In the blackest heart of Romania, deep in the Carpathian Mountains, there looms a place where shadows dwell, and no living soul dares to venture out beyond dusk for fear of what lurks in the darkness.
From the Journal of Jonathan Harker
Darkness descends upon the land to wrap the world in night's black embrace. The restless dead stir in their ancient tombs and creatures, born of shadow, rise to quench their savage hungers. Whispers echo from the crypt, beckoning with the promise of dark desire. And those who heed their call are forever lost in the night.
As I approached Castle Dracula, I heard a growling voice that seemed to come from the nightmarish gargoyles that roosted upon the tower above.
We are the sentinels of stone.
We are the guardians at the gateway of shadows.
We are the watchers in the night.
None shall trespass here.
I have met Count Dracula, and though he has welcomed me into his castle domain, I feel a sensation of menace within its confines. My host has been gracious and charming, yet I feel uneasy when he is near. His ancient castle is magnificent, although dank, gloomy and strewn with cobwebs, and I always have the strange sensation that I am being watched, even when I am alone. One evening, wolves began to bay from somewhere in the distant forest. Dracula, who was at first held rapt by their call, turned from the window and said...
"Listen to them—the children of the night.
What music they make."
I am a prisoner here in this God-forsaken castle, kept against my will by forces that compell me towards darkness. I hear their songs and whispers at night coming from the graveyard and the catacombs below. Their voices are like dark angels, beckoning me to the cold, dank crypt, yet I dare not succumb to their siren's call for fear of losing my immortal soul.
Through my window, I watched as a gypsy caravan made it's way to the castle. But, alas, the gypsies are of no help and cannot be trusted. While most of them fear Dracula and shun his accursed castle domain, some are in leauge with the fiend. As I crept through the halls, an old Romany crone grabbed me by the wrist and, in a harsh whisper, the hag croaked an ominous warning.
From dusk till dawn, beware night's call,
For Nightmares rise as shadows fall—
Wolves howl and wail 'neath moonlit skies,
And grim things harken to their cries—
The restless dead and souls forsaken,
From their deathly sleep, awaken—
And things that shun the light of day,
Prowl the night in search of prey—
Letter from Doctor Abraham Van Helsing
Heed my instructions closely for your mission is dire and it is no simple task to slay this creature of darkness. You must first find his resting place, a coffin surrounded by his native soil. The creature's powers will be diminished during the daylight hours. This is the time to strike. Arm yourself with holy water, a blessed crucifix, a heavy mallet and a stake carved of ashen wood. The stake must be driven through the creature's heart. Then the body must be decapitated and the remains burned to cinder.
Harker's Final Entry
I have been joined by Dr. Van Helsing. Together we found the vampire's lair in the deepest regions of the catacombs. An inscription above the ancient crypt reads: "Beware, ye who dare to venture where angels fear to tread." May God be with us on our mission.