Pardon me, but I think this one genuinely needs to come with an explanation. A few years ago I found myself running my first AD&D campaign- and was in need of interesting NPC's for the adventure, which was bulging with vampiric storyline. So I joined the supposed hordes of other people and rolled him up so to speak, on paper for the campaign. My only known information about him at the time was the English-dubbed version of the first movie; and I felt that left me a little shallow with the caliber of background information I consider to be something of a must with my NPC's. In a nutshell that's why this whole bizarre story was created. For all you hard-core Vampire Hunter D\ Whitewolf fans out there: Be warned! This may be an unholy hybrid for you. It's just that I didn't think Dracula was very interesting father figure (or any other figure, for that matter) compared to Cain. Did I mention that my version of D exists in the Forgotten Realms world? Oh well. Posting this might be a bad idea.
The title of the piece is The Endless Rabble; called so originally not by the first critics, but a feisty young lady who has become close to D as of late, and was forced to read the whole thing upon it's authors demand. The supposed author is another far more extroverted and less famous NPC running around in my neck of the universe by the name of Cheser`e Borgia.
On a more formal note, I should state that D. is copyrighted by Mr. Kikuci and is his property alone. Likewise; Whitewolf Publications and TSR are formally copyrighted producers of fictional information. The reference to vampiric history, and the world my story takes place in are not my own creation, but everything else is. So if you wanna borrow, please ASK. E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This story contains reference to unconsentual sex and its fair share of violence. If you are under 18 don't get me in trouble by reading it.
The Endless Rabble
by "Cheser`e Borgia"
I'm about to tell you one of the most interesting stories I know. And if you knew who I was; well, coming from me- prepare yourself for a treat, people. Its not that I'm a notably fantastic writer, its just there's not many people around who know about this person's rather remarkable story, and I had always thought it read like a parable. Now don't mistake me, I'm not saying that I know even half of it. However I will declare that a very sizeable chunk of information has successfully been wrestled from the horse's mouth, (occasionally, with the aid of strong liquor) and I, unlike the other few existing creatures who know this story, possess the necessary imprudence to write it down. In a way, it actually is D.'s fault; because he knows my nature, and willingly told me every word of what I convey to you now. My dear old friend: if this script finds its way into your hand, you can rest assured- I won't tell them about Sossal. I hope that makes you feel better, but I'd be surprised if it did.
Well, here is what I've been able to spin together based from conversations occurring betwixt myself and the damphir hunter spanning approximately 450 years; and should not be mistaken as reading material for the faint. Extraordinary people usually lead extraordinary lives, and no living thing I've ever come across embodies the word quite like D. The actuality that he's the most bizarre man I ever met I consider to be an appealing side note. Enjoy- and don't blame the messenger.
Dulchenvas (pronounced Dull chen bas in his father's native tongue) was the fruit of a union between Cain, the first vampire and a human woman named Jasmine Kethergett. The birth took place in a forest near the Moonsea; and his mother died giving birth to him as is the case with all dhampir children. At the time D was born, Cain's ancient laws ruled the majority of Faerun; and the unquestioned law regarding dhampirs stated that the race posed an obvious danger to the vampire clans, and their unnaturalness from birth would render them into a life of despair and misery, belonging in neither the human nor the vampire societies. So, these unfortunate accidents were to be terminated on discovery, under punishment of death. Cain's true convictions on this issue were put to the test when his own half-vampire son was born. He sought to keep D's existence a secret, and have him quietly escorted across the ocean to Maztica, but an evil wizard had already cast his greedy eyes toward the child. His name was Emeric the foul, (a.k.a Emeric the insane; endowed to him because of his abominable choices for sex partners) and he knew that the purity of the child's blood would amount to great power one day. Emeric spent much of his time in the pursuit and acquisition of such things; and so the crafty human devised a plan to steal Cain's son from his designated keepers. Few people would have dared to try, but the wizard's malice, cunning and resourcefulness were all forces of reckoning. In the meantime, Cain's Childer had learned of Dulchenvas's existence and insisted that this damphir especially must die, for the good of them all. Reluctantly Cain gave in to their cries and selected several of his Kindred to kill the child. Ironically, it was Emeric's successful abduction of Cain's son that saved his life from the vampires sent by his father to eliminate him. The vampires were satisfied with Cain's dispatch, and the venture's success was never questioned.
Emeric knew that in the passage of time D would be the most powerful dhampir ever, so he took the boy and his 5 year old half-brother to his castle\stronghold called Thorngate located in present-day Thay; an evil, mysterious nation far away from the vampire city of Enouch. Emeric festered rage and hatred in D not only with the unspeakable sexual tortures he performed with all small boys he came across, but also by telling the dhampir the story of who he was, and why he was abandoned. Emeric had no trouble lying to anyone and no doubt twisted the truth relentlessly to control his growing protégé. Dulchenvas grew up fast and angry; the only thing he truly cared for was his brother Cristoff.
For roughly the first 500 years of his life Dulchenvas lived as Emeric's minion and fed regularly as a full-blooded vampire does beginning at the age of 19; though he confessed to me that he was forced to wrestle his urges at Emeric's demand. Apparently, the bloodlust kicked in at early puberty and his body aged for a couple of years after his first feed, then ceased; leaving D forever looking as a man in his early twenties. At an early age he showed promise in methods of military strategy and wielded a sword ably. Eventually he found himself leading small armies of humanoids in the Goblin Wars against the humans and elves, (insisting to this day he has neither the charisma nor the political know-how to successfully command a large army) and looked after various interests for Emeric; while Emeric kept his brother's life perpetually dangled on a thread pending each test of Dulchenvas's loyalty. It was around this time that D first met Vahla, who paid handsomely for the invincibility spell placed on him by Emeric's own hands. The 2nd generation vampire and D disliked each other from the beginning. Dulchenvas looked so much like Cain, that Vahla could make no mistake that this young dhampir was his Sire's long lost son. Rather than killing the half-breed outright, (he knew Emeric would not have tolerated that) Vahla returned to Enouch having decided to bide his time and try to subtly discover if Cain knew the dhampir was still alive.
Back at Thorngate, Emeric was having trouble keeping his investment in line and under control. Cristoff had been killed in battle, and D's loyalty to the disgusting human was waning quickly. The wizard answered the growing insubordination by finding ways to hold the known fears D wrestled with over him constantly in an attempt to regain control, but unfortunately for Emeric it didn't work very well. While the wizard slept one night, the damphir poisoned his bodyguards before slipping quietly into his master's room to "deprive his body of bloodflow permanently."
Fearing retribution for the unholy deed done to his benefactor, D fled Thay and tried to vanish to the best of his ability. He continued to feed regularly and wander from settlement to settlement, putting his extraordinary agility to many rewarding purposes. Starting off as a common cutpurse and later distinguishing himself as an expert burglar, D survived by never staying in one place for too long. He was a little over a thousand the first time he attempted to wean himself off blood, but the effort failed and caused him madding frustration.
These were the days my old friend was the hunted as opposed to the hunter. The Thayans all wanted his head for killing their most powerful wizard, and much of Vahla's gold secretly went to the purses of many a bounty hunter with orders for dispatch of the dhampir. Dulchenvas survived the excessive attention by a run and hide refrain that spanned the whole of Toril. During this time he was between the ages of 1500-2500; and was developing an intense dislike for both the races he stemmed from. Despite these feelings, D began to involuntarily form questions in his mind. These queries plagued him incessantly, and could only be answered by his father- who, at that time, was among the things D hated. Cain, of course, knew his son was still alive but did not contact him in any way because of the still-honored law that forbade damphir existence. If he had chosen to commerce with D and the Kindred found out, the panic would have been widespread. (And I'm sure Cain knew that a bunch of uppity demi-humans who're already dead spells out a recipe for disaster!) You see, they did and still do fear D for a variety of reasons.
It was around this time that Dulchenvas abandoned his former career as a thief and began to wield a sword appropriate for his strength and height- a nodachi. He was introduced to the finer combative arts and his sword type of present choice by Hajeme Opotoke, a human martial artist who resode in Fui Lung; now called Malatra. It was while he was in tutelage there that he met Kelen. She was a human warrior of some renown in the area who had taken a vow to protect the forests, and Dulchenvas became smitten with her soon after they met. In what he considers to be a surprising coincidence she returned his affections knowing fully what he was. Though a kind of peace settled through him for the first time in his life at the prospect of giving love and receiving it in return, the same festering questions he had for his father were growing more urgent.
D planned to take up arms and go to Enouch, the infamous city where the vampires and humans co-existed. His purpose was to find Cain and speak with him although D was still angry to the point of hatred with his father, but not foolish enough to suppose for an instant that his vampire half could be defeated. In his own opinion, it was the biggest risk he had ever taken up until that time. Foolishly, Kelen insisted on going with D to Enouch, and even more foolishly, he agreed.
Kelen and D walked calmly into the First City just after sunset. Hundreds of the Kindred stood aghast in the streets, staring with calm hatred at their worst fears incarnate. D was poised to fight, and offset that not one vampire moved to strike at him or his companion- they all stood there like statues as if "they had shat their breeches." Dulchenvas had no way of knowing that the close physical resemblance between himself and his father would force all the Kindred to hesitate.
Unfortunately, the hesitation didn't last long. After a short, but highly impassioned battle the two were overcome by the many, and once captured it was decided by Oleon of the Royalty Clan and Vahla of the Rose Clan that the two should die immediately- but as an extra punishment for this ultimate abomination to their bloodline; Dulchenvas would be forced to watch what fate lay in wait for the only woman he had ever loved.
"First they bound her limbs to legs and threw her atop a podium where all could see the ghastly spectacle. Starting from just below her (Kelen's) breastbone Vahla took a sapara- using the blade's hooked end he pierced her flesh, slowly moving down her middle until the viscera were no longer within the body cavity...wave after wave of fanged smiles leapt on her as a pack of wild hyena's- and she was gone. When the relinquished their frenzy, I saw the bloody lump that was my Kelen. The exact moment I decided I was ready to die and no longer cared why I was here I found myself looking at...myself; but shorter, and with longer hair. That's when I hated Cain the most. I knew he had let Kelen die; all I wanted at that point was to follow her."
The bloody-mouthed vampires all backed off respectively at his presence; keeping distance, but intently observing Cain and D stare at each other. I was told that his father smiled at him just before D decided to charge. Naturally, the attack was fruitless. Dulchenvas stood like a puppet suspended a few feet in the air- unable to do so much as blink an eyelid. Utterly helpless, D thought that the end was finally upon him. And then Cain spoke.
"If you truly wish to die today Dulchenvas, I must accommodate you. But why not live and harvest the fruit that comes with age and power?"
Dulchenvas fell to the ground, again in control of his body. Then Cain thrust his arm foreword, offering it to his son. This was D's last chance, and he knew it. Looking around he saw the ugly, frightened mob still wearing Kelen's blood on their faces; seeming powerless to D for the first time in his life. The truth is that revenge was the initial reason he took Cain's arm that day. Not one hand moved to stop the two as they disappeared into the depths of the city for three days.
Officially, I was told that they conversed on a wide variety of subjects; and given (tossed, if you will) a few specific topics that were discussed. What I record is what I know for sure. D demanded retribution for those who had caused Kelen's death and Cain handed him a longsword.
"Then impale yourself on this sword, for you killed your woman the moment you agreed to bring her to Enouch with you."
D wept at this, for he knew Cain was right. Moreover, Cain told him about his early infancy and how he was begotten the night Jasmine Kethergett was seduced. Then the first vampire told D his own life's story and the bewildered dhampir realized his sufferings were pale in comparison to those of his father. The two most important pieces of information Dulchenvas obtained from his father were regarding the uniqueness of his position. The verity that he was half Cain's blood would (in time) give him abilities that would not be available to any other dhampir. But most important and surprising to D was when he learned of the choice: that one of his race could survive without ingesting blood. Cain warned him that to wrestle with the bloodlust would be a challenge in every sense of the word. The rest of this conversation is known only to D and Cain, though I'm toiling hard to change that.
When the two men emerged from their dialogue, the first vampire announced to his Childer why he was changing the dhampir laws. He told them that to sever the half-breeds from chord of Kindred or clan would only make powerful enemies out of potential allies. Cain's idea was that if the dhampirs were accepted, (not necessarily as equals) they could be valuable assets to their clans. From that day foreword no dhampir was officially without a clan except D; he is the youngest of the 1st Generation.
Dulchenvas lived in Enouch for a little over a thousand years, trying desperately to fit in and learn all he could. His father decreed that Divina; the 4th generation vampire infamous for her tempestuous manner, be D's employer. For the majority of the time he dwelled in the city he was something like a personal servant to Divina, though he was not paid and the tasks were always fairly menial. (Though I don't think D ever forgave her for forcing him to learn the fiddle.) Dulchenvas was also the only dhampir officially given access to the Book of Nod; a collection of vampiric history, sermons by Cain, and other scripts on what it means to be a vampire. All the clan leaders and especially the three 1st generation vampires despised him- daily he was beaten up and fed on to the point of death by many a vampire, and they took to calling him the royal feeding slave in jest among themselves. Apparently, the taint of Cain's blood made D very tasty to the other vampires. Fortunately for him, the vampires of Enouch had their mind in more important treacheries, and his suffering was more of a regular amusement for them. During these days the clan leaders and the 1st Generation savagely competed with each other for Cain's favor, resulting in one group's member's killing another in an attempt to get closer to Cain.
D was still in-taking blood regularly, but oddly enough refused the honor of drinking from his choice of the city's multitude of feeding slaves; another option not offered to any other damphir in the city. The reason for this was vaguely illustrated for me one evening as the vampire hunter and I sat opposite each other at a chess table at Whitehall. (My house in southwestern Faerun.) We were enjoying the game, and a pitcher of potent alcoholic combinations known throughout Halruaa as Thespian Tea. I had persuaded him to speak of Enouch, but when the subject of feeding slaves was brought up, (For the lemmings out there who don't know what a feeding slave is, quick 101: feeding slaves are slaves who eat a special diet to make their blood thicker and tastier. They are also trained to respond favorably to the vampire bite, a.k.a the kiss as deemed in their society.) Anyways, D began to tell the story of what would have been his first feeding. Apparently, when Emeric thought D was at the right age to begin feeding, he bought a half-Sylvan elf girl specifically for the occasion. While drinking from a full-blooded Sylvan elf would drive any blood-drinking creature insane, a half-breed had the richest, most flavorsome blood obtainable. It became apparent within a few moments of their meeting that the girl was not willing, but Emeric ordered D to subdue the slave and take what he wanted by force. The enormously tragic part is that he tried; but could not bring himself to do the evil that Emeric had done to him. He patronized the camp girls and the whores when necessary, but never took a slave- unwilling or otherwise.
Other than Cain, the only other being who was kind to D besides the human children of Enouch who pitied him was Saulot of the Snake Clan; a 3rd Generation vampire elevated in status who served as Cain's chief advisor. It was he who usually carried Dulchenvas away and healed wounds that would otherwise have killed him, after being mangled by the other vampires. To this day, it still confuses D as to why Saulot felt the need to perform that most simple of kind gestures. He was wiser, but no less malevolent that the rest of his brotherin. The only guess D ever came up with was that he was acting under the orders of the Vampire King, but when asked directly Cain denied this. D remarked to me once that Cain is many things, but not a teller of falsehoods.
With the ongoing corruption and backstabbing that had Enouch in its grasp, the city's day's were numbered; then one of the 1st Generation was found with the heart missing from the body- a clear sign that the murderer was a vampire who ingested the heart's blood, therefore absorbing the victim's power. I was never told which of the three 1st Generation was killed, but he did say total chaos engulfed the city when the body was discovered in the Kindred's council chamber. The last time Dulchenvas spoke with his father was on the final night of Enouch. When he learned of the murder, D sought Cain out; finding him alone atop the highest of his towers. When Cain was asked by his son what he would do to stop this, the vampire shook his head and turned to D
"All is just as it should be. I sleep in the earth tonight Dulchenvas, but I leave you with these. Here is a weapon, (the nodachi he has today) and this is the most powerful weapon you will ever have." (A small vile containing Cain's blood)
The two men then took their leave of each other, realizing the different destinies they had. On his way out of the panic-stricken city, D ripped out a page of the Book of Nod, and still carries that page with him to this day. (For the record, it is my personal belief that much more that this trivial conversation passed between them that night, but I have yet to successfully coerce the remaining in formation from D.) Once getting past the gates of the city, D turned and looked at Enouch for the last time already engulfed by flames. From a distance he stood and watched the city vanish until sunrise, silently vowing that his blood drinking days were over. He was 4168.
The next 1300 years were pure torture for the dhampir as he struggled to carry out his vow. Fighting the bloodlust took all of his energy and nearly all of his sanity. He remembers taking to the forests, suffering from a relentless head and body ache that can only be described by screaming. It was in one of those forests that D met someone who he still calls his best friend- a tree. Well, in all actuality it was a Trent, but D thought it was a tree at the time. He would visit this large Oak often, sobbing and whispering his torture softly at its roots. After 200 years or so of this, the Trent decided to talk back. Over a period of many hundreds of years the two became very close and even now D persists in keeping that Trent's location a secret. He will only say that it still exists, and he goes to see it when he wants advice of the wisest nature. (He certainly never asks me!) It took many years to get the bloodlust delicately under control before D was something like himself again. He even claims that toward the end of this agonizing process, a great fatigue overtook him and he slept approximately 10 years within the Trent itself. I did not bother to ask how this was possible- just don't want to go there, I suppose.
At the age of 5476 Dulchenvas was free from the necessity of blood drinking for the first time since childhood; but had rediscovered an escape in the thrill of the kill. He began working as a mercenary for whoever tossed enough money his way, and had no problem working for conflicting employers. His ample knowledge of Toril and its people rendered D an expert at blending in on the soil of any given kingdom on the planet. From what I gather he acquired quite a bit of money in this manner; enough to compile a large fortune after transferring considerable support to his opium habit. (Yes, of course it was just a phase!) Spilling blood had comfortably taken the place of drinking it for D; but his old acquaintances from Enouch who had been lingering patently for the perfect moment to finish him off, caught up with just outside of Merrydale. (Now called Daggerdale, I believe) They beat him senseless in a vast understatement of the phrase, and buried him alive approximately 20 feet under the ground with his own sword lodged in his chest. Though alive, he must have been a truly frightening sight when he broke ground one week later. After a slow recovery in a nearby forest, D fled to the Underdark seeking to evade his vampiric pursuers; or if he was exceedingly lucky they might actually think him dead.
During his travels in the Underdark Dulchenvas became acquainted, and somewhat friendly with the Drow elves. He settled into the Drow city of Menzobaranzan and served the houses of DeVir and Arabani collectively, though they were animate enemies at the time. The family matrons kept him alive and free in exchange for his invaluable services as a spy. He did his job exceedingly well and acquired more wealth, but remained to keep his tenuous hold on the bloodlust intact. Despite his graceful efforts to keep his two employers from knowing of one another, within 200 years the Drow families in question began to catch on. When his dual loyalties were discovered in the capitol city, the dhampir had a narrow escape but survived with only a few missing fingers and a demon of a headache. It was to be 500 years before D returned to the surface again, but he discovered some enormously fascinating places while he was stumbling around down there. D's total time in the Underdark spanned 7-800 years, and the initial blindness that occurred upon return to the surface took nearly seven years to wear off. The briefness of my knowledge concerning this particular period in my friend's life is no accident. D has repeatedly denied me detail pertaining to his tenyor with the Drow, but I did manage to come into some more recent knowledge by circumstance of chance. The most sober of my friends had become more inebriated than I have ever seen him. That night we talked about two things we never spoke of again- and one of them was the Drow.
In a semi-coherent manner D began to draw a tale of Halavin DeVir; the typical Drow matron you may have read about, whom D mostly referred to as "that temptress bitch." She shamelessly favored his touch above all others despite the fact that he was wasn't a Drow, and knowing well the fragility of his grip on the bloodlust. D admitted faltering with Halavin's advances to the point of biting her once, but managed to fling her away before any of the blood reached his gullet. (Yeah, I thought it sounded a little flimsy myself.) The end result was that she never left D alone after that. Her obsessive fascination with him is what eventually led to the unearthing of his disloyal conduct.
Once on the surface, D radically shifted the manner that he lived his life. Subsisting with the Drow had over-quenched his desire to spill blood, and subsequently his control over the bloodlust had grown stronger. He decided to buy a seven acre plot of land outside what was then the small community of Waterdeep and begin farming it. Agriculture ended up being something D was good at, although he was extremely anti-social and his neighbors regarded him with suspicion, but mostly left him alone. It was in the small town that he first clamped eyes on a lovely, Arian vision of a girl named Gwyneth. She was a seamstress commoner, but Dulchenvas's affection for the young woman was as obvious and steady as his finances. It took D five years to peacefully convince Gwyneth's father to give them permission to court, after which she was aloud to see him under the normal conditions. (i.e. constant chaperones, no touching and strict curfew.) The two were married just shy of a year later at a small ceremony on D's property. Remembering Kelen and the nature of her demise; Dulchenvas could not bring himself to tell his lovely bride who and what he is. I never was informed as to how he hid, or otherwise got around biting Gwyneth when they shared bed, and it is still unclear to me presently. All he ever really said was that the marriage was the happiest ten years he has ever known.
Unfortunately for the couple, D's enemies had found him once again and this time it was Vahla (Who had always appreciated the suffering of an enemy more than the demise of one) who was hatching the plan. He created a special scroll that would instantly quadruple the thirst of any designated target with vampire blood inside the area of effect. From outside the bedroom window Vahla silently cast his spell as Dulchenvas and his wife slept. D immediately awoke; as if from a violent nightmare and without warning the familiar thirst came back with a vengeance. Trying as quickly as he could to get out of their small cottage, his intention was to find an animal; but in his bewildered state his precious Gwyneth was awoken and she unhappily became the target of the spells effect. The day I met him D was ironclad in the notion that Gwyneth's death was entirely his fault, though over time he has realized Vahla's part in it. Even now, it's not something I recommend you discuss with him. The day it happened he was 6871.
Shattered with despair, D fled Waterdeep (and still has never been back) half-hazzardly pursued by some of Gwyneth's kin seeking to avenge her murder. If D had been succumbing to his frequent thirst during his marriage, it stopped about here. I know this because I was distantly familiar with the mage that D had met once or twice; who was entering my friend's employ around now. (That is, now being about a fifty years after his wife's death.) As he found himself battling bloodlust once again, the notion of creating a second orifice without the perception of taste was introduced to him by the mage in question. The vampire hunter and I have never discussed the mutual acquaintance for good reason- the poor fellow made a gross error, but we shan't discuss the operations of a wild surge now. Different essay altogether. Pardon my rabble: returning to the subject; the mage did give D the mouth on his left hand as agreed, but the hand ended up having two functional eyes and a voice, along with an automatic ability to share D's intelligence. (And various other weird powers) Did I mention that it never shuts up when given the opportunity to speak? Needless to say, he hates it; and I in turn find it to be humorous and informative.
The last half of the Dragon Wars was exploding in the east, and chaos ensnared the continent. Dulchenvas chose to take up arms again to help protect the Gold Dragon family of Feathercrest. He helped plot military strategy with the Dragon generals (or Miwyebbot as translated from their tongue) and acted as a physical bodyguard for the Dragons themselves- consequently saving the Feathercrest family many times when the help was needed most. (Again: long story shortened within a long story. Raise your hand if you understood that. Really- do it.) Killing wasn't much fun for him anymore, but it was clearly what he was best at, although money was no longer an issue. In his travels before marriage D had stashed over 1 million g\p in various locations around the realms. Within the next 300 years two things happened: he found out about the Camarilla's collaboration with Vahla to destroy his life, and he decided to become a vampire hunter. That has been his occupation since then. In the considerable time I have known him he has become one of my most trusted friends and is, in my humble opinion, one of the most fascinating people alive.
These words, though somewhat paraphrased, are presented as D told them to me in various parts of our two thousand year friendship.