In the distance a raging barn fire lit the night sky like a giant’s torch bathing the field in a soft flickering amber glow. Sheep wandered aimlessly in a open field as a cart dumped several caskets, old and singed by fire, unceremoniously upon the moist earth as a handful of people looked on.
A woman in her forties, yet regal and proud stood watch over the caskets, as they started to move, and thumps and muffled scratches could be heard coming from within. She was dressed in clean but simple 17th century attire and was holding a large flintlock rifle. Around her, looking on anxiously, where what appeared to be her kin. A Man slightly younger than she, a young girl of no more than 12 with long golden hair, and a couple of strapping young men in field hand attire. All appeared to be British or perhaps Western European.
Suddenly one of the coffins burst open sending shards of wood and rusted nails flying in all directions as figure burst forth shrouded in shadow. It wasted little time in assessing it’s surrounding and when it rushed into the Flickering light of the fire hot on the sent of precious sustenance, precious, warm, crimson vite. It was almost a blur but one could make out rotted leathers and once voluminous robes of linen. There may have been a turban of sorts on it’s head but attention was quickly drawn to the rusted curved blade it produced, as it lunged at the woman with the rifle who merely tilted her head back to offer her supple alabaster neck to the black beast from the grave.
Ivory fangs in stark contrast to charcoal black, desiccated flesh, wasted no time in finding their mark in her neck and for the first time in un-told years the taste of blood, of power, of life. He didn’t even notice when the next coffin shattered.
In short order another of the coffins were torn open from the inside with a crackly ripping sound. Then, What once must have made for a dapper corpse, in a fine fluffy frilled shirt and well fitting Italian renaissance garb leapt out and landed catlike on the balls of his feet. Hungry eyes darted anxiously about and surveyed the scene for but a moment before it deftly snatched up the nearest sheep and ran into the darkness, with only terrified bleating to tell of his presence.
Still other coffins could be seen lurching upon the ground, thumps and desperate scratches coming from within. Then another one opened, the lid rolling back upon it’s hinges as a Emaciated figure steped forth dressed in well tailored, if rotten, British attire of the 16th century, with all the poise and decorum of a proper English Gentlemen. The figure strode toward the nearest man, one of the field hands, and bit his neck in a attempt to feed. A scream of horror erupted from dried lungs as the blood from this man burned through the kindred’s body like molten lava.
Others attended to the fallen Vampire while the Moor and the Italian made their way around the “farmers” and sheep respectively. One brave field hand made his way to a coffin were light long scratches where heard from the inside. With a Crowbar and a quick wrenching motion he popped the lid of the coffin and attempted to jump back. Alas, he was not quick enough, and a small pallid hand shot up in a ivory blur of speed, clenched his throat and yanked him down into the coffin. His struggling proved futile as after some time a well composed, stunningly attractive, despite being clothed tattered and rotten renaissance finery, Mediterranean beauty strode forth to the group of farmers as the rest of them and the Kindred started gathering around the area were they awoke.
Questions flew back and for the between the Kindred and the farmers. The conversation was surprisingly civil. Save the Moor’s, who’s wild eyes, and accusations to match, betrayed him . What unspeakable horrors did the torpor nightmares drill into his black soul? The farmers reviled themselves as Ghouls and beckoned the kindred back into their homes to elaborate. The kindred didn’t go immediately but eventually t hey found themselves in a small but well kept home listening with wrapt attention to the Ghouls and the story they told.
Apparently it had been 100 years since all the Kindred were put into Torpor. All had known each other and though their conscious minds drew blanks when seeing each other, their beast remembered as their was no primal urge to strike from any of them toward any other Kindred. Furthermore all had been in some kind of service to the rightful King of the Night, Ruler of the Kindred of the Kingdom of England. And all seem to have been put into Torpor and hidden away to protect them from a rebel uprising by kindred usurpers that called themselves “the Parliamentarians”
The Ghouls were not just Normal Ghouls, they were elite, Royal and Noble Ghouls, entrusted with the important task of keeping these kindred safe and veiled from the eyes of Parliamentarian usurpers who would see them meet final death. The awakening was a accident, the barn was burned down by unknown arsons and the descison was made then to awaken the kindred rather than to risk someone finding the coffins in the basement of the farmer’s homes.
The Ghouls told them that they were in the “new world” in a small town of around 230 colonists and a unknown number of natives in the nearby forests. As well as information and blood the Ghouls also presented a chest that had been damaged in the fire. Within the chest was a half burnt cryptic note that seemed to warn the Kindred of the parliamentarian threat and entrust the ghouls with their safe keeping.
Also within the chest there were several bizarre items;
1) A human eye, brown, that seemed to weep blood. The Moor, without a second thought plucked out his own eye and set it in the socket to little effect.
2) A Brass Spider Broach with Ruby fangs and a empty bulbous crystal torso. The Italian woman tried this on and it seemed to do little more than pinch her flesh slightly when she pressed down on it.
3) A Fine Matchlock Pistol with 25 bullets. It seemed to be in perfect condition, even after a century of neglect. The Moor picked it up and immediately felt it’s hunger.
4) A Signet Ring bearing a Unicorn and a Lion, the Royal heraldry. The Italian woman donned this ring and everyone else seemed to think it looked absolutely stunning on her.
5) A Fine Rapier with a golden bejeweled hilt. The Englishman picked this blade up and when he attempted to unsheathe it, the blade sent fiery energy through his hand singing him horribly from the inside out. Then the Moor and the Italian Gentlemen experimented with it to find that it did not harm them when either touched it and it’s edge could slice through a man’s arm as easily as a brick of warm butter. The Italian wore it upon his hip and looked all the better for it.
6) A Ermine fur and silk cloak. Despite it’s age it was still quite fine. The Italian wore it and as he did it transformed into a common, though durable traveler’s cloak.
7) A Red Slate Tablet. It appeared to be empty as every one of the kindred examined it. It was only when the Moor picked it up did words appear to his eyes and his eyes only. He did not recognize the language but as he wrote down what he saw the Englishmen began to Translate what he immediately recognized as Latin. The Slate spoke more of the Royal Vampires and the viciousness of the Parliamentarians, as well as outlining the fine breeding of the Royal and Noble Ghouls who had been protecting them. The Englishman curiously found the need to leave out pertinent information regarding some of the Ghouls special abilities when it came to being fed on by Parliamentarians. With some “gentle” persuasion from the Moor, the Englishman finally translated the remaining text and it was clear that Parliamentarian Vampires could not feed from these ghouls, and from what happened outside when he attempted to feed from these Ghouls it became clear that the Englishman was not a Royalist Vampire at all.
The English Vampire was questioned sternly by the group but just as the other kindred, he seemed to honestly know nothing of his life post embrace. For the time being the consensus amongst the kindred was that they needed to deal with the more pressing matters at hand, none more so than basic survival in this small fishing & Trading post wedged between thousands of miles of Icy Sea and seemingly endless forests filled with wild animals, hostile natives, and perhaps even queerer things.