In his Key to Alchemy, Samuel Norton divides into fourteen parts the processes or states through which the alchemical substances pass from the time they are first placed in the test tube until ready as medicine for plants, minerals, or men:
1. Solution, the act of passing from a gaseous or solid condition, into one of liquidity.
2. Filtration, the mechanical separation of a liquid from the undissolved particles suspended in it.
3. Evaporation, the changing or converting from a liquid or solid state into a vaporous state with the aid of heat.
4. Distillation, an operation by which a volatile liquid may be separated from substances which it holds in solution.
5. Separation, the operation of disuniting or decomposing substances.
6. Rectification, the process of refining or purifying any substance by repeated distillation.
7. Calcination, the conversion into a powder or calx by the action of heat; expulsion of the volatile substance from a matter.
8. Commixtion, the blending of different ingredients into new compounds or mass.
9. Purification (through putrefaction), disintegration by spontaneous decomposition; decay by artificial means.
10. Inhibition, the process of holding back or restraining.
11. Fermentation, the conversion of organic substances into new compounds in the presence of a ferment.
12. Fixation, the act or process of ceasing to be a fluid and becoming firm; state of being fixed.
13. Multiplication, the act or process of multiplying or increasing in number, the state of being multiplied.
14. Projection, the process of turning the base Metals into gold.
ah, strange otherworldly being, here we have some soup. i know that you must be baffled at the idea that i would consume a liquid whose particles vibrate at frequencies in excess of mine own, but in truth this is very common for my species
jeremy are you going to explain hot and cold food to me at every meal it has been three weeks
A Team Free Will imagine requested by anon. An older piece of writing that’s been edited for reposting to stock-up on the details my younger self skimped out on. Hope you like it!
You checked the calendar to confirm the dread welling in your stomach like dry flames, the acidic bit gnawing at your insides as if you had starved a parasite within you for a moment past it’s patience, bitter bile rising in your throat to dance along your taste buds when your memory was confirmed by the flashing laser date stamped on your alarm clock. In two days, it would be the three-year anniversary of your best friend’s, and hunting partner’s, tragic death… literally by your hand. You never intended to hurt her, or bring about her demise, but your actions had stolen the breath from her lungs in one final exhale, clear chocolate eyes glazing over, hands falling limp to the concrete flooring, her skin losing it’’s olive complexion to take on a much paler, cadaverous pigment as the warmth drained from her body. The memory had been branded on the tissues of your brain with a cattle iron, and no amount of time lapsing since the event would diminish the amount of guilt that ran your nerves raw. You didn’t run on a nine-to-five, Monday through Friday schedule as a hunter (yours was more the whenever-you-rolled-into-town type of gig), so dates carried very little importance to you… but around this time every October, your joints went stiff, your mind thickening to a leaden consistency; and you knew the time was near. Most had an internal clock designed to warn them when their lunch break was nearing it’s end, yours warned when the year had rounded another corner, and her face haunted your dreams each night as the date approached. This was the only significant date in your life. No birthdays, holidays or celebrations were marked on your calendar. Just the one block in October, circled in red pen. You laid back down under the covers, your limbs weighed down with the extent of your despair, muscles unwilling to cooperate until the guilt had subsided.
God… It was all your fault.
Every time you closed your eyes, you saw her terrified eyes going blank, almond eyelids drooping lifelessly to a fatigued, half-closed state, blood pouring endlessly from her stomach even after her heart ceased to pump, her hands fluttering around the knife lodged deep within her abdomen before falling limp to her lap, palms sliding to the porous flooring with a defeated thump. She had been so scared in that moment, of the monster, of you…
“Y/n? Are you still sleeping?” Sam’s voice ebbed into the labyrinths of your mind, echoing off of the thin motel drywall, his cautious, quiet tone reaching your ears with painful volume after so long in silence. His voice barely grazed a whisper, yet it rang through your skull like cathedral bells. You flinched at the unexpected interference, rolling to face the wall, the glare from your motel-mandated alarm clock vanishing as you eased the comforter around your face, obscuring your numbing features from the hunter’s possible view. Sam’s steps journeyed to your bedside, the backside of his hand pressing gingerly against your forehead, checking for fever, before tucking a strand of hair behind your ear. He retraced his steps, walking back to the doorway. “Call me if you feel sick.” He murmured over his shoulder, footfall retreating beyond your bedroom alcove. You almost considered calling for him, but you knew his request was for physical pain only, none of this eternal, gut-wrenching grief. Tylenol couldn’t mend this. Your throat was dry, your nostrils burning with the phantom scents of her blood on the chilling concrete, crimson mixing steadily with the film of settled dust, liquid carrying the particles atop a glossy surface as it ballooned away from her injury. Her dead eyes stared at you, the light behind them gone so quickly, prematurely. She was sixteen years old when you had to… end it.
Her cries for help reverberated within your cranium, your legs kicking helplessly at the bed sheets confining them, your struggle paired with a low whining emitted as your face burned. You heard footsteps rush to your room, accompanied by panting and three pairs of hands touching you, probing your neck, wrists and temples for signs of physical distress, a feverish episode, a demoic fit, hands deserting your body to skim along the furniture, searching for a hex bag to explain your (apparently noisy) uproar. You felt the tears build behind your eyelids, body locking up when the men stumbled into the room, joints stiffening in embarrassment. You prayed to whatever god was listening that you’d be able to hold it together and remain distant from your friends for just a few days more… but it appeared as though they’d already pieced something together, your supposedly inconspicuous internal jabs hailing their attention.
“Y/n, what’s going on?” Dean’s panicked voice sounded, close enough to blow beer-scented breath across your chin. “Are you sick? Are you, I don’t know, hurt?“ He hissed, his hands spreading the tendrils of hair that had fallen over your features away from your face, his emerald eyes drilling into your pupils, dissecting your composure. "What’s going on? Don’t think we haven’t noticed how quiet you’ve been lately.” He whispered, lips pursed over his tentative accusation, his head tilting as if to coax an explanation from your frigid lips.
“Please talk to us, Y/n, so we can help you.” Came Castiel’s voice from somewhere near your shoulder, his hand warmer than the other two along your body, his touch alarming you. For an angel who barely tolerated the touch of his closest friends, his contact was shockingly soothing. You opened your eyes, releasing tears that you speedily wiped from your cheeks, burhsing Dean’s hands from your face, his callouses scratching along your cheekbones as his hand dropped. You sat up in bed, quivering. There was no way you could dig yourself out of this mess, no clever trick to evade their questions. It would be best to just… release the information. You steeled a shaky breath, your eyes shifting to Sam’s anxious hazel irises, his brow pinched with concern.
“Two days from now will be three years since I had to kill my best friend.” You mouthed, words barely a breath, barely a whimper. The men remained quiet, ducking their heads without interruption, droopping their gazes to the ground, unsure of how to react. “She and I were hunting something, and it was torturing her, making her go crazy. It was in her head, making her see things, shoot at me, scream…” you swallowed another scorching round of bile as it rose in your throat, pausing in your explanation. A trail of tears dribbled from your chin, your hand shivering as you swiped at the stream. “She asked me to kill her, and it was so dangerous, she was so far gone that I… I was going to stab her, but she came to her senses right before-” you choked on your words, throat closing. "She moved, and I missed her vitals. She suffered. It’s my fault.” The silence left in the wake of your words seemed to shift with the weight of understood sorrow, the men lifting their faces to yours, their eyes darkening, deepening with emotion.
“Why didn’t you tell us?” Sam sighed, his eyes glistening, his jaw hardening as he clenched his teeth, fighting the sight of your trembling form as it threatened to bring him to tears. You shook your head, swallowing nonexistent saliva to dampen your desert of a throat.
“Hunters are supposed to be strong. They aren’t supposed to cry, and the easiest way for me to fit that quota is if I cut everyone out of my life for a week or two.” You explained, voice crackling like a dying fire. “I mean… its worked twice now, I figured I’d keep to the routine.” Dean, kneeling at your bedside, rose, moving to sit beside you. His hand covered yours, pushing your hand down into the comforter, trapping the warmth from all sides.
“Look, there’s no quota to fit. People get hurt in this business. We cry, we yell, we feel. You’re allowed to feel, Y/n.” Dean assured, leaning close to you, locking your eyes on his. Castiel moved into your view, sandwiching between the two brothers as Sam moved to sit on the end of your bed, his shoulder slumped.
“I can tell you as a fact that her soul made it to Heaven, if it’s any consolation.” He said, his voice low with some angelic version of emotion, if monotonous. “She is very happy, and she has forgiven you for what you had to do.” You squeezed your eyes shut, expelling tears, water cascading down your cheeks as you buried your face into Dean’s shoulder, his arms winding around your body as you wept, the four of you held together by the distant shadow of another hunter.