Blood in the Water
While the Traditions (above) form the basis for all Kindred Law, they do not represent the extent of that law. Every Kindred domain has its own rules and regulations. Some have more than others, some enforce them more severely than others, and some are downright bizarre, the result of an eccentric or insane Prince. They all have them, though. The Laws of San Augustin are listed here.
The Prince of San Augustin demands that any Kindred newcomers to his city presents themselves formally at court. This is partly to ensure that the Prince has a solid grasp on who’s in his city at any given time, and partly to make sure that the new arrival understands who holds power and what she’s supposed to do while she’s here. Of course, following this custom can be difficult, since new arrivals rarely know how to find the Prince in order to report, but that, frankly, is their problem. In San Augustin, Kindred who go for more than a few nights without presenting themselves are likely to be dragged before the Prince upon being caught. If the Prince is in an understanding mood, he might simply issue a warning. Just as likely, however, he may banish the offender from his domain without allowing any time to prepare, which is tantamount to a death sentence.
Clan, Covenant, & Bloodline Restrictions
The Prince of San Augustin sees his city as a Cosmopolitan center of Kindred interaction, and as such has no outward restrictions on clan, covenant, or familial bloodlines. In practice, there are certain Kindred who are ostracized. Clan Ventrue holds sway in San Augustin, and old bigotry sometimes seeps into modern politics and social interaction.
Aside from the normal restrictions limiting feeding options in the Rack, and the Plaza; no Kindred is permitted to feed on the mortals of the Hope Family, or anyone employed at (or volunteering) at the Fountain of Youth. Violators are banished from the city, or – should the Prince deem it necessary, executed publicly.
TITLE, RANK, & POSITION
The ranks and position found in San Augustin are listed below.
Don Celio Pena de Cordoba
The single most important and ubiquitous figure in Kindred politics, the Prince of San Augustin rules with nearly absolute power – holding his position for no other reason than that he was strong enough, and smart enough, to take it. Don Celio is an able politician and diplomat, who makes a habit of accumulating favors from any and all Kindred – Prestation plays an important role in the politics of the Old City. At the same time, however, Don Celio was an accomplished Conquistador, when he found his way to the New World; and he has no qualms about intimidating or “disappearing” his rivals. While he would prefer to handle any troubles in his domain diplomatically, he is not above the odd bloodletting to keep his City healthy.
Of course, the politics of San Augustin require more than barking orders and issuing death marks. Don Celio’s job is not merely to govern, but to regulate. San Augustin – like any domain – is a boiling pot of personal and sectarian conflicts, petty grudges, and endless political maneuvering, all topped off with the innate and inescapable violence of a race of monsters who feed on blood. The Prince’s job is to keep a lid on that pot – or, perhaps more accurately, to be the lid on that pot. If Don Celio is seen as somewhat dictatorial, he must be so in order to keep so many powerful and easily agitated vampires in line.
Don Celio keeps the traditional title of “Prince” as his title of office, though he is referred to by his proper title of “Don” when addressed personally.
The Prince’s right hand, Vesta, is responsible for many of the night-to-night details of running San Augustin. While the Prince concerns himself with conflict in the city and making certain the Masquerade goes unbroken, the Seneschal makes sure things run smoothly in the government itself. She is responsible for keeping track of the Prince’s assets (and those of the Primogen and other ruling bodies). She makes schedules and appointments and handles the many logistics required so that no elder feels that another is given preferential treatment. Vesta holds substantial power in the City, for she often decides whose petitions are passed on to the Prince, who receives a court audience, and in what order.
While there is no Kindred with the title “Herald,” in San Augustin, Mercurio Dysmas; one of the Prince’s Ghoul Servants, serves amicably enough. Without being told to do so, the Ghoul Mercurio takes it upon himself to ensure that – when the Prince makes a decree – all of the City’s kindred hear of it (should it be meant for their ears). Mercurio ensures that every Kindred intended to attend an unscheduled Court is alerted to the need of their presence. Rarely, though often enough to bear mention, Mercurio hands down judgement, acting as Don Celio’s proxy when some corrective action needs carrying out.
Mercurio carries out all of these duties without being asked; sometimes without being expected. Though he rarely oversteps his bounds, Mercurio has sometimes drawn disfavor from the Prince; but typically, his word is considered to be carried from Don Celio’s mouth. He carries an inordinate amount of power in the city, for a Ghoul; and most Kindred treat him as an equal – fully expecting him to be embraced within the decade.
- Brigitte Arshire (Gangrel Carthian)
- Dr. Galen Asa (Ventrue Carthian)
- Katungi (Invictus Nosferatu)
- Olathe (Lancea Sanctum Daeva)
- Shaye Falcon (Daeva Dragon)
- Zyta Ceres (Circle of the Crone Mekhet)
The Primogen (singular and plural) officially serve as the Prince’s advisory council, offering advice and direction to Don Celio, and acting as a mouthpiece and representative to the Prince for their Clans, Covenants, and Coteries.
While Prince Celio rules his city unquestioningly, he does take great care to seek the counsel of his Primogen – taking their advice or explaining why he doesn’t. The government of San Augustin is somewhat informal, compared to other Kindred Cities; though the Primogen meet with the Prince once a month in the opulently decked-out boardroom, Don Celio set aside for exactly that purpose, most of the business of the city is handled outside the Council Chambers – at Elysium, and often in plain view of anyone interested in participating.
A Priscus (or Prisci in plural) is the informal “head” of a specific clan in the City. The position is not an official one, evolving organically as a single powerful Kindred takes responsibility for her clanmates. As an informal position, the Prisci hold no institutional power or rank, though many of those Prisci in San Augustin have attained formal status, and even those who have not, are recognized as being well-respected and powerful.
The Gangrel of San Augustin don’t recognize a Priscus (and barely pay lip service to the Primogen), as they tend to espouse a philosophy of self-reliance and survival of the fittest.
Brian Arshire, Juno Queneau, Noam Benjamin
In San Augustin, the position and title of “Harpy” is an unofficial one. Don Celio refuses to appoint a Harpy (though having his Wife among their numbers raises a few eyebrows).
Harpies in San Augustin attain their influence and position through personal power and charisma, and as such are more respected than any who might be appointed. This also mean, however, that the position is fluid, and some Kindred flow in and out of favor both with and as the Harpies of San Augustin.
A combination police investigator, enforcer, and inquisitor, the Sheriff is responsible for enforcing the Prince’s Laws and – at times – for carrying out sentencing. Minerva Weaver is loyal to her mentor, Don Celio – the city’s Prince – and truly believes that she serves the Kindred of San Augustin, in keeping order and the rule of law. Weaver is clever, a subtle investigator, who never seems to be on the case, yet somehow always seems to get her job done.
Neil “the Hound” Turner
Unusual in San Augustin, the Prince keeps no official Hound. Rather, he allows his Sheriff to use her muscle when necessary. To this end, Minerva Weaver employs a ghoul, Neil Turner – who has taken to calling himself “Hound.” Neil is an exceptionally talented combatant – versed in many forms of hand-to-hand combat, both armed and unarmed. He is an accomplished marksman, and surprisingly cognizant of Kindred physiology and the vampiric condition.
As a servant of the Sheriff, the Hound is most often used to carry out official and public chastisement of lawbreakers – serving as sort of a “Deputy” to the City’s Sheriff.
In the instances where the Prince seeks to skip over normal (and possibly public) procedure, he employs his own ghoul, Bia – whom many have taken to calling the Prince’s Scourge, or Assassin.