As I’ve been working on writing some entries regarding recent events and revelations, I’ve come to the conclusion

that there’s no way I can write just one piece to cover all the issues involved. So I may be posting two or three documents to address different concerns we face. Now, with that being said… I guess the first area I want to discuss is the huge differences and challenges we face in Septum Civis (Virginia) Vs. Gotham (New York). I will state that I was never a part of the Gotham community. I did not live in NY at the time of its formation, or its heyday. I can’t go on and on about the way things were or should’ve been. All the information I have is second hand from those who were there at the beginning. Even those Elders have differences of opinion as to where it all went wrong. So I’ll go with the info I have from different sources over the years. The ideas and teachings that later became The Sanguinarium, The Black Veil, and such were not the creations of one man, however one man seems to have taken credit for them. It was Father Sebastian who took these ideas and published them, later marketing them to bigger and broader audiences. Whereas growth in the community can be a good thing, in later years, the community put the almighty dollar above ethics. Some of those who became “Elders” misused their position and people were hurt. Some of those Elders did not enforce the Veil, or flaunted it, and admitted everyone and anyone into their households. I’m not going to get into the argument about weather or not households and the community at large should be open to Otherkin. That’s a whole ‘nother can of worms. What I do take issue with is some households taking in anybody who applies for entry. It might be possible that the house did not define their purpose in the community, or just decided that their purpose was to party, I don’t know. Being a Vampire/ Vampyre in my eyes was always about learning, study, and self improvement. It was a community that didn’t fool around and took seriously the idea of being accountable for your own actions. That doesn’t mean we don’t go out and have a good time when the time comes for it. As my father always said “When it’s time to work, work. When it’s time to party, party”. Gotham seems to have become the place for everybody who wants to party, not do the work, and even more so criticize those of us who do as fools. I’m not saying that’s true of all of Gotham, however it appears that the gaja have taken over. Many of the Elders have left for greener pastures. From what I’ve seen of it, there might not be anything left to save. Sometimes you have to destroy something in order to save it. Might just be time to let it burn? In Virginia, Septum Civis was created by necessity (which is the mother of invention). We had a need that was not being met. We saw, time and again, cases of people claiming to be vampires who broke mundane laws, and put the rest of us in danger. In 96 we had to deal with John Bush and the tons of negative press from that situation. All was quiet for a few years, and then other problems showed up. After Jonathan Barron was almost killed by members of his family, and the unwanted media attention it brought, we decided to cast aside our differences and meet. During this first meeting, it was clear that for us to continue as a united force, dedicated to serving the community (and each other) was the only way that we as a group would survive. We decided that a court would be formed for the sake of settling disputes, so that we would no longer have people resorting to violence to resolve their issues. In Septum

Civis, we concentrate on the Vampiric community and the problems there. As much as we would like to involve Otherkin, we can’t help others until our own house is in order. We decided on a set of laws, The Black Veil and our local traditions. At this time, the Council has only exiled two members, one for sexual harassment, and another for breaking mundane law (statutory rape). The main household in the area is Noctem Aeternus (although we are welcome to have others join us). Within 3 years we have managed to restore positive relations with the Pagan community and be somewhat tolerated within the local Goth community (both suffered in the press due to the actions of irresponsible people not connected to us). Word had gotten out that as a community; we do not tolerate those who break mundane laws. We do background checks, namely to keep out minors, sexual predators, and the media (since they are so damn pesky down here, lol). We also do this to check out those who show up claiming to know “so and so” and what not. Usually one of us will know the person they speak of, and we can reach them to confirm or deny the info. This is one of the advantages of a small community, we can keep in touch. As much as we would love to have some sort of establishment where we can go and be ourselves, away from the eyes of mundanes, this has yet to be done. All in good time. Right now we are all concentrating how best to serve the community, how to better ourselves and spiritual matters. You can’t help anyone else if your own house is not in order. If you want to be an Elder, you must lead by example. We’re not looking for a bunch of guys living in mom and dad’s basement, and no dayside life. We have people of all walks of life, military, law enforcement, writers, housewives, college kids and retirees. We have people of all religions and spiritual backgrounds. I still ask myself how we draw such a variety of people to our ways and teachings. For me it’s the spirit of community and the drive to serve others, as I feel that is my responsibility as an Elder. Lady Raven Cadwell (aka Darci) Co- Reagent of Septum Civis

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