A brief history of the Surnateum
(Rhesus Timeline)

First quarter of the 18th century: a 'vampire panic' sweeps across Europe. Worrying reports and tales told by travellers returning from Hungary and Romania fan the flames of turmoil.
1746: The Church officially acknowledges the existence of vampires via a book by Don Augustin Calmet.
1789: The group of monster-hunters is formed; the pistol is manufactured.
ca 1820: The pistol, a flintlock model, is converted to a percussion cap system. However, the pistol falls into disuse over the following decades.
15 January 1857
: Birth of the future 'Collector'.
ca 1870: A case is manufactured by Nicolas Plomdeur, a gunmaker from Liège (living in Paris) and Professor Ernst Blomberg.
1877: A curious young man finds the pistol in his attic. His father tells him the story of the monster-hunters. His grandfather was the last executioner. The young man, fascinated by this revelation, would grow up and become the first 'Collector'. He moves to London, the centre of the civilised world at that time. There, he joins the all-powerful Masons and soon rises to the rank of Master. The rituals, especially those for the second degree (Companion) awaken an ancient magic and endow the Collector with strange powers. This magic is linked to the Quest for the Holy Grail. The Collector takes up his 'position'. He will go on to collect evil and haunted objects, as well as grimoires.
1888 (London): A member of the Golden Dawn named Victor (his surname has been lost), who came face to face with a baital in India, sponsors the Collector in the secret society. This former Indian Army officer had travelled to the Americas and around the world looking for vampires. While visiting a cemetery in India, he was injured by a baital. The creature's bite can multiply the victim's strength tenfold - for good or evil. The sect's unverified magic rituals transformed the officer into Jack the Ripper, a bloodthirsty entity. The Collector destroys the monster on the banks of the Thames; during the confrontation he is spattered with the Ripper's blood.
1897 (London): Irish author Bram Stoker exposes his patron, Henry Irving, as a vampire via his novel Dracula. Irving refuses to stage the play at the Lyceum Theatre.
1899 (Pannonia, Ghent): During an investigation on the continent, the Collector asks a doctor for his opinion on bones found in Pannonia. The doctor, a specialist in blood research, ends up being the person responsible for the events known as Rhesus 1. The Collector is unaware of these events for many years. The swastika, a symbol linked to the dragon, makes a fresh appearance.
1900 (Delos, Greece): Camille meets 'IRMA' on a Greek island.
ca 1902: Tsarina Alexandra, in a desperate state since she has been unable to give birth to a male heir, discreetly calls upon the services of a 'witch' from the steppes of Mongolia. The witch puts her under the protection of an entity represented by a traditional magical symbol in the form of a swastika. The tsarevich suffers from an incurable blood disease transmitted through the maternal line. Bloody massacres taint the Russian court beginning in 1905. The monk Rasputin slows down the process destroying the imperial family, until he is murdered.
1906 (Naples, Italy): An amateur volcano geologist comes face to face with a mythological creature in a cave near Naples.
August 1910 (Brussels World's Fair): A Serbian-American scientist breaches the space-time continuum.
1913 (China and Tibet): The Collector takes his first trip to China and Tibet. The team's first terton, Kao, becomes a member of the Surnateum.
1914 (Ghent): The doctor disappears, not without making his confession to the man who would become bishop under the name Monsignor Eugenius Van Rechem.

1918 (Ekaterinaburg): The Russian imperial family is massacred. The Tsarina's last lucky drawing is a swastika. The baleful shadow of the Order of Blood, which demands increasing numbers of sacrifices, looms over the massacre. Rasputin, the magician who was protecting the family, had been assassinated the year before.
1919 (Munich): Members of the Thule Gesellschaft, who share knowledge with the Golden Dawn, unleash an uncontrollable ritual involving an antique bottle (see the Host). They unknowingly increase the vampire's power.
1920-1921 (China and Mongolia): Two teams from the Surnateum set out in search of an object that could change the very face of the world: the khanne. They travel to the outer reaches of Mongolia and China and pip Baron Roman von Ungern-Sternberg at the post. Ungern-Sternberg wants to reincarnate Mahagala, the god of war, and Genghis Khan. To do that, he needs the help of Bogdo-Geghen, the blind Buddha, a particular drug combining opium and poison from the allghoi khorkhoi (the Mongolian death worm) and the khanne. One of the Baron's banners depicts a black swastika against a red background. Part of the expedition seeks out passageways to the mythical Agharta.
1923 (Egypt): The Surnateum's first expedition to Egypt. The opening of Tutankhamen's tomb prompts worries and raises questions about curses.
1930 (Egypt): Second Surnateum expedition to Egypt. Some of the curses materialise.
1933: The bishop, realising that the story told during the confession a few years previously had actually been true, tries to find a way to get rid of the monster. He goes on a quest for weapons capable of giving him greater power or for the power to destroy him (see Relics).
1934 (Germany): All of the enemies in the Catholic and Conservative opposition groups, as well as all those who know who Adolf Hitler's true identity, are eliminated by the monster during the Night of the Long Knives (29-30 June 1934). The decimated opposition never recovers.
1938: Cassandra Grossemans 'sees' the presence of the demon in her tarot cards, although the story is about other figures. Part of the Surnateum's expedition team disappears in search of paradise, probably in the Sargasso Sea.
1939 (Ghent): Monsignor Van Rechem accidentally discovers a way to destroy the creature, but it is too late; the solution to the problem is not accessible. He takes precautionary measures and has the evidence sent to his cousin in Brussels.
1943 (Ghent): As he lays dying, he confides in his confessor, who does not understand the story at all but who is sent by a superior to the Collector to inform him of what has happened. The Collector puts together the final pieces of an amazing puzzle. The Surnateum has another weapon capable of destroying the monster; it will have to be sent to Berlin.
1945 (Berlin, 30 April): The monster is killed in his lair. But the weapon is lost somewhere in Russia. The Surnateum's team will also have to be put back together, something that will take years.
1975: The Collector has a Magic Box sent to the man who will become the next Curator.
2000 (Mongolia, Moscow): The head of Expeditions brings the weapon to the Museum. All of the evidence attesting to the authenticity of what happened find their way to the Surnateum. The private museum housing the collections must be destroyed; the collections await a new haven. A site is create which will facilitate contact among 'sensitives'.