Fringe tonight, y'all! Also, the fall equinox, which can only mean one thing- the monster!Bishops are up! This is the sequel of my preveious creation, Monster Works, which was written around this time last year, for Halloween. So, in the name of tradition, I present an AU about a strange set of genetic circumstances.

Happy Halloween!

Chapter One.

His mind knew that it had been approximately fourteen days since his father's last nightmare. But he never could keep track of how long he had been hibernating.

A low purring registered in his ears, and the feel of a scratchy, sandpaper-like tongue on his forehead. His first instinct was to nuzzle closer to the feeling of comfort, the warmth of another body draped over his own, but as he blinked away the film of dust over his eyes and felt the stinging stretch of his altogether unhealthily thin skin, a frown formed on his sunken face, "Walter," he said, his voice grainy and mouth dry.

Walter continued to purr, preening his son's hairline, his hands gathering and releasing the feather pillow under Peter's shoulder in a display of comfortable joy. Peter half-smiled, and shifted away from his affections, pushing his way to the surface of Walter's autumn grey wings, blinking in the strained light of the morning sun. He raised his arm to rub the wet from his face, and took in a deep breath of the cold, dusty air of his bedroom, "Walter, wake up," he said softly, stifling a yawn, "It's fall."

Walter started slightly, his rumbling purring fading as he blinked awake, his narrow pupils expanding into circles once more, "Hmm?" he questioned. He flashed fangs as he yawned widely, stretching his lean form across the mattress, his spine popping every now and again. He sighed, lying uselessly on his side as his tail twitched under the sheets, "Pancakes," he murmured with a smile.

"No pancakes," Peter replied, pushing the blankets away to swing his legs over the side of the bed, "I need something to drink. Hopefully the plumbing in the sink isn't as bad as last year..."

"I had a good dream," Walter said, as Peter shuffled across the creaking wood floor to the open bathroom door.

"Yeah?" Peter said, twisting on the tap. He smiled slightly as the water ran clear, but frowned as it tasted stale.

"About you, when you were young," Walter explained fondly, "and tomatoes, from the garden we had in Charleston. It was quite wonderful." He watched the ceiling for a few moments, before rolling on his side to watch the bathroom door, "What about you? What did you dream about, son?"

"Not tomatoes," Peter replied with a smirk, splashing his face with water in the porcelain basin.

"Oh-ho!" Walter chuckled, at last sitting up to scratch his bare chest, "Olivia, then?"

"Go start coffee, I'm still grumpy," Peter frowned, "and what did I tell you about wearing a shirt?"

xXx

A wind storm appeared to be on them, which explained the amount of dust suspended in the cool air of the house. They were in luck- only one of the windows had been broken, during oversummer (not speaking, of course, for Walter's room- the glass had been missing for years. Peter simply ignored his father's space entirely.). The plywood they had nailed up over the door six months earlier showed only minor tampering, and, in all, the house appeared to be in decent condition. He had done well, fortifying their nest.

"Walter?" Peter called as he leapt the barrister of the stairs, wings flaring slightly to soften his landing.

"Bacon!" Walter called back from the kitchen. Frowning with concern, Peter followed the noises of pantry rummaging, "Oop- I'm sorry, Peter, I meant to say 'here', but I've just found bacon in the icebox, hah..."

"Refrigerator," Peter corrected, "the one in the basement?" He made a slight face at the three dead mice lying on the countertop, freshly killed, "Did we get flooded, again?"

"Not from what I saw. I left you a snack on the counter, Peter... just until I can get the pancakes started."

"Yeah, thanks," Peter replied flatly, brushing the rodents off the counter and into the empty wastebasket. He took a seat at the breakfast bar, "Can we please not have pancakes?"

"I knew you'd ask, and I've only just found the surprise ingredient," Walter purred, emerging from the pantry nibbling spider webs from his fingers, and he held up a yellow package of Tollhouse chocolate chips, beaming, "See?"

Peter raised a brow, "How did those get past you, before oversummer?"

Walter shrugged, "Dunno. I'll get the batter mix," he stooped to begin rummaging around for a bowl.

"I'll wait for Astrid, thanks," Peter replied, his eyes straying to the empty coffee maker. He frowned again, and rose, going to the machine, plucking at the note taped to the glass pitcher, "What's this?"

"What's what?" Walter questioned, squinting at the pancake mixing instructions carefully.

"It's a note from Astrid," Peter murmured, mostly to himself, and he unfolded it carefully, his eyes scanning her neat, loopy writing, "...it says she's going to be gone for about a month."

Walter paused in his stirring, his pupils contracting slightly as he glanced at his son, "Why?" he asked sharply.

"It doesn't say," Peter replied, wandering over to his father to offer him the note, "she says that she'll be in Seattle for the summer, and that she left some supplies for us at her place." Walter took the note from him, squinting at the print suspiciously.

"Oh," he commented hollowly. He set the note on the counter, and returned to is mixing. He sighed through his nose, and Peter set a hand on his shoulder comfortingly, "I guess you'll have to settle for my pancakes, then."

Peter smiled wryly, "I guess. But only if you make peanut butter syrup." A smile tugged at the corner of Walter's mouth, and Peter patted his back, "We'll be alright, Walter. I'll make coffee."

xXx