Dresden Files
Senior Council
White Council

Ancient Mai is a witch and a member of the Senior Council. She first appears in Summer Knight.


She is over 400 years old,[1] with "rheumy" eyes and is said to be very creepy and scary.[2]

She has "precious little gift when it comes to actual combat magic".[3]

Ancient Mai is Chinese and, as Harry Dresden describes her, she looks as delicate and frail as an eggshell teacup. She has long, granite-colored hair with jade combs holding it up. She still has a haunting, ethereal beauty, though old even by Council norms. Her eyes are dark, piercing and merciless.[2]

Dresden finds her a very scary person.[4][5]


She appears to handle contact with other supernatural powers for the Council, having sent emissaries to both Faerie Courts at the start of Summer Knight.[6]

In the series[]

Summer Knight[]

In Summer Knight, she does not trust Harry Dresden, citing his dangerous attitude, and she voted against him when the Council deliberated on whether to give him to the Red Court.[6]

Proven Guilty[]

In Proven Guilty, Carlos Ramirez informs Harry Dresden that most of the Senior Council is unable to make it to Molly Carpenter's trial, granting the Merlin their votes by proxy. Ancient Mai is currently in Indonesia and is not expected to return to Edinburgh.[7] Along with the Merlin, she is suspected of being the traitor among the Council, as her whereabouts during many of the attacks are unaccounted for.[8]

White Night[]

In White Night, Harry Dresden and Bob discuss Mouse's powers, such as his bark. Bob explains Temple Dogs are sentinels that watch for dark energy and alert others to the presence of danger. Dresden notes this explains why Ancient Mai made Temple Dog statues to assist Wardens with security.[9]

Turn Coat[]

In Turn Coat, she repeatedly tries to have Dresden arrested for harboring a wanted fugitive, and is angered when Ebenezar McCoy and Joseph Listens-to-Wind refuse.[10]


  1. Jim Butcher forum response
  2. 2.0 2.1 Summer Knight (novel), ch. 5
  3. Jim Butcher forum response
  4. Turn Coat, ch. 14
  5. Turn Coat, ch. 40
  6. 6.0 6.1 Summer Knight, ch. 6
  7. Proven Guilty, ch. 44
  8. Proven Guilty, ch. 47
  9. White Night, ch. 14
  10. Turn Coat, ch. 40, 41, 46