Born Drakus Vokynus, Drakus the Long-Lived (born 1658 b.S. but disappearing around 1612 b.S.) is one of the most famous Sanriers in history. A Marmarran who throughout his life was praised, romanticised, scorned and even hunted, Drakus is used as an everlasting example to the most misunderstood danger of Blood Magic, ‘The Lust’. Though through his constant ingestion of the macabre fluid he was able to extend his life and slow down time’s affect on his body considerably, his obsession festered into insanity. While many acknowledge his departure from Marmarra to Venlaken, building his own castle in the area titled ‘Sigoshyyra’, few accept the official claims of a ‘self-imposed exile’. Most Marmarrans (and Anpagans neighbouring Venlaken) are sure that the sinister figure still resides in the ominous citadel - waiting.
Appearance. Drakus, in his early years as an object of dark desire, was depicted by a whole manner of artists, usually in a way reflecting his famous ‘addiction’ to drinking blood. As such, most of his portrayals have red as poignant motifs, some even choosing to show droplets trickling from his lips. However, from collecting various common traits in all of his delineations we can deduce the following about this baleful man’s appearance.
Picture description. Drakus Vokynus, Drakus the Long-Lived, one of the most famous Sanriers in history. Image drawn by Seeker.
Drakus was a man of graceful frame, unusually graceful for an insidious
Marmarran to say
the least. A tall and slender man, with tone to his muscles settled comfortably
in-between skeletal thinness and burly bulk; there was a conjunctive sense of
both arrogance and virtue in his posture. While his broad shoulders and tilted
chin hinted a man of pride and talent, the subtle arching of his back and
idleness of his long limbs expressed a stark sense of apathy.
The man’s face further expressed an unusual combination of characters. While his well-defined, high cheekbones and thin, bony nose adorned his face with a touch of elegance, his conspicuously dark eyebrows and watery grey eyes gilded his face with a twinge of grisliness. While the man’s skin was far from pallid, his complexion was that of a much more washed out bronze that only seemed to pale with age. Drakus possessed a darkly portentous aura about him; highlighted quickly by his cruel, thin red lips. This inherent darkness to his character, however, did not offset his equally inherent handsomeness - if anything it only made him more irresistible. His shimmering, warm brown locks and his flirtatious smile only went to further compose a character of foreboding and alluring qualities in equal measure.
The man was also notably well groomed and presented, mistaken by many as vanity. Often dressed in classical attire reminiscent of Lyrias Meurtian, though usually making use of richer hues and fabrics more comfortable and fashionable than stained leather. Drakus was also famed for his incredible dislike of the cold and was quite easy to spot due to his preference for large fur coats, particularly those of the exotic fenru fur. As the man’s celebrity grew so did the grandeur of his apparel, eventually becoming characterised by his silver, ruby and bloodstone jewellery.
Personality. His hunger for power formulates the foundation of Drakus’s personality. Many assume that the only reason he began to pursue Blood Magic was that he saw it as a mean to expand his capabilities and sphere of influence. Even before his descent into addiction, his obsession with attaining affluence was extreme even by Marmarran standards. While as a student in the Pyrunai institute Drakus was not exceptional in most fields, his ability to absorb Sanryu straight from blood drew great interest from Master Sanriers of the time. However, his naivety in conjunction with his perverse prioritising of power above everything led him to ignore the dangers of allowing too much Sanryu into his body.
Though Drakus’s proficiency within Blood Magic did improve, the price he had to pay was quite severe. Through his constant ingestion of blood, Drakus developed one of the severest known cases of ‘The Lust’, beginning to crave blood regularly. For many years this craving became an integral part of Drakus. While the institute tried to quench the addiction by satiating Drakus with large quantities of animal blood, his emergence as a romantic icon within Marmarra as result of his odd fetish did nothing to help his obsession, the blood he sampled from his lovers surpassing the satisfaction he received from the veins of stagnating livestock.
Due to his unusual penchants, Drakus was seen to have an understandably dark personality. Despite these dark elements, Drakus remained resolutely charming and charismatic. Drakus (like many Sanriers) was renowned as a great lover and womaniser. Where his unconventional addiction may have deterred others, within Marmarra such macabre curiosity equates to amorous interest. Even after he lost control of his lust for blood, becoming scorned by most of Marmarra, Drakus was continually romanticised, particularly by one his lovers, the poet Serbat Korm.
Dalvima Palera, a woman who dedicated her life to pursuing the enigma that was Drakus after his departure from Marmarra, describes Drakus as thus, twenty years after his supposed exile:
‘The man’s taste for his addiction seems to have
cultured itself. It seems that nowadays, only the youngest and
best-endowed women disappear into Sigoshyyra. Maybe the man has managed to
control his urges, or at least has developed standards on where he gains
his sustenance. He even returns the corpses, lifeless but with a peculiar
air of dignity about them. They could be
mistaken for sleeping, were it not for Drakus’s marks on their wrists.’
Birth and Childhood (1658 b.S.-1644 b.S.). Drakus
Vokynus, the son of the mediocre and somewhat lacklustre Sanrier Araba Vokynus,
grew up as somewhat of a loner. While his parents invested a lot of their
moderate wealth in developing his social pursuits, Drakus showed little to no
talent in the fields of music, art or literature. Though no one knows precisely
why, Drakus took a particular shine to his relatively unsuccessful father and
was greatly infatuated by the man’s vocation-
Induction to the Institute (1644 b.S.-1639 b.S.). After much persuasion, with a healthy dosage of bribery, Drakus’s father secures his son a position in the Pyrunai Institute where he can pursue the only thing, which he has ever showed significant interest in. As a bright student in the foundation classes, the adulation the boy received from both his tutors and his peers greatly changed his character to a much more sociable but much more arrogant one. Sadly though, Drakus reached the limit of his unassisted ability within the first few years of his tuition at the Institute. While this caused him considerable frustration, the peers who once adulated him surpassing him at every new obstacle, once the realm of ‘absorption’ was explored, Drakus once again began to shine. His ability to take nearly all the Sanryu from a sample of blood was unprecedented, a feat once again elevating his status within the institute.
The Thirst and The Lust (1639 b.S.-1636 b.S.). Craving the respect of his tutors and peers, Drakus began to abuse his talent for absorption. After months of continuously overdosing on Sanryu, Drakus’s body became accustomed to the unnatural levels of Sanryu, eventually needing it to function probably. He was diagnosed to have developed ‘The Thirst’, an incurable but controllable addiction to Sanryu and, essentially, the blood that holds it.
Drakus, in his naivety, exacerbates his condition. His only concern is the honing of his skills and he cares little for the consequences. Though the condition developed slowly, by 21 Drakus had afflicted himself with the severest known case of ‘The Lust’, where his body no longer needed blood, it craved it uncontrollably. His raging desire for blood was first made public when his association with Mashina Metaria, a young woman who had idolised the incredibly talented Drakus, became known. It is said the extent of the woman's adulation was limitless, offering herself to the man unconditionally. While it is no secret he ‘entertained’ her on a whole manner of occasions, she made it no secret that the man on many occasions tried to bite her arms and legs, drawing blood that he then lapped up like an animal.
Celebrity (1636 b.S.-1626 b.S.). Word of Drakus’s ‘unusual’ tastes spreads throughout the Pyrunai institute, making him a darkly desirable object for many of the Institute’s women. As his charms and inability to control his appetites for blood and beauty left few of the young women untouched, his reputation outside of the Pyrunai Institute’s walls only grew with every tale of a ‘wondrous experience’. Drakus quickly became a glamorised figure within Marmarra, with every young lady hoping she would be the next one to be bitten. For some time it became incredibly fashionable to display the man’s marks publicly on your skin, so fashionable that many tried to imitate it. The so-called ‘Drakus Suicides’ came about from women who tried to slice their wrists in imitation of his bite marks, only to cut too deep and fatally wound themselves.
It was not only Drakus’s romantic encounters that drew him renown. Though he was known as the many whom poets mused about, who artists drew and who every Marmarran female adored, Drakus elevated throughout the ranks of the institute. By the age of 28 the man had become a tutor within the institute, much to the delight of his adolescent female students.
The Descent (1626 b.S.-1612 b.S.). Even though the man’s popularity continued to grow, making him a dark romantic icon throughout the entire city, all was not well in Drakus’s world. His continuous blood-laden affairs only intensified the severity of his desire for the macabre liquid. Through these years Drakus’s lovers began to complain of more and more grievous wounds to their body where the man had tried to drain as much blood from them as he could muster.
As perhaps a silver lining to the situation, Drakus begins to realise that he can extend his youth by forcibly slowing the effects of time using Blood Magic. While this requires vast amounts Sanryu to maintain, his legions of followers make this a greatly viable possibility.
The Shame (1612 b.S.). Aged 45, but looking not looking a day over 20, Drakus committed a deed that would eventually lead many of those who idolised him despise him wholeheartedly. In what is attributed to animalistic lust-fuelled frenzy, twelve of Drakus’s students are found butchered in his bedchamber, the man wallowing in a pool of their blood, scavenging every last drop. Angered citizens make attempts at retribution against the man, but the powerful Sanrier throws the vigilantes aside with ease. When the Pyrunai institute itself denounces Drakus, the man realises the enormity of his mistake. He immediately leaves Marmarra.
Activity in Venlaken (1592 b.S.). The records of Dalvima Palera indicate that it was around this time that people began to start talking of Drakus inhabiting Sigoshyyra Citadel in the Grimmarsh region of Venlaken, shadowing the infamous Phantom’s Lake. Throughout these years small but consistent disturbances are recorded in the province of Lun, the Anpagan territory bordering Venlaken. While the actual proceedings are too quick for anyone to see in detail, they often involve mysterious figures stealing young women from their homes and taking them off towards Venlaken. The corpses are always returned to the same homes with marks characteristic of those Drakus gave to his lovers. Such reports continue to be filed in recent times, though these officially are attributed to various ‘hoax murderers’ who are brought to justice, sentenced twofold for their crimes and inciting fear. Many however, particularly those living in Lun, believe that Drakus still lives in Grimmarsh, somehow, and treat the area with particular fear and suspicion.
Importance. Drakus is primarily important for the lesson he teaches about the very real dangers of dabbling in Blood Magic recklessly. His name continues to live on through the lecturers of the Archsanriers of the Institute, citing him as the most extreme example of the dreaded ‘Lust’ in history. Such is the impact he left on the Institute that his portrait, a commissioned Tisare work, still remains displayed in the ‘Chamber of Tribute’ alongside greats like Gairus Meitarel. His pertinent reputation as ‘a tragic mistake’ also lent Moor’shune (the rival arcane school to Pyrunai) an everlasting example to proving the inferiority of Blood Magic itself, dubbing it as a corrupting and dangerous pursuit.
Drakus, however, is arguably much more important for the climate of fear he is still able to command even though it is inconceivable he is still alive. Even uttering the name in Lun is enough to cause hysteria. While Serbat Korm’s literary works on the man have done nothing to dispel any of the enigmatic man’s myths (numbering serial murder and immortal), the sheer level of terror that the man is still capable of invoking is perhaps a testament to his prominence, still causing many a Lunite to lose their sleep on at least one occasion.