History of Requiem in San Juan, Puerto Rico

  • ???? – 1493:   An isolated Kindred population existing in Pre-Colonial/Taíno Puerto Rico that ruled the Night without opposition.  They lived almost symbiotically with the mortals – when they were discovered, they were considered to be dark creatures cursed by the gods.  They did not possess any form of larger society, did not adhere to the Masquerade, and were not aware of any of the covenants.
  • 1493 – 1550:  European Kindred begin accompanying the Spanish Conquest and Colonization of the Island in small number.  The new arrivals are at best met with indifference and at worst with violence by the Kindred of the Taíno.
  • 1550 – 1565:  During what is largely held as the First Crucible, the growing tension between the Kindred of the Taíno and those of European heritage erupts in violence.  Mirroring the destruction of the native culture, language and religion, the Kindred of the Taíno ultimately fall before the self-styled Conquistadors or are driven into hiding.  A loose alliance between the Invictus and the Lancea Sanctum emerges.  The period is celebrated as the War of Conversion.
  • 1565 – 1620:  Under the governance of the same Church & State that prosecuted the war against the Kindred of the Taíno,  the Kindred of the Old World impose their concepts of Court, Tradition & Covenant on Society.  Prince Alfonso the Mad of the First Estate becomes the nominal head of the newly-anointed Court.  Among the many conservative laws announced, it is decreed that embracing from the native Taíno population is forbidden.
  • 1620 – 1628:  Six Crucibles Ago.  Bishop Isabel del Castillo, Architect of the War of Conversion, reveals in Elysium that Prince Alfonso embraced a young Taíno woman, Anacaona.  A once stable Praxis is shaken with the revelation.  The Court is filled with rumors that Anacaona is a puppet of hidden Elder Taíno Kindred; that she leads Prince Alfonso from Longinus; that she has blood bound the Prince; that he has finally surrendered to madness.  Prince Alfonso’s supporters dwindle in number.  One bloody evening, the Bishop presents a staked Alfonso to the Court and claims Praxis.  In the nights following, the Court whispers that agents were also sent after Anacanoa too, however, neither the Bishop’s agents nor Anacoana were ever seen again.
  • 1628 – 1773:  Archbishop Isabel del Castillo’s Praxis is marked by the wholesale adoption of the tenets of the Church as the Law of the Land.  It is with no surprise that the oppression of the ‘cultists of the Crone’ – both native and foreign alike – becomes paramount.  Every tenet and custom is stacked against them, and they are persecuted under her rule.  With the fall of Prince Alfonso, the First Estate is consumed with internal politicking as Kindred struggle for primacy.  Accordingly, the authority of the Church is largely unopposed during this period.
  • 1773 – 1778:  Five Crucibles Ago.  The Crucible begins with growing discontent as Kindred chafe under the Archbishop’s draconian rule.  Don Diego Treviño, a young and ambitious member of the Invictus, organizes a coterie of disenfranchised members of the First Estate and Acolytes of the Crone.  The coterie engages in a series of clandestine and insurgent acts against the Court to undermine the authority of the Archbishop.  In a final bold move to destabilize the Archbishop’s Praxis, Don Treviño leads a raid on the crypts below the Cathedral of San Juan Bautista.  At the time, it was believed that the Archbishop housed torpored kindred, including Alfonso the Mad, within the crypt to await God’s Judgment.  It is rumored that during the raid Don Treviño and many of his compatriots met their Final Death.  However, in the nights that followed, the Archbishop also does not appear in Court.  It is widely whispered that she was gravely wounded during the raid and fell into torpor.  A Synod of Priests loyal to the Archbishop and claiming to speak in her name step forward unopposed to lead the Domain.
  • 1778 – 1861:  The Synod is largely ineffectual at governing as it is given over to bickering and disagreement among the members.  The Inner Council of Puerto Rico engages in a prolonged campaign to prevent any one member of the Synod from gaining supremacy.  As a result, the harsh strictures laid down by the Archbishop are gradually lessened or not enforced at all and Kindred begin to enjoy greater freedom.  With the Royal Degree of Grace in 1815, foreigners are permitted into Puerto Rico by the Spanish Crown for the first time – including french refugees from nearby Hispaniola.  Kindred of non-Spanish descent accompany the kine ships and trade in number.  At the same time, a coterie referring to itself as the Daughters of Anacoano begins to harass and obstruct the efforts of the Synod.  Finally, in the years immediately following the Royal Degree, Philip d’Albret, having accompanied the mortal refugees from Hispaniola, presents himself at Court as a member of the Ordo Dracul.
  • 1861 – 1865:  Four Crucibles Ago.  Violent encounters between Paladins of the Faith and the Daughters of Anacoano increase in frequency and intensity.  Contemporaneously, Brother Juan, a mendicant preaching that the Synod has grown corrupt by its involvement in politics, receives widespread support within the Congregation.  The besieged Synod, faced with opposition within and without, publicly accedes to Brother Juan’s demands and the group release their claim to Praxis.  In the vacuum left with the Synod’s departure, a series of would-be Princes rise and fall in rapid succession.  During the Night of Three Princes, the 4th Tradition is shattered as Kindred turn on each other in Elysium.  In the chaos, two siblings in life and death, Antoni and Maria Vega, ascend to prominence in the Inner Circle of Puerto Rico and emerge as the only viable contenders for Praxis.  The siblings only accept Praxis after being offered the office three times by Brother Juan.  Philip d’Albret is largely unseen throughout the Crucible; however, following Antoni and Maria’s investiture, the Ordo Dracul is collectively granted regency over several noteworthy locations, suggesting Philip played a more active role than many realized at the time.
  • 1865 – 1912:  Praxis under the Gilded Twins, Antoni and Maria, is marked for its decadence and indulgence.  Kindred Society, so long oppressed under the Mad Prince, the Archbishop and then the Synod, is permitted to revel in its immortality for the first time.  Elysium is no longer held within somber Cathedrals and Churches that dot the landscape.  Rather, under the unflinching gaze of the Gilded Twins, Elysium becomes a series of balls, parties and salons – one seeming to blend into another without end. The Circle of the Crone are permitted to practice their faith openly in this new age of indifference & ennui.  The Daughters of Anacoano disappear into the dark corners of the island. In 1898, the island comes under the military control of the United States of America.  Accompanying the arrival of the United States dollar, the Movement begins to organize on the shores of Puerto Rico.
  • 1912 – 1917:  Three Crucibles Ago.  Rodrigo Díaz, a brash and charismatic Carthian, rallies Kindred displaced by WWI to his banner.  Some allege Rodrigo is a true idealist, others maintain he is simply an opportunist.  Regardless, Rodrigo leverages his growing support to demand increasing feeding rights on behalf of the “People”.  When Rodrigo’s demands are mocked by Antoni and Maria, the hostility between the two factions is largely played out through their respective mortal intermediaries in the nascent labor movement and sugar corporations.  Contemporaneously, and initially believed unrelated, the kine population experiences a sudden increase in violent crime with a ritualistic twist.  As rumors spread that Rodrigo is prepared to take direct action against the Gilded Twins, Antoni and Maria produce a bound and crazed neonate in Elysium.  The siblings declare that the childe is a self-confessed member of the Brood and had been operating within Rodrigo’s group for some time.  Furthermore, the childe confesses to one and all that other members of the Brood are hiding among the displaced within the Movement.  Rodrigo denies the accusations.  Nonetheless, the threat of the Brood unifies the Domain behind the Gilded Twins.  In the nights following the Scare, many recently arrived Kindred are expelled or put down out of fear of the Brood; however, it does not go without notice that all of those put to the question were counted as supporters of Rodrigo and no other members of the Brood were ever found.  Yet, as the Crucible draws to a close, so too ends the rash of mortal murders.
  • 1917 – 1960:  The Gilded Twins tentatively maintain their hold on Praxis.  Again, the Circle of the Crone enjoy the ability to practice their faith openly, if on the edge of Society, and emerge as Antoni and Maria’s most vocal supporters.  The Lancea Sanctum, which had momentarily rallied behind Brother Juan during the Scare, once more falls into internal strife in the absence of clear leadership.  Rodrigo and the Movement,  frustrated over the outcome of the Scare, remain zealous advocates of the “People” and continue their demand for reform.  The Shadow War between the two factions never truly ends and merely continues to play out through mortal proxies, such as the Ponce Massacre in 1937 and the Jayuya Uprising in 1950.  At best, the two factions enter into a tentative truce during WWII as the Domain once more attempts to absorb a new wave of displaced Kindred.
  • 1960 – 1965:  Two Crucibles Ago.  An increasingly disheveled Philip D’Albret, Primogen of the Ordo Dracul, suddenly disappears; his haven is found razed.  The already reclusive Ordo Dracul withdraw further into their own ranks and refuse to comment on the situation.  The Lancea Sanctum, on the verge of a schism, assemble in the Cathedral of San Juan Bautista for Midnight Mass and to seek inspiration from Longinus.  In the middle of a sermon by Brother Juan exhorting the congregation to calm, Archbishop Isabel del Castillo enters the Cathedral flanked by former members of the Synod.  She announces that she has returned to lead the Faithful and declares Brother Juan a Heretic and pawn of the Invictus.  In the ensuing chaos, Brother Juan and his supporters are captured and interred in the crypt below the Cathedral.  News of the Archbishop’s return destabilizes the Gilded Twin’s control on the City as Kindred take the opportunity to settle old vendettas and petty rivalries in the following weeks and months.  The ongoing Shadow War with Rodrigo and the Movement prevents the siblings from effectively leveraging their mortal influence against the Archbishop.  With their allies largely scattered and besieged on all sides, Antoni and Maria abdicate.  The Archbishop resumes her reign of terror.
  • 1965 – 1988:  Archbishop Isabel del Castillo’s Praxis gradually gives way to widespread prejudice and persecution.  Her appearances in Elysium decrease as she issues increasingly erratic and paranoid decrees through her Herald and Seneschal.  A broken Brother Juan is released from the crypts and permitted to wander the streets, denied a permanent haven, and forbidden aid or succor as a warning to any who would oppose the Archbishop.  Yet, their are once again whispers in Elysium that the Daughters of Anacanoa have returned to the City.  In the halls of the First Estate, the Gilded Twin’s abdication cause many to question the siblings’ resolve and worth to sit on the Inner Circle.  All the while, Rodrigo and the Movement diligently expand their spheres of influence in preparation for the next opportunity to overthrow the oppressive theocracy.
  • 1988 – 1992:  Historical Game / Last Crucible / New Wave – TBD
  • 1992 – Tonight:  TBD.