Caine's childer are called "The Damned," and no vampires embody this more fully than the wretches of Clan Nosferatu. While other vampires still look human and may travel in mortal society, Nosferatu are twisted and deformed by the curse of vampirism. Other Kindred speak shudderingly of Caine placing a mark upon the entire clan for the monstrous deeds of its Antediluvian founder. As such, Nosferatu find themselves loathed and ostracized by the other Children of Caine, who consider them disgusting and interact with them only when they must.

Following the Embrace, Nosferatu childer suffer an agonizing transformation as, over the subsequent weeks, they warp from humans into hideous monsters. The horror of the physical devolution often produces an accompanying psychological trauma. Unable to walk among the kine, Nosferatu must dwell in subterranean sewers and catacombs forever after.

Nosferatu often choose physically or emotionally twisted mortals for the Embrace, seeing in the curse of vampirism a possible means of redemption for the mortals. Amazingly, there seems to be some merit to this belief. Many Nosferatu are surprisingly levelheaded and practical, avoiding the obsessions, fits and rages of their fairer brethren. Not that this makes the Sewer Rats particularly pleasant to be around; indeed, some Nosferatu come to delight in the shock and horror their grotesque appearances inspire in others.

Nosferatu are survivors par excellence. Few creatures, mortal or vampire, know a city's back alleys and dark corners like the Nosferatu do. Additionally, Nosferatu have mastered the crafts of sneaking and eavesdropping; they make a point of keeping up with current gossip and affairs, not merely for pleasure, but for survival. Information brokers without peer, they can command high prices for their knowledge. Using their Obfuscate Discipline, Nosferatu make a point of listening to others' conversations from hiding, or sitting in on "secret" meetings. If a Kindred wishes to learn about the doings and denizens of the city, she would do well to consult the Nosferatu. Finally, millennia of shared deformity and abuse have fostered strong bonds among the monsters. Nosferatu forgo the squabbling and feuds ubiquitous to the other clans, preferring to work in unison. They treat each other with meticulous politeness and freely share information among themselves. To mess with one Nosferatu is to mess with them all – and that can get messy indeed….

Nosferatu often avoid destruction by trafficking in information. Their dependency on stealth, rapport with beasts and constant need to travel from fiefdom to fiefdom provide them with access to data unavailable to their less venturesome brethren. Even citybound Nosferatu find that their choices of abodes and victims make them privy to all manner of information and gossip inaccessible to the loftier clans. Nosferatu have learned that the most refined Ventrue prince will often hold his gorge, cover his nose and give up a beggar or two in exchange for information about his Lasombra rival in the next duchy. (And should bargaining prove futile, Nosferatu are not above a little blackmail).

Nickname: Sewer Rats

Sect: Surprisingly enough, with obvious difficulties with upholding the Masquerade, the clan mostly as a whole belongs to the Camarilla. Perhaps they value the safety of membership; perhaps they simply want the other clans within observing distance. Still, a fair number of Nosferatu are in the Sabbat or simply consider themselves autarkis (of no sect).

Haven: Their disfigurement forces most Nosferatu to take havens far from the eyes of mortals, in graveyards, abandoned warehouses and cellars. In large cities, entire broods of Nosferatu lair in the sewers and subway systems. These "kingdoms," particularly the older ones, are often much more extensive than mortals or Kindred are aware - subterranean labyrinths stretching deep into the darkness and guarded by monstrous ghouls. Even princes tread warily within the Nosferatu kingdoms.

Background: Nosferatu choose their progeny from society's castoffs: derelicts, the mentally ill and the hopelessly antisocial. Occasionally, a vindictive Nosferatu chooses to Embrace a beautiful, vain mortal, then watch gleefully as the Curse takes hold.

Character Generation: Nosferatu can have any concept, but often come from loner, outsider, or drifter stock. Physical or Mental Attributes are often primary (Social are rarely anything other than tertiary). Stealth is highly prized among the clan, while Survival allows a Sewer Rat to find shelter in the blighted zones Nosferatu favor. Nosferatu occasionally have retainers in the form of ghoul animals, or even a human ally or two, but there are rarely any predominant Background among the clan.

Clan Disciplines: animalism, obfuscate, potence

Weaknesses: As mentioned, Nosferatu are absolutely loath-some to look at. All Nosferatu have Appearance ratings at zero - cross the automatic dot right off the character sheet. Nor may they improve Appearance with experience points. Most Social actions based on first impressions, except intimidation and the like, fail automatically.


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