Cage Match 2012: Round 2: Jonathan Strange versus Rachel Morgan


The Contestants


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Jonathan Strange
Strangeite Magician

Age: Late 20s
Race: Human
Weapons / Artifacts: None

Rachel Morgan
Owner, Vampiric Charms and former Inderland Security runner
Age: Late 20s
Race: Witch
Weapons / Artifacts: Magic. Really good at magic. Also, sarcasm. Leather pants.
Don’t be near a ley line if you want to survive. Or near Jenks.

The Breakdown


  • One of the few practicing magicians in England
  • Willing to dig deeper into the mysteries to further his skill
  • Strong-willed

  • A witch and therefore capable of casting spells and using magic
  • Has a strange love/hate relationship with Trenton Kalamack
  • Best friends are a living vampire and a pixy

  • Bit of a dandy…

  • Often her own worst enemy due to stubbornness and angst—and getting into those leather pants

  • Stony Mayhall
    Can’t help thinking a zombie dying is a little sad, like tears from a clown

How Brent Weeks thinks the fight will go

Rachel stared at the man across the arena. He was a bit older than her, and dressed in some kind of costume, like he was from one of those Masterpiece Theatre miniseries on PBS. There was lace at his collar and cuffs—real, actual lace. He didn’t appear armed in any way—no gun, no sword. She was immediately curious and also wary—was he also a witch?

She headed towards him, slowly. He was regarding her with the same level of guardedness, along with several confused glances at her clothing. She stopped a few yards away and said, “what’s your name?”

He opened his mouth and she got a look at his teeth. He should have started flossing regularly twenty years ago. He smelled odd, too—like cologne over body odor. Wait, maybe he wasn’t some kind of actor. Maybe he was actually from the past. The previous guy had looked like something out of a sword-and-sorcery movie. This one looked like something out of Jane Austen. “I’ll do you the courtesy of telling you my name before you tell me yours, simply because you are a lady,” he said in an English accent that wasn’t quite an English accent. “My name is Jonathan Strange.”

“That’s a good name for you,” she said, smirking. “Those are some strange clothes.”

“No stranger than yours. Those are…those are trousers, yes?”

She looked down. When she looked up, he was casting a spell—or at least, that’s what Rachel thought he was doing. There was some muttering, some waving of hands. She didn’t sense power the way she was used to, but that didn’t mean anything. She’d been in the Ever-after, and everything was different there.

She wasn’t about to find out what the hell he was doing, though. She quickly crafted a shield in her mind and put it before. Good thing too—Strange had conjured a wind of fire, and even with the circle of power before her, Rachel could feel the heat.

“Some gentleman you are!” she yelled, even as she ran to the far side of the arena. At the same time, she pulled something from the bag slung over her shoulder.

A paintball gun.

“I hate to tell you this, but I’ve fought in His Majesty’s armies, and not once did a bullet come close to harming me.”

“That’s nice,” she said through gritted teeth. “This better work,” she muttered.

“What was that?”


“Ah…what you’re about to become. I see.”

The bastard had the gall to smile—crooked teeth and all.

Once again Rachel couldn’t feel the magic being created, but she had seen enough spells to know something was happening that she wanted no part of. Instead of waiting for another wall of fire to wash over her, she cocked the paintball gun. She hadn’t had time to prep too many pellets, but she figured whatever came out of the hopper and at Strange was going to wipe that smug grin off his face.

She pulled the trigger.

The paintball smacked into an invisible barrier—Rachel wasn’t the only one who could shield, apparently—and the splatter dribbled to the ground. Despite the shield, Strange flinched, and the smile faded from his face, replaced by determination. Rachel could see his lips moving.

She could also see the paint dribbling to the ground…

When it hit, the dirt of the arena floor exploded. She watched as a tremendous crater opened up, and Strange was suddenly swallowed by the earth.

The thunderous noise collapsed into silence. Rachel, who had been knocked down by the blast, stood up, brushing off her pants. Cautiously, she walked over to the edge of the newly-formed pit. She peered over.

“Madame,” Jonathan Strange gasped. “My leg…”

“Looks pretty broken.”


Rachel pointed the gun at Strange, and he cowered. She shook her head, reached into the bag, and pulled out a bottle. She tossed it down to the damaged magician.


“You don’t really know me, do you?” she snorted. “No—it’s going to freeze you for a little bit. Enough time for me to get out of her, so I’m not forced to kill you.” She gestured with her gun. “Go ahead—this isn’t over until one of us isn’t moving, and I figure that it better be you.” She smiled.

He grimaced, but opened the bottle. Seeing him hesitate, Rachel gestured with the gun. “I have no idea what the next ball does, Strange.”

He poured the potion over himself, his body freezing instantly.

Rachel walked away from the pit, and saw the arena door was opening. “Guess I won another one.


Predicted Winner: Rachel Morgan


Check out the previous match!

Check out the Bracket

Stay tuned for the Sweet Sixteen, March 19, 2012!

Jonathan Strange is a character from Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norell by Susanna Clarke; Rachel Morgan is a character from The Hollows series by Kim Harrison.

Jonathan Strange image courtesy of Bloomsbury. Rachel Morgan image courtesy of *ValliantCreations

Don’t forget–we’re always looking for fans’ depictions of these characters. Check out the details here

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