The Culebra are an ancient race of serpentine vampires that inhabited the world for centuries. They were also known as the Waxaklahun Ubah Kan or Los Culebra which in Spanish meant Serpent. It is said that the first Culebra was created by the Nine Lords of the Night – a group of priests and priestesses who worshipped the serpent god Amaru. One night, one of the nine lords received a dream message from the serpent god tasking him with finding the virgin priestess Kisa who had ran from her tribe before she was to perform a ceremony which would have her sacrifice a baby in a blood offering to Amaru. When she was found, the High Priest Amancio ordered her to be the sacrifice to Amaru and after slitting her throat she was thrown into a pit that contained the children of Amaru (blessed snakes of Amaru) who bit at her and injected her with the poison of the culebra transforming her into the Mistress of the night and the first Culebra..
Culebra , are a semi-reptilian race of immortal and feral creatures that feed on blood and are somehow related or descended from the Aztec snake gods, particularly a goddess. According to Professor Tanner these Culebra look more like snakes than bats and have a reptilian form. These Culebra are from Mesoamerican, Mayan or Aztec regions, unlike other vampires in the world, due to their appearance of reptiles (in other regions, vampires monstrous forms look like rats or bats). These Culebra have monstrous faces, cone-shaped fangs that fold up against the gums, flaked skin, vertical pupils, red/orange/yellowish glowing eyes and claws. Some Culebra that were large in their human form become horned and burly. Some Culebra have hardened scales while others have flaked skin like other snakes.
The blood of the living is the main component of a Culebra’s diet whether from the source, from a cup or container, or from the flesh of humans, which the Culebra make into a raw delicacy. It is undetermined when Culebra need to feed, how long they can go without feeding and what ill affects it has on them if it fails to feed, while it is known that they will lose themselves to their animal instincts and behavior due to their bloodlust. They can also consume human food, but it’s uncertain whether they gain sustenance from it, or simply do it to pass as human.
Despite their monstrous traits, they still retain many human traits that allow them to further the illusion that they are normal humans, such as sweating and breathing. As such, they still need to sleep, which they do during the day time. Culebra even produce waste and still grow hair like humans do.
Traits of the Culebra
Vampirism of a Culebra makes its victims immortal and gives them many supernatural powers.
· Immortality– Culebra do not age nor decay and are immune to death by disease or sickness.
· Accelerated Healing– Culebra heal from physical wounds much faster than humans without any lingering side effects of such injuries.
· Superhuman Strength– A Culebra’s strength increases with age, the 1,000 year old Santanico was able to eviscerate humans much bigger than her with ease, swing her hands through a person and maul them in one strike, and throw them with one hand across a room. Freshly turned Culebra are as weak as humans and one human can easily defeat them until they are overpowered. The master Culebra can at his or her discretion create Culebra that are stronger than a normal freshly turned Culebra.
· Steal Memories – a Culebra that so much as touches a human will instantly know everything that human knows. Culebra are also able to see, hear and even feel the past of the blood they’ve consumed. This is why some criminal organizations have pacts with the Culebra. Knowledge in exchange for victims
· Shapeshifting– Culebra can shape-shift into a reptilian form that is stronger and far more feral than their human form or their regular Culebra form. It causes them to mentally degenerate into mindless animals that can be killed easier as they are not as smart in a fight and are more blood crazed, though when partially transformed, they are simply more aggressive and can speak, while other are more like hungry zombies and even hunt in hoards or packs. They either have flaked or scaly skin with sometimes hardened scales and horns.
· Wall-Crawling– Culebra are capable of scaling on surfaces opposite to the ground and on walls, possibly with their claws.
Some ancient Culebra can have a special ability, such as growing a pair of bat-like wings, one ancient Culebra was able to crush someone like a boa constrictor.
If Culebra are killed, they and anything they wear turns to desert-like dust with no trace that it was ever a creature.
Sunlight – Direct, strong sunlight burns their skin and, if fully immersed in it, they will die and turn to dust along with what they wear. The touch of direct sunlight will either cause their skin to burn in smoke or be set ablaze. Only direct sunlight can harm a Culebra, while one that remains in shade or shadows will remain unaffected by the sun. However, if a Culebra has recently fed, it is able to walk in sunlight temporarily.
Heart Destruction– Damaging or destroying their heart, the organ of blood and the source of their strength, usually by means of stabbing it, kills them and turns them and whatever they were into nothing but dust.
Snake Venom – It appears that snake venom can incapacitate a Culebra. An S.A.V.E. envoy was told to put some rattlesnake venom into a goblet filled with blood that would be presented to a Culebra elder. Minutes after the elder consumed the poisoned blood from the goblet, he started to choke and became paralyzed, allowing the envoy to kill the elder.
Stats for a Culebra
EWS: 80 (Notable) REF: 70 STA: 80
Injury: Superficial, Minor –10, Serious –20, Major –30,
Critical –50, Lethal
Disciplines: Change Form (fog), Influence, Slow, Stifle,
Time Stop (Unique)
Aspects: Bane (religious symbols, holy water), Parasitic, Special Weakness (sunlight, wood), Supernatural Speed, Venomous, Sustenance, Unfeeling, Unkillable, Unliving
Special Weakness (sunlight):A Culebra dies if it is exposed to sunlight for at least one minute. However, if a Culebra has recently fed, it is able to walk in sunlight temporarily
Sustenance: Culebras must drink the blood of a living human or animal at least once a month in order to survive but like a snake they can exist up to 6 months without feeding – though they weaken as time goes by. They need only inflict a Minor Injury with their bite in order to be satisfied. Every night that goes by without feeding inflicts an Injury (beginning with Minor and escalating every day at sunrise). If the vampire reaches Lethal Injury from starvation, it becomes inert and will not revive unless human blood is spilled on its mouth.
Venomous: a bite of a culebra is venomous at the end of the scene in which the envoy is bitten, the envoy’s player rolls a General STA check. If the roll fails, the envoy is poisoned with the culebra’s venom. The venom is persistent and escalating (see p.225 of Chill). The envoy loses 5 STA a day, and the player must make a General STA check each day of game time. If the envoy succeeds in the STA check 5 times (one for each day in game time), the poison has dissipated in the envoys systems and the recovery process can begin. If the roll fails, the character suffers an Injury. If he fails the STA check five times in a row the character suffers a lethal injury and dies only to raise as a new culebra. Restorative disciplines can help the player replenish STA and Injury levels, but they don’t halt the poison. While poisoned, the envoy suffers fevers, intense pain, hallucinations, and bleeding from mouth and eyes (all of this means a -20 penalty to all target numbers, in addition to any Injury penalties).