Vampire Slaves?

by Becca !!!


Question:
I have read a lot of books on vampires and almost all of them have a vampire slave in them that a special vampire bite had made it so they could never disobey them. So what's the real truth behind vampire slaves because it doesn't make sense for them to give a special bite because the human would just turn into a vampire. So are there vampire slaves and how?

Answer:
Great question, Becca. The concept of a human slave to a vampire is a very intriguing one not only because of the physiological properties that might take place, but also the psychological ones.

I'm with you on the questionable nature of the "special bite". This is most likely pure fiction, created by authors to support their plots. As far as vampire mythology goes, the majority of legends do not suggest any sort of special bite, and as you said it doesn't really make sense on a physiological level.

Even if a special bite does not exist, that doesn't necessarily mean that there is no such thing as a vampire slave, though. It's interesting to look at the psychological nature of the "personal slave" in general. Even without magic powers or special biochemical reactions, humans have served as slaves to others throughout human history. While the majority of these situations are through physical force and/or the threat of violence (perfect for a vampire), at some point most slaves end up accepting their role, knowing that the consequences of attempting escape are very great. In other situations, humans can be psychologically manipulated into wanting to serve a master, and we know from vampire mythology that vampires are masters of manipulation.

So it is plausible, perhaps even likely, that vampires could have slaves, even willing servants. I imagine that there are even people who come to this website who would be willing to serve a vampire master just to be part of the experience (for the record, I am not one of them).

Now, before we dismiss the "special bite" altogether, there is an interesting possibility that exists to support this theory. Now, this is entirely theoretical, but after thinking about this question for a while, an idea occurred to me that may give some weight to the connection between a vampire slave and a vampire bite.

We know that vampires infect humans through the transfer of a bacteria known as vampire disease. Like any other bacteria, this one can be killed off with antibiotics, or in some cases, a human's own immune system. Many bacteria, though, do not entirely disappear from the body, even with antibiotics. These strains can be suppressed to the point of being inactive, but still live in small amounts in the body. These strains may stay dormant indefinitely, as long as the immune system can keep them from doing any damage to the body.

Taking this into account, it is theoretically possible, if not likely, that the bacteria causing the vampire transformation could live dormant in a human body - too suppressed to cause any real transformation, but too strong to be killed off entirely. If this were to happen, it's possible that the bacteria could still have some small effect on the human. Certain bacteria are known to target certain areas of the body, and if this one were to even mildly infect the brain tissue, it could cause a human being to behave in ways that would contradict their expected nature. Dementia is not an unusual symptom of several types of bacterial brain infections.

What this tells us is that there is probably not any kind of "special bite" that could cause strange psychological behavior, but that a normal vampire bite where the bacteria is suppressed by the immune system, could. Perhaps vampires have a way of either limiting the amount of saliva that goes into the wound (thus limiting the amount of bacteria), which could infect the body to such a small degree that the bacteria would live in the human body, but not be strong enough to turn the human into a vampire. This is essentially the same process that doctors use with vaccines - a very small amount of the disease that the body can fight off and build an immunity to.

To summarize, there are many ways a human could be influenced to be a vampire's slave, and a special type of bite is at least theoretically possible, though fiction authors are probably exaggerating the nature of such an event.

-Mike

Return to Vampire Q&A.