Baali: Servitors of the Pit
On the beliefs and hierarchy of the Servitors of the Pit:
In the ancient and glorious days of Mesopotamia, a cult arose in the city of Ashur which tended to a hidden well wherein lay the burnt and destroyed remains of the first of the Children of Night, along with the festering remnants of hundreds upon thousands of sacrifices which were thrown there. It was then, as now, the way of the priests of the cult to never allow these remains to dry, nor to complete their decomposition before they were baptized with ever increasing gore. Constant sacrifice was made there, of prisoners and slaves- men, women, and children alike, likewise, cattle and other livestock. Great swarms of flies and other insects bred there, and an unbelievable stench rose from the secret pit to the heavens.
Eventually, a Cainite of great power came to knowledge of the well, and witnessed the rites being held there, and found them wanting. They were, he felt, like children themselves, only playing at evil, and desired to teach them its true meaning.
Those who dutifully served the rotting pit raised incantations against him, but they were as wheat before a great storm. The power of his voice struck them dumb, his gaze alone struck many down, and those who remained, he rent limb from limb, or commanded even to rend their own flesh with their sacrificial blades. Those who were comely, he made to couple, and melted them together flesh and bone, or caused them to impale themselves on twisted bones which he drew out of their flesh.
So that his lesson to them would be remembered, he tossed their remains into the fetid fleshpit and poured a deep draught of his own blood in after them. Of the hundreds who worshipped at the well, only three were able to lap up that blood and crawl forth, filthy with gore, and howling with fury and madness, hateful, and vengeful, and hungry for death and destruction.
But deep in the pit, the vitae spilled had not gone without consequence. The Cainite had been terrible and his blood rich and potent as any might imagine. The flesh and bone that rotted there was stirred, and fueled, and fed, and as the shuddering mass coalesced, this unnamable thing fed upon it's own, absorbing the first Child into it's hideous bulk. There in the darkness, it swelled itself on the vampiric insect swarm that continued to breed in its stench. But this was not enough to fully sustain the thing, and it fell into torpor, dreaming the nightmares of darkness, as the Children of Night had done for so long before.
The three born of the well that night went forth into the world, and the records of Nergal and of Moloch are still spoken of in whispers by those who tread the dark ways. But the identity of the third is unknown, and has been the subject of speculation (and impersonation,) by many since. In truth, it was a pair lovers, merged by the Cainite destructor, who crept back when it's brothers had gone, whispered to by the growing thing in the well. It, too, fed upon the insects, and other small scavengers drawn there by the stench. In time it grew strong, and at the bidding of the pit-thing, created childer of it's own and commanded them to go forth into the world and create more such organpits, so that the sleeping mind of the immortal monstrosity could venture forth, growing in power, while it sought the resting places of the other Children of Night.
Thus, the cult was given birth, and it's power remains upon the world, in deep subterranean caverns where the fleshpits rot and seethe.
The Servitors are unknown even to most of the Baali, though they consider the followers of Via Hyron to be close cousins, and assist them occasionally without their knowledge.
The identity of the Cainite who gave birth to all of the Baali is deeply speculated, but the Servitors are convinced that it was Tzimisce whose vitae fueled them first, and that vicissitude is indeed the parasitic plague which the true Brujah believe it to be.
The embrace of the Pit is strangely similar to that of the Sabbat, and may be practiced upon mortal and kindred alike, (though kindred re-embrace is more often successful.) The victim is brought, willingly or otherwise, to the fleshpit, where all members of the coven enact a complex invocation. Thereupon, the victim is made to bleed, by any of various means, depending upon the value of the sacrifice to the group- some merely have their throats cut, others are fallen upon and ripped limb from limb. All members of the coven partake of the victim's blood, and the remains are thrown into the vile mess at the bottom of the pit. Most simply add to the ever increasing semi-sentient ichor that brews there, but occasionally, an especially strong-willed individual will drink of the pitslime, and escape to serve it's will ever afterward.
Servitors of the pit are thus, technically, only one generation removed from the Kindred who first fueled it with his vitae, but because so many kindred since then have added to it's essence, the effective generation of any given servitor varies. Within the cult, this is often only a small factor of a cultist's position within the group. A much more relevant matter is the member's loyalty and devotion to his or her service.
Those rare few who are familiar with the Servitors of the Pit may be able to recognize the strangeness of such a kindred's vitae under the effect of various rituals, but generally, it seems simply caitiff, clanless to all identifying measures. The aura of a Servitor does not flame as that of an infernalist, or some other of the Baali clan, but rather seems obscured by smoke, it's colors pale as any kindred, but veiled to varying degrees with a gray or black mist. In the case of much older servitors, and those who were embraced directly by the pit from their mortal lives, the aura appears entirely black.
Because of the unique form their embrace takes, Servitors are rarely traitorous to their covens, and those who have attained respected ranks may communicate directly with the minds of lesser servants.
The belief of the Servitors is only of little consequence, since they are so directly connected to their creator and thus seem to primarily reflect it's desires in their actions and thoughts, but those who maintain a semblance of sanity often rationalize their actions as a means of gaining favor with their 'True God'. Many of these consider themselves to be inferior to those who are lost to the mind of the Pit, or absorbed by it entirely and allowed to merge their whole being with the Faceless God. Some even reenact their embrace regularly, hoping to find greater favor.
Servitors of the Pit who are directly embraced generally possess the disciplines of Daimoinon, Vicissitude, and Obfuscate, though these are not exclusive, since other clans have brought their own disciplines into the covens, and shared them with their fellows.
The primary goal of the Pit is to expand itself, to further facilitate its search for the lost Children of Night. But over the millennia, it has grown increasingly more insane, and has turned its mind somewhat to the belief that all will not be right until it has absorbed the flesh and blood of all living things.
Via fovea: The Path of the Pit
10. Siding or agreeing with an outsider against the way of the Pit.
9. Failing to advance the strength and power of the pit at any opportunity.
8. Actively working to thwart the works of another that is serving the Pit.
7. Betraying a fellow Baali, (Unless for the purposes of spreading the Pit's power.)
6. Betraying a fellow servant of the will of the Pit, (except as above.)
5. Betraying a Pit brother or sister, (except as above.)
4. Aiding anyone who actively works against the will of the Pit.
3. Betraying a superior of one's birth Pit. (except as above.)
2. Aiding one who has been marked for the Pit to escape their fate.
1. Betraying the location of any Pit or its servants.
(I would like to thank Darrell Lasater, my compatriot and co-conspirator, for his insights and assistance in creating this article. - KM)
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