Dear readers, tonight with me is woman born to a Scythian mother and a vampire father. She is here to tell us about the threats to her world – and how she enlisted the last remaining vampires to fight the demons.
Tell us a little about where you grew up. What was it like there?
I grew up in a rural village on the Romanian Plain in the foothills of
the Carpathian Mountains. I have not been back there since I was a child, but what
I remember most is the mountains themselves, their white capped peaks in the
winter and the way clouds would hang low in the springtime, cloaking them like
Your parents were murdered when you were still a young girl. What do you
know about them?
My mother Aarani was the leader of our village. She was a Scythian, or
what some history books now call The Amazons. She was strong and fierce and had
the ability to connect with the life force of all living things, from the
smallest mouse to the largest bear. She led many successful horseback raids on
passing caravans of rich merchants travelling across the plain – until the
night she met my father Vasile.
That night she realised quickly that he was unlike anyone she had met
before, unlike any human. That’s because he was a strigoi, a human transformed
by the bite of a vampire.
They fought for hours and when they eventually laid down their weapons,
they both knew they had met their match, their equal. About a year later I was
born and that’s how I came to be the original descendant – the first child ever
born to strigoi and Scythian parents.
What do you do now?
I live in a rural farmhouse with my four sisters,
just north of Vermont by the Canadian border. Our day-to-day lives are much the
same as they’ve always been, tending to our crops and taking care of the
horses, although after everything that’s happened things are a little different
now of course.
What can you tell us about your latest adventure?
Well, to begin with I don’t think any of us will
ever be the same. I spent my entire life searching for the creatures that
killed my parents and the council, the world’s last four remaining vampires,
had refused to help me – until Gabriel came into the picture of course.
Oh, Gabriel… I don’t even know where to start with
him. At fist I wanted to kill him, but when I realised that he, a strigoi with
no idea who or even what he was, was actually the key to everything I had been
searching for, I couldn’t believe it.
You know, I like to think of myself as a leader, a
warrior like my mother, but if I hadn’t met Gabriel…
It was inevitable that there would be a war. That
is the balance of things. Good and evil, dark and light, earth and air, fire
and water – it’s how the world was created, but I don’t think any of us realised
what we would be up against when the army of Reapers broke the surface. We
could never have imagined…
What did you first think when you realised just how important Gabriel
actually was to all this?
What did I think? Honestly, I thought there must have been some mistake.
I mean, this strigoi with no understanding of anything was thrust into my life
and immediately upset the balance of everything. He didn’t even know what a
strigoi was… And he was one!
The thing is, he was so confused, so damaged and full of guilt for
everything that happened before I met him. I didn’t know how I would ever make
him understand just how important he really was, not just to the quest we were
on, but to the entire world.
What was the scariest thing in your adventures?
The demon Melloch. My entire life I had been re-imagining him as I saw
him that night, standing over my mother’s body, his black lifeless eyes staring
down at her. I’d never seen a creature like him. I was just a child then, I
didn’t know demons existed until the night he came and took everything from me.
When we eventually realised he would lead the Reaper Army to the surface, I
knew without a doubt that I would have to face him again.
What was the worst thing about the war?
Well, apart from the war itself and everything that
happened, I think the worst part is that it was all preventable. Humans just don’t
seem to understand. Yes, resources are important, but nothing matters more than
preserving our earth. Since the industrial revolution, carbon dioxide has
climbed to its highest levels in 800,000 years due to human activities including the burning of
fossil fuels, such as coal and oil, the making of cement and deforestation. It
was our job to at least try and give them a second chance, a chance to learn
how to love all life – not just each other.
What was the best thing about it, if there is a best thing?
For us, the war irreversibly changed things. We
can’t go back to how things were before, and our family unit is very different
than it was, but we certainly cherish what we have now. Personally, my life is
very different post-war and the things that have happened… I don’t even know
where to start.
But, if there is a best thing then I think it’s
that we were all forced to put our fears aside, to find the warrior that lives
in each of us, and to stand up for what’s right. In the end that’s always what
matters most – and that’s what we did. Together.
Tell us a little about your friends.
My friends. Well, I can’t say I’d ever really had
any friends other than my sisters. Keeping our existence a secret made it
pretty hard to have friends, and to be honest, I never really had time for any
of that anyway. That all changed of course when I met Gabriel and he
inadvertently brought Harrison Hargreaves into our lives. I had never trusted a
human around my family and I certainly didn’t trust him. It’s funny you know, I
always thought there was a certain strength that came with keeping your
distance, especially from humans, but after everything that’s happened, I guess
I was wrong.
Any romantic involvement?
Seriously, I think you know the answer to that one…
Whom (or what) do you really hate?
Demons, Melloch in particular. I hate him for what he’s taken from me,
but the truth is I do understand that evil, in some form, has to exist. As I
said before, our world is built on balance. For every darkened corner, there
must be a pool of light. For every tear, there must be a smile, and for every
rush of love, there must be the twist of hate. What matters is that we don’t
let our demons define us, Melloch or the ones that live deep inside our own
What’s your favourite drink, colour, and relaxing pastime?
That’s funny actually… You’ve just reminded me of
the time I first asked Gabriel if he had coffee in his cabin. You should have
seen his face. It was like I had asked for demon bran. In fact, I think he
actually said something along those lines… But seriously, I love coffee. It’s
one weakness I don’t mind sharing with the humans. I don’t really have a
favourite colour, and to relax I love just lying on the grass with my wolf
Aurel, stroking his fur and feeling the earth between my toes.
What does the future hold for you?
Well I can’t tell you everything of course, in fact
I shouldn’t even be doing this interview given what’s going on at the moment,
but I think it’s important that humans start to understand who and what we are.
And that was a major part of all this. If we are going to help them understand
how to save their world, then it’s time they started to accept our existence.
It’s a big step for us, but I think if we are going to help them, we need to
locate the other descendants and work together to change the course of our
Can you share a secret with us, which you’ve never told anyone else?
Really? A secret? Okay, well at the moment my
sister Jasmyne is travelling across Europe to learn more about a book called
The Codex Gigas. It’s also known as the Devil’s Bible and from what we
understand, a human is going to try and steal the book from its home in
National Library of Sweden. He’s going to try and unlock the devil’s curse to
try and… Oh, I shouldn’t be telling you any of this. That’s enough, the
interview is over.
Nikki Lee Taylor is the author of The Descendants, a five-book paranormal romance series. She wrote her first book in crayon at the age of four and later became a news journalist. Rise of the Reaper Army is her debut novel. She lives in NSW, Australia.
You can find Aurora on the pages of The Descendants – Rise of the Reaper Army
Join us next week to meet a young woman skilled in the magic of blood glyphs, desperately trying to save her dying mother . Please follow the site by email (bottom-right) to be notified when the next interview is posted.