Campaign of the Month: August 2014
The Concord of Ashes
Known amongst the Cainites of the Dream as "the Snake of Eden", this Settite has dwelt in Constantinople for centuries. He works to bring down everything that they are trying to build. Some say he has already succeeded.
A tall Nubian with lustrous dark skin, braided hair dyed red with henna and a several aligned rows of tribal scar dots that extend from one cheek across the nose to the other. His powerful figure is mostly hidden beneath dark robes that are embroidered with intricate serpentine patterns that catch the eye. Black pupils seem to take up his entire eyes.
Khay’tall, a Nuerian tribesman, was a slave to a Roman garrison commander stationed in Jerusalem. He was present when the Christian Messiah was nailed to a cross on a hill outside the city. He watched as the man hung there, suspended like a banner of flesh against a wooden standard, and wondered what sort of god would demand such a sacrifice from his children. He would soon have his answer.
One night his master, Comus Setevrius, held a lavish dinner party and Khay’tall was a servant at the event. Soon he realized that some of the guests weren’t human. He watched as they feed on other guests, almost in a frenzy. Khay’tall approached one of the guests, an Egyptian man named Nehsi – who was one of these supernatural beings – and petitioned to be made like him. When Nehsi asked why, Khay’tall said he realized that nobody is truly free. Everyone is a slave to something, whether it be a vice, religion or other men. And if he was going to be a slave he wanted to be a slave to something of his choosing. Nehsi was amazed by this response and took Khay’tall under his wing and taught him the ways of the Setites.
For over a century Khay’tall was a ghoul servant and guard to Nehsi, learning all that he could of the vices that shackled men and monsters. Finally Nehsi embraced him and sent him to work at the Temple of Set in the Roman-conquered city of Carthage. While in Carthage, Khay’tall metthe Toreador Michael, who had previously been known as Beshter the Wanderer. They debated often about the nature of corruption, vice and the struggle that every soul fought to defeat their demons or else become them. Khay’tall convinced the ancient that anything worth building had to be able to withstand the temptations of corruption- otherwise it would be a slave to something greater.
Centuries later, once the Triumvirs had succeeded in setting the foundations of their Dream in Constantinople, Michael invited Khay’tall to join them in order to be the proverbial Serpent in their Garden of Eden. He arrived in 489 CE, and threw the city into confusion and discord. Despite fierce opposition from the Gaul and the Dracon, Khay’tall was was granted the right to sire his own Scion family under the protection of the Michaelites.
Since then, Khay’tall has been doing his utmost to prove to Michael that everything is corrupt, and that the snake in the Garden of Eden is not an exterior force that interferes, but rather the inner weakness intrinsic to all. He retains his special status within the city as ‘the Devil’s Advocate’, and has sired many other Setites to aid him. Foremost among them is his eldest and favoured son, Sarrasine, who aids him in his appointed task with great skill and a relish that might even exceed his own. The others come and go, spreading the corruption of the Decadents throughout the ports of the Mediterranean.
He is a larger than life figure of infamy; rumour has it that his web of influence over his fellow Settites extends as far as Marseilles, Paris, Barcelona, Tangier, Tripoli, Jerusalem and Alexandria, and that he is at the centre of some sort of Settite heresy at war with the Ancients of his own clan. It is certainly known that the Children of Judas have thoroughly insinuated themselves into the Byzantine Church and the Guilds of Constantinople, where they have wreaked untold havoc and suffering to the moral and creative firmament of the Dream. They have also dominated the seedy underbelly of the city for centuries, a base which has faced challenges of late from the agents of the Narsene Lasombra.
Khay’tall has little to do with the younger Cainites of the city, preferring to work his corruption on the city’s elders. Even so, during their investigations in 1196 CE, he was observed on two occasions by the coterie. Bernhard saw him quietly observing him from afar at the Silk Road, and also managed to meet the deeply unnerving gaze of the Snake of Eden at the Chrysotriclinium Baths later in the week. The Gangrel was deeply pleased with himself for doing so, as well as secretly relieved that he had not suffered for it.
Lineage: Childe of Nehsi, Childe of Sethnakt (d), Childe of Set