In China, vampires had long, hooked claws and red eyes. They were known as ch’iang shih, which translates to “corpse-hopper.”
During the 16th century, it was believed that vampires fed off the bodies of plague victims, and that female vampires spread the plague. Those suspected of being vampires were even buried with rocks wedged in their mouths.
Sometimes grave robbers would open a coffin and the corpse would move or sit up—a natural reaction that can be caused by decomposition. This may have led to the legend of vampires sleeping in coffins.
Golden touches on the ridiculousness of how vampires are portrayed in books and films nowadays. The perfect bad boy – with a heart as soft as my pillow – yeah right! No such thing. Every girl and woman ever scorched by a true bad boy knows the truth. Being bad takes its toll and the psyche, you can’t be an ass with a heart of gold, so you can’t be a blood hungry monster with a weakness for love. The two things do not go together, no matter how romantic they may seem. The most believable storyline is Buffy’s where the vampires soul is restored by magic. That kind of makes sense, the rest of the vampires are just plain wicked, just the one cursed (undoubtedly brooding and gorgeous dude) Vampire with a soppy heart.
Golden turns everything we know about vampires upside down. What if Vampires were never blood sucking monsters to begin with? What if they were our one and only defense against demons and chaos taking over? But gossip, stories, media and the fear of the unknown has woven them into the bad guys and accepted humanity as flawed. Every gruesome crime committed is taken for granted to be the work of some deranged individual, demons and the power they wield over their hosts forgotten over the milinia. But what if every bloody crime, every terrorist attack and all wars were instigated by the demons living invisibly amoungst us? And the only ones who can save us have been pushed into the background, forgotten about and turned into caricatures of themselves through comics and films. You of course could not fully get away with it, hiding in plain sight between humans trying to protect them as best as you could. You would not be able to get away with it, and here comes the biggest conspiracy of all. Our soldiers, our police force, our govenours, mayors and president. They know. They work along side the Vampires of old, the Golden ones, to protect humanity with all its flaws from the demons within.
This week, for fun I am going to compose a list of actual factual vampire lores, stories and snippets to showcase how time, stories and old wife tales have formed our views of what vampires are today.
Medical ailments can mimic symptoms of vampirism. For example, haematodipsia is a sexual thirst for blood, and hemeralopia is day blindness. Porphyria causes sensitivity to light and teeth that are stained reddish brown.
Image credit Ayla Morten