Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The Making of a Villain

from Art of Fantasy site
When choosing the villain for Caprice, I had some excellent ideas come to me. Firstly, the invention of an Undead--whoa, not so fast, my dears. Vampires in my books are not true "undeads". My vampires have a very slow heartbeat. A true Undead is someone who has died and found a way to return in the flesh and has to "feed" a bit differently. 

Meet Priscus, aka "The Albino", aka "The Undead". In the book I explain a little more, and we do learn that the "undead" do not have to be like this multiple-thousand year-old "undead" who hunts the sibyl (aka Sabrina Strong), in order to feed on her soul. They can feed in other ways... and I'll leave that to you to discover when the book comes out.

The next step was to decide how he looked, and the above picture sort of popped for me, only Priscus has very long white hair in this, and pink eyes (thus the pink eyes on the cover). 

In the first mention of him in the book, Tremayne is approached by Priscus who hopes to feed on the soul of the lady which Tremayne is drinking blood from. I had to make this guy compelling and unusual.

Then I saw this photo and decided this would be exactly how Tremayne sees the Albino--in this position in a truck stop, and can't figure out who/what he is at first.

Of course, Bjorn Tremayne will always be the one constant character in this series where he's in the gray area of good/bad guy, which he is in this book.

Now, then, I am sharing another part of the book where you will see Priscus in action... sort of.

 Priscus aka The Albino aka the Undead

The white tail doe browsed in the long grasses along the Interstate. Head up, her ears perked attentively to some sound, or an awareness—aside from the constant sounds of traffic nearby. Being a creature of the earth, she sensed something was there. That alone spooked her.
Priscus slowed to human speed when he discovered the doe, and then slowed down to a stop, not ten feet from her. Since he had no scent he wanted her to see him, and she did. This had the anticipated and desired results. Her fear of the unknown had a particular pheromone that he could feed upon, but it wasn't nearly enough to satiate him.
Predictably the doe, upon seeing, him turned and bolted. Leaping gracefully, she sailed over the fence bordering the Interstate. Bounding along the ditch, her white tail like a great white flag in her wake. Priscus watched, and then followed her at his usual pace—too fast to be seen.
Traffic on I-80 moved along at a constant clip. Of course, Priscus was able to move at the speed of light. How terribly slow humans are! Hovering over the road, he paused to watch. Cones of light from the vehicles moved along the dark pavement constantly. The doe now traveled at less than half the speed of traffic. Fear bounded her directly into the pathway of two cars. When she made a huge leap and dodged the first car, which braked, another one zipped around her. Horns blared.
Delighted, Priscus chuckled and clapped his hands at the doe's agility, and sheer luck. He had set the stage—something he did when bored—and like always, it worked with the fantastic results of a fireworks display.
The doe had gained the relative safe-haven of the grassy meridian between the two strips of interstate, headlights spearing down either side of her. She continued along the strip of grass until she darted yet again into the dangerous east-bound traffic. Horns blared again. Would she be as lucky as she had been on the other side? Priscus patiently awaited the outcome, laughing at how the drivers veered wildly. One car drove off the pavement, into the meridian, and managed to swerve back onto the road, skillfully avoiding the deer.
Dismissing the car, Priscus' eyes surveyed the deer's progress. The distinctive sound of a semi's air horn blasted above the interstate noise. The sudden loud engine breaking alerted Priscus that an accident was imminent. The sound of the doe being hit was subtle; it was a thud of soft flesh, bone and sinew colliding against the metal brush pusher of the semi. He heard it as easily as though he were in a silent room, when the proverbial pin dropped. The impact shattered the deer's flank, snapping it's neck, killing it instantly. Were he desperate to feed on the innocent soul, he would have done so at this point. But why nibble on such inferior fare, when the main course was coming at last?
All this was fine, but it was the next series of events that Priscus was anticipating with relish.


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