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Vampire-footer.png Spoilers: Crimson Death
This article or section contains spoilers for 2016 novel Crimson Death.
Proceed with caution.
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Vampire-footer.png Spoilers: Serpentine
This article or section contains spoilers for 2018 novel Serpentine.
Proceed with caution.
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"Rodrigo is petty, cruel, and nearly honorless, but he is not weak."
—Hamish[src]

Rodrigo is an antagonistic member of the Harlequin introduced in Crimson Death. He is one of the wereleopard triplets with Rodina and Ru. Rodrigo is a sadist and a serial killer with a preference for slow, painful deaths. Their original vampire master hasn't been named.

Appearance[]

Looked about 17-year-old but had the shoulder span of an adult man. Rodrigo had a spattering of freckles across cheeks and short baby-fine white-blond hair which made him look like a sit-com extra from the fifties. He was shorter than Domino, and had black eyes like caves that reminded Anita of Olaf (judging from description, he wasn't mentioned by name).

Rodrigo was wearing a white button-up shirt and a well fitting dark suit as a disguise of a member of hotel security. He managed to hide somewhere a presumably magical blade described thus: "It looked like a short sword, but the blade was almost pyramid shaped and the blade wasn’t . . . It seemed heavier and oddly shaped."

Compared to his siblings, Rodrigo looked almost identical to Ru except for the eyes, which are softer on Ru. Rodina looks like a cross-dressing but clearly female version of Rodrigo with teasing hardness in her eyes. We never saw Rodrigo without clothes, but his body type presumably matched Ru's lean and muscular form. Ru resembles a long-distance runner who lifts weights, complete with an eight-pack. Ru, and presumably also Rodrigo, is a bit shorter than Nathaniel's 5'9".

History[]

Crimson Death[]

We met Rodrigo in Ireland when Anita had retreated to a hotel room to feed ardeur with Domino, with Ethan as a bodyguard in a connected room. Rodrigo and Hamish gained access by pretending to be hotel security sent due to noise complaints. Once inside they attacked without a warning.[1]

Domino proved to be a difficult opponent, and Rodrigo struck Domino down with a magical sword through the lungs to end the fight before Ethan could interfere. Rodrigo then beat Ethan in turn and left him hanging unconscious against a door, pinned with a knife through his shoulder. Hamish realized Domino was Anita's animal to call and told Rodrigo not to kill Domino, but he bled to death shortly after Rodrigo wrenched the sword out.[2]

Anita's screams didn't concern Rodrigo after all the loud sex, but he enjoyed seeing her pain. He had been sent to kidnap her so killing her wasn't an option yet, but hurting her was. He helped Hamish to drug her, and Hamish had to warn her she shouldn't look to him for protection from Rodrigo. He underlined the threat by revealing Domino's death was slow on purpose. Anita struggled anyway, and Rodrigo ended up slapping her hard. The struggle brought him close enough for Anita to finally recognize him as a leopard.[2]

Rodrigo taunted Anita and then amused himself by force-feeding her some of Domino's blood. It caused Anita to metaphysically marry a clan tiger, fulfilling the tiger prophecy, and made her the true heir of the Mother of All Darkness and the Father of the Dawn. Just before losing consciousness, Anita managed to unwittingly bind Rodrigo as her leopard Bride, and through him the whole triplet.[2]

Anita got taken to M'Lady regardless, but the triplet helped Anita and Nathaniel to escape at the first opportunity. Rodrigo got a free pass from Anita's revenge until they got to safety and led the escape, and for lack of better options pretended to be Anita's date outside in the view of tourists. He tried his best to protect Anita's safety and feelings, and when the Selkies pursued them in overwhelming numbers the triplets fought back the best they could. Rodrigo tried to explain about the prophecy, but had to return to the fight.[3]

When the darkness fell the Selkies retreated to give way for the vampires, allowing the triplets to escort Anita and Nathaniel to a haunted tower. Rodrigo scared away a tour guide by pulling a gun just before the vampires arrived. In the ensuing melee Keegan attempted to shoot Anita, Nathaniel, and Damian with a shotgun, but Rodrigo jumped in the way and shot back. He killed Keegan but got chest blown open in turn. Before dying Rodrigo finished explaining about the prophecy: the original translations spoke of joining of life forces—not marriage after all, but sacrifice and drinking blood of her animal to call. Rodrigo felt the power shift at that moment, before Anita accidentally claimed them as Brides.[4]

Afterwards Anita felt conflicted about owing her life to Rodrigo when she would have killed him anyway, had he survived the fight.[5]

Serpentine[]

Rodrigo is mentioned several times in this novel as we learn more about his siblings. We get early on a short recap of the torture, death of Domino, the escape from M'Lady, and Rodrigo sacrificing his life to save Anita and Nathaniel. It's reiterated that she would have killed him anyway for killing Domino, so it's good that his new instincts as her Bride saved her the trouble. But however accidental the binding was presented in the previous novel, here she is mentioned as having learned enough control and understanding over the process to not tie herself emotionally to the triplets like she did with Nicky. It's possible that all of that worked subconsciously in her favor.[6]

The triplets, on the other hand, aren't so lucky in the deal. Anita can't forget that they all were willing participants in the kidnapping and torture scheme, and Ru looks too much like Rodrigo for Anita's comfort. They are also grieving for their brother, and Anita's inability to forgive Rodrigo doesn't help, however useful and necessary Domino's death and the triplets' assistance in Anita and Nathaniel's escape and survival turned out. Rodina also keeps needling Anita about Rodrigo's death. Rodina shares some of his sadistic tendencies, and enjoys creeping out Anita by behaving like him. Ru, on the other hand, despite greater outward resemblance to Rodrigo, wasn't as happy to serve Marmee Noir as Rodrigo and Rodina were and seems to prefer Anita's rule. Ru reminds Rodina that they were all afraid of Marmee Noir, presumably Rodrigo included.[6]

We get hints about the triplets' age, and learn that Rodrigo used to go by name Rowan Erwin, together with his siblings Rosemary and Rue. The remaining two still protect Rodrigo's identity by using that name when they are themselves undercover.[7]

Rodina calls Rodrigo her right hand and Ru her left, and says she feels amputated from the person she was now that Rodrigo is gone. She would give almost anything to still have Rodrigo with them, and likes the pain needling Anita causes because it helps Rodina grieve him. We learn that the whole triplet knew Anita had no intention of letting Rodrigo live, which is probably why he sacrificed himself. Anita in turn still regrets not getting a chance to kill him herself, hates owing Nathaniel's life to Rodrigo, and hates seeing him in his siblings.[8]

It takes Anita having to pretend to be Ru's girlfriend for her to be able to see past Rodrigo's ghost to Ru himself.[9]

Age[]

On a few occasions throughout Serpentine the triplets are referred to be over a thousand years old [6], having spent most of the past thousand years as spies [7], and being born before the fall of Rome [10], the last of which might grow their potential timescale by over five hundred years more depending on which definition is used to mark the event. This opens the possibility that the triplets were over five hundred years old by the time they and their vampire master joined the Harlequin. This also would have given them time to learn to be fearsome warriors before joining the elite group.

References[]

  1. Crimson Death, chapter 75.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Crimson Death, chapter 76.
  3. Crimson Death, chapter 82.
  4. Crimson Death, chapter 83.
  5. Crimson Death, epilogue.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Serpentine, chapter 11.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Serpentine, chapter 18.
  8. Serpentine, chapter 19.
  9. Serpentine, chapter 24.
  10. Serpentine, chapter 17.
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