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Emma Drake
Learned Scribe

USA
206 Posts

Posted - 16 Sep 2012 :  06:51:37  Show Profile  Visit Emma Drake's Homepage Send Emma Drake a Private Message  Reply with Quote  Delete Topic
My current gaming group recently had a debate about how often Underdark races use contraception (as birth rates are generally lower than for, say, humans).

My contribution to the discussion was that, due to the lack of sunlight, herbal remedies (made from cannis seed or nararoot) would be either impossible to find or prohibitively expensive. Men and women would thus need to turn to magic if they wanted a reliable way to prevent conception. I pointed to the gnomes as a good source of such an item, as, in my mind, I imagined that it might take the form of a charm or a gem.

The counterargument was that as Underdark races that are not incredibly fertile, even magic forms of contraception would be uncommon. (And gnomes, as socially awkward isolationists would be particularly unlikely to be the source of trinkets meant to prevent conception.)

I did some searching in Forgotten Realms source books and didn't come up with much other than basic information. Drow are more fertile than surface elves and deep gnomes have shorter life spans than surface gnomes.

A perusal of the the forum archives produced this helpful post:

http://forum.candlekeep.com/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=2588

I found it rich in information on surface contraception, but the thread doesn't explore Underdark races.

Does anyone have any light they can shed on the topic? Is there any lore out there about such things? (To be honest, my interest was more piqued by the lack of material I turned up than the original debate!)

I'm specifically looking to find out how the various Underdark races might view unplanned pregnancy, what ways they might have to prevent it, and if those methods would be widely available for sale.

xo,
Emma

"I am always here, all about you. You are never truly alone. I flow wherever life flows, wherever winds blow and water runs and the sun and moon chase each other, for there is magic in all things."

- Mystra (Ed Greenwood, Silverfall)

Edited by - Emma Drake on 02 Jul 2013 01:19:31

Eilserus
Master of Realmslore

USA
1446 Posts

Posted - 16 Sep 2012 :  07:34:22  Show Profile Send Eilserus a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Considering the danger of the Underdark and the most likely constant need for replacement soldiers, wizards, and priests, I'm not sure unplanned pregnancies would be viewed as a bad thing. I think their use would probably vary by culture. For instance, I wouldn't see drow using such a thing very often when they could sell the child for gold or sacrifice it for the favor of Lolth or some other dark god. But, if needed, I would simply create a fungus, mushroom, lichen etc that would work in similar ways that you could probably buy in an alchemist's shop.
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sleyvas
Skilled Spell Strategist

USA
11737 Posts

Posted - 16 Sep 2012 :  11:55:12  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Given the dangers of the environment, I can't see them using contraception. Also, as the other person pointed out... we are talking the underdark not any area with moral standards. However, if they DID find themselves in need of such, I'm fairly certain they could obtain such from the surface through trade (assuming something made for humans wouldn't be toxic to them).

However, this does bring up a question of when wouldn't these underdark races want sex to end up with a child being conceived. For instance, some drow mage/pimp enslaves a succubus. His clients most likely don't want tiefling children, and he doesn't want to have to deal with a pregnant succubus. I could see him using herbs from the sunlit world. However, might he go so far as to require all his "clients" to wear tied off intestinal tubing (he buys them from a merchant who makes rothe sausage)? What diseases come about as a result?

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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Lord Bane
Senior Scribe

Germany
479 Posts

Posted - 16 Sep 2012 :  12:11:14  Show Profile Send Lord Bane a Private Message  Reply with Quote
As mentioned i could see the races of the Underdark rather make use of the result than prevent it unless they really donīt want to deal with it and try to get a hold of means, may it be local fungi, plants etc. or trade in market places with access to surface goods.
As for the example with the Succubus you gave Sleyvas, i think the mage or the succubus prevent it via magic or the succubus wants to get back at her captor by ruining his business plans and ending up pregnant on purpose, then being banished back to the abyss where she could plot her revenge on the drow mage.
Of course that now raises the question what happens if a pregnant fiend gets banished back to the lower plaves if it does effect the child they carry. If it gets carried over with them without difficulty i could even see the succubus to use her child to further her plottings.

The driving force in the multiverse is evil, for it forces good to act.
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
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USA
36784 Posts

Posted - 16 Sep 2012 :  14:27:10  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I would imagine that there are various Underdark plants, fungi, mushrooms, etc, that can be used as contraceptives.

Various minerals may also serve a similar function.

And I'd imagine that Lolth's priestesses, for one, have some means of magical contraception.

Candlekeep Forums Moderator

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Hoondatha
Great Reader

USA
2449 Posts

Posted - 16 Sep 2012 :  14:37:10  Show Profile  Visit Hoondatha's Homepage Send Hoondatha a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I'm with Wooly on this one. Given the vast array of subterranean plants and fungi and exotic minerals, there's got to be a variety of substances that would work at least as well as surface herbal contraceptives. And remember that we're talking about a number of different races here. What works for an elf would probably, though not necessarily always, work for a drow. But what works for a drow may not work for a duergar (contaminated by illithid experimentation), and what works for either of them may not work for svirfneblin.

And I'm sure that there's been plenty of research done by all of the races to figure out what works, for exactly the same reason on the surface: babies are necessary, especially in such a harsh environment, but only when you yourself have the resources (food, time, energy, safety) to bear and raise them. Nothing like a screaming baby to interrupt all of your schemes for advancement, after all.

Doggedly converting 3e back to what D&D should be...
Sigh... And now 4e as well.
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Emma Drake
Learned Scribe

USA
206 Posts

Posted - 16 Sep 2012 :  17:59:11  Show Profile  Visit Emma Drake's Homepage Send Emma Drake a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Thanks for all of the responses so far!

I agree - there probably is an Underdark herbal solution to contraception. Is this something that would be widely available for sale?

I also think that it is probable that less fertile, less promiscuous races might not have a great need for magical or herbal contraception. Even if an unplanned child were conceived, it would not be such a bad thing, it might even be viewed as a good thing.

One thing I think is interesting about the responses though - only one person has mentioned contraception as a way to prevent unwanted children from casual (in this example, prostitution) encounters.

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

However, this does bring up a question of when wouldn't these underdark races want sex to end up with a child being conceived. For instance, some drow mage/pimp enslaves a succubus.



What about situations in which the female is not enslaved but is just sexually promiscuous?

When I ask this, I'm thinking in particular of drow women, who are known for their sexual aggressiveness and promiscuity, but the question could apply to other races as well (I must admit my ignorance on the topic of sexual mores of other Underdark races). Surely they have sex in situations where they don't want a child, either because it would be a racially impure child or they don't want a child from that particular drow male specimen.
Even if promiscuous a drow woman didn't care if she conceived a child from any of her sexual encounters, I don't think that she would be so cavalier about when she conceived. Being pregnant makes a woman vulnerable in a number of ways, requires more resources, and certainly would limit some activities (such as running around the Underdark for one reason or another).

Thoughts?

"I am always here, all about you. You are never truly alone. I flow wherever life flows, wherever winds blow and water runs and the sun and moon chase each other, for there is magic in all things."

- Mystra (Ed Greenwood, Silverfall)
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Erik Scott de Bie
Forgotten Realms Author

USA
4598 Posts

Posted - 16 Sep 2012 :  18:42:27  Show Profile  Visit Erik Scott de Bie's Homepage Send Erik Scott de Bie a Private Message  Reply with Quote
A caveat: this is a hot-button issue, particularly when people start linking contraception to immoral behavior or promiscuity. People take contraception for all sorts of reasons that have nothing to do with those.

I imagine drow in noble houses have to have approval to bear children, generally, and male drow who knock up female drow without permission can be in hot water.

Contraception in the underdark is probably herbal (huge biodiversity of fungi down there, from the luminous to the edible to the poisonous), chemical (drugs, toxins, etc), and magical. The cheap stuff would be very plentiful but not as pleasant, the expensive and most effective stuff would be the province of noble houses. I think child bearing is extremely significant in the underdark--too important to be left to chance.

Cheers

Erik Scott de Bie

'Tis easier to destroy than to create.

Author of a number of Realms novels (GHOSTWALKER, DEPTHS OF MADNESS, and the SHADOWBANE series), contributor to the NEVERWINTER CAMPAIGN GUIDE and SHADOWFELL: GLOOMWROUGHT AND BEYOND, Twitch DM of the Dungeon Scrawlers, currently playing "The Westgate Irregulars"
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Eilserus
Master of Realmslore

USA
1446 Posts

Posted - 16 Sep 2012 :  18:53:31  Show Profile Send Eilserus a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Offspring are nothing more than tools to the drow. Half-breeds or those with any defect at birth would be slain (probably in sacrifice). Whether commoner or noble, I'd see them still having children, drow don't really care who's seed spawns their young, males are only really donors anyways. A drow female would probably see children as a means to seizing even more power or having tools that are a bit more reliable than "allies". According to 2E Drow of the Underdark, a drow female will conceive about 10 times during her life and that book has drow living to 700 at old age and most dying of natural causes before 800. So it might not be a huge concern for them either because they aren't breeding like say orcs. I would note that Matron Yvonnel Baenre had 20 children, so exceptions do happen, though I'd guess part of that was the work of the Spider Queen.
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Eilserus
Master of Realmslore

USA
1446 Posts

Posted - 16 Sep 2012 :  18:58:06  Show Profile Send Eilserus a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Erik Scott de Bie

A caveat: this is a hot-button issue, particularly when people start linking contraception to immoral behavior or promiscuity. People take contraception for all sorts of reasons that have nothing to do with those.

I imagine drow in noble houses have to have approval to bear children, generally, and male drow who knock up female drow without permission can be in hot water.

Contraception in the underdark is probably herbal (huge biodiversity of fungi down there, from the luminous to the edible to the poisonous), chemical (drugs, toxins, etc), and magical. The cheap stuff would be very plentiful but not as pleasant, the expensive and most effective stuff would be the province of noble houses. I think child bearing is extremely significant in the underdark--too important to be left to chance.

Cheers



That is a good point. Drow would breed for certain attributes.
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Emma Drake
Learned Scribe

USA
206 Posts

Posted - 16 Sep 2012 :  19:18:19  Show Profile  Visit Emma Drake's Homepage Send Emma Drake a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Erik Scott de Bie

A caveat: this is a hot-button issue, particularly when people start linking contraception to immoral behavior or promiscuity. People take contraception for all sorts of reasons that have nothing to do with those.



I don't think that promiscuity is a negative thing. Thus I don't link promiscuity with immoral behavior. I use the term merely to mean sex with multiple partners outside of the context of a formalized relationship. But maybe that opinion is a hot-button issue as well. ;)

My point in addressing both is that in contexts where pregnancy is not desired but not completely negative, the methods might be different than in situations where contraception is explicitly not desired.

For example, a svirfneblin couple that has recently had a child does not want another immediately because of resource management, but if pregnancy occurred it would not be the end of the world (and might even be seen as a blessing, considering their view of children). They might not use a magic item or unpleasant herbal remedies and instead might use coitus interruptus or the rhythm method. As a counterexample, a drow noble female might want to have sex with a non-noble drow for no other reason than she desires to do so, but would explicitly not want pregnancy to result. She might be more likely to use a magic item that made her consistently infertile.

You say that linking promiscuity and contraception is inappropriate, but I argue that it is appropriate because individuals that are promiscuous have different reasons for seeking contraception and thus might use different methods. There is no judgement in that - merely the acknowledgement that different motivations often lead to different solutions.

"I am always here, all about you. You are never truly alone. I flow wherever life flows, wherever winds blow and water runs and the sun and moon chase each other, for there is magic in all things."

- Mystra (Ed Greenwood, Silverfall)
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Erik Scott de Bie
Forgotten Realms Author

USA
4598 Posts

Posted - 16 Sep 2012 :  19:27:21  Show Profile  Visit Erik Scott de Bie's Homepage Send Erik Scott de Bie a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I see where you're coming from. My comment was mostly to bring up this distinction. Perhaps you are generally sex-positive in your attitudes (and good for you! ), but I know there are some folks who don't feel that way--who see "promiscuity" as a pejorative implying immorality, as has already been suggested in the thread--and I wanted to head that off.

Carry on!

Cheers

Erik Scott de Bie

'Tis easier to destroy than to create.

Author of a number of Realms novels (GHOSTWALKER, DEPTHS OF MADNESS, and the SHADOWBANE series), contributor to the NEVERWINTER CAMPAIGN GUIDE and SHADOWFELL: GLOOMWROUGHT AND BEYOND, Twitch DM of the Dungeon Scrawlers, currently playing "The Westgate Irregulars"
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sleyvas
Skilled Spell Strategist

USA
11737 Posts

Posted - 17 Sep 2012 :  16:39:43  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Erik Scott de Bie

A caveat: this is a hot-button issue, particularly when people start linking contraception to immoral behavior or promiscuity. People take contraception for all sorts of reasons that have nothing to do with those.

I imagine drow in noble houses have to have approval to bear children, generally, and male drow who knock up female drow without permission can be in hot water.

Contraception in the underdark is probably herbal (huge biodiversity of fungi down there, from the luminous to the edible to the poisonous), chemical (drugs, toxins, etc), and magical. The cheap stuff would be very plentiful but not as pleasant, the expensive and most effective stuff would be the province of noble houses. I think child bearing is extremely significant in the underdark--too important to be left to chance.

Cheers



I would go the exact opposite with drow of noble houses.... I'd believe that they wouldn't need such permission, because such would be to go against the chaos that is Lolth. I'd see them simply being happy that a child is being born, and if someone is having too many children as to become a threat, quite simply making sure they're sent off on missions that are considered extremely dangerous.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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sleyvas
Skilled Spell Strategist

USA
11737 Posts

Posted - 17 Sep 2012 :  16:45:29  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Erik Scott de Bie

I see where you're coming from. My comment was mostly to bring up this distinction. Perhaps you are generally sex-positive in your attitudes (and good for you! ), but I know there are some folks who don't feel that way--who see "promiscuity" as a pejorative implying immorality, as has already been suggested in the thread--and I wanted to head that off.

Carry on!

Cheers



Oh, if it was what I said... the moral quandaries I was talking about were the ones involving sacrificing children for power, selling their children, etc...

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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Erik Scott de Bie
Forgotten Realms Author

USA
4598 Posts

Posted - 17 Sep 2012 :  18:02:07  Show Profile  Visit Erik Scott de Bie's Homepage Send Erik Scott de Bie a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Ah, I see what you were saying, sleyvas. Thanks for clarifying. And indeed, those are morally dodgy.

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

quote:
Originally posted by Erik Scott de Bie

I imagine drow in noble houses have to have approval to bear children, generally, and male drow who knock up female drow without permission can be in hot water.
I would go the exact opposite with drow of noble houses.... I'd believe that they wouldn't need such permission, because such would be to go against the chaos that is Lolth. I'd see them simply being happy that a child is being born, and if someone is having too many children as to become a threat, quite simply making sure they're sent off on missions that are considered extremely dangerous.
Indeed, that's a valid way to look at it.

I suppose my suggestion ofthe concept of permission is more about acquiring the blessing of one's superiors rather than ruffling feathers. As you suggest, drow priestesses who have children could be seen as building a small army of supporters. A pragmatic matron mother might see her daughter having a child as an assassination plot in the making. (I mean, human kings in our own history have done the same--how much more likely is it that drow will do the same?) Far better for the house to be on board with child-bearing so as to incorporate those children into the house's army/plans/etc than to have to kill them off.

I seem to recall having read somewhere that it's the custom that house priestesses aren't allowed to have children at all while the matron mother is alive. That the matron mother is the only one allowed to have children, for much the reasons I just discussed. (Does that sound familiar to anyone?)

On that point, children in noble houses get separated from their mothers, partly so as not to be an annoyance, and partly to keep them from building that empathic connection. We saw this process with Drizzt: he wasn't raised by Malice but by his older sister, Vierna. For a drow mother, the choice pretty much comes down to "give my child to the noble house to be trained away from me, potentially into a weapon to use against me," or "don't have the child at all." I would expect most drow women aren't in a hurry to breed.

I don't think drow consider children a "blessing" the way many humanoid races do. Pregnancy and child rearing absorb their own set of resources. Pregnancy weakens a drow mother for a few months toward the end of gestation, making her very vulnerable to rivals. Then, when the child is born, it becomes pretty much a liability for at least a few years. All that effort for something you're just going to sacrifice or send on a suicide mission seems like a pretty foolhardy waste of resources and time.

Cheers

Erik Scott de Bie

'Tis easier to destroy than to create.

Author of a number of Realms novels (GHOSTWALKER, DEPTHS OF MADNESS, and the SHADOWBANE series), contributor to the NEVERWINTER CAMPAIGN GUIDE and SHADOWFELL: GLOOMWROUGHT AND BEYOND, Twitch DM of the Dungeon Scrawlers, currently playing "The Westgate Irregulars"
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Kentinal
Great Reader

4686 Posts

Posted - 17 Sep 2012 :  18:27:23  Show Profile Send Kentinal a Private Message  Reply with Quote
In some ways Lolth Drow are breed, breed, breed, with weed, weed, weed.

Only the best are permitted to live, I could see a Matron or high Priestess delaying conception because on holy mission, other then that I would think as many as possible because at least half would be killed before reaching age.

"Small beings can have small wisdom," the dragon said. "And small wise beings are better than small fools. Listen: Wisdom is caring for afterwards."
"Caring for afterwards ...? Ker repeated this without understanding.
"After action, afterwards," the dragon said. "Choose the afterwards first, then the action. Fools choose action first."
"Judgement" copyright 2003 by Elizabeth Moon
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phranctoast
Learned Scribe

USA
151 Posts

Posted - 17 Sep 2012 :  20:22:10  Show Profile Send phranctoast a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Drowjan Man. I apologize.. Couldn't be helped. :)

Currently reading: Spider and Stone by Jaleigh Johnson: Sequel to Mistshore
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Emma Drake
Learned Scribe

USA
206 Posts

Posted - 17 Sep 2012 :  20:35:30  Show Profile  Visit Emma Drake's Homepage Send Emma Drake a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Kentinal


Only the best are permitted to live, I could see a Matron or high Priestess delaying conception because on holy mission, other then that I would think as many as possible because at least half would be killed before reaching age.



I'm just not sure I can get behind this idea. Again, the limitation on a woman's activities during pregnancy (especially in the last few months, as Erik pointed out) and the fact that women do have sex with men with whom they wouldn't want to mix their blood (other races, non-nobles, etc) makes me think that they wouldn't just leave that totally to chance. Thus they would seek out ways to consistently control conception through contraception. The ability to have ultimate control over reproduction is also a way of expressing agency - something that drow women seem to be mighty fond of...

That doesn't mean they would use it for all sexual encounters - only for those encounters in which they thought offspring would be... weak, impure, or the like. (Again demonstrating that they are in control, not the men with whom they have sex.) Why waste the time it takes to birth that child that you're just going to kill anyway? What a huge waste of time, resources, and effort when you could just keep it from ever happening!

"I am always here, all about you. You are never truly alone. I flow wherever life flows, wherever winds blow and water runs and the sun and moon chase each other, for there is magic in all things."

- Mystra (Ed Greenwood, Silverfall)
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Lord Bane
Senior Scribe

Germany
479 Posts

Posted - 17 Sep 2012 :  20:39:43  Show Profile Send Lord Bane a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I would agree with the aspect that drow rather try to increase numbers, the natural selection of the underdark and the drow society keeps them in someone of a balance unless a war or disease causes major loss to the populace and only rely on contraception when occupied with important tasks.
As for drow pregnancy i could clearly see that the pregnant female drow of higher standing are well protected to ensure that they can give birth, they would also be secure from inner house plots for the time being as they add power to the house with new life and ensure itīs continuity.
If only the matron would be allowed to have children, then there would be the danger of too few nobles and that would weaken the status of the house as you just have to eradicate all nobles of a house to make it fall. Security in numbers.

The driving force in the multiverse is evil, for it forces good to act.
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5056 Posts

Posted - 17 Sep 2012 :  23:08:49  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message  Reply with Quote
For (the original, 2e) DROW OF THE UNDERDARK, Ed wrote two pages of fungi-derived medicines, teas, and the like used by the drow to deaden pain (i.e. before surgery), for contraception and for increased fertility, to bring on euphoria/wildly high energy, to heighten sensation (not just for pleasure, but to heighten sense of touch for delicate work, hearing and smell and sight for forays, etc.), and to speed healing and slow blood loss . . .
And it all got edited out. The short section on drow technology, however, survived.
love,
THO
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36784 Posts

Posted - 17 Sep 2012 :  23:25:38  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

For (the original, 2e) DROW OF THE UNDERDARK, Ed wrote two pages of fungi-derived medicines, teas, and the like used by the drow to deaden pain (i.e. before surgery), for contraception and for increased fertility, to bring on euphoria/wildly high energy, to heighten sensation (not just for pleasure, but to heighten sense of touch for delicate work, hearing and smell and sight for forays, etc.), and to speed healing and slow blood loss . . .
And it all got edited out. The short section on drow technology, however, survived.
love,
THO



It's a shame that the other stuff got edited out, but the section on drowtech gave me the inspiration I needed for an NPC -- I wanted to do an NPC based on a 1986 GI Joe action figure, and the drowtech section gave me the solution I needed.

Anything else nifty removed from that tome before its publication?

Candlekeep Forums Moderator

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Edited by - Wooly Rupert on 17 Sep 2012 23:27:31
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Kris the Grey
Senior Scribe

USA
422 Posts

Posted - 17 Sep 2012 :  23:43:35  Show Profile Send Kris the Grey a Private Message  Reply with Quote
THO,

Yet another interesting bit of lore on the chopping room floor! Alas, such is the nature of publishing I suppose.

That said...I recall at the GenCon 2012 Candlekeep forum Ed openly wondered (in sight of the WoTC crew) about releasing 2E (and older) products with 'new lore' sections that had been edited out of the works when they were originally published (he referenced the Haunted Halls of Eveningstar if I recall properly). I know WoTC plans to re-release all the Realms back catalog materials and seems presently inclined to do so in a digital rather than print fashion. I also recall their rather successful approach to 'web enhanced' 3E Realms products where in they would release rather meaty chapter sized add ons to their 3E Realms hardcover tomes online (that were obviously edited out of the print version for space concerns).

Has anyone (Ed or any of the 'powers that be' at WoTC) thought about doing something similar with the back catalog when it gets re-released? I own every single print tome released for the Realms from 1E through to 3E, and I have a goodly amount of the 2E books in digital format as well (from when WoTC released them as free downloads on their website after 3E came out), so I'd be a hard sell on back catalog digital reprints. I WOULD however GLADLY re-buy all those 1E and 2E (and 3E) tomes if they had even small 'lost/forgotten lore web enhancements' with 'new' content culled from edited out sections like the one you describe from the 2E Drow of the Underdark...and I'm betting I'm not the only one.

Just saying...a dollar or two could certainly be made.


Kris the Grey - Member in Good Standing of the Watchful Order of Magists and Protectors, the Arcane Guild of Silverymoon, and the Connecticut Bar Association

Edited by - Kris the Grey on 17 Sep 2012 23:53:28
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Emma Drake
Learned Scribe

USA
206 Posts

Posted - 17 Sep 2012 :  23:43:47  Show Profile  Visit Emma Drake's Homepage Send Emma Drake a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

For (the original, 2e) DROW OF THE UNDERDARK, Ed wrote two pages of fungi-derived medicines, teas, and the like used by the drow to deaden pain (i.e. before surgery), for contraception and for increased fertility, to bring on euphoria/wildly high energy, to heighten sensation (not just for pleasure, but to heighten sense of touch for delicate work, hearing and smell and sight for forays, etc.), and to speed healing and slow blood loss . . .




THO- Thanks so much for that bit of unpublished lore!

Do you happen to recall if those same remedies were usable by other races? And if so, do the other races produce them for themselves? If other races do not produce those items (or if they choose not to), is this a trade good for the drow?

"I am always here, all about you. You are never truly alone. I flow wherever life flows, wherever winds blow and water runs and the sun and moon chase each other, for there is magic in all things."

- Mystra (Ed Greenwood, Silverfall)

Edited by - Emma Drake on 17 Sep 2012 23:56:11
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Sightless
Senior Scribe

USA
608 Posts

Posted - 17 Sep 2012 :  23:54:47  Show Profile Send Sightless a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Emma Drake

Thanks for all of the responses so far!

I agree - there probably is an Underdark herbal solution to contraception. Is this something that would be widely available for sale?

I also think that it is probable that less fertile, less promiscuous races might not have a great need for magical or herbal contraception. Even if an unplanned child were conceived, it would not be such a bad thing, it might even be viewed as a good thing.

One thing I think is interesting about the responses though - only one person has mentioned contraception as a way to prevent unwanted children from casual (in this example, prostitution) encounters.

quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

However, this does bring up a question of when wouldn't these underdark races want sex to end up with a child being conceived. For instance, some drow mage/pimp enslaves a succubus.



What about situations in which the female is not enslaved but is just sexually promiscuous?

When I ask this, I'm thinking in particular of drow women, who are known for their sexual aggressiveness and promiscuity, but the question could apply to other races as well (I must admit my ignorance on the topic of sexual mores of other Underdark races). Surely they have sex in situations where they don't want a child, either because it would be a racially impure child or they don't want a child from that particular drow male specimen.
Even if promiscuous a drow woman didn't care if she conceived a child from any of her sexual encounters, I don't think that she would be so cavalier about when she conceived. Being pregnant makes a woman vulnerable in a number of ways, requires more resources, and certainly would limit some activities (such as running around the Underdark for one reason or another).

Thoughts?




I wouldn't be suprised if Lolth's priestess didn't have a spell to cause spontanious oberts of the infent, which they could cast the moment they realized they were with child. And given the flexability and strength of the skins of the giant mushrooms that are grown there, I could see a number of different coverings being made, for both sexes. the most common and likely issue being redening of the area and genital itching.


We choose to live a lie, when we see with, & not through the eye.

Every decision, no matter the evidence, is a leap of faith; if it were not, then it wouldn't be a choice at all.
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Wooly Rupert
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Posted - 17 Sep 2012 :  23:58:18  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Sightless

I wouldn't be suprised if Lolth's priestess didn't have a spell to cause spontanious oberts of the infent, which they could cast the moment they realized they were with child. And given the flexability and strength of the skins of the giant mushrooms that are grown there, I could see a number of different coverings being made, for both sexes. the most common and likely issue being redening of the area and genital itching.





I'd more readily expect a spell to prevent conception altogether.

Edit: Typo. Oops.

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Edited by - Wooly Rupert on 18 Sep 2012 05:21:28
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Emma Drake
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Posted - 18 Sep 2012 :  00:04:03  Show Profile  Visit Emma Drake's Homepage Send Emma Drake a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Sightless

I wouldn't be suprised if Lolth's priestess didn't have a spell to cause spontanious oberts of the infent, which they could cast the moment they realized they were with child. And given the flexability and strength of the skins of the giant mushrooms that are grown there, I could see a number of different coverings being made, for both sexes. the most common and likely issue being redening of the area and genital itching.





I'd more readily expect a spell to prevent contraception altogether.




While there might be a spell for abortions, I agree with Wooly - it's just easier to have an item, spell, or elixir that prevents conception.

(Did you actually mean to write contraception instead of conception, Wooly? If so, I apologize for putting words in your mouth!)

"I am always here, all about you. You are never truly alone. I flow wherever life flows, wherever winds blow and water runs and the sun and moon chase each other, for there is magic in all things."

- Mystra (Ed Greenwood, Silverfall)
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Sightless
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Posted - 18 Sep 2012 :  00:09:05  Show Profile Send Sightless a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Perhaps, although preventing the act doesn't seem in Lalth's nature no does it. It seems more like her to say, you have to deal with it and get rid of it yourself, this way. Still, that's not to say that some arcane method hadn't been developed. The last part however, involved the underdark as a whole, and the fact that commoners among the dark elves may not have access to such magics.

We choose to live a lie, when we see with, & not through the eye.

Every decision, no matter the evidence, is a leap of faith; if it were not, then it wouldn't be a choice at all.
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The Hooded One
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Posted - 18 Sep 2012 :  00:18:49  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Hi, Emma. They must have been effective for more than just drow, because some of the fungi were carried as trade-goods on to-the-surface caravans (running up through the ruins of Castle Grimstead), but Ed will have to provide details. (They were traded among drow cities, too.)
love,
THO
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Emma Drake
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Posted - 18 Sep 2012 :  00:29:58  Show Profile  Visit Emma Drake's Homepage Send Emma Drake a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

Hi, Emma. They must have been effective for more than just drow, because some of the fungi were carried as trade-goods on to-the-surface caravans (running up through the ruins of Castle Grimstead), but Ed will have to provide details. (They were traded among drow cities, too.)
love,
THO



Beautiful! Just the sort of stuff I am looking for. Thanks so much!

"I am always here, all about you. You are never truly alone. I flow wherever life flows, wherever winds blow and water runs and the sun and moon chase each other, for there is magic in all things."

- Mystra (Ed Greenwood, Silverfall)
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Erik Scott de Bie
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Posted - 18 Sep 2012 :  01:41:07  Show Profile  Visit Erik Scott de Bie's Homepage Send Erik Scott de Bie a Private Message  Reply with Quote
It seems to me that forbidding her people from using birth control would be 1) to put more power in the hands of the males (something Lolth would never do), and 2) kind of frivolous (there are far better ways to challenge them). Being fruitful and multiplying is NOT one of Lolth's tenets.

This is not to suggest that Lolth might not occasionally cause a contraception mishap and ensure that a particularly appropriate priestess is challenged (you know, one who can REALLY not stand to have a baby just at the moment). Lolth is, after all, fickle, and her favor can make life really difficult.

Cheers

Erik Scott de Bie

'Tis easier to destroy than to create.

Author of a number of Realms novels (GHOSTWALKER, DEPTHS OF MADNESS, and the SHADOWBANE series), contributor to the NEVERWINTER CAMPAIGN GUIDE and SHADOWFELL: GLOOMWROUGHT AND BEYOND, Twitch DM of the Dungeon Scrawlers, currently playing "The Westgate Irregulars"
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Kentinal
Great Reader

4686 Posts

Posted - 18 Sep 2012 :  03:23:32  Show Profile Send Kentinal a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Erik Scott de Bie

Being fruitful and multiplying is NOT one of Lolth's tenets.





From 2nd
quote:
Since the Time of Troubles, Lolth has assumed additional aspects as two
of her many stratagems to increase the ranks of her faithful and thus
her own personal power.


I will grant, that conversion clearly was part of her plan, if not full plan, however clearly indicated at that time wanted higher numbers.

"Small beings can have small wisdom," the dragon said. "And small wise beings are better than small fools. Listen: Wisdom is caring for afterwards."
"Caring for afterwards ...? Ker repeated this without understanding.
"After action, afterwards," the dragon said. "Choose the afterwards first, then the action. Fools choose action first."
"Judgement" copyright 2003 by Elizabeth Moon
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