Ruinum

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History

A page from Hozier's History of the Franco Prussian War
  • In 1898, sailors aboard the USS Maine were drinking Ruinum in keeping with the highest traditions of the Navy. However when the drunk sailors started playing with fire near the gunpowder, Ruinum accidentally caused the start of the Spanish-American War.
  • Romans used a version of Ruinum in their feasts for their god Bacchus. Bacchus is known as the Roman god of wine and ritual madness or frenzy. They called this version “Bacchuvino” or wine of Bacchus. Along with the drink, the Bacchanalia (orgies in honor of Bacchus) were introduced in Rome around 200 BC. More potent versions of Bacchuvinos are made every year after that since wealthy Romans cannot get enough of it even after the festival. Little by little, the festival drink spread from high society to the masses due to its high alcohol content and its mysterious side effects like fire eating, fascination with spikes and temporary lunacy. This may be one of factors that led to the downfall of the Roman Empire.
  • It is said that Datu Lapu-Lapu and his men drank a concoction of Ruinum (came from trading with the Chinese), Lambanog and herbs as a battle elixir in the Battle of Mactan. They annihilated the heavily armed Spanish forces including Ferdinand Magellan in April 1521 by using only swords, spears and berserker rage.
  • Howard Zinn referred to Ruinum in an early unpublished manuscript of A People’s History of the United States, saying that the honey wine had become a favorite of slave owners in the South in the late 1850′s. It was often referred to back then with the racially charged name, “[Censored] Spirits.”
  • On May 29th, 1892, Robert Ford, noted coward and assasin of Jesse James, opened a saloon in Creede, Colorado. It specialized in barley wines in the style of Ruinum. Six days later, the entire business district of Creede burned to the ground. Ford immediately opened a tent saloon with his remaining stock of Ruinum. Three days later, he was dead, shot with both barrels of Edward O'Kelley's shotgun. On a related note, in the 1939 film Jesse James, Ford was played by John Carradine, father of David, who died in the course of a Ruinum fueled sex romp in a Bangkok hotel in 2009.
  • "Heidi Bowl" Ruinum incident: in the fall of 1968 a drunken board-op at NBC made the poor honey-high decision to start the movie Heidi instead of letting the national audience see the dramatic win of the Oakland Raiders over the New York Jets.
  • Ruinum was the last thing drank from the Holy Grail before its disappearance. It was lost by the drunken crusader who took the last drink. Its loss was a trigger for the Crusade’s search for Christian relics.
  • Pompeii (and Herculaneum?) - In an attempt to appease the increasing ire of their god Vulcan, apparent due to 17 years of earthquakes and gas clouds, the Roman villagers made larger and larger sacrifices of Ruinum to Vesuvius. The largest sacrifice yet, delivered on the evening of August 24th 79AD in celebration of Vulcanalia, led to the eruption the following day.
  • Discovery of Canada: Around the year 1001 CE, the Greenland saga refers to Leif Ericson discovering Helluland (Baffin Island), Markland (Labrador, Canada),Vinland (Newfoundland, Canada) in following another explorer’s (Bjarni Herjolfsson’s ) path in reverse. Why in reverse? Due to a night feast with his men in his homeland (Norway) before sailing, he drank his first fill of Ruinum as a dare and became attached to it. He then decided after the feast that they would set sail with a few kegs of Ruinum the next day. Sailing with kegs of Ruinum would be a trend for all Vikings explorers after Leif’s successful run which in turn started the (drunken) Norse colonization of the Americas.
  • The Expedition of Burke and Wills: In 1860, Robert O'Hara Burke and William John Wills led an expedition of 19 men to cross Australia from Melbourne to the Gulf of Carpentaria in the North. After successfully making it all the way there Burke, Wills and John King became stuck at Cooper Creek after the rest of the expedition abandoned them. Running low on supplies and malnourished, the local Aborigines helped them by sharing some fish, damper and a version of Ruinum made with local berries and honey-pot ants. Burke became so intoxicated that he shot at one of the aborigines, who ran off into the bush. Within 3 weeks, Burke and Wills had both died from starvation. King was the only one to survive.
  • In December, 1916, a group of Russian nobles plotted to assassinate Grigori Yefimovich Rasputin (Григорий Ефимович Распутин (January 21, 1869-December 30, 1916) because they feared his influence over the Tsarina. The group lured Rasputin over to the Yusupov's Moika Palace. The group served him cakes and red wine, locally called руина (translated to Ruin in English), which was rumored to be laced with large amounts of cyanide. Rasputin was unaffected by the cakes and mysterious red wine, although Vasily Maklakov claimed to had supplied enough cyanide to kill five men. Prince Yusupov, one of the nobles in the assassination plot, then decided to shoot Rasputin in the back with a revolver. The men left the palace for several hours and returned to find Rasputin sitting in a chair drinking руина straight from the bottle. Rasputin lunged at Yusupov and attempted to strangle him. The other nobles arrived and shot Rasputin a second time and he fell to the floor. However, as the men cautiously moved forward to examine the body, Rasputin yelled "руина!" and struggled to get on his feet. The group immediately starting kicking and beating Rasputin for several minutes with clubs and random sticks until he passed out again. Legends state that the men then cut off his penis. The men then tied and wrapped Rasputin's body up in a carpet and threw him into the icy cold Neva River. Two days latter, Rasputin's body was recovered from the river. An autopsy showed that the cause of death was drowning, however he was also poisoned and the report indicated that both water and red wine was found in the lungs. The body was then moved to near-by woods and burned. During this process, it is reported that Rasputin appeared to sit up in the fire, which horrified bystanders who reported hearing Rasputin shout again "руина!" through the crackle of flames.
  • Doom of the Vikings and the Saxons: In 1065 the last Wessex King of England, Edward the Confessor, fell into a coma without issue. This started a succession crisis, since the closest claimant Edgar, the grandson of King Edmund Ironside, was but a child, and, having lived in exile with his father until recently had little support in England. Instead there were two serious contenders William the Bastard, Duke of Normandy, a powerful neighbour to whom Edward had originally promised the kingdom to if he were to die without an heir, and Harold Godwinson, the Earl of Wessex, who had long been an important advisor and ally to the king. Whilst comatose, all the power of the crown was held by Harold, who had been responsible for much of England's governance already. Realising that Harold planned to deny him his throne, William came up with a plan to weaken Harold and claim the throne of England. Travellers from Italy had brought tales of a concoction of great power that would bring Ruin to your enemies. William was not foolhardy though, and sent men to investigate these claims and they found that many a knight had met their end after becoming addicted to this sweet potion, and surmised that it brought ruin to the drinker, not the great power that they were expecting. He sent a ship, the Ruinum Magnus, with casks of this liquor to Harald Hardrada, the Viking king in Norway, who quickly became besotted with the drink. It clouded his judgement, and when Harold's exiled brother Tostig told him that England should be ruled by a Viking king again, as it was under Canute and Sweyn Forkbeard, he agreed and set sail with his longships. Drunken and arrogant, the vikings landed in England and were defeated by Harold at Stamford Bridge and their fleet smashed, ending the Viking age forever. But in reality, this was all a distraction to enable William to land in the south with his mercenary force unopposed. But Harold still had a mighty force, and William's mercenaries could not be trusted to fight to the bitter end, so Harold still could have won if it were not for his brother Leofwine bringing him casks of drink he had claimed from Harald's own supply. Harold drank heavily each day of the march south and soon stopped paying attention to the advice of his generals. At Hastings he slept out most of the battle, which his generals were ably winning due to their cunning deployment, but in the afternoon he awoke, donned his armour and struggled onto his horse and headed to the front lines with his sword in one hand and a horn of this sweet wine in the other. Against the petitions of his generals, who had seen he was in no fit state to fight, he commanded the cavalry and led them and his forces into a trap set by William after his army feigned a rout. Harold died from falling off his horse and impaling himself through the eye with his drinking horn, ending the rule of Saxon kings in England. Seeing the danger that this drink posed, William's first order after the battle was to have all casks of alcohol carried by the English forces burnt, as he did not want any more disasters to be brought upon the Kingdom he had just won.
  • Formation of Diaf - Survivors of the Mt Etna eruption, Justini Robertus Júvenes and Brianus Maleolis realise the moral threat that is Ruinum, and that it is being spread across the Roman Empire by the survivors from Pompeii. Realising that it must be stopped, but also that the sweet rich taste would be irresistible to the Roman people, they form a secret society to hunt down purveyors of this terribly delicious honey-wine fusion. They call themselves the Society of Diaf (Detegendo Infectio Anima Fructum - Uncovering the Fruit of Soul Corruption) and are rumored to have been involved disappearances and fires across history in their quest to destroy all traces of Ruinum (most notably the 1666 Great Fire of London). Their motto is Emori in Ignem.
  • Famous absinthe drinkers like Toulouse-Lautrec and Oscar Wilde talk about "The Green Fairy", a mystical creature associated with drinking vast quantities of the legendary elixir. No one talks about "The Black Demon" of Ruinum.
  • In wine and especially vinegar making, a large raft of yeast, or mother, remains in the fermentation vessel. Normally, this is filtered and discarded. In the production of Ruinum, this corrupted mother must be buried at least 6 feet beneath the earth, on a pyre of elm and ash. Typically, at least a symbolic piece of cold iron is placed in the center of the pyre. For especially large or aggressive mothers, a searing iron wheel is cast into the pit prior to burial.