From the frozen northlands, the think forests and icy mountains, the lands of vicious beasts and monsters come the Gangrel. By turns animalistic and insightful, they embody the most fearsome predators among vampires. From their kind come the tales of such horrors as Grendel and the Norse berserkers. The undisputed masters of the wild ways, the Gangrel are feared and respected for their unmatched prowess in survival. Some, it is whispered, even hunt or deal with the dread Lupines; certainly, their clan's shape-shifting powers and animal features bring to mind legends of dire wolves.

          The history of the Gangrel is disputed. Some claim that they descended from the same line as the Ravnos, while others insist that they are a separate clan (and, indeed, animosity between Gangrel and Ravnos is often quite fierce). For their part, the Gangrel put little stock in rumors. They trade stories when they meet, test their strength in combat and evade the machinations of politics. To the Gangrel, simple survival is more than enough.

          Once a part of the Camarilla, the Gangrel seceded abruptly. Theories as to the reasons behind this departure abound; in their usual detachment, the Gangrel do not discuss the matter, however. This is not to say that all Gangrel are without affilliations - some remained in the Camarilla out of loyalty or friendship, while antitribu still claim allegiance in the Sabbat - it's simply that the clan as a whole no longer bothers with politics, after several centuries of Camarilla support. Naturally, this withdrawal makes Gangrel suspect in Camarilla courts, and without the support of a justicar or Inncer Circle member, they can be subjected to political persecution - but few Gangrel really care.

          Survivors, woodsmen and animal-lovers make up the ranks of the Gangrel clan, so it's no wonder that they have little use for political infighting or social maneuvering. Typically, a Gangrel watches a potential recruit for some time, judging the individual's ruggedness, determination and wanderlust. Those who fail the selection process are either ignored, or they become an evening meal. Those few who are chosen are Embraced and then left to fend for themselves. The Gangrel sire typically watches from afar, only intervening in dire situations and waiting until the new childe has proven her merit before introducing himself and undertaking the process of instruction.

          Roleplaying Hints: You come from a long line of hardy explorers, both living and undead. In the Dark Ages, the Gangrel were Norsemen and warriors; in the modern age, you are still explorers, and you maintain the warrior spirit. You don't care about politics, or the Jyhad or sects, because they just don't matter to you. With all of eternity, who wants to waste immortality on foolish social maneuvering? There are new horizens to see and realms to conquer. The animals are your kind and your kingdom, and you give fealty only to those worthy of the warrior's heart.

          Disciplines: Animalism, Fortitude, Protean

          Advantage: While most vampires are uncomfortable outside of the cities, the Gangrel are hardy nomads, capable of survival in any territory. Although Lupines make travel dangerous for any Kindred, the Gangrel are better equipped than most to take to the open road or hide in the wilds outside of humanity's civilization. This wandering nature means that Gangrel hold to the requirements of any societies to which they may claim allegiance only rarely. Camarilla and Sabbat alike tend to give free rein to Gangrel wanderlust, and the sects rarely demand any sort of presentation or recognition. Few princes or bishops could really enforce a ban on the movements of the Gangrel in any case, so they rarely try.

          The Gangrel are known to deal with the Lupines from time to time. Though any individual Gangrel probably risks much in confronting Lupines, most Gangrel at least know how to stay out of Lupine territory and what to do to avoid antagonizing the shapechanging killing machines. Gangrel who spend time in the wilds can learn Lupine Lore by observing (and hopefully evading) the Lupines. This fact doesn't grant that Lupines are any more favorably disposed toward Gangrel, but a Gangrel is more likely to know how to encounter a werewolf and survive.

          All Gangrel gain a free level of Ability in each of Animal Ken and Survival.

          Disadvantage: The marks of the Beast make themselves known on a Gangrel's visage. Whenever a Gangrel frenzies, she gains an animalistic feature. Further frenzies cause such featurese to become more pronounced, or introduce new features. Elder Gangrel often barely resemble humans, with cat- or doglike ears, sharp nails, tufts of fur, slitted eyes or strange features. Each time the Gangrel frenzies, the character gains a new Negative Social Trait of Bestial, Feral or Repugnant. These Traits can never be bought off or removed without some sort of magical assistance (such as Vicissitude or Obfuscate). No more than five Negative Traits can be gained with this Disadvantage.

          Bloodlines: Within the Sabbat exists a small urban group of predators known as the City Gangrel. These Gangrel trace their heritage to one of the two original Gangrel to join the sect, and they Embrace from among those who survive in the cities - criminals, street people, lower-class laborers and the like. The City Gangrel possess the Disciplines of Celerity, Obfuscate and Protean. Although they manifest the same weakness as the rest of the clan, they tend to feature animalistic traits from urban beasts, such as rats' whiskers, cats tails and the like.

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