Claudia, the child vampire in Anne Rice's Interview with the Vampire is, in my opinion, the most haunting character I have ever seen portrayed in film or fiction.
She is a child that will not age, she is like an angel, but being vampiric, she is also a demon, for a monster dwells within that doll-like child, and it is that much more frightening because she looks angelic.
Her story is sad and so poignant. But I am not focusing on that. I am, instead, thinking about the portrayl of other child vampires.
I have two in my novel, The House on Blackstone Moor. They are different than Claudia, having perished during the witch hysteria that seized 16th Century France when they were raised from the dead.
And as the point is made throughout my novel, whether they be raised or created, no two vampires come back the same. That brief sojourn through hell affects each differently.
That's my take on vampire fiction. But truly, whether they come back monsterous or not, they are, because they are children, haunting.
It is so troubling. These tragic monsters, condemned to exist forever undead. Forever that is unless they are, somehow, destroyed.
And what of their memories and feelings. Do they know fear? Can they know fear? Mine do, they greatly fear the vampire destroyers for they have seen the horrific carnage left in the wake of a destroyer attack. Being undead does not mean they are not, sometimes, afraid.
Yet they have pleasure too. They enjoy sleeping for instance. They so like to dream, my Ada and Simon.
But what do they dream of? Do they dream of their living lives and also of their terrible deaths? Do they dream of hell? Do they see in their dreams Satan's own demons reaching out to draw them back?
Do they dream of an impossiblitly, a way to regain their living lives, or do they just exist from one eternal moment to the next as best they can?
And when the fierce thirst strikes, what then? Can they pretend to not feel it or do they not bother and rush headlong out in search of their sustenance?
That is their reality. Truth is truth after all, even to one who is a child and is also, sadly, a vampire.