Nestled high atop a mountain range in his father’s mansion, vampire Kellan Donnolly is living a life of carefree immortality. The son of the apostle Simon, Kellan is bound by an ancient prophecy decreed by God, one that must be fulfilled or the entire vampire race will be destroyed. Kellan must find a distant niece of Christ and father a child with her to keep their species alive.
In New York City, spunky Nicole Erwin and her friend, Mia, work part-time at Harbor Way Children’s Home, and soon discover working part-time in a big city doesn’t pay the bills. When Mia sees an ad in the paper offering two hundred dollars for blood donations, she presents the idea to Nicole, who reluctantly agrees to go for the extra cash, unaware her donation will change her destiny. When Kellan learns The Daughter of Christ’s descendant is in New York City , it is up to him to win her trust, while The Apostles try to keep Lucifer’s demon scout, Arius, from destroying her. Kellan reluctantly pursues Nicole. To his amazement, he discovers Nicole means more to him than just the salvation of his people, and together they embark on an adventure full of suspense and drama, with an unexpected ‘Savior’ who will aid Kellan and The Apostles on their journey for survival.
Targeted Age Group:: 18 and up
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
I’ve had always had a strange fascination with vampires, and wanted to write a story that steered away from the traditional “I vant to suck your blaaahhhd” genre that has sorely been played to the extreme. Being from a small town in Tennessee, the Bible was a significant part of my life, and I especially enjoyed the New Testament and the stories relating Christ’s life. Always curious, I never understood why the Bible didn’t go into more detail about the life of Jesus as a youth or the lives of His beloved apostles after his crucifixion.
So, I decided someone needed to write a story about them. Not the traditional non-fiction drivel, but a new kind of book. With my brain working overtime, I began creating a story– a different version of what’s been told for centuries. I asked myself “What if the Apostles were punished for abandoning Jesus and leaving Him to be crucified? What if they were doomed to live forever with the knowledge of their betrayal?” That’s when it came to me.
I was going to write a book, merging her two passions, vampire lore and Biblical characters to break away from the humdrum, biting on the neck, look into my eyes, nonsense that has been the staple of all vampire tales. Instead, I developed a story using a different method of transformation. After 10 years of laborious fact checking and meticulous reading, The Vitandi, my first novel was born
How Did You Come up With Your Characters?
It was easy, really. Most authors create their characters from people they know. Which was the case with me. I took the personalities of my friends and family and incorporated them into my characters.
Nicole gave him a small smile. “I see. May I ask something else?”
“If you’re a vampire, how can you walk in the sunlight? Aren’t you supposed to explode into a fireball or something?”
Kellan laughed. “No, we can function in the daytime. Anything else?”
Nicole nodded. “Yes. I want to know everything. Seeing as our daughter is half-vampire, I have the right to know what not to do in case…you know, just in case.”
“She’s not half-vampire, she’s pure human, but okay. Ask.”
“Um, what about crosses?”
“What about them?”
“Well, aren’t they supposed to terrify you? Make you shrink back in horror if one is brandished?”
Kellan sighed. “Not really, but we do find them repugnant due to the fact that they were originally Roman instruments of torture. The Apostles all saw that firsthand remember. Live crucifixion is apparently pretty awful.”
She opened her mouth again, and he grinned suddenly. “No, Nicole—garlic, holy water, and silver don’t work either. Wooden stakes do hurt us, but then, they hurt everyone. All that’s myth, conjured up by humans for protection. Or by Hollywood, actually. You’d be amazed at how much scriptwriters just invented. The truth is, the only way to kill a vampire is to cut out its heart—and the odds of that happening are slim to none.”
“Okay,” Nicole said, staring at him hard. “Can you turn into a bat?”
Kellan laughed out loud. “Good God, no!”
Nicole scowled fiercely. “Don’t laugh, Kellan! This is new to me! I’ve just learned the father of my child is a mythical monster, so cut me some slack!”
Kellan cleared his throat and grew serious. “I’m sorry. Please,” he said. “Ask away.”
Nicole nodded firmly. “Okay, back at the farm, that devil thing. It put a spell on me before you rescued me.”
“Yes,” Kellan nodded.
“Can vampires do that? Cast spells, I mean?”
Kellan leaned forward in the chair, propping his elbows on his knees. “No, I’m afraid not. The objective is to blend into the human world, not stand out. However, because of how a vampire is created, something is passed on—certain heightened abilities, but not the kind that have been glamorized by humans. The Dark Curse was meant to be a punishment, but for some reason, humans have opted to interpret it more as a gift. All that flying-around business is totally fictitious. We ride the bus, the subway, fly in planes, take cabs…you know.”
“But we’re stronger, and we can jump very high and scale buildings like flies if we want. We’re very hard to kill, because we heal almost instantly and we’re insanely durable. We can also project our minds short distances—we call it ‘free mind’—to scan our surroundings while our bodies remain stationary. We can read thoughts and move small objects, but that’s not easy. It takes a lot of concentration, and weakens us. Especially in the daytime. We can briefly manipulate human actions, but it wears off very quickly—just long enough to get out of a bind if need be. Another ability lets us to look inside humans and detect their physical health. The elders call it ‘the vision,’ but most young bloods call it ‘scanning.’ We can tell if someone’s pregnant, drunk, high, or suffering from some illness like diabetes, heart disease, or cancer that might taint their blood.”
“Oh,” Nicole said in a small voice.
“Is that all?” He asked.
She shook her head. “No. Just a few more.”
“Such as?” he said, and leaned back.
“What about your appearance? Aren’t you supposed to be all pale and deadly looking? You look normal. Not like…”
“Not like what?”
Nicole stomped her foot and huffed, “Not like, you know, a vampire.”
Kellan chuckled. “Most of the time we are normal. We have white skin and wild, feral eyes only when we morph. Oh—and we never sparkle. Ever. Our hearts beat and pump blood; we react to most stimuli just as if we were alive. Over the centuries, we’ve learned to adapt for appearance’s sake and can eat a little solid food, but after a while it sours and we expel it.”
“What do you mean, expel?” Nicole asked, knitting her brows.
Kellan stuck his index finger in his mouth and gagged.
“Oh,” Nicole said, understanding. “So, I guess drinking doesn’t hurt you either. When we went to the movies you drank a soda.”
“Yep. Liquid is absorbed and doesn’t do any harm.” He shrugged.
About the Author:
At the age of four, I knew I wanted to be a writer. My grandmother, a Haitian-Creole from Krotz Springs, LA., kept me and my siblings up at night by telling tantalizing stories of ghosts, ghouls, and the stereo-typical zombies that were a part of her culture and heritage. I started incorporating my own imaginary characters in the tales, adding a few details to make the story more frightening, and retold them to my parents, much to their amazement and amusement.
As an adolescent, I spent my afternoons going to the library and reading anything and everything. Mostly books on Roman and Greek mythology, Egyptian folklore, anything that had to do with the strange and unusual. At 13, I began writing my own short stories, and developed a unique style by using actual events and changing them into fictional form.
When my aunt, Mary Curtis Bowers, wrote a series of romance novels in the mid 80’s, I knew I had found a kindred spirit. The inspiration from my aunts novels opened up the writer lurking inside, encouraging me every step of the way.
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