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About a decade ago, I encountered a novel or a novella that I cannot locate.

The setting was Earth, about one century into the future. I remember vampires and a mesh of satellites around the Earth that were burning up in the atmosphere. This motivated a mission to deep space to find the intelligence responsible for the satellites.

Most of the novel focused on the crew of the mission — I recall that they were not "standard" humans. They had modifications to their minds and bodies, possibly for the mission.

At the time, I had gone on a binge, reading many short stories, novellas, and novels in quick succession. I fear that I might be combining several stories into one, especially the vampires and the deep-space first-contact mission, and so I am fully prepared for an answer of the form, "No such story exists."

Any assistance would be greatly appreciated.

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This is Blindsight by Peter Watts:

Two months have past since a myriad of alien objects clenched about the Earth, screaming as they burned. The heavens have been silent since--until a derelict space probe hears whispers from a distant comet. Something talks out there: but not to us. Who should we send to meet the alien, when the alien doesn't want to meet?

Send a linguist with multiple-personality disorder and a biologist so spliced with machinery that he can't feel his own flesh. Send a pacifist warrior and a vampire recalled from the grave by the voodoo of paleogenetics. Send a man with half his mind gone since childhood. Send them to the edge of the solar system, praying you can trust such freaks and monsters with the fate of a world. You fear they may be more alien than the thing they've been sent to find--but you'd give anything for that to be true, if you knew what was waiting for them. . . .

It's available for free on the author's website.

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