WoD: The Bones
The Order of the Skull and Bones
Founded in 1832 at Yale University, made exclusive by limited membership and the requirement that you be a senior at the university.
Notorious for selecting men who already were, and would cement themselves as the “Power Elite”. One alumnus once wrote:
“If the society had a good year, this is what the “ideal” group will consist of: a football captain; a Chairman of the Yale Daily News; a conspicuous radical; a Whiffenpoof; a swimming captain; a notorious drunk with a 94 average; a film-maker; a political columnist; a religious group leader; a Chairman of the Lit; a foreigner; a ladies’ man with two motorcycles; an ex-service man; a negro, if there are enough to go around; a guy nobody else in the group had heard of, ever … "
Either way, it’s membership consisted of the brightest and most promising Yale had to offer- so long as they were male. (At the time of this game, the Skull and Bones is still all-male).
The Order of the Skull and Bones is landed to two major properties, one, Deer Island and the second, The Tombs.
Deer Island is situated on the St. Lawrence River with the Deer Island Lodge being the main residence for Bonesmen visitors. The island is only accessible by a small raft coming from upstream. All motorized boats not owned by the Order or it’s members (who possess much of the surrounding land through family trusts) are banned from the river passage. The Island is the location of a retreat held by the Order every fifth year since 1900. The island itself has lost some of it’s former glory. There was once a time when the entire 40 acre retreat was filled with tennis courts, a softball field and a wide hillock for clay pigeons. These days, the lodge is the only standing structure, with the courts and softball field overgrown with vines. There are still many walking paths, but they are not as worn as they once were. The lodge is a drafty and leaky thing, but even in it’s ruin is still an impressive stone structure, standing three-stories and holding over thirty rooms. The deck of the lodge juts out over the lake, and there is a small dock with those few small fishing boats tethered there, which are used by the Bonesmen. Even with the lack of creature comforts, brotherhood and secrets yet untold bring even future presidents to the retreats.
The Tomes is a structure far less well known, being that it is only used for initiation ceremonies (about which there is much conjecture, but little corroborative evidence) and meetings of the order leadership. Aptly named, the structure resembles something of a mausoleum, with a wall connecting to two rear towers and enclosing a small courtyard.
While very little is known about the actions of the members of this society, even by many of it’s members, it is well known that rosters have filled out leadership at the FBI, CIA, Wall Street and Capitol Hill. Besides the prestige, some members have dabbled in those occult arts of numerology, enochian sciences and other pursuits of otherworldly power. Usually these efforts have gone for naught, with a great bit of theater, but no results. Occasionally there have been disappearances though, and some have always wondered at the unnatural success of it’s members. Every few years there is someone willing to rekindle the old ways in a grab and more and more tangible power. One day, they may reach too far…