The Liposuction Vampire

Also known as: Pishtaco

The Nakaq is an Andean vampire except that instead of sucking blood, he extracts fat. If he lived in the United States and if only his attacks weren’t fatal, victims might be lining up for him rather than attempting to elude him.

The Nakaq, a figure of Peruvian folklore, is envisioned as a charismatic, magnetic, mesmerizing man with a hypnotic gaze. The Nakaq is inevitably envisioned as a white man, although whether he is living, a phantom, or a ghost varies. His victims are almost invariably local Indians. He drags them to his subterranean lair, hangs them upside down, and extracts their body fat. Victims do not survive the procedure.

The Nakaq, long suspected of collusion with the Roman Catholic Church, is traditionally envisioned as a knife-wielding priest seeking human fat to forge church bells. Alternatively he seeks fat for magical or industrial reasons, to manufacture medicines or for nefarious government schemes.

The earliest documented reference to the Nakaq was written in Spanish in the seventeenth century. Although the concept of a fat-removing monster may sound amusing to those in weight-obsessed Western industrialized nations, the Nakaq is no joke in the Andes but rather the subject of genuine dread. The Nakaq is the bane of anthropologists: lone white men who appear in Indian villages as if from nowhere, seeking to ingratiate themselves with locals (like many anthropologists do) are often viewed with tremendous suspicion. Many have been chased out of town, beaten, or worse in the belief that their true identity is the Nakaq.

See also: Vampire; Viracocha