Vampires were the first creation by the dark witches and dark fae during the fae civil war. Their existence was created as a curse upon humans changing them into a brand new species. The curse turned them into living but enhanced beings that were stronger and faster with all of their senses amplified. It also slowed their aging process down making them age at half the rate of a typical human, as they had been initially created to be the elite soldiers of the practitioners of the dark arts. The curse extended their life if they were killed, triggering a transition to an undead state. The undead vampires were even stronger than the living ones but with more weaknesses. All vampires have enhanced sight, smell, hearing, reflexes, agility, and speed with the weakest of these abilities in hybrids and the strongest in the undead.
Living vampires are how most vampires lives begin. They can only be born from the union of two living vampires. They seem almost human and can be killed almost as easily. The living members of the species are also to create hybrids with other species. The child of a living vampire and another species, typically fae or witch, becomes a hybrid of the two species. They are also known to create hybrids with humans and werewolves. There is a weaker version of hybrids that is made by an undead biting a human. However, the human does not become a hybrid until it consumes the blood of an undead. The undead are the most powerful, brought to this form of their life either in death as a living vampire or by a hybrid being turned by another undead. The process of a living vampire becoming undead is simple, the living vampire simply has to die. They will re-awaken within three days as one of the undead unless their entire body is consumed by fire, their head is severed, or heart is removed before this process can occur. A hybrid has to consume the blood of an undead and die with it in their system in order to reach this stage of vampiric life.
All vampires require blood to survive though the ones that are not undead can eat actual food their bodies cannot function properly without the consumption of blood. The lack of blood in a vampire’s diet is known to drive them quite mad. It is the most essential part of their existence. An undead that has not had blood in days, weeks, or even longer will not die but become insane. The same can happen to hybrids and living vampires on a smaller scale, though no vampire can survive on the blood of another vampire. The blood of an undead is poisonous to all vampires with the exception of hybrids. Consuming the blood of Ilysians of the magical races that are gifted with abilities to control and manipulate an element will temporarily gift that vampire with those same power. The undead maintain the ability the longest at two days with the living vampires keeping it for a single day and hybrids for only mere hours. Each species’ blood has different tastes to vampires with fae being the sweetest and favorite. Elven blood is the second most popular and the taste difference between the species is significant enough that powerful undead can tell what species a person is by only a small taste.
The sun is restricting for most vampires. The hybrids are the only ones able to spend an almost unlimited amount of time in the sun with few side effects. Living vampires can express no vampiric abilities in sunlight and too much exposure can make them sick. The undead can only spend small amounts of time in the sun before becoming sun sick without any of their vampiric abilities, overexposure to sunlight is deadly to any and all of the undead. Sunlight in any false form will have the same effect as real sunlight.
With all the power the vampires yield, there is also weakness. All vampires are allergic to silver, with the undead being the most harmed and the hybrids able to tolerate small amounts of the metal. Silver is the most lethal metal to the species and the best way to restrain any vampire. They can be killed by a stake of wood or silver to the heart, loss of their head, or burned alive if already undead and death in any of these manners for a living vampire means they will not rise as one of the undead. All vampires are susceptible to the magic of the other Ilysian species but they also have some magic of their own. Undead vampires have the ability to bespell others with the exception of elves, fae, and other undead. Hybrids that are completely of elf and fae blood also are immune to this undead power, with those that are hybrids of mostly these two species having a resistance but not complete immunity to it. Some vampires are more powerful than others, considered alphas and high ranking within the council that governs them and answers directly to the Empress herself.
All vampires have a porcelain to deathly pale complexion depending on if they are hybrid, living, or undead and sharp canine teeth. The canines of an undead form into very prominent fangs with those of a living vampire being distinctly longer than a normal humans and a hybrids but not as pronounced as an undead. Every vampire, including the undead, still has a soul and an aura that is trapped within them until final death by the curse that brought them to life.
Vampires are a stealthy and quick race created to be master soldiers. They are the elite soldiers of the Empress’s forces, outranking their werewolf counterparts. These creatures that had originally been humans when they were created during the Fae Civil War are crippled by a need for blood that is the biggest side effect of the curse that formed the species. They are governed by their high council, made up of thirteen undead vampires, that answers directly to the Empress.
Top photo is concept art by Le Fey Designs of: Sóríya Mauríen Coménícío is a member of the Vampire High Council that serves as the Chief of Military and Political Relations Envoy to the Witches, Fae, and Werewolves that serve the Empress. This position also has her serve as the ambassador to the Empress’s forces in Corinthia. Sóríya is 884 years old when the story begins and still maintaining youthful beauty. She is older than the Empress and the granddaughter of three former High Council leaders with her only remaining grandparent, Vélíyana Dorésíyen, still serving on the council as the Master and Keeper of Laws. Both of her parents also serve on the council with her mother, Élíşabeth Multévyán, serving as Second in Command of Military and High General of Archery and her father, Érík Coménícío, serving as the Master Chief of Military and Political Strategy. She is the eldest of her parents’ four children and is the only one that is undead. Sóríya took Níkolás Voldáryéan as her partner and together they have three children that all remain living vampires, though Níkolás has joined her as one of the undead.
The bottom photo is the cover art by Le Fey Designs. This portrays the first Dark Empress Víkatréa, the Queen of the Dark Fae that declared herself Empress of all Ilysia nearly a thousand years before the events of the first book.