The ones who don’t stand by and do nothing
The crew of the Artemis are an eclectic bunch, but they have exactly one thing in common; they fight to save your ass from something you don’t even believe in.
Most people think that vampires are a European danger, bred in the slums of the Old World. It’s not a word commonly associated with the Caribbean. But near the Equator, day and night are predictable; darkness comes fast, and people come out after dark to enjoy the cooler air. It’s a vampire’s paradise – and before the land around the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico was divided by modern borders, it was better known as the Spanish Main.
Francis Hardy is Bahamian. Son and grandson of Islands fishermen, he’s lived on and near the water all his life, and he’s the public face of the Artemis when she’s ferrying rich tourists to see the beauties of the Bahamas.
Francis isn’t much given to talking about his past, or how he ended up leading a team of vampire hunters. If pressed, he’ll admit to having worked as the strongman in a floating circus when he was younger, but now he’s an old man in a profession that doesn’t generally lead to a pension.
- Age: 48
- Born: Commonwealth of the Bahamas
- Height: 1.80 metres
- Weight: 115 kg
- Languages: English
- Favourite food: Lamb curry
- Never drinks: American beer
- Music: Latin pop – Manu Chao is a top pick but then again so is Shakira
- Quote: “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”
- Most often grumbles about: People who think the earth is flat
- Personal quirk: Likes to know what’s in whatever he’s eating
Kim Marruci mixes a great cocktail, and she’s the favourite when the charterers want to learn to surf. She keeps a note in the log of how many bad pick up lines each charter group lays on her, and Francis calculates the ‘extras’ bill accordingly.
She was on an exchange year in California when she got news of of her brother’s death, and if he hadn’t left a package to be delivered to her in the event of his death, she would never have known how he died.
Rather than assuming he was doing drugs, or trying to sell it to a tabloid magazine, Kim walked into a hunter safehouse in Sint Maarten a week later and has never looked back.
- Age: 24
- Born: Italian Republic
- Height: 1.69 metres
- Weight: 64 kg
- Languages: Italian, English
- Favourite food: Sushi
- Never drinks: Vodka
- Music: Nordic heavy metal – Skalmold and Clickhaze are somewhere in all her playlists
- Quote: “My eyes are up here.”
- Most often grumbles about: Charterers
- Personal quirk: Likes anything that smells of patchouli or sandalwood
Mary Cox works as chef and tour administrator for Artemis‘s charter tours – and team medic the rest of the time.
She was studying medicine at Edinburgh University when she and a friend were attacked by a fledgling vampire on the way home one night. The hunters saved her life, but were too late for her friend. She and Francis have worked as a hunter team for over five years, which makes them the senior team in the area.
- Age: 37
- Born: Scotland, United Kingdom
- Height: 1.58 metres
- Weight: 57 kg
- Languages: English
- Favourite food: Hawaiian pizza
- Never drinks: Whiskey
- Music: Country and blues – Fats Domino is up often on her playlists
- Quote: “When Robert Burns said ‘A man’s a man for a’that’, he’d never had to deal with charterers.”
- Most often grumbles about: People grabbing plants and corals without checking if they’re poisonous
- Personal quirk: Hates having to wear sunscreen
Jean Vignaud can handle Artemis under sail as well as Francis can, substitutes for Mary in the galley, and climbs the rigging the way most people climb the stairs to bed. Because he’s not a people person, he tends to work as a deckhand on cruises.
Because he rarely discusses anything more personal than the slogan on his T-shirt, the fact that he became a vampire during the reign of Charles IX of France isn’t commonly known. Why and how he chose to renounce being vampire is something even his partner doesn’t know, but his record on killing vampires is exceeded only by Francis’s.
- Age: 463
- Born: Kingdom of France
- Height: 1.73 metres
- Weight: 78 kg
- Languages: Latin, French, Provencal, Spanish, Italian, Dutch, English
- Favourite food: Ginger beef on Shanghai noodles
- Never drinks: Smirnoff Ice
- Music: Anything by Dire Straits
- Quote: “Money for nothing is good.”
- Most often grumbles about: Powerboats
- Personal quirk: Rolls his own cigarettes but never usually smokes any of them
Sean Kosinsky handles the barbecues on the beach and makes sure that the beer doesn’t stop flowing. Artemis is the first boat he’s ever dealt with smaller than a cruise liner, and learning to sail isn’t coming easily to him.
He was kidnapped out of his North Carolina college frat house when a clan master was looking for a new plaything, and only a very timely hunter raid on the shelter where he was being kept saved him from slavery or being Changed.
- Age: 22
- Born: United States of America
- Height: 1.86 metres
- Weight: 86 kg
- Languages: US English
- Favourite food: Poached eggs
- Never drinks: Absinthe
- Music: Anything from Mozart to Rachmaninoff
- Quote: “Assuming direct control.”
- Most often grumbles about: Boats
- Personal quirk: Corrects everyone else’s log entries to US spelling
Cristina Perez-Batista can sail the Artemis, lead snorkelling tours, or teach charterers to surf behind a dinghy. She doesn’t like having to deal with people but fakes it well enough when she has to.
She jumped ship aged fourteen when her father decided to sail back to Europe, and lied about her age successfully enough to get jobs as crew for a few months before she was picked up ashore by enforcers under the aegis of a sub-clan of Changar. She managed to engineer her own escape and get far enough from where she was being held that Jean came across her before the enforcers did.
- Age: Nearly 19
- Born: Kingdom of Spain
- Height: 1.66 metres
- Weight: 65 kg
- Languages: Spanish, English
- Favourite food: Anything with seafood
- Never drinks: Beer
- Music: Anything but classical
- Quote: “Work is the curse of the drinking classes.”
- Most often grumbles about: People on boats who know nothing about boats
- Personal quirk: Hates wearing shoes