P. Baxter was a powerful witch of the Warren line of Witches. She was the daughter of Redmond Baxter and Philippa Halliwell, wife of Gordon Johnson, and the mother of Penny Halliwell, and hence the great-grandmother of the Charmed Ones. Baxter died in December 1970, and was reincarnated three years later as Piper Halliwell, her second great-granddaughter.
Baxter possessed the power to slow down the movement of molecules so that time appeared to be slowed down. She activated her power by flicking her hands at whatever or whoever she wished to slow down.
In 1898, Baxter's parents built what was referred to, by Beth Whittlesey, as "a masterpiece" of a house on Prescott Street in San Francisco in order to keep evil from taking control of the Nexus located underneath the building. As the house was completed when Baxter was one, she presumably grew up in it. When the house burned down because of the fires of the 1906 earthquake, Baxter and her husband, Gordon, rebuilt it and raised their own family there, thus keeping it (and the Nexus) in the protective custody of the Halliwell line.
At some point in her life, Baxter met a man whom she fell in love with. However, she eventually broke up with him in favor of another man named Gordon Johnson. She and Gordon married, though Baxter had a brief affair with her former lover before their marriage. She and her new husband lived in her parents' house. Although Johnson was a mortal, he accepted the fact he was married to a witch.
At an uncertain time, Baxter's maternal cousins, P. Bowen and P. Russell, moved into the house, where they lived for several years. They presumably fought demons and warlocks together, as did the rest of their family. There are two passages in the novel House of Shards describing some of the odd happenings on the street (thanks to their magic) during this time.
In the 1920s, alcohol was prohibited in the United States. Disagreeing with it, Baxter held a speakeasy at her and Gordon's house. She employed Jake Larson as the bartender, while her husband entertained the guests by playing the piano in a small band, Russell divined the future and made potions, and Bowen made use of her career as a professional photographer.
Magic appeared to have been practiced openly at the speakeasy, as Russell made potions and cast spells for other people, and even offered to curse people for others. Baxter also used her power in the open at least once, though in a life-threatening situation.
Bowen and Baxter soon came to learn that Russell's boyfriend, Anton, was an immortal warlock who had seduced her into turning evil, and hoped to steal the other two cousins' powers. After several unsuccessful attempts to sway her back to good, Baxter and Bowen decided to kill her and curse her future-lives to die as well, as they could not risk her and Anton joining forces in any life. Baxter was charged with obtaining the curse.
On February 17th, 1924, Baxter gave the curse to Bowen, and the two planned to use it on her. The same day, Russell refused to talk to them, saying that she was "done talking."
Later on, Baxter was watching Gordon play when she saw her ex-boyfriend in the hallway. She told him that she was married and could not be with him anymore, but he continued to grab her sexually. After saying that that was not like him, he revealed that he was Anton in a glamour. He put his hand over her mouth to stop her screaming, but she managed to. After he pulled her to the ground and began to choke her, she tried to use her power on him, but he broke free. Finally, she kicked him in the groin, incapacitating him, stood up and dropped the Grandfather Clock on him.
- Phoebe Halliwell: "Uh, I'm not who you think I am. I'm a different me. A me from another lifetime where we've involved into sisters. Good sisters. H-happy sisters."
- Baxter: "Must have cut off too much blood to her brain."
- Bowen: "Must have."
- — Baxter and Bowen dismissing Phoebe's claims.[src]
Baxter then went into the other room, where she saw Bowen wrestling with Russell on the floor. Baxter got down to help Bowen, and began to strangle her evil cousin. However, Phoebe Halliwell, Russell's reincarnation, then came into possession of Russell's body and escaped their grip using martial arts before running upstairs. Baxter believed that she was luring the two of them into another trap, but they went upstairs anyway after Bowen's cryokinesis power missed.
After going upstairs and finding nothing, Baxter and Bowen doubled back downstairs and found "Russell" there. Baxter began to strangle her again and the cousins recited the curse, which killed her. However, Phoebe had left the body and returned to her own just in time. What the cousins did with the body, or what they said to cover it up, is unknown.
In 1943, thirteen years later, Baxter had a son who was named Gordon Johnson II in honor of his father. Unlike his sister, he was non-magical. The family tree says that he later married Francine Bowen, but this is unlikely as he would have been 13 at the time, and Francine died only a few years later.
Baxter died in December, 1970, meaning she may have met her eldest great-granddaughter, Prudence "Prue" Halliwell. She was reborn, not long after, as Prue's younger sister, Piper Halliwell. It was said that Piper's half-sister, Paige Matthews, inherited Baxter's eyes and good-looks.
Powers and Abilities
- Basic Powers
- Spell Casting: The ability to cast spells and perform rituals.
- Potion Making: The ability to brew potions.
- Scrying: The ability to locate a person or object by the use of a scrying crystal, a map, and sometimes other tools.
- Mediumship: The ability to see and commune with spirits of the dead.
- Active Powers
- Molecular Deceleration: Baxter possessed the power to slow down molecules of a person or object to the point that they appeared to be slowing down in time.
- High Resistance: The ability to possess high resistance to magical and physical harm.
Baxter appeared to be a stern and intimidating woman, brave enough to hold a speakeasy as a protest in the 1920s, though she was less severe compared to her cousin, Bowen. She was also not completely faithful to her husband either, as she had an affair with another man before they were married, and ended the affair only after the wedding. However, she did seem to truly love her husband, as seen when she watched him playing the piano with a heartfelt smile just before Anton attacked her, and Gordon attacked him back afterwards in retaliation.
- "She was a real looker..."
- —Penny on her mother.[src]
To Phoebe Halliwell, Baxter looked exactly like her sister, Piper because she recognized her soul. Baxter was depicted as having brown hair and eyes, and wore black clothes. According to Baxter's daughter, Penny, she looked very similar to Paige Matthews, her youngest great-granddaughter. Baxter is also similarly described in the short story Old Friend from the novel The Warren Witches.
The two lived together at 1329 Prescott Street, and Baxter had presumably told Gordon about her true identity as a witch. Gordon risked his life trying to save Baxter from Anton, despite not having a chance.
- Ex-boyfriend: Baxter had an affair with a man while married to Gordon. She ended the affair and swore to never betray her husband again. In order to kill Baxter, Anton glamoured into him to catch her off-guard. She made it known that she did not have feelings for him anymore, and did not want to betray her husband. Baxter's ex was reincarnated as Leo Wyatt, her own future-life's husband.
- P. Bowen: Baxter's relationship with her cousin, P. Bowen, is largely unknown. They lived together in the 1920s, and joined forces against Russell in 1924. They presumably remained living together after they killed Russell, as Bowen's camera was left in the attic which she would be unlikely to do. Despite being cousins, the two did not show much affection for each other in February, 1924. They very rarely made eye contact, and spoke very seriously and one-toned to each other. However, this may have been simply because of their situation with Russell. In the short story Family History, they are shown as having a very positive, friendly relationship.
- P. Russell: Baxter's relationship with Russell was not a positive one. Though they most likely had at least an acquaintanceship for Baxter to allow Russell to live with her and her husband at their house, their relationship was minimal during 1924. Though, Russell was briefly hesitant to hurting both Baxter and Bowen, she was convinced by Anton to kill Bowen and leave Baxter to him. Baxter herself later exclaimed "God forgive us" before casting the curse on her, implying she may have loved her deep down despite what she became, or simply did not want to kill a family member.
- Children: Baxter's relationship with her children—Penny and Gordon II. Penny described Baxter as "a looker", implying she presumably had a good relationship with her. However, Baxter appeared to not live in the Manor during Penny's "hippie-days" while she was married to Allen Halliwell.
Notes and Trivia
- It is unknown what Baxter's first name is, other than that it begins with a "P". In the Spanish dub, Bowen referred to her as "Piper". However, this cannot be considered canon, as it was most likely a mistake.
- Baxter's running of her speakeasy was likely what influenced her future-life to be manager at the restaurant, Quake, own her own nightclub, P3, and eventually her own restaurant, Halliwell's.
- Some fans believe Baxter possessed Molecular Immobilization, however there was not enough evidence to prove this in the one scene in which she used her power. This was also invalidated in Old Friend from the Charmed short story collection, The Warren Witches, as P. Baxter had slowed down molecules instead completely immobilizing them.
- ↑ As Piper Halliwell
- ↑ Philippa is a novel character only.
- ↑ Family tree seen in Pardon My Past.
- ↑ Is There a Woogy in the House?.
- ↑ Mentioned by his daughter, Christina Larson.
- ↑ The actuality of this is often debated about in the Charmed fandom, as it was stated in the actual series that no men were born into the Warren family until Wyatt Halliwell. The information about Gordon Johnson II comes from the Family Tree prop, which seems to have an amount of false information.