Vampire The Masquerade : Love is in the Air

Introduction

Been a while since I got to write one of these. Unfortunately I had to skip on a few plays because it was getting a bit too much for me time wise. Playing till 04:00 in the morning after being awake a whole day is pretty exhausting, and if you do this every weekend, it will claim you at some point.

This time in the blog, I will keep it rather short, because both plays are to be considered “short plays” in that the amount of people present was limited and the plays themselves where also rather short compared to our normal sessions. Again, if there’s any mistake in the text or names, just leave a friendly comment for correction or poke me on Facebook.

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Foreplay (Kinky :3)

Oliver received an invitation to attend a small evening at the Gardens in München. Due to recent events in Regensburg, where Jones took the small bell away from Oliver and destroyed it, Klara was in a bad mood. When Oliver brought the bell back and explained what happened, Klara had to use a good amount of Willpower to constrain herself, but in the end the hobby room of the house had to pay the price. Not much of it remains. Because of this, Oliver now has a new form of “punishment”. He still needs to figure out what the third meaning is behind the bell, and has time till August to find out. Klara did not tell what would happen if he didn’t, but she would not be teaching him anything new until he did. So in order to get away from all this stress, since he’s not allowed to leave the house alone at the moment, Oliver called Marius, asking if he could take him along to this evening, explaining that he wanted to get away from things and just be out. That being agreed, Marius drove by before the happening and took Oliver along.

Before actually arriving at the location, Marius and Oliver took some time alone and just sat on the side of the Gardens, looking up at the sky and stars. Oliver did his best to answer the questions posed by Marius and explain what has been happening in the last month. Another topic covered was the traditions and etiquette in the Vampire Society and how Oliver sees this being applied to his education. Before heading to the actual meeting, Oliver asked more about the abilities that Gangrel posses, namely the ability to transform one’s hands into Claws. Marius explained how this was something unique to the Clan, and that Oliver would not be learning this until he was a full Gangrel, whatever that may mean.

The evening itself was pretty relaxing. Because it took place outside in the open, Oliver found it really comfortable and found his own little spot in the corner of the garden. Just lying on his back, with his Ghoul Gecko Otto on his stomach, he was looking at the stars, feeling the grass with his hands and smelling the sweet scents of the flowers and plants around him. He could hear the noises made by the animals around him, see the fireflies dance around in the sky and hear the nocturnal sounds of the garden. His mind and inner animal were at peace.

Often small disruptions occurred when people stepped over him, walked past him. Even one of the Malkavians, Alfred tried to start a discussion with Oliver, but because Oliver wanted to keep his serenity going, he made short work of that conversation by answering with short replies such as “yes”, “no”, “okay” to make it clear he was not in the mood for any social interaction with those who do not grasp the serenity of being outside. However the entire bliss came to and end when screams were heard in the distance and a fight broke out. Not getting the details, Oliver remained at the garden while Marius ran off to check what happened. When he came back, Kostia was with Marius, covered in claw marks and blood. Oliver, being smart enough about these things did not inquire where they came from.

Later on the evening, Marius was talking with the Malkavians, including their Ancilla Linkmann. Not long after, Oliver was grabbed by Marius and taken for a walk to talk about his “behavior” in Regensburg and the general etiquette that applies in Vampire Society. Although Oliver did not agree with the point made by Marius, and found it even weird that Marius would agree to anything from the Malkavians, he accepted what was being laid out before him: Following a course on etiquette from someone who could teach him and make an apology to the Malkavians for his rude behavior. Marius also explained that Oliver should think about his future, what he actually wanted, and laid out some potential options.

This talk continued, and at the end, Oliver decided that he’d be that Gangrel living in the woods around München, not being involved with Society. Only to show up when required or invited to something. Oliver loved his freedom, and the ability to become completely blissful when being in the woods. Picking up on the lecture about making a stand, Oliver agreed to talking to Ancilla Orsini von Rosenberg about learning the etiquette for when he was in the Society, but he refused to apologize to the Malkavians, using the argument that this was his point of view that no etiquette had been violated.

Approaching Ancilla Von Rosenberg turned out easier then expected. Oliver did not really succeed at convincing Marius from his point of view, but when the Ancilla confirmed about the speech Oliver made in Regensburg and how this had opened the eyes of several others, impressing many people, Marius fell silent for a moment, and a wide smile appeared on Oliver’s face. At this moment, Oliver was gently forced by Marius to ask about the etiquette training, and the Ancilla accepted to teach Oliver about the etiquette.

Some other minor talks and events took place, but I will be leaving them out here because they’re just minor character development and not that significant to be part of the blog. If you want to learn more, just ask me or attend the evening next time 🙂

Love is in the Air

The second invitation was for the next day, the night of Saturday on Sunday. Russ left early, leaving Oliver behind at home. Klara still not in the mood forced Oliver to reach out to Marius again. Marius agreed to pick him up, and together they went to the second invitation of the weekend: “Love is in the Air”, organized by Ancilla Frau Simone Duval, Clan Toreador.

Before arriving at the location, they were greeted by Staubkind and Kostia along the way, and traveled together to reach their final destination. When they entered the location, the first thing to do was greet the host of the night, Ancilla Duval herself. For being an older Vampire, she was actually pretty kind and acknowledged Oliver by welcoming him to the evening and shaking his hand. She also inquired about the Gecko on his arm, who he was.

The Gangrel took place in the back room, looking through all things, and discovering a table filled with snippets of poems and expressions about “Love”. They all quickly found one that they found hilarious, namely a piece about “taking love in ones hearth, for without it life would be nothing but a garden with sunshine where the flowers have been removed”. The hilarity was big enough to lure Ancilla Duval into the room, explaining the purpose of the entire thing. Namely everyone was supposed to take a piece, reflect about it and explain what it meant during the evening. The one impressing the Ancilla most, would receive a “favor”.

Oliver originally took the piece where the Gangrel where having so much fun with. Sitting back on the couch in the room, Oliver made him really comfortable till the Malkavians entered the room. Ancilla Linkman entered the room and said one should just take a place by pushing a Childe to the side, effectively placing herself on the couch Oliver was hanging on, pushing him to the side and leaning against him. With a death stare in his eyes, Oliver answered really abrupt to the question if he was comfortable, making it clear this was not to his liking nor his inner animal. The Ancilla however did not really seem to care much, so Oliver did his best to suppress his anger, although it was clearly showing he was agitated.

The game finally started when Ancilla Duval called everyone together in the room to start explaining their interpretations. However shortly before this, she had given Oliver a different piece of paper. One that said:

Educating is done with Examples and Love, otherwise it is nothing.

Because Oliver had a new piece, he needed time to think up a more decent response. Knowing the situations with the Malkavians, Oliver talked with Marius if he could use this example to tell a small “story” and try to reason his way out of the situation he was in. The reason behind this, was Clan driven. Stories are the means of sharing and communicating information inside the Clan. Oliver figured that if he learned from telling and hearing stories, the others could as well. Marius agreed and said he should just try and see what comes from it.

When it was finally Oliver’s turn, he handed his Gecko over to Marius, stood up; or rather was forced, and started his explanation of how he interpreted the sentence on his piece of paper:

“Educating is done with examples and love, otherwise it is nothing. When I look at my own education, I see many different ways being used.

The first one is people simply saying: This is how it’s going to be, that’s what you’ll be doing and that’s how it’s going to be. These are the are the examples being used. There is however no love, no understanding. Simply a person doing his task of educating someone without feeling anything for it. 

The second is people simply saying: Do what you think is right, and we’ll deal with the consequences when they come. This is the love being used, because he cares about the person learning and wants him to learn himself without constraints. Klara uses this on me a lot. However there are no examples. I often feel lost and confused.

The third one, the ideal one, is something our entire Society should be doing. If we truly care about ourselves and our future, all of you should be my example. All of you should be showing me how it’s done, because all of you should be caring about your future. Instead our society does not care about raising it’s children, and instead tries to gain advantages from those who are learning, backstabbing and abusing them along the way or afterwards. Our society lacks the love and examples.”

With that being said, Oliver sat back down and waited for all others to finish their explanations.

The evening itself progressed without any incidents. For a chance, Oliver actually managed to talk to more people on the evening and learn several things. Despite having to go out a few times for fresh air and clearing his mind, Oliver actually managed to engage into several philosophical discussions about the Vampire society. At some point the Gangrel all left the room for some reason, and Oliver was left alone at the bar with his Gecko. At this point, Amens came over to him asking him “if he had anything to say to her”. Looking into her eyes and studying her for a moment, Oliver answered with a clear “No”.

Amens was dissapointed, and said it was a real shame. She looked at Oliver one more time and left him then.
((OT interjection at this point made it clear that she threw a delayed Madness on Oliver.))

The evening itself was coming to and end. Ancilla Duval took the time to close the talking session and ended with a story of her own, out of own personal experience what it meant to hate someone and to love someone. She also explained that not one person had impressed her, but 4 people did. And therefor 4 people would be receiving a favor from her that they could use when they wanted. Oliver was one of those 4, because he reminded her when she was young and had to learn everything. When this was being told, Marius “petted” Oliver on the head, showing his approval that he did well.

As the talk was done, Oliver got a headache, and laid his head against Marius, who started to stroke through his hair. This kept going for 2 minutes, but when Marius tried to stop, Oliver grabbed on not letting go and kept leaning against him. At this point, Marius told him to come outside with him. Using Auspex Marius discovered an overwhelming feeling: depression.
Outside, Marius asked what was wrong, but the only thing Oliver could explain that he was not in the mood anymore, wanted to go home. Marius asked why but no feasible answer came, Oliver said he didn’t want to continue anymore and just wanted to go home. Marius offered some blood from a bottle he was carrying, saying he would feel better. Again Oliver declined the blood, saying he was not in the mood for anything.

At the point, Marius raised his voice a little bit, saying he should drink it. Oliver took a bit from the blood. Asking what was inside, explained why he was starting to feel better. Older blood as usual, mixed with Alcohol and LSD. The added kick helped Oliver break through the breakdown he was suffering from. The downside was that he was seeing funny things and having trouble walking straight. Oliver also asked another question to Marius: Knowing he would not be learning the clan ability for a while, he asked if he could learn more about his ability to talk with animals, if more could be done. Marius explained some advanced features that Spatz possessed through this, and said he should talk to him or maybe Salome.

More happened shortly afterwards, but I promised to quit here cause the involved player wanted to use this information himself later on, not spoiling the surprise.

Gangrel_by_schwarzeskaetzchen

Conclusion

I actually had fun. Riling up some Malkavians, and refusing to dance in line is turning out to be more fun then expected. Sad thing is that it only happens in small private plays, inside the Clan only. Should try on focusing to do this in public more, making more of a mess 🙂

Still have one point to spend in my abilities, and how it’s going now, this will probably go to Animalism II instead of taking Protean I. Guess I’m not going to be a Cliché Grangrel focused on fighting with his claws, but rather one who works with/through animals instead.

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