, Master of Seattle : Beastmaster Vampire
Member No.: 3
Joined: 30-November 11
ShilohVampire . 504 . Master of the CityWho are you?
I am Shiloh, Master of Seattle. I have been here since the first years of the city's existence, and I wet-nursed it through its growing years. I built it, sometimes with my bare hands, and there isn't a square foot of the city I don't know. Sometimes I think I am the city, a conceit that I'm sure would amuse the humans no end.What do you want?
Besides the obvious answers, once I have climbed Maslow's pyramid so to speak, I want the city safe and thriving. I want the Court secure. I want the city's star to continue to rise. And in the personal...that is a difficult question to answer. I live a circumscribed life. Or unlife, however it should be put. I have lovers in plenty, but few people I feel entitled to love.
The family of my birth is long since dead and gone, and I have not kept tabs on their descendants. However I do have a family, of sorts, in my household staff. Owen, my Court's chamberlain was my personal majordomo for twenty years before he moved on to taking charge of Court as a whole, and his wife Mary has been with me nearly as long. My current majordomo, Janos, is just as dear to me. This is, perhaps, one of those concepts which a modern mind has difficulty grasping, that my servants should be my dearest friends, but it's true nonetheless.
I've thought many times over the years about marking a servant or servants, but something has always stayed my hand. In my romantic moments I think it's because I haven't yet met the right people. In my realistic ones, that I am too used to my independence. In either case, I am always looking, and rarely meet anyone who tempts me to consider for very long.
Why are you here?
I was born in Africa, and it's at least possible that I was one of the first European children ever birthed south of Marrakesh. It was 1508, the white men were still building adobe garrisons and stumbling to pronounce the pidgin Swahili that the locals kept trying to teach them, and a man would have to be mad to put his wife on a boat and carry her off to the newly-built naval fort, but that's what my father did and I was the first (though far from the last) of his children born on African soil.
I grew up in a world that was wild and dirty and rough and refined. I would pull off my clothes and run with the Bantu children through the muddy streets all morning, but come back home at the noon bell to dress in stiffened silks and learn the lives of the saints. My mother hated Mozambique, so did both my older brothers and most of my younger siblings. Only my father and I truly loved it.
By the time I was twelve my parents had received nine marriage offers for me. Not because of my beauty--I was then, as I am now, pinched and scrawny and awkward. But because my father commanded the garrison and because there simply weren't any other European girls around. My mother was still fooling herself that she would be sending me back to Portugal to make a match there, but shortly after I turned fourteen the matter was taken out of everyone's hands.
There was a Sephardic trader named Jakob Pidzhi who had visited the island several times, on ill-defined but seemingly lucrative errands. He approached my father obliquely about a union with me or one of the younger girls but even in Africa good Catholics did not let their daughters marry Jews. Jakob appeared to take the refusal with good grace, though it didn't stop him from maneuvering me off to a quiet corner at a garden party and kissing me. Looking back, it wasn't really all that good a kiss, but maybe the surprise of it persuaded him because two nights later a trio of San bushmen ghosted into the fort, wrapped me up in my own blanket, and carried me out again.
The next time I woke up I was in a strange bed with a man atop me and a burning agony in the side of my throat. Somewhat later I awoke again and my situation was explained to me. I was to be Jakob's 'bride', and I had been made a vampire so that I would never finish growing into a woman, as Jakob was uninterested in adult women. Sebastião had Embraced me for his servant's sake, he himself had no interest in women and therefore didn't consider infecting me and marking me.
Memories of the next few months are fuzzy. Largely I remember being angry and afraid and not understanding why I couldn't send a message to my father. And the kittens. I remember that the kitchen cat gave birth to a litter behind my wardrobe and that I would pull the kittens up onto the foot of my bed and let the warm weight of them comfort me as I died for the day and the sound of them purring be the first thing to greet me as I woke again in the dark.
But eventually we settled down into a sort of truce. I became fond of them, in my way, and we stayed together for nearly two hundred years. We traveled Africa, traveling out to the edges of the white man's land, then coming back in to the 'civilized' areas, spending a few years in Marrakesh or Cairo or Alexandria before one of us got impatient. When my Call started to emerge and I found myself drawn to lions, Sebastião was inordinately pleased that I had inherited his affinity for the big cats. When I gained the Call for hyenas as well I thought he would split himself with pride. Not all of our bloodline gain the ability to Call more than a single animal, and branching out past felines told him that someday I could reach a greater level of power than any of us had anticipated. He never lived to see me master them all.
In the end, we got caught between two sides of a war nobody could win. As the Ashanti rose and the Bantu fought back, our little house in Cote d'Ivoire went down to a raid. They used fire, Jakob died trying to pull Sebastião from beneath a collapsed beam.
I stayed another hundred years, mostly in Cairo and Tangier, flirting with getting involved in European politics. In the end, I got restless again and sailed to America, where there were new frontiers to explore. I spent a century exploring, more or less, and arrived in Seattle when it was still a wild logging town full of madmen and trappers. I took Master when enough vampires arrived to make it necessary, and I have nursed the city through fire, flood, a gold rush, a silicon rush, a world of change.
This city is mine. It has always been mine. It will always be mine. This is the only reason good enough to stop traveling.
Where are you going?
Wherever the city needs me to be. Maybe that sounds like an oversimplification, but it's purely the truth.
- Player Name: Briar
- Player Age: Pushing forty.
- Other Characters: Janos Marić
- Preferred Contact: Hit one of those IM links, or PM Shiloh
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