Prince lestat and the re.., p.1

Prince Lestat and the Realms of Atlantis, page 1

 part  #12 of  The Vampire Chronicles Series

 

Prince Lestat and the Realms of Atlantis



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Prince Lestat and the Realms of Atlantis


  ALSO BY ANNE RICE

  Prince Lestat

  The Wolves of Midwinter

  The Wolf Gift

  Of Love and Evil

  Angel Time

  Called Out of Darkness

  Christ the Lord: The Road to Cana

  Christ the Lord: Out of Egypt

  Blood Canticle

  Blackwood Farm

  Blood and Gold

  Merrick

  Vittorio, the Vampire

  The Vampire Armand

  Pandora

  Violin

  Servant of the Bones

  Memnoch the Devil

  Taltos

  Lasher

  The Tale of the Body Thief

  The Witching Hour

  The Mummy

  The Queen of the Damned

  The Vampire Lestat

  Cry to Heaven

  The Feast of All Saints

  Interview with the Vampire

  UNDER THE NAME ANNE RAMPLING

  Exit to Eden

  Belinda

  UNDER THE NAME A. N. ROQUELAURE

  Beauty's Kingdom

  Beauty's Release

  Beauty's Punishment

  The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty

  THIS IS A BORZOI BOOK

  PUBLISHED BY ALFRED A. KNOPF

  Copyright (c) 2016 by Anne O'Brien Rice All rights reserved.

  Published in the United States by Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Random House LLC, New York, and distributed in Canada by Random House of Canada, a division of Penguin Random House Limited, Toronto.

  www.aaknopf.com

  Knopf, Borzoi Books, and the colophon are registered trademarks of Random House LLC.

  Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Names: Rice, Anne, [date]--author.

  Title: Prince Lestat and the realms of Atlantis / Anne Rice.

  Description: First edition. | New York : Alfred A. Knopf, 2016. | Series: Vampire chronicles ; 12

  Identifiers: LCCN 2016032866 | ISBN 9780385353793 (hardcover) | ISBN 9780385353809 (ebook) Subjects: LCSH: Lestat (Vampire), 1760- --Fiction. | Atlantis (Legendary place)--Fiction. | Spirit possession--Fiction. | Vampires--Fiction. | Paranormal fiction. | BISAC: FICTION / Occult & Supernatural. | FICTION Fantasy Paranormal. | FICTION / Suspense. | GSAFD: Fantasy fiction. | Horror fiction. | Occult fiction.

  Classification: LCC PS3568.I265 P755 2016 | DDC 813/.54--dc23 LC record available at https://lccn.loc.gov/ 2016032866

  Ebook ISBN 9780385353809

  This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

  Cover design by Oliver Munday

  v4.1

  ep

  THIS BOOK IS DEDICATED

  TO

  The undefeated and retired babyweight champion of the world and

  Mitey Joe,

  without whom the book might not have been born, and

  my old friends, Shirley Stuart and Bill Seely, and

  friends and fellow writers of my Northern California days: Cleo, Maria, Carole, Dorothy, Jim, Carolyn, Candy, Lee, and others and

  once again,

  to

  the People of the Page who give me so much more than I can ever give them.

  Remember him--before the silver cord is severed, and the golden bowl is broken;

  before the pitcher is shattered at the spring, and the wheel broken at the well, and the dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it.

  --ECCLESIASTES

  The New International Version

  Contents

  Cover

  Also by Anne Rice

  Title Page

  Copyright

  Dedication

  Epigraph

  A Brief History of the Vampires: Blood Genesis

  Blood Argot

  Proem

  Part I: Spies in the Savage Garden

  Chapter 1: Derek

  Chapter 2: Lestat

  Chapter 3: Garekyn

  Chapter 4: Lestat

  Chapter 5: Fareed

  Chapter 6: Lestat

  Chapter 7: Garekyn

  Chapter 8: Lestat

  Chapter 9: Derek

  Chapter 10: Lestat

  Chapter 11: Fareed

  Chapter 12: Derek

  Chapter 13: Lestat

  Chapter 14: Rhoshamandes

  Chapter 15: Lestat

  Chapter 16: Derek

  Chapter 17: Rhoshamandes

  Chapter 18: Lestat

  Part II: Born for Atlantis

  Chapter 19: Kapetria's Tale

  Chapter 20: Lestat

  Chapter 21: Lestat

  Chapter 22: Rhoshamandes

  Chapter 23: Derek

  Chapter 24: Fareed

  Part III: The Silver Cord

  Chapter 25: Lestat

  Chapter 26: Lestat

  Chapter 27: Lestat

  Chapter 28: Lestat

  Chapter 29: Fareed

  Chapter 30: Lestat

  Chapter 31: Lestat

  Chapter 32: Lestat

  Chapter 33: Lestat

  Appendix 1: Characters and Places in the Vampire Chronicles

  Appendix 2: An Informal Guide to the Vampire Chronicles

  A Brief History of the Vampires

  Blood Genesis

  In the beginning were the spirits. They were invisible beings, heard and seen only by the most powerful sorcerers or witches. Some were thought to be malevolent; some were praised as good. They could find lost objects, spy upon enemies, and now and then affect the weather.

  Two great witches, Mekare and Maharet, lived in a beautiful valley on the side of Mount Carmel, and they communed with the spirits. One of these spirits, the great and powerful Amel, could, in his mischief making, take blood from human beings. Tiny bits of blood entered the alchemical mystery of the spirit, though how no one knew. But Amel loved the witch Mekare and was ever eager to serve her. She saw him as no other witch ever had, and he loved her for it.

  One day the troops of an enemy came--soldiers of the powerful Queen Akasha of Egypt. She wanted the witches; she wanted their knowledge, their secrets.

  This wicked monarch destroyed the valley and the villages of Mekare and Maharet and brought the sisters by force to her own kingdom.

  Amel, the furious familiar spirit of the witch Mekare, sought to punish the Queen.

  When she lay dying, stabbed over and over by conspirators of her own court, this spirit Amel entered into her, fusing with her body and her blood and giving her a new and terrifying vitality.

  This fusion caused a new entity to be born into the world: the vampire, the blood drinker.

  From the blood of this great vampire queen, Akasha, all the other vampires of the whole world were born over the millennia. A blood exchange was the means of procreation.

  To punish the twins who stood opposed to her and her new power, Akasha blinded Maharet and tore the tongue from Mekare. But before they could be executed, the steward of the Queen, Khayman, a newly made blood drinker himself, passed on to the twins the powerful Blood.

  Khayman and the twins led a rebellion against Akasha, but they could not stop her cult of blood drinker gods. Eventually the twins were captured and separated--sent out as castaways--Maharet into the Red Sea and Mekare into the great ocean to the west.

  Maharet soon found familiar shores and thrived, but Mekare, carried across the ocean to lands yet undiscovered and unnamed, vanished from history.

  This was six thousand years ago.

 
The great Queen Akasha and her husband, King Enkil, went mute after two thousand years, maintained like statues in a shrine by elders and priests that believed Akasha contained the Sacred Core--and that if she should be destroyed, all the blood drinkers of the world would die with her.

  But by the time of the Common Era, the story of the Blood Genesis was completely forgotten. Only a few elder immortals passed on the tale, though they did not believe it even as they told it. Yet blood gods, vampires dedicated to the old religion, still reigned in shrines throughout the world.

  Imprisoned in hollowed-out trees or brick cells, these blood gods starved for blood until the holy feasts at which they were brought offerings: evildoers to judge and condemn and feast upon.

  --

  At the dawn of the Common Era, an elder, a keeper of the Divine Parents, abandoned Akasha and Enkil in the desert for the sun to destroy them. All over the world young blood drinkers perished, burnt to death in their coffins, their shrines, or in their tracks as the sun shone on the Mother and Father. But the Mother and Father themselves were too strong to perish. And many of the very old ones survived as well, though badly burned and in pain.

  A newly made blood drinker, a wise Roman scholar by the name of Marius, went down to Egypt to find the King and Queen and protect them so that no holocaust would ever again ravage the world of the Undead. And thereafter Marius made them his sacred responsibility. The legend of Marius and Those Who Must Be Kept endured for almost two millennia.

  In the year 1985, the story of this Blood Genesis was told to all the world's Undead. That the Queen lived, that she contained the Sacred Core, this was part of the story. It appeared in a book written by the Vampire Lestat, who also told the tale in song and dance in film and from the stage, where he performed as a rock singer--calling the world to know and destroy his own kind.

  Lestat's voice waked the Queen from millennia of silence and slumber. She rose with a dream: that she would dominate the world of human beings through cruelty and slaughter and become for them the Queen of Heaven.

  But the ancient twins came forward to stop Akasha. They too had heard Lestat's songs. Maharet appealed to the Queen to stop her superstitious blood tyranny. And the long-lost Mekare, rising from the earth after untold aeons, decapitated the great Queen and took the Sacred Core into herself as she devoured the dying Queen's brain. Mekare, under the protection of her sister, became the new Queen of the Damned.

  Lestat once again wrote the story. He had been there. He had seen the passing of the power with his own eyes. He gave his testimony to everyone. The mortal world took no notice of his "fictions," but his tales shocked the Undead.

  And so the story of origins and ancient battles, of vampire powers and vampire weaknesses, and wars for control of the Dark Blood became the common knowledge of the Undead tribe the world over. It became the property of old ones who'd been comatose for centuries in caves or graves, of young ones misbegotten in jungles or swamps or urban slums who had never dreamed of their antecedents. It became the property of wise and secretive survivors who had lived in isolation through the ages.

  It became the legacy of all blood drinkers the world over to know they shared a common bond, a common history, a common root.

  Prince Lestat is the story of how that knowledge changed the tribe and its destiny forever. Brought together by a crisis, the tribe unites, begging Lestat to become its leader.

  Prince Lestat and the Realms of Atlantis explores the history of the vampires ever more deeply as the tribe, governed by Lestat, confronts the worst challenges it has ever faced.

  Blood Argot

  When the Vampire Lestat wrote his books, he used any number of terms taught to him by the vampires he had encountered in his life. And those vampires who added to his work, offering their memoirs and their experiences in written form, added terms of their own, some much more ancient than those ever revealed to Lestat.

  This is a list of those terms, which are now common amongst the Undead throughout the world.

  The Blood--When the word is capitalized it refers to vampiric blood, passed on from master to fledgling through a deep and often dangerous exchange. "In the Blood" means that one is a vampire. The Vampire Lestat had over two hundred years "in the Blood" when he wrote his books. The great vampire Marius has over two thousand years in the Blood. And so forth and so on.

  Blood Drinker--The most ancient term for "vampire." This was Akasha's simple term, which she later sought to supplant with the term "blood god" for those who followed her spiritual path and her religion.

  Blood Wife or Blood Spouse--One's vampire mate.

  Children of Satan--Term for vampires of Late Antiquity and after who believed they were literally children of the Devil and serving God through serving Satan as they fed upon humankind. Their approach to life was penitential and puritanical. They denied themselves all pleasure except drinking blood and occasional Sabbats (large gatherings) at which they danced, and they lived underground, often in filthy and dismal catacombs and enclosures. The Children of Satan have not been seen or heard from since the eighteenth century, and in all likelihood the cult has died out.

  Children of the Millennia--Term for immortals who have lived more than a thousand years and most specifically for those who have survived more than two.

  Children of the Night--Common term for all vampires, or all those in the Blood.

  The Cloud Gift--This is the ability of older vampires to defy gravity, to rise up and move in the upper atmosphere and to cover long distances easily, traveling the winds unseen by those below. Again, no one can say when a vampire might acquire this power. The will to have it may work wonders. All truly ancient ones possess it whether they know it or not. Some vampires despise the power and never use it unless forced.

  The Coven of the Articulate--A modern slang term popular among the Undead for the vampires whose stories appear in the Vampire Chronicles--particularly Louis, Lestat, Pandora, Marius, and Armand.

  The Dark Gift--A term for the vampiric power. When a master bestows the Blood on a fledgling, that master is offering the Dark Gift.

  The Dark Trick--Refers to the act of actually making the new vampire. To draw out the fledgling's blood and to replace it with one's own powerful Blood is to work the Dark Trick.

  The Devil's Road--Medieval term among the vampires for the road each vampire takes through this world; a popular term of the Children of Satan, who saw themselves as serving God through serving the Devil. To ride the Devil's Road was to live one's life as an immortal.

  The Fire Gift--This is the ability of older vampires to use their telekinetic power to burn matter. They can, through the power of their minds, burn wood, paper, or any flammable substance. And they can burn other vampires as well, igniting the Blood in their bodies and reducing them to cinders. Only older vampires possess this power, but no one can say when and how a vampire acquires it. A very young vampire made by an ancient one may immediately possess the power. A vampire must be able to see that which he or she wants to burn. In sum, no vampire can burn another if he cannot see that vampire, if he is not close enough to direct the power.

  The First Brood--These are the vampires descended from Khayman who were in rebellion against Queen Akasha.

  Fledgling--A new vampire very young in the Blood. Also, one's own offspring in the Blood. For example, Louis is the fledgling of Lestat. Armand is the fledgling of Marius. The ancient twin Maharet is the fledgling of her twin, Mekare. Mekare is the fledgling of the ancient Khayman. Khayman is the fledgling of Akasha.

  The Little Drink--Stealing blood from a mortal victim without the victim knowing it or feeling it, without the victim having to die.

  Maker--Simple term for the vampire who brought one into the Blood. Being slowly replaced by the term "mentor." Sometimes the maker is also referred to as the "master." However, this has gone out of use. In many parts of the world it is considered a great sin to rise up against or seek to destroy one's maker. A maker can never hear the thoughts of
a fledgling, and vice versa.

  The Mind Gift--This is a loose and imprecise term which refers to the preternatural powers of the vampiric mind on many levels. Through the Mind Gift, a vampire might learn things from the world above even when he is sleeping in the earth below. And consciously using the Mind Gift, he might telepathically listen to the thoughts of mortals and immortals. He might use the Mind Gift to pick up images from others as well as words. He might use the Mind Gift to project images into the minds of others. And finally he might use the Mind Gift to telekinetically open a lock, push open a door, or stop the progress of an engine. Again, vampires develop the Mind Gift slowly over time, and only the most ancient can rape the minds of others for information they do not wish to give, or send a telekinetic blast to rupture the brain and blood cells of a human being or another vampire. A vampire can listen to many the world over, hearing and seeing what others hear. But to destroy telekinetically, he or she must be able to see the intended victim.

  The Queen of the Damned--Term given to the Vampire Mekare by her sister Maharet once Mekare had taken the Sacred Core into herself. It was ironic. Akasha, the fallen Queen who had sought to dominate the world, had called herself the Queen of Heaven.

  The Queens Blood--These are the vampires made by Queen Akasha to follow her path in the Blood and fight the rebels of the First Brood.

  The Sacred Core--This refers to the residing brain or governing life force of the spirit Amel, which is inside the body of the Vampire Lestat. Before Lestat, it was in Mekare. Before it was in Mekare, it was in the Vampire Akasha. It is believed that every vampire on the planet is connected to the Sacred Core by some sort of invisible web or network of tentacles. If the vampire containing the Sacred Core were to be destroyed, all the vampires of the planet would die.

  The Savage Garden--A term used by Lestat for the world, fitting with his belief that the only true laws of the universe are aesthetic laws, the laws that govern the natural beauty we see all around us on the planet.

 
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