Story Notes

– Vampires, due to their semi-rigid hierarchical pack structure, have evolved a pseudo-feudalistic style of government. It is divided as follows:
o The Dark Lord of Shadows: supreme god of vampiredom. No living vampire has managed to claim the title. First among equals amongst the:
o The Seven Lords of the Vampire Hordes: The gods of vampiredom, essentially. By some, they are regarded as mere myths and legends. Others, as the progenitors of the vampire race long dead. No vampire since the dawn of human civilization has managed to win any of the posts. They are identified by the Seven Blades, which are currently kept carefully hidden by certain vampires. The Seven Lords are as follows:
 The First Lord, The White Lord, The Mortal Lord, The Lord of Life and Death: Supposedly, the original vampire and the first (and so far only) Dark Lord of Shadows. Heavily associated with the colour white.
 The Second Lord, The Yellow Lord, The Lord of Sunshine The Lord of Pain.
 The Third Lady, The Green Lady, The Lady of Poison, The Lady of Vengeance
 The Twin Lords, The Red Lords, The Lords of Hate and Rage, of Blood and Fire
 The Sixth Lady, The Blue Lady, The Lady of the Sky The Lady of Sorrow
 She Who Laughs, The Black Lady, The Bitter Lady The Lady of Mockery.
o Below the Seven Lords is the Vampire Council, the current ruling body of the Vampire Nation. It functions as a sort of Parliament or United Nations General Assembly, mediating between the various vampire domains and negotiating with the human governments on their behalf. Only lords, and usually only those of ducal rank, are allowed to sit in the Council. It’s location is a closely guarded secret, and changes frequently to prevent humans from massacring them, as they have several times before. The executive of the Council is called the Chieftain of the Council, and is similar to the UN General Secretary.
o Below the Council are the lords themselves. Their ranks are as follows:
 Duke/Duchess/Archduke/Grand Duke/Grand Prince/Prince
• This rare title is given to those who have managed to unite entire countries under their banner. As one can imagine, given vampires limited ability to travel, this is incredibly difficult. Canada, the United States and Russia all have traditionally never had a duke due to their size.
• Dukes are the lords who dominate the Vampire Council, often bullying or intimidating their lesser peers.
 Sovereign Prince/Fürst/Marquess/Marquis/Margrave/Landgrave
• Sovereign princes have an entire province/state (in the U.S.) under their banner.
 Count/Earl
• Counts and Earls are vampires who have managed to unite entire counties under their banner. This includes all the little towns and sub communities, as well.
 Viscount/Vidame
• Viscounts are vampires who rule two cities or more, but less than a whole county. They rely heavily on the yeomanry and the Flock to maintain communication between their domains and there have been periods where baronies have rebelled openly against their viscounts due to the lack of communication.
• The rise of instant communication, rapid transit and cars have alleviated this more than somewhat.
• The rise of great conglomerate cities like New York and Toronto have cause many barons to demand they be raised to the level of viscount at the very least.
 Baron:
• A baron is the vampire in control of a city. They are by far the most numerous of the vampire lords. It is they who are responsible for levying taxes, raising armies and generally maintaining the day to day life of the Flock.
• A baron is the lowest rank of vampire that can receive representation in the Vampire Council. Most, however, do not, instead opting to let their superiors in the food chain do the work while they concentrate on their cities.
 Knight
• Knight banneret: a vampire who is a part of the ruling vampire’s bloodline. They frequently serve as the lord’s ministers and thus, depending on the rank of their patron, can outrank other vampire lords.
• Knight bachelor: vampires who are not a part of the ruling vampire’s bloodline, but are not lords onto themselves. Only a power in Baronies, the smallest of the vampire domains.
• Either type of knight may rule a small town or village between cities, at the discretion of the local great lord.
 Squire
 Yeoman/Fyrd/Free Man/Franklin:
• Yeoman and their equivalents are humans who have pledged their loyalty to the ruling vampire but own their land/business or whatever. They are the only people besides the local Master-at-Arms who are allowed to carry arms.
o At the bottom are the Flock, who serve as the domain’s peasants and crops, simultaneously.
 The Flock has a number of internal divisions all of its own. Some are merchants, others bar tenders, industrialists, whatever. Several act as blood dolls for their specific vampires. All of the Flock are expected to donate, however, as part of their taxes.
o There are also the Outsiders, domains who refuse to acknowledge the Council’s authority. Some domains do this because they feel that the Council is an illegitimate successor to the Seven Lords, others because they do not wish to be dominated by domains that have nothing to do with their concerns. The most famous of these is Fort City, but there have been others in history.
– The seven bloodlines are rarely united internally and their relationships with each other are more often divided according to territory than blood relations. For example, a Red Baron might vote against another Red Baron’s proposals because that the second Baron’s proposals act against his interests.
o Thus, while the White bloodline is the most numerous of all the bloodlines, this translates into very little real political power. This is especially true for the Whites as their bastions of power, Canada and Russia, are very much a collection of bickering city states and are not united as a single voting bloc.
o The Blues, formally the largest of the bloodlines until a large number of lengthy wars with Islam (starting with the rise of Islam in 610 and continuing throughout history, often interrupted by lengthy cease-fires and complicated immensely by differing loyalties, civil wars and the fact that both Islam and the Lapis lazuli Empire were waging war against the Ghûls) and an attempted genocide from the Ottoman Empire (at the end of the empire’s lifetime), faced a similar problem. Their empire reached from Morocco in the West all the way through most of Africa and well into the Middle East. As such, despite being an absolutely massive collection of vampires, they rarely agreed on anything. As noted, this is contributed to their collapse and eventual downfall. As of 2015, the traditional Blue holdings have been limited to Morocco, although many Blues fled the Old World and colonized Mexico, the Caribbean and much of Central America. Even still, the Blues are heavily divided.
o Other bloodlines are more unified, but not by much. The Green bloodline is largely concentrated in the British Isles, with a fierce and ugly conflict between the Duchy of England (ruled by Mina Van Helsing) and the Irish Princes. Much of their conflict is over Wales, which has not had a serious vampire presence since 1284, when King Edward I conquered Wales and purged the vampires from it. As Wales is considered in legend to be the birthplace of the Greens and was unquestionably the home of Arthur and Uther Pendragon, widely held to be the last wielders of the Green blade, it’s of immense significance. However, that dispute is also what guarantees a near total disunity of the Greens, as you’re either with the Irish Princes or with the Duchy of England.
o The Yellow bloodline controls most of France and Germany, and like Charlemagne’s empire before it, is sharply divided between the two. While their conflicts cannot be focused on a single point like the Greens, Yellow vampires nevertheless have little reason to get alone and do not vote in the same block. That these areas where some of the worst devastated during the last two world wars and that the Yellow power in Germany is very new does not help.
o The Orange bloodline, one of the two Red lines, is largely divided between the north, centered on the Netherlands extending into the rest of the Low Countries and the south, centered on Romania and extending into west into Hungary and north into the Ukraine. The southern half is heavily influenced by their lycanthropic neighbours in the Balkans and this is used against them by their northern kin. The southerners contend that the northerners are xenophobic and isolationist, and that they are pissing on the traditional relationship between vampires and lycanthropes. And there are the regional concerns between northern Oranges and southern Oranges, as they cross different countries.
o Finally, the Reds proper control most of the Balkans, extending into Greece and Turkey. Mostly, this bloc is divided by regional concerns and small time power struggles. There is also some concern over how close they should ally with the Whites in Russia.
o The Iberian Peninsula is divided into the Duchy of Portugal and the Duchy of Spain, respectively. Although the current Duchess of Spain is Yellow and the Duke of Portugal is Red, the peninsula is evenly divided between bloodlines and is arguably the stronger for it.

Tuesday Update

Greetings! Time for another Tuesday weekly update.

First things first:

  • The Valentine’s Day Massacre is going well. It’ll be up February 14th or 13th if you’re a patron.
  • The Dead and the Damned has admittedly been placed on the back burner for the moment, but I’m still chugging away at it.
  • It’s still my intention to create a full-on vampire language. To do that, I’ve been learning Irish and Italian on Duolingo, and I’ve now started learning Dutch, French and Spanish as well.

I think that’s about it for this week. Don’t forget to check out Robots and Vampires and The Standard Tech Case Files: The Black Coats on Amazon! They’re free if you’re a Kindle Unlimited subscriber. And please leave a review!

Also, don’t forget to support me on Patreon!

Some More Story Notes (proper update next week I promise)

Vampire Psychology
Vampires as Predators
– All vampires are predators, without exception. They think and feel in predatory terms.
– What this means differs from vampire to vampire. Some are horrified by the fact that they are predators, driven by a thirst they cannot control. Others are more accepting, having found peace in their ecological niche. Yet others have become monsters equal to any human, delighting in the slaughter and the carnage they cause. And everything in between.
– However, despite the large variation between individual vampires, some generalities to their psychology can be made:
o First, they have decreased empathy with humans. Vampires are more likely to see humans as prey, and their actions in a negative light, than humans are.
o Second, they have increased empathy towards other, predatorial animals.
 Second, Part 2: vampires can be territorial, however, and do not tolerate other predators on their turf. Their empathy only extends so far.
o Third, vampires are typically focused on the stalk, the hunt. They enjoy a good chase or a successful ambush, and even though they have a complex society that essentially farms humans, will go out (the exact rate varies) to hunt down a meal.
o Fourth, as predatory animals, they dislike confronting large groups of prey. They know that they are out matched and outnumbered, and will typically walk the other way if they cannot lure a single person out of the group.
o Fifth, and related to fourth, vampires prefer the shadows whether it’s the long dark of a hallway or a corner booth in a club where they can watch the door and as many patrons as possible.
o Sixth, vampires are often wary and prepared for any attack.

Some Story Notes

Therianthropes
General Therianthrope Biology
General Therianthrope Diet
– All therianthropes are carnivores, without exception. Further, their preferred prey is always humans.
– Therianthropes cannot digest synthetic essential nutrients properly and thus cannot be fed with meat substitutes.
o Specifically, they cannot absorb any nutrients from vegetation. While they don’t expel plant material any more than they do meat, it’s little more than empty calories for them.
– Therianthropes have a hyper-efficient digestive system. Every part of their meal is digested and they produce no waste.
General Therianthrope Physiology
– All therianthropes are shapeshifters, albeit not all to the same degree. This shapeshifting manifests as: being able to turn into at least one animal, being able to turn into a hybrid form of animal and human, and being able to turn into a humanoid form.
– All therianthropes are mammals, despite the fact that some turn into fish or snakes. That is, they have mammary glands and all suckle their young. The exact nature of the glands differs from species to species and form to form, but they are all mammals.
– All therianthropes can interbreed with humans, but not with different species of therianthrope. It is unknown why this is so.
General Therianthrope Psychology
Therianthropes as Predators
– All therianthropes are predators of humanity, without exception. As such, they see humans as little more than a food source and a very dangerous prey animal.
Therianthropes as Shapeshifters
– All therianthropes are shapeshifters, usually alternating between animal and human forms. As such, they do not tie any great importance to physical appearance, as that can easily change.

New Year’s Day!

And what a year it’s been. The Standard Tech Case Files: The Black Coats was released on the first of July, I quit Ticketmaster in August (yahoo!) and Star Wars: The Force Awakens game out four days after my birthday. All in all, 2015 was a fantastic year.

And I intend for the next year to be even better. Here’s the plan:

  • My Patreon page is finally up and running. Granted, my last experiment with crowdfunding in August didn’t turn out so well, but that’s okay. I learned a lot from that experience, and I think that Patreon at the end of the day will serve my needs much better than Kickstarter would have.
  • Still working on that Valentine’s Day short story. It’s called The Valentine’s Day Massacre and will be out February 14th (or 13th, if your a patron!)
  • Work on The Standard Tech Case Files: The Dead and the Damned is continuing apace as well. Due to the current state of my finances, it won’t be out until much later this year. But I am done with the series bible and I’m working hard on getting this sucker done.
  • Robots and Vampires is free on Amazon starting today and for the next five days. Please, if you do download, leave a review. For those of my followers who are also authors, I’ll be more than happy to return the favour and review your work as well. Here’s the link: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00NDLMDT4?*Version*=1&*entries*=0
  • Currently, I am working on getting hardcover and paperback versions of my novels out there. I’ll keep you guys posted as times goes on.

I think that’s about it for now. I’ll have more for you guys on Tuesday!