Hello, my dear.. You are here because you want to know more about me, are you not..? Heh, well, I certainly don’t mind divulging a little bit. My name, Selene Liselore De Vries, can be heard during every social event in the city, and perhaps even beyond that. Many know me for my charm and grace, my extensive knowledge about everything worth knowing in these nights.. but not many know my true tale. And that is why you are here, no? Well, sweetheart… let’s start at the beginning..
I was born, not even that long ago, in the beautiful city of Leiden. The 13th of June, which makes me a Gemini. Never put that much stock into horoscopes, but I have always felt.. an emptiness. Like a part of me was missing. Perhaps a twin, that I never had.. But, three years after my birth, life did give me a beautiful baby sister, Soe. I loved her from the moment she was born, and always felt an intense need to protect her.
We grew up, for the most part, happily with our parents, in the family mansion. Me and Soe.. we never had a want for anything. Our parents came from wealth, and we enjoyed the best schooling and care possible. Even though we went to school just like other children our age, we always seemed to have trouble connecting with others. So, we mostly stuck together, and ignored everything that could threaten to pull us apart.
Things were wonderful, for a while. Our father, Arjen, had a difficult personality. He was prone to indulging in pleasures such as gambling and drinking. He seemed to believe the family’s riches were infinite, and loved the thrill of risky investments. One in particular went incredibly sour and, seemingly overnight, we lost nearly all of our fortune. I was in shock, in denial. I had come so used to being able to live in safety, in luxury. All of that, gone, in an instant.
Thankfully, we were still able to stay in the mansion, but it quickly fell into disrepair with all of our staff gone. Life as we had known it, however, was over.. Dad.. couldn’t cope. With no wealth left to gamble away, he took to his other vice; drinking. It was so hard to see him like this.. Despite his faults, he had always been a good father. But fuelled by his alcoholism, he turned into an abusive shell of his former self. His lust and rage amplified by the addiction, he directed it onto me and Soe. I.. did what I had to. Did everything I could to protect my dear sister. But any pain I could spare her, was worth the violent abuse.
Sadly, things only got worse over the years. Our mother, Carolien, couldn’t cope either. For years, she had been a loving, caring mother. But seeing her life collapse around her, the way her husband harmed.. violated her daughters, with nothing she could do about it.. it destroyed her. Instead of showing it outwardly, she let it wreck her psyche, and she fell into a deep psychosis. Without much ceremony, she was sent to a mental hospital in Eastern Europe. The day she left, was also the last time I’ve ever seen her. I have thought about visiting, but I wouldn’t want to agitate her fragile condition by revealing myself. Revealing the.. monster, that I have become..
At this point, our corrupted household was completely isolated from the outside world. Father pulled me and Soe out of school, and kept us in the house at all times. He’d cut ties with nearly all family, friends and associates. There was only one business partner who kept visiting, even in these dark times; Sean Beckstrand. We had seen him before, he would check in every few years and stay for a few days, discussing business with father. After the family’s downfall, his visits became increasingly more common. Eventually, he was around more often than not. In this same year, Soe had run away from home, to seek peace in the city of Amsterdam. I.. never blamed her. Truthfully, I’d have done the same, if not for fear holding me back. If I would leave, what would stop father from seeking her out? So I stayed, hoping I could still continue keeping Soe safe, by keeping our abuser content.
Months went by, until we were one day graced by another visit from Mister Beckstrand. I was called downstairs, to see him and father waiting for me. And to see my sweet, poor sister, bound and gagged, tears streaking her face, sitting on the decaying wooden panels of the living room. I saw something flash through my father’s eyes; guilt, regret. He muttered something about there ‘being no other way’, and turned away to discuss with Beckstrand. I huddled up with Soe, wiping away her tears and stroking her hair gently, while the men discussed the transaction. Whatever happened, I knew I had to protect my sister.
When we were taken away, however, I quickly learned the futility of that notion. Upon arriving at the man’s studio in Amsterdam, he didn’t waste any time. Almost casually, he drained our bodies of blood, and fed us a portion of his own. I, of course, was shocked at the supernatural reveal, but I was mostly concerned with struggling against my bounds as I saw the life leave my sister’s body. For as much as I cried out while I saw, what I then believed to be, my sister dying.. I was completely apathetic while he let my own blood flow into him. After everything… I welcomed death.
The next evening, I awoke to Soe’s grinning face hovering over me. It took me a moment to realise that I wasn’t, in fact, dead. We were quite alive, and…terribly hungry. Surprisingly, our new Sire took good care of us. Compared to our lives before, at least. He taught us much about what we know were, about Kindred society, our powers. As much as the pain of the past weighed down on us, we were together, and the abused had stopped. Slowly, I started to feel more at peace, more in control. Me and my sister flourished under the Toreador’s care, and we quickly became known by the undead population of Amsterdam.
For a few short years, things seemed to be looking up. That was, until our Sire revealed his true plans. He wanted to made good in his investment and use Soe as an unwilling escort, to satisfy his clients with more..unsavoury tastes. I.. couldn’t let my sister befall this fate again. Determined to keep her safe, I did.. what I had to. Making it all seem like a terrible accident, I staked Sean in his slumber, and dragged out this body to be engulfed in flames in the sun. I never told Soe the truth, but somewhere she must’ve known. Mr. Beckstrand’s final death wasn’t investigated much. Everyone assumed he would come to his end like this one day, with the way he ran his businesses. Besides, at this point, most prominent Kindred in the city were quite taken with me and Soe.
Things moved very quickly, then. It turned out Soe and me inherited all of our Sire’s assets, including the studio and nightclub, Static. We ran it together, successfully, for a few years. The club prospered under new management, and we started to hold regular soiree’s in the gallery. Amsterdam’s current Prince, Maria Vanderhoff, and I reached an understanding of sorts. Though shaky at times, I don’t mind working for her for the most part.
Soe, however, wasn’t satisfied. She couldn’t stand being the country, and we said our goodbyes. Long stretches of time go by where I don’t hear from her, but I am confident that she’s able to take care of herself, now. She travels all over the world, and seems to be doing well for herself in North America, at the present.
I miss her, a lot. But I have my Childe, now. While it is a different love than you might have for family, it does truly feel like… I found my twin, in this life.