Recently, I had a wonderful opportunity to spend time with a new friend and fan. In the smattering of various conversation topics came a few comments and questions regarding Haven’s Realm, my favorite subject. One she asked mirrored a few more I’ve received over time, the origin of the damphere. I thought it time to tell you about these marvelous, inherently dangerous, creatures.
When I wrote my first novel, Twilight Destiny, back in 2003, the idea of a mortal being impregnated by a vampire wasn’t new. I had, in fact, read a shockingly unique twist by Linda Lael Miller, where one of my favorite female characters becomes impregnated by her mortal lover. I loved the idea. For her. I wanted another approach.
I like to do research online, and don’t swear by any one source. I often enjoy finding blog sites and forums I can browse through, especially when attempting to fully grasp a concept based more on myth and legend than on fact. Precious little information of any real credence was available at the time, and I really got a giggle over some of the ideas floating around in cyberspace.
Research indicated that a damphere is the hybrid result of a vampire impregnating a mortal. Please note that I did not say human. I pondered this while I read several articles describing damphere bears, wolves, and even beavers, and shook my head against the irrationality. The immortal sire would have to be of the same species in order to thusly procreate, and since most animals lack a sense of romance in their mating rituals, in fact lack all but basic procreational instincts, they probably won’t find their way into Haven’s Realm.
I concluded, for the sake of my series, that the male vampire retains his seed. He couldn’t produce a damphere without it. Women, however, lose the ability to nurture life. Their bodies probably still have eggs, but daily rest would restore any tissue altered in the course of the previous night. Bye bye baby. If pressed, through my writings, I’ll simply explain that the vampiress’ physiology prevents the eggs from being released. After all, they don’t go through “that time of the month.”
It takes a mortal woman and a willing vampire to create a vampire-human hybrid. That goes without saying. I’ve mentioned in my writings that birthing a damphere takes a great deal of willpower and fortitude. If you haven’t read my work, I’ll only tell you that Catherine, my first heroine, nearly dies in the attempt during my second story. Carrying the child would not be a problem that can’t be overcome with the best diet and exercise. Any baby draws what elements it needs from its mother’s body, so replenishing these nutrients is vital. She’ll need all her strength and endurance in the end.
Mentally, damphere are aware the moment their microscopic hearts begin to beat. They develop a strong life force, feeding, unfortunately, on that of their hosts. By the time they’re ready to emerge, the mother’s life is dependently connected to the child’s. Usually, the moment the baby draws breath, his mother dies. Tragic.
Thankfully, I’ve found a handy way around that problem. Consequences derived from the events in book two give two of my Council Elders unique skills. Combine this with their growing understanding of the half-breeds and their capabilities, and the hope they won’t become lethal enemies, and you’ll understand why the Council is now no longer adverse to the subject. Whether or not more children are born to my vampire family remains to be seen.
The exact nature of my youngest characters is not yet clear. As I’ve said in other articles, I write what my imagined friends tell me to. At this time, three damphere belong to Haven’s Community. The MacAaron twins reached the celebration of their fourth year, and are displaying the intelligence and vocal skills of teenagers. Their bodies, right now, are growing in sync with their ages, but not their minds. Already they’ve learned how to manipulate their environment, opening doors and such, to the dismay of their parents. Little Devon has already mastered aggressive skills his father sometimes needs to circumvent.
As they grow older, physical aging will slow, granting them, perhaps, centuries of life through their immortal parent’s aggressive and persistent physiology. But that is not all they inherit. Damphere typically have all the powers of the vampire, with the freedoms of a mortal. Although some suffer a mild thirst, they usually eat solid food. They have the advantage of daylight tolerance, making them potentially lethal enemies. It was one of these who killed Lysander, one time Elder and sire to Antonia, the only woman on the Council. It’s no wonder she acted the way she did on discovering Catherine’s condition.
The most recent addition is a boy of nine, the product of a demented vampire’s tendencies. His mother failed to survive confinement, leaving him to the protection and support of the Chancellor of the Savant. Unfortunately, Lorenz suffers from autism, along with isolated motor and language deficiencies. Carloman and I are placing all our hopes in my uniquely talented Dragon/seer friend, Hope, that she find a way to break through the boy’s isolation and bring him out to the real world before the power growing inside him destroys himself and all those around him.
I hope this answers your questions. Please feel free to ask more. In fact, I look forward to suggestions for my next article. Thank you for dropping by, Cherished Readers!