Transylvanian spring, day six of our travels to the Tihuta pass.
We are at the end of the foothills, at the start of the actual mountain pass. We can’t be more than three days’ travel from the tower foundation, but still we have encountered no villages.
The Byzantine seems restless and wishes to travel ahead to see if the first village is close by. I am hesitant to leave the caravan for our men are ill-equipped to handle the threats that lurk in the Transylvanian night. We agree to travel on no more then two hours before we head back.
And so the three of us set out on horseback to scout our path.
During our trip the Byzantine asks me if I would welcome newcomers to our lands, to bring more civilisation and prosperity to the region. His Christgod indoctrinated mind doesn’t seem to wish to accept that the God of corruption rules these lands and that the Tzimisce are the ones keeping him in check. I try to explain to him that newcomers are welcomed here as long as Transylvanians rule, preferably the Tzimisce, and that they follow our customs. This is the land of the Tzimisce, the Transylvanians, and the plague of Ventrue at the head of their hordes is not welcome here. The Saxons do not belong here and have no right to take our lands. The Gangrel at least seems to share my views on this.
After an hour or so we come upon the first village, a small settlement of hunters with a makeshift palisade around their houses. We are let in, as they know me and my sire, and we have an audience with the village elder Nicolai. He is an old and weak man who seems to want nothing more than to give his blood and that of his villagers to us. After some questioning we find out that the village is more or less held hostage by a local Vampyr whom they worship fervently. Radu’s Lady and The Lady of the Night, they call her, but we have never heard of her. It seems that Lupines came here every winter to take three or four of the villagers as payment, but that the Lady of the Night has kept them away the last two winters. They call her with a signal fire, whenever they require her protection. There is also another Vampyr in this area which they refer to as ‘the catlike Vampyr’, but the Lady doesn’t want them to talk to him.
At this point we notice that some, or all, of the villagers have gone up to the road, and that they are making a signal fire as we speak. Nicolai explains that this is what they have been instructed to do by the Lady if Vampyrs come to their village.
The three of us would like to have a chat with this lady to explain that this area will as of now have new rulers, so we let the villagers go about their business.
The wind stirs the leather hide flap door when Nicolai announces she has arrived. The whole village is chanting that there is blood to be given to the Lady of the Night, whether they mean ours or theirs is uncertain to me at this point. The locals do seem ‘thick in the head’ as the Gangrel states it.
I walk up to the signal fire with the Gangrel and the Byzantine close behind me, and indeed see a female figure standing awfully close to it. Some gargoyle figure is hiding on the cliff face behind her, but as far as I can tell we have all seen it. The seemingly young lady has a half rotten jaw and is not a Tzimisce or a Gangrel, she speaks in a Saxon accent. She doesn’t seem afraid of us and I start to suspect that she is one of the Usurpers.
The Gangrel seems to catch something on the wind and starts raving to her in a German dialect, I capture the words ‘Troll’ and ‘blood magus’.
As I unlimber my blade she ushers a word of blood magic and pulls me two or three yards toward the bonfire; she is most certainly one of the Usurpers. It is now time for her to feel the wrath of the awakened Tzimisce Zulo, Kupala feast on her ashes!
As my joints pop and my spine explodes the Gangrel and Byzantine also rush forward ready to do battle, but I have no eyes for them or the Troll that lurches into the night sky, I will rend this Usurper limb from limb.
As I and the Gangrel rush in she tries to usher more words of blood magic, but they seem to have no effect as a spear thrown by Gangrel and some shadow magic of the Byzantine seem to hold her full attention.
I charge in and chop freely at her again and again with all my might, but it seems her blood magic protects her, it is as if chopping an oak log with a rusty axe. The Gangrel also charges in with his mighty axe and hacks away at her. Blood magic or no, she cannot stand up to this onslaught for long. Luckily for the Gangrel and me the Troll swoops down on the Byzantine, probably to stop him from using his shadow magic to aid us.
The Usurper desperately tries to use her blood magic, as something pops inside my head and blood streams out off my ears, the fires flare up in an attempt to consume us, but all is in vain for her. Bit by bit the Gangrel and I chop her to the eternal death she so deserves, and finally, with a mighty double handed swing, I carve her in two.
We quickly rush to the other side of the fire to find that the Byzantine didn’t fare so well against the flying Troll. It has ripped apart the chest of the Byzantine with its mighty claws, leaving him for dead. When we try to charge, it immediately lurches into the air to escape our wrath.
As the Gangrel makes sure the Usupers death is indeed eternal by kicking its remains in the fire, I go back down to the village.
The incapacitated Byzantine needs blood and this village clearly needs a lesson, giving their devotion to one of the Usurpers. I push the village elder ahead of me to the fire and order him to bring the rest of the village. There the villagers give their blood to us, so we can regain our strength and resurrect our companion. I transform back to my normal form in front of their eyes so they are totally aware of the power we posses.
The Byzantine, who seems fine after taking the required blood, orders the woman to take the children back to the village, as they have clearly seen enough. The villagers are chanting their blood oaths to us at this point, calling us the lords of the night.
We go back down to the village to inform the elder of how things shall be from now on, and that we shall indeed be the lords of the night of this region.
The first step has been taken.