Blood Dance in the Dust Bowl
Quique "Oruga" Juarez
Prince's Childe, the Caterpillar
Oruga is Malice’s childe and fulfills the role of her Caterpillar. Appropriately, he has strong connections to the underworld, specifically dealing with finding, moving and dealing drugs. He’s not too hands-on with it anymore — he has lackeys that do the work. He spends most of his time smooth-talking vampires in Elysium or pretty mortals at his infamous private parties. He always has some good stuff there, and knows exactly how much he can jack up a mortal without killing them, yet getting a really wicked high off the blood. He’s always had some narcissistic tendencies, but his Embrace into the Malkavians seem to amplified it — he always has a charming word ready for anyone, but behind it there are covetous glances given to the ranking Kindred, and contemptuous ones ready for anyone lesser.
He is seldom seen without a hoodie, even in the summer heat, and a particular favorite of his is well-worn and features an emblazoned green caterpillar. Though handsome, he rarely shows his face.
Despite his mother’s most fervent wishes that he would turn out better than the father that abandoned them, Oruga never walked a very good path. His mother was a waitress in a Mexican cantina that let herself get charmed by an American tourist. He promised to marry her and take her over into America, and she believed him. They were together for a summer, and he promised that, at the end, he and his friends that he’d come to Mexico on vacation with would help her make the crossing. When the summer ended and she was pregnant, the promises vanished along with the Americans.
She eventually made her own way across, the hard way, the legal way, and she raised her son with the best she could provide on her nurse’s salary. Oruga just refused to make life easy for his mother. He was in fights and in and out of detention the entire way through elementary school, and in high school, the fights began involving knives and detention just wasn’t punishment enough for dealing pot in the parking lot. Juvie didn’t do him any favors — it just taught him where to get the better drugs.
At an age when most kids are getting their feet wet in college, Oruga was modifying cars for drug runs and establishing a massive tolerance for all manner of illicit substances. He was quick, efficient, discreet and could hold his own in a firefight if it came to it — and had a mom that would bail him out of jail no matter how screwed up he got and lied to the police for him over and over again. As Oruga’s reputation climbed, his apartments got nicer and nicer, and the parties just kept getting crazier.
They got so crazy, eventually a vampire or two would show up. One of them found his favorite old caterpillar hoodie and his vintage hookah to be a little too picture-perfect, and next thing he knows, he’s the latest addition to a warped Alice in Vampland adventure.
He’s pretty okay with the vampire stuff. He got killed by a real hottie and then brought back, and he’s got the power of an immortal at his command. He doesn’t have to drug-run anymore — he’s moved up into management and can easily get cronies to do the legwork now. The money’s rolling in, and he can still throw all the crazy parties he wants — fuck up a vessel with enough juice, and he can still get as mind-altered as he wants.
Sometimes, though, he wonders how his mom’s doing.