|Common Name||Le Belledonne, La Belladonna,|
|Habitat||Humid and warm environments|
Nearly every assassin and aristocrat has heard of the deadly plant known as Nightshade. Even fewer still know that the plant originated out of Farah’deen. Originally kept as a houseplant for the Masaya's palace, Nightshade has developed and adapted to more temperate environments, and is commonly seen growing in the wild, though it will not grow in freezing temperatures.
Originally found in Farah’deen, Nightshade was discovered by an ancient Sultan’s scouts who were documenting the landscape of the lands surrounding Azzul Saradiba, the capital of the Songaskian Masaya. The uses of the plant were found primarily by the lesser of the scouts, who acted as taste testers with the unknown plant. They initially fell ill and weak, however it was not until they consumed more of the plant that one fell over, killed by the mystical flower.
The Masaya soon ordered all Nightshade in Farah’deen to be rounded up and brought to his own palace, and had them planted in his private garden. He enjoyed their appearance and thought they were a pleasant addition to his palace, however there was a more significant reason behind his choice. The less public the Nightshade’s availability was, the more powerful the Sultan could be. With the poisonous plants kept under lock and key, there would be none to challenge him through poison. Ironically enough, the Sultan fell dead when a lone assassin snuck into his garden, stole several samples of Nightshade, and poisoned his dinner.
Since then, the Nightshade has spread back around the world, and adapted to new environments. Nightshade is commonly found on the Regalian Crown Isle, though is unable to grow wild within the actual confines of the city.
Nightshade can be identified primarily by its deep purple, bell-shaped flowers, whose petals droop towards the ground. Its stem is long and green, and rarely grows taller than three quarters of a foot. Typically, it has rounded leaves trailing infrequently up the stem. Small clusters of berries sometimes grow along with the leaves of the plant.
Uses and Abilities
While the entirety of Nightshade is toxic, the roots are known to be the deadliest. When consumed, the toxins flow slowly throughout the body, and begin the process of shutting down various bodily functions. Victims of nightshade poisoning usually experience immediate sweating and headaches, though after two hours of having the toxin in their body, they are known to exhibit vomiting and diarrhea. Though very uncommon, victims have been found to have hallucinations. On top of all of this, it has been recorded that the skin of many victims of Nightshade slowly turns a ghostly pale white, and small blue dots begin to form like freckles all over the body.
Four hours is all the time needed by the plant to render the person unconscious. At this point, the only thing that can save the victim is the use of Theomar’s Fungus, though their life can be sustained by healing magics until treated. Victims that are unconscious more than a day after being poisoned have not been known to recover. Nightshade is most effective when induced orally. Smaller Races are more vulnerable to Nightshade, while the Varran actually have a certain immunity to smaller amounts. Additionally, individuals with stronger immune systems are more resistant to its effects, while sickly persons, or children and the elderly, are more susceptible to its effects.
- Nightshade is not effective when coated on a dagger and cut on someone. Typically, the amount of poison that actually enters the bloodstream is too diluted to travel anywhere in the body and do any harm.
- It is rumored that the Emperor has his own greenhouse full of Nightshade, though many scientists and botanists claim it is impossible to do so.
- Some claim that intelligence officers and high-profile bureaucrats of the Empire expose themselves to small amounts of Nightshade in order to build an immunity to it.