Cappadocian
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For members of Clan Cappadocian, bloodline is often as much of a philosophy as it is a lineage. The vast majority of Cappadocians are fascinated by the concepts of death and undeath — most specifically with what remains once the eternal soul has left the body. Some were scholars in their morrals lives, while others were men of faith or philosophers. Such inquisitive natures remain vital even after the Embrace, and although the Cappadocians' bodies resemble those of the dead, their minds are quite alive with the metaphysical secrets of the night. Their studies and obsessions manifest most potently in their twisted Discipline of Mortis.

Within this archetype, however, these so-called graverobbers vary widely. For every one who was a priest following the events of the Crusades, there is a clanmate who was a knight fighting in those same holy wars. While the Cappadocians are not politically powerful as a clan, they do earn their place among the High Clans with their knowledge, wisdom and contacts. The most politically active act as advisors to princes, viziers to mortal kings and even tutors to royal families, while the scholarly more typically haunt monasteries or plunder graveyards for the "subjects" of their inquiries beyond the veil of mortality.

The clan is suspected of originating in the depths ot Anatolia or Armenia; several clan legends mention desert sands, subterranean cities and rolling plains. The progenitor of the clan, known only as Cappadocius ("of Cappadocia"), gives his childer great berth, merely asking that they uphold the quest for answers to the undead state. Scholars believe that many Cappadocians either spend their nights in the cold arms of torpor or have immigrated into the Saracen East, as Cainite history implies that they were once far more common than they are tonight.

Although they are disorganized and far-flung, many revere knowledge and congregate at certain times in temples, libraries and universities. There, they consult with one another on what they have learned, trading secrets and blasphemies, sainted truths and gossip. The clan's spiritual center is said to be in the great temple at Erciyes in Anatolia, where Lady Constancia acts as priestess and oracle, and where fragments of The Book of Nod were gathered at the end of the 12th century. Despite the fact that no outsiders — and very few Cappadocian neonates — have seen Erciyes, there are rumors of temples more secret and more terrible still, including buried necropolises of ages past.

Wirh its broad scope and well-traveled members, Clan Cappadocian has Cainites all over Europe and even to the south and east. Coptic monasteries in Africa are havens to Graverobbers, as are the courts of pashas beyond the Levant and even the halls of the Giovanni, a Venetian merchant family rumored to be skilled at the arts of nigrimancy. It is a cosmopolitan clan, with as many of its members claiming humble origins as hail from noble or clerical stock. To the Cappadocians, a keen mind is more important than breeding, and any Cainite with an inquisitive nature earns the esteem of his sire and peers.

Other clans often regard the Cappadocians as secretive and morbid, which is true to some extent. Indeed, their practice of Mortis and related studies require patient research and a plentiful supply of dead flesh. Members of the clan have been known to cloister themselves for decades, emerging from their laboratories and havens only to procure sustenance and subjects for their experiments — often one in the same. Beneath this dark side, however, lies a serious spirituality in many Cappadocians. Although their practices tend to make them cold, alien and withdrawn from the mortal world, they delve into mysteries that lesser Cainites and kine couldn't begin to fathom.

  • Sobriquet: Graverobbers
  • Appearance: Afflicted as they are by their clan weakness, the Cappadoeians all exhibit a ghastly pallor and emaciated frames. Many try to hide this corpselike appearance, though it is not so pronounced in some cases. They tend to affect the garb of their station, from the cassocks of simple monks and scholars to the fine robes of a chamberlain or even the rotting rags of a grave-digger.
  • Haven and Prey: Cappadocians usually make their havens away from the mortal world and even other Cainites, where they may study in seclusion or conduct morbid experiments without unsettling other residents. Such havens include disused chambers of castles, out-of-the-way monasteries, neglected cellars and Roman-era sewers or cisterns. Of all the High Clans, the Cappadocians are probably the least exclusive when it comes to choosing prey. Indeed, many Cappadocians see the Kiss as little more than a function, and they deny the emotional charge it gives to both predator and prey. Few Cappadoeians have any reservations about feeding from animals or even corpses, but fresh, human blood is still more delectable. When they do deed from mortals, Graverobbers are often as unobtrusive as they are in Cainite society, discreetly feeding from the dregs and untouchables of humankind.
  • The Embrace: Being possessed ot somewhat morbid mindsets, the Cappadocians usually Embrace those who are interested by death or work with it in some fashion, or those whose scholarly talents may be turned to the Graverobbers' own intellectual and spiritual pursuits. Soldiers, priests, hermits, pilgrims, gravediggers and supposed witches have all been Embraced into Clan Cappadocian. Additionally, the clan seems inclined to less of the European prejudices than the other clans exhibit, Embracing such far-flung folk as Persians, Moors and other foreigners.
  • Character Creation: Mental Attributes and Knowledges tend to be primary among Cappadocians. Concepts, Natures and Demeanors lean toward the introspective and contemplative, while Virtues lean toward one extreme or the other, either very developed or callously ignored after the Embrace. Backgrounds, like other aspects of the Cappadocians' personalities, usually focus on making the Cainite self-sufficient or at least well regarded by others. There are Cappadocians on every major road, but most tend toward the Roads of Heaven or of Sins. The clan's most spiritual and morbid members follow their own Road of Bones.
  • Clan Disciplines: Auspex, Fortitude, Morris
  • Weaknesses: The Cappadocians bear the visage of death, which makes their skin appear cold and corpselike. No matter how much vitae a Cappadocian imbibes, she never shows the "flush of life" that other Cainites may choose to display. This grim condition also exacerbates with age, and some of the most venerable Cappadoeians literally resemble nothing so much as shrunken cadavers. Difficulties of Social rolls for Cappadocians — any roll involving a Social Attribute — increase by one.
  • Organization: While Cappadocians may seem solitary, their inquisitive nature leads them to seek at least correspondence with others. In some cases, they form fraternities or societies of like-minded scholars, while others form coteries whose journeys may lead to the recovery of a lost relic. Others are simply cabals of fellow intellectuals who share their observations. The clan as a whole has no formal heirarchy (although most voice respect for the priests at Erciyes), so it is up to individual Graverobbers to provide for their social urges individually.
  • Quote: Is our undeath a curse or an exaltation? No easy answer exists. It is the question that has plagued its since God cast out Caine.