Legacy of the Drow
This series is followed up by the Paths of Darkness series.
- The Legacy (1992)
- Starless Night (1993)
- Siege of Darkness (1994)
- Passage to Dawn (1996)
||This section's plot summary may be too long or excessively detailed. (March 2008)|
The Legacy continues the plot-line of The Icewind Dale Trilogy, with Wulfgar and Catti-brie preparing for their marriage and Drizzt returning from the first of many visits to Lady Alustriel of Silverymoon. Drizzt returns to a disturbed Catti-brie and eccentric Regis, who has returned to Mithril Hall after a stint as master of Pasha Pook’s thieves’ guild. While Bruenor plans the wedding, Wulfgar's tribe settles the appropriately named Settlestone and begins to prosper. Wulfgar, on the other hand, is straining his relationship with Catti-brie, who feels his possessiveness is excessive and unwise. When Wulfgar unexpectedly attacks Drizzt and appears to have lethal motives, the tension builds, despite the drow’s diffusion of the situation.
Newly introduced is the dwarf battlerager, Thibbledorf Pwent. The dwarf, knocked unconscious during the invasion of Mithral Hall, pledges fealty to Bruenor. Among his personality quirks are a disgusting smell, and ungreased, ridged armor, which also serves as Pwent’s primary weapon. Meanwhile, in Menzoberranzan, Drizzt's sister Vierna (Taken in by Matron Baenre after the fall of House Do’Urden) is preparing to recapture her brother. Vierna believes that this quest, if successful, will gain her the full favor of Lloth, the chief drow goddess. Vierna enlists the help of Bregan D'aerthe, the most prominent mercenary band in Menzoberranzan. Jarlaxle, Bregan D'aerthe’s leader, briefly doubts Vierna’s sanity and designs, but is convinced when Vierna turns her brother Dinin into a drider.
The story returns to Mithral Hall, with Bruenor preparing a detachment to investigate a goblin disturbance in Mithral Hall’s unexplored lower tunnels. After the goblins are routed, tension builds between Wulfgar and Catti-brie. Wulfgar had wanted his fiancée to stay out of the fight, for reasons that didn’t satisfy the woman. A patrol goes missing soon afterward, and Drizzt prepares to investigate. Oddly, Bruenor suggests that Regis accompany the drow. Drizzt, with a few second thoughts, allows the halfling to join him. The pair discover the patrol, slaughtered; Drizzt identifies the murderers as dark elves and leads a pursuit. After the battle with the drow, Drizzt questions Regis on his new-found combat abilities, and discovers that the halfling is actually Artemis Entreri, wearing a familiar magical mask. Drizzt had previously used the item to pass as a surface elf, and had not realized its capabilities. Entreri then turns Drizzt over to the dark elves, who escape to the Underdark.
Entreri then challenges Drizzt, attempting to settle their feud from The Halfling’s Gem. Apparently, this was Entreri’s price in the operation to recover the wayward drow. The assassin is informed that he cannot kill Drizzt in the duel, because Vierna intends to sacrifice her brother to Lolth. Meanwhile, Bruenor and Wulfgar realize Regis’ deception and manipulation: Bruenor was charmed to allow Regis to follow the ranger on his expedition; and Wulfgar was persuaded that Drizzt had kissed Catti-brie. Catti-brie, Bruenor, and Wulfgar, together with Cobble (Mithral Hall’s High Priest) and Pwent, move to rescue Drizzt.
The duel between Drizzt and Entreri begins slowly, Drizzt not wanting to give the assassin satisfaction. Entreri counters by successfully taunting the drow with the whereabouts and well-being of Regis. Jarlaxle and Vierna are impressed with the battle, allowing it to continue until Wulfgar and company arrive. In the meleé, Vierna crushes Cobble beneath a steel wall and Drizzt escapes, but violates his vow to never take a dark elf’s life. The moral struggle inherently ends with a repudiation of the vow, if necessary to save the lives of those for whom Drizzt cares. Bruenor and his entourage also escape, and Entreri asks for an opportunity to pursue his nemesis. He kills his appointed escorts when alone and fails to find a hidden Drizzt. Drizzt’s friends are also searching for him, as are Vierna and Bregan D’aerthe.
The parties of Bruenor and Vierna collide, with another raucous combat. Bruenor attacks the Drider Dinin. Pwent is separated from the group, falling down a pit after overcoming dark elf poison. Vierna summons a Yochlol, a demonic handmaiden of Lolth, which attacks Wulfgar. Wulfgar had hurled his war hammer in an attempt to assist Catti-brie. Unarmed, Wulfgar succumbs to the demon and his friends look on in horror as the ceiling collapses and destroys both the barbarian and the demon.
In Starless Night Drizzt decides to return to Menzoberranzan to keep the drow from going after his friends. He gives Guenhwyvar to Regis and tells him not to tell anyone where he went. When Cattie-brie later questioned Regis, she was skeptical and decided to follow Drizzt. Drizzt goes first to Blingdenstone and stays for a short while. Then in Menzoberranzan, Drizzt is able to disguise himself for a little while as a guard, but is later found out. He is captured and taken to Matron Baenre's dungeon and tortured by Vendes, the chief torturer who earned the nickname duk'tak. Meanwhile, Cattie-brie uses the magical mask to disguise herself as a drow priestess. She teams up with Artemis Entreri and frees Drizzt. Drizzt kills Vendes, then later fights Dantrag Baenre, who was considered the second-best to Zaknafein, so he wanted to kill Drizzt because he was Zaknafein's son and protégé, to come out of Zak's shadow. Drizzt defeated him and obtained the speed bracers that he wore, while Cattie-brie took the sword Khazid'hea.
Siege of Darkness tells the story of how the Time of Troubles, in which all magic is temporarily disrupted and many gods and goddesses are forced to take the forms of their avatars and walk the material plane, affects the drow and Drizzt and company. The Spider Queen, Lolth, plots to keep Matron Baenre in power and to ultimately take Mithril Hall. In-house fighting results in the 3rd house, House Oblodra, destroyed, with the exception of their kobold/ goblin army and the 4th house, House Faen Tlabbar, left leaderless. Matron Baenre, along with the favor of Lolth, forms a loose house alliance to attack Mithril Hall. Realizing that they can not possibly stop a drow army, the svirfnebli, the deep gnomes, are forced to abandon Blingdenstone. The battle for Mithral Hall takes place on the surface as well as in the Underdark. The drow were defeated with a little help from an unlikely source, the balor, Errtu. Through trickery, all Baenre wizardry and spells are temporarily interrupted and the heroes take advantage of the opening, killing Matron Baenre and defeating the drow offensive. Lolth's plan all along was to bring about chaos and to rid herself of Matron Baenre.
Literary significance and reception
The Legacy, TSR's first hardcover novel, leapt to the top of the New York Times bestseller list within weeks of its release.
The Legacy debuted on the New York Times bestseller list at number 9.
Starless Night debuted on the New York Times bestseller list at number 12.
Siege of Darkness debuted on the New York Times bestseller list at number 13.
Passage to Dawn debuted on the New York Times bestseller list at number 13.
"The Legacy of the Drow accomplishes what it sets out to do: to provide high magic fantasy entertainment. While the quartet has its share of hiccups, they are far from ruining the book."—Jake de Oude of RPGnet.
- "The History of TSR". Wizards of the Coast. Archived from the original on 2008-10-04. Retrieved 2005-08-20.
- "BEST SELLERS: September 27, 1992". The New York Times. 1992-09-27. Retrieved 2008-05-31.
- "BEST SELLERS: September 19, 1993". The New York Times. 1993-09-19. Retrieved 2008-05-31.
- "Starless Night by R.A. Salvatore". Library Journal. Retrieved 2008-05-31.
- "BEST SELLERS: September 18, 1994". The New York Times. 1994-09-18. Retrieved 2008-05-31.
- "BEST SELLERS: August 25, 1996". The New York Times. 1994-09-18. Retrieved 2008-05-31.
- "Legacy of the Drow Collector's Edition". RPGnet. Retrieved 2008-05-31.