Imageedit 49 7128743998 This article contains spoilers from The Fire Chronicle.
Imageedit 47 7278434596 This article contains spoilers from The Black Reckoning.
Dire Magnus

Illustration of Rafe as the Dire Magnus in a Random House book trailer for The Fire Chronicle

Biographical information
Full Name
The Dire Magnus
Mr. Dark and Terrible (by Hugo Algernon)
Circa. 1882
Present-day (suicide)
Gabriel's cabin
The Dire Magnus
Thief (formerly)
Savage (formerly)
The Final Keeper
Resides In
New York City, NY (formerly)
Physical Description
Hair Color
Eye Color
Emerald green
Personal Information
Unnamed mother
Non-magical humans

Rafe, also known as Dire Magnus X, is a main character throughout the Books of Beginning. He was a leader of the Savages and the tenth and final Dire Magnus. He met and fell in love with Kate Wibberly in 1899 when she got stuck in the past and then later battled against her, Dr. Pym, and Robbie McLaur's forces in Cambridge Falls. In present day, he led an army against Loris, despite Kate's presence on the island.

Rafe was also the prophesied Final Keeper and killed himself at the end of The Black Reckoning to save the universe.


Rafe was a boy from New York who lived during the time of the Separation. Kate met him when the Atlas took her back into the past during The Fire Chronicle, and learns that he dreamed of her, and according to a magical interpretation, she would die if she stayed in New York with him. Kate stays, however, the two fall in love, and Rafe shares his backstory, which includes his mother's murder due to the nonwizard hatred of magic. As the Separation draws closer, the kids who Rafe and his friends Henrietta Burke and Scruggs protect end up getting caught in a fire. He saves all of them, and shortly before this rescues Kate from the Dire Magnus, but is unable to save Scruggs or Henrietta Burke, to his sadness. Before he and Kate escape from the church, Henrietta Burke tells Kate to love Rafe to save his life. Although Kate knows Rafe's destiny is to become the final Dire Magnus, she already loves him, and stops time to save him, which she knows causes her family's separation years later. Once Rafe finds out about his destiny, he vehemently refuses, but once Kate's life is put in danger, he sacrifices himself to become the next Dire Magnus to save her life.

Later in time, in The Emerald Atlas, it is assumed that he is the Dire Magnus who Kate meets in Cambridge Falls, though he shows no recognition of Kate at all. He only showed recognition when he first saw Kate, staring at her before talking with Dr. Pym and that in The Fire Chronicle he and Kate danced, and he said to Kate in The Emerald Atlas that everyone dances in the end. He enlists the help of the Countess and her secretary to enslave the children of Cambridge Falls, but ultimately fails when the Wibberly siblings release them.

In The Black Reckoning, Kate still loves him despite knowing that he unwillingly became the enemy. Rafe appears to her several times as a spirit, but Kate learns that even those spirits had been tainted by the Dire Magnus and that he had been manipulating her. Finally, after Emma strips all of the former spirits of the Dire Magnus from him and gives him ownership of the books so that once he dies, the power of the books is destroyed, Kate stabs him in the chest, releasing the first spirit of the Dire Magnus and releasing Rafe. After reassuring Kate that her family was okay, he and Kate go to hide in Gabriel's cabin. They spend a day there, happy that they can finally be together but knowing that Rafe has to die in order for the Books to be fully destroyed, for he is the Final Keeper destined to die to save the world. At the end of the day, Rafe asks Kate to always remember him by wearing the locket her mother gave her, and she agrees sadly. He says, more precisely that Kate had kept a promise with her mother, and so now she could promise him another promise- to remember him. That night, Rafe sacrifices himself to save the world, and a grief-stricken Kate buries him behind Gabriel's house, and tells him that she loves him before returning to her parents.


Rafe is a compassionate and caring person and holds all his loved ones deep in his heart, but he also suffers the burden of his mother's death, making him angry and bitter towards the non-magical humans whose ruthless discrimination caused so much misery in his life. These two aspects of his personality combine during The Fire Chronicle, when he allows himself to become the Dire Magnus in exchange for Kate's freedom, but also because of the revenge he can finally achieve against humankind.


See also