Laxatives, confections, & stimulating pies

Eleanor Konik

Eleanor Konik

Professionally, I teach pre-teens about ancient civilizations. In my downtime, I enjoy combining storytelling with my love of sharing obscure history and science.


From behind the bar, Julea cleaned cups and watched the tavern's patrons. The newest wore a very particular smile when he listened to Kanna talk — stiff and patient, but definitely attentive. He twitched every time the old witch's hand went close to the belt of herbs and crystals at her hip.

The last thing she needed was a bunch of Neo-Valorists hunting in her town, so Julea poisoned his next drink. A little laxative solved the problem nicely.

If you missed my previous stories featuring the Cult of Valor, check out:

The Laundress & the Fungal Growth
The art of getting clothes clean is basically magic
Fortifications originally protected us from nature


Whenever I read a story (like this one) where a character slips someone a laxative, I think about college pranks. Specifically, people putting depilatory chemicals in shampoo, laxatives in brownies, and itching powder in underwear drawers.

(Once, as a teenager, I threatened my father with the latter; he was not amused.)

When I think about laxatives, I usually think of thick pink liquid, like what comes in a bottle of Pepto Bismal. If I'm reading a fantasy novel, I expect some kind of potion or herbal tea.

I don't expect milk.

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