The Path of Night
Virtues: Conviction and Instinct
Bearing: Darkness. Nihilists give off a faint air of inner darkness, inspiring those around them to dwell on their darkest fears and thoughts. Their bearing modifier applies to any attempts to bring out a victim’s inner darkness, such as eliciting dirty secrets from a wellrespected politician or convincing a saint to break her vow of chastity.
Basic Beliefs: Those vampires who follow the Path of Night wholly accept their damnation; indeed, they believe that, as vampires, it is their preordained role to act as agents of damnation. Unlife is nothing without pain, and misery enjoys company. This Path is practiced largely by young Kindred of Clan Lasombra, who gladly mortify their own souls in the interests of bringing atrocity to the world.
The Path of Night borrows heavily from Catholic dogma, though it concerns itself more with abandonment and damnation than redemption. The vampire’s purpose in unlife, according to this Path, is to scourge the Earth, to act as an agent of evil and, thus, ultimately to do the bidding of the greater powers that dictate good and evil alike. No one lives without original sin, and those who follow this Path are beholden to expose and exacerbate that sin. Life and unlife are varying states of damnation; those who fail to realize their full potential are lost sheep, suitable only for slaughter.
This is one of the most terrible Paths in existence, as it concerns itself with the outright and intentional persecution of others. Its followers are more than mere bullies or sadists, however. One who receives the curse of Caine is bound by fate and duty to wreak vengeance upon the Children of Seth. In so doing, vampires on this Path hope that, by fulfilling the roles meant for them, they can transcend those roles and find ultimate peace. This final goal aside, though, the Path of Night is a Path of hostility and antagonism, and the company of those who follow it is extremely hard to abide.
The Ethics of the Path
• Leave no being untouched by your taint.
• Tempt and horrify those around you; the weak will fall, while the strong will be tempered by your testing of them.
• Inspire others to accept their inner darkness.
• Experience every sensation imaginable, and then some.
• Death is a means, not an end.
• Kindred, as souls damned by God, fulfill their purpose by preying upon mortals.
Few, if any, have certifiably chronicled this Path’s inception or evolution. By varying accounts the outgrowth of medieval death cults, Satanic cabals, debased Methuselahs, or the practices upheld by Adam’s first wife Lilith and her children, the Path of Night has been forsaken by most Kindred with any sense of Humanity at all. Some suspect a coterie of Lasombra known as the Black Angels foment dissension among the Clan, turning impressionable Keeper neonates down the Path’s unwholesome trail.
No sin is too vile for a follower of this Path to indulge, and no trust is too sacred to break. Kindred on the Path of Night tie their fates very closely to mortals, who bear the brunt of their depredations. As harbingers of damnation, the Nihilists cull the secret fears and sorrows of humans around them, inflicting these terrors upon the kine as the whim takes them.
Ironically, vampires on this Path often have great reverence for those whom they perceive as truly “good” or “blessed.” Indeed, one infamous Keeper, who plagued a family of witch-hunters down three generations and was finally destroyed by a scion of the line, is rumored to have praised his destroyer for her resolve.
Description of Followers
This Path is upheld almost exclusively by Lasombra, though the Keepers find occasional converts among other Clans. Lasombra who follow this Path are held in low regard by many other Keepers, as there is no room for nobility on this Path. While most Lasombra maintain other codes of morality drawn from the Sabbat, the ones who follow this Path are true fiends.
Path of Night Hierarchy of Sins
|10||Killing a mortal for food||Dead mortals feel no dread.|
|9||Acting in the interests of another||There is no time to fulfill petty agendas.|
|8||Failing to be innovative in one’s depredations||Familiarity for one’s vile acts breeds contempt for them in others, and they may soon fail to shock.|
|7||Asking aid of another||Those who cannot provide for themselves fulfill their ends poorly.|
|6||Accidental killing||God has made Kindred horrors, not murderers.|
|5||Bowing to another Kindred’s will||The games of the Jyhad are diversions from the Damned’s true purpose.|
|4||Intentional or impassioned killing||Death serves no one; it merely deprives one of a victim.|
|3||Aiding another||Compassion has no place in a vampire’s undead heart.|
|2||Accepting another’s claim to superiority||All Kindred are equal under God’s plan.|
|1||Repenting one’s behavior||The Kindred’s purpose is to cause repentance, not to practice it.|
Following the Path
Vampires on the Path of Night terrorize their victims, a term which may apply to anyone to whom the Nihilist is drawn. Kindred on this Path are loath to kill — that removes potential targets, though they are not above doing so if the death may cause great grief to others or if preventing it would inconvenience their own existence. To some degree, the Nihilists shepherd the kine, showing them what may await them if they are unrepentant. However, no follower of this Path would openly admit such a thing. In their own minds, they are devils, pure and simple.
Common Abilities: Kindred on this Path specialize in Abilities that allow them to torment others. Brawl, Intimidation, Melee, and Medicine (for physiological knowledge) all have their value.
Preferred Disciplines: Followers of this Path cultivate Obtenebration for the sheer terror it inspires, as well as Potence for the pain it allows one to inflict.