A Druid's Pharmacopoeia

‘A Druid’s Pharmacopoeia’was a piece I wrote for Torn Asunder, a d20 supplement edited by (friend and gamemaster) Steve Creech and Kevin Ruesch and published by Bastion Press in 2003 . The supplement was well received and had excellent reviews. It also won the Silver Award for Best Rules Supplement at the2004 Ennie Awards.

The thrust of the supplement, as might be expected, was to give gamemasters and players options in combat over and above just subtracting hit points. However, this piece does not involve anything about combat, but, rather, dealing with the aftereffects of combat, which was a planned section of the supplement.

I was most proud of the the fact that I was told by one of the editors that my submission (reflected below) needed minimal editing.

Druidical orders have always planted medicinal herbs and plants in their groves, so that they do not have to rely on their magic so often, and have developed many ways of using them that they have kept to themselves. Such plants are often more potent that what might be found or grown elsewhere, and are sometimes unique to these groves.

This pharmacopoeia is a compendium of such natural cures, palliatives, and preventatives. Most druid groves usually have one or two written copies, and new druids or rangers are taught from them, who are required to memorize it. The pharmacopoeia itself never leaves the grove. The contents are considered druidical secrets and are not to be shared among outsiders, for fear that they will over-harvest and exploit the natural bounty.

However, this copy was obtained [stolen] from an absent-minded druid, who obviously had a wry sense of humor, and who wrote down everything he learned so that he could reference it later. It is obvious that some of what he has written is from his own observations. He even drew crude but serviceable drawings of the plants referenced. Copies of this book are never advertised for sale openly, but occasionally they may be obtained for the right price. Anyone caught with a copy of this book by the druids or their followers could face quick punishment, or simply confiscation of the book, so anyone possessing it should take care to keep it safely hidden from wary eyes.

[Anyone possessing a copy of this book can add a +10 circumstance bonus to their Wilderness Lore checks, or, if they do not possess that skill, may attempt a Search check at DC 25, to find any of the plants referenced within.]

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