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You actually can go independent and sort of unite the houses, but it's pretty iffy. You not only need a high reputation with all factions, but you also have to bring up the topic with the Iscari and Randal before you declare your alliance. If done right, you can pick "My rebellion!" and Randal and his group will save you, though there will still be a fight because Saorise and Andrei will not give up that easily. So it basically plays out like siding with the Mavvar, only that at the end you are in charge with Randal as your right hand instead of the other way around, and the remaining vampires in the city are more diverse instead of consisting mostly of Mavvar. So, yes, you can bring the three houses together, but not peacefully. There will always be a final clash and Saorise and Andrei will never accept you.

As for your question, you have to be in the same house as your mentor to get the special endings. Those are not necessarily the best endings, mind you. I found Randal's special ending horrifying and Heath's was a tragedy. Only Markus' special ending has an uplifting note. Mind you, you have to get the former two before you can unlock Markus' special ending (which I consider the "true" ending, btw).

If it's alright, can you give me some more pointers in how to get the leader ending? I am on Randall's path and I had high rep points with all houses (wasn't equally high but they were close enough) and I did tell Randal, the Iscari, and that Mavvar guy that I will unite LA but for some reasons, the "My rebellion" option has never came up. Did you perhaps maxed out determination and if so, how? Or maybe I'm not supposed to agree to Andrei's deal, I don't know. I have no idea what I'm doing wrong and it's getting tiring to go through his route over and over again just to get the leader ending. (Since I've already got all of Randall's other endings, including the special ending)

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I would love to help you, but I'm not sure where you went "wrong" either. If you used the options to talk about it beforehand and have sufficient reputation with the factions, then I'm stumped as to what could be missing. But the deal with Andrei shouldn't be the issue, since I took that too. As for the personality traits, I'm not sure how they factor in, but since I played my Iscari as somebody who can take care of herself and isn't easily daunted, my character turned out indeed pretty determined, though the stat wasn't maxed. (Here are my exact stats at the moment of the proclamation oy my rebellion, in case anyone wants to take a closer look: https://imgur.com/zWpqiir) I wish I could be more of a help, but maybe someone else knows more?

That aside, are you trying to get Randal's second ending? Just asking, because I tried the very same thing, only to find out that it isn't linked to that at all. There seems to be only one ending for the rebellion, whether you side with Randal or go on to unite LA, and it even plays out mostly the same, with only minor differences in the epilogue. Spoilers ahead, for those who want to know: For the second ending, you have to side instead with Andrei, while also making a deal with Lazarus. At the end, you will notice Lazarus sneaking up on Andrei, just let him do his stuff.

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I just got Randal's secret ending last night and dear god, you're right. It's terrifying. I saw your post before I ever unlocked it but I was expecting Randal to go on a killing spree or something. I did not expect... well, *that*. It made it hard to sleep, man, damn.

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Tell me about it. Randal's beardless face will haunt my bad dreams forever!

I hate to say this but I thought he looked kinda hott without the beard... Then my heart broke when he gave me that scornful look

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You are right, he DOES look hot without the beard. Actually, I've thought "I wonder how he looks without the beard" for most part of the game. It's just that when you finally see it, well.... let's just say by that time I wanted my bearded teddybear in casual clothes back. *whimper*

Yasss! I was thinking my whole time playing through the vanilla ending that he was just a big ol' teddybear. I felt so fuzzy with him before.

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Thanks a lot for the tips, I guess I did it wrong because my stats were high that I was being rumored to side with the Rebellion but I was afraid to pick any forms of "rebellion" options after Heath said they would target him first and I didnt want him to die. Let me see if I can still recover my Mavaar MC and Heath relationship :(  (i like contrasting lovers so haha) 

I wont try Randal's ending if its really thay disturbing xD