The King is Dead: A Glorious Thing To Be the Scarecrow King
Beyond the Pale to the south sits the Darkmoor. This wilderness of bogs, mires, and granite-topped tors is home to very little modern human habitation, but boasts numerous ancient cairns, menhirs, and standing stones. Mystically-minded members of the Glorious Revolt and desperate criminals are some of the few humans to inhabit the area; the vampires largely avoid it due to the lack of prey, but some people claim the area holds stranger horrors – werewolves, wights, and wyrms amongst others.
Beyond that lies Kernow. Once an independent Kimmerian kingdom, Kernow has been assimilated into Mallean culture for nearly one thousand years and few local peculiarities still linger. Since the Kernish isthmus is the westernmost extent of the isle of Malleus, it is a natural haven for smugglers and pirates arriving from the colonies. The town of Pennsans, in particular, has become a pirate haven and a division of the Royal Army under Major General Garnet has been dispatched to pacify the town. The major general has taken his bevy of vampiric “daughters” (truthfully, his several times great-granddaughters) with him to Pennsans; they’re looking forward to the holiday.
Another Secret Society of Malleus
The Red Brotherhood
Few societies active in the Glorious Revolt would consider the Red Brotherhood to be part of their conspiracy -- the Bloodstained Blade and the Illuminated in particular consider the Brotherhood to be as bad as the vampires – because the Red Brotherhood is a fraternity of criminals and murderers. Composed of pirates, robber-knights, and smugglers, the fraternity enforces a rough code of honor that boils down to “brethren shall not prey on brethren.” While essentially egalitarian (indeed no other society save the Wild Hunt has such a mix of races, and the Hunt has fewer women or as many former gentry), the Red Brotherhood has no interest in the higher goals of the Revolt; they don’t even particularly care to see the King Wilhelm overthrown since they’re doing just fine thumbing their noses at him. The Glorious Revolt begrudgingly makes use of the Red Brotherhood when needed to smuggle arms and ash wood into Malleus; it would be a hero indeed who could persuade this army of cutthroats to take up the Revolt’s cause.
Archetypes: buccaneer, fence, highwayman, pirate, robber-knight, smuggler.
The unofficial leader of the Red Brotherhood in Malleus is the Reverend Kristoff Thorndyke, a former pirate turned smuggler turned highwayman also known as Feathertop for the weird, scarecrow-like mask he wears to protect his identity. Reverend Thorndyke is a bitter, nihilistic man with a pitch-black sense of humor; his fiancée was taken off by a vampire when he was young, and now he preaches subservience to them during the day and undercuts their power by night. If there is any hope of persuading the Red Brotherhood to actually embrace the Glorious Revolt, it could well begin in Thorndyke’s parish of Rum Marsh.