Petronius the Arbiter, born Gaius Petronius Arbiter, was a 5th generation Toreador childe of the methuselah Michael. During the Dark Ages he acted as his sire's steward among the Trinity of Constantinople.
Petronius was born in Rome during the reign of Emperor Nero. A satirist known for his extravagant lifestyle, Petronius found himself favored by the Emperor for a short time – a time period in which he penned the Satyricon, a collection of short stories that included the story of a werewolf and a vampire.
His work in the Satyricon fetched the interest of his future sire, and when Petronius tried to commit suicide to avoid the grisly death Nero had in mind for him, the methuselah Mi-ka-il approached him and offered him eternal life. Through undeath, Petronius abandoned his hedonistic tendencies and became a loyal subordinate of his sire, leaving Rome for Constantinople at his behest.
Petronius became the longest serving member of the Quaesitor Tribunal, and worked well with the late Septima Dominica of the Antonians and Symeon of the Obertus to keep order in the city. For more than five hundred years, despite adversity, infighting and the treacherous nature of the Childer of Caine, the Dream prospered. It was when the Iconoclast Movement had been beaten down and Antonius killed that things grew out of control.
When his sire became more and more unstable, Petronius became his majordomo, trying to retain control of the city. Although he was fully convinced of the divinity of his sire, he believed that the adulations of the archangel had to be reigned in, if the Michaelites should remain in power. To this end, he relied more and more on the Lasombra under Magnus, delegating more and more power to them.
- For the historical figure, see Petronius
- The book Encyclopaedia Vampirica called him "Titus" instead of "Gaius" (probably due to an editorial mistake)