Clan Brujah

Ancelin of Lincoln

The Devil's Advocate, Walker on the Road of Sin (Path of the Adversary)


Image by Nolife-Edi. Please do not use without permission


Ancelin of Lincoln has never actually been anywhere near Lincoln in his entire life, or undeath. He grew up in the Dipped Quill, a tavern patronized (illicitly) by students of the University of Oxford. The Dipped Quill was also the principal haven of Helewisa of Gloucester, the Baron of Oxford and a noted Prodigal. His mother was a simple tavern server who became pregnant after a passing dalliance with a visiting cleric and died from complications arising from Ancelin's birth. Helewisa saw to it that he was "adopted" as a sort of communal child of her other servants, initially as a simple act of charity. But as he grew older, the Baron started to notice what a remarkable mind the boy had. He earned his name by taking every opportunity to hang around the Bishop of Lincoln's lawyers whenever they stayed at the Dipped Quill, running errands for them, making himself useful... and questioning them. Several of the Bishop's clerks, amused by his curiosity, indulgently taught him to read and write.

From that point there was no stopping him. He devoured every text he could beg, borrow, or steal. Helewisa indulged him, excited to watch the development of such a quick and curious mind from childhood.

She had planned to allow him the same opportunity for a full mortal life that her sire had given her, and then perhaps offer him the Embrace if he fulfilled his potential. But at the age of sixteen, he suffered a fatal stab wound trying to break up an altercation at the Dipped Quill, and by the time Helewisa reached him, he'd lost most of his blood. Her choice was between Embracing him, and letting him die. Unable to bear the thought of losing so promising a scholar so early, she chose the former.

Ancelin adapted to the change well enough, but he was little more than a child, without the perspective which Helewisa's decades of mortal life had granted her. He agreed with her contempt for stagnant, static social structures, but his adolescent desire for self-indulgence led him to a darker expression of it. He's very much a thinking Sinner, seeing the Road as an opportunity to pursue self-discovery and self-knowledge, and encourage others to do the same.

During the War of Avalon, Ancelin became Mithras' unwitting pawn in a stratagem to prevent the Circle of Red from establishing a presence at Oxford University. Unfortunately, that left him implicated in the murders of three of the demonic Mages, all prominent Guildsmen of the town, and he was forced to flee with the Inquisition hot on his heels.

Mithras was sufficiently impressed by his intelligence and resourcefulness that he offered him a place in London. Ancelin makes his haven in the Martyr's Bones, a tavern about a dozen miles outside London which principally serves pilgrims on their way to visit the Shrine of St Thomas a Becket in Canterbury - hence its name. From this base, Ancelin directs the operation of a skilled band of highway robbers and an even more accomplished banned of spies, who themselves usually pose as pilgrims. He serves as one of the Prince's intelligence assets, specializing in intercepting communications between London and the Archbishopric of Canterbury, keeping the Prince informed of anything that might suggest a resurgence of the Inquisition. At the same time, Ancelin's presence serves as a check on the Jackdaw, preventing him from extending his grip on the city's criminal gangs to the surrounding lands. Ancelin is perfectly aware that he's being used, and fiercely resents it, but he relies on Mithras' patronage for his present, comfortable position, and he knows from personal experience that the Inquisition is an all-too-real threat. He's not, however, above giving a bit of discreet help to the occasional band of Furores or other troublemakers.

Destiny

Ancelin becomes increasingly involved with the nascent Anarch movement in the wake of the Black Death in the fourteenth century. He joins the Sabbat following the Convention of Thorns, and flees London. He takes refuge for a time with Moncada in Madrid before becoming an itinerant agitator for the Sabbat in a number of different European cities. He returns to London in 1848 to assist with Doctor Schreck's abortive coup; in the wake of its failure, he relocates to the New World. By the first decade of the twenty-first century, he's putting his extensive experience of espionage and the infernal to effective use as a member of the Sabbat Inquisition.