I rate this story PG-13 because of mature themes . This is a crossover of Due South/ X-Men/ Gargoyles. The three mentioned shows are not mine. They belong to someone else. However, Adrienne is mine. She is all mine. This story traces the blossoming romance between my favorite Gargoyle and an original character. I might turn it into an entire story arc. It just depends on the feedback. Don't write her off so fast, she's not exactly Mary Sue. She's a klutz! She hates heights. She's NOT perfect I swear. She's just a great way to tie three wonderful fandoms together!! If you're a romantic softie, dig out the chocolate and grab the Kleenex. You can always give my your opinion. Please be kind...this is only the second story I've
written. I'm usually a poetry buff.

ONLY FLESH AND STONE (X and the single Gargoyle)
BY DENIGODDESS (ravyndarkholme@aol.com)

Two Years Ago...shortly after New Years' Eve 2001.

Adrienne Westfall, aka Twilight, was on nightly patrol above the dark and gloomy streets of New York City. Cloaked in an aura of interdimensional shadow energy called Darkforce, she completed her nightly patrol of her fiancee's "beat." She knew that he felt less than adequate when she used her mutant abilities to assist in his investigations. More than once, Sgt. Benton Frasier and Detective Matt Bluestone had needed the aid of a certain Mutant associated with a particular renegade mutant group know as the X-Men.
This night was not unlike any other. The neon signs and the reflective surfaces of the billboards caused a harsh glare above the city. Adrienne more than once had called the luminating haze above the big apple, "Neon Heaven." She thought it had its own unflinching beauty. She appreciated the sights, sounds and smells of this metropolitan megalopolis. As she flew above the building, she reveled in the unique thrill and freedom brought to her by the ability of flight.
As she flew whimsically through the skyscrapers, she darted left and right. She loved teleporting in front of office windows and startling late-night cleaning staff. She truly enjoyed befuddling those invalid in late night trysts on office desks. Tonight was no different.
"Twilight to Fraiser, eleven o'clock and all is well." She replied cheerfully into her communicator bearing that "X" she was so proud to wear.
"Understood." He replied. "Nothing unusual at ground level."
"How's Matt?"
"Doing well." There was a pause. "He says he's rather hungry."
"What about Dief?" She asked.
There was another short pause, but, Adrienne heard a distinctive whine in the background followed by a loud bark.
"Diefenbaker is also hungry and would like Chinese." Benton replied. "Would you care to join us for dinner at The Golden Dragon after patrol?"
"Of course!" She smiled happily as she thought of their Wonton Soup and homemade pan-fried dumplings (potstickers). "Sentinels couldn't keep me away."
"Understood." Benton gave his customary stock reply. "Adrienne, please be careful."
"Don't worry, Studly Do-it-all-night." She quipped. "I promise not to run into any rabid mutants."
"That remains to be seen, Adrienne." He countered. "You see, in the last sixteen patrols, you have engaged in approximately four altercations. Of which two involved mutants..."
"I get your drift, Mountie." Adrienne did a loop-de-loop around a flag pole. "But, patrol's almost over."
Adrienne heard the faint "pppsssttt" above her. She looked around and found nothing. She silently cursed how the wind and the skyscrapers caused sound to echo and be distorted. She surged upward to get a better view and found herself in front of New York's most famous residence; the Eeyrie building. Adrienne had flown by it but rarely looked upwards. She was amazed by the grand view of a gothic medieval castle presenting a stark contrast against the backdrop of an artificially light skyline.
She noticed a helicopter sporting the "F.O.H" logo on the side had it's side door open. Adrienne saw two individuals garbed in dark clothing holding rather large firearms. She watched crimson beams burst forth from the large weapons and further light up the luminescent haze over the city. She watched the beams as they soared above her. She watched their path as they made their way toward their targets.
The red beams of light attempted to take out a sight that truly captivated Adrienne. She saw three creatures with large wing-spans and tails. She flew closer and watched how these winged creatures sought to evade the lasers that followed them. She saw one of the large creatures do a somersault in midair to evade the beams.
"Twilight to Fraiser." She said urgently. "I'm at the Eeryie building and I'm looking at some kind of aerial dogfight between Friends of Humanity and some strange looking winged creatures."
"Winged?' Fraiser inquired. "Matt wants to know what they look like."
"They have wings like bats...they have tails. I can't tell much more from here unless I get in the line of fire." She reported.
"Adrienne, those are gargoyles!" Detective Bluestone's voice cut in on her narrative. "I repeat; those are Gargoyles. They're friendly. If they're in a dogfight, they're in trouble. Where's your current proximity?"
"I'm about two hundred feet from the dogfight. It's right above the castle." She replied. "There are three Gargoyles and a helicopter with two armed gunman firing either laser or particle beam weapons."
"Intervene." Matt exclaimed. "They're friends."
"Roger Wilco." Adrienne replied. She soared upwards at incredible speed. She hated heights. She had learned to stifle her fear of flight by pretending that it was simply a movie on a screen below her. She wasn't adept at aerial combat; it was a weakness that cost her dearly in her recent battle with the Sentinels. "Dinner will have to wait."
She hovered under the helicopter and watched the largest of the three gargoyles desperately trying to distract the gunmen. He was trying to draw their fire away from his comrades.
It's time that I even the odds.
Adrienne came from beneath the helicopter and hovered only a few feet in front of the armed individuals. "Gentlemen, I believe that hunting Gargoyles out of season is illegal."
She allowed two globes of Darkness the size of baseballs to form perfectly in her hands. She nonchalantly shoved them down the barrels of their particle beam weapons. "I wouldn't fire those if I were you."
Unfortunately, the gunman on her right had a smaller sidearm pulled and aimed at a target behind her. "Forget the mutant, get the big purple one!"
Adrienne never liked being ignored. She felt a sudden pain in her stomach as a shot flew through the air and hit her squarely in the abdomen. The burning sensation of laser scorching her skin did little for pleasant temperament. She hadn't thought they would act so quickly. Most F.O.H members were not very smart in the strategy department.
Adrienne flew straight through the open side door of the helicopter and stood between the two surprised assailants. She gave one a glib smile then she grabbed him by the scruff of the neck. She tossed him out the side and watched with satisfaction as he landed harmlessly on a trampolines located in the courtyard of the castle.
"Going down?" She raised a sardonic brow at the second gunman.
Instead, he brought the butt of his large firearm across her jaw. Adrienne fell back stunned from the edge of the helicopter's door. She felt the cold rush of Spring air sweep around her. She tried to gather her wits, but, she was falling to fast to regain control of her rapid descent.
Adrienne's expeditious plunge abruptly ceased. She desperately shook away the disorientation resulting from the pistol whip she experienced. Staring at her was a stoic expression of obsidian eyes and lavender skin!?
"I never thought my guardian angel would be purple." She quipped.
He said nothing as he caught an updraft and soared upwards. She shook off the last of confusion. "Can you get in front of that helicopter?"
"Aye, I can." Come a deep lilting baritone with an accent that she couldn't quite place.
"Do it so I can get a clear shot." She ordered. The large lavender creature said nothing but did as she asked. He brought her in perfect alignment with the front of the helicopter. She knew she only had a few seconds before the Gargoyle hunters would respond. With practiced precision, Adrienne felt her hands tingle and surge with coolness as she fired two Darkforce torpedoes at the engine. She heard two dull thunks against metal and watched as they pierced the underbelly of the chopper. She watched the helicopter fly lopsidedly and almost crash into the side of a tall office building.
"Thank you." She said to the lavender behemoth that still carried her in his arms. He nodded and gave her only a hint of a smile.
"Detective Bluestone says that you're the good guys." Adrienne replied.
"Tell ...Detective Bluestone that we send our regards and our thanks." The baritone voice resonated around her.
"Will do." She replied cheerfully.
"Wait!" He called as she turned to return to her patrol. "What is your name?"
"You can call me Twilight." She smiled.
"Twilight?" He asked somewhat confused. "That is an unusual name."
"For an unusual person." Adrienne replied. She nodded her head to him. "And yours."
"I am called Goliath."
"Talk about unusual names." She glibly replied. "I think you have me beat. Anyway, I have Chinese food calling to my famished stomach. Be careful, all right?"
"...Will do." He said with mirth as he repeated her earlier response. She looked down at the courtyard one final time to take in the gothic beauty of the castle. She saw the first gunman aiming his rifle at the lavender Gargoyle across from her.
"Watch out, Goliath!" Adrienne screamed. She zipped the short distance and violently tackled the gargoyle in midair. One red beam sped by them and disappeared into the darkness. She smiled. Then, a burning sensation erupted on her back. It's burning turned to sheer agony as it spread throughout her body. She screamed in agony as the pain overtook her.
She watched Goliath's eyes widen in horror and then somehow he was underneath her, catching her in his arms. She felt the sweet allure of unconsciousness beckon to her.
"Stay awake!" He bellowed. "You will be safe soon."
"We'll see." She muttered as the pain sapped her of her strength and energy to speak.
The next few moment were a haze to Adrienne. She drifted in and out of consciousness and a myriad of faces crossed her line of vision. All she wanted was Benton Frasier. She wanted her Mountie to be there and make it better. She found herself lying in what seemed like a bed or an infirmary. She felt the open burn on her back as the cool air both soothed and aggravated the wound.
"Detective Bluestone," an unfamiliar voice sounded confident and deep in her ears. "Thank you for calling and who is your partner?"
"I'm Sergeant Benton Frasier of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police." Come the Northern brogue that Adrienne treasured so much. "I am the Canadian Liaison working with the New York City Police Department."
"Ben?" Adrienne cried out weakly.
"Yes, Love. I'm here." She heard his soft, soothing voice in her ear. She felt the warmth of his hand as he gently stroked her hair. "Lie still and save your strength."
"What happened?" She asked.
"You were hit in the back by a plasma beam."
"I thought it was just a laser."
"Unfortunately not, Love." He said softly.
"How...how bad?" She dared to ask the question.
"Hush now, Adrienne." She heard a catch that sounded suspiciously like a sob. "You need your rest."
"You lie like..." she coughed as she found it difficult to speak. "like a cheap Persian rug, Ben. How bad?"
"It's....mortal." She heard the ragged sob in his voice.
"I'm a shapeshifter." She told him. "If I can just find the energy to shift...."
"No!" He cried. "It's too dangerous. Just lie and rest. Hank is on his way. He'll take care of you."
"Ben," a voice suspiciously like Matt's called to the Mountie. "Can we speak to you outside?"
"Of course." He answered.
The sweet blackness that had tempted her finally overtook her.

"The prognosis looks rather dim, I'm afraid." Hank McCoy said in the corridor almost an hour later. "The plasma bolt has interfered with Adrienne's cell reproduction. She is unable to metamorph. If she were to try, she'd immediately expire."
"Isn't there anything we can do?" Benton asked urgently. "That's my Fiance in there. She's an X-Man. Isn't there some scientific contraption you can use to enable her metamorphing capabilities?"
"Unfortunately, there isn't." Hank said grimly. "Adrienne's wounds are far too extensive for her to be moved."
"Then nothing can be done for her?" Benton felt hot tears sting his cheeks. At that moment, he cared little for what others thought of him. He only wanted his beloved Adrienne to be well.
"Only if you want to be absorbed." Hank replied.
"Absorbed?" A resounding baritone quietly interjected. The Mountie and the Blue Furry Mutant turned to see a winged Giant standing beside them in the hall. "Will this absorption save....Adrienne's life?"
"Indeed, it just might. But, my rather gargantuan gargoyle friend, the price is costly." Hank told him. "I'm sorry. I don't believe I caught your name?'
"I am Goliath." He stated grimly. "And you are...?"
"Hank McCoy. My friends call me Beast."
"Indeed." Goliath replied quickly. "Not meaning to be rude, Mr. McCoy, but you were speaking about...absorption."
"Ah yes! Absorption." Hank pushed his falling spectacles upwards on the bridge of his nose. "Adrienne is a mutant with several abilities. One, the ability to generate and create a shadowlike energy know as Darkforce. Two; she has the ability to metamorph into any person or animal...especially those who are black, white, or both in coloration. Last of all, she has a unique form of empathy that operates on various levels. She can receive and send transmissions of emotion. On a deeper level, she can absorb DNA and form a psionic link with another party. Using a combination of their DNA and life-force, she can incorporate both into her own essence and use them to heal the other party or herself."
"Fascinating." Goliath murmured. "You are saying that she could take a part of anyone into herself, be inside their mind, and use their life energy to regenerate either person?"
"Yes, that's how it works." Hank replied. "However, there is a side affect to the "bonding" as Adrienne calls it. It forms a mental affinity with the party so strong that they both share thoughts, feelings. It can lead to a bond so strong that it is unbreakable."
"But this bond would heal her?"
"If she were strong enough to execute it, yes it would." Hank agreed. "However, she is weakening by the hour. Her vital signs have plummeted within the past several minutes."
"Goliath, Dr. McCoy..." A crimson Gargoyle came to them. "I think you had better come inside. The girl's unconscious."
Goliath, Hank, and Ben rushed inside the infirmary where they watched the heart monitor quietly show the slowing of her heartbeat. Hank took her pulse and silently shook his head. "She's entered a coma. She doesn't have long now."
"Damn you, McCoy!" Benton screamed. "Do something."
"There's nothing I can do."
"Maybe you can't, but I can." Ben rushed to her bedside and was ready to place his hands on her forehead. Matt grabbed him and shoved him away from Adrienne's side.
"What the hell do you think you're doing?!" Matt stood between his partner and the young Mutant. "Her need for life-force is so strong that she'd kill you, Ben. She can't control the bonding in her current state."
"I can't just stand by and let her die." He sobbed.
"I propose an another alternative." Goliath interjected. "It is not long until sunrise. We shall save your beloved Adrienne, Benton Frasier."
"Brooklyn will explain as we go." Goliath said as he gently scooped Adrienne into his powerful arms. "She saved my life and for that I am grateful. I will gladly repay my debt."
"Goliath, she could kill you." Hank said grimly.
"I don't think so. My kind also have ways to replenish ourselves." He cryptically replied.
Brooklyn explained to them as they followed Goliath about how Gargoyles are healed of all wounds and disease by the light of the sun. Benton and Hank looked skeptically at one another as they heard Brooklyn's fantastic tale. They arrived shortly before sunrise along the top of the castle wall. Hank, Matt, and Benton watched as the Gargoyles each assumed a position of ferocity except for Goliath.
"Hank McCoy, what must I do to commence this bond?"
"There must be an exchange of medium that includes DNA....bodily fluids are best." Hank explained. "The best mediums are blood, semen, and saliva."
"She has lost too much blood already. Semen is certainly not a viable option." Goliath contemplated with grim humor. "Saliva is the only option."
"You don't know how this absorption will affect you, it could well kill you before your reversion to stone."
"I think not if we time it precisely.ยด Goliath explained. "If Adrienne absorbs enough of...me. She will find the strength to shapeshift and restore herself to full health."
"That is the theory." Hank said.
"How long until sunrise?"
"One minute and ten seconds." The big blue behemoth glanced nervously at his watch. "Are you certain that you wish to do this, Goliath?"
"Yes." come his resounding answer. "I shall begin this....bonding."
Goliath looked at the pale, ashen face of the young woman lying almost lifeless in his arms. For a human, she certainly wasn't repulsive. Her short dark curls were a stark contrast to her naturally pale skin. He knew the best way to "exchange bodily fluids." He bent over Adrienne's unconscious form and slowly brought her closer to him.
"What the hell do you think you're doing?" Benton said tersely.
"A sleeping maiden can be woken with a kiss." Goliath replied quietly. "Let us hope that this particular instance will not prove us wrong."
Goliath brought his lips to hers. They felt dry and cold beneath his. He had grown accustomed to the human custom of kissing with his mate, Elisa....his darling, Elisa.....and only with Elisa....until now. He quietly deepened the kiss and tasted Adrienne deeply. He felt the wetness of his kiss mingle with her dry lips.
A few seconds past and nothing happened. Goliath felt the others staring on as he kissed Adrienne. She remained limp in his embrace. In an act of unconscious desperation, he tightened his embrace and folded his wings about her as if doing so would improve the potency of their kiss.
He felt a tingling at in his tongue. It was no different that eating spicy, spicy red peppers. Then the tingling spread out to cover his skin. It was akin to a very bad itch that needed to be scratched. He felt the itch turn into warmth that engulfed him in a cloud of comfort like an old familiar quilt. It was a very pleasant sensation. His entire body reverberated with subtle pulsations from the tips of his talons to the ends of his wings and tail.
Then, the world seemed to melt around them into a kaleidoscopic mosaic of color and light. Orbs of lavender, green and cerulean danced about them against a background of mauve. The ground beneath them vanished and now they floated languidly in the air. Goliath heard a faint strain around them that sounded almost like singing yet more like the rushing of water. The colored , glowing orbs circled around them at increasing speed. The sounds grew louder and the scent of lilacs, kiwi, and strawberry filled the air.
He saw flashing visions of the Mountie. The Mountie dressed in red surge. He saw strange faces. A man wearing what seemed like a ski visor. A regal woman with argent hair drew lightning from the skies. A wise leader informed in a wheelchair offered guidance. A short, muscular man with a feral nature inspired discomfort. Those unusual images combined with flashbacks of Demona silouhetted against a full moon. Elisa danced with him in her yellow "Belle" ballgown on Halloween. Pictures of his classmates interwove themselves amongst pictures of a castle, then a mansion. Members of the steel clan interposed with those of larger robots he instinctively knew were called Sentinels.
A lethargic weakness slowly overwhelmed Goliath. He watched as Adrienne's eyes slowly opened. They are dark like coffee. Yet, there is a hint of amber.
She looked up at him and smiled.
As the sun broke over the horizon, he felt that familiar stiffening overtake him. He watched as her face went from a smile and formed a scream. He felt panic bounce between them as he heard her terrified confusion bounce inside his mind.
Fear not, Adrienne. He reassured her with a gentle voice. It is only the sleep of my kind.
What the-?! She never had a chance to complete her question.
Hank and Benton watched in horrid fascination as they saw Goliath's skin lighten in color to a pale gray in the first rays of the morning sun. They felt jubilation as they watched Adrienne stir in his arm. Then dread set in as they watched her face contort into an expression of fear. Absolute fright filled Benton as he watched his Adrienne become gray stone before him. Helplessness threatened to cause him to lose his self-control.
"What happened?" He whispered.
"This is the Gargoyles' sleep that about which Brooklyn told us." Hank comforted the Mountie. "It would seem the bonding took place rather well between Adrienne and Goliath. So well, that she metamorphed into stone along with our craggy comrade. Let us hope that this repose will rejuvenate her as well as Goliath."
"What if she doesn't revert to normal form? What if she stays that way?" Ben asked.
"We won't know until Sunset." Hank answered. "There is nothing more we can do but wait."

One Year Later (give or take a few months :)) Spring 2002

Goliath waited anxiously by the edge of the castle rooftop. He continually scanned the skies for a silouhette to appear against the light of the full moon.
"Good evenin', Goliath." Hudson's soft Scottish bur greeted the clan leader.
"Good evening, Hudson. Did you sleep well?"
"Aye, I did at that." Hudson folded his wings about him. "Lookin' for the lass?"
"Indeed. Adrienne and I have an engagement that we plan to attend this evening." Hudson thought that he heard a hint of gleeful anticipation in his friend's reply.
"And what might that be, Lad?"
"I am going to the country for a few days."
"The country?" Hudson said confused.
"She is taking me to Westminster to meet her teammates and their leader, Professor Xavier." Goliath smiled. "She has promised that it will be the experience of a lifetime."
"And you're lookin' forward to it, aren't ye, Lad?"
"Indeed, Hudson."
"She's been a good friend to us, y'know." Hudson said. "She almost like clan to us."
"Yes, I agree."
"Are ye sure that ye be wantin' to take off from the castle?'
"Brooklyn is a good second-in-command." Goliath stated. "We have faced no threats for many months. I shall only be forty miles away. With the X-Men's marvelous aircraft called the Blackbird, Adrienne assures me that I can return within a few minutes."
"Ye need a break, Goliath. Enjoy it with your friend."
"I will, Hudson." Goliath laid a hand on his shoulder. "She has invited the entire clan to join us for the weekend, you know."
"Aye, Lad. I know. But Lex won't leave young Master Alex. Brooklyn is working on his new motorcycle. Broodway and Angela are watching the egg. I need to remain to guard the castle." Hudson reasoned. "That leaves only you. Ye know how sensitive that Adrienne can be. If nobody went, she be shooting guilt trips at us for weeks."
"True." He chuckled.
"Greetings and Salutations, Gentlemen." A cheerful voice said behind them. Goliath's face broadened into a bright smile.
"Adrienne!" He happily exclaimed as he jumped from his perch and landed in front of her. Then, he seemed to remember that Hudson was watching. He abruptly cleared his throat.
"It is good to see you." He greeted her in great solemnity.
"Are you ready?" She asked brightly.
"Nay, lass." Hudson shook his head. "None of us are able to get away."
"What?" He heard the bright note in her voice sour to shock and disappointment. "I thought that everyone was going."
"I am sorry, Adrienne." Goliath's baritone responded. "I must regrettably inform you that it is only I who is going."
She raised her eyebrows questioningly at Hudson. He merely smiled and winked. He watched her eyes widen as if she were truly horrified.
"Are you well?" Goliath's concern cut into their silent communication.
"It isn't a complete loss." She told him. "You're coming!"
"Indeed, I am." He smiled at her. "I have been looking forward to meeting your clan for some time."
"They're not exactly my clan... more like a pain in the butt on occasion." She smirked. "I think you'll like them. We're holding a barbecue at midnight just so they can all meet you. It's going to be the extravaganza of the twenty-first century."
"I am sure that it will be."
"Here." She handed him a golden band about the size of large wrist watch. She took his hand in hers. "Hold out your wrist?"
"You wish me to wear jewelry?" He asked clearly perplexed. Was this some Human custom that he knew nothing about?
"It's not jewelry." She countered. "It's an image inducer. It's technology that allows your appearance to appear altered. In this scenario, I've programmed it to allow you to appear human."
"Really?" Goliath seemed fascinated by the simple looking gold bracelet as she fastened it on his right wrist. She clicked a small button on it's side and she simply smiled at him.
"Really. Care to have a look?"
She led Goliath inside the castle and Hudson followed them. In one of the castle's corridors stood a large mirror. She led Goliath to stand in front of it and she heard him gasp in amazement. The reflection staring back at him from the glass was that of a tall male. He noticed that his skin appeared a dark burnished bronze. His long black hair remained but it crowned a strong jaw, high cheekbones, a cleft chin and deep-set obsidian eyes. He appeared to be dressed in a Henley tee shirt and comfortable jeans.
"Do you like?" Adrienne asked hopefully. "I tried to program in the truest Human representation based upon Owen's and Mr. Xanatos' descriptions of you. They told me that you had been human for a brief while. I used that for the basis of the image you see now."
"Your image is....accurate. The appearance is similar." He cryptically replied. He remembered his time being human when he first had discovered his deep feelings for Elisa. "Yes, Adrienne. I am pleased."
"Excellent!" She exclaimed. "Forty miles is a long way to glide. I figured we would drive instead."
"How else do you think I get here each night?" She asked humorously. "If I flew, I'd fall asleep once I arrived."

The drive at night was pleasant. The hustling traffic of the city subtly faded into the occasional car along the highway on the way to Salem Center, New York. They arrived around ten thirty to front gates sporting a plaque that read "The Xavier Institute For Higher Learning."
"This is your home?" Goliath asked marveling at the affluence clearly noticeable on the school grounds.
"This is my home." She replied. "It's not the castle, but, it will do."
"Indeed." He agreed.
She parked the car in the front circular drive. "Come on! I have to give you the grand tour."
An hour later, they had completed the tour of the upper levels of the mansion. She refrained from showing Goliath the sublevel because she hadn't secured permission from Professor Xavier. They finally stopped at a closed door at the end of the corridor on the third second floor.
"This is my room." She said quietly as she opened the door.
Goliath followed her in and took in her surroundings. He realized that her tastes in decor were rather traditional. He noticed her brass bed and plain white comforter draped over the bed. The bed stands, hall tree, and dresser were done in white with gold accenting.
"Just make yourself at home. I just want to take a quick shower." She said as she entered the next room and shut the door.
Goliath was beside himself as to what to do next. He had never seen this side of Adrienne. He rarely opened their link out of respect for her privacy. Their friendship was to precious and he knew that she valued her solitude. Yet, on rare occasions, he would get her to share poetry with him. She thought it fluff that she wrote to fill up pages in her journal. Goliath found that he enjoyed her prose.
At that moment, he saw her notebook on the bed.
He had read works from it many times when she had shown it to him. He peered over it and found a page marked with a pen.
Surely Adrienne wouldn't mind if I were to glance quickly at her work.
No, I mustn't. She would roast me alive for being intrusive.
One quick look is all.

He flipped quickly through the pages and settled his large frame upon the bed. His tail hung casually to the left and his wings folded comfortably around him. He browsed several pages until he came to the marked page scripted in heavy calligraphy ink.

I would serve to you my love like fine vintage wine
that has sweetened in the keg with the passage of time.
Would you partake of this particular flavor with me?
Would you savor its flavor brimming with resounding clarity?

Would my love infuse you with undying passion?
Would you ignore my humble offering in gracious fashion.
Here is the woman standing before you.
Here is the woman that truly adores you.

Goliath was impressed by the eloquent prose and the flowing rhythm of the stanzas. He knew that she had a talent for writing captivating verse. This was another example of her fine work. He knew her to be clumsy in the air , but, she was pristinely agile with the written word.
Goliath instincts told him that someone was watching him. He stood up to see Adrienne garbed in long white terry-cloth robe.
"Snooping?" She asked.
"Uh, no. I mean...I was merely reading your...poetry." He responded sheepishly. "Yes, I was curious. I wanted to read your most recent work."
She hastily grabbed the tattered notebook from Goliath's grasp. "Next time, please ask!"
"I am truly sorry. I meant not to offend you, Adrienne."
Goliath's earnest apology left her feeling contrite. She knew him to be sincere. He wasn't one to lie about being interested in her poetry. "I'm sorry, Goliath. I didn't mean to snap at you."
He placed his hands over hers. "It really was quite good.. It had good cadence. It rolled off the tongue like a melody one sings all their life."
"It's just dribble." She responded hurriedly. She tried to pull the book and her hands from his grasp.
"I think not, my Raven." He called her by his pet name for her. How that rumbling baritone could convince her of almost anything astounded her. Surely he knew what affect his deep voice had upon the female persuasion regardless of species. "Please, read some more of it to me."
"Goliath, it's just a few lines." She hedged. "It's merely a rough draft. Let me work on it."
"I truly would like to hear it." Goliath gently urged his friend.
"You could sell sand to people in Death Valley." She scoffed . "Fine, I'll read some. I'm a sucker every time."
She saw Goliath's face break into a big grin.
She cleared her throat and began to read. "I call it "Wallflowers and Wine"

I would serve to you my love like fine vintage wine
that has sweetened in the keg with the passage of time.
Would you partake of this particular flavor with me?
Would you savor its flavor brimming with resounding clarity?

Would my love infuse you with undying passion?
Would you ignore my humble offering in gracious fashion.
Here is the woman standing before you.
Here is the woman that truly adores you.

"I searched for the Love of my life in all whom I've met.
Yet, I am the one that all those always forget.
I looked into your eyes and the reflection rang true.
The love I've felt for so long I have been saving for you.

My heart asks the question and begs you to hear.
My heart seems so blind whenever I'm near.
Wallflower I am when you're in the room.
Yet, with your eyes upon me you cause me to bloom.

It is not my desire to remain forever untasted.
I beg for you not to discard my love and leave it wasted.
I would serve to you my love like fine vintage wine
that has sweetened in the bottle with the passage of time.

A quiet moment hovered between them. He looked at her with all mirth wiped away from his handsome chiseled features.
"Adrienne," He whispered in a hushed tone. "The piece is lovely."
"Thank you." She said breathlessly. "I need to take my shower."
He thought he saw tears brimming in those large brown eyes. He felt embarrassment filter from her mind to his as if it were his own.
"I apologize." He quietly mumbled. "I never meant to embarrass you."
"I'll get over it." She answered. "I'm a tough girl."
"Of that I have no doubt." He chuckled.
The silence hung between them for another moment. The spell between them was broken by the sounds of loud music just beneath her window.
"I think they've began the pool party and the barbecue." Goliath finally spoke. He was concerned that he had ruined his friend's good mood. Inspiration reminded him that she adored good humor. "Let us join the others. Please allow me to make amends for my inappropriate behavior."
"Goliath, don't worry about it.." She said comfortingly, seemingly oblivious to the twitching of his tail and the glimmer of mischief in his eyes. "I'm just a tad thin-skinned."
"No worries tonight." He said brightly. He quickly scooped her into his arms as though she were lighter than feathers. "Thou shalt have fun by the pool."
"Shakespeare never said anything about that." She replied nervously.
"Who said I was quoting Shakespeare?" He purred.
She loved it when he purred.
"Goliath! Put me down." She responded with a note of anger.
Being naturally dexterous, Goliath effortlessly opened her bedroom window latch with his prehensile tail. He forced the window open and stepped on to the balcony outside. He dived effortlessly from the window to the ground below.
"Goooliiiiiiiiaaaaaaaaaaaaath!" Breanna screamed as they plummeted from the third story. His wings spread and they glided adroitly to land on the soft grass beneath them near the pool. Those large brown eyes glowed with lavender fire as he gave her a sheepish smile.
"Goliath..." she said menacingly.
"It was the easiest way down." He offered.
"Oh! You couldn't have used the stares like other normal guests....of all the-" she spouted angrily.
"Gargoyle?' He chuckled.
" You overgrown Gargantuan Gargoyle!" She retorted sharply.
"Has anyone ever told you that your eyes change hue from a lovely cinnamon amber to a dark smoky hue when your perturbed?" He flirted.
"What?" She squeaked not quite believing her ears.
He looked at her speechless. He seemed as dumbfounded as she by his outrageous comment.
"We've both been under severe stress as of late, Adrienne." He said quietly. "Let's enjoy this repose and just be free."
"Fine." She answered. "Goliath?'
"Yes, Adrienne?" He asked.
"Put me down."
"Only if you promise to have a good time with me at the party."
"If I can forget you snooped. Then, you tried to distract me with shameless flirtation and flattery."
"Your poetry was very good by the way."
"Then, without my permission you accosted me." She began to enjoy this bantering between them.
"I had to make you smile. The ends justify the means, my Raven."
"You jumped out of a three story window without giving me any warning." She chided him sternly. "You know I am afraid of heights."
"It was the quickest way to the party,." He parried her remarks with apt ease. "Now, Adrienne. Let us enjoy this beautiful evening."
"I will." She gave into Goliath's request.
"With me?" He found himself asking. Somehow, he didn't want her to wander far from his side. It is only because I know no one here.
"With you." She promised in a whisper. She gave into the impulsive urge to stand on her tiptoes and give him a quick peck.
It was somewhat unusual for Adrienne to be so affectionate with him. Yet, it meant that she had forgiven him his transgressions. He set her easily upon her feet. She smoothed out her ruffled clothes. She wore a white sun dress that complimented her golden ivory complexion.
"Good, Let's get some food." She replied. Goliath gallantly offered his arm to her. She accepted and the walked over to the table brimming with cuisines ALA Remy and other aspiring cooks within the X-Men ranks. Her hand burned at the contact when Goliath covered it with his.
Scorching jolts of delight ran through her fingers and up her arm.
"Hey, Belle." A smooth Cajun voice drawled behind them. "Dis be de hombre my Adrienne talk so much about?"
"In the flesh." She happily replied. "Remy LeBeau, allow me to introduce you to my friend, Goliath, of the Clan Manhattan in New York City."
"It be a pleasure, mon ami, to meet the m- er. Gargoyle dat saved Dree's can more dan once." Remy offered his hand to the huge Gargoyle.
"The pleasure is mine." Was his deep reply and he took the thief's hand and shook it heartily.
"Oui. Dree, we need to see you more of you....like in a swimsuit, no?"
"Remy, you are such a flirt." She playfully scoffed. "You never stop, do you?"
"No, no, Belle. It is my flaw."
"Perhaps, later." Goliath found himself responding. He protectively wrapped his wings around the brunette.
"Remy, go find Rogue and go do something." Adrienne said.
"Your Goliath be a little jealous, I t'ink." He winked at her.
"Uh...no...he's ...uh..." She stammered at the very thought. "He's a Gargoyle. His nature is to protect. He's protecting my virtue from such a scoundrel such as yourself." Nice save, Adrienne. She congratulated herself. Yet, a bolt of unprecedented joy brimmed inside her. Be casual.
For the next hour they made the rounds and Goliath was properly introduced. No one seemed to mind that he had wings and a tail. Kurt made the comment that it was en vogue to have a tail and rather fashionable to have wings in this motley crew. For the next hour they sampled the culinary wares of the aspiring barbequers and sat quietly on the sidelines as the others indulged n water polo and volleyball. Adrienne finally persuaded Goliath to join them in a game of football with Bobby, Remy, Kitty and Logan on their team.
All was going well until Goliath and Adrienne ran to intercept the same overhead pass. They didn't see each other until they successfully ran into one another. Goliath's massive weight pressed Adrienne into the cool, soft grass. He lay haphazardly atop the much smaller woman. She noticed that his lips were only inches away.
She smells of lilacs and fresh Spring air. Goliath the Gargoyle noticed for the first time that those large orbs colored like coffee had flecks of copper in them.
"Jalapenya!" He whispered. He felt her warmth beneath him as she wiggled to get out from underneath him. He saw the edge of her lip bleeding from where they had collided. Goliath felt remorse for his inattentiveness. He suddenly kissed her gently where her lip and her cheek joined, hoping to take away the sting.
He felt so large and massive above her. His wings seemed to blot out the world as they spanned their entire length. Here was her dream man only inches away and it turned out to be.....a Gargoyle named Goliath! Holy Hell, what I am thinking!? Adrienne thought in sheer amazement. Did he just kiss my cheek? Or her lips... she wasn't quite sure. She gasped in pleasure as his tender lips again touched the stinging spot where she had cut her lip. She felt desperately trapped between her awareness of him, the thrill of the moment, and the threat of humiliation if her true feelings were revealed.
"Hey, purple guy!" Bobby Drake yelled from the other side of the field. "Didn't Adrienne explain the rules of Football? You're supposed to tackle the other team, not your own teammates."
"I do believe he's quite right." Goliath replied.
"Maybe..." She replied.
"Yes, of course." He said hoarsely. He quickly removed himself and offered her his taloned hand. He saw the hem of her dress had ridden up around her thigh. In instinctive protectiveness, he hastily smoothed the risen hem. His hand brushed gently against her thigh and he thought he heard her moan. He looked down in surprise at the young woman with her swollen lip. He watched his face wear shock...or pleasure?
"Goliath, please excuse me. I ...uh...need to get some ice for my lip." She hurried off toward the mansion.
Bobby Drake sauntered over to Goliath at the end of the game. His blonde all-American good looks were a definite contrasts to Goliath's looming lavender stature. "So, what going on between you and the Wallflower?"
"Wallflower?" Goliath queried not quite understanding Bobby's question.
"Y'know...you and Adrienne." Goliath looked as if he'd been hit over the head with a rock. Bobby stared at Goliath in disbelief. "The elusive Adrienne....bookworm...wallflower? Oh, I bet you didn't know! You're all she ever talks about...Goliath this...Goliath that....the clan did this...the clan did that.....Gargoyles, gargoyles, gargoyles. She never shuts up about it; especially you! I think she's got it for you , baad!"
"Got it...for me?" The unfamiliar phase made little sense to the Gargoyle.
"Y' know...has the hots for ya...wants to get down with you...has a crush on you."
"Ahh!" Goliath knew what the young man meant. Then the words hit him. "She has a crush on me?"
"She has to. Why'd she run off like that otherwise after that tackle?" Bobby smirked. "Probably had to take a cold shower, if you ask me."
"She injured herself as a result of our collision." Goliath replied gruffly; his annoyance apparent that he cared little for Bobby's insinuations. He let his gave travel off toward the backdoor that led to the mansion.
"Yeah, I can't believe that she actually joined the football game. She's not exactly graceful. She's like a bulldozer at a ballet. Getting her to play football is kinda like getting the Professor to grow hair. It just doesn't happen." Bobby laughed.
"Hey," Remy interrupted Bobby. "Da Professor can not help it if he be folically impaired."
"Yeah, true." Bobby agreed. "Did you see Wallflower run off like a scaled cat? Makes me wonder why she ran off in such a rush."
"Bobby Darake, I suggest that you refrain from further defamation of Adrienne's character." Goliath growled. Bobby took a step back when argent fire blazed from Goliath's steely gaze. "Especially if she isn't here to defend herself."
With those words, Goliath wrapped his wings around him in an ebony cloak. With his tail swinging angrily, he headed for the house to find the young woman that had stirred something in him most unexpectedly that night.

She rushed through the kitchen up the stairs to her bedroom. She locked the door behind her. Adrienne felt mortified and thrilled at the nights events. She fell upon her bed. She pulled a pillow over her head.

"Mon ami, wait up." Remy called to Goliath as he hurried to catch up with the furious Gargoyle.
"Bobby's mouth sometime outrun his brain. He was only teasin' Goliath."
"I found his remarks unnecessary." Goliath's anger rumbled into the night.
"Maybe so." The Cajun replied. "But, she had no need to run off dat way."
"She cut her lip. She needed ice." Goliath said tightly.
"Was dat before or after you planted one on her?" Remy asked.
"I don't understand." Goliath turned and stopped to look at the Cajun. "She cut her lip and needed ice. There is nothing more to tell."
"Maybe not, Goliath." Remy tossed the football up and caught it in his tapered hands. "We all saw you kiss Adrienne and she looked mighty flushed."
"Hey guys, wait up." Bobby yelled from behind. He jogged to catch up with Remy and Goliath. "Hey, Dude, I'm sorry. I was just teasin."
"Well." Goliath thought that everyone deserved a second chance. "Let it be forgotten."
"Coolness." Bobby whooped. "I still think she's got it bad for you , Goliath."
Goliath's eyes glowed and he quietly roared a warning.
"I t'ink Big Mouth has a point." Remy reluctantly agreed. "I t'ink you surprised her as much as you did yourself with dat little peck."
"I think they both wanna get it on." Bobby taunted. "I knew it!"
"I assure you that we are merely friends." Come the denial just a tad too soon from Goliath.
"Though she's not exactly your type is she? Hell, she ain't even the same species? Like, what's up with that?" Bobby shrugged. "Hey, perky tits and tight ass must be universal."
"Hey, hombre, don' be so crude." Remy warned Bobby. "Get your zipper shut and your manhood back inside your pants."
"If you'll excuse me, Gentlemen." Goliath pointedly cleared his throat. "I am going to get myself a drink of water."
As they watched the Gargoyle go inside, Bobby turned to Remy. "You think he's got it for her?"
"Yeah, I do.

He found Adrienne in her room applying a bag of ice to her swollen lip. She looked like a disheveled ragamuffin sitting there with the ice bag in her hands. Goliath thought about her and her stunning poetry. He though how lovely she seemed to him in that one moment of madness when she had been beneath him on the grass. He'd known Adrienne and friend and ally for quite some while and found himself wondering what lay beneath that invisible barrier that kept even her closest friends at bay.
He rapped quietly on her open door. "Are you well, my Raven?"
"Better." She smiled. He looked very imposing standing in the doorway. Broad shoulders, sculpted chest....cloaked wings and woolen loincloth. Hubba hubba! GQ centerfold of the month....G as in Gargoyle. "Thank you for asking."
"We missed you."
"I meant to return."
The moment of silence was a wall that blocked the usual rapport between them. He spied a book on her end table. He picked it up and read the title, "Heart of Stone, Heart of Love."
She slammed the book shut. "Put that down, Goliath."
"I apologize." His eyes fell downcast. "I don't like this anger and awkwardness between us, my Raven."
"I know." She lifted his chin so that his gaze met hers. "I don't know why I'm so testy." She handed the book to him. "Here."
He noticed the cover was one of a bare-chested Human male and a scantily-clad Human female locked in an embrace. He turned the book over and read the summary. "They called him the Stone lover. He was a rake, a rogue, and a libertine who's heart was harder than Granite. With his scathing wit, rapier intellect and charm, the Duke of Wyvern was adroit in the art of seduction." Goliath read it as if it were Shakespeare.
"A Friend lent it to me. I'll read almost anything." She explained hurriedly.
"I won't tease you for reading something entertaining." He sounded amused. "I have scanned certain male-oriented publications belonging to Xanatos."
"I don't think Playtoy or "Pent-Up" quite qualify in the4 same realm as a romance novel." Adrienne replied. "And I don't leave them in the castle outhouse."
"You are incorrect, milady. Mr. Xanatos has indoor plumbing."
"Cute, Goliath." She said with sarcasm. "Let me guess...you read them in the library."
"Of course...I have browsed through them on one or two occasions."
"To better understand the human mind." He supplied with mock dignity. "I certainly don't read them for the pictures."
She grinned. He felt a strange warmth settle over him. She brought out a subtle sense of humor that Goliath rarely expressed.
"I feel badly for our collision."
"Accidents happen."
"Let me make amends."
"Not necessary, Goliath."
"Please, allow me." He almost begged. "It's the least I can do after ramming into you like some common thug."
"Goliath, really! I'm fine. A little bumped and bruised, but, otherwise fine." She repeated.
Goliath leaned closer to her. His massive lavender knuckles gently grazed that sensitive spot that he had kissed earlier that night. He heard her breath catch when he touched her. an unfamiliar elation coursed through him.
"Adrienne, It is rare that we spend time together just we two. I'd like to make amends if you'll let me."
"I'd like to read more of your poetry." His large finger traced her lips. "Would you partake of this particular flavor with me? Would you savor it's flavor brimming with resounding clarity?"
"You're quoting my poem." She murmured in shock.
"Indeed. I would care to read all your poetry....I would like to know you better."
"I think that's possible."
"Would you read some more to me?"
"Yes, Adrienne. Now."
"You want me to read you my poetry?" She felt as if he had grown a third eye and started dancing the Funky chicken.
"It's certainly better quality than this...bodice ripper or Playtoy." He quipped.
"This is true. Though, some would beg to differ."
"I wouldn't." Goliath's obsidian gaze never left Adrienne's as the intensity of his words scored his name into her soul. "Please, I'd love to hear you read some poetry to me....for..."
Without words, she slowly reached into the drawer of her end table and pulled out the green tattered notebook. With trembling uncertainty, she opened a page at random. She nervously cleared her throat. "Are you sure?"
"Oh, yes.' Come that deep rumbling purr from deep within Goliath's throat.
"I call this piece, 'Butterfly Kiss.' I hope you enjoy it." She spoke so softly that Goliath strained to hear her.
Love is a tender, sacred thing
Ancient as the Sun, new as the Spring.
It is my secret shame and my delight
as you brighten my days and impassion my nights.

Your kiss turnes me into a butterfly
with grace and hue sweet upon the eye.
Your touch causes me to quake and tremble.
For just one moment, I think we resemble

the finest points of my romantic dream
you and me within amour's alluring gleam.
I find one moment of the purest bliss
when the dream ends with that butterfly kiss.

"It was wonderful." Goliath said with reverence.
"I'm glad you liked it. It's been one of my favorites for quite some time." Adrienne admitted.
Against his better judgment, Goliath found himself leaning toward Adrienne. He pressed his warm lips to her soft rosy cheek. He felt her stiffen slight with his tender affection. His large hands came up to tenderly and carefully cup her face. He pressed no further as he simply placed another kiss on her forehead. He felt her quake and tremble. Or is I who is trembling? He wondered. He reached up and deftly brushed back the errant charcoal curls with one hand. He brought his lips to that sensitive spot at the corner of her mouth and pressed a small kiss upon her skin.
She mewled.
He stopped. Goliath's tail twitched swiftly to and fro. "You have a heart and mind of a poet. There is truth in your words."
"What do you mean?" Adrienne tried desperately to catch her breath.
"There truly is bliss in a butterfly kiss." Goliath's deep voice felt like rich, melted chocolate to her.

For the rest of the night, Adrienne walked around in a haze of disbelief and absolute joy. Goliath had kissed her. She hadn't even seen it coming. Yet, he had kissed her three times....except where it counted......on the lips. She wanted to know what a true kiss from him would be like, would taste like to her.
The rest of the weekend went on without incident. The following night, Goliath (with his image inducer), Adrienne, Kurt and Kitty attended Shakespeare's Tempest at the Salem Center Community play house. Neither one mention the kisses that had occurred the previous night. Adrienne found glue sealed her lips every time she longed to ask Goliath about that kiss. He had made no overture of affection. He had remained at her side and had been a charming escort. He mingled effortlessly with her teammates. Only Logan proved to be a problem. His sarcastic remarks had caused Adrienne distress. However, she decided to let it go.
Adrienne Westfall lived for months on the precious memories of Goliath's butterfly kisses.

This is just of hint of what is to come. A little action and a lot of romance. I have more ideas for the next installment. Please let me know what you think about this! Thanks!