Categories > Books > Dresden Files


by BeccaStareyes 0 reviews

Michael reconciles his worry about Molly with his trust in Harry. Spoilers for White Night.

Category: Dresden Files - Rating: G - Genres: Drama - Warnings: [!!!] - Published: 2007-08-13 - Updated: 2007-08-14 - 1333 words - Complete

/The Codex Alera/, and related materials are copyright Jim Butcher. This work, according to Jim Butcher's wishes, is written under a Creative Commons (non-commercial) license.

Both Michael and Father Forthill had their hands full when the phone in Father Forthill's office rang. Michael set down the bag of groceries he had helped the priest carry in, then held out his hands. "Let me take those," he said. "You get the phone."

Father Forthill passed them off with a brief thank you, then took the phone. Michael took out the phone book and opened it to the As, skimming the auto repair section. Father Forthill's car had the misfortune of breaking down a lot. This time it didn't seem to be divinely inspired, though. Thankfully, he had been in the area, just getting off a job -- a carpentry job, even -- and had recognized the priest's car by the side of the road.

He heard Father Forthill set the phone down and looked up. "I'm afraid I'm going to have to ask to borrow your car again, Michael. That was Harry Dresden on the phone."

"Harry?" Michael's first thought was about Molly. Surely, if something had happened to Molly, he would have felt something. What good was being a knight if one couldn't protect those closest to you, after all? But, if something had happened to Molly, Harry would have called the house first.

"He wants me to go over and pick up the coin from him."

Father Forthill didn't need to explain more. "That is good news. I'd be happy to drive you over."


Traffic was surprisingly slow for this time of day, giving Michael plenty of time to think as he drove. He wondered what had changed Harry's mind. When they had last spoken about the coin, Harry hadn't been willing to give it up, even if he had been equally unwilling to embrace the power and corruption than the fallen angel would have been offering him.

And, whatever Michael thought of Harry's methods, he could see why it would have been difficult. The Denarians took back in spades whatever they gave. If Lasciel offered Harry more magical power for giving in, than Harry giving that up could well drain the magic he had naturally. It wasn't certain -- the former Denarian Hary had told him about had kept his magic, at the price of losing the artificially-extended youth he had gotten. Either way, it was a sacrifice -- something that would keep Harry from doing his job as Warden. And, for all the differences between a wizard of the White Council and a Knight of the Cross, both he and Harry were people who could no more decline a duty than breathe water.

Friendship and duty. It was that reason that Michael had worried less when away after meeting him. He had always known that God would look after his family while he carried out His orders, but there was something reassuring that God's protection might sometimes take the form of a tall wizard in a black coat. Not that he'd ever tell Harry that -- he knew Harry's views on religion, as much as he didn't understand them. Harry had been there to save Charity and their youngest son. Harry had been there to save Molly from being a thrall of the unseelie fae, a warlock, or executed by the White Council.

Molly. That was another thought. Harry had agreed to become Molly's magic teacher, and, in effect, her parole officer. Harry had told him what that involved, filling in the details of how the wizards on the White Council policed themselves -- usually with the look on his face that he got when he was holding back his language a bit. What was going to happen to Molly?

Michael shook his head, causing Father Forthill, seated in the passenger seat, to give him a curious look. I trust my friend with my daughter's life. It was why I let him teach her in the first place. I need not fear.

He pulled up to the apartment building Harry lived in, noting the presence of Harry's car in the driveway. With a glance behind him to make sure Father Forthill had gotten out all right, he entered the building, heading down the stairs to the basement. The steel door that marked Harry's apartment was closed, and Michael nearly reached out to knock, before a sharp pinch in the back of his mind reminded him that Harry used magic to defend him apartment.

Harry shoved the door open, then, and saved them the trouble. "Hello, Father Forthill. Michael."

"I'm afraid my car has broken down again, so I asked Michael to give me a lift over here," Father Forthill explained. "That's not a problem, is it?"

"Not at all. Come in."

Harry stepped back, allowing them to enter. As they did, Michael took a look at his friend. He looked -- well, he looked like he had been in a fight. Again. Not unusual -- there had been rumors that something was going on. No definite signals from God that he had been needed, but Michael had felt something brewing. Perhaps, a warning, for if whatever Harry had done hadn't worked out that well.

"It's in the lab," Harry lead them from the more normal-looking -- if you ignored the lack of any sort of electric device -- apartment, down into his basement. Michael had never much cared for going down there. Perhaps it was just meeting too many of the warlock sorts of wizards to feel comfortable surrounded by a wizard's tools of the trade. Or perhaps it was the fact Harry did occasionally do some things Michael thought were... rather unwise.

Charity had mentioned the model that was there -- that Harry had done some crazy feat of magical tracking when Molly had been kidnapped by Queen Mab's agents. The hole in it had to be new -- it seemed to go with the hole dug in the floor. Harry set the candle he was holding down on the countertop. "It's down there," he pointed his good hand at the hole in the floor.

It was but the work of a moment for Father Forthill to stoop and pick up the coin from the box Harry had sealed it in -- a box Michael had last seen him using to hold the powder he used to fight ghosts -- and wrap it in a cloth, all without letting it touch skin. "We'll need to return this as soon as possible. Michael, I'm afraid I'll have to ask for your assistance again."

"Of course, Father. One moment." He turned to Harry. "How is Molly doing in her studies?"

"Molly? She's fine. She's got a real gift for illusions. She nearly surprised Murphy and me a couple of days ago with an invisibility spell."

"Keeping her out of trouble?"

"As much as I can. She's finally getting enough sense to keep herself out of trouble."

"She'll be continuing then?" Michael let the question stand, not sure how to ask what his friend had given up in exchange for setting yet another member of the Order of the Blackened Denarius behind lock and key.

Harry glanced at the hole, then at Father Forthill. "She's still got a lot to learn. And I'm prepared to teach it to her. I don't want to be rude and all, but there's a hole in my lab I'm going to have to fill up before I do any more teaching. Talk to you later, Michael?"

He would most certainly here the story of what happened later -- right now, he had his duties to fulfill. And, Harry had his own. And, once again, Michael noted that his trust in Harry Dresden had not been misplaced.


"You mean you talked a fallen angel into giving up its life to save yours?"

"Only the fragment of one."

"My friend, I am glad you are on our side."
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