So far, in the Elder Races, I’ve given several examples of how drinks and magic intermix. I’m writing this off the top of my head, but I *think* the first time was when I introduced the concept of a healing potion in Storm’s Heart. As any experienced D&D enthusiast would know, drinkable healing potions have been around for a long while. In fact, I remember them from my college days. 🙂
Another time when I mixed magic and drinks was when I developed the concept of bloodwine. The history for how and why bloodwine was created (or developed) was from the crisis of the Black Death in the 1340s to the 1350s. This pandemic was catastrophic: an estimated 75 to 200 million people were killed, and in my series, it wasn’t just humankind that was affected–Vampyres were too. Their friends, families, retainers, and food sources were decimated. To avoid starvation, they had to alchemically develop a shelf-stable food source… and that was how bloodwine came to be.
I’ve always pictured bloodwine as a deep ruby red, as blood would be intermingled with red wines. Perhaps there’s a chemical reason why red wines work the best. Possibly rose wines would work too, but less well, and white wines would be even less desireable. In my head, I’ve always had the concept of a Vampyre bloodwine connoisseur turning his/her nose up at a white bloodwine. “Too dingy,” they would say. “See how the blood muddies up the clarity and color of a white wine….”
And in a previous post I’ve already brought up my third example of drinks and magic, with the wine that produces a mild hallucinogenic effect from Lionheart. The fourth example would be the simples and tinctures I mention in American Witch.
This is where I want to pause a moment. While I have not written it into a story yet, I see the human witches having a rich variety of magical drinks they could use. Healing possets, tinctures, simples, teas for healing and divination purposes, and I plan on incorporating the real life idea of “moon milk.”
I’m utterly enchanted with moon milk. There are different recipes available online, meant for a variety of purposes, and I’ve been browsing through them to collect the ones I want to try, and also to try to decide how I’ll bring the concept into a scene.
Some of the recipes appear to be for a woman’s time of the month. Other recipes are meant to help with insomnia and to be used as a sleep aid. Still others are to be consumed during a full moon, and real life pagans use them for magical purposes.
If you’re curious and Google “moon milk” be sure to set your browser to images, and you’ll get a full array of gorgeous images. They all look delicious and colorful. Some are vegan, some have dairy… really the variety is great. I’ve started collecting the ingredients needed to try a few of them, things like culinary quality rose petals, hibiscus, lavendar, butterfly pea flower, cinnamon, and a host of other ingredients.
Here’s just a few examples for you to consider:
What I love about these is that they not only fill a function, they’re beautiful too. And that’s a certain kind of magic to me.