Scourge is a term used to describe a vampire directly subordinated to a Prince. He is one of the muscles that a given Prince may call upon to do his bidding.
The Scourge is responsible for the destruction of those vampires of 14th and higher generations and those illegally embraced. Unlike the sheriff position, the scourge doesn't have a pretense of investigation, as they are searching out vampires who are guilty by their very nature.
This is a position most often found in paranoid domains where elders believe that fighting the symptoms of the Final Nights will stave off the coming of Gehenna. However, the Scourge originated as a position within vampiric courts in the dark ages, where a Cainite would act as the Prince's personal executioner, hunting enemies of the city (primarily hunting Caitiff and Autarkis) and acting when the sheriff could not (because of some political circumstances). It was reinstituted in Camarilla cities in the modern nights to eliminate illegal or weak vampires, namely thin-blooded, Caitiff, and unauthorized or rogue embraces.
The Scourges tend to be very unpopular and asocial Kindred. There isn't much possible room for promotion for a Scourge, but since they routinely destroy strange and secretive vampires, there is a chance that a Scourge scores a lucky kill on an Anathema and gets promoted to Alastor for that act.
- scourge: Italian "scoriada," ultimately from the Latin "excoriare" [to flay] and "corium" [skin], comprises a whip or lash, especially one used for the infliction of punishment. The typical scourge (in Latin: flagellum or flagrum) has several thongs or lashes attached to a single handle, as in the cat o' nine tails.