Chattox Academy: the center of the maze

Figured that it’d be useful to get some of the secrets out of the way on one of the more secret-laced pitches.

So.

Chattox Academy was founded in the late 1600s following the Salem Witch Trials, when cannibal and serial murderer Aiden Kavanaugh realized that vigilance and egalitarianism could interfere with his family’s predilections. Thus, Kavanaugh hired James Chattox, a prominent member of the School of Night, to establish a kennel in which younger members of his family could be “domesticated.” Chattox built the Chattox Academy using occult architectural design and mystic dramaturgy to create a symbolic Labyrinth of Minos in which children could be thrown for the Kavanaugh brood to emulate, evade, hunt and murder, all the while weaning themselves of the weaknesses of budding sociopathic serial killers.

The academy worked extremely well, allowing the Kavanaughs to become American royalty (Kennedy analogues.) In time, Chattox’s colleagues in the School of Night started pointing out other family lines that could benefit from the “Chattox method.” First came the Milliners, a Vicksburg slave-trading family who bred into one of the South’s largest ghoul clans during the siege and, thus, needed to teach its scions how to control their bestial urges. The Ampelos, a Greek shipping family with deep ties to a particularly bloody Dionysiac cult, followed by the house of Bashir, formed when an Egyptian soldier made a deal for wealth and power with an ifrit during the Yom Kippur War and traded four children from every other generation of his family to serve as its servants. The Vasilov were the last to request sanctuary; survivors of Soviet psychic experimentation, the Vasilov wanted to continue their experiment and reap valuable data about the human mind in a controlled environment.

The Academy is a private school located in rural Massachusetts and is prohibitively expensive for children under the age of 14. A series of scholarships, grants and trusts makes secondary education incredibly inexpensive, and an aggressive recruitment program (PASS) brings in students from across the nation to learn and rub shoulders with the best and brightest. In addition, the PASS program pays the tuition and expenses of seven young men and seven young women recruited to go to the school.

The fourteen chosen for free admission are there as part of a unique learning experience for the Old Boys and Girls. Those students, known as ultors (“avengers” in Latin) are chosen through a set of mystical calculations known only to the upper management, and they serve as players in an ongoing game with the Old Boys and Girls: to wit, they hunt down the passers and the ultors try to stop them. Those ultors who survive the first year are recruited as agents by one of the Five Families.

Those who refuse participate in the annual Homecoming celebration.

The school is plagued by other predators as well. Its design and mystic resonance make it a weak spot in reality, drawing in predators and trapping them within the grounds. This is seen as a benefit by the senior faculty, as it trains their charges in the difficulties of a wider world.

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