Second City

Domain Summary

Echoes of Chicago’s rich history of violence and destruction returned with the fall of the shroud. The Second City exemplifies the heyday of organized crime and political corruption, amidst a backdrop of a city showing the scars of the Great Chicago Fire, riots, disasters, and violence.

Dominant Races

Wraiths and Vampires, with few Fae and Shifters

Politics & NPCs

Look, ya mook, ya can’t stop crime. Best ya can hope for is to keep it under control, an’ dats just what we do ‘ere in the good ol’ Second City: we control it. We make sure all th’ criminally-inclined are under proper management an’ serving da Kingdom, instead of our enemies. Sure, we get a piece of th’ cut... dats just good business... but better us than someone who wants ta whack ya. So long as you remember that th’ true power of th’ Second City lies with the bosses and th’ politicians, you should be fine. Capiche? 

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Costuming and Archetypes

1920’s Chicago Gangster, Flapper, 1960’s Chicago Activist, Dirty Bum, Hitman Mercenary, Blue Collar Worker

Umbral Realms

  • Low Umbra - Shroud 0 (Stygia - Shroud 2)
  • Middle Umbra - Gauntlet 9 (Scar, Wastelands - Gauntlet 7, Atrocity Realms - Gauntlet 8)
  • Dreaming - Mists 3 (Far Dreaming - Mists 6, Deep Dreaming - Mists 9) / Banality 7
  • High Umbra - Periphery 8

Historical Information

Before the War of the Dead, Chicago was the jewel of the Midwest. Good people, great food, and plenty of culture. Sure, we had corrupt politicians, corrupt cops, inner city violence, and a terrible unemployment rate (and you thought it was hard to find a job when your only competition was the living), but that's how it’s always been here. A city built from fire, blood, and sweat.

After a massive vampire brawl for the ages, one of the not so ancient ancients, calls himself Adam, waltzed in with a crew and made a deal with the future Barons and Dukes, or Aldermen as they are called here. When the Shroud fell, history came... well... back from the dead. Legions of ghosts came storming through... but we were ready when human society fell. It was like history walked right out of the museums and protected this town, our town, the Second City. Wraiths attacked wraiths, while vampires herded humans to safety. Half the city was wrecked and the human population took a dive. But what we lack in the living we make up for with the dead. The old Chicago returned. Whole parts of the city changed. Old buildings took the place of the wreckage. You can walk down the street to a speakeasy that hasn't been standing in 90 years or turn a corner and end up in 1963. And trust me, ya don't want to go where the Haymarket Affair happened. Lots of angry dead people there.

There is one thing for certain in Chicago: Mob Rules. Long-dead criminals came out of the woodwork. Capone, Torrio, Bugs Moran, Dillinger, Patrick O'Neil... They all got piece if the pie; the Outfit, North Side Gang, Syndicate, and especially the O'Neils. They run this town. Just like the old days, they leave the general populace out of their games and give a little back to the city that makes them fat and happy. Of course, the Mob aren't the only guys saving our skins. We got Old Man Daley, Police Chief Russel, Pinkertons, Captain Streeter, Fred Hampton, and your various concerned citizens. It’s okay though, the mobsters aren't so bad. Pay your dues and you won't end up fueling the city’s ""electric"" plants (Soul Reactors), and they go about their business. You can lead an almost-normal life and not ever see those wise guys. Otherwise, you are fucked.

We've rebuilt on the rubble of what was before... with a little help from the past. We got power, we got phones, we got trains, cars, crime, law, running water, and surrounding farmlands to support the breathers. We pretty much got it all, at least what we need to survive. But there's still that grime here. It sticks to you... like history. And you know what the one thing you can't do is? Change the past.

Second City Joins Appalachia

Early in court, the nobles of the Second City sought to establish a cross-continental railroad as a means to spread their criminal empire into every domain in Dischordia. However, the figurehead domain lord, Adam of Rome and the council of elder vampires beneath him managed to squander one opportunity after another, planting a seed of unrest between himself and the the crime bosses who were the true power of the domain. Aided by her prophetic arts and political savvy, Alice MacGregor of Appalachia saw the Second City begin to falter and moved swiftly to annex it, but she was not alone. One of the Second City’s nobles, Gemini, was, in actuality, a willing pawn for Gabriel De’Angelo and the Society of Deus. With Gemini’s aid, De’Angelo was able to abduct and imprison Capone. Gabriel dominated Al Capone to gain information and a foothold in the Second City. Torrio, one of the foremost crime lords and a long-time friend of Capone, was furious, and chose to join with Appalachia both for the profit and power they represented, and as a rejection towards De’Angelo. Cap Hatfield, Devil Anse’s son, was put in place to govern the Second City on behalf of Appalachia and, following his marriage to Alice, they both claim it as their own.

War of Aether

The Second City was hit hard by the Aether, due to the number of wraiths in the domain. A fair share of helldivers under Lucy Carter stood against the darkness fighting many of their own domain members driven to embrace their darker halves by the Abyssal army. The Giovanni under Torrio kept these specters at bay and turned their enemies into profit by using them to fuel the soul-batteries that run the Second City. Cap Hatfield took the battlefield only once aiming high from his tower downtown to end the opposing general of the Abyss. One shot rang out and the battle was over. The Abyssal general felt the weight of creation full-force and exploded into light.

Court of (Criminal) Empires

Wherever politics goes, crime follows. With the advent of the Court of Empires, the Second City crime lords, O’Neil and Torrio, saw an opportunity to expand their business into every kingdom. By inviting criminals from every kingdom to a gathering in the Second City, they sought to establish a criminal network that spanned the globe... with themselves, of course, at the center. Unfortunately for them, a member of the Imperial Sanctum learned of their intentions. One of the Sanctum’s mysterious “Gray Men” infiltrated the gathering with orders to send a message to the criminal element. An explosion rocked the Second City gathering, sending Torrio and O’Neil back underground, and shattering plans for a global criminal network.

War of Maelstrom's Rebuke

During the Court of Empires, diplomatic relations between Dischordia and Lazarus' Kingdom failed, and the longstanding hostility between those two kingdoms erupted into war. A coordinated attack by Dischordian nobles on the European domain of Carpathia and its lord, Alyosha Buljiev, precipitated the conflict, which would come to be called the War of Maelstrom's Rebuke.

The Sublime Cataclysm

With the tides of the war turning quickly to their enemy’s favor, the Dischordian domain lords prepared a spectacular attack certain to bring a swift end to the conflict. Sultan Suleiman, unsurpassed master of spirit magic, led the largest ritual Dischordia had ever seen. Aided by New Faith ritualists, the Arcane Academy, and a million occultists assembled from every domain, the sky itself bled with the power they summoned. Chunks torn from the spirit realms themselves bombarded Lazarus’ Empire. As each realm impacted, it laid waste to thousands of miles of Lazarus' territory, destroying immense swaths of land and destroying millions.

As Europe reeled from Dischordia's devastating attack, armies of Aether seized their chance to attack both of its weakened enemies. Territories which had fallen to darkness during the War of Aether now bled shadows like an open wound. Swarming forth from these tears in reality, the shrouded armies of Aether laid waste to surrounding areas. Shadow-eaten vampires, spectres, and darker things spead their chill touch, overrunning nearby cities and domains.