Skin Game by Jim Butcher
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Mab owes a "debt" to Nicodemus and loans her Winter Knight (Harry Dresden) to him. Nicodemus wants to break into Hades' vault in the Nevernever and steal the Holy Grail and has assembled a team to facilitate the break in. Harry demands the privilege of bringing someone along to watch his back and picks Karrin Murphy.
When Butters is caught spying on them Harry and Karrin risk breaking their agreement with Nicodemus to save his life. A show down issues in front of the Carpenter's home where Butters' ran to seek sanctuary. Karrin uses Fidelacchius, to defeat Nicodemus but he tricks her into attacking him after he has put aside the Noose and coin causing Fidelacchius to shatter. He then severely injures Karrin and is about to kill her when Michael comes to the gate. Michael says if he lets Karrin and Harry go he will come out (where he will no longer be protected by Angels). Uriel attempts to talk Michael out of making the trade but when he can't bestows his grace on Michael. Michael's body is restored to it's fighting prime and he once more takes up Amoracchius. Nicodemus and Genoskwa quickly back down when faced with a Knight of the Cross, and Harry demands that Michael be allowed to accompany him since Karrin will no longer be in condition to do so.
Anna Valmont opens Marcone's vault and Harry opens the way but closes it behind them so Nicodemus won't be tempted to kill him to soon. Hannah Ascher opens the first gate (fire) and Harry opens the second gate (ice), leaving Nicodemus to sacrifice his daughter Dierdre in order to open the third gate.
Harry gets to the artifacts and quickly hides the majority of them leaving the Holy Grail for Nicodemus. Nicodemus, Genoskwa (hosting Ursiel) and Ascher (hosting Lasciel) attack Harry, Michael and Goodman Grey (who Harry hired before Nicodemus could). Genoskwa and Ascher are killed but Michael is badly injured. Nicodemus manages to escape and threatens to kill Maggie (Harry's daughter). Harry gets Anna, Binder, Grey and Michael out of Marcone's building. Grey takes the shape of a horse and carries Harry to the Carpenter house moments before Nicodemus and his squires arrive.
Nicodemus captures Charity and plans to make her watch while he burns her house down with the children inside. Harry is able to fend off the molotov cocktails but then is overcome with pain due to a new spirit of intellect (like Bob) that is growing in his head and is ready to be born (it's the offspring of Harry and Lash). Barely conscious Harry is horrified by Butter's plan to take Harry's duster and using Bob to power it go outside to attempt to fight Nicodemus and Tessa until help can get there. Harry uses the last of his strength to throw the broken hilt of Fidelacchius to Charity, she misses it but Butters catches it and it turns into a light saber that cuts right through Nicodemus' sword. Nicodemus and Tessa flee.
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