by Paul Michael Graham

There is no bloodline more mysterious and obscure than the Arachne. No clan has attributed to the creation of the bloodline but it is suspected that either the Assamites or the Followers of Set are responsible.

The most common theory is that the bloodline stems from the Greek mythological story of Arachne. Arachne (called "The Weaver" by the Arachne themselves) was a Lyrian princess whom was the finest weaver of cloth in the world. Arachne had woven a per fect tapestry. However, she was also very modest about her work which caused the Greek Goddess Athena to visit Arachne in the guise of an old woman.

Athena searched the tapestry for flaws that she knew Arachne would make. When she found none , she became enraged and tore the tapestry into shreds. Terrified by what she had seen, Arachne hung herself from the rafters of the home. Athena then turn ed Arachne into a spider and her nuice into her web.

This mythology has led to the history of the bloodline, but how Arachne became vampire kindred is unknown. More than likely it is not Arachne herself, but rather a Methuselah kindred who developed the powers and used the name as her own.

The bloodline is in fact very old, but is relatively small in membership. Their numbers have grown in recent years and kindred have reported sightings and told stories of vampires that could spin webs and walk on ceilings. The Arachne bloodline is one that is very misunderstood. Their bizarre discipline, Araneiform, is feared by those kindred aware of it.

The Arachne's incredible stealth makes them perfect spies and many are involved in such practices. Both the Camarilla and Sabbat employ the Arachne as spies, but neither trusts them. As a result, the Arachne as a bloodline show no overt loyalties t o either sect but will join if it suits their needs.

A majority of Arachne are South American in origin, most presumably because of the their connection to their spider brethren. Some of the largest spiders in the world originate from there and rumors of truly monstrous ghoul-spiders have been witnes sed.

The bloodline also persists that they are one of the original vampires clans, and that they do indeed have an Antediluvian member. Most dismiss this as foolishness.

Nickname: Widows or Bugs

Appearance: The Arachne have no standard appearance but tend to be South American in origin. Most members of the bloodline have a strong connection with spiders. Ex. Zoologists, pet store owners, spider collectors, etc.

Haven: Generally anywhere but inaccessible to others. Regardless of where the haven may be, it is usually infested with spiders.

Background: The bloodline generally tries to keep itself in a low profile. They believe that one day, they alone will be the only surviving Kindred which is why they are actively seeking new membership. However, they do not embrace jus t anyone. Before a mortal is embraced into the bloodline, the Arachne will study an individual to see how they react to spiders. Needless to say, arachniphobia is not tolerated.

Arachne are fanatically loyal to their bloodline. Any treason against them usually brings death to the offender.

Character Creation: Most members of the bloodline have an affinity for spiders and many have pet ghoul-spiders. Most Arachne tend to have Survivor Natures but have varying Demeanors. Mental Attributes and Skills are usually primary, bu t not always. Many of the bloodline are required to have the SilenceMerit*

Characters are required to purchase one pip in the Weaving skill in order to use the discipline Araneiform.

Disciplines: Araneiform, Animalism, Quietus

Weakness: Because Arachne can manufacture poison with their blood, they require more blood than other kindred. As a result, every two Blood Points an Arachne drinks only counts as one. This can make feeding hard and often fatal to the victim.

Organization: The Arachne bloodline headquarters is located in South America; somewhere in the rain forests of Brazil. The Arachne keep careful watch over their members and will protect them if they can. However, assistance is often no t available.

The Arachne also have a respectable amount of information because of their spying efforts. However, theif information is small in comparison to the Nosferatu.

Gaining Bloodline Status: Members of the Arachne bloodline generally gain prestige through successfully embracing new members. But, status is only gained if the new member is loyal, and she also successfully embraces her own child.

Quote: "Quickly and as silently as a spider I move. To learn the way of "The Weaver" is to kill with grace. Come into my parlor, won't you?"

Stereotypes:

The Camarilla: These shallow fools think they know what's going on. One day they will fall and only the Arachne will remain. For now, let them think what they want about us. We'll use them till the time comes, and the we'll throw t hem away.

They are a mysterious lot. Don't trust them if your life depends on it! Beware of their strange powers...it makes them very dangerous and unpredictable. They give me the willies...-Nigel Livingston, Ventrue elder

The Sabbat: They are disillusioned and have no discipline. Their chaotic ways will be their undoing. They kill themselves, saving us the task. In the end they will be easy to destroy!

Itsy, bitsy, spider crawled up the water spout. Down cam the rain an washed...-Stewart, Malkavian antitribu

The Inconnu: For now they stay out of our affairs. For now they live...

They have been around for longer than most know but their numbers are insignificant. Now they are growing and their power is spreading. I must watch them more closely. - Alexander, fifth-generation Nosferatu.