Christian Brookwater is a former Georgia plantation slave who became a vampire during the 1860s. His long, tumultuous life takes a complicated turn when he is forced to travel to modern-day Senegal to rescue a child from a vengeful werewolf prince. It is here that Christian uncovers a plot that would throw the entire vampire nation into a civil war. To stop this, Christian must betray his best friend and mentor, an influential Italian vampire who nurtured him during his vampiric infancy.
Christian is a member of a nocturnal law enforcement community that safeguards the secrets of the creatures of the night. This involves the killing of werewolves and other deranged monsters; something Christian excels at. But his fraternization with humans and his incessant need to kill racists vexes his superiors, who threaten to execute him if he doesn’t curtail his ‘racial impulses’. Christian also suffers from a rare condition that makes intercourse with human females especially dangerous.
Christian’s other mentor is a four hundred year old vampire samurai lord who teaches him the arts of war and sacrifice, and has a knack for appearing whenever things become desperate.
Of course, the warrior’s code can’t replace the desire for love, as Christian discovers when he becomes enamored with a human female in the 1940s. Despite Christian’s affliction, the two lovers raise a child together and for a while, our vampire gets a taste of true happiness.
Some years later, his family life ends tragically as Christian loses his great love and becomes estranged from his teenaged son. Heartbroken, Christian embarks on a series of illuminating, yet sinful adventures as he migrates to a new home: Harlem, New York.