Rooted Condition in Excilior | World Anvil


Back to your roots

ooted refers to an addiction to the narcotic gas of the wyndleroot. An individual addict is sometimes referred to as a root boi. (Even though the word boi, pronounced as "boy", sounds like it refers only to male addicts, the term root boi can be used for any addict, male or female.)

Transmission & Vectors

here is only one way to become rooted - by exposure to the narcotic gas that emanates from the roots of wyndlecain trees. Initially, this only happened in the wild, as the wyndlecain features a prodigious, exposed tangle of roots that are easily observable to anyone near the tree. Unfortunately, being close enough to see the roots also implies that someone is close enough to be exposed to the roots' addictive gas.   However, there has, for millennia, been a prolific worldwide market in wyndleroot, catering to that portion of the population that is either A) already addicted, or B) foolhardy enough to pursue the narcotic high while risking the chance of becoming rooted. This illicit trade is primarily facilitated by two dueling, criminal organizations - the Reaper Syndicate and the Scarlet Bottonfly Company. But there are always enterprising, independent merchants who pursue the profits of the wyndleroot trade while hoping to avoid the wrath of the ruling criminal factions.


hen root bois are enjoying a high, the side effects are primarily psychological. These include:

  • A sense of euphoria.
  • Occasional, pleasant hallucinations - often of beloved childhood experiences, or deceased loved ones.
  • Increased alertness.
  • Overpowering calm, and a sense of understanding that goes beyond the subject's level of education (i.e., a feeling that one is grasping "the mysteries of the universe").
  • An anesthetic cessation of nearly all pain or discomfort.
If the root boi goes 2-3 days without another hit of wyndleroot gas, they are apt to become short-tempered and erratic. Their speech and thought patterns can seem disjointed or illogical. They may fall asleep suddenly, in unusual times or circumstances. They can become excessively forgetful.   The greatest "symptom" of the rooted is constant yearning to travel to a wyndlecain tree. And if they find themselves in the presence of their desire, they will crawl directly into the roots of the tree itself - and stay there. Until they wither away. And die. And while they are in the midst of this slow, sad process of self-decay, they give every indication that they are in a purely euphoric state - dying in the greatest way they can imagine.   There are few observable, physiological symptoms of being rooted (other than the most obvious symptom - traveling to a wyndlecain tree, curling up in its root ball, and dying). Cognoscenti aren't even certain whether wyndleroot addiction has a true physiological component. However, some of the rooted in the most dire of circumstances can be identified by their sheer unwillingness to maintain themselves in any way. It's common for a root boi to have damaged skin, appalling hygiene, and a disheveled coiffure. They've also been described as having glassy, "distant" eyes.


he only acknowledged treatment for the rooted is to remove their access to wyndleroot. However, this approach rarely provides permanent - or even, long-term - relief. In the absence of the narcotic, the mind will, slowly, return to more of a "normal" state with far fewer cravings and a lessened fixation on the next high. But wyndleroot addiction is depressingly long-lived. Cognoscenti have documented cases of individuals forcefully separated from their wyndleroot supply for decades. And then, when something in their life changes to where they can suddenly avail themselves of the habit again - they go right back to their life as a root boi.


he rooted have very grim prognoses. The worst possible outcome is that the victim succumbs to the wyndlecain's siren call and eventually goes into the forest to wither away within its roots. This is especially likely if the root boi lives in close proximity to live wyndlecains.   Much more likely for most rooted is that they will carry their addiction until death. This doesn't necessarily mean that they can't continue to contribute to society, and even maintain a fulfilling life. But the yearning for more wyndleroot never truly goes away.


he simplest way to never become rooted is to avoid any-and-all contact with wyndleroot. The only way to become rooted is through exposure to the roots' narcotic gas. For those outside of northeastern Islegantuan, this can be simple to achieve, because the trees are only native to Ucarania and the other nations that border the Seia of Saints.   For those who live in the tree's natural habitat (especially Ucarania), it may be impractical to affect total avoidance. In those cases, the gas can be blocked or filtered out with a handkerchief, or other type of face covering, that's been soaked in vinegar. Dry cloth is useless to block exposure. And cloth that has simply been soaked in water or other non-vinegar liquids is decidedly less effective.   Even with proper prevention, trafficking amongst wyndlecains is a precarious proposition. The gas is incredibly resilient and addiction can set in after only light exposure. So the only people who regularly venture amongst wyndlecain forests are the low-level criminal operatives recruited solely for the purpose of harvesting wyndleroot. Amongst these unfortunate souls, the vast majority of them, if they continue to ply their trade, will eventually find themselves rooted.

Cultural Reception

he general view of root bois is similar to that of any other addiction. They are often dismissed as weak, stupid, degenerate, or as a drain on their arbyrkin. It's not uncommon for an arbyr to, quite literally, cast out those who have been revealed as root bois.   However, it's worth noting that some of history's most influential figures were found to be (or are strongly suspected of having been) rooted. Although the chronic addiction leads most to spiral out of control, there are a handful of individuals who, through superior means, and perhaps, through advantageous body chemistry, lived long lives in spite of their dependency. Some of those rare souls even seem to have thrived on the manic energy that is imparted from the wyndleroot high.
Chronic, Acquired
Affected Species


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