A Mercenary Company: The Flaming Fist

One of the most powerful such companies currently active (1368), the Flaming Fist is usually based in Baldur’s Gate, where its commander Eltan, is a Duke (See Baldur's Gate). The Fists have a good record of achievements, particularly when operating against other mercenary companies, such as the nonhuman bands.

The Flaming Fist is the most powerful, most magical, and most expensive fighting forces in the Realms, and is the result of decades of work and effort, both in training and in accumulating magical items for use on the battlefield. The Fist normally hires out at a base rate of 10,000 g.p. Per Day plus its share of the plunder, but will pay its own transportation costs and agree not to begin charging their rates until directly entering the employer's service.

The Fist consists of:

All men in the Company are mounted on heavy horses, and each has a spare horse, tethered behind the first when on the trail (total: 4,000 horses). In addition, there are 3,150 pack mules for the carrying of equipment and plunder, and 14 of the 6th level fighters ride as drovers to keep them together, armed with whips (the mules are bridled in long lines, or files). The Company also has nine wagons, drawn by teams of eight draft horses each (four spare horses are bridled to the rear of each of the wagons). The wagons carry food, and even more importantly, drink, medical supplies (including many curative spell scrolls) and siege equipment. All wagons have roofs that are platforms with sidewalls for use by archers, and the wagon walls are armored and trimmed with dragonhide to resist fire.

One of the wagons is a council wagon, furnished with a table (which can double as an operating table), a hole in the floor for a fire (which is built in a sand bucket), rugs, etc. It serves as a temple for the clerics of the Company when not otherwise in use. The device of the Company, flown on its banners and depicted on its tents and wagons, is the Flaming Fist. In battle, warriors of the Company wear white tabards blazoned with this device.

ELTAN (EL-tan)
Baldur’s Gate/Flaming Fist
20th level fighter (179 hp)
LN, Tempus
Human male

The leader and founder of the Flaming Fist, Eltan is a tactical genius who loves to fight. He is respected among the rulers of the Forgotten Realms because he is a man of principles and of his word, and because as a ruler himself, Eltan is seen as knowing and sympathizing with a ruler's concerns and troubles. Eltan sees a continual balance of power amongst many small kingdoms to be a Good and Proper Thing, and so hires out his company so as to prevent any large empire-forming. He is friendly with the other mercenary generals based nearby, but often battles them (never let emotions interfere with business, he believes).

Eltan is a tall, handsome man with grey eyes and jet-black hair, who wears a greenstone amulet, plate mail +2, a displacer cloak +2 (this plus his Dex makes him AC -3), and disdains to use a shield. His breastplate is polished mirror-bright so that his men can distinguish him easily on the field, as well as for the splendid effect. He wears a ring of absorption (750 spell levels left), a ring of anti-venom (absorbs poisons; 22 charges left), a girdle of storm giant strength, and gauntlets of ogre power: These latter two allow him to wield his most precious treasure, a rarely used hammer of thunderbolts. He also carries a silver dagger +2 his boot, a silver long sword +2, and a neutral, telepathic short sword +1 named “Roan,” his longtime friend. Roan can detect magic, detect invisible, detect illusion, detect traps, and know alignment once each per day, and will automatic return if it leaves him and he is conscious to so will it (maximum range 9”), if necessary dragging anyone holding it along with it (a combined strength total of 30 will stop it). A bracelet on his left wrist allows Eltan to communicate telepathically with Scar and Moruene. Eltan is probably the most heavily loaded of the magical characters in the Realms.

Normal high level types, such as successful PCs, shouldn't be wandering around with quite so much stuff. Eltan has it because his mercenary company presents the ultimate in equipage, as a DM'’s design example, and because Eltan is a careful and very rich man who has tried to prepare for every eventuality such as powerful adventurers trying to knock him off with ease. Eltan is often the target of assassination attempts, because his Company's targets believe that the Flaming Fist would fall apart without him.

Baldur’s Gate, Flaming Fist
14th level fighter
LN, Helm
Human male

Eltan’s right-hand man and faithful friend, Scar is a bald giant with a scarred cheek (hence his name) who swings a scimitar +2 and has a belt of six throwing axes. He wears bracers of defense (AC2) and a throat gorget, leather breeches, otherwise disdaining armor. Scar has a telepathic bracelet on his left wrist, allowing communication with Eltan and Moruene, which is clamped to a bronze wristlet that also supports a sheathed dagger. He, too, is a military genius, and at his belt carries two stainless steel vials; a potion of flying and a potion of speed. Scar often makes manic leaps or charges in battle to break masses of men defending in a strong position. He talks little, and never checks morale. Scar wears a greenstone amulet.

Scar's real name is Hurbold Duethkatha (HER-bold Dooth-KATH-ah); a secret to all save his surviving youthful acquaintances in Waterdeep, Eltan, and Moruene.

MORUENE (More-yoo-EEN)
19th level magic-user
LN, Azuth
Human female

Moruene is Eltan'’s lifelong friend, continual comrade, and occasional lover. She wears black robes (cut so that she can ride and fight unhampered), a greenstone amulet, bracers of defense (AC 2), a helm, a ring of flight (which allows the wearer to fly as in the magic user spell, as though cast by 10th level magic user, thrice in any 24 hour/144 turn period of time), two ivory scroll tubes at her belt containing one limited wish scroll and one teleport scroll, a dagger +2 at the back of her neck, on a throatband sheath, a rod of cancellation (only four charges left) at her belt, and a captured wand of viscid globs of 14 charges. Moruene also wears a bracelet which allows her to communicate telepathically with Eltan and Scar. One of her earrings is a 9-HD Fireball from a necklace of missiles, and the other is a polymorphed black pudding of 68 hp, which she will toss and follow with a dispel magic if in peril. Moruene wears a belt of iron plates, into which is locked a portable hole, which contains her working set of spell books. The other set will be found in her friendly mimic 7 HD, 41 hp storage chest, along with her Pegasus steed.

Moruene is currently looking for an apprentice. Also in her portable hole is a spare teleport scroll; she will use this to escape (with Eltan and Scar, if possible) if necessary, to a cave retreat, walled in, inside the Nether Mountains, a retreat which includes her treasures: 40,212 gp; a spiritwrack scroll with Demogorgon'’s true name, should he ever appear; Eltan’'s money (160,000 gp, in various currencies); a jug of alchemy and 2 week'’s dry rations (for 2 people), a prismatic sphere scroll, a protection from devils scroll, and a ring of spell storing containing one cure blindness, one cure disease, one dispel magic, and two cure critical wounds clerical spells.

The senior officers of the Flaming Fist serve as section commanders in battle, bodyguards in negotiating situations, and if Eltan and Moruene stand together in battle, often form a protective “hedgehog” or wedge around them (Scar prefers not to be guarded; it gets in his way). All are devoted to Eltan and Moruene, and will fight to the death for them; all are equipped with field plate armor, greenstone amulets, rings of spell turning, one potion of extra-healing each (in a stainless steel belt vial), and their preferred (and specialized) weapon, usually a broadsword. They habitually wear their visors down so as to better intimidate. These seven are:

Again, it must be stressed that this mercenary company is far more powerful than most; everyone else save a Horde raised by combining several mercenary companies is going to be less powerful than this, and carry a lot less magical loot; all of the Fist’s senior officers listed above are the equivalent of most of the other mercenary company leaders.

Organizations of Faerûn
Lands of Faerûn