Astral Beer

Astral Beer uses Mage's Mold in place of yeast, resulting in an alcoholic beer with the ability to boost Astral Projection safety and range. It is brewed by the Staghorn Brewery Co. using a proprietary process developed after nearly a decade of experimentation by Cynthia Staghorn herself.

Significance

Due to the care required to harvest a mage's mold required to provide the beer's effects, as well as the heavily guarded secret of the proprietary process developed by Cynthia Staghorn to brew the beer, Astral Beer is a precious commodity and only available to Reachmen and trusted friends. The brewing process allows the town of Northwood ready access to this otherwise priceless commodity.  

History

The properties of Mage's Mold were first discovered by a lost and injured explorer attempting to Astral Project to discover his way back to civilization. This was a risk, as not only did the loss of blood from his injury increase the chances of the spell going awry, with the separation of body and spirit he would have been unaware and unable to react if his physical condition worsened.   The grove where he lay bleeding out was coated with Devil's Lichen and unknown to him maintained a healthy population of the mold as well, which happened to release spores that night while he was casting. The resultant spell not only allowed him to pinpoint his location with regards to the nearest settlement but also enter the dreams of several of its sleeping inhabitants with his cry for help.   Once mold was identified as the cause for this boosted effect demand skyrocketed. The difficulty in extracting Mage's Mold from its poisonous lichen host, coupled with the inherent value of its effects on Astral Projection, meant those able to safely provide the mold could charge exorbitant rates, leading other suppliers with less robust harvesting processes to sell their own versions which may or may not be laced with the poisonous Devil's Lichen depending upon that day's quality control.   In more recent years, Cynthia Staghorn began her own efforts to harness the power of the mold. Recognizing that Mage's Mold bore a similar growth profile to the yeast used in her own brewing processes she began experimentation to develop a beer based around the mold and its properties. After nearly a decade of effort the Staghorn Brewery Co. developed a process that consistently allowed the mold to grow and multiply while maintaining its alchemical properties. The resultant brew contained a much lower concentration of the mold than traditional alchemical mixtures, and its alcohol content did mean those using the beer would run the risk of becoming drunk, but the safety and reliability of the process outweighs these concerns due to the sudden availability of the precious commodity.   Astral Beer was born.  

Current Usage

Astral Beer is most openly used for search and rescue operations into the surrounding Giftwood Grove. Volunteer mages run shifts searching when or where it's too dangerous for the standard search teams. Each mage is supervised by another member of the search team to ensure their safety during the projection, and verify the mage remains sober enough to safely continue casting.   A telepathic connection is also made between the mage and their keeper prior to the beginning of their projection shift, to allow the mage to retain communication with the search team during their projection. This allows all members of the search to to relay discoveries and request assistance throughout the search.   The beer also plays a key role in gathering information in support of the Reachmen's rebellion against the Church of the Heathen Prophet, although due to the Heathen's control over large portions of Northwood they are careful to keep this usage a closely held secret.
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Consumable, Food / Drink
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Cover image: Nature Forest Trees by jplenio

Comments

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4 Dec, 2020 17:41

Nice! A question though ... has anyone considered adding berries of different types to flavor the beer?

— The wolf of Tales of Justice, Creator of Legends of Elohey, Star Wars: Shards, Fiven Chronicles and more!
4 Dec, 2020 17:59

They could very well make different flavors of it if they wanted, I suppose. Right now though the focus is on the functionality of it rather than the flavor, as nobody drinks it for fun, and relatively speaking it's a fairly new so the Reachmen are more focused on how they can use this new tool to their advantage.

Author of Fillimet, bright fantasy land of possibilities
Sage Serukis
Dr Emily Vair-Turnbull
4 Dec, 2020 21:24

Your tooltip for Mage's Mold has a typo of 'Mole', just to let you know. :D   I count two different fungi which need articles. :D   This is a really interesting concept. I love the idea of an alcoholic drink that enhances certain types of magic. And I like that the mage imbibing it is watched so they don't get too drunk! XD

Emy x   Welcome to Etrea!
4 Dec, 2020 21:28

Thank you! It was a fun one to write.   Which fungi need articles still? The Mage's Mold and Devil's Lichen could probably do with an update at some point, but I think they're the only ones I referenced here?

Author of Fillimet, bright fantasy land of possibilities
Sage Serukis
Dr Emily Vair-Turnbull
4 Dec, 2020 21:39

!!! I didn't realise they were articles, I just thought they were tooltips!

Emy x   Welcome to Etrea!
5 Dec, 2020 08:05

A beer to enhance your magical abilities? That's such a neat idea!   I am wondering how often people try to steal Cynthia Staghorn's way of growing the mold, because beer or no beer, I think that by itself would be quite valuable knowledge...

5 Dec, 2020 13:22

Oh absolutely! Knowing the local government, too, there have definitely been attempts.   Luckily for Cynthia she has her community behind her. She supports them and they support her, especially since she doesn't hold back when they need her. And they are a lot more competent in defending their own than most people realize. <3

Author of Fillimet, bright fantasy land of possibilities
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