Date:    97-03-21 22:29:58 EST
I FOUND IT! Digging through a month's worth of FORKNI-L digests from last Sept.-Oct., I located my "The Games Vampires Play" Dark Knightie scene slant!

Okay, this is what I did (this is your example so you dark little Knighties can go and do your own to post here!) -

I selected a scene (a whole ep was a bit much, but this ep merits a full treatment sometime, IMO) from the episode, using Illinois Jules's wonderfully detailed Episode Slant (see previous post on slants for where to access those slants). Then I deleted her UF comments and wrote my own Dark Knightie comments on the scene.

Enjoy, mes amis...
Basic narrative below courtesy of Illinois Jules of the UF Loop. Her part is merely a description of the scene, no more. All of the opinions are mine - indicated with a dash in front of it.

"The Games Vampires Play" - one Dark Knightie's view of the scene between Nick and LaCroix:

A 'virtually' addicted Nick determinedly enters his loft. Hastily he puts
down his gloves, tosses off his coat and scarf, and strides purposefully to
the refrigerator. He grabs a bottle of "wine". Opening it quickly he drinks
deeply before he retires with it to the frontroom.
Nick barely places the container and 'game' on the table when he hears
the unexpected sound of vampiric flight. He turns.
LC: [sitting comfortably in a leather chair, facing his protege] "Would you care to try a little, human, vintage?"

- smug look from LaCroix, and do I detect a hint of triumph? He *KNOWS*.

Looking from the table, Nicholas glances towards the voice. He finds
LaCroix seated, there's a bottle in his hand.

- Nick's taken by surprise but maybe not. He is definitely focused, primed on something, and the sight must thrill his master deeply. Perhaps the reason for the smug little smile.

LC: [leaning forward] "It's young, but has an earthy, robust taste. And it
finishes quite well. It really is quite delicious." [offering it]

- Speaking vampire to vampire. Definitely not
"I'm-thrilled-to-be-a-vampire-and-you-should-be-too" and
"I-want-to-be-mortal-again". LaCroix is speaking to one of his *own kind* which Nick is supremely, both in the game and at this moment.

Nick steps sideways, to snatch the pro-offered gift warily from his mentor's hand. Never meeting his gaze.

- Snatch is the operative word - we are looking at a wolf snagging an
offering from another. I'm reminded sharply of the wolf in Dances With
Wolves who eventually takes food from the lieutenant's hand. Hesitant,
wanting it badly, frightened of it, but does it! Nick knows well what this
is and what drinking it means and he both wants it and is afraid of it and
hell, he's definitely taking!

- LC, after Nick takes the bottle, opens his hand and spreads his fingers
before steepling his fingers. I imagine him thinking in this gesture
something like: "Well! He took it! How about that?!"

LC: [steepling his fingers] "You know...I've been having the strangest
inklings about you, Nicholas..." [Nick uncorks the new bottle, gently
inhaling the bouquet as the other speaks]

- Savoring the bouquet - all the Dark Knighties on the list will agree with
me on this - I know I got a spine-tingling chill from this. I imagine
LaCroix's deep delight at watching this. Nick, preparing to feed!

"... That you are, ever so slowly wandering back into the fold..."

- Wandering not so slowly and in fact, running hard in a straight line!
LaCroix is being coy here, as he knows intimately that Nick is possibly
close to a full blown return here, far more than Nick is aware of. How
delicious of LC to play Nick so beautifully, so delicately, allowing his
creature to pull the net around him all by himself! (Okay, so maybe I'd just *like* to think this! ;D )

The man hesitates only a moment before he takes a long draught on the bottle of mortal blood, that his master brought for him.

- His hesitation reminds me of having something incredibly delicious before you, something you've been anxiously waiting to try, and you pause that brief moment before lifting the fork to your mouth as if gathering all your senses for the experience.

LC: "So you can imagine my delight at finding you like this. [amused, he
pauses briefly] I almost hesitate to ask...[serious now, pausing] What has
happened to you?"

- Well, I think LaCroix is highly intrigued with what must be going on inside Nick. He obviously knows something's up, because whatever he's been sensing in their link led him here to discover what the hell's going on for himself. He sees Nick as close to going over the edge, or perhaps recklessly abandoning himself to his nature. Nick is prone, I think, to swinging pendulums over his long history. LaCroix is afraid that Nick's coming back to his nature will mean the opposite extreme, which for the sake of his sanity and the Community's need, isn't the best thing either. He's intensely curious as to what has done this in Nick.

Knight recorks the container to stare at his visitor.

- This is the first time we've seen LaCroix in the loft where I don't think
Nick sees him as an intruder. In accepting the bottle from LC (which I do
not think LC expected him to do) he accepts his presence and even welcomes it. Wow. I imagine the impact of a person new to FK watching an ep like "Killer Instinct" and then watching this. Makes my head spin!

N: [terse] "Nothing's happened." [responding quickly] LaCroix sits
patiently, listening.

- Denial, denial - Nick, your words are so much dead air! LaCroix is sitting watching you, thinking - Au contraire! Everything's happened!

N: [given almost as an excuse, trying to explain] "It's the 'Game'. [moving
forward] It's a Virtual Reality game...about vampires."

- Another chill - the look on Nick's face when he says vampires! In that
moment he appears supremely the son of Lucien LaCroix, vampire!

LC: How quaint. [gesturing to the table] And this, game, has rekindled the stirrings in you?"

- LC's flippant comment about the quaintness of the game goes right over the head of Nick. Then, when he adds what he does about "stirrings" I'm
imagining that he's wondering so that he can discover a magic formula for
ensnaring wayward, mortal-leaning proteges back to their nature! Again, he's immensely intrigued, but playing it cool, of course. Always cool with the skittish colt, Nicholas.

N: [walking away, turning away. bottle still in hand] "I'm doing it to solve
a crime."
LC: "Oh, yes. Yes, of course you are." [sitting closer to the edge]

- Nick is fooling himself into thinking he's *only* in this for the
crime-solving. Lying to himself, which our Nick is really rather good at.
And LaCroix wonderful response treats the statement with the light disdain it deserves. He knows well what is happening inside that blond head!

>> "And you have, killed? In this game?" [he points to the device]<<

- Majorly kudos to Nigel for this eerie, dripping, oozing portrayal! He
could have had his tongue hanging out at the prospect of Nick's return to the kill and he wouldn't have shown this more effectively! LaCroix is
practically frothing at the idea and you *KNOW* he wishes that he could have watched Nick at the kill, his MOST favorite pastime in all eternity!

N: [near the front window now he turns abruptly, and gives a sharpened
response to LaCroix] "Yes!"

- Whoooo! Did you see how Ger's eyes GLEAMED when he said that? His swift turn of the head and the harshly and quickly stated "Yes" was terrific acting - he's made Nick a 100% vampire, every bit as much as Nick in the 13th century basement with the bimbos in "Fallen Idol"! I guess this episode chilled and thrilled my black little Dark Knightie heart because we got to see the 20th Century Nick actually killing and hunting as a vampire, even if it was a virtual reality game!

LC: "Savored the victim's blood? [returning the gaze] Nicholas looks off, fiddling with the cork, confused.

- Nick is confused because his dichotomy returns somewhat. Savoring the victim's blood, his mortal-leaning self whines in some dark corner inside him somewhere, is supposed to be wrong. Never mind that he feels incredibly powerful in it. The vampire is only minorly taken aback here.

"Must be quite an impressive game..."
The sound of a vampire taking to the air is heard again. Nick re-turns,
back. The loft is empty of its guest. He walks towards the suddenly vacated chair, staring at it. He seems lost.

- For the first time we've ever seen, Nick really regrets LaCroix's sudden
departure. Maybe he had thoughts of sharing the game with him! But I think something deeper is operating here. Their link together. Nick is reacting to the departure of his master, a wholly unconscious reaction to the loss of something he was just quite comfortable around during the last few minutes.

The bottle in his hand is opened once more. A deep drink follows.

- LaCroix's careful stepping around Nick in this scene could have been
designed to provide a deeper focus for Nicholas the Vampire. He (Nick) is perfect in the virtual reality game, displaying a skill in evasion and in
killing that in the olden days indeed must have unnerved his master,
thrilling him! Oh, how LC must long for those days! LaCroix did, indeed, create a supreme vampire in Nick, who unfortunately for him, turned out to be more complicated than originally suspected. But when Nick was content to be as he was, he was awesome. I've always wondered whether LC's obsession with Nick was because he'd seen how very, very good a vampire Nicky could be!

This scene, IMO, was WAY too short!

BTW, if anyone wants to tackle more of this particular episode, I can advise on dialogue as well as descriptions - I've got the script! (Go figure - it was the one thing I was determined to snag at Bridging, but I ended up getting it for $47 at the final silent auction - I'd had to pay $300 for an "Ashes to Ashes" script! Worth it, though...)