|Died:||16 July, 1951|
|First appearance:||Casino Royale|
|Last appearance:||On Her Majesty's Secret Service(mentioned)|
Vesper Lynd is a British foreign agent sent to liaison with James Bond in France.
Vesper is an agent of MI6's Station S, loaned to James Bond, much to his irritation, to assist him in his mission to bankrupt Le Chiffre, the paymaster of a SMERSH-controlled trade union. She poses as a radio seller working with René Mathis and later as Bond's companion in order to infiltrate the casino at Royale-les-Eaux, in which Le Chiffre frequently gambles.
After Bond takes all of Le Chiffre's money in a high-stakes game of baccarat, Vesper is kidnapped by Le Chiffre's thugs, who also capture Bond when he tries to rescue her. Both are rescued after Le Chiffre is assassinated by a SMERSH agent, but only after Bond has been tortured.
Vesper visits Bond every day in the hospital, and the two grow very close; much to his own surprise, Bond develops genuine feelings for her, and even dreams of leaving the service and marrying her. After he is released from the hospital, they go on a holiday together, and eventually become lovers.
Vesper holds a terrible secret, however: she is a double agent working for MVD, and worked with Bond because she was under orders to see that he did not escape Le Chiffre. (Her kidnapping was staged in order to lure Bond into Le Chiffre's clutches.) Prior to her meeting Bond, she had been romantically involved with an RAF operative. This man had been captured by SMERSH, and revealed information about Vesper under torture. Hence, SMERSH was using this operative to blackmail Vesper into helping them.
After the death of Le Chiffre, she is initially hopeful that she and Bond can start a new life, but realizes this is impossible when she notices a SMERSH operative, Adolph Gettler, tracking her and Bond's movements. Consumed with guilt and certain that SMERSH will find and kill both of them, she commits suicide, leaving a note admitting her treachery and pledging her love to Bond.
Bond copes with the loss by renouncing her as a traitor, however, and goes back to work for MI6 as though nothing had happened. He phones his superiors and informs them of Vesper's treason and death, coldly saying "The bitch is dead now."
Bond's feelings for Vesper are not totally extinguished, however; Fleming's eleventh novel, On Her Majesty's Secret Service, reveals that he makes an annual pilgrimage to Royale-les-Eaux to visit her grave. In the novel Goldfinger, moreover, when a drugged Bond believes that he has died and is preparing to enter heaven, he worries about how to introduce Tilly Masterton, who he believes has died along with him, to Vesper.
Behind the scenesEdit
Vesper is Bond's first romantic interest as presented in Ian Fleming's original novels. Other than Bond's future wife Tracy, she is the only woman in the series to whom Bond proposes and is practically the only romantic interest to be a fellow British intelligence agent. (Gala Brand is a policewoman, not an intelligence agent, and she ultimately rebuffs Bond's advances, being engaged to another man and Bond's relationship with MI6 employee Mary Goodnight remains ambiguous at the end of the final book to feature her).
- According to the novel, Vesper was so named by her parents because she was born on a stormy evening.
- Vesper Lynd is a pun on West Berlin. Like her namesake, the Cold War-era city of Berlin, Vesper's loyalties are split down the middle.