In this dark musical fantasy by Jason Beil, Tristan is an aspiring artist with immense talent and drive. His favorite subject to paint is also his obsession: Dawn, a young assistant district attorney who is making a name for herself prosecuting the notorious crime lord Vincenzo Perelli. Tristan has never spoken to Dawn, but he sees her every day. It is his custom to paint in the park each morning, and she crosses through the park into the city on her way to work. He watches her and often paints her as he muses that morning is the time of day when he feels most alive and inspired.
Tristan is creating a work of art that he is convinced will be a masterpiece like none other, a work that will bring him fame and fortune. Unfortunately, he soon learns that he has an advanced and untreatable form of cancer, and he has only weeks to live–far too short a time for him to complete his masterwork.
Needing someone to talk to, Tristan confides in his mysterious friend and benefactor, a man he knows only as Matthew. Matthew sympathies with Tristan’s plight, and even offers a solution. He reveals to Tristan a dark secret: in reality, he is an ancient vampire, known among his own kind as Methuselah due to his longevity. He offers to confer his “dark gift” to Tristan, effectively making him immortal.
At first Tristan is incredulous, then hesitant. Eventually, under pressure from Matthew, he relents. Matthew takes Tristan into his arms and drinks his blood, planting in him the seed of vampirism. The following morning, Tristan witnesses his last sunrise, saddened that he has now become a creature of shadow, the daylight forever lost to him.
In court, Dawn faces off against Anthony, Vincenzo Perelli’s lawyer–and also his son. The two attorneys are evenly matched in their knowledge of law and their skill in the courtroom, and they argue their cases passionately, granting no quarter, as if bitter enemies.
In truth, however, Dawn and Anthony share a different sort of passion: they are in love. Secretly, they are engaged in a torrid and scandalous affair that could jeopardize both their careers–not to mention their lives–were it to be discovered. They know they can’t promise each other a future together, so they decide to end their affair after one more night of passion. When morning comes, they go their separate ways, devastated.
In his underground lair, Methuselah conspires with his guest, the demon queen Lilith. Together, they decide it is time for vampires to rise from the shadows and become a true power in the world. Methuselah has a veritable army of vampire minions at his command, with which he and Lilith plan to take control of the city.
Tristan has taken up residence in Methuselah’s dark underworld. He refuses to drink human blood, and the hunger is slowly driving him mad. After weeks of agony, he finally gives into the bloodlust and takes to the city to feed–and not from just anyone. His former love for Dawn has been twisted into something dark and ugly, and he means to drink of her blood until no life remains.
That night, Dawn is returning home after a night at the theater with her friend Jessica. The two are talking about life and love, and Dawn comes to a decision. She is not going to give up her career or Anthony. She is young, confident, and still idealistic enough to think she can take on the world. She decides that she is going to do whatever it takes to get what she wants–everything. Jessica wants the best for her friend, but is worried that Dawn is getting in over her head.
Dawn and Jessica part ways, and it is not long before Dawn is attacked–but not by Tristan. Vincenzo Perelli has put a hit on her, and two gunmen leap from the shadows to attack her.
It is at that moment that Tristan appears, shaken from his madness when he sees Dawn in jeopardy. He kills the men and drinks their blood. Then he takes a horrified Dawn back to the vampires’ underground lair.
Over time, a tender relationship develops between Dawn and Tristan. Although he refuses to let her leave the lair, he cares for and protects her, ensuring she remains comfortable and unharmed.
At the same time, Lilith and Methuselah launch an all-out war on the city. The authorities are useless, and it falls to Perelli’s mob to defend the city against the vampires. Ultimately, they fail and are wiped out, and Methuselah turns the city into a haven for dark forces.
A miserable Anthony has survived the war and searches the streets obsessively for Dawn. On a whim, Lilith confronts Anthony in a bar and agrees to take him to Dawn. She hands Anthony over to Tristan, who is both threatened and amused by the young attorney’s presence. He decides to keep Anthony prisoner, claiming it’s safer for Anthony to remain in the vampire lair under his protection.
After a time, Dawn manages to convince Tristan that he must do what he can to end Methuselah’s reign. Embracing the last spark of humanity in his soul, Tristan releases his captives and leaves the lair, intent on confronting Methuselah in his new seat of power. It is something Tristan knows he must do, though he has little chance of survival.
Marching into the night, Tristan takes to the bloody streets to meet his destiny.