Literature / Thorn of Breland

The Thorn of Breland is an Eberron trilogy by Keith Baker which details the exploits of Thorn, a Brelish Black Lantern who receives high-profile assignments across Khorvaire. As the series goes on, Thorn leans more about the mysterious accident that befell her, a power core explosion that left a dragonshard embedded in her neck.

  • The Queen of Stone
  • The Son of Khyber
  • The Fading Dream


Contains examples of:

  • Absurdly Spacious Sewer: Par for the course with Sharn.
  • The Antichrist: The Son of Khyber is perceived as thus, uniting the fragmentary House Tarkanan to use their aberrant dragonmarks (which are almost universally of a destructive nature) into a cohesive army that he plans to lead against the Twelve. Despite this, he seems like a pretty nice guy, genuinely caring about the aberrant dragonmarked like himself and wanting to better their lives and seems more like he's the Anti Anti Christ. In the end, however, he turns out to be a Reconstruction of the former, with his master plan being to destroy Sharn and plant evidence that House Cannith is responsible, dealing a fatal blow to the Twelve ruling dragonmarked houses. Earlier, he had also sucked out the soul of an advanced warforged simulacrum of a child that was noted as having enough of a unique identity to be considered alive. After Thorn kills him, she notes that, while he did have good intentions, he was pretty sinister in how he wanted to fulfill them.
  • Back from the Dead: The Son of Khyber proclaims himself as the reincarnation of Tarkanan's cousin who fought in the War of the Mark 1500 years ago. Like other great figures in Eberron's past, he was saved by the Keeper to come back in an hour of need. Some people are a bit skeptical of this claim, but he has knowledge that most agree he couldn't have gotten anywhere else.
  • Bad Powers, Good People: Many of the House Tarkan aberrant dragonmarks are pretty decent people despite the persecution they experience. But the Son of Khyber is NOT one of them, being willing to annihilate Sharn and kill hundreds of thousands in order to weaken House Cannith and the other houses.
  • Been There, Shaped History: The rakshasa called the Moonlord is responsible for the lycanthropy plague that led to the extermination of almost all were-beasts 150 years before the present.
    • The Son of Khyber claims to be the cousin of Tarkanan (who is seen as the founder of aberrant dragonmarked) returned to life after the 1500 years after he died.
  • Bigger Bad: The Feral Master serves this role in The Queen of Stone, being the rakshasa overlord who engineered the events of the lycanthropic plague which led to the Silver Flame's purge.
  • Companion Cube: Steel, Thorn's sentient dagger that serves as a wealth of knowledge on a wide variety of topics.
  • Continuity Nod
  • Cursed with Awesome
  • Dark Is Not Evil: The Queen of Stone. Droamm in general is portrayed this way with a few exceptions, though often with some extreme amounts of Good Is Not Nice. One of the Hags, for example is noted to have defended the people of Droamm from invading humans who built a fortress on their lands by putting up a false plea of distress to send the guards away to another location....only for them to come back to find that the "distressed damsel" had devoured everyone who had stayed behind.
  • Dead All Along: Thorn died when the core of Dragonshards exploded and her essence was replaced with a dragon's soul fragment that has her memories and takes on some of her personality.
  • Empathic Weapon: Steel
  • False Flag Operation: The Son of Khyber wants to frame the Dragonmarked Houses for annihilating Sharn via destroying the planar Keystone that holds the towers aloft.
  • Happy Ending Override: The Son of Khyber makes it clear that the apparently upbeat ending of The Dreaming Dark trilogy didn't last and that Daine's supposed revival was a case of Came Back Wrong that eventually led to the party going their separate ways.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: The Son of Khyber's philosophy in a nutshell. When Thorn is horrified at the notion of kidnapping a Cannith child which turns out to be an advanced Warforged that was created to give the family children despite fertility issues, he tries to rationalize it by saying that his actions are justified by the thousands, if not millions, of abberant Dragonmark children that have been murdered or forced to endure great suffering due to the Dragonmarked Houses. It gets even worse when he [[spoiler: sucks out its soul].
  • Light Is Not Good: The Angel of Hope that resides by Sharn's keystone has fallen to evil.
  • Morality Kitchen Sink: The Son of Khyber really gets into this, showing that there are aberrant dragonmarked of all stripes.
  • Multi-Armed and Dangerous
  • Posthumous Character: Thorn actually died in the opening sequence of the first book, the Thorn that existed after that was actually just a splintered fragment of the soul of the soul of the dragon whose essence was stored within the Dragonshard that became embedded in her neck.
  • The Revolution Will Not Be Civilized: The House Tarkanan bases are located beneath Sharn, with one in the sewers and one occupying an ancient Goblin citadel.
  • The Revolution Will Not Be Villified:
  • Sanity Slippage: The aberrant dragonmarked suffer from this over time, some more than others.
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: Thorn and the Rakshasa that's been in love with the dragon that he's loved since the Age of Demons whose soul is inside her.
  • Utopia Justifies the Means: A Thrane knight from the time of the lycanthropic purge who's been un-petrified after 150 years is horrified to learn that Gallifar has been shattered by civil war. When he and Thorn discover that the rakshasa called the Moonlord is planning to stage another were-beast plague, he argues that they should let him. He explains that, while he's vowed to defeat evil were-creatures, a new lycanthropy plague might well succeed in uniting the Five Nations once again against a common foe as a matter or survival. Thorn points out to him that, given the deepness of the divisions between them and the nature of people, they're just as likely to turn on each other if it means that another country suffers from the plague first or worse. The knight is revealed to be a rakshasa in disguise, so it becomes a moot point.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: While Daine and Xu'sasar play a prominent role in The Son of Khyber, we never learn what happened to Lei and Pierce despite an offhand remark being made about the former. Also, it's left open whether or not Daine's spirit ever found a way out of Dal Quor without his body being available to him anymore.

  • The Woobie: Zae
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Literature/ThornOfBreland