The Wolf and Crane
The following is the recited history from the view of a Malkavian, not everything here should be taken as fact.
Part 1: Megalomania.
“If you’re completely off your rocker and have delusions of grandeur in which your personal existence is of special significance to the rest of the world, all hope is not lost. Mix in enough charisma and you have what it takes to start religion… or become a serial killer.”
You want to know what? I have no past. It’s dead. I killed it. Buried it in a shallow grave, with the rest of history. I will no- Ooooh. Now would you look at that beauty of a shotgun. And is that..? White Phosphorous? For me? You shouldn’t have… really.
Well, if you insist.
Our story begins in September of 1944. World War 2 rumbled towards its conclusion, while a politician named Adam Kitowski fucked his Italian secretary on his desk. Nine months later, he gets a baby. Me.
See, I had the good fortune to be a trust fund leech. Daddy was the politician. A filthy one at that. Money and power flowed through his vein, and he wielded it with a level of ham-handedness that should be roasted for 6 hours and served at Christmas. Mother was the depressed housewife who loved her evening grape juice. Siblings? Only child. Spoiled rotten and smart to boot. Bad combination. In the third grade I started to exhibit “symptoms” of what would eventually come to be the reason I sit before you fine gentlemen this evening. I speak of the day that I busted the tooth of that smug little shit Johnny in 3rd for getting a gold star on our macaroni art project, when I did not.
“Megalomania”, they called it. Characterized by delusions of power, relevance, and an inflated self-esteem. Where they cry problem, I hold as virtue. An unwavering will. The resolve to Get. Shit. Done.
This continued for a number of years. I was bad. Lashing out at teachers for low grades, disregard for a school that, in my opinion, was far, far beneath my boot-heel. As it turns out, daddy didn’t like that his darling boy was acting out so early. In a fit of disappointment, coupled with an inflated bank account, I had the pleasuring experiencing a very expensive, very prestigious boarding school.
Strict though they were, with their isolation cells, their shock therapies, their beatings. It was under the tutelage of the headmaster that I was whipped into a fine, young lad. My marks had rose to the highest of honors, and when I graduated High School (earlier than the grand majority of my classmates, I might add), I was offered a full scholarship to the school of my choice, with the field of my choice. Fancy that.
An incoherent mumbling can be heard on the other end of the recording.
The school? Burnt down a few years later. Mysterious circumstances. Very tragic, I know.
Where are we now? Ah yes, 1960, fresh-faced, 16-year-old me. Wonderful, yes. Eisenhower sits in the oval office, old as dirt, and just as nice to look at, and I’ve just moved in to a new dorm room at the prestigious Leland Stanford Junior University, away from the disappointed eyes of my father and stepmother. As it turned out, I had a particular knack for the workings of chemicals. Home-made cherry bombs and smoke bombs were quite the party favor at the time. I pursued this science, with a major in the field of Chemistry, and a minor in Biology. Hold your applause, because I swear this is leading to something.
Fast forward 4 years, I’m biting deep into these academic pursuits of mine. Over my head, a doctorate career in my chosen field of study. Under my heels, the bodies of fallen peers. Oh, don’t look at me like that. Not their –actual- bodies. I mean, of course, that I may or may not have deliberately sabotaged the works and efforts of my classmates. How did I accomplish such a feat? Why, with the pillars of Kindred society, of course. Machination, subterfuge, and obfuscation.
All I needed to do was put out the rumor that the test results had been leaked to the right ears, and where to get them. It was like shaping clay. Through the use of a third party, I had raked in over three thousand dollars in a single night. Biggest score of my life. Biggest mistake of my life.
I stood atop that class with the highest marks. The following week, a mob of disgruntled jocks had me cornered and beat me until I pissed blood. The rat had squealed, due in part to the aforementioned torch-wielders coercion in the matter. I learned a valuable lesson in trust that night. By the time I had dragged myself to my dorm, they had relieved me of my earthly possessions, with but one final warning. Get out of town. Unfortunately, I had been bleeding internally during this time and lost consciousness before I could truly start to comprehend their meaning.
When I awoke, the room stunk of patchouli and free love.
That’s when I met her. Lily. She had the most beautiful emerald eyes I had ever seen. I wasn’t aware at that time, but it was this Hippy Princess who had claimed me as her plaything. Already, the traces of Malkav’s curse began to settle in my brain as my first sip of ambrosia came in my dreamless unconsciousness. To health she brought me, and that long process of care gave her ample time to dig her claws into my being. In a few short months, I was at the peak of health, and utterly enslaved to the whims and ways of this wicked she-devil.
I came to know the people of the hippy commune well, and all the perks that came with it. It was sweet release. The drugs came easy, the women easier. Meanwhile, my empire, everything I built up crumbled down around my ears. I had dropped entirely off the grid. And I didn’t care. I had her. I lived to please her. I followed her, riding the waves of 60’s youth counter-culture, all the way until the tail end of that hazy decade. Oh, I wasn’t idle though. By the time I left, I had continued my training in my chosen field all this time. Hallucinogens were a particular interest of mine, and the products thereof were a particular interest of my loyal, peace-loving customers.
Once more I built a life, and once more she would end it on a whim. In 1971, she had grown tired of indulging her peaceful, loving side, and set hungry eyes upon a growing subculture of punks in the UK. She took me alone. We traveled by night, to the eastern coast of the United States, where she had arranged a boat ride across the Atlantic. For the first time, I set foot on foreign soil.
It was around that time, with the innovation of electric needles and brand new pigments, that tattoos were becoming quite the hot item. She said I should get some. I covered my body in them. I can only thank the powers-that-be that I found an artist of worth for the latter-half of that work.
By then, I understood what I was in full. A ghoul. I understood the nature of the whispers in my brain. I shared her affliction, and I learned, for the most part, where to sort out the method from the madness. But it was mild, compared to what now afflicts my blood.
The cold winds of winter blew on December 4th of 1974, the night of my embrace. I remember that night well. As per her request, I had shaved and cut my hair to exactly her specifications. I was clean, showered, and ready. I had no idea what would soon come to pass as I thought it just an average night. I would shoot a round of heroine, she’d drink from me. Panic set in when I realized she wasn’t going to stop drinking. I tried to scream out, but her caress stopped me. I tasted death for the second time.
When I awoke, I smelt a pulsating sack of deliciousness in front of me. Courteous as my Sire was, she had pulled some poor schmuck in off the street and broke his mind. My first taste of blood was that of drunken street punk. It was the best thing I had ever tasted.
Madness burnt through my veins like an exotic virus. The hallucinations were more demanding, the compulsions that much more compelling. But it was through her grooming of me that I learned to silence the voices for a time, to concentrate at a task at hand, and, in the quiet recesses of the night, how to listen, and glean knowledge from their deranged ramblings. For two decades, she had me under her care. She taught me how to hunt. To abandon my old life, bury it, and forget it had ever existed. She introduced me to Kindred culture, and showed the viper pit dressed in pretty, red drapes. She taught me the three disciplines of our clans and what I was capable of achieving from their use. She also taught me of the history of the clan, and of our elders who whisper in the minds of all our ilk. I danced under the moon’s glare with wolves and sheep, and was shown the joys and terrors of undeath.
And then she was gone.
I awoke like any other night. Eager to learn more of my condition. Once again, she had taught me a lesson in loss. But I was not lost without her. It was time to leave the nest. But I did not set out that night to conquer the city, instead, on that summer of 1995, I left London. I knew of a community of Gypsies of whom my sire had dealings with in the past. They allowed me to stay for a time, and in a few years, I had a rather nice setup there. In exchange for the narcotics I cooked within the trailer provided for me, I gained sustenance from them, and the folks they brought in, as well as whatever reagents I required to cook their vices.
I spoke little during my time with them, a period of solitude shy of two decades, instead, I focused my efforts on perfecting my craft, pursuing other interests, and most of all, developing my abilities. I found comfort in watching my powers grow, particularly that of the so-called path of ‘Dementation’. To inflict the insanity that plagues my mind over others is to wield that sharper side of this two-sided blade.
The voices kept me comfort during those long years. I learned more from their whispers than that of my Sire, and as surely as the night brings darkness, Lily fled from my thoughts. There was only the whispers, my craft, and myself. It was also during this time that I developed a curious, new facet to my affliction. Mild though it is compared to my previously acquired malady, I found myself overwhelmed by the mere sight of those whom innocence had touched. As if I could somehow transfer the innocence into me, a way to redeem some of my soul. This was particularly curious as once learned to examine this it would become clear again that I had no regard for my soul or lack thereof. Such is the nature of the curse as I would now struggle with the duality of this manifestation of my malediction henceforth.
In late 2013, I emerged from my self-imposed exile. By then, however, the gypsies had migrated north, and I with them, towards Ireland. It was a slow,
grueling treck south. During this time, I had met the princes of cities, dodged the sabbat masses, and mingled with Anarchs, I worked for my daily shelters, trading goods, services, and favors. Yet I was loathe to stay in one spot for long, for I had set my own hungry gaze back across the Atlantic. Returning to the United States.
End of recording