Harsh Light of Day
l Thousands of years ago: The five clans of vampires, Mekhet, Daeva, Nosferatu, Gangrel and Julii slowly discover each other and join together to form a single race of Kindred.
l 27 BCE: Headquartered in Rome, Kindred create one of the first multi-city, multi-sect societies in the form of the Camarilla. This new organization reaches across most of the Roman Empire.
l 96-180 CE: Many early forms of today’s covenants take shape. The Masquerade thins as Kindred continue to interact with their mortal families as ‘ancestor spirits’. In Rome itself, the existence of the Kindred is practically an open secret.
l 476 CE: Rome falls. The Camarilla is shattered and the clan known as the Julii is destroyed entirely.
l 500 – 600 CE: Following the sacking of Rome, many former Camarilla vampires flee across Europe, taking what knowledge they have with them. As centuries pass, this learning will come to form the basis for most modern Court structures.
l 700 – 800 CE: A new clan, the Ventrue, emerge as power in Europe and elsewhere. Questions about their ties to the dead Julii go unanswered.
l 800 – 1000 CE: As humans slowly spread across the world, so do the Kindred. Due to each city’s relative isolation, Princes find it easy to corrupt and control entire populations.
l 1000 – 1100 CE: Kindred decadence and arrogance rises. The Masquerade strains to the breaking point in some cities as vampires use the humans like cattle. Rumours and legends about blood-drinking barons and dukes abound.
l 1180 – 1250 CE: The Inquisitions rises. Throughout Europe, Kindred young and old are burned or given to the sun. The largest mass-destruction of vampires since the fall of the Camarilla occurs.
l 1300 – 1800: Surviving Kindred retreat to the shadows and lick their wounds. As the unity of the Inquisition eventually falls to in-fighting, the vampires resolve to hold the Masquerade above all else, lest the existence of them all be threatened again.
l 1910s – 1950s: Humans have now spread to all corners of the world, and the Kindred have followed. The telephone, radio and telegram all provide inter-city communication like never before. From the darkness, vampires watch, still cautious, but certain of their place at the top of the urban food chain.
l 1950s – 1990s: As technology and communication continue to evolve, some elder Kindred fall behind, content to retreat from the world at large and consolidate their power. Increasingly, neonates and ancillae are relied on to interact directly with humans and their inventions.
l 1990s – 2000s: Breaches of the Masquerade begin to occur more frequently as the era of ubiquitous, constant communication begins. Human hunters begin to organize like never before, attacking from across borders and behind computer screens. In retaliation, Kindred turns the mortal’s own advancements into a smokescreen: Photoshop and viral marketing become the wool that the vampires pull over the eyes of the world, even as more evidence of their existence leaks out every day. Keeping up with new technology is akin to shoveling water; as soon as vampires learn to deal with one new development, another emerges. This is a job mostly pushed on young Kindred, while many elders remain oblivious, willfully or not.
l 2005: In the face of ever-advancing technology, the feasibility of the Masquerade begins to be seriously questioned for the first time. Such discussions are kept mostly among ‘young’ Kindred, and the idea of eventual discovery by humans is mocked or punished by elders. While scattered and largely derided, the concept that the Masquerade might be finite persists.
l 2007: Several large and barely-concealed breaches of the Masquerade occur across the globe within months of each other, resulting in many Kindred meeting Final Death. This, combined with agitation from the Carthian Movement, pushes the future of the Masquerade from back-room whispers into open debate.
l 2009: With practically every human in the developed world carrying both a high-def camera and global communication device in their pocket at all times, Kindred grow increasingly desperate for a solution for the ‘cracked Masquerade’. Most elders continue to scoff at what they view as the overreactions of youth, but some listen. A significant portion of the Kindred population begins to view the Masquerade’s fall as inevitable, asking not “if?”, but “when?”
l 2010: A new organization of hunters calling themselves the “Neo Inquisition” emerge. They strike hard in many locations at once, and several prominent Kindred are destroyed by fire and sunlight. The Neo Inquisition seems to posses uncanny knowledge of Haven locations and weaknesses, information later revealed to have been discovered via careful use of surveillance monitoring and data theft. The Masquerade frays further still, and tension rises between traditionalist Kindred groups and those that believe a radical solution is called for.
l 2011: Among the Kindred advocating for change, a single idea begins to gain volume in the din: A preemptive, voluntary, world-wide shattering of the Masquerade. Proponents of this solution claim that, in this new world of information, controlling the narrative of the Kindred’s discovery is the most important thing, and the vampires can have the most power over it if they reveal themselves. Though most older Kindred regard the notion as akin to blasphemy, it quickly gains popularity with the younger dead, especially those with living mortal ties. As is the nature of such arguments, a dichotomy is quickly reached: “Reveal ourselves, or stay hidden?”
l August 1st, 2012: After much argument, and several more attacks by Neo Inquisitors, a grand conference of Kindred is called, the likes of which has not been seen since the days of the Camarilla. This “Council of Masks”, is convened in Rome, with influential Kindred from every clan and covenant making the journey to discuss the issue of the fracturing Masquerade. Unsurprisingly, the concept of a ‘self-reveal’ is the number one topic up for debate. What is surprising is how the argument has split down Covenant lines: Neonates and ancillae in both the Carthian Movement and the Invictus see grand opportunities in a world where Kindred can openly interact with mortals, and some have even managed to convince their elders of the notion. On the other side, the Circle of the Crone and the Lancea Sanctum find themselves allied in the fight to remain hidden, as the vast majority of both sect’s religious views teach strict separation of humans and Kindred. Only the Ordo Dracul remain undecided, with their numbers split roughly evenly down both sides of the issue.
l August 3rd, 2012: After three nights of gridlocked debate, the Council of Masks is attacked in a sophisticated and savage assault by Neo Inquisiton soldiers and suicide bombers. Though the Kindred manage to eventually fight off the attack, many meet Final Death in the process. It's impossible to ignore that the soldiers were not merely trying to kill, but to collect evidence that would be believed. For years, mortal hunters have not been able to convince the world of what they knew, but now it seems terrifying plausible that sooner or later they'll find something — and likely make humanity think the worst of Kindred.
l August 5th, 2012: In the wake of the destruction, two of the surviving elders, Nagato Hanada of the Ordo Dracul and Mira Gorbachev of the Lancea Sanctum, call for an immediate vote: Reveal ourselves to mortals, or try to stay hidden as long as possible? The final tally is surprisingly one-sided, with the entirety of the Ordo faction suddenly uniting in favor of the reveal. In the end, out of the remaining 25 delegates, only seven votes dissent against the final decision: The Masquerade shall be cast down. All seven dissenting votes came from the Lancea Sanctum and the Circle of the Crone, but both covenants had those who supported the Reveal in the end.
l September, 2012 – March, 2013: Many Kindred who opposed the Reveal go underground, withdrawing from their Courts. Several vanish entirely, or are found destroyed. Neo Inquisition is blamed for the latter.
l November 1st, 2013: After a year of preparation, the Kindred of the world Reveal themselves publicly with a series of heroic and philanthropic actions ranging from charitable donations to vigilante-like crime intervention. The flagship of the efforts to make vampires appear to be beneficial partners to humanity is the healing properties of Kindred Vitae: it is touted as a miracle cure, able to save patients from otherwise deadly injuries and to even ward off cancer and other diseases. Vitae’s addictive properties, and the slavish devotion it creates, are not mentioned. Also downplayed are the abilities of Kindred to affect the minds and emotions of others, and the Beast is kept a strict secret. The Masquerade has been replaced with ‘the Peace’, though the state of affairs between humans and vampires soon gains a more cynical nickname: ‘the Lie’.
l 2013 – Present: Reactions have been mixed, to say the least. Some nations have welcomed the Kindred with caution, others with open arms. Some countries have banned vampires within their borders, while others even carry out programs of extermination against them. Still other countries have broken out into violent conflict over the 'vampire issue'. Some have gone dark entirely. Most places are still reeling from the legal and spiritual ramifications of not only having proof of the supernatural, but also immortal citizens suddenly in their midst. One thing is certain, however: the world will never be the same again.
l August, 2013: Members of the Kindred community approach the Canadian government with proof of their existence, a preemptive step towards the Reveal mirrored in many other developed nations. After the initial shock, Canada's government has one of the more positive responses, and deals are made with Prime Minister Stephen Harper as to how the Kindred shall be treated within his country's borders.
l November, 2013 – January, 2014: After the Reveal, the Harper Government declares Kindred full citizens under the law, no different from humans, and attempts full integration. It is an unmitigated disaster as the legal system is unable to cope with the needs or abilities of Kindred. There are protests from both sides of the political spectrum, mob violence, and even a handful of deaths- both human and Kindred. The situation rapidly spirals out of control.
l May, 2014: In a shocking move by the Harper administration, the 'Kindred Nation' is recognized as a separate people and society within Canada, legally similar to First Peoples tribes. Paired with this announcement is the establishment of the "Red Districts", urban reservations set up in major metropolitan areas across Canada, created to house the Kindred. All Kindred are required to live within a Red District, and those areas are considered to be under vampiric law. The movement of Kindred from within a Red District is strictly controlled, with timed passes needed to legally leave the area. A large number of human residents of new Red Districts refuse to leave their homes, despite offers of government assistance for those displaced. In response, the Kindred Nation declares that any human who wishes to reside within the borders of a Red District may do so, rent and tax free, as long as they are willing to provide sustenance for the vampiric residents. While the majority of humans ultimately flee the Red Districts, a surprisingly large number elect to stay. Though controversial, the Red Districts succeed at quelling the civil unrest that had been plaguing the country.
l August, 2014 – September, 2015: More new laws and legal precedents are established in this time period than any other in Canada's history since its founding as the government struggles to keep pace with how the world has changed. Through constant debate, many decisions about the Kindred are made, and a new branch of the Canadian government is created to address them: the Office of Human and Kindred Relations, or OHKR. The legal status of ghouls is clarified, and OHKR establishes the Correctional and Medical ghoul programs.
l October, 2015: A Federal Election is called, and Stephen Harper's Conservatives are unseated in a furious clash between the Liberals and NDP. When the dust settles, it is the New Democratic Party who hold power in a minority government, with the Liberals forming the official opposition and the Conservatives just behind. Newly elected Prime Minister Paul Steinbeck vows to not only uphold his campaign promises of electoral reforms and pipeline bans, but also to move for greater integration between the Kindred Nation and the rest of Canada, calling the Red District system: "Primitive, short-sighted, and far too reminiscent of an ugly chapter in our country's past."
l November, 2015 – November 2016: Canada's first NDP government establishes itself, enjoying an initial grace period of majority approval by the virtue of 'not being Harper'. By mid-2016, however, PM Steinbeck comes under fire for being inconsistent with some of his policies and being much more centrist in practice than in promise. Canadian Kindred and humans alike wait to hear what "changes" the PM will enact. Meanwhile, south of the border, the United States of America elects its first-ever female President: Linda Grant, a dark-horse Republican candidate who rises to power on a platform of fiscal conservatism and extreme economic action. She is quickly dubbed 'the American Iron Lady' by international press, and liberals of all stripes regard her with great trepidation.
l December, 2016: Prime Minister Steinbeck announces phase one of his plan for greater Kindred/human integration: the Kindred Embassies. Opening in each capital city in every province and territory, the Embassies will be run by OHKR as a place for Kindred and humans to come together to freely share ideas, culture and business. While they won't be initially open to the public, human citizens can gain access to the Embassy by invitation or application. Volunteers are called for from across the Kindred Nation to populate each Embassy to ensure a healthy mix of human-vampire interaction. The plan is met with widespread approval, and the Canadian government is immediately deluged with applications from people wanting to be the first 'human ambassadors' to the Kindred Nation.
l January, 2017: The Embassies are set to open! Volunteer Kindred Ambassadors will rub elbows with select human officials and celebrities in what is already being called 'one of the most momentous occasions since the founding of our nation”. One way or another, history is going to made tonight.