The immortal dead, the living corpse, the undead. The vampire.
Vampire lore goes back centuries to the times of the ancient Egyptians, Greeks, and Babylonians when tales were spread of the dead coming back to life. Much of this is owed to the fact the human race had little understanding of death and what happens to the body after death. This lack of understanding lead to premature burials. In one such case, the man hung for his crimes had only just lost consciousness when he was taken down from the noose. And coupled with laziness of the workers who buried the criminal in a shallow grave, gave the man the time to recover and regain consciousness then dig himself out. Bewildered and confused, he wandered into town, reaching the gate just after sunset. The people who saw man, knew he had "died" that day, feared him to be a monster who'd come back to haunt them.
Of course, the vampires in Bloodlink are much more than rumor, fear, and a burial gone wrong. They are living, thinking individuals that have passions and desires just as you or I, but that horror and that fear that those townspeople felt when they saw the criminal back from the dead is the driving force behind the carnal, devilish nature that each character struggles with.
Vampire Lore: The Original Six
Just as the myth about vampires began centuries ago, so too, does the origin of the Western European vampires in the Bloodlink universe.
Around the time when the pyramids were being built, six individuals spread their terror, plundering and murdering throughout the known world to get gain and power. Each was feared and respected in their own region, and each tried to subvert the others, but they were matched in their cunning and wit. So they banned together to gain more power, and when they could not gain more power on Earth, they sold their souls to the Devil himself that he might make them more powerful than all their gods.
They became the nosferatu, soulless plague carriers. They took on monstrous forms any fed off the souls of the living, spreading their evil with each person they touched. Until one man stood against them.
He was a man of great faith and unique ability to harness magic. He believed they could be saved, or at least stopped. So he brought back their souls, giving them back their human forms.
But before the change was fully complete, the six grew angry with him, because he had taken away their power, so they attacked him preventing his spell from ever finishing, so they retained their ability to change their shape and feed on the blood of men instead. They are still living today and are known as the Ancient vampires or the Original Ones or the Original Six. They are nearly indistinguishable from other vampires, except that their appears can and will often change based on whether they have fed on blood recently or who's blood they drink.
All vampires classified as Western European vampires hail from these Original Ones. The further down the chain a siree is from their Original Sire can effect how strong their vampire abilities are but this is not always the case.
Most often, the strength of a vampire hails from their sire, being the vampire that bit them. How much the vampire drains from the human and how much vampiric blood the human is given at the time of being bitten will effect them as their body dies and they undergo the change from human to vampire.
A vampire, who is not one of the Original Six, can dilute their blood, however, if they try to create too many sirelings (also called "sirees"). This has not shown to have an effect on the vampire themselves as they are in an unchanging state, but the vampires they produce will share fewer strengths and weakness than most vampires.
A sireling may also develop fewer vampire traits if not enough of their human blood was drained during their transformation.
The Pure Born
Being a Pure Vampire or Pure Born is not something one can become. As the name implies, one has been born a vampire from two vampire parents. Both parents must be completely undead, being that both their sires must be alive at the time of conception and birth. If father is in the process of changing back from his vampire state to a human state at the time of conception, the child will be a half-blood at birth. The same is true if the mother is in the process of becoming or has become human at the time of conception or any time during the pregnancy. If both parents become human prior to the birth of the child, the baby will be born human.
A pure born vampire is said to be stronger, faster, and more powerful than other vampires. Rivaled only by the Original Six. Unlike other vampires, their bodies do change, often at will. At a young age, pure borns will seem to age at the rate of a normal human, but when they are able to understand and control their powers they can become any age at will. But most never reach that point due to difficulty to understand the world they have no connection to and will go mad before they have a grasp on reality or their own vampiric nature. They either fade from existence and become one of the Shade or they will become demonic monsters.
The few who accept the teachings of their parents will reach the mental state of adulthood about 20 years after birth, and with the exception of their ability to change their age, they act and look like any other vampire. If at any time, both of a pure born's parent vampires die, become Shades, or become human, then the pure born will die twenty-four hours following the death or change of their last vampire parent.
The Shade are vampires who's bodies have faded after losing the will to live and losing their identity. When they lose their identity, they willing offer up their souls, giving it up, and their bodies lose their form.
After losing the will to live, a vampire's skin will turn grey and their veins will turn black. When they begin to give up their soul, their body will start to dissolve and become like smoke. A vampire can still be saved while in this transition stage if they are able to find a purpose or reason to live either on their own or with help from friends.
Once their mind becomes like an echo and their body completely dissolves the change is irreversible. The term "Shade" was first deemed by the Original Six for their shadowy appearance, but they can sometimes appear white translucent shapes or orbs and are sometimes called ghosts or mistaken for will-o-whips, after the mythology creature of the same name.
Shades can also be completely invisible. The only sign of their presence is that the air will become colder around them. Vampire and people with an acute sense of hearing will sometimes hear their echoing moans as the Shade are in a state of endless misery and despair.
There is one case of a vampire who has become a Shade and then been able to come back from that state, but it is still unclear how he did it.
The Half Blood
Like Pure Borns, Half Blooded vampires can only be born. They are the only kind of vampire with a heart beat and are often confused for humans except that they age slightly slower than the average human and cannot be affected by blood diseases.
Half Bloods tend to get in trouble with the law because like vampires, they have an increase desire to follow negative thoughts and passions, but many strive to ignore the more carnal part of their mind and live upright lives. The ingestion of blood can give them enhanced strength and speed and hear from greater distances and higher pitches. And they tend to have higher tolerances for pain and avoid direct sunlight.
If their parent vampire becomes human, half bloods will lose all of their vampiric traits and begin aging at a normal rate.
Few are lucky enough to be called the Cured. This group of individuals who were bitten vampires who's sire has died. Twenty-four hours after the death of their sire, the vampire will begin the long transition to becoming human again.
First, their heart will start beating again and as their blood begins to flow, their nerves will wake up. This is accompanied by a pin pricking sensation throughout their body, which is the same feeling that happens after your foot falls asleep and you try to walk on it. Next, their fangs will begin to shrink, which most describe as their teeth "bugging them". During this time, they will also regain their reflection and their shadow.
But just because the Cured look and appear to be human does not mean they return to an average human status. Those would have been cured report they are still stronger and faster than before, even if they cannot run forever as they as a vampire. Others swear they age slower than normal. It all seem to varies on how long the person lived under the vampire curse. But whatever residual effects remain after the curse, seem to stay with them throughout their natural lives.
So Let's Wrap Things Up
Vampires come from all backgrounds and I hope you enjoyed taking a closer look into the Bloodlink world. There is so much still to talk about and discover, including other kinds of vampires and the lifestyle of vampires outside of the England clan. If these is a particular topic you'd like me to talk about, let me know in the comments or visit my contact page and ask me directly. I'd love to hear from you!
And until then, Stay Sane!