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Schattenblut Vampires


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Schattenblut Vampires

 

A vampire from this lineage is truly “undead.” They consume the blood of the living, but they are not themselves “alive.” Dying is an integral part of the process of becoming this type of vampire. They are not mutated humans. They are not some sort of virus. They are explicitly supernatural, unholy, and cursed. Immaculately preserved though they may be, they are the walking dead.

 

Schattenblut vampires are preserved and animated by extradimensional energy, the life-consuming darkness of the Schattenwelt, through a magical process fueled with the blood of the living. Some would call this process “black magic,” “witchcraft,” “blood magic,” or “necromancy,” and they would all be correct. These vampires are fundamentally beings of darkness, cold, and death. They are abominations, blasphemy given physical form. Their existence is a threat to all life and an insult to all that is Good.

 

Table of Contents

Known Schattenblut Vampires

Appearance

Aura of Death

Evil and The Soul

Vampire Instinct

Undead Physiology

Sleep of The Dead

Blood Lust

Feeding Requirements

Reproduction

Powers

Vampire Blood

Weaknesses

Achilles Heels

Daylight

Decapitation and Stakes Through The Heart

"What Counts As A Stake?"

Healing

Vampire Kryptonite

Ashes To Ashes

Sadly Mythtaken

Design Notes

 

Known Schattenblut Vampires

 

  • Gaetano "Guy" Giordano, AKA Mister Strix.
  • Guy’s sire, a German who currently identifies himself as “Johann.” Guy knows nothing else about him. Johann could have been sired by another Schattenblut vampire, or he could be the progenitor of the bloodline. If he is the progenitor, it might be because he was transformed by a different type of vampire and the curse "evolved," or he may have no "sire," having become a vampire by other means.
  • Johann claims to have several other “children,” who may or may not have spawn of their own.

Appearance

 

Even at their most benign moments, Schattenblut vampires live in the Uncanny Valley, and their look is always “Heroin Chic.” Even if they are technically beautiful, most humans will be uncomfortable in their presence, while only a minority will find them unambiguously attractive. Their skin is free of any blemishes or scars, unnaturally pale, and always cold to the touch, regardless of any physical activity or environmental factors. When visible, their veins appear to be black, rather than blue. Their builds tend to be lean. Their transformation burns away most of their fat, and leaves most of their internal organs shriveled and atrophied. Their eyes always have dark circles around them, seeming to constantly be surrounded by shadow, regardless of the angle or intensity of light in the immediate area. The irises of their eyes are completely black, indistinguishable from their pupils. The center of their eyes are just solid black discs. Their hands are slightly longer and larger in proportion to the rest of their body than they should be.

 

When they feed or use most of their powers, their appearance becomes even more overtly monstrous. Their veins bulge and darken. The blackness at the center of their eyes expands to cover the entire eyeball, like a drop of ink expanding in water. Their head remains the same size, but their facial proportions change. Their mouth, canine teeth, and tongue all enlarge by two to three times their normal size. Their mouth suddenly appears to be almost too large for their face, and to contain far more teeth than it should. Their canine teeth become razor-sharp fangs. Their voice deepens by at least a full octave and takes on an unearthly resonance, echoing slightly, independent of the local acoustics. When they snarl and growl, they sound just like a lion or a tiger.

 

Even when a Schattenblut vampire is not actively feeding or using their powers, they lack several signs of life that most observers take for granted, and they have many unnatural quirks which suggest or reveal their status as supernatural creatures.

  • The air around them is quiet, because of all the normal sounds their bodies don’t make.
  • They never cast a shadow, regardless of the level or angle of light in the surrounding area.
  • Their hands and fingers appear to have normal friction ridges, but their touch never leaves prints.
  • Their footsteps never leave prints or make a sound.
  • They do not breathe, cough, sneeze, or yawn. They only move air through their bodies to speak. In the cold, mist does not rise from their mouths.
  • They move far less often than mortals. They rarely blink, twitch, or fidget. When in a state of relative inactivity, they can appear to be statues. When asleep, they appear to be dead.
  • Their hearts do not beat. They have no pulse of any kind.
  • They do not sweat.
  • If they cry, the tears are blood.
  • When they are wounded, their skin does not bruise, and their cuts do not bleed. They will only bleed if they are staked through the heart or decapitated, or if they consciously force blood to the surface of their skin so they can feed it to someone else. Their blood is so dark that, instead of looking red like human blood, it appears to be black, with red highlights only visible when light hits it from certain angles.
  • As undead creatures, they do not age. Humans with whom they have repeated contact will eventually notice this.
  • They cannot consume mortal food or drink, and they vomit blood if they try. They have no desire for mortal food; it doesn’t smell or taste like “food” anymore. They crave only blood. Their bodies do not produce bile, urine, or feces.

Aura of Death

 

The area around a Schattenblut vampire is usually cold. When they enter a room, glass fogs up and water freezes. In their presence, mortals feel a chill and can see their own breath. When viewed through Infra-Vision, they always appear to be colder than their surroundings, even in the Arctic Circle, the depths of the ocean, or the vacuum of space. This unnatural cold may reveal the vampire’s presence to alert observers, even if it does not reveal their exact location.

 

The very presence of a Schattenblut vampire is hostile to life. At their touch, or even in their passing, plants (except for garlic or wolf’s bane) may wither, melt, or crumble into ash. Food and drink items, such as bread, milk, cheese, or wine (but never salt) may instantly spoil or rot. Animals react to these vampires with fear and hostility. Smaller creatures like insects may drop dead on the spot. Larger animals who happen to be pregnant may spontaneously miscarry.

 

While the natural world is threatened by the presence of a Schattenblut vampire, the technological world seems to ignore it. This sort of vampire has no reflection in mirrors. They do not show up in photographs or on video cameras, film or digital. Their voice does not show up on audio recording, and it does not carry through microphones, telephone (cellular or land-line), or radio. They do not show up as a blip on radar or sonar. They can walk freely through the laser, infra-red, and microwave beams used by electronic motion detectors without triggering them. Automatic doors won’t even open for them.

Machines can register their tactile input; they can operate machines by pressing buttons and typing at keyboards, and their weight can be measured with a scale. Their tissues can be analyzed with a gas chromatograph mass spectrometer, although the results will be unusual or inconclusive.

While a Schattenblut vampire will not appear directly on video or radar, their presence can cause bursts of static, video tearing, and other anomalies which may reveal their presence, if not their exact location, to alert observers.

 

Evil and The Soul

 

In game terms, any power which reveals or specifically targets “Evil,” such as “Detect Evil,” “Protection From Evil,” and “Smite Evil,” will show and affect a Schattenblut vampire as such, regardless of their individual conduct. However, the process of becoming this sort of vampire does not automatically remove or destroy the person’s “soul.” The soul is damaged and tainted, but still technically present. Any sensory power capable of perceiving or analyzing “souls,” such as “Aura Vision,” will perceive a Schattenblut vampire’s soul as stained with blood and shadow, shredded and hanging in tatters, but still existing. A Schattenblut vampire is still the same person, and they still have free will, though in most cases it eventually breaks against the onslaught of their new instincts.

 

Vampire Instinct

 

A Schattenblut vampire gains new instincts, and they feel those instincts more powerfully than any mortal has ever felt anything. Drink blood. Sleep during the day. Flee from the Sun, the holy, and the flame. Claim your hunting ground and defend your territory. Survive, at any cost. Destroy any threat. The urge to indulge those instincts is so overwhelming, few manage to resist.

 

Schattenblut vampires crave blood. The longer they try to go without drinking blood, or the longer they subsist on (relative to their needs) low quality blood, the more likely that they will fall into a feeding frenzy, indiscriminately attacking the nearest humans and gorging themselves with no regard for the survival of their prey. They may also fall into a feeding frenzy if they suffer significant physical harm, since their body metabolizes stored blood to heal their wounds and fuel their powers. A tough fight will usually leave them thirsty.

 

Schattenblut vampires have an innate fear of the things which threaten them the most, such as sunlight, fire, and holy symbols. They will usually flee from such things on sight, violently assaulting anyone who gets in their way, or even looks like they might get in their way.

 

Newly transformed vampires will often attempt to commit suicide, but they will find themselves physically unable to go through with it, and if they have caused themselves sufficient injury, they may fall into a feeding frenzy, or they may just flee from the source of their self-inflicted harm, attacking anyone unfortunate enough to find themselves in the vampire’s path.

 

Undead Physiology

 

Schattenblut vampires are undead, not living creatures. They cannot eat food or drink water, and if they try, they will vomit it back up immediately, along with some of their stored blood. However, they have a need for blood similar to the human need for food, and they still require sleep. Unlike a mortal, neither a lack of blood or a lack of sleep will destroy this sort of vampire. But deprivation of either blood or sleep will cause suffering at first, followed by injury, both physical and psychological.

 

If a Schattenblut vampire goes an entire day without sleep, or three days without drinking blood, they will begin to suffer fatigue and psychological instability, and their appearance will begin to deteriorate. At first, they will look sick (or, rather, sicker than usual). Then they will begin to age. Eventually, their flesh will decay and slough off their bones, ultimately leaving little more than a fanged skeleton. If they reach that point of deterioration, they will still be able to see and speak, despite not having eyes, a throat, or a tongue. Any blood they drink while skeletonized will be absorbed directly into their bones. Once they finally get the restful sleep they need, the decay will reverse itself, at roughly the same rate a mortal would recover from sleep deprivation.

 

Sleep of The Dead

 

A Schattenblut vampire requires approximately the same amount of sleep as a living human, varying with the length of the local daylight hours. Restful sleep requires complete shelter from sunlight, and soil from either the vampire’s homeland or their mortal grave. They do not need to be buried; a thin layer of dirt spread beneath them is sufficient. They do not have to sleep in a coffin or casket, but such items are well-suited to their needs.

 

Blood Lust

 

The body of a Schattenblut vampire metabolizes the blood they consume to maintain their existence, preserve their flesh from decay, heal their wounds, and fuel their powers. When this vampire drinks blood, their undead body stores that blood in their heart, where it concentrates and transforms, from mortal blood into vampire blood.

 

However, a Schattenblut vampire doesn’t just need blood to survive. They want it. They love it. Blood is just as much a drug for them as it is a meal. When they drink blood, they feel both intense physical pleasure, and a vague but profound and overwhelming sense of accomplishment at having done the thing they exist to do. To approximate the same sensation, a mortal would have to simultaneously take their first hit of heroin, eat the best meal they've ever tasted, have the best sex they've ever imagined, and use one hand to take the keys after buying their first house while their other hand takes the diploma they earned for achieving their first doctorate, all while looking at the face of their newborn child for the first time. Once the vampire has experienced this, they have difficulty ever thinking about anything else.

 

Feeding Requirements

 

The ideal sustenance for a Schattenblut vampire is blood “fresh” from the veins of a living person of the same species as the vampire was in life, usually a human, or a humanoid alien with genetic similarity sufficient to produce viable offspring with a human. Intense emotion also enhances the taste of the blood, though the specific feelings don't matter - fear and pain work just as well as pleasure and lust. Strong emotions felt by the original owner of the blood can embed as "psychic resonance," staying in their blood long after the event which triggered them (see "Powers" below). The further that the vampire’s feeding deviates from that ideal, the less satisfaction and nourishment they derive, and the more likely it is that they will succumb to a feeding frenzy. They can consume blood from cold storage, so long as that stored blood is of sufficient quality as to be suitable for transfusion back into a living person. Necrotic or coagulated blood is the equivalent of spoiled food, and attempting to consume it will provide no nourishment and will trigger vomiting, just as if the vampire were to attempt to drink water or eat mortal food. These vampires can feed from vertebrate animals and aliens which have “blood,” but the ichor of creatures like arthropods is too dissimilar to human blood for their needs. However, animal blood is not as satisfying or as efficient as human blood. It would take multiple units of animal blood to provide the same “nutritional content” as one unit of human blood. The blood of living supernatural creatures, such as werewolves, faeries, and dragons, on the other hand, usually tastes better than human blood and provides more efficient nourishment, and may also have side-effects, including addiction, inebriation, temporary insanity (hallucinations, violent rage, etc.), and even the gaining of temporary new superpowers, or temporary boosts to existing superpowers. Depending on the individual, the blood of human mutants and mutates, powerful aliens, and even some other vampires, may have similar effects.

 

Reproduction

 

Since they are not alive, Schattenblut vampires cannot reproduce sexually. There is no such thing as having been “born” as a Schattenblut vampire. The creation of this sort of vampire exclusively involves killing and transforming an existing human (or similar humanoid).

To become a Schattenblut vampire, a mortal must consume the blood of an existing vampire three separate times, on three separate days. This consumption need not be voluntary; the mortal can be force-fed or under the influence of mind control. Then the vampire must fatally exsanguinate the mortal. (The mortal may also rise as a Schattenblut vampire if they die by other means while such a vampire's blood is in their system.) The mortal’s corpse will be immaculately preserved at the point of death, and three nights later, it will rise. The new vampire will awaken overcome with blood lust, immediately descending into an indiscriminate feeding frenzy until its thirst is slaked.

 

Powers

 

Schattenblut vampires are not alive. Technically, they are animated corpses, immaculately preserved at the point of death. Since they are not living creatures, they ignore most of the associated physical concerns. Their bodies do not age over time, although their powers do increase over time in a process of “maturation” similar to that of living children becoming adults. They do not need to breathe, and they are not affected by diseases, poisons, or radiation.

 

The undead body of a Schattenblut vampire is significantly more resilient than it was in life. Their skeleton is harder than stone, though just as light as human bone. Their flesh feels like that of a human, but it displays a resistance to cutting or puncturing more akin to silk, leather, or Kevlar.

 

When a Schattenblut vampire is wounded, their body metabolizes its stored blood to repair those wounds. The process is usually instantaneous, though more grievous wounds will take a few seconds. This process can even replace lost limbs and organs.

 

Their undead body can also metabolize stored blood to increase their strength, speed, and agility to superhuman levels, or to shapeshift. The most common applications of shapeshifting include growing wicked talons capable of shredding stone and metal as if they were paper, and transforming into a cloud of mist, or a swarm of creatures associated with the night, disease, blood, or death, such as bats, owls, rats, or spiders. Even in their solid form, they can defy gravity to some extent, walking on vertical or even inverted horizontal surfaces as if they were on the ground.

 

Schattenblut vampires also have some psychic powers. They can broadcast a psychic command which forces the minds of others to ignore their presence. If they look a person directly in the eye, they can hypnotize them, controlling their mind and erasing or rewriting their memories. When they taste a person's blood, they can absorb the psychic resonance embedded within, experiencing that person's memories as if they were the vampire's own.

 

When a Schattenblut vampire pierces a living creature’s skin with their fangs and sucks out their blood, they trigger a rush of endorphins which overwhelms their victim with intense pleasure. This makes it difficult for the victim to understand what is happening, or to remember it clearly afterward. Since the vampire’s blood can heal wounds (see below), they will usually use their fangs to make a slight cut on their own tongue, then use their tongue to transfer a drop of their own blood to the victim’s puncture wounds, licking them closed. This, combined with the vampire’s aforementioned powers of hypnosis, allows their feeding to go mostly undetected.

 

The undead bodies of Schattenblut vampires develop heightened senses relative to their mortal bodies, which aids them in hunting. They are particularly sensitive to blood, being able to smell even tiny amounts of it from far away, like a shark. When the vampire tastes blood, they can learn details about the original owner that would make a crime laboratory jealous. Since they are infused with the dark energy of the Schattenwelt, they can also see perfectly in even total darkness.

 

Vampire Blood

 

When a Schattenblut vampire drinks mortal blood, their body quickly transforms it into vampire blood, a more concentrated substance infused with dark magic. Sorcerers can use it as a component for countless magical spells, rituals, potions, or other items. When ingested or injected by a living creature, the blood of a Schattenblut vampire can act as a powerful and potentially addictive drug. The specific effects vary by the individual and the amount consumed. It can act as a stimulant or as a narcotic. It can cause euphoria, or temporary psychological instability, such as hallucinations, violent rage, or uncharacteristically deviant behavior. It can even heal wounds, cure diseases, or grant temporary superpowers, such as enhanced physical prowess, and it can temporarily retard the aging process. It can also create a temporary psychic link between the vampire and the mortal drinking their blood. It can also temporarily stain or “taint” the mortal’s “soul” or “aura” with a “negative resonance.”
 

Weaknesses

 

There are many weaknesses described in vampire fiction and folklore. Unfortunately for Schattenblut vampires, most of them are applicable.

 

Achilles Heels

 

For the most part, a Schattenblut vampire’s body is far more resilient than a mortal’s, and their body can use stored blood to heal their wounds almost instantly. However, there are some weapons and powers which ignore and suppress these qualities, inflicting grievous wounds upon the vampire which heal slowly.

 

Acid

Corrosive acid destroys the vampire’s tissue faster than the vampire can re-grow it.

 

Blessed/Holy Weapons/Powers

As creatures of unholy darkness and black magic, Schattenblut vampires can be harmed with powers or weapons which have been created, “Blessed,” or “Consecrated” by a deity associated with concepts like “Good,” “Life,” “Light, and “The Sun,” or by that deity’s priests or servants, or with a weapon which is otherwise considered “Celestial” or “Holy.”

 

Disintegration

Powers which completely annihilate matter will destroy the vampire’s tissue faster than the vampire can re-grow it.

 

Fire

Fire destroys the vampire’s tissue faster than the vampire can re-grow it. Fire has a connection to the Sun, and a similar power to cleanse the supernatural and unholy from the Earth.

 

Garlic, Salt, Wolf’s Bane
These substances have spiritual significance and anti-disease properties, and have seen mundane use as preservatives. They are fundamentally opposed to creatures of death like Schattenblut vampires. Any weapon coated with them, or somehow made from them (such as rock-salt shotgun rounds), will harm the vampire.

 

Jade Weapons

Jade is a substance of purity and spiritual significance. The vampire is harmed by its touch.

 

Natural Weapons of Supernatural Creatures

“Natural Weapons” includes things like claws, fangs, and horns.

“Supernatural Creatures” includes things like vampires, werewolves, demons, faeries, and dragons.

The vampire can be harmed by its own kind.

 

Silver Weapons

Silver is a substance of purity. Practitioners of magic claim it is light given solid form. Practitioners of science acknowledge it has anti-disease properties. As a creature of death, the vampire is harmed by silver.

 

Daylight

 

Schattenblut vampires are, at their core, creatures of the night. The Sun suppresses their powers while it is in the sky. During the day, they are weak, sluggish, with dulled senses, locked in their human form. Even their bite lacks its mesmerizing effect on mortals during the day. The light of the Sun burns their flesh, reducing them to ash within a minute or two at most. It doesn't matter if the Sun is partially obscured; an overcast sky will not protect them. Any amount of sunlight, direct or indirect, will burn them. They cannot avoid being burned by standing in a shadow or wearing sunscreen. However, they are only harmed by the light that comes directly from the Sun. They are not harmed by moonlight, starlight, or ultraviolet lamps, though they find the latter uncomfortable.

 

Even when underground, or otherwise completely sheltered from its rays, their instinct is to sleep while the Sun is in the sky. Unless they are being actively harmed or threatened, they find it difficult to remain awake or alert during the day.

 

Decapitation and Stakes Through The Heart

 

If a Schattenblut vampire’s head is removed from their body, or if they are impaled through the heart with a “stake” (see “What Counts As A Stake?” below), then they will be rendered comatose. Their stored blood will leak out from the wound, they will appear to be dead, and their body will begin to decay like a normal corpse. Because of this, observers may assume that they have been permanently destroyed, but they are merely unconscious. If they are left beheaded or staked for long enough, then their flesh will rot away, and he will become a skeleton, as would happen if they were deprived of blood or restful sleep (see above).

If the vampire’s severed head is reunited with their body, or if the stake is removed from their heart, then they will regain consciousness and mobility in a matter of moments. Having lost all their stored blood, they will awaken extremely thirsty.

 

“What Counts As A Stake?”

 

Most characters would need the assistance of some sort of tool, like a hammer, to drive a “stake” into the heart of a Schattenblut vampire. This can only be attempted while the vampire is sleeping, or otherwise incapacitated (as a coup-de-grace in game terms). If a character is using an actual weapon specifically designed for impalement (daggers, swords, spears, arrows, bullets, etc.), or if the character has superhuman strength, then they can attempt to stake the vampire’s heart in the heat of battle (in game terms, this should require either a critical hit or a 5-point Power Attack maneuver).

 

Blessed / Holy Items

Schattenblut vampires can be staked with a weapon or relic which has been “Blessed” or “Consecrated” by a deity associated with concepts like “Good,” “Life,” “Light, and “The Sun,” or by that deity’s priests or servants, or a weapon which is otherwise considered “Celestial” or “Holy.” They can also be staked with a holy symbol associated with such a deity, if it is large enough and the right shape (such as a sufficiently large cross or Star of David), and if is hammered in or wielded with superhuman strength.

 

Garlic, Salt, Wolf’s Bane

Schattenblut vampires can be staked with any weapon made from, or coated with, one or more of these substances.

 

Jade

Schattenblut vampires can be staked with any weapon or object carved from jade.

 

Silver

Schattenblut vampires can be staked with any weapon forged of silver or plated with silver. A silver bullet lodged in the vampire’s heart will also have the same effect.

 

Wooden Stake

Schattenblut vampires can be staked with a piece of whole, unbroken, solid wood. Compressed particle board won’t work. A spear or arrow will work, so long as the part of the weapon lodged in the vampire’s heart is made of wood. While wooden weapons can be used to stake a Schattenblut vampire through the heart, they do not overcome the vampire’s superhuman resilience in any other way.

 

Healing

 

Schattenblut vampires are creatures of death. Most superpowers and magical spells which involve “healing” or “curing” living creatures will not work on them, and will actively harm them, especially if such powers are bestowed by, or associated with, supernatural or divine entities associated with concepts like “Good,” “Life,” “Light,” or “The Sun.”

 

Vampire Kryptonite

 

Certain otherwise benign items can be used to harm or repel Schattenblut vampires, limiting their movements and potentially trapping them in the following ways:

  • The vampire cannot knowingly approach these objects.
  • If these objects are mounted above or around a portal (door, window, etc.), then the vampire cannot pass through that portal.
  • If these objects have been arranged in an unbroken circle, the vampire cannot pass into or out of that circle. If they have been arranged in a line, the vampire cannot cross over that line.
  • If these objects have been placed upon the lid of a container, the vampire cannot open the container.
  • If another character wears these objects around their neck, then the vampire cannot use their powers to control that character’s mind, and the vampire cannot bite them, drink their blood, or physically attack them.
  • If another character wields these objects, then can keep the vampire at bay. The wielder, and anyone standing behind them, cannot be physically attacked by the vampire, and their mind cannot be controlled by the vampire.
  • The vampire will be burned if they touch any of these objects, or their shadows. If the vampire drinks the blood of another character who has recently ingested any of these objects, then the vampire will vomit up that blood, and suffer pain, nausea, and internal injury.
  • If the vampire is restrained with bonds made from or infused with these objects, then they cannot break those bonds, no matter how flimsy they are, and the vampire’s powers will be immediately suppressed.
  • The vampire can potentially overcome the limitations on their movement from these items with force of will, but the effort will cause them pain, and possibly injury. If such an effort succeeds, the item may be damaged or destroyed.

Garlic

Unlike most plants and foodstuffs, garlic will not wither or decay in the presence of a Schattenblut vampire.

All parts and states of the garlic plant affect Schattenblut vampires, the flower and the bulb, whether living, freshly harvested, preserved, or even dried out and ground into powder.

 

Holy Symbols & Items

Schattenblut vampires are harmed and repelled by holy symbols of any deity associated with concepts like “Good,” “Life,” “Light, and “The Sun.” They are likewise affected by items which have been “Blessed” or “Consecrated” by such a deity, or by their priests or servants, items of ritual or religious significance to such a deity, like holy water or communion wafers, or items which are otherwise considered “Celestial” or “Holy.”
If such a symbol or item is being wielded by another character, then that symbol or item will affect the vampire regardless of whether or not the wielder or the vampire sincerely revere the associated deity, believes they exist, or knows of them at all. The faith or ignorance of the wielder or the vampire is completely irrelevant.

 

Jade

Jade cannot be used to repel a Schattenblut vampire or limit their movement. But they cannot open a container with jade resting upon it, or attack someone wearing jade around their neck, and touching or ingesting jade will burn them. They cannot break bonds which incorporate jade, and such bonds will suppress their powers and cause them pain.

 

Mirrors

As described above, Schattenblut vampires do not cast any reflection in mirrors. Their instinct is to avert their gaze from any mirror they see. Mirrors can be used to repel the vampire, but their touch will not harm the vampire. If the vampire can overcome their instinct with force of will, and they stare into a mirror, a blurry image may appear for a moment, but then the mirror may crack or even shatter. The blurry image vanishes as soon as the vampire stops concentrating, or as soon as the mirror breaks. Mirrors may also crack or even shatter just from being in the vampire’s presence, though they will not break while being used to repel a vampire, unless the vampire exerts sufficient force of will to confront them.

 

Salt

Unlike most plants and foodstuffs, salt will not wither or decay in the presence of a Schattenblut vampire.

Pure salt will harm and repel a Schattenblut vampire, but saltwater will not, nor will foods with a high salt content.

 

Silver

Silver cannot be used to repel a Schattenblut vampire or limit their movement. But they cannot open a container with silver resting upon it, or attack someone wearing silver around their neck, and touching or ingesting silver will burn them. They cannot break bonds which incorporate silver, and such bonds will suppress their powers and cause them pain.

 

Wolf’s Bane

Unlike most plants and foodstuffs, wolf’s bane will not wither or decay in the presence of a Schattenblut vampire.

The plant affects Schattenblut vampires in all states, whether living, freshly harvested, preserved, or even dried out and ground into powder.

 

Ashes To Ashes

 

A Schattenblut vampire will not rise again if their body is completely burned to ash by fire or sunlight, or if their body is completely dissolved into sludge with acid or holy water. However, they may rise again if another character collects some of that ash or sludge and mixes it with blood.

 

Sadly Mythtaken

 

There are a small handful of traditional vampire weaknesses which do not apply to the Schattenblut:

  • Water, including running water, has no effect upon them.
  • They can enter a private residence without an invitation.
  • They do not suffer any confusion at a crossroad.
  • They have no obsessive-compulsive tendencies, beyond those described in “Vampire Instinct,” above.
  • They can be rendered comatose if their heart is impaled with a wooden stake, but they do not have any other vulnerability to wooden weapons.

Design Notes

 

This is a bloodline of “elite” vampires, like the titular antagonist of Dracula, or the oldest and most powerful characters in Anne Rice’s The Vampire Chronicles or Vampire: The Masquerade. These vampires are significantly more resilient and “magical” than those from works like Blade, Buffy The Vampire Slayer, or True Blood.

 




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