|“||Ahhh, the child of Bhaal has awoken. It is time for more experiments. The pain will only be passing; you should survive the process.||”|
Joneleth Irenicus, also known as "Jon Irenicus," or, simply, "Irenicus", is the main antagonist of Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn. He is an elf, originally from Suldanessellar. His henchmen managed to capture the protagonist shortly after the events of Baldur's Gate. At that time, the child of Bhaal was accompanied by Imoen, Jaheira, Khalid, Minsc and Dynaheir during an ambush. The choices the player has made in the game do not affect this. During the ambush, Dynaheir was killed and Khalid was later killed in Irenicus's dungeon. He imprisoned the party and started experiments on Imoen and the protagonist with the intent to get them ready for their souls to be taken away. Doing this would allow him and his sister Bodhi to live once again.
Beginning of Baldur's Gate II
|“||A name that is synonymous with death and ugliness.||”|
When Jon appears the first time, you only know he is experimenting on you and Imoen in order to release the untapped power you have, which might be beneficial for you as well. When you escape his dungeon, you will find yourself in Waukeen's Promenade and see Irenicus battling some hooded figures, easily defeating them. A group of Cowled Wizards will appear for his use of illegal magic. He defeats the first group easily, but claims he has not the time for fighting and lets himself be taken in, but requests Imoen be taken in as well as she used a couple of Magic Missile spells on him. Irenicus is taken to the government building in the Athkatla Government and the judge calls him a deviant and orders him to rot in Spellhold. After a while in-game, Irenicus easily overpowers the cowled wizards of the asylum and becomes its caretaker. He then begins again experimenting on Imoen.
Once a powerful elven spellcaster living in Suldanesellar, Irenicus was well-respected by his countrymen and loved by the elven queen Ellesime. However, Jon’s hunger for power and ambition lead to an eventual downfall. At one point, Jon, assisted by his confidante and "sister" Bodhi (their actual kinship is never verified) attempted to become a god but ultimately failed. For their deed, both Bodhi and Irenicus were stripped of their connection to the elven race and were cast out of the elven city. It is implied that the nature of the punishment significantly shortened Bodhi's lifespan, as she voluntarily turned into a vampire as means of survival. Irenicus was affected to a lesser extent, but was still left physically scarred by the experience; most notably, the pointy ears typical for his race are missing. In the beginning of Shadows of Amn, Irenicus has not given up his plans to ascend to godhood. He has built a massive secret base of operations beneath Athkatla from where he conducts experiments with the ultimate goal of restoring his soul and recreating the love he once felt towards Ellesime. The appearance of the Bhaalspawn proves a unique opportunity to forward his plans and even get his revenge toward Suldanesellar by draining the Tree of Life as a source of divine energy.
Irenicus has captured Gorion's Ward and their party at the beginning of the game, killing Khalid and Dynaheir and torturing the rest. Jon's motives at this point in the game are unknown. He is later apprehended by the Cowled Wizards together with Imoen for their illegal use of magic and exiled to Spellhold. From then on, Gorion's ward is left to identify and pursue his captor.
Later Gorion's Ward confronts him in Spellhold in Chapter 4, but Irenicus prevails and steals the protagonist's soul.
The final showdown takes place near the Tree of Life and then in Hell in Chapter 7.
- "Torture? Silly girl, you just don't understand what I'm doing, do you?"
- "I cannot be caged. I cannot be controlled. Understand this as you die, ever pathetic, ever fools!"
- "Life is strength"
- "You are but a gnat, compared to my power."
- "No, you'll warrant no villain's exposition from me."
- "Silence, child. Allow the fool to make his judgement."
- Baldur's Gate II:
Shadows of Amn (2000)
This icon indicates content from the original Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn campaign. In the original Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn, Jon Irenicus is of the human race. This is fixed in the Enhanced Edition.
Irenicus can join the party as a companion during Throne of Bhaal and may be redeemed with the mod Longer Road, available for the original game at Spellhold Studios and for the Enhanced Edition at Baldur's Extended World.