Name: The (Vampire) Scourge

Category: Monsters

Type: Humanoids

Size: Large

Region: Anywhere there are dark places for them to avoid bright light, and enough blood to keep their hunger sated.

Rarity: Very exotic now, but they were once far too common.

Lifespan: Immortal

Appearance

Unlike today's vampires, who have mostly reverted back to their humanoid forms, Scourge can quite seriously be classed as freaks of nature. Deformed and grotesque, they have the teeth of a vicious carnivore and long, thick fangs meant for not merely piercing a vein, but ripping it clean apart.

The Bloodlust virus brought out their animal side, giving them thick, sharp claws for rending flesh from bone and rendering their victims helpless. And their eyes, with enlarged pupils capable of filling the entire iris, are all the better for hunting their prey in the dark and the shadows.

The eyes and ears appear far too large for their skulls, and their minds are too far gone for them to bother with even basic hygiene so they are often seen with dried blood on their lips. Nevertheless, they do otherwise look mostly human.

Behaviour

The oversized eyes and hunting prowess in the dark is perhaps where the myth that vampires cannot survive sunlight originated. It is true that the Bloodlust virus makes today's vampires vulnerable to ultraviolet rays, but the Scourge were never on Earth? and thus never tested in this manner.

Their aversion to sunlight did, however, come from the enlarged pupils which cannot close fully against bright light -- and which proved to be Elysia's greatest weapon against them during the Scourge Wars.

Diet: Blood. They could never get enough of it, no matter how much they ingested.

Habitat: Unlike vampires who can live as humans, the Scourge found bright light painful so they usually gravitated towards dark spaces close to a population centre for ease of feeding. Often, they were found in sewers under major towns and cities, clustering together in large numbers yet never hunting together and squabbling over meals.

Breeding: The Scourge, like vampires, do not breed; they instead reproduce by infecting others with the Bloodlust virus, either through blood-to-blood contact or ingestion. It is the virus's ability to mutate quickly from host to host that caused such a rapid development in the species from the mindless, animalistic Scourge to today's vampires in just fifteen hundred years.

Special Information

Strengths/Abilities:

  • Pure hunters, the Scourge had greater speed and strength;
  • better hearing and night vision;
  • and a much stronger sense of smell.

Weaknesses:

  • There were no Charmers among the Scourge; those abilities came later in the rapid evolution of the vampire species.
  • The Scourge were mindless animals, driven by the Bloodlust into a continuous and endless feeding frenzy.
  • Their greatest weakness was their aversion to light.

Origin: The Scourge predate modern vampires and were the first humanoids (all of them human) to be infected by Isolde Akakios?. Where today's vampires have much control over their Bloodlust and can live normal lives with care and a strict feeding regimen, the Scourge were mindless and bloodthirsty animals bent on not only sucking the blood from every living thing in order to survive, but also on spreading their plague.

Other Info: It was the Scourge (originally known as the Vampire Scourge, though modern vampires have done their best to separate the two) who swept a bloody path across Elysia? some fifteen hundred years ago, and the Scourge that Elysians fought in the Vampire Wars?. And, with long memories, it is the Scourge that many Elysians think of when they think of vampires, so it's little wonder the species is ill received by so many.

It should be noted that there has not been a single recorded sighting of a Scourge since the end of the Vampire/Scourge Wars. Those infected who were able to reason and converse were allowed to live (with some interference from Xanth on their behalf), but all else was allegedly destroyed. From time to time, stories of "monster", or "rogue", vampires have surfaced in towns where a flurry of people have disappeared in a short space of time, but these attacks are just as often attributed to normal vampires or other predators.

Creator: Emma?

Creatures Monsters Vampires Humanoids Large Very exotic