Campaign of the Month: August 2014
The Concord of Ashes
This elder is sometimes known as the Saint of the Divinity Within; he is co-leader of the Obertus Tzimisce along with his brother and childe, Symeon.
This young man is inhumanly captivating and unearthly, like a saintly apparition or a platonic ideal made flesh. He is over seven feet tall, but proportionally correct, making him appear as a giant of sorts. He is not at all robust and appears to be emaciated, as if he has suffered a long illness. Garbed in a simple red habit, he is unarmed.
Hoping to heal the rift between his lovers, Michael presented Gesu and his younger brother, Symeon, to the Dracon and Antonius, to be Embraced on the boys’ 21st birthdays. Although they were seperated by two full years, they appeared nearly identical. Gesu was only 7, but his countenance showed a blossoming intellect, while his brothers child-like innocence could not hide the ambition and pride that radiated from him. For over a decade, the Antonians and Obertus families knew peace.
A few nights before the Dracon planned to Embrace Gesu, a small delegation from the Carpathian Tzimisce, including the ancient Triglav, an envoy of the Antediluvian itself, arrived and demanded to speak with the Dracon. The envoy urged the Dracon not to Embrace Gesu, for the clans seers had predicted that he would bring a terrible curse on his sire and the whole clan. The Dracon only mocked them for their superstitions.
When the Embrace took place, dark clouds gathered over Constantinople and the Monastery of St. John Studius. As Gesu’slife slipped away and the ancient Tzimisce’s blood flowed through his veins, a terrible change gripped the vampire-to-be. His skin became uellow and taut, and his bones contorted into impossible shapes. Gesu then slipped into torpor and his body withered.
While he lay in deathless state, his sire raged across the lands of Transylvania, destroying dozens of his clan-mates in his hunt for Triglav, whom he blamed for the curse laid upon Gesu. When he finally found his brother-in-blood, the Carpathians shook with the horrible battle that ensued. Terrible visions wracked the elders of the clan with the outpouring of power and hate as finally, the Dracon tore Triglav’s three heads from his body and destroyed him. Only the intervention of the Demenaus the Sage, a former student and lover of the Dracon, prevented him from continuing in his vendetta against his Carpathian kin. To this night, the acrimony between the Carpathian and Byzantine Tzimisce still boils over into hostility at times.
His mind was plagued by dreams in which he prayed to God for slavation, only to be given a dark vitae that flowed from a crucifix for him to drink. These unsettling dreams eventually awakened him from torpor. Finding Symeon holding vigil, Gesu Embraced his brother so that they would never be parted again. This betrayal infuriated Antonius, and he renewed his attacks on the Tzimisce with redoubled fervour. This unreasoning mission of revenge ultimately led to Michael and the Dracon agreeing to allow Caius to destroy Antonius, and the Dream has been in decline ever since. Although the Dracon remained in Constantinople for nearly a century afterwards, he was never the same, and he eventually deserted the city towards the end of the ninth century.
During the tenth, eleventh, and much of the twelfth centuries, the Obertus Order thrived under the dual leadership of Gesu and Symeon. Gesu reformed the ghoul Akoimetai monks into an order that was utterly devoted to him and his notions of exploring the Divinity Within each and every Cainite and mortal. The Akoimetai now call themselves the Gesudians in honour of their unliving Saint. Symeon took charge of the secular arm of the order, seeing to the growth and maintenance of the land holdings that belonged to the Obertus monasteries as well as handling political responsibilities with the other Families.
For a time, the Carpathian nobleman Veceslav Basarab dwelt among the Obertus Order during his studies at the University of Constantinople. He was considered to be a postulant, and had the privelege of making the acquaintance of Symeon and Myca. Gesu however, was only seen from afar by the yong scholar- remote, inspiring and distinctly unsettling in his unearthly piety.
Until the Latin Riots of AD 1185, the Obertus were truly a cohesive and influential force in the city. For the last generation of men, the Order appears to have grown deeply insular. Gesu has not been seen outside the Monastery of St. John Studius since the disaster of the Latin Riots in AD 1185. His brother continues to sit on the Quaesitor Tribunal, but Symeon seems to be withdrawn, uninterested for the most part in the politicking and intrigue that formerly gave his existence meaning. He rarely visits St.John Studius any more, preferring his own haven at the Church of Christ Pantokrator as well as the parlours of the Antonians and the Michaelite Arbiter, Petronius. Some speculate that the Obertus are riven by internal dissent, but as ever with the reclusive and secretive monks, no once can really ever say.
Lineage: Childe of the Dracon, Childe of the Eldest