Forever Knight – the Continuing Story.

The characters in Forever Knight were created by James Parriott and Barney Cohen and are the property of Sony/Columbia/Tri-Star. The stories here are fan fiction, in which Nick and Natalie survive "Last Knight", the series finale. Also, Vachon survived Divia in "Ashes to Ashes". This story may be archived wherever by whomever.

Wade Everett is a good-looking, capable, smart-ass, and gay homicide detective who's sometimes full of himself. He's temporarily assigned to the 96th and Nick while Nick's partner, Tracy (who also survived LK) recuperates. He's found out what Nick is.

**Status Quo Ante** This story follows "Re_Enforcements" Walt Doherty

Towards the back of the bar at the Raven.

.

__Wade and LaCroix__

Echo Sonata for 2 Unfriendly Groups of Instruments - PDQ Bach

"Sir, I think we need to talk," Wade said to Lucien LaCroix, Nick's sire and the senior vampire of Toronto.

"Why detective?," LaCroix said coldly.

"Because, sir, I'd like to live a bit more of my life."

"Hmmpphh."

"Sir, I apologize for injuring you. I trust you realize that –"

"Stop. Come over here and sit." LaCroix led him over to one of the back booths, quiet and private, but still in the open. "Let us cut this short, detective. I know what you want. You felt compelled to do what you did. You want me to accept that. I am not pleased with the event; however, what is done is done and cannot be undone. Furthermore, I owe you an apology as well. I did make you a promise which it is conceivable that I broke. I am sorry detective, and I am sorry that you were so stressed. I will set your mind at ease: let us consider things to be even. You do not owe me; nor do I owe you. Is that acceptable?"

"Certainly, sir. In fact, it's most generous and I'm most grateful."

"Now the other shoe gets dropped – that is always the way, is it not? By even, I mean that we are back where we started. You are my son's interfering partner; I am a senior vampire and if I get the opportunity to take you out, I may avail myself of it. So, be careful, young man.

"I think we can at least be honest with each other: there is no love lost between us, but we are both civilized enough as to not desire open warfare. So, armed truce? Let us consider the Raven to be neutral territory."

"Uh, that would be fine, sir. What does that make other places though?"

"Places where you need to be careful. Do not let yourself be caught alone in large open spaces at night, for instance. But, you should be safe, detective. Other vampires know how I feel about you so they will leave you alone – you see, reputation does count for something – leaving you for me. And, most likely I will not come hunting for you. At least not now."

"Yes, that's honest. I won't take you out either, sir," Wade said with a slight, hopeful smile.

"Oh, thank you, detective, that relieves me so much.

"I do think we understand each other, detective, but let us not push the issue. Please feel free to visit the Raven, but let us not be chummy. I'm so glad we had this little talk, let us not do it again." With that, LaCroix got up and left walking into the back rooms of the club.

Wade stood and looked over at Mikloš. Mikloš just raised his eyebrow and mouthed "You are 'luck bag'."

Wade grinned, walked past him towards the door, and said as he passed, "Don't I know it, Mikloš, don't I know it," and he walked out of the bar into the sunshine – while he still could.

.

__Nick and LaCroix__

Cavatina, You can beat me - Abduction of Figaro, PDQ Bach

"Nicholas," he said ironically, "how nice to see you. I thought you had given me up for Lent."

"Funny, Lucien," said Nick. "I want to talk to you about what happened with Wade."

"My dear boy, what two consenting adults do in the privacy –"

"You know what I'm talking about, LaCroix. You brought him over – or tried to."

"First, Nicholas, I am not accountable to you for whom I might bring across. Second, I have already talked with the young detective, and, you may believe it or not as you wish, but I have already apologized to him. I did promise him beforehand that I would not kill him, and while I do not believe that bringing him across is the same as killing him, I can see where one might interpret it that way; making him 'undead' as it were."

"Then you've worked out a reconciliation?"

"Nicholas, there was nothing to reconcile. Nevertheless, I do understand what you are asking, and, no, I will not take him, drain him, or bring him over – at least not under ordinary circumstances, and he understands that. Neither will he attempt to stake me, decapitate me, or otherwise incapacitate me. The Raven will be neutral ground."

"And what does that mean?" Nick asked with a sense of foreboding.

"It means, Nicholas, that I was not pleased with what the detective did to me in my own warehouse. He came to me to apologize and to ask for a 'truce', or at least some sort of accommodation – he does not want to be enemies, and rightly so.

"I agreed that we should simply adopt the 'status quo ante'."

"Which means?"

"Oh, come now, Nicholas, you remember enough of your Latin to figure that out."

Nick said, "Umm. Status before what, uh, which. Uh, o.k. I get it, you're going to treat each other like the incident never happened."

"Oh, good, Nicholas," he said with a little sarcasm, "you got it on the first attempt!"

"Fine. As long as you don't take him out or bring him across, LaCroix."

"Nicholas, I did say there were certain parameters; that is, 'not under ordinary circumstances'. Should the good detective ask me to bring him across, I may indulge him, and you will not interfere.

"Should the good detective, however, make his way to the anterior rooms of the Raven with some one of our kind, I will not offer him protection from himself. In other words, the detective should not take chances where he can be taken advantage of – because I will be watching, and you know how patient I can be at times."

"Humph. What's his end of the bargain?"

"Not to harp on this, Nicholas, but why do not you go to the source and ask him. After all, you see him almost daily. But briefly, I got the impression that if he thought he needed to, he would shoot me again."

"It looks like I need to talk with him – especially about getting in over his head. Remember, I know how tricky and flattering you can be when you want something, Lucien," Nick replied somewhat coolly.

"Ah, back to 'Lucien' we are, I see. No matter. Now if you have come and done what you think you could do to ensure the safety of your little playmate – I am sorry, your 'partner', please leave, I have work to do. A club does not run itself."

"I'll let myself out, Lucien."

"You do that dear boy, and, oh, do tell the young detective that except for the misunderstanding that I truly enjoyed his company that evening and would love to get together again. He certainly does know what to do with a body, particularly his own in conjunction with mine." LaCroix leered at Nick; Nick turned a bit green, turned on his heel, and left.

.

__Nick and Wade__

Duetto buffo di due gatti (Cat Duet), for 2 voices & piano (spurious) Rossini

"Wade, a moment."

"Sure, Nick, what's up?"

"About you and Lucien –"

"Oh, ah, I'd really rather not go into that if you don't mind."

"Oh, I don't mind at all, the less said about it the better. I do want you to know that LaCroix – Lucien – is dangerous. Please, take the situation seriously. You would do well not to be alone in his presence. You may be a resister, Wade, but LaCroix is a past master at commanding, influencing, seducing. I don't know how to make it any plainer."

"You don't have to, Nick. You've warned me that he's dangerous, and I'll believe you and operate accordingly. Thanks for caring, Nick."

Not being used to getting a 'thank you' for a warning like this, Nick looked a little non-plussed. Wade ignored that (with a small bit of amusement at his discomfiture) and Nick let it go.

"O.k., then. Oh, and when you ask if I've stayed away from LaCroix this week, I have, that conversation I had with him never took place, just like yours never did. Right?

"Right."

" Back to work then?"

"You got it, partner," Wade concluded.

* * * * *