Note: Written for the awesome livejournal community comment_fic, based on Valancy's prompt: "Becoming a vampire frees Alfred of many of his personal limits, but there are still some left."


Their first week in Paris, and already Alfred and Sarah have been to some of the city's finest restaurants. Initially they didn't go to such places to eat, but to soak up the atmosphere - the golden forks, the sparkling crystal wine glasses, the tables made of fine mahogany wood ("I shall have a new coffin made of this," Sarah announces one day, and Alfred has learned enough not to shudder at this morbid fancy, but smile and ask Sarah how she will have it engraved.).

Eventually they discover that at times the flavor of the blood they consume is influenced by the food a mortal has just eaten. Or, rather, Alfred discovers this. Sarah doesn't taste it herself, it claims that Alfred only can through some sentimental attachment to all things mortal, but Alfred doesn't care. He wins the battle one night after they make a meal of a drunken young man, only to find themselves as giddily dizzy as if they'd just consumed a bottle of wine themselves.

"See?" Alfred says, keeping an arm around Sarah's waist, lest she fall over. "It's exactly as I told you!"

"Write a book like your windbag Professor," she giggles, the wine having robbed her somewhat of her natural grace. Alfred tries to ignore the slight, and just enjoy they way Sarah smiles and clings to him. He's careful, however, to wait until she is asleep for the day before scribbling the new information in his little notebook.

Eating people is a lot more fun than choosing a meal from any restaurant menu, Alfred soon discovers. They have to be prudent, of course, but prudence adds intrigue to the game. They choose their victims carefully, making sure no one will miss them, or have reason to suspect foul play. Alfred thinks that Sarah only agrees to this so that she has an excuse to follow men and women around to all sorts of interesting places, and she is much more likely than Alfred to break with this creed when it suits her.

Eventually the two of them come to know a noble man with a surplus of daughters - seventeen of them to be exact, birthed by three separate women. The girls are all young and pretty, and Sarah immediately takes a fancy to the oldest one, a yellow-haired girl of nineteen.

It should have been an easy kill, and brought them a sweet companion for a few weeks. They follow her about for a few days and speak to her for the joy of doing so, thinking their minds are made up.

"We can't do it," Alfred says suddenly one evening.

Sarah raises her eyebrows at him, but doesn't answer.

"She's just been proposed to by a young man," Alfred explains quickly, "he's terribly in love with her, and she's decided to accept."

"What drudgery! I know who you're talking about. She'll go to work on his farm, and that will be the end of it."

Alfred sighs. As much as he wants to believe that Sarah loves him, explaining anything about love to Sarah is very difficult. Freedom is far sweeter to her, and Alfred thinks he will never be eloquent enough to change her mind.

"If it bothers you," Sarah suggests, softening, "we can change both. Wouldn't that be nice?"

"I don't think so. It's the same as - the same as an illness in a way."

Sarah scoffs.

"And we're doctors! At least… in a way… perhaps we are. You can't help a cold with a blood transfusion or cutting off a limb, and you're like to ruin the patient if you try it," Alfred continues quickly. "Our life wouldn't be a gift for them. They deserve a chance to live."
Alfred isn't exactly shocked when Sarah ignores his wishes and kills the girl two nights later.

He and Sarah quarrel for four days, though the girl begins to like her new form after just two.

When he finally looks over at her, and Sarah sees a chance of forgiveness in his expression, she comes over to sit next to him.

"We can play doctor if you like," she says, almost affectionately. "I shall start by curing you. You have too many human limitations yet."