LIFE GOES ON
By Kimberly T.
Author's note: This piece of pure silliness takes place sometime between the "Revelations of the Labyrinth" story arc and "A Quiet Night, a Busy Day", and is dedicated to all those people who, like me, thought for years that Creedence Clearwater Revival was singing, "There's a bathroom on the right!"
In the hour before dawn, a large part of New York City was still sleeping. But in the castle atop the Aerie Building, virtually all the inhabitants and visitors were wide awake, or pretending to be. The gargoyles were wide awake, of course, though most of them were still out on patrol. David and Fox Xanatos had just woken up after a very poor night's sleep; even though the clan now took care of their teething infant son at night, Alexander's occasional ear-splitting shrieks of complaint about his sore gums were impossible to sleep through. Elisa had stopped by on her way home from a difficult night at work, needing to unwind with her best friends after dealing with a particularly gory murder-suicide case. While disappointed to find Goliath was still out on patrol, she accepted the warm welcome from the people who were there at the time, and all three humans were currently in the kitchen's breakfast nook, sipping on coffee while waiting for the breakfast that Broadway was making for them all.
"Eggs just the way you like 'em!" Broadway said cheerfully as he brought over three platters. "One plate of poached, one over-easy, and one scrambled."
Xanatos accepted his poached eggs with a bleary smile. Fox nodded and mumbled something incoherent as she dug into her scrambled eggs, and Elisa accepted her two over-easy eggs with a smile and a "Thanks, Broadway."
"Any time," Broadway said with a grin as he turned back to the kitchen. "Leave room for the biscuits, 'cause they'll be done in just another minute."
A minute later, the timer dinged, and very shortly afterwards Broadway came out with a platter of biscuits, a tray of butter and other traditional biscuit toppings, and a hopeful smile. "Dig in, and tell me what you think!"
Everyone grabbed a biscuit, buttered it and took a bite… and paused. "Thish ish diff'ent!" Fox mumbled through a mouthful of biscuit, her eyes wide for the first time that morning.
"Muh-humm..." Elisa swallowed, and finished, "But pretty tasty," before popping the rest of it into her mouth.
Xanatos chewed his thoughtfully, swallowed and spoke. "Tastes like it has little bits of bacon in it, and… something else. What's the secret ingredient?"
"Grated carrots. So, you like 'em?" Broadway said hopefully.
Elisa answered by reaching for and buttering another one. Fox nodded as she finished her first one off, and David said with some surprise, "Actually, I do!"
"Good!" Broadway beamed as he confided, "I had to guess at the ratios for bacon and carrots; I couldn't find the right recipe anywhere. Lex couldn't even find it on the Internet!"
"So far as I know, Broadway, you have an original creation here," Elisa said just before biting into her second one. "My folks fed us food from a lot of different cultures when I was growing up, but I've never even heard of biscuits like these before…"
Broadway blinked in surprise. "Really? I thought they were pretty popular. I mean, that one guy on the radio even wrote a song about 'em, he liked them so much!"
"Song? What song?" David said just before biting into his second one.
Broadway scratched his scalp for a moment as he tried to recall exactly how the song went. "I heard it on the radio sometimes, while we were still in the clocktower… Well, I remember the chorus anyway." And then he took a deep breath and sang,
"Bacon-carrot biscuits, every day!
Bacon-carrot biscuits, every way!
I eat bacon-carrot biscuits; it's all right!
Bacon-carrot biscuits, when working overtime…
...Hey, is something wrong?" he stopped singing to ask anxiously, because all three humans had simultaneously choked on their food. "Did I use too much baking soda?"
"(cough-cough-cough) N-no, th-the recipe's fine, I just… swallowed a bit the wrong way," Elisa gasped as she reached for her orange juice.
"M-me too," Fox gasped, her shoulders shaking with suppressed laughter as she did the same.
"I'm fine, just… saw a flicker in the doorway for a moment, and thought it was my mother-in-law," David gasped as he recovered. That earned him a dirty look from Fox, but she was still too busy trying not to laugh to do more than that.
Broadway cast a quick glance at the doorway, but saw nothing amiss, so he shrugged and sat down to his own plate, piled high with scrambled eggs and biscuits.
After finishing his eggs, while buttering another biscuit for himself, David asked idly, "Have you ever tried making bagels?"
"Not yet," Broadway said between mouthfuls. "You like those, too?"
"Oh, definitely. In fact," and now David turned to face his other breakfast companions as he broke out into a tenor voice, "Last night I dreamt of some bagels…"
Elisa nearly snorted coffee through her nose. Fox grinned wide as she retorted, "That's funny, because I had a food dream last night, too! I dreamed that we were in the kitchen making lunch, and… you made the rice, I made the gravy…"
Elisa pounded the table in helpless convulsions of barely-suppressed laughter, while Fox reached over and gave her a few helpful thumps on the back. "Oh, God!" Elisa finally gasped when she caught her breath. "This is just too much…"
Broadway scratched his scalp ridges again as he stared at them all. "Am I missing something, here?"
"Breaking into song while talking about your food dreams is an esoteric form of humor," David informed him solemnly.
"I guess so," Broadway said as he shook his head. He polished off his eggs and as he went back into the kitchen for more, he muttered quietly, "Humans. Just when you think you've got 'em figured out…"
Elisa couldn't resist calling out after him, as she finished her plate and stood up to leave, "Hey, Broadway, remind me sometime to give you my mom's greatest dessert recipes!"
David was willing to play the straight man this morning. "Oh, yeah? What's your favorite?"
Elisa caroled over her shoulder as she strode out the door, "Oh my darling lemon pie!"
Actual lyrics to Broadway's song:
Taking care of business every
Taking care of business every way
I've been taking care of business, it's all mine
Taking care of business and working overtime
(by Bachman-Turner Overdrive)
Last night I dreamt of some
Last night I dreamt of San Pedro
You made the rice, I made the
You may be right, I may be crazy
(by Billy Joel)
Oh my darling lemon pie
Oh my darling, Clementine