Campaign of the Month: October 2017
Blood and Bourbon
“I dance the dance of the fool
And pray you find me mad
For if you lay hands upon the root
You’ll know me without illusion
And find me guilty of the truth.”
—Malkav’s words to her childer
e. = Embraced
• 6. “The Mother” (e. unknown, d. uncertain)
• 7. The Malkavians will not speak this Kindred’s name.
• 8. Uriah Travers (e. early 19th century)
• 9. Hercule “Monty” Lestrange (e. late 19th century)
• 10. Frank Larsen (e. early 21st century)
• 7. The Malkavians will not speak this Kindred’s name.
Clarice Barabet (e. early 19th century, d. 2005)
• 9. Harlequin (e. early 20th century)
• 10. Marceline Duval (e. early 20th century)
Ophelia Hensley (e. mid 20th century, d. late 20th century)
• 12. Janine Clairmont (e. mid 20th century)
• 13. Catarina Glapion (e. early 21st century)
The Man With The Silver Smile (e. late 20th century, d. 2016)
• 10. Elyse Benson (e. mid 20th century)
Rachel Elliot (e. early 21st century, d. 2005)
• 9. King Bolden (e. early 20th century)
Martin Neal (e. mid 20th century, d. 2005)
Julia Tilbrey (e. mid 20th century, d. 2005)
• 7. The Malkavians will not speak this Kindred’s name.
Rachel Naomi Massoteau (e. early 20th century, d. late 20th century)
• 8. Natasha Preston (e. mid 20th century, a. early 21st century)
• 11. Mary Allen (e. late 20th century, a. early 21st century)
• 12. Jack McCandles (e. early 21st century)
• 11. Kiah Savell (e. early 21st century, a. early 21st century)
Hannibal (e. mid 20th century, a. mid 20th century, d. mid 20th century)
Wyatt Jenkins (e. early 21st century, a. early 21st century, d. 2016)
• 13. Carter Landry (e. early 21st century, a. early 21st century)
• 13. Spook WIlson (e. early 21st century, a. early 21st century)
• “Artemis” (e. unknown, a. early 21st century)
• “Katrina Storm” (e. unknown, a. early 21st century)
Kindred by Malkavian Status
The Five Stages of Malkavian Enlightenment
A clan rooted in chaos and insanity shouldn’t have any structured leadership. Yet the Malkavians continue to be a major clan because they do. Malkavians jockey for status and influence just like the rest of the Kindred community. The difference is where the respect and influence comes from. Malkavians don’t care about the centuries spent in the night or prestigious lineages from powerful Cainites. No, Malkavian respect pours from how far along the vampire is on the stages of Malkavian development. The farther along the path, the less likely the Malkavian considers the lack of sanity to be a curse.
Fools (Status 0 or •): We all start here. There are those who say that most other Kindred never get past this stage by getting too wrapped up in the distractions of the undead life. Or, they just keep fighting it, clinging to whatever they can to resist the tide. Fools are usually recently Embraced vampires dealing with their curse. The cute ones even think there might be some way back and waste a lot of time looking for an exit that doesn’t exist. They don’t have much time for activities above and beyond their insanity. It’s hard to campaign to be sheriff when you’re trying to find out where all the voices are coming from, you know? No, I guess you don’t know. Well, listen to the voices for once and they’ll tell you, okay?
At this stage, we’re not much of a threat. We’re too busy wrestling with our inner demons to worry outsiders. Fools are little more than a collection of nervous tics and non-sequiturs to those looking in on the clan. We understand we’ve got time to work it out, but other clans often sense weakness and jump on those poor little swans pushing out of their eggs of sanity. An ambitious few attempt to fire off some pranks, but they are usually about as effective as a whoopee cushion from a broken gumball machine. At best, they provide some amusement for other Kindred, who love to watch us go through tormenting ourselves to distract themselves from their own.
Maniacs (Status ••): Malkavians that make it through those first frightful years move on to this stage. Many of us don’t make it past here and that’s fine. This is the point in development where we lash out at everything because of our pain. If we’re going to suffer, you’re going to suffer. The curse of madness hits maniacs hard, causing mental, emotional, and physical pain the likes of which surpass anything a mortal could survive. The only way to make it through to the other side is to lash out. Sometimes, the pranks at this stage leave an impression simply because of their violent consequences.
When most other Kindred think of Malkavians, this is the stage we all are in their simple minds. They write us off as violent lunatics even though they need us. Keeping a scapegoat handy works wonders for the political system on both sides of the Camarilla and Sabbat divide. That makes violent pranks at this level that much sweeter. How often can we cause enough collateral damage to illustrate the uselessness of sectarian violence? What are the lessons from leaving a bishop’s childe beaten in the trunk of a car and pushed into the nearest body of water?
Madmen (Status •••): This is where many of us see the light at the end of the tunnel. That’s usually right before the train horn sounds, but this is the first moment where many Malkavians realize that they’ve been given a blessing and not a curse. The breakdown of worldviews is over. The rebuilding begins now. This is where you let go and drift on the forces you can’t understand. That’s what leads Malkavians at this stage to seem calm, cool, and collected. The fear of losing everything is gone. Everything they were worried about losing was worth nothing in the first place. Madmen are free to seek out items of real value to their new opinion on the world.
The best madmen don’t shoot to kill; they shoot to teach. This is when plans become elaborate lessons meant to teach more than one Kindred at a time. These pranks are for shaking Kindred to their core. Madmen often find themselves in positions of power within a city, since they can usually be counted on to show up at meetings and not talk to the prince’s shoes the whole time. That gives them the resources to set bigger plans in motion, and have a few clan members further down the ladder to do the heavy lifting and fall on swords as needed for things to go smoothly.
Lunatics (Status ••••): Is there enlightenment in our condition? Surely, some of us get a great reputation for insight that comes from some gibbering with things outside normal perceptions. This stage reflects those of us who see the world for the gigantic mirror that it is. It’s all a lie to a lunatic and these Kindred devote themselves to breaking the biggest mirror of them all. They want to leave big, coyote shaped holes in perception. Lunatics often devote themselves to a signature act that’s decades in the making. They channel all that emotion into one bold statement that plays out in a huge shockwave across a city.
Lunatics act and the clan follows. A careful word, a slight gesture sets all the dominos. Lunatics are the clocks by which Malkavian Time chimes. They say the Great Prank was hatched by a coterie of lunatics. They literally created one egg for each city where Malkavians were located and hid them, like Easter Eggs. The Malkavian that found them got the strongest dose of mental mind twisting power and everyone else got those echoes. That’s why so many headless corpses were found in those cities. Wait, I confused eggs and heads again. Malkavians cracked open the heads and all the power came slushing out. Was I not supposed to say that out loud? Oops.
Fools (Status •••••): The end is the beginning is the end is the beginning. Everything you know is wrong. Everyone knows double majors are worthless in the real world. Fools realize that all the time spent building up their new perceptions ultimately burn out everyone. Where can you go once you’ve seen the world for what it truly is? Reality was made to be broken, so those at this point in their development are revered yet pitied. Honored yet mocked. The master becomes the student. But then were they ever really the master? Or did they just think that thanks to a mix of arrogance, delusion, and the refreshing scent of pine?
What’s the point of starting over? Most other Kindred miss that when we make it to this stage. It’s not totally starting fresh. The lessons are learned and the howls are new. Every time we build something, we know it can’t stand. Kindred think they are static and we intend to prove them wrong, even if we have to burn everything down with us locked inside to do so.
What am I? I’m a fool. Not a fool. Isn’t it obvious?
Most of the Status levels on this page are unknown to non-Malkavians. Most Kindred have no idea how the lunatics award Status among their own, and assume it’s due to a combination of age, lineage, and personal accomplishments. The higher a Malkavian’s Camarilla Status, the higher their Malkavian Status probably is.
As described above, this is incorrect, of course. The Malkavians don’t deliberately try to keep their internal hierarchy secret (like the Tremere and Ventrue do) so much as few Kindred have the necessary wits or patience to puzzle out how the kooks accord respect among their own. Malkavian explanations can be notoriously incoherent or unreliable, and even Kindred with Clan Friendship (Malkavian) can rarely predict the kooks’ behavior with any significant degree of accuracy.
Malkavian Status •••••
• Uriah Travers (8th gen. childe of unknown sire, e. early 19th century, Camarilla Status ••, Circle of the Crone Status •••)
Nothing is known of this apparently Cajun man’s mortal life, but he possesses an unusual rapport with the region’s Lupines and has even been known to hunt alongside their packs. He claims to be part werewolf himself, although most Kindred are dubious of this assertion. Travers lives well over 100 miles away from New Orleans in a solitary cabin by the Teche Bayou, but his knowledge of the city’s goings-on is uncanny despite his isolation. Though he keeps many secrets, few seem to be kept from him. Kindred who desire his counsel sometimes seek him out in the bayous, though he has been known to destroy presumptuous licks who interrupt his solitude without good cause. The prince is unconcerned with bringing Travers to justice. Everyone knows it’s every Kindred for themselves out in the swamps.
Malkavian Status ••••
• Harlequin (9th gen. childe of Clarice Barabet, e. early 20th century, Camarilla Status •••, Lancea et Sanctum Status •••)
No one knows Harlequin’s real name or face. Every night is Mardi Gras to this Malkavian, who is never seen wearing anything besides a face-concealing domino mask and changing rotation of ostentatious costumes. Harlequin is famous for leading the Krewe of Janus, a bogeyman-like coterie of anonymous Kindred that maintains the Masquerade (“that greatest of all masks”) by stalking, harassing, and eventually slaying violators. The Krewe is Big Brother to the city’s neonates and seems to have eyes everywhere, always watching for indiscretions. Elders are fond of the Krewe, which has secured Harlequin a place among the city’s harpies. Harlequin himself was a member of the Mistick Krewe of Comus in his mortal life and loves few things more than a good party—and no party more than Mardi Gras.
• Harlequin’s “Masks” (g. unknown, Ghoul Status ••)
These four masked ghouls accompany Harlequin at all times, endlessly parroting their domitor’s speech and mannerisms. None of the ghouls have ever revealed their faces. It’s anyone’s guess whether they are the same four who first appeared at Harlequin’s side a century ago—he never refers to them by the name and the masks they wear change constantly. There have always seemed to be two male and two female ones, judging by the shape of their bodies, but this could easily be faked. The ghouls appear to have no duties beyond mimicking their master, fawning over him, and serving as impromptu furniture. It is unclear what practical function, if any, they actually serve.
• Hercule “Monty” Lestrange (9th gen. childe of Uriah Travers, e. late 19th century, Camarilla Status •••, Unaligned)
New Orleans’ Kindred call him “Monty”, but no one can recall him introducing himself as such—or by any other name. He is of French descent, but often seems to strain himself not to slip into an accent or just straight-out French when he gets lost in thought. For almost as long as anyone can remember, “Monty” has offered his services as a private detective to anyone and everyone in need of help, no matter the nature of their case. He is as straightforward as a Malkavian comes, and his discretion in matters has become without question. On at least a few occasions, Donovan has executed a blood hunt on the results of Monty’s investigations. Every measure taken by the city’s covenants to recruit him have been met with a firm denial. He states his allegiance is, “To the Truth. Only to the Truth.”
Malkavian Status •••
• Elyse Benson (10th gen. childe of Harlequin, e. mid 20th century, Camarilla Status ••, Invictus Status ••, Lancea et Sanctum Status ••)
Purity-obsessed dollmaker. Harlequin and Katherine Beaumont were both attracted to the mentally unstable young artist and played a game of chess for the right to Embrace her. Katherine learned to her chagrin that few Kindred can predict a Malkavian’s moves. Elyse and her sire serve as their clan’s de facto face to other Kindred, but where Harlequin is mirthful and whimsical, Elyse is always calm, collected, and deadly serious. She is zealously fixated with the concepts of “purity” and “perfection”, which she considers dolls to be peerless epitomes of. She disdains overt displays of emotion and (especially) sexuality: rumor holds that she forces all of her ghouls to submit to castration or female genital mutilation. Milder rumors claim that she merely makes them wear chastity belts. She has remained an avid dollmaker into her Requiem and her work adorns the havens of many Toreador. An anorexic in life, her Embrace has only made her even more doll-like and she resembles nothing so much as an animate, life-sized version of her own creations.
• Elyse Benson’s “Dolls” (g. mid 20th to early 21st century, Ghoul Status • to ••)
• Key (g. early 21st century, Ghoul Status ••)
Majordomo to Elyse Benson who manages the servants, upkeep, and assorted daily (and nightly) business at the Wedding Cake House. Believed to have been a valet or hotel manager in his mortal life, Key is a consummate host and seems to derive genuine pleasure from making others happy. Rumor holds that his sexuality-despising mistress has either castrated him or forces him to wear a chastity belt at all times to “control his urges.” He is also an enthusiastic crossdresser and quite adept at turning himself into one of the “dolls” who make up Benson’s stable of beauteous, rigidly controlled ghouls. Further rumors hold that he seeks to become female, not because he is “genuinely” transgender, but because he thinks his domitor will love him more if he’s a woman. He is sometimes allowed to participate in drag shows at Faubourg Marigny as a reward for good behavior.
• Natasha Preston (8th gen. childe of Constance Leyburne, e. mid 20th century, Camarilla Status ••, Invictus Status ••, Lancea et Sanctum Status ••)
Antoine Savoy’s right hand. A cutthroat corporate businesswoman from a wealthy New England family who came to New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, Preston runs the night-to-night affairs of Savoy’s many enterprises. In contrast to her patron’s easy charm and affability, she has a dry, humorless, and down-to-business personality, but can be quite disparaging towards individuals she considers unintelligent or naive. She appears relatively clear-headed for a member of her clan and has exhibited no identifiable form of madness.
Malkavian Status ••
• Frank Larsen (10th gen. childe of Monty Lestrange, e. late 20th century, Anarch Status •, Camarilla Status 0)
“Photojournalist” at a gossip rag who has a knack for being at the right place at the wrong time. Since his Embrace, he has grown increasingly paranoid about this fact and claims to see “connections everywhere”. He sometimes hires out his talents for collecting photographic evidence of individuals in compromising positions, and has an uncanny gift for capturing photos that others dismiss as impossible—the more impossible the assignment, the more thorough the evidence he seems able to collect. Member of the Anarchs’ Twenty-Twenties krewe.
• Kiah Savell (11th gen. childe of unknown sire, e. early 21st century, Anarch Status •, Camarilla Status 0)
Malkavian Status •
• Carter Landry (13th gen. childe of unknown sire, e. early 21st century, Camarilla Status 0)
Corn-fed young Texas boy who looks like (and readily admits to being) a bookworm. Landry is a recent arrival to New Orleans from Houston and has accomplished little of note in his new home. He has been known to associate with Janine Clairmont, who shares his enthusiasm for literature.
• Mary Allen (11th gen. childe of Mezzo Lombardi, e. late 20th century, Camarilla Status 0, Lancea et Sanctum Status •)
• Shanice “Lapcat” Jeansonne (g. early 21st century, Ghoul Status •)
Post-Katrina orphan-prostitute who works Chartres Street around her domitor’s domain, which allows her easy access to customers, both mortal and otherwise, who wish to brush up against the color-class lines. Bad blood with the Shepards. Devout if quasi-heretical Sanctified Catholic.
• Janine Clairmont (12th gen. childe of Ophelia Hensley, e. mid 20th century, Camarilla Status 0, Unaligned)
Mousy, socially maladjusted librarian who never wanted for company thanks to the spirits who always talked to her. Fifty years later, she still makes her domain in the Milton H. Latter Memorial Library and dresses in fashions from the ’50s and ’60s, giving rise to a minor local legend that her ghost haunts the library. Although she remains as socially awkward as she did in life, her spirits have been known to pick up all manner of interesting tidbits. It remains anyone’s guess how she managed to survive Katrina.
• King Bolden (9th gen. childe of Clarice Barabet, e. early 20th century, Camarilla Status 0, Lancea et Sanctum Status 0)
This cornetist claims to be Buddy Bolden, a famous New Orleans jazz musician who was committed to an insane asylum upon being diagnosed with schizophrenia. No one is sure whether he’s telling the truth or not: the dates of his Embrace and Bolden’s committal appear to match up, and his savant-like jazz knowledge and skill with the cornet are beyond all question. On the other hand, he’s been known to confuse details of “his” life with ones that historians have long since debunked—a habit whose evidentiary usefulness is further muddled by the real-life Bolden’s admittedly poor ability to distinguish reality.
“King Bolden” appears to have few interests besides playing the cornet. His masterful skill and near-total lack of other social commitments, however, have won him the undying adoration of the city’s Toreador (he never refuses a chance to play at the clan’s balls), particularly Accou Poincaré, Antoine Savoy, and Veronica Alsten-Pirrie. He refused to leave the city during Hurricane Katrina and appeared oblivious as to the storm’s danger, and is only thought to have survived thanks to his patrons’ protection (his sire Clarice, whose skirts he’d previously hid behind, met final death during the storm). Most Kindred consider him an amusing curiosity and an idiot savant good for little besides his music. It’s a commonly circulated (if cruel) joke that it was a waste of the Blood for Clarice to even Embrace him: he’d have been just as useful as a ghoul, and at least be less of a vitae sponge. Another common joke is that it’d be pointless for Accou or Savoy to even claim boons for saving his unlife, since he’d be incapable of paying them back in any way besides what he already does: play, play, play, and play.
• Spook Wilson (13th gen. childe of unknown sire, e. early 21st century, Camarilla Status 0, Circle of the Crone Status 0)
• “Artemis” (unknown gen. childe of unknown sire, e. unknown, Status unknown)
A self-described “arrow” briefly encountered by George Smith when he was interviewing neonates to serve as companions to John Harley Matheson in his exile. Artemis appeared unaware of George’s purpose in doing this, and to have no clear reason for even being in his hotel, but allowed him to bestow her present moniker upon her. Harlequin stated that “her head is sharp” and warned that she could “tear right through us” when George made inquiries as to her identity. Her actual name and present whereabouts remain unknown.
• “Katrina Storm” (unknown gen. childe of unknown sire, e. unknown, Status unknown)
George Smith learned this Malkavian had appeared in New Orleans upon the exact night of Hurricane Katrina’s 10th anniversary when making inquiries of Alexander Wright regarding “Artemis.” The Brujah hound found Katrina’s (presumably false) name in exceedingly poor taste, and made several disparaging remarks regarding Malkavians’ sense of humor, but stated that she had been last seen in New Orleans East and “might or might not be the same lick as your Artemis.” George was unable to further investigate the matter before his final death.
• Genevieve (g. late 20th century, Ghoul Status •)
Former gymnast and abused ex-Sabbat plaything.
• Morgan “Haymaker” Hastings (g. late 20th century, Ghoul Status •)
UFC fighter turned poker prodigy.
• Wyatt Jenkins (12th gen. childe of Aaron Pryce, e. early 21st century, d. 2016, Camarilla Status 0, Lancea et Sanctum Status •, Malkavian Status ••)
Clarice Barabet (8th gen. childe of unknown sire, e. early 19th century, d. 2005, Camarilla Status ••••, Lancea et Sanctum Status ••••, Malkavian Status ••••)
Former Malkavian primogen and bishop for the Lancea et Sanctum. Clarice served as her clan’s public face for many years and was known for her fits of passion and mercurial, fey-like temperament. She could be kind and cruel by alternating turns that few outside her clan could predict, but her charm and wit won her a place as one of the city’s leading harpies from the Gilded Age and onwards. She was close to Maria Pascual and served as the elder Toreador’s protege for many years, which also won her New Orleans’ bishopric upon Pascual’s abdication of that office. Although Clarice received her Cabildo seat at Vidal’s hands and her bishop’s crosier with his blessing, she found Antoine Savoy to be far more her style of prince. Her support lent spiritual weight to his cause and she was one of his staunchest (and most valuable) allies by 2005. She remained in the French Quarter during Hurricane Katrina and was reportedly last seen avidly watching the approaching storm from a rooftop, barefoot and clad only in a nightgown, laughing that she “didn’t mind getting rain in my hair.” Harlequin was the first of her descendants who reported to feel the psychic backlash of her final death.
Hannibal (12th gen. childe of unknown sire, e. mid 20th century, d. mid 20th century, Anarch Status 0, Camarilla Status 0, Malkavian Status ••)
Hannibal was a small-time Anarch obsessed with blood. He tried to diablerized Maxzille Babineaux and her krewe made short work of him.
Francois Nicholas Du Valle (gen. unknown, e. late 17th century, d. 1815, Anarch Status •••, Malkavian unknown)
Little is remembered of this Malkavian save that he was one of the chief instigators of the final armed revolts against Vidal’s early reign. He was aided in this effort by Emmanuel Costa, the prince’s own childe. The two rebels and their conspirators were apprehended and executed. It’s unknown what turned Costa against his sire, but Du Valle is widely suspected to have played a part.