This article or section contains spoilers for 2021 novel Rafael.
Proceed with caution.
Hector is twenty-something, handsome man with smooth-features, pale brown skin, and greenish-gray eyes that are arrogant, defiant, enraged, and hiding fear when he feels Anita's ardeur through Rafael.
History within series
Hector's mother Suelita is one of the 'sexy, crazy, unstable women' that Rafael used to date, and who wanted to be Rafael's queen. She became pregnant with Hector right around the time her relationship with Rafael ended, but married someone else, which indicates that she didn't believe that the child was Rafael's or she would have offered a paternity test. Whichever the case, there are no born wererats, so Hector has presumably earned his place among the rodere through fighting, as those who fail to do so after being turned get killed. He doesn't live in St. Louis and his clan leader is called Victor.
Hector shows enough promise that he's one of the people whom Rafael considers taking under his wing to be groomed as his follower. Micah has been invited to witness these young fighters at some earlier time, and disagrees with this assessment. Micah thinks that Hector is a skilled fighter, but not good enough thinker to become a worthy successor. Hector doesn't keep Rafael in nearly as high regard as the other way around either, apparently belonging among the large number of wererats outside of St. Louis who think Rafael is sliding too deeply under the thumb of Anita and Jean-Claude and taking all the rats there as well. It comes as something of a surprise when Hector makes his challenge to Rafael's throne earlier than anyone expected, and initially Rafael fears that it's Victor who has put Hector up to it, hoping that Hector will allow the combined rat nation to fall into individual independent kingdoms again, as they were before Rafael united them all under his rule.
Rafael is initially hesitant to fight and kill Hector, as Suelita calls him after the challenge is made and drops the paternity bomb, making excuses for why she hadn't done so earlier and why Hector doesn't know. After Rafael finally tells other people about this everyone else finds the whole thing highly suspect, but Rafael really wants it to be true. During the events of the novel he is approaching the fight thinking that he doesn't want to kill his son and a promising future leader of his people. They are still arguing about the matter when Anita raises ardeur with Rafael, potentially for the last time ever, and at his request draws power from all the rats like many times before, even if that will likely make Hector even more convinced that Rafael needs to go. Hector is already in the city and as such should be more affected than usual, but surprisingly enough manages to resist ardeur when it first washes over the rat population. When Anita tries to insist, she discovers that Hector is an animal to call to some master vampire who doesn't belong to Jean-Claude and is powerful enough to hide their presence from him. This revelation changes things, and it becomes crucial that Rafael wins the fight.
When Anita finally meets Hector in person it turns out that in addition to being homophobic, as Rafael warned, Hector also doesn't have any respect for women or their right to choose who they want to sleep with. He also seems vastly more interested in power than in gaining it the right way, respecting the rodere traditions. All in all it calls Rafael's judgement in question, as Hector's fighting skills seem to be the only thing he has going for him as a potential future leader. It would be nice to think that Rafael is seeing Hector through rose-colored glasses thanks to the potential paternity, but it seems apparent that Rafael already considered Hector a potential successor for a good while before the challenge was made and Rafael was informed of the possibility.
Hector's personal attitude problems become secondary when they learn that Hector's master is none other than Padma, Master of Beasts, who has character faults of his own in droves. Padma already tried to enslave the wereanimals of St. Louis once and tortured Rafael because he wouldn't hand the rats over. There is no universe in which Padma would be a better master over the rodere than Jean-Claude, except for Hector personally, and even there the benefits would likely be imaginary and turn to dust if Padma actually ended up on the top. Padma's previous animal to call, Gideon, certainly didn't seem to particularly enjoy the experience. Padma also doesn't have any interest in resisting interfering with Hector and his actions, which makes him seem somewhat mercurial as some of his comments and observations come from himself and others are clearly spoken through him by Padma, who is in some ways significantly more intelligent than Hector, but also doesn't understand or respect the rodere culture and traditions enough to be able to formulate and implement a plausible plan for taking his revenge on Anita, Jean-Claude, and the people of St. Louis.
After some boasting and threats Hector tries to scare Anita away from the fighting pits by claiming that the men she loves are fighting for their lives elsewhere, although that is immediately proven false by the other people present who can smell the lie. Then he moves on to the stadium itself to have a pre-fight support gathering and propaganda session against Rafael via microphones. Padma continues to feed his power into Hector's voice, something that Padma himself has only learned to do after absorbing some power from the Mother of All Darkness, and at the same time sabotages his own efforts by disrespecting the rodere traditions and values and failing to explain Hector's earlier comments and actions when Rafael throws them back to Hector's face. He even unintentionally challenges Anita, Claudia, and Pierette to fight against him three-to one if he were to be successful against Rafael, and pushes at an old woman, who should be protected from violence by her age alone as to survive to an old age among the rodere is an accomplishment worthy of their respect. By the time the actual fight starts everybody knows without a question that Hector is a vampire's puppet, although that does not make any difference for the challenge. It only means that were Hector to win, he would be drowning in challenges in turn.
Although Hector is indeed a formidable opponent, Rafael is still better, and almost manages to deliver a killing blow even if Padma is blocking Rafael's healing and boosting Hector's. The fight is agreed to be single blade and claws, but when Padma levitates Hector out of reach of the killing blow that's too much for the rats. Anita and others are allowed to enter the sands to subdue Hector, but they aren't allowed to kill him, as the rodere's brujas want to deal with Padma first. Once they do that with Anita's help, Hector doesn't survive the death of his master.