From their webs of shadows the Lasombra guide the destiny of the dread Sabbat. Unseen even by mirrors, these lords of darkness glide through the night they rule, orchestrating the rise and fall of Kindred and kine alike. From the Sahara Desert to the Spanish Main, from the monasteries of Seville to the mean streets of New York City, no other clan so embodies what it means to be a vampire.

Elegant yet predatory, the Lasombra honestly think of themselves as the apex of Cainite existence. Firm believers in Divine Right and the rule of the superior, they have little patience, though often much pity, for those Cainites who are (through no fault of their own) inferior.

The Lasombra character is a curious mix of noblesse oblige and healthy contempt. They actively seek power wherever it may be found, from the halls of the cloisters to the corridors of palaces, yet they do not seek the titles and glory that come along with rule. Instead of chasing command for its own sake, Lasombra take the reins of power out of a firm belief that no one can hold them better. The appearance of power is unimportant; what matters is that the decisions are being made by those most suited to make them. Indeed, most Lasombra prefer the role of kingmaker to the title of king.

The Lasombra are loyal to the Sabbat, but they also believe it is their right and responsibility to be the strongest leaders of the sect. Lasombra often fight over who should lead among them, but they prefer other Lasombra to the members of other clans. There is less intrigue in the Sabbat than the Camarilla, but what does exist is found among the Lasombra.

The Lasombra are just as concerned about freedom as the other clans of the Sabbat, but they view the means of holding onto that freedom a little differently. They emphasize the control of mortal political, religious and financial institutions as a way of defending the Sabbat from threats. The Lasombra maintain the largest number of retainers of any clan in the Sabbat. They maintain agents in many positions of power and have implanted spies throughout the world. These agents are loyal to the Sabbat, but they answer directly to the Lasombra. After all, the Lasombra consider what is good for their clan to be good for the sect.

Even more than the Ventrue and Tremere, the Lasombra are masters of intrigue. Rather than erect the genteel facade of the aforementioned clans, however, the Lasombra are openly competitive and warlike. Lasombra maintain their often tenuous control over their Sabbat brethren through a mixture of force, espionage and manipulation, often guiding the other clans without said clans' realization. The word "Machiavellian" aptly describes the members of the clan. Stealth and cunning are second nature to them, to the point that they have developed an affinity with and control of the forces of night and shadows.

The Lasombra clan has fallen from grace - and its members enjoy it. Simultaneously graceful and predatory, the Lasombra guide - and, when necessary, whip - the Sabbat into an implacable force. Turning their backs upon the humans they once were, Lasombra give themselves wholly over to the dark majesty of the Embrace. Murder, frenzy, predation: Why fear these things, many Lasombra ask, if one is meant to be a vampire ? In contrast to the Tzimisce, though, Lasombra generally seek not to reject all things mortal, but to shape, them for their own pleasure.

The Lasombra have been involved with the Church since its inception, and some Kindred whisper that the clan was instrumental in the spread of the Christian faith. In modern nights, however, Lasombra have turned their backs on that divine institution. There are exceptions, of course, but for the most part, Clan Lasombra bears only contempt for the notion of salvation. In fact, the Lasombra brought many of the Church's rites and rituals into the Sabbat sect, twisting them into mockeries of Christian doctrine. The Lasombra ordained many of the sect's auctoritas and ignoblis ritae, so that the vampires of the Sabbat might never forget who and what they are. Lasombra are best known for their Discipline of Obtenebration, a means by which they call forth a tangible "living" darkness, manipulating it at their whim. Clan doctrine holds that this "darkness" is in fact the stuff of the vampiric soul, which has been simultaneously strengthened and corrupted by the Embrace. Through the Curse ofCaine, some Lasombra believe, God has cast them out, and thus it is their duty to build a new order on Earth via the Sabbat. More scientific Lasombra scoff at this superstition, but even they tend to believe that, as vampires, they represent a new and more advanced breed of sentience, one unconcerned with petty human notions of ethics. Let the milksops of Clan Ventrue burn in the solar fires of martyrdom; the Lasombra are happy with what they are.

Naturally, this villainous outlook is not universal among the clan, but many newly Embraced Sabbat Lasombra take great glee in the wanton destruction and vulgar depravity that such a philosophy allows. In striking contrast, some elder Lasombra still maintain their ties to the Church, though even they seem to consider themselves "tools of the Devil." The two groups do see eye to eye on one matter: Members of Clan Lasombra, as consummate manipulators themselves, adamantly refuse to submit to the antiquated whims of the Antediluvians. They fight the Jyhad proudly, but unlike many Kindred, they firmly believe they can win.

The typical Lasombra possesses a gift for manipulation, as well as keen leadership skills. Lasombra are the most common leaders of Sabbat packs, as their motivational and Machiavellian natures make them ideal for orchestrating the movements of the sect. Unfortunately, pride goes hand in hand with this dark nobility, and very few Lasombra acknowledge other vampires as equal, let alone superior.

Nickname: Keepers (as in "my brother's…")

Clan Disciplines: Dominate, Obtenebration, Potence

Weaknesses: Lasombra vampires cast no reflections. They cannot be seen in mirrors, bodies of water, reflective windows, polished metals, photographs and security cameras, etc. This curious anomaly even extends to the clothes they wear and objects they carry. Many Kindred believe that the Lasombra have been cursed in this manner for their vanity. Additionally, due to their penchant for darkness, Lasombra take an extra level of damage from sunlight.

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