cmfireflies wrote: ↑
Sat Feb 06, 2021 9:16 pm
But here's the rub: who knows what dreams of unrestrained vengeance might lurk in the deepest, darkest shadows of a boy who'd been neglected and bullied? Good little boy, shy little boy, powerless little boy who used to keep a scrapbook of murders who has now become virtually unlimited in the breadth and depth of the havoc he might wreak with impunity?
And if he were to become that, the apex predator who gets drunk by his new strengths and abilities, who eventually comes to look at regular people as walking meals or slaves, would he still be the Oskar that Eli fell in love with?
Pfff, o ye of little faith. 1) Your description of Oskar could also apply to Eli, and he turned out sane. 2) JAL vampires aren't all-powerful apex predators, more opportunistic hunters and humanity at large is still the more powerful force vs. two child vampires, and 3) Oskar's revenge should have been completed at the pool. Honestly the scarier post-turning scenario is if Oskar and Eli will be able to survive by themselves then really about power corrupting Oskar.
And who swooped in and saved Elias while he was being menaced by another kid's psycho knife-wielding older brother at the village skinny-dipping pond? Oh, wait, that never happened that we know of. Can't talk too much about what life for Elias had been like, but it seems likely that he and Oskar are/were/had been different boys. I'd think that vampirism would have an inherently magnifying effect on the id, and a single baptism in blood at the pool won't make up for years of systematic neglect and abuse.
And by the way, just how sane is Eli, anyway? Any takers?
I'm calling vampires apex predators because (1) they hunt, kill and eat the most dangerous game on the planet, and (2) vampires themselves fear no predator. Yes, humanity at large outmasses two vampire kids by a factor of a few metric megabazillion, but look at what Eli is and what she does: lives in the dark, maintains the camouflage of the very humble and powerless, maintains distance from the bulk of the community, tends to surprise her victims when they're isolated and easily overpowers fully grown men who outmass her by a factor of three or so.
Just take a look at the scene where Oskar thwaps Conny upside the head, but take a few steps back, get some scale. It was broad daylight, Eli was probably busily purring with her arm around her nounours under a blanket in her bathtub, but she was also very much on the ice, and not just at Oskar's side. Without her encouragement and support, Oskar probably would
have taken a polar dip; instead, he was busily gazing at the sky feeling euphoric, a Freudian symbol grasped in one hand and Conny on his knees before him on Stage Right. She was also on Stage Left, kids screaming their lungs out, while Blackeberg digs up yet one more body to add to a local rash of mysterious murders.
She may not have intended it, but Stage Left is probably a very common thing in her life: she brings diffuse but profound terror wherever she might happen to stay for more than a few days and nights. Body counts mount. Medical examiners often can't explain how the victims died. Radio stations and newspapers (or town criers in earlier times) get busy trumpeting it up, trying to juice it for all it's worth while it lasts. Parents tell their kids to stay home and stay indoors, and husbands tell their wives the same.
Not all the murders, you see, are "natural", but even the natural ones are a bit tough to explain. What kind freaked up nut job strings his victims up on a tree by the ankles and drains out all their blood? As for the unnatural ones, well... what kind of animal inflicts this kind of wound? - and what kind of animal just gores a victim's throat in order to siphon off all the victims' blood without also consuming all the really yummy parts (sweetmeats, liver, heart, etc)?
This is terror. It's something that you just know
goes "bump!" in the night, but you can't know what it is, what it looks like or what it wants, really. Is it a man who took too many of the wrong kinds of pills? A bear with some kind of brain disease? It's bad enough to be afraid of either of these things if you know
it's one of these things and thus at least theoretically able to hide from it or defend yourself in some fashion in the event of an attack, but... NOT knowing? If you don't know and can't be confident of any guesses you might make, then anything
is fair game, including wyverns, clowns living in the sewers mumbling something about them all floating or maybe even aliens with phalliphorm heads and incredibly acid blood serum. Things you can't possibly defend yourself against because you don't even believe they're real (but they're still really scary ideas, aren't they?).
Oskar's revenge wouldn't necessarily target specific people because even the mind of a twelve year old boy (who, remember, kept a murder book) could appreciate a simple, fundamental truth with singularly focused clarity: it wasn't specific people who made his life a living hell, it was humanity itself
. Oskar himself even before having met Eli might have said the same: people are callous, duplicitous, mendacious, manipulative, cruel, often harshly judgmental and otherwise just plain outright nasty - and this was before
the other kids tried to murder him.
If Oskar were to become the monster he could
become, it wouldn't be because Eli made him, it'd be because humanity made him, and humanity can't even see the demons it creates, let alone the ones that come back when the sun sets.
The more mind-boggling thing to think about is if the moral character of their actions change if ELi and Oskar are actually happy as murderous vampires. An unbiased observer would surely say no, right? If Eli has the right to live, he obviously should have the right to live happily, as being depressed helps neither him nor his victims. But with Oskar around, Eli should need less (or none) human attachments and would that change them? Maybe Eli and Oskar would be like Spike and Dru-pre Buffy, loving each other while seeming evil to outsiders.
What's morality got to do with anything? They can't be moral until they can co-exist with the community at large, and this, precisely, is what they can NOT do. To Eli, at least, the murders aren't murders, they're just people who died because she has to do what she has to do if she wants to live. There's no moral dimension to it. She's been at it too long for that ever to change, but that's the good
news: I think it likely she'd still be the Eli we think we know even if Oskar were to go completely off the wire. The real question is: would she still love him?
An even scarier question: if Oskar were to start using peroxide on his hair and sporting an English accent, would he still love her