Darius was an idea that came to me while having a long, relaxing bath. I had in mind a storyline in which Jack was missing Garrett because he was an MI5 assignment, and it came to me that he might meet an old friend. The name Darius popped into my head quite out of the blue and refused to leave. Then I thought of an old friend who was a vampire – so he could be a VERY old friend.
Yes, of course, I have seen the Blade films – once at least. I don’t like them much. I’ve also seen Interview With A Vampire twice. I haven’t read the Ann Rice novels the film is based on, but I get the drift. Darius, in his younger days, does resemble Louis from Interview quite a lot. Then his campaign to rid the world of ‘killer’ vampires puts him into the Blade ballpark.
I wanted to hold off as far as possible the revelation that Darius IS a vampire. The lines about him being hungry and Jack saying he would give him a ‘bite’ but no sex, are a clue, of course. I wanted the bit where he does bite down on Jack to be a romantic thing as far as possible, almost sexual, but not quite. I think that worked.
Jack sleeping with Darius, transferring his body heat to him, which then showed up on the infra red scanners was something I wanted to get in there, especially Toshiko spotting it.
The After Dark club is a nod to another film, this one a low budget horror called Vamp which had Grace Jones as the vampire manager of a night club called After Dark. It never really set the world on fire, but a few people might recognise the allusion. Davina, the vampiress of the Cardiff After Dark isn’t the killer. I think the evidence points to her at first, but then swings away.
The idea that Vampires can die of blood loss is my own idea. I wanted Jack to be able to offer himself in order for Darius to survive, letting his own blood drain until he died and had to come back to life. I think Jack would do that. The sequence where Jack and Darius both recover from their ordeal feels a bit rushed. I really need to address it some time. But I think the story worked. And Darius has been received as a sympathetic character that readers hope to see appear again in a story. That is, of course, possible. But I would have to find another angle on the Vampires first.