Natalie Lambert, Vampire Researcher
by Judith Freudenthal
1996

Natalie was trying to catch up with the mountain of paperwork that had accumulated on her desk recently. With dealing with sick vampires and trying to solve the Linda Wyatt case she had fallen further behind in the paperwork war. She heard a knock on her door.

"Come in."

Two very pale gentlemen in their mid forties entered. One look at them told Natalie that they were most likely vampires.

"What can I do for you?"

"Dr. Natalie Lambert?"

"Yes." She found the hairs on the back of her neck standing up and a cold shiver running down her spine.

"We have come to make you a very unusual offer. During the recent crisis in our Community you did not hesitate in trying to help us. We owe you our thanks. We have never come across a mortal like yourself before. We learned that it might be beneficial to us to learn more about ourselves. We're offering you the chance to openly conduct your research. All the members will cooperate with you fully."

Natalie couldn't believe what she was hearing. This was quite an opportunity. She knew from how the way they spoke that the two men in front of her were Enforcers.

"I don't quite know what to say. I'd love the opportunity. I would like to ask that you not mention this to Nick Knight, or suggest he cooperate."

"We can do that, but how long do you think it would be before he finds out?"

"Long enough for me to tell him."

"Is there any vampire in particular you would like to start with?"

Natalie knew this was too good and opportunity to pass up and let a small hint of a grin out as she said, "Lucien LaCroix."

"Interesting choice. When would you like him here?"

"Whenever you can get him to agree to come."

"He will be here within the hour."

Natalie couldn't believe it. "Tell him to wait for me, if I should be out in the field."

"We will."

"One last thing. Do you think it would be possible to somehow get a sample from a brand new fledgeling. I don't mean gather it myself. I'm not suicidal."

"That can be arranged. It will be difficult though."

"Thank you."

They nodded and left without a sound, or anyone knowing they had been there.

 

LaCroix walked into Natalie's office, not bothering to knock beforehand. Natalie looked up and saw him.

"I heard your requested my presence?" He did not want to be there, nor did he want to be a part of this ridiculous research project.

"Yes. I would like to draw a sample of your blood and maybe a small skin sample as well." She would love to draw some bone marrow to study as well, but knew she had better not press her luck.

"If I must."

Natalie motioned for him to have a seat on the autopsy table.

"I suppose this is where Nicholas sits when you stick him with your needles?"

"Yes, it is."

Natalie drew four large test tubes full of blood before taking two small skin samples. One sample was from his hand and the other was from his shoulder. She wanted to see the differences between exposed skin cells and those that were denied exposure to light.

 

Nick chose that moment to walk in. LaCroix enjoyed seeing the look of shock on his son's face.

"I believe Nicholas would like to know what I'm doing here. Can I go?"

"Yes. I may want another sample from you in the future."

"Call."

Natalie nodded and LaCroix left. He would not go far as this conversation was bound to be quite interesting.

"Nat, what was he doing here?" Nick asked concerned.

"Have a seat. This may take a while. I still can't believe it."

Nick sat on the exam table while Natalie reclined in her chair.

"A pair of Enforcers paid me a visit almost two hours ago." She saw Nick panic. "They did not identify themselves as Enforcers, but I could tell. They said that they owed me for once again helping the Community and offered me the chance to openly research vampirism. Can you believe it?"

"Barely. Did they give a reason why?"

"Because of the recent vampire illnesses. They realized that it might be helpful to know more about themselves. They said they had never met a mortal like me before."

"I've said that you were one in a million. This is a tremendous honor."

"I know. They asked if I had anyone in mind to start with...."

Nick grinned. He had seen LaCroix's expression when he entered.

"Do you think it will help our research?"

"I think it will. Especially when I receive samples from a new fledgling. No, I'm not collecting them myself."

"That may be a bit of a wait."

"I know. It will be worth it, if it is as helpful as I think it may be."

The End

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