|Official Name||Bloodthorn Vine|
|Common Name||Drsti Draksa, Bleeder Vine|
The Bloodthorn Vine found on Hadar has served as a minor defense against the unwary to the island chain’s dangers for centuries, perhaps even longer if some tales are to be believed. However, after a Slizzar alchemist unlocked its hallucinogenic properties, it became an essential plant to the Slizzar people and their worship of their lost god. The plant suffered terribly during, and in the aftermath of, the Chrysant War, but it has begun to find its way back into the ecosystem of the tropical region once again.
The Bloodthorn Vine is perhaps as old as a plant can be in Aloria, or it may simply be a more recent addition to Aloria’s ancient flora. Those who suspect the plant’s ancient nature point to particular pieces of art within the city of Sassrakkand, showing blossoms dotted along weaving imagery of vines, in a petal style and shape different from that of the notable Chrysant Flower, venerated in Slizzar society. The theory ultimately is that the Slizzar, while destroying physical records and writings after each Void Cycle, preserved more than the cuisine of the ancient world, but also the plants involved in such old culinary creations. However, the more common origin for the theory states it only emerged after the Fourth Void Invasion, and when the Slizzar went out into their island landscape, they found this hardy plant to be surviving even in the tough conditions. At some point, the crawling plant found its way to Teled Methen, but as this was still the Consolidation, an effective response eradicating the “plant of the Deceivers” was conducted. It is also believed that this was when the plant’s natural defense mechanism first made it’s way into Aloria’s Races, Altalar and slaves scratched by the plant experiencing the plant’s defensive side-effects. This is likely why the Allorn had such a negative reaction to the plant, deeming it dangerous, perhaps even corrupted and beyond their “ability to save” since they considered themselves masters of plantlife for their role as Estel’s inheritors.
When the Allar came to Hadar, generations after the Allorn Empire encountered the plant, they found it beautiful and to their liking, much as the Slizzar did. Due to the natural scales both species could possess, the scratches were found to rarely affect even juveniles, and the plant’s pollen did not seem to impact them as it did other groups. Following the Cataclysm, and the rebuilding of great aqueducts and other engineering projects, the Bloodthorn Vine greatly expanded in scope, becoming common to nearly every major island in Hadar. Despite this prominence though, alchemical uses for the substance eluded the Allar. They could use it to color smoke or other effects, but unlocking the plant’s natural hallucinogenic power fell to one unscrupulous Slizzar now famous in that part of the world, Phanasya Lompa. Lompa had been young when the Allar first reached Hadar, and grew close with several alchemists, studying their techniques to benefit his city. With the loss of their god during the Cataclysm, Zaalaanzaal, Slizzar faithful sought many methods to contact her, some seeking out the skills of alchemists to do so. Phanasya Lompa’s creation from his own effort was Adarrajya, the Mirror Tincture, which became a facet of the faith and made him incredibly revered among his peers. However, the plant would suffer in the coming years. The Chrysant War and its aftermath saw Bloodthorn Vines across Hadar destroyed, with many Allar outside of the island-rich region now suspicious of any who ask for its creation. As of now, the Bloodthorn Vine exists only in Hadar and often in remote locations, at the heart of an island’s foliage, though some Slizzar dream of the day the plant’s crimson hooks and bright flowers fill the jungles once again.
Bloodthorn Vines are similar to other varieties of vine, featuring a series of offshoots from a central, rooted vine that sits at the base of the object they are climbing up, capable of reaching great lengths and heights as a result, as well as combining with other Bloodthorn Vines in dense, interlocking networks. The surfaces Bloodthorn Vine can climb are various, from other plants such as trees, to ruins and other artificial structures. The plant’s body is made up of thick, deep green tendrils covered in bright red hooking thorns poking out and down toward the ground (if on a vertical surface). These tendrils are between one to two inches thick in diameter but taper off at the higher, and younger, parts of the vine. Brilliant red and red-pink flowers are also found along the plant’s tendrils. They are built flat but dense, with between seventy and a hundred tiny oblong petals set around a white and pollen-heavy center. Bloodthorn flowers are always two inches in diameter and practically sprinkle pollen when touched. They bloom year-round, at least once every three months, based on when that section of the vine matured to allow it to produce such a flower.
Uses and Abilities
Bloodthorn Vines course with a light defensive hallucinogen that tips the thorns protruding from its body. In addition, the flowers that grow freely dispense and are filled with substantial levels of this substance laced within the pollen. The flower is, therefore, the most used part of the vine as part of the drug Adarrajya, used in Slizzar worship of their lost god. As for the plant’s juices and the thorns, the hallucinogen appears clear and tasteless once distilled down and can be used in and on a variety of objects and people. All non-Naylar Races are susceptible to its pricking and its hallucinogenic properties. However, a massive amount would have to be used by a poisoner to have any profound effects on a subject beyond vague dizziness and mild, watery visions as is caused by the prick from a living Bloodthorn Vine thorn.
- Bloodthorn Vines are rumored to exist within the realm of the Dread Empire, where mutations by the Void have made the hallucinogen ten times stronger, and the thorns even more barbed. However, it remains to be seen if these are indeed Bloodthorn Vines, or a species whose alterations have produced a similar appearance.
- Slizzar tendrils do not react to the Bloodthorn Vine thorns effects, even if directly pricked. If anything, strangely, some Slizzar experience a spine tingle instead.
- Insects are the only animals immune to the plant’s properties, making the various large species of pollinator native to Hadar key in the plant’s efforts to spread across the continent's many islands