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Charon's Claw (sword)

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Charon's Claw (later known simply as Claw) was a magical sword and gauntlet designed to battle wizards. It was once wielded by the highly skilled assassin Artemis Entreri.[2] It was assumed destroyed in 1463 DR.[3]

DescriptionEdit

Charon's Claw was a sword and gauntlet combination, the perfect weapon when battling a wizard.

SwordEdit

The sword had a slender, razor-edged, gleaming red blade, its length inscribed with designs of cloaked figures and tall scythes, accentuated by a black blood trough running along its center. Entreri opened his hand enough for the wizard to see the skull-bobbed pommel, with a hilt that appeared like whitened vertebrae. Running from it toward the crosspiece, the hilt was carved to resemble a backbone and rib-cage, and the crosspiece itself resembled a pelvic skeleton, with legs spread out wide and bent back toward the head, so that the wielder's hand fit neatly within the 'bony' boundaries. All of the pommel, hilt and crosspiece was white, like bleached bones—perfectly white, except for the eye sockets of the skull pommel, which seemed like black pits at one moment and flared with red fires the next.
  — R.A. Salvatore, Servant of the Shard


The sword was a sentient artifact with the powers of a +4 keen smoking longsword ; strong of will and possessed of arrogance.[4][1] The sword could also intrude on the bearer's thoughts, turning them in dark and violence-inclined directions.[5] Anyone who touched the blade or handle of this sword unprotected would need to compete with it in a battle of wills. Failure meant it would burn the flesh and skin of the wielder's head away.[6] This ability could be used by the bearer of the sword, but it would require prolonged contact with the victim.[citation needed] Without defeating the blade in a battle of wills, the only way a person could safely use the item was by covering their hand with the enchanted gauntlet which was its counterpart. This kept the hostile sentience at bay.[6][1]

Upon being willed by its wielder, the sword could leave trails of ash in the air, creating temporary opaque walls to give an edge in battle.[1] It could also to produce a strange black glow to act as a light in the darkness — though only its wielder could see it. It also made its wielder invisible to infravision.[7] The sword was also enchanted so that even a small nick or cut would eventually prove fatal, as the wound would fester and eventually poison the victim.[8]

It was later revealed that the sword could dominate its former wielder. Herzgo Alegni was able to utilize this ability to enslave Artemis Entreri. Claw did not reside in the thoughts of a person it dominated, but it physically prevented that person's actions and caused them great physical pain. Distance from the sword made the effect weaker.[9] Additionally, the sword could bring the enslaved person back to life.[10]

GauntletEdit

The gauntlet was worn on the right hand. It had two main purposes: to shield the wielder of Charon's Claw from the malicious and persistent intelligence within, and to aid in fighting wizards. By wearing the gauntlet, the owner could catch magic directed at him within the magical netting of the gauntlet[11] and turn it back against the initiator[12] or just dispel it.[13] Additionally, the glove's laces pulsed to warn the wearer of magical scrying[14]. The wearer could even detect whether the scrying was of an arcane, priestly, or psionic nature[15].

HistoryEdit

BackgroundEdit

Charon's Claw was an old Netherese artifact.[16][1]

For decades the artifact was owned by the Soulez Clan at the Dallabad Oasis near Calimport.[17] An illithid, Yharaskrik studied the artifact by living in the deep tunnels below Kohrin Soulez's throne room.[18]

Artemis EntreriEdit

In 1366 DR, the assassin Artemis Entreri took the artifact from Kohrin Soulez after tricking Soulez into grabbing the blade without the proper gauntlet.[19] Artemis won control over the sword after a contest of will power thus enabling him to wield the sword even without wearing the gauntlet.[20]

The next year, while working in Heliogabalus, Entreri and Jarlaxle were approached by a Shadovar who offered them an alliance in exchange for the artifact, revealing to them the Netherese nature of it. Entreri refused to give up the weapon and killed the shade with his vampiric dagger; Charon's Claw resisted striking the shade.[21]

Later, during a fight against a lich, the gauntlet was destroyed, consumed by the life-binding forces of the lich and in turn destroying the undead.[22]

After the gauntlet's destruction, Jarlaxle asked their employers, the dragon sisters Ilnezhara and Tazmikella, to replace the gauntlet as compensation for the two fighters' achievements, but they refused.[23] Jarlaxle later presented Artemis with a new gauntlet, restored by the efforts of the psionicist Kimmuriel Oblodra, just after they left the Bloodstone Lands.[24]

Return to the NethereseEdit

At some point after Jarlaxle and Artemis parted company, Jarlaxle betrayed Artemis to the Netherese, who were seeking Charon's Claw in Baldur's Gate.[25] The sword fell into the hands of the Netherese lord Draygo Quick, who then gave it to Herzgo Alegni.[26] Alegni tied Entreri's life force to the sword, forcing Entreri to serve him and making it so that Entreri could not die while in the service of Charon's Claw.[3]

Entreri, known by this point as Barrabus the Gray, joined forces with Drizzt Do'Urden and Dahlia Sin'felle to take the sword from Alegni and thus free Entreri. They were able to take the sword by force in Neverwinter, believing they had killed Alegni. In truth, Alegni had made it to the Shadowfell where he was healed and tasked with retrieving the Netherese artifact. Entreri's group headed for Gauntlgrym, where they believed they could destroy the sword and thus allow Entreri to die. Despite Alegni's forces, Drizzt was able to throw the sword over the rim of the pit where the fire primordial Maegera resided. The sword was presumed destroyed and its hold over Entreri broken. Entreri, unexpectedly, did not keel over on the spot but continued to live.[3]

AppendixEdit

AppearancesEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Jason Bulmahn, James Jacobs, Mike McArtor, Erik Mona, E.Wesley Schneider, Todd Stewart, Jeremy Walker (September 2007). “1d20 Villains: D&D's Most Wanted; Preferably Dead”. In Erik Mona ed. Dragon #359 (Paizo Publishing, LLC), pp. 54–69.
  2. R.A. Salvatore (June 2005). Servant of the Shard. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 6. ISBN 0-7869-3950-8.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 R.A. Salvatore (August 2012). Charon's Claw. (Wizards of the Coast). ISBN 0-7869-6223-2.
  4. R.A. Salvatore (June 2005). Servant of the Shard. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 114. ISBN 0-7869-3950-8.
  5. R.A. Salvatore (August 2012). Charon's Claw. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 213. ISBN 0-7869-6223-2.
  6. 6.0 6.1 R.A. Salvatore (July 2001). Servant of the Shard. (Wizards of the Coast), p. ??. ISBN 0-7869-1878-0.
  7. R.A. Salvatore (June 2005). Servant of the Shard. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 176–179. ISBN 0-7869-3950-8.
  8. R.A. Salvatore (June 2005). Servant of the Shard. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 106. ISBN 0-7869-3950-8.
  9. R.A. Salvatore (August 2012). Charon's Claw. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 87, 114. ISBN 0-7869-6223-2.
  10. R.A. Salvatore (October 2011). Neverwinter. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 282. ISBN 0-7869-5842-1.
  11. R.A. Salvatore (June 2005). Servant of the Shard. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 89. ISBN 0-7869-3950-8.
  12. R.A. Salvatore (June 2005). Servant of the Shard. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 92. ISBN 0-7869-3950-8.
  13. R.A. Salvatore (June 2005). Servant of the Shard. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 96. ISBN 0-7869-3950-8.
  14. R.A. Salvatore (June 2005). Servant of the Shard. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 68. ISBN 0-7869-3950-8.
  15. R.A. Salvatore (June 2005). Servant of the Shard. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 87. ISBN 0-7869-3950-8.
  16. R.A. Salvatore (March 2002). Realms of Shadow ("That Curious Sword"). (Wizards of the Coast). ISBN 0-7869-2716-X.
  17. R.A. Salvatore (June 2005). Servant of the Shard. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 6–7. ISBN 0-7869-3950-8.
  18. R.A. Salvatore (October 2000). Servant of the Shard. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 84. ISBN 0-7869-1657-5.
  19. R.A. Salvatore (June 2005). Servant of the Shard. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 108–111. ISBN 0-7869-3950-8.
  20. R.A. Salvatore (October 2000). Servant of the Shard. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 183. ISBN 0-7869-1657-5.
  21. R.A. Salvatore (March 2002). Realms of Shadow ("That Curious Sword"). (Wizards of the Coast). ISBN 0-7869-2716-X.
  22. Warning: edition not specified for Promise of the Witch-King
  23. Warning: edition not specified for Promise of the Witch-King
  24. Warning: edition not specified for Road of the Patriarch
  25. R.A. Salvatore (March 2013). The Last Threshold. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 116–117. ISBN 0-7869-6364-6.
  26. R.A. Salvatore (August 2012). Charon's Claw. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 188. ISBN 0-7869-6223-2.

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