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Lord Chess was the ineffectual overlord of Zhentil Keep from at least the Year of the Prince, 1357 DR[1][2] until his death around the Year of the Banner, 1368 DR.[3]


Chess was a gluttonous, corpulent man who was vainly fastidious in manner and dress. A coward at heart, he was prone to gossip and being self-important.[1]


Chess started training as a cleric, switched to studying magic, then gave that up to be trained in the martial arts. He did not attain mastery of any of these professions.[1]


The Zhentarim kept him in his position of overlord of the Keep because he was easy to manipulate and provided diplomatic cover for their operations. The enemies of the Zhents didn't want him to be removed for fear of someone actually competent taking his place and expanding the Zhent influence. Being cowardly and fearful of attack or assassination, he hired a small squad of five bodyguards to accompany him whenever necessary.[1]


Lord Chess was double-crossed by Mask during his bid to trap Kezef the Chaos Hound, which resulted in Chess' death.[3]



  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 Jeff Grubb, Ed Greenwood and Karen S. Martin (1987). Forgotten Realms Campaign Set (Cyclopedia of the Realms). (TSR, Inc), p. 93. ISBN 0-8803-8472-7.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 Jeff Grubb and Ed Greenwood (1990). Forgotten Realms Adventures. (TSR, Inc), p. 120. ISBN 0-8803-8828-5.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Dale Donovan (July 1998). Villains' Lorebook. (TSR, Inc), p. 124. ISBN 0-7869-1236-7.

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