The Shepherds are a Gangrel bloodline that arose out of the failure of the Montrose Party. To them, too many Kindred put the whole community in danger by recklessly over-feeding on kine, and risk "spooking the herd." By policing such excesses, often quite forcefully, the Shepherds ensure that the kine remain at ease and responsible feeding remains easy. It's just good livestock management.
The Montrose Party was a group of pioneers lead by Esau Montrose who attempted to cross the West to California in the mid-19th century. Unbeknownst to Montrose, the party included a number of vampires who fancied themselves cowboys defending their livestock as they herded the humans to a new pasture. The party was ambushed by Sta-Au and wiped out. The sole survivor, Gangrel Greta Devenpeck, went back East with a conviction that all Kindred needed to better control their excesses or else humans would begin to react appropriately: locking doors, staying in at night, carrying weapons. A few too many weird corpses would lead to police investigation, and that could lead to a breach of the Masquerade that put Kindred everywhere at risk. Devenpeck began recruiting like-minded colleagues to enforce what they called the "Fourth Tradition:" protect the kine, because they're useless if they're running scared.
This ideology tends to bring Shepherds into conflict with the entrenched power structures of Kindred society, though no small number of Princes see them as useful retainers. The weakness of the Shepherds comes from their proximity to humanity; they gain Blood Potency at a slower rate than most Kindred, which can hamper their ability to bring force to bear on a particularly reckless feeder.
References[edit | edit source]
Annunaku · Anubi · Barjot · Bohagande · Bruja · Carnon · Childer of the Morrigan · Dead Wolves · Empusae · Kerberos · Hounds of Actaeon · Larvae · Les Gens Libres · Mabry · The Mara · Matasuntha · Moroi · Mystikoi · Nosoi · Nepheshim · Oberlochs · Shepherds · Taifa · Vedma