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Seven Times Seven is Still Seven

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  • Seven Times Seven is Still Seven

    So one of my favorite VII theories always was that VII is not a single organization- instead, it is a moniker used by a number of vampire covenants which have some interest in killing vampires, for their own reasons. Each such covenant has its own agenda and ideals, and some of them are even semi-recognized by the All Night Society- it is just that connecting them to the mysterious VII hasn't occurred, other then to the most paranoid vampires.

    The twist (and of course that there is a twist) that there is actually a VII- the Betrayed. The seven houses of the dead which still chase after the Kindred with passion born from the fury of vengeful ghosts. The Seven, however, are seven organizations which either use VII as a cover up for their actions, or which are simply mistaken as VII by outsiders. I do not assume that there is a shadowy "Conspiracy of the Seven" where the seven leaders of the seven covenants meet in the shadows of the night and exchange pleasantries (well, it MIGHT be, but not even the major covenants have that level of communication between them), so any such covenants is actually independent from the others. Some of them may not believe in VII. Some of them may blame the others for being VII. Some of them may even think they ARE VII- and to some level, that is correct. VII is simply the nickname the Kindred give to any strange covenant of vampires which kill their own kin. Anyone can be VII- just make sure to cover for your traces, and leave the right marks behind.

    That is, until the true VII comes, and then everything goes down to hell.

    Anyway, where my mind is blocked is about which exact candidates are there for being the Seven. Two such covenants which I have more or less settled on are the Iltani (which I have reworked into a form of a covenant instead of a bloodline, and are basically a secret assassin brotherhood which kills for profit and faith) and the Blood of Ahran (a variation of the Akhud's version of VII, which is independent from the Clan and is more focused on being the "judges of the Dead" which seek out demons with the demon which is coiled around their hearts). I would also want some reworked version of the Cult of Augurs, as it plays with the whole idea that VII are connected to the Julli (or JVLII)- I thought of connecting them to the modern Kataramenon. Sure, Greece is not Italy, but their faith sits really well with that of the Augurs in some concepts, and I can see them as "plague bearers and seers" with reasons for hunting other vampires.

    Now, that's three- but on others I'm a bit stuck on. I have considered the Tenth Choir (what is the big difference between Ten and Seven, after all?), especially since they seem to have some connections to the God Machine (which one of the story hooks for VII in the 2e Core talked about a God Machine cult of some kind), so that's a possibility, even though we would have to wait for Dark Eras 2 to know better. The Gallows Post could also be an interesting possibility to explore, with their fixation with controlling the roads between Domains and such. Speaking of the Gallows Post, as they are a reincarnation of the Legio Mortem, perhaps a different organization based around the Legion would do a better job as being one of the Seven? Or maybe the Peregrine Collega, as those assassins and criminals are already half way there. If we consider Broken Covenants, the Weihan Cynn may also be included, yet while I adore those dead monsters they don't feel really "VII" to me... Perhaps an iteration of some Egyptian Vampire Cult? the Mithraic Mysteries? And of course, we need at least one such group which would be focused around hunting the strix and such- as the connection between VII and the Owls have been suggested a number of times in the core..

    So, any suggestion for the other four covenants which could work as part of the Seven?


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    "And all our knowledge is, Ourselves to know"- An Essay on Man

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  • #2
    Surely at least one of the false-flag VII operations is simply internal to one of the larger organized covenants? The Invictus's real Conspiracy of Silence, using a known bogeyman as cover to pursue political grudges and eliminate inconveniences to doing business? The Mother's Army done Danse Macabre style, a sinister igigi cult within the Circle?

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    • #3
      I have three directions you might want to consider:

      You appear to have dismissed Sleepers from the VII sourcebook as an option. Is there a reason they don't meet your requirements and is it possible to modify them to your liking?

      Ancient Mysteries have the Edimmu. They're not a Covenant, but they're a plague of possessing Spirits that spread by encouraging Diablerie of their hosts. An affected Vampire is puppeteered by seven cooperating Spirits. Should his soul ever be consumed, the Diablerists soul is torn apart and seven teams of Spirits, seven members each, fly off in search of new hosts. While they wouldn't advertise themselves as the VII, panicked victims might leave messages on the walls to warn others of their coming.

      Finally, if you're not adverse to crossover, the Tremere from Mage are pretty hostile towards Vampires, and their metaphysics center on the idea of a Seventh Watchtower.



      ~

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Teatime View Post
        I have three directions you might want to consider:

        You appear to have dismissed Sleepers from the VII sourcebook as an option. Is there a reason they don't meet your requirements and is it possible to modify them to your liking?
        I don't know, the whole "brainwashed sleeper agent vampires" kind of thing was just not interesting for me. Not exactly what I am looking for as a semi-legal covenant which is not outright hidden from the All Night Society, and I just always found them as boring. Perhaps mixing some of their concepts with the Brethren of 1000 Faces from Danse Macabre could have some potential.

        Ancient Mysteries have the Edimmu. They're not a Covenant, but they're a plague of possessing Spirits that spread by encouraging Diablerie of their hosts. An affected Vampire is puppeteered by seven cooperating Spirits. Should his soul ever be consumed, the Diablerists soul is torn apart and seven teams of Spirits, seven members each, fly off in search of new hosts. While they wouldn't advertise themselves as the VII, panicked victims might leave messages on the walls to warn others of their coming.
        The Edimmu are totally a thing for my Seven- they are connected to my version of my Iltani, the product of Merges Sorcery which the Vipers can use and which they sometimes summon out of pure spite. I have made a draft for both them and the Iltani, which I need to finish one day.

        Finally, if you're not adverse to crossover, the Tremere from Mage are pretty hostile towards Vampires, and their metaphysics center on the idea of a Seventh Watchtower.
        While I have considered it, in the end I prefer my Seven to be made out of vampires, instead of mages- as parasitic as they may be. Perhaps some covenant which have rediscovered the secrets of Breath Drinking with some extra mysticism could proof itself interesting.


        My Homebrew Signature

        "And all our knowledge is, Ourselves to know"- An Essay on Man

        I now blog in here

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        • #5
          If you wanted to connect VII to the Legio Mortem you could handwave something regarding Legio VII Claudia, which was instrumental in establishing the Empire under Caesar. As far as I know from only brief research it was still in existence circa 400+.

          You could, if you wished, say there was a cadre of Mortem enforcers drawn from the most loyal and ruthless adherents of VII Claudia in the aftermath of the Republic's demise, who formed an agency answering to the highest echelons of the Senex and enacted their bloody will in far-flung corners of the empire. To Kindred, when VII showed up it meant their own were marked for death.

          Just a thought.

          --Khanwulf

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          • #6
            In 'A Thousand Years of Night', a scenario is given mentioning the Seven Lucky Gods hunting the vampires of Kyoto.

            The Sleepers (of 1E's VII covenant-book) are too disjointed to be a false-flag, but would be an interesting spanner in the conspiracy's works: something that uses their iconography but totally out of their control.

            Also, there was a Hunter supplement (I forget which one) that mentioned when a particular unnamed hunter group cleared out a vampire nest, they marked the site with VII (Vampire Infestation Inoculated).
            Last edited by shkspr1048; 02-06-2020, 12:07 AM.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by shkspr1048 View Post
              Also, there was a Hunter supplement (I forget which one) that mentioned when a particular unnamed hunter group cleared out a vampire nest, they marked the site with VII (Vampire Infestation Inoculated).
              They really sound as now Contagion Faction called The Crucible Initiative - 'scientific cleaners' cross-monsters & hunters faction. More to read on them in Contagion Chronicle book.


              My stuff for Scion 2E, CoD Contagion, Dark Eras, VtR 2E, WtF 2E, MtAw 2E, MtC 2E & BtP
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              • #8
                Do not fight too much, curious stranger. We promised an answer to your questions, and this is the best one you're going to get, so be patient, and be understanding.

                You have looked for us all your unlife, and you have followed your questions here, to exactly where you are. A corpse pretending to be a man hollowed out your life, and you spent every waking minute since trying to impress other corpses pretending to be stronger men. That's going to change.

                Stop struggling.

                And how many lives have you hollowed out to that end? How much blood have you taken for this purpose? Each human life, but a single one, but each one of you, a hundred lives from a hundred pints.

                You, more than a hundred, apparently.

                You have not been responsible with those lives. You take the blood, you burn the blood. Take blood, burn blood. You know there's power in blood, but you don't know how to access it, so you use it as fuel for parlor tricks. Like someone told you that you could get illumination from a book, and you're proud you thought to set it on fire to enjoy the light.

                Disgusting. Your shame is appropriate.

                The power is not in the burning. Blood is not fuel, blood is the life. We taste the revelry and pain of every life we take, and in errant children like you, we taste all the lives you have indelicately tasted. They're ours now. Yours too, soon. The Blood is the Life, and we each live a thousand lives concurrently. There is no comparison, there is no equal, there is nothing in human experience or possibility that is inaccessible to us. In older times, in older countries, we were "VII," we were "ALIVE."

                ...

                Have you settled in? Good. Welcome. Don't panic, your corpse just stopped pretending. You're with us now, and together we're going to really, truly, live.



                I've toyed with the thought that VII were vampires who consumed memories and personalities through blood, and by draining other vampires, they could access the memories and personalities of all the blood they've ever taken, too. Each VII is an amalgamate personality of all the blood they have ever tasted, that single-mindedly tries to acquire more Life. Dracula's "The Blood is the Life," you know. And it certainly helps that "vii" literally means "alive" in Romanian. :P
                Last edited by Kvark; Yesterday, 12:09 AM.

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