"But, what about my Touchstones?"
Yes, dear player, what about them?
Touchstones are people -humans, who keep you in touch with your Humanity. They could be the old lady downstairs who kindly gets on your case for sleeping all day and partying all night. It could be your doorman whose wife sends him to work with extra chicken soup because he’s told her how you always look sick. It could be the lady next door who “made WAY too much zucchini bread/meatloaf/cookies” and thought you would like them before they go bad. It could be your wife, your child, your second cousin once removed who you use to climb trees with and read your Dad’s Playboy you stole.
They are people who you feel close to and want to remain close to and who you treat well and perhaps you even love and care about.
But ultimately, acquiring a Touchstone is an act of selfishness. The penultimate act of selfishness in some ways because you will do anything to protect them because in so doing you protect yourself. That is until it comes down to you or them at some point. Or they age and you don’t so you move on and find another. Or they die. You may even mourne their death, but then you find another and when that one ages out you find another…then another…ad nauseum.
I’ll repeat what I said above, Touchstones are an act of selfishness. You NEED them in order to SURVIVE and not fall to your Beast. You USE them to cover your tracks to some extent in order to appear human and like you actually care about something. Without them you are a mere ravening Beast who probably will not last long. They convince you that you are not a complete animal. That is why they are tied to your Convictions.
You may strive to protect them, but if they are hurt or killed, and they pass on to whatever lays beyond, you are left with a Stain upon your Soul that you must attempt to erase. If you are the cause of that pain or death, the stain may remain forever. A good way to harm a fellow Vampire- who is hard to kill- is to simply harm or kill the squishy mortal they treasure.
But you can also lose them and acquire stains if they do something you don’t like. That lovely old Widow woman Cougar next door finds the love of her life and wants to marry him. That may mean she moves away or doesn’t have time to bake you banana bread or sit around watching you not eat popcorn as you binge watch the latest Netflix series. You may actually try to convince her that guy is not for her. Maybe even go so far as to arrange an “accident” or some other way of removing him from the scene.
“It’s okay…” you tell yourself, “At least she is safe.” She is also probably miserable and sad but, you put your arm around her and sit down to watch the next episode of House of Cards.
This is why having Touchstones is an act of selfishness. You don’t want them so much as you NEED them as they are tied to your Humanity and ultimately, your survival. They are a tool. Like a gun or a knife or your fangs. They all work together to protect you.
You can not make it in this world without them and, you will do ANYTHING to protect them.