Sect Pamphlet

Nominally a faction within the Camarilla, most “Anarchs” are still under the authority of the Ivory Tower. The Camarilla would say that the Anarchs are under the protection of the Sect, while the Anarchs would likely call it oppression. Still, many in the Anarch Movement understand the usefulness of the structure, with only the most radical calling for total withdrawal from the Camarilla. The Anarchs seek to change the Ivory Tower from within, turning it into the benevolent Kindred society it so often claims to be.

What needs to change? Ask twelve Anarchs, and you'll get thirteen different answers. They agree that change needs to happen, but they aren't collectively committed to any particular plan. Common threads pop up, such as the redistribution of power from the elders to all vampires, and for political authority to be based on merit rather than age. Whether those changes come through passionate debate in Elysium or guerrilla action against specific elders, however, depends on the Anarch in question. Unlike the Sabbat who rebel because vampires should be superior, the Movement’s goals are at least nominally egalitarian.

Naturally, it's that very sense of equality that makes the Anarch Movement so dangerous to vampire society. This resistance to change isn't unique to the Camarilla; elders in the Sabbat or the independent Clans have just as little desire to relinquish their power, and ancillae have worked equally hard to be next in line for the elders' station. If the Anarch rhetoric takes hold, all that work will have been for nothing. So it's not surprising that Anarchs spend much of their time frustrated, and they tend to adopt a siege mentality.

The Camarilla is also known as “The Ivory Tower,” and the Sect lives up to that moniker. Created in the 15th century, the Camarilla was formed to preserve and protect vampire society against the decimation brought on by the Inquisition as well as the power drain presented by the War of Princes during the Dark Ages. The leaders of the Camarilla ruthlessly enforced the Tradition of the Masquerade, elevating it to the Sect's highest law, a priority they continue to pursue even in modern nights. These so-called “Kindred” seek to maintain a quiet harmony between vampires and humanity — a goal constantly threatened by the Sabbat.

The Camarilla considers itself to be vampire society, and there is some validity to their hubris. It is the largest Sect of Kindred, after all, and nearly any city on the globe likely has some Camarilla presence. A Kindred who walks into a new city and looks for the local vampire population will, more often than not, find a Camarilla court. This expansiveness is partially due to the fact that the Camarilla says that any vampire, regardless of Clan or bloodline, may go to a Prince and claim membership in the Camarilla. It’s also partially due to the fact that the Camarilla claims that all vampire society falls under its authority, regardless of what other vampires believe. Many Kindred find it easier to sit in the shadow of the Ivory Tower than debate the point.

Opposite the Camarilla stand the Sect of inhuman vampires known as the Sabbat. Most of the vampiric factions believe that the so-called “Sword of Caine” is a collection of mindless barbarians and ultraviolent fiends, or even demon worshippers bent on bringing Satan to earth. As such, the Sabbat are vilified all throughout vampire society.

They're right to fear the Sabbat, but not for those reasons.

While the “Kindred” (a term the Sabbat despise) of the Ivory Tower cower among mortals and cling to outdated Traditions, the Sabbat prefer to indulge in their vampiric nature. They refuse to wear the tattered rags of humanity or to act as slaves and cattle to their elders. Besides, vampires are clearly and openly superior to mortals — do humans lie down with cows and call them brother? As such, Sabbat vampires consider mortals to be tools and food at best, and have little tolerance for “Cainites” who pretend to be human. They are inherently alien and literally inhumane.

But the Sword of Caine isn't just a collection of gorestreaked psychotics running around shopping malls with chainsaws. They reject humanity as a moral basis for their lives, so they have turned to other alternatives. They adhere to a wide variety of Paths of Enlightenment, philosophical tenets that force the Beast into a narrow channel and allow the Cainite to maintain a day-to-day existence that resembles stability (if not sanity). Further, the Sabbat not only rebel against morality, but also against their own inclinations towards solitude. They frequently join together into packs that act as one part religious cult, one part political faction, and one part combat unit.

Over the past few centuries, the fatal dance between the Camarilla and the Sabbat has changed vampire society. Their bloody Jyhad has shaped the secret history of the world, destroying millions of mortal lives in the process. However, there are some Clans who witness both Sects tear at each other's throats in the name of their ancient feud and decide that they would prefer to watch from the sidelines.

These four lineages can claim their place as proper Clans, but share a strong disinterest in getting involved in the war between the Camarilla and the Sabbat. Granted, individual members of these Clans (usually younger Kindred) show up in the ranks of both Sects from time to time, but the elders of the independent Clans have their own goals in mind, goals that would conflict with allegiance or loyalty to a Sect.

Of course, independent Kindred are vampires first and Clan members second; they don't all possess mindless, unwavering devotion to the ideals of their Clan. Most of them focus on their personal goals first, whether or not they coincide with their Clan's goals. This has the side-benefit of confusing outside Kindred even more, since it's never clear whether a particular independent will act with their Clan's interests in mind, their personal interests, or some hybrid of the two. Individual independents are always wildcards, with no set of laws or politics forcing them into a clear, defined path.

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