Dracula's early history is largely unknown. What is known is that one of his servants, Tanya, was freed from his control by the sight of her master attacking an innocent child. Developing a "blood substitute" to avoid feeding on humans, Tanya dedicated herself to fighting Dracula and won several of his followers over to her side. However, none of Tanya's 'Others' were able to directly fight Dracula, as he still possessed a mental link to them that could allow him to command them when they were directly in front of him, with their best efforts simply allowing them to win over or kill his other followers as they tried to pursue him.
Eventually, Dracula made his way to Gotham City, where he and his minions fed upon Gotham's marginalized (homeless people, prostitutes, drug addicts, etc.) to increase their ranks, aided by the mayor's reluctance to admit the situation to the public and Gotham's already high crime rate. In an attempt to cover up the true nature of the attacks, Dracula's minions always slashed the throats of their victims to cover up the bite marks. Eventually, Dracula, by his own admission, was driven so mad by the "tainted blood" of Gotham that he was no longer concerned with getting caught, having become a total monster.
The murders eventually gained the attention of Batman, who investigated and surprised one of Dracula's minions just as she killed another victim; seeing the bite marks after he drove her away before she could slice the victim's throat, Batman slowly realized the truth.
Dracula eventually came across Batman when the latter was saved by Tanya and her "Others" after coming across a vampire nest. Arriving in his monstrous bat form after Tanya's forces had decimated the new vampires hunting Batman, Dracula used his mind control powers to force Tanya and her minions to their knees, and then to commit suicide with their own stake guns.
However, before the latter could be carried out, Batman freed Tanya's forces by attacking Dracula directly, forcing the two of them down a pipe into a different part of the sewer, only for Dracula to slash his chest open.Using what he saw as an opportunity to his advantage, Batman drew the shape of a cross on the wall with his own blood, leaving Dracula at a stalemate as the vampire lord was simultaneously drawn to the blood, but unable to approach the cross (as the cross represented a religious symbol, which was one of Dracula's weaknesses as a vampire).
After several hours, Dracula was forced to flee from the approaching dawn or risk burning in the sunlight, while vowing that Batman's blood would be his when they next met.
Death of a Family
Dracula subsequently kidnapped Batman's ally, Commissioner Gordon, and held him hostage, bleeding him from a wound in his neck without biting him to prevent him from returning as a vampire. Meanwhile, Batman and Tanya lured Dracula's minions into the Batcave, where Batman set off pre-planted explosive charges to destroy Wayne Manor and expose the inside of the cave to the sunlight, killing both Dracula's and Tanya's forces.
Batman, having been granted some vampiric abilities by Tanya, subsequently armed himself with silver batarangs and tracked Dracula down just in time to save Gordon. In the ensuing battle, during which Batman found himself unable to match Dracula's incredible strength despite his new bat-like wings allowing him to pursue his foe, Dracula, enraged that Tanya gave him the "gift" without actually killing him, bit into Batman's neck and drained him of his blood. Nonetheless, Batman managed to force Dracula off him by stabbing him in the neck with a silver batarang, subsequently impaling Dracula on the remains of a tree that had been struck by lightning. This staking ended the vampire lord's reign of terror, his body collapsing as the Dark Knight watched, but Batman was unfortunately transformed completely into a vampire by Dracula's bite, leaving Alfred to officially fake his death as Bruce Wayne.
However, some of Dracula's forces remained, and, unable to think beyond their next victim after the loss of their leader, were taken over by the Joker, who coordinated their feedings to turn all of Gotham's major crime families. Although Batman continued the struggle against these vampires, he found himself increasingly longing for genuine human blood rather than Tanya's blood substitute, wondering if he was a more natural predator than Tanya or if his greater thirst was caused by his exposure to the more virulent vampire strain transmitted by Dracula rather than only being bitten by Tanya.
Despite his struggles with his bloodlust, Batman was eventually able to defeat the last of Dracula's 'family', with Gordon, Alfred, and a team of Gotham police officers staking the majority of the vampires as they slept during the day while Batman and his new ally, Selina Kyle, took out those remaining in a warehouse at night. During the final fight, however, Selina was killed by the Joker, and Batman, in a grief-stricken rage, succumbed to his vampire instincts and drained the Joker of his blood. Horrified, Batman fled the scene, leaving a letter asking for Gordon and Alfred to stake him now that he had become a monster like Dracula, taking the Joker's blood in a moment of vengeance and rage.
Unfortunately, Gordon and Alfred neglected to behead him after the staking; thus, Batman was driven insane by his bloodlust and the subsequent months he spent decaying in his crypt. When the stake was removed, Batman embarked on a rampage, slaying most of Gotham's villains for their blood, reflecting more than once that he had been cursed by Dracula's 'kiss' and the Joker's foul blood in equal measure. In his last moments, after he killed Two-Face- Gotham's final costumed villain after Batman had drained all the others- Batman noted to Gordon that he was now perhaps even worse than Dracula himself, feeding eagerly without even Dracula's patience and restraint, forcing Gordon to kill him so that he couldn't continue preying on the innocent.
Powers and Abilities
As with all vampires in this world, Dracula possessed superhuman strength and speed, and could also fly by transforming into a bat-like form (He could also turn into mist, but he was never shown demonstrating this power, although as all other vampires shown were capable of it he would naturally possess this power as well). He could be injured by silver, sunlight, or a stake through the heart, with staking being apparently more fatal to him than other vampires; where most staked vampires were merely immobilised by the stake, Dracula disintegrated into dust when he was impaled, although this may have been due to the size of the stake or his great age rather than any weakness on his part.
His most significant ability was a degree of telepathic influence over the vampires he created. While some could escape his influence with the right catalyst, such as Tanya and her 'Others', they were unable to defy his will again if they were ever put in direct contact with the vampire lord.