The Night Kingdom is a name given to a loose organization of vampire clans scattered throughout the known world. While not all vampires or vampire clans acknowledge the authority of the Night Kingdom, those who do submit to its governance. Very few mortals are aware of its existence, as the vampire clans that compose it are sworn to secrecy out of fear that its discovery would lead to war and the eradication of its vampire clans by fearful mortals.
H I S T O R Y
The Night Kingdom came into existence around the time that the Old Empire was first born. Prior to its formation, vampires existed in clans and covens, warring with one another and terrorizing mankind. But the formations of larger human kingdoms soon threatened vampirekind. Mortals sought to destroyed the monsters that stalked the night and waged a witch hunt against all those who were accused of being vampires. As a result, the number of vampire clans and covens dwindled until only a handful of them remained. The five oldest clans came together to end the slaughter and forged the Night Kingdom from among their ranks.
The Night Kingdom's first act was to conquer as many of the remaining clans and covens as was possible. For decades, they waged a shadow war to gather the remainder of vampirekind to their numbers. Their war was of mixed success. Many covens flocked to their side, seeking protection in numbers by joining the pre-established five clans. However, the larger autonomous clans (what few remained) sought to maintain their independence. As a result, the Night Kingdom exterminated those clans that refused to join them, until only a small number remained and were forced to go even deeper into hiding.
Their dominance secured, the Night Kingdom established its government in the northern mountains known as the Cage and set down a code to govern them. The first Council of Elders also swore its kingdom to secrecy in the hopes that it would remain largely hidden from mortalkind to protect vampirekind from any further purges. This was the greatest triumph of the Night Kingdom. With a combination of magic and strict laws, it has maintained its secrecy for centuries and has flourished in the shadows of the mortal kingdoms, ushering in an era of darkness and stability for all vampires.
S T R U C T U R E
Vampire society is rigidly defined. The oldest, purest, and most powerful vampires have absolute dominion over those who came after them. The government of the Night Kingdom reflects this tradition and can be found described below:
Council of Elders
The Council of Elders is comprised of the leaders of the five major vampire clans. These five clans are the oldest in existence, predating the formation of the Old Empire by centuries. Each clan leader is granted the title of "Lord," is known as a vampire elder due to their long lives and great wisdom, and is granted a seat upon the Council. Their term is for life—as an immortal species, this means that a single council member can serve for centuries at a time, until they are killed or resign and pass their title on to a successor. The lords of the Council are alone in deciding on vampire law and their word is absolutely final.
Each Elder rules over an area of vampire society. These areas include Law,Military, Spirituality, Diplomacy, and Lore. The Council was formed because no clan would allow a single vampire to rule over them. However, for procedural matters, the Council will elect a "Vampire King" (or Queen if a female is elected) from among their members to preside over their meetings and cast tie-breaking votes should one become necessary. The king is ruler in name only and abdicates their title after a term of four years. The Council can also remove a troublesome king with a simple vote among the remaining four members.
Vampire Clans Vampire clans are large family units of related vampires scattered throughout the known world. They are usually comprised of smaller covens and are led by the ritual vampires responsible for siring them. There are five such clans that comprise the Night Kingdom, each of which contains hundreds of vampires. Each clan is lead by an Elder — usually the oldest and most powerful ritual vampire among them. How the Elder in question organizes and runs his or her clan is up to them, so long as they strictly adhere to the vampire laws laid down by the Council of Elders.
Smaller in size than the clans, vampire covens are small family units of vampires spread across the known world. They inhabit the world's caves, forests, abandoned castles, and other areas left alone by mortals. Several vampires covens who agree to work in concert, or who are connected to one another via a ritual vampire responsible for siring them, form a whole vampire clan. Unlike clans, vampire covens can be comprised of ritual vampires or regular vampires—those who were turned by the bite of a ritual vampire rather than the magical ritual that makes one a full-blooded vampire. Each coven can choose its own leader, but are subservient to the clan as a whole and particularly its Elder.
Beyond the major familial units and governing bodies, the Night Kingdom's society is further broken down at the individual level into the following categories:
Ritual vampires: Commonly known as "pure vampires." These vampires have the highest status in vampire society. Their commands are expected to be obeyed by the lesser vampires and only pure vampires can go on to lead a clan or join the ranks of the elders. Among the ritual vampires, stature is determined by age—the oldest hold the highest seniority within a coven or a clan, while the youngest are expected to be subservient.
Regular vampires: While the most numerous of the two social classes, regular vampires are subservient to their sires and other ritual vampires. They are still subjected to the same rights as other vampires, but their leadership is not recognized (regardless of their age) beyond their individual covens. That is to say that regular vampires can go on to lead covens, but they cannot progress beyond that and will never become Elders or sit on the ruling council.
Vampire exiles: Exiles are vampires who have committed major crimes and are banished from their social groups. Before being banished, they have a powerful curse placed upon them that renders them mute—unable to reveal the existence of the Night Kingdom to mortals or other enemies of vampirekind. Exiles are treated with disdain and contact with them might also result in exile.
L A W
Vampire law has existed for centuries and is too numerous to list. However, the most important aspects of vampire law are laid out in the Night Code, which is as follows:
The secrecy of the Night Kingdom shall not be threatened. No vampire is permitted to speak of its existence, or to threaten its exposure, to outsiders of any kind. The punishment for violating this law is death.
Consorting with mortals is a grave crime. Vampires may only consort with other vampires to preserve the secrecy of our kingdom. Violation of this law is punishable by exile.
Consorting with a werebeing is a grave crime. Werewolves and others of their kind are our kind's greatest enemies. Consorting with them is forbidden, considered treason, and punishable by death.
As can be seen above, the Night Code is primarily concerned with maintaining the secrecy of the kingdom. Other known laws command that the Council of Elders be obeyed without question, the punishment for which is death. Vampire law also requires the observation of social hierarchies and obedience to those further up the ladder. Killing other vampires is not expressly forbidden by the law, but those who kill other citizens of the kingdom are looked down upon as kin-slayers and almost always exiled from their clans or covens.
M I L I T A R Y
The Night Kingdom possesses nothing in the way of a standing army and its fighting forces are much smaller than the armies of the mortal kingdoms. However, it is not without the means to defend itself and its citizens. All vampires have dangerous combat abilities that outstrip several mortal soldiers. But the vampires employed by the Council of Elders are the most deadly in the known world.
The Night Guard
The Night Guard consist of ten (two per Elder) elite vampire warriors trained in physical combat, the use of melee weapons (such as swords), and magic. They are assigned to accompany and protect the Elders and are recognizable by the black and silver armor that they wear. It is custom that each elder select the two most trusted and capable warriors from their clan to serve alongside them at the beginning of their tenure. They can then replace these two as they see fit or whenever the need arises.
Vampire Hunters Vampire hunters are the personal assassination forces of the Council of Elders. There are only about two hundred hunters at any given time, but they are widely considered the most deadly vampires in the kingdom after the Elders themselves. Vampire hunters are dispatched to kill troublesome vampires or those who have broken a major law. Common vampires are said to stand no chance against these hunters. Hunters rarely take their quarries alive, only doing so when commanded by the Council. They are also trained to achieve their goals by whatever means necessary, even if that means cutting down innocents that stand in their way. Hunters can be recognized by the black and grey ninja-like clothing that they wear, and their appearance is generally a sign that great danger is afoot.
Vampire Cleaners Vampire cleaners are mortals who have been enthralled by pure vampires via powerful magic. They help to keep the Night Kingdom concealed from mortals by discreetly cleaning up in the aftermath of a vampire's feeding. Hundreds of vampire cleaners exist and usually live in towns, cities, and villages around which vampire clans and covens are active. The spell that enthralls them will also wipe their memory if it were to ever be broken, ensuring the continued safety of vampirekind.
T E R R I T O R Y
The Night Kingdom does not have as much territory like a traditional kingdom or province. The need to remain hidden from mortals has caused the clans and covens to remain scattered, hiding on the outskirts of mortal society, or hidden within it. However, it was able to claim a small frozen province north of Ironmere. This frozen province is boxed on either side by towering mountains and hosts a single, massive lake at its center.
The mountains are collectively known to the vampires of the kingdom as "the Cage" due to their formation around the lake. The lake is likewise known as the Lake of Ghosts, a name that was actually bestowed upon it by mortals, who steer clear of the area due the rumors of ghosts, vampires, and other mythical creatures who might pose a threat to their kind. The province is also avoided by mortals due to the lack of food that can be found their, the sub-zero temperatures, and their inability to grow crops. As a result, vampires seeking shelter from mortals often live in caves or castles in the region and call it "the Promised Land."
The vampire capital (pictured left) is called the Bloodlet Throne: a massive castle built into the side of the Cage overlooking the Lake of Ghosts. The castle is as large as most capital cities found in the mortal realms, able to house thousands of vampires, but most importantly serves as the home of the vampire elders and the government that they lead. Legend states that the Bloodlet Throne was the home of the very first vampire: a human warlord whose progeny would go on to found the Night Kingdom and give birth to vampire government. The veracity of these claims are difficult to to ascertain.
E C O N O M Y
The Night Kingdom entertains some crude manner of trade between the clans and covens, though little is understood about how this system operates. The standard currency of the kingdom is a small golden coin known as a denarius.
One aspect of the vampire economy that is known is that "cattle" is freely traded among the covens, but especially with the capital in the Promised Land. Cattle refers to mortals who are enthralled by a powerful spell and are kept captive and used for their blood. While vampires are capable of eating ordinary foodstuff consumed by mortals, only blood will sustain them, and some vampire clans are more capable than others at obtaining mortals to feed upon, thereby necessitating this system.
R E L I G I O N
Vampires are known to worship a variety of gods, but the Night Kingdom has somewhat of a state religion shared by all of its scattered citizens. The kingdom's religion is one of the few things that bind all of the clans and covens under its wing together with one another, allowing these citizens a form of kinship they would not otherwise share.
The religion is centered around the worship of Knull (depicted right), who is said to be the god of darkness and bloodshed, the ruler over the night, and the being who first bestowed the gift of vampirism upon mortalkind. Knull is also known as the Dark Lord and the Bat-God, as bats share somewhat of a common kinship with vampires. Knull is in no way a benevolent god. He is a god of order and secrecy, and he despises all those who would threaten that order and secrecy. He is also bloodthirsty and is hailed as the one who drinks the blood of all the races. He is commonly depicted as an anthropomorphic bat with a cruel gaze.
I N T E N T
OOC: To give vampire characters a faction to belong to, complete with its own culture and customs. Players are welcome to create the five clans that govern the Night Kingdom (I call dibs on one :3). They are also welcome to create as many covens to be part of this kingdom as they see fit.
Tobi Not only that. But that history is way too much, There wasn't a war between humans. Never in the site's lore. Vamp were never that prominent to make a war with the world in the first place. Also vamps only came to be after magic was brought into the world. The OE have existed a lot longer than that.
You also can't state that they killed any and every vamp not wanting to join them. It's way too limiting for players and conflicts with other lore (including stuff like the province of Volkarna).
Overall I'd recommend scaling down. I love the idea of a Vampire Illuminati and this fills that role nicely. However the current history is making this way too prominent to the point where it's conflicting to the site's current lore. It's also limiting player opportunities with how the history is portrayed.
I'd suggest you rework the faction to scale it down a bit. Should be fine then