The Tremere Viewpoint
You enter a finely furnished office. A middle aged man is working at a small laboratory table to the side of a large marble desk. "I will be finished soon. Be seated." You wait. With a look around, you realize that all of the furnishings in the room are glass, stone, or metal. Even the customary wall hangings are fashioned from textured metal. The man takes his chair and fixes you with an unblinking stare. "Your work has been of the first caliber, and you have asked to learn more of our history. Instead of having your sire take care of that, I have decided to handle that task myself. As Regent, I must help all in my command to develop. Occasionally Regents get overly involved in their own research and forget that their primary task is to forge strong members for a stronger organization. You have earned your place here.
"A thousand years ago, true mages were numerous. The world was steeped in mysticism and wonder; magic was common. Many mages chose to be in collectives later called houses, and House Tremere was the strongest. All magic began to weaken after the turn of the millennium. The mages searched for new ways of fueling their powers and rediscovered a common source: blood. However, there were many limitations of raw blood, so the other Houses went on to search for alternate sources of power. We, as House Tremere, continued our investigation and found vampire blood - the blood of the bloodtakers - to be adequate. Our leaders, the Inner Council, decided that instead of risking our independence and settling on one of the known bloodlines, we would create our own superior bloodline. Our research brought the final death to dozens of kindred - unfortunate but necessary. The Council gave us the choice - serve the House for a few decades of sun or the eternity of night. Some chose to remain mortal and their wish was respected. Working together, the rest embraced ourselves using the new knowledge. Sacrificing our humanity for this power, we lost most of our previous abilities but developed new ones. House Tremere became House and Clan Tremere on the clear night of 21 September 1022AD.
Some kindred hated that we created our own future.
Some kindred feared us for our knowledge.
They hunted us without mercy.
We turned the hunt into a war of attrition which lasted more than a century. We suffered losses, but continued adding to our body of intelligence. We refined our mastery of blood and regained some of our old magics. We created a slave bloodline to assist in the war: the Gargoyles. We survived by working together as a House.
Our opponents did not.
That hunt ended.
Other kindred still hate and fear us.
Roughly a century of brittle peace passed until the next large hunt. This time, they were well organized, well funded, fanatical, and prolific. This time, they hunted all kindred without mercy. This was the time of the Inquisition: 1300AD. As all kindred were assailed by the kine, some
opportunist kindred seized the moment to destroy old enemies. Death was all around us - brought by kine and kindred. The eldest understood that all clans had to work together against the destruction. We worked together with some of the most enlightened kindred of Europe to create a federation
to defend ourselves. This federation, the Camarilla, was built on rules to prevent that hunt from reoccurring.
They are called the Traditions.
Without them, all kindred might have perished.Remember them. Honor them. They are:
Masquerade - Never reveal our true nature to those not of the blood.
Domain - Areas that Elders control are their concern. All owe them respect while in it.
Progeny - Only Sire another with the permission of the Elder.
Accounting - Until Progeny are released, their sins are the Sire's to endure.
Hospitality - Honor another's domain.
Destruction - The right of destruction belongs only to the Elder.
Certain clan elders did not agree with the leaders of the Camarilla and broke to form their own federation, the Sabbat. Their organization was soon controlled by the remaining opportunists and they continued their destructive ways. The Camarilla tried to work past the old grievances and come to terms, but the Sabbat murdered our envoys. They became even more violent as the centuries passed; assaulting all who would not become slaves to their insane quest. We are still at war.
As the Inquisition faded into history and the Sabbat incursions driven away like rabid dogs, we continued our growth. We are the cornerstone of the Camarilla. We are eternally watchful for another occurrence of the Inquisition. We are eternally watchful for another incursion of Sabbat. Even still, our enemies walk the street pretending to be Camarilla citizens. They try to pick us off when we are alone or have suffered losses. They still hate and fear us. Beware them.
What the Tremere think about the...
Sabbat: Treat Sabbat as you would treat an outlaw Tremere. Destroy them without mercy.
Everyone Not Sabbat: When possible, treat everyone as an individual - this decreases their likelihood of uniting against us.
Camarilla: A necessary political structure which maintains the peace, more often than not.
Brujah: An odd combination of thugs and philosophers. Distract the thugs with external enemies, distract the philosophers with conundrums.
Caitiff: Outsiders. Useful tools. Few will come to their aid, so help them when possible.
Gangrel: Vicious. They still harbor resentment from wars nearly a millennium ago. Only deal with them if absolutely necessary.
Malkavians: Potentially the most dangerous clan - also the most interesting to study. Listen to them, but do not believe them.
Nosferatu: Thieves. They will try to profit from our hard earned secrets. Do not let them. Instead, pay them for others' secrets.
Toreador: Degenerates. Easy to work with once an interest in their particular hobby is feigned. Appeal to their devotion to "beauty".
Ventrue: Materialists. This is the easiest clan to work with. Appeal to their adoration of physical value.
Garou: Dogs. Interesting to study, however, they are easily provoked and are very dangerous.
What is the future?
"Facies quatro Pyramidis sunt: Velle, Noscere, Audere, et Tacere. Sine Pyramide nilhil sumus." ( The four sides of the Pyramid are to will, to know, to dare, to keep silent. Without the Pyramid we are nothing. )
The only thing that matters is the House future. We do this by focusing on three methods: research, recruitment, and defense. All chantries are required to have elements of each. As we support each other, our work generates more power than the sum of our parts.
However, as long as we are persecuted, the other clans' squabbling must be exploited whenever possible. "By way of deception, thou shalt do war."
What don't we do?
"I demand that, should I break this oath, I should be cast out of the House and Clan. If I am cast out, I ask my brothers to find and slay me that my life may not continue in degradation and infamy."
"If a Magus has been ruled an outlaw, I shall bend all efforts to bring such Magus to justice."
We must never allow a member to be brutalized. If an outsider harms any, return worse.
How do you "move up the ladder"?
"We share our lives, our goals, and our achievements. I shall obey those the House sees fit to name my superiors and treat my inferiors with all the respect and care they earn for themselves."
"I shall further the knowledge of the House and Clan and share with its members all that I find in my search for wisdom and power."
"I recognize that the enemies of the House and Clan are my enemies, and that the friends of the House and Clan are my allies. Let us work as one and grow hale and strong."
Who "is respected more"?
Our Clan is not a cult of personality. Personalities do not matter - only position. Our highest rank is the Inner Council. The next rank is Pontifex. The next rank is Lord. The next rank is Regent. Below Regent, there are seven circles that you must advance through. Skill, not age or social status, dictates this advancement. This progression ensures that only the most qualified reach positions of authority. This is our House's strength.
If you are interested in learning more about the Tremere Clan, go straight to the source
with White Wolf's Clanbook: Tremere.
I found the Tremere Clan Novel to be painfully awful. I was really hoping to learn some insights
into the Tremere clan and mindset, instead I got several chapters repeated from previous novels
and the most tepid and uninspired character in all of the series. Eric Griffin's Tzimisce Clan Novel
was brilliant, however.