-Well, this here is "the next day", or sort of. Of course it won't get unnoticed that Elisa had not returned from her shift, and when she isn't seen anywhere else, who will be called? Of course the next kin.
-For the sake of my story I have re-arranged the chonology of the episodes. "The Mirror", "City of Stone" and "High Noon" now take place after "The Price" in this order. Also the events of the latter two episodes will obviously change. This is VERY important!
-Also we see Demona coping with her newfound humanity. But enough talking, time to start the second installment...
-I have no clue of the exact English quotes, so I simply translated the quotes from the German translated episodes.
Previously on Gargoyles:
Goliath: "While you were human, I've never seen how beautiful you are."
Elisa: "You mean I was ugly?"
Goliath: "Of course not!"
Puck: "I can't return you to your human form."
Elisa: "What do you mean with 'I can't'!"
Puck: "I...I can't! Demona said 'Rid me of this human...forever'. I had to oblige, and make this permanent to follow her order. I want to undo it, but I can't!"
Demona: "I don't belive it, he has really done it... The sun is so wonderful warm!"
(she walks by the mirror, sees her human reflection)
-The Mirror/"Rid me of this human...FOREVER!"
Elisa: "I think... I just wanted them completely for myself..." -Revelations -Vows
Matt: "Why haven't you told me earlier about them?"
Xanatos: "As much as I enjoy sparring with you Goliath, I'm here for a reason."
Elisa: "I think... I just wanted them completely for myself..."
Aftershocks, Part I
Her shift had already ended for half a hour, but Captain Maria Chavez had insisted on working a little longer, because something had happened that had brought some unrest into the precinct. One of their detectives had not retured for her shift. No life sign since she had completed the report about the theft of that old mirror in the museum. She was not in her apartment and her car was still in the parking lot of the precinct.
As if Elisa Maza, detective second class, had dissolved into thin air.
In her profession this was bad news. In fact it was very bad news. Every time the men and woman of the NYPD were out for their duty to protect the citizens of New York from the criminal scum, they were in the danger of either recive injury in the line of duty, or, in the worst but thankfully most rare case, come back in a body bag. And to simply disappear, if only for half a shift, and not be seen again already was a big warning sign, that something was very wrong.
Captain Chavez hated what she had to do now. While it would need another night or two before a missing person report would be filled, Elisa's next kin needed to be notified of this by her. She not wanted to do it. Elisa's brother had simply disappeared some months ago, never to be seen again. This was already a haevy emotional burden for the family. And now she had to tell them that their eldest daughter had disappeared also.
Peter Maza was a old friend of hers. Actually he was her superior before he had went into retirement some years ago. She knew, he prefered to hear what had happened as fast as possible.
Dialing the number of the Maza residence on her desk telephone, she hoped that it would be him to recieve this call and not his wife. Diane was not good in recieving bad news, as Maria had experienced herself when telling her months ago that her son had gone missing.
Please...please let it be Peter who answers. She pleaded in thoughts.
"Maza residence, Peter Maza speaking." She finally heared at the other end of the line. Reliefed that it was him answering the phone, she prepared to tell him what had happened.
...Destine manor, half a hour later...
Demona felt drained. After the first shock she had gone on a literal rampage, destroying everything in the room after she had smashed the mirror. But she had finally felt the limits of her human body which had not nearly as much strength as her real one. Also her muscles were protesting and she had felt sore. So she had simply dropped in front of the destroyed mirror, surrounded by the mute witnesses of her rage, and had cried until her eyes were blood-shot. She cursed Puck for doing this to her, and she cursed herself for smashing the mirror and robbing herself of the only chance to re-capture Puck and force him to undo his spell.
Demona felt tired. It was a long night and since stone sleep was now denied to her, she had a feeling she would nod off any minute. Suddenly something occured to her. Where would she sleep?
She never had use for a bed before, but alone the thought of sleeping on the hard floor ignited flaming protest from her muscles. She also had no comfortable armchairs or a couch. So she needed to buy a bed and let it being delivered to her house if she wanted to get rest.
This only brought her to more problems when she thought about it. She was a sorceress, warrior, mastermind and strategist... but she she had no clue how to put that thing together, so a hired craftsman had to do it for her. Getting over the fact that she had to let a human into her house, if only for a service, was hard enough. But it already brought up a new problem.
Impossible to let someone in while only wearing her gargoyle clothes! So she needed some more adequate clothes too. She would need to order it via telephone... Then she remembered that she not even had a clue what her clothing size was.
"Why must these cursed humans make their lifes and everything else so complicated?" Demona groaned before she pushed herself up.
She had to find out how to measure herself, otherwise her clothes would look really funny on her. And she wanted to inspire fear, not laughter.
...at the same time in a suburb of New York...
Everything looked again normal, but Anastasia Renard not wanted to bet on it. Last night had been really weird. All humans had changed for nearly two hours into gargoyles, before they had changed back into their natural form. Fey magic was at work Puck's fey magic.
She had no idea if that again was just a prank of her problematic son, or if he was controlled by someone else. What she DID knew was, that someone had destroyed one of her possesions, her ancient mirror. Regardless who did it, the queen of the fey hated it when something that belonged to her was vandalized.
Traces of fey magic were still present in New York, but she would not search for the sources, since mortals were involved. Puck's blunder was bad enough, she not wanted to violate Oberon's law too.
She had time. Maybe the source would come to her in time. Also she had other worries. Fox's pregnancy was slowly starting to develop, and her daughter had one of the worst cases of morning sickness she had ever encountered. She wondered if the birth would be like the tortue Fox had put her through. The birth had lasted for over 20 hours before her daughter had decided to get out of her and even a many millenia old queen of the fey felt drained after that.
Helping her daughter though that time was her main concern at the moment.
...in the Maza residence...
Chavez' call had disturbed the just beginning day of Peter and Diane Maza greatly. They had just cleaned the kitchen from breakfast when the telephone ringed. Peter had answered it and while listening, his skin color had paled significantly. After thanking for telling him, he had at once told his wife what had happened. Elisa had gone missing.
It was is if she had been swallowed by earth itself, as if she was suddenly removed and only now everybody noticed. Long minutes they had said nothing, remembering too well what had happened to their son. Derek had vanished just like Elisa and later had reappeared, but changed forever.
"It is not like Elisa to simply disappear. Something must have happend to her... something bad." Diane finally said, her hands trembling. Since she knew that her son was transformed into a panther with wings, there was always the lingering fear that it could happen again.
"I just hope she wasn't abducted by this snake..." Actually Peter meant both, Xanatos and Sevarius. Both he despised deeply for what they had done to his son.
"Why our family?" she continued. "Couldn't these crazy scientists and billionares have picked some other family to bother?"
"I know she isn't missing for long, and I have a bad feeling about that too. But I think we should ask someone else first." Peter said while holding Diane's hand. He also had a hard time staying calm, but years in the NYPD had hardened him enough to go through nearly any sort of crisis with a clear head. "Our son said that Elisa has friends that are very close to her."
"But he said that they want to remain anonymus, and that he respects their wish! How to speak with them?" Diane had finally calmed down a little and her hands had stopped shaking.
"I won't. Our son will do the talking. He said where he lives, so I will try to find him and ask him to do us this favor. He can ask these ominous friends if they have seen Elisa or know where she is." Peter said before he walked to the coat hook to get his jacket.
"I just hope that they have a clue about her whereabouts... Wish me luck Diane." Peter grabbed his flashlight, then left, leaving Diane Maza alone with her fear for her eldest daughter's well-being.
...a hour later, the sewers...
"How can someone live here, is beyond me!" Peter told himself, while walking though the tunnels beneath Ney York. Them dampness was not that bad, but the smell was disgusting. It smelled like a cross between excrements, junk and foul water.
Walking through the dark tunnels with only his flashlight as lightsource, he finally arrived at a tunnel that was in much better shape and also smelled less extreme. "According to what he told me, down there should be the door..."
He already wanted to walk on again, when suddenly...
"WHO IS THERE?"
"AH!" Scared, Peter nearly dropped the flashlight. Turning around, his saw a winged, catlike creature with black fur standing there. "Derek! Never ever again scare your old man like this!"
"Dad? Uh...eh... sorry. I thought you were a looter looking for some easy cash." Talon had thought that this man with the flashlight was some underground scum. But that he had nearly scared his own father out of his shoes... he already felt sorry that he had not checked first who it was. "How it comes that you walk though this..." he indicated around "...stinking hole?"
"Well, you live in this 'stinking hole' as you call it. Actually son, I need your help..."
...Destine Manor, around noon...
Finally the craftsman had left. Demona had been unsure how much longer show could have endured his presence. Now standing in a previously empty room was a good-sized bed, complete with mattress, cushion and blanket. Ready for her to sleep on it.
Demona also looked at her reflection. Through a still experimental online connection she had found out how clothing measurements were handled and had, after several failed attempts of measuring herself, gotten the correct numbers. Ordering a set of everyday clothes over the telephone, she finally had the package half a hour later.
Putting them on was an adventure for itself. Why had humans so many different layers of clothing? She never had use for underwear before and socks on her feet were something she had to get used to. She at least had made a good choice by picking a shirt and a pair of jeans. They were loose enough to be comfortable for her.
And after a second order, this time for a bed, she finally had a place to sleep. And it was about time. She felt like sleeping while standing. Stripping until she was naked she then literally jumped into the bed, her tiredness catching up. It was only a matter of minutes before she was deep asleep.
... on way to the clocktower, near sunset...
Talon knew that it was a bit risky to fly towards the clock tower with dusk not complete, but he wanted to make sure that he would not miss the clan by minutes. What his father had told him was very serious.
Elisa's disappearance had brought up painful memories of his own... 'disappearing'. How he was cut off from everything he knew, from his friends and family, being forced into a life in the shadows.
Without Maggie who always was there for him when he had depressions over what he had become, helped him to find the will to go on with his life, he had no idea where he would be now. In return he gave her support when she mourned over her past life and what she had lost.
Gliding through the jungle of skyscrapers was not as hard as he had thought it would be when he had first tried it. His previous job as a pilot obviously had helped him to master gliding fast. And now he tried not to be seen while homing in on the old clock tower that was part of the 23rd precinct. That he had never noticed these statues up there while working there...
Obiviously the best hideout is, where no one would even bother to look. He thought while landing on the balcony of the clock tower. He noticed that there were seven statues, not six. Strange... Ok, there are Brooklyn, Lexington and Broadway. Over there are Hudson and Bronx. And there together with Goliath... Oh shit!
Goliath was holding hands with a gargoyle that had a frightening resemblance with Elisa. Talon doubted that it was a piece of art because he never heared of art wearing jeans and a t-shirt. And she looked scared, really scared. Obviously alone the idea of turning into solid stone was frightening for her.
"Mom will faint when I tell her this..." Talon whispered to himself while staring on the stoned gargoyle that was his sister. The sun was just vanishing behind the hoizont and now Talon waited to see if his assumption was true. Taking a step back, he watched the clan waking up.
Elisa felt trapped, it was dark. She felt she needed to free herself of this prison. She pushed outward with strength while screaming loudly, bursting the thin stone skin off herself. Elisa roared loud while her eyes glowed red. Hearing herself, her eyes went wide in surprise, while loosing the glow.
"Oh God...that was me?" She nearly fell of the railing in surprise if not for Goliath holding her hand. "I... I had no idea that I could rival a lion's roar!"
"Better not do this in front of the family! Mom would faint while dad would get a stroke."
"Derek?" Elisa noticed her brother standing behind her.
"The captain had called our parents that you had not returned from your shift, that you have vanished. And dad wanted me to ask the 'mysterious friends' if they know something." He came to the point at once, not wasting time. "How did this happen?"
"It is the doing of one of our enemies, Demona!" Goliath had helped Elisa off her perch and now walked up beside her. "She wanted to use a magic being to kill Elisa, but instead she ended up in this form."
"It is a really long story..." Elisa was unsure what her brother might think of her now, but so far he had not reacted negative. Most likely because he had nearly the same problem.
"I have time."
"I think I better prepare our evening meal while you explain this weird night to Talon. Yesterday was really the most weird night in my entire life." Broadway said before walking through the door.
"Broadway is right, I for example can't explain things that well with an empty stomach. Especially since we had eaten next to nothing yesterday. Let's go!" Brooklyn announced before walking in as well, followed by Lex, Hudson and Bronx.
His own growling stomach reminded Goliath, that hunger was one of his priorities too. "Come Talon. It will take some time to give you all details." Taking one of Elisa's hands he led them both inside.
...at the same time in Destine Manor...
"Interesting, so Puck's spell only works at day. At night I'm still my true self." Demona said while inspecting herself. As soon as the sun had set, the pain had begun again and when it was over, she again was a gargoyle. So Puck's spell was only preventing her from stone sleep.
Putting on her gargoyle clothes she walked to the table in her workshop. This project of hers was the most time consuming at the moment, but in case of success the humans of the city would be helpless against her! Since the day she had torn this page out of the Grimorum she had wanted to use it. But only now she had decyphered the spell completely.
If she could trick Xanatos in her being able to use broadcast equipment, New York would be in for a nasty surprise. But that would take some days before she would approach him with the request.
In the meantime she would bring a person to life who up to now was only existing on paper. Dominique Destine, rich woman from France and owner of this mansion, would start to exist for real now. The longer she thought about it, the advantages of her current situation became clear to her. With her human disguise, she would be now able to use their own infrastructure against them.
She now finally had the ability to use her money far better. A business as a strwman for her real goals would be the next step.
...the clock tower, a hour later...
"...and so he disappeared with Demona into that mirror, and -poof-, the mirror was gone as well. And there we are now." The clan had taken turns in explaining to Talon what had happened and Lex was the one to finish the weird tale. "We yet have to decide what to do about the situation."
"Well I need to explain mom and dad somehow that their eldest daughter has become somethething they thought of as a myth. They don't know about you guys, but obviously that had to change. I think it will be best to... Eh, Elisa, what are you doing there?" Talon stopped when he saw Elisa searching for something.
"Ah there it is!" Elisa said while picking up her red jacket and gun holster. "I had wondered where my jacket, gun and shoes had gone after my transformation. They were in a dark corner of the tower. The shoes I can forget. This on the other hand..."
Elisa checked her gun then put on her gun holster before she wraped her wings around her chest with some efford. She was glad she had no elbow spurs when she put on her red jacket. Sorry. You have gone through much together with me, but to wear you I have to do this! Pushing her wings up they tore through the back of the jacket.
"If felt strangely naked without my jacket in case you wonder why I wear it. So Derek, what were you about to suggest?" Elisa said while walking back to the others.
Talon wondered why Elisa was so attached to her jacket, but that was not important now, so he went on. "Well, you should accompany me to our parents' apartment with one of the guys. I think it will be better that they see themselves what had happened to you and that you are not alone."
"I will come with you if Elisa agrees to your suggestion. My presence is calming for her." Goliath voltuneered.
Elisa gave her silent approval, so Talon continued. "I think it is best that I speak with them first while you wait outside. To prepare them for the shock. You know how easy mom gets scared as soon as her children are in trouble."
...twenty minutes later, Maza residence...
Diane and Peter Maza had waited the whole day for any news from their son, but he had not contacted them yet. It was late and they already wanted to call it a day, when there was a -thump- outside the balcony door. Talon entered through the glass door.
"Have you...?" Diane started to talk, but a gestue from Talon stopped her.
He waited some seconds, before he talked. "I have wanted to ask Elisa's friends about her whereabouts but that was unnccassary because she was with them when I arrived."
"Then she is all right." Diane said, visibly reliefed.
"Mom, Dad... not exactly. Something...had happened to her." Talon had no clue how to tell his parents that Elisa had grown wings, a tail and turns to stone during the day.
"No..." Peter said while both of them paled in fear. "Please don't tell us that she has also grown fur and was changed like you!"
That would be harder than he had thought. It seemed so easy when Elisa had done it for him. "No...no fur. And also not like me. It is... different, no mutation but something else."
"Something else?" his mother had now no idea was he was talking about.
"I... Have you ever thought that magic could be real? No this rabbit out of a hat stuff, but stuff like these wizards in fantasy movies can do?" Talon tried a different approach.
"Well... my father told me in my childhood stories about a mystical being, capable of magic. I never believed them. And your mother always reads these stories about that big spider capable of magic. But this is only from the imagination of some people." Peter said, then noticed his son's expression change when hearing about magical beings. "Son?"
"Better start to belive in them, they are quite real. One of them did something to Elisa... changed her for the rest of her life, because some psycho wanted to do her harm." Talon pointed to the balcony door. "She is waiting outside with one of her friends. Please, she is still the daughter you have raised and love. Don't judge her just by her appearance!"
His parents still not belived him about the magical beings, but they followed him out. There were two people in the shadows. One of them was far too big and too masculine to be Elisa. Obviously one of her friends. Then the other shadow had to be Elisa. Her siluette not really looked different apart from the fact that she seemed to have grown a bit.
"Elisa...?" Diane asked careful.
"Mom, Dad...please don't get scared when I step into the light." Hear voice was quiet, almost a whisper.
Then she slowly emerged into the light. Diane and Peter Maza first saw a pair of tan, three-toed, clawed, wolf like feet, and a very prominent tail. She was standing in a way with her legs angled, that would have been uncomfortable for humans. Elisa's hands had changed also, had only three fingers now. Caped over her shoulders was a pair of bat-like wings, not unlike the ones her brother had. Her head was the last thing to appear from the shadows. She had now very prominent, pointed ears, slight brow ridges instead of eyebrows and her eye color seemed to have darkened. But she still looked far more human than her brother.
"I must really disappoint you, looking like this..." she said nearly as quiet as a whisper.
Elisa now had her eyes downcast, not wanting to see possible rejection from them. Her brother had dissappeared for months before the truth was broken to them. But her transformation was only yesterday. What if...
"Elisa. Please look at us." That was her father. She not dared to raise her head too fast. Peter and Diane were only half a meter away from her."Never, never ever again think that we would reject you!"
"Our only disappointment is, that you have thought that. After what had happened to your brother, you should have known us better. It...it is quite a shock to see what had happened to you so shortly after Derek." Diane said while taking one of Elisa's hands. "But we would be heartless to now turn away from you. You will always be the daughter we love, even if you are changed into...into..."
"...a gargoyle." Goliath finished, still standing in the shadows.
Elisa's parents only now again noticed that Elisa's friend was still there and in the shadows. And that this was the first time he had said something. His voice was deep and masculine, yet not threatening in the slightest.
They watched when he stepped out of the shadows. He was big, really big, had lavender colored skin and more muscles than a human could even dream of ever achiving. All in all he was the organic equivalent of a battle tank. He was nearly naked, only wearing a loincloth.
"My name is Goliath. Our race is called gargoyles and Elisa was changed into one of us. She had told us much about you, but I wish I would have met you under better circumstances." he said.
Peter and Diane Maza first stared at the giant leader of Clan Manhattan, then at each other, before turning towards their changed children. "Inside! All of you! Elisa, Derek, you two seem to have withold more from us than you want to admit. You two and your friend Goliath won't leave until there are no secrets left!" Peter Maza made it clear with the authority in his voice, that there was no discussion.
"Then better prepare for a long night dad." Elisa said. "Because there is quite a number of secrets to be told..."
to be continued...