Blood And Ashes

A comic that I am tossing together. It ties elements of our Montreal by Night and British Isles by night games together. This is the cover and the first three pages, in order. Please note, I based all of the art in this on others work (which I modified). I do not claim that it is original, nor do I intend on publishing or ever making a profit off of it.

BloodAndAshesStephenDead

NEWSPREADS

Hans&Francis

 

Quick glimpse – MbN – Autumn of 2003

He remained seated in the maroon Louis XII chair, long after his most recent guest had departed, shadows swirling around him. Just two nights ago, he had returned to his natural form, no longer needing to share the guise of his now returned pack mate. Blood sweat began to bead upon his brow as he contemplated whether the shedding of his vicissitude created masque was related to the amaranth that he now clutched. “Impossible! Now calm yourself.” he thought.  In response to his attempts to settle his anxiety, the shadows slowed their movements about his seated form. His mind replayed the encounter, “She was announced as a messenger from Clan Assamite, and dressed as such. White formal robes, no doubt to show her state as a non-combatant. Onyx skin, marking her as older than himself. A slight accent to her French, maybe Turkish. The bow was properly executed, as were the greetings. Now her name…” This was where his mind drew a blank. As a well versed master of subterfuge, the inability to recall her name was what disturbed Tobias the most. Even more than the flower in his hand.

 

The HMS Beagle

Deep within the Lincolnshire countryside.

——————————————————–

Baylor stood watch from just outside the grove while their horses were tethered in a thicket a to the south.  Hans had brought his own saddlebags with him to the ancient clearing in which he now stood. He remembered, when this was a place of power, before William’s arrival. Druids had consecrated it as a grove at the behest of Lycans. Now, the oaks would tower over the mast of any ship of the line, but without Lycans or Druids to tend them, the trees had sickened. If Siguardson’s research proved correct, once felled, this sickly grove would provide Hans with the heartswood that he needed.

In these most recent nights, Hans rarely ventured forth in this fashion. Baylor was nominally more active, having traveled to the Americas, and Canton for his own affairs. Hans had focused upon hiding his powerbase in plain sight. A Lasombra amidst the most powerful Ventrue realm, seemingly loyal and antitribu. Yet, Mithras lay in slumber once again, and in his sleep the ancient’s lands had become restless with growth.  This in turn affected the world at large, for their was no greater power than the British, and in their growing empire, no power greater than Mithras. Proof of this was shown by how deeply the Treaty of Nanking took the headlines and attention of the mortals and Cainites alike. The world seemed under British control, and Mithras’ servants were always at the forefront, though not always carrying out the exact orders that they had been given by the ancient. His hold was slipping.

With over eight centuries of perspective he could now see that events had become cyclical. There was a natural ebb and flow to the world, one that even a mortal could detect if they looked closely enough. He had seen it in the black forest during the renaissance. Wolves would hunt their prey to near extinction, only to find themselves hunted by humans. Nearly wiped out, the remaining wolves would move into the deeper woods and whelp pups. In that time, hare and deer would return in force, and the cycle would begin again. The Cainite world was no different, the duration of the cycles was merely longer.

A Cainite would beget Childer if they were powerful enough. The Childer rose in power if they were deserving, and in time they would embrace in turn. With their own Childer under their control, the strongest would overthrow the weakest elders, and take their place. He had seen this thrice already, and soon it would happen again. As he settled his saddlebags upon the ground, he mused over his own line. It now ran further than he had intended, and like this grove it must be culled. So many years ago, his own Childer’s efforts had bore fruit in ways that he had not imagined at the time. That had taken both time and secrecy.

Focusing his vitae, Hans summoned forth several tendrils of shadow at the base of each tree in the grove. They would serve as his silent billhooks. No rapport of axes would echo throughout the night. The grove would merely fall in silence, seemingly from a force within.

Baylor approved of what he intended, but his closest companion still did not understand why he must do this. He merely accepted it.  Tonight he would begin to silently cull the rot from this grove and then collect what he needed. Then from his line, then from Baylor’s line. In time they each hoped to continue culling, each from his own Clan, leaving only the strongest to grow.

 

 

Quick glimpse – MbN – August of 2003

I skipped last night as I was feeling under the weather, but I’m back at it tonight with something special!

The following was translated from Latin:

Honoured Azrael,

As instructed I write to you, what I hope, is a short but satisfactory report. As was reported earlier, there are issues with your new training column but I would expect no less given the speed at which they are being pushed. Ricardo, while a fine instructor normally, is a poor choice and is feigning disinterest in this assignment. I caution that he is looking for any excuse to take the Archbishop’s childe out of the equation in retribution for past slights. I base this upon their interaction at the Palla Grande of 1759, and their further interaction at the Festivo dello Estinto in Mexico in 2001, when Ricardo’s childe disappeared.

I am able to recommend that further testing of this column should be undertaken, preferably where the dogs of Vienna can be used as a target. I feel that one of the candidates may have an innate resistance to their inferior hermetic arts. I regretfully, can not report further at this time as I respectfully wish to protest the presence of Samson during my investigation. His near immediate presence posed an unnecessary distraction upon the turncoat. Therefore I was unable to confirm a discreet test of blood.

I remain your agent, S