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THE LEGACY OF A VAMPIRE WITCH
The Complete Urban Fantasy Boxset
by Theophilus Monroe
5 books and 1200+ pages of vampires, witches, and New Orleans Voodoo fill this complete urban fantasy boxset.
My name's Mercy Brown-but don't let my name fool you. I'm merciless.
Book 1: Bloody Hell
It had been almost a century and a half since I last encountered anyone from the Order of the Morning Dawn. They were religious fundamentalists with the dual goal of eliminating vampires and witches.
Being both a vampire and a witch I was the embodiment of everything the Order hates. Their first attempt to eliminate me failed. Thanks to the fact that my mentor in the Craft was also a necromancer.
When they burned my heart they didn’t kill me. They unwittingly completed a spell that tied my existence to the soul of one who took my place in hell.
Now I’m heartless, literally.
Not having a heart has some advantages. It means I’m pretty resilient, especially when it comes to wooden stakes.
So long as the soul bound to my existence remained in hell, I was virtually invincible.
But the Order figured it out. They hope to redeem the soul who was damned in my stead. If they do that, I’ll meet the true death for sure. I have to capture the one damned in my place before the Order manages to liberate him from perdition. If they free him, I will die.
I have to go to bloody hell.
Book 2: Bloody Mad: A Vampire in an asylum? Like that's going to end well…
Book 3: Bloody Wicked: Taking on a horde of demon possessed vampires? Time to get wicked!
Book 4: Bloody Devils: We were the terrors of New Orleans. And humanity's only hope.
Book 5: Bloody Gods: I've always been the hunter… now I'm the hunted.
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Excerpt from Bloody Hell Book One:
It wasn’t the first time I’d been to hell, though on this occasion it was by my own insistence. It was also the first time I’d been here in the flesh. And I went with the girl who would later become the Voodoo Queen. It was a delicate relationship between me and Annabelle Mulledy; we hated each other, but we also needed each other. It was in her interest that I continued to deem her an asset, of more use to me than not.
They say that hell is all fire and brimstone. I’m sure parts of it are like that, but I never went there. I was more interested in the cold, dark part of hell. The place where cursed spirits roam, including the spirits of presently-staked vampires—and, thanks to a witch, my brother.
“Edwin!” I cried out, hoping my long-dead brother’s spirit might respond. He had been dead for more than a century and the better part of another. But it was his soul, cursed by the remains of my vampiric heart, that kept me alive.
A wraith darted past my face, the cold chill of the vampire spirit frosting my cheek. This was the part of hell where vampires went when they were staked. I’d sent more than my share here myself. After what had happened to me, I could never bring myself to burn their hearts—the only way to ensure a vampire never comes back.
I was the only exception to that rule. More than once, hunters who had heard of my exploits tracked me down and staked my chest. The horror on their faces when I laughed and sank my fangs into their necks after they’d staked me was the real prize. It isn’t the blood itself that we vampires crave—it’s souls, and human souls cohere in their blood. The more terrified the soul is when I feed upon it, the better it tastes.
A second wraith struck me in the chest. I extended my wand and zapped it with sunlight. You can’t kill the dead, but sunlight on a vampire’s wraith makes hell itself seem like a vacation. He wouldn’t fuck with me again. Annabelle didn’t know I was also a witch—and with her, I was playing my cards close to the chest. I quickly pocketed my wand. Thankfully, she hadn’t seen it. Annabelle was here on an errand of her own, a fool’s errand my sire had effectively blackmailed her to complete. If she knew the full reason I was here, she’d hardly comply. And we needed her. She was the only person we knew who could cut a literal gate into hell. It was the only way I could come here in the flesh.
In my human life they’d given me the name Mercy. Mercy Brown. I still used the name—my first name, anyway. I relished the irony of it. In my human life, before I was turned, I’d been a witch. Only recently did I resume my practice of the Craft. As much as I relished the flavor of human souls, the dark arts gave me a different kind of thrill. Another source of power. And nothing tastes better on my palate than power. Besides blood, of course.
I could hear the wraith I’d burned with sunlight screeching in the distance. That’s right, I thought, tell the others. Let them fear me more than they already do. Hell, half of the vampires here I’d staked myself. It was no wonder they’d attack me.
There was only one I was seeking, and it wasn’t going to be a pleasant reunion. It might even be the death of me. But I didn’t have a choice.
Meet Author Theophilus Monroe
Theophilus Monroe is a fantasy author with a knack for real-life characters whose supernatural experiences speak to the pangs of ordinary life. After earning his Ph.D. in Theology, he decided that academic treatises that no one will read (beyond other academics) was a dull way to spend his life. So, he began using his background in religious studies to create new worlds and forms of magic-informed by religious myths, ancient and modern-that would intrigue readers, inspire imaginations, and speak to real-world problems in fantastical ways.
When Theophilus isn't exploring one of his fantasy lands, he is probably playing with one of his three sons, or pumping iron in his home-gym, which is currently located in a 40-foot shipping container.
Interview with Theophilus Monroe:
Q: Hi Theophilus! Tell us a little about yourself.
TM: I’m a father of three boys. Life is a perpetual adventure—usually involving dirty diapers, fights over iPads, and watching Trolls 2 for the three-thousandth time. But having children also helps keep my creative juices pumping. I’ve grown up in Missouri and lived here my entire life—aside from a few brief forays into other parts of the country during my 12-plus years of college and higher education. After so much time studying history, philosophy, and other dry topics that don’t generally make for much of a career, I decided to start dabbling in creative ventures. I was just burned out on academia. Now, I write fantasy—mostly urban fantasy, though I’ve written a few epics.
Q: Why paranormal? What drew you to the genre?
TM: A part of it probably has to do with my background. In addition to studying theology, academically, I used to be a part of a paranormal investigation team. I suppose I’ve always been intrigued by things that are beyond our normal, sensible, experience. I believe there’s more to reality than what we can see, touch, or even hear. Speculative fiction represents an attempt to explore the perennial question, “what if?” Also, in addition to offering an “escape” from reality, speculative fiction also allows us to engage the “real world” in ways that traditional fiction doesn’t. When we create new worlds, new systems of magic, we have an opportunity to re-contextualize our human experiences in ways that allow us to view the world differently. It is a grand exercise in thinking “outside of the box,” which I think is an important habit to develop in a world where we often struggle to understand people who are different than we are or have experiences foreign to our own.
Q: Tell us about your heroine. What inspired her quirks and struggles?
TM: Mercy Brown is based off a vampire legend surrounding a girl by the same name. The legend is well known and can be googled. In short, a young girl who died of consumption in Rhode Island in the early 1800s (what they called Tuberculosis at the time) was suspected to be a vampire, rising from her grave at night. They dug her up, found her still pink and flushed with blood, and cut out and burned her heart.
My character is likewise “heartless,” but vivified again through necromancy. As a heartless vampire she can’t be staked. But she also believes she’s incapable of love, or any human emotion. She takes refuge in her mercilessness. But is she really as heartless as she believes? Is she still capable of love? You’ll have to read to find out.
Q: Is any part of your story or the characters based on personal experience?
TM: Not explicitly. But I have a character who is dealing with profound personal loss. She’s struggling with her “dark side” even while she is motivated by an innate goodness that she might not fully understand. She has experienced profound betrayal. I think these are experiences we’ve all had, at some level, and some of my own experience undoubtedly informs the ways she responds to these things and how these events help her change and grow.
Q: What is a typical writing day like for you? What inspires you?
TM: A couple years ago I built a little writing studio on my property. With three young boys, writing inside became impossible. Generally, I head out to my cave around five in the morning. My writing inspiration comes from a lot of different sources. Religious studies, mythology, history, and of course, people-watching. My wife jokes with our friends that they have to be careful what they tell me—there’s a good chance a version of it will end up in one of my books!
Q: Name a few of your favorite authors or books.
TM: When it comes to vampire books, I’m a big Anne Rice fan. I also enjoy her Mayfair Witches books. But I also enjoy fantasy, generally. I grew up reading books like C.S. Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia. I discovered Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files a decade or so ago and was immediately enthralled by the genre. While I like otherworldly fantasy, the notion of something paranormal in the real-world, lurking in the shadows while most of us mere “humans” are oblivious to all that’s going on, is intriguing to me.
Thanks so much for chatting with us today!