Tuesday, 15 April 2014

AtoZ Day 13: M is for Madness, Mara, Moon Child

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There is nothing scarier than a completely insane vampire. A creature with no remorse or mercy that simply wants your blood or your soul and will not stop until it gets it.

Many vampire films and books have very rational vampires, but what makes some of them so exciting is when that switch flips. I love it in fiction when the reasonable, seemingly personable person becomes the monster. In films they often show this on the outside as well.

I think Fright Night I and II (the 80s versions) do this very well where both Gerry and Regine eventually reveal their true monstrous appearances and drop the human act completely.

Who is your favourite vampire with a touch of madness?

Creature Feature:


Yet another female vampire, this time a Slavic legend. The Mara is a vampire created from the spirit of a dead girl who was never baptised.

According to Vampire Underworld she crushes and oppresses her victims to death and some legends tell of her drinking the blood of children, hence part of the vampire angle.

Wikipedia says she is the female version of the Alp, which acts very like and incubus.

Apparently, once she drinks the blood of a man she will fall in love with him, which spells his doom. She will return and plague him until he dies. So literally she is a stalker from hell. (VampireAZ and Vampire Rave)

Movie Recommendation:

Title: Moon Child
Rating: n/a
Summary: Mallepa is a small corner of Asia where the streets are run by mafia style gangs. Sho is a child thief living on his wits with his brother Shinji and his friend Toshi when he finds Kei waiting to die. Kei is a vampire with a tortured soul and Sho saves him and in return Kei looks after him and trains him as he grows to a man. However, no friendships go on forever and when Sho falls in love and gangsters seek revenge things fall apart.
Why you should watch this: It's a Japanese film written and staring Gackt and Hyde, both Japanese pop stars, which you'd think might be a warning, but it isn't. It is simply brilliant. Gackt has a talent for the genre and it's a cross between a gangster movie and a vampire movie with a feel of tragic live action manga. I challenge anyone to watch this without crying - my husband and I cry every time.

Not Quite the Ticket 
(#13 in The Diverse Life of Ianthe Jawara, Vampire)
by Natasha Duncan-Drake

The first Ianthe knew of anything wrong was when a crossbow bolt struck her in the shoulder. The blow would have thrown a normal person down, but it simply shook her as pain bloomed in the area of the hit. She grabbed at it, instinctively shutting down the nerve ending and stopping the bleeding around the injury.

"Demon spawn!" a man's voice yelled and then she shied back as a cross was shoved into her face.

It was a genuine relic, she could feel it humming with power, but it didn't make much difference to her. She pretended to be afraid even as her anger flared. She was more interested in the man behind the cross than the large piece of metal. Vampires being cowed by religious relics was a very carefully crafted fiction that served vampires well when dealing with hunters, so she made very sure to maintain the illusion.

"Get away from me," she hissed, backing towards the building behind her.

Her assailant was dressed completely in black and she recognised his silhouette immediately; it was her stalker. It had been over two months since she had seen him and she had let her guard down. Leaving Lilith at home, she had gone to Grant's restaurant and it had been such a nice night she had decided to walk back. A single glance around let her know she was in the one section of the town centre without CCTV. The man in front of her with his face half covered in a mask knew what he was doing it seemed, at least partially.

"I shall destroy his child as you destroy the children of god," the man shouted at her, pulling a long, lethal looking blade from his belt.

It was laughable really; there was no way he would be able to get near her. If the cross had worked he might have had a chance, but Ianthe was all too aware she could take him down in a heartbeat. The only worrying thing was the glint of madness in his eyes. He clearly wasn't in his right mind. Knowledge of the supernatural could do that to a human if they already had an unstable personality.

"Who the hell are you?" she demanded while making sure to shy away again as he thrust the cross in her direction.

He looked like a crackpot, but crackpots were not always alone.

"I am your doom," he snarled at her and just backed up her initial assessment of his mental state. "I will cleave your head from your shoulders and lay your damned soul to rest."

Removing the head was actually one thing that could kill a vampire, sometimes at least; it depended on the situation. Ianthe wasn't worried, though, because her assailant lacked the firepower to back up his threat.

"Where do you come from?" she hissed, moving further into the dark corner just to her left and drawing him in as well.

"God," was the crowing response. "I am his vessel and instrument."

When the cross was shoved at her once more, Ianthe had had enough. She tensed to strike, but then voices interrupted her.

"Hey, you, what d'you think you're doing?"

Her attacker froze before looking right and Ianthe followed his gaze. Three large men were hurrying towards them from the other end of the road. Ianthe couldn't find it in herself to curse people who actually had a public spirit, but she did mentally swear at the situation in general. The masked man muttered something in Latin, threw what she guessed was holy water at her and ran.

In the same heartbeat Ianthe snapped off the crossbow bolt, shoving the broken end up her sleeve, pulled her wrap over her injured shoulder and stood up straight.

Two of the men ran after her attacker and the third stopped beside her.

"Are you okay?" he asked with a rather attractive, worried little frown.

Ianthe stomped on that line of thought immediately.

"Yes," she said and did her best to look frazzled round the edges, "thank you. I'm so glad you came along."

"DC Phelps," he introduced himself, "we were just coming back from the pub. Are you sure you're alright?"

"Yes," she assured him with a somewhat wobbly smile, "he didn't touch me, just nearly took my eye out with a huge cross."

"A cross?" Phelps asked.

She nodded. He really was very handsome, but police and vampires didn't go well together.

"I think he thought I was a vampire," she said, deciding to cover up the obvious with the truth; "if you can believe it. Maybe he hasn't been taking his medication."

"Sounds like it," her saviour agreed.

"Now you're here I think I should be flattered, after all aren't creatures of the night supposed to be wildly attractive?" she said and let out a nervous laugh.

It wasn't difficult to act since her heart was still pounding even if she knew she hadn't been in any real danger. Phelps smiled at her and then one of his friends reappeared at the other end of the road.

"He's gone," was the shouted revelation.

"Damn," Phelps said. "Well ..."

"Ianthe," she took the hint and gave him her name.

"Ianthe," he continued, "do you want to report this?"

She shook her head.

"No," she replied, "he clearly isn't well. Maybe you could have someone on the lookout for him so he doesn't accost anyone else?"

"I'll call it in," he assured her.

Witnesses were a pain, but at least DC Phelps was easy on the eyes. She wasn't going to be able to just track down her assailant like she wanted to and he'd likely be long gone by the time she could leave. That didn't stop her planning as she thanked DC Phelps again and decided exactly how she was going to extricate herself.

A few of us discovered that we all had supernatural themes for the AtoZ so we got together and did a mini list. If you also have a supernatural theme (ghosts, monsters, witches, spells etc), please feel free to add yourself to the list.

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  1. A stalker from hell? Bwa haa haa!

    Great turn of events in your tale!

    1. I saw the opportunity and I had to take it ;)
      Thank you.

  2. I dated a girl named Mara, sounded exactly like that. Stalkery, insane, suck blood of children. I wonder...

  3. LOL @ Chris!!

    Mara sounds pretty cool, actually. I think she would be one of my favourites so far.

    Carrie~Anne at That Dizzy Chick

    1. She is kind of interesting isn't she and her legends seem to vary too.

  4. I agree, Mara sounds cool. I like her roundabout approach. Why kill people right out when you can stalk them and be a general nuisance until their demise? Brilliant! ;)

  5. Mara is an interesting name. A mad vampire is a scary vampire

  6. Hi Natasha .. Mara is 'interesting', while the Moon Child film sounds a fascinating take of a film .. I suspect I won't get round to watching it .. but! However your story I thoroughly enjoyed .. and want to know more .. cheers Hilary

    1. Moon Child is a fab film, but it is a little obscure :).
      Thank you.

  7. Wouldn't want to meet a Mara! My fav nutsy vampire has to be Michael Praed as Max Schreck in Son of Darkness II - the most put together, generous, handsome man turns into a formidable and lethal enemy, hell bent on what he wants. when he doesn't get his own way.
    Sophie's Thoughts & Fumbles - A to Z Ghosts
    Fantasy Boys XXX - A to Z Drabblerotic

    1. Oh yes, he was very good - doesn't look like it's on DVD yet *pout*

  8. I have always wanted to use the Mara vampires in one of books. I did use them years ago, but as a group of witches that followed a vampire goddess.

    Great post as always!

    Timothy S. Brannan
    The Other Side, April Blog Challenge: The A to Z of Witches

  9. Today's creature Maria caught my eye. Made me want to know more about this style of vampire. Not sure which vampire I would chose for your question, there's so many to consider.

    1. There are so many good slightly unhinged vampires aren't there :)

  10. Never heard of the movie, but it sounds interesting! I'll put it on my list.

    @TarkabarkaHolgy from
    Multicolored Diary - Tales of colors
    MopDog - The crazy thing about Hungarians...

  11. Mara sounds like something interesting to have in a story.

    ~Patricia Lynne~
    Story Dam
    Patricia Lynne, YA Author

    1. She could be most troublesome or intriguing couldn't she :)

  12. Not into vampires myself, though I do write science fiction. Mansfield and Mummies Review will be coming up in May.
    Sue Ann Bowling
    Homecoming Blog
    Stormy's Sidekick
    Blogging from A to Z April Challenge

    1. Vampires can be fun and I think we need more vampires in science fiction ;) Not that I'm a little obsessed or anything.

  13. I wonder what Ianthe has up her sleeve to deal with her attacker (apart from a broken crossbow arrow of course). ;)
    The Mara, quite a formidable monster/vampire. Glad I'm not a man! :)

    1. Oh she's have it covered ... eventually ;)
      The Mara is rather specific isn't she.

  14. Nice. I'm going to have to say my favorite vampire with a touch of madness probably comes from Underworld, though I can't pin one.

    True Heroes from A to Z

    1. They were a few with a screw loose weren't there :)

  15. Let this be a lesson to all parents - have your children baptised. The earlier the better. I like the name Mara. I was not expecting Lanthe to encounter any action so soon, but liked the little drama. Wonder what she has planned?

    1. That does seem to be the message of the legend doesn't it :). There is lots of excitement for Ianthe coming up ::g::

  16. Following from Blogging AtoZ.
    I'm writing "Things My Husband Has Broken" A to Z at http://AMomsPointOfView.com
    Come by and check it out.


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