Vampire Background

Ah, backgrounds. The very flesh of a character. Solid. You can RP for ten years with the same World of Darkness character, and it will change. It will get better, and worse, and then better. It will ebb and flow, but your background will always be the same. It's stable. Once you write it out, it can't be changed, and you're stuck with it. The past of your character is based on whatever words that you put in there. What good is his past, though? You're RPing in his present! That's the important part! I'd beg to differ. If you have the right ST around, you might very well find that your past /does/ affect your present, and even your future! Storytelling is a fire, and if you don't feed it, you're going to be very cold. You feed it with your RP, but also with your background. I know. I tell stories on the mud for which this forum corresponds to. So believe me! I'm not just making this stuff up, really. Being as this section is for Vampire Backgrounds, let me first start with a list of details that I like to choose from, when writing the background for one of my characters.

How old are you?
When were you born?
How old were you when you were Embraced?
How long have you existed as a vampire?
How old do you look to others?
Are you more or less mature than you seem?

What was unique about your childhood?
What do you remember about your early years?
What forged your basic motivations and attitudes?
Where did you go to school?
Were you a good student?
Who were your immediate family members?
What is your clearest childhood memory?
Did you go to High school? College?
Did you have a hometown, or did your family move often?
Ever run away from home?
Did you play sports?
Did any of your childhood frienships last until adulthood?

What kind of person were you?
Were you a kind and gentle person, or an arrogant bastard?
Were you popular, or a social outcast?
Did you have a family?
How did you earn a living?
Did you have any real friends?
Or just accquaintances?
What kept you going from day to day?
Will anyone miss you?

What was your first brush with the Supernatural?
Did your Sire stalk you?
Did you dabble in the Occult at all before your Embrace?
Did you ever meet a vampire before your Sire?
Did you even believe in them?
When you met one, were you scared? Curious? Disbelieving? Angry?

How did the Embrace end up changing you?
How did your Sire catch you?
Was the Embrace painful?
Did you get perverse pleasure from it?
Did the Hunger tear at you?
Were you frightened?
Did it somehow feel right?
Were you grateful to your Sire? Or do you want to kill her for what she did to you?

Who was your Sire, and how did she treat you?
What do you know of your Sire?
Was she seductive, forceful, abusive, cryptic, or open?
Why do you think she chose you?
Did you even know your Sire?
How long did you stay with her?
Did she teach you anything at all?
Where did you stay when she released you?
Where did you go?
Did you meet any other vampires while with your Sire?
Did your Sire embrace another?
Do you often judge others by the opinions of your Sire?

Were you presented to Kindred society?
Did the Prince welcome you?
Was he reluctant to accept you?
Did prominent Kindred need to be bribed or threatened before accepting you?
Did your Sire have permission to create you?
Are you on the run from Kindred Authorities? Or were you Sabbat?
Did a pack accept you? Were you bullied, threatened, beaten?
Were you meant to be Cannon Fodder at first?
Were you part of a mass Embrace? Or were you special from the start?
Did you get shovel-headed, like so many Sabbat do?

How did you meet those you associate with?
Were you brought together by chance, or design?
Are you united in purpose, working toward the same goal?
How long have you been together?
Did you know them before the Embrace?
Do your Sires cooperate? Or are they rivals?
Do any of you share the same Sire?
What keeps you together when things are at their worst?

Where is your Haven?
Where do you sleep during the day?
Do you have a permanent home, or do you migrate from day to day?
Do you stay in or near the place you inhabited during your mortal life?
Do you have anyone to protect you during the day?

Do you retain any connections to your mortal life?
Have you been presumed dead?
Do you still watch over mortal relatives or friends from afar?
Do you pretend to still be alive?
Have you abandoned your mortal existence entirely?

What are your habitual feeding practices?
Do you fancy a particular sort of place to hunt?
What is your preferred prey?
Will you risk hunger to find this type of prey?
Do you ever kill when you feed?
Do you seduce your prey? Kidnap them? Intimidate or beat them? Or do they come to you?

What motivates you?
Are you bent on revenge?
Do you long for a mortal life, and to look upon the sun once again?
Do you have ambitions among Kindred society?
Do you just want to be left alone?
Do you wish to Embrace any Childer?
Are you involved with inter-vampire conflict?
If you could have any one thing in the world, what would it be?

The last on this list is the most imporant of all. Most vampires, when choosing the Embrace, don't do it for fun. After the first century or so a vampire really needs motivation to go on or else immortality becomes a burden, hence Ennui. Those without motivation are not likely to do well after the Embrace, struggling through their new existence. Although a vampire's values often differ greatly from human or garou, they still need something worth existing for.

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