A Journey of Black and Red

by Mecanimus

Original ONGOING Action Adventure Fantasy Historical Female Lead Urban Fantasy Villainous Lead
Warning This fiction contains:
  • Gore
  • Profanity
  • Sexual Content
  • Traumatising content

Where am I? What is this! I... I don't remember anything. I am in chains? Why am I in chains?! And why am I so very...

Thirsty.

 

 

This is a story of vampires as I believe they should be, with their strengths and weaknesses, with their remnants of humanity and the beast inside. Updates every Friday. Mind the tags. 

Cover by Antti Hakosaari: https://www.artstation.com/haco

Special thanks to Svensonsen for getting me started, as well as Omi Nya, Jemima, my patrons and you dear readers, for the support.

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Author
Mecanimus

Mecanimus

Achievements
Word Count (14)
15 Reviews
1st Anniversary
150 Review Upvotes
2,000 Comments
Toplist #5
750,000 Views
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Table of Contents
Chapter Name Release Date
1. Cruel Genesis ago
2. Jimena ago
3. False Haven ago
4. The seed of Discord ago
5. The Reveal ago
6. Uprooted ago
7. Servitude ago
8. Outside ago
9. A casual visit ago
10. No rest for the wicked ago
11. The Gauntlet ago
12. Acte I, scène finale ago
13. Homeward ago
14. Roadside snacks ago
15. Reap what you sow ago
16. Marsh March ago
17. Loth of Skoragg's offer. ago
18. Six Months Later ago
19. A gentleman and a scholar ago
20. The Pursuer and the Pursued ago
21. Murder of Crows ago
22. The Waiting Maw ago
23. Into the Heart ago
24. Valor ago
25. The Source ago
26. Self-Discovery ago
27. Coming of Age ago
28. Like Herding Cats pt. 1 ago
29. Like Herding Cats Pt. 2 ago
30. Charm ago
31. Winternight ago
32. Old Money ago
33. The science of the Hunt ago
34. Ring Breaker ago
35. Blood Ties ago
36. Cloaks and Daggers ago
37. 1812, Overture. ago
38. Learning curve. ago
39. The Righteous One ago
40. Masquerade ago
41. Stand your ground. ago
42. The Cruel Seas ago
43. Confluence ago
44. Daydreaming ago
45. Embracing Modernity ago
46. The Eternal Game ago
47. Nemesis ago
48. Pyre of Dreams ago
49. The shadow over Marquette. ago
50. Under the Skin ago
51. Prince of Azure and Gold ago
52. Fate and Absurdity ago
??. Black and Red Healer ago
53. Three is a Crowd ago
54. Night-Owned Town ago
55. Sins. And explosions! ago
56. Preparations ago
57. The Beacon ago
58. The First Queen ago
59. Omen of the end. ago
60. Big Game Hunting ago
61. Before the Storm ago
62. Eneru ago
63. Reign of Blood ago
64. Knight Takes Queen. ago
65. Sur les Bords du Mississippi... ago
66. ... un alligator se tapit. ago
67. Expect the unexpected. ago
68. Dies Irae ago
69. Trial ago
70. Painful hearing. ago
Glossary. ago
71. House Nirari ago
72. All that Glitters ago

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nf_zeta
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Honestly just a great vamp story.

Reviewed at: 31. Winternight

I regret yet am happy about how long it took me to take up this story. Both because it's so great.

"This is a story of vampires as I believe they should be." When the author said this I wasn't sure what to expect but even though it's not how I really perceived them it's definitely a good parallel and a great image of what they should be.

The upsides and downsides of vampirism are well handled here, and the way they're slowly expanded on and developed just makes things that much better. The glimpses of other manner of creatures along the way and how their cultures work are great showings of proper world building with the right level of show versus tell so that it doesn't get bogged down in exposition but it also doesn't weigh down the chapter by chapter happenings with too much interlaid details.

Ariane is a GREAT character, she wasn't exactly the 100% pure saint of a soul that tempers her new vampire self but she had her innocence and she had her principles. That, combined with meeting the right -and the wrong- people in her early vampirehood helped mold her character by letting her see who she wanted to be and who she didn't. From there she just created the method by which she would become that person and watching her try to stick to it with mixed success is a enjoyable journey.

The grammar is excellent and the prose competent. It draws you in by being not too plain but not excessively flowery or confusing either. Dramatic where it needs to be and blunt when necessary.

 

Honestly, just as said in the title, this is just a great vampire story.

Raiooku
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A good story with an unusual writing style

Reviewed at: 28. Like Herding Cats pt. 1

At first I was a bit overwhelmed by the writing style and the usage of words such as "ubiquitous", "pugilist" and "praenomen". If I have to take time to search some words during the reading of a chapter, it would break the flow. Luckily this wasn't the case in later chapters. The chapters have some older words in them, but most are still well known, so I don't have to take time to search for them. I actually started liking the fact it's written in a more archaic style. Insults used in this story like harlot are more fun than insults such as slut. I like how the author has decided to bring back these old-fashioned insults. The style of writing itself is good too. Enough is described without getting boring.

The story itself is also very good. I'm sure everyone is familiar with the typical sparkling vampire plot, but the author has done a good job of writing a darker vampire story with interesting characters. I'm also happy the protagonist is a realistic woman. She doesn't fall in love with the first hunk, and is capable on her own. I'm also happy sensitive subjects such as rape are still touched upon in the story, since it's realistic for her to get unwanted advances from men. 

Overall, this story is very unique in its style and plot, I haven't seen anything like it online before, and I hope the author will keep continue updating the story!

 

hopolite15
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 I have read lots of stories on this site, but this story stands out as one of the best. I am not really of fan of vampire fiction, but I was bored and saw it was trending so I gave it a chance. That was a VERY good decision.  Mecanimus is a very talented author and has created a believable 1800s setting and a main character that is very intresting that is finding her place in the world. The author has also avoided filling the story with info dumps that lesser authors on this site do way too much. If you are still reading this review, stop and start reading the story. You wont regret it!

Serpentine13
  • Overall Score

The first chapter read in a very stiffly structured manner and put me off initially, but rapidly improved after. I ended up rationalising it as her being in her drone state.

I binged this story in a couple days. Worth reading, especially if you're looking for a decent vampire story. So far no romance, thankfully, and if there is later on it seems unlikely to be a focus.

My only complaint would be how the main character seems to morph, personality-wise, immediately after her time in servitude in a way that felt a tad forced. I'm looking forward to following this story though.

Update: This story has been worth the Patreon subscription.

Daja Akeno
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Beautifully dark & savagely bloodthirsty.

Reviewed at: 44. Daydreaming

Vampires are popular for a reason , lets not act like they aren't . This story is one very good reason for why we all love vampires. It sets a unique standard that ups the bar for vampires in general and it rightly deserves its place at the top. 10/10 story.

PaladinOfCosh
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A Trek through Crimson and Night Done Right!

Reviewed at: 42. The Cruel Seas

This review is spoiler-free.

 

Overall, this is a really well-done webnovel with engaging characters and dialogue that come together for an entertaining journey. The main characters progress and evolve with the flow of the story and the world's history is normally integrated into the story quite nicely. 

 

Ariane is compelling and cool but not overpowered, leading to some fun action with some real stakes. She makes allies, friends, and enemies that all come together for interesting character dynamics. I would write more here, but I want my review to be spoiler-free.

 

The grammar is mostly on-point. There's little mishaps here and there, but nothing so egregious that it breaks the flow of the story. 

 

But there's one thing that is dragging this down from a 4.5 or 5 star, in my opinion: the style. I'm a big fan of prose. Prose, at its best, also helps to convey the meaning of the story through sentence structure, type, etc. as well as word choice. This prose is mostly all over the place, especially in the beginning. In the first few chapters, it seems like the author is trying to lightly emulate Victorian English writing, which feels stretched. Mark Twain would be a better person to emulate, seeing as how he's American and his novels take place one state over. Additionally, it isn't very well-done. Victorian writing is more than just word choice, it's a way of thought, and this misses the mark. Thankfully, the author drops this pretty quickly (5 or so chapters in), which makes the reading much more pleasant. Once Mecanimus gets into the groove of things and drops the Victorian-ish stuff, the writing really picks up in quality.

 

My other complaint is also stylistic, but more of a personal thing than a true, glaring flaw. This is taking place in 19th century Louisiana, normally right around New Orleans. The author seems semi-aware of this, but not fully so. This stretch of American history, the antebellum South, is one of the most romanticized periods and has its own mythology. There's tons of books, plays, movies, and TV shows that focus on it. Additionally, there's a lot of history taking place in this time period. So what does all this matter? If the author wants to ignore the historical and literary precedents of their geographical location, who cares? Let them write a vampire book!

 

Well, no. It matters because the author has already built this into the mythos of their own work, but I think it could be done better. The one foot in the water attempt with historical fantasy is what gets me, because I think the novel doesn't have enough cred to be throwing around loaded terms like "coolie" without exploring why that word exists. And the book flirts a lot with being a bit more historical, or a bit less so. Both of which are fine. But to really earn the right to talk about runaway slaves, antiquated asian stereotypes, or some of the other subjects touched on, there needs to be more groundwork done on the setting, otherwise it comes off wrong. The other point I mentioned, the literary tradition surrounding the city of New Orleans and the antebellum South, I mainly throw out there because it feels like a missed opportunity sometimes. This is a really rich setting, and it feels so neglected at times. Not just the city, but in general. For instance, there's an enclosed space in Chapter 40 that is given no description besides being "as large as a warehouse" and contains four cages. Considering that this is an action setpiece, I would like to know a little bit more about the arena. This isn't the only time that I personally, felt that physical descriptions were a bit too sparse for me to get a good sense of the action, or even place. The settings are rarely given much detail. Even Ariane's house, which is the single longest-lasting physical location isn't given a good description. But overall, this didn't really affect my reading.

 

I think this is a good webnovel that I'll be keeping track of. My criticisms aren't meant to discourage, and I think this one deserves a lot of praise and to do well!

sarvashaktimaan
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This made me develop inferiority complex

Reviewed at: 30. Charm

As an author myself, this fiction made feel unreasonably inferior.

I absolutely love it.

Susurrus
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Amazing. I started it as something to pass an hour at lunch and couldn't stop till I had finished. Both well written and captivating. Well done. And thank you

turnas
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Would climb trees with protagonist

Reviewed at: 26. Self-Discovery

Protagonist likes hunting, vampiring, and guns.  Born too early for prom dresses or moon pies, she combines a tomboyish streak with a proper background.  Excellent for sneaking off and climbing trees with after church.  On.y 4.5/5 as despite the protagonist ACTUALLY climbing trees, she is kinda dead.  Makes explaining things a bit awkward.

RichyDaMan
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Binged all available chapters, excellent story, much better than other vampire stories on RR, would recommend