“We make war that we may live in peace.”
I’m slowly transitioning my full attention to the new task Alexander has set me to: speaking on his behalf to the supernaturals of Bulgaria. When we were watching Witches burn to ash in the middle of the field and Alexander casually mentioned this assignment, I realized the casual remark and monumental responsibility couldn’t be in starker contrast to one another. I never quite realized just how many supernatural creatures lived right underneath the noses of humans and how good they were at making sure they were known as little more than myths and fairy tales to the world at large. What’s more some of these creatures have truly frightening capabilities that make even The Family reconsider. Despite this, Witches still seem to be the only glaringly powerful foe we face which we’re well on our way to combating. Until I have reason to believe another type of supernatural poses as big a threat as Witches do, I imagine most of my effort will remain there.
As such I attempted to reach out to the Mehket of the city in order to establish a partnership. Almost all Mehket develop Obfuscation and Auspex, two of the most potent recon abilities the Kindred are capable of mustering, which made them the most reasonable choice to bring on board. I wouldn’t say I underestimated just how much Ruby hates sharing but the vitriol in her words when she warned me away from Mages was enough to raise an eyebrow. Truth is I’m fine with her having the Mages when it’s all said and done since I know they don’t hold a candle to the power a Witch can muster. Ruby wishes to take them all for herself and while that’s a huge blow to the supernatural force I’m trying to assemble, the setback is temporary at best. Even though Mages are some of the most versatile supernatural creatures in existence, they’re also some of the most vulnerable. A Mage caught unaware is almost as helpless as a human, after all.
Once more Avery and I were having a hard time finding common ground. Vita was right about the egos they all carry, for I realize that Avery speaks for her Covenant but had she sent another in her stead to open relations with me things probably wouldn’t have turned out drastically different. I have a lot of headaches right now and even fewer solutions, so it was only a matter of time until I had to let a few of them go which I already have. Valko seemed to be worried about what Ruby would do to the men in the Circle but I’d be surprised if her personal preference (her hatred of men) outweighed her tactical advantage (the full power of a Mage circle).
I’ve come to the conclusion that Ruby’s interest in the Mages is likely the result of one of two possible scenarios: either the rumors about her are true and she is a Witch herself or she believes that Magic is the only trump card she holds. If she knows what Vita mentioned about Eva, Alexander’s second in command, being just as powerful as her then she has every right to worry. Alexander is an unstoppable force in this world and one of the very few creatures to apex at his level while still keenly aware of his vulnerable spots (most of which are self imposed) and acts accordingly. If Ruby is indeed a Witch then her monopoly on Mages is concerning given if she acquired enough of them she could rival Alexander for power. Still, when dealing with creatures as old as she is that have seen everything the world has to offer and are as apathetic as the stone that makes up their walls, it’s easy to tell what their hot buttons are when they’re spurred with emotion. For all Valko’s worry about our interaction, all that happened was that I let Ruby know of a Circle of Mages that were interested in working with Kindred.
I’m moving forward with my security firm which has been unnecessarily exciting since a mysterious third party offered to coordinate personnel. In truth I’m not quite prepared for them so what I thought I’d have a month to prepare for is going to come together in the next few days. Luckily my Discipline training is progressing a lot faster than I even I expected so I should be able to manage. I’m very concerned with this new individual keeping tabs on our activities and even more so in their ability to infiltrate or undermine what I’m trying to do. Still, the combined might of the Family and Covenant will hopefully be enough to ensure a clean slate.
Valko and I have become very close over the last few days, although I’m not at all surprised given our involvement in the Covenant. I really want to get to know the rest of the family, I’m just in a position right now to where I need to utilize people I’m familiar with so I know what to expect. Julius and Valko are very consistent and both of them have been truly phenomenal at quietly standing beside me while I blunder my way through Kindred politics. Still, the encounter with the Witches made me aware that the Family is only a handful of individuals (despite being extremely powerful ones) and sometimes numbers are necessary to prevail. With that in mind, I’m starting a security firm to train elite Ghoul combatants. The plan has a kind of elegance in its simplicity and is founded off a very simple idea: an elite group of humans turned supernatural involving themselves in constant conflict to train and hone their skills. While doing so they earn the capital to continue the operation, attract new talent, and continue preparing themselves for full blown supernatural conflict. As Valko pointed out the Mehket outnumber us 10 to 1 and while they (presumably) have no where near the training we do, we could certainly use the numbers.
For the next few days I’ll be hunting Werewolves and tending humans but I’m thinking ahead now more than ever. Once more I’m hoping to capture a few Wolves to take to the market for trade with Anlo which, to my surprise, Cleo volunteered her assistance with. I assumed she would want nothing to do with it given her history with him. Cloe is, surprisingly I’ll admit, a good fit to my life and I’ve grown to value her for her capabilities and her presence. She has a lot of qualities I know can and will take her far in Kindred society and I’m hopeful that I can maintain a relationship with her in the foreseeable future. She reminds me of the way things used to be before the surge of independence in modern culture. Everyone is so busy trying to carve their own place in things they’ve forgotten that working with others and accepting your place in a design bigger than yourself can let you accomplish more than you ever could alone. Maybe it’s my military upbringing or my place with the Family but I still believe in that ideal which is why Cleo is such a welcome addition to our group. Mostly I keep my guard up around just about everyone I interact with outside the family, and I’m grateful that I don’t feel the need to around Cleo. Ironic given she poses perhaps the biggest threat given how intelligent she is and her rout mastery of the Dominate Discipline. Trust is a funny thing after all.
Despite all this being only a fraction of what’s on my mind, I think I’ll bring things to a close. Still a lot to consider: more Witches in Bulgaria? What of the First who is now awake thanks to us? Did Julius really plan on me getting “killed” in that encounter to force Alexander’s hand in turning me? I’ve always believed Alexander decides who is and isn’t a part of The Family regardless of blood and I was surprised to hear the other members of The Family didn’t echo that sentiment when I released to a trusted few that Eva wasn’t made by Alexander. Did I make a mistake in telling them? Then there’s the whole Viktor issue which is eating away at me, I don’t know how many times I’ve reached for the phone to call him only to remember he wants nothing to do with me for the time being. In all honesty I feel he’s overreacting, I died in that graveyard to save him after all which was even before I became a member of the Family.
More than anything else I’m happy here in Bulgaria, I’m glad Julius pulled me into this world. Things matter to me here, I feel the need to push myself to become better because I think for the first time people that I know care about me are expecting great things from me. Maybe it’s because of not having a family for my entire human life that I covet and care for the one I have now that I’ve become Kindred. I couldn’t ask for a better opportunity than the one I have now and I don’t intend to let it go to waste.