DRAGONS OF KARADOCmain image

Membership: Ashtoroth, Khârad Dur, Sarafand

Purpose: Minions of Karadoc

Affiliations: The Evil Walkers (see comments), Karadoc, Necromon

Enemies: Askalan, Black Knight (Dane Whitman), Captain Britain (Brian Braddock), Jackdaw, Valinor

Base of Operations: Otherworld

First Appearance: Hulk Comic#45/2 (January, 1980)

History:
(Hulk Comic#45/2 (fb) - BTS) - Ashtoroth, Khârad Dur and Sarafand never strayed far from Karadoc, their master. According to Ashtoroth's claims, he and his kindred have fought and killed many men. 

(Hulk Comic#45/2) - Hearing Necromon speak their names, the dragons flew to his citadel. Necromon ordered Ashtoroth to bring him the remains of the Black Knight and the carcass of his mount. He left, promising the knight would die.

(Hulk Comic#46 - BTS) - Ashtoroth mortally wounded and blinded the warrior called Askalan, and killed the rest of Askalan's fellow soldiers. He remained nearby, and was out of sight as the Black Knight happened upon the scene. The dying Askalan related the dragons attack to the hero before passing away from his injuries.

(Hulk Comic#46/2) - The Black Knight heard a slight sound behind him. It was Ashtoroth, who reared up and unleashed its fiery breath. Dane returned to his steed, Valinor, and fled with Asthoroth in pursuit.

(Hulk Comic#47/2) - The chase continued through the clouds, but Valinor outmaneuvered and lost Ashtoroth. Dane then ambushed the dragon, driving the sword Excalibur deep into it's underside. The dragon spiraled downward, but despite its wound was able to briefly hide from Dane. The hero suspected it was through the use of enchantment. Whether it was an enchantment, or reptilian cunning, the dragon snuck up behind and wrenched Dane from his steed. Using his tail, he then knocked Valinor to the ground with a single blow. Roaring in triumph, Ashtoroth flew away carrying Dane aloft. However, still too weak to gain height, it didn't get far before Dane crippled one of its wings with Excalibur. Mortally wounded, Ashtoroth begged the hero to end its suffering. In return he offered the power of a dragon lord for the taking.

(Hulk Comic#48/2) - Dane slew Ashtoroth, and a glowing pearl fell from its gaping jaws; the source of power the dragon had spoke of. 

(Hulk Comic#55/2) - Karadoc and his remaining dragons flew after the Black Knight, Captain Britain and Valinor as they went into the mists of time to find King Arthur.

(Hulk Comic#57/2) - Catching up the heroes, Khârad Dur struck Captain Britain. Brian fell, but was caught by Dane. Sarafand joined the fray, with Karadoc on his back. Once close enough, Karadoc and the Black Knight matched their swords against one another. However, unbeknownst to the dragons or their master, the heroes had a stowaway; Jackdaw. As Khârad Dur prepared to attack again, he was blinded by one of Jackdaws arrows. Unwittingly, the dragon blasted his master with his breath, turning him into a living firebrand. Both Karadoc and Sarafand plunged from the sky into the sea below, while Khârad Dur flew away.

Comments: Created by Dez Skinn, Steve Parkhouse and John Stokes

    While only Khârad Dur survives these stories,  there are likely other dragons out there that could replace them. Although Ashtoroth, Khârad Dur and Sarafand are the only three seen or named in these stories, I imagine they were simply Karadoc's best and most loyal dragons. Karadoc himself perished along with Sarafand, but Khârad Dur may have friends out there. And of course, death in comics is often a two way door, especially where magic is concerned. Only Ashtoroth is clearly shown dying on panel, as he bequeaths his pearl to the Black Knight. What happened to the incinerated remains of Karadoc and Sarafand once they hit the waters is anyone's guess.

    Although the dragons weren't seen interacting with the other Evil Walkers, I've listed them as affiliations as their master is part of that group and they were all part of Necromon's plans in this storyline.

    Only Ashtoroth displayed any abilities beyond that of the traditional dragons breath, claws and wings. That said, in the Heroes for Hire story featuring the dragon Malcolm Drake, the Black Knight says that dragons are extremely powerful magic users. This could easily include Karadoc's dragons. Malcolm Drake himself certainly was a powerful magic user, capable of casting glamours, eldritch shields, and growing to extreme sizes, amongst other things. Another notable dragon is Sir Benedict of the Falls, from the Excalibur mini series, who appears to be an Otherworld human/dragon hybrid. His full dragon form (if he has one) was never shown, only a hulking great humanoid form with vast superhuman strength and fiery breath. It could be that, like Y Ddraig Goch (AKA the Welsh Dragon, or the Red Dragon), he can switch between dragon and human forms. Y Ddraig Goch may have originated from Otherworld, considering his Welsh roots and Otherworld connections. To achieve his human to dragon transformation, this dragon had to absorb energy from people within an area of roughly 50 square miles, rendering them unconscious. Arguably, as dragons of similar origin, Karadoc's minions could potentially have similar (albeit unrevealed) abilities.

    Kharad Dur was described as 'the Mighty Kharad Dur' by Necromon, suggesting he was the stronger of the three dragons. This strength wasn't really shown, but he appeared to be a similar size to his companions. Speaking of size, the dragons appear approximately 15' tall when standing upright on their hind legs and approximately 30' in length from head to tail. They weigh tons, but no exact amount is specified. Ashtoroth generates a blast of white heat, engulfing the Black Knight. That suggests temperatures of 1315 degrees Celsius/2399 degrees Fahrenheit or more. Whether his companions were quite as powerful in that department isn't clear. What I find more interesting is how well the Black Knight endures such intense heat considering his only obvious protection at the time was his chain mail. Perhaps he had additional magical protection via Excalibur, Merlin, or some other unseen source (a Pendragon spirit?).

    Many thanks to Chad Anderson and Snood for scanning images for me.

Profile by Changeling.

CLARIFICATIONS:
The Dragons of Karadoc have no known connections to

Nor do they have any known connections to other dragons, particularly those of Otherworld origin, such as

Ashtoroth has no known connections to

Khârad Dur and Sarafand have no known connections to


Ashtoroth

Also known as "the scourge of men," Ashtoroth claimed to have killed many. Ashtoroth and his kindred  flew to Necromon at his citadel after hearing their names.  He was ordered to kill the Black Knight and Valinor. During his mission, Ashtoroth encountered Askalan and his soldiers, mortally wounding Askalan and killing the rest. He remained nearby, and was out of sight as the Black Knight happened upon the scene. When Ashtoroth attacked, Dane fled. Asthoroth chased him through the clouds, but Valinor outmaneuvered him. Dane drove the sword Excalibur deep into the dragons underside. Ashtoroth recovered, and wrenched Dane from his steed. He knocked Valinor to the ground with his tail, and flew away with Dane.  However, Ashtoroth was still weak and didn't get far before Dane crippled one of its wings. Mortally wounded, Ashtoroth begged Dane to end its suffering. In return he offered the power of a dragon lord for the taking. Dane slew Ashtoroth and took the dragon's pearl.

Ashtoroth was a large dragon, and weighed tons. His intelligence appeared comparable to a human's. He had enhanced strength, potentially class 10, in his limbs, and at least class 10 strength in his tail, which knocked Valinor over with little effort. His stamina was superhuman. Like many dragons, Ashtoroth had scaly armored skin, claws, fiery breath, and wings. His skin provided enhanced durability, and he could generate blasts of white heat with his breath. He could fly fast enough (around 150 mph) to catch up to the winged horse called Valinor. However, compared to Valinor, he was large, slow, and less maneuverable. Asteroth had acute hearing, picking up Necromon's words from some distance away. He was stealthy for a creature of his size; he may have had an enchantment that could hide his presence, or this could just have been skill and cunning. Ashtoroth could speak, albeit in the rasping tones of ancient dragon speech. However, his meaning was communicated to the Black Knight's mind. He was an experienced aerial combatant. Prior to his death he owned a pearl which could grant a human the power of a dragon lord. How much of his own abilities were derived from the pearl is unclear.

--Hulk Comic#45/2 (46/2, 47/2, 48/2)









Ashtoroth's Pearl

As Ashtoroth passed away, a pearl fell from his jaws. The Black Knight took this pearl, and was nearly possessed by it. Dane shook off the pearl's influence when Valinor, sensing the change in him, reared up in fright. The winged horse's hooves caught Dane with a glancing blow, clearing his mind. Continuing with his scouting mission, Dane encountered the giant called Gargantua. The pearl saved him from Gargantua's attacks. Later, while Camelot was under siege, the pearl helped pierce the illusions of Necromon. Dane then went in search of King Arthur. The pearl's power helped deal with the stone guardians guarding the kings tomb. The guardians reverted to their original form, that of standing stones. Dane hurled the pearl at the stones, causing a massive explosion of power. The stones were gone, and King Arthur rose from the grave. It is unrevealed if the pearl escaped the explosion intact. 

The Pearl granted the Black Knight enhanced senses, enabling him to see people leagues away, objects otherwise invisible to the human eye, and to pierce illusions with the ease of a sorcerer. He described this as seeing with the "eyes of a dragon." It also enabled him to read and control minds, and to sense emotions. It protected him from death in various ways. Once, it caused a giant hammer to smash before it could hit him. It also seemed to slow down time, and with the speed of thought could turn his body into pure mind, allowing physical attacks to pass through him. It augmented his will power to an unspecified degree.

--Hulk Comic#48/2 ([49/2 BTS], 50/2, [51/2-54/2 BTS], 55/2, [57/2 BTS], 58/2, 59/2)


Khârad Dur

Khârad Dur, Ashtoroth and Sarafand flew to Necromon's citadel upon hearing their names. Ashtoroth was sent on a mission, while the others remained behind.  Sometime later. Khârad Dur, Sarafand and Karadoc flew after the Black Knight, Captain Britain and Valinor as they went into the mists of time to find King Arthur. Catching up the heroes, Khârad Dur struck first. However, unbeknownst to the dragons or their master, the heroes had a stowaway; Jackdaw. As Khârad Dur prepared to attack again, he was blinded by one of Jackdaws arrows. Unwittingly, the dragon blasted his master with his breath, turning him into a living firebrand. As Karadoc and Sarafand plunged into the sea below, Khârad Dur flew away.

Khârad Dur was a large dragon, and weighed tons. His intelligence appeared normal, compared to humans. He had strength and stamina on a par with, or possibly greater than, Ashtoroth (see comments). Like many dragons, Khârad Dur has scaly armored skin, claws, fiery breath, and wings. His skin provided enhanced durability. He could fly fast enough to catch up to the winged horse called Valinor. He had acute hearing, picking up Necromon's words from some distance away. He didn't display any magical abilities like those of his companion Ashtoroth, though it is entirely possible he has some. He was an experienced aerial combatant. As a result of his encounter with Jackdaw, Khârad Dur was blinded in his left eye, though it is possible he may have magically healed.

--Hulk Comic#45/2 (55/2, 57/2)



Sarafand

Sarafand, Ashtoroth and Khârad Dur flew to Necromon's citadel upon hearing their names. Ashtoroth was sent on a mission, while the others remained behind. Sometime later Sarafand, accompanied by Khârad Dur, carried Karadoc after the Black Knight, Captain Britain and Valinor as they went into the mists of time to find King Arthur. However, unbeknownst to the dragons or their master, the heroes had a stowaway; Jackdaw. Khârad Dur was blinded by one of Jackdaws arrows. Unwittingly, the dragon blasted his master with his breath, turning him into a living firebrand. Both Karadoc and Sarafand plunged into the sea below.

Sarafand was a large dragon, and weighed tons. His intelligence appeared normal, compared to humans. He had strength and stamina on a par with Ashtoroth. Like many dragons, Sarafand has scaly armored skin, claws, fiery breath, and wings. His skin provided enhanced durability. He could fly fast enough to catch up to the winged horse called Valinor. He had acute hearing, picking up Necromon's words from some distance away. He didn't display any magical abilities like those of his companion Ashtoroth, though it is entirely possible he has some. He was an experienced aerial combatant. 

--Hulk Comic#45/2 (55/2, 57/2)




images: (without ads)
Hulk Comic #45/2, p2, pan9 (main image)
Hulk Comic #47/2, p2, pan4 (second image, Ashtoroth)
Hulk Comic #45/2, p3, pan9 (sub profile, Ashtoroth)
Hulk Comic #48/2, p1, pan6 (sub profile, Ashtoroth's pearl)
Hulk Comic #57/2, p1, pan7 (sub profile, kharad dur)
Hulk Comic #57/2, p2, pan5 (sub profile, sarafand)


Other Appearances:
Hulk Comic#46 (January 16, 1980) - Steve Parkhouse, John Stokes, Dez Skinn
Hulk Comic#47 (January 27, 1980) - Steve Parkhouse, John Stokes, Dez Skinn
Hulk Comic#48 (January 30, 1980) - Steve Parkhouse, John Stokes, Dez Skinn
Hulk Comic#49 (February 6, 1980) - Steve Parkhouse, John Stokes, Dez Skinn
Hulk Comic#50 (February 13, 1980) - Steve Parkhouse, John Stokes, Dez Skinn
Hulk Comic#51 (February 20, 1980) - Steve Parkhouse, John Stokes, Dez Skinn
Hulk Comic#52 (February27, 1980) - Steve Parkhouse, John Stokes, Dez Skinn
Hulk Comic#53 (March 3, 1980) - Steve Parkhouse, John Stokes, Dez Skinn
Hulk Comic#54 (March 12, 1980) - Steve Parkhouse, John Stokes, Dez Skinn
Hulk Comic#55 (March 19, 1980) - Steve Parkhouse, John Stokes, Dez Skinn
Hulk Comic#57 (April 2, 1980) - Steve Parkhouse, John Stokes, Paul Neary
Hulk Comic#58 (April 10, 1980) - Steve Parkhouse, John Stokes, Paul Neary
Hulk Comic#59 (April 17, 1980) - Steve Parkhouse, John Stokes, Paul Neary


Last updated: 02/12/13.

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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