Scio Occultus Res
But his heart chooses his cabal.
If an Order is an extended clan of like-thinking mages, then the cabal is a mage’s brothers and sisters. They are mages that may not share his Watchtower or his Order, but they are the people he trusts most in the world. They are friends, companions, helpmeets, lovers, rivals, partners.
Cabals tend to form when a mage meets someone he trusts and respects, someone he wishes to join him on his journey. Membership crosses all the borders of Awakened society, and all mages accept that, though other loyalties may pull on one, a mage’s first duty is to his cabal. Some Orders, such as the Guardians of the Veil, try to restrict the membership of their members, encouraging single-Order cabals, and many mages feel most comfortable with mages of their own Order, forming single-Order or single-Watchtower cabals on their own.
That said, the traditions of Awakened society are such that no mage may forbid the creation of a cabal, as long as that cabal isn’t a Renegade group. Indeed, many of the most respected and famous cabals throughout history have been mixes of Order and Watchtower, the various strengths of the members shoring up the weaknesses of the others.
When a mage awakens, he is treated as a junior member of his mentor’s cabal and, unless he does something particularly offensive and unforgivable, is welcome to remain a member when he finishes his apprenticeship. This is how larger, generational cabals like the Ebon Noose and the Stone Assembly continue through the years.
If a mage decides to form a cabal on his own, he usually informs his mentor and Order about it. This is a courtesy (and courtesy is so very important in Boston) and not required, but it can help ease the parting between the mage and his previous cabal.
Cabals are named by their founding members, and the name usually has some significance for the members. After all, names are very important to magical thinking, and the right (or wrong) name can have a real impact on the cabal. Names can draw on symbolic ideals (Stone Assembly), important events in the past (Ebon Noose), or an important link the members share (White Putnams). What matters is that the name resonates with the members.
Boston’s history has made it very popular with mages, and there are a number of cabals scattered through the city and the surrounding territory. Some of the more famous ones include: