Friday, 31 May 2019

Vampire the Masquerade V5 - Session Thirty - A Meeting of Barons (Part One)

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 campaign is set in Los Angeles and features a small group of Camarilla agents sent into the 'Free States' to search for ways to once again bring the Ivory Tower to dominance under the pretence of being disillusioned neonates looking for the freedom of the Anarch way of life. Now with a barony of their own it's time to consolidate their position and then plan their next move.
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. 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.
'Infiltrate LA' Chronicle
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
'Foothold LA' Chronicle
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'

The PC's
Phil as Michael Tomassio - Toreador Baron of Pasadena
and Hope Romero - Gangrel Scourge
Tom as Johnny 'Roach' West - Malkavian Seneschal
and Marie - Clan Carna
Dave as Vincent 'Vin' Ghast - Brujah Sheriff
Matt as Dr Daniel Matthews - Banu Haqim 'Fixer'

The player characters stats and backgrounds can be found HERE should any-one be interested. There's also some minor 'house-rules' HERE that have occurred as we went along.

As I have written out introductions and dialogue for certain NPC's and some location descriptions I'll post these more or less as I wrote them so they'll be in a 'reading to the group' style and they'll also be in blue so you can tell them apart from the more traditional write-up sections and occasionally an obscure Malkavian premonition will turn up in purple. 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. Anything covered via player handouts will also be in blue as they're written in the same style as introductions and the like. Where particular NPC's have a mention in a faction profile you will be able to reach it by clicking on their name beneath their picture.

Pre-Session Player Handouts
At the start of certain sessions I distribute local news reports and information relevant to certain individuals. Some relate to previous sessions, others are things going on that the players may or may not wish to investigate or involve themselves in. Others of course are complete bollocks red herrings...

Michael - You have received word via Roach that Therese has ensured that the Banu Haqim 'Chick' wont be informing on Daniel as she has 'matched the bounty' though what she meant by that is unclear. 'Chick' has also spread the word amongst her own network that reports of a Banu Haqim matching Daniel's description in LA are bollocks as the guy is actually a Brujah not one of their clan at all.
Daniel - Keith Chang has recovered well from his wounds with the aid of your Vitae within his body greatly speeding up his healing. It'll be a week or two till he's fighting fit but he's okay for light duties anytime you feel the need.
Vin - Your underground bunker below the main brothel is now complete. It has a concealed entrance, security doors, a secured escape route into the sewer network and room enough to contain you, your ghoul and your own security team if you so desired. Haven 1: Brothel Secure Room (Hidden Armoury 1, Postern 1, Security 1, Watchmen 1)

The war in Anaheim between Tom Weaver and Allison Maller has ended with Tom Weavers death. It seems that Tom had pooled his resources into one massive overwhelming attack upon Allison's fortified base and was ambushed and killed upon the way by a pre-emptive strike by Allison herself. The kindred rumour-mill is also rife that Amethyst lost several of her own people in the attack including one of her most valued advisers Cade Sheppard a Ventrue who was effectively her Seneschal.

Storytellers Note - I had several sub-plots and a nice background for Cade...oh well...

The mortal authorities are reporting it as gang related but due to the use of a number of vehicles belonging to several businesses in Santa Ana has created a multiple jurisdiction task-force to look into this and other gang battles over the last few months in part due to the increasing usage of military specification weaponry during these gang battles.

The other major talking point amongst the kindred is the rumour that the Blount sisters are actually mass murdering diablerists. The elders and clan leaders who regularly attend rants have known about this for some time and have deemed the explanation that the black veins that show up so strongly in their auras are simply the result of defending their community from an occasional interloper as entirely understandable given their isolation.

The Blounts have met with several of the barons to express their disappointment at being slandered in such a manner and that they may have to be less generous with their feeding rites in future and have also stated quite simply that if any kindred believes the rumours to be true to simply not ask for such feeding rites.

Given the troubles across LA and the reduction in feeding opportunities this has caused several of the younger kindred have expressed their desire to find the source of this rumour and make sure the kindred in question shows more respect in future. Thin-bloods, Caitiff and several Neonates who have benefited from the generosity of the Blount Sisters from a number of baronies have began independent enquiries into tracing the source of the rumour. A few have even gone as afar as offering rewards and boons for information.

Scene One - Rumours and Lies
Louis Fortier - Ventrue
Baron of West LA and Downtown
You have received a message from Baron Fortier inviting you to a meeting to discuss some concerns effecting the kindred of Los Angeles. You have been told that you may also bring up to three other members of staff if you deem them important. You have only been told that the meeting is to discuss 'security concerns'. You are of course free to refrain from attending if you so desire. The meeting is set for tomorrow evening at the Fortier's mansion for ten in the evening.

Michael considered his options carefully. Baron Fortier was fundamentally an honourable man who dealt with others as they dealt with him so who he bought with him could be interpreted as a message in of itself. His effective Seneschal 'Roach' had lately irritated several kindred of importance with some of his unusual habits but unfortunately his ability to scry the auras of others was too useful to be without. Hope was of course an invaluable scourge but could be somewhat of a liability in the area of diplomacy if things became tense and Vin was now infamous amongst the kindred of Los Angeles as a 'giant-killer'.

Jane Lane - Malkavian
Baron Voerman's Seneschal
Michael decided that despite his one recent indiscretion towards Voerman's representative and the commando 'Chick', that Daniel would be his best option for security. Daniel subtly reminded Michael that as far as all in LA were concerned he was a Brujah, not Banu Haqim and that it was a ruse he intended to maintain. Given the circumstances the Baron of Pasadena agreed that this was actually a fine idea.

With his entourage finalised, Michael dismissed those present and being in the rare position of having an evening free decided to spend a few hours of it with his increasingly erratic blood doll Susannah. This would both enable him to fulfil her increasingly clinging insistence on his regular presence and also enable him to detect if her belief she was being followed was fact or delusion.

He spent a fairly pleasant evening with her which seemed to calm her obsessiveness very slightly. Michael wasn't an expert in counter surveillance by any means but his senses were highly developed and his observation skills were very effective and in his opinion she wasn't being followed.

Daniel meanwhile was still concerned about just where the rumour of a Banu Haqim in Los Angeles had come from and figured his best bet for information on such things was the Gangel 'Fixer' Marius. The last few times he'd attempted to deal with him direct he'd been intercepted by his Ghoul assistant Victoria but on this occasion he got straight through.

Marius Walker - Autarkis Gangrel
"Bit busy at the moment Daniel, what do you need?". Daniel didn't feel comfortable discussing the matter over the phone so decided to push his luck and see if he could get a face to face meeting. "If you can get here in twenty minutes, I have thirty spare. Otherwise you'll have to wait a week or so..." Deciding to take the opportunity provided he headed straight to his car before rushing to Marius's Hallowbrook Apartment headquarters and haven.

Security were expecting him and he made his way through the extensive precautions protecting Marius's home surprisingly quickly. The private sections of the tower were busy and all of those resident seemed to be occupied with something. Yukio slid past several security people, pointed at the door to Marius's apartment and then entered ahead of him. Apparently this was as much of an invitation as he was going to get.

Marius was sitting on a couch in the living area of one of the four floors that his home encompassed. "You'll have to make it quick Daniel..." and with that he gestured at the seat opposite. Yukio meanwhile had disappeared up the open staircase to the second floor and Daniel couldn't help but notice that beneath her long coat she was wearing full body armour and had a small arsenal of weapons strapped to her person. Something significant was apparently being prepared for.

Therese and Jeanette Voerman
Not sure what was important and what wasn't Daniel told Marius everything that had occurred between him and Therese's Seneschal and her commando coterie member 'Chick'. He also mentioned that the price for the Baron of Santa Monica not pursuing the matter had been the use of his skills in an unspecified future assassination. "A blank cheque?" commented Marius "I doubt she'll waste that on something trivial, Therese doesn't squander resources on trivialities the way her sister sometimes does." Marius confirmed what Daniel had surmised that Chick quashing the rumour about a Banu Haqim being in LA was simply Therese protecting her interests. After all there was no use having a pet assassin for a day if they got themselves killed before they could be utilised.

Daniel then raised his other concern about the initial source of the rumour. "When my current priorities have been completed I can look into it for you if you wish?" offered the Gangrel. "The price would of course depend on the resources expended but given the useful services you've provided for me in the past I imagine a trivial boon or at worse a minor one would suffice." The Banu Haqim agreed to the terms as it became obvious that his time was up and giving his thinks he left. Though his curiosity had been piqued by just what the 'Fixer' was expending so much effort to accomplish.

Scene Two - Leanna
Leanna - Duskborn
'Shepherdess' of Blood Dolls
With the matter of Susannah beginning to linger in his mind, Michael began to consider solutions to the problem of having an obsessed and now seemingly mentally deranged blood doll connected to him. There was the real concern that knowing he wouldn't authorise such an action himself that one of the more practical members of his coterie might decide to remove the problem on his behalf. He had done some investigation into possible solutions but was hampered by his preference for one that wasn't unnecessarily cruel.

After some consideration he decided that he'd see if the 'shepherdess' of Marius's blood doll herd, Leanna had any ideas. He'd spoken to her briefly at the kindred meeting known as 'The Rant' and had been impressed with her professional manner. Given the masquerade stretching size of the Gangrel's herd he presumed that if any-one had been required to deal with a similar problem it would be her. The downside of course was that there would no doubt be a fee and also that it involved admitting a mistake to some-one working for a notorious information broker...amongst other things...

Deciding he had little choice he decided to bite the bullet and ring Victoria about utilising the services of one of Marius's retainers. Surprisingly he got neither Victoria or Marius instead being referred to Yukio. "Everyone's really busy Michael. What do you need?" Michael asked if it was possible to speak with Leanna and was relieved by the reply. "Leanna? She's the only one who isn't bloody busy. Is tonight too soon?" Given the urgency of the matter in his opinion he gratefully took the offered meeting that night.

Security was quite heavy as usual and the upper floors of the building seemed to be filled with activity though the floor he was guided to in order to meet Leanna was fairly quiet. The entire floor had been divided into a mere four apartments in a similar manner to the floor on which he'd met the Drake sisters who acted as Marius's occult advisers. It was apparent that being a ghoul or retainer of the 'Fixer' came with considerable perks. The as usual, impeccably dressed and beautiful Leanna met him at the door to her suite and ushered him inside.

The suite was expensively and tastefully decorated but Michael had to admit that in his opinion at least she'd overdone the 'boudoir' look a little. Leanna slid elegantly into a lavish sofa while Michael sat opposite and as he sat she reached for two bottles of wine that sat upon the table. "I selected both a traditional vintage and a 'special' bottle for our meeting. Do you have a preference?" As Michael had fed earlier that evening he gestured towards the bottle of Ch√Ęteau Lafite. "Nostalgia sometimes leads me to desire a traditional wine rather than one infused with...other substances" he stated with a smile. Leanna poured two generous glasses of the blended Bordeaux red and indicated that Michael should state the reason for his visit.

"It's a difficult subject to broach I'm afraid. I used an ability that Toreador refer to as 'The Lingering Kiss' in order to swiftly tie a blood doll to myself..." Leanna briefly interrupted to indicate she was aware of the ability "...and now I'm beginning to fear that her sanity and self control is...slipping." Leanna asked a few pertinent questions relating to the frequency of his visits to her, how often these involved feeding and about the nature of her mental problems before allowing him to continue. "I wish her no harm, I simply want to release her from this addiction and I believed that you might be able to help."

Leanna paused briefly before replying. "If as you say, you only take blood and give her none then the addiction is fortunately purely mental. Memories can be altered or made indistinct and she can be isolated from you while this is undertaken so as to not reinforce the initial problems." From the matter of fact tone Michael gained the impression that this was a fairly routine process for her. "You've done this before then?" Leanna smiled at the question. "Oh yes. Mortals are easy to program or deprogram if one has the appropriate skills and experience. The real art is in altering the memories in such a way that others of their acquaintance don't notice the inconsistencies. It's why...elimination, is often considered before a more elegant approach." Michael strongly indicated that her permanent removal was something he would have made every effort to avoid.

Thin-Blood Alchemy
 "Do you wish to keep her once the damaged is mitigated or are you done with her now?" was the next question.

Michael informed her that he believed that keeping her any longer would be cruel and that he wished her to be free. Leanna asked a few more questions relating to her current employment, family and friends who might notice her initial absence and a number of other minor points that hadn't occurred to Michael at all. The conversation then moved onto the inevitable subject of payment.

"The majority of my needs are met by Marius. He is most generous in the area of resources as long as I continue to provide the services he requires..." Michael had been in enough negotiations with other kindred to know that either a 'but' or a 'however' was coming, he wasn't disappointed "...however. I have an unfortunate condition that means I require kindred Vitae on a weekly basis in order for my other abilities to continue to function. My benefactor of course provides this however it means he is less generous in providing Vitae for my other experiments. My usual fee is three measures of kindred blood but as I've decided I like you I'll settle for two in this case."

Victoria - Ghoul PA
Notorious Psychopath
Michael who had some experience with blood magic and the occult required reassurance that it would not be used in any way that would cause harm to himself. She assured him that this would not be the case and he was inclined to believe her as she seemed sincere.Once the required payment was extracted, Leanna arranged a time for Michael to send his blood doll to her under the guise of a job in Susannah's field of graphic design and stated that she would sort out everything from that point onward.

As he was about to leave he enquired about whether any further use of her expertise would require him to go through Victoria. Before replying she handed him a card. "I'm one of the few in Marius's employ in a strong enough position to bypass Victoria without consequence so by all means contact me personally if you wish." Michael realised of course that didn't necessarily mean that Victoria wouldn't take such an act out out on him, just that Leanna herself was safe from reprisal. "Does that mean..." enquired Michael "...that you're not afraid of her?". Leanna's tone became serious for the first time during the meeting. "Of course I'm afraid of her. Any-one with any sense should be...".

On that slightly ominous note, Michael left reasonably confident that his problems with Susannah would now be over with. All that remained now was for him to prepare for his meeting with Louis Fortier tomorrow evening.

Scene Three - A Meeting of Barons
Daniel adopted his cover identity of Baron Michael Tomassio's Brujah chauffeur and checked over the vehicle he had specified. In this case this was the armoured vehicle he'd had made at the same location that produced those Marius used. Michael had of course spent a lot more money on the interior of his than Marius bothered with.

As usual the Fortiers mansion is extensively guarded and patrolled as well as having it's usual physical security measures of high spike topped walls, reinforced gates and armoured gatehouse.

Daniel was keeping a close watch on the security precautions, looking for weaknesses or exploitable lapses in security protocols and was despite himself suitably impressed. There were pairs of guards with overlapping patrol routes, security camera's covering multiple zones with seemingly no gaps between the monitored regions and the barricades even had ram prevention measures. All the guards were in high specification body armour, had high calibre weaponry and also carried back-up pieces.

The Fortiers Mansion
Though this meant that they would be safe from exterior threats during the meeting it also meant that should they need to penetrate it's defences themselves in the future it would be a mammoth task to do so. As they were escorted within he noted that the guards within the complex were slightly less well armoured than those without but judging from their alertness he imagined that the guards were rotated to avoid complacency setting in. He gave Roach a questioning look and a voice in the back of his head simply said "They're all Ghouls, every one of them..."

You are escorted to a basement meeting room already containing a veritable who's who of the local barons. Louis Fortier is at the head of the table with Catherine Du Bois on one side and Mariel St John on the other, just behind them against the far wall is Fortier's scourge Marco Joseph. Therese Voerman is here with Jane Lane and two of her commando's while Jesus Ramirez is here representing El Hermandad flanked by a pair of guards and a somewhat weaselly looking fellow. On the opposite side of the table is Hank Boyd leader of the Crypt Sons accompanied by three others which have the look of 'Muscle'. Four seats are vacant opposite Therese, and there are another four at one end of the table. Your guide gestures towards the table but to no particular set of seating.

As brief introductions were exchanged Michael noted that these seemed to be all the barons whose baronies were adjacent to or effected by downtown. A few moments later this theory was confirmed as Nines Rodriguez, Skelter and Damsel were escorted into the room, Nines himself had a base in Downtown. Nines gave Michael a respectful nod as he sat down, recognising him from his inspired speech at the Rant where he had bravely (or perhaps foolishly) stepped between the two and prevented the conflict between Nines and Marius with his rhetoric. Skelter had taken several looks of recognition in Roach's direction but now seemed to have decided he was mistaken.

As all were seated Roach scanned the aura's of each in turn, avoiding only Therese whose presence he could feel via the link known as 'the Cobweb' which all Malkavian's were effected by to one extent or another. Accepting that he would be unable to hide much at all from her should she wish to take a stroll through his mind he turned his attention back to the others.

Jesus Ramirez - Ventrue
Salvador Garcia's Lieutenant
All the barons seemed confident and calm as indicated by the light blue filling their aura's though this on occasion became the dark blue of suspicion which would be expected of kindred who had survived long enough to reach their respective positions. Their guards shared this dark blue hue to their auras and were understandably alert. Several had aura's closer to purple which Roach had learned normally meant aggression though none had shifted to the red he associated with anger. He found himself taking an instant dislike to the weaselly looking kindred that accompanied Jesus Ramirez as his aura flitted between all the shades with negative connotations. The distinctive mental signature of Therese drowned out all other voices within the cobweb briefly before speaking directly to Roach. "You notice that Marius hasn't been invited of course?"

Michael watched Roach pan across all present but as he received no telepathic messages took this as a sign that the Malkavian had discovered nothing of note.

Baron Fortier raises his hand subtly for silence and the other barons seem to have enough respect for him to do as requested. "Let me get straight to the point. The chantry of Maximillian Strauss, former Camarilla Primogen has turned up in downtown and is now inhabited by representatives of three different Tremere Houses. Since much of Clan Tremere and I'm informed some of Carna is still loyal to the Camarilla I thought that we should discuss how to deal with this potential threat as all here..." He outstretches his arms dramatically "...are neighbouring baronies..."

Henrique 'Hank' Boyd - Brujah
Crypt's Sons Baron
"They've done jack-shit to us..." this from Hank Boyd of the Crypt Sons "...and I'm far too busy at the moment to get involved in another fucking war. As long as they stay out of our shit like they've been doing we should stay out of their business. There's only like, what, six of them anyway?". Michael found himself somewhat surprised that Hank had such an ambivalent attitude to them as he had a reputation for aggressive action though he did note that he'd paid enough attention to know their numbers. Nines however was less open to such a flexible attitude stating quite clearly that he thought it "Compromised the Anarch ideals to have a Camarilla faction in the middle of downtown". His viewpoint was that "Unless they overtly pledge themselves to the Anarch cause something needs doing about them. The Free States need to remain exactly that..."

Jesus Ramirez seemed to agree with Nines which wasn't a big surprise given how close to Salvador Garcia's ideas their own philosophies were. Ramirez wanted discussions with them and guarantees of their Anarch or at worse independent status as he "Doesn't want a Camarilla presence by proxy slap bang in the middle of the Free States". Michael chose this moment to interject and addressed Baron Fortier. "Forgive my ignorance but do we have any information that proves the former House Tremere residents still hold any allegiance to those who abandoned them?" Fortier explained that after they were evicted from their chantry they had set up a new haven within his domain without asking permission and had proceeded to drain kine of their blood in masquerade threatening quantities. His childe Catherine Du Bois had driven them out along with a small army of armed ghouls and after that they had made their way into the Santa Monica mountains.

Maximillian Strauss - Clan Tremere
Former Primogen and Regent
Michael pointed out that this had been many years ago and that these blood mages had made no attempt to contact the Camarilla, spread it's ideals or for that matter involve themselves in LA politics at all. Perhaps the very fact that they failed to follow Strauss indicated that they were already leaning away from his ideals? "As Nines so eloquently said..." continued Michael only slightly patronisingly "...the Free States are 'Free' and that freedom should be available to any-one regardless of their former allegiances or what exactly are we fighting for?"

Nines seemed to be swayed somewhat by the argument as was Damsel, though Skelter looked unmoved. Fortier spoke once more "I'm going to want guarantees of their loyalty due to their residence in my barony. Any acts against my interests would justify me taking action." Roach could see clearly that Hank had no desire to interfere, understandable considering he was already fighting half a dozen gangs from the barony of the angels. While he was musing, Therese spoke to him via the cobweb once more.

Therese Voerman - Malkavian
Baron of Santa Monica
"You realise that Technically speaking the chantry is within the domain granted to Marius by Fortier? Now of course Fortier considers Marius untrustworthy due to his recent tendency to absorb rather than eliminate problems and I doubt he wants a chantry of blood wizards added to his collection.

By drawing all of us to join in a decision he hopes to put the Gangel off any direct interference. There is of course the distinct possibility that Fortier's actions will lead to exactly the result he's trying to avoid...there are several things that the Gangrel still fears, but Fortier and his clan aren't one of them..."

Seeing that he might be able to get the matter resolved none violently after all he decided to risk bringing Hank back into the debate on his side by quoting him directly. "As Mr Boyd pointed out earlier they might not even be a threat at all..." Hank looked up at the mention of his name "...and I like him have no wish to become involved in a war that might not even be necessary."

Baron Voerman who as far as anyone other than Roach was aware didn't seem to have a great deal of input so far began to put forward some input of her own. "I have given permission for my coterie member to take up residence at the chantry and also keep her employment within my own organisation. I consider this a good enough way of keeping track on any threats to us that might occur within."

Clan Tremere Chantry
As no-one at the table had raised an objection to Therese having an operative within the chantry, Michael decided it was safe to reveal that he also had a similar opportunity for infiltration. "My own contact Marie has been offered a place within the chantry..." This got the attention of the majority of those assembled "...She has no Camarilla ties or loyalties and this would give us two friendly individuals within the chantry whose loyalties can be relied upon."

Seeing he had everyone's focus he continued, launching into an epic speech about Anarch ideals, the need to welcome rather discourage converts to the cause and the folly of wasting resources to remove a threat that might not exist. He also reminded all present that the Sabbat had recently appeared on their doorstep and the Second inquisition were on the look out for any unusual activities which a war with blood mages would provide aplenty.

As he finished he could tell that he had swayed enough of the table to make his next suggestion seem like a natural progression rather than a power grab. Before he could begin however he could hear romantic music begin to play within his mind and as he turned to Roach he noticed him nod in Damsel's direction. It seems his passionate speech had gotten him a fan. Not sure whether that would be a good or bad thing he carried on. "We just need some-one with the appropriate diplomatic skills to approach them and gauge just exactly what their intentions are." Louis's reaction made it clear that he had no desire for it to be one of his organisation.

Amanda 'Mandi' McBride - Tremere
House Goratrix
As Hank had expressed his complete lack of interest in involving himself, Nines was still edging towards a violent solution and Jesus remained unconvinced that just left himself and Therese Voerman. Of course if Therese decided to take up the mantle then there was little he could do to prevent it but he was hoping that she had no interest in becoming involved.

"I have far to many of my own affairs to manage to spare the time to pander to the insecurities of a few barons worried about half a dozen witches in a run down house." stated the Baron of Santa Monica. "Mandi, My own operative within the chantry will keep me informed and if I deem it necessary I'll pass any information onto those here. The Baron of Pasadena also has an operative within the chantry perhaps he will take on the responsibility as he has argued most vociferously for a peaceful solution?" Knowing that the chantry and it's inhabitants would be an invaluable weapon in his scheme to one night take the Free States for the Camarilla he agreed as reluctantly as he thought made his compliance seem reasonable. "I do however have one proviso. If I am to be held responsible for the success or failure of this task them my conclusion must be taken as final...whether I decide they are a threat...or not." Once his condition had been agreed to the meeting began to disband.

Nines once again congratulated him on his adherence to Anarch principles and even Jesus seemed to begrudgingly acknowledge the merits of his earlier speech. Damsel on the other hand was positively gushing and though Michael knew this might be of use in the short time he was concerned about how she would react if or when his true loyalties were revealed. He also noticed that Roach was viewing him intently as if concerned about just how good the speech had been, perhaps worried that Michael was beginning to 'go native'.

Of course his next problem was just how he approached the three Houses within the missing chantry and persuaded them to adhere to the rules specified by the meeting of the barons...

To be Continued in 'A Meeting of Barons' Part Two

In Conclusion
I 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 that for once went more or less as I was expecting and leads nicely into the coterie attempting to make allies of the various Clan Tremere Houses within the chantry. They also need to deal with the fact that they attended a meeting that their Mawla Marius was specifically excluded from.

As only the negotiators were available for this session it was fortunate that pretty much that was all they had to do this time, lol. Let's see if the same tactics that worked on a room full of barons works on a room full of blood sorcerers...

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 represented by the actor Matt Bomer, Johnny 'Roach' West is quite obviously Kurt Cobain, 'Vin' is the actor Scott Adkins, Dr Matthews is Mads Mikkelsen, Hope is Deborah Ann Woll, Marie is Eva Greene, Paula Patton is 'Amethyst', Marius Walker is Tony Curran, Leanna is Leeanna Vamp, Victoria is Lilith May, Skelter is Vin Diesel, Jesus Ramirez is Javier Bardem, Hank Boyd is Michael Clarke Duncan, Therese Voerman is Whitney Moore and Mandi is a suicide girl  called Jeckyl Suicide though no doubt goes by other names too. 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...

Thoughts and comments are (as usual) most welcome.

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