Maiden's Tea

Fri, 07/11/2014 - 20:53 -- BlueWinds

Allow me to abut the last post, a boring "I'm not dead yet" update, with something more interesting - a bit of world building.

Mentioned only once in, there is a special plant known as Maiden's Tea which has had quite an influence on the development of the world as a whole, and Vailia in particular.

On the continent to the west of of the city there grows a weed - a plant so prolific that you have to cut it back continually or it will strangle a field of any other crop, and so useful that wars have been fought over its possession. Related to mint and catnip, Maiden's Tea stands two to three feet high, with dark green leaves. It's harvested by cutting down the whole plant, stripping the leaves, and throwing away the stem - again, much like mint.

When dried, the leaves can be made into a bitter drink, the eponymous Maiden's Tea, or simply chewed up and spit out. One dose will render a woman infertile for two weeks, with no outward sign - she will still have her period as normal. Three doses will cause an miscarriage. Five doses in quick secession will render her permanently sterile, and sick for a week. Ten will kill her.

Small quantities have no effect on a man. Large quantities will still make him sick or kill him.

Growing weedlike as it does across an entire continent, Maiden's Tea is cheap, ubiquitous and absolutely vital to Vailia's culture. It renders absolute control over a woman's fertility into her own hands - married women and whores alike take it regularly, and without stigma. Children are a woman's choice in Vailia.

It is also a major source of wealth. While it grows like a weed to the west, the rest of the world has to import their supply - a supply that travels primarily on Vailian ships. The Guild is the association of adult entertainers, yes, but it is also responsible for a vast merchant fleet. Perhaps soon I'll get around to talking about why this is so much more exciting than it sounds. :)


terumokou on

So it's something cats could go nuts over.

BlueWinds on

More like cat-girls. :3

ExSeth on

Back in March when you first posted a bit of a map and mentioned that it was related to your new game, I was pretty intrigued, and now that you've all-but-solidified that the new game will heavily feature naval themes, I'm pretty stoked. This worldbuilding is also pretty iuteresting. Even within, the world was pretty well-formed and intriguing, and it looks like you'll have a lot more room to expand on it this time around. I'm looking forward to continued development quie a bit. 

More related to this post in particular, I like the precision involved with multiple doses of Maiden's Tea. Hints at a lot of the subtle underlying magic that seems widespread in this setting.

Frankieo on

Would be funny if there was an added effect for 20 usage, where if you lived long enough to have used it 20 times in succession, you would gain immortality - but you would be eternally sterile as a consiquence :P

Light (not verified) on

Good stuff. It's theorized that Rome had access to a similiar plant. Debateable just like anything else from antiquity, but it's not without *any* historical prescendent. I'm excited for the next game. You do great work!.Information on the plant:


BlueWinds on

Very interesting, thanks for sharing!

This plant is based, in part, on a similar contraceptive from Exalted, which goes by the same name. Cool to know that there's possibly historical precedent, though Silphium seems to replicate the abortifacient property, rather than the more important contraceptive one.