Assamite

Clan Assamite

"The Assassins"

Description:

The childer of Haqim, known as Assamites to the rest of the Kindred, are a silent knife in the dark, an order of bloodthirsty assassins who participate in the secret wars of the undead by operating as killers for hire. Outside the purview of the Sects, the Assamites are true independents and mercenaries, hiring out to whoever can pay their blood-price and ungoverned by the will of Prince or Priscus. By the time a mark realizes that he’s being hunted by an Assamite, it’s often far too late. Needless to say, this makes the Assamites both feared and reviled by many of the other Clans.

In truth, the Assamites are more than simple thugs and killers. Theirs is a complex but insular Clan predicated upon the three principles of wisdom, sorcery, and diablerie. Most Assamites that other vampires encounter are members of the warrior caste, however, so Kindred society has painted them all with that brush. For their part, the Assassins have done nothing to stop this misunderstanding. If it helps them acquire contracts and it occludes the true nature of their Clan, the better for them.

Long ago, the Assamites were brought to heel by a powerful curse to curb their bloodlust, levied by the Tremere at the behest of the Camarilla. They cannot taste the vitae of vampires without it causing them harm. In their ongoing quest to lower their Generation and bring themselves closer to their holy figure, Haqim (whom some outside scholars claim was of the Second Generation, while others insist he was a judge appointed by the other Antediluvians), the Assamites must refine the blood of Kindred into an alchemical solution. Were it not for this mystical yoke, the Assamites would surely be unchecked on a crusade of unholy diablerie.

Sect:

For the most part, the Assamites tend to be independent, letting the Sects hire them to operate on their own terms. That said, some Assamites believe an allegiance with the Camarilla or the Sabbat would allow the entire Clan to stand more strongly.

Appearance:

Older Assamites often come from Middle Eastern and North African cultures, though more and more young Assamites come from a wider demographic. In traditional environments, the Assamites prefer garb appropriate to religious or Clan custom. When in public, however, Assamites wear whatever the locals do, allowing them to fulfill their contracts without anyone noticing anything amiss. An Assamite’s skin grows darker with age (as opposed to other vampires, whose skin gets paler); particularly ancient Assamites are almost ebony in complexion.

Haven:

Assamites often share communal havens with others of their local cell, remote structures that allow the Assassins to watch the larger domain from a distance. These havens are generally well appointed, but not so lavish that the whole place can’t be moved on short notice. Individual Assamites also tend to keep personal hideouts of a much more humble nature, for when they need a place to lay low.

Background:

Those Embraced into Clan Assamite tend to fall into two distinct types: The “provincial” members of the Clan fit whatever their locality is, and can blend seamlessly in with the people around them. The higher-profile “jet-setters” transcend cultures, bolstered by their ability to handle interpersonal and intellectual challenges.

Character Creation:

Physical Attributes tend to be primary, with some Assamites favoring Social Attributes to help them get close to their prey. Talents and Skills are equally favored, but Knowledges may help the wise Assamite in a pinch. Few Assassins cultivate extensive Backgrounds, and instead specialize in an array of Disciplines that heighten their competence. The most accomplished Assamites follow the Clan’s unique Path of Enlightenment, and those who don’t often have to spend a great deal of effort maintaining their Virtues and Humanity.

Clan Disciplines:

Celerity, Obfuscate, Quietus

Weaknesses:

Due to the Tremere blood-curse, should an Assamite consume the blood of another Kindred, she suffers one automatic level of unsoakable lethal damage per blood point imbibed. Diablerie attempts result in automatic aggravated damage, one health level per point of permanent Willpower the victim possesses; the would-be diablerist gains no benefits (including Generation reduction) if he survives the process. In addition, Assamites must tithe some of the profits from their contracts to their sires or superiors (generally around 10 percent of all such earnings).

Organization:

An insular, hierarchical organization shapes much of Assamite custom. “The Old Man on the Mountain” — the master assassin who makes his haven in the mountain fortress of Alamut — is the ultimate authority, and the Clan heeds the orders that trickle down to them with a mix of reverence and terror. Individual and local cells of Assamites known as falaqi frequently have license to act with autonomy, but “turncoats” against the higher cause are rare.

Stereotypes:

  • Brujah: Where they are blatant, we are subtle. And that is why they are a broken Clan and we are ascendant.
  • Followers of Set: Humility before God is itself divine, but certainly not humility before their unclean god.
  • Gangrel: When the blade bites deeply, they die as readily as all other Kindred.
  • Giovanni: They value their independence as we do, but they squander it in unholy debauchery.
  • Lasombra: For all their posturing, they are quick to pay our fees and hire our knives.
  • Malkavian: In the parable of the scorpion and the frog, they play the roles of both doomed creatures.
  • Nosferatu: But for their desperation to be included among the society that shuns them, they would make puissant rafiq.
  • Ravnos: Make yourself known to them and they will acknowledge their place.
  • Toreador: We kill to honor our God. They kill to avenge a wittier remark.
  • Tremere: Possessing the power of Solomon makes them none the wiser for it, and vengeance will be ours.
  • Tzimisce: They bear old grudges against us; meet them with a wary eye.
  • Ventrue: Vultures picking at the corpse of a long gone nobility.
  • Caitiff: Every culture must have its Judas goat.
  • Camarilla: A tower built in Babel by Icarus.
  • Sabbat: They profane what is holy and pretend it is an eminent glory.
  • Anarchs: The wisest of the tribes — because they know when to admit they don’t know.
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