06:15 - A Job Well Done

Goliath finished pulling on the pants and turtleneck that Elisa had
brought with her and threw his arm protectively around her shoulders. He saw
Demona shoot him a wounded look as Conners finished reading her her Miranda
rights and helped her into a squad car. Right now he was worried about Elisa,
though. She looked terrible!

"I'm going to ride with the prisoner in the squad car," Conners told
Maddox. "You go ahead and get Elisa to the hospital. I'll see you back at the
station." He turned to face Elisa. "I don't want to hear a single word from
you, missy. You are going to get checked out at the hospital and that is
final!" He glanced at Goliath. "Stoneman looks like he needs a shot. Make
sure he gets checked out as well."

Elisa managed a smile. "Yes sir!"

"By the way, great job, you two! Go on and get patched up. Rest.
We'll need for you to stick around for a day or two while we deal with our
shape-changing charge, but I'm sure that you'll return to New York with a
recommendation for a promotion." He turned back toward Goliath. "I am very
interested in reading your explanation of what happened to your clothes."

Goliath and Elisa stared at each other. How in the world WERE they
going to explain that one? Elisa had mumbled something about how Demona had
dowsed him down with something and how he was not about to risk it staying in
contact with his skin (outside of Demona's earshot, of course).

They watched Conners hop in the squad car's front seat and drive off,
and then got in the back of the unmarked cruiser which the Detectives had
arrived in. Maddox started the engine and headed out.


Elisa and Goliath were seen without a wait once they arrived at the
emergency room. Elisa endured a battery of blood tests, a pulmonary function
test and x-rays to boot. She was lucky in that her lungs seemed to have
suffered no damage. She did have second degree burns on her hands and back.
Worse of all, her forearm had suffered second and third degree burns.

The RN who was caring for her, started an IV and gave her a
synthetic version of morphine before the physician came in to debride her
arm.

She could hear Goliath hopelessly trying to talk the Doctor out of
giving him a tetanus shot in the next treatment room. Even in the midst of
the red-hot pain washing over her as the physician scraped her melted shirt
from her arm, she laughed when she heard Goliath's yelp of pain as his shot
was administered. It had always amused her to see that most men (and
apparently male gargoyles as well) could be real babies when it came to
anything other than a wound obtained in battle. Shoot em with a gun or stab
em with a knife and they stoically endured the pain, but as soon as the Doctor
needed to do a simple blood test...

Finally it was all over. Her wounds were dressed and she was given
her discharge instructions. She would be on prophylactic antibiotics for two
weeks and needed to check in with her physician back home in three days.
She was prescribed an oral painkiller and discharged.

The rest of the day went by in a blur. She remembered Goliath
tucking her into bed and nothing else until Tuesday morning.


When Elisa awoke, the clock read four A.M. The first thing which she
realized was that the pain in her arm was nearly tolerable. Goliath's tail
was wrapped around her leg and she had to slide it off her so that she could
leave the bed. She somehow managed to stumble into the bathroom without
waking him. Once there, she shut the door before flipping on the lights.

She did her business and moved over to the sink to wash up and brush
the yuck out of her mouth. Her image in the glass startled her.

"Oh Maza, you do look bad!" she said softly as she stared at
herself.

She brushed her teeth and removed the gauze pad from her head. She
had a small bald spot where the Nurse had shaved her hair. There were five
sutures holding the gash in her scalp closed. Carefully, she brushed her
hair, arranging it so that it carefully covered the bald patch. There was
little that she could do about the scrapes and bruises showing on her face.

She would have checked her back in the mirror, but Goliath had
dressed her in one of his shirts before putting her to bed and it was just
too much trouble to try and remove it. Her arm and back had begun to hurt
again so she took two of her painkillers and hoped that they wouldn't knock
her out the way the drugs in the emergency room had.

She flipped the lights out and headed for the kitchen to get some
orange juice - she was really thirsty! Perhaps she'd make a sandwich as well,
her stomach was queasy, reminding her that she hadn't eaten in quite a while.


Goliath was awakened by his transformation back to human form. Elisa
was missing from the bed! He bolted out of the bedroom.

Elisa, who was reclining on the sofa with a newspaper, looked up
startled by his abrupt entrance into the room.

"Take it easy, Big Guy," she said. Noticing the look on his face,
she sat up. "What's wrong?"

Goliath moved onto the sofa next to her and gathered her gently to
him, mindful of her injuries. "I had a nightmare, Elisa. One that has been
haunting me for several weeks now."

"Tell me about it," she said as she stroked his cheek and snuggled
closer.

He did.


As the sun set over Manhattan, the Gargoyles burst into life with
a shattering of petrified skin and impressive roars. Brooklyn turned, ready
to lead the way down to their evening meal and was confronted by David
Xanatos.

"What's wrong?" was the first thing that slipped out. "Are Goliath
and Elisa all right?" The rest of the clan quickly gathered around them.

"Everything is O.K., folks. I heard from Elisa earlier today. They've
wrapped up the case." Xanatos was forced to stop as the gargoyles hooted and
slapped each other on the back triumphantly.

"There's more," he intoned. They all quieted down. "Demona was behind
the break-in at my company and the others. Goliath and Elisa were able to
turn the stolen goods and other incriminating evidence over to the Police.
Goliath captured Demona herself and she is now in Police custody."

"She's been arrested? That's great news!" Brooklyn said as he high-
fived Lex.

Broadway threw an arm around Angela's shoulders. "Do they know that
she's a gargoyle?" he asked.

"They do. I have made recommendations to them on how best to hold her
and so far the police have taken every precaution. They got her transformation
on tape as absolute proof of her identity as both Demona and Dominique Destine.
She's been charged. Let's just hope that the state of New York doesn't try to
extradite her for the crimes she committed here."

Angela bolted inside the castle and after a startled pause, Broadway
followed. He caught up with her in the library. She was crying on the sofa.
Seating himself next to her, the large gargoyle pulled her against his chest
and let her cry. He figured that when she was ready to speak, she would.

After a while, Angela quieted down. Only an occasional hiccup
wracked her form.

"How could he be so cruel to her, Broadway?" her voice was but a
whisper.

"Angela, I'm sure that Goliath did what he felt had to be done. You
know him well enough to know that he does not do things out of spite. He
would never risk putting one of us on public display like this unless he felt
there was no way around it."

"I know you're right," she sniffed. "But I can't help but picture
her in a cell while people shuttle by, gawking at her."

"She'll be all right, Angela. She's immortal, remember? No matter
what happens, she will survive...she always has." Broadway thought for a
moment. "Course, if they threw MacBeth in the next cell things might go
differently..."

She swatted him playfully. "You're not helping matters!"

"I know, but at least you're smiling again."

They leaned toward each other...

...and were interrupted by Brooklyn, who made as much noise as
possible entering the room.

"Angela...are you all right?" he asked sheepishly.

"I'll be fine, but thanks for asking."

"I just thought that the two of you would want to know that Goliath
and Elisa will be returning in the morning."

"That's great!" Broadway yelled. "I really miss Elisa!"

Angela gave him a sideways look. "Yeah? Well you'd better not miss
her too much or my father will pound you into hamburger!"

Broadway blushed. "Aww, you know I don't mean it that way!"

Brooklyn's eyes gleamed ferally. "Watch out, Angela. You didn't see
the way he followed her around before you showed up."

Angela stared at Broadway, aghast. He held his hands up in front of
him but was unable to utter much more than, "Uhhh..."

"I think that's my cue to leave," Brooklyn said as he slipped out of
the room. The other two heard him break up laughing when he got down the hall
and realizing that they'd been had, they began laughing as well.


By that evening, Elisa had been feeling like her old self. Yeah, the
back stung if she wasn't careful leaning back in a seat and the left arm was
stiff and tender, but if she avoided using it she was O.K..

Earlier, she and Goliath had met Conners and Maddox down at the
station and finished giving them their statements. The four of them had all
the paperwork done by lunch and went out to eat together. Afterward, they
had said their good-byes and headed back to the suite.

It was now after nine, and they were done packing their possessions.
Elisa was determined to return all the clothing she had purchased to Xanatos,
after all, he had paid for them. She did not want to accept any sort of gift
from him. She had explained to Goliath that to do so would go against her
own convictions, not to mention how it would look to Captain Chavez and the
rest of the precinct.

"I don't mind him pulling some strings for me - most cops accept that
as part of the job, but once everybody thinks that you've been 'bought', your
career is over."

Goliath kissed her. "This is it then, our last night in the Nation's
Capitol. What would you like to do?"

"I would like to do whatever you want to do."

Goliath gave her a puzzled look.

"I can return anytime I want, but we cannot be certain that you will
ever have the chance to visit this area again. What do YOU want to do?"

He smiled. "Do you remember the first time we went gliding together?"

She moved into his arms and he wrapped her up in his warm wings.
"Of course I do," she sighed against his chest. "How could I ever forget that
night?"

"Then relive it with me again tonight. Be my guide in this new city
and see it in a way you never have before."

Elisa smiled up at him and then tangled her hands in his hair,
pulling his head down for a kiss. When the kiss was over, Goliath scooped
her up in his arms and carried her out onto the balcony.

They did not return until just before sunrise.


The following morning was a bitter sweet one for the two lovers.
They stood outside and watched the sun rise on what looked to be a beautiful
spring day. Elisa felt as though she had the proverbial lump in her throat
when she reminded Goliath not to stare too long at the sun.

"I suppose we should get dressed..." he grudgingly admitted.

"Owen will be meeting us at the airport soon."

He kissed the hand she had laid on his arm and together they went back inside.

Back to Reality

Several hours later, Elisa unlocked the door to her apartment and
led the way inside.

Goliath was right behind her with Owen bringing up the rear. The
majordomo had insisted on carrying the two bags which held their
personal possessions. The cases with the clothes she had worn during
her reassignment and Goliath's suits were still in the limo.

"Miss Maza, please allow me to bring up the rest of the cases. They
contain your clothes. It is ridiculous for you to be returning them to Mr.
Xanatos. What could he possibly want with them - they're all tailored to fit
you."

"Owen, I appreciate your persistence in this, but I cannot accept
them. It just wouldn't be right."

"Mr. Xanatos is not going to be pleased..."

"I really couldn't care less, Mr. Burnette. I think that he came out
of this whole escapade quite well, don't you? If he's upset, tell him to
donate the clothing to a worthy cause."

Owen sighed. "Very well. When shall I tell him to expect you?"

Here, Goliath broke into the conversation. "At dusk, Mr. Burnette."

Owen raised an eyebrow and made to leave the apartment.

"Owen."

At the sound of Goliath's voice, he stopped and turned around.

"Although your employer may not appreciate all that you do for him,
rest assured that I do."

A very rare smile spread across the majordomo's face. Without another
word he left, closing the door behind him.

Elisa let out a very big yawn and mumbled about how sleepy she was.
Without a word, Goliath scooped her up and headed for the bedroom. Placing her
down on the bed, he looked around him. How strange, that in these past years
he had never set foot back here.

Noticing Goliath's hesitation, Elisa yanked him down onto the bed
beside her.

He turned the fall to his advantage, instantly rolling to one side and
pulling her up against him. Once he had her pinned, he took his time
kissing her and alternately nibbling her heck and ear. He likewise took
time in slowly allowing his free hand to wander over her, sometimes
stroking her, sometimes pinching gently, but always driving her mad
with desire for him.

Elisa moaned and shivered as goosebumps rose all over her skin. She
writhed, attempting to kiss and touch him as well, but he would not allow it.

Goliath was focused on one goal: to make what might be their only time
together as humans one to remember forever. To that end he planned on
making her want him as she never had before - a feat indeed!

"Please!" she gasped, as she began to struggle against him in earnest.

He instantly stilled. "What Elisa?" he asked hoarsely. "Please what? What is
it you want?"

"You..." she breathed, still struggling. "Oh please... let me touch you!"

With a groan he turned her loose and was immediately surprised and
delighted by her sudden aggression as she shoved him onto his back. Leaning
over him, she licked and chewed on first his ear, then the side of his strong
neck, working her way down to his shirt collar.

With an impatient sound, she sat up and began undoing the buttons.
Then she pushed back his shirt and ran her ands over the broad expanse
of his chest, nearly purring as she did so. When she bent forward and
nibbled on his nipple, he hissed and exploded into action.

Elisa was startled to find herself suddenly on her belly, pinned to the
bed by the weight of his large frame.

He threw an arm over her left shoulder and cradled her head in the
crook of his elbow as he nipped the side of her neck. His other hand
tore her blouse open and delved inside, massaging her breasts through her bra.

When Elisa squirmed, again frustrated at her inability to touch him,
Goliath increased the pressure pinning her to the bed. His free hand
slid downward, undid her pants and slipped inside.

Feeling him massaging her as his hardness firmly pressed against her
buttocks, she moaned loudly and pushed backwards against him. "Big
Guy..." she panted. "Please let me loose!"

"Tell me why," he growled in her ear.

"So I can tear your clothes off!" she husked.

"But I can remove them myself," he teased, stimulating her in earnest.
"Give me a better reason."

"Ahhh..." Elisa was having a great deal of trouble focusing, let alone
talking."Let me loose so I can tease you?"

He slipped a finger inside her and brought her right to the edge, but
withdrew before she climaxed. "But in teasing you, I'm already teasing
myself," he whispered, as she began to buck against him in protest.

Knowing that he had pushed her as far as he could without her
becoming resentful, Goliath finally released her and eased up enough
with his weight that she was able to twist around and free herself. The
look on her face was enough to make his aching member even harder
- something he hadn't thought possible.

"Are you going to arrest me, officer?" he managed to ask, as she
rolled onto him.

"No, but you are definitely about to be thoroughly frisked," she warned.
Without further hesitation, she pulled off his unbuttoned shirt. Then,
straddling him, she slowly ran her hands down his belly, over his belt
and over his crotch. She teasingly traced the outline of his impressive
hardness, but then began to massage him through the flimsy fabric of his
slacks.

Goliath was breathing hard, but somehow managed to mumble a
humorous,"Officer, isn't this a violation of my rights?"

Elisa gave him a devilish smile. "No. It's me exercising my new rights."

To prove her point, she slowly unbuckled his pants and unzipped
them. Released from restraint, he sprang free and she wasted no time
in pulling his pants the rest of the way off.

Losing interest in carrying out the teasing much longer, Goliath
finished peeling off his lover's clothes until they were finally both
completely naked. Completely out of patience, he surprised her
by flipping her over onto her hands and knees, then pulled her hips
up to meet him.

Elisa overcame her surprise only long enough to look back over her
shoulder and say, "No, wait Goliath... we have to...ugh!"

With a growl, he had buried himself completely within her.

She gasped, then moaned as she caught her breath.

His echoing groan signaled only a brief pause before he began thrusting.
Overcome by the sensation of her accommodating all of him and freed
from the fear of seriously hurting her, as he could when in his true form,
he took her quickly and forcefully.

Leaning his much larger frame over her, one arm snaked around to
play with her breasts while he passionately nibbled and bit the back of
her neck.

All coherent thought fled Elisa as she bucked against him. With a yell,
she climaxed violently. He followed seconds later, his fingers digging
into her hips, his back arched and his yell a counterpoint to her own.

They collapsed together, he rolling onto his side and pulling her up
against him. Even as they tried to catch their breath, he couldn't help
but keep kissing her neck and nibbling her ear.

"Mmmm, Elisa..." he whispered as he nibbled, "I already want you again."

She smiled, but then rolled to face him, her expression troubled. "We
shouldn't even have done that, big guy," she murmured. "You got me
so worked up that by the time I realized that we needed to use protection,
it was too late."

He kissed her and said, "Do not fear, Elisa. I could think of nothing
better than to have a child with you. I would never leave you, nor
would I fail to be a supportive mate and loving father."

"I know. But it just would be too much of a complication so early
in our relationship," she explained. "I have to work to support myself
and the higher up I can work my way through the ranks, the better
able I'll be to raise our child."

Goliath sighed and rolled onto his back."Money isn't everything
Elisa and in the end fate quite often dictates when event will occur,
not us. You must not fall prey to the illusion that you can control how
your life unfolds."

She snuggled against him. "No, but I can influence it at least,"
she replied. "Oh honey, I'm not saying no. I'm just saying we should
be more careful and wait a bit."

"Chances are good that this may be the only time you and I can
mate while I am human. It seems only right to forget the protection
and leave it up to fate." He kissed her tenderly on the forehead.
"But I promise that if we have another such opportunity that I will
follow your wishes in the matter."

She kissed him back and within minutes they were both sound asleep.


Ring.

Elisa snatched the phone, nearly dropping it before getting it to
her ear. "Hello?" she managed weakly.

"Elisa, It's Matt. Welcome home!...Say, I didn't wake you, did I?"

She glanced at the alarm clock. "It's two in the afternoon. We
needed to be getting up anyhow."

"We? Oh, I see. Goliath is still human, eh?"

"Never mind that. Why are you calling?"

"Just missed the sound of your cheerful voice, I guess. Actually,
Chavez was hoping to see you this afternoon."

"Did she say what time?"

"Around four? Bring Goliath with you. I can show him around the
building's interior while you and Chavez chat."

"We'll be there. Bye Matt."


Matt met them at the precinct house. After hugging Elisa and clapping
Goliath on the back, he led the way inside. The three of them stopped outside
Chavez's office.

"While you're tied up in there, I'll give the big guy here a tour
of the inside of the building. It'll give us a chance to talk."

"Talk about what?" Elisa asked suspiciously.

"Well, about what may turn out to be the trial of the century, for
one. I am the task force leader, after all. And secondly, it may be in the
clan's best interest to issue a statement to the press."

"Sorry, Matt. I just thought that..."

"That we were gonna talk about you?" Elisa actually started to
blush. "Don't worry about it, Elisa. You know that I'm more likely to gossip
about the Illuminati."

"Should I be relieved, or insulted?"

"Never mind that now! Chavez is waiting for you." With that, Matt
gave her a friendly shove through the door and steered Goliath down the hall.

"So, Mr. Stoneman, do you drink coffee?" Was the last thing Elisa
heard as she closed the door behind her.


Over the course of the next hour, Goliath got to see what the inside
of Elisa's place of employment looked like. Matt took him around, introduced
him to most of Elisa's friends and co-workers, taught him to act as if he
actually liked three-hour-old coffee and showed him how suspects were booked.

The last stop was Matt and Elisa's work area. Their desks stood face
to face in one corner of the squad room. Matt pulled Elisa's chair around to
his side and motioned for his companion to sit down. Goliath couldn't help
but find the contrast between the two desks amusing. Elisa's was barren, her
case files neatly arranged in a stack on the corner. Matt's desk didn't have
a single clear area on it. Papers were strewn everywhere.

"I see what Elisa meant about your file system," he said as he
nodded toward the desk.

"What's wrong with my file system?" Matt looked flabbergasted.

"Never mind. Did you want to talk to me about the clan?"

"I was in DC this morning," Matt leaned forward and said in a
conspiratorial tone of voice. "As the head of the Gargoyle Task Force, it fell
to me to interview Demona, since she's the only gargoyle to ever be held in
police custody."

"How is she coping?"

"She has a cold, but if you ask me, that lady can cope with nearly
anything."

Goliath was incredulous. "She has a cold? That is...impossible."

"Why? She does spend half of her time as a human."

"But..."

"Goliath, never mind that now! She states that the you are
persecuting her for not remaining with the clan and that this entire thing
was planned to make an example of her so that none of the others would ever
dare to challenge your leadership."

"That is utterly absurd!"

"That may be so, but I'm obligated to give her statement to the
press - freedom of speech, you know."

"Who would believe such a thing?"

Goliath clearly didn't realize the damage that could be done. Matt
decided to fill in his blanks. "The Quarrymen won't hesitate to use it against
you. Divide and conquer tactics still work well. The press will
sensationalize it and people will begin taking sides. Goliath, you need to
ask for a press conference and officially state your reasons for turning her
over to the human Judicial system."

The human-looking gargoyle sat, deep in thought for a while. After
just a few minutes he came to a decision.

"You're right, of course. Let's arrange for me to make my 'statement'
late tonight. I need to discuss this with the others first."

"You got it. How about if I help you prepare your statement while we
wait for Elisa?"

Goliath nodded, giving Matt a grateful smile.


Elisa had to suppress the urge to yell out triumphantly as she left
the Captain's office. She was being recommended for a promotion! After getting
slammed for constantly being in the wrong place at the right time and the
right place at the wrong time, she had finally done something that they could
not ignore!

Detective first class before her thirtieth birthday! Now that was
something to crow about! Best yet, if she got the promotion, Chavez would
allow her to pick her assignment. Chavez knew what it would be, too.
Matt was gonna have to put up with her again...when she joined the Gargoyles
Task Force.

"Imagine getting paid to keep an eye on my own clan?" she said to
herself. "It just doesn't get any better than that!"

"What doesn't get any better than what, Maza?"

Elisa hadn't meant to speak her last sentence out loud. You'll see,
Morgan...you'll see!" she said as she wandered in the direction of the squad
room.

"Mmmm-hmmm," Morgan said. "That new fella o' her's has sure got her
singing." He shook his head and laughed as he left the station. She may look
like hell right now, but at least she's happy - and that's the way I like to
see her, he thought.

Elisa found Goliath and Matt busy scribbling out something at her
desk - probably couldn't find any room on Matt's, was her guess.

"What's up?"

"I'll show you a little later, Elisa." Goliath stood and stuffed
the papers in his jeans pocket. "We had better get back to the Castle. We've
much to attend to."

Elisa slipped her arm through his. She noticed that her fellow
detectives had noticed and didn't really care. She was gonna show off her
Big Guy while she could. It might even put an end to those annoying rumors
about her. "See you later Matt. I don't have to return to work until my arm
has healed up."

"Don't worry. I suspect you'll be seeing me sooner than you think."


They arrived at the Eyrie just before five thirty. The Xanatoses
treated them as though they were their long lost relatives, with Fox
embracing Elisa and David shaking Goliath's hand and slapping his back. Even
little Alex held out his arms to them in a silent plea to be held. For a
moment Elisa nearly forgot everything Xanatos had done to the clan and to her
brother - but only for a moment.

Sensing that Elisa had once again become the cool, no-nonsense
detective of old, Xanatos asked them to step into his office. After thanking
them for their efforts in DC, he cut to the proverbial chase.

"What are you going to do with Thailog's assets?" he raised an eye-
brow and steepled his fingers as he waited for their reply.

Goliath spoke. "We've discussed it, and we plan on giving them back
to Thailog - if he lives."

Xanatos' eyebrow shot up further on his forehead.

"Why? You didn't think we'd turn it over to you...did you?" Elisa
remarked.

"Well, actually, I had hoped you would. After all, he did steal most
of the money he invested in that company from me."

"We took that into consideration," Elisa explained. "But we also
decided that perhaps you owed him that money. After all..." she mimicked his
drawl, "you made sure that he would never lead any sort of normal life. He is
in a strange way, your child, and yet he's been denied a childhood or any
kind of affection which a parent normally bestows on their offspring."

"Xanatos, you gave him intelligence and a vast knowledge of the
world," Goliath continued. "but you've never taught him what love and
commitment are. He is still a child, and a dangerous one at that, but he
deserves the chance to live his own life and learn all that you did not teach
him. I am also his parent, as well as his twin. Perhaps, in giving back his
possession, I will win his trust. I have to try."

"I see. You realize that he can do a lot of damage with that company
if he so chooses?"

"I doubt that very much. There is no profit and even less challenge
in harming the weak and thanks to you, that is all that he understands."

Xanatos actually looked shaken for a while, but as usual, he made
a fast recovery. "Very well then, if there is anything at all I can do for.."

"Actually, there is something you can do for me. You had offered me
the use of a chamber here in the castle. I would like to take you up on that.
I would also like to be able to...have it decorated to suit my tastes."

"Not a problem. Pick the chamber you want. I'll have Owen give you
some catalogs which you can use to pick out furniture and other furnishings.
He'll take care of it for you."

"Thank-you," Goliath said as he helped Elisa up. "We need to be
going."

Xanatos watched them leave the room before shaking his head and
smiling. Life would never be dull with those two around. He rose and walked
to the window, thinking back on what Goliath and Elisa had said about Thailog.
They would never know the guilt he carried in his heart over how things had
turned out with his first 'son'. What had he been thinking back then? He
sighed. He should never have let Sevarius talk him into accelerating Thailog's
growth and programming him as though he were some sort of robot...but the
good Doctor had made it seem so plausible at the time.

He had wanted to be the one to restore Thailog's assets, but it
probably was best that Goliath do it. He doubted that Thailog would ever
even contact him. He would have to find some other way to make things right
between them.


Goliath and Elisa had only ten minutes to spare before sunset. In
that time, he led her to a chamber which he had already decided to lay claim
to. One of the largest personal chambers in the Castle, it had once belonged
to the Queen, Katherine's mother. There was little to recommend it now, except
its size, balcony and dressing chamber, but it would make a splendid and cozy
little nest for them with some work.

"Goliath, it's beautiful!" Elisa had said after looking around. "I
didn't even know that they made fireplaces that large!"

"This will be our chamber here in the Castle, my love. It will be
a sanctuary to which we can retreat when the outside world treats us
cruelly." As he spoke, he began removing the faded jeans and forest green
knit sweater which had looked so wonderful on him.

Elisa found herself biting her lip. This was going to be harder
than she had thought. As he removed his clothes, revealing that he had the
loincloth on underneath, it seemed that he was stripping away a part of
someone she had only just begun to know. As he stood before her, she knew
that she might be looking at his human form for the last time. It was like
watching someone you loved being led to his execution.

"My love," Goliath said softly as he came to her, alarmed by the
tears which she had fought so hard not to shed. "what is the matter?"

"I know I'm being foolish," she sniffed against his chest, "But I
feel like I'm losing a part of you."

"Hush now." He stroked her hair back from her face and wiped her
tears away with the back of his hand. "Do you remember me telling you about
my nightmare? How you put my worries to rest by pledging to always be here
for me? Did I not make the same pledge to you? This form is but an illusion.
You must think of it that way. As long as you carry me in your heart, I'll
always be beside you to share the sunlight."

They kissed before the windows as the fading light caused shadow to
spring forth and enfold them. When they parted, it was to walk out hand in
hand to meet the rest of their family - as one.

Epilogue

"This is Doreen Duncan at the WPIX newsroom with a late breaking
story. We go live now to Travis Marshall."

"Thank-you, Doreen. Travis Marshall reporting live from Rockefeller
Center, where the leader of the Gargoyle's Manhattan Clan is about to make an
official statement about the arrest of Nightstone CEO, Dominique Destine. Ms.
Destine was revealed to be a gargoyle shortly after her arrest on Monday."

The camera shifted away from Marshall and focused instead on Goliath
as he stepped up to a hastily erected podium. He was surrounded by quite a
few of New York's finest, under the direction of one Matthew Bluestone. They
worked to keep the throng of reporters and the curious from getting too
close to the gargoyle.

Goliath looked directly into the camera and spoke:

"A long time ago, Gargoyles and Humans lived together and worked
together for a common goal, a common ideal - to protect their Castle from
those who would harm them.

The gargoyles protected the Castle fiercely at night, asking only
that the humans protect them during the day. The Castle was attacked on many
occasions, but not even the largest of Viking raiding parties were able to
overcome them.

In the end, the danger came not from the Vikings, but from within.
The castle was betrayed by both a human and a gargoyle, neither of whom was
satisfied with what they already had.

Today, my clan struggles to survive here in New York. We seek to
live once more among you humans. For the past few years we have done our
best to protect those who could not protect themselves and we have asked
nothing in return.

We are asking for something now. We ask that you find it in your
hearts to accept us. To accept that we have a right to live, a right to be
treated like people. We cannot survive without your support.

I remind you now that history has a terrible tendency to repeat
itself. This island, Manhattan, is our Castle now - ours and yours, but
beware. The betrayer still lurks amongst us, waiting to destroy all that we
hold dear.

Dominique Destine, the one we know as Demona, is the very same
gargoyle who helped bring about the destruction of Castle Wyvern. We have
tried time and again to prevent her from harming the innocent and scheming
to destroy humanity, but have finally admitted defeat.

We therefore ask you to judge her by the laws of your society, for
if we are to live amongst you, we must be willing to abide by those laws.

Thank-you."

Goliath was quickly hustled away from the podium by his guards and a
short while later was seen gliding away overhead. Five other gargoyle forms
took to the air, flitting about him excitedly before they all disappeared
from view.

The end for now... or perhaps the beginning?