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A duffel bag sat perched at the foot of the massively oversized bed, flanked on all sides by an array of clothing and toiletries; all neatly folded and grouped across the bedspread. Emerging from the…Continue
Date of Birth: Spring, 4980 B.C.
Family: Varian† (f.)|| Talisa† (m.)
Current Residence: Blood Mansion
Relationship Status: Don’t Ask
Build: Heavily Muscled
Eyes: Hazel || Hair: Midnight Black
Calm || Dignified || Disciplined
Gallant || Honest || Intuitive
Old-fashioned || Aloof
Predatory || Sly || Unrepentant
Assertive || Calculating
The hour grows late, the darkness of the night so complete a few extra lit candles were necessary with which to write by. It seems as if a spell has been cast upon the castle, all of the inhabitants holding their collective breath as the sounds of labor intensify. I can do nothing but sit and wait, listening to the distressing sounds of my mate struggling to bring new life into this world. We have long awaited this day, indeed tried for it for many years and finally were blessed with offspring. Listening to dear Talisa now however I wonder why we were so hurried, could this agony not have waited another decade, century? On a night such as this I would have welcomed the rigors of the kingship but even that has been denied me, the entire coven retreated in silent vigil. History would be written this night, mine own flesh and blood already burdened with a great responsibility by virtue of bloodline and has not yet drawn breath. Whether male or female the babe will be in training for the crown from the start, destined to take over when I step down. It is a heavy weight to carry to be sure but it is the duty passed down to us from Valkyries himself and we shan’t falter or fail in that regard. We are a people cursed and blessed in equal measure, a bane upon the gods allowed to endure only through the kindness of a whim. Our strengths and powers are as frightening and as endless as the stars that number the sky and therefore a strong leader must be at the helm. For without the King the children of the night would be loosed upon the world, a force if unchecked could topple civilizations in a single night and then because it can, topple the world. The vampires must always have a King, and a King they shall have for I have just been told…. I have a son.
Where others may have resented being in such a position Gideon took it all in stride, accepting his lot in life with complete conviction and a thirst to be of service to his line and his people. Varian took great pains to instill a sense of pride and responsibility in his son, imparting to him that his very life had to be a complete commitment to serving their people. It was a daunting task to set upon the shoulders of one so young and Talisa often became incensed with great anger at the things her mate required of their son. Still she knew it was necessary, every lesson he was taught strengthened the great armor he would need to deal with the many battles he would wage daily as King.
It became an affectionate running joke around the coven that Varian hadn’t sired a son more a shadow floating silently in his wake and was very watchful, for wherever the King went his son was sure to follow. Ever present during public meetings, at council gatherings, counting of coin, trade negotiations, disciplinary hearings, and the like Gideon watched, listened, and learned from his father. The King was a very patient teacher, taking the time to answer any questions as thoroughly as possible whenever Gideon posed them as well as letting him quarry others in order to grasp and master his future trade. Much to his parents delight the little Prince proved both insightful and calculating, striving to understand not only his duties as a King but what his people expect of him in turn.
By the time Gideon was 20 he was a strapping young man well on his way to becoming a skilled diplomat. He had a wit and charm that could sway even the most hardened and solemn of men, knew the laws of the race inside and out, was well versed in all manner of decorum and trade, and was proving to be a compassionate yet shrewd Prince. Much to the King and Queen’s delight two of the Bastion had children around his age who became Gideon’s playmates and best friends. Delilah Rancour was a rambunctious young female with a fiery spirit and a spark of constant challenge in her eyes while Piotr Sokolov was a brooding entitled brat who found fault in everything.
Even with all of the meetings and lessons and socialization Gideon often found it difficult to sit still or focus as he grew older. Hitting his 20’s was much like hitting adolescence and not matter how much he tried to concentrate his mind simply wouldn’t have it. He was antzy and restless, unable to sit still for very long and constantly prowling much to the displeasure of his father. Finally, Albert - Delilah’s father and an original descendant - suggested putting the young Prince into training with the other children of the Bastion. It had never been done before, the Bastion itself was meant to be the strongest line of defense for the King. As their histories tell it the six who had been spared with Valkyries had not only named him King but swore to protect him from all harm and so their descendants too took up that duty with fervor.
Neither Valkyries nor Varian had been schooled in the art of war or in the use of weapons but Albert recognized the agitation coursing through young Gideon. There were some who could acclimate to the strengths of a vampire and feel satisfied with just that but in others all the strength coupled with the long hours of the days and nights became too much. He needed stimulation or he very well might lose control one day, which was the last thing they needed out of their future King. It took some convincing but with the help of Talisa Varian was finally swayed.
So together Gideon, Delilah, and Piotr were pressed into combat training whiling away hours upon hours being passed around through many different instructors. Delilah and Gideon picked up every new weapon and style with an ease that surprised their parents while Piotr struggled to keep up. His attitude hindered him greatly as he was often scornful toward their instructors, a complete snob through and through. His only saving grace perhaps was his competitive drive, always pushing himself in order try to best or humiliate the Prince. Still for all his bluster Piotr wasn’t near as skilled as Delilah or Gideon, the two far outpacing everyone in every new weapon that was taught to them.
The Prince’s transformation was most startling, the whip thin boy barely out of his teenage years was replaced by a hardened warrior in his prime. Thick muscles honed from hours of training roped over sturdy bones, filling out a frame that was both tall and broad. Gideon trained religiously for hours each day, rotating through willing combatants to keep his skills sharp, often sparing with Delilah who had become just as adept in the art of combat. It became somewhat of a spectacle to watch the pair during sparing, their intricate dance of body and steel seeming almost choreographed so in tune they were with one another. So evenly were they matched that it was always a toss up as to who would win, and gambling was often done as to the outcome.
By the time Gideon was well over 200 years of age he was standing side by side with his father, offering advice as well as handling situations so that the King could have some time to himself or with his mate. The future members of the Bastion had all been put forth, the seven of them training as a unit and spending as much time as possible with one another for when Gideon rose to the throne they would take their positions as his counsel and private guard. He and Delilah still spared, the pair of them the most skilled by far, training in every spare moment they had.
Something had changed in that time for Gideon, though his relationship with Delilah could only be described as functionally dysfunctional he had begun to see her as more than just a friend. She was beautiful and fierce, spoke her mind with absolute conviction and she saw him for more than he was. Piotr was often in their presence, a third wheel that grated on the Prince’s nerves. The upstart Bastion often boasted that one day Delilah would be his and each time this was said Gideon had to bite back a territorial growl. At first he didn’t quite understand where that need was coming from until one especially vexing night after Piotr had pushed him too far.
The snob had gone so far as to enumerate the reasons Delilah could do no better than himself, how he could have any female he wanted so she should count herself lucky that he wanted her. After he had finally retreated Gideon had entered into a sparring match with some other guards who were quickly replaced by none other than the raven haired beauty herself. Something came over him as they traded blows and in a move that was faster than even he could track he had her pinned beneath him, his fangs bared as the growl he worked to hold back each day ripped out of his throat. On impulse he dipped his head, claiming her lips in a kiss that seared it’s way all the way down to his toes.
That was the kiss that started it all, the beginning of an addiction that the Prince was powerless to resist. Unsure of how their parents would react the young couple kept their love affair quiet for no Bastion had ever dared fraternize with a Prince, and no Prince had ever laid claim to a Bastion. They were treading on unknown ground though Gideon cared not, he was falling for Delilah Rancour and in his heart she was his. He adored her quick wit and intelligence, admired her strength and resilience, and deeply respected her dedication to every undertaking she ever entered into. It was his plan to mate her the first chance he got, though as the two of them well knew that time would most likely be after his father decided to step down from the Throne. Varian was a traditionalist who had bowed to a few whims but this was one he wouldn’t budge from.
Gideon expertly ducked lots of potential mates that his father thought were appropriate and at one point the Prince was sure that his mother was helping to sabotage that effort. He always suspected that perhaps she knew more than she let on, her decorum and grace lending to her silence though her little acts to keep him separate from the women his father picked always amused him. Still the years went by and he refused to take a mate, exclaiming that he wouldn’t mate a female that he didn’t love. This angered Varian on several occasions for he found his sons lack of interest in even trying to like one of his choices most galling but with the help of Cecelia, a Bastion and a very close friend of Gideon’s, the King was eventually soothed into complacence.
Decades passed in a happy blur for Gideon, his position as Prince a great responsibility that he carried with ease while he and Delilah existed in a blissful bubble. Unfortunately the state of their people was a deteriorating situation that pulled both the Prince and the King from other duties with great regularity. Relations between the Blooded and the Turned had always been strained but it seemed the prejudices and distrust were escalating. Varian, try as he might, couldn’t seem to find the root of the problem and no matter how many hours he worked the problem the circumstances only seemed to get worse.
The Prince’s Bastion worked as a tight knit unit under his command to quell the small risings which put a strain on his time with his beloved. Even as she seemed to be pulling away from him he couldn’t spare the time to find out what was bothering her for his duties to his people always came first. His father was becoming increasingly agitated and stressed trying to pull his people together struggling against some unseen force that was working against them. In spite of the peace that they had known for hundreds of years, Varian found himself facing multiple executions and other disciplinary trials with a heavy heart.
Winter, 4506 B.C
My Dearest Son,
There is so much that I would wish to impart to you, so much that I still have to teach you but I fear my time upon this Earth may be coming to an end. I have labored these past several centuries to bring our people together, to end the feuds that divide us so that we can once again stand firm and united. Alas I fear it has all been in vain and my biggest regret should my suspicions prove true is that the consequences of my failures will be the only legacy I leave behind.
It is my belief that someone or someone’s unknown are working behind the scenes to stoke the fires of this cancer that plagues our people. I have yet no proof besides that feeling in my gut that these occurrences have been orchestrated. For what reason or to what purpose I know not, nevertheless it is a sense that I cannot shake. Should the worst come to pass, keep those you trust completely close to you and heed my warning. Find the culprits responsible and deliver them swift justice.
This was not the legacy I had hoped to leave to you, any father wishes only to provide for his offspring a better life than he had once had himself. To make the world a bit better before bequeathing the future to him and in that endeavor I have failed spectacularly. Be strong, be stalwart, and never forget your duty. Perhaps one day you can forgive me my weakness. Perhaps one day I may forgive myself.
The tensions between the Blooded and the Turned finally boiled over in a night that would go down in Vampire history as the Great Betrayal. In the wee hours of the morning, just as the first hints of light were blooming in the sky a sect of Turned opened the gates of the city wide exposing the populace to the waiting army of humans and werewolves that waited beyond. The screams and cries of his people would forever haunt Gideon to his dying day, a chorus of souls placed under his protection crying out in horror as both their King and their Prince failed them.
The moment the reports started pouring in, Gideon had begun directing warriors to the underground tunnels. Focused on evacuation and counter attacks he completely ignored his father who was adamant that he be taken to a secret bunker to wait out the attack. The young Prince wasn’t about to leave his people, the continued requests to see sense were left unanswered. Finally Varian was forced to pull rank, ordering his Bastion to take him to the bunker and await nightfall. Against the five of them Gideon was powerless to resist though his screams of outrage were the last to echo through the castle’s stone walls. Dastan, Piotr, Idris, and Delilah all muscled him along the halls while Cecilia lead the way towing a very freightened Iris who was no more than 6 at the time. Once the doors to the bunker was closed they were trapped there until the moon rose once more into the sky.
Furious at being manhandled against his wishes, forced into glorified hiding as his people were butchered like animals Gideon retreated to a corner of the room. Just as the door was sealed the Prince experienced a sensation akin to being struck by lightening, the pain so deep and searing that it brought him to his knees. In that moment a profound sadness over came the raging anger, as all the powers of the King were passed to him and the deaths of both of his parents were felt along the link he now shared with every member of his race. From that moment on Gideon became a caged animal, prowling around the secured room clenching and unclenching his fist as the screams of terror and pain filtered through the thick walls.
In those hours Gideon could feel every death, the pain of each radiating through the link along with the deep seeded fear as his people were slaughtered without mercy or compunction. By the time the moon rose to release the locks on the room, the new King was seething with rage the force of it having settled on his wide shoulders like a dark cloak. He didn’t so much emerge from the room as explode, tearing through first the castle and then the city with murderous intent. The werewolves that remained met gruesome ends while the humans were drained and all but ripped apart.
When the dust finally settled the vampires set to burning and mourning their dead while their new King set to the task of finding the traitors who were responsible for the near extinction of the race. It didn’t take long, once he uprooted one they began to turn on each other in a bid to save their own skin, though that effort was in vain. Gideon killed each one of them with his own hands, making a spectacle of each in an effort to deter any who might have similar thoughts. At last the coronation made things official, King Varian and Queen Talisa were laid to rest and so began the reign of King Gideon.
Delilah, Idris, Cecilia, Dastan, Piotr, and even little Iris swore allegiance to their King, officially speaking the oath of the Bastion to serve and protect their liege. Left with the daunting task of rebuilding the race Gideon was also presented with his father’s warning, the hint of a more sinister hand having orchestrated the massacre was a disquieting revelation and one he took seriously. Despite the blood shed the divide between his people was still strong, perhaps even stronger following the Betrayal for mistrust was a powerful thing. Still, he was determined to bring all those responsible to justice and was single minded in his quest for the truth.
Cecelia became a valued ally in the effort, for her parents too had been killed during the attack as well as her younger sisters. Cecelia was graceful and beguiling in her carefully cultured innocence, wielding it like a weapon to unearth information with an ease that was sometimes frightening to behold. Meanwhile Gideon was facing another emotional upheaval as Delilah all but shut him out, pronouncing that they were through though offering no explanation to account for the sudden change of heart. That blow seemed the final straw for the young King, closing him off from everyone save the very few he trusted most.
The Bastion became fractured as the species limped along with no relief in sight from the prejudices and barriers that had ripped it apart in the first place. Delilah was closed off save her duties, Piotr became increasingly hostile, and Iris was prone to the mood swings of a child, things he had little time for. Dastan and Idris remained stalwart companions and were most often at his side along with Cecelia when she wasn’t out gathering information for him. Finally, nearly 3 centuries later, they had a break in the cold case, a disclosure from a source that shed light on the hand behind the Betrayal that confirmed everything his father had suspected though no one could have guessed how deep the betrayal went.
Grigori Sokolov, Piotr’s father and one of King Varian’s own Bastion had composed the entire coup in an effort to seize the throne for himself and rid the species of what he considered the weaker element. Rather than face justice Grigori fled, disappearing into the night as if the devil himself was hot on his heels. Gideon was rocked to his very core, that one of his father’s most trusted Bastion would betray him shook the young King down to his very foundations. Despite all the good his father had been working toward their people were still bent on ripping one another apart and a male he had considered a good friend had betrayed him completely.
Suspicious and heart sick Gideon could only find one thing within his warriors mind that might make everything better, and that was to leave behind the crown to go in search of the traitor. Disgusted by the short sightedness of his people, skeptical of his own friends, and completely shattered by everything Gideon disappeared into the night renouncing the title of King in order to hunt down the man who had murdered his family. With him gone the vampires fell instantly into a civil war, both sides engaging in warfare beneath the surface of the waking world in an effort to exterminate the other.
Gideon spent the next several thousand years, following the trail of Grigori Sokolov though he frequently became sidetracked by other affairs. With no King the vampires became rampant, breaking the covenant laws laid down by Valkyries himself with no thought to the consequences. While he may not be King any longer Gideon took the breaking of those laws personally, taking it upon himself to deliver recompense whenever and wherever he came across it. When new vampires were made he took the time to teach them, Rogue’s he dispatched with cold indifference, and all the while he followed Grigori. For all intents and purposes Gideon became a renegade to his own people, a vigilante who went to great pains to keep himself hidden and away from everything.
After well over 4,000 years on his trail he finally cornered the betrayer in China, much to his consternation his mortal enemy had not been idle either. Grigori had been busy building a small army, turning well trained Initia in order to have ready made soldiers with which to seize control. Gideon engaged him in combat and though his skills were far superior to Grigori’s he had the advantage in numbers, the overwhelming force of newborns overpowering the warrior as well as injuring him gravely. In a moment of pure chance, one of the newborns struck fast, putting himself between Gideon and the other newborns. With an impressive amount of skill he waded through the ranks and cut down Grigori, bringing an end to the snake.
After sorting out what remained of the newborns, Gideon left his ally to continue his quiet existence with his heart a little less heavy. With that wrong righted the world seemed a little less dark in his eyes, though he was loath to give up his quiet and solitary existence. Though it felt like no time at all had passed when the newborn who had saved his ass showed back up to plague him. Not matter how vehemently he cursed at the dolt, Kit Doe became as persistent and irritating as a skin rash with no possible antibiotic to cure the illness.
Even for all his complaining Gideon found he secretly liked Kit, his abrasive humor though advanced by his generation was mildly refreshing. The ancient also found himself trusting the Turned implicitly, something he hadn’t experienced for a very long time. As they traveled Kit fought alongside Gideon while he in turn educated the new vampire on the history that they now shared. Another small blessing, Kit wasn’t prone to asking too many questions and didn’t change in his attitude when he discovered he was in the presence of the vampire king.
Together they traveled for another 2,000 years or so, weeding out the bad eggs and staying below that radar; unfortunately Gideon’s past finally caught up with him. In the absence of the King the vampire population was becoming out of control, the two sects were more divided than ever, and the Bastion only saw one solution to the problem. They spent the better part of 300 years tracking him down and finally cornered him in a remote city near Bucharest. Despite their passionate entreaty the self-banished former King refused to pick up the crown, even when his dear friend Cecelia tried to sway him.
Delilah became impatient with the proceedings, stepping up to offer Gideon an ultimatum: If he defeated her in battle then they would leave him alone forever, but...if she beat him he would return with them and take up his rightful position as King of the race. Confident in his skills and abilities Gideon drew his twin broadswords and faced off against Delilah, having the experience of centuries of battles the ancient held no doubt in his mind that he would best his once sparring partner. Kit offered him a drink of ale in preparation and with the entire Bastion to stand witness Gideon and Delilah met in single combat.
In truth Gideon hadn’t been expecting the same skill level from his old friend and lover, after all the centuries he had expected to have surpassed her considerably. Humbling though it was she proved just as adept as she was when they were young, meeting him thrust for thrust just as she always had. It seemed to go on forever before the warrior realized that in order to best her, he would have to kill her. So evenly were they matched that nothing short of stopping the heart that beat in her breast would deter her from winning the bout, and even with all the time that had passed he still loved her. She was a terrible and frightening storm, beautiful in her fury and entrancing in the danger she could wield.
Gideon yielded, took up the crown, and once again stood as King of the Vampires. He and the Bastion have worked tirelessly this last year to eradicate all the Rogues which has greatly reduce the population to almost nothing. Unable to stand being around his family home, a place that is haunted with memories Gideon had found a new place with which to rule his people a place in the new world surrounded by rumors and superstition. Evermore, Colorado is now the seat of power for the sovereign of the Vampire race, providing a fresh start for both the King himself and the whole of the species.
The King is shaking some things up with his people, hoping against hope that he doesn’t make the same mistakes his father did. No longer is the Bastion the only voices on his counsel, for much to their displeasure Gideon elevated Kit and 4 other Turned to Advisers in an effort to quell the animosity and discrimination between his people. With any luck they can usher in a new era of peace and prosperity for the children of the night and finally stand as one united race.
I've met some very strong and independent women across the many centuries that I've been living upon this Earth and yet not a single one of them holds a candle to Cecilia. Her physical and mental fortitude are second to none, despite everything she's had to endure she remains one of the most loyal and stalwart members of people.
A long time ago she made an oath to me as her and King, but even before taking my place as the Monarch I made an oath to her. Sealed in blood she is my sister, my bonded warrior counterpart that I will stand beside no matter what comes.