- This article is about the covenants from Vampire: The Requiem. For other uses, see Covenant (disambiguation).
A covenant is an organization or religious establishment consisting mostly of Kindred, though human servants and ghouls are often present at covenant meetings and are sometimes members themselves. There are five major covenants; others do exist, but the vast majority of Kindred are members of the major five, who often disregard the others. In addition, some bloodlines form tightly knit groups based on political or spiritual belief, as well as blood ties; these bloodlines may also be considered minor covenants.
Unlike clans, which may be thought of as families, a covenant is chosen by the vampire according to his or her beliefs. A vampire's Sire's allegiance nearly always plays a large role in their decision. A vampire may choose not to join a covenant at all; such Kindred are known as the Unaligned, or "Unbound."
While covenants span the globe, they are not truly global organisations; their power is localised. While their practices and beliefs come from a common source, a Circle of the Crone group in Brittany may differ wildly from their counterparts in New Orleans, for example. In general, though, covenant members are accepted by their comrades wherever they travel, but since vampires do not generally stray far from their chosen cities, status in one city's covenants may mean considerably less elsewhere.
The major covenantsEdit
The Carthian MovementEdit
- Main article: Carthian Movement
The Carthian Movement is revolutionary in the concept of a democracy, the "one Vampire, one Vote" ideal and are also the newest major covenant. But since their modus operandi is taking cues on political evolution from the mortals, members have also embraced totalitarianism, communism, technocracy/meritocracy, fascism, theocracy and a host of other forms of government vampires find non-traditional. The vast majority of its members are neonates, newly Embraced and inexperienced vampires. It is the only covenant that votes its leaders. Members frequently argue over what is the best form of government. The Carthian Movement is an almost completely secular and non-religious covenant.
- Main Clan: n/a
The Circle of the CroneEdit
- Main article: Circle of the Crone
The Circle of the Crone is considered the vampiric equivalent of neo-paganism and witchcraft. It follows the belief that a goddess (the Crone) was cast out from the other Gods and Goddesses for uncertain reasons. They celebrate most of the major Wiccan holidays and practice a "Blood Magic" known as Crúac. There are many differences in belief and dogma between various circles and cities of the covenant. They generally dislike and argue with the Lancea Sanctum.
- Main Clan: Gangrel
- Main article: Invictus
The Invictus (a.k.a the "First Estate") is strictly concerned with material gain and power within a city. They are heavily involved in city politics and business. The members of this covenant are the most common users of the blood bond for subordinates and as a form of punishment. New members are often attracted with the promise of rank and status; with service to elders and experience, any member could rise to prominence if they are qualified and active within the covenant. However, the majority of new members will never gain any recognition for their acts, and the Elder of the Inner Circle use neonates for their own gain. It is a very corrupted covenant, whose first thought is almost invariably "money and power."
The Lancea et SanctumEdit
- Main article: Lancea et Sanctum
The Lancea et Sanctum (pronounced LAN-key-uh et SANK-toom) (a.k.a the "Sanctified") is the Vampiric equivalent to Catholicism. They believe in redemption and forgiveness (or eternal damnation) through Longinus, whom they believe to be the first Vampire, being considered a vampiric Christ or Saviour. They believe that the Vampiric gift is to be used for the good of man, by only feeding on or killing sinners and scaring the "Kine" in the right direction. Proselyting and Conversion are essential to them, for the Salvation of all Vampires. They practice a Blood Magic known as Theban Sorcery. This Covenant generally dislikes and argues with the Circle of the Crone.
- Main Clan: n/a
The Ordo DraculEdit
- Main article: Ordo Dracul
The Ordo Dracul (a.k.a. "Order of the Dragon" or just "Dragons") is focused on understanding the vampiric condition and improving upon it, transcending the limitations of their condition. They practice a Blood Magic known as the Coils of the Dragon. They believe their line was started by Dracula.
- Main Clan: Mekhet.
- Main article: Belial's Brood
Not much is known about Belial's Brood except that they revel in death and destruction. They do not respect the Traditions, least of all the Masquerade, and are considered dangerous by the major covenants. Most stories of the Brood describe them as infernal or demonic. They take their name from their founder, Belial.
- Main article: VII
VII is perhaps the most mysterious covenant of all; even their name is a puzzle, though most vampires interpret it as the Roman numeral (and so pronounce the covenant's name as "seven"). All that is truly known about VII is that they seek to destroy other vampires; their motives remain impenetrable. They are the subject of many rumours and legends among the Kindred, and so far none of the major covenants have been able to extract any information from captured members.
Several new covenants were introduced in The Danse Macabre. Some of these approach the Requiem from decidedly different perspectives than the rest of the covenants, and others intersect with the new mechanics introduced in The God-Machine Chronicle or with the workings of the God-Machine itself.
- The Brethren of the Hundred Faces
- The Brides of Dracula
- The Children of the Thorns
- The Harbingers
- The Holy Engineers
- The Nemites
- The Society of the Accord
- The Sun-Walking Knights
The Children's CrusadeEdit
Between the 12th and 18th centuries, the Children's Crusade, a covenant of child-vampires, had sole right to the Embrace of children, and in many domains it was required that child-vampires be placed in the Crusade's care. The Embrace often wears harder on children than it does on adults, unable to grow up, having to deal with the Beast and everything it brings, and the Crusade eliminated those of their number who fell to madness. However, in time, it became apparent to the adult vampires that the Crusade was rotten in ways they could not understand, hiding their insane comrades' crimes, and making deals with the Strix. The Crusade was wiped out, scourged from the Earth... but a few slipped through the cracks, slumbering in torpor. If they awaken, the Crusade may begin anew.
The Gallows PostEdit
The Gallows Post came to prominence in Europe's late Middle Ages, a loose group of vampires who arranged safe passage for other Kindred, and maintained safe-havens where vampires could spend the day, keeping the lines of Kindred communication between cities open. As human networks became more open and secure, it paradoxically became more difficult for Kindred to travel, and the Gallows Post fell into decline, dying out by the late 19th century. Some of their safe-havens still survive, accessible to those who know the old signs and forms.
The Legion of the DeadEdit
The Legion of the Dead originated in the Camarilla, the members of its military wing who decided to stay independent after the Camarilla's collapse, rather than join another covenant. They were a mercenary band right from their independence, and by the 9th century CE, their creed was nothing more than "profit or die". Their mercenary status eventually brought them low, as they betrayed other groups too many times, and they were wiped out by the 12th century CE. Their legacy remains in the cursed artifacts they left behind, weapons, armor and money marked by violence and greed.
The Tenth ChoirEdit
The Tenth Choir were a rumor even among the dead, a group said to believe that since their condition was a curse from God, they must therefore take revenge on Him. To that end, they were said to have created blood magic that let them deal with angels and demons alike. The last report of them came in the London Blitz.
Did they ever truly exist? Were their activities a metaphor for something deeper? Or were they simply an urban legend? No-one can say.
Carthian Movement · Circle of the Crone · Invictus · Lancea Sanctum · Ordo Dracul