the letter didn't sound like his father, but also because those places don't exist outside of H.P. Lovecraft's fantasy novels. But Montrose was right about Tic heritage, which was passed down from his ancestor, Hannah. But who is Hannah on Lovecraft Country? Let's discuss.
Warning: Spoilers for Lovecraft Country Episode 2 follow. Ardham turned out to be a small village, overlooked by the giant Ardham Manor. When Tic, his Uncle George, and his friend Leti arrived, they were treated as heirs to the manor born by the Braithwhites, who own it. But the place is strange. George and Leti each found their hearts' desires in their rooms: books and clothes, and visions of loved ones. Moreover, they were unable to remember the horrors that occurred on the way there. But Tic was strangely unaffected; he remembered everything, and the house did not fool him.
It turned out, the house is full of magic, and the Braithwhites are wizards. The original builder of the house, Titus Braithwhite, was a powerful sorcerer, and the current owner, Samuel, and his daughter Christina, who are distant cousins, possess those abilities too.
But they need Tic. Unlike them, Tic is a direct descendant of Titus, the great-great-grandson of the only survivor of the great fire that burned Ardham to the ground — Hannah, who was a slave in the house.
Like many Black women forced into slavery in the 1800s, Hannah was regularly treated not just as an unpaid servant, but also raped. From the time the United States closed its ports to outside slave trade from overseas, it was customary for slaveowners to sexually abuse the slave women in their house, which is apparently what the fictional Titus Braithwhite did in the show's lore. When Titus' spell to open the gateway to Eden failed and the house burst into flame, Hannah, pregnant with Titus' child, was the only one to make it out alive.
Now, Samuel wants to use Tic to recreate Titus' spell and open the gate to Eden. As Titus' only living heir, Tic is a far more powerful warlock than anyone else in The Order of the Ancient Dawn. This is his birthright, though he has no idea how to use his abilities.
In Episode 2, Samuel forced Tic to agree to complete the ceremony, which would have most likely taken his life. But Hannah's ghost wasn't about to have any of that. The moment Samuel's spell began to falter, she appeared to Tic. Somehow, her presence guided him to seize the magic himself and throw it back in Samuel's face, turning him and the rest of the Order in the room to stone, and then sand.
As the spell broke, the house around Tic started to crumble. Hannah broke into a run, and Tic followed her. He retraced the same steps she once took to escape to freedom as those who owned her died. Tic burst from the house alive, just before it collapsed entirely, saved by his ancestors, still watching over him.
Lovecraft Country continues on Sundays at 9 p.m. ET on HBO.