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Blood and Oil

Reflections Of A City Hidden
From the Journal of Melchior Hessian: Entry 2

Things aren’t supposed to change this fast in our society. We are very static creatures by nature, beings that play chess games that span decades, and yet the balance of power in this town has shifted in mere nights. And wonder of wonders, it was I and my coterie that changed such things. None more surprised than yours truly, to be sure. Well, my brothers and sisters in the Society just as much, but that’s for rather different reasons, I think.

Jeremy remains a bit of a puzzle, I frankly confess it. He is part of the Movement, but I find myself wondering more and more why he affiliates with the Carthians at all. He doesn’t seem to… believe anything, as far as I can tell. But he has entrenched himself deeply and inextricably into the politics of Kindred and Kine alike. Why?

My sire, it seems, has successfully brokered an agreement with Marcus Gerard, effectively bypassing Jack by sacrificing Cassandra Kaine. A bold plan, and one that I am at once thrilled and terrified at being part of its inception. My standing in the Movement has increased accordingly; they say I will be named Myrmidon soon. A post I am not entirely disappointed to hold. An honor.

But this all turns on an illusion, the illusion of security that can be so easily shattered by so few. The Man in the High Castle is one of them. But some of his lieutenants have suffered the Final Death, or have disappeared. Perhaps the Snitch feels the ground shaking under the Renaissance Center. Nothing would please me more. His artifacts belong in museums or in the hands of the Kindred of this city. They are weapons with which we could break this stranglehold, but how to get to them? And once got, how to use them? Questions I don’t yet have answers to.

My other coterie member has had greatness thrust upon him, as the saying goes. Connor is not a political animal, but his assistance in throwing off the Kine hunters was invaluable. And in a scrap, well, it’s wise for every gunman to have a swordsman at his back. A fine ally, and one more critical then others realize. He is not stupid. He is ignorant, but learning quickly.

And finally, my new cousin. He is… strangely capable. Flaky, immature, and a diablerist. But useful. I can’t figure out how much he really knows and how much is him faking knowledge, but sometimes the latter skill is just as important. Jeremy finds him insufferable, and I’m often inclined to agree. I’d be lying, though, if I said I felt no grudging affection towards him. You almost take pity on him for his earnest self-centeredness, like the little hipsters that drift through Liz’s shop. Where he goes from here… I could not say.

I’ve taken, of late, to playing chess in the mirror more and more. Something about it attracts me, and not just from the bargain I struck with old John Rabe. I cannot shake the feeling that it holds all the answers to my questions, if I just stare long enough. The reflection of a city’s secrets, the solutions to its riddles writ bloody and backwards. Is this madness?

And the answer comes back, with smoked spectacles and bloody red velvet.

Yes.

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My Name Rings Out
You come at the king, you best not miss

Every Kindred in this city knows my name. As well they should. I took nothing and I made it everything. My name rings out in Court now. I walked in and no one knew me, now I walk in and they clear a path. Because those who know what happens in this city know; they know this was my coup and Victoria is Prince because I made it so. This deal was brokered in a basement room between Victoria, Mel and Me.

There, of course, were others involved. Connor was a crucial piece of muscle, we may not be here if not for him. The helsings are a different matter now though. And Mel is Victoria’s right-hand man in the Covenant, which makes his cousin Vinny important. Thus far Victoria does not know what I am. Mel has been good to his word. He is an ideologue. And that intrigues me. He mused not long ago what my politics were. Ideologues do not understand self-preservation.

Marcus Gerard is General and Victoria is Prince and I, I am Primogen, my word holds weight, because I hold the word of The Prince and The Snitch.

Endagre’s memories have served me well, with my contacts in the The Renaissance and his in the local government I have ample pull amongst the kine. I’ve been able to cut profitable deals in order to get things done: my van has new plates because some reporters showed up at the right time, and some national funds for education came through for Victoria thanks to some pressure from city council.

Now I must secure my gains, this crypt will not do for long. Security through obscurity may have worked a week ago when I was unknown in this territory, but no longer. The homeless still assist me, and I them. I can only hope my new position will allow me to help them as well. I lived their life for the past decade and it is no easy task.

Perhaps now, with this power, I will be able to have my peace.

I suspect not. It’s all in the game.

Ain’t no way out.

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Dear Mom

Dear Mom,

I’m sorry. I’m so sorry. I don’t know whats going on anymore. Things used to make sense but now…

Normally I’d be writing Uncle Tim, but…I’m pretty sure I’m not allowed to tell him most of this. And I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t believe me anyways. You at least have been able to see me right? Question is….can you forgive me?

Here, I’ll start from the beginning. I had stayed the night over at Mel’s and both of us had gotten up. However…well, what looked like Mel’s sire showed up. Cassandra I think here name is. Anyways, Mel seemed to disbelieve it and when Jeremy showed up, neither of them trusted her. Turned out they were right, it was the crazy Raven guy all along. Well, this guy had apparently found one of the bigshot humans in the city that everyone was looking for. Dunno how. Hell, a LOT of stuff happened that night that I didn’t understand. Well, thats politics for you.

I’m rambling. Anyways, things got really over my head so I just sat back and waited. Its what I do ma, I’m no brainiac. I figure Mel and Jeremy are good guys, or at least better guys, so I’ll just help them out. Gives me something to do. Well, they eventually planned everything that they needed to and we headed out. Then…Well the damn FBI guys showed up again and started shooting us.

I dunno how to describe the fight, but I’ll just say….I’m sorry. Again. Mom….I killed those guys. And I didn’t feel bad! At all! Does this make me evil? What….what am I becoming?!? I mean…the bastards kind of deserved it…sort of…but still, killing isn’t what we’re supposed to do. I even killed a hobo! I didn’t….he just…. I just need to drink, and I figured I could help him out too. But… he just…died. Mom, this power… I don’t think I’m cut out for this.

Mom… I dunno how much you know, or how much you’ve seen, but please. Can you…I dunno put a word in for me? I don’t want to go to Hell…I didn’t even mean for all this to happen. Just…help? Please mom. This….this wasn’t what was supposed to happen. If I don’t figure out the good I’m supposed to do as a vampire then…I don’t know. I just don’t know.

Connor

((Written and then donated at Church to be burned to send words up to Heaven. Donated after Wed evening Mass))

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Dear Leah

Dear Leah,

How are you? Hope the kids are doing well. I know you’ve been worried about how late Kyle stays out, but I promise, times are tough and things’ll get better. If not, well me and Mark will figure out something for you.

You wouldn’t believe the stuff thats been happening recently. New Years is apparently a busy time for everybody. You know how I said I might be helping out some political group? Apparently, they’ve got all sorts of crazy people working for them. Nice, but crazy.

First guy I have to tell you about is some guy named….err….Melcio……Melkia…….I dunno, Mel something. Some odd European thing. Anyways, he’s this cool wizardy guy that knows all sorts of stuff about all that stuff Grammy used to tell us about. The guy has enough books to count as a friggin library, I know I had to crash at his place for a bit. I’ll get to that in a bit. Anyways, if Grammy asks if I kept up with my respect for otherworldly things, let her know I have. Heck, you can even hope some of his smarts knocks me up a peg or two eh?

Next is Jeremy. He’s a great guy once you get to know him, but I swear the guy is always sick or something. Also a bit blunt, but hey pot and kettle right? Well, this guy certainly could count as a saint in my book. He says he works over at the drug rehab place and I’m pretty sure I’ve seen him before helping out at the charities around town. Only reason this is so awesome, is cause I’m pretty sure the guys a hobo! Seriously, he doesn’t have any address I know about and he’s always wearing the same clothes! Anybody that helps others even while they’ve got nothing HAS to be a good guy.

Right, well anyways the three of us ended up working under some chick named Victoria. She said we were needed down over at some blood drive over in Redford cause…err, well cause they were having issues with blood donations. I’m O neg so I guess thats important? So the three of us met up with some emo kid named Raven and trooped on down. Anyways, we were all trooping down to do our civic duty when the Santa guy just drops randomly! Right, well, there was a Salvation Army guy collecting donations….you know, Santa guy.

Anyways, this guy just drops to the ground and starts having some weird disease break out all over him! he was coughing and hacking up blood, I swear I saw some boils appear outta nowhere, it was sick. I ran over hoping to get some of the doctors inside to help but the stupid girl greeting everyone at the drive wouldn’t get anybody for like 5 whole minutes! It was ridiculous! And then more people started getting sick and dropping! Me and the others got outta there real quick and I’ve been drinking a hell of a lot of water and chugging Benadryl ever since.

After that fiasco, Mel, Jeremy and me were supposed to help move and unload some crates of supplies as a general charity work for the organization. That went pretty well the entire time right up until the end. Mel said somebody was following us for whatever reason and apparently that gut was really good at disguising. He totally walked in the back door and none of us knew it was someone different until the actual doorman, some guy named Anton, came back and flipped out. Seriously, I’ve never seen anyone get so pissed off, and I was down at Berkley’s during St. Patty’s. Well the fake ran off as fast as he could and the doorman chased after him; looked like he was gonna kill the guy. So I pulled the fire alarm and cleared everybody out. Seemed the best thing to do at the time anyways.

Well, after that we all split up and went our separate ways cept I got in trouble again at work. Oh right, forgot to mention. I had clocked some dumb frat boy a new one over at O’tooles during New Years cause the dumbass was being rude, drunk, loud….and well a frat boy. Anyways, turns out he’s some senator’s son or something and now the friggin FBI showed up to sue me! Well, they said they was the FBI. Trashed my whole apartment and definitely seemed fishy to me. Seriously, when cops bust into your place at least they TRY and at least clean up bits of your place.

Listen, I started talking to much, so I gotta go, but I’ll fill you in more later I guess. Tell Kyle and the kids I say hi. If Jessie still complaining about allowance, just ask her when the last time was she ever did the dishes. Hope the PTA meeting went well and love you!

Connor

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Building Relations
Pay Me My Money: In Cash

The courts have come together now to attempt a unified assault on the suburbs. My unique potential may be an asset in the future, with subtle changes to the blood. I expect that the division will return shortly. The courts may seek different support not that Endagre is no longer in play. I should keep my new connections quiet for a while, to alleviate any undo suspicion.

I went on the raid, I gain nothing from it, and revealed myself to Mel. However, this must be done to maintain my cover. I did get a police cruiser out of the deal. I sold it to Ray. He owes me 700 dollars, I’ll have to go back and get it. The asshole needs to pay me my money: in cash.

Jason Endagre has met his final death. Willy “The Snitch” Stabler required that the unspeakable be visited upon him, it may have been a release for him after what he must have experienced with that disease. He had some connections in the local government that he was kind enough to introduce me to, prior to his death.

Melchior Hessian knows to much, for now he is blood bound not to reveal it, I am not sure that this provides sufficient recourse if he does. I must secure a more powerful base to place myself above reproach on the issue. I should also arrange for a scapegoat to take the fall if it ever came out.

Willy owes me, I should get the word out about what happened with Endagre. Also that I have clout with Willy now.

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The Kings of Nothing-At-All
From the Journal of Melchior Hessian: Entry 1

And here I sit.

Why is it, I wonder often, that we have no kings? We’re hardly humble folk, we Kindred. I think it has something to do with the fact that kings, since the oldest stories ever told, are appointed by Gods, not men. Princes can be appointed by Beasts, and in Detroit, they certainly are.

The Movement was supposed to be different. It was supposed to be a subversion of that hellish little agreement that we were all monsters and wouldn’t (couldn’t?) try to be anything more than that. The Lance canonizes it. The Estate celebrates it. The Dragons… want to transcend it. Whatever that means for us. And the Crones reinterpret it, but intellectual gymnastics only take you so far. But the Carthian Movement… I believed in it. I still do, I think.

But it isn’t. It isn’t. The city killed the Movement, and now we just have Carthians, all jockeying for power. Cassandra is all right for what she is, I suppose. An apparatchik to the core, someone who has operated inside the revolution for so long she’s forgotten what it’s like to have to mount to the barricades. But professional. Intelligent. Realistic. Something to be said for that, up to a point.

Jack, well, that’s as dead an end as any of us could ask for. Sometimes when he talks, I see that dark sparkle in his eyes that says that his Man has happily surrendered to the Beast. Like a junkie in a room full of smack. He’s happy that the city is how it is. It’s a joke to him. And the rumors of his being in the Brood grow louder and more earnest day by day…

And Marcus? At once the best hope and the worst death for us. He promises a final blaze of glory against those who would imprison us, and speaks it honestly. He frightens me, I frankly admit it. But he might be the only real Carthian left of the lot.

And the self-proclaimed “Duke” of the Renaissance Center. Well.

I don’t know if I’ve ever met a man whom I hold in such contempt. A slimy, small man of the world of sex and alcohol. Cringing in his tower while the people who he once called comrade die in the street like rats. If there’s justice in this world he’ll fall from the highest pinnacle of his glass cage, and no one will mourn him. And the dust will vanish on the wind when the sun comes up over Detroit.

Ah, but I digress into fantasy and bitterness. The present calls, and it demands my attentions. My suspicions about Jeremy were confirmed. He took it badly, and I can’t blame him. I dare not write, even here, what I know. Too risky. For him and me alike.

Mr. Jameson is an interesting case, certainly. He consumes food and alcohol without the usual detriments to our kind. Save the frailties inimical to our race, he’s more man than Kindred half the time! Not a bloodline I am familiar with, but one which merits some study.

My faith in the soldiers (but not in the Cause) was further shaken last night, upon finding out that Jason Endagre had sold us out to the scum in the suburbs. His motives were understandable. His objectives were inexcusable. To target our people from the one house of charity we still have, to try to poison us in our hour of greatest need. He got the appropriate punishment, I guess.

I walked around the park tonight and came to a decision. I no longer have the luxury of sequestering knowledge that I am uncomfortable with. This war, with the introduction of poisons and foul magics, has made that impossible. Connor stayed in the basement tonight. ’Tis well. If this goes amiss, he can sweep up the ashes.

So here I sit, the chess pieces glistening in the light of the incense as the board rests on the Glyph of John Dee. And I look in the mirror and see the smudge that once my soul embodied. I fear what will come, but the cause demands. And I am but one man in a city that has no more kings. So let me ask the aid of the King of another realm, to lend assistance in a city of broken mirrors…

Veni Ionne Rube

Veni Ionne Rube

Veni Ionne Rube

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Welcome to your Adventure Log!
A blog for your campaign

Every campaign gets an Adventure Log, a blog for your adventures!

While the wiki is great for organizing your campaign world, it’s not the best way to chronicle your adventures. For that purpose, you need a blog!

The Adventure Log will allow you to chronologically order the happenings of your campaign. It serves as the record of what has passed. After each gaming session, come to the Adventure Log and write up what happened. In time, it will grow into a great story!

Best of all, each Adventure Log post is also a wiki page! You can link back and forth with your wiki, characters, and so forth as you wish.

One final tip: Before you jump in and try to write up the entire history for your campaign, take a deep breath. Rather than spending days writing and getting exhausted, I would suggest writing a quick “Story So Far” with only a summary. Then, get back to gaming! Grow your Adventure Log over time, rather than all at once.

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