When Harry receives anonymously-sent photos of his good friend, Michael Carpenter, he instinctively knows that it's a threat. However, Michael seems unfazed, trusting in God to keep him and his family from harm. But soon Harry realizes that someone is out to get the sword Michael used to wield as a Knight of the Cross. Knowing it cannot fall into the wrong hands, he immediately begins to investigate who might have knowledge that the sword is in his possession, which leads to an unexpected villain. When the man kidnaps one of Michael's children to get at the sword, Michael is no longer content to sit on the sidelines, so he and Harry work together to bring the man to justice.
"The Warrior" is a short novelette that takes place between Small Favor and Turn Coat, but before the novelette "Last Call," in the Dresden Files series chronology. In this one, we have a mysterious person who's making threats against Harry's friend, Michael, and his family, and who also appears to be trying to get Amoracchius, the sword Michael used to wield as a Knight of the Cross, as well as Fidelacchius, the one used by the fallen Knight, Shiro, both of which are now in Harry's possession. Harry finds himself in a race against time to figure out who the bad guy is, rescue one of Michael's children, and keep the swords out of the hands of the wrong person.
"The Warrior" is a really fun Dresden story that I very much enjoyed. I had been troubled by the outcome for Michael at the end of Small Favor, the last full-length novel prior to this story. In it, he had been gravely wounded and his future was uncertain. In this novelette, we learn that he did recover, although not fully. He is no longer able to take up his sword, so it appears that Amoracchius is now in limbo, as well, waiting for a new Knight. However, despite his limitations, Michael is still a fierce warrior, especially when one of his children is in danger. I was glad to see that, although he's no longer a Knight, he's doing fine, and he and his family are happy, perhaps happier than they've ever been now that he's no longer putting himself in constant danger. He's also still the honorable man we've come to know throughout the past several books of the series. Butters puts in an appearance when Harry is injured, while Molly and Mouse have their roles to play as well. Overall, this was a really good story and I like the way everything ties together at the end, with Harry's actions causing a ripple effects of future goodness. "The Warrior" was originally published in the multi-author anthology, Mean Streets, and was later reprinted in the single-author anthology, Side Jobs.
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