LaCroix, Lucien

LaCroix, Lucien

(pop culture)

LaCroix is a vampire and centuries-long companion of Nick Knight, the detective star of the television series Forever Knight. Like Knight, LaCroix first appeared in the made-for-television movie, Nick Knight (1989), where he had originally turned Knight into a vampire some 400 years ago. However, Knight had rejected the life of killing that the two had shared and broke with his creator/mentor. He began a search for his lost mortality and LaCroix continually foiled his attempts.

In the 1880s, Knight had participated in an archeological dig where he hoped to recover a jade goblet reportedly used in a ritual to cure vampirism. He had one such goblet, but two were required. One-hundred years later, he had become a policeman in Los Angeles. One evening he was called to the museum where a watchman had been killed and drained of blood. He would later learn that LaCroix had arrived in Los Angeles, bitten the watchman, and stole the matching goblet.

LaCroix made Nick aware that he had come to town by taking a job as a radio announcer called the Nightcrawler. Tracked down by Nick, he offered him a choice, the goblet or the life of Alyce Hunter, a staff person at the museum. As Knight tried to protect Hunter, LaCroix destroyed the goblet. Then, in the ensuing fight, Knight killed LaCroix by impaling him.

In 1991, the characters from Nick Knight were given a fresh start in a television series, Forever Knight now set in Toronto. Nick, short for his real name, Nicolas, was a young soldier who returned from the crusades in the year 1228. He spent the evening with a young woman, Jeanette, and woke to discover that he was a vampire, having been transformed by LaCroix (Nigel Bennett). Over the next centuries, LaCroix, Jeanette, and Nicolas had numerous adventures. LaCroix repeatedly reminded Nick what he really was, and when Nick refused the entreaties of people to become a vampire, LaCroix would step in and turn them. LaCroix also stepped in to protect Nick when a member of the Enforcers, a vampire organization dedicated to keeping the existence of vampires unknown, targeted him for possible elimination.

However, LaCroix usually assumed the role of Knight’s nemesis, especially when Nick was about to discover a new means of becoming human again. For example, in 1916, in San Francisco, Knight decided to test the powers of acupuncture to make him normal. While he lay covered with needles, LaCroix killed the owner of the acupuncture shop. Again, in 1966, Knight was in East Germany searching for the Aberat, a book with rumored spells that could cure vampirism. LaCroix found the book first and, as Knight watched helplessly, consumed it in flames.

LaCroix remained a continuing character through the three seasons of Forever Knight, and in 1997 appeared in a novel trilogy based on the series.

Sources:

Garrett, Susan M. Forever Knight: Intimations of Immortality. New York: Boulevard Books, 1997. 284 pp.
Nayne, Anne Hathaway. Forever Knight: These Our Revels. New York: Boulevard Books, 1997. 274 pp.
Sizemore, Susan. Forever Knight: A Stirring of Dust. New York: Boulevard Books, 1997. 252 pp.
Strauss, Jon. “Forever Knight.” Epi-log 36 (November 1993) 4–11; 37 (December 1993): 29–35, 62.

Lamiai see: Greece, Vampires in