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XARUS

Real Name: Xarus

Identity/Class: Human vampire, (1950s era - Modern age)

Occupation: Would-be-conquerer, aristocrat

Group Membership: Vampire Nation

Affiliations: Anchorite Sect, Atlantean/Aqueos Sect, Claw Sect, Charniputra Sect, Krieger Sect (Legate and unrevealed others), Moksha Sect, Mystikos Sect, Nosferatu Sect, Siren Sect (Alyssa and unrevealed others);
formerly Roger Denby, Jubilee (Jubilation Lee), Wolverine (James "Logan" Howlett)

Enemies: Claudia Belles, Blade (Eric Brooks), Dolly, Dracula, Texter, Tripp, X-Club (Madison Jeffries, Dr Nemesis/James Bradley, Dr. Kavita Rao), X-Men (Angel/Warren Worthington III, Armor/Hisako Ichiki, Bling!/Roxy Washington, Colossus/Peter Rasputin, Cyclops/Scott Summers, Cypher/Douglas Ramsey, Dazzler/Allison Blaire, Dust/Sooraya Qadir, Emma Frost, Husk/Paige Guthrie, Iceman/Robert Drake, Magma/Amara Aquilla, Magneto/Max Eisenhardt, Mercury/Cessily Kincaid, Pixie/Megan Gwynn, Rockslide/Santo Vacarro, Rogue/Anna Marie, Storm/Ororo Munroe, Wolverine/James "Logan" Howlett);
formerly Anchorite Sect, Krieger Sect, Mystikos Sect (Stephen), Siren Sect

Known Relatives: Vlad Tepes Dracula (father), Lilith (half-sister), Janus (half-brother), Vlad Tepulus (half-brother, deceased), Vlad Dracul (grandfather, deceased), Mircea (uncle, deceased), Radu the Handsome (uncle, deceased), Prince Mircea the Old (great-grandfather, deceased), Stephen Bathory (second cousin, deceased), Prince Basarab the Great (ancestor, deceased), Frank Drake (relative by Tepulus)

Aliases: Lord of Vampires, Lord Vampire, Lord Xarus, Master, Xarus the First

Base of Operations: Secret headquarters, San Francisco, California;
formerly old army airfield neer Pioneer, Arizona;
formerly unrevealed hotel, Austria

First Appearance: (Atlas Comics, presumably) Mystic#17/3 (February, 1953); (Marvel, confirmed) The Death of Dracula#1 (August, 2010)

Powers/Abilities: Xarus shared many of the traits typical to vampires, including great strength, resistance to conventional injury and aging, exceptional hearing and a specific vulnerability to beheading, wooden stakes to the heart, sunlight and spiritual objects. It is believed he could transform into a winged half-bat creature. He needed to drink human blood to maintain his vitality. He also had some training in hand-to-hand combat and sword fighting. Xarus often used light-bending technology in an amulet that prevented destructive sunlight from reaching him. He sometimes wore a monocle.

Height: 6'2"
Weight: 200 lbs.
Eyes: Solid red (no visible pupil)
Hair: Blond

History:

(Mystic#17/3 (fb) - BTS) - Being Dracula's son, Xarus felt inadequate compared to his father, the legendary lord of the vampires. He came to live in an unrevealed hotel in Austria where he spent his days sulking and wallowing in his misery.

(Mystic#17/3) - One night in the hotel bar, with a morose Xarus drinking a bottle of blood he brought himself, he encountered the immoral psychiatrist Roger Denby who was eager to ally himself with aristocracy. When Xarus told Denby of his noble lineage and feelings of inadequacy, the psychiatrist offered to treat him through hypnosis in hopes of ingratiating himself with this influential nobleman. Xarus accepted the offer and took Derby to his room where he successfully planted the hypnotic suggestion in his mind. Xarus awoke feeling brave and courageous, confident of his own abilities and convinced he could do anything his father did and even better. Denby learned the folly of his ways when he poured himself some red wine to celebrate only to find it was blood. Xarus showed his fangs and jumped the good doctor.

(The Death of Dracula#1 (fb) - BTS) - Xarus was romantically involved with Alyssa the leader of the Siren sect, although she felt no particular love or loyalty towards him.

(The Death of Dracula#1 (fb) - BTS) - Sick of hiding in the shadows Xarus was preparing a coup to take over his father's role as Lord of Vampires. If he were to succeed he would literally lead the vampire community into the light of day. Xarus had the Mystikos sect develop a light-bending pendant that would allow vampires to survive direct exposure to sunlight. He also attempted to unite all the different vampire sects to form one vampire nation. Xarus made alliances with the Nosferatu, Aqueos and Charniputra who would support him in his plan. Xarus also forged a secret pact with Claw Sect, one of the biggest vampire sects that would quietly play along and support his plans.

(The Death of Dracula#1) - Xarus attended the gathering of the world's vampires, which was held once a century on a deserted Greek island. From all corners of the world the different vampire sects arrived. With their entourages waiting on the surface, the sect leaders met underground to discuss matters. Feeling the human population had exploded over the last century, the Anchorite and Atlantean sects asked for leadership. Curious to hear more, Dracula asked what they had in mind in the way of leadership. Xarus used this opportunity to speak and claimed their community needed to come out of the shadows. This didn't sit well with Dracula who remained convinced vampires had their own world. Xarus then surprised his father by setting his plans in motion: he drove a stake through Dracula's heart after which the sect leaders of the Nosferatu, Atlanteans and Charniputra joined in stabbing their former leader. Dracula's other son Janus and the sect leaders loyal to him watched in shock as Xarus beheaded his father. Xarus then stated he would be the one to lead the vampire community into a new era and asked the clanheads to join him. The Nosferatu, Atlanteans, Charniputra, Moksha and Siren were eager to join but the two biggest clans those of the Krieger and the Claw (the Claw sect had secretly already joined Xarus but tried to keep it a secret) denied Xarus' leadership and left. Xarus ordered the Charniputra sect leader to place Dracula's body in the crypt and the Atlantean sect leader to hide his head away.

(The Death of Dracula#1 (fb) - BTS) - Xarus then put the next stage of his plan in motion. He outfitted loyal Nosferatu and Charniputra followers with the light-bending pendants and sent them to attack the Krieger sect's castle in broad daylight. With their leadership decimated, Xarus installed a puppet ruler to bring the sect into their ranks.

(The Death of Dracula#1) - Still on the Greek island Xarus met with his brother Janus who tried to talk sense into him, Xarus then showed him what he considered the gamechanger: compact electronic devices that bend a narrow part of the light spectrum to render a vampire immune to the lethal aspects of direct sunlight. After that he revealed his men were already taking down the Krieger sect. But when Janus still wasn't convinced in joining him he told Janus not to ponder much longer. After retreating to his chambers Xarus was visited by three female vampires from the Siren sect sent by Alyssa to assure him of her loyalty. However unbeknownst to Xarus they had been sent to kill him, something which they failed to do. Furious, Xarus went to see Alyssa while still covered in the girl's blood, carrying her decapticated head. Xarus was sure Alyssa would like to prove her loyalty to his new regime now.

(The Death of Dracula#1 - BTS) - Alyssa convinced Xarus she would be loyal to him from now on.

(The Death of Dracula#1) - Later that night Xarus and all of the different sects convened hoping they would join his newly founded vampire nation. Janus tried to betray him by getting the Claw sect to stop Xarus, unaware of their secret alliance. Pleased to see his decision to keep it a secret to weed out dissenters and traitors had worked, Xarus prepared to execute his brother Janus and the leaders of the Mystikos and Anchorite by exposing them to sunlight. Alyssa arrived to bid Janus farewell, kissing him on the lips and quickly putting one of the light-bending pendants in his pocket. Mere seconds later the sun came up those who Xarus deemed traitors died, only Janus survived and quickly fled the scene. Unaware of all this, Xarus was proclaimed the new Lord of Vampires.

(X-Men III#2 (fb) - BTS) - Now that the different vampire sects had come together as a single vampire nation, Xarus saw mutantkind as the answer to the vampire's future. If he could turn the X-Men, they would become an unstoppable force.

(Blade: Curse of the Mutants#1 (fb) - BTS) - Xarus sent his vampires outfitted with the light-deflecting pendants to hunt vampire killers in broad daylight. With the element of surprise on their side, the vampires managed to kill at least eighteen high-profile hunters.

(Blade: Curse of the Mutants#1 (fb) - BTS) - From a hidden base below an old army airfield near Pioneer in Arizona, Xarus masterminded attacks on several defiant vampire groups with help from the Claw, Krieger and Nosferatu sects. But after they'd killed a group of vampires in Brazil, the famous vampire hunter Blade caught wind of it and together with Claudia Belles set out to track them down.

(Blade: Curse of the Mutants#1 (fb) - BTS) - Next, Xarus and his men killed a group of vampires on the Orkney Islands in Scotland. After they had left, vampire hunter Dolly found evidence of Xarus' involvement: flight clearances from Xarus' chartered jet in Scotland.

(Blade: Curse of the Mutants#1) - Blade joined up with Dolly and Belles as they travelled to Arizona to meet with nine other vampire hunters. Once Xarus and his men had left their base, the hunters set the ground with explosives to force them up to the surface. At dawn the hunters activated the explosives thus driving out Xarus and his vampire army into the sun. To their shock, none of the vampires burst into flame because of their pendants. This led to an unfair fight between Xarus' army and the hunters who were all slaughtered except for Blade. The vampire killer managed to escape and set out to San Francisco.

(X-Men III#1 - BTS) - Xarus had Dominic and the Mystikos sect manufacture a special vampire virus that would partially turn humans into vampires. To spread the virus, Xarus ordered one of his own to sacrifice himself like in a kamikaze stunt, targeting depowered mutant Jubilee.

(X-Men III#1) - From an apartment building looking out on San Francisco's Union Square Xarus and Alyssa watched how the vampire let himself explode in a crowd to release the vampiric virus which successfully infected Jubilee.

(X-Men III#2) - Xarus and Alyssa were met by Dominic who brought a gift, a young woman to feed on. Dominic explained the delivery of the manufactured virus exceeded expectations as people who were infected came pouring in (infected humans would feel the "call" and would come out of their own accord). Xarus, however was impatient Jubilee still had not answered the call to which Dominic explained the depowered mutant was stronger than they thought but it would happen nonetheless. That very night Jubilee indeed answered the call and arrived at Xarus' mansion, still scared and misunderstanding her feelings. Xarus appeared from the shadows offering his hand and the answers to all of her questions, which Jubilee hesitantly accepted. Begging and crying to stop the emptiness inside of her, Jubilee gave herself to Xarus who then sunk his teeth into her neck.

(X-Men III#2 - BTS) - In an effort to stop Xarus and save their friend Jubilee the X-Men decided to resurrect Dracula.

(X-Men III#3) - While in the presence of the sect leaders Xarus welcomed the newly transformed Jubilee into their midst. Xarus explained to her he hoped to offer the same new life to all of the X-Men, both mutants and vampires are feared and hated by humanity, but united they could be unstoppable. In the meantime, Xarus' forces had amassed an army of at least twelve-thousand vampires within a five-mile radius of San Francisco. Xarus' right-hand "man" Brad had already successfully lured Wolverine in a trap that would lead him to their secret base, Xarus turned to Jubilee and asked her to get in position. Under the vampire's influence Jubilee would set herself up as bait which allowed her to bite Wolverine and spread the virus. Wolverine was taken prisoner and put in a cage but while in the presence of Xarus he broke free. However Wolverine had already been transformed into a vampire, now under control of Xarus.

(X-Men III#4) - Xarus visited one of his main scientists to see how Wolverine's transformation was going. When he was convinced there wasn't the slightest trace of the mutant's infamous healing factor left in his blood he deemed his transformation complete. Xarus then called for everyone to appear in the war room wanting a progress report. Legate of the Krieger sect was telling them they only needed twenty-four hours to get complete optics on the X-Men's headquarters to facilitate a quick surgical strike when Xarus received a videocall from Cyclops. The X-Men's leader thought the time had come to introduce himself and ask why "his" city was being flooded with vampires. Xarus once again told his story about the many similarities mutants and vampires shared. Unimpressed, Cyclops explained they were no brothers, no friends and no neighbors, he and his X-Men would choke the bay with vampire bodies and give Xarus a true historic moment; to preside over the greatest slaughter of vampires ever known. Irked because things wouldn't go as planned, Xarus showed Wolverine and Jubilee who tried to persuade Cyclops of the benefits. Cyclops ended the call and ordered his team to prepare for battle. Xarus ordered Wolverine to attack the X-Men and take Cyclops' head.

(X-Men III#5) - On the day of the assault Xarus, convinced he was making history, wondered if any of the other conquerors like Alexander the Great ever felt the same way. Feeling a great sense of pride Xarus sat down to watch the battle through a video screen while his army attacked the X-Men. The tension rose as Wolverine was released upon the X-Men, however Cyclops pulled out a special device they had prepared just in case. With a mere push of the button, Wolverine's healing factor was reactivated which automatically rid him of the vampiric infection. Xarus was shocked by this setback, even as Iceman used his holy water blessed to throw his groundtroops in disarray, cutting off escape routes over land and air. Pacing around his war room, Xarus was unsure about his next move when a call came in from Wolverine who threatened he would come and kill him. Enraged by his defeat Xarus ordered to send the second wave in, however Brad reminded him there was no one left because they wanted to move so quickly. Xarus' rage turned to shock when Dracula arrived, having been resurrected by the X-Men. Vlad triumphantly walked around the war room, taking delight in the shock on his minions' faces. He then offered amnesty to the sects that had been led astray and forgave them. But Xarus would not be forgiven.

(X-Men III#6) - Surprised his father had been resurrected Xarus ordered his men to kill him at once, but the sight of the one true Lord of Vampires scared all of the sect leaders. Just than the X-Men joined by Blade came crashing in, Xarus took the opportunity to grab a sword and attack his father. The two fought but Dracula clearly had the upper hand. After throwing him on the floor, he grabbed hold of Xarus' head and tore it right off his body. Xarus' prodigy Jubilee tried to attack Dracula but was taken out with a single blow to her face. With the severed head of his son still in his hands, he ordered to alert the sects that Dracula had returned.

Comments: Created by Victor Gischler (writer), Giuseppe Camuncoli (pencils), Onofrio Catacchio (inks).

For my money, The Death of Dracula was the perfect setup to introduce the redesigned Dracula and the vampire community into the Marvel Universe. Perhaps older readers of Marvel's horror characters would prefer to see them in their own little corner, but watching them interact with more mainstream characters was great to see. Once the Curse of the Mutants storyline had concluded the redesigned Dracula popped up in lots of mainstream series and even the animated Avengers television show.

Xarus received a profile in the Vampires: The Marvel Undead handbook. The entry presumed Xarus appeared as early as Mystic#17 published by Atlas Comics in 1953. I've chosen to include that appearance in this profile, but given this is a retcon I've kept the creative team from Curse of the Mutants as Xarus' true creators. Also the Vampires: The Marvel Undead handbook erroneously called Mr. Denby Markus instead of Roger.

Profile by MarvellousLuke

CLARIFICATIONS:
Xarus has no known connections to


images: (without ads)
The Death of Dracula#1, p20, pan2 (main image)
Mystic#17, p12, pan 7,8 (atlas comics)
The Death of Dracula#1, p8, pan1 (stabbing Dracula)
X-Men III#2, p23, pan3 (turning Jubilee into a vampire)
X-Men III#4, p22, pan1 (Xarus' army)
X-Men III#6, p7, pan4,5,6 (Xarus' death)


Appearances:
Mystic#17/3 (February, 1953) - Vic Carrabotta (pencils, inks), Stan Lee (editor)
The Death of Dracula#1 (August, 2010) - Victor Gischler (writer), Giuseppe Camuncoli (pencils), Onofrio Catacchio (inks), Axel Alonso (editor)
X-Men III#1 (September, 2010) - Victor Gischler (writer), Paco Medina (pencils), Juan Vlasco (inks), Axel Alonso (editor)
Blade: Curse of the Mutants#1 (October, 2010) - Duane Swierczynski (writer), Tim Green (pencils, inks), Jody Leheup (editor)
X-Men III#2 (October, 2010) - Victor Gischler (writer), Paco Medina (pencils), Juan Vlasco (inks), Axel Alonso, Daniel Ketchum, Jake Thomas (editors)
X-Men III#3 (November, 2010) - Victor Gischler (writer), Paco Medina (pencils), Juan Vlasco (inks), Axel Alonso (editor)
X-Men III#4 (December, 2010) - Victor Gischler (writer), Paco Medina (pencils), Juan Vlasco (inks), Daniel Ketchum (editor)
X-Men III#5 (January, 2011) - Victor Gischler (writer), Paco Medina (pencils), Juan Vlasco (inks), Axel Alonso (editor)
X-Men III#6 (February, 2011) - Victor Gischler (writer), Paco Medina (pencils), Juan Vlasco (inks), Axel Alonso (editor)


Last updated: 02/06/17

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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