The History Of Themberchaud In DND

If there’s one thing that Dungeons & Dragons is known for, it’ll be its dragons. From massive lightning-breathing blue dragons to friendly silver dragons looking to lend adventures a hand, there are plenty of dragons to discover while role-playing with your friends.



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Among the many dragons, you can find in Faerun, few are as fearsome as the legendary fire-breathing red dragon, Themberchaud. Featured in the Dungeons and Dragons: Honor Among Thieves film, Themberchaud has been catapulted back into the spotlight thanks to his adorably chonky redesign. The red dragon has an expansive history in Dungeons and Dragons, one that might not be known to many players.

Themberchaud’s Depressing Origins

Themberchaud by Yang Lou

Born into a depressing system of oppression and forced labor, Themberchaud is a red dragon who spent much of his time in Gracklstugh, a city deep in the Underdark under the rule of the duergar, Dungeons & Dragon’s dwarf version of the drow.

Unlike most dragons in The Forgotten Realms, Themberchaud has never seen the light of the sun, having spent his entire existence in the Underdark. Themberchaud was hatched by a group of psionic duergar clerics called the Keepers of the Flame. Their mission, and by extension Themberchaud’s, is to keep the massive forges of the underground city aflame.

Keeping the dragon in charge of this duty happy is part of the Keepers of the Flame’s responsibility, giving him little reason to venture beyond the city walls. In exchange for his services, Themberchaud was given an ample treasure hoard and as many meals as the dragon wanted.

The relatively easy life that Themberchaud lives has contributed to his plus-sized status, making him easier for the Keepers of the Flame to control since he could not leave the Underdark on his own, nor could he fly for longer than short distances.

What Does Themberchaud Do?

Dungeons and dragons Themberchaud close up
Dungeons and Dragons movie screenshot Themberchaud close up

As a Wyrmsmith, Themberchaud comes from a long lineage of dragons forced into service this way. Part of the process of keeping a Wyrmsmith in the duergar’s control, however, is knowing when to enact the next stage of their plan.

When a dragon starts to become too strong – a common concern, as red dragons get older and start to consider what the city needs is a good tyrannical leader – the Keepers of the Flame must replace the older red dragon with a younger one.

Related: Dungeons & Dragons: The History Of Strahd Von ZarovichKilling a red dragon is no easy process, but the Keepers of the Flame make it easier by keeping the Wyrmsmiths in the dark about this step of the plan. This process was made much more difficult as the egg of the next red dragon was stolen by a thieves’ guild in Gracklstugh called the Gray Ghosts.

The resulting war that broke out between the Keepers of the Flame and the Gray Ghosts gave Themberchaud even more reasons to doubt his caretakers and captors.

Eventually, Themberchaud would work to conspire against the Keepers of the Flame and the king of Gracklstugh. Working with agents within and without the city, as well as a party of adventurers who came to the city in search of the legendary Moontear relic, Themberchaud broke free of the city’s hold on him and free of the cycle of death and imprisonment that has plagued his lineage for ages.

What Happens to Themberchaud In Honor Among Thieves?

Themberchaud breathes fire in Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves.

While how Themberchaud escaped captivity is never explained, the next time we get to see the plump dragon is during the events of the film Honor Among Thieves. Here, the red dragon has claimed the abandoned ruins of Dolbunde, a gnome city deep in the Underdark. He was discovered by Edgin, Xenk, Holga, Simon, and Doric as they fought undead Thayan assassins in the ruins.

As it turns out, Dolbunde was once home to an even stronger dragon than Themberchaud. The ruins were once the lair of Daurgothoth, a greatwyrm dracolich. The skeletal remains of Daurgothoth are one of the strongest entities in Faerun, and is devoted to creating an entire species of dracoliches to rule. Where this dragon is now is never explained, but unless Themberchaud has received a huge power boost in the film, it’s likely that it left some time ago for a new domain.

Related: Dungeons & Dragons: The History Of Bahamut And TiamatIt seems that Themberchaud didn’t think much of the adventurers or the villains, as he didn’t say anything at all to them despite his notably deep draconic voice and prideful tendencies.

While Themberchaud was slightly injured during the fight, the worst thing that happened to him during the battle was drenching the dragon in a bunch of water, potentially giving him a way to leave the caverns that have held him captive all his life through the initial exit that was much too small for him to escape.

It could also be that the chonky dragon was too focused on saving his breath for his fire breathing, as in the film he struggled to catch his breath at times to produce enough fire to try and cook Edgin and the adventurers.

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