Rebirth is one of Kelley's short stories that is now part of the Tales of the Otherworld collection.
In 1802, Aaron Darnell is out drinking with his friends, John and Geoffrey. While they are walking the streets, Aaron is shown to be kind and charitable, giving out coins to an underage prostitute without asking for services and attempting to save a shopkeeper who was being threatened for money. While attempting to resolve the shopkeeper situation, Aaron is stabbed and killed.
He awakens inside of the family mausoleum to find himself in a coffin with his mother waiting for him to wake. His mother is very happy that he has woken, revealing that he has been dead for three days and is now a vampire. She goes over the basics of being a vampire and explains that he has been reborn because of her bloodline. Aaron is must upset by the fact that to continue his existence he will have to kill at least once a year, before the anniversary of his death, and he vows not to do so.
Six months later Aaron is less concerned about the affects of drinking blood as he has been hunting people he believes deserve it. As he is feeding, Cassandra DuCharme slips up on him and informs him that he can take more blood than he had been which would allow him to avoid drinking every night. When she learns he is planning to allow himself to die rather than take a life, she offers him companionship which he turns down.
In his final days, Aaron is in a tavern preparing to die for real when Cassandra finds him again. She shown Aaron a grave robber who he can kill without feeling guilty and after some persuasion he agrees to take the life, extending his own so he can continue to do acts of good. The story ends with Aaron joining Cassandra in her travels for now, certain that he is never going to take another life.
- Aaron Darnell
- Aaron's Mother
- Cassandra DuCharme