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I joined your group of friends-- I guess our group of friends, now-- as a testament of faith, and it would be a disservice to that faith to turn around because it's hard. If it'd have been easy, I suppose I wouldn't have been needed to be called to it.
– 
Caduceus Clay, in conversation with Caleb Widogast.[2]

Caduceus Clay is a firbolg cleric who worships the Wildmother. He is played by Taliesin Jaffe.

Description Edit

Appearance Edit

Caduceus Clay2

Official full body portrait of Caduceus Clay, by Ari.[art 2]

Caduceus is a seven foot tall "not necessarily healthily thin" firbolg with pale skin and grey fur. He has a shock of pink mohawk hair paired with a light fuzz of a beard. He wears a gentle silk shirt with one long flowy sleeve, dark green pants, and brown boots spotted with pink lichen.[3]

Personality Edit

Caduceus is jovial and dedicated. Long after his family abandoned the crypt they tended, he remained, ensuring that the graves of the dearly departed remained undisturbed while cultivating the plants that grew from those interred there seemingly for personal use. Kind and welcoming, he offered The Mighty Nein (then his house guests) tea before they even introduced themselves. Caduceus is also humorously blunt; as a follower of The Wildmother[3], he believes in the "natural order" and happily informed Beau that the leaves for their tea grew from the dead. He considered gauging time in seasons the only method that mattered.

Caduceus is best known for his remarkable perception. While not the most intelligent person, he makes up for it with constant, nigh-clairvoyant insight. Moreso than Beau, Fjord has come to rely on Caduceus' council when it comes to making responsible decisions and understanding others' motivations.

Biography Edit

Background Edit

IMG 20180728 114227

Fan art of Caduceus Clay, by nelmdraws.[art 3]

Caduceus lived with his family at the sanctuary like grave site of the Blooming Grove. Located within the depths of the Savalierwood, it was know by those of Shadycreek Run to the southeast as the Bone Orchard. Predating Shadycreek Run, and surrounded by the cursed blighted woods, the old stone church that stood there was surrounded by three consecutive rings of rusted fence built to hold back the continually encroaching razor-like grey-purple thorn vines, which had just breached the third fence in 835 P.D.

Chapter 11 Edit

Chapter 12 Edit

Caduceus joined the Mighty Nein in sailing aboard the Mistake, serving as the ship's cook.[4] He adopted the pirate alias "Cornelius" when introducing himself to Captain Avantika[5] and later became a deckhand and apprentice bosun.[6]

Caduceus, along with the rest of the Mighty Nein, was automatically initiated into the ranks of the Revelry upon arriving at Darktow Isle.[6]

Relationships Edit

Caduceus stated that he had several sisters, brothers, and his parents, but he did not know where any of them were. His family members had left the Blooming Grove one by one to find and fight off the source of the cursed blight that had overtaken the Savalierwood and had been encroaching on the Blooming Grove for over one hundred years. One of his sisters had been the last to leave to the east, which had been around 18 to 20 seasons ago. Though Caduceus generally likes everyone, he has ill feelings towards one of his siblings.[7] For the Mighty Nein Caduceus often acts as a sounding board and kind ear for the troubles of the group. He is quick to make tea and food to give to others as a way of comfort.

Caleb Widogast Edit

Caduceus commonly refers to and addresses Caleb formally as "Mister Caleb."

Caduceus has expressed to Caleb that he believes the world is shaping Caleb into something important, and that he wants to ensure that he helps Caleb get to that point.[8]

Jester Lavorre Edit

At first Jester had been wary of a new cleric, but the two have grown close over time.

Character Information Edit

Caduceus Clay4

Caduceus Clay with an homage to Taliesin Jaffe's previous character. Art by Kevin Scholtze

Abilities Edit

  • Swarm of Beetles

Firbolg Abilities Edit

  • Firbolg Magic
  • Hidden Step
  • Powerful Build
  • Speech of Beast and Leaf

Cleric Abilities Edit

  • Channel Divinity (2 uses)
    • Channel Divinity: Turn Undead
  • Destroy Undead (CR 1/2)
  • Divine Domain (Grave Domain)
    • Channel Divinity: Path to the Grave
    • Circle of Mortality[9][10]
    • Eyes of the Grave[11]
    • Sentinel at Death's Door
  • Ritual Casting
  • Spellcasting

Domain Spells Edit

1st-level Edit
  • Bane[12]
  • False Life
2nd-level Edit
  • Gentle Repose
  • Ray of Enfeeblement
3rd-level Edit
  • Revivify
  • Vampiric Touch[13]
4th-level Edit
  • Blight
  • Death Ward

Cleric Spells Edit

In addition to his domain spells, Caduceus has access to four cleric cantrips, the Spare the Dying cantrip, and 1st- through 4th-level cleric spells. As a 7th-level cleric, he can prepare up to 12 of these spells per day. As part of the Grave Domain, Spare The Dying can be cast as a bonus action and as a ranged spell (30 foot range).

Cantrips Edit
1st-level Edit
  • Bless[19]
  • Create or Destroy Water[20]
  • Cure Wounds[21]
  • Guiding Bolt[22]
  • Healing Word[23]
  • Protection from Evil and Good[24]
2nd-level Edit
  • Blindness/Deafness[25]
  • Calm Emotions[26]
  • Enhance Ability[27]
  • Lesser Restoration[28]
  • Locate Object[29]
  • Prayer of Healing[30]
  • Protection from Poison[31]
3rd-level Edit
  • Create Food and Water[32]
  • Dispel Magic[33]
  • Meld into Stone[34]
  • Spirit Guardians[35]
  • Water Walk[36]
4th-level Edit

Notable Items Edit

  • A bag of tea leaves and flowers cultivated from the Blooming Grove grave garden
  • A metal-like breastplate and shield made from pearlescent turquoise green-blue chitin. It is covered in lichen and was made by one of his sisters
  • Blight Staff: A knotted wooden staff that was topped with a large uncut amethyst. Like his armor, it is covered in lichen and is described as being "wet" and "alive". This staff lets him summon a Swarm of Insects that act on his turn.
  • Tea Set
  • Cooking set
  • Herbalism Kit
  • Garlic and spices
  • Old broken blade from the Age of Arcanum (Obtained from Pumat Sol)
  • Straw Hat (replaced by Jester after she stole his previous one)
  • Periapt of Wound Closure (obtained from Caleb after Caduceus suffered a series of near-death experiences[40])
  • Shield of Retribution[41]
  • Quaal's Feather Token (Tree)[42]

Quotations Edit

  • "Have you ever been in nature? Yes! Violence is extremely natural."
  • "I'm just... I'm just gonna turn 'em into mulch. That's okay. Shhhhh..."
  • Caduceus: "Something will be here."
    Beau: "What did you just do?"
    Caduceus: "I made the Earth remember him."
  • [happily bemused] "I don't understand what that means."
  • [also happily bemused] "I don't understand what's going on."
  • [still happily bemused] "That's really great."
  • "Sleep well with your bad decisions."[43]
  • "I could fill a book with what I don't know."
  • "Not cool, man." (after exorcising a ghost from Beauregard)[44]
  • "We're running; it's bad!" (after walking out of a wall during a fight with a dragon)[45]

Trivia Edit

  • Caduceus has the highest wisdom (20) of all of The Mighty Nein, as well as the lowest intelligence (9).
  • A caduceus is an ancient Greek or Roman herald's wand, typically one with two serpents twined around it, carried by the messenger god, Hermes or Mercury. Hermes also acted as a psychopomp, a being tasked with guiding the souls of the dead to the afterlife. The Caduceus acted as a key to the underworld, and as a tool to guide the deceased. The Caduceus is associated with healing in the US due to its similarity to the rod of Asclepius.
  • His name may also be a reference to Cassius Clay, the birth name of Muhammad Ali.
  • Caduceus claimed to be a good gardener, having grown lilies, bramble, mushrooms, and moss within the sanctuary of the Blooming Grove.
  • Caduceus' resemblance to RPG designer Adam Koebel quickly drew comment from Adam, Matt, and Taliesin.[46]
  • While Caduceus' love of tea appears to be a reference to the last name of Mollymauk Tealeaf, and his official color palette matches that of Arizona Green Tea, Taliesin has stated that these relations are all purely coincidental, and Caduceus' habit of drinking tea was a spur of the moment decision he made moments before being introduced.
  • Caduceus is Taliesin's first character in Critical Role not built on any character options created by Matt.
  • Matt revealed on Twitter that the cantrip "Decompose" was custom created for Caduceus as a sort of flavor cantrip. [47]
  • Taliesin revealed on Talks Machina that the pink on Caduceus' armor isn't flowers but a specific species of moss.
  • Awakening from a night's rest along the road through the Ashkeeper Peaks in the Menagerie Coast, the Mighty Nein met a pet vendor heading north to Rexxentrum. During this interaction Taliesin expressed that he and Caduceus were in conflict over wanting to purchase the crimson weasel as Caduceus was a vegetarian.[48]
  • It can be assumed that Caduceus is a virgin, as it is implied that he is unaware of the sensation of "post-coital feelings" Beau mentions when he observes the dodecahedron.[49]
  • Taliesin confirmed in Talks Machina Episode 96 that Cornelius, given earlier as a false name to Avantika, is the name of Caduceus' father.

GalleryEdit

References Edit

  1. See "Talks Machina #76: 'Converging Fury' and 'Within the Nest'" (TMx76).
  2. See "A Pirate's Life for Me" (2x41) from 13:52 through 14:22.
  3. See "Within the Nest" (2x28).[citation needed]
  4. See "O Captain, Who's Captain?" (2x36).[citation needed]
  5. See "Dangerous Liaisons" (2x37).[citation needed]
  6. See "A Pirate's Life for Me" (2x41).[citation needed]
  7. See "Talks Machina #90: 'A Pirate's Life for Me'" (TMx90).
  8. See "A Pirate's Life for Me" (2x41) at 16:45.
  9. See "The Stalking Nightmare" (2x29) from 3:42:31 through 3:43:01.  Caduceus heals the maximum possible number instead of rolling when healing someone at 0 hp, consistent with the first aspect of Circle of Mortality.
  10. See "The Stalking Nightmare" (2x29) from 3:41:46 through 3:42:03.  Taliesin explains the Spare the Dying aspects of Circle of Mortality.
  11. See "The Journey Home" (2x30) at 3:07:40.  Caduceus uses Eyes of the Grave.
  12. See "Temple of the False Serpent" (2x39) at 3:28:22.  Caduceus casts Bane.
  13. See "Welcome to the Jungle" (2x38) at 1:22:38.  Caduceus casts Vampiric Touch.
  14. See "The Journey Home" (2x30) at 2:42:37.  Caduceus casts Decompose.
  15. See "O Captain, Who's Captain?" (2x36) at 3:58:36.  Caduceus casts Light.
  16. See "The Stalking Nightmare" (2x29) at 43:48.  Caduceus casts Sacred Flame.
  17. See "The Stalking Nightmare" (2x29) at 3:41:46.  Caduceus casts Spare the Dying.
  18. See "The Stalking Nightmare" (2x29) at 2:33:40.  Caduceus casts Thaumaturgy.
  19. See "In Hot Water" (2x43) at 1:24:58.  Caduceus casts Bless.
  20. See "Temple of the False Serpent" (2x39) from 1:52:02 through 1:52:47.  Taliesin strongly considers having Caduceus cast Create or Destroy Water before deciding against it.
  21. See "Within the Nest" (2x28) at 1:16:55.  Caduceus casts Cure Wounds.
  22. See "O Captain, Who's Captain?" (2x36) at 3:33:55.  Caduceus casts Guiding Bolt.
  23. See "Within the Nest" (2x28) at 3:27:25.  Caduceus casts Healing Word.
  24. See "The Second Seal" (2x47).[citation needed]
  25. See "The Stalking Nightmare" (2x29) at 2:57:02.  Caduceus casts Blindness/Deafness.
  26. See "Beyond the Boundaries" (2x32) at 2:28:57.  Caduceus casts Calm Emotions.
  27. See "A Hole In the Plan" (2x42) at 2:19:41.  Caduceus casts Enhance Ability.
  28. See "Welcome to the Jungle" (2x38) at 2:32:24.  Caduceus casts Lesser Restoration.
  29. See "In Hot Water" (2x43) from 3:04:24 through 3:10:35.  Caduceus casts Locate Object.
  30. See "Dockside Diplomacy" (2x35) from 27:09 through 27:38.  Caduceus casts Prayer of Healing.
  31. See "Temple of the False Serpent" (2x39) at 2:47:51.  Caduceus casts Protection from Poison.
  32. See "A Pirate's Life for Me" (2x41) at 27:56.  Jester and Caduceus provide food by casting Create Food and Water several times over a two week period.
  33. See "The Stalking Nightmare" (2x29) at 1:55:00.  Caduceus casts Dispel Magic.
  34. See "The Stowaway" (2x45) at 4:15:37.  Caduceus casts Meld into Stone.
  35. See "The Stalking Nightmare" (2x29) at 3:15:59.  Caduceus casts Spirit Guardians.
  36. See "O Captain, Who's Captain?" (2x36) at 3:57:12.  Caduceus casts Water Walk.
  37. See "In Hot Water" (2x43) at 3:02:46.  Caduceus casts Control Water.
  38. See "In Hot Water" (2x43) at 2:45:22.  Caduceus casts Divination.
  39. See "A Hole In the Plan" (2x42) at 3:58:36.  Caduceus notes he can locate creatures, consistent with Locate Creature.
  40. See "A Pirate's Life for Me" (2x41) at 17:08.  Caleb gives Caduceus the Periapt of Wound Closure.
  41. See "The Second Seal" (2x47).[citation needed]
  42. See "The Second Seal" (2x47).[citation needed]  Caleb gives Caduceus a Feather Token that can create a tree
  43. See "Dubious Pursuits" (2x40) from 3:13:14 through 3:13:37.
  44. See "The Diver's Grave" (2x44) at 2:42:26.
  45. See "The Stowaway" (2x45) from 4:27:19 through 4:27:37.
  46. See Adam's tweet from during the show riffing on the resemblance, Matt's tweet from after the show recounting when he first saw the art for Caduceus, and Taliesin's tweet from after the show responding to Adam's tweet.
  47. See Matt's response to a fan asking what cantrip Caduceus cast on Molly's grave.
  48. See "Beyond the Boundaries" (2x32) from 3:35:32 through 3:35:47.
  49. See "Beyond the Boundaries" (2x32) at 21:36.

Art:

  1. Official portrait of Caduceus Clay, by Ari (source).  Used with permission.
  2. Official full body portrait of Caduceus Clay, by Ari (source).  Used with permission.
  3. Fan art of Caduceus Clay, by nelmdraws (source).  Used with permission.
  4. Fan art of Caduceus Clay, by Anna Landin (source).  Used with permission.
  5. Fan art of Caduceus, by BlackSalander (source).  Used with permission.
  6. Fan Art of Caduceus Clay, by Vanessa Dambach (source).  Used with permission.