The Tremere unveiled the Gargoyle bloodline in AD 1167, and the Slaves have been a steady, if infrequent, part of Kindred society ever since. Gargoyles might, in fact, be one reason that the Tremere weren’t exterminated entirely in their first few centuries of existence. These odd quasi-Kindred often look like their stone namesakes — rocky-skinned, ugly, winged creatures that exist only to serve their masters.
Or such was the case for several hundred years. Recently, though, many of the Slaves have thrown off their chains and joined the Camarilla. Why the Gargoyles choose to ally themselves with the Sect that also protects their former masters is anyone’s guess. One of the going theories is that it’s a slap in the Warlocks’ collective face, but most Kindred don’t give the Gargoyles credit for being that sophisticated.
More likely, the Rockheads simply realize that in the Camarilla, their talents will be recognized and no one will try and order them around (at least not directly).
Gargoyles are created out of other Kindred, and this ugly fact makes their creation a seldom-discussed topic in polite vampiric society. The Tremere start with a Gangrel, Nosferatu, or Tzimisce vampire and perform obscene, bloody rituals using its blood, heart, and skin. Vitae from another vampire (from one of the other two Clans) is used to provoke a violent mutation, with the result that some Gargoyles look purely hideous (Nosferatu base), some look feral (Gangrel base), and some look fleshy and sport bony protrusions (Tzimisce base). No Gargoyle can pass for human.
The Tremere tolerate the Gargoyles’ presence in the Camarilla as best they can — it’s not as though they can easily re-enslave them, after all. But relations are obviously strained. The Gargoyles’ revolt and induction into the Camarilla has all but doomed the remaining slave Gargoyles, as their masters now monitor them ruthlessly for any sign of betrayal. The Tremere also aren’t above planting hypnotic suggestions in their Slaves’ minds, so that if they ever do rebel, they still serve a function for the Clan.
Nickname: Traditionally Slaves, though free Gargoyles have been known to crack heads over it. Other common nicknames are Rockheads, Runaways, Freemen, and Grotesques.
Sect: Gargoyles usually join the Camarilla. It’s not impossible for a Slave to join the Sabbat, but the bloodline as a whole frowns on this.
Appearance: Not all Gargoyles look like the stone grotesques found spitting rainwater over old buildings, but all are nightmarish. Some have tufts of hair protruding randomly over their bodies, or odd, galloping walks. Most Gargoyles have gray, rock-like skin. All Gargoyles have wings. These grow as the character’s Flight increases.
Haven: Slave Gargoyles sleep wherever their masters allow them — closets, basements, crypts, cells. Free Gargoyles prefer sleeping in havens high above the ground. Bell towers and disused high-rises are favorites. Gargoyles are often muscle for other Kindred, sometimes in exchange for a bare-bones haven.
Background: Gargoyles creation rarely shows a discernible pattern. The Change tortures the new Gargoyle’s body, as bones elongate and split to form the wings. The face warps, leaving nothing to recognize the mortal or vampire by. They rarely remember their unlife or mortal existence.
Character Creation: Created to be slaves, Gargoyles specialize in Physical Attributes, Talents, and a few select Skills (Melee, for instance).
All Gargoyles start with a free dot of the Flight Discipline. Appearance is always zero. Gargoyles created by the Tremere are at the same Generation as the Kindred that act as their “base.”
Weakness: The Slaves are hideous. That grotesquery takes different forms, but always results in an Appearance of zero. They are also highly susceptible to mind control from any source. A Gargoyle’s Willpower score (current or permanent) is considered two points lower when used to resist such powers.
Organization: Gargoyles have a strong sense of community. They often keep communal havens. Sometimes Gargoyles petition the Prince for the release of slave Gargoyles, but more often they just tear slave owners to pieces. With no community, Gargoyles are likely to Embrace and build their own.
Camarilla: Our new home. Here, no one shouts or strikes us or burns us with mirrors and light. Here, they ask politely, and we are free to ask for payment in blood. Paradise.
Sabbat: They are so brutal. And they love each other so. And yet, when I think of them, my eyes begin to burn. Why should this be?
Tremere: I will never be a slave again. Never.
The View From Without
Camarilla: Fuck you, Merlin. They belong to all of us now.
Sabbat: Where d’ya think they get the raw materials to make those monsters? Oh, the civilized Camarilla.
Ravnos: You headed into the city? Good luck! Don’t forget to look up!
Many Gargoyles are unique, but some are more distinct than the “typical” Gargoyle. These variations are colloquially called Scouts, Sentinels, and Warriors. The split between them — particularly older Gargoyles that are hundreds of years old — can be quite pronounced, depending on what “stock” was used and how the creator refined the ritual used.
For characters reflecting these deeper variations, use the following in-Clan Disciplines and Clan weakness instead of the ones listed in V20. Visceratika is considered out of clan for Gargoyles from these variants. All Gargoyles remain susceptible to mind control from any source. A Gargoyle’s Willpower score (current or permanent) is considered two points lower when used to resist such powers.
These Gargoyles were created to explore and report back to Tremere about their surroundings. They were designed to turn to stone if heavily damaged so that the Tremere or other Scouts could retrieve them later to claim any information they were unable to report back.
Weakness: All Health penalties from injures double as the Gargoyle’s damaged body turns back to stone. These penalties only go away when the Gargoyle awakens in an evening with no health boxes crossed off.
These Gargoyles were created to watch over the chantries, havens, and other important locations of the early Tremere. They are quite sociable and friendly, despite appearances to the contrary.
Weakness: If a Sentinel Gargoyle finds itself truly alone without someone to call master, mate, ally or friend, all dice pools are halved until the Gargoyle can find someone to trust and serve in the world.
These Gargoyles were built to wage war on the enemies of House and Clan Tremere. The Tremere did not want to waste their small number on fighting their battles, so they created these stone soldiers instead.
Weakness: Whenever a Warrior Gargoyle frenzies, a part of their body turns to stone. Choose a body part and an Attribute that reflects the part (such as eyes for Perception or legs for Dexterity). Until the next sunrise, any rolls requiring the attribute are considered an automatic failure. The next evening, the body part returns to normal.