Sociopathic vampyres are real. They rule us, in fact, in the near-future alter-Earth. An oligarchical group, descendants of the 19th Century Robber Barons and the large plantation Aristocracy from the South (slavery was never abolished) have led Alt-America to full hemispheric conquest. Similar arrangements prevail in the British Empire, L'Afrique Française (Napoleon held on to Egypt, his descendants moved on South), the Deutsches-Ungarisches Kaiserreich in Europe and the Chin-Tsarist Empire in much of Asia.

Well, the bloodsucking part may be a bit metaphorical (although old Aztec practices have been revived in the Americas) and telomere regeneration vats might take the place of dusty crypts, and unnatural long-life is medically induced rather than transmitted by bites, but it is certainly restricted to a ruling class and their closest advisers and servants, which are feared as vamypres by the mostly ill-educated populace.

To give you a sense of how small a clique we're talking about, at the last Hallows Eve's Sacrifest, there were 12,000 adult American Vampyres in attendance, with another 20,000 present remotely using their Palantíri (we would call it Skype for Business, I guess). The Americas house a billion subjects.

The setting is a pseudo-anarchy libertarian nightmare fuel, with each of hundreds of noble families vying for power in the Great Game.

Assuming they have body-guards, and they don't age, have only slightly faster than human reflexes, senses and strength, but otherwise mortal like any other, how long can we expect such Vampyres to survive?

  • $\begingroup$ Can they get diseases? I sense there's a caveat there, too. $\endgroup$
    – Mikey
    Apr 12 '16 at 18:15
  • $\begingroup$ There's some detailed life expectancy/average ruling time charts for ancient Roman emperors here. I could write a fleshed out answer going down a certain thought process, but I don't have the heart right now. However, this may be of interest to you. $\endgroup$ Apr 12 '16 at 18:18
  • $\begingroup$ @Mikey, a fast-acting neurotoxin could bring them down, but with the medical science capable of curing aging, I'd guess the death by common cold is a rare cause of death for vampyres. $\endgroup$ Apr 12 '16 at 18:36
  • $\begingroup$ @SerbanTanasa - there are a lot more things people could get, take example Diabetes, HIV, etc. but it would be part of my percentages in my answer. Can one of your people have a heart attack, diabetes, etc? $\endgroup$
    – Mikey
    Apr 12 '16 at 18:55
  • $\begingroup$ How about lead overdose? $\endgroup$ Apr 12 '16 at 19:03

Not as long as you would think. Their kids will depose them

So the dictators can't die of old age and their powerful government will make rebellion by the humans difficult but possible. The real threat is from the vampire kids and lieutenants.

Imagine yourself as the son of the vampire king of England, you are the prince and you will never rise to more power or responsibilities unless your father "has an accident" or you conquer a neighboring kingdom, that you could rule on your own.

There will be a constant tension between the old guard who want to hold power and the next generations who want to rise and want change. Among humans this is solved by younger generations agreeing to start at a low rank and gradually rising as they learn and as older more experienced workers retire. There is a constant inflow and outflow. But in the vampire world there is no such peaceful cycle, because there is only inflow. To rise in rank all the older vampires above you would have to die or quit. Among humans you only need to compete with the humans born within 40 years of you. With vampires you have to compete with all the vampires ever "born".

We would expect frequent violent explosions as this tension is bleed off either in coups by lower rank groups or in wars against neighboring nations in an attempt kill off some members and open some positions. As vampires stuck in the same job for the last hundred years try to either grab more power in their country or gain power over a neighboring region.



A priori we can assume the life expectancy to follow some standard distribution and that as vampires die they are replaced by new ones following that same distribution. As such the combined life expectancy would creep upwards as ones with low one were replaced by ones with full range.

If we further assume that life expectancy is related to how the vampires behave, that some behaviours are risky and some comparatively safe, this corresponds to safe behaviours becoming progressively more common and risky behaviours becoming less common.

If we also assume that the way vampires behave tends to form coherent patterns, that the vampires have beliefs and values and behave according to them, their society will become more and more risk averse, more and more focussed on thinking ahead and avoiding risks by adopting safe solutions.

This would naturally result in a society where violent deaths become less and less common, where any disease or accident that can be avoided will be. In such society no meaningful life expectancy would exist for people who aren't already dead. You would be able to calculate what life expectancy was, but not estimate it for the still living vampires. Their causes of dead would be the things they failed to avoid due to them being impossible to predict. No estimate of timing of unpredictable events can be made.

  • $\begingroup$ This sounds like an actuary's worst nightmare....;) $\endgroup$
    – Shalvenay
    Apr 12 '16 at 22:26

Depends on politics.

Your scenario requires advanced medicine and genetic engineering, somewhat beyond current-day. Such medicine requires R&D, thus scientists, thus a big contingent of educated people (even if it is a minority compared to the total population).

How long it takes to intelligent non-vampires to stage a revolution to remove the vampires from power and kill them? Since the vampires are still mortal, most means of killing still work: poisons and chemical agents, guns, bombs, "accidents", etc.

Outside revolution, vampires could last several centuries, maybe more, until they get bored of life and commit suicide.


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