Monday, February 10, 2014

The Stuff of Legend

Discovering you're the stuff of legend is always a bit of a shock at first for the vampires in my universe. Those unable to process it become the ferals (more on them later). But for the sentients, how they deal with their new life depends on what sort of people they were prior to it. Those of a more evil disposition prior to the conversion will remain as such but be even more dangerous considering the abilities the condition gives them. One reason Narain finds "feeding" so difficult, even though he needn't kill the host, is because he's not sure if he'll pass on the condition. And if he should unknowingly choose a dangerous person...well you can imagine the rest.

Those people of decent conscience, like Narain, will remain decent even after the conversion and perhaps feel even more responsible for guarding others against the nastier realities of their condition.

That's one thing I wanted to convey in the novels: I wanted to project the confusion one might feel if he unwittingly falls into this situation where his life alters dramatically. And even for sentients it's not always an easy road to hoe. I view Narain not so much as a vampire but a man suffering from a dangerous, sometimes deadly condition that dictates how he maneuvers through the world. 

Narain found two key people who helped him deal with what he had become. The first was Alphonse Reno. A few days into the conversion (which would take a few weeks), when Narain's physical makeup was being altered, he was found wandering half out of his mind by Alphonse Reno, a wealthy land owner in the area. Alphonse had been researching vampirism since he lost his own son Laurant to the feral condition and believes that there is a physical cause behind it. It's his hope that one day he will be able to find a cure to bring his son back to him. Once Narain is out of his fugue state and Alphonse is certain he is the other sort of vampire: A sentient in full possession of his faculties. 

I really like the first scene between Alphonse and Narain when the old man breaks the news to his young guest what he has become. It's touching for Alphonse who takes on a fatherly aura when it comes to Narain; and to Narain who is now faced with an uncertain future.

Alphonse helps him adjust to the realities of his new life and even gets him to believe that a relatively normal life can be achieved. He even convinces him to try to reunite with his family in India who have longed thought him dead. But even after taking the trip, Narain is unable to bring himself to do so. (Still the trip would have ramifications in future novels).

Narain returned to France yet was unable to bring himself to go back to Alphonse feeling in many respects that he failed the old man confidence with his cowardice. Instead, he wanders, uncertain how to live a normal life with the constrictions of his condition. When his money is gone, he hides from the sun in crypts and caves, forcing himself to steal the blood of others yet unable to come to terms with what he must do to survive. 

It's during this time that he meets the second and most influential  person: Sophie Grayson, daughter of industrialist Harrison Grayson and the woman whose sacrifice would help Narain achieve what he thought no longer attainable. 

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