|Official Name||Tabacca Leaf|
|Common Name||Lafenall Leaf|
Tabacca Leaf is a unique plant, as despite being originally used by the Elves, the Ailor have heavily adopted its use, to the point of overreliance within some. The Tabacca products that the Leaf helps produce are various, but all have the same effect, a calming of the nerves which is much liked by physicians. Tabacca Leaf grows in Daen and only Daen, jealous Daendroque and Jendaskea Ailor heavily protecting one of their major sources of regional income as since 200 AC, the plant has only gained popularity.
Tabacca Leaf has been known to the Alorian world since the time of The Consolidation, when Altalar explorers encountered the plant in the Ularen Plains. While there is much to find appealing in this open, rugged plainland, the Altalar were greatly, greatly drawn to Tabacca Leaf after its nerve-calming effects were discovered. In the following centuries, it was one of the first drugs actively used by the future Kathar, the various Void cults of Altalar society before much stronger drugs were developed for usage. As it fell out of use in upper and even middle rings of society, the plant’s usage blossomed among the Cult of Ciellonia. They sought to rehabilitate the plant, and restricted its usage to their special ceremonies as well as a tool of relaxation at communal and social gatherings. When the Wildering came, and the Cielothar were born, they soon encountered the Avanthar and shared their practices with the plant. Soon, it became common to the societies of the Ularen Plains, being shared with the Qússrakón Ailor as well.
By 140 AC, Ailor from the Daen states of Daendroc had come into contact with all three groups, and a few of them (amidst what was usually hostilities) expressed interest in acquiring the plant. The Avanthar and their proxies, the Qússrakón, resisted, but the Cielothar in a gesture of peace freely shared the plant and its proper usage. Upon their return, these early Ailor adopters quickly started to grow and share the substance among one another. By 190 AC, it was one of the most significant regional crops behind only foodstuffs and Poppies. In 198 AC though, the substance reached the Regalian Archipelago, and the desire for this product exploded. The original plantation owners who now had vast fields of the substance ramped up their production, and became some of the most respected brands in the business. By 240 AC, for every 200 Regalian houses, there was some form of shop selling Tabacca, while a mere ten years later, the smoking of Tabacca was no longer limited to the conventional consumption of smoking through a pipe, thanks to the garette and the sigg. Unfortunately, it was then that the Regalian Pessimism occurred.
Tabacca demand crashed, and hundreds of shops were closed down amidst the economic downturn. Tabacca Leaf lay fallow in fields, largely capable of only being traded locally in Daendroc, though nobles in the Regalian Empire maintained a limited demand for the substance. Eventually, demand returned, but the great heights of Tabacca consumption remain largely in the past. Still, it is a popular substance, used by scholars, merchants, dockworkers, criminals, and nobles alike, and figures of both sexes too in some areas. As a result, despite the recent wars and chaos in Daen, Daendroc industrial powers have worked to secure this lucrative revenue stream, and it has survived the chaos for now.
Tabacca Leaves are a medium sized plant, reaching three and a half to eight and a half feet tall with soil and other cultivation factors affecting their size. They have large, oblong-elliptical green leaves up to two feet long that decrease in size the farther up the plant one goes. Additionally, the plant possesses trumpet-like flowers two to three inches tall with pink edging that fades into white at the base. The plant meanwhile, is covered in a unique phenomena, short hairs which ooze a yellow secretion that makes the plant constantly sticky and stains the hands of those who handle the plant raw.
Uses and Abilities
Tabacca Leaves have only one major use: in Tabacca. Tabacca itself is derived from virtually all parts of a mature specimen of the Leaf (though some parts contain far more than others). It is often dried (with varying methods) before being ground into a semi-rough compound, which must remain granular enough to allow some fibers of the plant to remain visible. Some compare the ground substance to appearing like wood shavings. From there, the substance can be consumed in a number of ways. The original and formerly most common way was through the use of smoking pipes, which were simple wooden, reed, or tertiary substance devices held in the hand and where the smoke produced from lighting the Tabacca put in the pipe end is then inhaled via the mouth. This is the method once practiced almost exclusively by the various peoples of the Ularen Plains, though the Ailor quickly took to it themselves. Additionally, in some regions, the direct chewing of the plant is enjoyed though this is seen as barbaric by most Ailor, as it is messy and leaves plenty of unsightly Tabacca stains on one’s teeth. However, two other methods, both developed by Ailor, also exist.
A Garette is a small white paper-rolled “pipe” developed by Duke d’Garette of Ithania. In order to prepare Tabacca for Garette-smoking, the mixture receives less of the substance in addition to less potent batches secured with the paper. The result is that Garettes burn much slower than pipes, but impart less impact on the user, thus requiring two Garettes to achieve the effect of one pipe. These are most commonly used by lower classes of people, criminals, scholars, farmers and urban workers. The other form of consumption is a Sigg, a heavier Lusits-born variety of the Garette that involves fragranced paper and high quality Tabacca Leaf developed by the Siggoinas plantation family. These are thicker and larger than Garettes, but most producers will add drizzles of burnt sugar cane to their mixture to give Siggs a very sweet and strong smell. Siggs burn faster than pipes though and, akin to the Garettes, produce weaker effects. Siggs are particularly popular among noble circles due to their strong and pleasant high quality smell, especially since sugar is often a resource only available to upper class individuals. Once, many noble houses in the Regalian Archipelago and the City of Regalia itself possessed smoking rooms, which were separated from the rest of the house, and had specific ventilation to the outside to allow for smoking without disturbing the other tenants. Few of these rooms exist today, though are most commonly still found in Heartland Ceardian and New Regalian noble structures across the Empire.
Tabacca’s effects meanwhile, are singular, as it possesses the ability to calm the nerves of an individual. Smoking Tabacca has been known to lower anxiety and cause shaking or stuttering to cease, and smoking is often prescribed to patients with night terrors or sleeping issues. In addition, they can simply calm a person and keep them calm as they are thinking, which is why some scholars enjoy using them. However, a side effect does exist, though only a few unfortunate people. Some can become addicted to the substance, just like any form of drug, and without a consumption of Tabacca smoke, the symptoms of withdrawal are a painful problem for those around them. Thankfully for the Regalian Empire, these few individuals are rare.
- Cedromar I was well known for enjoying Tabacca extensively, but largely seems to have kicked his once impressive habit.
- One of the most well known sellers of Tabacca in the City of Regalia was Bulric Osten, owner of Bulric's Fine Tabacca which operated for a little over a decade. Unfortunately, a fire in his shop near the Golden Willow destroyed his business, and he chose to retire, seeing the “odd bit of fate” as an omen.