The Blacktalons Mercenary Company was a mercenary force based out of Iriaebor in the Western Heartlands in the mid–14th century DR.[1]

History[edit | edit source]

Formed some time in the early 1350s DR, the Blacktalons were merely a gang of bandits before Taurgosz "Tenhammer" Khosann attained leadership of the gang (along with his nickname) by slaying ten men with a single swing of his warhammer. As the leader, he remade them into a legal mercenary company.[1]

After less than a decade, it was well established by the early 1360s DR.[1]

Organization[edit | edit source]

The Blacktalons kept a standing army of 120 members, both men and women, comprising eighty veteran fighters and twenty recent recruits, as well as twenty rogues of various levels of experience who were skilled as scouts or bandits.[1]

Leadership[edit | edit source]

While he commanded as an absolute dictator, "Tenhammer" had a small council of trusted aides who advised him.[1]

Symbol[edit | edit source]

The company's symbol was a black claw with three talons on a blood-red field. This was shown on a member's breast or helmet, and never on a banner.[1]

Contracts[edit | edit source]

They predominantly took contracts for guarding caravans, but could also be hired to raid caravans for a higher price. Following their bandit past, the Blacktalons also occasionally raided unguarded caravans off their own backs in order to encourage their owners to seek their protection. In addition, they were sometimes hired to operate as an irregular cavalry.[1]

Although the Blacktalons were fairly unscrupulous, they never reneged on a contract. However, if cheated, they sought revenge. They also defended Iriaebor when trouble broke out, not because of any goodness in their hearts but to ensure good relations with the city's government.[1]

They generally worked the trade routes around Iriaebor.[1]

Cost[edit | edit source]

The Blacktalons charged 1 gold piece per person per day for guard duty. A raid would cost 300 gold pieces, in advance.[1]

Base of Operations[edit | edit source]

They were based out of Blacktalon Citadel in Iriaebor.[1]

Equipment[edit | edit source]

The Blacktalons were armed with a range of weaponry and armors. They had a habit of using mud or paint to darken their armor, in order that they not stand out.[1]

They had their own mounts, typically medium warhorses. They preferred these, but would choose mounts appropriate to a caravan they were protecting. Thanks to the fine horses of Iriaebor, the Blacktalons enjoyed quality mounts.[1]

Relationships[edit | edit source]

Although they rarely conflicted with other mercenary companies, the Blacktalons had earned the ire of the Mindulgulph Mercenary Company and the Sirocco, as well as a number of adventuring companies.[1]

Members[edit | edit source]

Appendix[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

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