"Winterlong": Long ago, Deborah Dancer was a vampire hunter, and she hunted those vampires alongside the rogue vampire - and the only vampire with a conscience - Andrew Bennett. Now, years later, Deborah has retired into seclusion
- My name is Deborah Dancer, and I used to love a vampire with a pure heart. Things, clearly, have changed.
Appearing in "Winterlong"
- Deborah Dancer (Flashback and main story)
- Charles Thompson (First appearance)
- Dmitri Mishkin (Flashback only)
- Mishkin the Dog (Apparent Death)
- John Constantine (Mentioned only)
- Stormwatch (Mentioned only)
Synopsis for "Winterlong"
Long ago, Deborah Dancer was a vampire hunter, and she hunted those vampires alongside the rogue vampire - and the only vampire with a conscience - Andrew Bennett. Now, years later, Deborah has retired into seclusion, and though she never thought she'd see Andrew again, he has returned, and he has changed.
In an effort to save Deborah's life, the now human Mary Seward and Professor John Troughton have arrived just in time to corner Andrew and his new squeeze Tig. Quickly, John unloads a water-gun full of kerosene onto the vampires, and Mary sets them ablaze. Desperately, the saviours drag Deborah away from her burning house, leaving her dog Mishkin behind. Though the dog makes it outside, it doesn't make it far enough to escape death at Andrew's hand. Though she mourns for her dog, Mishkin's death buys them the time they'll need to escape.
Unfortunately, Andrew's intent to create a new breed of vampires extends to resurrecting Mishkin from the dead as a vampire, and ordering him to seek food - his previous owner will do, but there's no hurry. Mishkin is drawn instead to a nearby hunter, who makes a good meal for Tig and Andrew.
In Boston, the three humans arrive at Logan International Airport, hoping to go back to the place where Andrew was turned, find out who turned him, and then recreate the circumstances of his birth. They hope that this will restore him to his old self. Hearing this plan, Deborah refuses to be a part of it. She already did all of these vampire-hunting things before. Mary explains that they need an expert on who Andrew Bennett was. She can only speak for how she wished he would be.
Elsewhere, Andrew stands outside the Oblivion Bar, watching the patrons state the password, and then enter. After one particular young magician gets in, Andrew decides the time is right. With some cajoling, Tig walks up to the bouncer, looking to get in too. He warns her that while she is welcome, she will be killed if she feeds. Any other kinds of trouble will see her sent to the House of Secrets for punishment.
Not long after getting in, she meets the young magician and picks him up with relative ease. She drags him outside, making out with him against the wall, until Andrew appears. Andrew points out that he knows how powerful a magician this young man - Charles Francis Thompson - is. Andrew explains that while past vampires have merely turned others at random, he has a strategy. He wants to make Charles a general in his new vampire army.
Reluctantly, Charles accepts the offer, and Tig sinks her teeth into his neck.
- This book was first published on November 28, 2012.
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