<Conrad> wears a concerned frown as he flips through the book of Thaumaturgical rituals. The coming attack on the Anarchs has him more than a little worried. He knew that there was no chance of going his entire unlife without having to face another supernatural in combat, but he’d hoped he would be better prepared when the time came. His knowledge of blood magic was still fairly

rudimentary, and it was better than his mastery of the other two disciplines his blood gave him affinity for. With what little he’d mastered so far, and his own lack of battle prowess, he didn’t see much chance of coming out of this with his existence intact, much less unscathed. “There must be something here. Something I can learn before the attack to improve my chances of survival.

House and Clan Tremere has managed to survive for centuries with a laundry list of enemies howling for their blood. Surely I can find something that can get me through a single night.” He sighs and continues browsing the book. Wards wouldn’t do him much good, and most of them were beyond his current skills anyways. Tracking his enemy wasn’t the problem, neither was them speaking ill of

him. He begins to lose hope and his head falls into his hand. Then he stops on a page, and the grimace on his face eases away. “Donning the Mask of Shadows? What have we here?” He reads on and the worry lines on his forehead relax, and for the first time since the meeting he smiles. “This just might be what I need to, as they say, ‘pull my ass out of the fire’!” Enthusiastically thumping

the book on his desk, Conrad pulls out his notes and begins jotting down the importan components of the ritual, cross referencing them with another book on the general principles and theories of blood magic and how it relates to other disciplines. “I see, I see. So as long as these Anarchs don’t have too much of a mastery of Auspex then we’ll be practically undetectable, at least until

the fighting starts. It’s not foolproof, but it would give me an opportunity to wait out the initial chaos and find a good time to strike. Then not only can I possibly survive the battle, but I might actually be able to contribute.” He nods to himself and begins setting about the work of learning the ritual, poring over the text, using every memorization technique he has learned in his

long tenure as a linguist, student, and professor. It’s the first time he has felt this kind of urgency in researching something other than the identity of his wife’s murderer since his Embrace, and it is also the first time that researching the Occult hasn’t left him with a gnawing sense of guilt. It was his obsession with Occult studies that had drawn the Kindred’s attention to him

and led to her death, and now for the first time he begins to once again actually enjoy delving into the world of lore and hidden knowledge that awaits him.

<Conrad> disappears to the library for several minutes and returns with a few more books. One is a treatise on the various disciplines available to Kindred and another is a more in depth analysis of the gift known as Obfuscate. Though he, of course, has no actual affinity for the discipline itself, the ritual seems to be largely based on the same principles and the additional frame

of reference can only help. He spends several hours entranced with the numerous ways that the mystical energies contained in vampiric vitae can be manipulated to spectacular effect, even without the application of blood magic. It is to his surprise that he learns the Obfuscate does not in fact involve actual invisibility, but rather a sort of passive, low level mind control that simply

prevents the victims from acknowledging what is right in front of them. “Fascinating. Existentially terrifying, but fascinating nonetheless.” He then switches to the other book and begins reading a bit about Auspex. He has a somewhat better, though still limited understanding of this particular discipline, having learned its most basic power. Though he does need to study it further, and

makes a mental note to do so when the opportunity arises, he is currently more interested in how this discipline interacts with and counters that of Auspex, and by extension the ritual he is intent on learning. “Hmm…it seems that there is a passive heightening of awareness that occurs as one further masters Auspex, enough so to pierce the mental fog created by a lesser user of Obfuscate.

Fascinating.” He cross references the ritual and discipline lore books for several hours, reading various accounts of the ritual in use and finally feels confident that he has a handle on it’s limitations. With that established he begins the process of learning the actual casting itself.