The Arrival by Ranwolf(ranwolf@hotmail.com) The Ionic Butterfly(aurelia_@yahoo.com)

The gargoyles characters and concept is owned by Buena Vista/Disney. These characters are not ours, they are being used without the knowledge and/or consent of Buena Vista. No money is being made, so there is no point in a lawsuit. The characters of Avery Bishop, Tina Harris, Crim, and Natty Jones are the soul property of Christy Smith-Hayden, and are used with her consent(Though I get the feeling she might have forgotten. *shrugs*). Christine and Davida(better known as Belinda) is the property of Jewel Faukler. Nic Maza was created by Ranwolf, Miyabe Tendo is owned by Ionic, and all other characters belong to their rightful owners.

Though this story takes place within the boundaries of Christy Smith-Hayden's universe, it will have no impact on her stories. Consider this an alternate reality.

WARNING: There are places within the story the authors go for some cheap laughs.

*****

There was a incredible flash of green and blue light, followed by a eerie silence while before there was a rhythmic hum. The sensation of freefall was then replaced by agonizing pain which permeated throughout his body. His brain partially shuts down to compensate the overload of sensations, only after he slammed into the ground.

Before the darkness overtook his pain-filled mind, he felt both fear and helplessness. Fear over being found by the Quarrymen and helplessness because he knew he was too weak to take a few of the bastards with him and avenge his clan.

Soon, blessed oblivion over took him and the pain disappeared.

*****

David Xanatos was in his office, looking over some financial reports from his over seas business dealings. His ever present assistant, Owen Burnett, was sitting in a seat on the other side of the large mahogany desk, taking notes of things he felt he should personally check on. His cellular phone began to ring. Owen closed the file, placing it on the desk in front of him and answered.

"Owen Burnett speaking..." The blond man paused as the person on the other side spoke. "I see. I'll inform Mr.Xanatos. Continue monitoring." He deactivated the phone and put it away. "Mr.Xanatos, I've just been informed of something you may find interesting."

"What would that be Owen?," Xanatos asked not looking up from his report.

"A gargoyle has been found in sub-level ten."

"What?!" Xanatos looked up from his work a look of mild surprise on his face. Owen knew his employer was more surprised than he let on.

"A gargoyle has been found in sub-level ten," the Major-domo repeated. "He seems to be severely injured and is now in the infirmary on the same level."

"Who is it? Brooklyn? Lexington?"

"I can not tell you at this time, sir. Dr.Lestat does not recognize this gargoyle."

"Alright, let's get down there and find out what is going on, before anything unpleasant happens." Xanatos placed the reports he was going over in his desk and locked it. He rose from his seat and headed directly towards the bullet elevator with Owen right on his heels.

*****

They arrived in sub-level ten less than a minute later. This level was dedicated to the research and development of audio/video technology, radios, television and similar forms of consumer products. Xanatos and Owen reached the infirmary to see three individuals, two men and a woman. The men were dressed in the grey and blue tactical suits of the XCG, Xanatos Corporate Guard. The woman was a brunette standing just over five feet tall, wearing a white lab coat, Dr.Ellie Lestat was her name.

He reached their position, the two XCG members reported what happened.

"Let me see if I understand this," Xanatos said, when he was informed. He spoke in such away it put the two elite security guards on edge. "You and Buranco here are in lab 2-H, doing a routine check, when there's a flash of light. Then you see the gargoyle lying on the floor unconscious. Is that correct?"

"Y-yes sir," Golding answered nervously. "All I know is, one second everything checks out, the next, he's on the floor looking like he ran into a bunch of those Quarrymen. Me and Buranco rushed him to the infirmary, sir."

"Did you notice anything unusual before he appeared?," Owen asked the other guardsman

Buranco was visibly not as nervous being around the two top bosses of the company as Golding was. After a moment of thought he answered, "As a matter of fact, I did. There was a strange hum. I figured it was just some of the equipment in the room."

"Both of you return to your posts," Xanatos ordered. "On second thought take the rest of the night off. I assume I don't have to remind you both not to speak to anyone about this... do I?"

"No sir!," Buranco and Golding replied in unison. The two men then turned around and quickly walked away.

Xanatos and Owen turned to Dr.Lestat, who was patiently waiting for the interview to conclude. "How's he doing, Ellie?" Xanatos asked his old college friend.

"To be honest, David, I'm surprised he's not dead. Three broken ribs, a dislocated hip, heavy internal injuries and second degree burns over %35 of his body." She continued informing Xanatos of what was done to treat the injuries as she lead him and Owen into the infirmary.

Inside Xanatos saw the gargoyle on a hospital bed, with a I.V. tube in his arm, a oxygen mask on his face and remote sensors attached to various parts of his chest arms and throat. The monitoring equipment showed he was in stable condition. The gargoyle looked to be about Xanatos' height. He had shoulder length, coal black hair and a light tan complexion lighter than his own. Part of his face was obscured from the bandages covering the side of his face.

"As you can see, he's stable now." Dr.Lestat concluded her report.

"What can you tell me about him?" Xanatos asked her. Still looking at the unbandaged portion of the gargoyle's face. He couldn't help but get the feeling he's had seen him before. But that was impossible, because every gargoyle he had ever seen, with the exception of Demona, Coldstone, Desdemona, and Coldsteel were accounted for, either in the Eyrie building or in the Labyrinth.

"There are a few things you might find interesting." The doctor led Xanatos and Burnett to the bedside. Lestat asked the two men if they noticed anything missing.

"He doesn't have wings," Xanatos said simply.

"Exactly. At first, I thought the wings were severed at some point in his life, but when I received the x-rays that were taken, I saw there were no joints for wings to connect to his body. That seemed strange, then one of my nurses noticed this." Lestat reached down and gingerly lifted one of the gargoyles arms. Even swathed in gauze they were easily able to see what the doctor was referring too.

"Five fingers?," Owen said, the only emotion shown was a slightly raised eyebrow. "Interested."

"Ellie, what are you saying? He's half human?" Xanatos looked at the comatose gargoyle again.

"That's the theory," Ellie replied. "I had a D.N.A. sample sent to the lab to make sure. It should be back any minute."

As if on cue, a young medtech entered the room. He walked to Dr.Lestat, handed her the file, and promptly left the room, not saying a word.

Ellie opened the the file and began reading. She skimmed through the preliminary reports of blood-type, plate counts and such to the meat of the report. "Well, knock me over with a feather."

Xanatos recognized the phrase immediately, she used to say that everytime something exciting or unexpected came up. "What does the report say, Ellie? Is he half human?"

She nodded, a look of disbelief still on her face. "Not only that, but according to the report, he's a cross between Goliath and Det.Maza." Xanatos kept himself from blurting out, "What!?!," managing to keep his surprise to a minimum.

"May I see that report, Dr.Lestat?," Owen asked, reaching for the report with his left hand.

"Of course," she said handing the report over to Owen, who proceeded to read through the report.

"How is this possible?," Xanatos asked.

"Well, when a man and woman love each other-"

"You know what I mean!" Ellie laughed. Xanatos gave his friend a withering glare. Unlike his other employees, Ellie didn't seem to be intimidated. "Who could have created him? And why?"

"Well," Ellie began, "I know about Christine and Davida-"

"Davida changed her name to Belinda before she left, Ellie."

"O.k., Belinda... Did you have a male hybrid created?," she asked with a hint of distaste in her tone. She never really forgave Xanatos about the two hybrid girls, especially because of what they went through after their creation.

"No. They were the only ones created. Perhaps that lunatic, Sevarius, has something to do with it."

"Mr.Xanatos," Owen said after a moment, "he is _not_ an artificial hybrid."

Xanatos and Dr.Lestat stared at Owen as if he had suddenly grown a extra arm out of his forehead. "What are you talking about, Owen? This gargoyle must be twenty years old..."

"At least," Lestat put in.

"How can he _not_ be artificially created?"

"I agree Mr.Burnett, if this.. Demi-goyle was naturally conceived, he should be no bigger than a two year old. But look at him."

"I understand your skepticism," Owen said, putting up a hand to forestall any interruptions. "Let me explain. Delilah, the hybrid clone of Det.Maza and Demona, was created artificially. According to notes and files we obtained from Sevarius, he needed to use a specially made enzyme called Amalgamime to splice the two strands of D.N.A. together. The enzyme left a very easily detected genetic marker in Delilah's genetic code, Christine and Belinda are the same." He paused for a moment to let that sink in. "Miss Bishop, who was conceived naturally, does not have any such markers."

Xanatos understood quickly. "So this gargoyle," He nodded towards the Demi-goyle. "doesn't have any of these markers."

"That is correct."

This made Dr.Lestat more confused. "Then where the hell did he come from?"

"Not where, Doctor, when."

"The future? You're joking!"

Owen gave her a blank look. "It is the only logical conclusion. Take into account the fact, he does not have any genetic markers, modern genetic technology is not advanced enough to create a hybrid without them. It is the only answer that truly fits."

"Feh," she snorted, "you sound like a Vulcan."

"I will take that as a compliment, Dr.Lestat." Owen allowed himself a small puckish smile.

Xanatos sighed, he didn't need these kinds of headaches, as much as they made life interesting he didn't want them all the time. "Are there anymore surprises I should know about?"

Without missing a beat, Lestat replied," His eyes are cybernetic implants."

Xanatos did a double take. After a moment he calmed himself. He turned to his old friend. "Ellie, I want him moved to the infirmary up at the castle, as soon as you feel its safe, understood?"

"Sure thing, David," Lestat said. "David, what are you going to tell the gargoyles?... About him, I mean."

Xanatos was quiet for a moment. "Honestly, I'm not sure." With that said he turned around and left the infirmary.

"Good evening, Doctor," Owen said in parting, before following his employer out of the room.

Left alone in the infirmary, Dr.lestat looked down at the comatose demigoyle. "I don't know who you are or what you're doing here, buddy, but you just made life a little more complicated."

*****

The next day, around noon, Xanatos was in his office. His wife, Fox, was with him, seated on the other side of the large desk. She was told about the gargoyle the previous night. She was also told the medical staff had begun calling him Dimidius, latin for 'Half'.

"Any news on how the Gargoyle is doing, David?," Fox asked him

"Ellie tells me Dimidius, turned to stone this morning, which is a good sign. We may get some answers tonight."

Fox frowned slightly. "Who came up with the name 'Dimidius'?

Xanatos shrugged. "It's better than calling him 'it' or 'The Hybrid'. It seemed rude."

One of Fox's eyebrows quirked upwards hearing her husband say that. "Oh? And since when were you worried about coming across as rude, David? Especially to someone who is in a coma."

"That's irrelevant," Xanatos said to his wife. He had to admit, she had a point. "He needed a name for records" Fox chuckled at Xanatos' defensive tone of voice.

A time later, the two double doors opened, letting in a three year old bundle of hyperactivity, Alexander Xanatos and his nanny, Avery Bishop.

"Mama, Poppa! Nana's taking me to the zoo!," Alex cried in excitement, he did not get to leave the castle all that often, so to him that was news worth telling.

Fox rose from her seat and moved to intercept her son. She picked him up and carried him to the couch in another part of the large office to talk to him about the planned trip.

Avery walked straight to Xanatos' desk. "How is Crim doing, Avery? Is he over that cold yet?"

"Not quite, but he's getting better. I figure he'll be all better tonight," Avery replied, reporting her son's health.

He smiled slightly, genuinely pleased. "That's good to hear." His expression became more serious. "Avery, I have a favor to ask of you."

This caught Avery by surprise, Xanatos was never the type to ask to idly ask for a favor. "What is it, Mr.Xanatos?"

"Last night a new gargoyle arrived at the castle..." He raised his hand to keep Avery from saying anything until he was done. "I wast to tell the clan, but because of certain facts, things may become... difficult. I would feel it best if you were there as well, to back me up, if you will."

Avery blinked in confusion a few times, undoubtedly wondering why he wanted help in simply telling Goliath and the others of the new gargoyle. "Mr.Xanatos, what's going on? Who's this gargoyle you're talking about?," she asked quickly.

Xanatos sighed quietly to himself. "As best we can tell..he is Goliath's and Det.Maza's son?"

"Huh? Come again?"

"You see...," Xanatos began telling Avery all he knew about the demigoyle who was in stone sleep in the infirmary.

*****

Several hours later, Elisa arrived at the Eyrie building, Owen had called her at home, asking her to come to the castle for some important news involving the clan. It was still some time before sunset as she stepped into the lobby of the Eyrie. The security guard recognized her as a frequent visitor of his boss and let her through with no hassle.

The ride in the elevator may have been less than a minute but it seemed to take forever. If she didn't know better, she'd swear it was stopping at every floor to prolong her ascent. When the doors of the elevator finally opened, she was semi-surprised to see the stoic blond man facing her. "Owen," she said with cool familiarity.

"Detective," he replied in a way that made the temperature in the room drop. Elisa wondered if Puck had 'arranged' for that ability. "If you would come this way. Mr.Xanatos and Ms.Bishop are awaiting your arrival."

Elisa nodded as she followed the Major Domo to the castle parapet. There she saw Xanatos and Avery waiting. She smiled when she saw the half human woman who made such a significant impact on her already unusual life. She nodded to Xanatos in recognition, though he helped the clan out many times since the truce, she still didn't fully trust the man.

After a quick greeting to Avery, Elisa turned to Xanatos. "What's going on Xanatos? What's this important news involving the clan?"

Xanatos seemed unphased by the sudden interrogation. "Patience Detective," he said calmly, "Goliath and the other should be told at the same time. No fair playing favorites." He gave Elisa an infuriating smirk.

Elisa frowned. "Do you know what's going on, Avery?," she asked the blond hybrid.

"I do," Avery replied, "But, Mr.Xanatos is right though, the others should be told at the same time." Elisa could see Avery wanted to tell her, but she didn't push the subject. She waited impatiently for sunset.

After a few minutes, dusk finally came. The expected, but still awe- inspiring, sight of the stone statues coming to life was seen. Muscles flexed, wings unfurled and eyes blazed as seven statues came to life.

There was a hasty greeting on Elisa's part, who opted to kick patience out on it's ass. "Alright, Xanatos. What's going on?," She said impatiently, "What's this news you wanted to tell the clan."

"News?," Goliath asked, "What news?" He turned to Xanatos waiting for an answer.

Xanatos sighed almost imperceptibly. How was he going to tell them of the hybrid? He thought for a few moments before deciding to just tell them. What was the worse that could happen? "Goliath, Det.Maza, it seems that you now have a son."

"What?!?," the two said in unison, looking as if they wanted to chuck him off the building. The entire clan went into a uproar, asking question, demanding answers, and accusing Xanatos of creating another hybrid like Christine and Belinda. Owen and Avery came to his rescue, explaining to them about the genetic markers and how the Demigoyle did not have them.

Mental note, Xanatos thought to himself, Give Owen and Avery a raise.

"I wish to see this gargoyle for myself," Goliath spoke in such a way, it left no room for argument.

"Of course," Xanatos replied, "It will have to wait though. Dr.Lestat is running a few tests on him to determine how much stone sleep improved his health. He had some serious injuries when he was found."

*****

As the discussion continued between Goliath and Xanatos, Elisa took Avery to the side with Brooklyn. "Avery, what's going on here? Is Xanatos telling the truth?"

"And what does this guy look like," Brooklyn added.

From what I understand, if you went only by D.N.A., he is your son." Elisa stiffened slightly hearing the word. "This time travel idea of OWen's seems a little off." Avery paused for a few moments to let her words sink in. "As for what he looks like... He actually looks like your father when he was young, But with long hair. He has pointed ears and a tail, but he doesn't have ant wings."

"This doesn't make sense," Elisa hissed softly. "I still get the feeling Xanatos is behind this." She noticed Xanatos turn his head in her direction. At first, she thought he had heard her, but dismissed the idea when he turned back to Goliath.

"He may not look it, Elisa," said Avery, "but he's nervous about this whole thing to be the mastermind. He isn't in control."

Elisa could see Xanatos glancing between herself and Goliath. The others being upset was understandable, she was upset herself, but Goliath... Goliath was just to quiet and it was starting to unnerve her.

"I better get back to the hatchlings," Avery said quietly, "Tina must be getting swamped." She walked away, disappearing through the stone archway leading into the castle.

"Come this way Detective," Xanatos motioned for her to follow as he lead the clan to a large enough elevator to hold them all. *****

The elevator doors opened to the infirmary ward and each member of the clan stepped off. Xanatos led the way to the room Dimidius was in.

The Trio were still talking about Dimidius loud enough the entire floor was able to hear them. When the group reached the doorway, they were greeted by a not to happy looking Dr.Lestat. "Would you three please keep it down!" It was a order not a request. "This is the infirmary level in case you forgotten. Same rules as a hospital, keep it quiet. Get it?"

"Got it," Broadway replied sheepishly.

"Good."

"How is Dimidius, Ellie?," Xanatos asked, easily hiding the amusement he felt see the large aqua-colored gargoyle be chastised like a child.

"Nic."

"Pardon?"

"His name, it's Nic. And he's doing fine. Still a little weak and very sore, but other than that..." She shrugged, leaving the comment hanging in the air. "I was half tempted to sedate him." The clan gave her a questioning look of surprise. "When Nic awoke, he wanted to get up and start looking for you, I couldn't have that while he is in his current condition." Ellie grinned. "A few well placed threats from one of my nurses did wonders."

"Can we see him?," Elisa asked, obviously wanting answers to several dozen questions running through her mind.

"Yes, but only you and Goliath, Det.Maza. The rest of you will have to wait out here." The last was said while Dr.Lestat looked directly at the Trio, each of whom looked down at their feet apologetically.

*****

Dr.Lestat led Elisa and Goliath into the room. The first thing they noticed was all the medical equipment scattered around the room being prepared to be moved back into storage, heart monitors, brainwave scanners and a crash cart. All top-of-the-line and very expensive. Elisa thought the crash cart alone could pay for a years worth of maintenance and insurance on her Fairlaine.

The second, and most significant, thing she noticed was the Demigoyle, her "son", sitting up on the hospital bed. He did indeed look remarkably like Peter Maza, with long sable hair reaching just past his shoulders. She saw Nic was having what appeared to be a rather animated conversation with a young asian woman, with long hair tied into a single thick braid and wearing small wire rim glasses. Elisa listened for a moment but could not make out a single word said. Is that japanese?, she thought to herself.

Dr.Lestat walked ahead of Elisa and Goliath, approaching the two young people. Neither one seeming to notice the doctor.

"Ahem," Dr.Lestat cleared her throat to get their attention. "Miyabe, don't you have something to do right now? Like, help Cassi with getting everything back to storage?" Lestat eyed the young nurse with the barest hint of a smile.

"Oh ah yes Doctor. Sorry," Miyabe stammered. Then turning to Nic, added, " I'll see you later, Nic. Alright?"

"Sure thing, Miyabe. Ja," Nic responded with a smile.

Miyabe returned the smile. "Ja ne, Nic-san," she said before leaving the room.

After the nurse had left the room, Dr.Lestat fixed Nic with a slightly annoyed look. "Your job, young man, is to recover from those injuries. _Not_ hit on Nurse Tendo."

Nic blinked. "Hit on her? Whose hitting? All I was doing was talking to her. I didn't even touch her."

Lestat raised a eyebrow, a look of surprise on her face. A sly smile formed on Nic's face, he was making somekind of joke the doctor fell for. Lestat snorted. "Quit with the jokes, Nicodemus." Dr,Lestat grinned, seeing the hybrid wince at the mention of his full name. "Where's you learn japanese, anyway?"

"Long story... don't ask." Nic grinned. He then put out his hand towards Goliath. "Nic Maza, nice to meet you, Goliath."

Goliath reached out, taking Nic by the forearm in a warrior's clasp. "Likewise, Nicodemus."

Nic winced once again. "Please, just call me Nic. I keep feeling I'm going to get grounded when I'm called that."

"Of course," Goliath responded in a even tone, the type that told Elisa he was still debating whether or not he should trust his "son".

Nic turned to Elisa, making a similar gesture. Elisa felt the firm grip of his hand on her forearm. "Mom..." She winced herself when Nic spoke. He cursed softly under his breath. "Sorry, I mean Elisa. Excuse me if I don't get up, but the Doc here thinks if I do I'll fall on my face."

"Again!," Lestat said quickly with a grin on her face. Nic gave her a look that said, "You didn't have to say that!"

"Sue me," she responded aloud.

Nic smirked. "I would, but my lawyer is only five years old in this time."

"Nic," Elisa began with a slight smile on her face, "I'm sure you know we have a lot of questions for you."

"Such as, where are you from," Goliath continued, "And, How did you get here?"

"I figured you would." Nic sighed. He looked towards the door for a moment before he spoke once more. "If you want to know, you might as well call in the rest of the clan from the hallway."

Elisa looked to the tall gargoyle standing besides her in astonishment. She turned back to Nic and asked, "How do you know they are there?"

"It makes sence to bring them along, just in case there was trouble. Second, I can see them through the door with my thermalgraph vision.. Didn't anyone tell you my eyes are really implants?"

"Yes," he answered, "We were informed of that fact. I assumed they gave you normal vision."

"They do, but they also give me other forms of sight. Thermalgraph, Infra-red is one of them." Nic quickly told them about the other forms of sight he had, Nightvision, which they would later discover caused the implants to change from the usual brown to a aqua green color, and a weapons H.U.D.(Heads Up Display), which turned the entire implant black, while the other two modes only changed the color of the iris. Nic also told them the implants were prototypes designed for military use.

"How did you end up with them?," Elisa asked him.

Nic was quiet for a moment before answering. "I'm sorry. but I'd rather not talk about it now."

Elisa was going to press the subject further but decided against it, when she saw the look on Nic's face. It was the same look her father got when he was asked to speak of something he rather not, drawn downcast eyes and a slight air of depression or shame about him. "Alright, Nic. But I would like to know."

"Yeah, I know. I might tell you one day." After a few moments of silence, Nic looked up at his parents, with a small smile, he said, "Can you call the others in? I'd like to say hi."

"I'll get them," Dr.Lestat offered as she walked to the door. Poking her head out into the doorway, Ellie asked the others to come in.

Each member of the clan filed in one at a time. Nic was surprised to see Angela entering the room with Broadway. There's something wrong here, he thought. The way Angela and Broadway were holding hands strongly suggested they were mates, But that couldn't be right. Angela was mated to Brooklyn. Nic thought about this for a time trying to through the information. Realization suddenly struck him like a shot. Not only did he travel back in time, he traveled to another reality.

"Oh no..," he said in a near whisper. "Oh God no..." Nic placed his face in his hands and sobbed once, repeating, "I failed, I failed...," over and over again.

Elisa looked to Goliath in confusion. Goliath was no better off.

Angela approached her new brother wearily. It was obvious Nic was in some sort of emotional turmoil. She couldn't stand seeing anyone like that, especially if that someone was family. She placed her hand lightly on his shoulder and, with the gentlest of tones, asked, "Are you alright? What is the matter, little brother?"

At the last word, Nic looked up and peered into Angela's face with a look of utter sorrow and depression. "I failed my mission," he answered quietly.

"What mission?," Elisa asked.

The Demigoyle took in a deep cleansing breath before beginning. "I am Nicodemus Maza of Clan _Wyvern_. I am from the year 2026, in that year, except for myself, Angela, Brooklyn and Lexington, every gargoyle in North and South America are dead." The statement brought out a unified gasp from the entire clan. "The Quarrymen, after years of campaigning against gargoyles, finally declared all out war on us, turning New York City into a war zone. The Governor called in the National Guard to try to stop the fighting, but after a couple days they were pulled out, probably by the Illuminati. It left us and the Xanatos' to fend for ourselves."

Nic continued on with his story, telling how the U.S. government basically abandoned New York City, but set up containment units of thousands of soldiers to keep the fighting within the city.

Early in the war, Angela and her two eggs were sent to Japan, one of the few countries to recognize gargoyles as part of it's citizenry, to stay with the Ishimura clan, where he himself stayed fora few years after an incident with Hyena. Lexington and his mate a female gargoyle from the London clan named Nala, were sent as well.

Nic also told them of how Broadway and Claw were the first to die, but not before they were able to destroy the hovership the Quarrymen's leader Jon Canmore, better known to the world as John Castaway, was on. Unfortunately, Castaway's death only stopped the bigoted humans fora short time. No more than a week after his death, Rose, Castaway's daughter, took command. Rose proved to be just as ruthless and fanatical as her father.

In the last days of the war, what was left of Clan Manhattan was forced to abandon the Eyrie building, their home for the past 30 years or so. Brooklyn, Hudson, Bronx, Talon, Maggie and the last of the clones, Delilah, Malibu, and Burbank, were sent on ahead, while Nic, Alex, and a squad of Steel Clan robots stayed behind to stall the Quarrymen when they made their final assault on the Eyrie. They had also planned on using the Experimental Dim/Time machine in an attempt to travel back in time and change history. The theory being, time travel by scientific means was different enough from the Phoenix Gate to be able to change the past. Obviously, something had gone wrong after Alex pushed him into the vortex created by the time machine, The last thing he remembered was being told a squad of Quarrymen had broken through the building defences and were making their way to the R and D level.

Nic finished his story with a shuddering breath breath. "The next thing I remember is waking up here and seeing Dr.Lestat, Miyabe and some others in the room."

There was a silence in the room for several moments after Nic was done. "I.. I'm dead?", Broadway gulped loudly, instinctively taking Angela's hand, who in turned squeezed it reassuredly.

"Yes, you are," Nic said flatly, "Me and Alex were hoping to change everything by coming back to destroy the Quarrymen's financial base. But now, I'm not even in my own reality and there's no way I can get back. It was all one way."

"So, you're stuck here." said Brooklyn, it being more statement of fact than question. Nic nodded slowly. Brooklyn turned to Goliath. "Goliath, can I talk to you for a second?"

"Of course." Goliath walked over to another part of the room with the red gargoyle close behind. "What is it, Brooklyn?"

"I don't know about you, but I believe him."

"As do I," said Goliath, agreeing with his second.

"He's stuck in this world, his clan is either dead or living in another country. And since we're technically his clan, I was thinking.."

"We accept him into our clan," Goliath finished the thought.

Brooklyn grinned. "Just what I was thinking. It'll be interesting having someone from the future around, especially during the playoffs."

The both of them walked back to the others who were watching their return. Elisa, Goliath noted had a look on her face that clearly said she knew what was happening and absolutely agreed. Nic had a similar look and, again, was struck at how much the Demigoyle looked like his "Father-in-law".

"Nic," Goliath began, "Brooklyn and I would be honored if you would stay with us and be a part of this clan."

Nic's jaw parted slightly, he had guessed correctly what was going to be asked of him, but still, being asked was still a shock. "I.. I would be honored." Nic's voice was choked with emotion. To be part of a clan once again, to be with his father, mother and the others. Thank you, Father," he said in a low whisper.

Goliath smiled slightly at Nic's words. He was just getting used to Angela calling him that on occasion. Now he had a son, who would most likely call him that on a regular basis. He noted Elisa was doing a terrible job at hiding the smile she had. He wondered how she would feel Nic calling her "Mother" regularly.

Goliath's thoughts were interrupted when Nicodemus spoke once more, the despair he felt no longer in his voice. "Uhm, Doc? Where's my stuff? A small duffelbag should've appeared with me. And what about the gear I had on me?"

"Yes, a bag was found. It's in that closet over there," Lestat said, pointing towards the west wall. "As for your gear, it was sent to the Security Office for safe keeping. We couldn't have you up and about with access to those weapons of yours before we knew what you were about."

"Weapons?," Elisa asked, "What sort of weapons?" She turned her gaze to Nic waiting for an explanation. A mother's stare?

"Nothing particularly lethal, Det.Maza. A tazer of somekind, a knife and an unusual weapon I can only describe as a collapsable staff." The doctor chuckled lightly. "The thing knocked out a security guard who was inspecting it. It just sprung open, hitting him in the head."

"The Telescopic Bo," Nic said with a sheepish grin. "It was a gift from Mr.Xanatos after I compleated my training in Japan with Yama of the Ishimura clan."

"You mean it's like the Mimbari Battlepike From Babylon 5?," Lexington asked.

"Babylon 5?," Nic said puzzled. "Xanatos said the idea came from a old t.v. show from before I hatched. That could be it."

Elisa suddenly blanched. "You hatched," she croaked, "You mean, as in a egg?"

"Yes..." Nic's reply was slow, not understanding why Elisa was acting unusual. Where else do gargoyles come from, he thought.

"Elisa? Is something the matter, lass?," Hudson asked, placing a hand on her right shoulder.

"Yeah, I'm okay. The idea of me pushing out a egg is a little unnerving."

It took a moment for her words to register in Nic and Goliath's mind. "Oh yeah, human's give live birth...," he said aloud.

Goliath nodded and successfully fought back the smile that threatened to form for Elisa's sake. Goliath's mind wandered to what the conception of a egg would involve. His face flushed and he dared a glance at Elisa. His eyes went wide when she winked at him.

"If it helps any," Nic said, not noticing the exchange, "I was a C-section." He noticed Elisa seemed relieved to hear that, but not much.

After a few more minutes of conversing with his new clan, Nic turned to Dr.Lestat and asked, "Doc, when can I get out of here?"

"I'm just waiting for a few more test results," she answered, "I'll let you know as soon as I receive them. Most likely, you can leave later tonight."

"Great." He looked to the others, smiling slightly he said, "No offence, but can you all get out so I can change? This hospital gown is kinda drafty."

"Especially in the back," Angela commented, this brought a small snicker from Broadway, which was cut short by a slap to his thigh by Angela's tail. Everyone filed out of the room.

Goliath was the last to leave, he looked back to his new son as Nic got up off the bed, walking slowly to the closet, to retrieve his duffelbag. He smiled, wondering how much the lives of his clan would again change with this recent addition. He shook his head, banishing the thoughts. The clan was growing strong once again, that was all that mattered. He left the room and joined the others as they waited for Nic to finish changing.

*****

It had been three weeks since the arrival of Nicodemus Maza. He had used that time recuperating from his injuries and becoming reacquanted with his clan. In that time he met and became friends with Avery Bishop and her cousin Tina Harris. Brooklyn's and Lexington's mates, respectively. He felt awkward when he saw young Alexander. He had always thought as Alex as the older brother he never had, meeting the toddler version was, at first, unsettling to say the least.

As he grew accustomed to the new faces that were apart of his new life, he began to wonder how much different the people of this Manhattan was to the ones he knew. He'd find out eventually.

As time passed, he grew to become friends with the other hybrid within the castle, Avery, and her cousin, Tina. He even began to jokingly refer to Avery and Tina as "Aunt Avery" and "Aunt Tina".

"At first, it was cute," Avery told him one day, after Tina stormed out of the kitchen, she had asked Nic a few times to stop referring to her as his aunt, but when Alex started up... "But if you call us that one more time... I swear, I'm gonna knock you through a wall." After that, the word aunt was never again used with the names Tina or Avery by him.

The others of the clan were very similar to their counterparts of his world. Brooklyn was the smart mouthed, second in command who was able to find a joke in almost any situation. Lexington was still the tech guru of the clan. Hudson the wise old veteran. The idea of Angela and Broadway being mates took some getting use to, but it was obvious the two were deeply in love. Bronx was.. well, he was Bronx. Which left his genetic parents, Goliath and Elisa.

In Nic's eyes, the human/gargoyle couple had always been something he found fascinating. Two individuals, from, literally, two different worlds, finding so much in common. Both had dedicated their lives for others they did not know. Both were strong, independent, natural leaders with the famed "I don't take shit from anyone" attitude, though Goliath may not call it that.

Then there was Miyabe Tendo, the nurse who helped care for him while he was in the infirmary. The two had hit it off very quickly, talking about anything and everything. Their interests, pet peeves, their lives in general. She was the first person he had told how he got a pair of cybernetic implants.

He was seven years old when the cyborgs, Hyena and Jackal, attacked the castle while the others were on patrol, leaving himself in the care of Hudson and Bronx. Nic told her, while Hudson battled Jackal alongside the XCG, Hyena found him, managed to knock out Bronx, then proceed to rip his eyes out, leaving him on the floor huddled in pain, crying for his mother, to be found by Hudson after Jackal retreated.

Miyabe sympathized with him but did not pity him. Pity was the one thing he did not want from her. That was when he realized he was falling in love with her. Everyday he looked forward to her next visit. He thought of the way she smiled when he said something she found humorous, the suttle shifting of muscle when she moved. He enjoyed listening to her talk. The way Miya's accent, mild most of the time, would thicken when she spoke of something she felt strongly about, like her favorite baseball team, the Atlanta Braves.

One night he decided to do something about it, but first, he had to talk to someone.

*****

The sun had just set, the daily ritual of bursting from their stone cocoons and frightful roars, the full-blood gargoyles of Clan Manhattan awoke. "Evening all," Nic greeted his family. "Evening Pop." He grinned at the way Goliath sighed deeply at the title. "Pleasant nap?"

"As pleasant as kin be expected, lad," Hudson answered brushing some stone chips off of his shoulder.

Nic watched as each of the clan went off to do their own things, Broadway went off with Angela, most likely to the kitchen. Lexington left to the suite, to work on a assignment he had for class at M.I.T. Hudson grunted as he lifted a anxious looking Bronx and flew off towards Central park. Leaving Goliath and Brooklyn discussing the patrol schedule.

"Father," Nic called to get Goliath's attention.

"Yes?"

"I was wondering...if it's o.k. with you, I'd like to go on patrol tonight. I can't be cooped up in the castle all the time," he said gesturing the entrance to the castle. "I've been on patrol before, so it's not like I don't have experience."

One of Brooklyn's browridges raised slightly "Yeah? How'd you manage that? Someone give you a lift? Not exactly a smart idea."

"Brooklyn is correct. It would be far too dangerous for one of us to carry you. Especially if we are attacked by Demona, The Quarrymen or any of our other enemies capable of flight."

Nic smiled, the corner of his eyes crinkling ever so slightly, apparently finding something amusing in Goliath's statement. "Heh. You don't have to worry about that. With a little help of magic I can fly just as well as any full blooded gargoyle."

Before either Goliath or Brooklyn could ask for an explanation, Nic closed his eyes and began`to chant something in latin.

Brooklyn's latin was still a little rusty, but he remembered enough to understand what Nic was saying.

"By my own power, let me fly as high as the Eirie Tower."

There was a flash of bluish-white light that surrounded the Demigoyle's body for a brief moment. When the light faded Brooklyn was shocked to see Nic hovering about three or four inches off the ground.

"Wha? How? Huh?," said Brooklyn intelligently. After a few moments Nic deactivated the flying spell, landing quietly onto the stone floor.

"Why did you not tell us this before?," Goliath asked.

Nic shrugged. "This may sound a little cliche, but no one asked."

Goliath sighed, he had asked for that. "Very well, Nic you may go. You and Brooklyn will patrol the Tribecca area. Elisa informs me there have been an increase in muggings in that area."

"No problem. When do we go?"

"In one hour. I must speak to Xanatos first." The clan leader turned and walked through the stone doorway, heading for Xanatos' office.

Brooklyn was about to leave to greet Avery and Crim, when Nic stopped him. "Brooklyn, can I talk to you for a minute?"

"Sure," he answered, "What's up?"

Nic began slowly. "Well... You know that nurse that's been coming up here to check up on me?"

"Miyabe? Yeah, what about her?" A small smirked formed on the elder gargoyles face.

Nic nodded. "I've been thinking of asking her out, but I... I'm not sure how to approach her about it." He paused for a moment. "I was hoping you had somekind of advice?"

The red gargoyle blinked briefly in surprise. "What? You've never asked a girl out?," then he added, "Shouldn't you be talking to Goliath about this?"

"You know about my life before I arrived here." Brooklyn nodded in remembrance. Nic was a little busy with something called survival. "Besides, Goliath isn't exactly approachable when it comes to dating advise."

Brooklyn chuckled, he had to agree with the hybrid in that respect. Goliath could give good, sound advise in just about any subject. But dating?

The elder gargoyle thought for a few moments before speaking. "The only real advise I can really give is just go up to her and ask... It might help to bring flowers or something."

"That's it? Just ask?" Somehow, he was expecting more.

"Yup."

"Might work," Nic said, smiling a little. "What's the worse that can happen?"

Brooklyn gave him a wry grin. "You really want me to answer that?"

"Not really."

*****

The hallway Nic was in was deserted. All personnel assigned to this floor were either at their stations or on break. He was standing outside one of the infirmary rooms, staring at the door, collecting his thoughts, planning on what he would say, trying to determine what Miya's response might be. He was hoping for a yes.

O.k. Maza, he thought to himself, You can do this. You've fought Quarrymen, Hyena and Hound with no problem. Asking Miya out should be a cinch.

Then why do I feel like I'm about to piss in Oberon's goblet?

The hybrid breathed in and out a few times to help him relax, the way Sora, Kie's mate, taught him. He placed his gloved hand on the door lever and entered. Inside the infirmary, Nic saw several Medtech's doing various things around the large room. Apparently they were in the middle of somekind of inventory check.

Oh joy, he thought wryly, an audience. Nic scanned the room before locating the person he was looking for. Miyabe's back was turned to him as she counted small boxes and bottles in one of many cabinets, then marking it off on a clipboard in her hands.

Nic watched her for a few moments, lost in thought. All his plans on what to say forgotten. He saw Miyabe turn around. She jumped a bit at the sight of him. He had approached her quietly, not even realizing he was doing so.

"Ack!," yelped, "Nic, you scared me."

"Sorry about that Miyabe, didn't mean too," he replied, a hint of nervousness creeping into his voice.

"That's o.k.," she assured him, smiling up at the taller hybrid. "What brings you here? Are you having those headaches again?"

"No, they stopped a couple days ago." During the first couple of weeks, Nic would develop paralyzing headaches that lasted only a few minutes at a time, usually just after dawn or sunset. He didn't complain of them, learning long ago to block out pain and continue. Nevertheless, the others of the clan noticed and badgered him to have it checked. It turned out to be the concussion he received, slowly healing, Not as fast as a full gargoyle but much more quickly than a human.

"I came down here wondering if I could talk to you for a second?"

"Of course. What about?" She held the clipboard tightly to her chest. Though outwardly she appeared calm and waiting patiently for Nic to begin, internally she was a nervous wreck. Everytime she was near Nic she felt this way, it both scared her and thrilled her. It was like this the first time she saw him. He was in stone sleep at the time, but the thought of a statue coming to life and said statue now speaking to her was what her friend and room mate, Cassi Ranger, would call "Very wild."

"Ah hell, I might as well say it," Nic said bluntly, "I was wondering, if you're not busy this weekend, do you want to go out?"

Miyabe blinked, this was quite honestly the last thing she expected him to say. "Nandate? (What did you say?)" She asked in japanese, so surprised was she at the question.

Nic winced slightly. This wasn't working out as well as he hoped. He noticed many of the others in the room stop what they were doing and watch what was happening. Some with looks of amusement, others curiosity, a few with disgust. O.k., maybe a little humor will help.

"I asked if you wanted to go out. It'll be fun. I've been told I have a sunny disposition, and I've always been kind to animals... except pigeons. I _really_ hate pigeons."

Miya giggled at the last comment, which in turn made Nic feel much more comfortable with his present situation.

"I don't know...," she began. "THere aren't many places gargoyles are welcomed. Let alone someone who is half."

"Ah, but there is a solution to that problem," Nic responded. "Avery told me about this club the others go to. Seems the Clan have been going there for a year or so, and except for one incident around last Halloween, there's never been a problem."

Miyabe was quiet for a few moments, tossing the idea around in her mind. Well it was obvious he was at least attracted to her, his being there was evidence enough. She had to admit, she felt that way about him, plus they got along quite well. So the question now was, "Why not?", and that was exactly what she said.

"Great," came Nic's reply, a smile playing on his lips. "Friday, around eight?"

"Mmm I'm sorry, I can't. I'm on duty."

"Oh." His smile practically fell off his face.

"But I am off the next night." Miya grinned seeing his light up. "I can meet you here."

"Great, Nic said once again." I guess I'll see you then." He smiled again, the corners of his eyes crinkling slightly as he headed towards the exit to let Miyabe continue her work. He was about to leave when a thought occurred to him. "Miyabe?"

"Hmm?," she sounded, turning back from her work.

"A little advise... don't wear a skirt saturday." Before Miyabe could reply, Nic was out the door.

The nurse stared at the door in puzzlement wondering about the skirt statement, when a loud "YES!" exploded from the hallway. Miyabe recognized the voice immediately and laughed silently when she saw Cassi jump in surprise.

She turned back to her work, the statement, for now, forgotten.

*****

On the south parapet of Castle Wyvern, Goliath, Brooklyn and Broadway waited for the last member of tonight's patrol, Lexington and Hudson had already left towards the Midtown area of Manhattan.

While waiting, Brooklyn informed his larger rookery brother about the recent discovery of Nic being able to use magic. Though surprised, Broadway was actually solemn about that bit of information. When asked about his lack of wonderment Broadway simply answered, "Since I met Nic, I had this feeling there was something... special about him. I guess him doing magic is it."

"Goliath," Brooklyn asked after a few moments, "is there anything specific you want me and Nic to look out for?"

"There have been an increase of... carjackings, I believe that is the correct term, in the Tribecca region. Elisa believes it is a small group of possibly one half dozen individuals who are responsible." Goliath paused for a moment. "There have already been two deaths."

"Alright. We'll keep an eye out for them," the red gargoyle answered. "Anything else?"

Goliath thought for a short time. "Yes. See if you are able to determine what other... talents, Nic has."

Brooklyn nodded, he planned on that himself. A few minutes later, Nic arrived on the parapet dressed in dark colored jeans, a pair of black boots and matching t-shirt and a long coat that reached mid calve.

"Hey," said Nic in greeting,as he walked over to the others. "Sorry I'm late. I had to get my staff from the security office."

"S'o.k.," Brooklyn replied, then asked, "What about the knife and stungun?"

Nic shrugged. "I never really needed them. I can do the same thing with my magic, I only carried them them to make Xanatos feel better. The gun's been used only a couple times and that was just for target practice." He shrugged again.

"The same thing with your magic?" Goliath said, almost repeating the same words to his son. "I do not understand."

Nic looked at Goliath briefly before explaining himself. "When Alex, the one from my world that is, figured out I could do magic he and puck started teaching me. That was only a few months ago so I only know a few spells."

"Like what?," Broadway asked curiosity piqued.

Well there's the flying spell, the Fulmenos Venite, a healing spell and a spell that can cause small earthquakes." Nic leaned against the wall. "Nothing major."

Brooklyn blanched, his brick red hide lightening. "Being able to cause earthquakes is 'Nothing major'?"

"O.k. maybe earthquake wasn't the right word for it... I guess tremor would be more accurate. Besides, I can't knock over a building, if that is what you're thinking. I'm not powerful enough." Nic suddenly grinned, his fangs bared. "I can make a mean milk shake though."

The corners of Goliath's lips quirked upwards at the joke and again, he wondered from whom Nic inherited his personality. Not from him that much was obvious. Perhaps Elisa, he had the same competent air about him. But there were times where his son acted more like his second-in-command, joking, poking fun at any situation. He thought he would soon need to sit with the hybrid and speak to him.

"Come," Goliath said, his voice reverberating in his throat, "we must begin patrol. Broadway, with me." With that, Goliath leaped off the parapet, huge wings spreading their full span, angling toward the Upperwest Side.

"Right with you Goliath," Broadway replied quickly. "I'll see you guys later." He spread his wings before following the lavender giant.

The two remaining gargoyles watched, for several seconds, as Goliath's and Broadway's forms became smaller as they flew away. Soon, they themselves were aloft, flying hundreds of feet over the pavement of Tribecca.

*****

They were in their second hour of patrol. For Manhattan , it was a quiet night. Few crimes were being committed, just some muggings and a few break ins. Of the five confrontations they had so far only one ended in fighting. Brooklyn was mildly surprised to see how well Nic handled himself.

Nic's style of fighting consisted of fast punches and kicks, powerful tail swiped and rather painful looking counter and submission holds. "Think Jet Li with a tail," Brooklyn would say later, describing the night's events to Avery.

They were over the area known as Little Italy, flying along at a more leisurely pace, having a philosophical discussion. "Sorry, Brooklyn," Nic said, looking towards the elder gargoyle, "Picard was a better captain. Almost eight seasons of t.v. show proves that."

"Nope, nuh-uh, Kirk, all the way," Brooklyn stubbornly replied. "Name one time, Picard went on an Away Mission and got into a fight."

Nic answered quickly. "The episode where they went to a planet and being attacked by a robot as a demonstration by a holographic salesman." He have had this discussion before with the Brooklyn of his world.

"O.k.," said Brooklyn, "Name two episodes."

Nic laughed, he was expecting that, but for the life of him, he couldn't remember another, though he was positive there were others. Hey Brook, you want something to eat? My treat."

"Uh, sure, why not?... Where'd you get the money? Allowance from Elisa?," joked Brooklyn.

"Ha ha," Nic replied dryly. "Believe it or not Xanatos put me on the payroll.. I was as surprised as you are," he said, seeing the look on Brooklyn's face. "He said, because I can pass for human so easily, I should have some money. So he put me down as something called 'Castle Security Specialist'. I received my first pay check yesterday. Six hundred and change after taxes." Nic chuckled. "I'm probably the first gargoyle who has to worry about the I.R.S."

Brooklyn was about to ask how he cashed such a check, when he heard the scream of a woman from somewhere below. "Daskete!!!" The red gargoyle had no idea what was said, but e knew for sure it wasn't good.

"Let's go!," he said, partially folding is wings and banked downwards to his left.

"Right behind you, Brooklyn." Nic adjusted his flight path and followed Brooklyn.

*****

"Onegai...," said the young woman who was trapped in a dead end alley by three men. She was short, barely over five feet tall, asian, with short brown hair. The sleeve of her blouse was torn completely off and the top loose, having been ripped open, which she struggled to keep closed. Blocking the exit of the alley was a black man, tall and thin, wearing jeans and a bright colored jacket, sporting the word "Q-MEN" on the back. The two others were white, similarly dressed, one was short with broad shoulders and the other was more slender with a odd posture of one shoulder drooped lower than the other, like he carried a lot of weight on it.

"What did she say?," the short man asked aloud.

"Do I look like I know chinese?," sneered Q-man. The look of annoyance told her he did not like his companion.

"She's talkin' japanese," the third man answered the first, "not chinese, Jake"

"A jap bitch, huh," Jake said, a ugly grin formed on his lips. He thumbed the switch to the knife in his hands, the blade popping into place. "Maybe she's sayin', 'Fuck me, I'm horny.'"

The smiles that grew on the other two face's sent chills down the young woman's spine. They drew weapons of their own and stalked forward.

"Ie! Matte kudasai!!," she pleaded once again. She continued backing away, bumping into trash cans and almost slipping on something she stepped on. She raised her hands in front of her, in an attempt to ward off the nightmare that was presenting itself to her.

She continued backing away until a wall stopped her retreat. She yelled again, wondering why no one was coming to help her. Her heart thumped erratically with fear as she watched helplessly as the men advanced on her. Nisan, daskete..., she thought in despair.

*THUNK!*

She blinked, one of the white men, not Jake, was sprawledd out on the alley floor unconscious, laying face up in a oily puddle of water. Something had struck him from above.

"What the fuck happened to Max?," Jake asked, understandably confused. Jake and the other man stared at the downed Max.

"I can answer that, a voice called from the roof. A moment later, she watched in awe as a black-clad figure jumped down from the roof, landing gracefully between the woman and the men. He was tall, with long sable-colored hair, wearing the before mentioned dark clothes, a black trench coat and pants.

She couldn't see his face, his back was to her, but judging from what was protruding from under the coat he wore, namely a long serpentine tail, knowing her savior's appearance was the least important thing. This was one of those creature she heard about, a gargoyle.

"You two dickheads want to make this easy and give up?" The two men glanced at each other for the barest of moments, before rushing the tailed being, weapons brandished. "I didn't think so." There was a sense of good humor in his voice. He seemed very calm seeing two armed men running towards him.

He raised his arm as the black man, later identified as Gavin Jareth, lunged forward, boxcutter in hand. The gargoyle latched onto Jareth's wrist, twisting it hard enough to pull Jareth off of his feet, at the same time breaking the forearm in what was called a spiral fracture. Before Jareth could even scream in pain, the gargoyle slammed his fist into the rapists nose, knocking him unconscious. Which was fortunate for Jareth, his nose was shattered, he would have difficulty breathing for the rest of his life.

The gargoyle released Jareth and glanced at the girl. He flashed her a quick, almost reassuring smile, before turning around to face Jake.

"Well?...," the creature said. "What are you waiting for?"

Jakes eyes narrowed, then screamed loudly, charging the creature. Which proved how stupid Jake must have been. He made a swipe at the gargoyle's face with his knife. Dodging easily, her savior caught Jakes hand.

"Whoops! Sorry, try again," he taunted the the attacker, a malicious grin clearly plastered on his face.

"SHUT THE FUCK UP!!!" Jake tried to punch the gargoyle, who was still holding onto his wrist. That hand was also caught. Jake's knife hand slowly opened as the creature squeezed the wrist painfully. The girl could almost hear the bones grinding together. The knife fell to the floor with a clatter.

"My turn," her savior said softly. Still holding onto Jake, he reared back his head and slammed it forward into his face. Jake crumpled into a heap, the creature supporting his weight like he weighed only a pound. He reached down, taking the semi-conscious man by the front of his jacket and slammed him up against a brick wall, hard enough to wake him up.

Holding the rapist a good six inches off the ground, the gargoyle turned his head, facing her. "Eigo ga dekimaska?"

She blinked. "Yes, little bit," the woman stammered, very surprised he spoke japanese.

"Good," he said, another smile forming. He turned back to Jake who was just coming out of his daze. "You awake?," he menaced. Seeing Jake's eyes focused on him he turned his head towards the woman. "O.k., Miss...?"

She realized he was asking her name. "Sa-Sadamoto... Sadamoto Megumi des."

"Miss Sadamoto, it's your choice what what happens to this sack of crap." The last said with a animalistic growl. "One: I let him and his friends go...," Megumi didn't like that idea and the gargoyle saw it. "Two: Call the police. Or three:.. I castrate the fucker!" To emphasize his point, he casually lifted a taloned hand, and gouged a large chunk of masonry from the brick wall, letting the pieces fall to the floor. "Imagine what it can do you you," he said to Jake in a harsh whisper.

Jake's eyes widened in absolute horror at the idea. That's when his bladder released it's contents onto the floor.

The gargoyle's face scrunched up in disgust, catching a whiff of urine. "Pathetic," he said contemptuously. "Well, Sadamoto-san?," he said, still glaring at Jake. "What will it be?

Jake looked to her, his eyes clearly showing fear, quietly begging her not to pick option three. "Call the police," she answered, as tempted as she was, she couldn't have _that_ on her conscience.

The gargoyle nodded, then said to Jake: "You're lucky she's more forgiving than I am." With that, the creature jammed his palm into Jake's face, causing it to bounce off of the wall, knocking him out. The creature held Jake for a few moments longer before releasing the man, who crumpled to the ground, to lay in a puddle of his own waste.

"Are you alright?," he asked, walking slowly towards her. Megumi backed away in fear, not knowing what was going to happen next. "Whoa, matte, hold on. I'm not going to hurt you. I just wanted to make sure you're alright. My name is Nic." He gave her his name hoping that would ease her mind somewhat.

Megumi looked at Nic, trying desperately to determine if she could trust him or not. Finally, she decided to take a chance, he did help her after all. "Arigato gozaimas."

Nic smiled slightly. "Dou itaishimas," he replied. "You're just lucky Brooklyn heard you yell for help."

"Brooklyn?," she asked.

"Yeah, he's on the roof. I asked him to stay up there and keep an eye on me, to make sure I didn't get in over my head."

As soon as Nic finished, Megumi saw another creature jump down from the roof to land with cat-like grace behind Nic. Where Nic looked almost human, the other looked like a cross between a dragon and a very large bird of prey with brick red skin and a shock of long white hair.

"Megumi-san, meet Brooklyn, the closest thing I have to a uncle. Brooklyn, Megumi."

Brooklyn snorted lightly at the comment. "Don't start. I heard what happened with Tina and Avery." Nic chuckled, Megumi smiled politely, not sure what they were talking about.

"Can you call police now?"

Nic let out a short, "D'oh! Forgot, sorry," before reaching into his coat and pulled out a small cell phone.

Brooklyn looked at the younger gargoyle in surprise. "You brought a cell?"

Nic nodded. "I figured we might need it," he responded.

"Why didn't you use it before?"

"Wasn't necessary," Nic said simply.

The red gargoyle sighed heavily. "You wouldn't happen to have some rope in there so I can tie these losers up would you?"

Nic shook his head no. "Nuh-uh." He activated the phone and dialed in a number Megumi assumed was for the police.

Brooklyn spotted some old wires hanging from the far wall, he went over to them and pulled them down. He grabbed the closest on by th leg and proceeded to hog tie each of th assailants, he was kind of reluctant to touch the one laying in his own piss.

A short time later, Nic deactivated the phone. "O.k., I called Bluestone, he'll b here any minute with a cruiser to pick these three up."

Megumi breathed a deep sigh of relief. "Sankyuu, both of you."

Brooklyn laughed. "He did most of the work," he said with good humor.

Megumi smiled, becoming more comfortable being around these strange looking individuals. "Sankyuu anyway, Brooklyn-san."

"No problem then. Just doing our job."

*****

Several minutes later, sirens could be heard in the distance. "Sounds like our cue to go," said Brooklyn, heading towards a wall.

"Sure thing." Turning to Megumi, Nic said, "We'll be on the roof until the cops get here. Wait in front of the alley for them and don't worry about those three." Nic thumbed at the tied up prisoners.

*****

Megumi watched in amazement as the two gargoyles scaled the side of the building, their fingers making crunching sounds against the wall. She noticed Nic was taking longer to climb. Probably due to the fact, Nic was wearing sneakers and Brooklyn wasn't. Strange, she hadn't noticed that before.

After the police arrived and took the still unconscious men away (they had some difficulty untying the knots Brooklyn made) Megumi was taken to the local precinct house to make out the incident report. As the police cruiser pulled away, she looked out the window to see Brooklyn fly off to wherever gargoyles called home. A few moments later there was a flash of light from the rooftop, then seeing Nic fly off in the same direction.

Smiling, Megumi thought, Kieichi-nisan and Bell-chan are _not_ going to believe this.

*****

Returning to the castle Brooklyn and Nic were told the others had returned from their patrols shortly before they did. Goliath was in the library, reading. Broadway was in the T.V. room with Angela watching a movie together.

Brooklyn went off to the rookery to spend the remainder of his night with Avery and the hatchlings, while Nic went to the T.V. room. He entered the room and saw Angela sitting on the couch,giggling aloud. On the screen, John Cleese was dressed as a armored knight having somekind of argument with a guard of a castle parapet. After a short fit of more giggling, she said, "Oh my... (giggle) that's one of my favorite parts."

"I've always liked the Three Stooges myself," from behind his sister and her mate. Both Broadway and Angela jumped at the sound of his voice.

"Don't do that!!," Broadway gasped in surprise.

Nic started chuckling not noticing Angela reach for and take hold of a couch cushion and fling it at him. Fortunately for Nic her aim was off and missed him by a good margin. Unfortunately Lexington, picked that moment to enter the room.

"Nic, there you are, Elisa's been looki-(WHAP!!) Hey! What's the big deal?!?"

"Oops! Sorry Lex, I meant to hit Nic," Angela apologized, doing her best to stifle a giggle.

Lexington "Hmpf"ed and let it slide. He looked up at the hybrid. "Where have you been? Elisa's been looking all over for you?"

"I was on patrol with Brooklyn," answered Nic matter-of-factly, like it was a every night thing.

"What did he do? Carry you?"

"Nah," Nic waved his hand dismissively. "I flew on my own... I used magic," he added before the predicted question was asked.

Lex blinked a few times in surprise. The only reason Angela wasn't surprised was because Broadway had told her when he returned with Goliath. "You can really do magic?" Nic nodded. "Cool!"

The hybrid grinned. "You were saying Mom was looking for me?"

"Yeah. She's in the Great hall, c'mon."

Nic followed the green gargoyle out of the room. "By the way," Nic began, "How's that little project of ours coming along?..."

*****

In the Great Hall of Castle Wyvern, Elisa could be seen in the company of a older couple. An Native-American man in his late forties to early fifties with straight grey hair reaching down to chin level, and a African American woman of about the same age, shorter than the man dressed more formally than the man. They were Elisa's parents, Peter and Diane Maza.

Elisa thought it would be wise to introduce her parents to their grandson early. Just in case later on they found out about him and thought she was keeping secrets from them again. She explained everything she knew about Nic, the way he arrived, the alternate future, where she was one of many casualties with a war with the Quarrymen, everything.

To their credit, they took it all in stride and seemed quite anxious to meet their grandson. They had asked what he looked like but, Elisa would not answer, stating she wanted it to be a surprise.

After quite a bit of waiting and wondering where he was, Elisa saw Lex followed behind by Nic. "Found him," the green gargoyle said. "He was on patrol with Brooklyn."

"Patrol? How?"

"I'll explain later," Nic answered, giving Elisa a questioning look about the couple with her, apparently not knowing who they were.

Elisa could see her parents tense slightly as they got a good look at Nic. They saw the strong resemblance between Nic and Peter. Elisa couldn't help smirk at the thought of what Nic's reaction might be when she introduced her parents to him. "Nic, I'd like you to meet Peter and Diane Maza... My folks, your grandparents."

"My... grandparents?!" The look of shock and surprise on his face could easily considered comical because of the way his face contorted.

"Hello Nic," Diane said, smiling, "Elisa told us quite a bit about you."

Nic gave her a weak, off-balanced smile. Not sure what to say, he greeted her. "Hello... Grandmother?"

"Call me Grandma."

"That'll make me Grandpa, " said Peter, also smiling broadly.

"I guess it would." Nic paused, he shook his head before continuing. "I'm sorry, this is a little much to take in at once."

Peter chuckled. "Trust me, we felt the same way when Elisa told us about you."

"And what about when she introduced us to Christine and Belinda."

"Who?," asked Nic in confusion.

It was the Maza's turn to be surprised. "He doesn't know?," Diane asked Elisa. Speaking to the veteran detective as if she was a small child caught in a lie.

Looking a little embarrassed, Elisa answered, "Ah... well, it never came up."

"Who are Christine and Belinda?," Nic asked once more.

"They're your sisters, dear. Xanatos..." Diane paused, not exactly sure how to phrase this. "created them a few years ago, when he was an enemy of the Clan."

"Where are they now?"

"They're living on their own now," Peter answered. "They don't exactly feel.. comfortable staying here. They do visit on a regular basis."

"Why wouldn't they feel comfortable?"

"They had some bad experience while they were here," Elisa said hesitantly. She gave Nic a look that told him to drop it for now and she'd explain later.

The Mazas talked to Nic for quite sometime, about their respective lives. The Mazas were intrigued about Nic's life in Japan. Nic, on th other hand, was surprised to hear he had an aunt named Beth, she had not existed in his world.

"Beth is visiting from Arizona in a few weeks, so you can meet her then," Elisa told him.

"Great. Can't wait." His grin turned sour when a very loud growl was hard. The source: his stomach. His eyes bulged at th enormity of the sound.

"Hungry?," Lexington asked, a cheesy grin forming on his face.

"Heh," Nic laughed. "Maybe a little. I haven't eaten anything since this afternoon. I'm going to the kitchen to make something to eat." He looked at his grandparents and added, "Maybe we can continue talking?"

"Of course, Nic. Perhaps you can tell us about this nurse, Lexington has been telling us about."

The hybrid slowly turned around to face th little green gargoyle. "He has, has he?"

Lex blinked. Survival instincts began coming to life. As he inched his way towards th door, he said, "Uhm... excuse me, I forgot I had something to do." As soon as he was near the door, he bolted, a marginally peeved time-traveling demi-goyle right behind him.

Diane laughed as she watched Nic chase the smaller and faster Lexington through half of th castle. "I have to admit Elisa, you and Goliath's genes make interesting offspring. When are the two of you going to actually have your own?"

Elisa's eyes widened in shock at what her mother said. "MOM!"

"Oh please," Diane said dismissively. "It's not difficult to tell the both of you care for each other and it's not that much of a stretch of the imagination to figure you two have been... intimate." At that Elisa's face matched the color of her jacket.

Peter was doing his best to contain his grin seeing his daughter squirm. "Maybe I should talk to Goliath?," he suggested.

"Oh God," said Elisa, absolutely mortified. "I don't believe I'm hearing this."

*****

In another part of the city, things were not going so well for the Quarrymen organization. Not only was membership dropping but, it was just discovered over $10 million had been withdrawn by an unknown party from various bank accounts across the city. John Castaway was not a happy camper.

"I don't believe I am hearing this!!," he raged, as he launched a fair-sized computer monitor across the room. "How could this be happening?!" Castaway looked towards a nervous looking black man wearing a grey three piece suit, he had salt and pepper colored hair and black horn-rimmed glasses. "How can $10 million just suddenly disappear over night?"

"I don't know, sir," Royce Seville, the Quarrymen's Head Financial Advisor, admitted. "F-from what I can tell, someone broke into all the banks in Manhattan that had Quarrymen accounts and hacked into their computer systems. Our accounts were the only ones targeted, no others were touched."

Strangely, Castaway seemed to calm down quite abit at the news. "Is there anything that can be done to recover the money?," he asked in a clipped British accent Royce could now tell was fake.

"I'm afraid not, sir. The hacker was very skillful in hiding their tracks."

Castaway grimaced visibly at the words. "I see. Very well, you may go Mr. Seville. But please do what you can to replace the money. We'll need all of our resources if we are going to destroy those damnable gargoyles."

"Yes sir." Seville rose from his seat and left the large office. He took that better than I thought, he mused. He closed the door behind him and walked only a few yards, when he heard screaming and crashing from behind the door as the blond man went into a tirade that would leave several thousand dollars in damage. "Than again...," he sighed.

Seville decided it was time to send in his letter of resignation and look for a new job. Perhaps Nightstone Industries was hiring.

End

Author's notes: Anime fans may recognize the name of Sadamoto Megumi from the manga(japanese comic book) Oh! Megami-sama! known as Ah! My Goddess in the United States.

Translations

Ja and Ja ne- Basically it means "See you later." Daskete- "Help me" or "Save me" Onegai and Kudasai- "Please" Matte- "Wait" or "Stop". Hence, "Matte kudasai" means "Wait please" Ie- "No" Hai and Ee- "Yes" Eigo ga dekimaska?- "Do you speak English?" Arigato gozaimas- "Thank you very much." Gozaimas is usually used to make a comment more polite. For example, Ohaiyo means "Good morning" adding gozaimas makes it more friendly. Nisan- Shortened version of Onisan, meaning "Older brother". A honorary suffix. Sankyuu- Just change the "S" to a "Th" sound and you should be able to figure it out ^_^. Chan- Another honorary suffix usually used to refer to someone that is younger than the speaker, or it can be used as a term of affection.