The Founders were a coterie that was instrumental in the creation of the Camarilla. The first recorded meeting of this coterie is in Vienna in 1394, at a meeting gathered by the Ventrue elder Hardestadt the Elder and the Tremere Councilor Meerlinda in response to the threats posed by both the Inquisition and the Anarch Revolt.
There, Hardestadt proposed the institution of a shadow society of vampires, hidden away from Inquisitors and other mortal witch-hunters. Some, such as Prince Mithras of London, rejected this suggestion, but a few heeded Hardestadt's call. These few, the Founders, joined Hardestadt in spreading the word of the necessity of this shadow society, which would eventually be called the Camarilla.
- Adana de Sforza (Brujah)
- Camilla Baines (Malkavian)
- Josef von Bauren (Nosferatu)
- Milov Petrenkov (Gangrel) (missing, presumed deceased)
- Rafael de Corazón (Toreador)
- Mistress Fanchon (Tremere)
- Hardestadt (Ventrue) (deceased)
The Founders are known to have remained active as a group even after the institution of the Camarilla at the Convention of Thorns. They came to be known as "Justicars", as much of their time was spent policing their sect, until the first true Justicars were appointed at a Conclave in 1504.
The Inner Circle
The Founders' last known activity as a group was in Rome in 1666; the coterie's subsequent fate, and the fates of all the members save for Rafael de Corazón and Hardestadt, are largely uncertain. Hardestadt is known to have been a member of the Camarilla's Inner Circle, and some or all of the other Founders may have followed suit.
The Inner Circle is the secretive cabal, compromised of a single member of every pillar clan, that controls the Ivory Tower. It is the archetypical secret society, inspiring legends for countless conspiracy theorists’ nightmares, exerting its will subtly, with frightening effectiveness. Few know the identities of the current membership of the Inner Circle, but none can deny that these Kindred are the true political hub around which the Camarilla revolves. None are certain exactly how the members of the Inner Circle achieve their position, except simply by surviving to be a ripe old age and ascending to monstrous power. Every 13 years, these secret masters meet in Vienna to discuss potential threats to the Camarilla and the sect’s future.
It is worth mentioning that a small coterie of Kindred that first took the role of Archons was also present at the founding of the Camarilla. Staunch allies to the Founders, the four pioneer Kindred that assisted the first Justicars were:
- Gilbert d'Harfleur (Ventrue)
- Father Jean-Marc d'Harfleur (Toreador)
- Federico DiPadua (Nosferatu)
- Lilika Kairos (Brujah) (now an Anarch following Theo Bell in 2018)
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