As I get closer to publishing War of Nytefall: Rivalry, I’ve been thinking about the powers of the various vampires. The Vampire Queen herself has a few odd abilities, but I can’t go into that. There are plenty of others I can work with. Especially since I had so much trouble with a few of them.
Now, I’m first going to explain that I don’t mean anything really powerful, but fairly normal. This would be Lost’s psychic abilities, Clyde’s Lord’s Rage, Mab’s shadow jumping (did it already), and a few others. These are fairly common abilities that might only have a vampiric twist. Instead, I’m going to list the ones that really stand out as bizarre and maybe not as useful as one would think. Some are spoilers too, so I won’t always name the vampire.
- Bob’s Horse Creation– This one goes right to the top of the list because it’s so specific and strange. When the stories were on Earth, Bob was simply obsessed with cars, so I needed to come up with an equivalent. In a medieval setting, the main mode of non-walking transportation is horse. So, he wouldn’t stop talking about it and needed an associated power. I was going to do a transformation, but I thought having him make a variety of undead steeds was both cooler and more his style. Can he create more than horses? Yes since he already used an antelope, but he used his own logic to explain that and still believes he can only do horses.
- Titus’s Chaos Blood– I don’t know what I was thinking here, but he can coat weapons in his blood to mimic a Chaoswind weapon. For those that haven’t read my books, these are evil weapons that can cause great pain to anyone with ‘good’ in their souls. The more ‘good’, the more pain. It doesn’t seem like it would work too well against vampires that are considered undead, but Dawn Fangs aren’t like that. So, this power is geared more towards mortals and other Dawn Fangs.
- Luther Can Taste Emotions– Originally, he had surface scan telepathy, but I really couldn’t get that to work. Instead, I noticed that I had him licking the air a bunch and turned that into his power. It’s fairly straightforward. He can taste the air and tell what a person is feeling. The stronger the emotions, the stronger the taste. It’s come in handy at times, but not as much as I had hoped. Honestly, it’s hard to have him do it because he would need a reason to check for emotions.
- Fang Shooter– This is one of the three powers that just came to me when I was purposely thinking of weird abilities. A vampire that can shoot his or her fang like a bullet was a really cool idea to me. I gave the character limited uses before they have to regenerate more fangs. This is probably the only one where I considered the physiological side the power. They have two rows of extra fangs in their jaws like one would have baby teeth.
- Nadia’s Swarm Form– Doesn’t make a lot of sense for a noble to have something that sounds fairly disgusting. Yet, it has been fun to use because there’s a sense of drama to her dispersing into a swarm of crimson moths. I’m starting to have her do it to only part of her body to avoid attacks too. Another function could be spying, which makes this power very versatile. It’s also dangerous because crushing one of the swarm causes her damage when she recombines. It can be healed, but imagine feeling the initial pain and then a new one upon returning.
- Sanity Drain– The second of the three odd powers. I haven’t fully figured out how to include this one very often too. To use this, the character has to either maintain physical contact or make multiple contacts in a short period of time. This will drive the enemy insane for a while, which can turn out to be a rampage, anxiety, depression, or whatever they are more prone to suffer from. The problem is that the enemies usually die or escape too soon. It’s probably more of a torture technique.
- Poison Factory– The last of the purposely odd powers, this one was actually the first and totally spontaneous. It was originally an energy drain, which I had on the character before I actually wrote them. This never sat well and made even less sense when they debuted. I also realized that I forgot to give them a weapon and was struggling to think of something. The idea of poison came to mind, which made this a very unique path. None of my previous characters have worked with poisons as a main mode of attack. This vampire can create the stuff from their body and even store it in bottles. It’s made them a lot more dangerous and interesting than I expected.
These have just been overviews. It’s also made me realize how there are a few powers that I forget to use. Titus’s Voice of Inspiration only works when he’s leading a group and Lost’s enhanced senses aren’t big factors lately. It’s difficult to find a chance for every power to get used in every book. I guess with Lost, she’s gained better control over her senses, so they aren’t running wild. Still, these odd ones tend to get more attention than the more mundane. Some of the odder ones are coming this way in War of Nytefall: Rivalry.