Aether Poisoning and Selective Expression Resistance

When dealing with aether poisoning, most cases are quite straightforward.  The classic symptoms are all exhibited, starting with fever and nausea.  Whether ingested in the form of contaminated food or simply encountered in the environment, aether is an emetic first, as it causes the subject to heave rapidly.  After that phase passes, the subject may believe that nothing is wrong.  However, the secondary effects are more subtle, and far more disturbing.  The subject exhibits wild mood swings, as well as violence, even in normally peaceful individuals.  As the effects wear on, dementia sets in, and many subjects die from self-inflicted wounds-tearing one’s eyes out, chewing at limbs, or various drops, falls or leaps from any available ledge, window or even tree.

There is no known antidote for aether poisoning.  Milder cases do not always present all symptoms, but even the simplest must be restrained, as aggression is considered to be almost universal, and even mild cases are a danger to themselves and others.

Far more interesting and complex, however, are the extremely rare individuals who do not exhibit these signs-in fact, for some of them aether actually makes them stronger.  Aether in these individuals seems to stimulate cell growth, an some individuals put on muscle mass, grow taller, or increase in intelligence.  These changes are not without a price, though: rampant growth is incredibly painful, often causing crippling pain in the area that is experiencing the effect.  Old wounds can reopen, only to suddenly heal months in a matter of minutes.  Once again, though, the subject experiences the pain of the injury a second time as it tears open and reseals.

A different, though far more unsettling effect, is the mutagenic nature it expresses in other individuals.  After the initial stages, running through aggression, unsettling effects occur-evolutionary throwbacks such as claws, tails, armor plating or even poison sacs grow in the subject.  There is in the archive a very unsettling tale of a young girl who survived the initial change only to poison herself with her own sting and expire.  Postmortem research has thankfully given us a way to treat such envenomation, as all the cases that we have seen thus far seem to share a similar venom.

Should you come across one of these cases of resistance,  everything you can to ease their pain, and take as many noes as possible, so that we may one day have an understanding of the mechanics thereof, and possibly a hope of a cure.

Elen Llydawc,

Chief Healer, Sanctuary

Published in: on January 10, 2010 at 4:40 am  Leave a Comment  

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