Wednesday, October 2, 2013

275: Poison Kisses

ENTRY 275: Poison Kisses

Who weeps for the lost leaves of three?
- Grafitti on restroom wall in Extropia

On the flight from Earth during the Fall, the seedbanks did not prioritize which plant species they sought to save. They sought to save all the species they could, not simply the endangered or commercial varieties. However, once the surviving samples reached the safety of their respective habitats, many of these seeds were not held as the common heritage of transhumanity: they were put up for option to the highest bidder. Foodstuffs went for vast sums, as did drugs such as tobacco, coca, and opium in all their different varieties. Plants that were seen as more expensive to raise and less commercially useful went for smaller sums; kudzu for example was purchased by a small terraforming hypercorp out of Titan. Poison oak, poison ivy, and poison sumac were purchased by a private, anonymous investor.

She used her wealth to set herself up to her satisfaction, cocooned within a microhabitat with walls of Europan marble and attended by a harem of indentured sex-workers rescued from old Earth. To ensure their fidelity, she had each augmented with glands that produced plant poisons in their bodily fluids, but reserved immunity for herself. As she grew older, her once fine mind became demented and cruel. Her indentured servants were made into torturers, their poison kisses wracking the bodies of their victims. Eventually, she was so isolated in her microhabitat, no one even noticed when she died.

Her servitors took the opportunity to make their own way, though they keep in touch for mutual comfort and support. Some have gotten on with their lives, abandoned their old forms to become informorphs or managed to find cred and favor enough to resleeve; others haven’t been so lucky, staying in their poisoned forms, unable to become physically intimate with others without specialized equipment, unless it is with each other. Most still suffer with harsh memories of their time with the Mistress; some have become criminals and sadists, unwilling walking chemical weapons. So they drift, in ones and two and threes, but ready to answer the call should any of the others need help.


Poison Kisses’ bodily fluids are laced with plant-based biotoxins from internal drug sacs; these are long-lasting and potent irritating agents which have become relatively obscure. Exposure usually results in itching, blisters, and swelling (particularly if taken internally or if the victim is particularly allergic), which apply a -5 to -30 modifier to all tests for the duration depending on how much of the subject’s surface area is cover - the -30 modifier would correspond to having over 50% of exposed skin affected. Fortunately, once the source of the problem is identified, a quick dip in the healing vat can deal with the problem. Without access to a healing vat, the best medicine can do is negate the penalty until the rash works its way out of the victim’s system. The toxins the Poison Kisses exude can remain active for years, especially in their clothing and bedding, resulting in inadvertent exposure. It is not normally commercially available.

Onset Time
Poison Kiss
D, O
1 minute
1 week<


  • A Ruster separatist group has begun using dermal patches and spray weapons loaded with a toxin similar to that of the Poison Kisses’; the network contacts the PCs and asks them to investigate these attacks in concert with the disappearance of one of their number. The missing Poison Kiss is being held by the Rusters and “milked” for their secretions.
  • A hypercorp hires the PCs to sniff out and shadow the Poison Kisses. They are paid promptly and in full when they deliver their report, but are not told why the group was under surveillance. If they think to check back (or made contact with any of the members), they discover that the hypercorp is moving in to capture the network as part of its plans to develop their own chemwar biomorph.


  1. What's up with this new white layout? Am I missing a required optical implant? I prefer the old darker version, easier on the eyes.

    1. Fucksticks. Okay, my laptop died on me, and in desperation to get the next post out on time I went out and got a chromebook. Unfortunately, it looks like GoogleDocs does terrible, hideous, very bad, not-good things to the formatting. So I need to go fix that, and then see that it doesn't happen again.

    2. Thanks for the fix, and you have a commendable dedication to these entries.

    3. It's worth doing right if I'm going to do it at all!