Thomas Morton was the founder of Morton Court at Providence Preparatory Academy for the Advancement of the Arcane Arts (P2A4), and is also referred to as the Lord of Misrule.
Thomas Morton is by far the most mysterious of the four founders. There are myriad conflicting reports about the exact details of Morton’s life, in no small part because of Morton themself. Morton was a cryptozoologist, herbologist, explorer, and an early European eschewer of the gender binary. They traveled widely, dabbling in belief systems and adopting cultural ideologies from across the world.
By the time Morton came to America, they had accrued a significant band of followers. Morton’s followers were as unpredictable as Morton themself, prone to wild revels, dancing, pranks, and wordplay. Morton renamed their settlement Merrymount, even the name itself a pun (on mare, the Latin word for sea). Morton’s revelers were contentious among the early Puritans, mixing pagan rituals with flagrant magic in a manner the other settlers found unbecoming and disturbing.
Though Morton and Bradford did not get along (indeed, Bradford once famously marooned Morton on a small island, following a drunken argument about grammar), Bradford invited Morton to teach at his new school, hoping to convert Morton’s followers to his own path. Bradford did not succeed in conversion, but Morton’s students stayed at the school. Morton themself came and went unpredictably, sometimes vanishing for months at at time. Morton would often bring strange creatures and plants and leave them for students to experiment with and examine. One such sapling eventually grew to become the Bartering Birch; Morton staunchly refused to explain where they acquired the sapling, and its precise origins remain entirely shrouded in mystery.
In the New World, Morton at first attempted to support Mundane settlements and foster communications between them and the various First Nations tribes. They wrote a number of anthropological treatises on the First Nations, in an attempt to stave off war between them and the European settlers. Unfortunately, Morton’s work was not well-received by the settlers. Things came to a head when Morton realized that a local settlement was selling slaves, and a disappointed Morton stepped away from the Mundane world entirely.
No one knows exactly what became of Morton, but the last confirmed sighting of them at the school itself was in 1647. One theory claims that Morton attempted an ascension ritual by becoming an avatar of the Babylonian deity Tammuz. Another states that Morton fell gravely ill, but defeated Death itself in a game of cards, and won their immortality. Others say that Morton simply found a particularly nice spot in the woods behind P2A4’s campus to take a nap, and that sooner or later they’ll wake up, well-rested and ready to cause more mayhem.