Campaign of the Month: August 2014
The Concord of Ashes
“Welcome to my house, weary traveller. Enter freely and of your own will. Within my walls you will find safety and comfort for so long as you abide with me, the lord and master of this Domain. This I swear by Earth and Sky, and the Waters of Life and Death that bind us all. Come, enter now, and leave some of the happiness that you bring.”
This chronicle details the adventures of an ambitious, talented coterie of Cainites that have become bound up in the intrigues of Transylvania and the Byzantine empire. They fought to find their own place among the Siebenburgen and within the Dream, aware that they were the pawns of the elders, their own sires and even darker forces that they have not yet begun to comprehend.
In their second goal, they failed. Forced to watch the city of Constantinople burn despite their mighty efforts, they nonetheless emerged strong, tempered by battled, wizened by grief and betrayal. They have since returned to the Siebenburgen in order to see their initial ambitions served.
The coterie consists of:
- Veceslav Basarab, a noble diplomat of Clan Tzimisce, who would become Knez of Tihuta;
- Sister Maude, a physician and occultist of Clan Cappadocian, noted for her sarcasm and benificence;
- Iulia, a secretive scholar of Clan Lasombra, known as the formidable Prince of Weissenburg despite her youth;
- and Brother Adalbert, a Benedictine monk of Clan Ventrue, lately the Seneschal of Kronstadt;
- with Bernhard’s progeny, Svenin the Tall, a freebooting, opportunistic reaver who serves as the strong arm of the coterie, when he can be bothered.
Since 1217, the Lexor Brujah Senator known as Theophanos of Epirus has become an invaluable member of the coterie, using his wealth and mercantile acumen to smooth their travels. By 1218, the Phaedymite Ravnos Francis de Toulouse had also thrown in his lot with the Concord, seeing advantage in counting himself among their number.
Another member of the Concord was lost late in the winter of 1203 CE, during the assault of Voivode Koban against the valley of Toth. While he fell, it is unclear whether he has suffered the Final Death:
- Bernhard von Billung, aka Sir Gunther von Wolfgang, a Saxon knight of Clan Gangrel.
At various times, other Cainites have joined the coterie for brief periods:
- Sir Conrad de Monreal, a famed Crusader, now a stalwart of the Lexor Brujah,
- Sir Alaric di Taranto, a Knight Templar of Clan Lasombra,
- Lotario Acuto, an enigmatic Michaelite of Clan Toreador,
- Armis, a brooding scout and veteran warrior of Clan Gangrel,
- and Maria, also of Clan Toreador, an aristocrat allied to the Arpad Ventrue.
The Concord has become a noted political force within the Siebenburgen of Transylvania, and also for their activities during the disastrous Fourth Crusade. Forced to settle down in their respective demesnes in order to guard their power and shepherd their vision of a peaceful, prosperous Transylvania, they have fostered the creation of a second coterie to see their designs brought to fruition.
Self-dubbed the Ashen Band, these young Cainites are:
- Sir Ulrich von Wettin, of Clan Ventrue. Childe of Hardestadt the Younger, this driven aristocrat has been placed at the disposal of the Gangrel Svenin to see him grow strong or perish trying;
- Kelemen Szantovitch Gutkeled, of Clan Tzimisce and childe of Knez Veceslav of Tihuta. Even more of a sybarite than his sire, the Count of Reps’ primary usefulness thus far lies in his family connections and his enormous wealth;
- Helena Korosi, of Clan Brujah. A proud and canny Hungarian aristocrat with ties to the local Szeklers, she stands with the coterie as a means for her adoptive sire, Prince Karsten of Kronstadt, to establish ties with the Concord;
- Brother Berengar von Dohna, of Clan Ventrue. Childe of Heinrich von Achern, this devoted and pious member of the secret Order of the Black Cross is Brother Adalbert’s student, and Lord Jürgen’s agent in the coterie;
- Sága, of Clan Nosferatu. Product of a desperate, brutal embrace in the wilds of Ruthenia, and given succor by Sister Maude at the behest of Durga Syn, this natural storyteller serves as the Cappadocian’s proxy;
- Marius de Şimand, of Clan Lasombra and childe of Prince Iulia of Weissenburg. Pragmatic and secretive in the style of his sire, this saturnine Vlach works to keep the disparate band of neonates from fracturing along petty lines;
- and Andras Taragoš, an Alexandrite of Clan Ravnos, who serves as the agent of Theophanos of Epirus. Something of an unknown quantity, the glib Romano has yet to prove his worth.
I have drawn heavily upon and expanded the story arcs and characters as presented in the Dark Ages Clan Novels, Transylvania By Night and Constantinople By Night. Against the backdrop of the larger campaign, we intend to loosely follow the storyline of the Transylvania Chronicles, Bitter Crusade and Under the Black Cross (as the storyteller is a little lazy). Fans of the Old World of Darkness with an eye for detail might also recognise a few names from the Chicago Chronicles here and there…
DISCLAIMER: I have wandered the Web for some time gathering pieces of art to use for portraits and scenery in my games. If I have used something that belongs to you and have caused offence, please accept my apologies in advance and don’t hesitate to contact me. I’ll be more than happy to take it down or give credit where it is due!