Nov 12, 2019 2:46 AM
various vampires in Milliways
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"Sunlight thing being catching fire? Yes, it's unpleasant. Well, you can see my lovely forehead ridges. And we don't have souls and as a group we're very into the apocalypse, though I'm starting to think of giving it up in light of recent events. Other than that... we explode if you put a bit of wood through our chests, that could be notable. Not much else to speak of."

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"Direct sunshine and we sparkle, no spontaneous combustion. Very conspicuous, therefore very illegal," says Maggie. "No apocalypse, not so friendly, if we're going to marry food we turn it into not-food first, and in terms of my physical composition what you see is what you get, though what you see is in fact nigh-invulnerable unless another vampire goes after me or somebody ignites me."

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"It's actually kind of pretty. Like I'm made of crushed diamonds. But do it in front of a human and -" Maggie punches one of her hands with the opposite fist. "The vampire shadow government finds you and sets you on fire. So I have to sun myself in secluded locations, you see."

"I burn in the sun," says Leekath, "much worse than even a really pale human, if I'm not wearing a suncloak or a sunscreening spell. I usually go with the spell."
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"Wait, hang on, why would the vampire shadow government get involved? If I see someone aggressively sparkling at me I'm less likely to think 'oh my land, I'm surrounded by vampires!' than 'somebody got lost on the way to New Orleans'."

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"Well, you might be able to get away with it if the human doesn't tell anybody," shrugs Maggie. "Or you eat them right away and then they of course don't tell anybody. But if there's somebody talking too much about anything a little funny, the Volturi figure you can't handle being a vampire and should instead handle being a pile of ashes, see?"

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"Still doesn't make sense, but okay, Sparkle Party. At least you still eat people."

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"I eat people," Leekath points out. "I just don't eat entire people like some kind of monster."

"How do you stop?" asks Maggie. "I find it pretty hard to put one down and not immediately go on to find another, let alone quitting in the middle. I don't get how anybody manages to turn anyone."
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"Amen, sister," says Suzanna. "I mean, I've turned people, but if you needed to leave them half full or something, I'd never have managed."

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"I get full," says Leekath. "Or I just, you know, stop, because I'm not a murderer. And these days it's my fiancé I bite."

"How come you haven't turned him?" wonders Maggie. "More to the point if you keep biting him how do you avoid it?"

"...You keep using that word, what do you mean?"

"...Turn...ing?" says Maggie.

"I don't know what that is."

"Holy hell," says Maggie.
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Leo cackles horribly. "This is amazing. Terrible Vampire, I love you."
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"Ugh," says Leekath.

"Turning is making a human into a vampire," explains Maggie.

"That doesn't even make any sense," says Leekath. "I've always been a vampire, I was born a vampire, I have vampire dads and a vampire brother and sister."
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"Dads? What, are you like seahorses?"

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"...No, I have a helpful aunt and there was magic involved," says Leekath, rolling her eyes. "Anybody from a decently developed country can do that where I'm from, not just vampires, it's beside the point."

"Keen," says Maggie.
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"Magic. All right. Back where I come from magic is less suited for gay dad assistance and more suited for murder, sorry for the confusion. Back to the other confusion. Vampires aren't born, they're made. At least sensible vampires. You take a human, you drain their blood, you give them a mouthful of yours, and bam, new vampire."

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"For ours it's more complicated- way more complicated- but yeah, the principle's the same."

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"My version's simpler. If I get some venom into somebody and manage not to kill 'em in the process they spend three days screaming and then poof," says Maggie.

"And my kind don't do that at all, that's weird and gross," says Leekath. "Why would you even want to?"

"Well," says Maggie, "I never have, but if one day I locate the love of my life and she has a heartbeat, standard procedure is turn her and keep her forever."
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"Our way's more for minion generation, but I guess you could do that too."

(Leo nods.)
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"And sometimes you turn somebody because you just like them but don't want to set up housekeeping," says Maggie. "Or you think they'll be a witch and want a witch in your coven, that's why my maker turned me."

"A witch?" frowns Leekath. "God this translation magic's glitchy."

"Witch is somebody with a personal magical power," says Maggie. "Sometimes humans have 'em and they're better after they become vampires, sometimes people get them only after they turn."

"That's not what a witch is. Ugh, even wizarding translation works better than this."
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"Yeah, witches are not that. I don't know about glitchy, though, I feel like if you stranded a bunch of English-speakers on islands containing various weird magic things you'd get a lot of similar-looking overlap. Like, there's these things that drink blood and react to sunlight, they're vampires, doesn't matter that one's a creepy demon thing and one has a weird bumpy face and one sparkles. There's these people with insert magic here, they're witches, doesn't matter if they do exactly one thing or try to cause the apocalypse or, I don't know, whatever your weird kind does, probably flies around on broomsticks and apologizes a lot."

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"I don't speak English. I speak Leraal and vampire fluently, and a bit of Eashiri and Martisen," says Leekath. "Witches where I'm from make potions - no broomstick or apologies involved."

"Vampire's a language?" asks Maggie.

"Yeah. We can't speak other languages particularly well when we've turned into bats."

"Turned into bats. Now I've heard everything."
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Leo raises his hand. "There's some vampires over on our side who do that. Not counting my own somewhat batlike self." He peels off his face and winks, then pastes it back on.

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"I wanna see you turn into a bat," says Maggie.

"I have no good reason to turn into a bat right now," says Leekath. "I don't even need to do it to fly, anymore."
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"Aw, but it's a neat party trick! We could all demonstrate something, if you want. Sparkles could hop out into the sunlight, Suzanna could... I don't know, do some weird magic thing? Maybe she can do a light show. We'll be the Amazing Vampire Circus."

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