This is the character sheet for The Saga of Darren Shan. All spoilers are unmarked, read on your own peril.
Twelve-year-old Darren Shan is the main protagonist of the series. At the start of the series he was a fan of spiders, so when the Cirque du Freak visited his home town, he became obsessed with Madame Octa, a rather large and colorful performing spider, with lethal poison, and stole it from it's rightful owner: a vampire.
- A Child Shall Lead Them: While he isn't, strictly speaking, a child anymore when he becomes a Vampire Prince, he is one by vampire standards. They refer to him as a "cub prince".
- A Protagonist Shall Lead Them: As a Vampire Prince, and as one of the Hunters in books 7-12.
- Angst: First after Mr. Crepsley blooded him, and much later, following Mr. Crepsley's death.
- Anti Anti Christ: It was his destiny to become the Lord Of Shadows, should he mange to kill Steve. He rejected it.
- Back from the Dead: Briefly, just for long enough to Set Right What Once Went Wrong.
- The Beastmaster: Spiders, wolves, dragons, he can tame all of them as part of his inheritance, and he can also tame rats courtesy of being a vampire.
- Bishōnen: In the manga after the Plot-Relevant Age-Up stated below.
- Break the Cutie
- Cain and Abel: With Steve.
- The Chosen One: Played straight in that, he's one of three vampires who are allowed to kill the Vampaneze Lord. Subverted in that he was chosen to destroy the world, should he, or the other two succeed in doing so.
- Dhampyr: Sort of. He's half-vampire, but he was transformed into one by blood transfusion, instead of being born one.
- Et Tu, Brute?: Towards Kurda in books 5 and 6. In the scene leading up to that reveal, you can see how Kurda and Darren had become incredibly good friends. And then...
- Famous Last Words: "Destiny... rejected!"
- Fate Worse than Death: Subverted. His soul spent a hundred thousand years in the Lake of Souls, before Evanna saved him, and after setting right what once went wrong, he was finally allowed to enter Paradise.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Subverted in the first book. He gave up his humanity to save Steve's life, who was bitten by Madame Octa, the lethally poisonous spider.
- Subverted again, when he returned to the Vampire Mountain to warn the Princes about Kurda's betrayal, despite he has been sentenced to death by them for failing on the Trials and escaping. The Vampires were so impressed by this, that they made him a Prince, just so his failure could be pardoned.
- Played straight in the last book. He gouged Steve into killing him, and let him to do it, to save the world — and himself — from the Lord Of Shadows.
- Heroism Equals Job Qualification: For a Vampire Prince, apparently.
- I Hate You, Vampire Dad: Towards Crepsley at first. He gets better.
- Killed Off for Real
- MayDecember Romance: with Debbie. Subverted as she is the same age as he is, but looks older than him, because she's a normal human.
- Nightmare Fetishist: He has an over fascination for spiders. In the prologue of the first book, he admitted that when he was little, he fantasized about a spider climbing down his throat, laying eggs in his stomach, which then would hatch and start eating him from inside out. Oh and he fantasized about this when he went to bed.
- Offered the Crown: Given a choice between a throne or a pit of stakes, guess which one he goes with...
- Older Than He Looks: he was blooded into a half-vampire at the age of twelve. At the end of the series, eighteen years later, he had apparently aged about six years, and only because he had a...
- Plot-Relevant Age-Up: in Hunters of the Dusk.
- Puppy Love: With Debbie at first.
- Screw Destiny
- Sibling Yin-Yang: With Steve.
- Single-Target Sexuality: Debbie was the only girl he was ever in love with. Even when they met again sixteen years later. and he looked like a teenager while she became an adult.
- Soul Jar: When his friend Sam is killed by the werewolf, Darren drank all of Sam's blood, and with it, he absorbed a part of Sam's soul, that became a part of him, until Darren's own eventual death, when it was set free. The manga goes further and has Sam's soul as a Spirit Advisor for Darren.
- The Smart Guy / The Strategist: He came up with some rather impressive strategies, particularly his plan to confuse the Vampaneze before the battle in The Vampire Prince, worked so well, that the vampires lost twelve warriors, instead of the estimated thirty to forty minimum casualty. It largely contributed to his election as the youngest Vampire Prince. He even outwitted Mr. Tiny in the final book.
- Star-Crossed Lovers: With Debbie.
- Take a Third Option: Mr. Tiny's plan was that either Darren or Steve would become the destroyer of the world, whichever survived/killed the other. It backfired on him, when Darren realized that only means both of them must die at each others hands.
- Teacher/Student Romance: With Debbie.
- The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: As one of the three Lord Hunters.
- Took a Level in Badass: He took at least one in each trilogy.
- Unwitting Pawn: To Mr. Tiny trough the entire series. Then he subverts it, by literally saying Screw Destiny to him.
- Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Evanna implied he would've become the Lord of Shadows, because of all the horrible things he went through.
- Amicable Exes: With Arra Sails.
- Badass Cape: He wears a red cape.
- Badass Teacher: To Darren.
- Break Out Character: He has his own series of four novels.
- Dual Wielding: His preferred fighting style with knives.
- Dying Moment of Awesome: Fighting the highly skilled Vampaneze Gannen Harst, Steve and the Lord of the Vampaneze (both half-vampaneze) all at once, and apparently winning by killing the Vampaze Lord. Then it's revealed the guy he killed was only a ploy...
- Good Scars, Evil Scars Has a long scar running down on his cheek.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Mr. Crepsley is bitter, snarky, perfectly willing to let Steve die, and not averse to smacking Darren around to teach him a lesson, and yet he genuinely cares for Medames Truska and Octa, and comes to the rescue every time Darren gets into trouble (which is often).
- Killed Off for Real
- Knife Nut: His weapon of choice.
- Noodle Incident: He treated the story behind his scar like this. As it eventually turned out Evanna scratched him.
- Offered the Crown: In the prequels, Paris Skyle nominated him to become a prince, but he declined the offer and resigned as a general, to get revenge against Wester instead.
- Parental Substitute: To Darren, after he got through his I Hate You, Vampire Dad period.
- Perpetual Frowner: He only laughed once, when he found out about Gavner's elephant underpants, and immediately felt sorry for it. But he often smirks.
- Platonic Declaration of Love: Multiple times between him and his mentor, Seba Nile, and between him and his assistants, Darren and Gavner (in the prequels).
- Proud Warrior Race Guy
- Senseless Sacrifice: He didn't take Steve down with himself to give his friends a chance to escape. After he died, Steve revealed to Darren that he is actually the real Vampaneze Lord.
- The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: As one of the three Lord Hunters.
- Together in Death: With Arra, according to Evanna.
- Withholding the Cure: To Madame Octa's poison, unless Darren becomes a half-vampire. Later this is acknowledged as being less than heroic, but it's justified in that Tiny made him do it.
- You Gotta Have Orange Hair: Justified in his back story, which reveals he was dyed in the factory he worked in as a child.
- Back from the Dead: His soul made a pact with Mr. Tiny, who brought him back as a Little Person. For most of the series he didn't remember anything of his old life, and the whole Lake of Souls book was about his and Darren's adventures to find out who he had been before he died.
- Body Horror: All of the Small persons are small, have thick, grey, sutured skin, large green eyes, they have no nose, nor outer ears, and large mouth with grey tongue and sharp teeth and they don't feel tastes.
- Brick Joke: In Hunters of the Dusk he, Darren and Mr Crepsley spoke about who he could've been, and Mr Crepsley jokingly said he has vampire blood, to which he admitted that he had been wondering if he had been a vampire in his previous life, because of his liking of the clan. This caused Darren to wonder if he could had been a Prince, which he dismissed. Then in Lake of Souls, it turned out that he was the traitor Prince-nominee Kurda Smahlt.
- Deal with DesTiny
- Fun with Acronyms: His name is an acronym of his name in his past life, Kurda Smahlt.
- Identity Amnesia: Part of the deal which granted him a new chance to live.
- Pint Sized Power House
- Time Travel: Mr Tiny created him from Kurda's corpse, then he put him back into the past.
- Stable Time Loop: In his life he was the traitor vampire Kurda Smahlt, his deal with Mr Tiny included that he had to protect and help Darren, who uncovered his treason, and caused his fall.
- The Smart Guy: Just like Kurda.
Vancha MarchOne of the four Vampire Princes, and one of the three Hunters who're allowed to kill the Vampaneze Lord.
- Adaptational Attractiveness: In the novels he was described as someone who could've been mistaken for the twin brother of a werewolf, while he's rather handsome in the manga.
- Anime Hair: In the manga, he has a quite ridiculous saiyan hairdo.
- Badass Beard: In the manga.
- Bare-Fisted Monk: The only weapons he uses are shurikens and his fists. However he only kills with the shurikens when he has to save someone, and has no other option.
- Casanova Wanna Be
- Determinator: See below at Windmill Crusader.
- Proud Warrior Race Guy: He's an extremist in this regard even among the vampires. He only wears clothes he himself sewn together from the skins of animals he killed, he fights only with his hands, he carves out his shurikens from the ore, sleeps on his cloak, eats only raw meat, and drinks only water, milk and blood.
- The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: As one of the three Lord Hunters.
- Windmill Crusader: He regularly takes walks in the sunshine, trying to break the curse of vampires, which forces them to live in the dark. He's been doing it for over a century, without any success, but he's not willing to give up, despite the bad sunburns and sunstrokes he gets from it.
- All-Powerful Bystander: He hates it, but he can't directly interfere with the destiny of the world, because...
- Archnemesis Dad: To Darren.
- The Beastmaster
- The Chessmaster: He set up the whole plot of the series, and up until the climax, everything went exactly as he planned.
- Evil Can Not Comprehend Good: He explained his plan to Darren and the dying, but still alive Steve, because he was absolutely sure he's won, giving ahead the only way of stopping him. He didn't count on Darren allowing Steve to kill him, simply because he's so evil, he couldn't imagine a son of his could make such a selfless act.
- Faux Affably Evil: He seems to be a rather kind person... until you hear him stating that he hates drinking blood, except from infants, because their blood is...so sweet.
- Fat Bastard: Short but overweight.
- For the Evulz: Most of his actions are based around him officially wanting to make life more 'interesting', but since this involves mass death, his definition of 'interesting' is very warped.
- Humanoid Abomination
- Luke, I Am Your Father: To both Darren and Steve.
- Made of Evil
- Meaningful Name: Desmond Tiny.
- Considering that he's older than the English language, he probably named himself that, just to be creepy.
- Nightmare Fetishist: In Book 7, he claims he is in a hurry to catch a volcano eruption, which will kill everyone in ten miles radius.
- The Necromancer: The Little People that serve him are established as being essentially ghosts he brought back to some form of life in new bodies.
- Out-Gambitted: By Darren, and again by Evanna.
- Time Abyss: He's so old, that Seba Nile, the second oldest living vampire at the age of 700, was young the first and last time they met before the series. He even claims that he measures time in continental movements.
- Time Master: He can move around through time and perceive the past and future apparently at will, allowing him to use Kurda's spirit to create Harkat years before Kurda died.
- Xanatos Gambit: He would've won regardless of the outcome of the final battle. The only thing he didn't expect was Darren's sacrifice.
Steve Leonard ("Leopard")
- 0% Approval Rating: The Vampaneze only followed him because Mr. Tiny told them that the Vampires would exterminate them if they didn't.
- Ax-Crazy: The Vampaneze, despite their preference for living victims and killing, hate the guy because of this reason.
- Arch-Enemy: To Darren and Mr. Crepsley.
- Anti Christ: Had he managed to kill Darren, he would've become the Lord of Shadows.
- Appropriated Appellation: His birthname was Leonard, nicknamed "Leopard" by his friends, both because it rhymed well, and because he was a wild child. He went by it as an adult.
- Cain and Abel: His and Darren's relationship serves as this.
- The Chessmaster
- Combat Pragmatist: He uses ranged weapons and lies which are both forbidden to his subjects the Vampaneze, and he recruits humans to fight on his side, who're also allowed to do these things.
- Complexity Addiction: Steve's plans are often excessively complicated when all he really wants to do is kill Darren.
- Evil Former Friend: To Darren.
- Fate Worse than Death: He will be trapped in the Lake of Souls forever.
- Killed Off for Real
- Made of Evil: A sip of his blood almost made Mr. Crepsley to throw up.
- It's All About Me: Steve is constantly fixated on the idea that Darren became a vampire just to show him up, ignoring Darren's constant protests that he did it to save Steve's life
- Sibling Yin-Yang: With Darren.
- The Sociopath
- Ungrateful Bastard: Darren gave up his life as a human, and became Mr Crepsley's assistant to save Steve's life. He viewed this as Darren deliberately tried to kill him with Madame Octa, and then stole away his dream of becoming a vampire, and swore vengeance on both him and Mr Crepsley.
- Vampire Hunter: Posed as one, who knew the difference between the Vampires and Vampaneze, and haunted the latters.
- Vampire Wannabe: When Mr. Crepsley refused him, he goes... mad.
- White Hair, Black Heart
- Would Hurt a Child: He killed Shancus, Darren's godson, who was eight. For the Evulz!
- Because Destiny Says So: His loyalty to Steve is mostly because of this.
- The Dragon: He was chosen by Mr. Tiny to be Steve's bodyguard. Not that he was happy with it.
- Long-Haired Pretty Boy: In the manga he's quite attractive, despite his purple skin and red eyes.
- My Master, Right or Wrong: He follows Steve because of the prophecies, even though he disagrees with what Steve does (and wants him to do) more often than not, and Steve treats him horribly.
- Noble Top Enforcer
- Will Not Tell a Lie: When Vancha points out that the Hunters have no reason to believe anything Steve says, Steve immediately points to Gannen, who's a true vampaneze, and wouldn't lie even if his Lord instructed him to.
Reggie Veggie "R. V."
- Animal Wrongs Group: He set the Cirque Du Freak's werewolf free, because he thought it was cruel to keep it chained in a cage all the time. Of course Darren was partially at fault, since he did tell R.V. that the werewolf wasn't really dangerous.
- Even Evil Has Standards: Somewhat hypocriticaly, he turns against Steve, after he kills Shancus For the Evulz, eventhough, he had (or at least attempted to) kill children in the past. Steve even calls him out on it.
- FaceHeel Turn: starts of as a friend of Darren.
- HeelFace Turn: when Steve kills Shancus. Although, he doesn't really join Darren, he just runs off again...
- Hook Hand: He has a silver and a golden gauntlet with hooks for fingers. They were constructed by Steve, and are the main reason, why R.V is more co-operative with Steve, than others of their kind.
- Irony: Sam's bag has a note "hands off" written on it which Darren reads straight after R.V. runs of wondering where his went...
- In a more dramatic sense, he was a vegetarian before the incident with the werewolf. After becoming a vampaneze, he claimed to have taken a liking for raw, bloody meat, heavily implying human meat.
- Nightmare Face: on the cover.
Prince Paris Skyle
- Authority Equals Asskicking: Subverted. He was the eldest living vampire during the time of the series, as highest ranking Prince, and indeed he was very badass, but due his age he was no longer fit for active front service. Instead during the war he focused on coordinating the Generals.
- Badass Beard: Especially in the manga adaptation.
- Badass Grandpa: He died wrestling a bear, and he took it down with him! At the biological age of eighty!
- Killed Off for Real
- Living Legend: There are many legends surrounding him, including that he fought side-by-side with Jean D'Arc, he traveled with Christopher Columbus to America and introduced vampirism in the "New World", he was the inspiration behind Stroker's Dracula, and last, but not least, Mr Crepsley confirmed that he was friends with William Shakespeare, and upon Shakespeare's death, Paris drank all his blood, sucking out part of his soul and all of his unwritten works with it, and later had them written down.
- Soul Jar: He was friends with Shakespeare, who on his deathbed asked Paris to drink all his blood, so that part of his soul can live on inside Paris, and all his unwritten works could be written down.
- Reasonable Authority Figure
- Elderly Immortal: He's 800 years-old by the time of the series and appears to be an extremely fit 80 years-old.
- Bald of Awesome
- Crusading Widower: He had a human wife, who was killed by the Vampaneze. He hunted that Vampaneze down, and hated the others even more than any other vampire.
- Interspecies Romance: He was once married to a human woman.
- Large and in Charge: Even among the Vampire Princes, he stands out in this respect.
- Tattoo as Character Type: He has arrows tattooed on his arms and temples. He was named after them.
Prince Mika Ver Leth
- Warrior Prince: Like the rest of the vampire princes.
- Dark and Troubled Past: his mother figure was killed.
- Goofy Print Underwear: yellow boxers with pink elephants.
- Killed Off for Real
- You Shall Not Pass!: To the Vampaneze. It didn't work, because of Kurda's betrayal.
- Action Girl: She remained undefeated in a game for eleven years, and even Mr. Crepsley considered it suicide to challenge her in it. She also took the Trials of Death multiple times to prove herself worthy of being a vampire.
- Amicable Exes: With Mr. Crepsley.
- Defeating the Undefeatable: She was undefeated in a game for eleven years, until she underestimated Kurda in book 5.
- Faux Action Girl: Her badassery is always talked about, but it's never shown. She remained champion of a game for eleven years, even Mr Crepsley thinks it's suicide to challenge her in it, but first Darren humiliates her in it- although he still loses-, then she loses to Kurda in one move. Then in the battle with the vampaneze, it's stated that she had killed many others, but the only one she's actually shown fighting, mortally wounds her.
- Killed Off for Real
- Last Request: She made Mr. Crepsley swear that he wouldn't let the Princes to sentence Darren to death.
- Sickeningly Sweethearts: Darren found her flirting with Mr Crepsley rather strange.
- Together in Death: With Larten, according to Evanna.
- A Friend in Need: He seems almost compelled to protect Darren whenever the latter is in danger. This is why Mr. Tiny chooses him to be made into Harkat.
- Actual Pacifist
- Badass Pacifist
- Back from the Dead: He's Harkat's true identity. Although it seems to be more of a reincarnation, since while they share the same soul, and after learning the truth Harkat also gained back Kurda's memories, they're actually two different person, and when Kurda had to choose whether he wanted to live again, he choose to die, and let Harkat live.
- Befriending the Enemy: His philosophy about the vampaneze... until the Vampaneze Lord actually appears.
- Defeating the Undefeatable: His win over Arra Sails.
- Good Feels Good: He sets up makeshift hospitals to help people at the time when World War II was just ending, just because he likes to help. Arra and Larten don't quite understand this, but they help out and contribute their healing vampire spit.
- He Had a Name: About the vampaneze volunteers that he brought into the mountain for his plot. "They were brave men, whom you killed, like vermin." This is generally his conflict with other vampires over how to view the vampaneze.
- I Did What I Had to Do
- Know When to Fold 'Em: He doesn't try to deny the accusations or resist arrest at all. He tells his assistant, Cyrus, not to fight.
- Let's Get Dangerous!: Most vampire considers him weak, because of his usual refusal to fight, so it came by a total surprise when he beat Arra Sails in a game she remained undefeated for eleven years. As he put it to Darren:I dislike fighting. But it doesn't mean I can't fight.
- Long-Haired Pretty Boy: In the manga.
- Minored in Ass-Kicking: Unless he has to, he prefers not to fight. But when he has to...
- No Place for Me There: He knew that the vampires and vampaneze would both wish to execute him for treason because of what he planned to do to save them, but he did it anyway.
- Offered the Crown: Was set to be invested as a Vampire Prince. Then he and Darren switched fates...
- Proud Warrior Race Guy: Subverted - he's one of the only vampires who isn't one, and he regrets the injuries and loss of life they subject themselves to by always looking for fights and putting Honor Before Reason.
- The Smart Guy: Part of why he was nominated to become a Prince.
- To Win Without Fighting: His plan would have allowed the vampaneze to do this. The vampires would have had to join them, but at least they would be alive.
- Unknown Character: He had three assistants (two in the manga) who aided him in his plot. One of them was named Cyrus, and kills himself when Kurda tells him not to resist just after Darren's accusation. The other two remain unknown, aside from brief appearances. The one besides Cyrus in the manga has a design and they both appear in several group pictures, such as in the end, and the title page of chapter 94, right after Kurda is pulled from the lake of souls.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: He betrayed the Clan, in order to save them from the Lord of the Vampaneze, and the war he heralded.
- The Extremist Was Right: Several characters acknowledge that his plan might have been the best way to save both sides.
- Badass Grandpa
- Mentor Archetype: Larten's.
- Elderly Immortal: He's the second oldest living vampire when introduced with only Prince Paris being older than him.
- Handicapped Badass: He lost an eye wrestling a lion in his youth. He lost the other in the battle against the Vampaneze allied to Kurda.
- All-Powerful Bystander: Not as powerful as Mr. Tiny, but just like him, she can't interfere with the events no matter how much she would like for the same reasons.
- Berserk Button: She' quite volatile, so be careful around her:
- Don't call her a witch.
- Don't try to force yourself on her when she's wears one of her beautiful forms.
- Don't try to mess with the fate of the world.
- Lady of Black Magic: Blessed with powerful magic, and able to take on a beautiful form thanks to Voluntary Shapeshifting.
- Seers: She can look into the various possible futures.
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: She can look however she wants to. She mostly looks like a short ugly hag, who wears nothing but ropes around her body, has stubby little fingers with claws on her pinkies, and Mismatched Eyes, that are constantly switching their color.
- Awesomeness by Analysis: Is really good at learning languages.
- Dark and Troubled Past: his biological parents treated him like a monster and sold him to a circus where the ringmaster abused him, but was happily saved by Mr.Tall.
- Teen Genius
- Our Mermaids Are Different: In the prequels, it is revealed that she's actually a Skelk, this series' "creature that inspired the mermaid legends" species. Yes, our mermaids are very different.
- Healing Factor: He can regenerate any of his bodyparts. When he's head was cut down, two grew in it's place.
- Action Girl
- Badass Teacher: When Steve suggested they let the Vampaneze kill some of her students, she slapped him hard enough to hurt him. Keep in mind, he was half-Vampaneze.
- Interspecies Romance: She fell in love with Darren, a half-vampire.
- Jail Bait Wait: Subverted. As an adult, she refused to get involved with Darren who looked like a teen, but when Darren's second Purge started in Lord of Shaddows, and he explained to her that he'd not only be turned into a full vampire, but will also grow up to look his actual age in a few weeks, she was quite happy to point out that this means he won't be a boy anymore, but a man.
- MayDecember Romance: Subverted. They are the same age, but by the time they met again sixteen years later, she was an adult, while Darren appeared to be around seventeen.
- Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Hemlock is a poisonous plant. And she hates her family is named after it! Subverted however, as she's a very kindhearted person.
- Puppy Love: She and Darren were around twelve the first time they met and dated.
- She's All Grown Up: It took sometime for Darren to recognize her, when they're reunited sixteen years after their first meeting.
- Star-Crossed Lovers: With Darren.
- Student Teacher Romance: Subverted. Despite their mutual attraction she refused to get involved with Darren, because she felt it would be wrong, as a teacher and adult.
- Teen Pregnancy: She had Darius when she was sixteen.