Title: Oh Baby
Rating/Warnings: PG-13 for swears and interspecies breeding.
Summary: Elisa has some news for Goliath, Brooklyn might be interested as well, and Hudson has a dim view of what this means for the rest of the clan.
A/N: Whenever I watch more than two episodes of Gargoyles in a row, I want to be Elisa Maza. Gargoyles is my second fic-producing fandom, after X-men.
Elisa stood on top of Castle Wyvern, on top of the Aerye Building, shivering as the frigid winter wind cut through even her thick winter coat. Even though the sky was completely overcast, she knew internally that it was only a few more minutes to sunset.
She'd honed that skill pretty sharp in the last four years.
Normally she stood right next to the guys until just before they woke up, but tonight she hung close to the wall, trying to stand in the lee of the building to get at least some protection from the bitter wind.
Goliath was going to be mad when he saw that she was standing out here waiting for him, she mused to herself. For the last few nights he had begged her repeatedly to wait for him inside, where it was warm. But Elisa loved to watch the guys wake up each night, stretching with deafening roars, wings exploding to their fullest spans, stone fragments shooting in all directions. More specifically, she loved watching Goliath, never tiring of the way that at sunset cold stone transmogrified into the fiercely-alive warrior that she had fallen for so hard. And she was addicted to the thrill she felt ripple through her stomach when he turned to look for her first thing every night. And then there would be his strong embrace, almost too strong, as though he had been worried the whole time he slept that she might have disappeared without him protecting her 24 hour a day. It was one of the few times he didn't treat her like she was made of glass, one of the few times he used more than a fraction of his strength with her.
So if Elisa took another scolding for endangering her health, it was well worth it. Besides, the colder she looked, the harder Goliath would try to warm her up.
A smile quirked on Elisa's lips as she felt intuitively the loss of the sun for the night. Spider web cracks appeared on the statues in front of her, then stone exploded in all directions as Hudson, Brooklyn, Angela, Broadway, Lexington, and Bronx roared to life for another night.
But Elisa only had eyes for Goliath. Larger than life, he stretched his full height, dark wings extending with the snap of leather, lavender skin pale against the dark sky, his roar making the stone beneath her feet tremble, shaking through her whole being. He turned instinctively and locked eyes immediately with Elisa.
They'd done this hundreds of times by now, but Elisa still felt her heart hammering in her chest as he hopped off the parapet and headed for her, eyes never leaving hers. The world could have ended, and Elisa would still have only been able to see Goliath's face, his eyes betraying his overwhelming desire to hold her even as he scowled at her. He crushed her against him, wrapping arms and wings around her and Elisa clung to him closely, reveling in his searing heat, pressing her head right where she could hear his heart pounding.
"I have asked you repeatedly not to wait out here," he growled, breathing close to her ear. "It is far too cold. Your body is like ice."
"I missed you, too, big guy," Elisa replied, unphased. "You know I can't resist watching you wake up."
"It is not good for you," Goliath replied stubbornly, pulling his head back a little to look at her face. "You have seen me wake dozens of times. Tonight was no different, and tomorrow will be exactly the same."
"Then I can't wait," Elisa smiled simply, reaching up to kiss him good morning.
"Geez, they're at it already," Brooklyn grumbled. "Every night they have exactly the same argument. I'm not sure whether it's more sickening watching them argue or watching them make up."
"You don't have to watch them at all," Broadway pointed out, still looking over the city rather than witness his leader's PDA. "I'm sure not looking." Bronx barked his agreement.
"I think it's sweet," Angela said. "It's certainly an improvement over the way things were before. If you had seen them while we were traveling from Avalon, both being tortured by their completely obvious love for one another…" she broke off glaring at the trio as they all clutched their stomachs and made gagging noises.
Goliath broke off the kiss quickly when he heard the sound effects behind him, looking slightly embarrassed. Elisa smiled affectionately and backed up a step, knowing that Goliath hated PDA. Goliath let his wings slide off her reluctantly and she winked at him, letting her eyes promise of things to come later.
"So what are you guys up to tonight?" she asked, turning to Hudson and the trio plus one. She glanced back to see Goliath's scowl return with full force.
"Inside, now," he ordered. "You can talk where it's warm."
"Yes, sir, sergeant sir," Elisa gave a good-humored mock salute to her overly concerned lover, and led the way inside.
"Ah, Goliath," Xanatos was just about to open the door. "I was hoping you would be awake. Good evening, Detective Maza."
"Hello, Xanatos," she replied neutrally, if not affectionately. They exchanged significant glances and Elisa shook her head slightly. Goliath was just about to ask what was happening, when Xanatos turned back to him.
"I've made some changes in the castle's daytime security that I think will be more effective," he said. "I'd like to go over them with you later tonight, if you don't mind."
"Later will be fine," Goliath nodded, still trying to figure out what was going on.
"Excellent," Xanatos flashed his trademark smile. "Fox and I will be trying to put Alex down for the night until roughly dawn, if last night is any indication. Come and find me when you're ready." He glanced at Lexington. "Why don't you come too, Lexington? You've got the best feel for the computerized defenses."
"Sounds great!" Lex replied eagerly. "Why wait…ow!" he broke off as Angela stepped on his tail hard. "Oh, yeah, I mean later's good, we've got plans anyway."
"Yeah, we'll catch you later," Brooklyn repeated, pushing the others in front of him back out the door as Goliath watched them with a furrowed brow.
"What is going on?" he asked, turning to Elisa, she fidgeted uncomfortably.
"Um, tell you what," Elisa said. "Why don't you go down to the library and I'll be down in five minutes? I'll explain everything then, I promise."
Goliath glanced back and forth from Elisa to Xanatos twice uneasily before doing as she asked. When he was out of sight, Elisa sighed.
"Are you ready for this?" Xanatos asked.
"I've got to tell him sometime," Elisa looked anxious. "They're sure, right? One hundred percent? Cause if they're wrong…"
"They're utterly convinced," Xanatos assured her. "Concrete evidence."
"Guess it's now or never then." Elisa put her game face into position, then squared her shoulders and prepared to make one of the hardest announcements of her life.
Goliath was pacing in front of the huge windows when Elisa opened the library door and slipped in. Goliath stopped pacing to face her, and crossed his arms, demanding silently to know what she would confide in Xanatos before him.
"Could you not look at me like that?" Elisa asked, putting a hand on his arm. "This is hard enough without you looking so scary." Goliath's expression melted a little.
"I do not mean to be harsh with you, my love," he said. "But you have me worried."
"I know," Elisa gave him a wan smile. "I'm sorry, big guy, I just don't know how to tell you this."
"Whatever the problem is, we will face it together," he said confidently.
"It's not a problem," Elisa shook her head. At least it better not be, she added mentally. "It's…I'm…"she took a deep breath, then looked deep into Goliath's eyes and went totally blank. She simply couldn't find the words to tell Goliath what she needed to. Instead she very deliberatively took one of Goliath's hands in her two.
She flattened it against her abdomen with a significant look.
"Wha…" was all Goliath got out before realization took hold. His eyes widened and his nostrils flared, he flailed for the wall with his free hand, missed entirely, and sat down hard on the floor. Elisa kneeled beside him, still holding his hand. She held her breath, simultaneously desperate to know Goliath's reaction and terrified of it. "How?" he finally asked
"I would think that would be sort of obvious," Elisa murmured wryly.
"But…" Goliath seemed only capable of issuing monosyllabic questions. "When?"
"About six weeks," Elisa confessed. "Give or take."
"Why did you not tell me before?" Goliath asked, looking hurt.
"I wasn't sure at first," Elisa lowered her eyes guiltily. "And I didn't want to get you excited until I was sure. And until I knew everything was okay."
"Is it…okay?" Goliath's conflict between Elisa's safety and the possibility of a child was very plain. Elisa waved her hands rather helplessly.
"So far as anybody knows," she told him. "I'm healthy. That's why I told Xanatos before you. He found a private OB-GYN we can trust."
"OB…G…" Goliath looked more bewildered than ever.
"OB-GYN," Elisa repeated. "That's a pregnancy and baby doctor. Oh, Goliath," Elisa's voice quavered. "I wanted to tell you so bad, but I was scared…damn, I promised Angela I wouldn't cry…" she reached up and angrily swiped at the tears that were beginning to slip out of her eyes.
"Don't…don't cry," Goliath reached out and pulled Elisa close, his own voice cracking a little. "I just cannot…you are…we are…"
"Going to have a baby," Elisa finished for him, looking up with some anxiety. "How do you feel about that?"
As he was formulating some response, a flash of irritation crossed Goliath's features, and Elisa cringed.
"You have known you were with child for all this time," he scowled at her, "and you have STILL been standing outside in the winter's cold every single night!"
"Uh," Elisa's look of dread was replaced with surprise. "I uh, well…yeah."
"I forbid you to do it anymore," he told her very seriously. "Who knows what strain this pregnancy will place on your body, and I will not allow you to endanger both you and our child with this sort of foolishness."
"Does that mean you'd like me to go on being pregnant?" Elisa asked with relief.
"Of course!" Goliath stared at her. "Elisa, my love, I can think of nothing I want more than to have hatchlings…er, children with you." He paused for a moment, then gave her an odd look. "Besides, what other choice is there, once the deed is done?"
Elisa looked extremely uncomfortable.
"There are choices, you know," she said, not looking him in the eye. "We've never talked about this, and if you didn't want to…if you thought it would be too dangerous…" Elisa trailed off, silently begging Goliath to understand what she was talking about so she wouldn't have to explain herself any further.
He clearly did not.
"Now, if people don't want a child," Elisa explained heavily. "A woman can end a pregnancy voluntarily. It's relatively risk-free medically, especially compared to childbirth." She felt sick, as though just saying the words had had a negative effect.
Goliath's horror, meanwhile, had rendered him utterly speechless.
"I wish I hadn't mentioned it," Elisa finally said. "I just thought you watched the news enough to know about it." Goliath gave himself a little shake, flexing his wings.
"You thought I might over-react?" Goliath asked. "That I might fear for you enough to consider…" Goliath couldn't quite bring himself to say the words. Elisa brought her eyes back up to his.
"We're taking lots of risks here, big guy," she sighed. "No one knows what to expect, and if anything goes wrong, they won't know how to help me. But…but I want to try. I want to have your child, Goliath."
The sound of those words knocked the wind out of the gargoyle, and whatever reply he had to give died on his lips. He just stared down at her dumbly. When it became apparent to him that he wasn't going to be able to say something deep, he leaned down to kiss her gently.
These bizarre human customs do have some uses, he thought to himself. What had started out as a chaste expression of pure love, quickly deepened into passion. Elisa ran her hands over the sensitive spot on his back where his wings joined, and he buried his talons into her thick, dark hair, emitting something that sounded like a cross between a growl and a purr. He broke away after several minutes, breathing heavily.
"Perhaps we should not start something we cannot finish," he said shallowly.
"Not on the library floor anyway," Elisa smiled, rubbing her cheek against his chest. "But before you starts that 'I'll hurt you' crap again, THAT is just as safe as it was before."
"Elisa," he rumbled, "the gift you have given me today…I cannot express what this means to me, and to the clan. I love you so much."
"I love you too, Goliath." Suddenly weak from emotional relief, Elisa could do no more than to cling to Goliath tightly.
When the trio plus one returned they found Goliath and Elisa watching TV, Elisa perched on the arm of Goliaths chair, his arm around her waist. Brooklyn cleared his throat and received no response.
"Come on, guys," Lex said stepping in front of the TV. "We know you aren't really watching the Weather Channel."
Goliath and Elisa both blinked as though waking up then saw everyone else. Goliath cleared his throat in embarrassment.
"Did you guys have fun?" Elisa asked.
"Loads," Brooklyn cut to the chase. "What's up with you guys?"
"We do have something of an announcement," Goliath said. "Perhaps someone should go find Hudson and Bronx."
"Already here, lad," Hudson said from the doorway. "Xanatos said that ye'd have somethin' ta tell us." Xanatos followed Hudson into the room.
"You hear for the announcement too?" Broadway asked.
"I already know the news," Xanatos answered with a slight smile. "I am merely here to clear up confusion and offer support." Elisa winced at the mention of Xanatos' pre-knowledge of the situation, and gave Goliath another apologetic smile. He squeezed her hand reassuringly.
"Since everyone is here, I will make the announcement," Goliath stood formally and Elisa slid off the chair to stand next to him. "Elisa shared with me today something that will affect the whole clan. Something that will change our lives forever. Something…miraculous."
"Just TELL US already!" the trio exclaimed.
"Hrmm, quite," Goliath rumbled nervously.
"No time like the present, big guy," Elisa smiled up at him, taking his arm and squeezing it. "Guys," Elisa took over the announcing, "I found out today that it's official. I'm going to have a baby."
There was shocked silence in the room, excepting Xanatos' smirk and Angela's wide grin.
"Or an egg," Elisa added. "Or a something. I'm having a something."
Angela rushed over to hug Elisa and her father.
"Thank heavens!" she exclaimed. "I didn't think I could keep your secret one second longer, Elisa!"
"Did everybody but me know this 'secret'?" Goliath asked Elisa with a raised eyebrow.
"Heh," Elisa avoided Goliath's eyes. Meanwhile the other clan members were still shaking off their surprise.
"She did say baby, right?" Lexington asked.
"I definitely heard baby," Broadway agreed.
"Oh baby," Brooklyn sounded breathless.
"Congratulations, lad!" Hudson beamed, slapping Goliath on the back heartily. "After bein' frozen all those years, I was nae sure any o' ye had it in ye!"
"Just take it as a compliment," Elisa whispered, hiding her giggle at Goliath's scowl behind a hand. As the males surrounded Goliath with cheers and elbowing and masochistic grunting, Angela pulled Elisa aside and clasped her hands with excitement.
"Elisa, this is so exciting!" she exclaimed. "Father looks so happy!"
"Imagine how happy he'll be when you tell him your news," Elisa said slyly. Angela blushed, which was more a state of mind than a color on her lavender skin.
"I haven't even told Brooklyn yet," she sighed. "I'm too nervous to."
"Don't be nervous," Elisa reassured her. "I'm sure he'll be…"
"Boy!" they heard Brooklyn tell Goliath loudly, "I'm sure glad I'm not YOU!"
"…ecstatic," Elisa finished with a frown. Angela narrowed her eyes.
"Maybe I'll tell him now," she said through gritted fangs. "Oh, Brooklyn, can I talk to you for a moment, sweetheart?" Elisa laughed to herself as she rejoined Goliath.
"What is she up to?" Goliath asked as he watched Angela hiss something at Brooklyn and the second-in-command's eyes grew to the size of dinner plates. Then he fainted. Angela looked grimly satisfied.
"Serves him right!" she growled, stalking from the room and leaving her mate in a heap on the floor. Broadway, Lexington and Bronx hurried to huddle around Brooklyn. Bronx licked his face to bring him around. Brooklyn groaned and rubbed his head as returned to consciousness.
"Are you all right?" Lexington asked.
"What'd Angela tell you?" Broadway echoed in hushed voice.
"Baby," Brooklyn groaned, shaking his head to clear it. "Oh baby…" his eyes widened as what he was saying reminded him of Angela's stark announcement.
"Not her too!" Goliath demanded, pushing past Broadway to glare down at Brooklyn. Brooklyn shrugged sheepishly.
"Fraid so, big guy," Elisa laughed. "Angela was just waiting for the best time to break the news."
"I'm beginning to think you women are all in this together," Goliath growled.
"Ye forget what it's like to live in a castle full o' them," Hudson rolled his eyes. "Bein' with child is like a disease in females."
"You'd better qualify that with 'because it's catching,' buddy," Elisa told him with a threatening look.
"Aye, an' then there'll be the hormones…" Hudson started to sound rather long-suffering, "…an' the mood swings…"
"Hey, pal, this is a JOYOUS EVENT," Elisa reminded him forcibly, punching him in the arm.
"Oh aye," he rolled his eyes heavenwards for whatever divine assistance gargoyles expect, rubbing his arm. "I'll wager this castle'll be jus' bursting with yer brand of joy soon enough."
"Fun as this is," Elisa interrupted him with a final warning glare, "some of us have to get to work so we can afford children." As Goliath opened his mouth to protest, Elisa held up a hand before he got a word out. "I'm negotiating a desk job with Chavez more or less immediately, so I don't want to hear one word from you."
Elisa kissed Goliath lightly with a promise to see him before dawn, then left the room. Goliath watched her leave with a worried look.
"Er, Hudson," he snagged the older gargoyle by the arm as he also made a move to leave the room, "tell me more about these…mood swings…"