Sunday, October 31, 2010

Ten Unusual Ways To Kill A Vampire

Zoe_Lionheart_100Last time, we discussed how not to kill a Vampire. Now let’s check some methods that might work.

I’ll repeat the basics first.

Everyone knows, Vampires don’t like garlic, don’t like Christian symbols, don’t like wooden stakes, and can’t stand sunlight. Garlic is rather a nuisance. Vampires don’t like the smell — like many mortals — but they don’t like fish or cheese either. Have you ever encountered a Vampire with bad breath? Probably not, and that’s why.

Holy water mainly hurts, and although it hurts much, it won’t easily kill them. Wooden stakes won’t kill all kinds of Vampires, but a stab in the Vampire’s heart region will immobilize him safely, enabling the Vampire hunter to carry his prey to the light of day. And yes, sunlight will kill, will burn the undead body to ashes.

Conclusion: Vampire ash cannot be used for revival. That gives us a clue.

Here are ten unusual ways to kill a Vampire.

(Disclaimer: most of these methods have not been tested yet — use this guide at your own risk!)

1. Burn him to ashes
It works on Aliens, why shouldn’t a flamethrower work on Vampires, too? However, they can resist fire quite well, so you have to make it really hot. This in turn will be difficult to stand for you yourself, unless you are a dragon and can simply incinerate him with your own breath. Trust me: Vampire flesh will be turned to plasma like anything else by a flame of twelve hundred Kelvin.

2. Drown him in hot lava (or in a blast furnace)
It needn’t be the Mountain Of Fate in the land of Mordor, any hot volcano will do. Again, the fire resistance and healing abilities of any Vampire will be overstrained by the heat of molten stones.

3. Blow him up and scatter his body parts over a football field
The healing abilities of Vampires are legendary (as the Vampires themselves), but how can they regain their body if it’s blown into small pieces and scattered all over the place?
To be sure, do it in an open field, not underground. Maybe he can slowly recollect his body, but not before sunrise.

4. Decapitate him
In theory, it should be difficult to heal if your brain is separated from your hands, and Vampires do have a brain. So far, Hollywood failed to explain how important it is and if a Vampire can survive without it. Test with caution.

5. Grind his body
That’s the way Max and Moritz died. (Reference: Ground into coarse pieces and eventually been eaten by ducks the Vampire will not heal easily, if at all.

6. Dissolve his body in acid
Again, thoroughly destroying the physical body will render a Vampire helpless. But as poison won’t work, he may be acid-resistant, too, so you’d need a rather large amount of strong acid, preferably a swimming pool full of it. Not very feasible.

7. Eat him - Cooked or fried?
This is a special proposal. Note that a Vampire is not easy to digest, he may even cause you heartburn. There are no recipes either, you´re entirely on your own. Personally, I prefer him deep-fried, that is, soaked in grease and then grilled in open dragon fire. Tasty and with high nutritive value.

8. Run him over with a steamroller… several times
In the first place, your Vampire will be flat out — if you get him. A steamroller is slow, a Vampire is fast. But if you succeed, you’ll face no more resistance.

9. Enclose him in concrete
In fact this method doesn’t belong in this list, because it won’t easily kill him. But it will quite reliably remove him from your surroundings for a very, very long time. Until one day some stupid archeologist wants to know why his instruments show a cavity of lower density in the big concrete block. Imagine the fun he’ll have with a very, very angry Vampire! That will teach people that some things are better left buried.

10. Nuke him
In the center of a nuclear explosion there are some million degrees for some fractions of a second, turning the body into nuclear plasma, that is, cores without the electrons around. There’s not enough matter left to hold the spiritual existence of a Vampire. Very reliable — but keep a safe distance.

Okay, folks, so much for the technical part. Before you go ahead, make sure your victim is indeed a Vampire, you’ll have a hard time explaining yourself to the local police anyway. Moreover, you should consider hard if you want to alienate your entire Vampire community by testing any of these methods on the friendly Vampire neighbor next door. They might be displeased.

Maybe I’ll pick up this topic next time — ten ways annoyed Vampires show their displeasure.

Stay tuned.

Excerpt from Zoe Lionheart, Book 5, Lioness’ Skin

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The transfer in Livorno, in an old truck garage with disintegrating finery, partially broken windows and torn-out installations, iridescent oil pools and a ten-year-old calendar with a scantily clad girl on the wall between spare parts where they had met at dawn, had run smoothly and professionally. Jerome had been delighted by Zoe's special offer that she had presented in the end, especially when he had moved his Geiger meter across the empty payload bay and had heard the increasing humming--the fading remnants of a recently removed nuclear warhead. Then he had waved Zoe to the side of the garage to hand her the money suitcase, while his staff had begun to load their own truck.

She already knew how much money he had withdrawn and could estimate from the suitcase's weight that he brought about that amount. Nevertheless she had to play the game by the rules, so she opened the suitcase locks while she watched Jerome and his new bodyguard--a stringy, black-clad Asian with a poker face and a Japanese sword on his back, looking like a Ninja, in the heart of Italy, not exactly inconspicuous. Where had Jerome picked that one up?

Zoe didn't care, even if she wore no obvious weapons. In exchange for the slinky tank top today she wore a black body and a white blazer with her black jeans and trainers, and therefore she had left the crate-hauling completely to Jerome's team.

Something was wrong. Jerome appeared tense and insecure, impatient? He was sweating, Zoe smelled fear. His Ninja was energized all the time anyway. Then Jerome said straight to her face, "You are a stoolie!"

She threw a quick glance at the suitcase in her hand, and her features froze. It only contained newspaper.

* * * *

When her hidden cameras recorded the slender features of Zoe's present and transmitted them, April drew a hard breath. A cruise missile? How could have Zoe got her hands on that? April had known that Zoe had brought a surprise, but hadn't insisted on premature revelation. "Don't spoil the fun," Zoe had said. Oh yes. And we're carrying a nuclear weapon platform worth a half million dollars, black market price accordingly higher, around in the country of an ally to play cats and mice with a few terrorists.

The Geiger meter event only made things worse. April was just glad that the warhead wasn't included, but after all Zoe had promised by no means ever to deliver real nukes to their customers.

Hopefully the rest of their mission would run as well as their procurement in Genoa. That April took the back seat this time for one followed from their roles in Frankfurt, moreover they both agreed that Jerome was dangerous. "Like a hand grenade with a broken pin," Zoe had illustrated, "you don't know if and when it will go off." Unlike Don Pasquale, who lead a regional business, Jerome had no obligations to keep, could change his area of business any time. And he had no need to cater for traditional honor among thieves. His only reason not to cheat was the hope to continue business, eventually the missing information about Zoe's means would emerge. With a larger entourage they could have built a credible threat of force, but they both still hoped to foster uncertainty by the obvious lack of bodyguards bristling with arms.

April felt concerned by the Ninja's presence. What's this long knife here for?
Outside of Zoe's field of vision, shielded by the trucks, April detected a new pattern of movements. No more pushing crates, what was going on? She intensely studied her screen, enlarged the respective window.

Zoe had said that Jerome had no reason to try a trick before the main delivery, but of course that wasn't guaranteed.

Then her camera screens went dark.

* * * *

Zoe looked up shocked, her thoughts racing. Stoolie? How did he find out, did they make a mistake? Had their cover been blown, had someone recognized them? She had carefully scanned Jerome's data, he didn't have any information regarding Zoe or April, but perhaps one of his staff did? Beads of perspiration on his forehead, accelerated heartbeat, faster breath, narrowed pupils--he didn't appear entirely convinced himself. Could she turn the situation? They needed more from him, access to his masterminds, before all a hint what was really going on. Who would start a religious war and tear the world into a nuclear winter? Until now their mission had run silently, and it should stay that way. Her new boss wouldn't like it if they served him a clearly visible botch right away. Only, if Jerome asked for a fiasco, he'd get it. Would it have to happen?

His staff was still loading the truck? Yes, the sounds of heavy crates set down hadn't muted yet, only become less frequent? Hasty steps in the back, silent but not silent enough for Zoe, the rub of fabric on fabric, the clacking sound of safety switches, snapping of supposedly sneakily operated locks. That really didn't sound good!

Only Zoe's improved hearing could detect the hushed chafing of the clean Japanese sword in the stiff black sheath. As she was about to turn around to the Ninja guy who had almost noiselessly moved behind her back, the sharp edge of the Katana already approached her neck.

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