Wild Mass Guesses for the concluding Apocalyptic Trilogy of The Dresden Files:
The Outer Gates will fall, and Harry will initiate a prison break.Consider, Demonreach is a prison where Skinwalkers are in minimum security and Harry has the key. Meanwhile we've got Outsiders slipping in, particularly but not limited to Nemesis. Things are only going to get worse from here, so eventually the options will be total annihilation or calling in some very very unpleasant backup. So as a last ditch effort Wizard Dresden is going to officially declare that things have crossed the Godzilla Threshold and let everything out from under Demonreach
Empty Night in the Apocalyptic Trilogy will focus on the Swords of the Cross and the origins of humanity.Re-reading Blood Rites and something Thomas says struck me: "When every star in the heavens grows cold, and when silence lies once more on the face of the deep, three things will endure: faith, hope, and love." Faith, Hope, and Love referring of course to a biblical passage but also being the English names of the Swords of the Cross. He also notes "once more" so it is either about origins or some serious whammy that has happened in the past.
During the Apocalyptic Trilogy, one of the villains will attempt to erase the Archive's memory.
The event that causes the Apocalypse in the final trilogy is the Stone Table breakingThe Stone Table is the one item that regulates the seasons. We will see the stone table breaking and Harry become free from Mab's control as the Winter Knight.
Harry's going to unite all the good/neutral races we've seen so far himselfAt the end of the series, Harry will wield Winter Ice, Soulfire, Hellfire, Summer Fire, stand with three Knights of the Cross (Murph weilding Fidellachius, Daniel wielding Esperrachius, and Thomas/ someone else wielding Amorrachius), have the White Court (Led by Thomas), White Council, both of the Faerie courts, the Venators, and an army of ghosts on his side. Against him will be the Formor and an army of Outsiders. And it will be epic.
The series will end with a Big Damn Heroes moment for humanityNo, not an individual mortal, like Murphy or something. So, here's the setup: partway through the apocalyptic trilogy WOJ says will cap off the series, the Black Council will take over and the Masquerade will fall, revealing the supernatural to the world. The world governments reel as people start panicking. Stuff happens, and in the last book, Harry's gathered some sort of army (FOR THE PIZZA LORD!), but they're on the verge of defeat against the Black Council's horde of outsiders (or something equally dangerous). The enemy stretches out to the horizon. All of a sudden, a shadow falls across the field. Harry looks up to see a volley of artillery shells so thick that they BLOCK OUT THE SUN. The conventional mortal muggles will ultimately be the deciding force that will defeat the series's big bads. For added support, see comments made by Harry In-Universe and the scene with the Mules in First Lord's Fury. Clearly, Jim is fond of the concept that regular people can be just as dangerous as anyone else.
The title "Empty Night" for one part of the apocalypse trilogy means that the stars will go out."Quietly, without making any fuss, the stars were going out." It worked for Arthur C. Clarke, you know Dresden will make it a thousand times better. Which is saying quite a lot.
The antagonists of Backup will try to destroy Ferrovax, and kick off the apocalyptic trilogy.It's part of their stated agenda, but you can't really kill and destroy one of the last couple of dragons, a Freeholding Lord, without someone (a lot of someones) noticing. My guess? Dragon's lifeblood desanctifies the cursÚd athame. Two birds, one stone. Maybe three, if they can wrangle the energy of his death and the destruction of the athame's bindings into breaking something big, say, the Stone Tablet?
Queen Mab will be one of the final enemies Harry must face in the apocalyptic trilogy
The Black Council wants to summon Outsiders to destroy the universe, and that's what the "Apocalyptic trilogy" will be all about.Seriously. One member uses the phrase "the end is nigh" as a passcode? Sounds like an apocalyptic cult to me! Harry has power over/against Outsiders, hence the Black Council's interest in him. The reason so many folks, both evil and not-so-evil, want to give him power is both to make sure he's strong enough to prevent The End and to have control over him before/while/after doing so. Oh, and Demonreach is a place where the walls between the world and the Outside are thin, and will be the site for at least some of the major final battles.
Regarding Harry's death; he will be brought back to life as... The Pizza Lord!My reasoning? He has the respect and admiration of 600 pixies (stated in Changes- 100 regulars, 500 part timers), who have a massive amount of devotion, belief and faith in him. We are told repeatedly throughout the series that belief and faith are a type of power, and that they can give things power, so if that many magical creatures are devoted to you it's got to do something. The effect on Harry? The combined force of their belief will break the universe, and resurrect Harry as the God of Pizza!
The Big Bad of the entire series is (or will be, by the time we reach the apocalyptic trilogy) Gentleman Johnny Marcone
The Big Bad of the entire series will end up being someone no one expects:
The Apocalyptic Trilogy will be, or include as part, RagnarokWe've already got Odin, a valkyrie, and we've seen Einherjar. As Odin is alive, Ragnarok can't have happened yet, and it certainly fits the description of an apocalyptic battle.
John Marcone will give a Heroic Sacrifice towards the end of the Apocalyptic TrilogyJim Butcher has spent a heck of a lot of time building up the antiheroic rivalry between Dresden and Marcone. "Marcone is scum, but he doesn't hurt kids", he's a civilizing influence on crime, etcetera, etcetera, Bueller, Bueller... Anyway. He spends a lot of time outlining the fact that, despite being a criminal overlord, he's basically a positive influence in the world. So after the Black Council is defeated, the Outer Gates sealed for all time, the Formor crushed underheel...Gentleman Johnny dies, sacrificing himself to save the world. Which, of course, causes Harry to think better of him, a la Morgan. Hendricks and Gard aren't the same force-of-personality to keep the organization together. One can just see Dresden describing this: "I never thought I'd say it, but I'm going to miss Marcone. Much as he was a criminal scumbag, he kept things at a simmer, not letting them boil over. Sure, I've got power to burn. Hell's be-... for crying out loud, I just stopped an Apocalypse. But I can't be everywhere at once. Without Marcone watching the other side of the fence, the world's going to get a little bit darker. Magic doesn't solve problems; that's what the person using it is for. Time to get to work."
The Apocalyptic trilogy will be the three main villainsHells Bells: the Denarians, possibly joined by the Big Man himself. Stars and Stones: the Fairies, probably Mab going to war with everybody and breaking some oath(as she swore to Harry that the stars would fall from the sky before she broke her word). Empty Night: the Oblivion War, probably vampires, necromancers and everybody who was anybody will be back here.
The apocalyptic trilogy will remake the world.Not (just) destroy it. Individuals from the series may even exist in some better form (for them) in the new world. "Empty Night" means (possibly in addition to "The Stars Are Going Out") "that which was before there was anything" (i.e., "Let There Be Light").
During the Apocalyptic Trilogy, Harry will suffer a HRROD and possibly performs a Heroic SacrificeDuring the second or third book of the Trilogy, Harry is forced into a battle that, despite his power creep, causes him to burn out (possibly against Ferrovax or another Dragon), leaving him unable to use magic. However, Harry being Harry, he doesn't quit, but struggles to save the world, using only his wits, and all contacts that he's gathered during the years. It will serve as to showcase the huge development he's gone through, and he manages to save the world, but at the cost of his life. The chapter after that will be from Molly's POV, saying something along the lines of while the world is saved, Harry's dead and the world is still far from safe, and that she will follow in his footsteps. The series will then end with a nice callback. "Harry taught me a lot of things about magic. About the value of life. And while his death saved us all, there are still threats out there. I don't want to see any of those try and destroy what he gave his life to save. I'm not going to let any nasties, ghoulies and creepies run around spreading terror and fear. I'm going to do what he would have done. My name is Margareth Katherine Amanda Carpenter. Conjure it at your own risk. When things get strange, when what goes bump in the night flicks on the lights, when no one else can help you, give me a call. I'm in the book."
The death of Ebenezer McCoy will be one of the pivotal events, if not starting point, for the Big Apocalyptic Trilogy.My vision for the end of the series' "case files" will involve Ebenezer falling in combat to a member of the Black Council, most likely Cowl himself. This will create a political meltdown within the White Council during the BAT, forcing the Merlin to make three declarations: 1. The Black Council does exist. They've been working in secret for years to sabotage the White Council's protection of non-magical humans. The Vampire War was most likely a ploy to leave both factions too weak to oppose them in preparation for declaring themselves openly. 2. In times of emergency, a member of the White Council has been given the power to break the Laws of Magic without fear of consequence. The Blackstaff is the next best thing to an assassin: when a situation arises that might force the Council into violating the Laws of Magic, the Blackstaff is dispatched to resolve it. Ebenezer McCoy was the most recent holder of that post. 3. The current crisis demands that this office be immediately filled, so Harry Dresden is hereby appointed as the new Blackstaff. He has experience fighting the Black Council, along with determination and strength that dwarf any other potential candidates. Plus, as Ebenezer's pupil, it's likely he was being unknowingly trained to fill this post someday. Naturally, the strain of hearing that Harry is now above the Laws of Magic pushes the Council to its breaking point. A faction lead by Cristos breaks from the White Council, many of those defecting to the Black. On the other hand, the wizards who remain with the White Council are encouraged now that the Senior Council is being open about the threats they face.
One of the adversaries Harry will face in the Apocalyptic Trilogy will be the Devil himself.As in the actual, literal Satan from the Bible. This seems a strong possibility given the involvement of the Denarians. He might even be the chief nemesis Harry faces.
During the apocalyptic trilogy, Harry (or maybe Murphy) will forgive and redeem NicodemusIt was Michael's dream, it's the essence of what being a Knight of the Cross IS, and it would be a Crowning Moment of Awesome.
In Hell's Bells Harry will try to use Soulfire and Pyrofuego to literally burn down Hell.It probably won't happen, but I thought of this after reading a particularly good line in Girl Genius.
In the Apocalyptic Trilogy, we will learn that Ivy is not just a hedge against Doomsday.We will learn that in addition to being insurance against a doomsday scenario, that she is also herself a walking doomsday weapon. She will turn out to be humanity's last resort, to be used in the event the human race faces an extinction-level event and nothing else will work to prevent it.
The Dresden Files will end the same way the Time War ended.The Masquerade will not be broken. There will be an epic battle sequence in the Apocalyptic Trilogy with all the good guys versus all the bad guys, and various people will switch sides in a confusing manner. But Harry, having realized that the White Council is hopelessly corrupt, will choose to bring both it AND the chief enemy race, vampires, down. He will then assume Doctor status, wandering the world with truly awesome wizarding powers and an especially long life span, protecting muggles from the things that go bump in the night. His first companion? Murphy, of course!
The final apocalyptic trilogy will begin with Outsiders killing (or at least wounding) God.
Empty Night will feature the return of Lord RaithThe curse keeping the White King from feeding is powered by Harry and Thomas' souls. Harry has died once, presumably breaking his connection, which means if (when) Thomas dies the curse on Raith will be broken, he'll rather swiftly take control back from Lara, and we'll see just how he earned his reputation.