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Exactly as the name implies, these guys are The Fair Folk. They're mostly divided into the warring Summer and Winter Courts, with those outside the Courts known as "wyldfae". The Fae are ruled by a Byzantine series of laws and restrictions that govern how various members of each Court can act, but they have become masters at working within these restrictions. For example, as a rule they Cannot Tell a Lie, but they're absolutely ruthless rules lawyers about Exact Words, and being in debt to a faerie is... bad, to say the least. They range in power from the relatively harmless (pixies) to the greater-than-godlike (Mother Summer and Mother Winter). Luckily for the Puny Earthlings, all Fae have an Achilles' Heel: iron and steel will burn them and cut through their magic instantly.
- Achilles' Heel:
- Iron and steel in general, which is considered the equivalent of toxic waste. Leaving iron objects in Faerie is considered a dire insult.
- Overall, the Fae are noted for having a wide range of weaknesses, some very specific, and some seemingly quite arbitrary. Getting around these weaknesses and limitations is what makes the fae so damned dangerous and such effective manipulators.
- Always Chaotic Evil: Played interestingly in regards to Winter. They're pretty much all harsh, brutal, and unforgiving owing to the nature of the power they're aligned with, but the books also plainly establish that they aren't evil in a metaphysical sense like the Fallen, Outsiders, and other demons. And then in Cold Days it turns out Winter exists to protect the rest of reality from the much, much nastier Outsiders, which blows this trope pretty much out of the water while simultaneously giving a really good explanation for why Winter fae need to be what they are.
- Balance Between Good and Evil: A very deliberate case. The violence and cruelty of the Winter Court is a Necessary Evil created to protect reality from Outsider incursions, while the Lighter and Softer Summer Court exists mainly to protect everyone else from the Winter Court.
- Balance of Power: Summer and Winter operate in a perpetual balancing act. As one gains power over the year, the other loses, until the summer solstice or winter solstice, when things move in the other direction. If one side gains an outside gain to power, the other will either seek to stop it or gain an equal amount.
- Blue and Orange Morality: Fairies are quite moral, generally speaking. Problem is, their morality is convoluted, arcane, and only occasionally intersects with regular human morality (in particular, they have very strong senses of honor and obligation, and are psychologically incapable of telling direct lies, but they have real problems with things like "empathy" and "not manipulating everyone around you for some obscure goal", and in many cases can't do a good turn for someone else without a bargain being struck). This is, in fact, the chief problem in dealing with either faction- what they promise and what you thought they promised are rarely the same thing.
- Bride and Switch: Or possibly Groom and Switch. Either way, it can happen and is usually to the misfortune of the mortal. A marriage ceremony is powerful binding agreement and if the mortal weds the fae, the fae can change the mortal to his or her desires.
- Cannot Tell a Lie: No faerie can lie. As in not being able to tell an outright falsehood. Under no circumstances, however, should that be taken to mean that they're not capable of deception by any variety of other means, including Exact Words, careful omission of important details, or phrasing that can be easily misinterpreted. Nemesis is a game-changer, giving infected faeries the ability to lie outright. It doesn't necessarily make them good at it, but since no one familiar with the fae expects them to be able to tell an outright untruth, that doesn't matter much.
- The Champion/The Dragon: Both Courts have a Knight who serve as agents for the Queens to carry out their will in the mortal world, as the Queens are unable to directly harm or kill any mortal who does not first either attack them or otherwise represent the opposing Court. The Knights are mortals given some of the power of their Queen, making them far tougher, stronger, and swifter, as well as giving them powers related to their Court (i.e. the Summer Knight gaining power related to flame, while the Winter Knight gains power related to ice). In Cold Days, it is revealed that the Winter Knight is usually an assassin. The Summer Knight, on the other hand, is simply there to stop the Winter Knight.
- The Chessmaster: Many of their plans are so incredibly complex that completely figuring out what the faeries were after the whole time is nearly impossible. The general rule of thumb is that once the fae get involved, things are about to become a whole lot more complex and problematic for everyone.
- The Chooser of The One:
- The senior Seelie and Unseelie crowns are implied to be this to the younger ones. Mab specifically chose and had trained two candidates to replace Maeve if Maeve refused to atone. Titania would have selected her own choice of Lady with the death of Aurora, had she been closer than Lily to take in the mantle.
- Any of the Courts Queens may be the chooser of the Court's Knight, though they may disagree on the best choice.
- Code of Honour: The Fae have a very strong belief in this. No fae can gain or lose freely. It must be traded for something of equal value. Lea, for instance, can only be second to Mab's power in her court because of payment in a deep fealty Lea has to Mab.
- Cold Iron: Fae cannot touch iron without pain. Well, most of them. Mother Summer and Mother Winter use an iron cutting knife.
- Combat Medic: In the battles against the Outsiders, Summer's role is this. They tend to the injured Winter soldiers. As Mother Summer noted, alliance has no meaning out here as they are all Fae protecting the world.
- Complete Immortality: The six Queens are this. Shoot them. Cut up their bodies. Make them dust in the wind and they will comeback. It may take them a few years, but to a being who can live 1,000 centuries, a decade is not much. The only two methods known to fully kill them are on a battlefield made by the Queens that allows Immortals to die, or on the night of Halloween. And even then, killing them won't stop their mantle of power from entering some woman who has a power or personality best suiting that mantle and in due time a near copy of the old Queen will be back.
- The Corruptible: For all their power and abilities, they are not above being corrupted by an ancient beyond-the-universe power known only as Nemesis. The worst part is it can befall them even when they fight it.
- The Corrupter:
- If one has too much debt owed to a fae, the fae can override the freewill of the mortal and make the mortal act as the fae wishes.
- If one marries a fae, a similar result can happen. Entering into the pact willingly, even if the mortal doesn't know the truth, will lead to the fae having severe control over the mortal.
- Further, when Jenny Greenteeth took Georgia's place at her wedding and enchanted Georgia to a mystic sleep needing Billy True Love's Kiss to wake her, if Billy kissed Jenny at the end of the ceremony, then he would have lost his power to save Georgia as his kiss would be corrupted by him wedding another.
- Cruel and Unusual Death: If you harm a Fae with iron, they will get angry. To kill one with iron is called the "iron death". And those it called friends or family will likely take harsh vengeance against the slayer.
- Dark Is Not Evil: The Winter (Unseelie) Court generally represents coldness, darkness, and death. More often than not, they are considered the "evil" ones, as they tend to enjoy the pain they cause others. That said, death is a necessary part of nature to allow others a chance to grow, darkness can be just as much a protection for those in hiding, and all of Winter fights to defend reality from the Outsiders.
- Debt Detester: The Fae, high and low, have a general dislike to a heavy degree being in the debt of any mortal as they are obliged to repay the debt. This is because they must maintain a balance. So any boon or injury must be settled with the like. However, it is a difficult thing to do if the obligation is open-ended or the action done is difficult to appraise.
- Do Not Taunt Cthulhu: Generally speaking, insulting them is, in their eyes, an attack upon them and so an injury. They will repay this injury in time. Even small ones like Toot-toot in Storm Front could do some nasty things if taunted.
- Equivalent Exchange: Fundamental to their nature. If you harm a faerie, they must harm you back. Obtain power from them, and they must gain power from you in return. If you make a deal based on something you provide then and there, you're not going to have a problem. But if you make an open-ended trade, then you're going to regret it. This is also why they don't like charity, as an act of kindness obligates them to return the favor.
- The only way around this is if they provide a "necessity", and the one instance it was granted was that it was to maintain balance between the Courts.
- Exact Words: The Fae are bound by the exact letter of their word. As long as those words are fulfilled, nothing else matters. This is magically enforced by Faerie itself. If someone makes a boast or claim with enough will behind it, Faerie will regard it as a binding promise and hold the speaker to it, with consequences for failure.
- The Fair Folk: With the Seelie and Unseelie courts ruling half the year each, the Fae of the Dresden-verse can range from kind and considerate to murderous monsters who take great pleasure in the kill. One should always be on edge near any of them, even if they appear to be your friend and want to help you.
- Feel No Pain: The blessing and curse of the Winter and Summer Knight's Mantle. The bearer feels no pain from injuries, allowing the person to go to his or her limits in a fight without fear of holding back from pain. It is also theorized by Butters that this would make a Knight easy to kill if a Queen felt healing wouldn't be worth her effort.
- Fighting a Shadow: Cold Days reveals that all of the Faerie Queens are immortal, except on Halloween and at the Stone Table. Even if blown to smithereens, they'll eventually regenerate.
- Forever War: The Winter Court against the Outsiders to protect all of reality. And The Summer Court against Winter to protect humanity.
- Friendly Enemy: Cold Days reveals that it's traditional for both Sidhe Knights to have this type of relationship, despite the Summer Knight often being murdered by his Winter counterpart. The same can be said of the Winter Sidhe that defend the Outer Gates, with Summer healing their wounds, despite existing to protect the world from Winter.
- From a Certain Point of View: One of the many ways they get around a straight answer.
- Part of their nature, as when Harry demands a straight answer from Maeve and Lily, they both give him looks of deep irritation and disgust, and it takes an obvious effort for them to reply.
- Geas: When a mortal or fae owes a sufficient debt or loyalty to a Fae, the fae can place these upon the debtor. Such as in Proven Guilty when Titania forbade and magically restricted what the Summer Lady and Knight can say to Harry.
- Human Weapon: The Winter Knight is trained to fight and survive not with any weapon in particular, like Fix's powerful sword, but rather be a weapon to ensure survival.
- I Gave My Word: The Fae are bound by their word and when they give it they cannot go against it. That said, well, using a variety of answering from a certain point of view and abusing loopholes in the wording of the contract, even the friendliest of the Fae can fulfill the promise with giving the person very little of actual substantive material.
- I Know Your True Name: Because faeries never change their essential nature, unlike humans, their true names will stay the same and always have power over them.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: For those whose names aren't known, their titles and nicknames work as well, though maybe not as effective.
- Immortality: The Fae Queens and others are this big time. Nothing done to them, whether you cut their heads off or grind them into dust, will kill them. They will come back from any assault unless one of two things is happening. First, the Queens create a realm where it can happen, such as the site of the battle in Summer Knight. Second, they can die on the night of Halloween, which lasts until the first birdsong of the next day.
- Lady of War: Queens and Ladies of Summer and Winter. All are described as wearing beautiful clothing, but come times of war, they will have out and be on the battlefields themselves. None are afraid to get their hands bloody if need be.
- Lawful Good/Lawful Evil: In-Universe. Within their own set of morals and attitudes, the Fae generally fall under these two. They are strict followers of their codes and contracts. They could no more break their word than swallow iron and expect to live happily. Regardless of their place in nature, they must be Lawful.
- The Laws and Customs of War: There is a strict set of laws and procedures every fae must abide by while in service to one of the Courts. Even their mortal knights have to obey them to some extent or suffer the consequences. These laws include rules regarding the treatment of enemy prisoners; torture is prohibited, but in turn if an enemy surrenders, they are now bound to act as a vassal of their captor.
- Light Is Not Good: The Summer (or Seelie) Court tends towards powers of growth, warmth, and light, and are often considered the "nicer" of the two. This does not mean they're "good". Take note of Mother Summer, who acts like a warm, loving grandmother and she cuddles over jars containing the deadliest plagues known to man as one would a favored pet or picture of a grandchild.
- Magical Database: If Toot's words in Cold Days of just "knowing" Winter Law and Molly's ability to access it in Cold Case are the same for all, then any vassal of their Queen will know what Mab's Law and Titania's Law are. A vassal can mentally pose the question to the Law and receive the desired information, whether it is the treatment of prisoners, or the details of a treaty and the tribute one side has agreed to in exchange for protection. There doesn't seem to be any payment for accessing this knowledge beyond simple servitude to their Queen. This also means even trying to break the Law and the Law will respond swiftly. It is unknown if human knights have the same access.
- Magically Binding Contract: Any deal they make will fall under this. Few things can get one out of a debt to a Fae, besides paying them what is owed. Transferring the debt is possible, but not even one of the Knights of the Cross has the power to undo a contract made by a free-willed mortal.
- Manipulative Bastard: Masters of controlling people through subtle means.
- Moment Killer: The Ladies' Mantles will act as needed to keep their bearers a Maiden up to and including attacking their sexual partner, even if it would be consensual on the Lady's part.
- Nature Spirit: Both sides are essentially this. Summer holds domain over fire, earth, light, and life. Winter holds domain over water, wind, darkness, and death. Every fae works under at least one of these categories.
- Politically Active Princess: The Ladies of Summer and Winter are this. They are the youngest and have the most connection to the human world. Their exact duties haven't been described but they are obligated to some tasks they must fulfill.
- Powers as Programs: The Winter Mantle contains knowledge and, perhaps, a low level sentience and understanding of things around Harry. The magic it imbues in Harry, giving him access to his new ice magic, only needed the spell names Harry chooses to give them to have access to them. Confirmed as of Shadowed Souls: Cold Case. The Winter Mantle is absolutely merciless in not only enforcing Winter's Law but in protecting its bearer from damaging it through ignorance, honest mistakes, etc.
- The Promise: The fae have a firm belief in fulfilling promises and debts. Leaders are even obligated to fulfill the promises of subordinates if the subordinate is indisposed while on duty for the leader.Lady Molly: There was a low thrum in the air as I spoke ["I can. I will."], and I felt something go click somewhere in my head. I had just made a promise.
And Winter kept its promises.
- Protectorate: In Cold Days Winter has all of reality as the thing it must protect at any cost from the Outsiders. Likewise, Summer has humanity and the rest of the world from the backlash of Winter.
- Royal "We": At formal occasions when all the court is in attendance, Mab, and presumably Titania, speak with this method.
- Rule of Three:
- Speak their name three times in a conversation, especially in the NeverNever, and they will appear.
- Repeat the same question three times to a fae and they must answer without using loopholes. But they don't like this being forced on them.
- Rules Lawyer: Within a given set of rules or laws, they will follow them and try to get what they want anyway. They will apply Loophole Abuse if one such exists, so be very clear and exact when crafting the rules. They also respect humans of any sort who can use the Sidhe rules against them successfully.
- Secret Keeper: The cleaning brownies, who tend to Harry's home from time to time, fully expect part of their payment to be done with keeping silent about their work. Harry cannot even mutter a word about how his home keeps so clean or they won't come back.
- The Soulless: Fae have a body and a spirit, but only Humans have souls. While there are some fairly deep implications in the metaphysics, in practical terms, Humans have and can exercise free will, while Fae are essentially bound to their nature. It's also why soulgazes don't work on them. It's still not necessarily safe to look into their eyes, though.
- Summon Magic: As they are beings not completely of this world, it is possible to summon them if the ritual is proper and one either knows their True Name, or their Nicknames they go by. However, they may not be the happiest of beings if they were in the middle of doing something or do not like to travel.
- Super Empowering: The nature of the Mantles of the Fay. Each mantle has within it certain instincts and powers which are infused into a person upon receiving it (willingness need not matter). Lily went from an un-chosen changeling to able to swat Harry like a bug in terms of power and strength. Harry gained knowledge of ice magic he had been lacking and just added names to the spells to use the new powers.
- Time Abyss: The Queens and the Mothers are implied to be this. Kringle and the Erlking as well. Though, as Kringle notes, they as entities may have existed but the form they have take recently could be vastly different. Kringle references himself here as there are wizards alive who did not grow up with the promise of Santa Claus (or any of his other names) coming around in the cold of winter.
- Winter Royal Lady: The Queens of the Winter Court.
Mother Summer and Mother Winter
Mother Summer and Mother Winter
Mother Winter: Simply tell us, boy. Which is more important. The body—First appearance in Summer Knight. Two sisters who are beyond ancient. The mothers of Mab and Titania, respectively. They do not live with their daughters or granddaughters, but are still well respected by everyone in both courts. Mother Summer can be seen as the progenitor of nature. She cares for the growth of all, from human development to plagues that could wipe out all other species. Mother Winter is destroyer of nature. She is the final end of it all. They both live in a small cottage together.
Mother Summer: Or the soul.
Mother Summer: Or the soul.
- Anti-Magic: Mother Winter can craft the Unraveling. It is such powerful Anti-magic, it can break even a vampire curse. She produced the Unraveling with no apparent effort, knitting it up as she spoke with Harry.
- Armor-Piercing Question: The above quote is what they ask Harry in Summer Knight. They were impressed when he said it was a stupid question because it wasn't a simple matter.
- Balance Between Good and Evil: Mother Summer represents the power of creation and life, Mother Winter explicitly calls herself "the destroyer". It's simply their nature and don't hold it against one another, and they are even friendly with each other.
- Big Good: Like their daughters, they too have tasks and duties about ensuring the Outsiders do not destroy reality. And they will do what is needed to ensure they will not win.
- Fight Off the Kryptonite: Mother Winter is the only Fae seen to not only hold an iron cleaver with no trouble, she can turn it to rust. As Mother Summer used the cleaver as well, presumably, she too could overcome it.
- Friendly Enemy: Demonstrated in miniature when Harry first meets them; as they are of Summer and Winter, they have their opposing views on most everything. As Mother Summer sweeps up some dirt, Mother Winter cites the foolishness in this as the dirt will just come back. That said, they do care for each other and tend to the other when their strength is gone at the solstice of the other.
- Hidden Heart of Gold: According to Mother Summer, the three Winter Queens are this. Each one has the capacity to love and feel affection. It's just their hearts are bound in Winter cold. But it's still there because you need to have a heart in order to have it frozen.
- Hope Bringer: Mother Summer, the Progenitor of Life, assures Harry he can choose to resist the pull of the Winter Mantle and remain himself. Her words also seem to imply any mortal who is given the Mantle of the Sidhe has the same choice.
- I Have Many Names: Generally, they are just referred to as Mother Summer and Mother Winter. No other moniker is said of them. When Harry chose to try and summon Mother Winter, he invoked the names Atropos and Skuld in his ritual, one of the Fates of Classical Mythology and a Norn of Norse Mythology. There is a third name she would have answered to but it isn't said. Skin Game suggests that the name may be Hecate.
- Mind Probe: Both are more than capable of reading a mortal's mind who comes into their cottage, even if the mortal isn't bound to any court. The probe is so soft, gentle, and quick, the target is likely to not notice.
- Never Mess with Granny: Despite looking like old ladies, these two have power likely equal to the Archangels. Note that Uriel admits in Skin Game he has the power to destroy galaxies, which seriously raises the estimations of the Mothers' power.
- The Philosopher: They like asking deep, inquisitive questions to see what sort of person is before them.
- Solitary Sorceress: The two Queen Mothers live in (what seems to Harry) a cottage in an extremely isolated part of the Nevernever.
- Tough Love: Mother Winter to Mab. While Winter cold freezes much of their hearts a bit, the most human part of these women remains unfrozen and allows Mab and Mother Winter to know love. Their ability to act on it, however, is hindered and they must use roundabout ways.
- Wise Beyond Their Years: One of the best ways to impress the Mothers is to be this. They even consider Einstein to be a sage.
The Unseelie Court (Winter)For Sir Harry, see his entry under Harry and Harry's Household.
Mab, Queen of Air and Darkness
Mortal brute. Whatever your past, whatever your future, know this: I am Mab, and I keep my bargains. Question my given word again, ape, and I will finish freezing the water in your eyes.The Queen — i.e. the central ruler, more powerful than the Lady but less so than the Mother, as well as the most visible face — of the Winter Court of Faerie. More so than any other high-ranking fae (except perhaps for the Leanandsidhe) she has a tendency to pop up in Harry's life at the very moments he doesn't want her around. Which is pretty much all the time. Her daughter Maeve was the Winter Lady.
- Action Mom: Mab is a skilled magic user and fighter, and directed her forces during the war in Summer Knight.
- Affably Evil: For a very weighted term of "affable". She will be quite calm and polite as she freezes the water in your eyes.
- An Ice Person: As part of her core power.
- Asskicking Equals Authority: It's rather unclear whether it's this or Authority Equals Asskicking, and may be a combination, but it's clear that Mab is powerful; as Jim Butcher put it, there's a reason why when Mab wrote the accords and told the various supernatural nations to abide by them, they listened.
- Barrier Maiden: Turns out this is a big part of the Winter Queen's job. She and her armies do the lion's share of the work protecting the Outer Gates.
- Batman Gambit: In Skin Game she, Marcone and Hades jointly execute one, years in the making, to get revenge on Nicodemus for his plot in Small Favor. It works to a breathtaking degree.
- Big Entrance: She loves pulling these off. Whether it's emerging from a snowstorm, or arriving by trumpets that sound like the player were being beaten with a salted lash, her entrances are almost always noteworthy. Summed up best in a conversation by Harry.Titania: Do you know what my sister believes in?
Harry: Flashy entrances?
- Big Good: Once you get past the scheming, ruthlessness and alien sense of morality. As Queen of the Winter Fae, Mab is one of the foremost defenders of reality. Much of the series is really a play by Mab to protect all of existence.
- Black Comedy: She seems to like it, or at least will indulge in it from time to time. She does call the entity inside Harry this despite knowing that the "parasite" is a spiritual entity born of Lash and Harry's love, in short a fetus.
- Brainwashed and Crazy: What many of the mortals (and some of the other Fae) suspect has happened to her in the later books after she takes the Black Athame from Lea. Though it turns out this was a Red Herring.
- The Chessmaster: Deserves special mention. In Skin Game she manages to outplay Nicodemus himself.
- Cold-Blooded Torture: Literally, being the Winter Queen, and she is a master of inflicting agonies upon people, such as what she did to Lloyd Slate. In her own words:
- Color-Coded for Your Convenience: Her hair and clothes are normally white, silver, or pale shades of blue, purple or green as befits the Winter Queen. When she's about to fight or kill someone, they are always black.
- Costume Porn: Her outfits are generally laced with sapphires, opals, and other breathtaking gems. That said, when she wears black, expect bodies to fall.
- Curb-Stomp Battle: Given how quickly Lily's forces and Maeve's forces capitulate to her order and Lily and Maeve only stand in silent defiance, all know this would result if they honestly tried attacking her.
- Dark Is Not Evil: Mab may be ruthless, but everything she does is to protect reality from the Outsiders.
- Did You Just Romance Cthulhu?:
- Mab once laid with an Austrian composer who died at a young age, and gave birth to her daughters Maeve and Sarissa.
- Mab has sex with Harry as part of his initiation into being her Knight. That said, it was in his head, as his body hadn't left where it was, so he is unsure what to call it, besides not being sex. One cannot make love to a hurricane.
- Deal with the Devil:
- She plays the devil side and keeps making offers to Harry to become her Knight. He keeps turning them down... and occasionally suffers for it. As of Changes, he took her offer.
- Ages ago when Winter was taking over watching the Outer Gates, the transition wasn't a kind one and she needed to make some deals. One was with Anduriel, Nicodemus' Fallen partner, and the source of her debt to Anduriel in Skin Game.
- The Dreaded: Mab is feared by many. Even those who call her a close ally, like Kringle, are wary of her terrible pride and the wrath that flows from wounding her pride.
- Due to the Dead: With Demonreach's permission, she buries Maeve and Lily on the island.
- Eye Scream: When Harry got a little too smart-assed, she froze the water in his eyes. Ow?
- The Fair Folk: Queen of one half of the land.
- Fate Worse Than Death: What she does to her treasonous Winter Knight, Lloyd Slate.
- God Save Us from the Queen!: Considering her Cold-Blooded Torture note and her ruthless actions for completing a deal, she has all the earmarks of this trope. This however isn't the full story as she must be this cold and ruthless in order to be able to fight the ancient force Nemesis and the Outsiders attempting to destroy all of reality.
- Hidden Depths: In Cold Days, Mab reveals to Dresden that she used to be human, and does love her daughters, to the best she is able."I was mortal once, you know," she said, very quietly.
- I Gave My Word: More than any Fae seen, she takes this deadly seriously. If one even dares to hint she might renege on a promise, she will make the doubter suffer.Mab: I am Mab. The stars will rain from the sky before Mab fulfills not her word.
- It's All My Fault: At the end of Cold Days as she stares down Maeve after Lily's death and Sarissa becoming the Summer Lady, Mab accepts that everything that has happened, specifically allowing Maeve to live for as long as she did, is her fault. She loves her daughter too much to stop her. She also takes responsibility for what is about to happen soon after.
- Jerkass Has a Point: Though one would be a fool to call her this directly, Harry concedes she is right about one thing. If Harry kills her in Cold Days after Molly became the Winter Lady, it would force Molly to become the Winter Queen with all the duties and limits therein.
- Knowledge Broker: Mab holds a large amount of information, but keeps it close to her chest. The price is usually steep. For Harry, her asking price for a very long time was that he would become her Knight.
- Lap Pillow: Played for creepy in Ghost Story, when Harry wakes up to find a "cadaverously-thin" Mab doing this.
- Loved I Not Honor More: A familial love. Her duties as Queen put a deep strain on her relationship with Maeve. She loves her daughter, but cannot truly express it openly. And, as The Needs of the Many shows, Mab will sacrifice being a kind and loving mother to protect reality.
- Makes Us Even: In Skin Game she owes a debt to Anduriel and part of paying that back is loaning Harry to him. Word of Jim says Mab was working down to Nicodemus's debt. The bigger ones were done first.
- Mama Bear:
- The reason for her rage after the assault on Arctis Tor was because she realized that Maeve had been corrupted by Nemesis.
- On first reading, in Cold Days she turns all black at the sight of blood being spilled at her formal gala. When it is later revealed the one injured is her daughter, this may have played as another reason for her hatred in that moment.
- Meaningful Name: The origin of her name "Medb(h)" is Celtic for "She who intoxicates".
- Names to Run Away from Really Fast: If her name alone isn't enough, try on her titles for size: "The Queen of Air and Darkness" for starters. Incidentally, her name comes from a line in Romeo and Juliet and the title is from, appropriately enough, Celtic mythology.
- Name's the Same: In-Universe, with her daughter Maeve. Mab comes from the Celtic "Medb(h)." This was sometimes Anglicized into "Maeve."
- The Needs of the Many: Her duties in protecting reality and all of existence come first in pretty much every situation. She will sacrifice everything, whether the human race or even herself, to protect all of reality.
- Not Hyperbole: Several times throughout Skin Game, Harry considers screwing over Nicodemus early, before realizing that Mab would crucify him if he did. Then on second thought, he realizes that not only is she quite likely to stick him up on a cross, it would be a mercy compared to what she did to Lloyd Slate.
- Not So Above It All: While Mab has a well-earned reputation for being ruthless, cold, and all business, she has a few guilty pleasures. She likes Big Entrances, getting the last word in, and she has her daughter, Sarissa acting as her liaison to modern culture, which includes watching select movies and trips to Disneyland.
- Not So Different: From Titania. Both are loving mothers to their daughters and want no harm to come to them. They also knew their child had been claimed by Nemesis and couldn't bring their hand down to stop them. Where Mab departs from Titania is that she explicitly orders Harry to kill Maeve when a critical moment is just days away.
- Offing the Offspring: Decides to do this by proxy. In Cold Days, her first mission for her new Winter Knight, Harry Dresden, is to kill her daughter Maeve.
- Harry tries to escape his deal with Mab by setting up a Thanatos Gambit. But he never expected Mab to team up with Demonreach and the mysterious parasite to bring him back to life.
- In Cold Days, she out-gambits Maeve as well mainly by ensuring she had a back-up to one gambit, and she understands The Power of Love.
- In Skin Game, she does it again, working with Marcone and Hades to ensure that not only do powerful holy relics end up outside Hades' vault, ready to be used for the fight against the Outsiders, but also managing to ruin Nicodemus's reputation in the process and leaving him with the Holy Grail, which it's theorized he didn't actually want.
- Power Incontinence: When she's pissed off enough, the mere sound of her voice can severely injure or kill whoever she's talking to. This is why she uses a go-between to speak for her in Small Favor.
- The Power of Love: Played perversely straight. Mab understands and respects this human emotion, probably more than any other emotion.Mab: So many terrible things are done for love. For love will men mutilate themselves and murder rivals. For love will even a peaceful man will go to war. For love, man will destroy himself, and that right willingly.
- Furthermore, while Thomas is a near-immortal vampire, the fact he loves Justine so deeply is reason enough to consider him mortal enough to offer him the Mantle of the Winter Knight, should something untoward happen to Harry.
- Pride: Kringle describes there being a terrible pride within her. He knows she won't bend. Ever. And if Harry had done what he did in Cold Days (twice threatened her life and called her out on all her plotting) and there was a witness, Mab would have killed him, although since he had the brains to do it in private this time around her reaction was mixed with appreciation that she finally had a Knight with the stones to be worth the irritation.
- The Promise: The Fae have a firm belief in fulfilling promises and debts. For this reason when Harry calls his godmother in Dead Beat, Mab appears in for Lea, who was infected with Nemesis. Mab has detained her but not killed her as she is still useful.
- Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: In Cold Days, she stops both Lily and her force, and Maeve and her force with such a sentence.Mab: Cease. This. Rudeness. At once.
- Sink-or-Swim Mentor: Like many Winter Fae. Take her rehabilitating Harry in Cold Days, for example, where she tried to kill him once a day, every day, for the entirety of his recovery after waking from his coma. In her own words, she has no use for weakness (and it provides useful training in channeling his magic without tools).
- Speak of the Devil:
- Say her name three times anywhere in Faerie (or a summoning circle), and she must appear.
- Conversely, Mab avoids doing this herself by never calling on Archangels or Fallen Angels by their proper names, only a title.
- The Spock:
- According to Titania, Mab is the far more rational, mathematical, cold-blooded of the two.
- According to her mother, Mother Winter, Mab is The McCoy as she won't personally kill her own child who was infected with an Outsider (though in comparison to Mother Winter, even the Trope Namer is The McCoy by comparison.
- Tough Love: Mab to her daughters. While Winter cold freezes much of their hearts, the most human part of these women remains unfrozen and allows Mab to know love. Their ability to act on it, however, is hindered and she must use roundabout ways.
- Villains Out Shopping: In Cold Days, we learn that she went to Disneyland with her daughter Sarissa.
- Walk on Water: Mab, Queen of Air and Darkness, can manifest and stand on water.
- Was Once a Man: By her own admittance, she used to be a human. Presumably, this applies to Titania as well, since the two bear sister Mantles.
- Wham Line: In Cold Days she says, "I was once mortal, you know."
- Xanatos Gambit: In Skin Game Harry notes that while Mab might give him a hard mission, she would never set things up so that if Harry failed she would get taken down too. Mab would come out on top, hands clean of any involvement in Harry's death. Not only would his many allies not come after her, but she might be able to recruit one of them as a new Knight.
I think it might be wise for you to indulge me. I simply go mad when someone ruins a good party mood.The Winter Lady, Mab's heir to the title of Queen of Air and Darkness. Kind of a bitch. Twin sister of Sarissa. In Cold Days, it's revealed she became an agent of Nemesis and refused to be cured of the corruption. She killed Lily and was killed by Karrin. Her mantle was taken over by Molly.
- An Ice Person: A sip of lemonade turns to ice in her mouth. Considering that she had tried to seduce Harry not even two minutes earlier, Harry realizes that it was probably a very good thing that he turned down sex.
- Anything That Moves: Twisted about. While Maeve has the desires to have her way with anything, if she should act on it the Mantle will defend itself and viciously attack her would be sexual partner before they get beyond kissing.
- Astonishingly Appropriate Appearance: An Ice Person with glacier-hair? Textbook example.
- Ax-Crazy: Oh boy. Not only is she one of the Winter Sidhe and therefore vicious by nature, but according to Sarissa she literally has a form of congenital dementia that makes her even more unstable than normal.
- Bad Liar: An odd case. She becomes capable of lying due to Nemesis, but because she has no practice at it, her lies tend to be very blatant. However, they still work because nobody expects a faerie to be able to lie. Once people start to realize she can, her whole plan starts to fall apart.
- Batman Gambit: Manipulates Lily into helping her, and exploits Harry's distrust of Mab and Lily's reputation to turn Harry's attention away from her — it would have worked, too, if not for Harry realizing the story didn't quite add up.
- Bare Your Midriff: Her first appearance has her wearing a shirt that she cut in half to wear.
- The Caligula: Her court is rather more debauched than her mother's, and after taking her job Molly grumpily tells Dresden that she has tons of work to do because Maeve was always letting it pile up to waste time in revelry.
- Can't Have Sex, Ever: Although we didn't see it directly during her lifetime, the Winter Maiden must be a maiden, and the Mantle of the Winter Maiden will work to ensure this, with violence if need be. Maeve was notable in that she had a lot of lust, but could only really act out on it indirectly.
- She likes to tease Harry with a chance at her, but he's quick to shoot her down. The first time he turned her down, shortly afterwards he noticed her lemonade had turned to ice in her mouth, making him glad he did.
- Cannot Tell a Lie: Subverted, when under the influence of Nemesis.
- Combat Pragmatist: She justifies not coming to Harry's aid sooner in Summer Knight with "If I had, it'd have been a fair fight. And I try to avoid those." In Cold Days she kills Lily with a gun.
- Didn't See That Coming:
- At the end of Cold Days she had planned on her mother showing up but not being able to stop her directly and was about to kill Harry, to ensure he couldn't kill her. She didn't think some vanilla mortal named Murphy would have a second gun on her ankle and shoot with such accuracy.
- Also at the end of Cold Days Maeve didn't see what Lea was doing with Molly as relevant to her plots against Mab and damning Sarissa to the Summer Court. She didn't realize Mab had Molly prepared as a back-up to Sarissa, in the event something did happen to Sarissa. So when Maeve died, her Mantle did not pass to some potential Nemesis infected soul, but Molly Carpenter.
- Evil Feels Good: Basically her response when Sarissa says Mab can heal her from the influence of Nemesis.Maeve: I am strong, Sarissa. Stronger than I have ever been. Here, now, stronger than she is. Why should I want to be healed of that?
- Frozen Fashion Sense: Notably averted. Unlike most Sidhe, who wear fine and archaic clothing, Maeve has a wardrobe full of modern clothing that somebody her apparent age would wear, with a particular emphasis to show off her body of course.
- Green-Eyed Monster: The reason she let herself stay as Nemesis' pawn is because deep down, she is jealous that her mother pretty much ignores her in favor of her sister.
- Hair-Trigger Temper: In her first appearance, she is shown to be quick to anger at the slightest insult. Challenges to her authority are a good means of triggering one as well.
- Heart Is an Awesome Power: She has the ability to lie thanks to Nemesis. This is physically impossible for a Fae to do so knowingly.
- Humanity Is Infectious: Worries about this, due to what happened to Aurora, and also regarding Mab's apparent insanity. However, at this time she was likely under Nemesis' influence and should be taken with some salt.
- Interplay of Sex and Violence: Her descriptions of sex tend to involve lots of destruction.
- It's Personal: When the Alphas and Harry killed Tigress, a ghoul assassin Maeve liked, she set her maiden Jenny Greenteeth to not only destroy Billy and Georgia but Harry and Karrin too.
- Jackass Genie: A man in Summer Knight apparently said he would die to play music well. Maeve grants that literally.
- Jerkass: Oh Hell Yes. She can be petty and abusive to anyone just for kicks.
- Killed Off for Real: By Murphy. She had it coming to be honest.
- Literal Genie: See the Jackass Genie example.
- Logical Weakness: The power of her Mantle is tied with the title of Maiden. Should she become a mother, it would shatter the power inside her.
- Manipulative Bastard: Part of her role as a Fae and Winter Lady. However, special mention must go to her actions leading to the climax of Cold Days, when she manipulated Lily into helping her attack Demonreach.
- Master of Illusion: In Cold Days, she uses magic to alter what Harry says to Lily, driving her into an Unstoppable Rage. And this is while she is also attacking Demonreach.
- Meaningful Name: Maeve is a form of the name "Medbh", which means "she who intoxicates". That would sum up her general tactics regarding Dresden.
- Name's the Same: In-Universe, with her mother Mab. Mab comes from the Celtic "Medb(h)". This was sometimes Anglicized into "Maeve".
- Obfuscating Stupidity: Just because she acts like a psychotic dilettante nymphomaniac doesn't mean she isn't a dangerous and intelligent plotter.
- Older Than They Look: Maeve is consistently described as looking old enough to be tempting but young enough to make one feel guilty for thinking said thoughts. This is a facade, as she is easily centuries old and fully aware of the effect it has.
- Pint-Sized Powerhouse: Woman of average height. One of the top ten fairies in existence.
- Politically Active Princess: She is implied to have been this for a time, until she started forgoing her duties these past 150 years. She still turns up at certain functions, like making war against Summer or when Lily calls her in Proven Guilty.
- The Power of Love: Unlike Mab, Maeve is dismissive of this power. For example, she didn't consider what would happen when trying to kill Harry Dresden in front of Karrin Murphy.
- The Pornomancer: She's able to tempt damn near anyone out of their pants. The fact that Harry (a human) can resist her drives her into out-and-out shock.
- Rebellious Princess: She is more than happy to make some chaos for Mab's court. Before becoming infected with Nemesis, she has over 150 years of backlog work. After her being infected by Nemesis, she gains the ego to openly challenge Mab in Mab's personal court.
- Smug Snake: She generally gives an air of confidence and pride over those she feels are beneath her.
- Unskilled, but Strong: When Will is made nervous by the waves of cold pouring off of her as she does magic, Harry points out that isn't an indicator of power, it's a sign that she's not controlling her magic properly. Still the Winter Lady though. And it could have been an act, as Elaine heavily implies.
- The Vamp: Ten times out of ten, she will use her sexual appeal for malevolent reasons. While an argument can yet be made that Maeve isn't exactly evil, Maeve does lean more towards outright evil rather than being simply cold and merciless like her mother.
- When she is possessed by Nemesis, this trope comes into full effect. She's frequently trying to seduce Harry into her service rather than her mother's, and with her power over the Harry's Mantle, it comes close to working.
- Victoria's Secret Compartment: While wearing what was essentially a bikini and apparently unarmed, she pulls out a small-caliber pistol. Harry had no idea where she kept it.
- Villain Ball: She doesn't have Murphy searched in Cold Days and then tries to kill Harry Dresden in front of her. She also dismisses Molly's training with Lea could have resulted in a second backup to the mantle of a Queen of Faerie.
- Walking Wasteland: Flowers wither and freeze in her presence, which provides a counterpoint to the Summer Ladies.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Her hair is in dreadlocks, and every lock is dyed a different color, mostly blues, greens, and purples, in order to look like a glacier.
Lady Molly Carpenter
Lady Molly Carpenter
"Not everyone is so far over the edge they can't come back. Sometimes people just . . . just get lost. They just need someone to show them how to come back."Michael and Charity's oldest child, introduced as a wide-eyed preteen who gawked at Harry's every appearance; she soon develops into a rebellious teenager . . . with a talent for mental and illusion magic. She dresses like a goth and normally has multicolored hair, primarily because it drives Charity crazy. Her "full" name is Margaret Katherine Amanda Carpenter.As the results of the machinations of the Fae, Molly was turned from reformed warlock to the Faerie Lady of the Winter Court.Narrates the short stories "Bombshells" and "Cold Case".
- Action Girl:
- She handled herself pretty damn well against the Devourer in Changes. She's earned this.
- Deconstructed in Ghost Story: Molly simply not mentally equipped for violence, and is suffering psychologically.
- Reconstructed in Cold Days: She's gotten her act together. It remains to be seen how she'll handle being the Winter Lady.
- A Day in the Limelight: The short stories "Bombshells" and "Cold Case" are narrated by her.
- All Girls Want Bad Boys:
- Considering how Charity views Harry at first . . .
- Inverted in "Cold Case": she has the dig on for the very valorous Carlos Ramirez.
- All Love Is Unrequited: As of Ghost Story, Harry finally realises the depth of her feelings for him go far beyond a mere crush, and feels extremely sorry for her that he does not reciprocate.
- Anti-Hero: After Harry's death, and her part in it, Molly takes up the mantle of Wizard Protector of Chicago and fights a war against the Fomor and their agents. She does this by being as bad and as scary as possible, which includes killing people who are corrupt.
- Anything That Moves: Lust is a built in part of the Winter Court to keep their numbers up so they can continue their eternal fight against the Outsiders. Molly had, while human, killed her sense of lust by the time of Ghost Story. On becoming the Winter Lady, it comes back — strongly.
- An Ice Person: Part of her new powers as Lady Winter.
- Bare Your Midriff: In Down Town, Proven Guilty and Wild Card.
- Battle in the Center of the Mind:
- In Ghost Story, between Molly and the ghost of the Corpsetaker, taking on the form of an epic battle in a massive cityscape between opposing armies. And Molly's Command and Control takes on the appearance of the bridge of the Enterprise, with various roles carried out by copies of Molly acting out their analogues from the show. It is every bit as hilarious and awesome as it sounds.
- In fact Harry mentions he and Molly did this as a regular training exercise, with Harry's mind being a solid fortress defended by powerful but slow mental constructs, while Molly's is next to impossible find and defended by a comparable Mongolian horde of mental constructs. Both realize how dangerous is to lose a Battle in the Center of the Mind and how easily a thought could be implanted by the winner to put a gun in the other's mouth.
- Benevolent Boss: In Skin Game, she mentions that the Fae are quite happy to have a boss who is not Maeve. Of course, being Winter, they show this appreciation by constantly trying to attack her through her dreams to test her worth, but that's their closest equivalent to a pat on the back.
- Big Entrance: She invokes this by breaking down a door in "Cold Case" and using her rave spell with the music "Everybody Dance Now" blaring. This is just an illusion while she sneaks to the side and slits some throats.
- Birds of a Feather: With Harry, as they share magical talent, general alignment, problems with authority, got involved with Black Magic before they knew better and all-around geekiness. Comes close to Distaff Counterpart, but Molly and Harry are also Foils of each other in many other aspects.
- Black Magic: What got her involved with Harry in the first place, and a recurring problem for her since. It is addictive, after all.
- Blessed with Suck: She has mind magic, which can basically solve any non-combat problem. It's a pity that most of what she can do with it counts as corrupting Black Magic, and it makes her permanently tuned in to the emotions and thoughts of any beings around her... no matter how evil or incomprehensible they are.
- Bratty Teenage Daughter:
- How she's initially introduced. She's openly disrespectful of her parents, has at least two piercings and has altered her Catholic-school uniform to be more sexy. She also has a set of keys that will open handcuffs (both the real kind and "fun-time" handcuffs) and when asked about this by Harry, she quirks and eyebrow and asks if he really wants to know. By the time we see her again in Proven Guilty she has gone full goth, including numerous tattoos, multi-colored hair and so many visible piercings that Harry decides he doesn't want to know about anything else that might be pierced. She tones this look (and her rebellious nature) down somewhat after becoming an adult.
- She is now intentionally trying to invoke this trope in service of Mab, because although she's grateful that she no longer counts strictly as a wizard now (and as such is no longer under their death sentence), she has lost her humanity and will be pretty much immortal. Fae doesn't care about emotions, so she also will hurt people she cares about. She has a lot of resentment issues toward the Winter Queens as a result and is acting out when she can get away with it.
- Break the Cutie:
- The end of Changes, and then what came after. Lea did not help.
- The fireball incident in White Night is another one, in which Harry rather drastically forces her to realize that he is not a perfect, infallible hero and that she should not expect him to be one, and that this is not a game.
- A one-two punch in "Cold Case": first she discovers that she Can't Have Sex, Ever and that Winter will magically enforce this restriction by doing lethal damage to any potential partner. Then she learns that the children she just rescued and returned to their loving families are the "tribute" she came to collect from them, and why they must be taken.
- Broken Bird: In Ghost Story because she feels responsible for Harry's death and covering it up.
- Character Development: After all she has been through, Molly can withstand traumas that would break a lesser person. Her sanity was hanging by a thread, but she's mostly pretty stable even once she becomes Winter Lady. It's getting to the point now where traumatizing her is going to piss her off and make her either vindictive or willing to seek her idea of justice.
- Chekhov's Skill: Word of Jim says her being the eldest to so many siblings and having to control their energetic natures makes handling the Sidhe and Fae under her purview easier.
- Combat Pragmatist: Not having the brute force of Harry or the combat skill of Murphy, Molly makes do by manipulating the people around her to deadly effect. She will also slit the throat of some inhuman cultists.
- Coming-of-Age Story: The books Proven Guilty and White Night confirm that hers is going on in the background.
- Crazy-Prepared: Eventually becomes this through her wizard training. In Cold Days, we find out that she actually set aside a room in her apartment when she learnt that Harry came Back from the Dead again and would likely need a place to crash.
- Curb-Stomp Battle: The Justice League Chicago, at one point between Changes and Ghost Story tries to have an intervention for Molly. It doesn't go well . . . for them. Molly flooded all of their minds with horrific visions and illusions, seemingly with little effort. The Chicago Alliance is understandably terrified of her following this incident.
- Dark Chick: To Justice League Chicago.
- Dark Is Not Evil: As Lady Winter, she is now an incarnation of the forces of darkness, decay, and death. Still on the side of the good guys, though.
- Dark Secret: Helped Harry arrange his Thanatos Gambit, and then erase his memories of it afterwards. Poor kid.
- Death Seeker: Played with. In "Bombshells", she comments that she deserves death, but doesn't actively seek out suicide because Chicago needs a protector.
- Delinquent Hair: Molly first started dyeing her hair when she ran away from home.
- Deep Sleep: In Ghost Story she's learned to use a multi-target sleep spell to knock out a group of Mooks.
- Disproportionate Retribution: The Winter mantle's method of enforcing that to keep the balance of the roles, the Maiden must remain a maiden: it overrides the consciousness of the lady in question, and has her ferociously attack her would-be partner, doing mortal injury to him. Justified in that the Fae do not as a rule get the idea of emotional attachment, and so that there is no temptation of any kind for the Winter Lady to try bending or breaking the rules. Ever. It is also effective and practical as self-defense for anyone who would defile the Maiden without her consent.
- The Dreaded:
- Invoked; she realized that monsters' viewing Harry as this kept them away from Chicago, and created the identity of The Ragged Lady to terrify them on her own.
- In "Cold Case" Molly realizes Mab wants to prove herself and become this to prevent any usurpers from directly trying to kill her as the new Winter Lady. Once the children the cultists would have sacrificed are away, she unleashes icy hell on them.
- The Empath: Molly is significantly more sensitive to both magic and the emotions of others, which can result in her having trouble in combat situations. She gets better at handling it by the events of Changes. She experienced a severe psychic backlash from the epic battle in Changes as well as the bloodline curse, assumed by Harry to be a part of resulting Sanity Slippage.
- Enemy Mine: In Cold Days she is working with Mr. Etri of the Svartalves. After saving him from a bomb sent by the Fomor, they became this. For her actions, she gets a apartment, free rent, repairs, and their protection on their property."[He] might oppose you. He might break your bones. He might cut your throat in your sleep or make the ground swallow you up. But he will never, ever lie about his intentions. He's not my friend. But he is my ally. He's good at it."
- Evil Laugh: She first displays what is best described as one when utterly destroying a handful of Outsider cultists.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: From the perspective of the White Council. A recovering warlock under the tutelage of another recovering warlock and one of the baddest Wardens of the White Council suddenly becomes a sovereign of the Winter Court who might have a significant grudge against the White Council. Oh and her mentor? Now ostensibly her Knight.
- Full Circle: At the end of "Cold Case", she kidnaps children (so they will become Child Soldiers in Winter's war against the Outsiders) . . . not unlike how she was kidnapped in Proven Guilty.
- Goth Girls Know Magic: Played With in that she actually ditches more of her Goth trappings as she develops her magic.
- Gratuitous Japanese: Seems to be her preferred language for her spells as of Changes.
- Genre Savvy: Almost as much as Harry.
- Green-Eyed Monster: She is slightly envious of all the raw magical power Harry has.(after Harry's ghost possesses her during a battle) "Is that what it's always like for you?"
- Heroic Lineage: Descended from royalty (Charlemagne), as are all Knights of the Cross.
- Hero with an F in Good: Molly, really, really wants to help people, and following the example of her father and teacher. What a pity that she has very poor decision making skills. Namely, Mind Controling your pregnant friend to keep her off heroin is a bad idea.
- Hot for Teacher: Her initial opinion regarding being Harry's apprentice. Harry killed off that idea very quickly. It came back full force in Changes when Susan realized it less than a minute after meeting her. Apparently, Harry's just that Oblivious to Love.
- Hot-Blooded: When a teenager.
- Hope Spot: Cold Days gives her life one. She's got an apartment now, and Lea's stopped "training" her. She's still traumatised but things really seem to be getting better for her. Now the finale's come up, and . . . oh. Oh, she's the Winter Lady now.
- It Gets Easier: Her killing people using veils and glamour is described as such."It's easy. It shouldn't be so easy."
- I Kiss Your Hand: A twisted example. Harry kissed her hand, as a sign of his platonic respect and gratitude after she agrees to help him kill himself.
- Keeping Secrets Sucks: Because of what she knows in Secret Secret-Keeper and her refusal to tell anyone makes those who would trust her and help her through Harry's death sense she is holding back on something and so distrust her. Especially true for Murphy, a former cop. Molly, sensing this distrust, pulls further away, which makes people distrust her even more.
- Lady and Knight: After Cold Days she and Harry become this. It remains to be seen what side of the spectrum they'll be on.
- Lethal Chef: Contrary to her mother, she once burned a boiled egg . . . but she can make a damn good cup of coffee.
- Lethal Harmless Powers: Molly has upgraded her illusions to make people see themselves being dragged into the Nevernever by hideous monsters, make people see guns, lipstick prints, etc., and manipulate them into killing each other . . .
- Living Emotional Crutch: Harry is one for her. After his death in Changes, Molly decided to fight a one-wizard war against the supernatural nasties looking to make Chicago their new hunting ground in Harry's absence, but she did it by putting herself in harm's way in the most self-destructive way possible. By Cold Days Molly gets her act together, but then the short story "Bombshells" reveals that only happened after Lea obliquely told her that Harry was still alive.
- Logical Weakness: The power of her Mantle is tied with the title of Maiden. Should she become a mother, it would shatter the power inside her.
- Love Hurts: A comparatively minor example in Proven Guilty, when Harry explicitly tells her it isn't going to happen. Post Changes, it gets much, much worse, when he asks her to help him commit suicide. She does. And after his death, things only get worse.
- Love Makes You Crazy: In Cold Days, she tries to submit herself, sexually, to Harry while he's being overwhelmed by the predatory nature of his Mantle. She is aware that this is extremely self-harming but does not care.
- The Load:
- Every time she sneaks out to tail Harry, she ends up needing to be saved or protected. She's learning that it's generally best to listen when he says she isn't going to be able to help much.
- This is changing as of Ghost Story . . . more or less. She's better at fighting, but her sanity and emotions are becoming increasingly ragged, and they're only getting worse . . .
- Master of Illusion: She is really good with veils. Very handy for confusing vampires into gutting each other by accident or just having to stop moving. This is considerably upgraded in Ghost Story to being able to take on mortal and supernatural threats with:
- Faux Flame: Complete with screaming demonic faces, though it's eventually seen through.
- The Treachery of Images: Uses this to commit the majority of her murders.
- Doppelgänger Spin: Created six clones of herself to try and fool her pursuers. As of "Cold Case" she can now pretty much effortlessly generate around thirteen. This is without drawing on the Mantle of Winter.
- Sensory Overload: Her "One Woman Rave" Spell has been combined with monsters of the Nevernever in addition to a variety of other images and sounds.
- Most Common Superpower: Molly becomes pretty well-endowed as she gets older. During her more rebellious years, she even had her nipples pierced.
- Mind Control:
- She gets into two friends' heads to try to steer them away from their heroin addiction; it doesn't work out well. Messing with people's minds has a tendency to drive them insane.
- She gets better at using mental magic after her training begins.
- My God, What Have I Done?: In Cold Case, Molly discovers the Winter Mantle will protect itself by attempting to kill anyone she attempts to have sex with. Queen Mab knew this but didn't tell her because Molly is still pissed off about having been forced into the position of Winter Lady, and acting petulantly as a result. Molly only found out this way because she still thinks like she's entirely human; she never stopped to consider that sex was impossible for Winter, or to ask the Mantle what would happen if she tried it.
- My Greatest Failure: Her failed attempt to talk Harry out of killing himself, as "Bombshells" confirms. The guilt of it was enough to push her onto the streets."I couldn't really look away from the mirror this time. I tried to look at it objectively, as if she was someone else, and not the one who had killed the man she loved and who had then failed him again by being unable to prevent even his ghost from being destroyed in its determination to protect others. That bitch deserved to be run over by a train or something."
- Nightmare Fuel Station Attendant: Master of Illusion variation as of Cold Days. May also count as Dark Is Not Evil.
- The Ophelia: Invoked and lampshaded in Ghost Story. Not entirely an act, sadly enough.
- Pay Evil unto Evil: As the Rag Lady, killing corrupt cops along with the Formor, although at least some of this may have been Lea's doing.
- Perky Goth: When she becomes a teenager. Even when she grows into adulthood, her personality is a strange, unpredictable mix of light and dark.
- Physical God: As Lady Winter.
- Power-Strain Blackout: Played with. Molly and Carlos seek to celebrate their relationship after defeating the servants of the Outsiders, but the Winter Mantle rises to override her before they can do more than kiss. She "wakes up" in the shower, washing blood off, with no idea how she got there. This condition will, she learns immediately after, occur anytime she does anything that could threaten the destruction of the Mantle of Winter she wears as Lady.
- Precocious Crush: What Harry thinks her feelings are towards him in Proven Guilty; given her naivete at that time, he's probably right. Later on, after she learns more about him, they become more serious.
- Rags to Riches: In Ghost Story she was homeless and had to resort to looting the corpses of her enemies just to have enough to eat. Then, in Cold Days, she becomes the Winter Lady. By Skin Game, not only is she heir to one of the most powerful preternatural nations on the planet, she gets an eight-figure annual income. Damn.
- Screw the Rules, I Have Connections!: By the end of Cold Days Molly is still a wanted Warlock for violating several Laws of Magic, namely using magic to kill and using mind-altering magic with a general kill-on-sight for any Wardens. Then she becomes the Winter Lady and, as Mab points out, those charges will never take effect because Mab will not allow it. Not that they will be expunged from her name, it's just attacking Molly could instigate a war between the Council and the Winter Sidhe. Depending on how Butcher deals with the matter if it ever comes up again, as one of the Sidhe, Molly is no longer a Wizard nor a Warlock — and probably not even mortal — and thus technically no longer subject to the White Council's jurisdiction.
- Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!:
- This was Molly's initial take on her mentally manipulating her boyfriend and best friend so they would clean up their lives. Even though it was wrong on many levels, Molly feels justified despite the damage she has inflicted upon them both. Unusually for the trope, she didn't know there were any rules apart from ethical ones, which say pretty clearly that brainwashing is wrong. That's how Harry defends her against the White Council.
- As of "Cold Case", Molly has learned the legends of Fae kidnapping children are true, and knows now they will be used to fight against Outsiders. She thinks this is unconscionable and has pretty much vowed to come up with an alternative.
- Secret Legacy: Inherited her magical talents from her mother Charity, whose own abilities had long since atrophied from disuse.
- Secret Secret-Keeper: Molly knows who killed Harry. Molly knows why it happened. She knows Harry is ignorant of it because she removed these facts from his mind . . . after he set up his own assassination, so Mab wouldn't find out.
- Spare to the Throne: Her training under Lea is part training her to survive, part making her ready to simply survive fighting dark monsters, and able to fill the need to replace Maeve or another Lady. In Mab's calculations, Molly is her Spare's Spare in case the first Spare, Sarissa, cannot do it or isn't close enough.
- Speaks Fluent Animal: Once her empath powers strengthen, enabling her to communicate with Mouse and other animals.
- Stupid Sexy Friend: Is this to Harry. He finds the idea of a relationship with her squicky (since he's known her since she was eight years old) but she's now an extremely attractive woman in her mid-twenties, and he's not blind. As his narration puts it at one point, he can 'admire the scenery without wanting to go camping in it.'
- Take a Level in Badass:
- In Changes, she goes from "talented but not suited for battle" to holding off an army of vampires with a magical light show.
- This is nothing compared to the levels she's taken by the time of Ghost Story, thanks to fighting monsters on the streets of Chicago and enduring six months of Lea's brutal Training from Hell.
- Yet this is nothing compared to the end of Cold Days when she becomes the new Winter Lady, although this is made possible by the aforementioned attention from Lea.
- Technical Virgin:
- In Proven Guilty Dresden agrees to take Molly as an apprentice, and asks if she is sexually active. She replies that she is "technically" a virgin, and has "explored most of the bases." Dresden tells her that there is to be no more "exploring" (and that she is not to start any "solo expeditions") until she develops better mental discipline.
- Harry has either forgotten or relaxed that rule, or considers her more disciplined, as of Turn Coat. She ends up with a date (gained by flaunting her bangin' bod) and Harry voices no objection.
- Training from Hell: From Lea, in Ghost Story. This includes being starved, having groups of Fomor Mooks sent to attack her, and being bombarded with knives and baseball sized chunks of ice to improve her shield spells. Later on, Lea points out that Harry's more gradual and gentle training of Molly was not suitable to training her in how to actually fight.
- Undying Loyalty:
- After she grows out of her rebellious teenager phase, has this towards Harry. Deconstructed in Ghost Story where following one order of his directly fucks up her life and the lives of several other people. You know the one.
- Unusually for the trope, Harry specifically trained her to be that way because the supernatural world is a very dangerous place and the time it takes for her to ask questions may be the time it takes to get killed. Mab asks Harry if he had more self-serving reasons for doing so, and Harry's own narration admits that it's a possibility.
- Unequal Pairing: She first crushes on, and later falls in love with Harry when he is her teacher, then the balance of power is flipped when she becomes Lady Winter and Harry's Queen.
- The Unfettered: Willing to do whatever it takes to protect Chicago in Harry's absence.
- Visible Invisibility: Played with. Molly is pretty much the best there is when it comes to throwing veils — invisibility magic. In "Cold Case" she realizes that anyone who looks close during the ice storm she and Carlos are walking through will see the sleet bouncing off something that cannot be seen without magical assistance.
- Weak, but Skilled: While she may not have the raw magical force of Harry, something she's very aware of, it's made clear in offhand comments by Harry and Thomas in Changes and a first hand account by Will in Ghost Story that if she catches you off guard, you're going to be curled up on the ground screaming at things that aren't there. This trope stops applying as of "Cold Case" when Molly starts drawing and flinging around the power of Winter.
- You Are Not Alone:
- She tries to convince Harry of this when he was depressed (and influenced by a Fallen) and planning his own suicide.
- In Ghost Story Karrin, Father Forthill, and Lea each in their own way tried to tell her she wasn't alone. She had allies who could help her shoulder her burden and give her protection. The former two use strongly worded and empathetic arguments. Lea, being Lea, arranges some enemy mooks to find her when exhausted and would have failed if she were alone. Harry's shade was enough to turn the tides.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Her hair was naturally blonde, but she liked to dye it various colours. It turned white after she became Winter Lady.
The Leanansidhe, aka "Lea"
My godmother was what she was — a being of violence, deceit, and the thirst for power. Her attitudes and reactions could not fairly be called inhumane.Harry's fairy godmother. The second most powerful being in the Winter Court, next only to Mab. Genuinely cares about Harry, and for a long while tried her best to keep him safe . . . by turning him into a hound. Is strongly suspected to be batshit insane.
- The Archmage: She is called an elder sorceress of the Winter Court, second only to Mab in the Queen's Court. She can craft powerful protective magical armor in seconds, but it generally lasts until noon. She can turn seven people into dogs at the same time, and some of them aren't wholly human. She knows a means of binding, if not completely removing, the vampire curse from a Red Court victim.
- Axe-Crazy: Well, in many of her appearances, but not always. Other times she's nice enough. Molly, after meeting her, upgrades her from "spooky death Sidhe lady" to "spooky, crazy death Sidhe lady". Lea approves.
- Barrier Maiden: Word Of Jim is when Mab isn't out standing on the lines of reality protecting humans from the Outsiders because she is needed inside for some function, like Harry's party in Cold Days, Lea takes over for a time.
- Blood Knight: She seemed to be enjoying herself greatly while fighting some of the Lords of Outer Night.
- Blue and Orange Morality: She simply doesn't get human standards of morality.
- Cannot Tell a Lie: Like all Fae not affected by Nemesis. She can, however, lead one to false conclusions.
- Cat Smile: When she smiles, Harry notes the similarity to a cat.
- Cruel to Be Kind: This is her teaching mentality in a nutshell. Unlike the naive and practically infantile wizards she mentors, she knows exactly how cruel, dangerous, dark, and unforgiving the world likely is. To her, teaching isn't about coddling and the like, but empowering students and getting them stronger and capable of being able to handle themselves. For people like Harry and Molly, who shoulder so much power and the path they have chosen to fight the darker beings, this is even more true. So if she has to break their bones, push them to the point of starvation and death to learn all she can teach them to survive, she will do it.
- Debt Detester: In Grave Peril the prospect of being in an unbound debt to Michael to save Harry's life makes her hesitate but open to an amicable deal. But averted with her deal with Margaret McCoy-Dresden, where the deal to protect Harry from unspoken harm doesn't seem to bother her at all.
- Dissonant Laughter: When she was fighting against the Red Court and saw what her godson Harry and Ebenezer McCoy were doing to the vampires and human mercenaries, it really got her going.
- The Dragon: To Mab. She is said to the the personal handmaiden of the Queen of Air and Darkness.
- Dragon with an Agenda: Implied. While she normlly plots to take Mab down, she wouldn't have acted on the impulses but because she was possessed by Nemesis, she tried some sort of attack to either to kill Mab or infect her with Nemesis as well.
- Enigmatic Minion: Hinted to be planning something. Whether or not the tendency has been "removed" we do not know.
- Evil Counterpart: To Eldest Gruff as both are personal servants to their Queens and have the power to defend their station.
- Evil Mentor: While "evil" may be a bit strong, she was implied to have tutored Harry for a time after he ran away from Justin Dumorne, and she took up Molly's apprenticeship while Harry was dead.
- Evil Redhead: More towards simple malevolence, but befitting her nonetheless.
- Fairy Godmother: To Harry, obviously. Lea has a lot of fun with this in Changes, when she uses faerie magic to suit Harry up in Costume Porn protective armor before the final battle—against his protests (and much to Susan's amusement).Susan: Wow. You . . . you really do have a fairy godmother.
The Leanansidhe: And I've never been able to indulge.
- From a Certain Point of View: She may not be able to lie, but that won't stop her from speaking in vague terms.
- Hidden Depths: It would seem, judging by Grave Peril, that Lea truly loves and is loved by someone, seeing as how she gave Thomas a kiss that blistered his skin and that mark remains on Thomas for over a decade. Although this is Lea we're talking about.
- It's Personal: As she reveals in Ghost Story, the amount of aid that she provided to Harry and company during the Storming the Castle scene in Changes was not just because of Mab's orders. She hadn't forgotten the Black Athame that Bianca gave to her, which subsequently drove her insane. As Harry had already taken down Bianca, she owed him a debt of justice — which she very happily paid by helping him take revenge upon the entire Red Court.
- Only Known By Her Nickname: The Leanansidhe is only a title. Her true name is unknown.
- Pet the Dog: Promising to give Susan a good burial. Genuine acts of kindness are rare from the Fae, but as Harry remarks:"Even in Winter, the cold isn’t always bitter, and not every day is cruel."
- The Promise: The above Pet the Dog was done with a straight promise and no prompting from Harry.
- Psychopathic Manchild: Has shades of this, some of her behaviors are noted by Harry to have "a childish glee" or similar.
- Scylla and Charybdis: In Ghost Story she admits that Harry put her in this situation as she has two obligations she must fulfill. First, she must honor her word to Harry and answer his question about who killed him. On the other side she is bound, presumably by Mab, to not tell Harry who killed him. She is forced to fulfill both by answering using Exact Words and being true From a Certain Point of View.
- Sink-or-Swim Mentor: Varies between this and straight-out Evil Mentor. Fortunately, she has a much more limited amount of influence over Harry than his other mentors. Unfortunately, Molly is a different story . . .
- Skewed Priorities: Frequently.
- In Changes, she's less concerned with getting to Chichén Itzá on time, and more with how Harry looks. After all, Harry is now the Winter Knight, and his appearance reflects upon Mab now.
- Also in Changes, the Red King sends one of his messengers to Dresden, and after delivering the message, the messenger tells him that her life is his to take. Harry refuses to let her come to harm. Lea is more miffed at the missed opportunity than anything else.Lea: I have not sacrificed a holy virgin in ages.
- So Proud of You: Lea has shines of this in Ghost Story when she recalls how well Harry did in his last adventure. She had hoped he would make the fight for his daughter a memorable one, and as usual far exceeded the expectations. Harry is a little unsettled by this.
- Stealth Mentor: She claims that many of her efforts to attack Harry were actually attempts to toughen him up. Such as in Ghost Story, when she refuses to aid Molly after putting her in danger because she wanted to teach Harry a few more lessons. However, given her Blue and Orange Morality, such ought to be taken with a pinch of salt.
- Skunk Stripe: In Changes after her cleansing was finished.
- Spell My Name with a "The": She's called the Leanansidhe.
- Verbal Tic: Has a habit of saying "la" as an exclamation or expression of anything from boredom and dismissal to vexation and annoyance.
- Villain Ball: In Grave Peril she plotted with Bianca to set up a gambit to try and reclaim Harry. Part of the deal included giving Bianca Amoracchius for a weapon of equal power. This trusting action led her to be infected by Nemesis and led to Maeve's eventual downfall.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: Towards Harry. She genuinely has his best interests at heart (as far as can be determined), but her definition of "helpful" frequently clashes with Harry's (not to mention most human interpretations of the word).
- When the Clock Strikes Twelve: Her gift of armor to Harry does have a time limit. It will leave him at twelve. Twelve o'clock noon. She is of Winter.
- With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: Suggested. In this case it's not her own power, but the power of the Black Athame that Bianca gave to her. She seems to have gotten better by Changes, but is still out for blood against the Red Court.
Sir Lloyd Slate
Sir Lloyd SlateThe Winter Knight. Slate is the Winter Queens' personal mortal hitman in Summer Knight. A drug addict, murderer, rapist, and general scumbag, Harry is unsure whether or not those were qualities that got him the job or if he got them from the job. In Summer Knight Slate joined forces with Aurora to get revenge on Maeve, who he had bad blood with. After the events of Summer Knight, Mab kept him prisoner and tortured him endlessly. In Changes, he was finally killed by Harry to take up the mantle.
- Combat Pragmatist: When killing Reuel, instead of following Winter instincts and probably giving Reuel an equal advantage, Lloyd just decides to ice the stairs and break the guy's neck.
- The Dragon: To Aurora.
- Fate Worse Than Death: Lloyd Slate wasn't exactly a stellar human being, but let's just say that what Mab puts him through is . . . excessive.
- Functional Addict: Whether this was introduced by Maeve as a way of controlling him or part of the package from square one is unknown.
- An Ice Person: As the Winter Knight, he can use ice-based powers.
- Katanas Are Just Better: Mostly averted; he has a sword that resembles a katana but in Harry's opinion it just doesn't have the class to be called one.
- Magic Knight: By virtue of being the Winter Knight. He can call on Winter magic and is a skilled physical fighter.
- Mercy Kill: From Harry to end the pain and torment Mab put him through and so Harry can become the Winter Knight, though Mab forces him to admit to himself that mercy isn't his primary motivation in doing so.
- Mistreatment-Induced Betrayal: He conspired with Aurora because he was sick of Maeve's treatment and her tendencies. Though Mab was in a position that she could understand, getting tired of Maeve's ways too, she wouldn't brook a traitor.
- Professional Killer: His job is being the hitman for the three Winter Queens.
- The Sociopath: It is implied in Cold Days that this is because he gave himself to the power of the Mantle and lost himself in it.
- Super Empowering: As a recipient of the Winter Mantle, he gained ice magic as well as the other benefits of the Mantle. He still wasn't a Wizard-level magic user.
- Tragic Monster: Sarissa claims that he wasn't always the man he was, and that the Mantle changed him.
Other Winter Knights
The many previous Winter Knights who served Mab throughout history. Many are infamous killers known for their sheer brutality and cruelty. They include:
- Gilles de Rais
- Andrei Chikatilo
- John Haigh
- Fritz Haarmann
Eldest Fetch, a.k.a. "The Scarecrow"
Eldest FetchOne of Mab's retainers, an old and powerful faerie known as a fetch: a shapeshifting creature that feeds on fear and serves as Winter's enforcers, assassins, and messengers. Most fetches assume forms of creatures or people that their targets fear, i.e. movie horror monsters in the modern era, but these are simply illusionary forms or constructs made of ectoplasm. Eldest Fetch, however, is old enough that he can shape his entire body to resemble the movie monster known as "The Scarecrow": a massive, pumpkin-headed monster made out of old, supernaturally-powerful vines and roots covered in rags. Eldest Fetch is behind the fetch attacks on the horror movie convention in Proven Guilty and kidnapped Molly, though not all is as it seems . . .
- Achilles' Heel: Like all faeries, fetches are vulnerable to iron. As a Winter fae, Scarecrow is vulnerable to fire, too, particularly fire conjured by Summer. However, Eldest Fetch and his fetch minions are also vulnerable to those who are not afraid of them; they can neither sense them nor use their fear as a shield or source of power. A fearless Harry wielding Summer fire is enough to panic him.
- Anti-Magic: Harry slaps him with a Hellfire-boosted force attack with enough power behind it to knock him over Lake Michigan. Scarecrow walks through it without flinching. Later on it is implied that this works through fear; as long as the one tossing magic is afraid, Scarecrow can block their attacks.
- The Dreaded: Deliberately invoked; like all fetches, he assumes horror movie monster forms to frighten his targets, giving him power over them.
- Emotion Eater: Feeds on fear, and also has a thing for magical power. This makes Molly an ideal target.
- Evil Counterpart: The Fetches are the Winter counterpart to Summer's Gruffs, making him the counterpart of Eldest Gruff.
- Human Shield: Though Molly is far too small to be a shield for him, he does threaten to kill her if Harry or Charity attack him.
- Known Only by Their Nickname: Throughout Proven Guilty he is known only as "Scarecrow" and the leader and most powerful of the Fetches. While it could be intuited, it's not until Cold Days that he's confirmed to be "Eldest Fetch".
- Large and in Charge: The leader of the phages causing Harry trouble in Proven Guilty.
- Lawyer-Friendly Cameo: While he's not a direct analogue of any Real Life horror movie monsters, Scarecrow has more than a passing resemblance to Pumpkinhead. Or if you're feeling more generous, the Great Pumpkin.
- Oh, Crap!: When Scarecrow realizes that Harry is not afraid of it and is packing Summer fire.
- Primal Fear: This thing lives and breathes this trope. By using it against its victims, it becomes even more powerful.
- Unwitting Pawn: Madrigal Raith was his decoy pawn at the convention. Scarecrow himself appears to be such for Maeve as part of the plot between her and Lily to get Harry into Arctis Tor and drop fire into the Winter wellspring, drawing off Winter's armies from the border and letting Maeve trap them in a region of slowed time, allowing Summer to attack the Red Court and save the White Council. No one said those bloody faeries weren't complicated.
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: With the Scarecrow as his Shapeshifter Default Form. He only changes shape once during the novel, when trying to escape from Harry as a flying creature. Harry, however, is great at anti-air fire.
Cat SithA powerful Malk in the Winter Court. Mab assigns him to be Harry's assistant in Cold Days.
- Brainwashed and Crazy: By Nemesis.
- Cats Are Mean/Cats Are Snarkers: He is both to those he sees as beneath him.
- Combat Pragmatist: He doesn't bother with talking in a fight; he just kills his enemies. In fact, Harry realizes that he's been corrupted by Nemesis because he doesn't kill Harry instantly.
- The Dreaded: For somebody that's relatively small, he has a killer reputation, and by all indications has earned it. When a group of Sidhe corner Harry with intent to kill, he snatches one from under the noses of his six allies and dismembers him in the bushes. Harry gloats, putting the rest on guard, and and Sith does it again.
- Loophole Abuse: Mab orders Cat Sith to be (essentially) Harry's butler, much to Cat Sith's chagrin. Harry's first wiseass instinct is to request a can of Coke. Cat Sith gets him a warm can.Cat Sith: I shall be happy to similarly fulfill any such command you give me, Sir Knight.
[Translation: I don't want to be here. I don't like you. Give me commands, and I will give you hell for it.]
- Monster Progenitor: Of the Malks, according to Harry, who refers to Cat Sith as the Optimus Prime of Malks.
- Name's the Same: Harry and Thomas at one point call him Sith. It was during an After-Action Patch-Up, and Harry has to point out to Butters that it's not the same Sith, to Butters' disappointment.
- No-Nonsense Nemesis: When Cat Sith decides to kill someone, he just does it in the most expedient way possible. Fortunately for Harry, the Nemesis-infected version of him is more prone to holding the Villain Ball.
- O.O.C. Is Serious Business: His not coming when Harry summoned him should have been a clue to Harry something was wrong. Later, Harry knows he was brainwashed when "Sith" spoke to him to taunt him, when the real Sith would just kill him in the most pragmatic way.
- Servile Snarker: He is ordered to serve Harry, but his open snark shows his disdain for this position Mab has put him in.
- The Shadow Knows: Cat Sith looks like a large but otherwise normal Malk, but his shadow is much larger that it has right to be.
- The Sneaky Guy: In addition to his frequent usage of Stealth Hi/Bye, he can sneak around like no other.
GrimalkinA malk who serves the Winter Queens. He was sent by Maeve to guide Dresden to her presence in Summer Knight, and he speaks for Mab in Small Favor.
- Cats Are Mean: Grimalkin is grumpy and mean when Dresden talks to him in Summer Knight.
- Mouth of Sauron: Serves this purpose in Small Favor, as, due to her anger, Mab's voice would cause Dresden severe physical harm if he heard it aloud. Having Grimalkin speak for her lets him listen to her orders without suffering undue harm.
The RedcapA high-ranking Sidhe of the Winter Court and part of Maeve's entourage. Makes an enemy of Harry at his birthday party and spends the majority of Cold Days trying to kill him for being insulted. He's also Ace's father.
- Abusive Parents: Makes no secret of his disdain of Ace and would gladly have allowed Thomas to kill him if it meant getting to kill Dresden, despite Ace doing all he can to please him. The closest he gets to being a good parent is when he does praise Ace for his "spirit," when Ace is consumed with hate for him.
- Berserk Button: Don't touch, let alone steal, his hat.
- Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: In folklore he's known for befriending travelers only to kill them and dye his hat's red with their cooling blood.
- Choke Holds: Seems to prefer strangling people, even challenging Harry to a strangle duel
- Combat Pragmatist: We clearly see where Ace gets it from as this guy loves playing dirty. If he loses a strangle duel with you, he'll just show up on a jet-ski where due to the open water, you can't use your magic effectively. If that doesn't work he'll poison you while you're distracted with saving hostages, with a poison that specifically dislikes Winter creatures and as an added bonus will bring the Wild Hunt on your trail.
- The Dragon: To Maeve.
- Eye Scream: Harry claws one of his eyes out.
- Hat Theft: What causes Harry to earn his hatred.
- Jerkass: He is a real cantankerous prick who will abuse anyone he sees as beneath him.
- Nice Hat: Never seen without one. It is, naturally, red.
- Monster Progenitor: Is possibly the monarch of the Redcaps, given his insistence on having "The" put in front of his name.
- Poisoned Weapons: Uses a poison dart coated in Hawthorne to try and assassinate and weaken Harry, and it's quite effective against beings of Winter including the Winter Knight.
- Spell My Name with a "The": Corrects Harry when called him a "Redcap" instead of "The Redcap".
- Take That!: Occasionally favors a Cincinnati Reds hat. Harry, naturally, is scandalized.
Jenny GreenteethThe Jenny Greenteeth of English folkore, and a nixie who serves Maeve. At Maeve's insistence, she tries to seduce Harry during the Summer Knight case, but fails. Maeve later sent Jenny to destroy the Alphas in revenge for their actions during that same case. However, Billy and Georgia were able to defeat her.
- Butter Face: A Downplayed example, Jenny's teeth are noticeably green. When we see her without glamour she is actually quite monstrous.
- Forced Sleep: She does this to Georgia so she can impersonate her.
- Glamour: A specialty of hers. She first uses it not to change her appearance, but it did cloud Harry's... rational thinking enough to make Harry much more likely to take up Maeve's proposal; and she later uses it to impersonate Georgia. In the first case, Harry managed to counter it by dumping ice-cold water down the front of his pants.
- Killed Off for Real: Ripped apart by Billy and Georgia.
- Naked First Impression: Harry first meets her when she swims out of a pool in Maeve's court, dressed only in a transparent shawl that didn't even give a pretense of modesty.
- Our Mermaids Are Different: Jenny is a nixie, which is a mermaid-like water spirit.
- Red Right Hand: It's in her name.
- Super Not-Drowning Skills: As a nixie, she doesn't need air. Like he folklore counterpart, this is actually a part of her M.O.
- Theme Serial Killer: In folklore, she lures people into the water before grabbing onto them and dragging them down into the depths, so naturally her counterpart in the Dresdenverse really likes to drown people. When she shows up to sabotage Billy and Georgia's wedding, the ensuing fight nearly ends when she nearly drowns Harry in the punch bowl.
- True Love's Kiss: Her sleep magic is vulnerable to it, which is why she tries to get Billy to kiss her first in order to 'contaminate' his love and render him unable to save Georgia.
The MiksaniOne of the Hidden Peoples of the Winter Court, the Miksani are a group of cormorant-themed spirits who regularly send tribute to Mab. They have had a problem these last few years and as of "Cold Case" Molly must deal with it so Mab gets her tribute. A group of them are based in Unalaska, Alaska, including:
- Several children
- Child Soldiers: Their children are taken by the Winter Lady to be trained in war and, ultimately, to fight to the death defending the Outer Gates.
- Killed Off for Real: Tupiak, who died trying to save the children.
- Papa Wolf: Tupiak, but he died trying to save the children.
- Posthumous Character: Tupiak, who died before the "Cold Case" story began.
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: They have both humanoid and cormorant forms, and can freely shift between them.
GlenmaelA fae who chauffeurs Leanansidhe and her companions, including Harry and Susan, during Changes.
The Seelie Court (Summer)
Queen TitaniaThe Summer Queen, who was largely unseen in the story up until Cold Days. She is Mab's sister and opposite. Whereas Mab rules through cold calculations and logic, Titania rules through the wisdom of the heart. This causes problems if her heart is not feeling very wise.
- Action Mom: Titania is a skilled magic user, fighter, and directed her forces during the war in Summer Knight.
- Actually Pretty Funny: In Cold Days, Titania nearly smiled when Harry gave honest, if a little snarky, answers to her questions on how she and Mab differ. And this is the guy she's sworn undying vengeance on.
- Barrier Maiden: Mab's job is to defend reality from the Outsiders. Titania's job is to protect the rest of reality from Mab.
- Big Entrance: She manifests by means of a tornado coming down from the sky and striking near Harry's location.
- Big Good: While Mab is the Big Good about protecting reality from the Outsiders, Titania is the great protector of the human realm from the backlash of Mab's efforts.
- Cannot Tell a Lie: Part of the standard Fae package.
- Garden of Evil: Mentions that she wants to visit horrors on Harry that would make Lloyd Slate's fate seem kind by comparison. Among the horrors listed involves "feeding Harry to her garden". Take a moment to process that.
- The Ghost: Until Cold Days, she was never seen in person even when her influence was all around.
- Good Is Not Nice: She is much more personable and caring for humanity than Mab is. But if you succeed in pissing her off, start praying.
- Good Is Not Soft: In her entrance, she is wearing some kind of skintight armor, and she is unarmed, but projecting the confidence that she is armed well beyond the ability of her enemy to withstand. Moments later, she barely restrains herself from killing Harry and reaches through his magic circle like water.
- Green Thumb: Not shown, but a safe assumption.
- The High Queen: As she is Mab's opposite and Mab tends towards the other kind of queen, Titania generally has this kind of presence. If provoked, however, she can in her own words make what Mab did to Lloyd Slate seem kind.
- Mama Bear: She loves her daughter Aurora and despite knowing she was possessed by Nemesis and needed to be stopped, she still hated Harry for being the instrument of her death. Especially as his method involved her slowly bleeding out from dozens of cuts from steel blades.
- The McCoy: According to Titania, compared to Mab, Titania is the far more emotional and empathetic of the two. This does not equal morality, however, because if Titania becomes offended or hurt in anyway (looking at you Harry), her natural inclination is to take vengeance, even if doing so is irrational or detrimental. Titania is able to stop herself from hurting Harry, but it takes her a lot of effort and years of counseling, and even with the fate of the world at stake refuses to forgive him or help him with more than a few small hints.
- No-Sell: Harry's circle of protection, which should block anything without a soul from crossing it, was simply overpowered and destroyed as easily as a human batting away a spider's web.
- Not So Different: From Mab. Both are loving mothers to their daughters and want for no harm to come to them. They also knew their child had been claimed by Nemesis and couldn't bring their hand down to stop them.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: Played with. On the one hand, remember that Harry killed her daughter in the most painful way imaginable (or as Titania describes it, an iron death), but she manages to restrain herself from killing him and aids him. On the other hand . . .
- Revenge Before Reason:
- Has given geas-driven orders that no information about Summer's diplomacy, troop movements, etc, are to be given to Harry, mainly out of spite for him killing Aurora.
- In Cold Days this is semi-averted after years of counselling from the Elder Gruff. When she has Harry off the ground and inches from doing things to him that make Lloyd Slate's fate look positively merciful, she relents and lets Harry go with the name of the enemy which infected her daughter. However, she tells him that she will never be able to truly forgive him for what he's done, and refuses to offer any more help, even with the fate of the world at stake.
- Who Watches the Watchmen?: She does.
Lady AuroraThe first Summer Lady, who appeared in Summer Knight. Was the one behind the murder of the Summer Knight, in an effort to give his power to Winter to disrupt the balance between the Courts.
- Brainwashed and Crazy: By Nemesis. Her Evil Plan would have had unforeseen side effects extremely beneficial to the Outsiders' cause.
- Cannot Tell a Lie: Like any Fae. So, she uses other means, while being completely honest to a degree, to distract Harry. See Care-Bear Stare below.
- Care-Bear Stare: Uses this to distract Harry in the Rothschild hotel.
- Dark Messiah: Her goal is to make a world where nobody will ever be hurt again . . . and she'll do whatever it takes to achieve it.
- Death of a Thousand Cuts: Mobbed by iron-wielding pixies. Harry even uses that phrase to describe it later.
- Dying as Yourself: Subverted. As she lies bleeding to death next to Harry, she starts to cry, apologize, and whisper that she only wanted the pain to stop. Even though Nemesis's influence was fading, it had still driven her too mad to fully understand what she'd done.
- Fertile Feet: More because she's one of the most powerful of the Summer fae than because of her personality.
- God Save Us from the Queen!: Her goal was to have Winter win the endless war. This would have caused a new ice age over most of the planet, killing much of humanity.
- Knight Templar: Because of Nemesis, she is driven in her quest to "save the world" from the endless war of the Fae. She will save it even if it means destroying it.
- Logical Weakness: The power of her Mantle is tied with the title of Maiden. Should she become a mother, it would shatter the power inside her.
- Rebellious Princess: She is willing to have her first knight assassinated and then kill the girl Aurora turned into the Summer Knight for a gambit that would give Winter a boost in power and win the war.
- Utopia Justifies the Means: She was completely willing to kill off billions of innocent mortals to create a better world for the survivors.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist:
- She tries to start a war which would destroy the faerie courts, specifically so she can put things back together in a way which would be better for humanity. Unfortunately, she's a little crazy and the collateral damage involved in such a plan is unacceptably high.
- As of Cold Days it would have been much worse, and she probably would have accidentally destroyed reality along the way.
Lady LilyA changeling who is friends with Fix, Ace, and Meryl during the events of Summer Knight. Briefly turned into the Summer Knight by Aurora in an effort to give power to Winter and break the seasonal cycle. After the events of Summer Knight, she became the Summer Lady — and was the first mortal to do so.
- Fertile Feet: Her mere presence causes plants to spring into existence, sometimes from implausible, inanimate objects. For example, in Proven Guilty she causes a carved wooden flower in Mac's bar to turn into a real, living flower simply by passing it.
- Horrible Judge of Character: Trusting Maeve and distrusting Harry proved to be very bad mistakes, but sadly justified because she believed Maeve's straight statements were True.
- I Just Want to Be Normal: Lily simply wanted to get married and have a family, but because Harry inadvertently turned her into the Summer Lady by killing Aurora, she got stuck with the role.
- Kill It with Fire: Par the course, but how many people sculpt their flames as a flaming butterfly?
- Lady and Knight: When she and Fix are together they ooze the White version, in addition to being their actual titles/position within the Summer Court.
- Nice Girl: Definitely seems that way. It never did her a lot of good.
- Playing with Fire: As a Queen of Summer, Lily specializes in using heat-based magic, including giving Harry a deceptively-powerful fire enchantment to keep him and his comrades warm while entering Winter in Proven Guilty. Harry uses this special Summer fire against the Scarecrow, and accidentally pumps it into the wellspring of Winter to boot. The rest of Winter is very unhappy.
- Rape as Backstory: Though not outright said, it is implied that Lloyd Slate raped her at some point for Maeve's amusement. It's also suggested that he likely wasn't the only one, thanks to the inhuman beauty she received from her fae heritage not being backed up by anything in the way of enhanced ability to defend herself.
- Reluctant Ruler: She never wanted to become a Queen of Summer.
- Sacred Hospitality: In one particular instance, she uses this plus Rules Lawyer in Cold Days to delay Maeve's forces from pursuing Harry for a short time by insisting she be formally introduced to each of Maeve's forces, as is the custom.
- Surprisingly Sudden Death: In the climax of Cold Days, she stood strong and ready to fight Mab when she was shot in the head by Maeve and no one, save Mab, saw it coming.
- Taken for Granite: During much of the events of Summer Knight she was turned into a statue by Aurora after being turned into the Summer Knight. She remained this way until The Unraveling could be used on her.
- Took a Level in Badass: Upon becoming the Summer Lady, Lily went from a weak-willed girl who barely had the wits to survive on her own to a conniving, tricky magic-wielder who can work within the intrigue and treachery-laden world of the Sidhe. In terms of power, what her fae-half was before becoming the Summer Lady is unknown, but certainly far below the level of a minor Physical God.
- Unexpected Successor: No one anticipates a changeling not chosen by any Summer Queen to end up with the position of Summer Lady.
- Unwitting Pawn: Of Maeve. She is lead to her death by Maeve's machinations.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Her hair starts out a bright shade of green while she's still a changeling.
I've been in Winter for a third of my life. I don't trust anyone.A changeling who rehabilitates Harry after he comes back from the dead, she's actually one of Mab's daughters and the twin sister of Maeve. She becomes the new Summer Lady through Maeve's killing of Lily.
- Broken Bird: Winter isn't kind for a changeling . . . or anyone really.
- Blessed with Suck: She was content with being just a changeling, until Maeve forced the mantle of the Summer Lady onto her by killing Lily.
- Older Than They Look: She is as old as Maeve was.
- Spare to the Throne: Her helping Harry through his physical therapy is in part a chance for Mab to hone her into someone suitable to be the Winter Lady should the need to replace Maeve reach a climax.
- Took a Level in Badass: Contingent with becoming a Physical God as the Summer Lady.
- Unexpected Successor: Mab's machinations aimed for her to replace Maeve, not Lily. When Maeve kills Lily and Sarissa being so close, all the work Mab put into making Sarissa able to handle Maeve's job made her an ideal candidate for the new Summer Lady opening.
Lord Marshal Talos
Lord Marshal TalosOne of Aurora's closest supporters.
Sir Ronald Reuel
Sir Ronald ReuelA highly respected artist, the previous Summer Knight and protector of the Changeling kids. His mantle is taken over by Fix, at the end of Summer Knight.
- Badass Grandpa: Had been operating as the Summer Knight for quite a while, and Lloyd Slate admits that he wasn't sure he could have killed Ron through purely magical means. In addition, no one in Winter was willing to cross him when he took Meryl, Fix, Lily and Ace under his protection.
- Cool Old Guy: He took his wards to Disney World.
- Death by Falling Over: Was flung down a flight of icy stairs and had his neck broken.
- Flaming Sword: Had one as Summer Knight according to the RPG, which may or may not be the same sword Fix carries.
- Magic Knight: By virtue of his station of being the Summer Knight. He can use Summer magic and is a skilled combat fighter.
- Plot-Triggering Death: His death sets off all the events of Summer Knight.
- Posthumous Character: His murder is what sets off the plot of Summer Knight.
- Shout-Out: To J. R. R. Tolkien, as Ronald Reuel is what the "R.R." in "J.R.R. Tolkien" stands for. Reuel is also described as a "creator of worlds"/fantasy illustrator.
- We Hardly Knew Ye: Outside of Meryl's brief description of what he was like, we know very little about the guy, and the few mentions of him in later books refer to him simply as the previous Summer Knight.
Sir FixA changeling — a scion of a human and one of the Sidhe — who was friends with the former Summer Knight. Characterized by his meek demeanor and worrisome nature, and doesn't want to get involved in the upcoming war between the Summer and Winter courts in Summer Knight. Becomes the new Summer Knight afterward.
- Armor-Piercing Question: Suffers one from Harry in Cold Days when Harry lays out evidence Fix knew and then repeats the question of when has Maeve ever been straightforward with an answer and who wanted to be on Demonreach.Fix: Oh. Fuck.
- Bodyguard Crush: Towards Lily.
- Berserk Button: Don't defend Lloyd Slate's actions or make sexual comments about Lily, or you'll be burned alive
- The Champion: To Summer as a whole but to Lily in general.
- Combat Pragmatist: As illustrated in Small Favor, Fix isn't afraid to preemptively put a gun to your head if he isn't sure he can take you fairly. When warning Harry to leave town in Cold Days, he mentions that if he stays, then this will be the last he'll see Fix coming. Later when fighting Harry on Demonreach he has no issues taking him on with a sword and armor while Harry is exhausted, already injured and completely naked.
- Convection Schmonvection: Averted. When he and Harry finally throw down the heat bloom off of Fix's fireballs is mentioned as being just as dangerous as the fire itself, and Harry is frequently forced to protect himself from radiant heat with Winter mist.
- Expository Hairstyle Change: Goes from a meek mechanic with spiked hair to confident and powerful Summer Knight with a shoulder length do typical of faerie nobles.
- Fireballs: Is able to launch one the size of a peanut M&M that instantly consumed a Winter troll hit by it.
- Flaming Sword: Carries one as Summer Knight and is quite skilled with it, to the point that in the RPG his initiative jumps from Good to Epic while using it. When fighting Fix, Harry is convinced he could easily leave his guts on the ground with it if he isn't careful.
- Friendly Enemy: With Harry in Small Favor and Cold Days; the Summer-Winter dynamic means he and Harry are on opposite sides, but they both go out of their way to avoid killing each other.
- Half-Human Hybrid: Like Lily, Meryl, and Ace, he has one Sidhe and one human parent.
- Heel Realization: He realizes very late in Cold Days that he is helping the bad guys of the book.
- It's Personal: It's suggested he'll hold Harry somewhat responsible for Lily's death. This is unconfirmed as of yet.
- I Am Your Opponent: Stands in Harry's way when Lily and Maeve assault Demonreach.
- Improbable Weapon User: Goes into battle with a wrench in Summer Knight.
- It Was a Gift: Fix's sword that Lily melted was a gift to him from Queen Titania for being her Knight.
- Kavorka Man: Harry notes that Fix is not a particularly good-looking man, but by the events of Proven Guilty, his status as the Summer Knight has ensured he has the confidence and presence to get many more women. However, as his heart belongs to Lily, Fix (probably) doesn't really care.
- Lady and Knight: When he and Lily are together they ooze the White version, in addition to being their actual titles/position within the Summer Court.
- Living Emotional Crutch: Appears to be one for Lily by the time Cold Days comes around.
- Lightning Bruiser: Back in Summer Knight, which takes place before he was anything but a meek mechanic, he was still faster with his wrench than the Winter Knight was. Given what we see of the Winter Knight's power when Harry has it, this is quite impressive. By Proven Guilty he appears to have the skill and strength one expects from the Summer Knight as well.
- Mr. Fixit: Fix was a mechanic before becoming Summer Knight and Craftsmanship has the highest rating in the RPG of all his skills.
- Magic Knight: By virtue of his station of being the Summer Knight. He can use Summer magic and is a skilled combat fighter.
- My Master, Right or Wrong: Will not go against Lily's commands even if they could endanger millions of innocent lives
- Oh, Crap!: In Cold Days, when he realizes Maeve's Cannot Tell a Lie compulsion is no longer in place.
- Playing with Fire: He is the Summer Knight.
- Took a Level in Badass: Goes from scrawny, scared changeling to the Summer Knight. So really it's more like several levels.
- Sacrificed Basic Skill for Awesome Training: While the Summer Knight mantle grants Fix enhanced strength and speed, Summer magic and instinctive fighting knowledge, wound him with iron and that all goes away, as he never really learned to fight without it.
- Secret Keeper: He knows Harry has a daughter. He's also in a position to do an incredible amount of damage with it, given who he works for.
- Unstoppable Rage: When Lloyd Slate, the Winter Knight, kills his best friend, he goes berserk and takes the man down singlehandedly. With a wrench.
- Who Watches the Watchmen?: The Summer Knight's job is to protect whoever is the target of the Winter Knight.
- Wrench Whack: He takes down Lloyd Slate this way.
- Yes-Man: As he fully embraced the role of Summer Knight, he rarely went against the wills of Mother Summer, Queen Titania, or Lady Lily. This led him to not consider questioning either Lily's actions or Maeve's forward answers until well into the climax of Cold Days.
The Billy Goats Gruff
The Billy Goats GruffPersonal enforcers for the Queen Titania of the Summer Court, they appear to be goatlike humanoid faeries. Consist of a series of brothers who are not just powerful, but very intelligent. Based on the fairy tale of the same name.
- The Archmage: The Eldest Gruff is a skilled sorcerer, having taken down three Senior Council wizards, killed a Denarian with no more difficulty than swatting away a fly, his very staff causes plants to grow even in the cold of winter, and he can teleport in a quick flash.
- Bad Vibrations: Harry's introduction to the eldest Gruff is Magog being blasted into the building, and a series of heavy steps ominously thumping towards him. After seeing Tiny, Harry rightfully expects him to be enormous, but the Eldest Gruff turns out to be no taller than Murphy, and walks rather heavily using his magic staff as a walking stick.
- Bigger Is Better: The Gruffs come in waves, with each "older brother" bigger, stronger and tougher than the last. Then subverted: the Eldest Gruff is barely 5 feet tall, and yet is orders of magnitude more dangerous than any of the others.
- Bystander Syndrome: Averted in Cold Days of himself, Kringle, and Erlking, he is the only one to give Harry a slight hint to Sarissa being taken away by the Redcap. Rather justified in that he's the most "good" morality-wise of the three.
- Combat Pragmatist:
- Most other faeries hunt with swords or magic. The gruffs? Machine guns. The others aren't slackers at nasty fighting either; the youngest brothers ambush Harry with a feint and surprise attack.
- The gruffs also won't shy away from bringing "temp agents" to help out; Thomas is hunted by faerie elves while masquerading as Harry, and later on the boat carrying Harry is attacked by kelpies: plant faeries apparently made of seaweed.
- Tiny is actually very much a pragmatist as well. He won't attack Harry while he's inside MacAnally's, but he has no qualms about waiting right outside to crush him the moment he leaves. Also, when he storms the subway station, he does so under a huge combat veil; this doesn't generally get noticed because Harry triggered the fire sprinklers, which instantly grounded out the magic being used by the veil.
- When Harry uses cold iron against them, even though they're way out of his league and would have easily killed him, they consider it Disproportionate Retribution.
- Friendly Enemy: The gruffs don't despise Harry; in fact, Tiny and especially Eldest come to express both respect for his ability and regret at having to fight him. Once they are no longer enemies, the friendship remains, and Eldest helps him twice over in Cold Days.
- Genius Bruiser: Tiny is a massive gruff who towers over twenty feet tall, but he's far from stupid.
- Good Counterpart: The Eldest Gruff to the Leanansidhe, as both are personal servants to their Queens and have the power to defend their station.
- Hero Antagonist: The gruffs may be out to kill Harry, but they're actually pretty nice and friendly guys who are famous for fighting and slaying evil trolls. Harry even has a good long laugh with Eldest when they meet, as they both agree that normal, mortal women are impossible to understand, to say nothing of the Sidhe Queens.
- Hitman with a Heart: For Titania's personal assassins, they're actually pretty nice guys when they're not trying to murder your face off.
- Ironic Nickname: Harry, being Harry, names the Gruff who outmasses an ogre as "Tiny".
- It's Personal: Much like the fairy tale, harming one of the younger brothers, even if it is in self-defense, is not well liked by the elder brothers and they will come to avenge the injured ones. The Eldest Gruff, and so the eldest brother, subverts this as he doesn't seem to be angry at Harry's hurting his kin or the use of iron against them. He sees it as All a Part of the Job.
- My Master, Right or Wrong: The Gruffs are troubled at having to fight Harry, who is someone they deeply respect, but they'll do it anyway if Titania wills it.
- No Name Given: The Gruffs don't appear to have individual names, but for Tiny, which is a nickname Harry gave, and the Eldest Gruff, which is more of a descriptor.
- Pint-Sized Powerhouse: Eldest Gruff can swat bearers of fallen angels like uppity pixies and has killed three members of the Senior Council in duels over the years. He's five foot two, at most.
- The Shrink: Eldest Gruff acts as this to Titania at times. In regards to Harry, he helps Titania assuage her intense rage to the man who killed her daughter for the greater good. She reaches the point where she can comport herself in a mostly neutral manner to Harry in Cold Days.
- Sorting Algorithm of Evil: Each "wave" of gruffs is significantly smarter and tougher:
- The first four were relatively short, though still smart and coordinated enough to use small unit tactics and used misdirection, ambush, feint attacks, even playing possum.
- The next three used disguise, SMGs, tried to funnel Harry into an ambush, and knew how to properly do a systematic sweep when Harry managed to give them the slip.
- The next Gruff ("Tiny" Gruff) was more than a story tall, and is described as being about four tons at the least, and has knuckles larger than cantaloupes. He was also smart enough to go against Harry in full armor and underneath a veil.
- The last one, the Eldest Gruff, is tiny but easily the smartest, but what makes him so deadly is that he's one of the strongest spellcasters Harry has ever met.
- Stealth Hi/Bye: The Eldest does this to deliver Harry his doughnut to pay back the debt Summer owes Harry while Harry and Thomas are in a car. Thomas only notices the doughnut suddenly being there and knew it wasn't there before.
- Worthy Opponent:
- The Eldest Gruff, a being who has killed three Senior Council members and has their purple stoles as trophies on him sees Harry as one for his genius in outwitting some of the strongest Sidhe. This honestly helps Harry in the long run as his years of wise counsel was the only thing that prevented Titania from killing Harry.
- Tiny also feels this way about Murphy, actually holding her in higher regard than Harry, out of respect for her, a mortal, going toe to toe with him and forcing him to back down by pointing out he is bound to honor Mac's rules of neutrality and no fighting while Murphy, not being a signatory to the Accords, as a police officer has a lawful right to protect the citizens of Chicago.
KorrickAnother of Aurora's supporters.
- Glamour: To look like a unicorn, of all things.
- Hair-Trigger Temper: Korrick is fiery and quick to anger.
- My Master, Right or Wrong: He serves Aurora in all things. To defy her, even as she commits treason against Titania and the Summer Court, is something he cannot bring himself to do. It's unknown if an order from Titania or Mother Summer would have stopped him.
- Our Centaurs Are Different: He's a centaur and a strong warrior.
If I did not release you now, how should I ever have the pleasure of hunting you myself some fine, bright evening?A powerful Fae and one of the Kings of Summer, who leads The Wild Hunt. First encountered in Dead Beat, where, as a result of the plot, he became one of Harry's mortal enemies. He commands the Wyldfae of Summer.
- Affably Evil: In Changes, he treats Harry and Susan courteously when they land in his hall, even warning Harry not to Speak of the Devil. And in other books he is outright helpful to the wizard. But he's still a vicious wyldfae whose prime passions are violence and death.
- Bishonen Line: When he takes off the helmet in Changes, his features are notably more symmetrical and attractive than those of his subjects.
- Blood Knight: To say he enjoys combat and the hunt is an understatement.
- Bystander Syndrome: In Cold Days of the Eldest Gruff, Kringle, and himself, he only stares blankly at Harry, giving no hint to Sarissa being taken away by The Red Cap.
- Crown of Horns: He wears a helmet adorned with a massive brace of antlers.
- Dumb Muscle: Very much averted. He is very sharp, quick thinking, and respects these traits in others too. It is one reason he respects Harry, for while he may be weaker than the Erlking physically and magically, he was more than quick enough to take a slip of the Erlking's tongue and use it against him.
- Evil Laugh: Judging by Harry's narration when The Wild Hunt is fighting Outsiders during Cold Days, the Erlking's laughter sounds a lot like this.
- Hidden Depths: The Erlking is much more reasonable and courteous when he is not leading the Wild Hunt.
- Horned Humanoid: Subverted. The horns are actually part of his helmet.
- Hunting the Most Dangerous Game: His fondest passion, though, in the world of The Dresden Files man is not necessarily the most dangerous game.
- I Let You Win: Harry defeats him and Kringle to gain leadership of The Wild Hunt. However, Harry realizes there was no way he could have realistically won; the Erlking wanted him to use the Wild Hunt but couldn't just give it to him freely, as the Wild Hunt itself will only respect a leader who earns control of it through force.
- Immortals Fear Death: Averted. He loves the hunt and when a certain astronomical event occurs and renders him able to die, he doesn't hide. He just fights harder.
- Large and in Charge: He's nine feet tall, towering over the goblins he rules.
- Leave No Man Behind: During the fight with Outsiders in Cold Days, he witnesses one of dozens of hounds get dragged beneath the water, and promptly dives off his horse into the lake to get it back.
- Not Good with People: By his own admission, he isn't a people person and generally dislikes the Sidhe rule twisting that goes about in the courts.
- Our Goblins Are Different: In the Dresdenverse, Goblins are supernatural huntsmen with asymmetric faces and unusually cruel hunting implements. When its mentioned that Harry and Susan were supposed to be able to handle a million of them without trouble, Harry mentions that the real Goblins are like ninjas from Krypton. The Erlking himself is an honorable entity who will honor his word, even if he regrets doing so, and is much more concerned with "kingly" pursuits like hunting and fighting than sneaking or tinkering.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: You can expect the king to follow his rules and laws fairly and justly. He is even willing to help Harry save reality, once Harry proves himself to the Wild Hunt.
- Ring of Fire: He creates one as the boundary of the ring during Susan and Harry's Trial by Combat against the Red Court to determine who is, if not telling the truth, more committed to their version of the story.
- Sacred Hospitality: Even when he doesn't mean to give it, he accepts he has given Harry this by calling him a "guest" in Changes. However, this also extends to the vampires chasing Harry into his domain. As they have competing claims, he must decide on who is being honest and decides on Trial by Combat as a means to find the truth.
- Trial by Combat: When Harry and Susan, and the Red Court vampires land in his dining room, he couldn't decide who was being truthful for why they were there. Is it sheer dumb luck and an accident as Harry contended or a brilliant ruse to get him involved in the White Court-Vampire War as the vampires implied? When one of his men suggests this idea to settle the matter, he goes with it.
- The Wild Hunt: He leads it on Halloween. He gives those who come into its path the choice: Join, Run, or Die.
- Worthy Opponent: Genuinely respects and likes Harry for his tactics against stronger opponents and being able to call on such a powerful spirit of the hunt and infuse it within a T-Rex's skeleton. After he found Harry too weak to defend himself in Dead Beat, the Erlking spares his life because the dinosaur thing was just that cool. Still plans to hunt him down for sport one of these days, though.
- X Meets Y: In-universe. In Cold Days Harry notes he is like "Jackie Chan meets Hannibal Lecter".
A goblin who is in a dispute with Ambre, a ghoul.
Wyldfae: Little Folk
A fairy that Dresden used for information, and later recruited to his personal service by bribing him with pizza. Leader of the Za Lord's Guard.
- Amazon Chaser: He seems to fall for Lacuna after she knocks him on his ass.
- Berserk Button: He REALLY doesn't like being called a domovoi. As he tells Sanya, he's actually a polevoi (a field spirit, whereas domovoi are house spirits).
- Beware the Cute Ones: Several of Harry's early successes come from his respect for beings like Toot who greater powers tend to overlook, and Toot's services as spy and scout are a great help to Harry on many occasions. Once Harry arms his little followers with cold iron, things just get worse; no matter how powerful the opponent, no fae magic will defend against that.
- Big Eater: For his size. He could probably outdo some humans under the right conditions.
- Bishōnen: Just as pretty as a fairy noble, just, you know, tiny.
- The Cavalry: An especially odd version of one.
- Cloud Cuckoolander: He is a fairy and has a very odd thought process.
- Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Oh that silly little fairy, what could— Good god! My arms!!!
- Forget your arms. Look out for your eyes.
- Even back in Storm Front, Harry is careful to not fall asleep because he knows Toot could whisper the information in his ear and then place some curse upon Harry for kicks.
- David Vs Goliath: To protect Harry, armed with just his box cutter, he attacks a skinwalker, an ancient fallen messenger of a holy people and pretty much a Physical God.
- Fairy Companion: He doesn't follow Harry around, but Harry is nevertheless his personal Jesus, what with saving his friends and giving them regular deliveries of pizza.
- G-Rated Drug: Pizza.Sanya: You are a drug dealer. To tiny fairies. For shame.
- Hero Secret Service: The leader of the Pizza Lord's (Harry's) Guard.
- Hilarity Ensues: Instant funny, just add Toot-Toot.
- Honor Before Reason: Toot-Toot refuses to run away, no matter how insanely outclassed he is.
- This is important, as Harry knows he's in danger when Toot-Toot tells him to run, and even more importantly, to forget the doughnut.
- Hold the Line:
- Not in any epic battle, but Toot-Toot and the other Za Lord guard protect the cleaning brownies from the Dread Beast Mister.
- In Turn Coat he is the line when he fights off the demigod skinwalker aiming to kill an incapacitated Harry. He fails, but not before buying time enough for another to come and save the day.
- And then in Cold Days, he and the rest of the Za-Lord's Guard hold off the waves of Wyldfae that Ace sends to kill Harry. Harry thinks it's so badass that he compares Toot to King Leonidas.
- Improbable Weapon User: A boxcutter and a nail. Of course, he's so small that these are about the right size, and since iron hurts fae, they're also surprisingly effective.
- Instant Messenger Pigeon: As he and his group know the small ways and passages through the Nevernever, they are very good at acting as messengers when Harry needs them to be.
- Large and in Charge: He's gotten noticeably taller as his power and status among the fae increase.
- Literal-Minded: Even when he is eighteen inches tall he does not understand metaphors. When Harry asked him to watch his back, Toot told Harry to lean forward.
- O.O.C. Is Serious Business: Harry knows that he is in mortal danger when Toot tells him to forget about the doughnut and run.
- Our Fairies Are Different: And obsessed with pizza.
- Pint-Sized Powerhouse: He started out about six inches tall, but still a powerful force that Harry shows respect to.
- Power Glows: Well, he does, anyway.
- Praetorian Guard: After many favors done to him and other dewdrop fairies, Toot-Toot become fiercely loyal to Harry by protecting his cleaning brownies, to removing any pests in the area in or around Harry's place. They even attacked a Sidhe Queen on his command.
- Punch-Clock Hero: He and his people are mainly in it for the pizza and eventually personal loyalty to the "Za Lord".
- Reckless Sidekick: Proving that Tropes Are Not Bad, despite being hopelessly outclassed, Toot-Toot is the bravest character in this entire goddamn story. He goes up against gods, demons, wizards, vampire queens, and survives!
- Scavenged Punk/Improvised Armor: Toot's armor and weaponry are this trope, and are progressively upgraded as he scrounges better junk to make them from.
- Shoo Out the Clowns: Mostly played straight, but occasionally and awesomely averted.
- Small, Annoying Creature: Averted. Toot-Toot is a total badass and fairly amusing.
- Through His Stomach: Harry gains Toot-Toot's initial loyalty by feeding him. First some honey and blood-soaked bread, then upon learning Toot-toot loves pizza, that.
- Took a Level in Badass: Over the books. He started as an informant and became a big damn hero. Per Word of God, Toot, like every other Sidhe, gains power by having more influence in the world around him, so he becomes more powerful through each act he performs to aid Harry.
- Trademark Favorite Food: Pizza, if that wasn't clear by now.
- You Shall Not Pass: Buys Dresden time by attacking a demigod.
- Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Toot-Toot fears cats, especially the Dread Beast Mister. But for the sake of protecting the cleaning brownies, he and the Za Lord's forces will keep him at bay.
Captain Hook, aka Lacuna
LacunaThe leader of the Little Folk who harass Harry in Cold Days at Ace's direction. Lacuna is captured by the protagonists, and eventually joins Harry's service by agreeing to be his prisoner of war in exchange for Harry abiding by the Winter Law.
- Action Girl: She is a capable fighter, dangerous and not to be underestimated.
- Blood Knight: This little one really enjoys battle.
- Granola Girl: According to Jim Butcher, she is a tooth fairy. As a result, she thinks pizza is evil, and lambasts Harry for feeding it to the other pixies. She's also offended when Toot-Toot brings her a Jolly Rancher, and knocks him on his ass.
- Heel–Face Turn: By The Laws and Customs of War of the Fae Courts, she accepts the position of "Prisoner" to Harry Dresden and becomes his personal valet, with some provisions in return.
- Instant Messenger Pigeon: Like Toot, she has become this for Harry while he is living on Demonreach.
- Know When to Fold 'Em: When she is held captive by Harry and cannot escape, she accepts his declaration she is his prisoner and resigns herself to serving Harry, as mandated under The Laws and Customs of War of the Fae Courts.
- Lady of War: Lacuna's typical station.
- Literal-Minded: When Harry comments that he probably has brain damage, Lacuna offers to cut open his skull to check.
- Pint-Sized Powerhouse: For someone so small, Lacuna manages to kick a disproportionate amount of ass. She almost manages to kill Harry a few times.
- Punch-Clock Villain: Only in service to Ace, and when it is clear she cannot escape Harry or Toot without serious harm to herself, she is humble enough to accept being Harry's prisoner.
- Samus Is a Girl: Toot and Harry don't see this coming.
- Spikes of Villainy: Lacuna's armor is covered in tiny, spiky fishhooks, hence the name.
- Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Like other little folks, Lacuna is scared of cats. Especially a large number of cats.
ElideeA tiny, ant-sized pixie who guides Dresden through the Undertown in order to repay a favor to Toot-Toot in Summer Knight.
KeefLeader of a group of cobbs based in Shoegasm, a shoe store in Woodfield Mall. Appears in the short story "It's My Birthday, Too".
- The Elves and the Cobbler: The cobbs, Keef included, are based on the legend of elves building shoes. Harry helped make a deal between Shoegasm and Keef's clan to allow them to stay there in return for likely helping with some repairs.
- G-Rated Drug: Pizza is still an enticing thing for him (and the younger of his kind really love it) but he has enough control to not do as Harry asks for just that.
- Interrogation by Vandalism: Susceptible to this. Dresden gets their information by breaking and then threatening to throw away some well-crafted shoes.
- Killer Rabbit: Harry considers them this. Keef may look like a 19th-century ten-inch tall man with goggles and white puffy hair, but Harry knows they aren't to be pushed when it comes to shoes. After Harry uses a carrot-and-stick to get their help, he knows they could have seriously hurt him if the deal went sour.
- Obstructive Code of Conduct: He and his kind can fix any shoe that is not thrown away. Even if the shoe is just dropped into the trash and taken out, they cannot touch them.
MerylA half-troll, half-human hybrid, Meryl was part of a group of changelings that included Fix, Lily, and Ace. When Lily was captured she did everything she could to rescue her, including Choosing to side with her troll side instead of her human side, and ultimately died saving her life.
- All Trolls Are Different: Meryl was self-sacrificing and had a soft, quiet voice, both unusual traits for trolls in most fiction.
- Brawn Hilda: Meryl was muscular and ugly.
- Deadly Upgrade: Granted, making her Choice to be a full troll didn't kill her in and of itself, but it ended her ability to live in the human world.
- Half-Human Hybrid: With a troll being the other half.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Twice over.
- She sacrifices her humanity to become a powerful troll so she can help save Lily
- Her rushing against Aurora's thorns and combat against Talos led to her saving Lily, as well as the world, at the cost of her total life.
- Killed Off for Real: Died of her injuries in the climax of Summer Knight.
- Undying Loyalty: In order to save Lily, she pushed her way through a poisoned barrier of thorns and battled the mighty Sidhe warrior Talos. She dies from the injuries.
A bridge troll. The first magical enemy Harry Dresden is known to have fought in Chicago. Appears in the short story "A Restoration of Faith".
Wyldfae: OthersFor Kris Kringle, one of the Kings of Winter, see the entry for Donar Vadderung under Other Powerful Entities.
King Gwynn ap NuddGwynn ap Nudd is king of the Tylwyth Teg, a kingdom of Welsh Fey. He first appears in the side story "Curses." He is the one who cursed the Chicago Cubs.
- Hereditary Curse: He curses the Chicago Cubs because he (in his goat form) was removed from the game for smelling terrible. He's actually been over the insult for a while now, and keeps renewing it because he feels their determination despite the constant losing has become part of the spirit of the game.
- It's Personal: When he and his "owner" Billy Sianis were kicked out of the game, he was deeply insulted, and cursed the team. His anger cooled down a while ago, but he keeps the curse going out of tradition.
- Pals with Jesus: He's the "Jesus" of the trope. He is very friendly with Harry, even enjoying a baseball game with him.
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: The extent of his abilities is unknown, but he can at least become a (foul-smelling) goat. He was the goat that was removed during the 1945 World Series game against the Detroit Tigers, which led to the curse on the Cubs.
GrendelkinGigantic monsters that weigh over a quarter ton. Strong, fast, and able to cast some spells, they are very dangerous foes. One appears in the short story "Heorot".
- Anti-Magic: The one that Dresden and Gard meet can do this, and it's possible others can as well.
- Attempted Rape: The one we see is stopped by Dresden and Gard while he's in the process of trying to rape Elizabeth Braddock.
- Bizarre Alien Reproduction: Their babies burst out of their victims' bodies.
Rawhead and Bloody Bones
Rawhead and Bloody Bones
Large beasts that look like skinless minotaurs and are made from the remains of farm animals that died in slaughterhouses. One appears in Welcome to the Jungle, and a much larger one appears in Cold Days.
KarlA nacken water spirit who finds himself bound to serve Luccio after he loses an ill-conceived bet with her. Appears in A Fistful of Warlocks.
- Impossible Task: He offers to serve Luccio if she manages to ride on his back for an hour, and doesn't tell her he'll spend most of that hour underwater. He expects for Luccio to drown, since humans generally can't breathe underwater. Luccio, however, manages to survive the bet and earn his service.
- Made a Slave: Forced to serve Luccio after losing his bet to her.
- Servile Snarker: He makes various gripes to Luccio about his position even as he faithfully obeys her commands.
AceA changeling who appeared in Summer Knight who was friends with Fix, Lily, and Meryl during the events of Summer Knight. He betrayed Harry for protection from the Winter Court and he returns as an antagonist in Cold Days.
- Chekhov's Gunman: First seen in Summer Knight and was still alive at the end. It is implied he is behind nearly all the car accidents and car bombings that nearly killed Harry since then.
- Combat Pragmatist:
- Say what you want about the guy, but he came closer to killing Harry than most other threats. Bombing his car, hiring tiny fairies and giving them real swords and nail guns, blocking his exit so that his father could get to him, blowing up a warehouse while Harry and his friends were inside and sinking it, and trying to Just Shoot Him.
- It is also implied that he was the one behind the attempt to run Harry off the road in Proven Guilty and who planted the car bomb in White Night.
- Half-Human Hybrid: With the Red Cap being the other half.
- It's Personal: Harry notes Ace had a lot of reasons to hate him since he killed one of his friends, led another to death, and the last two want nothing to do with him.
- Took a Level in Badass: Started off as a punk with a gun, ended as as a bomber and assassin by car against Harry.
- "Well Done, Son!" Guy: His father is The Red Cap, a certifiable asshole who gets his jollies from killing people and dipping his hat in their blood, and Ace desperately tries to please him, despite the fact he would have allowed Thomas to kill him if it meant getting Dresden.
A wyldfae with power to rival the Leanansidhe. He appears in the comic Wild Card.
- Ax-Crazy: Murders his way through Chicago with gleeful abandon.
- For the Evulz: His sole motivation for trying to start a three-way war between Chicago's most powerful factions is to amuse himself.
- Healing Factor: The main thing that makes him so insanely dangerous to take on directly is that he recovers from pretty much anything in almost no time at all. Getting blasted with steel-jacketed rounds slows him down, but only barely. Getting his arms lopped off? They'll grow back in a couple of minutes.
- Hero Killer: While he doesn't quite kill Murphy, he's still one of the few people in the series who comes close.
- Let's You and Him Fight: His strategy. He targets members of House Raith, the police, and Marcone's mob, each time making it look like one of the other groups was responsible so that they all begin shooting at each other.
- Life Force: He can drain the life-force from someone to make it look like a White Court vamp killed them.
- Noble Demon: After a fashion. As with all Fae, he'll keep his word, and regards Dresden as a Worthy Opponent.
- The Quincy Punk: His baseline appearance very much works on the standard punk vibe, right down to the multi-coloured hair.
- Seen It All: Has been alive so long that his only source of amusement is in setting up situations where he doesn't know what the outcome will be.
- Time Abyss: He's been around for a long time, even by fae standards. Unfortunately, this means he's bored.
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: He has this power, and he shows it off to Murphy, even turning into a carbon copy of Dresden himself in front of her just for kicks.
- Worthy Opponent: Regards Dresden as this once he's beaten.