Last year I had the pleasure to read Regina Jeffers’ book, “Vampire Darcy’s Desire,” and I reviewed it for last year’s Haunted Austen event. When I found out that Regina Jeffers was rereleasing the book this year, I jumped at the chance to have her back again to share the story behind this book’s re-release and to offer us an excerpt from this wonderful JAFF paranormal story.
This is one of those stories that stayed with me long after I closed the final pages of this book. I’ve thought a lot about what I enjoyed so much about this story, and I can’t say it’s just one particular aspect of this story. I loved the romance, the historical influences, the paranormal elements and the very unique battles that are fought in this book between our characters.
But, if I did have to choose one particular aspect to admire, it would be the intense and very romantic relationship that develops between Darcy and Elizabeth. After all, he has sworn himself away from love, romance, and even from having his own family! Yet, after he meets Elizabeth Bennet, his world really comes apart, and Darcy comes to question nearly everything he has held onto as a man who is carrying a great, secret curse. They sacrifice a lot in this story to be together, but can they really make the greatest sacrifices of all for one another?
I’d like to thank Regina Jeffers, who not only re-released a terrific book, and wrote this great post for my readers; she also brought two generous giveaways for my Just Jane 1813 readers. Thank you so much, Regina!
Please join me in welcoming her back to Haunted Austen!
In 2009, Ulysses Press contracted with me for a vampiric version of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice to add to the Twilight mania of the day. We must remember that Stephenie Meyers’ book was based on Pride and Prejudice. Unfortunately, after seven years, my book is no longer in print. I have asked for the rights to be returned to me, but as I wait for the process to know an end, I thought to bring back the book under a new cover.
I have a non-competition clause in my contracts with Ulysses that says I cannot sell the book to other traditional publishers, but I can self-publish it. That is exactly what I did.
For those of you who have not read the tale previously, the story weaves a traditional Scottish ballad, that of Lord Thomas and Fair Ellender, throughout the tale. Lord Thomas Benning is Elizabeth’s ancestor and Lady Ellender D’Arcy is Darcy’s. Lady Ellender has given another of her suitors, Seorais Winchcombe (George Wickham), to a baobhan sith (female Scottish vampire) muse in order to save Lord Thomas’s life. Therefore, Wickham has pledged revenge on each generation of Darcys. The curse of being a damper (half human/half vampire) is passed through the first-born male of each generation. Darcy is determined never to marry. Never to conceive a child. Never know the life others cherish in order to bring an end to the curse. Wickham is determined to kill all the Darcys, and he will stop at nothing to have his revenge.
We must remember that Dracula was not published until 1897, some 80+ years after the events of Pride and Prejudice, so I depended heavily on Celtic tales, Slavic legends, Scottish folklore, etc., to create the tale.
I thought you might enjoy a bit about a REAL vampire hunter’s kit from the Victorian era.
The box contains a prayer book and “vampire-slaying equipment”
A “vampire-slaying kit” was sold in 2012 by the Royal Armouries museum in Leeds. The 19th Century box, containing a crucifix, pistols, wooden stakes and a mallet, was sold for £7,500 at an auction in North Yorkshire. It had been left to a Yorkshire woman in her uncle’s will. The box and its contents all date from the 19th Century, but are likely to have been put together in the 20th Century. It is thought it was produced to capitalise on the popularity of Bram Stoker’s 1897 novel Dracula and the Hammer Horror Movies. As well as the weaponry, the box contains a copy of the Book of Common Prayer from 1851 and a handwritten extract from the Bible which quotes Luke 19:27. (But those my enemies, which would not that I should reign over them, bring here, and slay them before me.)
This article comes to us from BBC: Leeds and North Yorkshire. To read the complete article, please visit: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-leeds-18583374
Book Blurb: Vampire Darcy’s Desire presents Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice as a heart-pounding vampire romance filled with passion and danger.
Tormented by a 200-year-old curse and his fate as a half human/half vampire dhampir, Fitzwilliam Darcy vows to live a solitary life rather than inflict the horrors of his life upon an innocent wife and his first born son. However, when he encounters the captivating Elizabeth Bennet, his will is sorely tested.
As a man, Darcy yearns for Elizabeth, but as a vampire, he is also driven to possess her. Uncontrollably drawn to each other, they are forced to confront a different kind of “pride” and his enemy’s “prejudice,” while wrestling with the seductive power of forbidden love. Evil forces, led by George Wickham, the purveyor of the curse, attack from all sides, and Darcy learns his only hope to survive is to align himself with Elizabeth, who is uncannily astute is how to defeat Wickham, a demon determined to destroy each generation of Darcys.
Vampire Darcy’s Desire retells Austen’s greatest love story in a hauntingly compelling tale. Can love be the only thing that can change him?
I hope you enjoy this excerpt:
In this scene, Darcy and Elizabeth work together to save Georgiana. Elizabeth has read in a book that if one says the name the vampire’s name backwards, it will vanquish him.
Intuitively, Elizabeth became aware of Darcy’s presence. He made no sound nor could she observe him, but she knew he was there. It was a heady experience. Emboldened by his nearness, she edged forward. “I tell you, Wickham, your plan is madness. You will be found and punished.”
Desperately seeking an escape, she returned to the image in the book, and immediately she recognized her error. The foul monster’s name was not really George Wickham. He was Seorais Winchcombe. George Wickham was his Anglicized name. Again, she visualized his name. She thrust the crucifix forward, extending her arm and palming the cross.
“Ebmochcniw Siaroes!” The words shot through the darkness, and with a gust of wind, Wickham flew backwards, slamming against the brick wall behind him.
Instantly, Elizabeth grabbed Georgiana and tumbled with the girl to the ground. He fired the gun, aiming for Wickham’s heart, as the demon slid down the wall. In triumph, Darcy strode forward, adjusting the sword in his grip as he moved. He would decapitate the beast lying at his feet. Poised above the limp body of his enemy, he could not have anticipated the attack.
In the shadows of the alley, a figure waited. Phantom-like, it clung to the side of the building, blending in with the faded wooden slats. So when Darcy stepped from his hiding place and fired on Wickham, Mrs. Younge reacted. Like a wild animal, she charged, taking Darcy by surprise, clawing at his back and ripping his coat to shreds with just a few swipes.
Dropping the sword, Darcy hit the ground and rolled, attempting to escape the claws and the fangs snapping at him with great force and speed. His face sustained a raking from the tips of her nails, but he fought on. Calling forth his own powers, he pushed against her chest. Extending his arms, blue light streamed from him, wrapping the vampire with a force she never expected.
Even so, the lamia valiantly attacked a second time. She pressed Darcy backward, her fangs dangerously close to his neck and ear. He struggled to right himself, but the she-devil drove a knee into his chest as she mounted him, forcing Darcy’s shoulders to the ground.
As they wrestled for control, neither Darcy nor Mrs. Younge saw Elizabeth move. She grabbed the discarded sword and with a sweep and a lunge–a perfect envelopment–she came down upon the woman with all her might. “No…o…o!” She screamed as she thrust the sword through Mrs. Younge’s back, sending it all the way through the woman’s body.
A blood-curdling scream reverberated throughout the small space. With the evil released, the body of Amelia Younge shriveled, becoming an empty shell. Her skin decayed before they could turn to look upon her.
Darcy scrambled to his feet, and he scooped the cowering Georgiana into his arms as he moved. “Hurry!” he called to Elizabeth over his shoulder. She hiked her skirts to follow him. He glanced back only long enough to observe Wickham crawl to where Mrs. Younge’s festering body rested before he disappeared in a puff of smoke.
Darcy bolted toward the waiting carriage, unceremoniously dumping Georgiana onto the floor of the coach before shoving Elizabeth in after her. Heaving his own scratched and bruised body onto the seat, he pounded on the roof, and the coach lurched forward, throwing Darcy and Elizabeth into each other’s arms. Righting himself, but not releasing his wife, he called, “Retrieve Belton!” Then he turned his attentions to Elizabeth, without whom, he would, undoubtedly, be dead. His hands slid up and down her arms, her back, searching, assuring himself of her safety. “Tell me you are not injured,” he demanded.
“I am well,” she rasped.
The air rushed from him in relief. “Thank God.”
Then Darcy quickly untied Georgiana’s hands, and both he and Elizabeth assisted her to a seat between them. “Are you injured?” he asked as he massaged her wrists.
“I am well, dear brother,” she responded. “Thanks to you.” Turning her head to Elizabeth, she said, “And thanks to you, dear sister.” She leaned against Elizabeth’s shoulder and sobbed.
Darcy cupped Elizabeth’s chin with his palm and, leaning across his sister, kissed his wife’s lips tenderly. “Thank you for saving both of us.”
Tears misted Elizabeth’s eyes, but she raised her chin in defiance. “I could not become a widow so soon after my marriage.”
Mrs. Jeffers has offered two giveaways of this book for my Just Jane 1813 readers. To enter your chance to win one of her two ebooks of “Vampire Darcy’s Desire,” please leave a comment on this blog by midnight, ET on November 1st. The winners will be announced on November 2, 2016.
Thank you, Regina Jeffers, for writing such a romantic story for JAFF readers and for your generous giveaways for my readers!
Vampire Darcy’s Desire can be purchased at the following places:
Feel free to enjoy my Just Jane 1813 interview with Regina Jeffers!