Thanks to Mel (@MonarchFisher) for the art!
We’ve learned quite a bit about both Raishan and Thordak since the initial compendium posts, so before the final battle, here’s a quick summary of what we’ve learned about both dragons in the last several weeks. The initial summaries for both dragons can be found here (Raishan) and here (Thordak). Since some of the information from Raishan is of questionable veracity, here’s her Fact-Check.
We’ve also included a quick primer on MM-standard ancient red dragons and their lairs, but be warned: Thordak appears to be far from a “standard” dragon, so there are no guarantees that these abilities will be exactly what we see tonight.
- While she is in another form, she can still cast spells. (Ep 71)
- We have seen her cast:
- Minor Illusion (Cantrip), Episode 70 (0:47:49)
- Blight (4th), Episode 71 (3:20:24) and (4:21:40)
- Freedom of Movement (4th), Episode 71 (3:20:07)
- Modify Memory (5th), Episode 73 (0:24:12)
- Chain Lightning (6th) , Episode 71 (2:59:16)
- Project Image (7th), Episode 73 (1:46:55)
- Teleport (7th), Episode 71 (4:42:29)
- She helped defeat Vorugal, telling him, “When you see your master on the other side, tell him it was worth it.” (Ep 71)
- Raishan detailed to the Council how she, with the aid of the ousted fire giants on the Plane of Fire, sealed an Ember Seed within Thordak’s Heart Stone, enabling him to officially leave the Plane of Fire with it inside of him and not die. (Ep 73)
- Upon request of Vox Machina, Raishan brought Asum Emring (the real one) and Brom Goldhand to Whitestone, where they detailed Thordak’s increased madness and changing physicality. (Ep 77)
- Raishan’s disease appears to be real, as it was visible in the room with the magic siphon in Whitestone. (Ep 77)
- She traveled with Vox Machina to Emon in Larkin form, and is one of the individuals with them to face Thordak. (Ep 78)
- J’mon Sa Ord successfully repelled an assault by Thordak on their city of Ank’harel centuries before the attack on Emon or his invasion of the Verdant Expanse fifteen years ago. (Ep 66)
- Thordak’s initial home seems to have been the Scalding Sands, before he tried to expand and take Ank’harel. (Ep 66)
- Thordak clashed with Raishan during the invasion of the Verdant Expanse. (Ep 70)
- Upon seeing Raishan’s illness, he made a deal with her, promising to cure her in exchange for her help. (Ep 70)
- Raishan, with the help of some fire giants, turned the heartstone into an Ember Seed so that Thordak could safely escape the Fire Plane with it embedded in his chest. (Ep 73)
- Since taking control of Emon, Thordak has appeared to become more elemental in nature. He’s shedding scales, replacing them with jets of flame, and has some kind of crystalline crown that twists around his horns and head. (Ep 77)
- Both Brom and Asum (the real one!) have said they “don’t know what we’re dealing with” anymore. (Ep 77)
- The crystal within Thordak’s chest is no longer visible. Either it was removed, or he has grown so much that scales now cover it. (Ep 78)
- In addition to wyverns and lizardfolk, Thordak has fire giants and fire elementals serving in his armies. He also seems to have won over the allegiance of many of the mages that used to serve within the Alabaster Lyceum. (Ep 77, 78)
- Thordak has something beneath his lair that he is guarding particularly fiercely. Raishan claims to not know what it is, since he “lets nothing within his sanctum.” (Ep 77)
- Thordak appears to have not yet noticed Vox Machina or their allies within his lair. Yet. (Ep 78)
In general, red dragons are territorial, tyrannical, covetous, and extremely dangerous. They are the most powerful of the ancient chromatics (and that’s NOT including giant elemental crystals embedded in their chests or the rituals required to do so). Their hoards are legendary, as they hoard anything of any monetary value. Their memory of the loot they lord over is photographic, and they can accurately price the value of any treasure with but a glance.
Obscuring volcanic steam and magma spews forth from their lairs and the ground is unsteady by tremors of the shifting foundation. The surrounding area is broken by fissures, some opening up into the Elemental Plane of Fire directly. Nearby sources of water become tainted by sulfur, and the ground reshapes itself to form a natural fortress for the creature.
Willing servants of red dragons flock to them for their display of strength, erecting monuments to worship and proclaim the dragons’ past victories and conquests. These servants also serve as the reds’ eyes and ears, providing news to the creature on potential uprisings and news of other dragons. Willing and unwilling servants alike often show their fealty to delay a fiery death.