The thing of it was, Rick underestimated Jonathan. Well, everyone did. Jonathan was fine with that. He was more than fine with it. Kept him alive for more years than he could remember, people underestimating him. Being a coward was healthy. But. But. There were times when, as an English gentleman, one just had to stand up and do the needful. And it was Evie the damned brute was proposing to marry! Jonathan could hardly just let that go, could he? His little sister? No! No, something must be done.
The first step, naturally, was alcohol. Lots and lots of alcohol. For a man's last farewell to bachelorhood, it was only to be expected. And Jonathan was never, ever, as drunk as he knew he looked. There was a trick to that. Always look drunker than your opponent. Makes them feels safe. In control. Won him a hell of a lot of hands, that.
Then, there was the handcuffs. Jonathan was good at handcuffs. From every conceivable angle, in every conceivable circumstance. Well. Maybe not the peacock and the pillowfight, that part had been mostly made up, but the point was it could have happened, if her father had been just that little bit richer ... Anyway. Rick was good at handcuffs, too. But Jonathan was willing to bet never from that particular position, in that particular location. Rough around the edges as he was, there was too much of a certain innocence about Rick for him to have learned that one. One had to be weak, debauched and completely in a woman's power to learn that. Until Evie, Jonathan didn't think Rick had ever let his guard down far enough to learn.
Then ... there was the talk.
Alright, no, then there was the cursing, a little bit of screaming, some fascinating Arabic, some mild threats of torture and a judicious yank or two in certain places where the bite of metal made an impression, before Rick calmed down enough for any actual talking to take place. But Jonathan could forgive him that. The man was still an innocent, after all.
And strange, for all that effort, it hadn't even turned out to be a very long chat at all. He'd never been all that good at threats, seeing as he'd spent most of his life being the one threatened. But for Evie, he was willing, more than willing, to give it his best shot. And there were things a debauched petty criminal like himself knew that sent shivers of real terror up the spines of manly hero-types everywhere. And other things that sent shivers up the spine of any man with half a brain, too.
Certain formidable women in certain organisations getting hold of certain pictures of certain adventurers with certain handcuffs in certain places, for example.
"If you ever so much as make her lip wobble, O'Connell," he warned. "If you make her so much as sniff. There won't be a city in the Old World you can set foot in. Clear?" And Rick nodded, furious, eyes promising a thousand grisly deaths should Jonathan ever give him the slightest chance. He could do it. Rick O'Connell was a dangerous man. But so was Jonathan Carnahan, when given reason.
When that reason was Evie, it wasn't even a competition. Rick never stood a chance.
"Well then!" Jonathan laughed, sitting back on his heels and saluting the bound man cheerfully. "Glad we got that sorted out, old chap. Glad we got that sorted out. Oh, by the way? That bumpy thing digging into your behind? That'd be the key." He grinned, winked, already headed out the door. "You have fun now! Man should enjoy his last night of freedom, you know. Before all that marital bliss ..."
By the time Rick had wriggled and wrenched his way free, Jonathan had disappeared whistling into the Egyptian night.