In any other series, Marcone would be the bad guy. There’s been a lot of discussion about him as of late and it scares me how many people think he’s some undercover good guy.
The person I can think of off the top of my head who Marcone most closely resembles is Wilson Fisk. A mobster who has risen from unknown origins to take up a seat of wealth and power in a city, and rule over the underground world.
It’s very easy to forget when one is dealing with literal blood sucking, soul eating, monsters, but Marcone is in his own way “a monster”. It’s a term he uses to describe himself.
He is the self confessed king of crime in Chicago. Which means nearly every crime runs through him, and he takes a cut of the money on the way through.
Drugs. Human trafficking. Bribes. Money laundering. Protection money. Con artists. Loan sharks. Contract kills. Marcone doesn’t make a habit of pulling the trigger himself. But sending someone else out to kill someone does not make him less guilty. It just makes it harder to trace.
The only time he gives out charity is for tax purposes. Every move he makes is strategically calculated on a scale of “how does this benefit me?”
Even when it comes to his own code of ethics, not killing children is not a base line for being a decent human being. People don’t get trophies for not doing things that wouldn’t even occur to most people. He won’t kill a child, but he’ll kill a child’s parents, he’ll make them an orphan. Even in Even Hand he seriously debates the pros and cons of handing Justine and the child back over to the Fomor. Then at the end he was fine with the idea of shooting Justine, but he decided the cons outweighed the pros.
Marcone spends his life making it look like his hands are clean, which is why he’s not in prison. But that doesn’t mean they are clean. And that’s why Dresden doesn’t get along with him.
Back when they first meet Marcone offers a business arrangement to Harry. He wants Harry on his staff. In exchange Harry gets money. And Harry debates it. It would make his life so much better to have that income.
But he chooses not to because of where that money comes from. It’s blood money. His easy life would be made off the misery of countless other faceless people. People who are less privileged than him.
Marcone’s livelihood is made off the back of people who can’t afford to get away from him, and people who don’t have the power to stand up to him. People who can’t say “fuck you, you bastard” and survive.
When Harry is standing up to Marcone he’s making a show of it. He’s showing Marcone that he’s not all powerful. He’s showing the people around them he’s not all powerful. He’s showing that there is still opposition. Marcone can’t touch Harry. But Marcone wants to change that. He wants to set up a fail safe because one day he won’t be low down on the chain of evil any more.
Like working with Lara, Marcone is the evil Harry knows. Like choosing Mab over Nickle Head, Harry works with Marcone because the world isn’t perfect, and sometimes they have to cross paths, and he would rather go with the evil he can say “fuck you” to and live, than the one that’s going to cost him a piece of his soul. Whenever they work together Marcone gets something out of it, be it revenge on those who endangered his life, a signature for the accords.
Marcone is Wilson Fisk. But Harry isn’t Daredevil. Harry can’t micromanage Marcone when there’s a vampire war, giant vortexes, people killing with magic, fallen angels. Marcone is small potatoes.
But since book one Marcone has only ever focused on becoming more powerful, on being a bigger player. That’s why he wanted Harry in the first place.
Marcone is mortal scum. He chose every step he took. When fighting a monster, it is what it is. It didn’t choose the way it was born. But Marcone? Marcone is much more terrifying than that.
Marcone turning up at Harry’s and going “Stay out. Don’t get involved. Or else.” is basically him turning up going “HELP! PLEASE! I NEED A WIZARD!” without using those words, and the only person who wouldn’t realise that is Harry who goes “FUCK YOU I DO WHAT I WANT!” and dives in head first.
Like, the biggest fuck you Harry could do in a situation like that is go “Okay.” and close the door and not do anything.
When I go through the chronic illness tag I see so many people that appear to be misdiagnosed. I’ve lived that and I know how hard it is and I just hate to think that these people don’t have someone like my mom fighting for them. Even if they have someone, they aren’t my momma. I wish I could go to every single one of them individually and tell them about lyme and it’s co infections. But it’d take so long, be so stressful, and it’s so very complicated. I’m doing my best, but it’s just not good enough. UGH
He knows he’s dreaming. He’s back at Dresden’s home, with the rugs that cover the floor and the candles that clutter every available surface. He takes a step forward, and he’s in the bedroom. He’s never seen Harry’s bedroom, so it’s probably pretty inaccurate. And there’s Harry. Standing there. With his duster and his staff and his blasting rod and his gun, because clearly his subconscious is not interested in subtlety.
And he can feel himself reacting. He has control, though. He can stop this any time, he knows how to wake himself up. This is his dream. So, when Harry Dresden smiles, and beckons him to come over and help him out of his coat, he goes. He has always wondered what the coat would feel like, how softened it was with use. The magic that has sunk into every inch of it. Now he knows that it is addicting, that it is buttery soft and smells like the back streets of Chicago. He folds the coat as he puts it aside.
Harry is watching him, his lips quirked in amusement. John can feel himself begin to flush. Perhaps this version of Dresden is too realistic. But then again, he is not attracted to caricatures.
“What’s the matter, Johnnie?” Harry asks, interrupting his train of thought. “Did you fall in lust with my coat?” He grins like what he’s saying is supposed to be funny. While there are many things that John finds appealing about Harry, his comedic timing has never been one of them. Despite that, he fights down a shiver at the words.
“Of course not, Harry,” he says. He is careful to project just the right amount of mocking exasperation. Just because this is a dream, he doesn’t want it to be easy.
“Aww,” says Harry, the insult to his wardrobe running of him as easily as water of a duck’s backside. Then his intensity ratchets up a notch, and he stares directly into John’s eyes. Harry’s eyes are brown, deep and rich like the finest Mahogany wood. John has never been able to forget what they look like, those eyes that have seen the depths of his soul, but he doubts. He doubts that they were as beautiful as he remembers. Perhaps, he thinks. Perhaps I was wrong to doubt. It is a sentiment that is often applied to Harry Dresden.
And now Harry is only wearing a black T-shirt and jeans. While John was lost in thought the staff and blasting rod have been leaned against the wall, and the gun is nowhere to be seen. John takes a deep breath, and feels his throat push against something. Startled, he looks down at himself. He is wearing a complete suit and tie. Unusual, for one of these dreams. Unusual, but not unprecedented.
He reaches up to tug at his tie. However, this idea meets a sudden death as Harry is suddenly standing in front of him, his long fingers twined over John’s. The previously banked heat floods through John’s systems as Harry’s touch sends shocks through his skin, a mere echo of the power that fills every crevice of his soul. His hands freeze.
“Let me do that,” says Harry, and his voice is low and intent. He is so close and John could tuck his head under Harry’s chin, if he so desired. Which he doesn’t. John lets his hands fall down to his sides. Harry unties the tie, casually flicking it across the room. Then, slightly impatient, he makes a twisting gesture with his hands and mumbles something under his breath. The suit coat that John is wearing gapes open, and the white undershirt, Egyptian cotton, John thinks, opens itself button by button while Harry watches. The cloth brushes over his nipples as it gapes open, and John is painfully aware of the fact that his pants are still firmly fastened.
He shrugs out of the suit coat, and folds it next to Harry’s. The silence is getting to him, just a little bit. He wonders if he is being judged. But no, Harry does his judging all out loud. That’s not what this silence is about. He glances back at Harry’s eyes, and swallows instinctively. Harry’s eyes are molten, glowing with the endless fire of a dormant volcano. John wonders if he falls in, will all of his impurities burn away? What parts of him will return anew from the forge? He wonders, but not enough to ask.
“Are you just going to stare, Dresden?” His voice breaks the wizard out of whatever was holding him back.
“Don’t worry, John,” Harry says, and now the same heat that was in his eyes has transferred to his smile. “I said I’d take care of you, didn’t I?”
When engaging with angry wizards, please remember to take your standard issue flame retardant material. It will not save you from being burned eventually, but it will give you an extra second to shoot him in the head.
Sadly, I think, one of the last books Marcone is going to die. But by god he's going to go out with class and like an absolute boss. Making Harry, begrudingly, admire him. Maybe while he's defending "Persephone" who "Demeter" still doesn't know about. I always got that vibe from the moment I met him in Storm Front. He will go down eventually but in a way that will make a lasting imprint.
I disagree. Yall have a better opinion of Marcone than I have. He’s a scum bag.