Round 1: Ryodan vs. Mercedes Thompson [Alpha Showdown 2013]


VBC: Home of Alpha ShowdownIt’s officially time for Alpha Showdown 2013!  You made your nominations and we have 16 of the most badass, alpha characters from urban fantasy and paranormal romance novels locked into the bracket. Only one will be named champion and today’s first bout is sure to end in a knockout.

Round one pits a man full of mystery who overwhelms just about everyone sharing space with him against a resourceful, Ryodan, one of the mysterious nine from Karen Marie Moning’s Fever World, against a resourceful, bright shapeshifter who knows how to handle just about every aggressive supernatural type.

Read the pitches, then make the call. Who should advance to the next round in the Alpha Showdown? The poll at the end of this post will be open for two days. Remember, alphas don’t share titles. Your votes decide who advances in the Alpha Showdown 2013.

New for 2013! Every (non-spam) comment on an Alpha Showdown post will enter you to win books featuring the final four alphas. So make sure to join the discussion and cheer on your favorite alphas.


Iced by Karen Marie MoningRyodan

You know him from: The Fever Series and Iced by Karen Marie Moning
First appeared in: Vocally in Bloodfever, physically in Dreamfever
Supernatural status: We’re too scared to ask

Championed by: Krista from Vampire Book Club

Every once in a while a character comes along who terrifies you, while at the same time obsessively intrigues you. You know you shouldn’t be attracted to them, but you just can’t help be dragged under their spell. Ryodan is this and so much more. The words alpha and omega should be defined by the standard he sets. So the final outcome of the Alpha Showdown 2013 is a foregone conclusion. To paraphrase Ryodan’s own words, if they’re stupid enough to show up, they’re stupid enough to die.

Some may argue that Ryodan is a more civilized version of Barron’s or the beta to Barron’s alpha but they would be wrong. This thin veneer only makes him more dangerous.

“She thinks he’s not an animal like Barrons. That he’s more civilized. She’s right, he is more polished. But it only makes him more dangerous. With Barrons you expect to get fucked up royally. With Ryodan you don’t see it coming.”

He’s the “devil in a business suit,” perceiving everything until finally making a decision. Then everyone who “pissed him off or offended him or just breathed wrong dies.” Ryodan isn’t the person who pushes you off the cliff. Instead he “allows” you to come to the conclusion that it was your own idea to jump off the cliff. Not that he couldn’t easily throw you off said cliff. It amuses him to do it this way.

“They don’t call him the master of manipulation for nothing. Barrons breaks heads. Ryodan turns them inside out. Barrons fucks you up. Ryodan makes you fuck yourself up. He pushes buttons and rearranges things to his own private, coolly sociopathic plan.”

He has the lethal magnificence of an ancient predator. He is at the top of the food chain and he revels in it. He has the crafted, impossible beauty of Greek statue, but the scars of a violent life. He doesn’t wear underwear because it chafes (“Too small and confining”). He likes sex for breakfast, “early and often.” He is the only man who can survive a fight with Barrons. The Nine (un-killable creatures like himself) are more loyal to him, than they are to Barrons.

Barrons calls him when he needs back up. He suffers no inner conflict on his choices, his needs or his actions. He is the ocean and everyone else is the earth that he shapes to his whims. He is everything which we should idolize and demonize at the same time.

There is no question in my mind and shouldn’t be in any other sane individual’s—Ryodan is the clear-cut winner of this Alpha Showdown. The rest are just pretenders. They may as well not even show up.

Ryodan says it best, “I’m King, Liege, Lord, and Master.” The rest of you are just cannon fodder.

Frost Burned by Patricia BriggsMercedes Thompson

You know her from: Frost Burned by Patricia Briggs, Mercy Thompson series
First appeared in: Moon Called

Supernatural status: Coyote Shifter/VW mechanic

Championed by: Jen from Fiction Vixen Book Reviews | @FVJen_Cardsgirl

Mercy Thompson. What does her name make you think of? Kickass chick? Sexy coyote shifter?The female all women aspire to be like and all men want to mate? I will tell you what I think of… The Ultimate Alpha!

Ryodan?? Pfft. Who does Ryodan think he is to go up against Mercy? His biggest claim to fame is that he doesn’t wear underwear. Mercy has faced off with a whole werewolf pack and tamed their alpha. She might seem like the weaker opponent here, but Mercy has taken on all number of beings and come out on top. Fae, vampire, river monsters, human crazies… nothing can keep Mercy down.

Her connection to her mate has only made her stronger and given her new abilities but the best ability Mercy has is her brain. She can think circles around all the baddies. She lives in a world full of things that are bigger, meaner and stronger but she can outsmart them and come out the winner in any fight. Anyone wanting to take Mercy down is going to have to bring out the big guns (you hear that, Ryodan?).

Mercy has shown us that she just keeps getting smarter and stronger. And she has what it takes to WIN.THIS.SHOWDOWN!


This poll will be open for 48 hours. Alpha with the most votes will advance.

122 Responses to “Round 1: Ryodan vs. Mercedes Thompson [Alpha Showdown 2013]”

  1. Ash says:

    Ryo is the way-to-go. 🙂

  2. Ash says:

    Mercy’s gonna bring down the big guns? Pffff!. Ryodan uses his bare hands. 🙂

    • KPS says:

      **sigh** A little coyote going up against one of the nine…I think we all know how that’s going to end.

  3. Mariya says:

    Ryodan all the way!

  4. KPS says:

    Ryodan all the way! Team Ryo for the win! I would like to say that whoever wrote the description for Ryodan did a superb job 🙂 awesome. I think you really captured who Ryo is and why we’re all so enamored with him.

  5. Andie K. says:

    Well this is easy

  6. AnnaM says:

    I’m definitely Mercy’s girl, through and through. No way would she ever let Ryodan get in her head to mess with her. She’s the daughter of freaking Coytote, as in *the* Trickster.

  7. Karla says:

    No contest. Ryodan all the way. I honestly feel sorry for anyone who has to go up against him. And I pity the fool who actually thinks he/she has any chance at winning. Word of advice: RUN! Run fast and run far because once you step into that ring with him, there’s no going back. You’re as good as dead. And yes I’m totally and completely head over heels in love with him. *sigh*

    Krista amazing job! You made me want to go read the series all over again!

  8. RVASarah says:

    I have both of these series on my TBR list. 🙂

  9. Lw says:

    No contest.

  10. Heather says:

    Wow, that was an easy one! Sorry Mercy.

  11. CdnMrs says:

    The thing about Mercy is that you don’t see her coming. She’ll bake you cookies and then take you down.Master manipulate that Captain No-Underpants!
    Here’s to the underdog…er…under-coyote.

  12. Danielle says:

    It’s Mercy for me. I’ve only read the first book in the Fever series. I think I should read the rest of the books 🙂

  13. Julie says:

    I haven’t read Iced yet, but I’m thinking I have to vote for Rydan just from the description Krista gives him.

    Btw – is there a poll somewhere to vote, (if there is I don’t see it or the link doesn’t work) or is voting done just in the comments?

  14. Sheena T says:

    Wow. That was really hard for me. I love Mercy. She is unstoppable. No really she is. She takes a licking but keeps on getting up no matter what. But when you put her up against Ryodan there is like no competition ( Sorry Mercy) Ryodan is indescribable. He has skills we dont even know about. He will literally snap your neck before you can get any sarcasm out your mouth.
    So my pick will def be Ryodan. Thanks for bringing the contest back. 🙂

    • Snapdragon says:

      I agree with you Sheena. I adore Mercy and she is very wiley and resourceful.
      Ryodan will end up just killing her, walking over her body and than going his merry way.

  15. Bells says:

    Ryodan all the way! Holy moly Krista did an awesome job capturing the alphaness, yes it’s a word, of Ryodan. Great job!

  16. Amy M says:

    I love Mercy, I do. But after I read Iced, I couldn’t get Ryodan out of my head for more than a week. He’s a character that demands all attention be on him. Very well done with the description Krista, definitely captures what Ryodan is all about. My vote has to go with Ryodan. If Mercy were up against anyone else there would be no question.

  17. There is no contest. Ryodan.

  18. Nods head while chanting….Ryo Ryo Ryo.

  19. Jillian B says:

    Ohhh definitely Ryodan! <3<3! yummy. I love me some dark, mysterious, alpha males and ryodan is soooo that.

  20. Amber says:

    The showdown is over before it starts! Ryodan!

  21. Laura says:

    Great descriptions – it was hard to pick! I’ve read Ryo but not Mercy so I tried to base it on the write ups but I still went back and forth. Gah! Good luck to both!!

  22. Teresa says:

    Haven’t read Iced yet so it’s got to be Mercy for me

  23. Anne says:

    I’m sorry Mercy. I love you, but I have to go Ryodan. He’s immortal and can change into a giant monster.

  24. I’m not sure if this is even competition! Ryodan for sure! 🙂

  25. glamored says:

    This isn’t even fair. I adore Mercy, but the only way she could best Ryo is to run. Run far and run fast. Sorry ’bout that Mercy.

  26. Jen says:

    I had to go for the underdog… go Mercy!!

  27. Sofija Kapranova says:

    This is tought choises, but I am choosing Mercy.

  28. Sarah L says:

    I’m in the big minority here but I am not a Ryodan fan, so go Mercy! No matter what she faces or trauma she goes through she is strong, she has had to earn her supremacy and has an amazing spirit.

  29. Mercy’s my girl, but I’m going to have to choose Ryo, he always has some new tricks up his sleeve and we still don’t know the extent of his powers…sorry Mercy! 😉

  30. Maya says:

    I really, really dislike Ryodan. Mercy’s books are great and she deserves to win.

  31. Mikel says:

    Mercy hands down! She is tougher than a Timex!

  32. Meagan says:

    I’m completely with Maya. I really don’t like Ryodan, but I adore Mercy. She may not match Ryodan in strength, but she’s equally intelligent. Her bravery should count for something- she goes in knowing the odds are stacked against her.

  33. Meagan says:

    The odds seem stacked against Mercy, as per usual. Poor girl, I’m rooting for you!!

  34. Marina says:

    This quote sums it up: “Barrons calls him when he needs back up”!!!!!

  35. Laurie says:

    I’m a huge Mercy fan, but I just finished Shadowfever and I gotta say I think Ryodan has this one.

  36. Ayana says:

    No competition. Ryodan would eat Mercy as a snack. The league he’s in? Mercy couldn’t reach on her best day.

  37. Beth says:


  38. Vicky says:

    Ryodan all the way

  39. Johana says:

    I haven’t read Mercy’s books but I don’t think that’s relevant here. No one can beat Ryodan. Not literally, not figuratively.

    “He is the ocean and everyone else is the earth that he shapes to his whims.” This stuck with me because it’s the absolute best description I’ve read about a character ever.

    I was a Barrons’ girl in Fever, but… If you read Iced, and not only you’ll love Ryo (possibly, blasphemously more than you might love Barrons) but you’ll be ruined for every other Alpha ever. That’s just the way it goes.

    Sorry for the rest of the contestants. I don’t even know who you are, but I’m sorry for you. Better luck next year 😉

  40. LisaH says:

    As much of a fan of I am of Mercy and her kickass skills, I voted for Ryodan. He’s one sexy dude 😀

  41. Steph says:

    Both are on the TBR list… I just have to vote for the under-coyote though 🙂

  42. Patti L. says:

    Your Ryordan sounds very frightening and creepy.
    This does not make him an alpha, it just makes him – as his own ‘champion’ says – a sociopath with supernatural abilities.

    Alphas (and, in Patricia Briggs’ Mercyverse, at least, Omegas) take care of those weaker than themselves, or close to them. Mercy has this in a big way. She’s not a superfast healer, she doesn’t have any charisma macho like most alpha types.

    What does she have? A sense of responsibility, and the Coyote creed: If you can’t win by the rules, change the rules.

  43. Krista says:

    I’m torn. Why must you make me make these tough life decisions?!? I think Ryodan is the ultimate Alpha, but if anyone is wily enough to out smart him, it might be Mercy.

  44. Mary B says:

    Ok this is real bad I haven’t even read anything with Ryodan in it and had to vote for him! Sorry Mercy I do you too!

  45. Esyra says:

    From the description I would have voted for Ryodan but i have not read his books so I will be loyal and vote for the one I know.

  46. Megan S. says:

    What the what? I hate Ryodan so much, I couldn’t even finish the book. Mercedes Thompson FTW!

  47. Sunny says:

    Supporting the underdog…go Mercy!

  48. Kamla L. says:

    Ryodan, no contest! and I would love to help him celebrate his victory!

  49. Sara says:

    I love Mercy and all, but this really is no contest. While she is resilient and always seems to scrape through things, I don’t really consider her an alpha. She gains her alpha status through Adam, not on her own. While Ryo… well, Ryodan is a force all his own. He’ll never compare to Barrons in my book, but he can definitely take down Mercy in an alpha contest.

  50. Lathainya says:

    Hands down Ryodan, and what a great description for him.

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