Almost the entire clan was assembled, and all present were holding their breath in suspense, careful so as not to miss one moment of what was happening.
"Are you sure you heard it rattling, Angela?" asked Broadway. "I think it's too early yet."
"Be quiet," snapped Goliath. "The process is sensitive in the extreme, it might even be disrupted by vibrations of the air!"
Angela and Broadway grinned and exchanged understanding looks, but fell silent all the same.
"I am certain it will hatch in its due time, my love," the red-haired female said. "We can watch for a while longer, and if we see it has halted, we can take a break and return later."
Goliath opened his mouth to say something, but before he had the chance to, a noise could be heard inside the egg. It moved slightly, but very perceptibly. Now there could be no doubt - the hatchling inside it was struggling to get out.
All of a sudden, a tiny crack appeared in the egg's shell. And another one. Then it stopped moving for a couple of minutes - the little creature was gathering its strength for the final blow. And then, the egg rattled. Cracks now ran all over its surface, until finally, it fell apart. The air was filled with collective whoops, gasps, cries of delight and exclamations of relief as the hatchling was finally revealed before the clan's eyes.
"I told ye!" Hudson cried triumphantly. "Didn't I tell ye it would be a male, Broadway?"
The hatchling was a tiny thing, wet and bedraggled, its wings no more than folds of flabby skin. Nothing about him suggested the extent of strength he would possess some years down the road. His skin was blue, and he had a patch of red hair on his head that would one day grow into a mane like his father's.
"You owe me ten bucks, Lex!" declared Broadway.
"I bet that the hatchling would come out with lavender skin and black hair," explained Lexington, noticing Angela's quizzical gaze.
"Brooklyn said he is certain it would be a female," added Broadway. Demona, meanwhile, wrapped her son in a warm blanket and held him tenderly in her arms. Almost at once, the little one began to nuzzle at her breasts, and she settled down to let one breast loose of her halter top so that the hatchling could nurse.
"Brooklyn," repeated Goliath, frowning. "Where is Brooklyn?"
"Patrol duty," supplied Hudson, but it was clear from the tone of his voice that there was more to it. The absence of both Brooklyn and his young wife at this moment was conspicuous. It was as though Brooklyn didn't wish to be involved in this particular celebration of new life within the clan, and didn't mind the others figuring it out. Even though quite a while passed since Demona returned to the clan, even though they fought shoulder to shoulder more than once, it was obvious he would never trust her again. He suspected her still. He didn't dare to raise the matter anymore, but this undercurrent of hostility created tension between the Leader and his Second.
Now, however, Goliath was too wrapped up in his happiness to spare Brooklyn much thought. He approached his beloved, who cradled their son in her arms, and tenderly stroked the back of the hatchling's head. Her smile radiated pure joy as she reached for his hand.
"My love," he said. He wished to say something else, but all words caught in his throat, rendering him temporarily mute. It didn't make any difference, though. He knew she understood, as did all around them. The world might still be perilous, full of enemies and yet-unknown dangers, but at this moment they were together, full of love for each other and their newborn son, and nothing else mattered.
Thank you, thank you, thank you for your wonderful comments! For many years I lived as though I am the only Goliath&Demona fan in the world, and it's terrific to know there are more people like me out there. And no, I haven't read the comics and I never will. As many wonderful things as there were in the show, the love of Goliath and Demona was THE Number 1 attraction, for me, and as I know they did not get together in the comics, I'll just ignore those.