- See also: The Book of Nod (sourcebook)
The Book of Nod consists of multiple recensions and fragments that have been reassembled by various Kindred scholars, such as Aristotle deLaurent, Beckett, and Sascha Vykos. There have been attempts to compile these texts into one book, such as the chapbook produced by an obscure Georgia publishing house. But, traditionally, the primary transmission of Caine's story is oral (through Sabbat ritae or storytelling among the undead), while the texts with the most important events in Cainite history are heavily guarded to protect the Cainites. It must be mentioned that one's own personal beliefs aside, the texts and notes that have been passed down through the ages should be treated with great caution.
Known attempts to assemble the Chronicles of the Book of Nod include:
- The catacombs under El Dorado allegedly have 13 stone tablets containing words to each of the 13 tribes of Kindred.
- The Codex of Caine assembled by Critias
- The Prague Plaques found in the Nosferatu tunnels beneath Prague.
- The Erciyes Fragments, found in the Monastery of Shadows near Erciyes, and dutifully copied in 1197 by Niccolo Giovanni, ghoul nephew of Augustus Giovanni.
- The Book of Nod assembled by Aristotle deLaurent, Beckett, et al., and distributed by Ayisha Jocastatian. DeLaurent claims this is the most complete, but still not the complete text. It's assembled from a wide variety of different sources into a single narrative.
There are numerous open questions concerning the history of the Book of Nod. Its author is unknown, though Malkav, Saulot, and even Caine are often cited to have written parts of it, if not the whole thing. However, it may have had many authors and editors over the thousands of years since the time of the events which it describes, placing great doubts on its veracity. Some consider the entire book to be myths or lies, a story vampires invented to explain their existence or a tool used to mislead others into thinking and acting a certain way. Adding to these doubts is the fact that many writings attributed to the Book of Nod are incredibly vague or contradictory, sometimes appearing to be outright misdirection – which creates some large (and often violent) schisms of interpretation between Noddist groups. The oldest piece of the Book is dated to just before the time of Sumer, around 4500 BCE.
The Camarilla has a policy of denouncing Noddist lore and persecuting those who spread it. Any found pieces of the Book of Nod or similar texts are either destroyed or quietly stashed away to be studied by the sect's leaders. Nevertheless, the Book of Nod continues to be sought by many Kindred in the belief that it holds truths of vampiric nature and prophecies of the future.
A fabled "lost book" of the Book of Nod, the "Cycle of Lilith," is in truth their own narrative and series of documents, most recently assembled as the Revelations of the Dark Mother. Although tied to the Book of Nod, the narrative of the Cycle of Lilith is no more part of the Book of Nod than the Book of Nod is part of the mortal Bible.
The Chronicle of Caine
The Chronicle of Caine comprises the following fragments: The First of Times, The Coming of Lilith, Lilith's Magick, The Temptation of Caine, Zillah's Tale, The Tale of the Crone, and The Tale of the First City. Although Caine is identified with the "Cain" mentioned in the Book of Genesis, these Tales are not to be comparatively accurate with standard biblical canon. In his own words, Caine relates what his motives were that led to his curse, giving his personal viewpoints of the events that surrounded the days after the Fall of Man, and his history of being the Dark Father.
- In The First of Times, Cain explains that he sacrificed his brother, Abel, out of love. His "Father" cast Cain out, to wander in darkness in the Land of Nod.
- In The Coming of Lilith, Cain expresses his sadness of being left in the darkness, cold and hungry. Then enters Lilith, who tells Cain that she was Adam's first wife, the original wife of his father. She takes him in and cares for Cain.
- In Lilith's Magick, Cain wishes to have the gifts of power that Lilith has. After some persistence, the hesitant Lilith begins the Awakening ceremony by cutting herself with a knife and bleeding into a bowl for him to drink. Cain partakes.
- In The Temptation of Caine, Cain is visited by three angels who are agents of God. Each angel offers Cain a chance to repent for Abel's murder. By rejecting the Archangel Michael, Cain and his children are cursed with a weakness to fire. By rejecting Raphael, Cain and his children are cursed with the vulnerability to sunlight. By rejecting Uriel, Cain and his children are cursed with the Beast within for a thirst of blood. A fourth angel then appears, he who is Gabriel. This angel offers Golconda, the only way to "light" by the mercy of God. After this experience, Caine is now officially "Awakened" having the following powers: Celerity, Potence, Fortitude, Obfuscate, Dominate, Presence, Protean, Animalism, and Auspex. Caine then becomes aware of the Path of Blood, the Final Path from which all paths stem. And with all these powers, he leaves Lilith.
- In Zillah's Tale, Caine falls in love with Zillah and seeks to marry her. He does everything he can think of to make her desire him, yet she would not have him. Caine becomes so frustrated, that he tears at his hair. He finally seeks out the Crone's magick, who ultimately tricks him into a blood bond. This discovery of the Blood bond is what finally binds Zillah to Caine so that he could get her to marry him.
- In The Tale of the Crone, the Blood bond that has Caine bound to the Crone, has him in her servitude. After a year of compliance and avoiding her blood, he asked the Crone how to be more powerful than his childer, for fear that they may take over. This inquiry was really part of a plan to use this information against her. She provides him a weapon of living gopher wood and explains how to use it. After accepting the weapon, Caine stabs her in the heart with it, breaking the Blood bond.
- In The Tale of the First City, Caine expresses being in loneliness for an eon. He seeks to be with mortals again, and finds a city inhabited by the "Children of Seth". They accept him as king and he rules for some time, again feeling alone in his power. A young man named Enoch begs to be Caine's son. Despite Uriel's warning about having childer, Caine Embraces Enoch, his first childe. Caine then proclaims that this First City be known as the City of Enoch. His new childe Enoch, then begs for Kindred brethren. Caine agrees, and has Irad and Zillah embraced. They in turn, create more progeny. For fear of spreading his curse, Caine's orders that no more childer be made. They obey and the city prospers for ages, becoming a great Empire. Then the Deluge came and destroyed the City of Enoch and all of the "Children of Seth". Caine was so upset, that he disappeared. His surviving childer and grandchilder sought him out, and when they found him, Caine told them to go away. Left to fend for themselves, a Great War ensued with thirteen Antediluvians "killing" their Elders: Enoch, Irad and Zillah. When Caine discovered what happened, he sought out the Antediluvians. They had rebuilt a new city known as the Second City and produced another generation of vampire. Unbeknownst to the Antediluvians, the Dark Father Caine cursed his descendants with the characteristic weaknesses of each clan. Eventually the city is in constant state of war, it dies, and the Kindred scatter. The Tale concludes with a prophecy of a Last City, the City of Gehenna.
The Chronicle of Shadows
The Chronicle of Shadows are a collection of pieces and fragments that are debated to even be part of the Book of Nod. There are analysts who claim that this section had been diluted by the scholars and writers of Carthage, who took poetic license to write down "Caine’s Laws." It has even been said that the Chronicle of Shadows is just a collection of propaganda created by the Camarilla to support its tyrannical reign. While some believe this to be an elaborate Malkavian prank, others believe these texts came straight from the Dark Father himself, especially the thirteen commandments that were provided on authentically aged tablets.
The Chronicle of Secrets
The Chronicle of Secrets is the shortest collection of the three Chronicles. It contains prophecies and visions of an event called Gehenna. It seems to some, that the worries of this event have passed down from Generation to Generation and have caused a ripple of paranoia and fear that continue to reverberate through the Cainites and the Canaille. The Camarilla would rather see these texts just burn.
- The Erciyes Fragments
- The Black Throne
- The Last Daughter of Eve
- The Dark Father
- The Dark Mother
- The Time of Thin Blood