Disclaimer: Gargoyles and Sandman do not belong to me.
Hello and welcome to the one-shot sequel of Dreams of a Gargoyle, a Sandman/Gargoyle crossover. Here, we will be taking a look at the mind of Demona and what happens when she meets Dream of the Endless.
For those of you Sandman fans out there, the Dream in this and Dreams of a Gargoyle is Daniel Hall, the successor to the original Dream who is commonly referred to as Morpheus. Daniel is a much kinder Dream than the much stricter, more punishing one that Morpheus was. Just in case any of you were wondering.
Dreams of an Immortal Gargoyle
Demona did not sleep as much as she used to. In the old days, when she was a normal gargoyle, she simply turned to stone at dawn like all the others. There, her body would absorb the solar energies that would rejuvenate her and fill her with the strength to carry out what gargoyles needed to do.
But that all changed since that incident with that cursed mirror. If Demona had never stolen it, she never would have summoned Puck. The whole thing had been a waste of time. She wanted Puck to destroy Elisa Maza and then the humans in the city. Instead he turned them into gargoyles and the Manhattan Clan into humans. Then, when she was defeated the Clan, they forced Puck to restore everything back to normal. And then, and this was the part Demona hated most, Puck had cast a spell on her that made her turn into a human in the daylight instead of stone.
Even now, Demona hated Puck for his trickery. Humans, the beings that Demona hated more than any other species on the Earth. And now she was forced to turn into one every day. If that wasn't bad enough, the transformation between human and gargoyle was always painful. No doubt another thing Puck did as payback upon her. Despite this, Demona had used the form to her advantage. It allowed her to create Nightstone Unlimited, after all. Not to mention she could plan more and no longer worried about being attacked while she was stone. If only Puck had made it that she could have stayed as a gargoyle during the daytime. But, Demona grudgingly admitted whenever she thought of it, it wouldn't be nearly as beneficial.
Demona should have known better than to trust any of Oberon's Children. First the Weird Sisters and then Puck. All of the Third Race were tricksters who brought nothing but ruin to others, whether they be mortals or gargoyles.
But that day, Demona dreamed. Oh, she knew she was dreaming. Because her dreams were too good to be true. Her dreams were filled with fantasies about finally destroying the human race and avenging herself against all those who had ever wronged her. Goliath, Elisa Maza, David Xanatos, Puck, the Weird Sisters, Macbeth. All of them would suffer in her dreams. But then, she would wake up and find herself in the cold and harsh face of reality. That her dreams had not yet come true. But they did fill Demona with drive. She was determined to make her dreams become reality. And thanks to the Weird Sisters making her immortal, she had all the time in the world.
Tonight, Demona was going through a personal favorite of her dreams. Back when she had turned all the humans in the city to stone and took her time destroying them. Demona laughed as she aimed her laser rifle at the stoned humans, watching with glee as their bodies blew up and the few remains all fell to the ground in heaps. Demona laughed at the carnage she was causing.
As she turned around to destroy some more of the humans, Demona froze.
Standing there was a person Demona had never seen before. He was a man. A tall, rather thin man. His skin was pale. Chalk white pale. He was dressed in fine robes that looked fit for a king. A chain hung around his neck, carrying a beautiful emerald. He had short, white hair on his head. And his eyes…if all of the previously mentioned features didn't strike this man as a bizarre figure, then his eyes certainly did. His eyes were pitch black. No eyeballs. Just pure darkness. But Demona could just scarcely make out what appeared to be faint lights shining from his eyes.
Demona knew something wasn't right. She had never seen a man like this before. So why was he in her dream? Her eyes narrowed. Was he one of Oberon's children? She aimed her laser rifle at him. Rather redundant considering that it was a weapon from her dreams but maybe it could still affect him.
"Who are you?" Demona demanded. "What are you doing here?"
"I have come here at a request, Demona," the man replied to her. "Your weapon forged from long past memories could no sooner hurt me than a needle could harm a dragon, but I do not take kindly to being threatened. If you attempt to harm me, I will punish you as such."
Demona snorted. "And who exactly are you? Are you one of Oberon's Children?"
"The Fair Folk?" The man asked her, a tiny hint of amusement could be heard in his voice. "I am far older than Oberon. I am older than even his mother, Mab."
Demona wasn't sure whether or not to believe this man. If he was telling the truth, that he was older than Mab, than he was no doubt powerful. However, Demona's arrogance and refusal to bow down to anyone got the better of her despite a small voice in her head actually telling her to keep her mouth shut.
"Then who are you?" Demona demanded, taking aim at the man. "Tell me or we'll see just how much damage I can do to you."
The man frowned at her. "You know me, Demona. I am Dream of the Endless. And I am not amused with your threats. Especially within my own realm."
Dream went deathly pale as the laser rifle fell to the ground with a loud Klack!
"D…Dream of the Endless?" Demona repeated in a voice almost less than a whisper. She had been raised in the stories about the Endless. Destiny, Death, Dream, Destruction, Desire, Despair, and Delirium. They were said to be beings of great age and power, far more powerful than any of Oberon's Children. Most mortals had foolishly believed them to be gods and named them as such. Though, of course, some human religions had gods of dreams or gods of death, so it wasn't all that hard to believe. But the human beliefs were a far cry from the stories that the gargoyles were told. One example being the human's version of the Sandman. Honestly, they portrayed one of the most powerful beings in existence as an impish figure who went around sprinkling magic sand into the eyes of those who couldn't sleep. If Demona hadn't been raised in the stories of the Endless, she would have thought that Sandman was one of Puck's brethren.
But those things were the farthest from Demona's mind. She has just threatened Dream of the Endless. And the legends said he was even fiercer than his sister Death.
"Were it not for your former mate requesting me to come," Dream said. "I would have dealt you a suitable punishment for threatening and aiming a weapon at me."
Now Demona was more than willing that shout and show defiance to one of the Fair Folk, but even she wasn't stupid enough to incur the wrath of the Endless down on her head. Instantly she got on her knees. "My lord," She said quickly "Forgive me, I didn't…" But then all of Dream's words clicked into her mind. "What did you say?"
"I am here because Goliath asked me to talk to you," Dream explained to her. "I have come to give you some advice. It is your choice whether or not you heed it, but I recommend that you listen."
Demona snorted in contempt when she realized that Goliath was involved. "So, Goliath still hopes that I can be redeemed. I suppose I should be flattered that not only does he still have hope for me, he actually asked the Prince of Stories to do so." But Demona knew to still tread carefully. She was in the dream world now and Dream could anything he wanted with her as he pleased. He could torment her with thousands of nightmares and make sure that she could never wake up from it.
"You should thank your daughter, Demona," Dream said. "For it was her doing that Goliath asked me to see you."
This piece of revelation made Demona pause. "My…daughter?"
"Angela has accepted that you and Goliath will never be together," Dream said. "But she still dreams that one day…you will change your ways and return to the clan. She dreams that a mother and daughter can finally be reunited."
Demona looked at the ground. She shook her head. "Lord Shaper, the humans have betrayed my kind, destroyed my people, and then turned my own daughter against me. How could you ask me to accept them?"
Dream looked at her. "Vengeance is an unending road, Demona. And your anger is misplaced. There is another who is at fault for the pain and suffering you and others have endured."
Demona looked up at the Dream. "Who?" She stepped forward. "Dream King, I must know. Who?"
Dream advanced towards her. This action caused Demona to take a step back. "You have always known, Demona. But you have refused to accept it." He took another step forward, causing Demona to take another step back.
"I…I don't know what you're talking about," Demoan said quickly, refusing to look at Dream now.
"Oh, but you do, Demona," Dream said. "Who made the deal with the captain of the guard at the Castle Wyvern? Who formed an alliance with Macbeth and the Weird Sisters? Who called upon Puck? Who tried to deceive Angela into joining with Thailog. Humans were not responsible, Demona." He raised a hand and pointed at her. "You were."
"No!" Demona cried in anguish. Of course Demona knew. She always knew that she was just as to blame as the humans were. But she refused to accept her responsibility in these actions. She always had blamed others. It was so much easier to blame the humans for all her problems.
"Your hatred for humans run much deeper than the betrayal at Castle Wyvern," Dream continued. "You have always despised humans long before that. In your eyes, gargoyles were superior and that humans should bow to you. The betrayal was merely an excuse to justify your disgust with them. But you are just as guilty as they were, Demona. Your continuous denial will only send you down a road where there will be no turning back."
Demona looked up at Dream fiercely. Normally by now she would have lunged at anyone who would say such things to her. But she knew it was futile. She was no match for the Endless.
"Do you mean to say that I will actually go to Hell?" Demona asked. Gargoyles did not follow any human religions but they did not deny them either.
"Hell is real, Demona," Dream said, causing Demona's jaw to drop . "But one can make their own Hell as well. And that is all you have done for yourself your entire life since Castle Wyvern."
Demona glared at him. "That is not true!"
"Oh?" Dream asked, raising an eyebrow at her. "It was your actions that caused your clan to be destroyed. It was your actions that have made you immortal and linked to Macbeth. It was your actions that made you an enemy of the gargoyle you once loved as well as your own daughter. It was your own actions that cursed you with turning into that which you despise so much during the day. Will you deny this?"
Finally Demona couldn't take it anymore. Dream's words cut her deeper than any sword could ever do. All her rage and frustration that had built up had finally reached its boiling point. But that wasn't all. There was also self-hatred. Demona partially accepted that part of the blame was meant for her and it made her all the more angry. But she refused to allow anyone, even the King of Dreams, have the satisfaction of proving her wrong. With a shriek like a banshee, she lunged herself at Dream. The emerald flashed with a brilliant green light and Demona was sent flying back as if hit by an inivisible force. She slammed into the building behind her and slumped to the ground. Weakly she looked up to see Dream walking towards her.
"You attempted to harm me," Dream said. But his tone was not threatening, nor did it feel condensing. It was more as if he was speaking a matter of fact. "By right, I should punish you for your offense."
Demona's eyes widened and she gulped. She had gone too far. She had tried to attack Dream. Now she was sure that she would suffer dearly. He could make her worst nightmares come true. He could torture her in the most gruesome way possible. And even if the torment was just a dream, it wouldn't matter because it would feel real to her. Dream was right. She had possibly made her own Hell.
"In the past, I would have punished you severely for attempting harm on my person," Dream said. "However, I can see that you are lost and confused. I shall not punish you."
Demona was surprised by this. Dream of the Endless was known for many things, but his mercy was not popular one. There were tales that he wore helmet on occasion that was crafted from the bones of a dead god. Demona truly considered herself blessed if Dream was being merciful to her than he was to a god.
"But head this warning, Demona," Dream said. "Should we meet again and you attempt to harm me, I will punish you as is my right."
Demona nodded. After getting knocked back like a ragdoll, Demona did not really doubt Dream's power.
"Before I go, I will go you the advice I intended to give," Dream said. "The past cannot be undone. And vengeance is a road that rarely brings satisfactory. Nor will it bring your clan back. They are dead and you are alive, Demona. So live."
Dream's form started to flicker in and out of the dream like he was a message about to end.
"My, lord," Demona asked, wondering what was going on.
"Also," Dream added. "Consider your daughter. I know…what it's like to distance oneself from their child."
And suddenly Dream and the entire city was gone. Demona awoke and found herself in the bed of her mansion. She was still in her human form, Dominique Destine. In a way of staying true to the gargoyle sleeping patterns, Demona caught a few hours of sleep as Dominique. Groaning, Dominique sat up and swished her legs over her bed.
The dream was still fresh in her mind. No doubt Dream had made it that she would remember it perfectly even in the waking world.
Her conversation with the Dream Lord echoed in her mind. Dream had called her out on so many things that she had been willing to deny. Truths that she felt would devastate her if she accepted them. He told her to forsake her path of vengeance, her desire to eradicate the humans. And…to consider her daughter.
Dominique was not in the mood to think about this right now. She crawled back into bed and waited to go back to sleep. And this time…she really hoped that she would get some sleep without any dreams.
By the way, in the Sandman universe, all the religions exist. Heaven, Hell, the Underworld, Mount Olympus, they're all in there. And Dream himself had to enter Hell in the Sandman comic Preludes and Nocturnes. That's why he told Demona that Hell exists.
By the way, the reason Dream chose his human form here was because he was being more serious instead of his time visiting Goliath. And, he wanted to let Demona know who exactly he was.