OFFICIAL VEKN GANGREL ANTITRIBU NEWSLETTER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 MARCH 2002 IN THIS ISSUE .... EDITORIAL: 4 Glorious Years DECK: The Ditchwitch Deck FICTION: The Ditchwitch EDITORIAL: 4 Glorious Years The first ever !Gangrel NL hit the newsgroup exactly 4 years ago, in March 1998, so this is really the beginning of the 5th year of its uninterrupted publication. And what an amazing 4 years it's been - for the clan, for the game, for the community, and for me personally. i never cease to be amazed at how this marvellous game has spawned a genuine international fellowship, a fellowship composed moreover of exceptionally brainy people who dedicate a large part of their lives to an activity which, at its best, approaches an art-form. In celebration, you may now all raise your right hands and give yourselves a little pat on the head - you deserve it. Indeed, Scott, Jeff, Peter, the two Roberts [Goudie and Treasure], Todd and Steve may give themselves TWO pats on the head, if they choose. Y'know, Steve, maybe you should give yourself three - after all, you've put not only love and thought into this game, but also LOTS of WW cash. i'm glad you are getting a lot of it back, and i hope that continues for a LOONG time. DECK: The Ditchwitch Deck North American readers will mostly know what a Ditchwitch is, but i'ld be surprised if many people from the other continents did. Ben Peal, whose dearest wish it is to own one, kindly explained about them to me when David Tatu was driving us up through Georgia and the Carolinas last autumn, erm, sorry, Fall. A Ditchwitch is a caterpillar tractor which is used to excavate ditches in the heavy clay soils of the American South. The usual mechanical scoop/bucket/spade-type things don't work here, so instead the Ditchwitch has a HUGE [8-foot long] chainsaw on the front, with which to delve into the Dixie dirt. i must admit i thought that Ben was having a little innocent fun at the Limey's expense when he told me this, but it's actually true - i have seen them with my own eyes, and very surreal and menacing they look - True American Gothic. They even have a website - http://www.ditchwitch.com/Category/CategoryView/1003 has some pictures of the chainsaws. i've named the following perfectly-functional [despite having 5 disciplines] country gangrel-antitribu deck after this amazing machine, because it contains chain saws, and cards that say "earth" and "rock" on them. i dedicate it to my Southern US friends in appreciation of all their kindness, to Jared Strait for winning a storyline tourney with a !Gangrel deck, and to Ben in honour of his TWO victories in the storyline tournament. O, and it's 4CL-legal [but was designed for NCL, and works just fine there]. Am i Mr Emollient or WHAT????? CRYPT [12 vampire cards] Caitlin x 2 Genevieve x 2 Haakon Mortensen Leon Monique x 2 Omaya x 2 Sadie Shane Grimald LIBRARY [90 cards] MASTERS  Animalism Auspex Blood Doll x 3 Campground HG Dominate Fortitude Minion Tap The Path of the Feral Heart Pentex loves You! Protean The Rumor Mill, Tabloid Newspaper Storage Annex Sudden reversal Tribute to the Master Twisted Forest MINION CARDS  DISCIPLINELESS  Arson Computer Hacking Flak jacket Forced Awakening x 2 Gas-Powered Chainsaw x 2 JS Simmons, Esq. Laptop Computer x 2 Leather Jacket x 3 Pier 13, Port of Baltimore Sawed-Off Shotgun Sport Bike White Phosphorous Grenade ANIMALISM  Carrion Crows x 2 Cats' Guidance x 3 Guard Dogs x 4 Rat's Warning x 2 Shadow of the Beast Song of Serenity x 2 Wolf Companion AUSPEX  Aura Reading x 2 My Enemy's Enemy Precognition x 2 Pulse of the Canaille Revelations Spirit's Touch x 2 Telepathic counter x 2 DOMINATE  Conditioning x 2 Deflection x 2 Govern the Unaligned x 2 Graverobbing FORTITUDE  Hidden Strength Rolling with the Punches x 3 Skin of Rock x 4 Superior Mettle x 2 PROTEAN  Claws of the Dead x 3 Dissolution Earth Control x 2 Form of Mist Homunculus Quick Meld Rapid Change x 3 Wolf Claws FICTION: The Ditchwitch Gillespi Giovanni approached the padlocked gate, glancing to right and left to make sure he was unobserved; then, producing a pair of long-handled clippers from his trenchcoat he cut the chain and pushed the gate open. In the moonlight the machines glinted menacingly and he walked along the line, counting six from the left, before vaulting into the cabin. Rummaging at the left-hand side of the seat he found the keys, and started the engine. It roared into life as he drove the machine, at first hesitantly but then with growing confidence, out of the gate and down a muddy lane, then into a forest. Freshly-cut earth and crude concrete marked the spot, and Gillespi fired up the gigantic chainsaw and began to dig. About 10 minutes worth of work saw him cutting into a large concrete pipe, whereupon he stopped the engine and jumped down, lighting a torch as he did so. Filmy eyes, sunk in a rotting face, gazed blindly up at him from the cavity. With a grunt of satisfaction, Gillespi reached into the hole and pulled hard at the corpse's head, which came free with a squelch and an exhalation of noisome gas. "My, my, you've looked better, old chap. Looks like Legbiter's people had their fun with you alright, before they stuck you down here. Still alive, you say? BAAAD luck. 'Spect you'ld be in the market for a little payback, hmm? Well, just let me know where to find Monique. She and i used to have a bit of a thing, y'know, and i can use my, erm, pull on her to hurt Legbiter GOOOD." The dead mouth worked and the face moved, writhing as if with subcutaneous maggots. Gillespi watched it intently, bending closer and nodding; then, satisfied, he stood up, casually tossing the head back into the excavation, and turned to go. His car was parked discreetly close by, but as he drew out the keys he froze, feeling something brush his leg - a cat! Swiftly he reached into his coat for his Biretta, but even more swiftly did Haakon Mortensen, concealed amongst the trees, fit the last of 20 2H pencils into the hopper of his Chu-Ko-Nu. A salvo of pencils fanned out from the crossbow, glowing with the friction of the air, and slamming into the unfortunate Giovanni, who tried desperately to dodge, to duck, to draw his gun ... but to no avail ... a second of agonising pain as the pencil found his heart, and then another second, and another .... O God O Caine let me faint let me die let me go mad ...... But Gillespi could not lose consciousness. Paralysed but held upright by the body of the car, he could only watch as Haakon crossed his now-fixed line of sight, lighting a cigarette and waving casually to him as he did so. Gillespi heard the sound of the Ditchwitch motor starting, and then the saw. The vehicle entered his line of sight and turned purposefully towards him. Above the sound of the engine and the saw, he could hear Haakon's powerful bass: "Way down South, in the Land of Cotton, Old Times there are not forgotten, Look Away! Look Away! Look Away! Dixieland!" Not very long afterwards, Gillespi heard no more. ********************** Alright, that's it for this Anniversarial issue. April will be a bit late cos we are going across the water for some vampy fun with some french friends. Don't forget it's Portsmouth sealed-deck on the 17th [venue still to be determined, sorry, i forgot to ask the troops about it last night]. Blame it on a REALLY exciting game which Rob won [4 to him, 1 to me] with his war ghouls ... but i reckon my Ahrimanes were ONE bleed-boost away from making it an even MORE exciting game. O, and, finally, this is the last NL from firstname.lastname@example.org. That address shuts down today, so correspondence to email@example.com, please, from which future NLs will emanate. Seeya!