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Lucy Westenra

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Lucy Westenra
Lucywesterna

Real Name

Lucy Westenra

First Appearance

Dracula (1897)

Original Publisher

Archibald Constable and Company (UK)

Created by

Bram Stoker

Origin

Lucy westenra eerie

From Eerie #12.

Lucy Westenra is a vivacious young woman who is much praised for her beauty, purity and sweet nature. These qualities earn her three suitors, all of whom propose to her on the same day: Arthur Holmwood, wealthy son of Lord Godalming; Quincey Morris, an American cowboy; and Doctor John Seward, an asylum psychiatrist.

Lucy accepts Arthur's proposal, but soon begins suffering from severe anaemia. She has, in fact, become the victim of Count Dracula, who is slowly draining her of blood. Despite the best efforts of Dr. Seward and Dr. Abraham Van Helsing, Lucy's condition rapidly deteriorates. Dr. Van Helsing correctly identifies the true cause of her illness, and puts up garlic around her sickbed to repel Dracula. Even after four blood transfusions (from Holmwood, Seward, Van Helsing, and Morris, respectively) and although the doctors try to keep a constant vigil over her condition, their efforts prove futile. Lucy and her mother die together when a wolf controlled by Dracula (or in some cases, is Dracula) comes crashing through the window while the two women are left unattended. The mother dies from a heart attack, while Dracula drains Lucy to the point of near death.

The men find her the next morning barely alive; they try a transfusion, but by this point it's much too late, as the bite marks on her throat have vanished and her teeth now sport longer canines. For a moment, when Arthur is near her, she requests a kiss, while turning much more voluptuous. Helsing pulls Arthur away, knowing that it is the monster talking, and not Lucy. Lucy, also realizing she's becoming inhuman, asks Van Helsing to protect Arthur. Helsing swears to do so for Lucy's sake, just as she passes away. The men think it's over, but Helsing knows that with Lucy's death, her transformation into the undead is just beginning. It is more than likely that what they witnessed was the last of her humanity fading away.

Sure enough, after her death reports of children being attacked at night are heard, with each child claiming it was the "Bloofer Lady" (child speak for "Beautiful Lady"). The children also have bite marks on their throats, though none of their blood has been seriously drained. Dr Van Helsing realizes that Lucy has now risen as a vampire, and asks Dr Seward, Arthur, and Quincey to help him destroy the undead creature. When they doubt him, Helsing leads Seward with him at first to show him first-hand - first by showing that Lucy's coffin is empty, and then waiting when she comes with another child to feed on. She once again only takes a little blood before leaving the child and heading back to her crypt. Van Helsing and Seward make sure the child is all right and go into the crypt where the coffin now contains Lucy's body. However, as Helsing points out, Lucy's body hasn't decayed a day since her death, as the undead never age.

That next night, Van Helsing gathers the rest of the men and puts a holy plaster over Lucy's crypt while she's out feeding. The men wait for her to come back where they see the monstrous form she's now become. She is now seen as sexually attractive instead of innocently sweet, and has lost her purity. They confront her, stopping her from biting her current victim. She throws the child she is feeding from to the ground, showing how she has lost her innocence and any maternal instincts. Upon seeing Arthur, Lucy changes her tone and stance and acts as though still alive, beckoning him to come to her so they can be undead together. Her hypnotic spell almost works until Helsing flashes a cross at her, repelling her. She flees to her crypt, but is unable to enter until Helsing removes some of the plaster. Even with the small space, the men are astonished as Lucy uses her powers to slip inside as if it was nothing. The men soon follow and find Lucy in her coffin, resting. Van Helsing explains to the others that the Lucy they know is indeed dead, and the figure they see now is a monster in her form, the result of vampirism if a victim has been fully drained. He warns that unless she is stopped, she will continue her nightly feedings to the point of fully draining her victims, who likewise will become undead and continue the cycle, building up Dracula's army. Arthur hammers a stake into her, in a scene which is considered to be metaphoric for consummating their marriage while establishing phallic male dominance.

Van Helsing feels it best that the men who loved Lucy in life play a role in freeing her soul. On his instructions, they stake Lucy, destroying the vampire part of her, and Lucy is finally able to rest in peace. However, just to be sure Dracula does not reclaim her, Van Helsing has the grisly task of cutting off her head and stuffing her mouth full of garlic as a precaution.

Lucy is seen as a foil to Mina Harker, Jonathan Harker's wife. Where Mina is demure and shy Lucy is bubbly and enjoys the attention of men, although she only confesses this once, to Mina, and feels guilty for it. She expresses a fleeting desire to marry all three of the men who propose to her, which is seen by some as the reason she is chosen as Dracula's first victim - she is more open to experiences and her own desires than Mina, although she shares Mina's almost worship-like admiration to men, calling them kind and fairer than women.

Public Domain Comic Appearances

  • Eerie #12

Notes

In the unauthorized film adaptation of Dracula, Nosferatu, Lucy Westenra was replaced by the character Annie.

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