Chapter 1

As I looked around my empty bedroom, I felt a sense of freedom that can only be associated with leaving home for the first time – really – and for good! This afternoon would be my
last at home with my overbearing mother and just plain annoying father. The
King and Queen of Vampyra. It would be five long years until the frightening
prospect of moving back into the castle as the new Queen would present itself.

Cara, Daniel and I are triplets and the only three vampires in the world who were born, not made. We’re constantly told just how frighteningly beautiful the three of us are – which makes us very
noticeable as royalty.

Yes in just a few short minutes, my brother Daniel and my sister Cara and I will be leaving the palace for the Vampyre’s Academy for Nobility. Although the “Nobility” part is actually a load
of bull. Any vampire from the royal family is allowed in. As is any vampire
family with a lot of money…basically every other family. But to be perfectly
honest, it’s not as over crowded as you’d think. See there is the ruling family
and there are seven other smaller families. The rest are just nomads for the
most part.

Each year, only one vampire is allowed to be created by any nobility family. In the last few years, the Devereux family, the Cosimo family and the Moreau family have chosen not to
create more vampires. Which is bizarrely lucky for my family because it lets
Cara, Daniel and I start school together instead of a year or two apart.

In the Academy students are classified as such:

Level 1: Fedlings

Level 2: Neophytes

Level 3: Adept

Level 4: Savent

Level 5: Night Stalker

Level 6: Death Bringer

Level 7: Vindicator

Level 8: Sicon

How fast you move up each level is entirely dependant on your level of commitment to your training as well as your partners training. You see, once at the Academy, you are assigned a partner,
with whom you share morning classes. Evening classes are you and two other
teams. In the morning, we study defensive strategies, battle techniques, how to
use the unique powers that we are born with/ given and weapon use. At night, we
study Alchemy, Astronomy, Psychology, and Calculus. Before morning classes,
we’re set loose to go find ourselves a nice meal and again after the night
classes. We’re back in our dorms around nine, in our rooms around midnight and asleep about two o’clock in the morning.

It’s a year round school, with breaks for two weeks during the winter and spring and a week in the summer. It’s a smaller vacation in the summer because the first year Fedling’s are the
most susceptible to sunlight. As you level up, the weakness all but diminishes
from your body. Since there’s more sunlight in the summer, we try our best to
be in the schools where there are treated windows to block out excess sunlight
from coming through.

My parents, being as busy as they are, decided that for our first year or so, we shouldn’t come home. We’ll be at school all year. But we still don’t need to attend classes or even stay inside
the castle during the break which is a plus.

“Jasmyne!” my sister called using my real/legal name to get me annoyed. “Jasmyne Rousseau! Jazz would you get you skinny vampire arse down here right now! It’s a long plane ride to the Academy!
We can’t miss our flight!”

“I’m coming now!” I called back just as our butler James came upstairs.

“Shall I take your bags Ms. Rousseau?” he asked.

“Yes James, thank you very much,” I said grabbing only my carry-on and my purse.

“Your welcome miss,” he said. He waited for me to leave the room and start to walk downstairs before he followed as a sign of respect. My brother and sister were already by the door waiting
for me along with my parents, who had three boxes wrapped in silk wrapping
paper. One was bright purple, one was blood red and one was bright, electric
blue. Colors to match the eyes and natural (as in born with) highlights of
myself, Daniel and Cara respectively.

“Good evening mother. Good evening Father,” I said. “To what do I owe the pleasure?”

“We have parting gifts for the three of you,” my mother said sweetly, although I could tell she was holding back tears.

“I can see. And what daresay are these gifts?” I continued. Man I hated talking like that! But it’s a rule in the household. Proper English is the only thing tolerated. No slang words such
as ‘what are they?’ Sometimes I kind of wish my parents hadn’t been created
during the Renaissance.

“For Cara,” my mother said opening the silky blue wrapping paper. “A Lapis Lazuli pendant with her animal symbol engraved on the back and a new tiara encrusted with the finest Lapis Lazuli
gemstones.” She handed her the pendant and I could see the happiness in her
eyes. We rarely received gifts from our parents and this one was especially
beautiful. But my parents could also be unimaginative at times so I knew I
would be getting the same pendant with a different color stone and a Dragon on
the back instead of a dolphin.

“For our young Daniel,” my father said. “A new sterling silver wrist band and crown with rubies encrusted along the silver.

“Thank you father,” Daniel said with out interest.

“And for you Jasmyne,” my mother said once again using the name I despised with every fiber of my being. “A beautiful white gold tiara, a pendant with you animal symbol engraved on the
back and a ring all encrusted with –”

“Ceylon Sapphire gemstones encrusted in the center of the ring and pendant and all around the tiara,” I finished making my parents smile. “Thank you both so very much, they really are
beautiful gifts.” I looked at Cara who was slightly disappointed now. Her own
pendant was just a blue stone attached to a leather cord and her tiara was much
less…elegant then mine. She hadn’t even gotten a ring.

It’s been like this for the last sixteen years and I always felt so bad for it. My parents had always liked me best no matter how much they denied it. I could see it, Daniel could see it
even the servants could see it. Cara was always content with what she got, but
I knew it hurt her feelings that I had always received more then she had.

“Well we best be off,” Daniel and I said in unison. We hugged our parents had the servants bring our bags to the car and we drove off into the rising moon.

“Cara.” I said as soon as we were away from my parents amazing hearing range. “Cara I’m so, so sorry. Please forgive me.”

“You didn’t ask for the gifts,” she said smiling, placing her tiara on her head. “They gave them to you. They are trying to bribe you into being Queen. I honestly don’t mind Jazmine. I’m not
going to let a little sibling rivalry come between me and my only sister.”

“Are you sure, because I swear I will chuck everything out the window right now if you ask me to.”

“No you wouldn’t and that’s fine. We don’t need to deal with it anymore. We’re going to the Academy. We’re free from our parents for…well almost all eternity.”

We all laughed and I hugged my sister tightly. I put on my own tiara and pendant. I hesitated before putting on my ring, but Cara all but forced it onto my finger. She was absolutely
right. I didn’t need to worry about being treated like I was better then my own
sister anymore. I would be treated as an equal among everyone at the
Academy. And you know what?

That was absolutely fine with me.

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