You have always seen us. Yes, there, on the outskirts of your city. Perhaps you have seen the archons drive us away, but in time we have always returned. You marvel at our appearance, at the distant lands reflected in our eyes. You wonder about our mysteries, the powers you've heard we possess. Do not fool yourself. Those powers we traded long ago, for abilities far more monstrous. We are still proud, but our blood is gone, and we have known prejudice that even the Damned should never endure.
"Call me a vagabond, and I'll smile. Call me a thief, and I'll laugh. Call me a liar, and I'll feed you your liver."----
Gypsies, vagabonds and charlatans, the cunning vampires of Clan Ravnos roam the night as they indulge in the most dangerous of games ~~ lying to the liars, tricking the tricksters, and gleefully receiving curses from the Damned. From Bel Air to Bombay, from Shanghai to Sarajevo, these nomadic vampires wander where their citybound Kindred fear to tread. Now learn of the Ravnos' secret arts, and the centuries of hate that can lie behind a jester's smile.
Tramps and thieves, the Ravnos are scattered throughout Europe like chaff on the wind. Every country hosts a few, but where they can be found varies from night to night and whim to whim. Many travel with bands of roving tinkers or other undesirables. It is rare for more than one or two to be found in the same place at the same time, for they are solitary Cainites and prefer audiences and marks to company.
There is a reason the Ravnos have a reputation for chicanery – it's because so many of them are so very good at it. Reynard the Fox, with all of his mythical cleverness, could find himself talked out of his fur and fangs were he to deal with a Ravnos, and most Cainites and humans don't do nearly so well as that. Ravnos live by their wits, and they are constantly testing and sharpening those wits against all comers. Shell games, convoluted thefts, storytelling for coin, the selling of "holy relics" and a dozen other arts for separating fools from their possessions are all Ravnos calling cards. Most Ravnos will express professional admiration for any non-Ravnos who attempts to make a living in their field – and then rob the interloper blind.
There is nothing a Ravnos values so highly as his freedom. Wise Cainites do not seek to keep Ravnos from a place of their choosing, only to hurry them from that place once they have arrived. Once word travels that a certain location is barred to Ravnos, they will appear by the dozens to test the ban until it shatters. They then take their vengeance by descending upon the newly opened city in force and stripping it, by hook or by crook, of anything that strikes their fancy. About the only way in which an infestation of Ravnos is preferable to a military conquest is that the Ravnos sometimes leave more of the town standing.
The one thing that Ravnos prize more highly than a good trick (and a Ravnos who manages an exceptional theft will be regarded highly indeed by his clan members) is their honor. However, it is Ravnos honor, and defined differently than most Cainite honor is. A Ravnos never breaks her word – provided she has spit into her palm and shaken hands on it. Otherwise, the oath, no matter how fearsome, simply does not count and can be broken with impunity. A Ravnos will go to the ends of the earth to avenge an insult to her "good name," but it is up to each Ravnos to decide what constitutes an insult. Finally, a Ravnos will not cheat or steal from fellow Ravnos or one whom she considers to be a friend or "brother." The rest of the world, however, is fair game.
The Ravnos of the Sabbat are very different from their brethren outside the sect. The Ravnos Antitribu are still pranksters and thieves, but they have devoted themselves to the cause of the Sabbat. They are the only known organization of Ravnos in the world. Together, they are very dangerous, so dangerous that even the Lasombra put up with their ways.
The Ravnos never formed a unified clan. For all the centuries of their existence, they have been the Gypsies of the Vampire world, traveling in small groups, but never gathering as a clan. The Ravnos who joined the Sabbat were among the Gypsies persecuted by the Inquisition. For the first time in their long existence, clan members found themselves joining together for their own safety.
The Ravnos Antitribu should be considered the same as other Ravnos in most respects. One major difference is that their honor extends to all Sabbat, but not to Ravnos outside the sect. They are still very individualistic, but they have learned to accept unlife as part of a pack.
Appearance: Ravnos enjoy dressing in gaily colored rags and tatters, showing their tatterdemalion status off with pride. They love gold jewelry and many wear brooches with the Sabbat symbol.
Background: Wanderlust and a gift for trickery are all that's required for Embrace into Clan Ravnos. Certain mortal bloodlines (such as those that will someday be called Rom or Gypsies) are preferred, but runaways and buskers of all ethnicities have found their way into the clan. Sabbat Ravnos typically choose those who remind them of loved ones they had in life. In times of peace, they may choose mortal descendants. Most Ravnos Antitribu are Embraced before the age of 40.
Clan Disciplines: Animalism, Chimerstry, Fortitude