Campaign of the Month: October 2017
Blood and Bourbon
“It’s all papers and forms, the entire Civil Service is like a fortress made of papers, forms, and red tape.”
“Bureaucracy gives birth to itself and then expects maternity benefits.”
“You will never understand bureaucracies until you understand that for bureaucrats procedure is everything and outcomes are nothing.”
Bureaucracy is the ability to affect the aspects of local government. Bureaucrats can manipulate the rules, red-tape and regulations that are necessary to run a city. Influence can be attained by amassing contacts or allies among the clerks, supervisors, utility workers, road crews, surveyors, other civil servants and even city councilmen and alderman. Bureaucracies in the World of Darkness are vast, sprawling and byzantine beyond compare. Areas of authority frequently overlap and the various functions, bureaus, and authorities form a labyrinth which few can navigate.
|Background Dots||Level of Influence|
|X||Non-employee service recipient|
|•||Entry level employee|
|••||Senior employee/lower management|
Allies (Bureaucracy) •••••
• Patricia “Pat” Maurier
Parish clerk of Orleans Parish. 87-year-old dried up spinster who claims she is the bastard daughter of William Faulkner. She’s sharp as a whip and with a mind like a steel trap despite her age. She’s a consummate clerk, wielding political power from behind the castles of paperwork. She binges on old bourbon (her family is old money) after every election she oversees, and quotes liberally from her “old man.” She claims she’s named after a character in his book Mosquitoes (or the character is named after her). Likes puzzles and riddles and writes gaudy mystery-romances under a pen name. She’s “decided” that she will live to 90, then retire and die. Likely in that order, she laughs.
Story One: Amelie Savard listened to Pat address McGehee’s student body during the school’s opening assembly. She mentioned being an alumnus of the class of ‘46 and exhorted the girls to “spread [their] wings and fly far” while remembering their family’s roots.
Story Two: Pat was present for the Eighth District police shooting after arriving to help bail her several-times-great-niece Rachel out of trouble.
Story Three: Louis Fontaine knew Pat for decades and consulted with her to research the Slattern Slashers. The two also shared drinks and morbid humor over getting old.
Allies (Bureaucracy) ••••
• Jerry Marron, Jr.
New Orleans’ district chief fire marshal and husband to Pamela Ardoin. Gossip and the gospel-truth agree that Jerry inherited his position from his uncle, Martin Glass. His uncle served as a NOFD firefighter before an injury forced him to accept a lateral promotion at the fire marshal’s office, where he worked initially as an inspector before climbing the ranks to district chief. During that time, Jerry Junior became an inspector with his sole qualification being his pedigree. Later, when Martin Glass stepped down, Jerry Junior took his place–at least in name. In truth, the current district chief is confounded by NOLA’s prolix bureaucracy, and his understanding of his own district’s role in that web is only a little better. Indeed, Jerry Junior used to simply rely on his uncle, coming to him whenever there was a problem he couldn’t easily solve (which covered most of the district’s operations), and obediently doing whatever his uncle told him to do.
So divesting his authority, Jerry has spent his days on ocean fishing tours, hosting blue-collar neighborhood broils at his heavily expanded Bywater residence, and buying presents for his seven grandkids. Yet, since Katrina, Alzheimer’s disease has been inexorably stealing his uncle’s mind, which has left the current district chief to rely upon increasingly erratic, faulty advice. After such literally demented counsel caused not one, but two front-page fiascos, Jerry has begun to lean upon his secretaries and two district captains to effectively do his job. More than anything, Jerry is afraid his employees and the greater public will learn just how unqualified he is, and in doing so, forever tarnish the reputation of his uncle, whom he idolizes. Consistent with his general obliviousness, though, Jerry doesn’t realize that both of his fears are increasingly coming true.
Story Seven: Jerry is a cousin to Milo Glass and spoke with him when he came over to visit his father Martin. He was dismayed to inform to Milo that the conversation they’d had about local firefighters filing false injury claims was actually a result of Martin confusing memories with a story he’d read about Los Angeles firefighters.
Allies (Bureaucracy) •••
• Terrance Delaune
The senior-most fire marshal captain of New Orleans District. Terrance served under Martin Glass, and greatly respected the fellow blue-collar man’s drive and competence. He served faithfully under Glass for a decade, and even vigorously helped the man’s city council campaign, but he became disillusioned and resentful when what he considered was his deserved district chief promotion was nepotistically given to the grossly unqualified Jerry Marron. Initially, Terrance kept his mouth shut and tried to compensate for Jerry’s incompetence, but he changed his tune, hard, once Martin Glass developed dementia. Indeed, Delaune has made it his mission to ruin his boss’ career and profit from the ashes. Although the current chief’s incompetence generally just requires Terrance to do nothing, he has at times taken a more active role by collecting disparaging internal memos and tipping off the media to certain failures.
More recently, Captain Delaune’s corruption has become personal as well as professional, as his growing alliance with the office’s assistant secretary, Paulette Dupuis, become a full-fledged affair. Together, they have embezzled nearly six figures from the district and state of Louisiana. Terrance claims he loves Paulette and just wants to ‘save’ enough for both of them to ‘retire’ together in the Bahamas, but in truth, he finds her disgusting (although the nearly fifty-year-old man doesn’t particularly mind the frequent sex with the younger if larger woman). Time, however, is running out, as both his wife and the city auditors are close to uncovering Terrance’s multiplying sins.
Allies (Bureaucracy) ••
• Bobby Gordon
Fire marshal inspector with a history of questionable judgment calls in shutting down clubs, restaurants, and other business for alleged code violations in the middle of major events. Whispers say he works for the mob as part of a protection racket. Once, very early in its existence, shut down the Corner Club, but spent four years in court against an array of civil suits that left him near-destitute as a result. Works long hours to try and pay rent (his home was among assets seized) and for his son’s leukemia treatments.
• Elaine Montague
City health inspector who is struggling to make it on her own after splitting from her husband, Brandon Eriks, last summer. Has a three-year-old daughter with him and is fighting a protracted legal battle for sole custody, but often leaves her daughter with her ‘stay at home mom’ sister Kathy. Struggling at work due to what she suspects his harassment by police further up the chain, though she can’t prove it. Although her looks make her frequently hit on, she has no interest in a relationship at this point—not the least of which because she’s afraid that Brandon would kill any other man who touched her.
• Jada White
A thirty-five-year-old and fifteen-year employee, Jada White gets about half the work done for the entirety of the New Orleans DMV by herself. Her line is the only one in the que that seems to move, and it’s not uncommon for her to juggle five or six phone calls along with a face-face interaction at once. Overweight but not obese, she’s an aberration in government work: genuinely cheerful at work and kind to those that interact with her. Her two children, both middle school-aged, attend a charter school. She shares custody with ex-husband, with whom she has a polite, if not warm, relationship. Kept his last name for the kids. Refers to those she interacts with at work as “babe.”
• John Michael Flynn
Pole climber for AT&T for 26 years who was eligible for retirement last year, John is a fiercely blue color working Catholic who wonders where he went so wrong as a parent and refuses to leave his job, lest he be left with nothing. With his son in a drug addict in prison and his daughter a “degenerate homosexual whore,” Michael has fallen into his work, his hobbies and light beers by the dozen to avoid facing the “failure” of his life. Those hobbies include protesting at abortion clinics and attending sporting events. Even his wife Charity rarely seems to interact with him, leaving him to his hobbies.
• Justine Ross
Parish clerk of court known for her sass, the candles she keeps burning in her office, and distinctively long and colorful fingernails. Longtime employee with many professional relationships who is rumored to have dirt on or have chits she can call in with many of the attorneys. The middle child in a large family, Justine is outgoing and popular in her personal life, as well as a known believer in Vodoun (which one of her sisters actively practices). She enjoys blues music (jazz isn’t as much her thing), traditional Creole cuisine, and screwing with tourists. Another of her brothers plays for the New Orleans Saints.
• Paulette Dupuis
Assistant secretary of the Fire Marshal’s District of New Orleans. Daughter of Marcus Dupuis, a former public defender who was disbarred for sleeping with multiple clients. Paulette has worked under both of the Marron district chiefs. Unlike her superior, Paulette is uninterested in preserving her office’s integrity. Instead, she foresees the inevitable fallout of Jerry Junior’s incompetence, and has begun looking for a soft, safe place to land–and has not been above trading favors and assisting Captain Delaune in embezzling district funds. She suspects that Captain Delaune won’t leave his wife as he’s promised Paulette, and so she’s been trying to devise a back-up plan to blackmail him into doing so–or at least taking the fall if their scheme is discovered. She spends her free time at home pampering her miniature greyhound, shopping for plus-sized lingerie, and trawling through real estate advertisements in the Bahamas. Presently, she’s narrowed down her list to the islands of Inagua, San Salvador, Mayaguana, and New Providence; after all, she thinks, a girl can’t be too choosy.
Allies (Bureaucracy) •
• Molly Mason
File clerk at the New Orleans branch of the Louisiana Office of the State Fire Marshal Public Safety Services. Molly conducts no inspections herself (and in fact has only a passing understanding of them), but is responsible for helping to schedule building inspections, organizing schedules for the many fire marshals and inspectors, and filing the results of inspections.
• Paul Christianbury
52-year-old former dentist exposed as a child molester ten years ago who got off on criminal charges twice in five years despite his victims’ waking up mid-assault, but lost his wealth in subsequent civil cases and had his medical license suspended. Now drives a garbage truck for the city and endures semi-regular police harassment. Jessica White claimed her sister was among his victims, though the now-deceased police officer didn’t have any sisters.
Story Four: Paul briefly collected the trash along Louis Fontaine’s route. The retired detective’s circles may have included racists, murderers, and drug addicts, but he drew the line at pedophiles. He promptly reached out to Otis K. Wiggons and old police friends who “advised” Paul to switch routes to a different region, as they thought he wasn’t “clean enough to pick up our district’s trash.” Lou has not seen the former dentist since.
• Paola Quiñones
Puerto Rican “lineman” at Entergy, NOLA’s electric and natural gas utility provider. Shares an apartment in Faubourg Marigny with Dr. Alejandra Suarez, a friend made during their mutual time at Loyola (although hers did not end with a degree). Involved in a long-time affair with Father Sinclair.