Campaign of the Month: October 2017
Blood and Bourbon
“I spent 33 years and four months in active military service and during that period I spent most of my time as a high class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street and the bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism. I helped make Mexico and especially Tampico safe for American oil interests in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in. I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefit of Wall Street. I helped purify Nicaragua for the International Banking House of Brown Brothers in 1902-1912. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for the American sugar interests in 1916. I helped make Honduras right for the American fruit companies in 1903. In China in 1927 I helped see to it that Standard Oil went on its way unmolested. Looking back on it, I might have given Al Capone a few hints. The best he could do was to operate his racket in three districts. I operated on three continents.”
“Why, of course, the people don’t want war. Why would some poor slob on a farm want to risk his life in a war when the best that he can get out of it is to come back to his farm in one piece? […] But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy or a fascist dictatorship or a parliament or a communist dictatorship. […] All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country.”
War is a ceaseless fact of life in the World of Darkness. Poverty and lack of opportunity drives thousands of desperate youths to enlist in the armed forces, which hammers them into disciplined instruments of violence before rolling on the most accomplished and least scrupulous to high-paying private security firms. Veterans too injured in body or mind to be of further use are spat onto the streets as change-begging homeless. All the while, the defense contractors who arm, supply, and increasingly staff the military line their pockets. Contacts and allies can include: commissioned officers, enlisted soldiers, discharged veterans, private bodyguards, other security contractors, and civilian employees.
|Merit Dots||Level of Influence|
Army: Officer cadet (officer), recruit (enlisted)
Navy: Officer candidate / midshipman (officer), recruit / seaman (enlisted)
Army: Lieutenant (officer), private (enlisted)
Navy: Ensign (officer), 2nd or 3rd class Petty Officer (enlisted)
Army: Captain (officer), corporal or sergeant (enlisted)
Navy: Lieutenant (officer), 1st Class Petty Officer (LPO) or Chief Petty Officer (LCPO) (enlisted)
Army: Major (officer), staff sergeant or sergeant first class (enlisted)
Navy: Lt. Commander (officer), Senior Chief Petty Officer or Master Chief Petty Officer (DLCPO) (enlisted)
Army: Colonel (officer), master sergeant or first sergeant (enlisted)
Navy: Commander (officer), Master Chief Petty Officer or Command Master Chief (enlisted)
Army: One-star general (officer), sergeant major (enlisted)
Navy: Captain (officer), Master Chief Petty Officer or Command Master Chief (enlisted)
Army: Two- or three-star general (officer)
Navy: Rear Admiral or Vice Admiral (officer)
Army: Four-star general (officer)
Navy: Admiral (officer)
Allies (Military) ••••
• Frank Alvarez
The regional director for Blackwatch, Frank spent four years in the Army in the early ‘90s after graduating on a ROTC scholarship. His service during the relatively calm era following the Soviet Union’s fall was peaceful, boring, and uneventful. The MBA he got afterwards and the business acumen he acquired from a decade of private sector work have been much greater assets. Frank joined up with Blackwatch in the mid-2000s when the Iraq War was beginning to spin down. One of his first accomplishments was to land a contract with Audubon Place’s homeowner’s association during Hurricane Katrina, putting bored mercenaries to work on American soil against looters and other undesirables. The work was easy, the money was great, and Blackwatch has never left the Big Easy.
Today, Frank is far more than the middle manager he was in 2005. The regional director for the Southeastern United States, his pioneering efforts at integrating Blackwatch into the civilian side of life have kept the company fat and happy as they wait until the next wars that the United States will inevitably involve itself in. Frank is not particularly loved by many of his combat-hardened employees, but he is respected for the work he’s done to keep them employed, out of harm’s way, and making the easy money babysitting pampered civilians—plus the occasional job subsidizing police forces against the rioters, looters, and other people that most of the mercenaries would be happy to shoot for free.
Frank himself is politically moderate and lives in the Crescent City with his wife and three children. He is typically accompanied by one of his mercenaries when he travels for work. Very financially well-off, he drives a luxury car and has put all three of his high school-age children into private school. Hates the heat in New Orleans but loves the food. Quite good at reading people and giving them what they want, with an easy smile. Now balding, he isn’t so much in good shape as he isn’t fat. Very tall (6’6") and somewhat gangly. He tries to work normal hours, but is willing to meet with important clients on their terms—and is always on the lookout for more places to insert his tentacles and develop additional business contacts or clients for Blackwatch.
• Roger Ferris
Ruthless ex-CIA agent who serves as the Malveaux family’s chief of security.
Allies (Military) •••
• Alphonse Meridian
The long-time driver for Orson Malveaux, Alphonse is not exactly Vatican-issued. If one were to dig deeply into his past they’d find a youth of indiscretion, violence, and blood, including arrests for battery, assault with a deadly weapon, and attempted murder. Most of the crimes didn’t stick despite their brutal details: evidence had a habit of getting lost. The archbishop of course would tell you such is the power of God, that He can save such men from themselves. Wise outsiders should question how much of that past has been left behind. In truth, mild-mannered Alphonse is as cold-blooded as they come. The point of contact for his boss’ more unsavory contacts, he is the link between the archbishop and all manner of unpleasant individuals—and also his employer’s shield. The .44 magnum he keeps in the glove box is not just for show. A thin man with thinner hair, few ever see him coming.
Alphonse served as Orson’s largely silent enforcer during two of his meetings with Caroline. After she incurred her uncle’s terminal displeasure by coming out as gay, Orson ordered Alphonse to arrange a lobotomy for his niece in Venezuela. Alphonse attempted to drag her out to his waiting car by force: although he was fast, the mortal man could not withstand the Ventrue in single combat, who beat him senseless.
• Andrew Thomas Johnson (Retainer •••)
Merc in charge of the night shift Blackwatch team guarding the entrance to Audubon Place. Three-tour Iraq veteran and ex-Marine whose fellows got a kick out calling him “President Johnson” or “Mr. President,” and now goes solely by his middle name of Thomas. Not a history buff, but claims to know everything there is to know about America’s 17th president.
Caroline Malveaux-Devillers interacted with Johnson on repeated occasions when she still lived in Audubon Place. She was impressed by how the Blackwatch team leader had bothered to stop his men from shooting her dog Caesar when the furious animal, driven half-mad by the vampire’s unrelenting proximity, attempted to flee the gated community. She was also irritated when he took some of their conversations for flirting and kissed her without her consent.
• Ben Chandler (Retainer •••)
The right hand of Roger Ferris, Ben has worked for the Malveauxes for nearly four years. Where Ferris is the overall architect of the family’s protective efforts, Ben is the blunt end of the stick used in those efforts require direct action. A massive slab of meat, Ben stands nearly 6’8 and weights close to 300 lbs, most of it heavy muscle on his powerful frame. Former Marine only allowed into the service during the Iraq War when wavers were readily handed out to meet recruiting requirements, he worked with Roger in Iraq as a lance corporal and made an excellent impression on the then field operative that persisted long after Ferris transferred out of Iraq into Jordan and subsequently left the Agency.
Despite his exemplary service, Ben was drummed out of the Marine Corps after his first five year enlistment ended on height/weight standards and spent half a decade working in industrial jobs until Roger reached out to him when he was putting together his team for the Malveaux family, an opportunity that Ben jumped at. Though far from a dunce, Ben is used mostly for his intimidating presence and physical skills. A combat veteran he’s unfazed by danger or the use of violence. Truly enjoys his job and his boss, both for his professionalism and the opportunity it has given him. Big fan of football, though he maintains that it’s gotten too soft and concerned with injuries rather than “purity” of the game. Diehard fan of Alabama, often wearing a ball cap for the school, which earns him a great deal of ‘love’ in New Orleans (though few are willing to actually say anything to the titan of a man).
Chandler served as Roger Ferris’ right-hand man during many of his boss’ dealings with Caroline Malveaux-Devillers. Some were hostile and others friendly, but the ex-Marine largely stayed quiet and followed Ferris’ lead.
• Earl Hager (Retainer •••••)
Standing at 6’6", Earl is about as foul a man as exists in New Orleans. An Army veteran who served nearly ten years, he was administratively discharged under vague circumstances that remain classified, like many parts of his record. He settled in New Orleans rather than return home to Philadelphia, and has remained as a high-priced thug for hire ever since. Earl will do just about anything if the money’s right—shove pregnant mistresses or ex-girlfriends down stairs, abduct children, or murder rivals. He’s done work for the Mob, but allegedly wasn’t civilized enough for them. He’s done work for several gangs, but is too expensive to keep on hand. He’s also done work for the wealthy and powerful, often on referral. Despite his reputation as a thug, Earl holds several black belts and simply happens to enjoy violence and petty cruelty. He’s been picked up by the NOPD several times, but no charges have ever been made to stick, especially since several witnesses have disappeared.
• Jamal Harrison
Jamal was 17 years old when he enlisted in the Army with just a GED. It wasn’t that he wasn’t smart enough to finish high school, it’s that he had a bit of an anger problem and ended up knocking a teacher down a flight of stairs when the teacher in question told him to remove his hat. Rather than stick around and wait for the consequences to catch up with him he shipped off to basic. He was 18 by the time he graduated basic and moved on to AIT, then served six years before being cut with an “other than honorable” discharge. He moved back to NOLA in 2006 and was promptly invited to join Blackwatch. He’s smarter than he looks but is often content to play the role of “hulking muscle.” He doesn’t talk much about his time in the army or what he saw overseas, and it doesn’t seem that the discipline instilled in him helped any with his anger problem. No wife or kids to speak of, he prefers the company of women he can pay and show “what it’s liked to be fucked by a real man” before sending them on their way.
• Marcus Weeler
Marcus is a private security consultant who runs his own small office with four employees: a former NOPD detective, a pair of veterans from the Iraq War, and a charming young receptionist and dispatcher named Shelly. He himself walked both paths, first serving as a police officer in his home town in Oklahoma, then quitting his job to join the Marines in 2001 after 9/11. He rarely talks about his service, especially the Navy Cross he earned, and kicked off his own business five years ago in New Orleans when he got out. Though incapable of competing with larger firms like Blackwatch, he has developed a reliable reputation in New Orleans for less strenuous work, providing protective services for specific events or on-call services while maintaining good relations with the NOPD. He often supplements the security details of visiting CEOS, foreign dignitaries who don’t warrant police protection, and celebrities visiting New Orleans. On occasion he also audits the security protocols of larger entities, and prides himself on being a consummate professional who runs his business with a firm hand.
• Mr. Taylor
6’6" Jamaican-born bodyguard from the worst slums of Kingston, Mr. Taylor escaped to the United States when he was seventeen. Eager to make something of himself, he instead found that with no education, a thick accent, and limited language skills, New Orleans was far from from the land of opportunity he had hoped. The ruthlessness he brought from his rough upbringing still allowed him to find work as bouncer, while a developing sense of professionalism—and iron determination to make something of himself—allowed him to work his way up to being a private investigator, a bodyguard, and finally one of the region’s most sought-after ones. Mr. Taylor prides himself on that professionalism, dressing in immaculate suits and speaking only when required, and never out of turn. He is quietly taking online courses and attending night classes for his MBA. For the last five years he’s been in the employ of Matthew Malveaux, and is one of few privy to many of the man’s secrets by necessity.
• Richard “Rich” Orr (Retainer ••••)
A dishonorably discharged Army Ranger who served tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, Rich was picked up by Blackwatch International and almost immediately sent back to Iraq as a supervisor of a team of mercs. After spending another two years in the country buried in heavy fighting, he and his team were pulled out after sparking an international incident when they opened fire on insurgents in a crowded market, killing over sixty civilians in the crossfire. Now in New Orleans as private security, he’s in charge of another team of mercs, and embodies almost every negative stereotype about his employer and profession. He beats his wife, cheats incessantly, and gets into drunken brawls at bars that regularly put his unwitting opponents into the ICU. He’s also been involved in at least six shootings in the last three years as part of his duties, all of which have been swept under the rug.
Allies (Military) ••
• Bradley Abel (Retainer ••••)
Former special forces adrenaline junkie who fought in Desert Storm as an enlistee but left the service during the ‘90s in pursuit of adventure, becoming a mercenary for hire who fought on four continents. Bradley returned home to New Orleans to help care for his cancer-stricken father after his mother died. His relationship with his father is toxic, with the former hippie viewing his son as a war criminal, but Bradley’s twisted sense of duty has kept him at the old man’s side throughout the chemotherapy treatments. How long he—and his finances—can sustain such abuse is less clear. Presently unemployed, he’s itching for action, and sometimes even walks down the streets of bad neighborhoods hoping to get mugged.
• Brett Goodman (Retainer •••)
Ostentatiously a “profiler” and “investigator,” Brett is in truth a spy and expert at both breaking and entering and simply conning his way into groups and buildings both on behalf of the Malveaux family. A high school con artist who attained a bit of law enforcement notoriety while still a teen for repeatedly talking his way into high society events, corporate headquarters, and anywhere else he didn’t belong, often simply for laughs but just as often to facilitate protests on behalf of student activist groups to get under people’s skin (and impress girls). Recruited (nearly press ganged) by the CIA as a non-official cover agent, spending nearly a year at the Farm where one of his many trainers was, for a time, Roger Ferris. When Roger entered the private sector he reached out to Brett, who has found the grass much greener (and more lucrative) working for the Malveaux family. Conducts corporate espionage, break-ins on persons of interest to gather information, blackmail material, or bug their homes, and (rarely) does more deep cover work, approaching and seducing or manipulating targets over time. Truly enjoys the thrill of outsmarting and manipulating others to achieve a goal. A consummate womanizer who is tasteless enough to brag about his many conquests to many of his coworkers. Regarded as somewhat unprofessional by the former military members of the team, though they find many of his escapades hilarious. Was one of the many moving pieces used to tear apart the Cherry family. Also handy with a handgun and a bit of martial arts in a pinch, and though Roger doesn’t use him in that role, Brett is quite confident in his ability to handle himself.
• Brock Patterson (Retainer ••)
A former cop who got tired of writing speeding tickets, Brock joined Blackwatch to work stateside, originally working as a legal attaché to units before certifying himself in their semi-annual training courses for field work. Relatively cool-headed as Blackwatch goes, Brock is often the voice of reason with regard to legal repercussions, but is loyal to his co-workers when things go sideways and isn’t afraid to throw a punch (and has more than once talked a cop out of arresting a member of the company after a rowdy night of drinking). He’s worked in four states, and only relatively recently came to New Orleans. 6’1", with a bit of a belly and love for cheap bear. Hates running and his home city’s head.
• Christofer Steiner (Retainer ••••)
Former Army Ranger, four-term Afghan veteran, and private security mercenary. Descended from German-American plantation owners and slave traders. Compulsive patron of prostitutes, with a laundry list of STIs, including Hepatitis C and HIV. Close friends with Venton Pelletier.
• Curtis Morris
Marine rifleman turned civilian (never a former marine), Curtis knew Brian Fuller from their time together in the Middle East. Returning to his home town of New Orleans after finishing an eight-year stint during a draw-down in U.S. forces, he ended up on a short list when Caroline instructed Fuller to identify potential security personnel. Officially, Curtis is employed today by Canal Camp Apartments LLC to provide security for the Giani Building, but the rifleman knows well which side his bread is buttered on in truth. He’s grateful for a job that more closely resembles the one he knew (having a weapon in hand feels right), and all the more grateful for the free ammo that Fuller drops off for him every week to maintain his proficiency. Missed (and still does) the more regimented life of the military and enjoys working with other former military professionals, even army and navy ‘pukes’. Moonlights as a personal trainer. Curtis is on Caroline’s short list of potential security ghouls, but for now is among those that provide more mundane security.
• Daniel Hayes
A veteran Navy SEAL discharged after 18 years of service when his reenlistment paperwork got “lost” by his then-commanding officer, Daniel came to Blackwatch out of necessity when he was left without a job, a pension, or a marketable set of skills to anyone else. He despises the company, their excesses, and the many “thugs” he is surrounded with, but he keeps his head down and is resolved to do his job as professionally as he is able. Pays child support to two different ex-wives in two different states and lives in relative poverty. Particularly hates his boss, Richard Orr. He was recently hired by Cécilia Devillers as a bodyguard to protect her from stalker Mercurial Fernandez.
• Erinn Harris (Retainer ••)
6’0" tall heavily built African-American woman and former up-and-coming MMA fighter from New Orleans proper who was sidelined in a car accident with a drunk driver and spent 18 months recovering. Attempted to return to the octagon but couldn’t give up her vicodin and after a pair of failed drug tests was run out. Near-destitute after her cousin mismanaged her money, Erinn turned to petty security jobs, serving as a bouncer before she was hired by Marcus. Erinn now heads security at The Corner Club, part bouncer, part local celebrity. Erinn is not particularly well-spoken, but knows when to keep her mouth shut.
• Jeremy May (Ally [Military] ••)
Jeremy is as country as they come, with all that entails. He drinks hard, has his own stubborn morals, and could care less what anyone else thinks of him. The son of a soldier turned gator hunter, he grew up in woods and swamps with a rifle in his hands, and even became something of a local legend at regional three gun tournaments. A natural brawler, high school wrestler, and firearms savant, he made it to college (the first in his family) on a shooting scholarship, but dropped out after two years with his best friend to move to New Orleans, see the big city, and join the police force. That was in 2011. Since then he’s been involved in almost a dozen shootings, all of them justified, and would have been a prospect for the NOPD SWAT team if he could have kept his nose clean and stopped pissing off his corrupt boss. In his spare time he moonlights as a bouncer.
May delivered the fatal shot to Richard Gettis during the ex-detective’s firefight with SWAT. The surrounding circumstances resulted in his departure from NOPD for the private employment of Abélia Devillers as a bodyguard.
• Kayla Graves (Retainer •••)
High school and college beauty pageant winner (former Miss. Louisiana), Kayla grew up wanting to be a cop after her father’s murder when she was nine years old. Upon joining the force, she did not find herself assigned to homicide or even beat patrols, but VICE, where her striking looks and sultry voice proved all-too effective at baiting would be-johns during prostitution stings. She was discouraged by the work, which left her feeling cheap and dirty, but persisted in the hope it would lead to better things. It didn’t. The last straw came when she found several other VICE squad members had been taking (and sharing) nude photos of her in the shower and locker rooms without her knowledge.
When Roger Ferris approached Kayla after the arrest of a Malveaux ally, she was all-to happy to jump ship into the private sector, regardless of the work offered. The fact her new paycheck was substantially better didn’t make her feel the least bit guilty about burying the evidence of the arrested man’s indiscretion—nor did the fact her new boss didn’t treat her like a bimbo. She’s extremely bitter towards the NOPD and frequently bickers with Drew Harrington when the two are forced to interact, but is more generally disillusioned as to the nature of criminal justice as a whole. She’s been discretely sleeping with Roger for the last 18 months, though both have been unwilling to make a commitment to an actual relationship. The matter is complicated by the fact that she frequently works as a honeypot, drawing in men with access to valuable secrets, influence, or damaging information on the Malveaux family, though that’s hardly the only role she works in. She’s grown more comfortable with what she does now that she no longer uses her looks in pursuit of ‘justice’ and is capable of more readily seeing the value of what she does in practical, if not moral terms. Also works occasionally as a discrete bodyguard who is often mistaken for a personal assistant because of her looks, though she’s typically only used in that role when extra manpower is required (for instance, foreign trips). Thinks most men are easily manipulated by her looks, and frequently jokes about the matter with Margaret Ramsey, who in turn offers (perhaps jokingly?) to help her out by removing the need for male companionship.
• Margaret Ramsey (Retainer •••)
Former white hat and now black hat hacker from a prominent New Orleans family, Margaret dropped out of MIT in her senior year (at age 20 after graduating high school a year early) to get under the skin of her prim and proper family when they reacted badly to her coming out. They subsequently attempted to “break” her poor attitude by kicking her out from their home and cutting off her trust fund. After two brief stints working a minimum wage retail and food service job, Margaret started violating her principles and turning to more black hat work. The pay was substantially better, for a while, until her arrest by the FBI left her even worse off than before. Enter Roger Ferris, always on the lookout for new talent, who offered her a deal she couldn’t turn down: a well-paying steady job and way out of her legal troubles. Down the rabbit hole she went. In the two years, since she’s tumbled all the way down the moral abyss that surrounds the former CIA station chief. Her six months working for minimum wage and living in a shithole apartment deeply affected the once-privileged girl, and she remains all-too grateful for the opportunity Roger gave to a college dropout without any on-the-books certifications. Roger, for his part, appreciates the advantage of having a mostly off-the-books hacker (her arrest record was wiped). Margaret is heavily tattooed and has brightly colored hair with many piercings. She sometimes frequents the party scene but is still socially awkward within it. Rape survivor that rarely talks about it, even to those closest to her.
Originally from Mississippi, Nicole grew up a tomboy and went to school on an athletic scholarship, graduating with a degree in criminal justice and joined the Secret Service out of college. First working out of a field office, she eventually made it onto a protective detail and was later selected to join a tactical response team as part of a political initiative to open those jobs to women. It was a role she thrived in right up until last year, when responding to a call she mistakenly shot an innocent civilian under unclear circumstances. The event was used as an excuse to shut down the pilot program she was a part of, and she herself was fired and given a black mark on her record that made future employment as a law officer almost impossible, though she never faced formal charges. After spending a few months wallowing in self-pity she dusted herself off and signed on with the best available option going forward: Blackwatch’s personal security division. She is not particularly happy with her current employment, finding many of her coworkers unprofessional, but doesn’t see a better option, short of a private contract. Distrustful of institutions and relatively conservative. Was South Baptist, but started drinking when she was living and working in DC and hasn’t stopped. Recently single after her fiance dumped her. Even more recently deceased after being hired on as Caroline Malveaux-Devillers’ bodyguard and killed while in the Ventrue’s service.
Allies (Military) •
• Allison West (Retainer ••)
Recent arrival with Blackwatch, Allison’s background is atypical for the private security company in that she doesn’t have a military or police background. Two years ago she was a paralegal and pregnant with the first child of her accountant husband. After reading a story about a pair of infants accidentally swapped by careless attendants at a hospital and taken home by the wrong parents, as well as the alleged benefits of home births, Allison and her husband elected to have her give birth in their house. The nurse they hired, however, was a CPM (Certified Professional Midwife) rather than a CNM (Certified Nurse-Midwife). Unaware of this distinction, their midwife (who was not a nurse) failed to call a hospital when she could not hear a fetal heartbeat, and lacked the medical training to attempt intubation after the infant boy was delivered. The resuscitation he received at Tulane Medical Center came too late to save him. Allison’s husband tracked the midwife to an address in Central City and banged on her apartment door in the middle of the night, screaming with incoherent rage. A neighbor’s 14-year-old son tried to scare him away with a pointed gun. The firearm had been carelessly left loaded, and when the boy turned off the safety so he’d “be scarier,” it accidentally discharged in the teenager’s shaking grip.
Allison went all but mad after receiving the news of her husband’s death. A lifelong liberal who had never so much as touched a gun, she purchased a pistol mere days after giving birth and spent countless hours at the range in the weeks that followed. She blew through her husband’s life insurance policy on self-defense classes and moved into a local gym, so “she’d be ready” once the 14-year-old was released from juvenile hall. He died a year later in a lockup fight with a corrections officer. Allison isn’t still isn’t sure if she’d have gone on a shooting spree if one of her gym’s regulars, and an employee at Blackwatch, hadn’t noticed her and recommended the security company as a way to work off aggression. Having long since quit her job as a paralegal, and with her savings eaten up by a costly lawsuit against the midwife and months of regular expenses, Allison reluctantly admitted that she needed work.
Allison wants to shield her employers from “the worst the world has to offer” and sees little worth living for, holding that her life ended alongside her family’s. She is reckless with her personal safety and has a tendency to use excessive force during altercations—not that Blackwatch minds. A movie buff who particularly enjoyed romantic comedies before the deaths of her family, Allison can hardly stand such films now. She spends a great deal of her free time at the range, the gym, or martial arts classes, where she’s continuing to progress. She lives a modest lifestyle and is uninterested in a love life.
Amanda fled a sexually abusive father after her mother’s death and enlisted in the marines when she was 17 years old, just in time for the Iraq War. Angry, hurt, and wanting to lash out she was infuriated by her exclusion from combat roles, particularly as many of her friends and comrades came back maimed or dead. Left the service after four years and found the private sector more accepting of her desires. Her commander called her suicidal. Her squad-mates called her crazy. She didn’t really care. When the last Blackwatch merc was pulled out of Iraq it was the saddest day of her life. Amanda was a fiery and fearless young woman who was always spoiling for a fight, even with men twice her size. Perhaps especially with them. Her commander threatened to have her thrown out of Blackwatch if she put any more of his men in the hospital. She was eager to deploy elsewhere, and readily took up employment with the Ventrue Caroline Malveaux-Devillers. She lost her life mere weeks later.
Brett Cuellar & Riley Hitchcock
Former sergeant and lieutenant, respectively, in the Louisiana National Guard who made a small but steady stream of income selling munitions and grenades (ostensibly used in training exercises) to the Mafia. The two were inadvertently swept up in the intrigues of Kindred society when the Mafia re-sold their explosives to George Smith, who broke the Masquerade by detonating a bag of them in a semi-public location (drawing heavy police and emergency services scrutiny at the site of a Kindred battle). Hitchcock and Cuellar were tracked down by the prince’s agents and brought before the court to reveal what little they knew. Their petty corruption offended the deeply traditional Vidal, who hailed from an era when sentries faced execution for falling asleep on watch. The prince had the two Guardsmen executed for dereliction of duty.
• Matt Manson (Retainer ••)
Former army and Iraq vet, Matt left the army after four years and getting busted down twice and denied reenlistment. Half-thug, half-patriot, he joined Blackwatch to make (more) money for shooting terrorists, shove the many regulations of the army, and never looked back. He loves his job, and loves it even more in the States where the influence of the company protects him from minor indiscretions like bar fights, and their many contracts fill his pockets with more money than he’d ever dreamed of when he enlisted as a small town boy from the Rust Belt. 5’11", dark hair, and full beard, though he wears a balaclava when working. Has an extensive firearm collection and also enjoys hunting.
• Michael Garrison (Retainer •••, Unreliable Retainer Condition)
Standing at “only” 5’11" and weighing 160 lbs, Michael Garrison doesn’t look like much for a mercenary, but his unassuming demeanor belies an employment history with the Secret Service, Pinkerton, and as a private bodyguard for Vera Malveaux… when he was sober. Michael’s downfall is alcohol, and he tends to follow a catastrophic boom then bust pattern with sobriety, kicking the bottle entirely three times (so far), only to inevitably return. As it turns out, most employers that feel the need for a bodyguard are less willing to accommodate one who may not show up. So was his ex-wife.
• Megan Garrett
Ex-Marine who now works for Blackwatch in a relationship with Hannah Cahn. Works on floats with her at Southern Decadence and other festivals. She fractured the skull of Joseph Beaumont while drunk during 2014’s Fourth of July, earning the enmity of the musician and and his sister Penny.
• Ridley Jones (Retainer •)
Ridley joined Blackwatch in 2014, a washout from Marine basic training who failed Crucible (the grueling 54-hour challenge at the end). As a mercenary, he’s been tasked with marginal duties stateside. Only 20 years old, he’s young, dumb, and senselessly arrogant—a trait which got his teeth kicked in by Amanda Turner not long ago. He gets very little respect from his fellows, most of whom are former service and many of whom are former Marines. He consequently takes delight in abusing or taking advantage of people he is in a position of authority over: mostly paparazzi, college protesters, and the odd waitress that refuses to serve him without an ID.
• Stephanie Hall (Retainer •••)
Stephanie Hall was the first woman accepted into the prestigious LAPD SWAT Division six years ago. She jokes that it took her four years to get in and four months to tire of their shit. On her way out the door (officially terminated for insubordination), she burned every bridge she had left in the department. The scorched earth campaign, however satisfying, effectively ended her police career. She ended up working in the private sector working for Blackwatch, and drifted to New Orleans along that dark current. Though her field record is good, her inability to keep her mouth shut has strained relationships there as well, and relegated her to a boring night shift when she is least likely to interact with personages of note.
• Trayvon Belhomme (Retainer ••)
Trayvon was a local high school football star that joined the army to get out of the hood and see the world when his scholarship fell through due to his criminal record as a youth. Sent to the 101st Airborne, he served a tour in Afghanistan before getting flagged during a personnel audit for his undisclosed criminal history and spat out of the army on an administrative separation. Rather than go home to New Orleans he courted Blackwatch, which was more than happy to pick him up. He was much less happy when they shat him back into New Orleans because of his ‘familiarity’ with the city. He’s (reluctantly) made peace with his assignment and finds time to visit his mother on occasion, and even sends her a portion of his paycheck, though he knows it’s likely spent on drugs. 5’8" and built like a bowling ball, people tend to underestimate Trayvon—to their dismay. He’s faster and more elusive than he looks, and as strong as an ox with his stubby thick arms. Shaved head, very dark skin, and a beard.