Cambion: the Legacy
The Cambion Families
In the ancient past, creatures of unimaginable power and evil visited the earth, making mortals their playthings or their servants. These creatures, known to us now as demons, left their mark across many different cultures and peoples. Many of these demons, those most human in thought and form, took human lovers for themselves and these unholy unions lead to children being born. These children, often known as cambions, had many of the supernatural powers and features of their demonic parents as well as some of the weaknesses. Because of their unique abilities and connection to their hellish parents, these cambions were often used as servants and followers of the demons, doing their bidding and sometimes ruling on their behalf. As the ages past and civilizations progressed, the demons began to visit the realm of mortals less and less frequently, instead relying upon their mortal or cambion servants to enact their wishes. Eventually, they did not communicate with their children at all.
The cambions, now left to their own devices, sought to further their own power and either pave the way for the return of their demonic parents, prevent it, or bring their return about. They knew that they carried their powers within their blood and so sought to pass along these powers to other mortals, perhaps to have more servants of their own. As time went on, the cambions developed their own culture, no longer ruling mortals openly but using their powers to secretly manipulate them. Cambions of a certain lineage bred with each other, eventually forming distinct cambion families with certain shared characteristics, powers, and traditions.
These families have remained relatively insular over the centuries, raising and teaching their own children, living in huge mansions or estates in isolated areas away from prying eyes of mortals, using their supernatural powers to retain their wealth and privilege as the mortal world changed around them. As one might expect, cambion culture is extremely conservative and traditional, with a special focus being placed on family and seniority, with social orders much like those of ancient days. They are also dark and twisted by their nature and upbringing, with a callous attitudes towards life, sick rituals, incest, and other unspeakable practices.
The first generation of cambions, sometimes called the progenitors or the ancients, are said to be truly immortal and unaging, though most have withdrawn from the world and are only rarely seen by even the most ancient of cambions. Cambions have mystic power based on the purity of their blood, how many generations they are removed from the demonic ancestors, and their actual age. More powerful cambions age more slowly, with some weak blooded cambions living only twice as long as humans, while some are thousands of years old and show little sign of age. Unfortunately, the more powerful a cambion is, the more detached it is from the world of mortals and the more vulnerable they are to demonic weaknesses such as holy ground or the faith of the virtuous.
The powers that cambions wield vary tremendously from individual to individual, though certain types of powers tend to run in families. Their diabolic sorcery tends to have strange reality warping effects, usually based around certain themes or concepts. Ultimately, the cambions are cruel and terrifying creatures and their powers tend to act like nightmare that have come to life, reality becomes surreal and nightmarish as cambions use their magic, a victim's worse fears may come to life or time and space may not behave in normal ways. Some cambions have an affinity for heat and flame, being immune to fire and having the ability to summon the unnatural fires of hell. Others command powers of darkness and cold, drawing it forth from the abyss. All cambions have enhanced physical prowess, strength and resilience far exceeding that of humans, amazing agility and vitality, as well as regenerative abilities. Once again, the purer the blood, the more powerful the cambion.
Cambions also have strange weaknesses as well, inexplicable limitations to their powers or vulnerabilities. The most common is that some cambions are stronger in the night and weaker in the day. For most, this is merely a reduction of powers during the day, though some cannot stand the light of the sun at all and must hide away from it. Another common weakness is to religious faith or even innocence such as that of a child or saintly individual. They are sometimes vulnerable to blessed items, being burned by holy water or not being able to enter holy ground. As with power, the weaknesses are more potent for those who are older and purer of blood. Knowing the true name of a cambion also gives you some measure of power over it and resistance it its powers, which is another reason why the families tend to be so conservative – because parents have supernatural power over their children as they have given them their true names.
While they are bound by familial loyalty and ancient codes of honor, cambions are not kind or moral by any stretch of the imagination. Demons are cruel sadistic creatures and their twisted descendants carry on those traits in their blood and in their traditions. Cambions also see themselves as a higher life form than mortals, a master race of sorts chosen by gods to be a cut above humanity. This belief combined with their ancient traditions of rule by nobility and their callousness makes the behavior of the cambions horrifying. Some cambions indulge in torture for their own sick pleasure, experiment on human subjects using magic or science, hunt people as though their were game, delight in causing fear and terror, or keep mind altered slaves. Many cambions are also hedonistic and decadent, having lavish parties or engaging in orgies or frivolously spending their money.
The cambions have been declining in temporal power in the modern age. With the advancement of technology, their conservatism and isolation does not serve them well. A few families, those with weaker blood but more progressive and flexible attitudes, have become more wealthy than strong blooded families who depended on magical might instead of social connections.
Amidas are a family that is more human and human their the rest of their kin. They seek to rise above their demonic ancestry.
Ascania are a family which openly worships Satan himself and claims to be descended from him. They embrace their evil nature both as dark priests of the cambion and as master of manipulation.
Ephrati believe that they carry the blood of angels in their veins and so think that it is their birthright to rule over all lesser creatures.
Ivorix are lords of the dark forest, creatures of primordial nature, the kill and the hunt.
Krann are masters of dreams and nightmares, they bring forth the worst fears of their victims and delight in causing suffering.
Mordua are a family of darkness, night, and the endless cold of oblivion itself.
Sklavi this nearly entirely female family are the most inbred and inhuman of all cambions, they are insane cannibals and shape shifters who cause chaos and madness.
Vesian are a family of hedonists and pleasure seekers, delighting in experiences every sensation and sharing their discoveries with others.
Curs are bastards of the cambions, having no family of their own, often being born from the union between two cambions of rival families or a cambion and human.
Powers and Weaknesses
Abilities are common to all cambions.
Corruption is the amount of unnatural weaknesses or bizarre deformities that a cambion has as the result of either its demonic heritage or inbreeding.
Dark Desires are the compulsion that all cambions have to act in terrible ways. Urge is the degree to which a cambion is losing control and succumbing to those Dark Desires.
Goetia is witchcraft, practiced by many cambions.
Legacy is the purity of a cambion’s blood and so represents its potential for supernatural power.
Maleficia are the innate supernatural abilities that cambions have based on their ancestry.