UseBright Abyss comes in dark jars, simply opening them and inhaling the contents will start a trip.
The 'bright' from Bright Abyss comes from the luminosity of the drug. It glows a marigold-yellow, too bright for some creatures. It is in a powder-like state when taken by predominantly partygoerss, lesser addicts, or both. To administer the substance, it can be swallowed or injected, but mostly is inhaled. Ingesting or injecting the substance leads to it being less effective; inhaling is the most popular and most potent. It has a pleasant odor that is both citrusy and like freshly-cut grass.
Bright Abyss had been used for a short time as an anti-depressant, but quickly faded from that field as most who were administered the drug became more depressed and addicted to the bursts of happiness. The amount of Bright Abyss that is safe to use without any side effects typically is not enough to serve as a cure for the depressed –enogh Bright Abyss to being them to a natural level is dangerous–; moreover, prescribed individuals have a likelihood to abuse the substance. Some who find themselves in the pit of despair with little hope will resort to the substance from hear-say. These cases typically do not end well.
The substance is not bad, it’s only the misuse of it that is. In a controlled environment with people who care or a lone by an individual who knows what they’re doing, the trip induced by the substance can be an enjoyable ride without any lasting effects. In fact, some pagan rituals of north-central Hasehak use the substance for coming of age, marital celebrations, and more.
EffectsThe unique feature of the drug is that affects all species differently. Examples include but are not limited to: Drake, they become lethargic and unable to focus with a deep sense of relaxation; Humi, unable to sit still, they become excitable and have an altered preconception; Isynx have auditory hallucinations, typically pleasant sounds but does depend on their mood; Muzoval, they gain an acute sense of sonder, a feeling of awe at life around them that can either be an uplifting wave or an anxiety-filled din; and Gheforis who have all the effects of their host with an additional sense of nausea and an inability to balance.
One effect shared by all who use Bright Abyss, From which the latter half of the name is derderived, a sense of falling. To the user, it’s as if the ground under them vanishes and they fall an fall into Ulinta itself. Depending on the person and current aptitude, this can either be negotiable, exciting, or frightening. Combined with the other effects, some species prefer not to partake at parties, in particular the Gheforis who already feel ill due to it.
The effects are not permanent and will dissipate in time, depending on the species and the individual’s physique. Beings who have more air circulate through their lungs tend to have shorter trips; bloodletting is a common tactic for bringing someone down quickly. After the trip is over, there may or may not be lasting effects. If the amount is small, the user will simply have had an altered state for a while. If the quantity is large enough, they may be permanently altered, a loss of joy in their life along with a non-uniform change to their personality. In worse case crescendos, the user may become addicted to the substance, reliant on the rush to bring a sense of normalcy.
HarvestingBright Abyss is completely natural, it’s the light found crowning the heads of Jackalope. The easiest form of harvesting is to encase the light in a jar of sorts and run off with it, assuming one has the jackalope restrained and incapable of escape. Ancient peoples would not take for later use but consume the light directly from the jackalope before letting it free. Today, with conveniences a the forefront of the sellers' minds, it’s best to bottle them in black jars filled with sugar.
Jackalope are not creatures for the farmstead, but that hasn’t stopped people from trying. They will jump and burrow their way through fences, the only way to keep them is in a building or having a warding bubble. People tend to opt for the building, since it’s cheaper, and they just need them long enough to grow to maturity. This is terrible for the jackalopes who need open grasslands, leading to lower yields. There are farms because while the substance is generally illicit, jackalope are just vermin one could find terrorizing their garden.
General processes for harvesting are as follows: First, take a fully matured, not sick, jackalope and restrain it. Then, take a specially made jar, sterilize and fill it with sugar, and cup the light. Quickly place the lid over the jar and secure it. Then, pull the jackalope away, the length varying depending on the specimen, to about five hundred paces away; this ensures the severing of the connection between the jackalope and their light. Release the jackalope and now you have a jar of Bright Abyss. The jackalope will no longer be able to produce enough of its own happiness, but what happens to it is none of the sellers' concern, it’s just a dumb animal.
A Call to RevertPeople native to the region jackalope are found have long since used Bright Abyss in pagan ritual. Through years of cultural understanding, they know how to take the substance in a side-effect-free way along with not bringing harm to the jackalope population. Most cultures outright kill the jackalope, using it as food while under the effects. Some take such a small amount that the light regrows on the jackalope after they set it free, leaving no ill effects for anyone.
Ever since modern harvesting techniques started, there has been a small but loud minority of people calling to either stop what is happening or to bring back the old ways. They say that if they do not stop, the jackalope population may become endangered. Others are more focused on how they treat the jackalope, not killing them but condemning them to a life of misery. Modern tongues tend not to like the taste of jackalope, thus don’t sell, so the sorrowful husks are set ‘free’.
AddictionDue to what the substance is, excessive or prolonged use typically leads to depression and addiction. Sufferers will feel like they have no happiness in the world and can only achieve happiness by using the substance. And, because of its downward spiral effects, it takes more and more Bright Abyss to bring them up to what once was their natural level. Worst-case scenarios can be left to one’s imagination.
Addiction, while prevalent enough to make the drug outlawed in several nations, is not an absolute outcome. Taken in small, controlled doses there will be no lasting side effects when taking the substance. But these doses vary from person to person, and the rush of effects, if the person enjoys that sort of thing, might lead them to take more than they should.
What is it, really?
Really? You sought me out just for this? Alright, but it wasn’t going to be much longer before some scientist discovered it. As payment, you’ll have to tell me why the Blood Queen needed so much blood, I know you know…Alright. So first, it’s not some chemical the Jackalope produces, it’s a microorganism. They live in symbiosis with them, providing them happiness they couldn’t otherwise make themselves. In return, the Jackalpe create a field to protect them, and their constant fighting with one another helps them spread. It’s a mutualistic symbiosis.You don’t get it yet? Their Awezlu, they have so much soul that the jackalope basically has a constant energy source. Kind of weird since the jackalope have balanced soul-body ratios. Whatever, you’re basically inhaling tiny parasites that fill you with their overloading happiness. Like any other awezlu, they just want to balance themselves, so they force any excess they have into you.His name is Alder, I got him from, well, I just found him in the fields one day. He was about the size of my fist at the time. I like to think we’ve bonded, he can now roam my cabin while I keep on eye on what he chews and where he poops. He’s my little experiment, I just had to know why.Anyway, to finish, they get inside your blood from your lungs. They have the easiest time exerting themselves in your circulatory system, since it’s so closely connected to your soul. They die after a while, since you’re not a jackalope, that’s the effects wearing off. That’s why they have different effects, different species have their natural atunemnts, so because you have more water in your body, it will be altered.Now get off my ship before I throw you off.
Nice article and an interesting source, effect and market/ use traditions.
I love the contrast of information between body and sidebar — it really highlights how our anecdotal perception of something and the truth of it can be so very different even when the two aren't at odds with one-another. I also really like how you took the time to weight the effects of the awezlu on each of the different species! It sounds like a very interesting experience, though I don't think I could do it if I knew that they were harvesting a Jackelope's complete soul. I'd rather raise one as a pet, harvest part of it myself, and then care for the Jackelope so that I can make up for the happiness I took away — or might even forgo it entirely. Hmm. Great job adding an ethical dilemma!
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