An Excerpt from The Dragon: an Alchemist’s Perspective
By Dr. Eleeroi Braun, PhD, AlchD
The Draconic Containment Unit was, during its long span of existence protecting the Continents, peerless in their field of capturing and/or slaying rogue dragons. And unlike less qualified personnel such as myself, they did not fear a dragon’s great strength, or its prowess in magic, or even its cunning intellectual prowess. According to Elliott Jerredine, Supreme Lance Commander of the Unit during the Shadow Dragon Siege of Nisshoki, there was only one thing they truly loathed dealing with:
“...those blasted scales. There’s nothing harder than ‘em in existence. It takes days worth of potions and softening treatments just to clear a molted skin out, even more to make it into armor. And on a live dragon? There’s no chance of cutting through it unless your weapon’s been enchanted at least 20 times over, passed down 10 generations, and consecrated by an entire pantheon’s worth of gods. For us normal folk without the funds and divine favor needed for all that, you’ve gotta try and get at the creases between them; otherwise it’s like trying to stab 100 inch thick plate armor, it’s just not gonna work. But even then, there’s no way in hell archers can aim good enough to land hits, and more of my men have died thinking they had an opening to attack than any have had running away or fighting on the defensive, and it’s all because of these infernal bloody scales!"
The toughness of dragonscale cannot be underestimated; ever since the toughness of molted dragon scale has been discovered, alchemists of previous generations have attempted to find a single, efficient way to work it into armor. Previously, it has taken months, even years to craft a single breastplate of dragonscale. But in the present, due to the discoveries of Dr. Xjym Krozhe’s experiment's with the lunar cycles of Parvpora and Canelux 60 years prior, we have succeeded in doing so. With a vat of aqua regia steeped in the light of Parvpora at its fullest to render the scales malleable, yet still hard, combined with Sixteen-Legged-Acromantula silk to hold the individual scales to each other while maintaining the elasticity of the scaleweave construction, a standardized, relatively (in comparison to the past) cheap method for processing this valuable material into armor was born. And it is still used to this day.
But dragonscale is more than just premier armor material. Dragons are magical creatures, and the body of every dragon is inundated with incredible power. As was proven by my colleague Dr. Opra Eter, even a single ounce of dragon claw filings provides enough energy to power a standard Class B Golem Construct for over a week. It thus stands to reason that dragonscale has magical uses of its own.
In practice, we have already begun extracting Dragonscale’s potential to be used as a way to amplify magical ability; if energy from a magically active base such as Lacriamium is tuned to the same frequency as the natural magic in them via the Time in a Bottle Chronoconcentration Method, it provides nearly boundless, easily malleable magic to turn into incredibly powerful enchantments. So far, we have discovered ways to duplicate numerous magical artifacts using this method:
The availability of dragonscale has also increased tremendously in the past decades. Merely a century and a half ago, brave explorers and foolhardy poachers would have had to attain these precious sources of magic; after the Draconic Accords, the practice of dragonscale donation has become widely spread, and dragon air traffic can often leave these things scattered along the ground under their flight. Though still expensive, the wide availability of dragonscale has reduced the price quite a bit: a full set of dragonscale armor will nowadays run you for only about 1550 silver. And it’s certainly far easier to get than dragon fangs, eyes, flame gizzards and the like.
Just remember, hunt for dragon scale responsibly. And if you’re heading into a large cave that smells like brimstone to do it, you should probably run very quickly in the opposite direction.