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       Vampire Academy: The Ultimate Guide, p.1

           Richelle Mead
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Vampire Academy: The Ultimate Guide

  Table of Contents

  Title Page

  Copyright Page


  CHAPTER 1 - Vampire Academy

  CHAPTER 2 - Frostbite

  CHAPTER 3 - Shadow Kriss

  CHAPTER 4 - Blood Promise

  CHAPTER 5 - Spirit Bound

  CHAPTER 6 - Last Sacrifice


  CHAPTER 7 - Characters

  CHAPTER 8 - Love &friendship

  CHAPTER 9 - Allies & Monsters

  CHAPTER 10 - The Quiz

  CHAPTER 11 - Glossary

  Vampire Academy: The Ultimate Guide


  Published by the Penguin Group

  Penguin Young Readers Group

  345 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014, U.S.A.

  Penguin Group (USA) Inc., 375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014, U.S.A.

  Penguin Group (Canada), 90 Eglinton Avenue East, Suite 700, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M4P 2Y3

  (a division of Pearson Penguin Canada Inc.)

  Penguin Books Ltd, 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England

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  Penguin Group (Australia), 250 Camberwell Road, Camberwell, Victoria 3124, Australia

  (a division of Pearson Australia Group Pty Ltd)

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  (a division of Pearson New Zealand Ltd)

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  Johannesburg 2196, South Africa

  Penguin Books Ltd, Registered Offices: 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England

  Copyright © 2011 Richelle Mead All rights reserved

  ISBN : 978-1-101-56566-7

  Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data is available

  The scanning, uploading and distribution of this book via the Internet or via any other means without the permission of the publisher is illegal and punishable by law. Please purchase only authorized electronic editions, and do not participate in or encourage electronic piracy of copyrighted materials. Your support of the author’s rights is appreciated.

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  Vampire Academy


  The idea for Vampire Academy was first conceived back in 2006. I was already working on two adult series and really wanted to do something for young adults. Since my first two series dealt with demons and fairies respectively, I thought I’d give vampires a try in order to be different—little knowing what a phenomenon they’d become in the next year! I knew from some college courses that a lot of the best vampire mythology could be found in Eastern Europe, so I went digging around the stories from that region and eventually discovered Moroi, Strigoi, and dhampirs. Really, all I had to work with was a snippet from that myth, but I was able to build an entire culture and history for my books surrounding those three races and their interactions with each other.

  The idea of a young woman in love with her instructor was a story I’d wanted to do for some time. Rose’s character and personality were, in some ways, inspired by one of my adult characters: Eugenie from the Dark Swan series. Eugenie’s another action heroine who’s not afraid to get in a fight, but she’s a twenty-something woman who has already come to terms with who she is and who she wants to be. I began to wonder what it’d be like to write about a younger character, one who was kickass and not afraid to stand up for her beliefs but who was still growing, finding her identity, and also learning what it means to control her fighter impulses. I was fascinated by the idea of that journey. Rose and her fierce devotion to her friends were the results of my experiment, and she soon developed into the vivid and unique character we love today.

  First line: I felt her fear before I heard her screams.


  In the middle of the night, two years after running away from their boarding school, Rose Hathaway and Lissa Dragomir have been found . . . and there’s no escaping this time.

  Where are they going? Back to St. Vladimir’s Academy, the last place they want to return to. They’d run away to escape a looming threat that had put their lives at risk, and returning could mean they’ll have to face those dangers head-on.

  The majority of the students at St. Vlad’s are Moroi—peaceful, living vampires who follow a nocturnal schedule. Even though sunlight doesn’t kill them, they’re still stronger at night. All Moroi have abilities in elemental magic—earth, fire, air, or water—but in their teens, they will begin to specialize in one of the four. Also enrolled at the school are dhampirs—those who are half Moroi and half human. Dhampirs train to become the bodyguards of the Moroi after graduation, guarding them against the evil, undead Strigoi. Rose is a dhampir who’s been unofficially protecting her best friend, Lissa, a Moroi, while they’ve been out on their own. Keeping Lissa safe is Rose’s number-one goal. That they’ve been found means Rose has failed—and she’s damn mad about that.

  Rose might be tough, but she stands no chance against the ten guardians the school has sent to find them, especially the one who seems to be in charge: Dimitri Belikov. The attractive guardian stops her easily. Rose is ready to fight hard to protect Lissa but lacks the skill to go head-to-head with someone as strong and experienced as Dimitri. Rose quickly learns that Dimitri’s nobody to mess with—the proof is marked right on his skin.

  He leaned forward to pick up something, revealing six tiny symbols tattooed on the back of his neck: molnija marks. They looked like two streaks of jagged lightning crossing in an X symbol. One for each Strigoi he’d killed. Above them was a twisting line, sort of like a snake, that marked him as a guardian. The promise mark.

  —page 13

  Total badass. Too bad he’s the one dragging them back to St. Vlad’s. Anyone else, Rose might be able to handle.

  Through their psychic bond, Rose senses Lissa’s terror about going back to the school. The bond was created after the car accident that killed Lissa’s parents and brother Andre when the girls were fifteen. It only works one way, though. Rose can sense Lissa’s thoughts and feelings, but Lissa can’t do the same.

  The car accident left Lissa as the only remaining member of the Dragomir family, and therefore her continuing survival is vital to her race. The Dragomirs are one of the twelve royal Moroi families—important and influential families that rule the rest of the Moroi and from which the Moroi king or queen is chosen.

  Rose wishes she could help ease the fear her best friend feels about being discovered and captured, but there’s nothing she can do. They’re headed back to St. Vlad’s whether they like it or not.

  At the school, Headmistress Kirova calls an uncomfortable meeting to decide the girls’ fates. Unsurprisingly, the rebellious and outspoken Rose is blamed for convincing Lissa to run away from the safety of the Academy and putting her life in danger all this time, but that’s not the truth. Rose took Lissa away in order to protect her, but she can’t tell anyone that. Trust is not something Rose hands out easily.

  Joining them in the meeting is Victor Dashkov, gravely ill with Sandovsky’s syndrome, a terminal illness that afflicts Moroi. He is also from one of the royal Moroi families and had promised Lissa’s father that he’d watch out for her. He’s like an uncle to Lissa. Wh
en Dimitri reveals to those present at this meeting that the girls share a rare psychic bond—which he noticed during their capture—it’s a secret that Rose doesn’t want anyone else to know about.

  Victor shows great interest in what a bond like this could mean.

  “That is a gift,” murmured Victor from his corner. “A rare and wonderful thing.”

  “The best guardians always had that bond,” added Dimitri. “In the stories.”

  Kirova’s outrage returned. “Stories that are centuries old,” she exclaimed. “Surely you aren’t suggesting we let her stay at the Academy after everything she’s done?”

  He shrugged. “She might be wild and disrespectful, but if she has potential—”

  “Wild and disrespectful?” I interrupted. “Who the hell are you anyway? Outsourced help?”

  —pages 21–22

  Actually, some might just say the Russian’s a good judge of character. But other than that, he’s also Lissa’s sanctioned guardian now and, as such, he is invested in the Dragomir princess’s safety.

  As a novice guardian herself, Rose is way behind in her classes, which puts her at a major disadvantage compared to other students in her senior class. A bit reluctantly, Dimitri agrees to tutor Rose before and after regular classes to help her catch up. Rose doesn’t exactly like this guy—well, not yet, anyway—but she needs to stay in school in order to keep Lissa safe. And this? Well, this might be the only way she can do that. However, if she steps out of line just once, she’s out of there—and for the immediate future she’s basically on house arrest, grounded from doing anything fun or social except going to class and training with Dimitri. Looks like she’s going to have to rein in those “wild and disrespectful” ways if she wants to stay out of trouble.

  Sure. That could happen.


  Since there’s no rest for the wicked, Rose and Lissa are sent to their separate classes immediately. Classmates seem shocked to see the beautiful but rebellious Rose Hathaway back at St. Vlad’s. Rose gets a chance to reconnect with some of them, including Mason Ashford, a fellow novice guardian, who was a good friend of Rose’s before she and Lissa ran away.

  “Hey Mason, wipe the drool off your face. If you’re going to think about me naked, do it on your own time.”

  A few snorts and snickers broke the awed silence, and Mason Ashford snapped out of his haze, giving me a lopsided smile. With red hair that stuck up everywhere and a smattering of freckles, he was nice-looking, though not exactly hot. He was also one of the funniest guys I knew. We’d been good friends back in the day.

  “ This is my time, Hathaway. I ’m leading today’s session.”

  “Oh yeah?” I retorted. “Huh. Well, I guess this is a good time to think about me naked then.”

  “It’s always a good time to think about you naked,” added someone nearby, breaking the tension further. Eddie Castile. Another friend of mine.

  —page 28

  Mason gives her some info about the enigmatic Dimitri Belikov. Among the students, the Russian’s considered a god around school when it comes to fighting. She’s going to learn a lot from him—but it’s really going to hurt.

  Terrific. But if it gets her what she wants, then it’s totally worth it. She’s determined to be Lissa’s guardian after graduation, but first she’s going to have to prove herself to everyone . . . and not everyone is happy she’s back. An instructor named Stan Alto gives Rose an extra-hard time in class, reminding her harshly that she has a lot to catch up on and there are many people to whom she must prove herself. To protect Lissa, she needs to stay in school, and to stay in school she’s going to have to work damn hard.

  Later, Victor Dashkov finds Rose to tell her that he’s on her side. To him, it’s obvious that Rose kept Lissa safe all this time because she’s skilled and dedicated. He seems to know a lot about the psychic bond the girls share because he’s studied up on the subject, but he’s eager to know more. Rose feels bad for the sick man—at this point she believes he only wants the best for Lissa’s future.

  But that isn’t what everyone wants. A bitchy rival named Mia Rinaldi makes her presence known. She’s taken over Lissa’s spot with the popular “royals” at St. Vlad’s, and Lissa and Rose seem to be no longer welcome in those circles—not if Mia has anything to say about it. Mia’s even currently dating Lissa’s ex-boyfriend, Aaron, and hates both Lissa and Rose on sight. Later, they’ll learn that this hatred stems from Mia’s hurt feelings at being used and discarded by Lissa’s brother, Andre. Mia, despite having non-royal bloodlines, is determined to be a part of the popular crowd and sees Lissa as a threat.

  Great. Yet another person Rose needs to protect her friend from.

  It’s not just bitchy blond enemies who are a problem now that the girls have returned to St. Vlad’s. They’re the main focus of student gossip and rumors today. One topic everyone wants to know the answer to: What did Lissa do for blood while they were away? As a vampire, she has to drink blood regularly to survive.

  The truth is that she fed from Rose, but a dhampir giving her blood to a Moroi, even a friend in need, is viewed as big-time wrong—and dirty. There’s a nasty term for a dhampir who gives up both her neck and her body for the addictive bite of a Moroi guy—a blood whore. While what she and Lissa did isn’t nearly that bad, it’s best to keep this secret to themselves.

  Luckily, the girls are not only greeted at school by gossip, conflict, and potential enemies. They also have a few allies who are very happy they’re back, like Victor’s daughter, Natalie Dashkov, who’s been assigned as Lissa’s new roommate. She’s super boring and unpopular, which pleases Rose since it’ll help keep Lissa out of danger. Ever since the car accident, Lissa’s been very fragile—being back at school with backstabbing, fake friends—aka the popular crowd she used to socialize with—might prove too much for her. At the first sign of trouble, a worried Rose plans to get Lissa out of the school if that’s what it takes to protect her.


  But Rose can’t be with Lissa all the time—at least not physically. However, sometimes she can be pulled into Lissa’s head through their psychic connection and see and hear the world through Lissa’s eyes. That’s what happens when Lissa wanders into the school chapel’s attic in a search for solitude.

  Instead of solitude, Lissa finds Christian Ozera. Christian’s parents chose to become Strigoi—the evil, immortal enemy of Moroi. Even though he’s from a royal bloodline, this stigma has branded Christian a social outcast—not to mention a jerk—and Lissa isn’t too thrilled to be around him.

  However . . . there’s something about him that’s kind of intriguing. The taunting, snarky Christian seems very insightful, especially when he easily guesses that Lissa fed from Rose while they were away. She’s afraid he’s going to tell, to use it against her, but he’s not that kind of guy. He promises not to say a word and then magically warms the air when Lissa seems chilled—Christian’s elemental magic specialty is fire.

  Other than her secret ability to heal—which isn’t really tied to any of the four elements—Lissa hasn’t specialized in any one element yet.

  Hmmm. Lissa decides that maybe Christian’s not so bad after all, especially when he volunteers to share this secret hiding place with her whenever she wants to use it. And, you know, his ice-blue eyes are rather striking...

  When Rose snaps out of the bond, Dimitri’s in front of her and seems worried about what’s happening. His concern takes her by surprise, and she explains that it’s just the bond between her and Lissa at work. Suddenly he isn’t the hardass guy she originally met. Maybe there’s more to Dimitri than meets the eye—not that what meets the eye is bad at all. Her twenty-four-year-old instructor’s tall, dark, Russian, and . . . super hot.

  Feeling his eyes on me like that made something flutter inside of me—which was stupid, of course. I had no reason to get all goofy, just because the man was too good-looking for his own good. After all, he was an antisocia
l god, according to Mason. One who was supposedly going to leave me in all sorts of pain.

  —page 64

  Yes, pain for Rose is yet to come with Dimitri. Physical . . . and otherwise.

  Right now? Just the physical kind.

  Later, Rose makes a point to lecture Lissa about staying away from creepy Christian. If she’s interested in dating, Rose thinks she should direct her attention back to her ex, Aaron, who would be a much safer choice of potential boyfriends—plus, stealing him away from the annoying Mia would be a total bonus.

  Rose gets permission to go to church, even though she’s not exactly what you’d call religious. She just wants to do something social—being grounded sucks. There she learns in the sermon about St. Vladimir, the patron saint of the school, someone who was “filled with spirit,” which allowed him to heal the sick.

  Healing . . . just like Lissa can do.

  The priest mentions his “shadow-kissed” guardian Anna, and this also gets Rose’s attention since Ms. Karp, a former teacher, had once called Rose the same thing in reference to her connection to Lissa. She wants to know more about St. Vlad, and the priest suggests she look up the subject of Moroi saints in the library.

  Great, extra homework.

  When Mia continues to be a pest by insulting Rose’s fashion sense—which, admittedly, has slipped a bit in the past two years—Rose vents to Mason in the library about the girl who’s quickly turning into her nemesis. Mason has inside info on Mia—her parents are basically servants, working for Moroi royalty. Huh. So even though Mia acts like a princess, she sure isn’t one in real life. Putting her Mia issues aside, for the time being anyway, Rose and Mason research Moroi saints, as the priest suggested, and Rose learns that Anna and St. Vlad had a bond that allowed her to see into his heart and mind. It’s intriguing information, but over the next weeks, while training with Dimitri regularly and attending all her classes, she forgets all about it.

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