Friday, April 30, 2010

Vampires and Sex: Give Me a Break - by Neil Benson

Vampires have been associated with sex since Carmela was written by by Sheridan Le Fanu in 1872. The novel is about a young woman's seduction by an older woman who is a vampire. In Dracula, by Bram Stoker, the tradition continues as Count Dracula takes Lucy's blood, gives her some of his, and converts her to a vampire. This exchange of bodily fluids is a clear sexual metaphor. Then he turns his attention to Mina whom he bites before he is forced back to Transylvania. It is important to note that no mention is made of conventional sex. Stoker wrote in the Victorian era and doubtless felt constraints on what he could say and portray.

My question is why would a vampire, hundreds of year old, turn his evil attention to these young women? It certainly can't be a case of raging hormones. Dracula is dead; he has no functioning hormonal system. One source I found said the following:

"Stoker used the vampire as a metaphor for the Victorian view of sex as innately dangerous. In Dracula, sex with the Count transformed women into seductive sirens and horrific baby killers – the opposite of the Victorian ideal of chaste and nurturing womanhood."

The above citation greatly oversimplifies Victorian society's view and actions about sex. I don't have the time to explore this complicated issue. If sex was dangerous in that era, it was so because of the deaths of so many women during the process of childbirth.Jumping ahead to the present time, there is hardly a vampire novel in which sex doesn't steam from the cover until the last page of the novel. This just doesn't mean sex takes place, as in the case in "Some Girls Bite" by Chloe Neill, or the much more popular, Twilight Series. Even in the absence of sex in these novels, the heated looks, and drooling anticipation of sex, pulsates like a chorus of loud drums. In other novels, romance and sex between mortals and vampires is a key element of the plot. In some novels intraspecies sex is the central focus of the plot. I choose not to name these novels for a variety of reasons.

Let's get back to vampires and sex. I've already asserted that vampires have no hormones. Since they're dead, they can't have circulatory systems, ergo no blood flow to a very important organ for the males. What's that you say? The vampires cut themselves and the blood flows? Not bloody likely. Sure, it happens in the novels and in the movies, but that doesn't make it so. I'm currently reading a well-written vampire novel, which I won't name, where the vampires are not only sexually ravenous, but capable of emitting pheromones to control human sexual responses to them. Back to the beginning. No hormones, no pheromones, no sex.Despite what I said, since it's fictional, anything can happen. In fact, in my vampire novel, Unholy Embrace, there is a passionate love affair between the female vampire and her mortal lover. Probably, for as long as vampire novels will be written sex will take place regardless of the biological impossibility of it. All the more fun.
Link to first three chapters.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The Damned Thing by Ambrose Bierce - free horror story

The damn thing by Ambrose Bierce is a story about what horrors can lurk in the forest. We should remember that nothing is innocent as it looks. Then again, what looks innocent?

Unholy Embrace a vampire novel by Neil Benson - excerpt - Through a vampire's eyes

Frank discovers the attractive woman he sat down with is far more than she seems. Way more.

“You're not an overgrown boy or a self-styled stud eager to add me to his sexual trophy case.”
“You can tell that just by looking at me?”
“That and much more.”
“Okay, tell me what you know.”
Her gaze caught mine as I issued the challenge.“You're an architect in his mid-thirties who would rather be a painter,” she said without hesitation. She leaned back in her chair, steepling her fingers, her bright green eyes studying my every move.
“How do you know that?” Was she a mind reader or something?
“There are traces of light green ocher paint under the nails of your index and middle fingers on your right hand.”
I couldn't see anything, even when I held my nails under a light.“I have excellent vision, especially at night.” “There's nothing there to see,” I said.
“You failed to wash off all the ocher and pale yellow egg tempera paint you used.” She licked her lips.
Nessa had just described the colors I had been working with earlier in the evening. “I don't know how you guessed what I was using, but there's no way anyone could see the paint in this dim light.”
“A vampire could.” She leaned forward, opening her mouth, and showing the tips of sharp pointed fangs.
“Are those real?” I asked in a voice barely a croak. My heart beat faster and the hairs on the nape of my neck stood up.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Unholy Embrace vampire novel by Neil Benson - failing to kill an enemy

Nessa fails to kill an enmey.


I had just stepped outside my house on a moonless night, when a pair of hands grabbed me around the neck. Caught off balance, I was pulled into bushes next to my home. When I fell to the ground, I saw an open mouth with four fangs descending towards my throat. I put my hands around the other vampire's chest and thrust upwards.

The vampire staggered backwards, and I stood up. Though larger, my opponent was weaker. She snarled and tried to grab my throat, but I pushed her to the ground. I fell on top of her and pinned her arms to the ground.

“Who are you?” I asked.

She didn't answer, but struggled to get out of my grip.

When I hit her on the side of the head, she lay still. As I examined her unwashed face and dirty dress, I remembered her. Narice, I thought.

I held her jaw to get a better look at her.

“Narice, why did you attack me?”

“You killed the master.” Her open mouth revealed her fangs and her slit-like eyes glared at me.

“He was a monster that deserved to die. Why are you angry at me because I killed him?”

“When he died, I suffered great pain for many days. You had no bond with him like I did.”

“Bonded to him? I despised him. He killed my husband and took away my life. I should kill you, but I will let you live in your misery. If I ever smell your scent again, I will find you and tear out your throat.”

I let go of her jaw and stood up.

After she arose, she stared at me for a few moments. Then she turned and ran into the woods.

I stayed outside until dawn, making sure she was gone