While useful in many ways when it comes to the darker side of alchemy, shadow cloth is rather difficult to obtain. The cloth, so thin that it is almost gauze-like, is tainted with dark, spectral energy. The shadow cloth can only be found in the wrappings of banshees and other, more dangerous and powerful wraiths.
In order for the fabric to retain its magical and alchemical properties, it must be taken from the subject, such as a banshee or a wraith, while that subject is still “alive,” in a manner of speaking. This makes the gathering of this material rather dangerous, as it is highly unlikely that the subject the material is being taken from is going to willingly submit to such. There are few (living) people who can successfully complete an extraction. This makes it a rather rare material to come by, and a much sought after one, as it is useful in many alchemical concoctions.
One story that acts as a testament to the difficulty in obtaining shadow cloth tells the tale of a man who had both arms, both legs, one ear, and all of his eyelashes torn off by the banshee from which he was attempting extraction - but I shan’t go into detail.
Recent alchemical advancements have made it possible to craft shadow cloth using a few easier to come by ingredients such as burr berries, mandrake, and particular types of coral.
The following items are known to require shadow cloth in their creation:
In conclusion, shadow cloth is a dangerous, yet necessary component to many alchemical recipes, perhaps so necessary that it is worth the many violent and rather interesting deaths that accompany its collection.
-From “Practical Alchemy” by Vrantil Moras, Royal Alchemist to Queen Qendresa of Adeluna