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CHAPTER THREE
SUBCULTURE

The pool is placed under the effects of Obfuscate, hiding it from the eyes of humans and most other vampires. Animals, however, can smell the intoxicating aroma of the vampiric blood. Rats, roaches, stray cats and dogs, and even (if legend is to be believed) the fabled sewer alligators come from miles around to drink from the pool.

The ingestion of the blood-saturated water turns the animals into ghouls of a sort: they gradually become larger, more cunning and much more aggressive. Of course, the blood is Nosferatu vitæ, so the animals usually begin to sprout deformities as well. So much the better, think the Nosferatu.

The vita. is as addictive to these animals as it is to humans, and once an animal has drunk from the Spawning Pool, it continues to come back for more and more. The longer a creature drinks from the pool, the more pronounced the effects on the animal – it grows larger and larger, fiercer and fiercer, more and more malformed. Urban legends depicting dog-sized rats or swarms of foot-long roaches are quite common in areas near the Spawning Pool.

The animals remain susceptible to Animalism, and the Nosferatu employ these ghouls as scouts, spies and sentries. A few (particularly the larger beasts) are kept in the warren as guards. In most cases, however, the Nosferatu let the animals roam where they will. They prove remarkably effective in discouraging vampiric incursions and nosy sewer workers alike.

SUBTERRANEAN WARFARE

Very few mongooses, however old and wise they may be,
care to follow a cobra into its hole.

           – Rudyard Kipling, “Rikki-Tikki-Tavi”

The Nosferatu have many enemies, both among their own kind and outside. They have fought a guerrilla war in the dark for millennia. In that time they have become quite skilled at using their environment against their foes.

One of the first actions undertaken by Nosferatu new a city is to gain influence in the construction, transportation and maintenance industries. This can be accomplish through prestation, ghoul creation or blackmail, but it is done whenever possible. Possession of such influence gives the clan a tremendous amount of power in a modern citypower often overlooked by the loftier Ventrue, Tremere and Toreador. If the Nosferatu presence in a city has been strong for a long time, the entire city may be riddled with hidden chambers, booby traps, escape routes and secret crypts.

Nosferatu love subways. Not only do the trains supply constant vessels, but they are powered by electricity. This electricity can be diverted from the tracks for a variety of purposes – including defensive ones. Nosferatu often run wires from the third rails of subways to nearby metallic structures. They then lure enemies to these structures. When the pursuing Kindred/Lupine/witch-hunter/whatever touches the “harmless” girder or other debris – ZAP!

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