Last updated: 5/12/2016 — new information in italics
These cheat sheets summarise what we know so far about the world of the Black Dagger Brotherhood. Click here for a round-up of BDB-related posts on Book Thingo.
This section contains information on:
- Overview of the BDB
- Pretrans training program
Note that the cheat sheets have not been updated to include information from The King to avoid accidentally spoiling readers who have not yet had a chance to read the book.
Under threat from the Lessening Society, the vampires as a race began to breed their strongest warriors with their strongest bloodlines to the point that they evolved into a subspecies of vampire warrior, with more physical strength and extra mind powers than the average civilian. This subspecies formed the Black Dagger Brotherhood, named for the daggers Vishous calibrates specially for each Brother to stab lessers through the heart and send them back to the Omega.
A notable exception is the Dhestroyer, who can absorb a lesser’s essence, preventing his return to the Omega. He has the potential to absorb all of the Omega’s power, which makes him a huge threat to the evil. After the raid on the lessers, Butch knew that he could not consume all of those lessers, so he’s looking for a way to take out the Omega.
All the Brothers have a star-shaped scar over their left pectoral caused by being punched in the chest with a spiky glove by the rest of the Brotherhood during initiation.
There used to be twenty to thirty Brothers at a time, but as of the end of Lover Reborn, there were only seven Brothers including the king (who no longer fights) and the Primale, who is now fighting for the first time in history. Although they are not actually Brothers, John Matthew, Blaylock, Xhex and Payne have joined the war.
In an historic move, non-royal, non-Chosen born Qhuinn was the first Brother to be inducted based on merit. The total number of Brothers at the end of Lover at Last is eight.
Even though the race has scattered after Lash’s raid, the Brotherhood remains based in Caldwell, NY, as the Tomb is located there.
Pretrans training program
The old school training program took the form of a warrior camp run by V’s father, the Bloodletter. There was a certain hierarchy to things there. Strength ruled and the warriors in training had to fight for their place in the pecking order. Loss meant the public humiliation of rape by the opponent who bested you.
Pretrans got by on whatever scraps were left over or what they could steal from others. No one owns anything.
The Bloodletter must have made regular reports back to the king because sometimes a warrior would attract the Brotherhood’s interest. That warrior would be taken from the camp with a group of Brothers and tested. He has only one chance to pass or fail. If the warrior passes, he never returns to the camp and failure means he never leaves.
There are few females there, and they are used for cooking, cleaning and sex.
The number of fighting Brothers was extremely low when Wrath ascended to the throne, not to mention that there weren’t any soldiers to act as the race’s police force and back up the Brotherhood as and when needed. Tohr started holding classes for pretrans males with warrior blood as they were easier to train, even though they would have to relearn how to move after their transitions. The curriculum covers martial arts and weaponry, explosives, computer hacking and tactics.
The future of the training program is uncertain due to lesser attacks on the aristocrats, but JM, Qhuinn and Blay have joined the war against the lessers.
The training program is being reopened for posttrans vampires, but not only glymera males. This time, civilians and females are eligible to try out.
The program began with about 60 recruits (with male:female ratio around 10:1) that were pared down to 7. I don’t know if any of JM, Qhuinn and Blay’s pretrans class returned for the new program. The first night began with canapés laced with an emetic, the lights go out and the exercise equipment and doorways were electrified. Then were timed sonic booms with flashing strobe lights and a fuckton of rubber bullets. The recruits are dunked in the pool before finally being allowed to leave the gym.
There were energy bars and water bottles, some of which had been tampered with. The recruits are forced to walk a circuit until they drop.
The finalists are Paradise, Craeg, Axe, Peyton, Novo, Anslam and Boone. The King’s First Adviser’s aristocratic daughter outlasted her competition and was named Primus, a title that is never referenced again, except when Peyton is butthurt that Paradise looks up to Craeg as a leader.
The thing with the new program being a meritocracy is that you quickly have to learn who the best candidates are. But the curriculum appears to be similar (if not the same) to the previous program.
Looking into their home lives, they decided to move Craeg and Axe into the training centre.
The duration of the program appears to be open ended.
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