Bracken Redfern is a lamia vampire, a member of the Redfern family, the younger brother of the late Brook Redfern and the paternal uncle of Jez Redfern. He is featured as a supporting character in the book Huntress.
Not much is known about Bracken's physical form, although it is revealed that, like his niece Jez, he has "silvery blue" eyes, which change to pure silver when angered. In Jez and Morgead's Night Out, he is shown to have wrinkles, indicating he may be an older vampire, likely middle aged or more.
Bracken is depicted as a seemingly level-headed and even tempered man. He truly cares for Jez, despite her half-human origins, raising her since she was a young child, and was saddened by her leaving him when she found out the truth about her parents. He was the one person trusted by his late brother, Brook, who gave Bracken the four year old Jez to raise after being mortally wounded, knowing his brother would not betray her "to the Night World elders". He regards Jez as "a true Redfern", and defends her mother from insult, as in spite of her humanity, Bracken calls Jez's mother "a good woman", and denies both her and Jez being "vermin".
When Jez remembers the night of her parents' deaths, she fearfully returns to her uncle to ask for the truth, locating Bracken in his personal library. Shocked at her recollection, Bracken reluctantly confirms that Jez is only half-vampire, with her mother being a human being. Stunned, Jez is devastated by the revelation. Bracken explains how, after being attacked, Jez's father brought Jez to him just before he succumbed to his fatal injuries, with the trust that Bracken would never betray Jez.
He had experimented with teaching her how to feed like a vampire, bringing her a rabbit, and had been delighted to realize she had the ability to drink blood. He was also surprised when, during a "carpentry" accident where Jez hurt herself with a screwdriver, Bracken had licked up some of her blood, surprised by its ability to carry oxygen; he referred to it as "the best champagne", which Jez noticed had actually revitalized her uncle, although vampire blood is not supposed to be able to do so.
Jez is upset knowing the truth, thinking Bracken should have had her killed, but he sharply tells her that her mother had not been "vermin", and that her father had given "up everything to be with her". However, Jez feels she cannot live this lie anymore, and wants to leave. "Sadly", Bracken allows her to go live with her maternal uncle, Jim Goddard, and his family.
Near the end of the book, it is revealed that Bracken has been found and rescued by Circle Daybreak; likely, the Night World would have executed him for harboring both a half-human and a Wild Power.
- The name Bracken is derived from a poisonous fern of the same name; the name itself comes from the Scandinavian word for a fern plant.
- Although the family tree posted by L.J. Smith shows that Bracken has a wife, Dulse, Jez doesn't mention her; it is possible that Bracken is a widower.
- The family tree also mentions him being the grandchild of Opal and Hodge Burdock. If this genealogy is correct, then Bracken and Brook cannot be Redferns, as with the vampire patriarchy system, their father's surname would have been Burdock.
- Although Jez physically resembles her mother, Roxanne, she has the same eyes as her uncle. It's possible that Brook, her father, also had this trait, which he passed onto Jez.