Few Kindred have ever beheld the Northern Lights. The trek to the far reaches of the world, in a place inhospitable to man, beast, or vampire, with no reliable way to feed is enough to put even the most curious Cainite off the idea. And yet, a bloodline of vampires managed to dwell close enough to see these lights on a regular basis. This line — the Noiad — felt it was their sacred duty to witness the Northern Lights and interpret the will of the gods. Their mortal charges, a nomadic tribe called the Samí, lived in fear and awe of their godlike protectors.
The Noiad defended the Samí from outside threats, both natural and supernatural, and acted as shamans and teachers for these wanderers. In return, the Samí gave of their blood and kept the Noiad safe during the long months with no darkness.
Of course, the touch of the Kindred corrupts everything. The Noiad protected the Samí from monsters from the wastes, and their blood allowed the mortals to survive times of famine, but the Wanderers also refused to allow their mortal herds to change or improve. Interlopers were turned aside or killed, regardless of their intentions. When it became clear that the march of Christianity (and Lasombra working within the Church) could not be stopped, the Noiad pushed the Samí further north, away from the herds that would sustain them and away from the dawning of a new era. Whether the Noiad saw something in the Northern Lights that spurred them to this decision, or whether it was simply fear of change, is not important in the end. The Noiad drove the Samí almost to destruction.
Sect: The Noiad never belonged to a Sect, and were largely apart from the vampire politics of the day (at least until war pushed far enough north to inconvenience them). As a Gangrel offshoot, other Cainites would have considered them a Low Clan, on the rare occasion that other Cainites learned enough about them to have opinions at all.
Appearance: The Noiad dwelled openly among the Samí, and Embraced exclusively from this population. Most Noaid were dark-haired and strongly built from their demanding lifestyles pre-Embrace. Their skin tone, of course, tended to be lighter than their stillliving comrades.
Haven: The Samí constructed mobile “havens” that could be dragged behind them as they traveled by day. If terrain or numbers made this impossible, the Samí would watch in awe as their heavenly protectors sank into the earth, only to rejoin them the next night.
Background: The Samí selected for Embrace tended to be those with talent for divination, as well as dream and star interpretation. The Noiad also watched children descended from families that included at least one vampire, looking for the traits they favored. Physicality was not a primary concern, but only because Samí that were not physically capable of thriving in the harsh climates didn’t live long enough to be considered for the Embrace anyway.
Character Creation: Physical Attributes weren’t necessarily primary, but tended to be no worse than average. All Noiad had good ratings in Survival and Animal Ken, and at least a dot or two in Athletics, and Melee. Finally, all Noiad had at least a dot of the Herd Background.
Weakness: The Noiad were so intrinsically tied to the Samí and to their role as the divine protectors of the tribe that one of the legends about them came true. The Samí’s protectors, it was said, could not sup from animals, but could only take sustenance from the blood of the chosen (that is, the Samí). The Noiad, in fact, could not drink from animals, though they were capable of drinking from any mortal or Cainite, regardless of nationality or ethnicity.
Organization: The Noiad usually saw one another when they came to witness the Northern Lights (this also gave them the opportunity to make sure the gods were all telling them the same things). The Noiad also used animals, either ghouls or those controlled by the Animalism Discipline, to keep in some kind of contact.
High Clans: They can pretend to know of their god’s mind all they want. They wrote the book, and they want to claim their god did it. I know this trick.
Low Clans: Too many have already been fooled. The ones that haven’t know to leave us alone.
The View From Without
High Clans: They know more of the truth than they realize. I have no doubt that God speaks to them in the lights at the end of the world. I just doubt they truly hear Him.
Low Clans: The wolf that hides in the flock must remember that it is not, itself, a sheep.