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Jarlaxle
The famed mercenary, Jarlaxle.
Jarlaxle Baenre
Basic Information
Home currently World Above, last seen in Neverwinter.[citation needed]
Former home(s) Menzoberranzan[1], Calimport, Bloodstone Lands, Luskan, Erlkazar
Gender Male[1]
Race Drow[1]
Known language(s) Abyssal[2], Common[3],
Drow, Drow Sign Language[1],
Elven[2], Gnome[4]
Rules Information
Alignment Neutral evil[5]
Evil (4e)[2]
Game Edition 3rd[6]
4th[2]
2nd Edition Statistics
Class
Fighter[5] 17
3rd Edition Statistics
Class
Fighter[6] 18
4th Edition Statistics
Class
Elite Skirmisher[2] 21

Jarlaxle Baenre is a drow mercenary and leader of the Bregan D'aerthe mercenary company. He is (sometimes) an ally of House Baenre, although you can see on several occasions that his band's services are available to the highest bidder or to whoever suits him. Obviously House Baenre is the biggest house and so has the deepest coffers. He is one of a small number of male drow who actually have some power in a Lolth-worshiping city.[citation needed]

DescriptionEdit

Slender, handsome and tightly muscled, Jarlaxle is the dandy of Menzoberranzan. He chooses the brightest colors for his clothes and wears a cape that shines in every color in both the visible and infrared spectrums. Jarlaxle commonly wears high boots and bracelets that can be made to be loud or silent at his discretion. He also wears a magical eye patch that protects his mind from magical and psionic intrusions and allows him to see through walls and other solid objects. He often shifts the patch from eye to eye to keep others guessing as to its powers. Another staple item is his wide-brimmed hat, plumed with a diatryma feather and worn atop his clean-shaven scalp. Jarlaxle's shaven head is a symbol of his place in Menzoberranzan. In a society where rank and position are indicated by hair style (e.g., male drow nobles all have haircuts specific to their houses). Although beautiful like all Tel-quessir, Jarlaxle has no hair to illustrate that he considers himself removed from the society of Menzoberranzan.[citation needed]

PersonalityEdit

More than anything, Jarlaxle is an opportunist. His wealth is considerable, but official station in drow society means nothing to him. He has observed that the best way for a male to survive and prosper in the matriarchal drow society is by being outside the system and too valuable to be eliminated - and he was audacious enough to take his life in that direction. Always calm and graceful, Jarlaxle enjoys flaunting his independence and is proud of the fact that the noble houses come to him for aid. In the city of Menzoberranzan, intrigue and double-dealing are a way of life, and no one plays them better than Jarlaxle does. As a male outsider in the city, Jarlaxle has much information few others beyond Lolth's priestesses are likely to have access to. He is probably one of the most powerful individuals in the city and the surrounding Underdark. For enough money, Jarlaxle and his band might ally with Gromph Baenre and Jalynfein the Spider Mage to set about changing Menzoberranzan's Lolth and female-dominated society and to squeeze as much adventure and pleasure from life as he possibly can. However, he sees no need for such drastic change at the present; he benefits from the chaos of Menzoberranzan, and is always able to align himself with the winning side in any feud.[citation needed]

He has a very charismatic personality, always willing to talk his way out of situations rather than resort to force of arms. Moreover, talking is what Jarlaxle does best. His words easily work past the handicap of his race's evil reputation, able to turn potential enemies into allies. He appears also to be extremely intelligent and a brilliant tactician who almost never seems to be unprepared for any thinkable and unthinkable circumstances. He also prefers not to kill anyone as long as he can manipulate the person to serve his interests, no matter how small their role might be. Interestingly for a drow, Jarlaxle doesn't like to kill somebody unless he has to.[citation needed]

In The Ghost King, Kimmuriel reveals a deep understanding of Jarlaxle's personality. He recognizes his gambling, and sometimes foolish seeming attitude, as a very good facade, underneath which lies a frighteningly intelligent mind.[citation needed]

He speaks common, drow, as well as the goblin,[7]svirfneblin, and halfling tongue[8]. Also, with the aid of his many magical devices and items, Jarlaxle can possibly speak any language in existence, fluently and flawlessly.[citation needed]

RelationshipsEdit

KimmurielEdit

Jarlaxle and Kimmuriel share a mutually beneficial relationship. Kimmuriel knows and understands more about Jarlaxle than any other being.[citation needed]

Catti-brieEdit

Since their meeting in the Underdark, Jarlaxle has sometimes shown an attraction to Catti-brie. Although unlikely, and certainly not reciprocated, in The Ghost King, it is hinted at that Jarlaxle may hold some sort of feelings for Catti-brie as a result of their time together in the Underdark. Whether these feelings are simply familial or romantic, and even their very existence are all in question.[citation needed]

Artemis EntreriEdit

Jarlaxle and Artemis met when Vierna Do'Urden employed Artemis to help find, capture, and fight against Drizzt Do'Urden. After Artemis was trapped in the Underdark, Jarlaxle offered him advice and even missions. Jarlaxle and Artemis also worked together in Calimport, taking over many guilds in the city. They were eventually run out by competitor drow Rai-Guy and Kimmuriel. Together, Jarlaxle and Artemis teamed up with Cadderly Bonaduce and destroyed the crystal shard by tricking the red dragon Hephaestus into breathing fire upon the artifact. Jarlaxle and Artemis also traveled into Vaasa and Damara. There they joined a party of adventurers and invaded a replica fortress of Castle Perilous and battled the dracolich Urshula. After, the two took the castle and claimed it for themselves causing a team of heroes to invade and do battle. Jarlaxle also accompanied Artemis back to Calimshan and aided him in his search for (and murder of) Artemis's father.[citation needed]

CombatEdit

When forced into combat, Jarlaxle will throw a seemingly unlimited supply of magical daggers conferred to him by his bracers[9]. One in every three or so daggers is an illusion, but can still be fatal if it is believed to be real. The daggers will magically disappear after a short period of time, returning themselves to his magic bracers.[citation needed]

He is extremely skilled in the two long-blade fighting style commonly used by the drow, though when mismatched with less skilled opponents he has been known to use the less effective but visually showy swashbuckling style to distract them - though his mastery of this style was enough to impress even Artemis Entreri, the famed assassin and Jarlaxle's former companion.[citation needed]

In situations where his daggers are of no use, he can magically extend two blades that he wears at his belt behind his back transforming them into long swords, not to mention the array of weapons (including a small war hammer, that he keeps miniaturized in the sweat band of his outrageously large hat.[citation needed]

Of course, Jarlaxle also possesses the typical drow weapon - a hand held crossbow adorned with bolts dipped in sleeping poison.[10]

PossessionsEdit

Jarlaxle is renowned for having a seemingly unlimited supply of magical tricks. The following list is merely some of his confirmed items. It is very likely that he has many more:

  • A hat with a huge white diatryma feather that can be used to summon one of the Underdark birds; the feather always grows back after being used for the summoning[11].
  • A fine cord that can elongate to at least 120 ft is tucked under the silken band of his hat[12].
  • An eye patch that prevents magical and psionic intrusion or, if shifted to the other eye, enhances his vision. It also enables Jarlaxle to see through doors[13].
  • A pair of boots that can be noisy or silenced at will.
  • One of his jeweled earrings can extend its size to that of a small grappling hook, used as such when tied to a rope[14].
  • A many-hued piwafwi that displaces light, thus hindering ranged attacks.
  • A brooch of shielding clasped at his cloak's front side[9].
  • A silver whistle hanging on a chain around his neck that can open and close doors and the like regardless of traps and locks on them. Different abilities are activated by blows on it of varying lengths.
  • Two jewel skulls, artifacts obtained from relics of the lich Zhengyi, one having the power to raise humans from the dead[15] and the other to employ the help of the powerful dracolich Urshula[16]. Jarlaxle later gives them to his lieutenant Kimmuriel Oblodra for study.[17]
  • Jarlaxle's belt is a snake that will uncoil into a rope form for climbing when needed, extending to whatever length is required.
  • Several extra-dimensional devices, including a button on his waistcoat that turns into a bag designed to shield the magical emanations of its contents[18], and a portable hole that, if reversed will create a temporary hole in whatever surface it touches. He also carries a ring that opens a limited number of extra-dimensional portals[19].
  • A black cloth in the shape of a small bat that turns into a living creature which can serve as a scout[20].
  • A palm-sized ornament in the form of a silvery rearing dragon, with wings and jaws spread wide, a gift from the dragon Ilnezhara, is, in truth, a charm to secure the entrance of a room[21]. It is a trap bringing forth the various breath forms of the deadly chromatic dragons.[22]
  • A tablecloth that can magically provide a feast[23].
  • A pair of obsidian steed figurines of wondrous power, fashioned after one that he recovered from the dead body of Mariabronne the Rover[15].
  • Jarlaxle also possesses a variety of slender wands which are capable of releasing anything from a lightning bolt to a greenish, gluey semi-liquid blob of goo[19]. One such wand can create a solid stone wall to cut off the pursuit of enemies[24]. Another wand creates illusions. In true Jarlaxle fashion, he spent much time practicing with it until he could produce an illusionary fireball so realistic that creatures within the illusion burn as if from a real fireball, if they don't know it is an illusion. He has been known to fire a blast at his own feet, killing any surrounding enemies, and leaving him unharmed.
  • A Ring of Arbitration that the drow retrieved after the half-orc Olgerkhan dropped it[25].
  • A small silver cone to create an area of amplified sensibilities enabling him to overhear the conversation of his subjects from a long distance.[26]
  • A small orb which when crushed can throw him through the multiverse, to which plane of existence Jarlaxle cannot predict - his last route of escape.[27]
  • Agatha's mask, an item of illusionary magic[28].
  • A small silver mace charm that is attached to his hat, it can be enlarged to a medium sized heavy silver mace.

Also has a copy of the Ruby Pendant wielded by Regis.[citation needed]

HistoryEdit

Due to the status of his birth, Jarlaxle was to be sacrificed to Lolth by Yvonnel Baenre. However, she couldn't seem to kill the baby. Her second oldest son tried to grab him in an attempt to assist, only to be killed by all of the effort that Yvonnel put into killing the baby by some magical power. Thus, the matron felt that the sacrifice was complete, even if it was her second-born son instead. During his youth, Jarlaxle became close friends with Zaknafein and the first time Jarlaxle felt guilt was when he betrayed their friendship.[citation needed]

Jarlaxle later grew to found Bregan D'aerthe, a mercenary band that grew to be very powerful, yet very loyal to House Baenre. Thus it could be said that due to the band's loyalty to Baenre, they had somewhat forged an empire in Menzoberranzen. Bregan D'aerthe was present amongst the troops of Baenre during the fall of House Do'Urden.[citation needed]

Jarlaxle would then be contacted by Artemis Entreri during the early phases of Baenre's conquest of Mithral Hall. Entreri requested a fight against Drizzt, a fair one, and offered his services in return. A fair fight was not, at the time, able to be given and when Entreri "joined" Bregan D'aerthe, he felt trapped and fled the Underdark. Nevertheless, Jarlaxle continued to aid Baenre during the conquest of Mithral Hall all the way to the failure of the conquest.[citation needed]

Eight years later, Jarlaxle would approach Entreri with the hopes of extending his empire to the surface, starting with Calimport. They created a faction out of the Basadoni guild and placed Entreri as the pasha. Jarlaxle then arranged a fight between Entreri and Do'Urden, a fair fight. During the fight, he aquired Crenshinibon.[citation needed]

He had an adventure with Artemis Entreri working in the Bloodstone Lands. He stayed in regular contact with his lieutenant Kimmuriel Oblodra, in whose capable hands he has left Bregan D'aerthe. Although he does not take an active role in leading his mercenaries any more, he still requests the resources of the group when it suits his needs. The option is open for Jarlaxle to retake control of the mercenaries, as Kimmuriel wishes to be done with his duties leading the group.[citation needed]

He and Entreri started working for Ilnezhara and Tazmikella, the copper dragon sisters of Heliogabalus, who wanted them to investigate the appearance of Zhengyian constructs in Vaasa. These adventures are detailed in the Promise of the Witch-King and in Road of the Patriarch. At the end of Road of the Patriarch, Artemis leaves Jarlaxle to parts unknown, while the dwarf Athrogate continues to travel with Jarlaxle.[citation needed]

In The Pirate King, it is eventually shown that Jarlaxle and his group were manipulating events in Luskan that resulted in the destruction of the Host Tower of the Arcane, the death of Deudermont, and Luskan becoming a free port. Jarlaxle also took a scrimshaw piece from Regis that depicted Drizzt and Guenhwyvar, rather than taking the valuable ruby pendant.[citation needed]

In The Ghost King, Jaraxle's dream is invaded by Yharaskrik, the illithid killed in Servant of the Shard. He and Athrogate both join up with Drizzt Do'Urden, Bruenor Battlehammer, and Thibbledorf Pwent on an adventure to Spirit Soaring where they hope Cadderly can help them fend off the coming of the Ghost King.[citation needed]

During the events of Gauntlgrym, Jarlaxle returns beside Athrogate. The two of them join Dahlia Sin'felle in an expedition to Gauntlgrym where they are tricked into releasing the fire primordial. Jarlaxle and Athrogate join Drizzt Do'Urden and Bruenor Battlehammer in an attempt to right this wrong. After the fire Primordial is sealed up once more Jarlaxle and Athrogate both are presumed dead by Drizzt.[citation needed]

During the events of The Last Threshold, Jarlaxle has not died in Gauntlgrym and ends up aiding Drizzt Do'Urden and Dahlia Sin'felle indirectly once again. Jarlaxle and Artemis Entreri end up meeting once more though it is not on the best of terms.[citation needed]

AppendixEdit

AppearancesEdit

NovelsEdit

The Dark Elf Trilogy:

The Legacy of the Drow Trilogy:

Paths of Darkness:

The Sellswords Trilogy:

Transitions:

The Neverwinter Saga:

Computer gamesEdit

GalleryEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 R.A. Salvatore (August 1994). Starless Night (Paperback), p. 94. TSR, IncISBN 1-56076-880-0.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 Bruce R. Cordell, Ed Greenwood, Chris Sims (August 2008). Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide, p. 251. Wizards of the CoastISBN 978-0-7869-4924-3.
  3. R.A. Salvatore (August 1994). Starless Night (Paperback), p. 130. TSR, IncISBN 1-56076-880-0.
  4. R.A. Salvatore (August 1994). Starless Night (Paperback), p. 152. TSR, IncISBN 1-56076-880-0.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Ed Greenwood (1992). Menzoberranzan (The Houses), p. 63. TSR, IncISBN 1-5607-6460-0.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Bruce R. Cordell, Gwendolyn F.M. Kestrel, Jeff Quick (October 2003). Underdark, p. 161. Wizards of the CoastISBN 0-7869-3053-5.
  7. R.A. Salvatore (September 2006). Promise of the Witch-King, p. 86. Wizards of the CoastISBN 0-7869-4073-5.
  8. R.A. Salvatore (September 2006). Promise of the Witch-King, p. 89. Wizards of the CoastISBN 0-7869-4073-5.
  9. 9.0 9.1 R.A. Salvatore (September 2006). Promise of the Witch-King, p. 10. Wizards of the CoastISBN 0-7869-4073-5.
  10. Warning: edition not specified for Road of the Patriarch
  11. R.A. Salvatore (June 2005). Servant of the Shard, p. 282. Wizards of the CoastISBN 0-7869-3950-8.
  12. R.A. Salvatore (September 2006). Promise of the Witch-King, p. 262. Wizards of the CoastISBN 0-7869-4073-5.
  13. R.A. Salvatore (September 2006). Promise of the Witch-King, p. 43. Wizards of the CoastISBN 0-7869-4073-5.
  14. R.A. Salvatore (September 2006). Promise of the Witch-King, p. 262. Wizards of the CoastISBN 0-7869-4073-5.
  15. 15.0 15.1 R.A. Salvatore (September 2006). Promise of the Witch-King, p. 344. Wizards of the CoastISBN 0-7869-4073-5.
  16. R.A. Salvatore (September 2006). Promise of the Witch-King, p. 354. Wizards of the CoastISBN 0-7869-4073-5.
  17. Warning: edition not specified for Road of the Patriarch
  18. R.A. Salvatore (September 2006). Promise of the Witch-King, p. 25. Wizards of the CoastISBN 0-7869-4073-5.
  19. 19.0 19.1 R.A. Salvatore (June 2005). Servant of the Shard, p. 343. Wizards of the CoastISBN 0-7869-3950-8.
  20. R.A. Salvatore (June 2005). Servant of the Shard, p. 344. Wizards of the CoastISBN 0-7869-3950-8.
  21. R.A. Salvatore (September 2006). Promise of the Witch-King, p. 42-43. Wizards of the CoastISBN 0-7869-4073-5.
  22. Warning: edition not specified for Road of the Patriarch
  23. R.A. Salvatore (September 2006). Promise of the Witch-King, p. 91. Wizards of the CoastISBN 0-7869-4073-5.
  24. R.A. Salvatore (September 2006). Promise of the Witch-King, p. 18. Wizards of the CoastISBN 0-7869-4073-5.
  25. R.A. Salvatore (September 2006). Promise of the Witch-King, p. 357. Wizards of the CoastISBN 0-7869-4073-5.
  26. Warning: edition not specified for Road of the Patriarch
  27. Warning: edition not specified for Road of the Patriarch
  28. Warning: edition not specified for Road of the Patriarch