Campaign of the Month: October 2017
Blood and Bourbon
“If this is a world of darkness, like so many of our kind often claim, then Roderick Durant is the light in that darkness. He is a shining example of what could be, what should be, if only we did not give in to their baser instincts. Some might scoff at the term ‘idealist,’ but Roderick has long been my moral compass. ‘What would Roderick do?’ That’s the question we should all be asking themselves if we want to be better than the Beast would have us be.”
“Chance favors the prepared mind.”
At first glance, one might be forgiven for thinking Roderick was an upwardly mobile young businessman rather than a Brujah Anarch. He prefers three-piece suits over biker leathers and his coiffed hair doesn’t look like it’d survive many barroom brawls. He might do just fine in one himself, though: his sire Coco had him follow an exacting fitness regimen before his Embrace so that he’d have a peak body forever. He’s naturally slim of figure, and kept fit through regular jogs and less regular baseball, but those last days of physical conditioning left him with some added muscle he’s glad to have. He takes good care of his skin and hair, which he attributes to the influence of a former girlfriend who worked in the salon industry.
Born to an affluent family of politicians and lawyers, Roderick checked all of an elder sire’s usual boxes for an exceptional intellect and promising legal career ahead of him. It’s unclear exactly what Coco Duquette saw in this child of privilege, as his mortal life couldn’t have been more different from hers or her first childe’s. Then again, some Kindred think “different” might have been just what Coco was looking for: Roderick certainly fits the mold of an old school “thinking Brujah” better than his brother-in-blood Micheal Kelly ever could.
Embraced just after passing the bar exam, Roderick is known for being “the Anarchs’ lawyer” and is a frequent sight at Orleans Parish Prison and Orleans Parish Criminal District Court (both conveniently located in Mid-City) getting the ghouls and mortal associates of more criminally-minded Anarchs out of trouble. While his legal services have allowed him to accumulate a fair amount of prestation over Mid-City’s Kindred, Roderick seems more interested in advancing his position within the Camarilla than in “playing lawyer.” He’s a frequent sight at his sire’s side, handling the fine details of her various affairs, to the point some Anarchs have joked he’s her “chief of staff.” He also serves as the scribe for the city’s Cabildo (primogen council), where it’s his job to record transcripts of everything that’s discussed during meetings. For obvious reasons, it’s considered an envious position for any neonate to hold.
Despite this exposure to some of the most cynical and machiavellian power actors in the city, Roderick retains a decidedly idealistic streak and wants the Anarchs to push for greater rights of self-determination within Mid-City. He’s locked horns with his more pragmatic “work within the system” sire more than once, and their impassioned debates remain a crowd favorite during the Movement’s meetings. In that regard, at least, Roderick seems as much a Brujah as any of his clanmates.
Roderick has a decent-sized domain in Mid-City. The working-class neighborhood isn’t completely to his tastes, but the feeding is good enough, and Coco thinks it’s valuable for him to broaden his horizons. There’s a fair amount at Riverbend to interest him, including the fact that he could easily hunt there by posing as a member of Tulane’s student body, but he can’t bear the idea of owing favors to Donovan.
Roderick has some clout among the district attorney’s office and criminal district court in Mid-City. He’s less interested, though, in cultivating that influence than he is in tending to Kindred affairs.
Roderick enjoys decent standing among his sect, clan, and covenant (for a neonate). He’s most respected by the Anarchs, thanks in part to his sire’s position but also due his own actions. Most of his fellows think he will be a leader in the covenant some night. He might enjoy a similar level of standing among his clan, but ‘old school Brujah’ are predominately elders, and he isn’t an elder. His coterie, the Golds, include Christopher Guilbeau, Hezekiah Santana, and Amaryllis DeCuir. They’re nominally all equals. His position as scribe for the Cabildo is also one coveted by other neonates. (Anarch Status ••, Brujah Status •, Camarilla Status •, Golds Status ••, Scribe Status ••)
George Smith spoke with Roderick when he was searching for suitable companions to spend time with John Harley Matheson at his plantation beyond the city. Roderick declined due to the time commitment involved, but George was impressed by the well-spoken young Brujah.
Micheal Kelly never spoke with his younger brother-in-blood, but made several disparaging references to him being “Coco’s pet.”
Celia met Roderick Durant (then known as Stephen Garrison) at her first college party in 2009. The pair were introduced by Celia’s roommate, Emily Rosure, and immediately hit it off. They talked about their majors and Stephen drunkenly confessed that he has a stalker. When Celia took him back to her dorm room to fool around she got cold feet when clothes started coming off, so Stephen offered to take her out on a date to make it special, and after a “magical evening” he took Celia’s virginity. They soon made their relationship official. Celia took Stephen home to meet her father at the worst dinner ever, where Maxen berated Celia for her lack of cooking ability and told Stephen what a disappointment she was. The couple’s following dinner with Diana was much more relaxed, though once they were alone, Stephen pointed out to Celia that something must be going on with her mother’s income for her to live as poorly as she did. He offered his assistance in helping resolve the matter and the pair convinced Diana to talk to a lawyer.
Stephen met Emmett Delacroix when the latter dropped Celia off for a family dinner. He did not seem amused by the boy’s lack of propriety and accused Celia of cheating on him. Celia confessed that she was in love with Stephen and they enjoyed a romp in the car before going back to Tulane to pull Emily from her alcohol-induced funk.
Despite her plans to confront Stephen’s stalker, who Celia assumed was a vampire, she died before she got the chance. Following her Embrace, she met up with Stephen to officially end things with him. She told him that she cheated on him and fed from him before wresting back control of her Beast and fleeing the scene, leaving a distraught Stephen behind.
In 2016, Roderick spoke with Jonathan North at Elysium following the latter’s verbal confrontation with Caitlin Meadows and warned him that the mad scourge might seek retribution. Jon was grateful for the warning.
Roderick was present when Caroline Malveaux-Devillers handed off the recently-Embraced Amelie Savard into Coco’s care. He helped his sire take care of some related details, but spoke to neither of the other two neonates directly.
In 2010, Celia met Stephen again the evening of her official release as Jade Kalani, only to find her former boyfriend had also adopted a pseudonym as Roderick Durant. He was roped in by the Toreador’s words at Elysium and made an appointment to see her at her spa, where Celia came clean about who she was. The evening ended with Roderick losing control of his Beast and beating her into torpor, then dropping her off with Coco to revive her.
Two years later, Celia invited Roderick to see the new Batman movie with her and attempted to rekindle their relationship. Things went well for a while until Celia confessed that she had actually cheated on him in 2009. Multiple times. Despite his apparent desire for the “ugly truth,” Roderick once more lost control of his Beast and took out his anger on Celia’s face.
Celia was content to leave Roderick alone for a handful of years. It wasn’t until his sister, Dani, was Embraced as a thin-blood that Celia reached out to him. The two spent a few hours catching up and discussing their options, then met up later to spend the day together and declare that they still had feelings for one another.
Roderick later reached out to Ayame to discuss getting his sister safely to Houston with the Anarchs that Ayame knows there. He implied that he would be coming with her to handle some business for his sire.
After being jumped by hunters in Roderick’s haven, Celia invited him to stay with her until his new place is finished. They’ve since been content to mostly spend their time in each other’s arms.
More to come.
Troile (e. prehistory, d. 146 BCE?)
• 4. Losario (e. millennia ago, d. uncertain)
• 5. Adana de Sforza (e. 11th century, d. uncertain)
• 6. Eleanor de Valois (e. 15th century)
• 7. William Starkweather (e. 16th century)
• 8. Coco Duquette (e. late 18th century)
• 9. Micheal Kelly (e. early 20th century)
• 9. Roderick Durant (e. early 21st century)
Roderick is childe to Coco Duquette, Clan Brujah’s primogen in New Orleans, the co-regent of Mid-City, and the closest thing the Anarchs have to a leader. Embraced during the French Revolution, she believes that change is best effected by working peacefully within the system and is a long-time ally of Prince Vidal’s. She has won a number of gains for the Anarchs over the years, though her influence has taken a hit since the Trial of John Harley Matheson.
Coco is childe to William Starkweather. A former common law magistrate who served on the Star Chamber Chamber during the early Tudor era, William never fully abandoned his role as the judge who broke the power of England’s landed gentry. By the Enlightenment he came to see himself as a judge of mortal society itself. He toured continental Europe, deciding which nations had remained true to the time’s ideals and which were wanting, and freely Embraced childer whom he felt could best use immortality to effect productive change. Revolutionary France was his last great journey beyond his homeland and Coco the last of his progeny (as well as one of the most successful). He resettled in London during the Napoleonic Wars and has remained there since.
Starkweather is childe to Eleanor de Valois. A scion of the royal House of Valois, Eleanor was renowned for her cool judgment (for a Brujah) and ability to see all sides of a conflict. She excelled at the same scholarly pursuits her sire did, but unlike the notoriously contentious elder Brujah, Eleanor became known as a peacemaker and settler of disputes. Her reputation won her the honor of being the facilitator and chief spokeswoman of the Convention of Thorns and it was her efforts that were responsible for much of its calm. She served several on and off terms as justicar for her clan in later centuries and now sits on the primogen of Paris.
Eleanor is childe to Adana de Sforza. One of the seven Founders of the Camarilla, Adana de Sforza was born to the Attendolos family of rural nobility who would eventually found the House of Sforza. Nicknamed the “gadfly of the Camarilla” for her penchant serving as a devil’s advocate, Adana was a firm believer in the necessity of creative conflict. Rare was the night that she did not adopt an opposing stance to her fellow Founders’ positions. Throughout the Convention of Thorns, she spoke out at odd moments, sometimes disrupting almost-agreed upon solutions in order to challenge her fellow Cainites’ perceptions and beliefs. Little has been seen of her since the 18th century. She is believed to have been destroyed or entered torpor at the Sabbat’s hands.
Adana was childe to Losario, an obscure methuselah of whom little is known. He seems to have been active in the Italian peninsula at some point, given his childe’s mortal origin. He is presumed to have been destroyed or entered torpor long ago.
Losario is childe to Troile. Clan Brujah holds their founder lies trapped beneath the salted earth of Carthage, though the Ventrue insist they destroyed Troile during the Third Punic War.
Roderick’s elder brother-in-blood Micheal Kelly is an Irish brewer and World War II veteran who operated a bar located in Mid-City called Danny’s for decades. Danny’s was recently destroyed by Bobbi Jo Boggs and the White Reich Outlaw Motor Club. Micheal’s lack of retaliation against the Boggs and the release of humiliating photographs that depicted him being gang-raped by the entire OMC have seriously diminished his standing among the Anarchs.