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|As a result of the New 52 in 2011, the entire line of DC characters was relaunched, incorporating properties belonging to the company's imprints: Wildstorm, Milestone, and Vertigo. As such, elements of this character's history have been altered in some way from the previous incarnation. For a complete list of all versions of this character, see our disambiguation page.|
- I'm Mary Seward. Queen of Blood. The baddest bitch who ever lived. Being a vampire gave me my powers. But being me made me awesome.
- — Mary, Queen of Blood src
In 1591, Mary Seward was a servant girl for the aristocratic Bennett family, along with being the secret lover of the son of the manor's lord, Andrew. They thought to run away together, as Andrew's father would not approve of their relationship. However, one night, he did not return, only leaving a letter to her noting that they could never be together that broke both of their hearts. A year later, he returned, but she was distraught, having been left to his father's lusts in that time. She considered his having been changed into a monster as the divine punishment that she had prayed for. He explained that he was changed, and had made himself the master of what he became - and she would become his mistress. He kissed her, then, for the first time. Not long after being turned, Mary admitted to Andrew that she planned to use her new abilities to kill those who had wronged her in life. Though he had tried to dissuade her, she left without him, leaving him to discover that she had already brutally murdered Lord Bennett just prior to his return, as revenge for raping her. By Andrew's reckoning, while his change to a vampire had unlocked "strength and compassion and power" within him, what was unlocked within Mary was "hatred and bile and evil."
By the beginnings of the 21st Century, Mary had grown tired of leaving humans alone as her kind fell into stagnation and the seemingly inevitable unremembered extinction. Amassing a group of vampires into an army she called Blood Red Moon, she sought to become a true revolutionary in the vein of "Martin Luther King and Malcolm X and Ben Franklin all rolled into one" as it had been during the American Revolutionary War, displacing humans with vampires as the top of the evolutionary ladder. Naturally, Mary wanted him to come with her, to change his mind and help lead the fight against humans, despite the emergence of superheroes. The perspective that vampirism is a disease disgusted Mary, and, after mockingly using her pre-vampirism form as an insinuation that Andrew wants her to go back to being her former demure self, she angrily transformed into the form she felt was most true to her, the naked form of the Queen of Blood. She accused him of trying to take away all that she ever was for the last four hundred years. Even so, she still loved him, and they spent the night together. The next morning, Mary had left a note announcing that today she had begun her holy war against humans.
Shortly after leaving their bed, Mary had, in a show of defiance toward Andrew as her first act of the day, drained a nearby maintenance woman of her blood. Joining her army, she ordered them to march up and out onto the streets of Boston and kill humans, and if Andrew Bennett should come and kill them, those who die will be martyrs. Despite her desire to be free, and her feelings of superiority, Mary hoped to herself that there would a better future for vampires, and that Andrew would see the error of his ways, and join her. When she faced Andrew after he had dealt with her forces around his apartment, she regretfully fought him and ordered her vampires to kill him. She knew that the horde will be unable to kill him, and merely wanted to send a message to him, a humiliation, while the horde would come to see him as the traitor to vampires he truly was, marking him for death.
Thereafter, she and her cult spread their war across the United States of America, attacking Star City, Coast City, and Los Angeles in mass abductions before Mary left a message for Andrew indicating that she was planning on attacking Gotham City next, heading there on a freight train. When Andrew came to Gotham and began looking for Mary and her vampires, he, along with Professor John Troughton, Tig Rafelson, and Batman, came face to face with her and her grown horde in the basement of the Gotham Courthouse.
Futilely, Andrew tried to talk Mary, the Queen of Blood into calling off the horde, but she merely thanked him for bringing Batman to "play with," teasing that he would make an excellent king to her queen. The vampires persisted, and Batman urged that they needed to fall back or be overtaken. Furthermore, a sizable amount of the horde was sired by another vampire, who Andrew managed to kill and free those who had not become full-bloods, to Mary's anger and anguish. When Batman explained that Mary's vampires were not worthy of death nor were they the oppressed, but were instead criminals who deserved justice, Mary merely laughed and mockingly challenged him to arrest her. As he knew that she could turn intangible, he instead wrapped her in a magically charged piece of rope that would hopefully subdue her with a shock long enough to have Zatanna deal with her, the rope had little effect beyond a brief shock, and he was tossed aside, with the preparation to turn him to a vampire as well. As Andrew distracted her briefly, she saw as Tig killed him, making Mary laugh as she realized that Tig did not know his death would not stop her in any way, having been turned for far longer than the three-day mark. However, to their surprise, his death fulfilled his destiny as the "Demon's Lock," unleashing Cain, Sire of All Vampires upon the Earth once more.
Following the rise of Cain, the original vampire took control of the Cult of the Blood Red Moon away from Mary. In fact, this point aggravated her, and she tried to confront Cain, but his power proved to be too much for her. On that point, she turned against Cain altogether, taking sides with the Justice League Dark and Batman in order to face down her former children and prevent Cain from taking over the world. Still, her efforts in her monstrous form were for naught, as Cain used his powers to remove the vampires' weaknesses, even as she fought alongside the magic users.
Upon Andrew's resurrection and his ability to both turn Cain's vampires to dust and restore them to attack Cain, an excited Mary rushed to her lover's side, who admitted to the error of his ways and had the vampires attack their original sire before decapitating him. Soon after Cain's destruction, Mary sought to use her army as she once had intended, but Andrew put a stop to that by removing the memory of all of the events of Cain's rise from the consciousness of everyone but Tig, who had caused them in the first place. He followed this by giving a mission to John, then leaving with Mary and their vampires to build their empire anew.
In the Utah desert, Mary worked with Andrew to control the mass that was nearly every vampire in North America. When Andrew returned after a brief time away from the commune, Mary intercepted him and attempted to convince him to just let the vampires feed on humans. As a result, Andrew faced the assembled, announcing that they were free to feed as they wish to - if they could beat him in a fight. Only Mary called out, and taking up his offer, with the terms being that if she defeated him, she would get her army back, but if she lost, she would die.
After quite some time, the lovers were still at a stalemate. Andrew's power may not last forever, and Mary promised that she would keep fighting until she set him right or left him dead. However, they were startled by the imminent firebombing they faced at the hands of the Order of the Van Helsings, whom Andrew had John and Tig contact for him, to Mary's anger. In defiance of Andrew's order otherwise, Mary had the vampires attack the coming Van Helsings and kill them many at a time, but the fanatics rose again as mummies due to their Anubis necklaces. As the fight went on, Mary was present as Andrew mercilessly tortured Van Helsing before his death, and realized that those who her vampires were biting were cursing the vampires with their own necklaces through their blood, turning them into vampire zombie vampire hunters. As Stormwatch entered the battle when Mary and Andrew's group were attempting to kill as many of the vampires as they could (having been frozen by Andrew's magic), and Tig was bitten by one of the zombie vampires, Andrew was convinced to use his magic to again become a Demon's Lock, using his magic to absorb all of the vampires into his own body. Though the process turned him into a truly evil vampire (and the only one remaining a vampire at all), Mary was reverted to pure humanity for the first time in approximately five hundred years.
Two months after she and John had to retreat back to Boston and away from Andrew and Tig's assault on Stormwatch, Mary lost her drive to do evil, and instead merely wanted to be held by the man she loved, though that was obviously not possible at the moment. She and John Troughton were trying, perhaps futilely, to find any lead on saving Andrew; to get him back. Going for a walk through the Boston streets, she was mugged, knocked unconscious. Awakening, she tore through his lip with her teeth, showing both to him and herself that while she was no longer supernaturally empowered, she was still the same, dangerous woman, further proving it by impaling his head against a spike of splintered wood. Returning to John, she told her plan to seek out the man who sired Andrew, the Demon's Lock, in an attempt to save him. However, she was aware, much to her annoyance, that one woman knew Andrew better than she: Deborah Dancer, who she finds, alongside John, in Maine, in the process saving her from Andrew and Tig, the former aiming to turn her as Mary herself could not due to his post-resurrection ability to change the rules of vampirism. She and John ended up burning down Deborah's cottage to escape with her, needing to leave her dog Mishkin behind as a sacrifice to cover for their escape. Escaping back to Boston, they told Deborah of their need for her help, how Deborah was necessary due to knowing Andrew as he was, rather than in Mary's case, how she wished he would be.
Going together to Bennett's Wood, Andrew's family's former land in Glastonbury, England, Mary and her two companions attempted to raise a spectral impression of Andrew's death using Native American magic in order to see who turned him. The spell raised a specter of Bartholomew, Andrew's former carriage driver, who could not say much of the killer, but upon realizing that he had died and been raised by black magic, remarked that Lord Bennett, Andrew's father, had been right to warn Andrew away from Mary. As she had thought Andrew had never gotten the nerve to tell his father about her, Mary was shocked, and realized that the note he had sent to her had been after he had turned, and that he had always intended to be with her. Trying to retrace Andrew's steps after the accident in hopes of finding some clue, Mary and company were surprised to find Cain, now a human, who admitted to being Andrew's sire.
As Cain told his life story, Mary became frustrated with its slow pace, eager to know what could be done to turn Andrew back to his old non-evil self. Grumpily, she stormed out, grumbling to herself until she was interrupted by John Constantine, who offered his help despite their animosity on account of him being part of the Justice League Dark, and revealed Andrew's current whereabouts and actions. Mary returned with Constantine to the others, explaining that Andrew had killed most of the Van Helsings by then and that he would be on his way to his next location, before eagerly leaving the bar where they had been listening to Cain despite his intention to finish his story and how it involved Andrew. As Constantine led the others to the House of Mystery in the hope of using it to enter the pocket dimension of the Armory within Castle Van Helsing, the door was already locked, and when opened, revealed Andrew waiting for them inside.
Despite Constantine's worry about what Andrew's control of the House meant, Mary and the others decided it did not matter, and entered anyway. She found herself alone in a dark room, surrounded by the animated corpses of all of those whom she killed, whom Constantine saved her from by making them all disappear. However, soon after rescuing her, they found themselves face to face with Andrew - and John Troughton's heart. Quickly, Constantine bound Andrew to a wall, as they sensed the gate to Hell opening, and left the corrupt vampire with Mary while he left to close it. With Andrew trapped, Mary demanded to know why he chose not to turn her. He explained that she had her chance, and failed to do anything of value with her power. Pressing against him, she suggested that together they could have done more. As they kissed, Andrew bit into her lip, hoping to turn her, but Tig arrived, decapitating her before there was any chance.
When a redeemed and renewed Andrew attempted to charge the gateway to Hell that threatened to destroy reality, Mary's spirit arrived instead and slapped him away, angrily, she warning that for all that Andrew had taken away from her, he would not take away her martyrdom too. Sent by God, she was tasked with killing Lilith and Cain, the former having possessed Tig. After the two's defeat, she admitted to Andrew that she was not to stay in the mortal realm. As they professed their love for one another, she admitted she would wait for him on the other side before disappearing.
- Vampirism: In addition to the various mental and physical benefits that vampires are heir to, they also possess the ability to turn others into vampires as well. Each new vampire is traditionally subservient to the one who "turned" them, but some strong-willed vampires have been known to rebel against their masters.
- Enhanced Senses: A vampire's senses are enhanced far beyond those of a normal human being.
- Immortality: So long as vampires continue to consume blood, they will not age beyond the physical state they were in when they first became a vampire.
- Invulnerability: Vampires are invulnerable to most forms of injury (certain exceptions apply). Bullets, blades and blunt objects do little to no damage to a vampire's body.
- Regeneration: In addition to being virtually indestructible, whatever damage a vampire does in fact suffer can be healed through the consumption of human blood.
- Superhuman Strength: A vampire's strength level is several times that of a normal human being and they are considered superhuman.
- Superhuman Stamina: So long as they continue to consume human blood, a vampire can function tirelessly without rest or relaxation. However, a vampire's stamina wanes the closer it is to sunrise.
- Psychokinesis: Most vampires possess some form of psychokinesis. Some are clairvoyant, others can communicate telepathically, some possess mind control. Particularly powerful vampires can control the minds of several people at once.
- Transformation: Vampires often possess the ability to transform into a variety of creatures or effects such as bats, wolves, rats or even mist. While their physical attributes may fluctuate during such states, a vampire's mental acuity is the same as that when they are in their human shape. A vampire who transforms into an animal may also benefit from that particular animal's attributes including razor-sharp claws, fangs or the ability to fly.
- Metamorphosis: Vampires often demonstrate the ability to alter their appearance at will.
- Energy Construct Creation: As a spirit, Mary is capable of forming dual swords of her power.
- Queen of Blood (Mary Seward) was created by J.M. DeMatteis and Tom Sutton, first appearing in House of Mystery Vol 1. However, in the rebooted Prime Earth continuity her first appearance as part of the DC Universe is in Joshua Hale Fialkov and Andrea Sorrentino's New 52 I, Vampire series.
- 24 Appearances of Mary Seward (Prime Earth)
- 23 Images featuring Mary Seward (Prime Earth)
- 6 Quotations by or about Mary Seward (Prime Earth)
- Character Gallery: Mary Seward (Prime Earth)
- I, Vampire #19
- I, Vampire #0
- I, Vampire #6
- Dark Days: The Casting #1
- I, Vampire #1
- I, Vampire #2
- I, Vampire #3
- I, Vampire #5
- I, Vampire #7
- Justice League Dark #8
- I, Vampire #8
- I, Vampire #9
- I, Vampire #10
- I, Vampire #11
- I, Vampire #12
- I, Vampire #13
- I, Vampire #14
- I, Vampire #15
- I, Vampire #16
- I, Vampire #17
- I, Vampire #18