He did not expect to wake.
He did not expect to have Lacroix sitting beside his bed, nor to know that Natalie was on his side, neither dead nor human.
He turned his head, seeing the ancient in the chair, hands folded over the knob of a walking stick... one Nick remembered giving him ages ago it seemed. It was assuredly not the one Nick remembered from the emotional scene he had inadvertently created.
"Shh, Nicholas. You will rest." There was a command there, but it was quiet, tired even.
"Is mine, as you are once more." Lacroix leaned forward and made certain Nick could see his eyes. "I denied you enough of your desires over the centuries, trying to regain you. Now, I have given you her. From here, we shall see."
Nick wasn't certain if it was gratitude in his soul, or worry in his heart for Natalie, but Lacroix was right.
Things would change, and maybe for the best.