Nick sat on the ledge overlooking his loft. Everything was quiet now and, as he contemplated the events of the past few nights, he couldn't help but wonder why she made him do it. He couldn't help but wonder why all of this had taken place, and also, what would be the outcome? It made him feel so strange. She had been crying and he just couldn't let her do that. It all happened so fast.
She wanted to take him back to the beginning to see what caused him to be a vampire to begin with. What he loved and what he cared for.. what is his essence. He needs to be loved. but doesn't know how. He needs...someone to explain to him why these things happen. He knows why, but does not understand the reason. Why did God make such a thing as he. None of the others question their existence. Why does he have this incessant need to undersand the very nature of his being. He still has a soul, but thinks it has been stolen from him. It still is there, simply waiting for redemption.
Just as Lacroix was about to answer for him, a voice barrels out from the darkness with a Parisian accent. A pair of reddish, glowing eyes peers at them with intensity. A womanish figure glides from the shadows; "Stop.... he shall not perish! He needs guidance and support, not a death sentence."
"You still live...." says Lacroix, .."it's always a pleasure to see you."
" Who is she?" Nicholas inquires. Lacroix responds, "Nicholas, let me introduce you to Lillith, the 'mother of our race'. A fine, exquisite lady, and the most powerful of all vampires...truly not one to contend with," as Lacroix backs away from Nicholas.
She states, "Yes, Lacroix....over 3000 years of power....," she looks at Nicholas, "....I even know tricks that Lacroix only dreams he could do. I have come to save you, Nicholas. They say every few centuries, a very special vampire is brought into our society; and it is my job to teach that vampire what I know and to pass on a bit of my power to those special vampires. You, Nicholas, are one of those special vampires. I shall take you under my wing and teach you the ancient ways of our race." She turns to Lacroix; "You may leave now Lucien Lacroix...I will be his mentor now." Then a cloud swirls about her body like a gentle breeze...showing her power.
"Leave Lucien Lacroix" said Lillith.
Lacroix disappears with a curse into the night.
Lillith turns to Nick and says "Do not leave. I have saved Natalie, she sleeps in my home. Lacroix believes she is dead. I will take you to her now".
They then fly into the night.
When they reach Lillith's home, Nick finds Natalie on the bed and rushes to her side, but Lillith stops him and says to Nick, "I must explain to you first that she is not a Vampire she is still human, but she can now sense all Vampires good or bad".
"But Lillith how did you save her?"
"In time you will learn all these things - I will teach you all that you must know. We were not given these gifts so we could kill, we were to help humans not to destroy them."
Natalie opens her eyes and cries out for Nick and he rushes to her side and wraps his arms around her.
Lillith smiles with tears in her eyes as she slips from the room.
Natalie looks at Nick with love in her eyes as she asks, "Where are we and what has happened?"
Nick answers her, "I could not stop,and you almost died."
Natalie asks "Am I a Vampire?"
"No" answers Nick, then explains, "You can sense all Vampires good or bad."
"There is another Vampire here but she is good and very powerful."
"Yes" Nick answers her, "her name is Lillith, she is the mother of our race, she is 3000 years old and the most powerful one. It was she who saved you from death."
Natalie asks, "When can I meet her?"
"As soon as you feel up to it. She wishes to talk to both of us in a few hours, she is resting now. This evening you will meet. We will sleep for a while now my love."
"Yes" answers Natalie and they fall asleep in each others arms.
* * * * * * * *
Nick and Natalie enter the large comfortable living room and find Lillith sitting by the fireplace waiting for them.
"How are you this evening?" Nick asks Lillith.
"Much better" replies Lillith.
Nick introduces Natalie to Lillith.
"Hello Natalie, I am sorry we have to meet at such a bad time."
"You wanted to talk to us?" Nick asks Lillith.
"Yes" Lillith answers, "we have much to talk about. You must decide what you are to do now. There are two choices open to you. You can both go back to your lives without any trouble and little will change or you, Natalie, must decide if you will become a Vampire. If that is your decision then I will teach you and Nick to be guardians. You must decide by the next sunrise. As you know, Vampires do not age as humans do and it would be sad for you to be parted from Nick. It is a big decision for you and I hate to rush you but we must leave as Lacroix will be on the lookout for us when he realizes you are still alive Natalie. He will always find Nick, and you Natalie, are a problem he would like to remove. I will leave you to discuss this matter together. Goodnight."
She glides from the room.
Nick and Natalie look at each other in surprise.
Natalie: "What ever we decide it must be both our decisions."
Nick: "I don't want you to suffer as I have shut away from the sunlight for all of eternity."
Natalie: "I love you and I would not be happy parted from you,I would only spend the rest of my life unhappy and lonely without you".
Nick: "I can not risk trying to do it, I nearly caused your death the last time."
Natalie: "I am sure that Lillith will not let this happen."
Nick: "You have made up your mind then to become a Vampire."
Natalie: "Yes I wish to be with you forever my love."
Nick: "Then I will stand by your side for eternity. We will talk to Lillith this evening and give her our answer together. We must sleep now and wait until then.
A cold breeze swept through the city street. A cloaked figure moved slowly down the street. It was the figure of a man, slightly muscular with long raven black hair cascading down his back in defined curls. Eyes shone bright blue, glowing like beacons in the night air.
The figure stopped and moved quickly into the entrance of a building. He had heard something. A sound he had not heard in years - the ringing in his ears which told him that close by there was another. From the corner of his eye he barely recognized the shape of a man before it slid from his view.
"Who goes there?" Drake asked, feeling eyes all over him.
The ringing was intense now and he knew that a creature of the blood was close to him. Rising up from his position he opened his cloak pulling from its confines a wooden stake.
"Come join me in Hell!"
La Croix quickly stepped aside, and Drake missed his target.
"I have come to aid you in your quest", La Croix told Drake, "As we
both are searching for the means to the same end".
"Who are you and what do you want?", Drake inquired of Lucien.
"I am La Croix", Lucien said, "And you?"
"Drake", was the stranger's response.
La Croix had heard rumors regarding this member of the community gone awry. It was a stroke of luck that Lucien should chance to meet him at this point in time.
"Come with me, Drake", La Croix told his new acquaintance, "We shall have a drink at the Raven to celebrate our forthcoming victories over our mutual enemy, and discuss her demise".
Once inside The Raven, LaCroix and Drake seated themselves in a corner
booth. Janette noticed LaCroix's presence and smiled at him from across
the room. She dutifully walked over and asked what type of refreshments
they would like.
"Janette, permit me to introduce you to Drake", Lucien said.
"Hello", Janette smiled, "I am pleased to make your acquaintance".
"Charmed", was Drake's only response, as he evidently was preoccupied with LaCroix's offer.
"What shall I get you to drink", Janette asked in her customarily charming manner.
"Bring us a bottle of your fine special reserve, would you, Janette", asked LaCroix.
"Certainly", Janette answered, "Coming right up".
She turned and walked away, leaving Drake and LaCroix alone. Janette shared her special reserve with few others, as her precious supply was dwindling, and once gone, so would be the essence of her favorite artist, Leonardo Da Vinci. Janette had offered to bring him across on his death bed, but Leonardo had adamantly refused. He had preferred death and being buried in the ground and allowing his talents to die with him to becoming a vampire and living forever. Janette shook her head slowly from side to side as she went to get a bottle of her vintage and two pewter goblets with which to serve her patrons. She could not understand how mortals could be so stupid! But, just as Leonardo had drawn his last breath, Janette salvaged his blood for future use.
"Now", Lucien said to Drake, "Where were we?
Ah, yes! We were about to join forces."
"Tell me what you are willing to do to help me, and just what do you hope to gain in return", Drake asked LaCroix.
"I sense you are unhappy with your fate", Lucien responded, "And I am willing to lead you to where you may find the one responsible for our eternal damnation".
"And just what will you gain by this", inquired Drake suspiciously.
"The same person has wronged me also. This same person is attempting to rob me of what is rightfully mine and is interjecting themselves into my affairs", stated Lucien matter-of-factly, "Should you do away with this person, it will put an end to my troubles".
Janette approached them with a bottle of her vintage special reserve
two goblets perched upon a silver tray. She sat the tray down on the
table and opened the bottle and poured the two goblets full of the red
"Enjoy", she said, and then she walked away so the two gentlemen could be alone to discuss whatever it was they wanted to discuss.
"Lead me to the person I am seeking", Drake said, "I will deal with
them, and we shall both be set free from this living hell they have
damned us to!", stated Drake.
Lucien raised his goblet in a toast, "To our salvation".
"Here, here", said Drake as he also raised his goblet in the toast.
A smile played at the corner of Lucien's lips. Ever the Roman conquerer, Lillith had met her match. She may have won the battle, but La Croix was adamant on winning the war!!
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