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My version of vampires were created by powerful mages during their experiments-they sought immortality, so humanity would never end up without someone to save them from the eldritch horrors or creatures of chaos that would otherwise destroy them. However, these vampires have the following problems:

  1. Blood Dependence-They need blood to sustain their life; a minimum of a liter for every two months. The average person contains 4 to 6 liters in their body (men generally have more than women), and someone can die from losing 2 1/2 to 4 liters of blood (exsanguination). Now, a liter is 2.1 pints, and it takes four to eight weeks to regain just one liter of blood (plasma, platelets and red blood cells alike). Vampires just need the blood to sustain their life force; for nutrients and calories, they can ingest regular food for that.

  2. Blood Dependence (Continued)-Vampires get weaker over time, as the life force (AKA essence, spiritual energy) inside ingested blood is depleted. For this and other reasons (seriously, could you perform your best when giving your body only the minimum amount of calories and nutrients it needs?), vampires really need regular blood meals (at the end of every month? I'm open to change).

  3. Blood Hanger-Going off of 2, did you know a 1% drop in your bodily water reserves may cause a proportional drop in cognitive function? Combine that and hanger (hunger-driven anger), and you know exactly why a vampire who's gone without blood for a while is a potential danger. The more blood deprived a vampire is, the more primal and ferocious they become.

  4. Imprinting-The essence contained in the blood causes vampires to form a very close connection to those they've fed on for twelve months or more: they can sense their presence (and by extension, their location) and emotional state. This is called 'Imprinting,' and it makes it perfectly likely that a vampire can hunt down (and quite possibly stalk) a former donor.

  5. Picky Bloodsuckers-Vampires only Imprint on certain people; they just can't take blood from anyone, unless they're dying from blood deprivation. They seem to sense the traits of the person who the blood came from and judge it by that; in simpler terms, a vampire's choice of blood says a lot about the kind of people they like to be around (and them by extension). The exception is vampires that can't (or won't) Imprint; they don't really care who their blood comes from.

  6. Even Pickier Bloodsuckers-For some reason, vampires tend to seek donors that can also be partners; male vampires have an innate drive to seek out female blood donors around their age (no more than 4 years difference; see below) and vice versa for female vampires. The difference in blood drive is dramatic; most male vampires would never even think about taking blood from a male unless they had to (and once again, it's vice versa).

The Good News:

  1. Vampiric Healing-Vampires have anti-coagulant agents in their saliva, but they also have healing agents in special glands they can pump into a donor to heal the damage (of the fangs puncturing the skin and blood vessels) and replenish blood cells 4x as fast as normal. This prevents scarring (AKA fang marks) and helps the vampire get more frequent blood meals without hurting the donor.

  2. Imprinting-And even just donating blood to a vampire once-creates neural links in a vampire's mind, making them much less likely to attack, steal from, or dominate you (sadly, 3% of vampires have mind-control abilities) and more likely to help you. Generally, a vampire will do anything to help their Imprinted. However (see 4 above) this also causes a vampire to very quickly develop relationships with people who give them blood. If an older individual acts as their donor, the vampire will soon see them as a paternal figure. If a member of the same sex, as old as them or younger, acts as their donor, the vampire will soon see them as a sibling (brings a whole new meaning to 'blood brother,' now doesn't it?). If a member of the opposite gender, around their age (no more than 4 years difference) gives a vampire blood, they will likely develop romantic feelings for them.

  3. Imprinted Food-No, it's not what you think. After a vampire has Imprinted, food made or grown by that Imprinted are as good as blood for them (well, about; the caloric value of the food determines the amount of BV, or Blood Value, a food has). So food made by an Imprinted can be better than blood, and it's a whole lot easier on logistics. However, vampires often take blood now and then, out of habit or, y'know, the fact they're vampires.

The vampires are legal citizens, the governments knows they exist (regular politicians are kinda-sorta bloodsuckers anyway, and since these vampires are better allies (and taxpayers) than enemies...) and is willing to turn a blind eye as long as they don't start enslaving people, causing crimes, or draining them dry. However, in order to survive, the vampires need blood (and it can't come from blood banks; vampires don't usually need medical aid, so the government has reserved that for the regular people who end up hospitalized and lacking blood) from donors.

Even worse, due to all the anti-vampires crazies (and those who suffer from a fear of all that sucks blood, and those who would not take the news of vampires being real well), the vampires have to keep their existence a well-kept secret or deal with an awful lot of prejudice and discrimination.

My question is, simply: How Can Vampires Get Enough Donors To Keep Themselves Alive?

Specifically, what would be the best method to obtain a donor? I feel like a dating website could work, but I'm not sure how effective that would be. The best method won't just attract crazy people, will incentivize nondisclosure (of the vampire's existence), and will get people to willingly give blood to the vampires.

EDIT: As pointed out by DWKraus, a vampire should only need one donor, due to math (a full vampire taking frequent small meals should never leave a donor more than a pint down) and modern medications that can stimulate blood production.

If more details are needed, or if there are problems with the OP, please let me know. As always, I appreciate your input and feedback. Thank you!

EDIT: In the end, I found DWKraus's answer the most helpful, but each of you had an important contribution (except Ash...sorry, but I just can't go that route).

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  • $\begingroup$ You said that for your math, a person regains a liter of blood in 6-8wks, and a vampire needs a liter every two months. You do understand that means one person is all you need? If the vampire starts full, takes frequent small meals, the person is never more than a pint down and the vampire is always full. If the vamp can increase a person's blood volume, then even less. $\endgroup$ – DWKraus Jan 26 at 5:15
  • $\begingroup$ If we're talking modern era (and you mentioned a dating site) then there are medications to stimulate red cell, white cells (although immunology says white cells are probably not good for the vampire). and platelet production. Plasma is replaced quickly and mostly by drinking fluids and maintaining a healthy diet. Plenty of red meat and iron supplements might help. Someone with polycythemia vera requires regular blood donation due to excess RBC production and might be happy to do their civic duty to a fellow citizen. $\endgroup$ – DWKraus Jan 26 at 5:23
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    $\begingroup$ "male vampires have an innate drive to seek out female blood donors around their age" Does this still apply to gay vampires? $\endgroup$ – Studoku Jan 26 at 14:06
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    $\begingroup$ @Alendyias Conventional rules of attraction? $\endgroup$ – Studoku Jan 27 at 2:15
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    $\begingroup$ @Alendyias why would vampires be more uniform in their patterns of attraction than humans are? $\endgroup$ – Geoffrey Brent Jan 27 at 4:09
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One:

You said that for your math, a person regains a liter of blood in 6-8wks, and a vampire needs a liter every two months. You do understand that means one person is all you need? If the vampire starts full, and takes frequent small meals, the person is never more than a pint down and the vampire is always full. If the vamp can increase a person's blood volume, then even less - the person wouldn't even notice the effect. The more blood a person loses, the faster their body produces red cells to replace them. So the vampire only needs to find a human spouse.

If we're talking modern era (and you mentioned a dating site) then there are medications like erythropoietin to stimulate red cell, white cell (although immunology says white cells are probably not good for the vampire) and platelet production. Plasma is replaced quickly and mostly by drinking fluids and maintaining a healthy diet. Plenty of red meat and iron supplements might help. Someone with polycythemia vera requires regular blood donation due to excess RBC production and might be happy to do their civic duty to a fellow citizen.

You might want to consider if the vampire's healing ability might have a useful function in this equation. If, for example, it was a treatment for common blood disorders like sickle cell anemia or thalassemia, then the people and doctors would seek out vampires and arrange "private arrangements" so they could trade a little blood for a normal life. Sickle cell is quite debilitating and the medications to treat it are less than effective.

When talking about volunteering, the loss of blood is pretty minor. If you ran a plasma center, they can pay people to sell their blood for research ant to make drugs. If a certain donor was found suitable, they might be simply paid to donate frequently and told their blood had "special antigens" or something like that. A binding non-disclosure agreement would be perfectly ordinary.

If the vampire works in healthcare (specifically a phlebotomist), the only problem would be the pickiness. There are endless opportunities to collect "just a little extra" blood from someone, and if the vampire were doing it, they would know if a random donor was acceptable to them and be able to collect "one extra red-top" to meet their needs ten milliliters at a time. It doesn't sound like much, but it would go a LONG way towards meeting their needs or filling in any shortfalls, and you might draw six patients an hour. If "old" or anticoagulated blood was okay, get a job in the lab - I'd say a liter of test samples is probably discarded each day in my hospital just in getting rid of samples that are no linger needed. Again, pick and choose what is good. It might also be a way to find good donors, since all the tubes have detailed patient information on them.

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Firstly; polyamory

A vampire needs:

  • Minimum 1 (1L per 8 weeks), but ideally 2 or more donors.
  • Who they form intimate connections with (imprinting)

This has polyamory written all over it. 2 or more imprinted individual intimately connected to you; Ethical non monogamy is basically required by these conditions alone.

Secondly; BDSM

How does blood donating feel from the donors perspective? It depends on the scenario, but I've heard from someone whose done bloodletting in BDSM that its a high like taking drugs: Some power play. Submission. Trust. Woozy mind. Pretty hallucinations. Epic sex. And then bandaged up for a few hours on the couch with ice cream and hugs.

Your vampire goes to their local BDSM community gathering, is open and honest about what they're after, and listens to others about what they're interested in trying. Within a few gatherings they will find someone interested in trying bloodletting.

If they respect consent, help other people explore their interests, are decent people, and keep socialising within the BDSM community they will probably find a second.

With the blood imprinting magic happening, they'll be able to maintain a kinky polyamorous relationship easier than normal humans.


After your edit: one is now enough. Isnt your source of life essence important enough to justify having a backup? If they're sick I'm going to get hungry, then hangry. If your single partner dies, or dumps you, you'll be dead in 8 weeks. In which case you're needing to keep an eye out for plan B all the time or directly cheating on your partner on the side.

I'm not sure I could find a new partner from scratch in 8 weeks, even if my life depended on it, especially if they need to have a bloodletting kink, as that's not the most common kink.

Having two isn't excessive; It's not excessive to leave some spare blood in the human, it's not going to rot or need to be thrown out, but if not donating their blood does cause an issue somehow, polyamory comes to the rescue again. Between 1 (no backup) and 2 (excessive apparently) theres other numbers like 1.5; 2 vampires can share 3 partners between them.

(Having personally been in long term 2 on 3 heterosexual poly relationships before I can confirm they are workable.)

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    $\begingroup$ Insert obligatory "Better love story than Twilight" joke $\endgroup$ – JANXOL Jan 26 at 13:15
  • $\begingroup$ I put in some edits, sorry if I wasn't clear: one donor is enough, two is not ideal so much as excessive. Also, I wasn't looking for polyamory; definitely a no-go for me. Thank you for your input though! It showed me something I'll have to account for. $\endgroup$ – Alendyias Jan 27 at 1:28
  • $\begingroup$ In the same vein (sorry), see also tattooing/piercing, shiatsu-style massage, hot food, etc. - humans are quite fond of using painful sensations for pleasure. $\endgroup$ – Geoffrey Brent Jan 27 at 2:12
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There is an app for that

(and it can't come from blood banks; vampires don't usually need medical aid, so the government has reserved that for the regular people who end up hospitalized and lacking blood).

You are talking about government-controlled blood banks there. Private blood banks are another thing.

But then again, that is so 90's. We're in the 2020's now. All a vampire would need is a smartphone. They could order blood through Uber Eats.

It would work like this: special restaurants for vampires would hire volunteers for vampire-specific blood donations. If you are such a volunteer, you would periodically go to such a restaurant and have your blood collected and refrigerated. The restaurant is legally not a blood bank because:

  1. It is not connected to the public health system in any way;
  2. The blood there does not need to go through all the same treatment that it would usually undergo in a blood bank. In fact you could not use this for a regular blood donation.

You get paid fairly for this. Then vampires order their meal through an app. They could order, for example, a Quarter Pounder with Cheese combo, substituting poutine for the fries, with a 700 mL blood shake on the side. That's not 700 mL of blood, as there are other things mixed in it, but it will keep a vampire going for a while.

Go "vegan"

In the Twilight series of books, a family of vampires spares the local humans by draining blood from animals instead. They call themselves the vegan vampires. Apparently they don't know what vegan means, because for vampirism to be vegan, the blood must come from humans.

Carnis data vermibus not

People who have just died could be a source of blood. Lots of people die everyday in modern cities[citation needed], a vampire could feast on the blood of still warm bodies. If you think that won't do because they would have no vital energy, drain the braindead instead.

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  • $\begingroup$ Mostly agree - but how would uber eats ensure that vampires don't catch something nasty from the fast delivered blood? You're basically ordering unprotected sex anonymously from the lowest bidder online. I have no idea how HIV in a vampire would play out, but if it happens, market share goes bye bye... $\endgroup$ – Ash Jan 26 at 14:38
  • $\begingroup$ @Ash just like the porn industry, the restaurants could require frequent testing from the volunteers. Nowadays an HIV test costs peanuts and you have a result in less than an hour. $\endgroup$ – The Square-Cube Law Jan 26 at 14:39
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    $\begingroup$ Humans live for approximately 30,000 days, so you can expect in the ballpark of one death per day per 30,000 capita (will vary depending on demographic details). Whether those humans will give consent for their blood to be used, or whether vampires will care about consent, is another matter. Charles Stross' "Laundry" series includes vampires for whom feeding is always lethal (even if drinking previously-donated blood); in that series the government's not-very-pleasant solution is to use donors who are terminally ill. $\endgroup$ – Geoffrey Brent Jan 27 at 2:19
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    $\begingroup$ Why am I not surprised there is a vegetarianism stack? $\endgroup$ – No Name Jan 27 at 3:27
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It sounds like a mix of old style feudalism and modern sects could work.

Your vampires can grant protection and resources to their underlings, thanks to their network and powers. In exchange for this protection, the underlings will grant the master a periodic taste of their blood. It can be a periodic ritual, let's say once a week, where the priest/priestess of the underlings will offer his/her neck to the master as a pledge of submission and renewal of the alliance.

The priest/priestess is selected by the vampire master based on pickiness and imprinting (of course the criteria are not known to the underlings), and the underlings make sure that the priest/priestess is protected and well fed, as he/she is the living seal of their alliance with the master. The chronicles are generous of examples of what happened when, lacking a seal, the master went on a rampage.

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Adding to what has already been said.

Imprinting-The essence contained in the blood causes vampires to form a very close connection to those they've fed on for twelve months or more: they can sense their presence (and by extension, their location) and emotional state. This is called 'Imprinting,' and it makes it perfectly likely that a vampire can hunt down (and quite possibly stalk) a former donor.
Picky Bloodsuckers-Vampires only Imprint on certain people; they just can't take blood from anyone, unless they're dying from blood deprivation. They seem to sense the traits of the person who the blood came from and judge it by that; in simpler terms, a vampire's choice of blood says a lot about the kind of people they like to be around (and them by extension). The exception is vampires that can't (or won't) Imprint; they don't really care who their blood comes from.
Even Pickier Bloodsuckers-For some reason, vampires tend to seek donors that can also be partners; male vampires have an innate drive to seek out female blood donors around their age (no more than 4 years difference; see below) and vice versa for female vampires. The difference in blood drive is dramatic; most male vampires would never even think about taking blood from a male unless they had to (and once again, it's vice versa).
Imprinting-And even just donating blood to a vampire once-creates neural links in a vampire's mind, making them much less likely to attack, steal from, or dominate you (sadly, 3% of vampires have mind-control abilities) and more likely to help you. Generally, a vampire will do anything to help their Imprinted. However (see 4 above) this also causes a vampire to very quickly develop relationships with people who give them blood. If an older individual acts as their donor, the vampire will soon see them as a paternal figure. If a member of the same sex, as old as them or younger, acts as their donor, the vampire will soon see them as a sibling (brings a whole new meaning to 'blood brother,' now doesn't it?). If a member of the opposite gender, around their age (no more than 4 years difference) gives a vampire blood, they will likely develop romantic feelings for them.

All of this sounds incredibly rapey. Specifically, it sounds like a lot of the attempted justifications IRL stalkers and rapists throw out to try and justify their actions. So the vampires will only drink blood from certain people, who are almost always individuals of the opposite sex from them, claims to have a "connection" to the donor that gives them the right to stalk them, and are much more likely to harrass or attack them. This sounds exactly like an IRL stalker or rapist's motivation (see: Twilight).

What happens if a vampire only wants to drink from someone who doesn't want to give blood, and ends up stalking them, pestering them, or even attacking them? Sounds like IRL cases of how stalkers (both male and female) become obsessed with certain individuals and try to badger them into sex, first by flattery and positive methods but eventually escalating into violence, blackmail, and rape.

To put it another way, say a vampire is being fed off of blood bags and finds they like the taste of "Sophie Jenkins, age whatever from Staten Island, NY". Do you really think if they say "hey the blood from this one person is really good, can you get me more of this" the government is going to do so? No, they're going to say "screw you, you'll drink the blood we give you". Refusing to drink blood unless it comes from a specific person is an incredibly creepy thing to do and requiring some rando civilian to give blood whether or not they want to is very unethical. Most governments would balk at this idea.

If anything the government is going to deliberately randomize blood so that vampires can't feed from any one person for more than 12 months and get "addicted" to that person (and make no mistake, the humans will see this as addiction).

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  • $\begingroup$ Good grief, I see my mistakes here. I really need to account for this (protect the humans!) or else there'll be more than a few problems in my story.... $\endgroup$ – Alendyias Feb 2 at 2:51
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The UK alone could immediately support roughly half a million vampires with no change to anything except the law and social attitudes!

In our 2021 society, corpses are drained of blood by undertakers as part of the embalming process. This is literally an everyday process for them. This blood is thrown away.

A scalpel is used to cut underneath the skin to find the carotid artery and jugular vein to begin processing fluids. A drain tube is placed to drain blood from the vascular system. [What Does an Undertaker Do to a Body? ][1]

A massive population of vampires could be sustained in countries where embalming is common. In the UK for example there are 9 deaths on average per 1,000 people, or 9,000 per million.

Thus out of the 68 million population of the UK, 612,100 people die on average per day. One body per vampire per day should be enough. The blood could be bottled and sold chilled.


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  • $\begingroup$ Sorry, but vampires need life force to be inside the blood; blood from recently deceased people has some lingering life force, but corpses aren't exactly the best option here. I will consider it, though..... $\endgroup$ – Alendyias Jan 26 at 22:22
  • $\begingroup$ When a body dies, its constituent cells don't immediately die. Have a vampire café next to the emergency department of every hospital. As soon as the patient is pronounced clinically dead, decant the fresh, still-living, blood. The red and white blood cells should be in fine fettle. $\endgroup$ – chasly - supports Monica Jan 26 at 22:35
  • $\begingroup$ Per the OP: "Even worse, due to all the anti-vampires crazies (and those who suffer from a fear of all that sucks blood, and those who would not take the news of vampires being real well), the vampires have to keep their existence a well-kept secret." $\endgroup$ – Alendyias Jan 26 at 22:37
  • $\begingroup$ Per the OP, "The vampires are legal citizens, the governments knows they exist (regular politicians are kinda-sorta bloodsuckers anyway, and since these vampires are better allies (and taxpayers) than enemies...) and is willing to turn a blind eye as long as they don't start enslaving people, causing crimes, or draining them dry." You can't have it both ways. Either they are allowed or they aren't. You seem to be changing the rules as you go along. Simply have a government-approved cellar beneath the ER and don't tell anyone where the blood is going. $\endgroup$ – chasly - supports Monica Jan 26 at 22:39
  • $\begingroup$ I apologize; I was trying to account for the likelihood of anti-vampire prejudice. After all, what is racism based on? A superficial trait. Yet it is still the basis of how many hate crimes? Vampires are potentially very dangerous, so in all reality, wouldn't there be more prejudice against them? $\endgroup$ – Alendyias Jan 26 at 22:42
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How about a mutually beneficial relationship?

The vampires should seek out hemochromatosis patients. Someone with hemochromatosis must have blood taken every so often, neglecting this will eventually kill them. Furthermore, the law is stupid, such blood can't go to the blood banks despite it being perfectly safe (as much so as any blood is) for anyone other than a hemochromatosis patient. Thus such patients have to pay for their periodic bloodletting.

Furthermore, it seems that your vampiric feeding might be preferable to the conventional way of drawing blood. It seems like an ideal pairing. Do your looking on a forum for hemochromatosis patients.

The only problem I see is that diagnosed hemochromatosis patients skew towards the older end of the spectrum (it's a genetic condition that actually exists from birth but is usually only diagnosed when symptoms show up. When young people are diagnosed it's usually because they realize they might have inherited the genetic flaw.)

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