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Literature / The Sanguine Chronicles

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Vampire. Werewolf. Marko hates them both. Too bad he sees them staring back from the mirror every morning....

The Sanguine Chronicles (rough draft here) is a novel by Ralph Hayes, Jr. about a young man who is a strigoi — a word that refers to either "vampire" or "werewolf". Marko Martinov is somehow both — which should be impossible, except his mother was caught between a vampire and a werewolf while still pregnant with him, resulting in him being a crossbreed.

Tropes In This Work Are:

  • Basement-Dweller: Lampshaded and subverted — Marko admits he lives in his "parents'" basement, but he has a job (he works at a bookstore) and he is not yet an adult (he's about 17). It's also fortified to the hilt to keep him from escaping when he goes feral.
  • Beat It by Compulsion: Certainly, Marko has troubles with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, due to being a vampire.
  • Body Horror: How Marko views his shapeshifting.
  • Cursed with Awesome: Marko has the powers of both werewolves and vampires. He also has the problems of both.
  • Clueless Chick-Magnet: Marko, who has exotic heritage to season the beefcake. His cluelessness about the feelings of others cause him to do something truly stupid.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Marko, through and through.
  • Death by Childbirth: Marko's mother never recovered from the attack and perished giving birth to him.
  • Disappeared Dad: Marko has no idea who his father is, but knows his mother was widowed 2 months into their marriage
  • First-Person Smartass: Marko writes a journal he expects to be read, so he becomes this kind of narrator.
  • Fur Against Fang: Vampires and Werewolves are predators. They don't like sharing territory. Though at least one organization of vampires uses werewolves for something.
  • Get a Hold of Yourself, Man!: Marko tries to get a twitterpated Aconite to get a clue—at least, he thinks she needs to get one. In doing so, he screws up royally.
    • Another, much more justified one is directed at Marko himself.
  • Good Parents: Aunt Nan and Uncle Bob aren't his parents, but they're just as good in Marko's mind.
  • Happily Adopted: Very much so. Marko clearly loves them and states in his journal, "My Aunt and Uncle rock."
  • Happily Married: Aunt Nan and Uncle Bob.
  • Hi, Mom!: Marko writes his journal with the expectation that someone will read it. Guessing that his therapist might be one of them, he writes "Hi Mrs. Z!"
  • Honorary Aunt: Aunt Nan and Uncle Bob are actually distant cousins.
  • Hybrid-Overkill Avoidance: Werewolves can't turn vampires, vampires can't turn werewolves—but somehow this didn't apply to him.
  • I Hate You, Vampire Dad: Marko says werewolves and vampires screwed up his life and killed his parents, therefore he doesn't consider either as "his kind".
  • Locked Out of the Loop: Snooch, Janie, and Marko try to do this with Aconite—but she catches on to how vapid the junk they foist off on her is.
  • The Masquerade: Explicitly averted—Marko says there is none. People simply don't want to believe in monsters (and he points out that they won't even believe a Wet Paint sign). Result: werewolves and vampires barely have to hide, since people refuse to believe.
  • Nerves of Steel: Aunt Nan and Uncle Bob face a panicking werewolf/vampire in their own home armed with no more than milk and cookies—and successfully calm him down without batting an eye.
  • Not Himself: Marko refers to "Wolf Me", explaining that at certain times, he is completely feral and no smarter than any normal wolf—ergo, he cannot think. It's the reason he insists on being locked up during the Full Moon.
  • Oh, Crap!: Numerous times, including when Aconite somehow ends up with Marko's book and when she realizes its her, Marko and his frends, and an elderly couple against a group of vampires.
    • Most vividly when Marko corners a vampire, and the vampire tries to intimidate him by transforming at arm's length. Marko doesn't bat an eye, and then returns the favor. Since he is part lycanthrope and part vampire, his metamorphosis is much more impressive— and much more graphic. The vampire in question screams like a girl and wets himself.
  • Our Werewolves Are Different/Our Vampires Are Different: He's very different, even In-Universe. The main difference werewolves and vampires have from the usual is that the viruses can only affect people with certain genes.
    • Vampires have telekinesis, hypnotic illusions, control over small animals, and partial transformation to a bat-like form. Sunlight just weakens their powers and they have OCD of some sort (can be anything from an aversion to crosses to counting).
    • Werewolves on the other hand are pretty much the standard man-wolf type.
    • Marko has the weaknesses of both, transforms into a black bipedal wolf with bat wings, and the only vampire power he has is telekinesis. And if Aconite is any indication he's a bit weaker than a full werewolf
  • Pretender Diss: Marko has nothing but contempt for goths who want to be vampires, he compares them to "bug-chasers" (gay men who actively try to get infected with HIV).
  • Sadist Teacher: Mr. Murkowski is a fairly mild example, but it seems he does NOT like students.
  • Single Specimen Species: Marko is the only werewolf/vampire hybrid he and his family have ever heard of. His mother was attacked simultaneously by a vampire and werewolf. The curses cancelled each other out in her, but combined in him.
  • Technically Living Vampire: And Marko has a speech on how "undead" is an oxymoron.
  • There Are No Therapists: Averted, he does have a therapist. They made a breakthrough when he changed into a monster in front of her and threw her desk across the room. There's even a scene where he talks with his therapist.
  • Vampire Vannabe: Aconite. When Marko refuses to turn her after she figures out his secret she checks out a visting rock band that turns out to be composed of vampires looking for "recruits", and then they infect her with lycanthropy instead, she does not take it well.
  • Vampiric Werewolf: The main character infected by both a vampire and a werewolf when his mother got in the middle of a fight between them while pregnant with him. He has a mix of powers from both
  • Vegetarian Vampire: Of the "animal blood" variety. He also satisfies his lycanthropic flesh cravings with lots of bacon and rare steaks.
    • He has had human blood, which is like heroin to a vampire.
  • The Virus: Lycanthropy and Vampirism are caused by two different strains of the "strigoi" virus, which most people are immune to fortunately. And the strains are similar enough that normally infection with one confers immunity to the other.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Marko is oblivious to a girl's attraction to him—which ultimately results in her being turned into a werewolf and him getting it from friends and family.
  • Your Vampires Suck: With special bile aimed at Twilight.