Mardi Gras Black Tie
Prince Marcel is holding the annual Vampire Ball on Tuesday night at the Cabildo Museum under the laws of the Elysium. It is a costumed affair for New Orleans’ social elite and visiting dignitaries. The rules of the Masquerade will be strictly enforced. The Ball begins at midnight and goes to sunrise.
The Coterie has learned the names of their Sires! But, Prince Marcel will not be pleased to learn who some of them are. And the mysterious Sarah Cobbler, the sorcerous vampire who organized their Embrace, is still at large. Her conspiracy is clearly aimed at harming Marcel, but how? and why?
And the Coterie notices something important when they combine their knowledge of their Sires. Almost all of their Sires met with some recent misfortune that gave Sarah the leverage she needed to force their cooperation. This conspiracy must involve more than Sarah.
Portents and Signs
During the Ritual, Mary calls out to the Loa, her own ancestor spirits, to awaken the potential within each of you … this is what you Dream.
Leigh is in Church, praying, when the Loa give you a vision: You see a police officer, the letters "NOSTF " on his jacket are bleeding vampire blood. You see yourself turning a Tarot card revealing the Fool when you begin to ask if this is a real vision. You are in another vampire’s memory, walking down an empty street somewhere near the cruise ship terminals. The lights of the great ships are clearly visible and you’re enjoying that feeling that follows good sex or a good feeding, satisfied and tired at the same time. The night is young and the Kine are celebrating Mardi Gras. You see some police nearby and they stop to admire your looks as you saunter on by. Just as you pass them you feel a sting and realize that you’ve been shot with a dart of some kind. You turn in anger, and electricity courses through your body and you are struck again and again with more darts until you fall to the ground in agony. Then the men are upon you, driving a stake through your heart. And you feel a lethargy taking you down into darkness, into torpor. And you think “They are capturing me, not killing me, but why?”
Jack is praying in Church when the Loa give him a vision: You awake in a stone sarcophagus, with the implements of voodoo still around you. Mary is chanting nearby, and you see that you are encircled by white flour and white candles. There are Wraiths all around you rising from their graves. They are not the recent dead, but the dead from long ago who suffered horribly in slave ships before dying on this foreign shore. They speak strange languages and have Mary’s strange magic, and they hate your white skin, and they hate your dark soul that cheated death when could not. And they are Cursed because their spirits will never find their way home. The Wraiths cannot pass the circle. The Wraiths fear Mary’s magic. But they are growing stronger and you feel that is dire news.
Louis is standing outside Church, praying, when the Loa give him his vision: There is a silver stake driven into your heart and you are being bound to an anchor while your inner Beast is revealed to be a Greater Demon bound in silver chains. You are on the deck of a container ship, and the anchor is going overboard and Angelus is laughing and his eyes are alight with demonic fire and you realize that you are about to spend the rest of eternity in the darkness of the Deep. Just then the scene starts over, but this time you ask your Demon for aid, and he unfolds his wings and flies you through the shadows of the Abyss and takes you safely back home. And then you remember, this vision is the Fate your Sire spoke of as he Embraced you, and his last words to you were, “There is no boundary between Heaven and Hell unless we believe in one.”
Mary is in the Confessional in Corpus Christi Church. She is telling Father John Marrow about a john she saw the prior night. He was a regular, a New Orleans cop that she would get information from and feed from when he visited her. But this time, he seemed different and smelled different. This time she had to kill him: When she began to feed, she tasted vampire blood and realized that the cop had become a ghoul. So she Mesmerized him and he told her he had just been transferred to the New Orleans Special Task Force and was getting the “Super Serum”. Everyone in the department knows that the NOSTF are getting some military grade performance enhancers, but actually the NOSTF is drinking vampire blood. There really were vampires! And the NOSTF captures them during Mardi Gras and exchanges them for more vampire blood. But the Loa tell Mary that his vampire blood is fouled, that it’s mixed with demon blood. The entire NOSTF are ghouls in thrall to a Demon! And Father John says he’ll take care of it, and he makes Mary forget all about her confession. But now, Mary’s coterie is dead and it seems awfully coincidental that Sarah had them Embraced just two blocks from the Church. How did Sarah get all that information? Who told her everyone’s secrets so she could blackmail all the Sires? Who gets told secrets more than a Confessor?
Mary left the group and went in search of Father John with murderous intent. She took Jack with her. The Coterie awoke from the science some minutes later and heard a the police outside the church. They then made their escape from the storage room.
Leigh decided to persuade the police that she was in need of help, and that her friends were inside. Everyone except Becky decided to exit stage left and ran out the back door. Becky went out and Mesmorized a copy into taking the night off. Meanwhile, Tina outran everyone while Louis and Steve were left to deal with two squad cars.
Louis panicked and his Beast rose up and helped him summon Bob the Wraith. Bob took the form of a Shade, a horrific version of a Wraith, and drove the police off the road. Bob then decided to take some reward for his efforts and consumed one of the cops. Louis ate the other one, messily.
Steve watched Louis go on a rampage and then took off. He and Tine met up and saw the police cordoning off the area. Becky and Leigh moved to a safe spot to watch the police.
Tina, Steve, Jack and Leigh got a text message from Alexi ‘get to Corpus Christi Church, Marcel is on his way. Father John is held hostage’. Tina was the first to arrive and Marcel overawed her and she told him everything. In return, he acknowledged her loyalty and charged her with bringing him the head of John Marrow. Tina took Steve, Becky and Alexi into the Church. Leigh decided to try something outside. Louis was a no-show.
The battle took a few minutes. Alexi and Tina managed to wound Father John, and he used some kind of living shadow power to defend himself and managed to escape. Leigh brought a snakey friend and then Father John, the snake and Tina and Steve all took a trip to Hell. As they traveled through the Abyss, Marcel ordered the neighborhood cleansed. He also ordered the police to apprehend Mary Mekhet and Jack McCandles.
When Tina and Steve arrived with Father John, he managed to escape again after healing himself of almost all his damage. He also claimed that he was innocent. Tina heard Mary in the Church whispering to him, egging him on so perhaps Father John is not entirely to blame.
The Coterie was officially acknowledged and given the right to live in New Orleans under Marcel’s authority, even Leigh who is a Follower of Set. Louis’ shadow walking ability remains a secret. Both Louis and Leigh are told that they will never hold positions of authority under Marcel because of their Sires. And Steve will be watched. But Tina was offered the rank of Page, a Knight’s servant, Sheriff Alexi.
The Page’s first order is to apprehend Mary Mekhet.