Indiana Jones Wiki

The Skirmish at The Raven occurred in 1936, between the archaeologist Indiana Jones and several Nazi agents in The Raven bar in Patan, Nepal. Both parties had come to Nepal seeking an artifact in the possession of Abner Ravenwood. The artifact in question, the Headpiece to the Staff of Ra, was a key element in discovering the Well of the Souls, where the fabled Ark of the Covenant was said to be contained within. The piece now belonged to the late Abner's daughter, Marion Ravenwood, who ran a bar in Patan. Both parties clashed over the artifact, resulting in the deaths of all but one of the agents and the destruction of the bar when it was set aflame.



Major Toht and his men confront Marion Ravenwood.

After Indiana Jones had spoken to (and received a welcome back in the form of a right hook to the jaw) Marion and offered her $5,000 for the headpiece, she was musing over the offer when the door to the Raven suddenly opened, revealing four men; Ratty Nepalese, Mean Mongolian, a machine-gun toting man, Otto, and their leader, a bespectacled man in black by the name of Arnold Ernst Toht.[1]

Undaunted by the intrusion, Marion informed them that the bar was closed, only for Toht to respond they hadn't come for a drink but rather the same piece that Jones had been seeking, subtly threatening Marion that Jones had better not have acquired it yet. Blowing smoke in the Gestapo agent's face, Marion asked if he was willing to offer more and offered him and his men drinks as they began to surround her. Toht, under the guise of stoking the fire with a poker, subtly demanded that she surrender the headpiece and when she refused, ordered her pinned to the bar while he prepared to torture her with the red-hot poker.[1]

Before he could do so, however, the crack of a whip sounded and the poker flew out of Toht's hand to land next to a curtain, which ignited. Whipping to face the attacker, Toht found Jones pointing a gun at him demanding Marion's release. Noticing their eyes travelling to his left, Jones spotted Otto trying to get a fix on him and fired at him, grazing his arm and causing him to misfire. As Marion took advantage of the momentary distraction to break free of Toht's grip, the bar erupted as both sides traded shots. The Nepalese man upended a table to use as cover, unaware that the headpiece was on the table as well, and pinned Jones down with machine gun fire before his gun jammed. Taking advantage of the distraction, Jones fired his pistol at the fireplace, dislodging several burning logs that ignited the spilled alcohol near the table. As the burning Nepalese flailed in pain, Jones shot him through the head, killing him in front of a shocked Marion. As the flames spread, engulfing half the bar, Marion grabbed a burning log and bludgeoned the Mongolian from behind as a Giant Sherpa burst in and grabbed Jones. Hauling the archaeologist over to the bar, the Sherpa held him down as Toht knocked over a bottle of liquor with his Luger and set light to it, allowing the flames to travel across the bar towards the pinned Jones. Noticing Marion, Jones requested whisky and then broke the bottle over the Sherpa's head, forcing him to let go just as the flames reached where Jones' face had been moments ago. The Sherpa quickly recovered, however, and began choking Jones while simultaneously trying to grab his gun. Observing the brawlers, Toht dispassionately ordered Otto to shoot them both. Otto racked the bolt of his MP-40, preparing to comply, but the Sherpa and Jones angled the gun towards him and plugged the Nazi with four rounds before resuming their fight.[1]

As Otto's corpse dropped to the floor, Toht scrambled for cover next to the overturned table. Noticing the headpiece lying next to it amidst shards of glass, Toht attempted to grab it, unaware that it had been lying in the heart of the fire for most of the fight and as soon as his fist closed around it, it began sizzling as it seared into his flesh. Screaming loudly in agony, Toht dropped the headpiece and ran across the burning room before jumping through the window with a loud crash and plunging his searing hand into the snow to soothe it. Inside, Jones managed to disarm the Sherpa and knocked him out with a chair, only to spot the newly-conscious Mongolian holding him at gunpoint. A shot rang out and Indy flinched before looking down at his chest in confusion; the Mongolian, on the other hand, collapsed to reveal Marion had shot him from behind. Pausing only to retrieve the headpiece, Marion fled the burning tavern with Jones.[1]


The destruction of the Raven mean that Marion had no reason to remain in Nepal as her only source of income had been destroyed, so she resolved to accompany Jones until he could repay her. It also meant that the Nazis were unable to acquire the headpiece, which they needed to uncover the Well of Souls; however in grabbing the white-hot headpiece, Toht had branded an exact copy of one side into his hand which their chief archaeologist, Rene Belloq, was able to use to construct a crude, one-sided replica which, though it worked, did not reveal the precise instructions and so the Nazis began digging in the wrong place.[1]



Notes and references[]