Pontafix Inquisitor Brittany
of Clan Tremere
Brittany is played in the WHITE WOLF: VAMPIRE role playing system.
Goratrix returns to Brittany
Brittany was living a relatively calm life in Chicago with Shimee. She had become very sad after Jeeves' death. it had also made her disillusioned with hell, and she was looking for "something more" to believe in then just good and evil.
One evening her Auspex heard Goratrix calling to her in her mind. "Help me" he said, and Brittany saw him trapped in a mirror. This was the first time she had heard from her sire since she ran away that night almost a thousand years ago, and Brittany was shocked. She knew he must be desperate indeed if he was calling on her.
Brittany has always felt a great deal of loyalty for her sire, and she wanted to help him. Brittany had no idea what was going on, or even where to find Goratrix after all these years. Remembering he had oft spoke of Meerlinda as a friend, Brittany thought of asking Meerlinda for help. When Brittany finally was able to reach Meerlinda, she was greeted kindly despite the fact that they had never met. Brittany started to explain who she was and what was happening with Goratrix. Fortunatly Brittany's Auspex picked up the true Meerlinda's warning underneath her spoken words - "You are in great danger. The Tremere have been compromised. Run!" Brittany broke the connection immediatly. Now she was really scared - if something was so powerful as to trap Goratrix and control Meerlinda, what could they expect HER to do about it?
Desperate and out of ideas, she called on Jadrax. A few souls poorer, Jadrax told her Goratrix was in NYC. Brittany left immediatly. After a few misadventures, Brittany finally tracked down the mirror containing Goratrix in an auction house and was able to acquire him. Goratrix directed her to a brownstone, where inside she found the surprise of her life.
Brian, a Wall Street stockbroker, had been ghouled and dominated by Goratrix and was watching over ... Goratrix's body. However, it wasn't empty though - inside Goratrix's body was none other then Tremere himself. The walls were covered in symbols, and the place seemed well warded. However, Tremere seemed disoriented, and occassionally stared off into space for long periods of time. Looking at his mind with Auspex, Brittany saw it had been ravaged by several high power Psychic Assaults. She carefully propped up Goratrix's mirror against the wall, and then sat down on the floor across from it.
Talking with Auspex from the mirror, Goratrix explained to her that Tremere was kicked out of his body by a combination of the Vicissitude that came from their using Tzimese blood to become vampires, and Salout's soul remnants. The Salout/ Vicissitude Souleater was now in charge of the Tremere clan, and was planning to infect the entire clan and turn them into souleaters. The souleater's agenda seems to be "First the Tremere, then the world".
"Why isen't this happening to the Tzimese?" Brittany asked. "After all, they are masters of vicissitude."
Goratrix sighed and replied "Yes, but here's the really awful part. The Souleater in Tremere is learning Obeah. It's learning to heal itself while replicating faster. Sometimes vicissitude lays dormant inside hosts, never able to awaken. Now it's learning to make self aware, self healing souleaters. If it manages to learn Obeah and infect our clan, there may be no stopping it."
"And we're supposed to stop this?" Brittany gestured around her, "Just you and me?"
"Yes. We have to." Goratrix looked at her sternly, and Brittany looked doubtful. The reflection of Goratrix softened a bit, and smiled at her. "It'll be ok, we'll find a way. The first step is getting me back in my body so we can get Tremere back up to antidiluvian."
"Wait a minute ... if you don't mind me asking Sire, why aren't *YOU* taking over the Tremere, insted of helping reassemble him?" and Brittany hooked a thumb at Tremere, sitting catotonic on the couch.
"Because Tremere has a plan, and I believe in him."
Goratrix explained that his departure to the Sabbat was a planned ruse on the orders of Tremere. No one else knew the truth about it except for Grimgroth. To all others he was Goratrix the Betrayer. Only Tremere & Grimgroth knew that Goratrix was still loyal, and doing a very dangerous but needed assignment.
Goratrix explained the Vicissitude had forced Tremere into an extended torpor while it devoured Salout's memories and tried to learn it's powers of Obeah. When it felt strong enough, it tried to take over Tremere. Battles had gone on inside the body between them for quite awhile, forcing Tremere into periods of extended torpor. Finally the Souleater seemed to be making it's final play, and Tremere had fled his body to avoid destruction from the Souleater. Tremere had come into Goratrix's body, placing his soul in a mirror. Tremere intended only to use the Tremere antitribu to gain power enough to defeat the souleater and fight his way back into his body. Unfortunatly, it didn't work. The Tremere Antitribu were destroyed in the process, Tremere himself was ravaged by several psychic assaults, but Tremere was unable to retake his body. Tremere seemed to keep it together long enough to get out of Mexico, and hid in NYC after finding a mortal to care for them. Unfortunatly, the mortal ghoul sold off the mirror, and that's when Goratrix realized Tremere was going to need more help then he could give in his current state.
We knew that we would need help for this. Brittany explained to Goratrix that Allen Green was a Samedi who modelled himself as a 'problem solver', and had the reputation of being able to accomplish most anything, for the right price. Not that he did the jobs personally, but he had the most amazing network of supernaturals to subcontract work to; after taking his cut, of course. He traded in boons and unique magical items mostly, and had an impeccable reputation of honor - never disclosing details of his deals. Brittany had worked with him before, and felt sure he could come up with something to help them. Goratix agreed.
Brittany called her old business associate Allen Green. Allen was his prompt businesslike self as always. He showed up personally within the hour, and we explained our problem. Upon striking a deal where Tremere would owe him a life boon, Allen agreed to help. The next night Allen returned with the soulless body of a 4th generation Tremere. Allen moved Tremere's soul essence into the new body, and returned Goratrix to his own body. He then provided Tremere with a vial of blood, which he said was part of an antidiluvian's essence shared through Ritual of the Bitter Rose. Thus Tremere was once again 3rd Generation, and had all his original disciplines and powers. Goratrix was quite happy to be back in his own body as well.
However, we still had the matter of the Souleater in Tremere's original body, that was taking over the clan and infecting them with vicissitude.
Allen said he would help with that as well, for a seperate fee of blood boons from each Circle fo Seven member. Tremere reluctantly agreed, feeling he had little other choice in the matter and regaining his clan was now the highest priority. Allen told us that we were getting his "Gehenna" discount - meaning that what was going on was so bad, Allen had a vested interest in not allowing it to happen as well. Allen said he was not making a "profit" on this, the boons were going to be used to pay off the help he was subcontracting out to. Tremere voiced his concern that outsiders would learn too many of the Tremere secrets, but Allen reassured him that anyone working for him was held to the same level of professionalism that he was held to.
We prepared some rituals we would be needing for the upcoming battle. Tremere went to a secret cache of his. "We're going to be needing this." he said on his return, then gifted Goratrix and Brittany with a Gem of Invulnerable Weakness, and took one himself.
Allen started organizing an attack on the Tremere chantry of Vienna. In the end there were three groups making the assault: One was Brittany, Shimee, Goratrix and Tremere; one was Allen, his childe Wendy, her childe Joshua, and Wendy's friend Tyler; and the last group was Gitane and Valerius. Jokingly we called each other "Team Tremere", "Team Samedi", and "The Lovers" [after the tarot card].
He had also hired a mage called Butterfly, who was going to sneak us into the Main Chantry through something called "the Laberynth" - a part of the lands of the restless dead that goes everywhere. Going through the Underworld was quite an experience. Apparently since all vampires are dead, we have to meet our "shadow", which is that nasty voice in the back of your head full of every fear and doubt you have ever had. Do not be so quick to dismiss that confrontation though - vampires gather a lot of "baggage" as the centuries wear on, and personally I was a bit surprised at some of the creative things mine dragged up. Tyler and Wendy seemed to take theirs the hardest, but we all made it through just fine. Low and behold Butterfly peeled off a section of the "wall" and we were in the Main Chantry of Vienna.
I'll be honest - I suck at describing fight scenes. Suffice to say there was a wave of expendable minions, and then a wave of gargoyles. Both were beat fairly soundly and quickly.
Then came the Circle of Seven members ... that was a hard fight.
Brittany faced Abetorius, and was able to torpor him with a combination of Spirit Thaumaturgy "Evil Eye" and her Dark Thaumaturgy: Chains of Pleasure "Glow of a Thousand Embraces".
We had managed to save all the Circle of Seven members except Elaine, and our side had lost Joshua (who was completly out of the fight) and Tyler (who was badly hurt).
Goratrix faced Elaine. Elaine went to the Horrid Form of Vicissitude after Goratrix removed her arms, and she was baked down with much flame.
Tremere faced Thomas Wyncham, who he Dominated to sleep.
Allen faced Grimgroth, and we got a display of how awful 2nd Edition Thanatosis can be when Samedi Elders use it. First he was stiffened up with Rigor Mortis, then his head shrunk. Gross and effective.
Joshua was taken out of the fight by a blow from Xaviar that left him incap'ed.
Tyler faced off against Xaviar, and there was a fast and furious exchange of blows. After having her left shoulder shattered and her arm hanging limp and useless at her side; Tyler showed us all just how deadly Brujah in frenzy can be as she put her hand through Xaviar's chest, narrowly missing his heart and leaving Xaviar incap'ed.
Wendy faced off against Meerlinda, and though many blows were exchanged neither seemed able to hurt the other one. Allen tagged in to fight Meerlinda, eventually knocking her out with Thanatosis. Wendy went after Tyler to calm her frenzy.
Gitane faced off against Etrius. Out of all of the Circle of Seven members Etrius seemed the only one who retained any control over himself - they exchanged bare-fisted, no claws blows and it was obvious Etrius was pulling his punches. Gitane as well seemed to not willing to seriously hurt him either, and eventually Valerius stepped in to knock him unconcious.
As expected, the Souleater that once was Tremere and Salout arrived. It was in blood form, and a terrable sight to behold. The fight went fast, as most of our attacks didn't affect it ... Valerius was instantly dissolved into a puddle of blood, and as it started to go for Gitane Wendy hit it from behind with some horrable looking green slime. Wendy was quite surprised when her slime attack had no effect save to anger it. The rest of us were in different corners of the room, and it flowed around and trapped Wendy over Tyler's body and gloated at her.
They say in moments of utter desperation people find their inner strength; and I do believe that, because I saw it happen. Wendy used Serpentis "Eyes of the Serpant" to lock the Souleater into staring at her eyes, then a third eye opened in her forhead and the Souleater was bathed in a golden glow. They stayed locked like that for several minutes - the rest of us were afraid to move or do anything, as she seemed to have finally found something that was affecting it.
The Souleater writhed and twisted, then began thrashing about. It looked as if it was fighting with something none of us could see. Finally a misty form rose up out of the blood. It turned and looked around the room, it's three eyes finally coming to rest on Tremere.
"Tremere, I'm very angry with you," it said, then paused. "But I'm letting it go." and a look of determination passed over his smoky features.
It turned to Wendy and said "Thank you, childe."
"You all need to leave here now." As it said that, Salout swirled around the quivering blood creature. The screams ring in my ears to this day. The stone floors themselves began shaking, and we grabbed the fallen and fled. The resulting explosion blew a hole 50 feet across up through all 5 floors of the chantry. Stone and rubble were falling everywhere, and it was hard to carry someone and dodge the crashing stone. We all finally made it down the corrador to safety.
"There is a public chantry in Vienna, we'll go there once we get a few necessary wards replaced here." said Tremere. Brittany collapsed with relief - it was finally over. We had won.
Copyright 1997-2003 Robin Connor. All Rights Reserved.