It occurs to me that I seem to really like being mean to vampires. I've written them running afoul of both the Pied Piper and a haunted/reincarnated/possessed yew tree (long story, let's call him a dryad) so far, and one of those stories that I've promised myself I'm going to get around to writing some day has some vampires run afoul of a village of selkies, in a 'vampiric couple takes scenic coastal tour and realises a shade too late that they're holidaying in Innsmouth' sort of way. Though, in that case, it's more of a mutual misfortune, and the ghost and the stormwitch also didn't help. Heh. I just like having vampires run into things that are weirder or stronger or more dangerous than they are, or even just things that are unexpectedly capable against them.

Thinking about it, an incomplete list of nasty things I want vampires to try and mug in a dark alley/remote forest/unexpectedly dangerous holiday:

- Unicorns. Built in stake which, though bone rather than wood, has to get a bonus in the holiness/sacredness stakes and also has significantly more muscle behind it than a human can normally pull off. The whole sex-blood-death-purity tangle also has some interesting resonances.

- Kelpies. Do not bite shapeshifting fairy horses. Though vampires have an advantage in that they're hard to drown, but then again shapeshifting fairy horses tend to also keep good old fashioned carnivorous teeth around as well, and the magically making people stick to them thing has a lot of potential (for comedy as much as all else, a vampire stuck teeth-first in a violently pissed off kelpie's neck would be hilarious). See also each uisge and pookas. Seriously, don't mess with fairy horses. They might get along with a vampire if they could arrange a mutual hunt, though, in which case every human within a hundred-mile radius needs to be very afraid.

- Fairies in general, particularly full-on sidhe. Like the Pied Piper above, I just like the idea of vampires running into fae, equally beautiful, alien, often predatory beings who do not run on mortal rules. A mutual vampire/fae masquerade must be one of the most tortuously delicate, flamboyant and utterly lethal affairs possible. Also, on the individual mugging-gone-wrong level, there's that rule about not eating/stealing fairy food. Where does 'violently assaulting one to drink their blood for sustenance' rate with that? I mean, it's going to come across as extremely impolite at the very least. And generally speaking you do not want to be impolite with the fae.

- Angels, for an obvious one. I think I tend to be a bit picky with this, in that I don't want your standard urban fantasy 'whoops' encounter, but more like vampires as your standard predatory animals encountering old-school, biblical 'do not fear me' cthulhu-esque angels, sort of a vampire horror show. I mean, you try to bite someone and they turn into an incomprehensible multidimensional, multi-winged/eyed burning extension of divine will, it's a bit of a 'whoops apocalypse' moment. Or soldiers in a vampire war encountering an angel on the field and it's like walking into the blast radius of a WMD. I don't know, if you're going with angels I feel like you outta go big and horrifying, you know?

- Going back down a couple of levels, dryads. I didn't think about it too much until I was writing 'Yves', but living trees really are natural vampire hunters, what with the whole 'naturally equipped stakes' part. Some trees also get bonuses against the undead, like the aforementioned yew tree which is supposedly planted in graveyards because its roots keep the dead from rising again. Tree spirits as guardian entities against the undead just feels like a good plot to me.

- I feel like the Sea in general would interact interestingly with vampires. Nautical mythology is its own whole thing, and vampires have that 'running water' thing that's interesting. Vampires can't drown, but the sea is generally full of very big things with lots of teeth, and a lot of a vampire's advantages on land would be negated over water. There's also some of the more esoteric vampire powers, like turning into mist, which might go interestingly over the ocean (a vampire losing their sense of self as the sea basically dissolves them in salt-laden mist, for example), and of course their interaction with the sun, depending on which vampires we're dealing with, could go a lot more dangerously on the open ocean. I think I would kind of like a whole Marie Celeste, 'The Fog', Dracula-aboard-the-Demeter thing exploring some of those. Sirens, fog, ghost ships, living islands, the whole earth-mist-water thing, the way the Sea has always had a somewhat different view on holy/unholy, maybe little bits of things like The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, the Flying Dutchman, death and undeath on the sea. There should be more nautical vampire stories.

- On a related note, and again mentioned above, selkies. This one is slightly sideways, but I always thought that given the selkie folklore of being held captive by their skins (often forced into marriage that way), and the whole vampire thing of brides/blood-thralls, that on at least a political level vampires and selkies might be fairly natural enemies. Though, on the other hand, selkies are often held captive by humans, and seeing humans held in thrall by the equally predatory vampires might be seen as a sort of turnabout-is-fair-play thing. So. Could go either way, possibly depending on the individual selkie/vampire, but I think that could be a very interesting match up. (Also, selkies and slavery in general might be a very interesting minefield to go wading in. Heh).

I don't know, I just think vampires ought to play with other beasties more. And get trounced by them, yes. It's not that I don't like vampires, but they're just ... really good, familiar starter monsters to give to people, lull them into a false sense of security, and then slap them face-first into the weird shit with? Heh. Also, I'm a wee bit biased towards sidhe/fairies/fae, as you might have noticed, but then again I'm Irish and I grew up with Irish ghost/fairy stories, and on the 'beautiful alien creatures who look lovely but will absolutely mess you up/kill you/curse you with immortality and a life of darkness' score, the fae win it for me every time. Sorry, vampires? I promise I do still love you.


icarus_chained: lurid original bookcover for fantomas, cropped (Default)

Most Popular Tags

Powered by Dreamwidth Studios

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags