Dreadfully treading the line between an ichor of cultural significance and the substance of abuse, razum rum is a dark fluid as greedily consumed by the addict as it is by those claiming benign intentions. Produced through a unique process of purification, the black fluid known as Sinn is refined to extract the latent memories of a soul's past life.
SinnCommonly found in the swamp-like regions of the Grovemire, sinn is the the physical incarnation of a soul's past, given liquid form. With the consistency of a deep tar, being covered in this dark fluid is often difficult to remove.
Effect & UseUpon consuming razum, the user will enter a comatose state. The duration of this affliction is directly proportional to the volume of rum devoured. During this period of mental stasis, the consumer will live through memories of The Before. This effect is commonly referred to as Hindsight. Visually apparent, spirits whom are effected will have the colors of their skin darken and dull. While most spirits avoid consuming such a liquid, those who seek it fall into one of two camps. The addicts wishing to use it as an escape and the adjuncts looking to abuse its memory restorative properties.
The AddictMiserable in their new found state of existence, the addict will turn to razum as the way out. During the stasis of coma brought on by Hindsight they'll live out any number of possible lives within the realm of The Before. Entirely dependent upon the content of the rum, the addict's experience will change based on the nature of the sinn used to produce it. Often recalling a life better than the addict's previous reality.
The AdjunctProclaiming razum as an incredibly valuable tool, adjuncts will willingly consume this fluid in hopes of reclaiming memories of the lives they used to lead. While valuable batches of razum don't come around often, when they appear it occasionally leads to a cultural revolution, creative pursuit, or achievement of engineering. Unfortunately for the hopeful adjunct, the most likely outcome usually involves wasting away in the same pit with the rest of the addicts.
- Rare - Usually featuring the lives of scientists, playboys, artists, and the obscenely rich.
- Normal - Probably no better or worse than the life the user leads now.
- Ilk - Repeating a remembered life of abuse, experiencing this is often worse than the hell the user came from.
- ??? - Occasionally a batch will go horribly wrong, causing the user to wake in a dark place filled with nightmares and horrors. This strain has been used by creative assassins or sadistic jailors.
Not unlike the widely divergent qualities of different wines, razum will also differ dependent on the nature of the batch. As opposed to taste, as all razum rum tastes dry and bitter, the quality of the rum is entirely dependent on the experience following its consumption. High quality rum is often rare and sought after by the addict and the adjunct alike. When a strain is confirmed as an exceedingly excellent stock, this quality rum will occasionally see use by affluent individuals and of those whom consider themselves social-consumers. Quality control is like playing a game of Russian roulette. You never know what kind of batch you've created until after you've tasted it. Producers will often surround themselves with a cabal of addicts to serve as Guniea-pigs to separate the goods from the garbage.
DullimentThe less detrimental of the two side-effects will cause permanent loss of the coloring for a spirits skin. Most souls within the realm of the The After tend to have vibrantly colored carapaces of various shades. However, extended consumption of razum runs the risk of permanently damaging this coloration; effectively draining the shade away from one's soul and leaving it gray and visually lifeless.
RelapseThe worse of the two possible side-effects, relapse is common for souls whom have consumed a dangerously low quality of razum. Often caused from the mind-shattering experience of the memories found within, souls whom awake from their state of coma have difficulty distinguishing the experienced memories from their current reality.
Consumable, Food / Drink
RarityAfter the most recent rise of The 2nd Church, razum has become harder to find as any soul with the knowledge to produce such a spirit has been hunted down. Seeing razum as a potentially dangerous substance, The Church has taken upon the responsibility to eradicate its circulation and erase any knowledge as to its production.
Raw Materials & ComponentsRequiring several gallons of Sinn to produce even a single drop of razum. The process will be slow outside any means of industrial level production.
Production / PurificationThe process of producing razum may appear simple, but those who know how to do achieve it always prefer to call it 'gravitational chemistry'. Sinn is forced through a spiraling tube of increasingly smaller grates. Upon spinning this tube, the heavier elements of sinn will be filtered from the fluid allowing the more refined elements to slowly sludge towards the bottom.
ConsumptionBelieving the best results are achieved through direct contact, consumption of razum rum is always done by hand. While retaining some of the tar like quality of sinn, holding the raw liquid is fairly easy as the surface tension tends to keep the fluid from slipping through your fingers. Caused by a minor affliction of dulliment, the practice of drinking straight from the palm often leaves the hands of past and present addicts marred and devoid of color.
Unsplash images provided by Julian Böck and Nathan Dumlao
Dr Emily Vair-Turnbull
Really interesting. I can see why the lure of experiencing other lives would turn people into addicts. Really dangerous stuff.
Reminds me of red honey, and yes, it's me again talking about sunless
What an interesting article! The different qualities of Razum and the uses people come up for them are really interesting, especially how the lowest quality is used by assassins.