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  #26  
Unread 4th of March, 2009, 09:24
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Wired*Nun
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The files and investigations currently reveal that, of those killings that can be pinpointed, they took place within a just a few minutes of each other. More precision isn't possible right now, though it might be with more investigation.

There is connection between the murdered kindred and the mortals, ranging from casual to more than casual.

All the rest of the questions are valid and can be investigated.
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  #27  
Unread 5th of March, 2009, 06:03
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It's just that Vortigern assumed that they all took place at the same time, and I had the idea that this wasn't necessarily true.

And yes, of course there was a connection between each vampire and the human found together, but I meant a connection between the five cases.
Perhaps we should look into a connection between Kellough and Lumila, as they resided in the same building.
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Unread 5th of March, 2009, 06:08
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It may be that they took place at the same time, or it may be that there was enough time for a really really fast creature, or one with mystical abilities, could have done them sequentially...but there was a lot involved in preparation of some. For example, throwing someone out a window is no big deal but the more ritualistic or complex killings would have taken preparation time. In any case the times were near each other.
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  #29  
Unread 5th of March, 2009, 13:36
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I agree on the connection between the two in the same building, we should look into that further.
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Unread 5th of March, 2009, 16:20
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The complexity was what was striking to me, as Wired was saying. Some of these are deceptively simple seeming but... not. Add to that the timing issue and the little oddities of the 'clues' or 'statements' seeming left purposefully at some of the locations... well, it makes me think timing all of these to the 'T' as it were, to be done by one person is a bit of a stretch. Not that it is 'impossible'. But it makes me think that there is more than one agent/actor here.
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Unread 10th of March, 2009, 01:13
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[I've copied all of this into one post, I believe it's most of what is significantly known up until now. I suggest that you guys extract future findings and post them here...using this thread is really the key to solving the thing, I believe.]

The first file he opens is that of Jean-Claude Reynaude. Potentially the most important of the individuals killed, at least, as far as status is concerned. Or was. This Kindred was, for at least one-hundred-and-fifty-six years, Prince of Paris, France. He had held immense power in the Camarilla, but had apparently been going slowly mad, his decisions becoming more and more erratic. Eventually the insanity of the preposterous "marriage" of two notable Kindred in 1995 resulted in a fracturing of the Camarilla in that city, deaths of the "groom", disappearance from public view of the "bride," and the deposition of the Prince by the Paris Primogen. Jean-Claude had been driven out in disgrace, to take up residence in a crumbling mansion in the east side DC neighborhood of Georgetown. Surrounded by urban blight and decay, he was seldom seen outside of his home, and was largely forgotten, until his death by misadventure.

That misadventure was interesting indeed. Apparently something had lured Jean-Claude outside of his haven - apparently to feed, for his remains, as little as they were, were found attached to his dead victim, a streetwalker who went by the name of Shiela, but whose driver's license identified her as Shawna Marie Benson. She did not die of overfeeding, but rather, apparently of a heart attack. It was impossible to determine exactly how Jean-Claude was killed, but careful auspex examination confirmed that it really was his fangs still lodged in her throat.

The most interesting part of the whole thing was that they were both, apparently, defenestrated. Launched out the window of her sixth-floor tenement flat by a force powerful enough to land them both a hundred feet away, just about 9 pm. It was a strange and startling enough occurrence that some of the street-dwellers and onlookers had notified a nearby free-clinic doctor at his workplace across the street, who had come out and pronounced her dead on the spot, and called the authorities.

The next file shows a number of portfolio shots of the Toreador known as Swann. He is - was - a performance artist known for his bizarre, almost Malkavian shows for very exclusive audiences. The Justicar slides the pictures aside to read the details of the crime, as compiled by witnesses. He was rehearsing, if that was the word, in his private studio, with an audience of one - a mortal and probable blood doll named Kristine Wilson, the younger sister of a nightclub owner known to be connected to both the Toreador clan and to organized crime. The audience was also slain. It appears that the murder happened around 9pm as well, by the forensic performed on the mortal. They as yet did not know what to make of the remains of Swann...especially the feathers. The decomposition of the hundred-year-old Kindred was too severe to tell exactly how he died...but the mortal died of hanging, after a fairly merciful drop of at least six feet on the rope attached to the high-ceilinged beam. Swann was also hanged, leaving some bones and suchlike attached to another rope...but obviously, this was not what caused his final passing. The authorities had turned up nothing else at the scene, and were calling it suicide for now.

The third file reveals a Ventrue named Dominic Kellough. He sees a small note in the margins that explains he changed it from Denny Kelly back in the Twenties, when being Irish was something of a liability to anyone with prestenses. He was a relatively undistinguished functionary for clan Ventrue, apparently acting as liaison to what Irish mob remained in the City. He owned a pub in Georgetown, the Silver Shamrock, as cover. This one was discovered frozen in his own deep-freeze, then torn into four pieces...in that order. There were some axe marks that seemed to be in the nature of perforative creasing - ensuring the body was quartered, nice even sections. Most of the body was in the morgue, delayed in its decomposition by his people at the ME's office. Identification was only slightly complicated by the intermixed quartered remains of another accompanying mortal, one Selwyn Circe, apparently a regular at the pub. Neither were exsanguinated, either. Both were probably killed around the same 9pm, on that same Monday night, the pub's dark evening. This begged the question of what they were doing there. They were discovered the next morning by the day manager opening up for lunch.

Number four. A Tremere of no note whatsoever. He could tell by how little the usually reactionary clan squawked at her ending. Maxina Lunmila...strange name, that, for a younger. Though not a childe of his, she had the makings of being a protege of that odd bird, Dean Noir. His files on the Tremere were woefully incomplete, but he had information that she had approached him just two weeks ago, aping his beatnik mannerisms, pleading for him to teach her the esoteric ways of his "science" of political analysis. It appeared he had agreed, at least preliminarily.

The murder of this one was easily examined, since the weakblood had been born in 1981, embraced in 2006...childe indeed. The body had scarcely decomposed.

It had been found neatly decapitated, by some kind of blade, laid out upon the butcher-block kitchen island of her Georgetown third-floor walkup. This allowed the blood from her body to drain neatly into the built-in sink. The body of her apparent last meal mingled with hers, and the two bodies faced each other. The heads were set upon their neck stumps, in a now-eternal near-kiss, in the sink. The mortal was identified as one Raoul Adan, 28, an immigrant from Buenos Aires, no other particular relationship to the deceased Kindred other than as a rather winsome blood pool.

What was starting to make this interesting was the location of this apartment...two floors above the Silver Shamrock, less than a mile from Jean-Claude's mansion, only a half-mile from Swann's studio...and the murderer had either made a small error, or, more likely, left a deliberate piece of evidence. Perhaps a taunt. The stroke that had taken the mortal's head had severed the cord of an old electric clock, freezing its hands at 8:58PM.

Number five was a Brujo with, he had to admit, good taste in kine. Not such good taste in final death, however. Cristobal Tejon-Pascuale, impaled on the tetherball pole of a neighborhood playground, two blocks from the pub. Well within a half-mile of all of them. His head was wrapped tightly with duct tape, apparently enough to stifle his cries, which would have been apparent at the approximately 9pm time of death...he was joined, half-Christlike, by the now-obligatory mortal companion, and this one was a stunner. Jennifer Stanley, an up-and-coming model - a bit too fleshy for true supermodel work, but amazingly attractive and likely to have her fifteen minutes as a starlet, dancer, or American Idol contestant. His own fangs ached a bit as he contemplated her picture. "Pity," he said quietly. She was also impaled, classically, on another of the poles. Also taped. Both were taped head to foot, in fact, and the Brujo had been bound with steel cable, tightly wound. These two had been found about 9:20pm, by some kids wanting to use the playground. The lights had been turned off at the pole, but were otherwise unaffected. That mean the murderer had to overcome a relatively tough Brujo, avoid his coterie in public, manage a mortal, then impale them both in public...all in the space of just a few minutes. For good or for ill, the Brujo was also fairly young, and his tightly-wrapped corpse was still laying in the morgue.

"It's only been a day, but here's what I know. The hooker that went out the window was killed by the fall. It looks like she was struck in the neck by some kind of natural weapon - bones, claws, something like that - as or before it was done. The ME says they didn't get enough of the material to sample properly. CSI pulled some fingerprints out of her apartment but they don't have any matches yet. They did say that she must have been running flat out, straight out her window, to have flown that far. I dunno. I looked, and I don't believe it." He rubs his chin, then taps the table and hums something tunelessly.

"The artist's place was wierder. The girl was hung slowly, strangled to death. What was hanging from the other wire...the ME says that was swan feathers and bones. With Swann gone, he's a suspect as well. But you know what? I think that's bullshit. The bones didn't like any bird I ever saw, and I worked at a poultry plant when I was in college. Some of it was human...or at least primate. And they were lifted into the loops by something strong, because the wire wasn't drawn over a beam or anything...it was fastened to hooks. There were no defensive wounds on her, either...but there was no evidence she was knocked out, either. No other evidence...no fingerprints."

"The ones in the freezer were drawn and quartered. It looks like they lay down peacefully, then allowed themselves to be hacked into quarters - here and here - " he draws his hand across his body, crotch to neck, then across his sternum - "but the cuts were not complete. The body was torn the rest of the way...like you'd section a chicken, but not finish it with the knife but just tear it the rest of the way. Then dumped into the big chest freezer on top of the Budweiser. There's no evidence of where this happened, or how the body parts were carried there."

"The ones upstairs were decapitated just like the media reported. The clock. The blood was drained out of them into the sink - they checked the plumbing. No fingerprints there either. The heads were chopped off by something extremely sharp and heavy."

"The ones in the playground...the man was dead long before he was impaled, maybe two weeks. The woman was alive when she was put on the pole. Must have been excruciating. Their heads and limbs were taped up to immobilize them. Again, someone very strong, maybe a couple of someones, must have done it. There were some scrapes near the poles where they stood on something, though we're not sure what."

The mess on the sidewalk was...wierder than usual. He'd had the bloodsuckers bring in those they valued for patching up, garnering a certain mutual tolerance, if not respect. He'd sewn up critters that he didn't have names for, bearing wounds that had been made by who-knows-what. This one...

He saw a woman, scantily dressed but otherwise almost unrecognizable from the concrete poisoning. It looked like she had fallen from a great height, at least a hundred feet, he thought. But there was a tiny bit of life left in here...a tiny bit.

Even the most vulgar of magick wouldn't save this life...but maybe something else could be done. He did what he could, tweaking blood pressure and heart rate, brain function...brought her around for just long enough. He put his ear to her lips, willing her to tell him something, anything, about what happened.

"Catch..." was all she said. Catch? What did that mean? Then she Passed.

A closer examination showed bloodsucker fangs embedded in her neck...that was pretty wierd, even for his practice. They usually didn't leave souvenirs. Then he noticed some other remnants - bone fragments, teeth, a ring he caught a bystander trying to palm...remnants of one of them? He knew the old ones didn't last long when their peculiar unlife was terminated.

"Anyone know who this is?" he asked.

"Shiela. She turn tricks ovah by the stop an save," came the answer from the back. "Rolly gonna be pissed."

The cops came then, and an ambulance. He saw familiar faces, shook his head at them. His verbal report and a quick signature as to time of death - 20:59, 8:59pm - was enough to let him go back to his work as they loaded up her body.

The victim's hair was dark, as was that of the mortal slain with her. There is a rusty-red hair caught in the sharp corner of the range hood, virtually invisible. It may or may not have anything to do with the crime...it may just be evidence of some other visitor past.

He examines the deep cuts, two of them, in the butcher-block center island, evidence of the blows that severed the heads. The four-inch-thick solid wood is nearly split in two, as if by a large-bitted axe, or a cleaver driven by an inhumanly powerful arm. The cuts are about ten inches (25cm) long. There is blood and bits of flesh driven into the cuts as well, indicating the blade was not particularly sharp. The crack is over 1cm wide at the top, indicating a very thick blade. Nothing still here in the kitchen made those cuts.

The cuts were made very near the sink, indicating the heads probably rolled into the sink and the blood spurted into the sink, draining through the system. Running the water for a moment confirms that the sink is not blocked. This might indicate the killer or killers ran the water to prevent clogging from the clotting...or perhaps washed off the blade? The cuts also indicate the killer struck each body in turn from each side, rather than both from one side. He hadn't heard the bodies had been bound in any way.

Below the sink, on the wood of the cabinet near the floor, he sees a deep gouge, as if the tip of some sharp tool had been driven into the wood perhaps 1 centimeter, then removed.

The cuts in the butcher-block island and the gouge near the baseboards under the sink were most likely NOT made by the same tool. The small gouge looks more like something was jammed into the wood, then withdrawn, something about the size of a large pencil, but much harder. The cuts in the butcher-block island and the gouge near the baseboards under the sink were most likely NOT made by the same tool. The small gouge looks more like something was jammed into the wood, then withdrawn, something about the size of a large pencil, but much harder,

Samples from the dead woman show just that - dead human being, unaltered. She hadn't been adulterated, before or during the process of death. That was both good and bad...it might have simplified things if the woman had been Turned by the bloodsucker...then she could be interviewed later. But, this one was dead for sure.

Samples of the bloodsucker show him that his suspicions were correct - just one, an older one, though not ancient. Male. Maybe from mid-14th-century or so.

The ring is, or contains, some kind of bloodsucker magick, but it is incompatible with his own, as far as he can tell. Oh, he could activate it, but has no idea what the result might be.

"No. The dead man was a gang member from the Latino gang SouthSide Locos. He normally wouldn't be in this neighborhood, this is El Rukn territory. The woman wasn't a gangbanger at all, I never saw her before. I heard she was an actress...I don't know if that means she was a high-class prostitute, or what. She sure wasn't from around here. I talked to the Els, they say they had nothing to do with it. In fact, they are concerned that the Locos will blame them for it, and they are laying low and keeping an eye out. And I don't know anything wierd that happened before or since...wierder than the whole situation itself."

The pattern of gouges, if it is a forward-facing pawprint of some kind, was pointed away from the building i.e., as if the creature had descended or jumped down from the building. It would seem to be away from the pub and toward the playground. However, that is not conclusive. Near the playground, the print points toward the pole holes, but it's far enough away that this is not indicative of anything.

There are no security cameras on the streets that he can see, except for a couple of automated teller machines (bank money machines) that do have small cameras that focus on the users as they step up.

Inside the Silver Shamrock, the party is only getting more racous as the hour grows later. It's very difficult to overhear anything with the amount of noise, What he can glean indicates the patrons don't know anything more than rumors from the news media. The only new thing is a rumor that Kellough and Circe were lovers, killed by some gay-hater or Circe's family or a jealous lover or...it's all pretty much speculation.

His diagram of the murders shows him a rough meandering line, from east to west along the C&O Canal - the defenestration near Cadys Alley, the hangings on Grace St, the impalements on Blues Alley, the Shamrock in Jefferson Northwest. That makes the next scene the murders at Swann's studio.
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  #32  
Unread 10th of March, 2009, 09:30
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Ummm...any way we could get like a condensed version? Or one that doesn't seem like a big wall of imposing text?
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  #33  
Unread 10th of March, 2009, 10:55
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I tried... I got a wall of imposing text. I think the easiest way is for each of us to take what the ST gave us here and break it down into bullet statements (or whatever's easiest for the individual). That way it works for the player, and if you miss something it's your own judgement...
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  #34  
Unread 10th of March, 2009, 11:52
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Yes, my intention is not to do your work for you but to provide you and me with one reference to go to rather than tracking all over.

I suggested before that you guys split things up into topics or events or NPCs or something, because the poster and the GM are the only ones who can do edits. If each of you takes a piece you can keep editing it and adding to it without making new posts.

If one of the players wants to, you can just copy the whole thing, paste it into a new post, and then start editing it down to bullet statements or fact nuggets. Or whatever. I'm just trying to encourage you guys to build up a "database" of knowledge that you won't have to hunt all across threads for.
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Unread 10th of March, 2009, 12:33
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Why not make an actual database if it's going to be this complex? Ha! Lol...
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Unread 10th of March, 2009, 12:52
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Yes, and how will that be accessible to all players?

And what's complex about just keeping what is essentially a text file?
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Unread 10th of March, 2009, 13:08
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...because I don't want to read a novel lol.

<-- = lazy.
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Unread 10th of March, 2009, 13:10
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Most, if not all, of it is stuff consolidated that you have already read. So skimm, take what you need at the moment, and do your heavy crunching on each bit when you have time.
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Unread 11th of March, 2009, 12:04
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I have created a Word doc with bullets based on the files the Ventrue recieved, and metagame info in the form of interviews and quotes that have been going on. Let me know if you want it, and where I should send it.

I'll be creating and eventually posting some thoughts based on what I know IC, at least. I'm more comfortable working IC that way, but we'll see if I can't free myself up and do a little OOC colaboration!
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Unread 12th of March, 2009, 04:24
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I'm interested! I'll pm you my e-mail.

I think we should take Wired*Nun's suggestion, post the 5 files separately, each of us taking one. We could take your document as a starting point, post it and the one that posted it is responsible for keeping it up to date with new info. Of course, the other players could give suggestions and point out things the ‘file-keeper’ missed, and we should all brainstorm about it, but since we can only update our own posts this way we share the work. BLC already started on file 1, but she seems to be gone for now. And Vortigern made one large file, which would mean he would have to do all the updating if we work from that.

I think it might be wise to start 5 treads, one for each file, containing only that file and keeping this thread for discussion and pointers and stuff.

Does this make sense when you read it? If it does, how shall we distribute the files?

Christiaan is, obviously, mostly interested in file 4, but so is Dean I guess. As a player, I’m willing to take any file.
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Unread 12th of March, 2009, 04:52
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My only concern with that is the fact that we're operating on the reasonable assumption that all these murders are connected; having seperate threads is a good idea for organization, but eventually the threads will connect.
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Unread 12th of March, 2009, 08:55
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Lets distribute files first on a volunteer basis. I'll take file 5.

Why not have the files separate and discuss possible connections in this thread?
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Unread 12th of March, 2009, 09:03
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That's what I meant. This thread is for the connections, the ramblings, the conjectures. The files in seperate threads insure we can find them back easily.
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Unread 12th of March, 2009, 21:57
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Originally Posted by Wired*Nun # "In medieval days they used to do that to live people”


1) Defenestration. Not particularly medieval, but a type of punishment that has definite political connotations, and Reynaude used to be a Prince. Also the way Jezebel was killed in the bible, and Shiela was a hooker.
2) Hanging till death. A way of killing people that is of all times, but, like defenestration a recognized form of institutional punishment.
3) Drawing and quartering, as explained by captain McGreggor.
4) Decapitation
5) Impalement (BTW; ewww, much more ewww than the others. Also, death from impalement usually takes a while, so how did our guys (m/f) die?) Obvious Vampiric connotations and once again a recognized form of justice-related punishment

So, yes, they are all ways of killing people, but more then killing, they’re also punishments that were meted at one time or another. Executions, I guess.

Don’t have anywhere to go with this (yet?), but it’s food for thought. And nightmares

Last edited by ikay; 12th of March, 2009 at 22:00.
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Unread 12th of March, 2009, 22:31
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Give Ikay a gold star! This is a key insight.
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Unread 13th of March, 2009, 00:23
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Indeed it is. Hmmm. It also strongly implies an uknown link between the 'victims'. A former conspiracy of some kind or whatever. Though it could be something else, still. We must not jump to conclusions. They could all just as likely be targeted by someone who 'viewed' them as criminals or deserving of execution individually somehow. Yet I am beginning to doubt it.
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Unread 13th of March, 2009, 00:38
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Ok, so the killer(s?) were going medieval on their asses. Literally. Have we found out how old the kindred are (maybe they were medieval? prolly not). Maybe a heritage thing? Dunno.
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Unread 13th of March, 2009, 00:44
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Swann was not. He was circa ~1920. So my assumption at this point is that he made friends with someone older than him, who then had enemies who also were older than him.
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Unread 13th of March, 2009, 02:00
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Some common knowledge:

Jean-Claude rose to prominence after Napoleon's overthrow and the restoration of the Monarchy. He was Toreador Primogen before the Revolution and Terror. It is believed he was Embraced sometime during the Enlightenment period, mid-1500s, probably of seventh generation.

Swann has been addressed.

Dominic was reputed to be 11 gen, migrating during the Potato Famine of the 1840s to the US, Embraced somewhere around 1860.

Lunmila and Cristobal were both 13th Gen, him embraced in the 1980s in Argentina, her a neonate recently arrived from the Ukraine.
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Unread 13th of March, 2009, 02:06
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ikay
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Thanks, Wired, I was writing an answer with what we knew about that, but this saves me the work. We really should get going on those files.

Being a vampire might be reason enough for some to kill these five, that’s a connection right there. I’m saying; if we find a deeper connection I’m all for exploring that, but we shouldn’t regard the simple possibilities. Because for now I just don’t see a connection between these five, apart from the fact they were all in that area. There might be some connections, but so far nothing that links all five.
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