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Characters: The Dresden Files Unfazed Everymans And Badass Normals
Characters from The Dresden Files
, ordinary people and badass normals.WARNING!
Due to the books relying heavily on mystery and surprise, the pages would be virtually unreadable with excessive spoiler tags. Therefore, all spoilers except for the most recent novel (Skin Game
) are UNMARKED
. Tread carefully.
open/close all folders
A reporter for the Midwestern Arcane
, a trashy tabloid that doesn't deserve a journalist as good as she is. She will put herself at an extraordinary amount of risk to get the scoop on some genuine weirdness, and constantly pesters Harry for leads. Harry's girlfriend until the Red Court got their hands on her..
- Damsel in Distress: Repeatedly, in the earlier books. Harry had to rescue her an inordinate number of times early on.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Just about literally. She lets Harry sacrifice her on the altar that is being used to empower the bloodline curse, to target the Red Court.
- Intrepid Reporter: Harry notes that she gets into a lot of trouble investigating angles for the Midwestern Arcane.
- Marked Change: The Fellowship's normally invisible tattoos allow her to use the junior league version of the Red Court's abilities without letting her bloodthirst get out of control.
- My Greatest Failure: How Harry views what happened to her.
- Shoot the Dog: After she attacks Martin and starts to turn into a full vampire, Harry has to cut her throat to turn a bloodline curse intended for him on the Red Court.
John "Gentleman Johnny" Marcone
The boss of the Chicago criminal underground, he's not quite as unpopular with the cops as one might expect since he runs his operation with the minimum of bloodshed and the maximum of profit. He's smart enough that he generally tries to keep Harry on his side, but isn't averse to working against him when necessary. Harry hates his guts, but he has still probably done him more good than harm overall, even as the two men recognize that they will eventually come into a situation where only one will be left standing.
- Abnormal Ammo: Uses an anti-ward musket ball in Even Hand. According to Gard, who made it, a bullet of that power takes a ridiculous amount of power to enchant, and it'll only work if the original bullet has killed a great man.
"I was unconscious for three weeks after scribing the rune for that one. To say nothing of the fact that the bullets themselves are rare. That one killed a man named Nelson at Trafalgar
"How do you know?" Gard:
"I took it out of him
. Men of his caliber are few and far between."
- Affably Evil: Can be very charming when he wants to be, is almost uniformly polite in the face of Harry's deliberate provocation, and has assisted the heroes even in situations where it doesn't materially benefit himself. Harry continuously reminds himself that, no matter how often Marcone assists him or even saves his life, he is still a bad person.
- Ambiguously Evil: Sometimes it's hard to tell if he's a Type I Anti-Villain or a particularly hard-core Anti-Hero.
- Anti-Villain: He's more often help than hindrance to Harry; while his empire of crime is vast and increasing, he maintains order and reduces violence. We ultimately learn from his Start of Darkness in White Night that the motivation that drives him is to prevent Innocent Bystanders from harm, and he is desperate to heal a young girl in a coma from a bullet meant for him. In Small Favor, he refuses to be freed first until the Archive is rescued, and during the subsequent escape, shelters her and makes sure she is the first person on the rescue helicopter.
- Arch-Enemy: He believes himself to be this for Harry Dresden. He had stated in his monologue of "Even Hand" that someday he and Harry will face each other for one final time and has been preparing armament to ensure his victory. It's difficult to decide which is more impressive: that Harry can destroy the strongest mob boss in the nation or that Marcone can kill one of the deadliest wizards on the planet.
- Authority Equals Asskicking: Even when he's not surrounded by God-knows-how-many bodyguards, this is seriously one guy you do not want to mess with.
- Badass Normal: He once managed to keep a knife hidden from FBI agents, then pull it out and throw it through a rope while hanging upside down in the dark. Another time, he ripped Nicodemus into shreds with a machine gun. It slowed him down for, like, two seconds, but it's the thought that counts.
Marcone was criminal scum, but Iíll give the rat his dueóheís got balls that drag the ground when he walks.
- Berserk Button: It's hard to find something that will set Marcone off, but if he even thinks you're threatening children, and especially Amanda Beckit, a.k.a. "Persephone", he will murder you until you die. He outright says in Changes that part of the reason why he is helping Harry against the Red Court is because they are hurting children.
- Batman Gambit: In Skin Game he, Mab and Hades execute one jointly, years in the making, to get revenge on Nicodemus for his plot in Small Favor. It works to a breathtaking degree.
- Big Damn Heroes: He's needed to be rescued a couple of times now. On the flip side, he's also been one to show up at the last second with a rescue squad (usually Hendricks and Gard) a couple of times as well.
- Clasp Your Hands If You Deceive: He does the finger-steepling thing quite a bit, as his character design is based on David Xanatos.
- Crazy-Prepared: This is a man who puts extra light and thin doors at dramatic entry points to reduce shrapnel. Not to mention having both technological and magical defenses installed in multiple safe houses, though they do sometimes interfere with one another.
- Cynicism Catalyst: He will do anything to try to make up for the fact that a little girl took a bullet meant for him and has been in a coma ever since. When Harry soulgazed him in Storm Front, even before he discovered what had happened, Harry could tell how much that single event had changed him.
It was a dry and cool place, inside Gentleman Johnny Marcone. Except for one dim corner. There, hidden away from his everyday thoughts, there lurked a secret shame. I couldn't quite see what it was. But I knew that, somewhere in the past there was something that he would give anything to undo, would spill blood to erase. It was from that dark place that he drew his resolve, his strength.
- Diabolical Mastermind: One does not become boss of Chicago's underworld without becoming both of these.
- Deadpan Snarker: His narration of Even Hand.
Mag entered in the manner so many of these self-absorbed supernatural cretins seem to adore. He blasted the door into a cloud of flying splinters with what I presumed was magic.
For God's sake.
At least the vampires would call for an appointment.
- The Don: Runs basically all organized crime in Chicago. The cops are actually fairly willing to put up with this, as organized crime's gotten a lot less violent since he took over, and his control of things prevents turf wars.
- Enemy Mine: Has probably teamed up with Harry more times than he's been an antagonist.
- Even Evil Has Standards: Marcone is willing to take a profit from any single vice you can name... except those which involve the exploitation of children. The defining moment of this trope may have been the opening scene of Even Hand, where he personally sees to the execution of a pimp who sold children and a drug dealer who sold to minors.
- The Fettered: Marcone is a pure pragmatist, capable of making ruthless and utterly cold-hearted decisions if it means good business. Unless children are concerned. On at least one occasion, Marcone has knowingly made a bad decision because a child's safety was on the line.
- Friendly Enemy: Generally courteous, and often helpful, towards Harry. Harry responds by being as rude as possible to drive home his view that Marcone's a villain, however friendly he acts. Both men respect one another, after a fashion, even as they realize that they will never be able to reconcile their fundamental differences.
- Friend to All Children: His first rule. To Harry's annoyance, since it means he can't just dismiss the guy as a mustache-twirling villain.
- Genre Savvy: After the first time failed, Marcone never threatened Harry again and had accepted with saintly tolerance Harry's insults and property destruction. This seems bizarre for The Don at first sight, until one realizes that he must have recognized that Harry always came out not only alive, but victorious over and over again against enemies several magnitudes stronger than him (and Marcone). As per "Even Hand," Marcone has been implementing precautions into all his buildings specifically to destroy Harry.
- Green Eyes: Harry's usual description is "the color of worn dollar bills." Murphy compares them to "dead grass." Noticeably, in a flashback, his eyes are a more healthy-looking "bright, grass-green."
- I Know Your True Name: Actually we don't. In his narration of Even Hand, he mentions the fact John Marcone is not his real name.
- Johnny McCoolname: But see above.
- Knife Nut: He always seems to have several lying around.
- Lesser of Two Evils: It's frequently pointed out that, yes, he's the leader of all organized crime in Chicago, but his standards and pragmatism keep the levels of collateral damage much lower than they would be without him, and his absolute control over the criminal underworld has stopped turf-wars.
- The Mafia: Runs the Chicago branch, though with less wise-guy tradition and more ruthless pragmatism.
- Major Injury Underreaction: "Even Hand" ended with his arm broken, several ribs bruised or cracked, and lacerations all over his body. He barely reacted, killed the dark wizard, and went out to a nice restaurant after a quick check-in with his private doctor.
- Morality Pet: "Persephone," the girl who was put into a coma by a drive-by hit on Marcone when he was younger. Harry outright says that this is the entire reason why Marcone tightly controls the streets and doesn't hesitate to kill criminals who hurt innocents. To a certain extent this applies to all children (for instance, his protectiveness towards The Archive), as does his Berserk Button.
- Mysterious Backer: Mostly since, as the name itself implies, he's a pragmatic, but ruthless gangster.
- Noble Demon: The man is corrupting scum. He will work his way through Pragmatic Villainy with a cold ruthlessness. However, he always honor his promises and debts, and he never harms children in his venture, at least not directly. He won't permit any drug dealing to them and will personally deal with the violators.
- Not Distracted by the Sexy: He is the only human so far who not only is completely unmoved by White Court glamour, but he managed to pierce through the veils of Lara at their first encounter, finding her shadow government "amusing." In Cold Days, Thomas tells Harry that Marcone has become the second man to turn Lara down in a century (Harry being the first).
- Neighbourhood Friendly Gangsters: His modus operandi reduces the amount of collateral damage and civilian casualties in Chicago's criminal underworld. However, it's made explicitly clear that this is done out of ruthless pragmatism, not any real sense of decency
I am not a humanitarian. When I offer charity it is for tax purposes.
- Papa Wolf: Summed up when Harry makes a probing threat against Persephone:
I'll kill you. If you so much as breathe in her direction, I'll kill you, Dresden. Myself.
- Pragmatic Villainy: His dealing with Harry Dresden in Storm Front was him just trying to pay Harry to not work the case. He escalated the amounts to a considerable amount, a week's pay for doing nothing. It is said this is his usual method of getting people out of his way.
- Red Baron: Gentleman Johnny Marcone. It says something about the man that he makes the nickname "Gentleman" Badass.
- Rags to Riches: Mentions in Fool Moon, when a loup-garou is on the loose, that his parents were in no position to leave him much of anything, let alone the silver necessary to kill it.
- The Stoic: In Death Masks, the fact that he blinks once is implied by Harry to be a massive tell for him. Invoked in Even Hand.
Marcone: (Narration) I am not made of stone, but I have found it is generally best to behave as if I am.
- The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: For Dresden. He is sure that one day he and Dresden would face each other one last time. And he is not certain that he would be the one left standing.
- Vetinari Job Security: He's a crime lord who makes a profit off any vice trade you care to name, but he's infinitely better than any of the alternatives. Harry at one point tells him someday he won't be the lesser evil, but until then, it seems everyone is relieved Marcone's running the Outfit and keeping the collateral damage down.
- What Beautiful Eyes: He has Green Eyes, which suggest extreme materialism (being the color of worn dollar bills).
Marcone's chief bodyguard/enforcer.
First appearing in Storm Front
as a distraught woman who lost her only daughter to mob violence. Broken from that act of violence, she wanted revenge and ran against Harry Dresden when she and her husband used magic to kill. After getting out of prison for drug dealing, Marcone offered her a job as an accountant. She is now Marcone's girlfriend, and the madame of one of his "health clubs."
- Broken Bird: The loss of her daughter was something she never recovered from.
- Despair Event Horizon: After the loss of her daughter,
- Enemy Mine: In Small Favor she sells Marcone out to the Denarians hoping to have the man killed once and for all.
- Meaningful Name: Ms. Demeter. Like the Goddess, her daughter is trapped in a coma, unable to be woken up by any means Marcone (Hades) has tried.
- Miss Kitty: Runs the Executivxe Priority gymnasium/brothel for Marcone.
- Put on a Bus / The Bus Came Back: Arrested and sent to prison in Storm Front, she came back eight books later.
- Revenge Before Reason: In Storm Front she didn't care who she had to destroy if it means Marcone is destroyed.
- Stockholm Syndrome: Her feelings for Marcone, and vice versa are...complicated.
- You Killed My Daughter: Her daughter was killed during a hit aimed at Marcone. Though averted later when Harry learns her daughter is alive, but in a coma and cared for by Marcone. He won't reveal her to her mother, fearing the despair Helen would go through with finding her daughter alive but in such a state would be unbearable to the woman.
Thomas Raith's long-time girlfriend and primary food source. After he almost killed her in Blood Rites
, she was in a wheelchair for a while, got out of it, her previously dark hair turned white, and, ironically, she and Thomas could no longer touch since love burns White Court vampires. Largely due to this last characteristic, she is now Lara Raith's personal assistant, since Lara prefers to have an assistant that none of her family members can turn into a thrall.
"Polka will never die!"
Chicago medical examiner, polka enthusiast and geek extraordinaire. He was assigned to autopsy the corpses found after a fire, but since said fire was in fact the result of a wizardly temper tantrum
, he got a vampire corpse, called it "humanlike, but definitely nonhuman" and consequently got stuck in a mental institution for observation for three months. This gave him a cheery disrespect for authority that helps him get along quite well with Harry.
Harry's deceased father. Formerly a stage magician, he died when Harry was around six years old. Officially, he died because of a brain aneurism; some have hinted otherwise. We'll know sooner or later. His ghost made a brief, cryptic appearance in Dead Beat
- Vagueness Is Coming:
- "Beware the Jabberwock, my son." However, this may just be part of the lead-up to a pun. "No, I don't have a vorpal sword to lend you. You'll have to make do with a Snickers snack."
- His remarks about how "Death" and "Terrible waters" lie in Harry's future play this straight, when events in Changes (Harry shot dead by Kincaid) and Aftermath (rise of the aquatic Fomor) are taken into account.
The second oldest of Michael and Charity's children, now a member of the Chicago Alliance.
- Badass Normal: Has no powers, but he has been very well trained. Bombshells reveals he's just come from a tour in the army.
- The Big Guy: He is a trained fighter on the large size.
- Hot-Blooded: Is a bit eager to deal with the Fomor and other issues, with a tendency to not think first.
- Idiot Ball: He mentioned Murphy was now the custodian of two of the Swords in front of a White Court Vampire. Not his brightest move.
- Knife Nut: His preferred weapon.
Margaret "Maggie" Angelica Dresden
The daughter of Harry and Susan. She was conceived during Death Masks
. The living Macguffin of Changes.
She was kidnapped by Arianna to be used in a sacrificial ritual, but saved by Harry.
- A Boy and His X: She and Mouse, whom Harry tasked as her protector, are virtually inseparable.
- Buffy Speak: According to her, Mouse "slayerized" a monster under her bed.
- The Cutie: Was this until Arianna kidnapped her.
- Break the Cutie: Compare the smiling photo to the broken-down wreck she is when Harry meets her (after narrowly securing her a reprieve)
- Disappeared Dad: Harry, by virtue of not being told she even existed for the first five years of her life and later his death.
- Happily Adopted: As of Ghost Story is now living with the Carpenters with Mouse as her companion.
- Human Sacrifice: Arianna planned this for her, and after Arianna's plans fell through thanks to her death at Harry's hands, the Red King tried to do the same. She was saved, but it's pretty safe to say that she'll have scars for years to come.
- Missing Mom: Susan because it was too dangerous to keep her around while Susan was fighting the Red Court, and later because Susan died in a Heroic Sacrifice, saving little Maggie from the Red Court.
A professional thief who was a member of a crew that called themselves the Churchmice, Valmont first met Harry when she was hired to steal the Shroud of Turin in Death Masks
. She reappears in Skin Game
as part of Nicodemus's caper.
- Badass: She manages to steal the Shroud of Turin from the Vatican and is arguably the best thief in the world.
- Boring but Practical: In Hades' vault, she goes right for the fountain of diamonds, filling her sack from the spout. She chose them over the gold and other treasures because they had the highest value for their weight and would be easy to move once they got back home.
- The Bus Came Back: Returns after a 10 year absence.
- Classy Cat-Burglar: She has a reasonable claim to the title of the best thief in the "Dresdenverse" at the moment.
- Revenge: Her main reason for joining Nicodemus' group in Skin Game is for a chance to avenge her friends that died in Death Masks.