by Anthony Docimo


Author's Note: Galemys, Desmana, Sonora, and all other original characters and places are my own - including the Brooklyn
Zoo.  Everything else belongs to the show Gargoyles. Desmans are a real biological group.  for more info, try here: http://www.encarta.msn.com/index/conciseindex/1C/01C20000.htm

Brooklyn was unconcious.  Not stone sleep this time.  His mind instinctively replayed the recent events.

Assigned by Goliath to patrol the Brooklyn Zoo, the close sister to the Bronx Zoo.  Struck down by tranquilizers shot by
Quarrymen.  Watched as Lex promised to get help: Brooklyn didn’t want two gargoyles struck down.  Fell into ice-cold
water.  And then, for the longest time, nothing happened.

When Brooklyn regained conciousness, he opened his eyes, giving them time to adjust.   He saw eyes.  A pair of them.

Colors first, then came depth, revealing that those were not eyes - they were sockets.  Pinkish-purple skin, no scarring in
the hollows.

“Thank you,” he croaked out, realizing that his throat was sore, “for saving me.”

“T’wain’t nothing,” a rich female voice answered, not in the least sultry or seductive.  “Besides, I needed the excercise.”

His eyes wandered, seeing who his rescuer was.  At least she wasn’t screaming over his appearance.   Below the empty
sockets was a pronounced chin, then the body was visible faintly: a tan woolen shift that looked like she’d just tossed it on.

Moving back up, past the chin and where the eyes would have been, Brooklyn found that her neck was stiff and widening
from where her eyes lay -- it also was unside-down: her neck jutted down, putting her eyes lower than her pectorals.

The back of her neck - the part visible to him now - was covered in tiny lumps that seemed to be practicing to be scales.   To
each side of the neck, left and right, was a row of white hairs sticking out.

All of his sight was back.  His headache was also gone.  He tried to sit up - not really taking note of her white hairs rustling as
though from a breeze.  With one lightning-quick arm, she pushed him back down.  “Rest.”

Slowly she pulled her arm - covered in anthrocite grey fur - away from him.  The movement was sure, methodical.

She was also, his mind registered, dripping wet.  The shift seemed to be waterproof: both from over and under, the water could
not drench it.

“I’m Brooklyn,” he introduced.  For want of anything else, may as well make polite conversation.  “What’s your name?”

“I am of the Galemys clan, of the Desman superclan, of the Jirre somolo Paadaes uberclan.”

“And you yourself?  Do you have a personal name?”

“I am of the Galemys clan.”  She lifted her head - and Brooklyn realized that he’d been looking at the nostrils, not empty eyes.
The real eyes - ears? - were tiny black dots on the back of the real head; the thing he’d thought was her stiff neck  turned out
to be a muzzle longer than his own, not to mention thicker.  “And what clan of you?”

“Manhattan,” he answered, then corrected himself, “But before that, I was of the Wyvern clan.  My clan got moved here a few
years ago - is yours anywhere around?”

“I am alone.”

“I’m sorry.”

“For what?  The rest of my clan is still in the Pyranees.”

A few quiet moments.  Then Brooklyn asked a question again.  “When I’m okay to leave here, would you like to meet my clan?”

“Are they like humans in form?”  Brooklyn nodded, then realized that she probably couldn’t see that well; but she spoke before
he could correct himself and apologize.  “Then I must tell you that my answer is no.”

“Why not?  They’d be glad to see another gargoyle face.”

“The Jirre somolo Paadaes uberclan is a minority within the gargoyle Race, ones greatly different from more humanlike gargoyle
clans.  Where there are other the humanlike ones, my uberclan is removed from the area, often by force.”

Brooklyn let loose a low whistle.  Was that true?  Why would gargoyles persecute their own kind?


Sonora Jenkins finished tying her shoes, then adjusted her uniform.  The emblem of a ‘Q,’ with a hammer in it.  These people and
their ill intentions, Sonora thought to herself, will be the coupe de grace to those freaks!

The psycological heart of any person had differently-sized chambers.  In Sonora’s largest chamber was lay her loyalty to her closest
friends.  While the Quarrymen did not hold the largest, they were still important to her, to all her family.

“Listen up,” the team leader - a man named Xander Nesin - told them.  “We’re going to do a little practice hunting tonight, at the
old cathedral.  Nobody’s in it, ‘cause it’s up for repairs.  Who knows, maybe we’ll find a live gargoyle among all the stone ones.”
The team laughed, and so did Sonora - though for different reasons.


“If I’d been one of the Deaemisc uberclan,” Brooklyn had to know, “would you just have let me drown?”  Two days had passed,
during which time  he had learned much from his hostess, who’d finally caved and allowed him to call her ‘Gale’ and ‘Galemys.’

The full name of the uberclan he’d just mentioned was Deaemisc sidulu Rawarate.  The more humanlike of the uberclans.  The
Jirre somolo Paadaes hid, not from humans, but from the Deaemisc uberclans.

“You would not have been drowned long,” Galemys said, both comforting and vexing at once.  “It was not long to morning, and in
the mornings, they let the polar bears back into that exhibit.”

Desmana chose that moment to enter, tossing a trout to Brooklyn.  Over nine feet tall, she dwarfed Gale, and would’ve made Goliath
look short.  Instead of Gale’s anthricite-grey fur, Des bore a rich reddish-brown fur coat.

According to Gale, it’d begun as a harmless accident, a keeper dropping a fish into an empty cage.  Over the years, it had grown
into a sort of payment for keeping the zoo and their grounds free of trespassers and such vermin.

“You are free to go,” Des told Brooklyn.  To Galemys, “We need to start seeking out a new lair.”

“Not really,” Brooklyn said, catching her attention.  Galemys and Desmana were equally blind, yet equally alert and perceptive
somehow.  A magical sense?  “When I get back to my clan, I’ll just tell them that I was helped out by a clan that just wants to be
left alone.”

The whiskers on Desmana twitched.  “Very well.  Fly away then.”

As Brooklyn got up, he didn’t bother to correct her words.  Unlike him, they really did have the capacity for powered flight - but
they prefered to stay closer to the ground.



“Hey guys, guess what I - ?” Elisa Maza started to say, running up the steps to the courtyard.  There was nobody there.

“What is it?” Broadway’s voice asked her, scaring her nearly to death.  She took a few more steps and looked to her side: Broadway
was there, a perfect place to ambush enemies.

Elisa handed him the piece of folded paper, ready to help him if he needed any.  “By the way, where’s the rest of the clan?”

“Out looking for Brooklyn,” answered the aquamarine  “Lexington nearly didn’t return yesterday, and told us of Quarrymen hunting
the two of them.”  He seemed to take notice of Elisa’s pulse.  “Sorry ‘bout that, Elisa: sometimes old habits come back.”

“It’s okay,” Maza answered.


Three Nights Later:

“I don’t see why we can’t go,” Angela was saying.  “The fliers say that it’s open to everyone, even gargoyles.”

“From what Brooklyn has told us,” Goliath replied, “there is another clan there, one that wishes to be left alone.”

“Well, then we’ll have to keep people away from the clan’s lands there, won’t we?” Angela said, deftly manuvering.

Their conversation was interupted by the arrival of Broadway and Hudson from patrol.  Broadway had a passenger with him.  An
unwilling passenger, judging by how she thrashed.

The gargoyles took up positions surrounding her  before Broadway let her go.   There was nowhere for her to run to, certainly.

She took a look around her, eyes wide.  “Wyvern clan?” she inquired.

“We are,” Goliath said, not afraid.

Her eyes flashed hotly.

Angela didn’t know whether to step forwards or to back up.  “A Quarryman gargoyle?”

“It pays well,” Sonora quipped.

Hudson pulled a piece of shatterred statue out of his pouch.  It was from the head of a chiselled gargoyle, long of mouth and with
sabre-fangs sticking forth.

“Why’re you doing this?” Broadway asked her.

Sonora stared defiantly back at him.  “This is not the olden days.  No longer can our kind simply protect.  Now we must also blend
in, camoflage.  The Jirre somolo Paadaes and their ilk are a threat to our continued existance.”

“Gargoyles protect,” Goliath said firmly.  “People should accept us for who we are, not our appearance.”

“Coming from a clan who hasn’t been around the last thousand years, that’s easy for you to say,” Sonora said bitterly.  “You, all of you,
are the same uberclan as I am: you should be helping me fight them.”  Brooklyn walked into the room, with Bronx at his side.  “Well,
most of you are  then.”

“Brooklyn’s a valuable member of our clan,” Angela defended.

“Aye lass,” Hudson added.  “We bear ye no ill will, but if ye keep attacking gargoyles, we will stop ye!”

“Agreed,” Goliath said.

“I’m free to go?” Sonora asked, standing up.  Goliath nodded.  “You’re fools, all of you.  You nod like humans, yet you think we can
do something besides blend alongside them.”  She walked light-footed over to the low castle wall of this high point.  “May someone
have mercy on you -  because humanity won’t,” Sonora said just before she dived off the building.



Galemys was perched on the concrete ledge that ran around the polar bear’s enclosure.   In front of her   she could smell the water,
the tang of chlorine, the undercurrent of bear.  Behind her was the reek of humans, of children stressing their mothers, of hormone-
driven teens, of cottoncandy.  All around, the wind blew a stiff breeze.

And it was that breeze that kept her from smelling Desmana’s approach, as it was running from Galemys to Desmana, rather than the
other way around.

“Quite contemplative tonight, aren’t we?” Desmana asked rhetorically, an dthen she smelled it: dried ink on coloured paper.  “You’re
still holding hope for that?”  Galemys nodded.  “Forget that, put it aside and bury it.”

That didn’t seem to be effective, Desmana saw, so she tried a different tactic.  “They are going to hold a swimsuit competition, here
in the zoo.  It will be at night, just like that paper doubtlessly says.  But what it does not say is that gargoyles shouldn’t expect to win,
much less recieve an honorable mention.

“Remember what you are, Galemys.  Over one-fifth of your body weight is from your head.  Your wings are strong, but do you think
that those would really be attractive to human judges?”

Galemys looked down at the icy waters twenty-plus feet below her nose, her beady black eyes clouded with sadness.  “But I have a
figure,” she pleaded, plucking at metaphorical straws.

Desmana nodded - this was detectable by the hairs on their muzzle - and said “True, you have a set of mammaries, more than the
human norm to be precise.  And small as they are, they are also buried under your fur.”  A biting tone, “Or would you shave yourself
for a chance to go there?”

“No, Desmana,” Galemys answered sullen.  “I’ll stick to the shadows and watch.  The old macaw cage on the hill, next to the aviary,
won’t have anyone near it to spot me.”


Quarryman  HQ:

In one of the back rooms, John Castaway had just recieved a rude shock: one of his best quarrymen was really - “A gargoyle.”

She - Sonora somebody - nodded.  “You neve knew we could be so similar, did you, John?”

“How many of you beasts are in my organization?” he demanded.

“Oh, only me,” she said calmly, sitting down.  “Now, I’ll tell you something, and let you decide how to handle it.  This is an old story,
passed down through the generations....”  And she told him a tale he almost didn’t believe.

Thousands of years ago, in her story, humans still killed humans, and gargoyles killed gargoyles; the two warring indipendantly, for this
was ages before the Compact would be forged between the two species.  But gargoyles fought fiercer, and in the end had only three
major clans left.  Time passed, the three clans placed widely apart.  Clan became Uberclan, a supergroup of defining characteristics.

But the war had never really ended.  The hatred hadn’t died at all.

“And this third clan?” Castaway asked.

Sonora shrugged.  “Nobody knows.  Maybe they left the Earth, maybe they faded into nothingness.”  She paused, leaning towards
him.  “We want the same thing, John: to rid the world of the beasts.”

Castaway had to admit that a temporary alliance would save on human fatalities, at least untill the garg-beasts were gone.  He filed a
mental note to investigate the third clan, as a hiding gargoyle was a potential risk.

“Very well, you’ve got a deal.”

Two Nights Later:

Brooklyn Zoo:

Galemys watched as the men finished setting up the awards stage.  She’d come here as soon as she’d woken up this evening, eager
to observe the proceedings.  Already there was a gathering crowd of people.  She wasn’t sure where Desmana was, only that she
too was observing the humans tonight - though from farther away.  There were times she wondered if the taller one was allergic to

The call of human children distracted her.  Those were creatures of energy, or so it could seem.  She herself had contributed to the
Clan back home, back before accepting the posting here.  A distant, primal corner of her mind called for her to lay another pair of
eggs, maybe a trio.  But who was there as a prospective mate?  The only male member of her uberclan in the remote area was
Brooklyn -- “And he no doubt thinks me ugly,” Galemys muttered to herself.

The sound of large leathery wings caught her attention: gargoyles landing.  One of them smelled familiar.  Brooklyn!  She stayed still,
hoping that his companions - smelly as they were - wouldn’t notice her.  They weren’t really stinky, but hundreds of generations of
revulsion at their distant cousins had an effect on the mind of them all.

With one exception, the newly-arrived gargoyles took up defensive positions, places where they could both watch the showing as
well as keep an eye out for danger.  The one exception took - her - place up on the stage with the humans.

A swimsuit competition.  Galemys unconciously fingered her clothes, once a cloth bag of questionable decent.  She could never go
up there - she didn’t belong in their world.

With her ears  she could hear a cluster of children over by Reginald the bear’s enclosure, spitting into the chill water, laughing, shouting,
playing.  Another world forbidden to her.

She felt the attack an instant before she heard it, before the bullet impacted with a branch near her head.  She closed her nostrils and
the lids to her tiny eyes.  Somebody was shooting at her - with a silencer attached!

The next shot pierced her right wing, taking her off-guard, off-balance.  Two snipers?  They’d come from different directions.  Galemys
slipped and fell, taking a tumble right into - the edge of the crowd - next to the stage for the competition.

She couldn’t see Sonora’s smile of pride, of triumph.  All she knew was fear of the crowd, was pain in her wing.

But what nobody could have predicted, let alone factored into their equations - not Quarryman, not gargoyle - was the fact that one
little boy dropped his baseball, right into the waters below.  The lad leaned over on the railing to see where it was, and -

The little boy’s grip faltered for only a moment.  But it only took a moment for the fall to begin.  As he fell downwards, toward the cold
waters below, he cried out, screaming.

Brooklyn could see Galemys suddenly stop quivering, and swing her nose up in the air.  By now she was crouched over, but definately
on two legs.   Then she turned and ran, dropping to all fours.  She was oblivious to anyone in the way, bowling over several humans, as
well as Angela, as the exhibit was on the other side of the platform - expediency demanded her shortcut.

When Galemys got to the railing to the watery exhibit, she simply *leaped* right over it, then tucked her limbs in for a faster drop to
the water.  And a call was let out, as unlike the normal gargoyle ‘wildcat’ call as a loon or an alligator, only more shrieking.

And then Galemys was in the water, swinging her head back and forth, looking with her other senses.  And then she knew where the
boy was: thrashing in the water, trying to keep his head above the surface; panicked and yet unawares of the polar bear approaching.

She darted in, paddling for all she was worth: if she’d had functional eyes, they would’ve been glowing.  The bear was slightly closer to
her than the boy, so she folded her nose against her body, kept paddling -- and rammed her shoulders into the bear, knocking it off course.

Turning quickly, she pushed herself away from the bear, kicking the bear to gain a new direction: back to the boy.  She grabbed him,
the fight nearly gone from him, and gripped him close.  There was an artificial island up ahead, just a few more paddles and -

*Pain!*  A raking pain blossomed on the end of Galemys’s tail, a gift from the bear.  The zoo would likely shoot her if she killed the
polar bear, so she twisted her tail, bringing it closer to her own body, and reached out for the concrete island with her free hand.

Once the island was gripped, she climbed up as fast as she could.  Another swipe from the bear, it’s head now out of the water.  Blood
was flowing freely from the end of her tail, she could feel it.  There was also almost no hair left down there either.

From the island, she leapt to the enclosure wall, the boy safe against her.  There was somebody leaning over the railing, an arm stretched
to them.  “Give him to me, I’ll see him to his parents.”  Galemys got a little higher before handing him up and over.  She had no way of
knowing that that woman was Sonora.

And then the bear leapt out of the water, clamping his teeth down on her tail.  She screamed again, a call like an alligator, and fell
backwards into the water.

“So he wants to playfight, does he?” Galemys asked quietly, bubbles of air rushing to the surface, worrying the audience she’d
unwittingly gained.

Galemys allowed her instincts to take over, take control.  A steady stream of bubbles flowed from her nostrils, a by-product of her tasting
the water constantly.  Now she knew exactly *where* she was and *where* the bear-attacker was.

She charged, carefully not to kill it - too large for food, her instinct relented.  To those above, and even to the polar bear, alls that could be
seen was a blurr, a flurry of movement.  And then the bear rose to the surface, limp.

That done, Galemys kept underwater, pushing the bear towards the flat rock-shaped background, near where he was let in and out of
by his keepers.

She dragged the unconcious bear onto the platform in the rear of the enclosure, setting him down with only the clawtips touching the water.
Galemys then returned her attention to climbing out.  She was almost to the top, easily a few feet from a large shadow - a recess of trees,
a hiding place.

But then somebody in the crowd called out - “Look, there’s somebody coming out!”  Other words followed that; among them were
invitations over to the crowd, clappings for how she’d handled the polar bear, and more.

She climbed over the edge, into the shadows.  Here she could leave their sight, go with Desmana to find someplace else to hide....

But Galemys walked towards the people, her clothes sticking to her body.  Tall and thickly-muscled, with four small breasts slightly lower
than a woman would have them.  Hair flat against her, looking smooth and gracefull, the full length of her arms visible - whereas normally
it was obscured by her fur.

At the edge of the crowd, almost policeman-like in how he was between them protectively, was one of the officials she’d detected earlier.

“What is your name?” he asked her.

“Gale Mise,” the desman-like gargoyle woman answered.

The official looked from Sonora to Gale and back again, considering.  At last, he returned his attention to the audience.  “We have a winner.
Her name is -”


Later that night, when everyone else had gone to their homes, Desmana stood at the peak of the Aviary, looking out at the zoo grounds.
“No more do we hide.  You and your kind have gone too far.”

And she began a spell that would summon up all of the varied forms of her uberclan from across the world.  From Japan, Greece, South
America, and many more places.



Name: Not Applicable.
Clan:   Galemys Clan.
Known as: Gale, Galemys.
Derivation of either: Scientific name of one of the Desmans, which she resembles.  short arms and legs, larger-than-normal hands and
feet. tiny dots-for-eyes.  long grey tail.
Life: 1931 AD  -- Present Day.
Fics: Swimmer. {in Avalon Mists}.
Description:   Like a giant Pyranian Desman.
Notes: Galemys is a member of the subgroup of gargoyles which bears less physical resembalance to humanity, and thusly is hunted
down for that - not just by human quarrymen, but also by the more humanlike gargoyle subgroup, who see the less humanlike ones as
a threat to their continued existance.