Tienelle, or seersweed, is a highly toxic herb with silver-gray leaves, valued by mages for its mind-expanding properties. The properties of tienelle break down space-time barriers and releases the mind to an unclouded view of the continuum. The herb can be packed into a pipe and smoked. This allows spellbinders to perceive complexities beyond their training to encompass.
Tienelle grows at high altitudes and there is no antidote to its toxins. The leaves of the herb are the most potent.
Tienelle contains a narcotic that causes cramps, headache, and the sudden onset of dehydration which might end in coma or death. Trained users generally purge their systems for hours before using the herb. There is no antidote -- Fellowship mages and spellbinders are trained to transmute its toxicity, but because of the dangers, mages rarely ever use tienelle without someone to watch over them.
Because tienelle also expands the senses, tienelle scryings are mainly done in defended, warded, areas like Rauven or Althain Tower. Without protections, the mind is hyper-sensitized and left unshielded to the risk of chance-met interference.
Koriani enchantresses boil the flowers and then soak tobacco leaves with them to weaken the potency.
Role in the Story
|Spoiler warning: Contains plot elements from multiple books in the series.|
Curse of the Mistwraith
Third Age 5637: Tienelle is first introduced at the Fellowship gathering at Althain Tower. Following the decimation of the meth-snakes, Dakar is asked to use tienelle while the Fellowship casts strands to divinate the future.
Third Age 5638: When Arithon flees Etarra after the failed coronation, he steals a half tin of tienelle from Sethvir's saddle bags. He uses these herbs to track the future of Deshir's clans. Though Arithon goes into a trance for twelve hours to ensure that his chosen location was isolated, and he fasts overnight, he breaks two other precautions: he uses tienelle alone, and in an unwarded area. His recovery from the scrying is interrupted by Jieret, whose harmless banter triggers a further vision of Deshir's dead. Following the failed coronation at Etarra, Elaira uses the less potent variety during her character scans at Narms.
Ships of Merior
Warhost of Vastmark
Third Age 5647: Aboard the Khetienn following the ransom exchange, Arithon attempts to use tienelle for two purposes: scrying a sound path for the Vastmark campaign, and regaining access to his blinded mage-sight.
Third Age 5924: Selidie orders the use of the Great Waystone to break down Arithon's defenses and reveal how he manipulated the flux at Caithwood. When the attack risks killing him before his talents can be unlocked, Selidie orders Lirenda to light tienelle to intensify her probe.
- © Janny Wurts, Curse of the Mistwraith, p. 232 (US-Hardback)