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Juliet

wow that's a lot of stars is a sci-fi setting about adventure, exploration, and discovery. Every person, place, and thing has a story to tell, if you listen closely.   Setting Intro | Visitor's Guide | Author's Intentions
Content Warning
Drug use and near-death experiences
 
Juliet is a drug the puts its user in a comatose and near-death state. While it has useful applications in medicine, there's also a significant risk of killing its user. As such, it's a strictly controlled substance. That hasn't stopped various black markets from supplying it, or claiming to.
 

Effects

Juliet is used to instill a near-death, comatose state in its user. It slows all bodily processes dramatically, and though a physician or bioscanner could tell the difference between a true death and a Juliet mimickry, the average person may be mislead. The user can only be taken out of the coma with medical intervention. The longer they remain comatose, the less likely a full recovery is possible. Whenever Juliet is used, there's a risk its user will not recover at all.  

Uses

Medically, Juliet is used to drastically slow a progressing illness or poison until a proper treatment can be administered. This could be required if the patient needs to be transported to a more advanced hospital, a medication needs to be synthesized or shipped to location, or a specialist requested from nearby.
Outside of medicine, it's used in less savory ways. It's fast-acting and can be applied through most fabric, making it an expensive but effective disable. It can provide a slow, helpless death, and because of the time-sensitivity, is used in hostage situations to extract ransom money in exchange for the comatose loved one.
 

Acquisition

When acquiring Juliet for medicinal purposes, a facility must go through a long, arduous process. There's numerous forms to complete, signatures to gather, layers of approval, and training sessions. The patches must be housed in a secured location that only limited, trained individuals can access. Many claim these requirements interfere with the primary use of Juliet: in an emergency to save a life. Yet medical oversight boards insist it's all necessary due to the risks inherent with the drug.   The extralegal means of acquiring Juliet pose even larger risks:
  • The ingredients and methods needed to synthesize Juliet are a closely-guarded secret, by some to prohibit unauthorized use and by others to help keep competition low and pricetags high. Because of this, there are a variety of different formulas used by black market dealers, and their safety is even less guaranteed.
  • Seeking out Juliet on the black market attracts attention. No one buys Juliet without a purpose, after all, and those who frequent the black market circle potential action like vultures, seeking ways for an easy score. Then there are those who find it easier to steal the product from you rather than buy it themselves, and may in turn resell it to others.
  • Medical facilities that deem the official process too arduous for their immediate needs may acquire medicine through the black market instead. Often they'll find themselves in unexpected debt to cartels, or blackmailed into providing treatment, resources, and other services they might normally refuse.
  Unsurprisingly, the most common place to find Juliet is on Nisora. In Galendra, Cryptix often supplies hospitals and clinics in their territories with the best-quality versions they can create.
Hold, daughter, I do spy a kind of hope,
Which craves as desperate an execution
As that is desperate which we would prevent.
If, rather than to marry County Paris,
Thou hast the strength of will to slay thyself,
Then is it likely thou wilt undertake
A thing like death to chide away this shame,
That cop’st with death himself to ’scape from it;
And if thou darest, I’ll give thee remedy.
— Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet, Act 4 Scene 1

Information

Uses
Emergency medicinal
Crime
Form
Patch applied to the neck, series of needles on the underside inject Juliet into the bloodstream. Can be applied through most modern vacsuits

Author Commentary

Romeo
In campaign 1, Juliet was used to protect people from the aneurism caused by refusing orders sent to Emerald Legion mind control chips. One of the PCs saved his girlfriend's life with it.


Cover image: by Aaron Lee, Nick Ong, Norah Khor

Comments

Author's Notes

This article was written as part of Summer Camp 2023. Follow the link to learn more.


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