Thousand Year Old Vampire- a play through

hawkeyefan

Legend
So for Christmas, my wife picked me up a copy of Thousand Year Old Vampire by Tim Hutchings. It’s a kind of solo- storytelling RPG of sorts. It’s got some really interesting game mechanics that involve replacing old memories with new ones as the vampire gets older and older. Less and less of its original self remains. I haven't played through yet, but it seems like the game is focused on the loss that such a long lived being would face.

Essentially, you determine some starting traits for your vampire, and some loose sense of their place in the world and their history and relationships. Then, you use a d10 and d6 to randomly generate prompts for play. Each page contains three prompts. You roll both dice, subtract the d6 result from the d10, and then move that many pages forward (or backward in the event of a negative result) and use the first prompt on that page. If you have already used the first prompt, you move down to the second, if you’ve used the second, then move on to the third. If you’ve used all three, then you move along to the next page.

The prompts may alter your vampire’s traits or remove them or introduce new ones. A vampire can only have 5 memories at any time, with 3 experiences related to each memory. When prompted to add a memory, you must eliminate an older one. They suggest that however you track this, you strikethrough the memory but leave it visible on the page.

I thought it’d be cool to go through it and record my results here as a series of posts. I’ll post my vampire and his stats in the next post, which I’ll edit as needed, and then will record each prompt in a subsequent post. Feel free to comment if you like, or follow along, or ignore this altogether.

I’ve decided on England in the 1000s as my starting era, and I’ve drawn very loosely on actual historical figures and events. My goal is more about having a sense of time and place than about historical accuracy. Anyone who would like to correct my inaccuracies will be summarily executed.

Also, the starting situation for the vampire is pretty loosely sketched. I don’t have every detail mapped out because we can either add them as needed, or else they may become irrelevant due to the passage of time. My goal here is to see how the game plays, and to be entertained. I'm not trying to impress anyone with my writing ability. I'm going to lean heavily on things that we'd all likely consider tropes or even outright cliches.

Each vampire is defined by certain traits, the types of which are summarized below. Most prompts will result in changes to the traits… they can be lost, replaced, restored… and so on. Here's a bit of a summary of the traits and the rules that pertain to them.
  • Memories- these are the important events of your vampire’s life. A Memory is a set of Experiences, which are all related. Each Memory can have up to three experiences. When prompted to add a new Experience, it can be placed in an existing Memory if there is space and if it is connected to the Memory. If not, then it must be added as a New Memory, and another Memory must be deleted to make room. The Vampire can only remember so much. It is possible to transfer deleted Memories to a Diary. But the Diary must be listed in the Resources section, and once entered, the Memory and associated Experiences cannot be altered further. A Diary can hold up to four Memories.
  • Skills- a broad descriptor of the Vampire’s capabilities. Some prompts will indicate a Skill should be checked. I’ll add a mark on the sheet to reflect that. A Skill can only be checked once. Prompts may indicate that a Skill is lost.
  • Resources- these are assets or items that the Vampire has which can be used to assist the Vampire in some way. Some Resources may be Stationary; a hereditary castle or a hidden cave, for example.
  • Characters- the people that are important to the Vampire. Some are mortal and others maybe immortal. Mortal characters should be stricken when a prompt indicates enough time has passed that their life would have ended.
  • Marks- a mark is a strange indicator that there is something supernatural about the Vampire.
  • Note- when a prompt indicates that a skill should be checked, and the Vampire has no unchecked skills, lose a Resource instead. If a prompt says to lose a Resource and the Vampire has none, then check a Skill. If a prompt says to check a Skill or lose a Resource, and the Vampire cannot do either, then the game is over, and the Vampire’s existence ends.

Okay, next post will be the Vampire’s details and traits. I'll have to come back to this second post to edit the traits as needed throughout play. After that, I'll start playing. Each prompt will be in a new post, and I'll include the prompt itself and then the results in the story. I'll write it in first person from the Vampire's point of view. Some posts may be short and light on detail, and may get fleshed out in subsequent posts; I expect sometimes context may come from posts that follow. We'll see.
 
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hawkeyefan

Legend
THE VAMPIRE CHARACTER SHEET

Name: Eadric Streona

Memories

Memory 1: I am Eadric, eighth child of my house
  • My father is a minor noble of the middlelands; my ambition is stronger than my station, and I will take what I can from this life
  • .
  • .
Memory 2:
  • My skill for subterfuge and intrigue are recognized, and I’m placed in command of a company of soldiers nominally tasked with defending the realm, but our true task is eliminating the king’s political enemies.
  • I kill Sigefirth, my closest confidante, before he can betray me and reveal my true nature.
  • .
Memory 3:
  • I'm named Earl of Merica, in the middlelands; I bring my task of recognizing and eliminating the king’s opponents to a larger stage.
  • I am forced to flee Lundenburh, forfeiting my title and authority.
  • After being humbled by Wulfstan, I agree to leave England.
Memory 4:
  • I marry Eadgyth, the daughter of King Aethelred’s sister; her dowry makes me rich, and allows me to continue my work on the king’s behalf.
  • After my encounter with Aija, I find myself changed, and upon returning home to my wife, I'm overcome with a bloodlust and I drain Eadgyth.
  • I have Sigefirth dispose of Eadgyth's body, and then use her disappearance to convince the King that his enemies are growing bolder; he urges us to double our efforts to root out his enemies.
Memory 5:
  • I am seduced by Aija and corrupted into something both more and less than a man; she wants me to betray my kinsmen to the Danish Prince, Cnut.
  • I recall the encounter more clearly, and realize that my victims will be left with incomplete recollections of the feeding as long as I only drink a little.
  • In the town of Twywell, I learn from Wulfstan the name for what I am: vampire. He shares much of what it means to be a vampire.
Skills
  • Cunning Insight
  • Manipulation
  • I never take blame
  • Bloodthirsty
  • (X) Slake Subtly
  • Vampiric Sense
  • I know my place as an immortal
Resources
  • A group of loyal armsmen
  • Title, Earl of Mercia
  • A stash of plundered gold
Mortals
  • Aethelric Streona, my father, a minor noble of the middlelands; he thinks highly of his middling accomplishments; he loves my oldest siblings, but had little time for me
  • King Aethelred, my liege, a fool who does not deserve his crown; he is called the Unready for a reason, he is not capable of dealing with the threats that face Briton
  • Eadgyth, niece of Aethelred, I married her for political gain; she is fair enough and kind, but it is her family’s power that I need
  • Sigefirth of the Seven Burghs, a member of my armsmen and my right hand; when I feed too greatly he disposes of the bodies
  • Cnut, a Danish Prince who seeks power in Britain, he wants to marshal allies
  • Edmund, called Ironside, son of Aethelred and crown prince; he is what holds this crumbling kingdom together
Immortals
  • Aija, a member of the court of the Danish Prince Cnut; she is mysterious and strange, often said to be a witch
  • Hemminge, spymaster of Prince Edmund; his connection to Aija is uncertain, and his true aims unknown
  • Wulfstan, an ancient vampire of great strength, existing alone in the town of Twywell, he taught me about vampires and commanded me to leave England after I attempted to betray him
Mark
  • In the light of the day, my shadow behaves randomly, often in ways that betray how I truly feel about others; I avoid going out in the day, and when I must I take measures to try and cast no shadow.
  • I have an aversion to religious symbols and ceremony.

**************************************************

So now, I’ll start rolling prompts and will type a post for each one. I’ll post the prompt, and then the events of the story. I’m hoping to do this daily or nearly daily as time allows.
 
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hawkeyefan

Legend
Prompt 1
In your blood hunger you destroy someone close to you. Kill a mortal Character. Create a mortal if none are available. Take the skill Bloodthirsty.

I returned from my visit with the Danish Prince Cnut. I was not well; my time with the woman Aija seemed to have left me with some sort of affliction. I did not recall all of the details of our.... dalliance. I should have heeded the rumors about her, and ignored her advances. It seemed she... did something to me. My skin seemed to burn and itch, and I was taken by an incredible hunger, though I had no appetite.

Instead of reporting to King Aethelred, I sent Sigefirth in my stead. Returning to my guest chambers in his majesty's castle, I found Eadgyth waiting for me. She welcomed me warmly, and as we embraced, my hunger became overwhelming. I pulled her close and felt the beating of her heart in her neck. I could almost see the blood pulsing in her veins, and I knew how to satiate my hunger.

I drank of her. In doing so, I recalled my encounter with Aija more fully. I realized what had happened to me. It did not stop me. I was so hungry that I simply could not stop.

Finally, when I'd had my fill, I let Eadgyth's pale body fall to the floor. For a moment, I felt... complete. But it was fleeting. Before long, the horror of what I'd done registered. Not that poor Eadgyth was gone, but that I'd killed her. I would have to do something about this. Could I hide the fact? Could I blame it upon one of the king's enemies? What could I do?

But even then, beyond the concern for my station and my position, already I was wondering when I would be able to feed again.

**********
Results: Eadgyth is killed; Bloodthirsty skill gained
Experience added to Memory 4:
  • After my encounter with Aija, I find myself changed, and upon returning home to my wife, I'm overcome with a bloodlust and I drain Eadgyth.
 
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hawkeyefan

Legend
Prompt 9

You develop a system for feeding. What is it? What happens to those who die? Create a Skill that reflects this.

Thank whatever gods there may be for Sigefirth. He helped me dispose of Eadgyth’s remains. Getting rid of bodies is not exactly a new endeavor for him; he’d been eliminating enemies of the crown at my command for years. Eadgyth proved no more troublesome. Sigefirth bundled her up and left from His Majesty’s castle in the deep of the night, with none the wiser.

We blamed Eadgyth’s disappearance on some plot of His Majesty’s enemies. I mentioned Prince Cnut as being a possible culprit. I explained that my visit with the Danish lord left me with an ill feeling, and proposed that the meeting was pretense on his part to enact this scheme. I vowed to Aethelfred that I would uncover the truth and that I’d bring those who abducted Eadgyth to justice, and that if she was alive, I’d find her. The fool believed me.

I had my men arrest folks for questioning. Even the most tenuous connection to the Danes or any of His Majesty’s other enemies would suffice. I would often question these prisoners personally. I did so alone, so that I could feed.

I had learned from Eadgyth to control myself. I drank only a small amount from them. When I did so, their mind seemed clouded to the full nature of the encounter. If I took only a little, they did not die, nor did they become afflicted as I was. Sometimes, I drank too much. It was no matter; these dregs of society would not be missed, and Sigefirth easily disposed of their bodies, as he had dozens of others.

With this process in place, I was able to satisfy my urges, and learn to control my feeding.

**************
Results: Added Skill "Slake Subtly"; added Cnut as a character; added that Sigefirth helps dispose of bodies
Experience added to Memory 4:
  • I have Sigefirth dispose of Eadgyth's body, and then use her disappearance to convince the King that his enemies are growing bolder; he urges us to double our efforts to root out his enemies.
Experience added to Memory 5:
  • I recall the encounter more clearly, and realize that my victims will be left with incomplete recollections of the feeding as long as I only drink a little.
 
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AnotherGuy

Adventurer
I really appreciate the time and effort taken here @hawkeyefan and this game has piqued my curiosity. If I've understood correctly the story-telling is all you. Only the prompts are from the game itself, those which you have italicised, right? And do you set your own starting date or is it fixed at 1000 AD due to the name of the game?
Time, is that pushed forward by your storytelling or do the prompts age you or perhaps both options are viable?

I like the game, it is smart, although I keep drifting to the possibility of it evolving into a duet (2 player, not the 1 GM and 1 player version), where perhaps a common goal is pursued, whether you are allies or foes.
 



hawkeyefan

Legend
I really appreciate the time and effort taken here @hawkeyefan and this game has piqued my curiosity. If I've understood correctly the story-telling is all you. Only the prompts are from the game itself, those which you have italicised, right? And do you set your own starting date or is it fixed at 1000 AD due to the name of the game?
Time, is that pushed forward by your storytelling or do the prompts age you or perhaps both options are viable?

I like the game, it is smart, although I keep drifting to the possibility of it evolving into a duet (2 player, not the 1 GM and 1 player version), where perhaps a common goal is pursued, whether you are allies or foes.

Yes, I probably could have been clearer. The storytelling is all me, the Prompts in Italics are from the book. The text that follows the prompts in the posts above is what I imagine in response to the prompts. The book urges you to not overthink things, so I tend to come up with them immediately after generating the next prompt. I just let whatever comes to mind out onto the screen. Then I do a little tidying to make sure it all makes sense, and then I post it.

One thing to note, each prompt is meant to be an Experience that needs to be added to a Memory. I've edited to add a few in based on the first couple of prompts. Once a Memory has 3 Experiences, you can't add any more. Once you need to add an Experience and there's no room and/or no Memories with space would fit, you must delete a Memory and crete a new one based on the new experience.

You can set your own starting date, absolutely. I just chose to run with the thousand years for mine. But there's no reason you couldn't start earlier or later than that.

On the passage of time, I'm not entirely certain. I've not perused the book beyond the rules and the prompts I've rolled other than some incidental reading of secondary prompts on the same page and so on. It seems that the prompts will at times indicate the passage of time. The Vampire Creation section certainly conveys that; it explains that the Characters you come up with for your Vampire should be important, but will not likely be around too long. It also says to use your judgment; if enough time appears to have passed that a character would likely no longer be alive, then go ahead and cross them out.

I expect within the next couple of prompts we may see years start to go by.

I have an idea to journal this in a word document, but to change page color and font to also indicate the passage of time. I'll stop hijacking the thread now. :D

No worries! Feel free to comment however much you want.

I feel like there are probably lots of creative ways to play the game and track the results. Playing through will probably inspire more ideas, too.
 


hawkeyefan

Legend
@hawkeyefan Great to read this -- it brought up many fond memories of my first session. I journaled this using footnote-style references to give the prompt numbers, and simply added headers when the date changed significantly. I kept a running. electronic tag of my assets, skills and memories, and snap-shotted them every now and again.

Here's my journal:


That's awesome, thanks for sharing it. I didn't read too far as I want the prompts to be surprising to me, but I'll definitely take a look at this once my playthrough is done. I like the format and the details you've come up with.

Funny how we both started with what was going on in 1020 and looked up some details and then started.
 

GuyBoy

Hero
As Eadric gets older, Sweyn Godwinson and, later, Robert of Belleme, might be interesting friends/rivals.
The opportunity go on the First Crusade might also appeal to a vampire!
 

hawkeyefan

Legend
Prompt 5

You murder someone you love or respect rather than let them expose you. Kill a Character. Check a Skill. If you have no living Characters, kill no one and create a beloved mortal Character who you have betrayed.

Long have I known that trust is fleeting. My brothers, desperate for our father’s affection, taught me that lesson early and often. But for Sigefirth to betray me… a man I had raised from nothing to a prominent position in my house… it is unbearable.

As our schemes went on, and the scope of our actions grew, I started to notice small signs of mistrust in Sigefirth. He would at times question my decisions. He would assume responsibilities that should not have been his. Always under the guise of easing the burden upon me! Clever of him to turn my doubts against me!

I knew, though, I knew after he came in upon me as I questioned the Bishop of Wells. He saw me feeding! He’d seen glimpses before, and certainly the aftermath of some of my more… indulgent meals. But in this case, I had not noticed his presence, and he watched for a time. Perhaps it was the length of the viewing which disturbed him, or perhaps that it was a man of the cloth on whom I fed, though I’d never known Sigefirth to be particularly devout. Whatever the reason, though, when I did notice him, I saw revulsion in his face.

I knew it would not be long before he would reveal the truth of my condition, the truth of our mission, the truth of Eadgyth’s death.

Satiated, I dismissed the Bishop. It took him a few moments to come to his senses, then he dreamily thanked me and departed. Vigorous from my feeding, I called Sigefirth over to me. I bade him lean in, as if I had a secret I must unburden. He hesitated only a moment before obeying. I whispered to him an apology… and then I snapped his neck.

The enormity of this decision immediately registered as I realized I would need to dispose of his body, and I would need to craft some illusion for the members of His Majesty’s Court with whom we worked about what had happened to him. Could this subterfuge even continue without him?

**********************
Results: Sigefirth is dead
checked the Skill Slake Subtly (marked by an X on the character record)

Experience added to Memory 2:
  • I kill Sigefirth, my closest confidante, before he can betray me and reveal my true nature.
 
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Fenris-77

Small God of the Dozens
Supporter
Playing around with some parchment backgrounds and fonts. The font below is Saucy Jack.

1648312541268.png
 

hawkeyefan

Legend
Prompt 8

You are recognized for what you are by another creature like yourself. Create an immortal Character, lose a Resource, and gain a Skill. What did you lose to them?

Without Sigefirth, my schemes slowly started to unravel. His Majesty was unimpressed with the progress made toward finding his niece’s abductor. Aethelred was growing more and more nervous about his hold on the throne. The Danish prince Cnut had taken several towns, and it was believed he had support from within. While enacting my ruse of uncovering the King’s enemies, I actually had found some. Indeed, support for His Majesty was waning among the lords.

My own feelings did nothing to help the matter. I was growing withdrawn. The politics and machinations had begun to bore me. I had always wanted power and influence, and I now had them… but I also had been given a taste of power of another sort entirely. Courtly intrigue seemed an almost archaic path, and one that was unnecessarily indirect. Given my newfound abilities, could I not simply seize power? Would there be any who could oppose me?

It turned out there could be.

Hemminge was one of Prince Edmund’s men. Many said that Edmund was the only thing keeping his father on the throne, and having seen what I had, I’d not have said they were entirely wrong. He was called Ironside because of his bravery in battle. He’d fended off several of Cnut’s advances. He’d also helped marshal the lords in support of his father, however tentative that support may have been; without Edmund, it would have been nonexistent.

Hemminge was Edmund’s spymaster. Further, he was a creature like me.

Edmund and his retinue returned to Lundenburh from their most recent campaign. Hemminge immediately reached out to me to check on the progress of my work. It was a breach of proper etiquette for him to demand answers from me, but he was backed by the Crown Prince. I reluctantly agreed to meet with him.

He entered my chamber and I immediately knew he was like me. It was as if I could smell it on him. His smile told me he was also aware of our shared… condition. His eyes occasionally flashed with a reddish light, just as Aija’s had. Was he a creature of hers? Was that her task for Cnut? To convert enemies to allies through this unholy means? Was he here on her bidding? It seemed too unlikely a coincidence, otherwise.

Hemminge explained to me that due to the unfortunate loss of Sigefirth, and per Prince Edmund’s request, he would be assisting me in my duties going forward. I politely thanked him for his offer of aid, and explained that it was sorely needed, that the enemies of the Crown were many. He smiled and nodded throughout the meeting before finally, mercifully taking his leave.

I immediately gathered several of my men, as well as some of the coin I had secreted away, and then in the dark of the night, like a common criminal, I fled Lundenburh. I had been at this far too long to not know the truth of the meeting, and what would follow. I would be questioned by Hemminge, and then after wringing whatever knowledge he could from me, he would assume my role and my title, and I would be quietly removed.

At least, that was how things would normally have gone. I'd overseen such actions myself, after all. My nature, and that of Hemminge, however, cast the situation in a new and unknown light. Had Hemminge not been like me, I would have allowed things to play out merely out of curiosity, as a temporary salve to the malaise that had come upon me. But his true nature… his possible connection to Aija… these mysteries left me quite unsure how to proceed. He seemed to be a threat to me in a way no other could be.

So I fled, unsure of my next steps.

******************
Added Immortal Hemminge
Added mortal Edmund
Lost Resource: Title, Earl of Mercia
Added Skill: Vampiric Sense
Experience added to Memory 3: I am forced to flee Lundenburh, forfeiting my title and authority, due to the arrival of the vampire Hemminge
 


Fenris-77

Small God of the Dozens
Supporter
OK, enough reading and mucking about, time to get stuck in. I decided on the following as my character sheet. I'm going to change fonts as time passes both as an immersive tool and also to help contextualize the item in question (as in I will immediately see how 'old' that bit is). Quintus is a Roman, so the Latin quotes seemed like a solid affectation.
1648739869869.png
 

Fenris-77

Small God of the Dozens
Supporter
@hawkeyefan - I'm loving the paythrough

So I have my vampire written, but I'll spare you another screen shot and all the fonts. In plain text, here he is (with translations from the Latin):

Thousand Year Old Vampire

In absentia lucus, tenebrae vicunt (in the absence of light, darkness prevails)​

Being an incomplete and at times unreliable account of the long life and eventual death of one Quintus Aquilor.

Memories Verba volunt, scripta manent (spoken words fly away, written words remain)

Primus
  • I am Quintus, fifth son of Honorius Aquilor and I can trace my name back to the Senate of Rome. I was born in in the Year of our Lord Eight Hundred and Seventy-Three in Ravenna. My destiny was always to enter the priesthood and build my family’s fortunes through the glory of God.
Secundus
  • My father has arranged for me to accompany my uncle on a delegation to the court of Boris I, Emperor of Bulgaria. My uncle is furious that my father entrusted me with the gift of manuscripts for the new library in Preslav.

Tertius
  • We docked at Tomi on the Black Sea, from there to make our way overland to Preslav. The night of our first camp Cato caught a servant of Galthus rifling through my belongings – he had my ring in his pocket. Crato garroted him and we buried the body under an oak tree. Galthus will have to be more subtle.

Quartus
  • I have liberally spent some of my father’s gold buying mercantile contacts in an effort to supplant the Byzantine hold over the trade in furs from the lands of the Rus. I bought Durndal a fine new woolen cloak that he blushed over. Tomorrow we will be presented to the court of the Emperor Boris I.

Quintus
  • I was unexpectedly invited to dine with Elena Stoyanov, of the Rus, to discuss furs and our shared love of manuscripts. I was received at her manse with great honour and we drank and talked late into the night. When I was drunk she moved in close, and I thought he would kiss me, but she ripped out my throat with her long fangs. Her eyes glowed green in the firelight.

SkillsFaber est suae quisque fortunae (every man is the artisan of his own fortune)
  • Oratory in service to the Church of Rome
  • Swordsmanship and Riding, as befits a noble scion
  • Calligraphy, as books are a passion I need not hide
ResourcesAn dives sit omnes quaerunt, nemo ad bonus (Everyone inquires if he is rich, no one inquires if he is good)
  • A chest of gold destined to buy influence and contacts in the far Kingdom of Bulgaria
  • A gold ring inscribed with a simple cross, a gift from my eldest brother, long dead
  • fine collection of ancient manuscripts, intended as a gift to the library at Preslav
CharactersVox et praetera nihil (a voice and nothing more)
  • My uncle Dominus is a Papal Legate and a pompous blowhard whom I suffer poorly
  • Crato, an unassuming manservant granted me by my father, he is gifted in the arts of murder and intrigue
  • Galthus, a northern Lombard and castellan to my uncle. He is a devious snake and we loath each other
  • Durndal, an armsman in service of my uncle with whom I share the occasional tryst
  • Elena Stoyanov, an immortal posing as a noble from the lands of the Rus. She is dark and beautiful.
MarksEtiam sanato vulnere cicatrix manet (thought the wound is healed, a scar remains)
  • My eyes now glow in dim light like those of a wolf
 

hawkeyefan

Legend
Prompt 15

While traveling you come into conflict with another immortal. Gain a Mark. Who are they? What trick did you play upon them? Create a new immortal character.

The timing of my exile could not have been more fortuitous. Within weeks, Cnut had defeated Edmund at Assandun, and Aethelred was forced to give Cnut half his kingdom.

In the weeks that followed my exile, I roamed the land. I had been branded a traitor. My funds were dwindling. The loyalty of my men was in question; I had lied to them about our departure, telling them that we were on a mission of grave importance to remove another enemy of his majesty's from within the kingdom, but that our mission was secret. They began to hear rumors, though, and it would only be a matter of time before one or more of them suspected the truth. Unsure of what to do, I began to feed on them. Just small amounts to keep my strength up, and to keep them acquiescent.

I needed a target of some sort to occupy my men. I settled on Leofwine, a lord in northern Mercia, on the outskirts of what was once my earldom. He had strong blood ties to the Danes, and the town where he held sway, Twywell, was remote enough that I had little fear of discovery. With the loss at Assandun, the king's men were far too occupied to worry about me.

I began to become more withdrawn during this time. These mortal entanglements seemed beneath me in some way; at times I wondered why I would fear being discovered at all, yet at other times I would quake at the idea. I was pondering this all one evening as I strolled the streets of Twywell. I came across a church, a simple building not like those found in Lundenburh. From within, there was the sound of a hymnall from those gathered for evening mass.

The mere sight of the building filled me with dread. The hymnal was like a dirge. I felt the need to flee, but at the same time my legs felt too heavy to move. I felt I would collapse, but someone came to me and helped me move away from that dreaded place. once we were a good distance away, and I was able to recover my senses, I realized that my savior was an immortal like me. He introduced himself as Wulfstan. He seemed intrigued at finding another like him. He gave a name to what we are, a word I'd heard before but had never quite understood: vampire.

Some vampires are repelled by the symbols or trappings of faith. It is not an affliction he shared, but he realized what was happening to me when he came across me outside the church.

We spent the next several nights discussing things. I was happy to find a fellow who did not seem entangled with Aija or Hemming, or my prior life in any way. Wulfstan seemed happy to have someone to share his knowledge with. He told me much of what it means to be a vampire, how each of us is marked in unique ways, with great strengths, but also startling vulnerabilities. He explained that with time, the vulnerabilities could possibly be overcome. Wulfstan no longer feared to walk in the day as he once had. His shadow had never betrayed him as mine has me, but for years, the light of the sun had left his skin corpse white. For decades, in fact. He lived here peacefully enough in Twywell, feeding as needed on strangers and travelers, and leaving the townsfolk be. I asked him how long he had been this way, and he had no satisfactory answer. "Years beyond counting," was all that he said. The thought both thrilled and terrified me.

Over the course of a month, I learned much from him. But before long, my respite came to an end. One of Cnut's thegns arrived in Twywell. Their presence made me think of Aija, which made me uncomfortable.

It was more out of curiosity than fear, I think, that made me betray my newfound companion. I drank of one of the thegn's men and left him outside of Wulfstan's home. When the body was discovered, the thegn gathered his men and moved on Wulfstan's homestead. I chose that time to gather my men and flee. Wulfstan had told me that they were my "thralls", that my bite would keep them loyal to me. We left Twywell in haste.

Before long, I expected the story of what happened here would spread, and I would learn of how things played out, and exactly how vulnerable a vampire may be.

*****************
Mark Gained: Aversion to religious symbols and ceremony
New Immortal Character: Wulfstan
Experience added to Memory 5:
  • In the town of Twywell, I learn from Wulfstan the name for what I am: vampire. He shares much of what it means to be a vampire.
 
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Fenris-77

Small God of the Dozens
Supporter
Medieval England is my academic métier, and I approve of the Vampire described above. I'm glad you did it actually, @hawkeyefan , as it forced me to do some actual research into areas I knew less about.
 


Dungeon Delver's Guide

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