Welcome to the revamped backstage for Shinigami Dance. The original thread can be found here: Shinigami Dance: Playground of Deities However since the original creator handed creative control over to the remaining four players over three months ago, the original thread is more of a reference and not to be taken as how the story will now progress. Most concepts and the original history have been altered and many cases completely left out. So though it might be fun to read, it is no longer accurate.
Alexander Ma'Shala | Scythe | Nall smaller form | Nall true form ~Played by Rachmaninoff
Lucia | Scythe | Ruby smaller form | Ruby true form ~Played by SunfallE
Nathan | Scythe | Scythe 2 | Isen | Isen human form | Weapon ~Played by Allamorph
Adrian | Scythe | Astera ~Played by indi
Phaidra | Scythe | Sarvel | Sarvel human form ~Played by Sabrina
Gavrie & Karl | Scythe | Karl human form
Patrick, Terry & Fiero | Patrick, Terry & Fiero | Scythe
Excerpt drawn from A Study of the Vampire and its History, an essay.
Further difficulty in determining the vampire's origins arises when examining their records and lore, for though the vampire can boast one of the most extensively recorded histories known to exist on Earth-second only to the shinigami and perhaps the Hebrews-no two sets of records or journals can agree on a single common ancestor. Rather, the vampire as a species appears to have begun as multiple isolated incidents within the span of around thirty years, with sporadic repeat occurrences every few centuries, followed by a gradual but steady proliferation.
Also of note is the singular failure of the shinigami in catching and preventing the vampire's evolution. Certainly the error is due in part to the encasement of the vampire's soul, which would have prevented any shinigami from sensing the human's approaching death; but even so, death is the business of the shinigami, so it follows that some sort of advance knowledge of death must have been present. Any speculation on the reason for the oversight is ultimately futile, however. With so many different instances, it is highly unlikely that any more than two or three occurred under similar circumstances. Whatever the case, the first vampires managed to escape the eye of the shinigami for long enough to ensure their continued survival, allowing their bodies to slowly adapt to their newfound attunement.
Not being true creatures of the spiritual, the first vampires underwent several major physiological changes shortly after turning, as it came to be called-the most prominent being a marked increase in strength, speed, and endurance. In most cases, this change was accompanied by a period of intense physical pain, either in a single excruciating session or as a series of sporadic fits. The few who escaped this side effect were instead subjected to severe psychological torture, invariably rendering them insane madmen or in the worst cases psychotic masterminds. The journal of one such person noted briefly that several of his comrades did not survive the torture; those who suffered physically commonly died from organ failure or internal bleeding, and those who suffered mentally became brain-dead.
Those who survived the transition, as stated above, became stronger and faster, with noticeably superior reflexes. Early on, these changes only manifested openly as instinct, in circumstances when the vampire might be under mild stress or other cases which require thoughtless reaction, but as the vampire aged the difference became decidedly more pronounced. Vampires as young as a decade can achieve an average running speed of twenty-five miles per hour and can sustain these speeds for nearly twenty minutes. They are also easily able in a single leap to clear horizontal distances of over thirty feet starting from an easy jog, and can generally jump over twice their height from a standing position. All vampires continue to grow stronger as they age, though the rate at which they mature gradually decreases over time, meaning that the difference in strength between vampires of twenty-five and fifty years is more pronounced than is the difference between vampires of seventy-five and one hundred years, though the age difference is the same.
Other changes to the species were much less beneficial. The vampire almost immediately developed an extraordinary allergic sensitivity to sunlight, for reasons that even now remain unclear. The initial reaction was, in fact, so violent that direct exposure for even a few seconds would cause the vampire's internal body temperature to literally skyrocket, often resulting in spontaneous immolation. Even indirect exposure was extremely painful-especially, it appears, to the eye and the sinus regions, for if light were streaming into a darkened room the vampire would not be able to even look near the source without their eyes watering.
Because of this side effect of the evolution, vampires naturally became nocturnal in habit, transitioning to their new lifestyle within a matter of decades. Their still-adapting physiology allowed their night vision to adapt rapidly in individual cases, and the traits were cemented and enhanced into the species by successive generations. The vision of modern vampires rivals and in some cases surpasses that of most predatory felines for distance and clarity, and they are only truly blind in the complete absence of light.
Interestingly, vampires seem to suffer no ill effects from exposure to moonlight, though it is in essence merely sunlight reflected off the moon's surface. Cause for the selective photosensitivity could be certain types of direct radiation that is absorbed by the moon's surface, but very little significant testing has been done to ascertain the truth of this supposition-though it has been consistently observed that light from the full moon seems to have a pronounced euphoric, almost drug-like effect on the vampire.
Human myth mentions that the vampire is also susceptible to various other items, including such disassociated objects as crosses and wooden stakes and even venturing to such absurd lengths as garlic and -holy- wafers. However, most of these myths are merely that, and only one or two hold any real truth. The wooden stake, for example, is believed to be fatal to the vampire once plunged through its heart-but the same outcome would naturally be expected if one stabbed any living creature in the same location. Likewise, legends that an arbitrary herb or other foodstuff possesses the ability to subdue a creature for no discernable reason are almost certainly derived only from pagan rituals and lore; the concept of crosses, or -holy- water or wafers, bringing the vampire harm is also pagan in root, having become inextricably entwined with Judeo-Christian beliefs during the Catholic empire in the millennia following the fall of Rome.
The myth of the vampire's aversion to crosses does hold a kernel of truth. Numerous cases of vampires recoiling from or being burned by certain crucifixes have been documented and verified, but the reason does not lie with the notion of divine blessing or the power of faith since there have also been recorded instances where such objects elicited no reaction at all. Instead, the truth in the myth is held in the material which makes up the item: silver.
Vampires are essentially humans who have partially crossed into the dimension inhabited by the shinigami-also dubbed the -spiritual- realm-and because this state is unnatural their core being draws heavily on the energies of that realm in order to sustain them. Silver seems to act as a ground for this draw of energy, causing it to be dispersed back into its natural environment without being absorbed by the vampire, should a vampire come into contact with it. This siphoning-away of energy is harmful to the vampire, and manifests outwardly in severe burns at the point of contact, even occasionally through articles of clothing, and prolonged exposure is thought to be fatal.
Silver also seems to react violently with the vampire's blood, disintegrating and oxidizing within seconds of exposure and preventing the vampire's blood from carrying oxygen to the rest of its body while still acting as an energy ground. The reason for this reaction remains unclear; perhaps the transfer of -spiritual- energy acts as a catalyst for the chemical process, but again, no significant studies have been done concerning the matter.
The last of the vampire's physiological changes were the canines, or fangs. Contrary to popular culture, a vampire's canines are not obviously lengthened, but merely sharpened to fine points that extrude a few millimeters beyond the normal plane of the teeth. The difference is almost imperceptible, and only those who know what they are looking for may see it-and sometimes the change escapes even them.
The purpose of the unique canines is, naturally, the means to satisfy the mythical bloodlust. As has been mentioned before, the vampire's body draws heavily upon the energies of the -spiritual- realm for sustenance; however, the relationship is more akin to breathing than actual feeding. To continue its survival, the vampire requires another form of -spiritual- energy: one found almost exclusively in the blood of humans. A vampire may be able to go a span of some years without -feeding-, as they call it, but unless its hunger is at some point satisfied it will gradually become more sluggish, and its body will weaken to a degree.
As of now, no records exist of any vampire succumbing to starvation from blood, but the possibility has not been ruled out.
In the process of feeding, a vampire possesses the ability to pass its nature on to its victim, like a sort of spiritual seeding. Every vampire while feeding enters a state of moderately heightened spiritual attunement to which their victims are exposed through direct contact, and this exposure begins to prepare the human for the transition to vampire via the gradual formation of the soul sac unique to the species. The sac, which exists in the same plane as the soul, effectively compensates for its loosening connection to the body and prevents the shinigami from sensing when the connection is weakest, when death would normally occur. After the brief window of weakness the connection gradually becomes stronger again, making the separation of the soul from the body of a mature vampire a more arduous task than the separation from a vampire of merely a few decades.
This change, though never immediate, can occur under one of several circumstances, all of which require a feeding to occur. First, a vampire may turn its victim after a succession of feedings, in which the victim's soul is gradually encased in the singular spiritual sac while they are still alive. Younger vampires must engage in multiple feedings to achieve a live turn, and mature vampires may only need as little as three for the same result; it is also rumored that vampires of a sufficient age may be able to turn a victim in a single feeding, but this rumor is unconfirmed.
The other two methods share the common factor of the victim's physical death. In the more common case, a vampire can turn its victim by feeding just before the human's death, its own spiritual aura combined with the trauma of death amplifying the seeding effect to the point that only the single feeding is required-although in most instances of this case the human has been the subject of at least one prior feeding. In the absence of another vampire, however, an infected human will only turn if they have been fed upon sufficiently for the shock of dying to serve as sufficient impetus, and in this alternative scenario the human was typically one or two feedings away from turning anyway.
Once the soul is completely encased, the fledgling vampire will experience the same torment described above, but the harsh effects are softened to a degree by the gradual turning process, and dying partially prepares the vampire to endure the ensuing pain. Because of this difference, the survival rate of turned vampires is much higher than that of the natural vampire, and it is commonly viewed with some small measure of contempt or disdain which manifests on a social level. Natural vampires, who are rarely found living in the modern era, hold higher stations in the vampiric social strata than turned vampires, almost without exception. Additionally, born vampires-humans who are the offspring of at least one vampire, and who go through their transitionary ordeals during adolescence-typically hold themselves in higher regard than turned vampires, though this social stigma has long been under dispute.
One final change that accompanied the vampire-s shift to the -supernatural- spectrum was the ability to employ forces known as magic, forces which humans have the capacity to merely sense....
Okay, the history is up and yes I'm stating the obvious here. =P
Edited by Rachmaninoff, 29 March 2012 - 11:06 PM.