In my Star Trek fanfiction, Tricoulamine started off as a kind of garden-variety nerve toxin. It’s meant to be, in some ways, what a criminal would get as a lethal injection. Or it’s like the cyanide pills that you see in spy movies.
As I progressed with writing fan fiction, I found it was useful for a few other purposes. For one thing, it comes in several forms. For humans, it’s either in tablet or injected form. For Klingons – and it’s not fatal to them; it just knocks them out – it’s a sand-colored gas. For Calafans, it occurs naturally in their environment, and is meant to be akin to a form of cyanide being found in peach pits.
It first shows up in Reversal (injectible form), then in Intolerance (gas), then in Temper (naturally occurring), then in Fortune (tablet), then in Escape and The Point is Probably Moot (both times, it’s a tablet. Escape contains a missing scene from The Point). In Fortune and The Point, it’s understood that it is particularly difficult to get if you’re not a physician. However, since it occurs naturally in the environment of the Lafa System, if humans settle there, then there is the potential for people to obtain it without a prescription.
The name is, in part, meant to reflect the poisoned grain from The Trouble With Tribbles episode for TOS, quadrotriticale.
For Klingons, it just knocks them out, and is not harmful. It’s unclear how long the unconscious state lasts. In Intolerance, the Klingons are out for a few days or so, but they are already in a weakened state, so it’s unclear.
For humans, it hits your digestive tract or bloodstream and you’re a goner. Fortunately, it’s fast enough that there is little to no pain. In Temper, a human victim of tricoulamine poisoning appeared to be sleeping.
It is unknown how it affects other species, and since it occurs naturally in their environment, it’s possible that it doesn’t affect Calafans at all.
It can be pronounced as either tri-coo-la-meen or tri-coh-la-meen.