Merrick's Solution is a vile concoction: an amalgamation of various blemish-inducing reagents combined into a single brew. This potion is capable of turning the most beautiful Ithanian princess into the ugliest Alorian alive. The brew was first discovered by an intoxicated Alt-Regalian alchemist around 250 AC, who was part of an elaborate plot to embarrass an Ithanian Souverain into submission at court. This plot was largely successful; the woman was shamed and expelled from court for fear that she was infected by some terrible disease. Now seldom-seen, Merrick's Solution is an unpopular yet reliable means of embarrassing one’s enemies, or simply crushing any sense of self-worth they may have.
Merrick's Solution was formulated by Mercer Merrick, a drunk, single, and elderly Alt-Regalian alchemist who lived during the third century after the Cataclysm. This man was known as the local idiot; Merrick was constantly experimenting with new concoctions and mixtures in search of an alchemical compound that would elevate him to fame. Unfortunately, Merrick was unpopular among friends and strangers alike, but distant court whispers brought his name to a woman vying to become the Grand Souverain of the Ithanian Realms: Denise de la Petite Fleurcompe. Denise was chiefly opposed by the most beautiful woman in the realm: La Beau Renee de Sabine. Though she was not the smartest or most prestigious woman, it was said that even the rising sun paled in comparison to her beauty, and this stood as a threat to Denise.
Fleurcompe sent messengers across the world, searching for someone that could help her. On more than one occasion, Mercer Merrick’s name was brought up, but Denise refused to work with him on account of him being nothing more than a lonely drunkard. Nonetheless, as the Grand Souverain election came closer, the lady grew more and more desperate. She commissioned Merrick to create a potion that would turn her opponent ugly for the elections. Merrick immediately set to work, gathering the worst ingredients he could think of. Finally, after weeks of experimentation, he found a brew that would work. By brewing together the most vile ingredients imaginable, Merrick had found a potion that would cause de Sabine to turn hideously ugly. He boxed up the recipe and several ingredients, and traveled to meet Fleurcompe.
The potion was a complete success. Fleurcompe’s spies were able to slip the mixture into de Sabine’s drink unnoticed. What unfolded was pure chaos: Renee de Sabine began losing her hair, as her joints began to swell. Next, boils, pimples, warts, and other deformities began springing to the surface of her skin. Her ears and nose grew larger and grotesque, while the rest of her body seemed disproportionately anorexic in comparison to her large joints. Only one Hivre voted in favor of de Sabine purely out of pity for the woman; the rest favored Fleurcompe, who in turn bestowed favors of wealth to Mercer Merrick. Soon, Merrick’s Solution spread across the higher circles of nobility as a means to embarrass their rivals. Merrick was a complete success.
Merrick’s Solution is most often brewed in a small jar sitting within a larger metal bowl full of boiling water. The solid substances of the Kaolinite and trout scales are ground into a fine powder using a mortar and pestle, then added into the jar with the Vocadine. The mix is then left to stew for an hour, being stirred every ten minutes. After this, the Orc blood and Salas’maïdar excretion are carefully added with a pipette and stirred into the potion. The mixture is then left to boil for another ten minutes before it is taken out of the bowl to cool on it's own. Once it has, the concoction is strained through a cheesecloth to remove any chunky or unseemly bits, leaving the unsettling brown liquid behind and ready for use. It can be stored for upwards of two months before spoiling and losing potency.
Merrick’s Solution can be applied two ways to the victim. The first method is through oral ingestion, where the victim who is receiving it is tricked into consuming it. It is very easy to conceal Merrick’s Solution within food, and less-so in beverages because of its dark and murky appearance. Oftentimes, shadowy infiltrators drizzle the juice on top of a meal, or into a soup or stew. The other method of applying the Solution is via a Cryostim The mixture can be injected straight into the bloodstream, to deadly effect; a full dosage of Merrick’s Solution will have amplified effects in the bloodstream, and will cause all of the unattractive effects to effectively double.
Merrick’s Solution is more commonly known as Aloria’s “Ugly Potion,” for the express reason that it makes any who consume it “uglier.” It forces boils, blisters, discoloration, and even cartilage protrusions to manifest in those who have ingested the malevolent brew. The victim’s ears and noses will begin to grow in grotesque and undesirable manners, often appearing pointed and crooked. The victim’s skin will then wrinkle and discolor in random patches, even taking on purple and orange hues on occasion. Furthermore, the victim’s joints will swell up, causing them to appear thin and knobbly. Finally, Merrick’s Solution will make any person seem gaunt and often follows with feelings of exhaustion. These effects will last for twenty four hours, and cannot be stopped once the liquid is consumed.
Merrick’s Solution is composed of a liquid, murky brown broth similar to that of a stew. It has no chunks in it, and is thin and fluous. It is difficult to detect when added to dark drinks or mixtures, but is easily spottable in lighter drinks and in clear glasses.
- Merrick’s Solution has been a tool of embarrassment and discomfort between friends and rivals alike. In small doses, the soup-like brew can be used in short-lasting practical jokes.
- While Merrick’s Solution can be used to make a person appear unattractive, it also has an alternative use. Some opt to use the potion to intentionally change their appearance, sacrificing beauty and comfort for an apt disguise.