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So a bard charms monster 1. Monster 2 uses an action ability (such as Infernal Command) where it can make it so monster 1 can't be charmed.

Does Monster 1 lose the original charmed status or does it keep the original charm?

Does Infernal Command, for example, only prevent the target from being charmed again by something else while the ability time is active? My line of thinking is like putting on a bullet-proof vest after you have already been shot.

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Think of charming as a condition - "Charmed" condition. Suddenly the creature cannot be charmed, i.e. it cannot have the condition. So it doesn't.

In your specific case, it's no longer charmed.

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    \$\begingroup\$ How are you differentiated "can't be Charmed" (which typically involves making a save) from "no longer is Charmed" (where the condition is already present?) See my note here. \$\endgroup\$ – NautArch Jun 15 '18 at 16:04
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    \$\begingroup\$ The wording is, as usual, ambiguous. I am trying not to make a difference between getting the condition and having it. There are cases where this is specifically detailed (as with being petrified and poisoned), but this is not the case. So I would argue (even if it may be against the Sages) that there is just the condition, and it doesn't matter whether you are getting charmed or already are. You can't be, so you no longer are. The condition doesn't magically reappear when the buff ends – unless something specifies it does, as is the case with petrification. \$\endgroup\$ – J.E Jun 15 '18 at 17:16
  • \$\begingroup\$ That's an interesting approach, but would that make the Paladin's Aura answer incorrect - or is that a different case? \$\endgroup\$ – NautArch Jun 15 '18 at 17:25
  • \$\begingroup\$ @NautArch tough question, I'd say it is different, since nature of fear and being charmed is different (not by rules, but generally). The source of your fear makes you fear it constantly, being charmed is not renewed constantly. When the charm is "broken", I can't see a reason for it to continue. But this is language and meaning argument, not rules argument. Moreover, I don't think it's healthy to assume that every answer is factual and unshakeable. Some things will always be a matter of opinion, so two answer may even contradict and not be wrong. \$\endgroup\$ – J.E Jun 15 '18 at 18:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ Fair enough, but I think the goal is for a system to be consistent. Both of these are conditions. Both of these conditions are caused by a source. Suppressing/removing them should have the same mechanics. I may simply need to my own answer up :) \$\endgroup\$ – NautArch Jun 15 '18 at 18:28
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Monster 1 stops being charmed. See also this Sage Advice answering the same type of question:

In #DnD, the exceptional trumps the general. (No longer being a valid target trumps condition carryover.)

That means that if you can somehow change a creature to no longer be a legal target for an ongoing spell, that spell will stop working.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ What if the charmed condition doesn't come from a spell? The question does not say that the bard used a spell and there are other ways they can induce charm onto something. \$\endgroup\$ – Rubiksmoose Jun 15 '18 at 14:00
  • \$\begingroup\$ Does it end the charmed condition or just suppress it (like the Paladin's Aura)? \$\endgroup\$ – NautArch Jun 15 '18 at 15:18
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    \$\begingroup\$ This specific piece of Sage Advice has been met with a lot of skepticism, since JC and Mearls have both stated the exact opposite. Additionally, becoming immune to a condition does not make a monster an invalid target for a spell/ability, it just makes them immune, so the Sage Advice doesn't even apply here. \$\endgroup\$ – GreySage Jun 15 '18 at 15:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ @GreySage out of curiosity, where does JC contradict this tweet? I know Merls does but that doesn't mean much honestly. \$\endgroup\$ – Rubiksmoose Jun 15 '18 at 15:38
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It depends on how he was charmed.

Infernal Command for Narzugon states:

Each ally of the Narzugon within 60 feet of it can't be charmed or frightened until the end of the narzugon's next turn.

Thus, the question becomes "Is the charmed creature still considered an ally of Narugon and a valid target for Infernal command?"

Charmed condition:

A charmed creature can’t attack the charmer or target the charmer with harmful Abilities or magical effects. The charmer has advantage on any ability check to interact socially with the creature.

Earlier editions of D&D stated that a charmed creature regarded the charmer as an ally. The current version says friendly or trusted.

Thus by RAW 5e, it seems that Infernal Command would break the charm. However, there is room for a DM to decide that the charmed creature is not an ally of Monster 2 while charmed.

A middle ground ruling that I'd make is that the charmed creature gets a new saving throw possibly with advantage.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ For this I'd think it would depend more on whether the Narzugon considers the charmed monster to still be an ally, since it's the one granting protection from being charmed to its allies. Generally it still makes sense to use beneficial effects on friends that are currently acting hostile due to magical control (especially beneficial effects that might help negate the magic forcing them to be hostile!) \$\endgroup\$ – Ben Jun 16 '18 at 7:52
  • \$\begingroup\$ @ben -- perhaps, my take is that it functions like a leadership buff (I can't remember the name of the ability right now). So, the target needs to view Narzugon as it's leader. \$\endgroup\$ – ravery Jun 16 '18 at 10:50
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It will depend on the specific Charm/Immune to Charm effects

The problem here is that in the case of an ability that makes a creature unaffected by a certain condition, it says nothing about whether or not it's actively removing that condition.

Removing Conditions

There are specific ways to remove the Charmed condition whether it's Cleansing Touch, Dispel Magic, or other spells and abilities that do so.

Suppressing Conditions

This is where it gets a bit trickier. We can look at this question on a Paladin's Aura of Courage in relation to the frightened condition. The language of the Aura is similar to the language used in Infernal Command:

Aura of Courage
[creatures in the aura] can’t be frightened while you are conscious.

Infernal Command (Mordenkainen's Tome of Foes, p. 167)
Each ally of the narzugon within 60 feet of it can’t be charmed or frightened until the end of the narzugon’s next turn.

The answer provided in the linked question provides evidence that the Condition has not been removed, but it is only suppressed. Given the similarity in language with Infernal Command, the same answer should apply here as well.

Infernal Command will suppress the Charm/Frightened condition until the Narzugon's next turn.

Other abilities may work differently, but in the case of Infernal Command, this is likely the answer.

Ruling with Removing

Removing the condition entirely isn't necessarily a bad ruling. Crawford himself stated that the RAW was unclear, but went on to state the RAI. If your table prefers the complete removal the condition, the ambiguous RAW says that's okay - and it is. It just gives those suppressing options a bit more firepower, so folks should plan accordingly when designing encounters or acting within them.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Lesser Restoration can't remove the Charmed condition, can it? \$\endgroup\$ – enkryptor Jun 15 '18 at 19:37
  • \$\begingroup\$ @enkryptor No, those are just examples of spells that remove conditions. \$\endgroup\$ – NautArch Jun 15 '18 at 19:58
  • \$\begingroup\$ I still think we should to be specific here. "Grappled" is a condition too, but it isn't meant to be removed with restoration spells \$\endgroup\$ – enkryptor Jun 15 '18 at 20:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ @enkryptor I'll try and fix tonight with specific examples of charmed removal. Right now, dispel magic and paladins cleansing touch are coming to mind. \$\endgroup\$ – NautArch Jun 15 '18 at 20:57

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