Greetings, lovely mortals. My name is Devlin Dalcon, penning a few lines for your pleasure about my vampire kin, specifically the mortal writer’s perchance for curing vampires.
Most any fan of popular vampire romance is familiar with the redemption of the vampire as part of the plotline. This drastic change is often accomplished through or because of true love, a common motivator of transformation in otherwise supernaturally stubborn males. But for some, “opening a new vein,” so to speak, isn’t enough. This devilish creature of the night must not only become pure of spirit, he must also be cured, i.e., become human. This idea of a reverse transformation is not confined to romance, either. Most all long running TV vampire series — The Vampire Diaries, Angel, Moonlight, Buffy, Supernatural, to name a few — and much more vampire fiction explore this possibility, sooner or later.
Being a vampire myself, I have always had a problem with that particular plot twist. Several problems, actually, depending on the given physical particulars of the vampire in question and his path to mortality. First of all, a vampire is not dead: we are simply a human that has been modified by a virus to have superb DNA replication, so we don’t age in exchange for the narrowing of our diet to blood. Yes, our eyes get a red cast when we’re angry, our fingernails can become talons, and we have sharp fangs, but we are not monsters. But that truth aside, how can one make something that has died or been dead for years — or centuries — alive again? Wouldn’t the vampire’s ability to age come back with their humanity, and rapid decomposition occur? While I dearly understand missing the sunlight or foods like chocolate and wine, what is the big draw of regaining your lost humanity? Not having to drink blood sounds good on paper, but in this day and age, there are enough vamp-philes that finding some blood donors isn’t that hard, especially to a being which is pretty much immune to all human disease. As for sunlight…most big cities never sleep, the internet makes a night shift job easily accessible, usually without even leaving your home. Thirdly…who wants to die? I have avoided death for better than four-hundred-years, enjoying travel, the prestige of my role in managing my country, and many long light of lovemaking. My extraordinary health is the last thing I’d want to give up!
I believe that there is another main reason that this plot twist is used, beyond the physical reasons. The idea of redemption is best exemplified in a lifted curse, of the monster regaining his lost mortality. It’s a metaphor for salvation.
So what say you? Should a cure be available for vampires? Is it better to have our most popular creature of the night stay a creature of the night, even if redeemed?
College student Elle has always dreamed of having her own life and a love to call her own. Yet haunted by past transgressions, the lovely young werecougar is terrified to share her body or soul with another…until a sorceress tempts her into sharing an anonymous dream with a legendary lover, the vampire Lord Devlin. Shocked by her newly awakened desire, Elle flees to her childhood home, finding comfort in her memories and the company of friends while evading trophy hunters…until the night dhamphir Elijah arrives, offering her his heart with the gift of a golden choker. Will Elle be brave enough to seize the true love that’s been denied her so long?
Excerpt from Freedom, the final Promise Me Series book:
My name is Elle O’Connor. You probably don’t know who I am. But if you’re any type of being other than human, you’ve likely heard of my father, Theopolis. He’s what’s called a Ranked assassin, which means he has international status. He also happens to be a werecougar, and an asshole most of the time. You might also know about my mom, Sarelle, if you keep track of the who’s who of vampires in the United States, as she’s been involved with several in the last five years. She’s still human, but it’s been a near miss kind of situation lately.
Before she was in love with my father, Sarelle — or Sar, as she likes her friends to call her – she loved a vampire by the name of Danial. It was he who really raised me. I’d met him a few days after I was born, over in Europe, and when he came to see her and me, after he’d come back after months of looking for my missing father. I was very glad to see him again.
Two weeks after Danial came to see Sar that night, she and I moved in with him. I feel like I should defend her decision to do that, as it makes it seem like she didn’t love my father, to go and live with another man so quickly. I want you to know that I think that one decision was maybe the best thing she ever did for me. She tried hard to take care of me, but even though I was very young, I could see she was a wreck. I could also tell she was scared: scared of being alone with a non-human baby she didn’t know how to care for; scared my father was not coming back, scared of what was going to happen to us. And Danial, with his calm assurance and vast wealth, swept in and fixed everything in a single night. What woman wouldn’t have leaned on a man like that, especially as it was easy to see she still loved him?
To say he was a father to me wasn’t enough. In those first years he was everything a father should be, and then more. When I was hurt or sad, he was there to kiss and hug away my tears. When I was angry and mean, he was calm and talked to me, teaching me how to handle my anger. And when I was inquisitive, or bored, he was there to tell me the reasons why things were the way they were, or to show me books or other hobbies that not only kept me entertained, but also enriched my mind.
The result of his attention to me was inevitable: I adored him completely. It wasn’t long before I called him Dad. And he is still the only one I’ve ever called Dad.
I went back to school, and lost myself in work. A month later, I was in the food court when a guy sat down at my table. I gave him a cold look, and said in my mom’s best nasty voice, “Are you lost?”
“No,” he said, giving me a heart-melting smile. “I’ve found you.”
I rolled my eyes. “Look, I don’t know you.”
“You do, you just don’t recognize me,” he said, giving me a wide grin.
I looked him over skeptically. He was cute, if a little young looking. Must be a freshman. He was medium size, his skin tanned, and his brown hair cut in a neat style, almost military. His eyes were hazel colored, and seemed friendly. And his body…his body was very nice. For his youth he looked very fit and muscular. “I don’t.”
“It’s Elijah,” he said, grinning wider. “I got older, Elle.”
I gaped at him. “I saw you a month ago. You were five!”
“I’m aging fast,” he admitted, uneasy. “My father’s worried about it, though he acts like everything’s okay. But there’s a good point, as I’ll soon be old enough to look like I belong here.”
“How old are you, really?”
“Don’t be embarrassed,” I said quickly. “I aged fast, too, because I stayed in animal form for months when I was young. It was hard to cope with, looking so much older than I was.”
“Oh look, it’s the virgin princess!” a passing boy said sarcastically. “Don’t waste your time, pal. She’s frigid as a metal post in January.”
Elijah looked at the boy, his eyes flashed vampiric red, and then he got to his feet. “You will apologize to her, now, cretin,” he growled. “And then I’m taking you outside to thrash you.”
“I’m not apologizing!” the boy called back, still walking. “But you can come outside if you want to!”
Elijah strode after him. I grabbed my stuff as fast as I could and followed. By the time I got outside, Elijah was holding the boy by the scruff of his neck and the boy was pleading for mercy.
“Apologize!” Elijah hissed, his fangs elongating slightly.
“I apologize!” the boy yelped.
Elijah shoved him, and he went sprawling.
I heard the squeal of police sirens, and grabbed hold of Elijah. “In here!”
We ducked into the library, and hid in the book stacks. “Why are we hiding?” Elijah asked.
“Shh!” I said. “You have to be quiet. We’re hiding because you can’t beat a student up on campus without being arrested.”
“But he was being ungentlemanly. And I didn’t actually beat him.”
“How uncivilized,” Elijah mused.
“Young Master, we must go home,” a rumbling voice said. “Your father will be searching for you. I do not want to be disciplined.” A large man appeared suddenly behind us, looking stern.
“Sure,” Elijah said, turning to me. “But mark this spot, Harp. I’ll want to come back here and see this woman when we next have an opportunity.”
“She is a comely one,” Harp said, his red eyes flicking over me. “It is done, young Master. We can return here at your will.”
“Is this your demon?” I asked politely.
“Yes. Both my sister and I have one. They are with us at almost all times.”
And I thought my father had been overprotective! Geez.
“Goodbye,” Elijah said seriously. “I hope to see you soon, Elle.”
“Sure,” I said, smiling. “Though it’s going to be May soon. I’ll be out of school.”
“Call me, if you are going to be at Hayden,” Elijah said, handing me a slip of paper. “This is my cell.”
Shit! Give him your number too! I tore off part of the paper, and wrote down my cell in tiny numbers. “Here is mine.”
“Thanks,” Elijah said, taking it. “Please be careful. You are here without any guards.”
“I can take care of myself,” I said proudly.
“I want to take care of you,” Elijah said seriously. Then he reached out and brushed my cheek gently, moving a strand of hair away from my face.
Part of me knew he was just young, probably copying something from a movie he’d seen. But no one had ever said anything like that to me before. Before I knew it, I kissed him. Though he was clearly shocked, before long he kissed me back.
“Break it up,” Harp rumbled, pushing us gently apart. “This is a library, children, not a barn. And we must be home.”
“Call me, please,” Elijah encouraged, and then they disappeared.
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