Ravnos

Nickname: Deceivers
Clan Disciplines: Animalism, Chimerstry, Fortitude

If ever a clan was renowned for a wickedly black sense of humor, the Ravnos would be that clan. These Cainites are deceivers of the first order, weaving illusion and lies into elaborate schemes to part the foolish from whatever it is the Ravnos might fancy - be it wealth, blood or even their victims' freedom. Like Mephistopheles or Old Scratch, the Ravnos ply their devil's deals with whomever they choose, be it human or Kindred, and woe to those who wind up unable to pay the hidden costs.
Although many Ravnos see themselves as great tricksters, the generally benevolent tricks of Coyote and Raven aren't so much their style. Instead, they draw on a tradition of illusion and deceit inherited from the rakshasas and ghuls of the Middle and Far East. A Ravnos is a highly dangerous being with whom to sup or bargain. And these devils have been making their wagers and bargains for a long time indeed The Ravnos are nomadic to the core and care little for permanent havens or positions in a city's established power structure. Even those who have chosen a given city for their home tend to establish and abandon havens as the mood strikes them, taking whatever lairs they like, doing as they please, and moving on when bored. This habit infuriates princes across the world, who resent the Ravnos' disregard for the Tradition of Hospitality. Few punish violators, though, for fear drawing the malice of the clan as a whole.

Although the clan has long-standing ties with the Gypsies, few Ravnos enjoy the hospitality of their mortal kin. Perhaps the Gypsies know these vampires' true natures too well, and are loath to offer friendship to the undying. Perhaps the Ravnos themselves alienate their mortal families through their dangerous tricks. Whatever the reason, a Ravnos typically has no allies he can rely on regularly. His charm may win him a few temporary companions, and clan loyalty may draw fellow Ravnos to his side in times of dire need, but the vampire's path ultimately lies alone

Naturally, the princes of many cities are leery of allowing such tricksters free rein in their domains. The Ravnos' eccentric code of honor is strong, but rarely coincides with another Kindred's definition of the term. A Ravnos may break her word at will, unless she's spit in her palm and shaken on the deal. She'll defend her "good name" for all it's worth - depending on what she considers slander. And she'll usually come to the defense of a clanmate, and vice versa; the Ravnos may take advantage of one another, but they consider it their privilege. Outsiders aren't allowed the same.

Perhaps the most worrisome thing about the Ravnos is that as a clan, they managed to survive for centuries in Asia, where most Kindred are quickly hunted down and devoured by the ruthless Cathayans. No other Cainites know exactly how they managed this - but now a possible reason is emerging. Rumors filter back to Europe and the Americas of elder things awakening, of ancient vampires shrugging off the earth of millennia and throwing the Cainite courts into disorder. These elder Ravnos - if rumor speaks correctly - have demonstrated terrifying mystical powers, including a talent for illusions so powerful they can affect the physical world. Time can only tell what part the reemergence of these "demon kings" will play in the Jyhad.

Sect

The Ravnos go where they will and deal with whomever they will, and sects be damned. The elders of the clan, particularly those centered in India, scoff at the Camarilla and Sabbat as temporary social clubs at best, hollow institutions where paranoid vampires can gather in numbers and reassure themselves that they are the apex of the food chain. The younger ones simply reject idea of giving any outsider even a fraction of authority Most Ravnos look at the Sabbat's promises of freedom and the Camarilla's offer of protection as nothing more for the trap, and politely (or not so politely).

Appearance

Many younger Western descent, usually of dark complexion, with darker Slightly rarer are those with Asian, African or Nordic rarer still are those without even a trace of Gypsy European Ravnos do not Embrace gorgio (non-Gypsies).

The Eastern half of the clan is mostly of Indian blood, members have Embraced promising men and women ethnicities. Like their Western cousins, they favor colorful and beautiful clothing, and enjoy practicing their allure on mortals.

Haven

Ravnos are nomadic by nature; even their Eastern childer feel the wanderlust upon them from time to time. Members of the clan often travel in vans or RVs, taking shelter wherever they may. Those with mortal relatives, particularly Gypsies, often stay with their families for a while. But when the local Kindred start getting uncomfortably curious, the Ravnos are on the road again.

Background

The nomadic vampires Embrace despite the swelling herds of humanity. The youngest however, are fairly indiscriminate in siring childer, and generations have seen Ravnos from all cultures and ethnicities.

Those Ravnos neonates without Indian or Gypsy blood typically demonstrated great facility for misdirection, barter and mischief in life. The Devil has a sharp eye for his own.

Character Creation

Ravnos typically have concepts, and their Demeanors can change as required by the situation. They tend toward primary Social as well as primary Talents. Many have high either in the form of ancestral treasures or as accumulated hoards of ill-gotten rare goods and objects of art.

Weakness

The Ravnos have indulged in their particular vices so long that they have become addicted to them. Each Ravnos has a weakness for some form of trickery, deceit or mischief, whether it be gambling, lying, theft, blackmail or even cleverly framed murder. When the opportunity to indulge presents itself, a Ravnos must make a Self-Control roll (difficulty 6) or succumb to her compulsion.

Organization

Most Ravnos trust nobody, not even their own clanmates, but work together when necessary to bilk, rob or topple an outsider enemy. They often make grandiose pledges of family loyalty to one another, although neither party expects very much to come of the vows.

The recently awakened clan elders, however, are beginning to contact Ravnos on all continents. Although the typically chaotic clan structure has yet to see any real change, it may be only a matter of time before the Ancients' will becomes manifest through the younger Ravnos.