Title: Even Dragons Have Their Ending

Author: Jedi Buttercup

Disclaimer: The words are mine, the worlds are not.

Rating: K+

Summary: JP/Godzilla. Dr. Chapman meets an old friend for dinner after the events in New York. 500 words.

Spoilers: "Jurassic Park" (1993); "Godzilla" (1998)

Notes: Because I apparently can't rewatch old favorites and not get itchy fingers. Movie canon only. Title is a Tolkien quote.

Alan nodded to their server as he cleared the plates, then evaluated his guest with a critical eye. "As wonderful as it's been to see you again," he said, "I know you wouldn't have come all this way just for dinner and a discussion of my research. And you haven't said anything yet about what happened in New York."

Elsie nodded, ruefully. "You know," she said slowly, picking at the label on her beer bottle, "I didn't really believe you, when you told me about what happened-- what it was like to see them."

"I know," Alan replied, a wry smile tugging at the corner of his mouth. "No one really could who wasn't there. And even those of us who were..." He shrugged, and gestured at the empty space beside him.

Elsie snorted. "It was just so-- I mean, I know it wasn't actually a dinosaur, it was just a mutant, but the size of the thing, Alan! I didn't even get as close to it as Nick did, and even so, the majesty of it--" She trailed off, wavy red hair a cloud around her face as she shook her head. "I know it would have endangered the world if we'd let it live, but..."

"I know what you mean," Alan assured her. It had been five years since his experiences on Isla Nublar, but he could still remember the way he'd felt when he'd spotted his first brachiosaur from Hammond's jeep, and when he'd touched the ill triceratops. "The things we saw at Jurassic Park weren't true dinosaurs any more than your 'Gojira' was. Theme park monsters, is all they were. But to be near one..." He sighed. "When we weren't running for our lives, I couldn't help but be caught up in the wonder of it."

"All children are fascinated by dinosaurs," she said dryly, repeating the old saw. "Paleontologists are just the ones that never grow out of it."

"Amen," he replied, and raised his bottle to her.

She cocked her head at that, and finally favored him with a genuine smile. "Are you sure about that?" she asked. "I've read your new book, you know. A little disillusioned, are we?"

Alan shook his head, then set down the empty bottle, picked his fedora up off the seat next to him and settled it on his head. "Disillusioned with people, perhaps. Never with the work. I've a new dig opening up soon, near Fort Peck Lake; you should stop by some time. Five years is a long time between visits."

"I'll think about it," she said, and gathered up her coat. "It sort of depends how the clean-up goes in New York, and where the National Institute of Paleontology sends me next."

"And what happens with this Nick of yours?" he asked, knowingly.

Elsie rolled her eyes. "Never mind about that," she said. "Hire yourself a cute grad assistant this time, and maybe I'll think harder."

He just smiled, and reached for the check.