Image Credit: Castlevania (1997) Image description: Alucard holding a sword and wearing a flowing black cape. End description.
One of the more famous Dhampirs is one of Dracula's children. His name is Alucard. He's a nepo baby if ever there was one. I mean, look at how many links on his Wikipedia page are blue! He's also a traitor. He ganged up on The Count with a bunch of vampire hunters which is an unforgiveable crime against vampirekind. It also makes the holidays a little awkward, but, you know. I'm sticking my neck out by saying this but he's not a bad kid. I've only met him a few times but I know him pretty well. He's got a lot going on. That's all.
Exactly what is sounds like: someone who is half vampire.
The offspring of a human and a vampire is sometimes referred to as a Dhampir.
Dhampirs, or half-vampires are actually pretty common. Many vampires who are born vampires are actually born of a human/vampire couple. It's becoming more common for half-vampires to identify themselves as such. In previous centuries, they would only differentiate themselves if it were undeniable. See, many half-vampires outwardly display their vampire genes the same way full vampires do. Many seem perfectly and utterly human. It does happen that there are dhampirs born who are smack in the middle of a vampire and a human. These dhampirs can often go out in the light and eat human food but cannot survive without drinking blood. Their powers are often weaker which makes it very difficult to hunt, but they are usually immune to vampire hypnosis and other vampire-related powers being used on them. Being perfectly in-between alive and undead makes being part of either species very difficult.
Of course, half-vampires are not always half-human. There are quite a few half-vampire half-werewolves running around.
And some half-vampires are not born but made. Sometimes turnings don't go quite right. Some vampire hunters have lineage so strong that their DNA itself fights off vampire genes. If one of these hunters is turned into a vampire sometimes their hunter blood will fight against the turning and counteract it. It's rare, but it happens.
Image credit: Blade II (2002) Image description: Blade from the movie Blade 2. End description.
Another famous dhampir turned hunter is Frank Blade. He wants to end vampire-kind. This self-loathing is common among dhampirs, unfortunately. See, if you try to embrace your human side and end up having to prey on humans just the same, it really fucks you up.
Blade's story is much more complicated than Alucard's. His family life is very different. Blade's father wasn't a vampire. While his mother was pregnant with him, she was killed by a vampire and the vampire enzymes got passed on to him. How this happened is anyone's guess. You human scientists aren't actively studing vampire genetics and we don't really have the resources to do it ourselves. It's not like you can advertise a clinical study to vampires openly. But I digress. Blade's desire to kill all vampires is mostly related to what happend to his mother and I feel sympathy for him but come on. I didn't kill your mom, Blade, so leave me alone.
Image credit: @ Full Moon (2008) Image description: The cover of VOL 2 of @ Full Moon by Sanami Matoh. End description.
Marlo is half vampire and half werewolf. She and I are good friends. For some unknown reason, during the full moon Marlo does not change forms from human to animal. Instead, she changes sexes. Marlo is genderfluid and shapeshifts from male to female during the full moon.
Does it bother him? No. Does he know why it happens? Also no. Vampire and werewolf genetics combined do interesting things, it seems. There could also be other magic at play. There's a lot we know but there's a lot we don't.
One thing is for certain, Marlo is an unusual half-vampire. But that doesn't bother them at all.
Image credit: Katee Robert Image description: The cover of the book Court of The Vampire Queen. End description.
Perhaps for the same reasons that they love vampires? Maybe it's the idea that they could be a vampire without knowing that enthralls them so much? Whatever the reason, there are a plethora of stories about dhampirs and their parents.
Image credit: The Lost Boys (1987) Image Description: Michael Emerson wearing his sunglasses. End description.
Sometimes, a turning doesn't go as planned.
When a turning is incomplete, a human can be turned into what is also known as a half-vampire. These half-vampires are NOT the same as dhampirs. Dhampirs are born, not made.
This is what happened to one, Michael Emerson.
Michael's turning was incomplete, which is why he never turned into a fully-fledged vampire and only got some of his vampiric abilities. This is also why he was able to return to his humanity. Full vampires cannot be changed back but halfsies can SOMETIMES.
Michael was one of many half-vampires, but he wasn't what we traditionally call a "true" half-vampire. He was born and lived 99.9% of his life a human. This form of half-vampirism is mostly an in-between stage that can last mere days or even mere minutes. Michael never took his final steps into vampirism and instead leapt back into humanity. I can't blame him, but I can't call him a half-vampire without a ton of footnotes.