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[WIR] Beckett's Jyhad Diary - The Big book of Metaplot

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  • Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
    Ergo, Mary the Black, Michael, and the Dracon inside Mary's body.

    Already completed.
    That is elegant - I wish I had thought of it. It also inverts the meaning and symbolism of Holy Mary the Virgin, Mother of Jesus.

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    • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XE1kAsRYIJw

      Matthew Dawkins says the Kickstarter for CULTS OF THE BLOOD GODS may begin as soon as they implement the changes suggested by the good people at White Wolf. That's really exciting.


      Author of Cthulhu Armageddon, I was a Teenage Weredeer, Straight Outta Fangton, Lucifer's Star, and the Supervillainy Saga.

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      • Some notes


        1) Not sure how much the Dracon will like the situation in Costantinople. He already abbandoned the Dream after the death of Antonius, and he really dislike demons (he hated Kupala). I don't think that Evil-Baali-Mikhail will make a great impression on him.

        2)Mari the Black fusing with Mikhail is quite the close reference to Moloch and Troile, descending under the earth fused in a lovely embrace.

        3) Which by the way is quite peculiar, given that one of the origin of the Third Baali founders was
        Some claim the third Baali was the lover of one or the other, or both. Others claim it was in fact a pair of lovers merged together at the organ pit, thus explaining the presence of hermaphroditic deities in various ancient societies.
        .

        4)Now, with Ur-Shulgi arisen, and Nergal awakening under Mexico City, for the first time in thousands of years, the Baali have three 4th Gen leading them. Nergal is still Nergal, Ur-Shulgi is still Ur-Shulgi, and Mari+Mikhail are quite similar to Moloch. Maybe Gehenna is not the only cyclical event.

        5) Sahar-Hannibaal (Prospero) will have his hands quite full. He already was searching for a Well in the Cayman Islands, now he has also a Well that cannot be reached in Costantinople.

        6) I don't think that the new third could be Vitel. Vitel has no interest in infernalism, and the Dream of Costantinople has just turned into an infernal nightmare. There is a Well now, fully operating. Costantinople has just become a gateway to hell. Besides Vitel is too entrenched in Washington, even emotionally.
        The third one must be someone who could be tainted, or that would not mind be tainted at all.



        Last edited by Undead rabbit; 08-20-2019, 02:22 AM.

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        • Possible Timeline;

          Chapter 27 – A Brief History of Beckett; This may occur at any time and is not bound to a location.


          Chapter 1 – Carna’s Rebellion; Opens the narrative in Milwaukee.

          Chapter 2 – Split City; Follows the last chapter and is set in Chicago. Lutica “borrows” Beckett’s jet.

          Chapter 12 – Planting the Eye; The first portion of this chapter probably follows Chapter 2 and is set in Ann Arbor and Detroit.

          -Unknown amount of time passes-

          Chapter 3 – Shadows Coalesce; Based on references to Vitel throughout BJD this chapter occurs early in the narrative, but after the events in Milwaukee and Chicago. It is set in Washington D.C.

          -Unknown amount of time passes-

          Chapter 4 – The War Across Dixie; This chapter occurs early in the narrative and after the events of Chapter 3. It is set in Birmingham and Atlanta

          Chapter 5 – London Calling; This chapter follows the Chapter 4 and is set in London.

          Chapter 6 - Schism; This Chapter follows the events of Chapter 5 and is set in Jordan and France.

          Originally posted by Hypothesis
          Beckett wants his jet back but Lucita isn’t taking his calls. So he tracks down her Frenemy With Benefits Fatima to badger her about his jet. Fatima calls Lucita and tells her to do something about the ahmaq allaeina. This leads to...
          Chapter 9 – Spark of Civil War; Occurs after Chapter 2 and is set Mexico City

          Chapter 10 – Hands of Darkness; Follows the last chapter and is set in Montreal.

          -Unknown amount of time passes-

          Chapter 7 – Anarch Freefall; Beckett has his jet back, so it occurs after Chapter 9, and is in Southern California.

          Chapter 8 – The Blood Matures; Follows the last chapter is still set in Southern California.

          -Unknown amount of time passes-

          Chapter 20 – Giovanni Chronicles V; The first portions are in Switzerland and Romania.

          Chapter 15 – The Price of Hospitality; This chapter occurs before Chapters 17 and 18 and is set Romania.

          Originally posted by Hypothesis
          I place these events of these chapters together simply based on geographic proximity – they are all relatively close together.
          -Unknown amount of time passes-

          Chapter 11 – The Dead Walk; The first portion is set in Haiti.

          Chapter 22 – Azhi Dahaka; The first portion in Caiman Islands.

          Originally posted by Hypothesis
          Beckett is inspired to seek out information on the Samedi after the events in the first portion of Chapter 20. Also, the Caymans are reasonably close to Haiti. Which he visited first is up for debate.
          Chapter 16 – The Deaths of Baba Yaga; This chapter is entirely set in Russia.

          Chapter 17 – The Fall of the House; The first portion of this chapter, which is set in Mexico, follows Chapter 16.

          -Unknown amount of time passes-

          Chapter 17 – The Fall of the House; second portion in Hong Kong

          -Unknown amount of time passes-

          Chapter 14 – Traansvaal Nights; This chapter is set in South Africa.

          Chapter 13 – The Freedom of Libertatia; This chapter is set in Madagascar.

          Chapter 21 – The Way of Three Eyes; The first portion is set in Johannesburg.

          Chapter 12 – Planting the Eye; The second portion is set in Cairo.

          Chapter 11 – The Dead Walk; The final portion is set in Cairo.

          Originally posted by Hypothesis
          First, these are grouped geographically. Second, I am arguing Beckett gets the crew together to mount a rescue of Hesha.
          Chapter 20 – Giovanni Chronicles V; The second portion is set in Venice.

          Originally posted by Hypothesis
          Cairo is home to the servants of the Cappuchin, who communicates with Beckett, and is reasonably close to Venice.
          -Unknown amount of time passes-

          Chapter 21 – The Way of Three Eyes; The second portion is set in Romania, but after Chapters 17 and 15.

          -Unknown amount of time passes-

          Chapter 19 – The Eye Opens; This chapter follows both Chapter 17, and Chapter 12 but before Chapter 26. It is set in Macau and India.

          Originally posted by Hypothesis
          Beckett decides the Eye of Vec... Hazimel is too dangerous to keep. Also, it is apparently inert. And Portia has not eaten any of his fingers is a few weeks, so he doesn’t need the Eye for protection. So he risks a return to the Far East to deal with the Eye.
          -Unknown amount of time passes-

          Chapter 24 – False Caine; This chapter is set in Berlin.

          Chapter 26 – Death Has Many Faces; The first portion apparently follows Chapter 24, and it is set in Venice.

          Chapter 23 – The Madness of Jerusalem; This chapter apparently follows the first portion of Chapter 26. It is set in Jerusalem.

          Originally posted by Hypothesis
          Beckett writes in Chapter 4 that he does not actually possess a death wish – but attempting to personally find the Tzimisce Founder alone can only be described as suicidal. I argue Beckett is only in the right mindset to make this attempt after he has been disturbed by Malkav in Chapter 23.
          Chapter 22 – Azhi Dahaka; The second portion of this chapter is set in New York. It probably occurs before Chapter 18.

          Chapter 18 – Carthago Delinda Est; The first portion of this chapter is set in New York. It probably occurs after Chapter 23.

          Originally posted by Hypothesis
          Ecaterina and Christof are operating in New York, so Chapter 22 probably occurs before Chapter 18. Likewise, Beckett is disturbed by a painting of the Black Monastery, so it probably happens after the first portion of Chapter 20
          Chapter 18 – Carthago Delinda Est; The second portion of this chapter is set in Carthage.

          -Unknown amount of time passes-

          Chapter 25 – Dreams and Nightmares; This chapter occurs after Chapter 22, but before Chapter 28. It is set in Caiman Islands (and nominally Istanbul).

          -Unknown amount of time passes-

          Chapter 28 – The Drowning of Rasputin; This chapter occurs after Chapter 25, 26. It is set in locations across South America.

          -Unknown amount of time passes-

          Chapter 26 – Death Has Many Faces; The second half of this chapter is set in Egypt.

          Chapter 29 – Omega; The final chapter is set in Tripoli, Napels, Rome, Strasburg, Abu Minqar, Sicily, and CTPhipps house.

          Originally posted by Hypothesis
          Serenna calls Beckett for a date, which is complicated by the fact he is clueless and her idea of a hot date involves gunplay. But aside from that it is should be reasonable to reach Tripoli from Egypt – and Beckett’s jet has not been replaced.
          Last edited by Grumpy RPG Reviews; 08-20-2019, 05:09 AM. Reason: Beckett made me do it.

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          • Originally posted by Grumpy RPG Reviews View Post
            Beckett's Jyhad Diary was published in January of 2018. The first season the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina appeared in October of 2018 - nine months later. BJD would have been published before the first trailers for CAoS even dropped - which is to say the BJD art had been created and approved a year or more year before CAoS even appeared on the scene.
            I knew that the Netflix-Version was more recent then BJD, and I must say, that I was not that familiar with the actual art of the horror comic prior to my assumption here. I just figured the artist could have been inspired by the character, as I'd argue that Smiling Jack's portrait by the same artist has similarities with Ian McShane's "Blackbeard" - but anyway, my bad.

            Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
            Chapter Twenty-Five: Dreams and Nightmares
            Prospero then gives a short summary of Constantinople's history as well as that of the Trinity. It's an entertaining summary because it's clear Prospero is not impressed with Constantinople, "The Dream", or the love triangle of Antonius, Michael, and the Dracon.
            What's interesting is, that it's actually Lucitas summary of Propsero's summary - and it's not that clear if that was just a way for the author to cut to the basics and inform the readers that are not that familiar with Constantinople by Night and the Tzimisce DA-Novel OR Lucita actually had something to hide or just skipped passages, that deemed her unimportant?

            Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
            The irony being that they do NOT look like an enormous golden ant anymore but a "normal" (albeit idealized) human visage.
            Fascinating, because I think Vykos is turning back to his old self as Myca prior (as per ConstbN), long dark hair and idealized visage. He/She/They certainly changed over the course of different publications/centuries from male/noble (ConstbN), slightly androgynous (Unter the Black Cross), slightly female (Bitter Crusade) to the modern horror version we know. Those of you that are familiar with the Dark Ages novels (particularly, No. 13), know, that Symeon acutally changed Vykos' appearance to make him look like the Dracon. So I always thought - maybe it's not only him being "possesed"/pregnant with the Dracon, but maybe he has just forgotton what he looked like prior to all these visage-changes?

            Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
            I think the Constantinople plotline probably should have remained in the past personally because it is a story that already has a beginning, middle, and end.
            The same could be said for the Vitel-plotline, but I know what you mean. It's certainly a matter of personal taste. I always liked the idea that Vykos' role in establishing the Sabbat/the Eldest diablerie was kind of his way of re-building the dream as a blood-cult rather than a city-ruling-concept, driven by the sad/mad Dracon and his own hatred for the deeds of his Elders. So if you want to change Vykos, as you already stated, you have to "heal" him of the Dracon. And it's a fitting way to let Mary/Michael be the ones who are actually capable to do that.

            What I didn't like that much was the 3rd place in the Trinity, because it is either filled with an Assamite i don't know (Eshmunazar?) or a red-lister i have no particular meaning of. I think that this section is actually meant as a choice for the ST, so maybe it's meant to be unclear.

            Originally posted by Grumpy RPG Reviews View Post

            I must disagree with CTPhipps and a few other here. I do not mind the return of the Trinity, specifically because it has not returned. Not yet anyway. This gives the PC - neonates, ancilla or elders – a chance to say “Oh, no, not this shit again” and to intervein in some manner.
            Exactly my thinking. You could have stories around powerful kindred who are drawn to Istanbul to complete the Trinity, the incomplete Trinity's attempt to convince the Dracon (who seems to rally the Obertus-revenants to his cause) to join them after all - and have the PCs hinder/support those voyages/attempts.

            Originally posted by Grumpy RPG Reviews View Post
            I think it is Vitel.

            Both Vitel and the original Michael thought highly of the Roman Empire, and sought to preserve it or recreate it. Mary-Michael seeks a “vampire who was destroyed and rose again.” Vitel was destroyed and rose again. Both Vitel and Mary-Michael have grand (deluded) visions of the future. Mary wants to see the world burn. And Vitel is willing to set it afire to deal with his enemies.
            Good point. And one could argue that he would make for a nice replacement for Antonius, the Roman Ventrue who gavec the original Trinity/Dream much of its structure.

            Comment


            • Amazing job, Grumpy RPG Reviews!

              Originally posted by Undead rabbit View Post
              1) Not sure how much the Dracon will like the situation in Costantinople. He already abbandoned the Dream after the death of Antonius, and he really dislike demons (he hated Kupala). I don't think that Evil-Baali-Mikhail will make a great impression on him.
              I don't think the author of this chapter was going for a purely infernalist Constantinople. That's clearly Mary's goal but Mary isn't in charge of Michael despite the fact she's the one who diablerized him. Michael plans on becoming God and harnessing all of the holiness of the universe with a third figure to balance them. You might argue Michael is just being crazy-pants here but he plans on gathering holy people to counteract the Baali Hive.

              2)Mari the Black fusing with Mikhail is quite the close reference to Moloch and Troile, descending under the earth fused in a lovely embrace.
              The revelation that Moloch wants the Children to stay asleep (a ship that has well and truly sailed by Demon: The Fallen) puts an interesting new spin on their relationship.

              4)Now, with Ur-Shulgi arisen, and Nergal awakening under Mexico City, for the first time in thousands of years, the Baali have three 4th Gen leading them. Nergal is still Nergal, Ur-Shulgi is still Ur-Shulgi, and Mari+Mikhail are quite similar to Moloch. Maybe Gehenna is not the only cyclical event.
              Ur-Shulgi is a Baali but I'm not sure he's a Baali founder despite the fact he's fourth generation. There's also an argument that he's a Widdenslaite (I know that's misspelled) Mage that was Embraced by Haqim as a weapon against the infernal. The fact he is a follower of the Path of Blood also indicates that, whatever his infernal origins and hatred of religion, he also is sincerely devoted to cleansing the world of his former brethren.

              I'm also inclined to think Nergal is buried deep underneath Mexico City due to the failed resurrection he planned with Samuel Haight.

              5) Sahar-Hannibaal (Prospero) will have his hands quite full. He already was searching for a Well in the Cayman Islands, now he has also a Well that cannot be reached in Costantinople.
              I'm inclined to think he's already found it, whatever his goals.

              6) I don't think that the new third could be Vitel. Vitel has no interest in infernalism, and the Dream of Costantinople has just turned into an infernal nightmare. There is a Well now, fully operating. Costantinople has just become a gateway to hell. Besides Vitel is too entrenched in Washington, even emotionally.

              The third one must be someone who could be tainted, or that would not mind be tainted at all.
              A bigger reason for why Marcus Vitel would be a poor choice for it is that he never actually died. Michael and the Dracon are genuinely dead beings that have come back through the miracle of diablerie and necromancy. What is dead may not die and in strange aeons and all that. Marcus Vitel was in torpor, which is not even that uncommon a state for vampires. Theo Bell and Christof just destroyed a Obternation-constructed doppelganger that may have been a Combo Discipline of his Blood Sorcery (Roman Numina).

              He made it to look like they killed him while slipping away from the battle after it was clear he was getting his down to his final hit points, so to speak.
              Last edited by CTPhipps; 08-20-2019, 02:02 PM.


              Author of Cthulhu Armageddon, I was a Teenage Weredeer, Straight Outta Fangton, Lucifer's Star, and the Supervillainy Saga.

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              • Thank you. That is a kind thing to say. I am open to discussing the issue and rearranging the timeline if someone points out something I missed, or they can make a good argument.

                It might be interesting go through BJD according to the timeline, rather than by the chapters.

                Comment


                • Originally posted by Athanasius View Post
                  What's interesting is, that it's actually Lucitas summary of Propsero's summary - and it's not that clear if that was just a way for the author to cut to the basics and inform the readers that are not that familiar with Constantinople by Night and the Tzimisce DA-Novel OR Lucita actually had something to hide or just skipped passages, that deemed her unimportant?
                  I need to read Dark Ages: Lasombra as I'm interested in finding out what Lucita did in Constantinople.

                  Fascinating, because I think Vykos is turning back to his old self as Myca prior (as per ConstbN), long dark hair and idealized visage. He/She/They certainly changed over the course of different publications/centuries from male/noble (ConstbN), slightly androgynous (Unter the Black Cross), slightly female (Bitter Crusade) to the modern horror version we know. Those of you that are familiar with the Dark Ages novels (particularly, No. 13), know, that Symeon acutally changed Vykos' appearance to make him look like the Dracon. So I always thought - maybe it's not only him being "possesed"/pregnant with the Dracon, but maybe he has just forgotton what he looked like prior to all these visage-changes?
                  Given some of Vykos' commentary that he wasn't overly concerned about losing their genitalia and the fact that they chose to live as a they, I'm of the mind that Vykos is either non-binary or transsexual but just didn't have the terminology for that in the Dark Ages. I'm inclined to think that's unrelated to the Dracon's attempt to make them into an alien being that is linked to the Tzimisce Antediluvian's more bizarre transhumanist qualities. One thing that distinguishes Vykos is that they're not a follower of the Path of Metamorphisis. They're a follower of the Path of Death and Soul. While you might argue that's because the former didn't exist when Vykos was created, I think it's more likely they're just a different mindset than the transhumanist Tzimisce.

                  The same could be said for the Vitel-plotline, but I know what you mean. It's certainly a matter of personal taste. I always liked the idea that Vykos' role in establishing the Sabbat/the Eldest diablerie was kind of his way of re-building the dream as a blood-cult rather than a city-ruling-concept, driven by the sad/mad Dracon and his own hatred for the deeds of his Elders. So if you want to change Vykos, as you already stated, you have to "heal" him of the Dracon. And it's a fitting way to let Mary/Michael be the ones who are actually capable to do that.
                  I agree, I think the "Womb of the Dracon" role for Vykos was also a bit distracting for a character that already had a lot going on. Mind you, the Dracon is a 4th generation consciousness that could become an actual dragon so it'd be interesting to see where they go next.

                  t I didn't like that much was the 3rd place in the Trinity, because it is either filled with an Assamite i don't know (Eshmunazar?) or a red-lister i have no particular meaning of. I think that this section is actually meant as a choice for the ST, so maybe it's meant to be unclear.
                  I'm inclined to think that Mary the Black should be more interested in finding a soul to diablerize to add to their body so she can be 3-1 (technically 4 with her as the mother) or has already achieved it with the Dracon. However, another way she might be planning to do this is finding host bodies for the souls of Michael and the Dracon. In which case, seeking 4th or 5th generation hosts is a big deal by itself.

                  Host bodies that might be interesting:

                  Menele: Michael
                  Dracula: The Dracon (becoming the Dragon)
                  Lambach Ruthven: The Dracon
                  Nergal: Michael (that would be a revenge for Mary but probably not work out for Michael)


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                  • It occurred to while working on the updated time line that when Beckett eventually got his jet back form Lucita, I bet it was just full of bongs, roaches, candy wrappers, empty bags of chips, empty beer bottles, used condoms, an assortment of underwear, a couple of empty kegs, unwashed clothing, and so on and so forth.

                    Well, no, not really – that isn’t Lucita’s style.

                    But it is still funny to think of all that pouring out of the jet the minute Beckett opens the hatch, like something from a Family Guy sketch.

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by Grumpy RPG Reviews View Post
                      It occurred to while working on the updated time line that when Beckett eventually got his jet back form Lucita, I bet it was just full of bongs, roaches, candy wrappers, empty bags of chips, empty beer bottles, used condoms, an assortment of underwear, a couple of empty kegs, unwashed clothing, and so on and so forth.

                      Well, no, not really – that isn’t Lucita’s style.

                      But it is still funny to think of all that pouring out of the jet the minute Beckett opens the hatch, like something from a Family Guy sketch.
                      It depends if she sent a Sabbat war party to bring it back, in which case there'd be heads, body parts, and Satanic graffiti over everything.


                      Author of Cthulhu Armageddon, I was a Teenage Weredeer, Straight Outta Fangton, Lucifer's Star, and the Supervillainy Saga.

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                      • One stuffed pony doll from whatever talking pony cartoon Pentex owns, unironically cared for and kept spotlessly clean, surrounded by pools of blood.

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                        • Originally posted by Reasor View Post
                          One stuffed pony doll from whatever talking pony cartoon Pentex owns, unironically cared for and kept spotlessly clean, surrounded by pools of blood.
                          In Fallout 3: Mothership Zeta, there's a room with a dozen dead Raiders around a single Giddyup Buttercup....

                          Lucita loves it.


                          Author of Cthulhu Armageddon, I was a Teenage Weredeer, Straight Outta Fangton, Lucifer's Star, and the Supervillainy Saga.

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                          • Chapter Twenty-Six: Death has many Faces

                            This is a big chapter. Two very big important meetings.

                            Beckett hands over the Book of the Grave War to Bindusara for translation and repair. The cost for this is that he needs to journey to Venice and get some information on the Giovanni. Anatole tells Beckett that he was an idiot for trusting him as he sold the Book of the Grave War to Albertus Magnus the moment he left.

                            I assume that Beckett eventually got a translated copy from Albertus but it cost him heavily.
                            Beckett is planning on sleeping in the canals, which while probably useful can't be hygienic, and is trying to figure out who to talk to in order to get some information on the Giovanni. He initially thinks about consulting Ambrogino. He decides, perhaps because he unleashed Cappadocius' spirit and the Giovanni hate Ambrogino that this might be a bad idea. Before he could respond, he is contacted by a mute child who gives him a flashdrive.

                            Beckett talks to Lia Milliner and basically is unable to keep his rude tongue to himself. This is actually Beckett at his most rude this chapter and I include his visit to Libertalia. It ranks up with his attempt to blackmail Hardestadt with his true identity when he makes fun of the (untrue in canon) rumor that Isabel Giovanni drinks from skulls.

                            A bit of information I'm ashamed to know but Isabel Giovanni only actually drank from skulls in the torture-murder-rape porn novel Eternal Hearts.

                            It is, far beyond World of Darkness: Gypsies, the worst f***ing thing ever done by White Wolf and only rarely brought up because almost no one ever admits to reading the damned thing. White Wolf's creators, justifiably, regret ever licensing fanfic about about their signature characters having a bunch of non-consensual sex scenes with the occasional murder.

                            The art was nice, though.
                            Beckett trades a in-person meeting with the Roman (Marcus Vitel) in exchange for a transcript of a Giovanni meeting. What they find out is that the Giovanni are running a huge network of meetings with various Kindred powers. They're forbidden from engaging with the Jyhad by Camarilla decree so they've pretty much thrown that to the wind but they're doing it from behind the scenes.

                            Really, the stones on the Giovanni are tremendous as they're making an organized effort to be friends with everybody but they're not the Followers of Set/Ministry. The Followers of Set have been making deals with everybody for 8000 years longer than the Giovanni and that's just all of recorded history. They've not made enemies of the Sabbat yet but the Harbingers are already ready to take them down. I also predict that Pentex will probably turn their wrath against them at some point over the whole Enzo Giovanni matter.

                            Enzo Giovanni is a weird character in that he was put on Pentex's Board of Directors in a fairly standard, "Okay, there's a Giovanni member now on the board. He's tempted by the Wyrm to turn against his family but hasn't betrayed them yet." Then for whatever reason, he was described as a massive incompetant boob the Giovanni CLEVERLY put in charge of Pentex with no real access to Giovanni funds--which I felt was pretty poor writing and actually didn't make the Giovanni look cleverer.

                            Yes, we put an idiot on the board of the most powerful financial institution in the world. How smart that we can't make use of their immense economic and occult resources for our own ends. Yes, Pentex answers to Ahrimane the Anti-God but is that really any different from their daily business? The Giovanni are practically Formori anyway.
                            The Pisanob are offered up as sacrifices to the Sabbat by the Giovanni without a second thought. Can't imagine them taking this poorly and turning over to the Drowned. There's also a cute bit that the Giovanni are furious with the Anarchs and believe they're the ones who have spread across Kindred society rumors of the Endless Night (Beckett giggles to himself over this--which goes to show you that you can only keep a secret between three people if two of them are dead).

                            There's some good characters in the original meeting with Mireya being one I especially like. She was found by the US military, cutting open one of their own while he was semi-sedate and rescued by her sire later. That's a good impression. We also find out that the Pisanob sacrifice was deliberate with the plan by the Giovanni being, apparently, to get the Harbingers off their back by giving up a bunch of their less-liked members (I'm going to say it was motivated by flat-out racism). This is genuinely stupid of the Giovanni as the Harbingers are not after Giovanni in particular, they are after Giovannin in specific. Note: I turn out to be quite wrong on this and the timeline of the second meeting actually informs the first. Isabel is loyal to her family in a way the Giovanni are not loyal to the Pisanob.

                            There's also Dante Rosselini who claims to be an Embraced Revenant. I don't think that he's actually a Giovanni Revenant but wouldn't be surprised if he had a sire from a Rosselini woman seducing a Grimaldi or other Revenant to birth him--the Giovanni are tricksy that way.

                            Beckett, already knowing the Giovanni are a bunch of apocalypse cultists, wants to attend the second meeting in person and contacts Hesha--who he last robbed of the Eye of Hazimel after cutting off his hands. Which explains why Hesha gave up the Eye so easily. He also can't help himself and asks why the hell the Followers of Set are obsessed with snakes when Set was an ass.

                            I mean the donkey kind but you know that Beckett used that word deliberately.

                            Anatole explains that Followers of Set are obsessed with snakes because of the Serpent's role in Christianity. I was confused by this because there's a perfectly simple answer in that FoS are invoking the snake because of Apophis. Beckett also promises him a copy of the Book of the Grave War--which Beckett feels compelled to give. Hesha insists on an even bigger payment--helping stake Isabel Giovanni. Beckett accepts.

                            Douchebag.

                            The actual meeting is about the True Vessel that contains some of Cappadocius's blood. It's a meeting between pretty much all of the Necromancers among vampires and the beginnings of what I believe will become the Hecata. It puts to lie my whole theory the Pisanob are not being directly targeted. There's a lot of outrageous demands that Isabel denies because she's loyal to her family in a way that I suspect most of her Elders would find naive (because they're all monstrously evil--and she's just "normally" evil).

                            All hell breaks loose during the meeting with Isabel finding out the True Vessel is in the hands of the Followers of Set in the Dream Court. A massive hole is torn between the veil and the Necromancers must fight for their lives to escape with poor Isabel having to trade the Pisanob for rescue. She later is captured by the Setites who think they brainwash her (but fail because Isabel is awesome). Isabel begs for help from Beckett, which makes me think either they were close friends or she just has spectacularly poor judgement.

                            We also find out much of this is the work of Lord Camden who is established as a CAPPADOCIAN not a Harbinger.

                            He wins an award for "Magnificent Bastard" and can now be listed as one of that trope alongside Marcus Vitel, Lodin, and Hesha himself.

                            Adventures

                            This section of the book actually details a lot of things which were followed in V5 and it's kind of fascinating that this chapter, of all ones, seems like it's the one most directly relevant to the new edition. Most of the chapter seems designed to remind us that there are more Families among the Giovanni than the apocalyptic Venetian bankers that dominate its business. We all knew this but this underscores they're not all happy merrily following the main clan to (literal) Oblivion.

                            Isabel, not being an apocalyptic nutjob, may actually have what passes for High Humanity among the Giovanni in that she doesn't want to see the world ended. Her plan is to level the playing field among the families by encouraging them to make friends with the rest of the Kindred race. The meeting Beckett read about is actually designed around making peace to an extent. Which is perhaps why she was kidnapped.

                            The second meeting is more or less a prelude to the creation of the Hecata. We don't know who, what, when, where, or how they exist but this is essentially the first gathering of the organization and them working in concert. This and the gathering of Necromancers in New Orleans basically feels like a test run for the upcoming Cult of the Blood Gods.

                            One big section of this book which I was super-excited about was the decision by the Orthodox Followers of Set to join the Camarilla. They bet heavily on the Camarilla to go against the mentioned polytheism and "Clan of Faith" elements that oppose them. As we find out with V5, the Orthodox Typhonists really screw the pooch here as the Camarilla breaks their word and they have their delegation assassinated either by the Camarilla's agents themselves or by the Banu Haqim.

                            My inclination is the dual persecution of non-Typhonist FoS in previous chapters combined with the epic humiliation of such a slap in social combat botch is what drives the FoS to rebrand as well as join the Anarchs. It also reduces the Cult of Set from the undisputed masters of the Clan to being merely the strongest faction within it.

                            A lot of attention has been paid to the destruction of Vienna by the Second Inquisition while everyone just sort of ignores the Mausoleum was also sacked by the SI with Augustus Giovanni going missing/probably destroyed. I'm wondering if it was Lord Camden who directed them there as he has some experience with the SI by this point and Isabel kind of lets it loose that Augustus is kept in Giovanni headquarters.

                            (It reminds me a bit of Nick Fury scouring the globe for Doctor Doom in MARVEL ULTIMATE ALLIANCE and it turns out he's in...Latveria)

                            Thoughts

                            A very impressive chapter that is a lot more important than it initially seems. It even mentioned Enzo Giovanni (though in this chapter he's kidnapped by the Pisanob--which means that no matter what book, he's the Giovanni clan's resident butt monkey).

                            Strangely, the biggest thing this chapter did for me was soften me on Isabel Giovanni in that she behaves as quite possibly the only Kindred who shows any sort of sympathy or affection for any other in this book. It may be her literal family but the irony is that the Giovanni are the kind of family where this kind of affection would not so much be frowned upon but incomprehensible.

                            One thing I do like is that we also find out that honor is a lie. In Berlin by Night, Beckett just walks off from the Sabbat pack after they accidentally give him his information (which isn't breaking an agreement because they never came to terms) but we also have the Camarilla flat out give the finger to the Followers of Set despite their supposed life-boon. I like that vampires, for all their talk of favors, aren't Klingons (or more precisely are exactly like Klingons as we all know Worf is the only one who takes honor seriously--real life knights and samurai were also the same way).

                            Also, curse this chapter for reminding me Eternal Hearts exists. I think I've broken like six sacred oaths by fans that we all agreed it should never be mentioned or referred to again by anyone.
                            Last edited by CTPhipps; 04-19-2020, 03:08 PM.


                            Author of Cthulhu Armageddon, I was a Teenage Weredeer, Straight Outta Fangton, Lucifer's Star, and the Supervillainy Saga.

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                            • Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
                              A bit of information I'm ashamed to know but Isabel Giovanni only actually drank from skulls in the torture-murder-rape porn novel Eternal Hearts.

                              It is, far beyond World of Darkness: Gypsies, the worst f***ing thing ever done by White Wolf and only rarely brought up because almost no one ever admits to reading the damned thing. White Wolf's creators, justifiably, regret ever licensing fanfic about about their signature characters having a bunch of non-consensual sex scenes with the occasional murder.

                              The art was nice, though.
                              Oh god, the flashbacks…was it ever officially declared noncanon? I hope so, in part because I want to see how they worded that announcement.

                              Originally posted by CTPhipps View Post
                              Anatole explains that Followers of Set are obsessed with snakes because of the Serpent's role in Christianity. I was confused by this because there's a perfectly simple answer in that FoS are invoking the snake because of Apophis.
                              From an OOC perspective, I think the authors are trying to emphasize how the Setites like to twist the dominant religion to their own purposes, and it's not just "snakes and evil and badly-researched Egyptian stuff". The…I want to say Clanbook Revised? Might even be Clanbook Original…delves into the more gnostic side of their beliefs, with the Aions and all that, which is definitely more proto-Christian than Egyptian, and definitely had a historical association with snakes. Also, to me, explains their focus on corruption and defilement better than a connection with the historical Sutekh.

                              (A focus on Apophis could have worked too, but imo that ship sailed when they chose to double down on the Set thing in the clanbooks.)

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                              • It's been 20 years but I remember on the White Wolf site they did actually post a message that Eternal Hearts was completely non-canon in what I believe had to have been a first and possibly last for them.


                                Author of Cthulhu Armageddon, I was a Teenage Weredeer, Straight Outta Fangton, Lucifer's Star, and the Supervillainy Saga.

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