Session 5 - The Best Laid Plans of Cainites and Men
23rd-27th November, 1197
Damien heard information that Roland was involved with a merchant named Fariq, and he tracked him down. After a brief exchange in the marketplace, Fariq invited him back to his home to discuss business. After a heated exchange at cross purposes, Damien discovered that Roland was getting a variety of slaves, never the same kind twice, and that Fariq had competition that he detests. Damien didn’t want word getting out that he was investigating Roland, and so attempted to kill Fariq, who vanished after a brief scuffle.
On his way back to his haven, Damien heard cries at the city gate and went to investigate, where he was joined by Maria. The pair discovered a man bringing news from Tihuta Pass, and persuaded the gate guards to let the man in, while comparing swords and leatherwork. He was run down and almost dead, but asked to be taken to Prince Vencel to deliver a message. Militza joined the pair as they made their way to Buda Castle, attracted by the cries as she went on her nightly confessions.
On arrival at the castle, the man (who effected no surprise at being offered blood) brought word that work on the castle had effectively ceased because there were supernatural terrors destroying the work. Vencel seemed mildly disinterested in the whole affair, and was inclined to let things slide until Damien persuaded him that they would remain loyal to Vencel, offering him preferential treatment in any trade that comes through the pass. Vencel accepted their proposal, and organised wagons of equipment and carriage transport for the conspiracy (newly named The Conspiracy of the Hydra after some discussion) to Tihuta Pass.
The weather worsened the next night, and the conspiracy were unable to depart due to the terrible conditions. A slight break in the storm allowed them to set off the next night, sending word to their forces arrayed further West to follow them one night behind. The group arrived at the settlement of Kronstadt a few hours before dawn, a place with grand walls and fortifications but which housed residents mostly living in wattle-and-daub dwellings.
The group attempted to lodge in the village inn (such as it was), to be told that the head of the town would want to meet them first. They headed to the largest hut in the town, only to find it deserted and strewn with weapons and animal skins. Damien relieved the place of a sword, and the conspiracy set up camp outside the walls.
While setting up camp, they were set upon by a group of what appeared to be bandits. A feral thing screaming at them to cease their trespass was, on closer inspection at sword-point, revealed to be Mitru, the Gangrel prince of the area, after the deaths of several of his men. Mitru grudgingly gave the group permission to stay in the area for the night, as long as they were gone from his domain the next evening.