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Heartburst Cherry Pits

The pit of the heartburst cherry is grainy and filled to the brim with an excess of caffeine. Chewing a raw pit can result in a lethal caffeine overdose through absorption via the salivary glands alone. The heartburst cherry has a magical property to its taste that makes it difficult to resist eating for vertebrates, attracting them to over-eat and numbing the stomach to impede the feeling of being full. Creatures that gorge on these cherries have enough time to transfer the seeds far from the parent plant before the waxy skin of the pit dissolves and exposes the pit itself, allowing the caffeine to enter the system. When the unfortunate diner finally succumbs to the poison their body serves as a fertilizer for the new sapling and a lure for more predatory animals to ingest and carry seeds. Scavengers who ingest these pits second-hand often survive a bit longer, however only the pit vulture has been recorded as ultimately immune to the effects. Historically the heartburst cherry's pit is renowned for how quickly it can kill with such a simple substance, and it appears in many tales of betrayal, assassinations and hubris.   Unsurprisingly people figured out how to ingest it without dying anyway.   When prepared by an individual artisan or facility armed with the proper washing, roasting and transfiguration techniques the lethal effects of this overdose can be mitigated and re-worked in to something useful. The result is a light coffee with an intensely bitter taste that should be served at a dilution of 1 part coffee to 3 parts water. This coffee provides a burst of energy and ability incomparable to anything but a good night's sleep, but it does catch up with you eventually.

Mechanics & Inner Workings

Imbibing a cup of brewed pit coffee provides the consumer with the full benefits of a long rest. Drinkers with a Constitution score of 17 or lower take 1d4 exhaustion levels after completing their next long rest. Drinkers with a Constitution score of 18 or higher instead take 1d4-1 exhaustion levels, with a minimum of 1 exhaustion level.   Pit coffee consumption can not be stacked or used to replace long rests completely. All levels of exhaustion relevant to consumption of this item must be eliminated via long rest or greater restoration before pit coffee can be benefited from again.

Manufacturing process

Wild heartburst cherries are harvested from acreage with private owners, the use of which is auctioned off to harvesters seasonally. Each cherry is shucked by hand. The flesh of the heartburst cherry is not harmful, and is separated away with great care to re-purpose it as useful byproduct. The resulting pits are prepared by a knowledgeable roaster. Properly prepared pits are ground to a fine powder and prepared in small batches. Boiling water is poured over the grounds in a filter specifically rated for pit coffee, allowing it to slowly trickle in to a waiting pot of water below.   Because of the extreme bitterness of this coffee many will use concentrated syrups to flavor it if they bother at all. It is popularly taken black, with the drinker sucking it down as fast as they can possibly manage before rinsing their mouth. This beverage can leave the inside of the mouth feeling numb for several hours if not followed by a chaser of something that binds with the present oils, such as coarse sugared cream. Some individuals chew blot paper instead. Some commercially available gums claim to remove heartburst oils.


In the developing work culture of the modern day access to this coffee is seen as an expensive blessing, and it is relied upon to overcome the limits of one's body to persevere with their work, something that is viewed as increasingly alarming by the general public. Previously it could only be afforded by royalty and was typically bestowed upon soldiers before battle as a part of their rations rather than being consumed by civilians.   In the past when preparation methods were less regulated and more poorly understood deciding who to give it to and when was a gamble generals had to be careful deploying en masse, as an over-reliance could see them losing the day based upon the coffee killing more soldiers than the enemy's blades.   Professional adventurers used to value ground pits enough that it was sometimes offered as payment, and jobs promising any appreciable amount might have been swarmed by those low on their supply. Being able to push through one more night on a journey in dangerous territory could be invaluable.
The heartburst cherry only grows in particular conditions in the Lotus Tendril's or, in the case of the smaller subspecies, in the forested areas of the Peakburst Isles. This makes them dangerous to harvest. Because of this and the fact the heartburst cherry can not be farmed with current agricultural technology, pit coffee remains a very rare item in high demand.
Base Price
Between 5 and 20 platinum per pound, depending on roasting facility.
Raw materials & Components
Washed, roasted, and transmogrified heartburst cherry pits.
Washing is more brief than more standard coffees, but roasting is relatively the same in terms of equipment required. The temperatures need to be monitored much more closely and after being maintained at a particular temperature for a certain length of time the beans are pulled and gone over by hand by wizards who practice the art of transfiguration magic. What exactly it is that they're doing when the find an issue is kept as a very dear secret, and one might apprentice for upwards of 6 years to master it, but it pays well. Each facility seems to have its own finishing steps.

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12 Dec, 2020 21:14

and I put this in my body???

12 Dec, 2020 21:26

You put that in your body!