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Literature / Vampiros do Rio Douro

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Clock-wise from the left: Sétimo, Espelho, Tempestade, Lobo, Gentil, Acordador. Center: Inverno

When water floods your streets
When ice freezes your blood
Start running, use your fastest steed
And prepare to know the Seven
For they will perform the most bizarre spectacle on the Earth
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Vampiros do Rio Douro ("Vampires of the Douro River" in English) is a novel series written by André Vianco and the Brazilian take on vampire literature. The first book Os Sete (The Seven) was published in 2000 and followed by more five books and a two-volume graphic novel. It starts when a group of explorers finds a sunken Portuguese ship at the literal coast in Southern Brazil with seven caskets made of silver with corpses inside of men accused of witchcraft. Turns out these coffins were prisons for seven powerful vampires from Portugal who begin to spread terror on Brazil after they are unwittingly released by one of the students and it's up to a student group to stop the vampires' onslaught.

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This series provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Anti-Villain: Gentil. He is the least evil of all the Seven and considers himself a monster and weak for succumbing to his thirst, as well as for selling his brother as an slave to the Devil in exchange for becoming a vampire. He ultimately saves the heroes at the end and helps defeat his fellow vampires, he does so after they promise save Sétimo (considered the worst of all the seven) because he Must Make Amends to him, since he was his biological brother.
  • Apocalyptic Log: The book opens with a little letter written by a man to his wife talking about the cold and how so many soldiers died in the recent days. The end of the letter states that it was found in the pocket of a man that was completely frozen.
  • Aristocrats Are Evil: Inverno and Tempestade were noblemen before becoming vampires.
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  • Asskicking Equals Authority: Defied regarding the Seven. Inverno is the group's leader and a person of mass destruction of his own right, but Sétimo is more powerful than him and all the others combined, on top of being bestowed with gifts superior to his brothers. Sétimo is not the leader because everyone else is too scared of him and with good reason since they sacrificed him to gain their powers, he came out stronger than the others and is too pissed off at them, wanting revenge instead of leading them. Inverno derives his authority from being their village's Feudal Overlord and being the first to awaken from their sleep.
  • Bad Powers, Bad People: The Seven became vampires with demonic superpowers granted by the Devil: Inverno has ice control, Acordador has necromancy, Tempestade has Power of the Storm, Lobo can transform into a werewolf, Espelho has shape-shifting and Sétimo can turn into a Bat Out of Hell on top of walking under daylight. All of them are bastards of different degrees whereas the Token Good Teammate Gentil has the not-so-evil-sounding power to stop power, which he only uses to save the protagonist's lives.
  • Bat Out of Hell: An literal example with Sétimo gaining the power to transform into a hellish bat-like creature just like Lobo can turn into an werewolf.
  • Beauty = Goodness: Downplayed. Gentil is described as having angelic blonde hair and is the nicest and most friendly of all his brothers. Having said that, he is an Anti-Villain compared to the others with the Devil stating he was merely "the least evil and not actually good". His biological brother Sétimo also shares his good looks, but is considered the worst of all the Seven.
  • Betty and Veronica: A villainous version for Sétimo's brides with the vivacious and sexy Paloma as the Veronica and the submissive and demure Aléxia as the Betty.
  • Daywalking Vampire: Sétimo was gifted by the Devil with complete immunity to sunlight.
  • Deal with the Devil: The Seven became vampires when the plague destroyed their city and to survive they sold their souls to the Devil, gaining immortality and demonic powers. But one of them had to survive plague hit the region where they lived and to survive they sold their souls to the Devil.
  • Deus ex Nukina: At the end of the book, the vampires are destroyed by a NUCLEAR BOMB.
  • Do Not Taunt Cthulhu: In the second book, the Devil appears before Sétimo to have an argument with him over his plans to Take Over the World. Sétimo proceeds to insult his former master saying he cannot interfere in Earthly affairs and by the time he is done making a new hell on Earth where everyone are vampires, the Devil and his hell will be forgotten with no more souls to be sent to his realm. The Devil answers by vowing to ensure his defeat by resurrecting his dead brothers and setting them up against him.
  • The Dreaded: The Seven as a whole are feared by all the human characters, but Sétimo is feared even among his brothers because of his superior power and being a daywalker. The only one who doesn't fear him is Gentil, who was Sétimo's biological brother in life.
  • Equal-Opportunity Evil: The Seven are mostly Portuguese in origin, but otherwise they accept Espelho (a former African slave) as their brother. Becoming an evil vampire transcends skin-color as they are all one of the same kind.
  • Even Evil Can Be Loved: Sétimo is hated by his fellow vampires (and the feeling is very much mutual) except by his brother Gentil, the only one willing to speak up in his defense and not completely fear him. In the end, Gentil saves the protagonists to ensure they would resurrect him because he Must Make Amends, even though it's shown that Sétimo still hates him for betraying him just like the others.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: While the vampires are unequivocally evil and described as "demons", a point is made that are capable of love. Sétimo, despite being viewed as "the worst" out of the bunch, goes completely berserk when César, his "father" (i.e. the human that resurrected him), is killed by Lobo and proceeds to brutally murder him in revenge. He also suffers a Villainous Breakdown after his brides are kidnapped by the military in order to draw him out, and he launches an all-out attack on them in revenge.
  • Five-Man Band: Well, Seven-Man Band.
    • Big Bad: Inverno, the leader of the group and the first book's main villain.
    • The Dragon: Tempestade, the closest friend to Inverno and a fellow noble.
    • The Evil Genius: Acordador, due to being a Necromancer.
    • The Brute: Lobo, the most unruly and savage member of the group. Espelho also qualifies due to having more physically driven powers.
    • Token Good Teammate: Gentil and Espelho are the ones that play the Reluctant Monsters among the vampires.
    • Sixth Ranger Traitor: Sétimo, who is considered so dangerous he is left trapped by all the others in the first book and by the second book, becomes the new Big Bad.
  • The Friend Nobody Likes: The Seven get along with each other pretty well... Except with Sétimo. All the other six are afraid of him since they handed him to the Devil as an sacrifice to gain his powers. The only one who isn't completely afraid of him is Gentil, who was his brother by blood when they were humans.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: Acordador, Gentil and Sétimo were just humble commoners (the former was an artisan, while the latter two were fishermen), Lobo was a mere merchant, while Espelho was an African slave. And then the village where they lived caught a plague one night...
  • God's Hands Are Tied: Both Heaven and Hell are forbidden from interfering in Earth's affair, a fact that Sétimo rubs on Lucifer's face when he says that by the time everyone on Earth is turned into a vampire, no one will go to Hell anymore and he will fade out of existence. While they can't interfere directly, the Devil can resurrect people that could stop him and do the job for him.
  • Godzilla Threshold: The Brazilian armed forces sustain so many heavy casualties fighting Inverno, who by himself is a Person of Mass Destruction capable of bringing heavy winter by his presence alone. As the dead pile up and no conventional way to fight them, they resort to a literal nuclear option by nuking their ship in it's literal coast.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: Naturally Satan, as the one responsible for granting vampirism to the Seven and he does appear physically to interact with the characters at one point or another. However, he is forbidden from interfering directly in mortal affairs and can only watch from afar. Surprisingly, he does a lot more than Heaven to assist the heroes in bringing down Sétimo by resurrecting the other six and empowering Tiago, but then again it was more out of Pragmatic Villainy.
  • I Hate You, Vampire Dad: Leonardo is a point-of-view character that gets turned by Lobo and forced into his pack of vampiric werewolves. He completely loathes his maker, but is unable to harm him or challenge him. When Sétimo attacks Lobo, Leonardo prevents the other pack members to intervene allowing his master to be killed by his enemy in revenge.
  • I Have You Now, My Pretty: Inverno towards Eliana, the student that awakened him from his sleep with her blood when she accidentally cut herself over his body. Hell, it's the very first thing he does shortly after awakening from his sleep is telling how he will make her his. What makes it even more creepier is that Inverno he calls her "mother" due her giving him life once again. So in other words, he wants to make his "own mother" his bride and queen.
  • His Name Really Is "Barkeep": The Seven have real names and are called just as often by it than their nicknames (Guilherme/Inverno, Batista/Tempestate, Miguel/Gentil and so forth). Sétimo is the only exception, as he is really the seventh son of his family.
  • Legacy Character: Tobias is member of a vampire hunting family whose every firstborn male is called by the same name "Tobias".
  • Meaningful Name: All of the seven's names reflect what they are.
  • Nerd in Evil's Helmet: Sétimo is the strongest and most dangerous of the Seven, a group of vampires with demonic powers granted by Satan himself, and among his brothers (who can easily take on the army by themselves), he is spoken in complete and total dread by his brothers as he is "the devil on Earth" and "evil incarnate", and considering how evil themselves they are, that is saying something. Sétimo is later revealed to look like a teenage boy who is a total dork with technology, which even the protagonists find jarring how can someone so unimposing could be terrifyingly evil.
  • Our Vampires Are Different: The Seven are vampires with traditional weaknesses like sunlight, silver, garlic, and each one of them has a unique superpower thanks to their Deal with the Devil. Some of their progeny can inherit their powers to a lesser extent, but this is not an universal case. They have superhuman strength, speed, regeneration, red eyes and sharp fangs.
  • Our Werewolves Are Different: They are just vampires spawned by Lobo and share the same traits as their normal brethren.
  • Power Incontinence: Acordador has to keep his voice quiet or else he might raise the dead if he speaks normally, and that is very taxing to him.
  • Scary Black Man: Espelho is a black vampire and attention is brought to his red eyes and sharp fangs just like his brothers.
  • Snow Means Death: Inverno's awakening leads to heavy snow and cold falling on Brazil, which is freaky considering it's a tropical country though characters do note that there is snow in Southern Brazil where the story takes place, it's nowhere near as intense as compared to places like Russia or Canada. It's also in this heavy snowstorm where Inverno leaves his victims frozen and completely drained out of blood.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Tiago, the actual main protagonist of the book, is just an average student who is forced to fight. He later becomes a vampire himself after being infected with Gentil's blood and the Devil him gifts him with superpowers equal to the Seven in order to defeat Sétimo.
  • Token Minority: Espelho and Lobo are the only non-Portuguese members of the Seven, with the former being African and the latter a Spaniard.
  • Vampire's Harem:
    • Inverno wants to claim Eliana as his bride after her blood wakes him from his sleep.
    • Sétimo sires two female vampires specifically to be his consorts.
  • Villain-Based Franchise: The series is ultimately tied the Seven and every entry in the series has their name in the title.
  • Walking Wasteland: Inverno is an one-man winter season, with his mere awakening causing the temperature to drop catastrophically.
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