I'm currently running a Vampire the Masquerade chronicle using the 5th Edition rule-set for a small group of fellow role-players. These are the chronicles of their adventures.

Our chronicle is set in Los Angeles and features a small group of Camarilla agents sent into the 'Free States' to bring them back under Camarilla control. After over four years of plotting, one of their number is now leader of the Anarch Council of the Free States and the rest have privileged places within the Anarch hierarchy.
The now obligatory warning bit - Unlike my other RPG write-ups this one will contain swearing, sexual references and other references that might offend. If you can't tell the difference between real             peoples opinions and grown-ups role-playing predators who crave blood then this probably won't be for you. There are however a list of potential triggers listed before the introduction. I've also used actual photographs to represent some characters which I'll give acknowledgements to at the end if I've any idea who they are.
The introduction to this campaign, the first story and all the other parts can be found at the following links and are in chronological order. If you'd prefer a summary of each session rather than read everything then there's a more detailed link page HERE as well as links to the first episode of each story in the blog sidebar.
Chronicle One - 'Infiltrate L.A.' 
Welcome to L.A. - Introductory Session
Story One - 'Three Murders' - Part OneTwo, ThreeFour and Five
Interlude Session - One
Story Two - 'The Pasadena Problem' - Part OneTwoThree, and Four
Solo Session - 'The Neillson Library'
Story Two Continued- 'The Pasadena Problem' - Part FiveSixSeven and Eight
Story Three - 'Becoming Baron' - Part OneTwoThreeFour and Five
Solo Session - 'The Gather'
Story Three Continued - 'Becoming Baron' - Part SixSeven and Eight
Chronicle Two - 'Foothold L.A.' 
Solo Session - 'Hostile Takeover'
Story Four - 'Countdown' - Part OneTwo and Three
Story Five - 'The Missing Chantry' - Part OneTwoThreeFour and Five
Solo Session - 'The Anaheim Assassination'
Story Six - 'A Meeting of Barons' - Part OneTwo and Three
Story Seven - 'The Carmelita Situation' - Part OneTwo and Three
Story Eight - 'The Blount Sisters' - Part One and Two
Story Nine - 'Blood Money' - Part OneTwoThreeFour, Five and Six
Story Ten - 'Anathema' - Part One and Two
Story Eleven - 'Predators and Prey' aka 'The Blount Sisters' - Part Three
Story Twelve - 'Aftermath' - Part One and Two
Story Thirteen - 'The Messiah Complex' - Part OneTwoThree and Four
Chronicle Three - 'Incursion L.A.'
Story Fourteen - 'The Rant'
Story Fifteen - 'Ties of Blood' - Part One and Two
Solo Session - 'A Gathering of Roses'
Story Sixteen - 'The Southern Solution' - Part OneTwo and Three
Story Seventeen - 'The Baker Disappearance' - Part OneTwo and Three
Story Eighteen - 'Inevitable Betrayals' - Part OneTwoThreeFour and Five
Story Nineteen - 'The Marius Contracts' - Part One and Two
Story Twenty - 'The MacNeil Protocols' - Part OneTwoThreeFourFive
Story Twenty - 'The MacNeil Protocols' - Part SixSevenEightNine and Ten
Interlude Session One - After Griffith Park
Interlude Session Two - Divide and Conquer
Interlude Session Three - On the Brink of War
Chronicle Four - 'Conquest L.A.'
Story Twenty One - 'Veni, Vidi, Victor' - Part OneTwoThreeFourFive
Story Twenty One - 'Veni, Vidi, Victor' - Part Six, and Epilogue
Story Twenty Two - 'The Unbound' - Part OneTwoThree and Four
Story Twenty Three - 'The War Council' - Part OneTwoThree and Four
Interlude Session - Recon
Story Twenty Four - 'Resistance' - Part OneTwoThreeFour and Five
Interlude Session - Damage Limitation
Interlude Session - The Killing Spree
Story Twenty Five - 'Personal Agendas' - Part OneTwo and Three
Story Twenty Six - 'Strange Bedfellows' - Part OneTwoThreeFourFive and Six
Story Twenty Seven - 'The Fiorenza Sanction' - Part OneTwo and Three
Story Twenty Eight - 'Hunters Hunted' - Part OneTwoThreeFour and Five
Story Twenty Eight - 'Hunters Hunted' - Epilogue
Solo Session - 'The Salubri Tome'
Story Twenty Nine - 'Methuselah' - Part OneTwoThreeFourFive
Story Twenty Nine - 'Methuselah' - Part SixSevenEightNine and Ten
Story Twenty Nine - 'Methuselah' - Epilogue
Galerie Sanguine - 'San Francisco'
'Anarchs' -  ZeroOneTwoThree and Four
Chronicle Five - 'Blood Cults of L.A.'
Story Thirty - 'A Plague of Blood' - Part OneTwo and Three

'The Cast' - Past and Present
This Sessions PC's are...
Dr Daniel Matthews - Banu Haqim, 'Sherlock'
Hope Romero - Gangrel, 'Census Taker'

The Storyteller
Everyone else...

The player characters stats and backgrounds can be found HERE should any-one be interested, but be warned that the page is usually several stories ahead of the most recent write-up and may contain some spoilers. 

There's also some minor 'house-rules' HERE that have occurred as we went along.

If I think something needs a bit of out of character explanation then those will get a storytellers note that will helpfully be in red. Introductory pieces that I read to the group are in Blue. Where particular NPC's have a mention in a faction profile you will be able to reach it by clicking on their name or faction beneath their picture.

Trigger Warnings for This Session: Drug Use, Modern Slavery, Sexual Assault, Torture.
Other Possible Triggers: Blood, Disease (Plague)

Storytellers Note - As well as being quite dark in tone, this session was also fairly long.

The Blood Plague is spreading and as expected, all the signs point to a deliberate supernatural origin. Unfortunately for Daniel it is the job of the Arbiter of the Councils 'Sherlock' to investigate matters such as this, that could effect the entire of the Anarch Free States.

With no further clues forthcoming from Gloria Martinez's domain, it is time to look into the activities of a people smuggler known as 'Dreads' who operated from within the domain of the Baron of the South Coast, Harvey Caplan.

Scene Sixteen - History Repeated
"An unusual choice of delivery service"
The books given to them by the Verbena Mages, and some further documentation that arrived in a small backpack attached to a vary large rat, have allowed them to draw some interesting parallels between this and the plagues in other cities. Daniel would have to thank Alonzo for the additional information when he saw him, even if his own Baron, the Toreador Michael Tomassio, wasn't particularly pleased with the method of delivery.

Unfortunately the useful parts were sometimes contradictory and mainly hearsay, leaving what is fact and what is fiction, for the reader to decide. Or in this case, for Daniel and Hope to wade through.

A Blood Plague, sometimes known as 'the Curse', swept through the undead society in the late 20th century, decimating domains and striking down vampires no matter their clan or status. This they already knew, fortunately some of their other information elaborated.

Also sometimes referred to as 'The Blood Curse' this mysterious plague plunged numerous Cainites into madness before destroying them between the years of 1997 and 1999, but was most prolific in Berlin and Atlanta. Paris, which was effected a century before, seemed to survive this re-emergence, though there were some cases, these were easily contained and controlled. For unknown reasons, only the younger kindred were affected by this. The Ancillae and Elders seemed strangely immune. Daniel began to suspect that age might provide a measure of immunity but after reading further found evidence to the contrary.

Gustav Breidenstein - Ventrue
Former Prince of Berlin
Gustav Breidenstein, former Prince of Berlin and a powerful elder, was one of the highest profile victims of the contagion that brought countless kindred to frenzy and forced vitae to escape from every orifice until the victim withered and died. This strain of the disease was especially virulent in the cities of Berlin and Atlanta. That certainly put the 'elder immunity' theory to bed.

Other cities were effected but to a far lesser extent and these managed the problem through quarantine of those infected. Some victims recovered, but most had to be 'disposed' of. It's lesser form could often be cured by the complete exsanguination of the effected kindred, but even this was sometimes not enough. In it's most primitive form, this treatment involved suspending the infected kindred upside-down and slitting their throat, therefore allowing all the vitae to drain from their system. They were then quickly 'fed' before entering torpor. Neither Daniel nor Hope could see many volunteers for this particular cure.

In many ways it reminded Dr Daniel Matthews of the great plague epidemics of the Dark Ages.

A possible vector, they discovered, was a virus artificially bred by the Sabbat. It was conquered in a way as yet unknown by Owain ap Ieuan. Sometimes known as Owain Evans, Kinslayer and The Wanderer. Daniel had never heard of them

Owain Evans - Ventrue antitribu
The virus bred by the Sabbat was known to them as Project Angharad, interestingly 'Angharad' was the name of a former lover of the aforementioned 'Wanderer'. The Sabbat virus was traced to a City Gangrel of the eleventh generation, called Carlos. He was a member of a Sabbat pack called The Talons, originally based in Montreal. All except their leader 'Mercy' were allegedly destroyed under mysterious circumstances, possibly they were victims of the very plague that their member had created. Daniel believed that 'created' was possibly the wrong word, as it was more likely that he discovered it and amplified it in some way.

Information on the earlier plague that struck Paris seems to have suffered from what, in modern times, might have been called censorship, as if the cure was somehow something that the cities leaders did not wish shared. Vague references to 'the one from the sewers' and 'the doxy' are all that had survived. 

This current plague seemed to have emphasised the loss of control, though they were yet to know of any who had met final death as a result of plague induced blood loss. Likely it was only a matter of time.

All in all this was not much to go on really. Especially as the news from the other Baronies was not good.

There has been more kindred victims of the plague, and these had been quarantined by their respective Barons. In the Hollywood Warrens, several Nosferatu had been quarantined, including Gary's childe Caleb. No deaths or Final Deaths had yet been reported above ground however.

Amara Martins - Duskborn
Elected Baron of 'The Liberated'
The Liberated had suffered some casualties, including at least one Final Death and there was another that might not survive another night. Those infected had also been quarantined, but Amara, leader of the Duskborn and Caitiff of The Liberated had forbidden their destruction, citing that their purpose was to protect her people from outsiders, not turn on those amongst them who most needed help. 

The South Coast had also lost one kindred, though this was thought to be an isolated incident as no others with the South Coast had shown signs of infection.

Gloria Martinez's camp meanwhile, had lost two Brujah, with a third, 'Arissa West' being in critical condition. In response Gloria had closed her borders completely and issued warnings that any kindred who crosses into her domain will be destroyed on sight. Myranda Maria of 'The Wilds' had announced that this prohibition went against a previously negotiated route between her domain and The Barony of the Angels, and that any attack against kindred along this route would be considered an act of war.

Within The Barony of the Angels their own council had agreed to support The Wilds should Gloria break her agreement. Even Nines Rodriguez has pledged his support to this proclamation, much to the surprise of many Brujah.

As expected Salvador Garcia has pledged his support to Gloria for her decision and has agreed to come to her aid if she calls for it. Allison has so far remained silent, but is unlikely to abandon her sister, or her sire, should a conflict break out.

Scene Seventeen - 'Dreads'
Harvey Caplan - Ventrue
Baron of the South Coast
Harvey Caplan had passed a message to Michael Tomassio, informing him that if another plague death occurs within his domain that he too would have to consider border controls, and that if any of his operatives wished to investigate the docks then it would be better to do so sooner, rather than later.

They were aware that Edan 'Dreads' Finney was a prolific people smuggler, using the usual method of promising his victims a better life, before taking their money and passports then making them work to 'pay their way'. This inevitably involved sweat shops, sex work or crime.

Permission to investigate within Baron Caplan's domain had been freely given, for in truth, Harvey was stretched too thin to investigate the matter himself.

Preliminary enquiries had revealed that 'Dreads' operated out of a small office unit and attached warehouse in one of the seedier areas of Long Beach Docks. His ship was a functional, but poorly maintained, small cargo ship. Its passengers were usually crammed into cargo containers, with next to no facilities, and the minimum of food and water.

His employees consisted of a number of hired thugs, ships crew, a couple of mechanics and a front man, all of which had sensibly made themselves scarce since their bosses death.

Harvey had arranged for all prying mortal eyes to be elsewhere and security cameras to be 'offline for testing' in preparation for them to investigate the location for themselves.


Hope's Shotgun - Saiga 12 c/w Folding Stock
Daniel was once again accompanied by Hope. This time she carried both a pistol and a shotgun. Taking a leaf from Vin's book, she'd gone with something capable of fully-automatic fire.

Though lacking some of the raw strength of the hulking Brujah, she'd selected something a bit more compact. Like Vin she'd also split her ammunition between solid slugs and buckshot, though unlike him, wasn't carrying a Duffel Bag full of drum mags.

Though in theory Daniel was authorised to investigate anywhere in the Free states, the reality was somewhat different, especially given the current tensions. After driving through the Barony of the Angels, he then decided to skirt around the outside of the former Crypts Sons territory, now held by Salvador Garcia. 

Louis Fortier - Ventrue
Baron of West L.A.
There was a sort-of DMZ between Baron Fortier's domain and Baron Garcia's where Louis had repeatedly and without much effort, managed to repulse Garcia's attempts to reclaim territory seized by the Baron of West L.A. before his arrival in the city. Daniel knew this would be a safe enough route, and then from there reaching the South Coast docks was a simple matter.

The part of the Docks specified was as unpleasant as they had been led to believe and 'Dreads' unit was in the worst part of it. The sign above the door said 'Finney Distribution'. Daniel parked behind a disused storage container that now appeared to be used as nothing more than an oversized trash dump. He made sure to park facing the exit, in case a swift getaway should become necessary, as something about this place put him on edge.

To an infiltrator of Daniel's skills the warehouse looked to be very simple to break into. The locks were quite ordinary, there was no alarm system, and a single security camera over the main entrance. Hope watched as Daniel located a camera blind-spot, then found a fairly sturdy drainage pipe and climbed swiftly, and skilfully, to a window on the upper level and peered inside.

Thirty or so mattresses and sleeping bags were piled in one corner and there was a single toilet cubicle whose door was hanging by a single hinge. Several fridges lined one wall next to an old workbench on which sat two microwaves and a battered kettle.

Daniel could see another security camera inside. He curled his arm around the post for stability, drew a handgun left-handed, and put a silenced round into the lens of the camera via a gap in one corner of the shattered window he was observing through.

"Taking care of the security cameras."
He slid to the ground and walked back to Hope. "Camera's taken care of, so we can use the side entrance. But be warned..." added Daniel. "...the place smells almost as bad as you..."

"I see your continuing the trend of taking me to all the nicest places..." replied Hope. Her eyes began to glow faintly red, and the darkness of the night faded, as her vision became preternaturally acute. It took Daniel a mere second to pick the crude lock on the side door, before he indicated that Hope could go ahead.

"Why is it always 'ladies first' when we're heading into a shithole that might be full of monsters?" she asked, but entered first, regardless. Up close, the warehouses conditions were even more primitive. The wiring would have given any health and safety representative a fright as it mainly consisted of wire, looped around nails or screws wedged into power sockets. Hope was then also treated to the smell of stale urine, excrement and sweat. 

Chained Prisoner
Daniel's attention was drawn to some dark stains in one corner. They were bloodstains and other traces of blood could be seen on the wall near several chains, hanging from a girder in the roof. In Daniel's opinion several people had been beaten quite badly here, he guesstimated that this had occurred over many weeks, possibly even months.

They also noted that a barrel fire seemed to have been used to burn a significant amount of paper and similar documents, judging from the scorched metal remnants of ring binders and folders.

"Well this is fucking grim. Remind me what we're looking for?" asked Hope.

"Well Watson, I'll know it when I find it." he replied, then added. "I think the plague might have been bought to the city by this bastard..."

Of the contents of the barrel nothing could be salvaged. Whoever had done this had been very thorough, but it did look like some of the items burnt may have been passports.

With no discoveries of note within the main area, Daniel and Hope moved to the single door in the far corner which led to the attached office.

Scene Eighteen - A Trade in Lives
The lock on this one was far better quality than the ones on the buildings exterior and took a bit more time to bypass. "Want some help with that?" asked Hope, amused by Daniel's initial failure to open the door.

Daniel's Lock-Picking Set
"I wouldn't want you to break a nail." he quipped back, as the lock clicked open on his second attempt. He swung the door open in an exaggerated manner and bowed slightly. "M'Lady?" Hope wiggled the raven-like talons that permanently tipped her fingers under his nose as she walked past. "These don't break..." she said with a smile.

The office was fairly clean, though not particularly tidy. It contained a desk, several filing cabinets, an empty book shelf, a sofa, a safe and a stairway to an upper floor.

The safe had both key and combination locks but the door to it was slightly ajar. Unfortunately, It was quite empty. "Looks like Dreads knew he was in the shit." commented Daniel. "He's had a clean out. I'll search the desk, you look at the files." Hope made a mock salute and then did as she was asked.

The desk contained shipping manifests and other documentation necessary for the legitimate aspects of this business.

"A shipment of 'cargo'..."
It seemed that Edan 'Dreads' Finney received a 'shipment of cargo' approximately every eight weeks. This put his last delivery sometime after the virus was already within the city, and his previous one about a week before the first cases appeared. Perhaps there was something to Daniel's theory.

The cabinets had been emptied of all documentation except for a small scrap of paper apparently overlooked. Only the header remained, this was for a company called Carlton Logistics. "I've found something for you to add to your conspiracy theorist pin board." Hope remarked, as she handed him the header.

The stairs to the upstairs rooms ended in a securely locked door. It had the same style lock as the downstairs door, so Daniel opened it easily this time. The upper room was a living quarters of sorts, with a small seating area complete with a combination television and dvd player, a compact but well equipped kitchen and a bedroom containing a double bed and a side table. 

It seemed that Edan lived far better than his customers.

Several DVD cases were piled nearby, with hand written labels. Each had a girls name upon it though all the boxes were empty.

"I don't think that's going to be security footage." stated Daniel, as he tossed a case aside. It was then that he noticed that the DVD player had a disc still inside it. "If you're going to watch that, I'll check out the other room." said Hope, clearly agitated.

"I don't want to, but it might contain something important, so it looks like I'm going to have to..." replied Daniel. It was probably for the best that Hope was absent during the viewing. Her relationship with her sire had given her strong feelings about abusers of any kind and Daniel needed her thinking straight.

The film started with a shot of a clearly terrified young Hispanic woman, flanked by several men wearing studded leather masks and the scene got a lot worse, very quickly indeed. Though Daniel couldn't see his face, one of the men was clearly Edan 'Dreads' Finney.

It seemed that violent pornography was one of his side-lines and that the 'actresses' were taken from those people he trafficked. Daniel was also extremely concerned about the woman in the film. Judging from her breathing and other factors, he could see she had some underlying breathing and health problems. A fact confirmed when she began to have a fit, right there on the screen. Daniel stopped the film before Hope re-entered.

Edan was lucky he was dead, because Daniel had no doubt about how Hope would have made him suffer had she caught up with him with knowledge of what the film contained. He would have been tempted himself, in all honesty.


The double bed within the adjacent room was stained, and some of these marks were clearly blood. Drug paraphernalia, including several needles and narcotics were nearby. Hope was no medical expert like Daniel but she'd spent enough time in deprived areas to recognise Heroin when she saw it.

The top draws contained clothing, the bottom one contained two sets of bloodstained handcuffs, more drug paraphernalia and a snub-nosed .44 calibre revolver with the serial number removed. There were also four sheets of paper, three of which were stapled together, on which were lists of names.  The first sheets names were exclusively female and some matched names on the DVD cases from the other room. Each had a brief and lurid description of the woman in question. Some had ticks next to their names.

Hope manage to push the Beast down for now, but could hear it whispering to her. Some of it's ideas were pretty good...

The stapled together sheets contained a more comprehensive list of names of both men and women and the descriptions were instead related to age, height, weight, build and similar factors. Some forty plus had been underlined and numbers were written next to each one. 

These numbers appeared to group these fortyish individuals into five groups of varying sizes, each consisting of a variety of genders and body types. At the bottom of the last sheet was the name 'Carlton', circled several times.

Hope re-entered the office and noticed the frozen image on the television screen a moment before Daniel hit the off button. She felt the Beast rising again, this time it was a little harder to quieten. She handed Daniel the lists without saying a word. He wisely decided that now was not the time to try to be amusing. He'd seen the Gangrel census-taker like this before. It usually meant that someone was going to die.

He briefly examined the lists and concluded that these could well be control groups for testing the plague or some variant of it.

Daniel's preternatural senses then detected a door opening in the adjacent building. It seemed that someone in the organisation, still living, had a key

Interlude - Coyote
The Circulatory System 'Escort' Vehicle
Celia Malone waited patiently for their contacts while Haris paced back and forth behind her. Three vehicles worth of security personnel were there too, but her bloodhound was always nervous when they had to meet other kindred, despite the overwhelming firepower at their backs.

"Stand still or I'll have to have one of the guards kneecap you..." stated Celia, in her usual conversational manner. Haris stopped pacing immediately. He doubted she was joking.

Exactly on time, the Gangrel Pack known as 'The Coyotes', arrived in one of their armoured transport vehicles. Celia recognised the design as being an almost exact copy of one of the Circulatory Systems own vehicles. An old Circulatory System vessel, and later 'bloodhound', called Leanna, worked for Marius now, and the Coyotes in turn worked for The Oratory. It made sense that some sharing of information had occurred given the System's expertise in this area.

Their leader Kellan Best exited from one side, the other Gangrel in the pack, Logan Velez, emerged from the other. The back doors then opened and the three Caitiff who completed the pack also emerged. The three were armed with Heckler and Koch MP7's and Glock 20's, though the two Gangrel appeared to be unarmed, and probably were. Despite being outnumbered six to one, the Coyotes, showed no signs of nervousness.

Haris inspected each of the two men and seven women that made up the shipment to ensure they were the specified resonance and blood type. He noted that they seemed dazed, and unusually compliant for people effectively being sold into slavery. 

"I see Leanna has been busy with some programming of their minds..." stated Celia. "...I hope there's nothing hidden in those directives that might cause me a problem?"

Leanna - Duskborn
Formerly of The Circulatory System
Kellan produced a flash drive from his jacket pocket. "All the triggers are listed on here and it's all yours, once we're paid." Celia nodded at Haris who scurried over with a brief case, that Kellan immediately opened. "Don't you trust us?" asked Haris.

"No." replied the Gangrel, who then continued to verify the payment was correct. A few moments later he closed the case and flicked the flash drive to Haris, who fumbled the catch, but managed to avoid dropping it.

As the Coyotes drove away, Celia noticed Haris lurking in that way he did when he was working his way up to asking something. "Spit it out or go away..." she said

"This buy wasn't with Circulatory System money. You used your own funds to fulfil Marcelina's list, so I was expecting you to, well, double-cross the Coyotes so you didn't have to pay..." speculated the Caitiff bloodhound.

Celia shook her head. "One. It's best to avoid making enemies of Gangrel packs, unless you really have to, especially if they also trade with your boss. Two, You don't fuck over the employees of a fourth generation killing machine with the ear of the Justicars without getting yourself dusted, and three, I didn't pay them in cash. It was a trade."

"What did you trade?" asked Haris, deciding to push his luck just a little.

"The Wolf Spider has mislaid two of his bloodline, and I happen to know where one of them is." she replied. "And now he knows too..."

Scene Nineteen - Wrong Place, Wrong Time
"We've got company." stated Daniel. "Company who seem to be familiar with the place..." Hope smiled. It wasn't in any way, shape, of form, even remotely pleasant.

Hope Romero - Gangrel
"Someone's going to die..."
Daniel faded from sight and took a position by the door. Not blessed with such abilities, Hope moved to behind a filing cabinet, that would at least partially obscure her from view.

Four men could be heard talking as they climbed the stairs, one was obviously the leader.

"I don't give a fuck what you think. We had some fun but now it's over, we need to make sure there's nothing that connects us to the films and then get the fuck out of town. Have you forgotten already that the one bitch fucking died and that asshole Edan still filmed it. It wasn't amongst the copies we found so it might still be here..." There was some muttering of begrudging agreement from the others.

As the first pair entered the room, Daniel gently placed the barrel of his 10mm pistol to the side of one of their heads. "Stay very still..." he said. The second raised a pistol and pointed it at Hope. "You pull that trigger and your bitch gets it..."

"Good luck with that..."quipped Daniel as they fired. It was a good shot. Fatal to a mortal, but not even an irritation to Hope. Her flesh hardened reflexively and the 9mm, hollow-point round flattened against her forehead. 

"My turn..." she growled, clearing the distance to the gunman in a fraction of a second, aiming low, she sliced through their femoral artery. Without slowing she continued the slashing blow and tore through the throat of the one with Daniel's gun to his head.

Familiar with the Gangrel's brutal fighting style, Daniel was already in motion and avoided being bathed in the arterial spray of either scumbag. The Banu Haqim rolled neatly to the stairway, propelled himself off the wall with one foot and neatly flipped over the two remaining gangers in the stairway. The first died instantly as Daniel's bullet took him in the back of the head. realising the need for someone to question, he instead put a round through the back of each of the remaining man's kneecaps. Fortunately Hope also saw the wisdom in having a prisoner.

As the sole survivor attempted to crawl away, Daniel placed a foot on their back. "Stay right there and stop screaming..." he advised. The thug with the leg wound wasn't dying fast enough for Hope's liking so she quietened them with a single crushing blow to the throat. This didn't kill them either, but at least now they'd die silently.

Daniel improvised some bandages for their prisoners ruined legs. They were going to die one way or another, but they didn't need to know that. Not yet. Besides which, they had questions. Hope dragged them to the bedroom and tossed them onto it, then retrieved the handcuffs from the draw. The bed already had attachment points for them. Neither Hope nor Daniel were surprised.

"I'm going to fetch my medical bag..." stated Daniel to the restrained prisoner. "...I'm sure my colleague will look after you until I return."

Hope gripped them by one shattered knee and squeezed experimentally. The scream gave her the answer she needed. "My friend can save you. But whether he does or not will depend on how helpful you are..." It took some probing of the wound with a talon before they decided to be cooperative.

"'Dreads' said they were just acting. How were we to know the dumb bitch had something wrong with her...it wasn't meant to be real..." Hope raised an eyebrow. The acting comment was clearly preposterous. The prisoner sensed her doubt. "Okay, maybe we knew he was talking shit..."

Hope turned her attention to the other knee. "I'm not convinced..." she said as she pushed a talon through the bone. Once the screaming stopped, a little more information was forthcoming.

"The cunt at Carlton Logistics did the distribution, we just had some fun with the girls..."

Daniel heard this last comment as he returned. One look at the mess gave him a fair idea of what Hope had been up to. "Don't worry doc. He's explained it all. He 'just had some fun with the girls'...so that's everything cleared up then...

Daniel then spent the next fifteen minutes pointing out sensitive parts of the human body to Hope before her victim finally passed out. He'd been sure that he knew nothing, but had decided that he needed punishing for his actions. "I thought he was holding something back." lied Daniel. "Apparently I was wrong."

"I suppose we should make this look a bit less like these buggers were clawed to death..." suggested Daniel. Using one of the thugs knives, he made the claw wounds look like they were inflicted with that weapon instead. It wasn't a perfect job but good enough to fool any casual examination by someone who already knew the answer.

Hope handed him the pistol she'd found in the drawer and Daniel shot the handcuffed rapist in the stomach, placed the gun in another's hand and fired again so as to ensure there was gunshot residue. After some more strategic swapping of weapons, they had created a plausible 'falling out amongst criminals' scenario.

Daniel made a quick phone call to one of their two resident hackers to get them to look into Carlton Logistics. While they did their thing, Daniel and Hope headed to the address on the scrap of a document discovered by Hope.

Scene Twenty - Carlton Logistics
This company seemed to be more legitimate than Finney's and was located just outside of the docks. All indications were that this was a respected and well known company with a proven track record. Hardly the kind of place that would associate with the likes of 'Dreads'.

Carlton Logistics - Likely a 'Front'
The header on the scrap of paper was, however, not for their headquarters but instead for a logistics hub within the Docks. Further cross-referencing indicated that this part of Carlton Logistics was, on paper at least, closed down six months ago and sold due to it being too small for their needs.

The hacker, Zipper's own enquiries also indicated that the purchaser had sold the building on almost immediately, and it had been left empty since as the subsequent owner went bankrupt. Technically the building was now in the hands of the bank.

The structure itself was in surprisingly good condition, for an abandoned building, and still had the Carlton Logistics sign on its side. A white transit van and an old but well maintained BMW were parked outside. Light were on in the reception despite the lateness of the hour.

Daniel parked out of direct view and moved in for a closer look.

A Mysterious Cloaked Figure
A large, slightly overweight man appeared carrying a file box and placed it on the backseat of the car. As he turned to head back into the building, a cloaked figure appeared, as if from nowhere, grabbed them by the throat and slammed them into the side of the van with bone crushing force, before then snapping their neck like a twig. This took barely a second before the perpetrator faded once more. The brief second before they disappeared led Daniel to believe that they were heading towards the reception area.

Cautiously, but as quickly as possible, the pair advanced on the building. The van had a dent in one side, and the victim's head was facing in entirely the wrong direction. In Daniel's opinion this had been a waste of effort. The initial impact had clearly killed them instantly.

Within the reception area were two dead men. One had a fist sized hole in his back through which his heart has been ripped out, the seconds back had been broken, their body folded almost in two. Scattered files indicated they were in the process of leaving with boxes of files when ambushed.

"Not fast enough..."
A woman's scream echoed from within the building, cut suddenly short, and then the sound of heavy footsteps could be heard running in their direction.

A large, muscular man, clearly unused to moving quickly, got almost to the doorway to reception before being pulled back into the room from which he emerged. A slight delay, followed by a sickening crunch seemed to indicate that he, like the first victim, had been thrown bodily into something sturdy.

Daniel drew his handguns and entered the room alongside Hope. Unfortunately, as they had believed this to be a legitimate commercial venture, Hope had left her bulky shotgun behind.

The figure within was waiting for them as they entered. Their bulky form, wrapped in a cloak that had clearly seen better days, showed signs of disease and decay. The smell of rotting flesh and necrosis was difficult to ignore.

"You don't look like potential recruits or vessels, but appearances can sometimes be deceptive..."
"So, do we fight? Or will you stand aside?"

The foul smelling kindred slid a large two-handed fire-axe from beneath his cloak, though held it casually in one hand. Gore coated and jagged fingernails tipped each finger of his free hand. It seemed clear that his preference was for option one.

"Not the most subtle of weapons..."

"It's unlikely that we'll be joining you..." responded Daniel. "...but an introduction might help..." This figure seemed to find this amusing. "My Brothers and Sisters call me Brother Pestilent." he replied.

Daniel continued. "...and why exactly did these people need to die?"

Pestilent looked towards one of the dead. "They knew things, secrets that weren't theirs to share. Now they know nothing, which is how it should be..." Then, without missing a beat, he hurled the fire-axe at Daniel.

Caught by surprise, Daniel hesitated a moment too long, and the weight of the weapon drove the blade into his chest, close to the right arm. The impact drove him backwards against the wall, and he slid to the ground, leaving a bloody smear against the white paint.

Storytellers Note - That was a bad time to botch a dice roll...

Hope wasn't keen on engaging in close combat with a creature such as this, but the only available weapon was a fire-axe in a cabinet, about five metres behind the plague cultist. Deciding that neither she nor Daniel had any time spare she launched herself at the monster, enhancing herself with as much vitae as she could spare, she attacked with berserker fury.

The onslaught forced her enemy back, but each wound she caused began to fester almost instantly, the corruption within seemingly matching the corruption without, but even the most severe wounds were ignored. He almost seemed to gain pleasure from the pain and draw strength from it. Hope stepped back, gore covered and awaiting the response of her foe.

Dr Daniel Matthews - Banu Haqim
"Not having a great night..."
Several seconds passed, then Brother Pestilent fell backwards with a crash and lay still. The hunger began to cloud her judgement, and the Beast screamed at her to feed, yet she pushed the emotion back down. Feeding on something that took ten seconds to realise it had been destroyed didn't seem like a great idea. She turned to Daniel who was pulling the axe from his body with considerable effort.

"I need to clean this shit off me." said Hope as she looked at her gore soaked clothing. "Are you going to be okay for a few minutes?" Daniel nodded in response and threw the axe to one side. The wound had begun to itch, the flesh around the wound already looked infected, and the doctor realised he'd need to do something extreme to ensure he wasn't about to become another plague victim.

As Hope picked gore from her talons, Daniel drew one of his karambit blades and began the gruesome task of cutting away the undead flesh surrounding the wound. Had he been mortal, the damage would have been fatal, but even to an undead creature such as himself the removal of so much flesh was a risk. He had years of experience as a surgeon but this was the first time he'd ever had to operate on himself.

Still unsatisfied, even after the precise, but self inflicted wounds, he emptied powder from several of his handgun rounds, placed it in the wounds, closed his eyes, then ignited the powder, cauterizing his dead flesh. Training with the Bahari had taught him many techniques for controlling the Beast, and he was pleased that even the fear of the close proximity of fire was something that could be overcome with sufficient willpower.

Hope emerged from the offices bathroom naked, but free of gore, just as the gunpowder exploded in Daniel's shoulder. "What the hell are you doing?" she asked as he staggered to his feet. "Taking precautions..." he replied.

The kindred who had called himself Brother Pestilent still lay where he'd fell. Before investigating the building further, Hope took the fire-axe from the cabinet on the wall and removed the plaguebearer's head with it.

"Taking precautions..." said Hope, mimicking Daniels tone.

"Let's see what was worth this many lives..." muttered Daniel to himself as they began their search of Carlton Logistics. 


Storytellers Conclusions
I sometimes like to do a round-up of how the session went in these features but if you couldn't give a shit what I think then feel free to skip this bit....

So...I nearly killed a PC this session...Well, in actual fact, the players own dice nearly killed their character this session...

Some of the point of this session was a reminder that not all of the evil in the World of Darkness is vampire related, though many kindred certainly take advantage of that factor of human nature. Also, their enemy is now aware that someone specific is looking for them. They'll be better prepared for interference next time. Hopefully the players are equally inclined to plan ahead.

Song Lyrics
Also, The quote in the header is from the following song, should any-one be interested...


Further Acknowledgements
Portions of the materials are the copyrights and trademarks of White Wolf Entertainment AB, and are used with permission. All rights reserved.

I've used pictures of real people to represent some of the characters and art for others so in no particular order Michael Tomassio is Matt Bomer, Johnny 'Roach' West is Kurt Kobain, Vincent 'Vin' Ghast is Scott Adkins, Dr Daniel Matthews is Mads Mikkelsen, Hope Romero is Deborah Ann Woll, Marie is Eva Green, Mr Hertz is Charles Dance, Sofia Rivera is Eliza Dushku, Amara Martins is Indira Varma, Harvey Caplan is Harvey Keitel, Louis Fortier is Eduardo Verastegui and Leanna is Leeanna Vamp.

Everything else is from vampire related folders and searches and is as far as I know is all of the 'fair use' variety. If there's something that you feel should be attributed to some-one then feel free to let me know and I'll happily add an acknowledgement.