No one truly knows where the bloodthirsty Vampires emerged from. To the Humans whom they majoritarily ressemble, Vampires appeared one day, out of the blue, and quickly became as a plague to the terrified population.
Vampires were once fully considered as a race unto their own, until it was discovered that, in certain circumstances, people bitten by a Vampire became Vampires themselves. A person may be seen one day, going about their daily life, and the next day go on a rampage through the city they had once called home.
This phenomenon is called in certain Vampiric circles the Hunger – a state of deep anemia that augments a Vampire’s already inhuman strength and turns them into savage beasts incapable of thought or mercy. A Hungering Vampire has but one goal: to feed. And it is during this state of Hunger that a Vampire’s age can be most accurately determined: a young or newborn Vampire will act as a feral beast and lunge blindly at prey; an older Vampire, even in a state of Hunger, will be capable of applying strategy and, for instance, attempt to calculate a prey’s threat level and how best to incapacitate them.
Yet, to this day, no one has been able to determine how long a Vampire truly can live. It is believed they are immortal; Vampires’ wounds heal within minutes, sometimes even seconds; they are capable of great feats, such as dropping from high roofs without breaking a bone, or bending forged metal. Even when drained of blood, a Vampire relies on Hunger to yet prevail and survive. Nigh unstoppable, Vampires can still be killed – with beheading and powerful magic the most effective means of death.
Alas for Humans, magic is not a tool they possess. Alchemists have been working on other means of death or incapacitation for years. Rosebleed, a powerful, odourless poison that attacks a Vampire’s blood system and triggers an artificial state of Hunger, has been used against Vampire communities to trick them into killing one another and die themselves of anemia.
Vampires have learned to hide themselves and avoid suspicion – with certain success.