"Taryon, My Wayward Son" (1x97) is the thirteenth episode of the seventh chapter of Critical Role. Having dealt with the Trickfoot clan, Keyleth goes off the deep end and Taryon finds himself on a collision course with a dark secret within his own family. What will he and Vox Machina discover at Deastok?



  • Backblaze is the sponsor for tonight's episode. Sam does an infomercial with Travis, Marisha, and Taliesin.
  • Merch update!
  • Wednesday Club may or may not be discussing Riverdale this week.
  • Signal Boost this week is starring Brian Compton.
  • Matt, Marisha, and Taliesin will be at MomoCon in Atlanta, May 25-28.
  • Matt will be at A-Kon in Fort Worth, June 8-11.
  • Talks Machina is next Tuesday, hosted by Brian Wayne Foster.

Previously on Critical Role

"After Vox Machina had taken a year of peace and activity to handle their own respective endeavors or communal endeavors, they discovered some family of Pike Trickfoot coming and knocking at the door of Whitestone.

"A reunion with some of her family she had not seen since she was a child, coming in to impart her with the knowledge of a terrible family blood curse that had been haunting them for ages and visions that were guided by her Uncle Ogden to the possibility that she carries the same curse and wanting to free the bloodline, or at least Pike, of this, they had to amass some materials and make their way on a moonlit night to the top of the Alabaster Sierras to complete the ritual to expel, exorcise this entity and destroy it.

"After gathering the materials and traveling to the top of the Salted Bluffs of the Alabaster Sierras the ritual was completed and the large, monstrous, black cloud-and-skull entity was summoned forth from Pike's body and [they] all leaped in to do battle.

"However, partway into this fray Vex happened to realize that it was seemingly an illusion—there was no ritual, there was no blood curse, and this was a ploy from the family to make a little cash off [Vox Machina].

"After some threats to Uncle Ogden and nearly losing him off the edge of a cliff, [Pike] made a deal to offer some money, in exchange [she] took [her] cousin JB under [her] wing and [the rest] were forced to leave and never return. They accepted and went on their way."

Part I

"We're Gods!"

Still on the cliff in the Salted Bluffs, Vex'ahlia casts Locate Object to find the diamond that was dropped by Ogden Trickfoot. Detecting it about 65 feet underwater, she asks Keyleth to help her retrieve it.

In what may have been a slight lapse of judgment, Keyleth swan-dives over the side of the cliff, thinking she will hit water and be fine. She doesn't jump quite far enough, however. In a moment of panic, she beast shapes into a goldfish before hitting the rocks at the base of the cliff.

Vex, on her broom, is the only one who sees this. Luckily, she still has a Revivify coin from right before Ogden's faked exorcism and quickly uses it on Keyleth's body.

At the top of the cliff, meanwhile, Vax'ildan is having a conversation with JB about Pike's childhood when Vex returns, carrying a bloodied Keyleth. They explain what happened. Pike, Vax, and Taryon help heal Keyleth back to mostly normal. The party descend the mountain and go back to Whitestone, bringing JB along with them.


A strange woman is waiting outside the Slayer's Cake bakery when they go to check on it. She introduces herself as Hilda and explains that, since her husband has gone to sea and not returned, she is looking for work. She offers some cream puff pastries for them to try, as a sample of her skills, and tells them Keeper Yennen can provide a reference.

Keyleth offers to scry on Hilda's missing husband for her. While Hilda goes to find something of his for the scrying, Percival suggests that JB could help with researching the orb under Whitestone Castle. Hilda returns, and Keyleth casts the spell, but sees nothing. She explains what this means to Hilda, who accepts the news and asks if they can talk again in the morning.

On the way back to the castle, Vax checks in on Hilda through a window. He sees her sitting alone in her hovel, doing nothing suspicious. They check in with Keeper Yennen as well. He attests that Hilda has been a housewife in town for some 15 years now. They leave it at that and bring JB to see the castle library.

Vex'ahlia's Breakthrough

Percy and Vex wander down to the orb that still sits beneath the castle. Most of the people researching it have left in the past year, as no new progress has been made in that time. They ponder it for a moment, until Vex decides to try shooting it with an Oracle Arrow from Fenthras.

To her surprise, it works. She sees a vision of what seems to be another plane, with an inverse orb, in a landscape of broken stone and shadow, and an obsidian tower in the distance. Vex excitedly tells Percy what she saw, and the two of them hurry to tell Cassandra. Cassandra, in turn, contacts Allura.

The next morning, Allura arrives to hear Vex's news. She notes that the vision sounds like a place in the Shadowfell, a parallel plane of negative energy and darkness, but that she will have to do more research on the tower. She plans to depart for Vasselheim the next day. Vex notices, just then, that Allura is wearing a wedding band; she and Kima have gotten married. Keyleth helps Allura get back to Emon.

Hilda Misses Her Interview

As Tary has not come down from his bedroom yet, they eventually go to check on him. When they do, they find his room empty and Doty sitting, shut down and unresponsive, in a corner. Percy retrieves Tary's book but finds no clues in it. Pike goes to the bakery to see if Tary might be there; he is not. Percy finds a little magical bead affixed to Doty's armor. When he removes it, Doty powers on and starts looking for Tary.

Keyleth performs a scry on Tary. In the scry, she sees him wrapped in his bed sheet in an unfamiliar room. Hilda comes into the room, then shimmers and turns into a drow elf woman who proceeds to check on Tary's vitals and test his ropes. The woman tells him he'll be home soon enough, and then the spell ends.

The twins go to search Hilda's house. They find a pile of linens in the corner, and inside, the real Hilda, bound, struggling and gagged amongst a pile of clothes. She tells them how the drow woman came to her home a few days ago, tied her up, and asked questions about her life.

Percy borrows Keyleth's Scrying Eye to check in on Tary, gleaning from the landscape that he is probably somewhere in Wildemount. The closest tree Keyleth knows is in the ruins of Draconia, so they go there next, with the intention of Wind Walking the rest of the way to Tary's hometown of Deastok.



Part II

In Wildemount

Tary wakes up on the back of his captor's horse. She tells him that she is fulfilling a contract to bring him back to Deastok, by request of one Howaardt Darrington. He offers to pay her double to break the contract, but she refuses.

The rest of Vox Machina emerge from Keyleth's tree portal near the ruins of Draconia and make their way, in cloud form, north to the main road. They find the road about two hours later and follow it east to Deastok. Though they watch for Tary's captor as they go, they see no sign of her. They double back, scry again, and eventually find her still traveling on the main road.

As the bounty hunter approaches on her horse, the party prepare an ambush for her. She starts to gallop around them, but Percy shoots her horse out from under her and Vex restrains her with a bramble shot. With that, the woman surrenders.

The woman's name, it transpires, is K'ryyn, and she is an agent under contract with Tary's father Howaardt. She had no intention of harming him, only of bringing him back to Deastok. The party decides to let her honor her contract. They accompany her and Tary into the city.

Darrington Family Values

Tary and the party are welcomed into the Darrington estate, where they meet Tary's father. Howaardt confesses to his son that their family has become impoverished, unable to pay their debts to the Myriad. He has brought Tary home to take up the mantle of duty to his family by marrying one Lydia, a daughter of the wealthy Truscan family, which would solve their financial problems.

Tary asks for time to think, which Howaardt grants. He also mentions that, if they wish to talk to Korshad, his contact in the Myriad, they should ask for "the Many" at the Grumpy Lily pub.

Featured Characters

Vox Machina





Adjustment Count Item Source Destination Notes
Expended 1 Coin of Revivify Vex Keyleth restored Keyleth after her unlucky cliff dive
Expended 1 Healing Draught Tary's alchemist satchel Keyleth
Acquired 1 small clear marble K'ryyn Vex Vex took most of K'ryyn's gear when they met her, but it was implied that everything would be returned


  • Matt (out of character): This is too many dice for me to roll.
    Marisha (OOC): No, it's fine! We're gods!
    Travis (OOC): Did you say "we're gods"? Why would you even tempt that shit?

  • "We're impoverished. I haven't been able to pay our staff in nearly two months. Everything that I had to do to maintain this legacy has come back to bear fruit, and the debt that we owe is vast. ... Everything your grandfather Oberon built, it's on the verge of fading away. All the taxes we claim on our lands now go straight to a syndicate that we owe a lot of money to. Unless we find a way to pay off the debts of your father and his father before him, we will all be thrown into the cold or worse.

    "Now, I've seen this storm coming for a while, Taryon. I've spent years trying to coax a family union with the Truscans; you know this. After much toil and diplomacy, they have agreed to wed you to their daughter Lydia. This union will bring our family a renewed avenue to wealth and protection within the empire! We can stave off this terrible end, and you will be a hero within the family. ...

    "When your grandfather passed, when you were still but a baby, our lands were nearly taken from us by a rival barony from within the Dwendalian court. Lord Jaipher found loopholes to revoking our ownership and titles set by Oberon. In my panic and necessity, I found an ally in the Myriad. Through a whispered hint, I met a man named Korshad, who ensured our surviving ownership in trade for a partnership with him. I signed, not wanting to toss, at the time, my only child onto the street.

    "But as the decades passed, I did not realize in my haste, the depths of the deal that I had made. And with many harvests failing in recent years, the agreement now devours our livelihood from within. They now demand our accrued debt paid in full or they take full ownership of everything."

    —Howaardt Darrington's confession to Taryon

  • "You always talked about bloodlines and legacies and the Darrington name. But you never told us you were proud. You never comforted us. You never cared what I wanted to do or who I wanted to be. I'm cursed with this name now, Darrington. You've sullied our name by enforcing these taxes and just being an asshole to everyone around our whole city, and now I have to live with it or marry this girl to save it.

    "Listen, I'm sorry I left, and I'm sorry I took all of that gold. I did not know it was everything. But what you're asking me is—I'll need to think. I'm sorry."

    —Taryon responds to his father's confession

  • Vex'ahlia: I'm really wishing we had taken a lot more money from Thordak. If we had taken more money, everything would be fine right now.
    Keyleth: No! That's not the lesson of the story, you guys!
    Taryon: Yes, money would have solved this.
    Keyleth: No! Not the lesson, not the lesson we're supposed to take away!
    Percival: No, I mean he's right that money would have solved this. But that's not the lesson. Keyleth is right.


  • The title of this episode, "Taryon, My Wayward Son", is a reference to the song "Carry On Wayward Son" by the band Kansas.
  • This episode marks the first time that Keyleth has died.
    • This is the tenth on-stream death of a player character, and the twelfth overall.
  • The character of K'ryyn was created as a collaboration between Matthew Mercer and the chat room during "Fireside Q&A with Matthew Mercer" (Sx17)
  • The geography of Wildemount described during this episode does not match up with later maps from the Mighty Nein's campaign. Vox Machina is described as travelling east from the ruins of Draconia to Deastok, but the maps received by the Mighty Nein place Deastok far to the northwest of Draconia.

External Links



Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.