Although many of Cairo’s Kindred residents are familiar with Aziz and often exchange pleasantries with him nightly, few have ever really stopped to notice him. To them, he is merely the perennial and irreverent tale-spinner of Cairo who, if provided with a kind word or small donation, will gladly thrill attentive ears with artful recitations of his latest riddles. In truth, Aziz is much more than most of them will ever know.
To hear him tell it, Aziz was saved twice by his Embrace at the close of the 18th century. First, his entire existence would have ended then, were it not for the timely appearance of his sire-to-be. At that time, Aziz was a mentally disturbed patient in the care of Christian missionaries who had established an impromptu hospital in a downtown caravansary following Napoleon’s conquest of Egypt. The French soldiers, bored by their standing orders in Cairo, had somehow arrived at the idea of using the hopelessly insane for target practice, and they soon had Aziz lined up against the wall. According to the tales, the boy’s body was so badly mutilated when his sire found him that the Embrace very nearly failed altogether.
In addition to saving him from certain death, the Embrace was also the thing that ﬁnally returned Aziz to himself. Through his sire’s vitae, a small portion of the essence of an ancient and mighty djinn had ﬁltered into him, focusing his thoughts as never before and illuminating for Aziz the path he must forever walk. With constant contemplation of his own duality, Aziz hoped to achieve that which Marid himself had sought so fervently — the elusive answers to the Eternal Riddle. Since then, Aziz has become a ﬁxture of downtown Cairo. The many Kindred who walk her darkened streets often ﬁnd him on the corner under the lamplight or relaxing in one of several neighborhood coffeehouses smiling his knowing smile and engaging all those who will listen in his personal brand of ingenuous non-dialogue. With the passing of a new millennium, even the kine now know Aziz by name, and veritable legions of destitute Cairenes gather around him every evening to sit and listen to him spin his wondrous tales. For many of them, Aziz is the very face of hope — a reminder in these dark times of what can be achieved if the spirit remains strong.
Although it sufﬁces many of Cairo’s Kindred to simply greet Aziz and be about their business, one among the Hajj — a devout Nosferatu named Shahid — legitimately enjoyed his company for much of the 20th century. During that time, the two spent many long evenings discoursing on the nature of humanity, divinity and faith, often reaching similar conclusions from differing angles. Shahid’s recent withdrawal into affairs both personal and religious saddens Aziz, and he longs for the night when he can show his old friend all that he has learned since last they spoke.
Although he was Embraced in his late teens, Aziz has a childlike quality about him that muddies his appearance as far as age is concerned. His bearing is at once roguish and sly, and he often smirks, winks and smiles at the most unexpected moments. No matter which of the eight languages he uses at a given time, Aziz speaks only in a unique style of rhyming verse called radh — a sort of beggars’ cant among lower-class Cairenes.
|Aziz, Prince of Riddles|
|Sire: Al-Basnyn Abyad|
|Embrace: 1799 CE|
|Apparent Age: late teens|
|Physical: Strength 2, Dexterity 5, Stamina 3|
|Social: Charisma 4, Manipulation 4, Appearance 3|
|Mental: Perception 5, Intelligence 3, Wits 5|
|Talents: Alertness 5, Athletics 2, Brawl 2, Dodge 3, Empathy 3, Streetwise 3, Subterfuge 5|
|Skills: Animal Ken 4, Etiquette 4, Melee 2, Performance 4, Stealth 3, Survival 3|
|Knowledges: Area Knowledge (Cairo 5), Bureaucracy 3, Enigmas 3, Investigation 3, Law 2, Linguistics 4, Occult 3, Politics 2|
|Disciplines: Animalism 3, Auspex 7, Celerity 2, Dominate 3, Obfuscate 5, Presence 3|
|Backgrounds: Allies 5 (homeless and beggars), Contacts 3, Status 1|
|Virtues: Conscience 5, Self-Control 5, Courage 3|
|Morality: Humanity 10|