Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
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Lasombra influence in Rio stretches back to Gonçalo Coelho's discovery of the site; after all, it was a legendary Archbishop of the time known as Monçada who bankrolled his expedition. The Toreador arrived scant decades later, with the first exiled Huguenots to build a permanent settlement along the bay. Until gold and gems started flowing through Rio from Minas Gerais in the 1690s, the two clans spatted intermittently. With the money, however, came the real wars, wars which lasted until 1807 and the arrival of the exiled Portuguese court fleeing Napoleon. The influx of powerful kindred of both clans ground the conflict to a quick stalemate, while the city's immense wealth and large transient population made peace a very appealing notion. Eventually, the truce grew into something that bears occasional resemblances to an alliance, based on the sacred tenet of not disturbing the goose that lays the golden (and emerald) eggs.
So it is here, of all places, that Sabbat Lasombra and Camarilla Toreador have made an unspoken peace. The city has been tacitly declared Carnival for the Kindred: a free city, outside the sect wars and the Jyhad. All vampires are welcome here, provided that they leave their politics behind for the duration of their stay. That is not to say that Rio is safe for vampires - not by any stretch of the imagination; but rather that if a vampire kills another here, it is much more likely to be for reasons of business - or pleasure - than for political gain.
Vampires of all stripes stroll through Rio's torrid byways, but certain clans are predominant. The Lasombra and Toreador still dominate Rio, conducting the city's affairs (or simply existing) with a style and elegance unknown to more staid regions. Brujah also walk here in abundance; some are descendants of slaves or holdovers from the nights of revolution, while others are drawn by Rio's Santeria rites and subversive blood cults. Malkavians cavort through the riotous night streets, their excesses ignored by the laughing herd; Tremere slink through the shadows, spying and selling their services; Setites hiss from alleyways, offering diversions to satisfy any and all tastes; and even Assamites can be found here, as assassins or as martial arts students of capoeira and Brazilian jiu-jitsu.
For Rio's mortal population, Carnival is the legendary festival that takes place four days prior to Ash Wednesday; for vampires, Carnival is something entirely different. It is the official code of Rio, enforced by centuries-old vampires who, perhaps weary of the wars of their kind, have made the city a playground. The city is a free port for vampiric goods and services, where deals can be struck and assignations can be made away from the watchful eyes of sect elders. It is in Rio that a Toreador can hire a Tzimisce to fleshcraft his dream lover, or a devout Lasombra can pray at the statue of Christ the Redeemer on Corcovado alongside a Wee Kirk Gangrel.
Vampires from any sect are welcome to the city as long as they are able to forget about politics during their stay. The city has become something like a holiday resort for the undead, since multitudes of tourists and sprawling slums offer more than enough sustenance. Thanks to the impressive variety of clans represented in the city, everything a vampire's heart could long for can be easily found in Rio.
During the Nights of Turmoil, it seemed that Rio came out mostly unscathed. Vampires surely disappeared in Rio, but less so here than elsewhere in South America. There are rumors that this is because of the most feared vampire in the city; Gratiano de Veronese, kept the Hunters at bay. Likewise, little changed in the city with the Chicago Blood Accord. After all, Rio had already been functioning in such a manner for centuries without the need of a blood contract to enforce the truce.
- 1502: The Portuguese explorer Gonçalo Coelho discovers Brazil, landing in what would later become Rio de Janerio. This expedition was bankrolled by none other than Archbishop Moncada (NPC) of the Sabbat.
- 1555: French Colonists begin to arrive, and accompanying them are members of the Toreador Clan. This marks the beginning of the conflicts between the Lasombra and the Toreador which would last for centuries.
- 1807: A truce is called between the Lasombra and Toreador Clans, marking the end of their regular conflicts.
- 1942: Suarez (NPC) of Clan Toreador becomes the Camarilla Prince of Rio.
- 2000: The infamous Lasombra Gratiano de Veronese takes up residence in Rio, taking the title of Archbishop of the Sabbat.
Vampires of Note
The following vampires of note have visited or resided in this location:
- Suarez (NPC): Toreador, Camarilla
- Prince of Rio de Janeiro from 1942 CE to present.
- Gratiano de Veronese (NPC): Lasombra, Sabbat
- Archbishop of Rio de Janeiro from 2000 CE to present.
- Arrived in 1807, traveled until 1875.
- Paulina Bouc
- Resided in Rio, avoiding kindred politics, from 1990 to 1999.