Oh you’ll never see my shade
or hear the sound of my feet
while there’s a moon
over Bourbon Street
My name is Valkyr. I am a vampire. And live among you.
My existence began in 1899. Considering the life span of a vampire, I’m still young. My mother, Shaya, was a vampire too. From her, together with my bloodthirst, I received my dark gift. My father, whose name and story was unknown to me for a long time was instead a mortal. From him, I received something else.
For a long time I only had been knowing my mother bit him to the throat, killing him, the same moment he conceived me in her womb. I thought she had chosen a mortal because the chill semen of another vampire could not impregnate her.
For a long time, I thought I had received from him, whom I considered just another of my mother’s victims, that little humanity living in me, preventing me sometimes to make peace between my soul and my needs.
I was wrong.
Do not believe in legends. We homines nocturni exist since the dawn of mankind. Or at least so our elders say, even though I know no one of them old enough and sincere enough to be reliable about the history of our breed.
Do not trust religions and superstitions either. Crucifixes and talismans do not stop me. I often spend peaceful solitary hours in the quiet silence of the crypt of an ancient church. I don’t think there is a safer place for me than one every day crowded by those who fear me the most. Night time I get on the roof and wait for my victims clinging to the rusty irony crucifix on the top of the bell tower.
I cannot die. Not like mortals do, at least. Some of us suffer from a kind of garlic allergy which may cause them what is now known to the human science as anaphylactic shock. The same applies to silver. We have no problem with iron in our bloodstream but we can get some difficulties with silver. It may damage our tissues and delay our regenerative processes. As for me, sunlight weakens me enough to make me nearly look like a human. That’s why my hunt begins at the sunset.
Bloodthirst kills me. I need to feed myself to not die.
As for this, at least, I am lucky. The dark gift is different for each of us. I’ve got the power to subdue my victims’ minds. I leave those who yield to my power just a night of forgetfulness and two little wounds which will heal with some good steaks in a few days. Those who, instead, resist my power and arouse the predator in me are found bled by their own foolishness.
There are things no one is allowed to oppose. Death is one of those. Escape is the only way out I grant my prey. If they can. It’s the predator’s natural law.
Sometimes, yet, human nature amazes me. There are people asking for nothing but to be deprived of their life as if it were a burden. Or of their freedom as if it were a chain. I wonder, in those moments, if I should deprive them of such an unbearable burden and accord them the vampire’s baptism, which would make all of them slaves of mine. But I don’t want to be a master. I don’t want to initiate a blood chain. Not again.
This is the life I’ve been granted and I accept it as it is. I won’t cut the thin thread of mortal life for the pleasure one more prey gives me. I am the one who decides if killing or not. And I don’t kill for the sake of killing. If I do it, I do it for survival as this is what I want the most: to live the life I received. And let any mortal face their destiny.
There are people dreaming of power, begging me for making them my similar, to leave a life they don’t tolerate, persuaded an existence like mine is desirable. They would pay any price to get it.
There are others dreaming of serving a powerful master, of being their slaves for all eternity.
My deny their request often makes them so mad that when they realise they will not receive from me the escape from a life they hate, they take it. It’s a choice I do not understand, but it’s their choice, not mine about them. Their prayers don’t buy me as I don’t know what mercy is. Their offers do not tempt me for they have nothing to do with me. Fate chose this life for me, so be it for them as well.
There are times, however, I am amazed at myself. I realise I feel a strange affection for some among those who hate me most, as those are the ones more related to their life, which they consider precious.
I never hurt them. I respect them, instead, as they see me as a danger, but not as an enemy. We do not cross each other’s path. They don’t seek me, neither do I. And when they pass away, sometimes I visit their tombs and pray, my way, for them, for they’ve reached a peace at the end of their life, I will probably never reach. Sometimes I wonder if my father’s spirit watches this son of his.
My only friend is my thirst, always accompanying me, only constant presence in a life that slips on me like a cloud on the horyzon of the time.
Suns rise and set, men are born, live and die. I stay here to claim my tribute from life, defending and conquering my right to existence on the throat of those who cross my path.
My name is Valkyr. I am a vampire. And whether you like it or not, I live among you.