The Necroscratch is an uncommon disease caused by a mushroom called the Iridescent Blue Puffball, a member of the puffball family of mushrooms. If you step on the puffball, it releases a cloud of spores, mostly harmless. But if they come in contact with skin, nose, mouth or eyes, it gets nasty and they bury themselves into your body as a kind of self-defense.


It starts with the feeling of not being right, as you have a cough and can't get rid of it. Then you scratch yourself, most of the time subconscious until it hurts, bleeds or someone says something about it to you.
After a few weeks the itching and scratching drills into your brain and is getting on your nerves, the first blue spots appear on your skin. They do nothing except for being strange blue spots, looking like you ran into something and can't remember where and when. But they move from time to time and reappear or get more in numbers. They are the first sign - besides scratching yourself to the state of bleeding - of the Necroscratch because from this point it only gets worse if not treated.
You are almost half a year in the Necroscratch, probably bleeding from a dozen places because of subconscious scratching and drive-me-crazy-itchiness over your whole body and the blue spots keep wandering around your skin. One of them reaches the brain eventually. The spores kill your nervous system or better: one by one they destroy the connections between your synapses, especially those connected to your sensory system. There is no real rule which sense goes first. Could be the hearing, the feeling in your hand or feet, maybe the sense of smell or scent or, if it is going really bad, your eyesight.
At this point the blue spots are staying were they are and are the least of your problems. So you may think but they are a place for rapid necrosis. Your skin will breach, bleed and crumble, you might lose an ear, a finger, a tooth or a toe. This is the last stadium and if not treated, very deadly.


The treatment is really simple and just needs one thing: alcohol. You have to get drunk for as long as the itching persists because those are the spores drilling into flesh, cells and nerves. A doctor or some assistants have to guide you through the process, starting with wine and getting higher in alcohol volume. It destroys the spores over time so they won't destroy your body.
The period of how long you have to drink, get drunk and stay drunk, depends on the infection and how many spores are in your body.


The effects the spores had on your body are partly reversable. You may gain back your senses over time by doing things and making new memories or practicing new hobbies. It helps to reconnect your synapses with each other. For the scratching wounds there might be some potions to it, but the scars will not fade.


There are a few things staying in your body. Sometimes numb extremities, hearing things or no hearing it all for a short period of time, losing your eyesight or flickering in the corner of your eye.
Scratching, extreme itchiness, strange blue spots, rapid necrotic and loss of sensory input (hearing, sight, touch)
lethal if not treated
caused by the Iridescent Blue Puffball

Cover image: Article Header Koria by CrazyEddie via Midjourney


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