Mask Root Paste
Tol Tales of Fabulous Flora #4
Deep in the Blight Swamp, growing only in hidden brackish tributaries, is a grass that the Caymen call Mask Grass. Caymen harvest clumps of this grass, cut away the roots and pulp them to form a thick paste. The paste is wrapped in bags formed from large swamp leaves and hung from the ceilings of Caymen huts.
On certain hunts the paste is smeared over the bodies of the hunters, and it is only then that its properties become apparent.
Mask Root Paste subtly changes its hue to match the colouration of surrounding flora, and thus camouflages its wearer so that he may more easily sneak up and attack prey. A single application of Mask Root lasts up to 6 hours before its masking abilities fade away and it becomes opaque.
Its use by the Caymen is imbued with ritual. The evening before the hunt, all who are to wear the paste abstain from eating such that their desire for food the following day gives the hunt more urgency. On the morning, there is much chanting and dancing amongst the Caymen, but the hunting party remains silent and still amongst the crowd. In this concentrated state, the paste is applied to them by their priest. After the last has been masked, the whole assembly falls quiet and the hunters file out of the village to begin the hunt.
During their stay with the Caymen, the Heroes of Winterhaven witnessed the Mask Root Ceremony only once. Perhaps they may find the paste useful should they return to the Cay Village.