Gargoyle Troopers: Transitions

by Desslock

DISCLAIMER TIME:  No I don’t own any rights what so ever to Gargoyles, the evil empire (aka Disney) does, and are used
here with out the owner’s or creators knowledge or consent.  Although the Roughwings are mine, if you ask nicely you might be
able to play with them, and if you feel so inclined to capture them for all time in a piece of art, all I ask is that you send me a courtesy
copy.  Also, due to a typo on the author’s part, the year should be 1996, not 1998, sorry.  Finally, if you have any questions or
comments then feel free to send them to me at

 September 24, 1996

        “Brooklyn, how are you doing?”  Xanatos asked as the young gargoyle walked into his office.
        “Ok all things considered.”  Brooklyn replied.
        The fact that Brooklyn hadn’t even bothered to make a wisecrack did not go unnoticed by the multi-billionaire.  Turning the large computer monitor that sat on his desk around so that it was facing Brooklyn, David Xanatos began with a question.
        “Do you know what all these red dots on this map represent?”
        “No I can’t say I do.”
        “They represent places where there has been some type of physical evidence of a gargoyle.”
        “Gargoyles like us?”  Brooklyn asked as he estimated there were about two-dozen red dots on the screen.
        “No, more like the none turning to stone during the day variety.  Sound familiar?”
        “You mean all these gargoyles, are like Rick?  That they claim to have been humans before.”
        “That is as yet unknown.  But its something that I think we would all be interested in finding out.”
        “So why tell me and not Goliath about this?”
        “I did, and we came up with a plan to find out.  That’s where you come in.”
        “Is this another one of your plots?  I bet you really didn’t tell Goliath.”
        Sighing, Xanatos decided to change tactics.  “Brooklyn, I’ll cut right to the chase.  Right now you are not a real popular guy among the clan.  Goliath was this close to throwing you out of the clan.”  David held up his thumb and forefinger less than an inch apart. 
        “He was?”  Brooklyn asked in surprise, a small knot forming in his stomach.
        “The only thing that saved you was the fact that you would be at the mercy of the world, and he couldn’t bring himself to do it.  But I think sending you out on your own would be a good thing.”

       Three days later, as Brooklyn double-checked the pack with his gear, the rest of the clan gathered on the western most tower of castle Wyvern. 
        “Man, you’re going to have so much fun.  Be sure you keep us up to date on your adventures.”  Lexington said as he helped Brooklyn to finish packing.
        “I will.”
        “Take care of yourself out there.”  Broadway said.
        Turning to face him; Brooklyn offered his hand and said “No hard feelings then?”
        “Nah, we’re rookery brothers.  I can’t hold a grudge.”  As he took Brooklyn’s arm.
        “You be careful out there.”  Elisa said as she hugged Brooklyn.
        “That goes double for me.”  Added Angela, as she did like wise and at the last second added a small peck to the side of his beak.
        “Whatever you find out there lad, remember, as long as you face it like a gargoyle, you’ll do ok.”
        “I’ll remember that Hudson.”
        Appearing from the stairway of the tower, the Xanatos family made their entrance.
        “Before you leave Brooklyn, I hope you will accept this small gift from my family.”  David said as he handed an envelope to the gargoyle.
        “There is a thousand dollars in small bills, a debit card and a credit card, and a phone card.  Feel free to use it anytime.”
        “Thank you.”  Brooklyn said.
        “It’s so hard to shop for a gargoyle, we decided that in this case cash was the best gift.”  Fox said with a wink.  “Think of it as an early Christmas gift.”
        “Bye bye.”  Added Alexander.
       Sensing that everyone else had said his or her piece, Goliath thought now was the proper time for him to speak.
        “Brooklyn, you know we will be worried about you while you are gone…”
        “I know I know, be careful…”
        Holding up his hand to stop Brooklyn, Goliath finished what he was going to say.  “Yes be careful.  But I also want you to know that no matter what happens, I trust you will make us proud by doing the right thing.”
        “Thanks Goliath.”  Brooklyn said as he accepted his leaders out stretched hand.
        “Since its not even October yet the days are still longer than the nights. You had better get going lad and make use of the night as best you can.”
        Nodding his head, Brooklyn picked up his gear, slung it across his back, said his final goodbye then jumped off in to the night sky.


October 25, 1996

       Damn, Rick thought, we’ve been on the run for the past two months now and we keep getting chased by who ever it is that’s hunting us.  I’m left with no choice then; we need to find some allies, some strong friends.  And the closest and strongest one I can think of is Goliath’s clan.  But I would rather not do that, the clan will accept them just like they did me, but Goliath will try to assert himself as our leader.  But at the least it would ensure my guys had a warm, dry, safe, place to stay.
        Just then Rick’s attention was brought back to the present by a sight that he wasn’t sure was there.  It looked like a gargoyle, but the darkness of the night made him not sure if he had even seen it.  Besides no one from Goliath’s clan would be this far from the city.    Watching the unknown gargoyle land below, Rick indicated for Harper to join him.  After quickly explaining his plan, Rick swooped down to where the other gargoyle stood.
        As the two gargoyles faced each other in the small clearing they had both landed in, Rick did a quick once over of his potential threat.  The first thing he noticed was that the gun that was strapped to its leg did a lot to steal Rick’s advantage of numbers. The squad had been out of ammunition for the past few weeks now.
        “My name is Rick.  Who are you?”  He asked taking control of the situation.
       “My name is Demona,” The female gargoyle said with a certain amount of seductive slowness as she stepped in to the moonlight.  “And I think we have a lot we can offer one another.”

One month and a thousand miles away.

       “Lets go, lets go.  You’ve got four minutes left.  You had better move faster.”  Rick shouted.
        Running past him carrying sandbags from one corner of the gymnasium to the center of the room, Rick’s Roughwings, as they had started calling themselves, were receiving a real work out.
        “Very good guys, you managed to pile all the sandbags with five seconds to spare.  Still you did meet the standard.”  Rick said as he climbed to the top of the sandbag pile.  “Now for the fun part.  The name of the game is king of the hill.  The rules are simple; knock me from the top of this pile.  The only other rule is that it’s all fun and games until someone losses an eye.  You think you can handle that?”
        Looking at their leader for a second, the remaining gargoyles looked at each other before charging up the sandbag pile at once.
        His attention distracted by the simultaneous attacks from Harper and Hannibal, Rick was caught by surprised when Athena snuck behind him and gave a quick yank on his tail.  Unfortunately for her, she lost her balance and fell down the sandbag pile and landed on her back.  Taking advantage of his being off balance, Harper and Hannibal managed to push Rick off the mound and watched as he fell and landed with his face right between Athena’s breast’s.
        Quickly standing up, Rick knew that he had to do something to regain his dignity quickly as he watched Harper, Hannibal, Duke, and Machiavelli laughing uncontrollably.
        “Atten Hut!”  He shouted.  “Every one that laughed at this little misfortune, run a lap around the gym and then knock out ten push ups.”
        Once the other Roughwings had started running their laps, Rick helped Athena to her feet.
        “Sorry about that, kind of embarrassing wasn’t it.”
        “Yeah, but maybe next time you shouldn’t do it with such a large audience.”  She retorted playfully.
        “I’ll have to keep that in mind.”  Rick said with less amusement.

       Watching a short distance away stood two gargoyles, one a lean and attractive female.  The other was a male that stood nearly as large as Goliath, but with a much less personable disposition.  His brown hair and grayish green skin contrasted against his partners red hair and blue skin.  The scar that ran down his right pectoral muscle contrasted against her flawlessly smooth skin.
        “Are you sure this is a good idea?”  Aries asked Demona as they watched from an overhead observation window.
        “Yes, just look at them, they have a real loyalty for Rick.  The harder he pushes them, the harder they work.  Plus you must admit, he is quite skilled in both armed and unarmed combat and has taught them quite well.  As I hear it, he beat you by a good margin in a shooting contest.”
        “A weapon is one thing.  But the true test of a warrior comes from defeating his enemy with his own hands.  Just look at them, running around with sandbags, now wrestling around with each other.  I still say you should have made me their leader and not left Rick in his place.”  Aries said with barely hidden disgust.
        “Why Aries, what’s the matter, having a spat of inferiority complex?  Don’t you see what he is doing, first he tires them out with exercise, then he builds up their spirit with a little bit of play.  Is that why you’re in such a foul mood, you weren’t invited to play in their games?”
        “No, I just disagree with his methods.”
        “I also hear that Rick has a special nickname for you too.  What is it he calls you, Sarge?”
        The low growl of irritation that came from his throat gave Demona all the answer she needed.  Now all she had to do was find out why Rick calls him that.


        Later that day, Harper stood at the doors leading in to Demona’s office.  He didn’t know why she wanted to see him, but it must have been important if she couldn’t wait for Rick to return from the weapons evaluation that he was doing for her.  Knocking twice, he was greeted with a pleasant voice telling him to enter. 
        “Harper, please sit down.”  Demona indicated toward a seat that was in front of her desk.  “I just wanted a chance to talk to you one on one, to get to know you a little better.”
        “What would you like to know?”
        “You're pretty loyal to Rick aren’t you?”
        “Yes I am.”
        “What about me?”
        “I didn’t know loyalty to you was required.”
        “Its not.  But Rick must have done something right to earn your trust and respect, I just wanted to know what it was so I could do the same.”
        “You make it sound as if you want to buy my loyalty.”
        “Not in the least.  I just wonder what leadership skills he has that I might be able to learn.”
        “In that case, its a simple thing, he made us feel like a family, and taught us that there is more to life than being a soldier.  For example, I have learned a lot about music from him, both how to play and how to appreciate it.  If I’m not mistaken, is that not Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 in D Minor you have playing in the background?”
        “Ahh, I see.”  Walking over to the wet bar she kept in her office, Demona began to fix her self a scotch and water.  “Would you care for a drink?”
        “No thank you.  I’m still on duty.”
        “Then maybe you can answer a question for me.  I heard that Rick has a special nickname for Aries.   I was wondering why does he call him Sarge?”
        With a slight smile Harper said, “Only if you answer me a question first.”
        “What is your question?”
        “Does it irrate Aries when he’s called Sarge?”
        “Yes it does.”  Demona said as she sat on the edge of her desk, letting a lot of her thigh show.
        Chuckling a little before responding, Harper explained the story of Rick and Sergeant, and how Aries looked a lot like Sergeant did.
        “I see.”  Demona said as she walked behind Harper. “But why else would Rick insult Aries like that?  The only thing that it has caused is tension and a lack of cooperation between the two.”  Demona asked as she laid a hand on Harper’s shoulder.
        “That I don’t know, but Rick is the smartass type, he may just do it out of reflex.”
        Standing up Harper asked, “Is there anything else you wanted to know?”
        “No.  But I would like to be able to talk with you again sometime.”
        “Perhaps, but for now I need to return to the training of the Roughwings in Rick’s absence.”
        Watching as Harper walked out of her officer, Demona made a mental note that Harper was going to be hard to seduce, unlike Duke, Machivalli and Hannibal.  But with those three plus, Aries and the two gargoyles under him, in addition to the new gargdrones that were coming on line, she would soon have a powerful clan of her own.


        The next day, Aries smiled as he watched his two gargoyles, Ivan and Genghis, square off against two Roughwings.  Although he hated to admit it, Rick did have a good idea in having a contest to see who was the best gargoyle.  Of coarse Aries already knew who would win this contest hands down.  Both he and Demona had worked hard to train his two gargoyles, and now they were going to see the fruits of their labor.
        “Hello there Sarge, looks like you're ready for today’s contest.”  Rick said
        Growling, Aries let his displeasure at being called that name be known.
        “All you Sergeant types are the same, you have a real bad disposition and no sense of humor.”
        “How would you know?  There is no Sergeant in you’re Roughwings.”  Aries said.
        “Now there isn’t, but when I first meet them they had one with them.  Sergeant 13 it was.”
        Growling again, Aries began to clench and unclench his fist as a wave of anger beginning to swell with in.  Sergeant 13 is dead?  I knew him, fought by his side, he was a great soldier, he wouldn’t be killed easily unless, unless someone had helped to kill him.  Aries thought.
        “Like I said, you guys have n….” The rest of Rick’s sentence was cut off as Aries landed a powerful punch to his face.
        Taken by surprise, Rick reeled and fell backwards as Aries landed blow after blow.  Landing on his back, Rick rolled to his left before assuming a crouched position.  Charging at him, Aries swung at Rick’s head.  Dodging to the right, Rick counter attacked with a blow to the stomach, which seemed to do little to slow Aries down.
       “Wow, check it.  Rick and Aries are going at it!”  Duke shouted.
       “What?”  Hannibal asked, his inattention allowing Ivan to sucker punch him. 
       Charging again, Aries plowed in to Rick and they both fell to the ground and rolled around a few times before Rick flipped his opponent off of him.
       “Come on Rick, beat that big blow hard.”  Machiavelli shouted in supported.
       “No way, Aires will wipe the floor with him.”  Genghis countered.
       “In your dreams pal.”  Duke said. 
        Assuming the offense, Rick closed the distance between him and Aries and landed two good punches before being head bunted.  Another powerful blow sent Rick falling to the ground again. 
       “Look at the, he’s getting his ass kicked.”  Ivan cheered as Rick fell. 
       However, even as he fell Rick used his tail to sweep Aries’s feet out from under him. 
       “You were saying?”  Machiavelli shot back.
       Taking advantage of the situation, Rick ran to a near by wall and used it to propel himself back the way he came.  At the end of his flight Rick’s hand connected with Aries head.  Unfortunately, Aries had decided to get up and personal with his opponent and had begun to run towards Rick in order to grab him.
       “Ah crud, these two are going to kill each other.  Athena, go and get Demona.  Duke, Ivan, help me to break this up!”  Harper shouted.
        Finding himself in a crushing bear hug, Rick realized that his options where now extremely limited.  Reaching out with both his hands, Rick grabbed a hold of Aries’s neck and began to squeeze.  It had come down to a battle of attrition, which would pass out first. 
        So involved where the two combatants that they completed ignored all attempts to separate the two of them.  Even when darkness had claimed them they didn’t know it was because of oxygen starvation, but instead a rather irate Demona standing over the two with a tranquilizer gun.


 October 18, 1996

        “So Lexington, how do you feel a month after Goliath made you second in command?”  Broadway asked his younger rookery brother.
        “Not to bad so far.  Although I’m starting to see some of the headaches that Brooklyn had to deal with.”
        “What kind of headaches?”  Angela asked.
        “Well for instance, having to try to play peacemaker between Goliath and Xanatos.”
       “Tell me about it, boy did you see how irate Goliath looked with Xanatos tonight?”  Broadway asked.
        “Yes, but I don’t know why.  I thought father had set aside his differences with Xanatos.”  Angela said.
        “You know Xanatos, he’s always scheming about something.  Probably spent half the day dreaming up some elaborate plan just to bother Goliath.”  Broadway chuckled. 
        “Why do you and Lexington always speak so badly of Mr. Xanatos?  He’s always been a polite and nice man when I talk to him.”  Angela asked.
        “Angela, I don’t want to sound mean, but you are a little naive of the new world still.”
        “Naive?!”  Angela said in disgust and anger.  She could not believe that Broadway had just said that to her.
        “I, uh, um, what I meant.”  Broadway stammered as he realized that he had just stuck his whole foot in his mouth. 
       “Angela, look down there on that building.  Do you see what I see?”  Lexington asked as a way of avoiding an argument.
        Following his gaze, Angela saw what Lexington was pointing at, a lone figure sitting on the roof of a building.

       He was cold, wet, hungry, tired, and scared.  Despite all this, Kenny just sat there, his arms wrapped around his knees and his wings wrapped around him, as he watched the three gargoyles land not fifty feet from him.  Approaching slowly, they kept their hands in plain site, as if they were trying to reassure him of their intentions.
        “Hello there.  My name is Broadway, this is Angela and Lexington.”  Broadway said as he introduced the group to Kenney.
        Barely lifting his head in response, all Kenney said was his name.
        “Kenney,” Angela said, “If you want, you can come and stay with our clan.  It will give you a dry place to rest during the day.”
        “Where are you from?”  Kenney managed to organize his thoughts enough to ask.
        “We live in New York.”  Answered Broadway.
        “You’re from here?”  Kenney asked as he slowly stood up, his wings falling to this side to revel his coppery colored skin.  “How long have you been gargoyles?  Where are you staying now?  Are there more like us?  How are you surviving like this?”  Kenney began to ask in a rush.
        “Hold on there, one question at a time please.”  Lexington said.  “If you want to come with us spend the day with us then we’ll answer all your questions.”

        “You mean you live there?”  Kenny asked in disbelief as the four gargoyles approached castle Wyvern.
        “Yep, isn’t something?” Broadway said.
        “Man, how in the world did you get such awesome digs?”
        “It helps to have a friend with a billion or two just lying around.”  Lexington said.
        “We will give you a tour of our home later.  For now lets get you dried off and something to eat.”  Angela said.
        “That sounds like a good idea, it’s been a few hours since I’ve had anything to eat.”  Broadway said.

        “Goliath, I have something to show you.”  David Xanatos said as he entered the castles library.
        “What is it this time Xanatos?”  Goliath asked, annoyed that his reading had been interrupted yet again. 
        “There is a nice young lady that I would like you to meet.”  Xanatos said with a slight smirk as if he was about to play a gag on a friend.
        Careful to mark his place this time, Goliath returned his copy of Great Expectations to the bookshelf before considering Xanatos.
         “A nice young lady for me to meet, why Xanatos, I didn’t realize that you were in the match making business also.”
        “Why Goliath, was that a joke?”  Xanatos asked with a chuckle before finally sobering up.  “I’ll cut straight to the point.  A few days ago a lost and scared female gargoyle was discovered at my shipyard in Norfolk.  She was quickly nursed back to health before being brought to Manhattan.”
        “You’ve discovered another gargoyle?”  Goliath asked, his earlier irritation quickly forgotten.
        “Yes, she is in my office this very moment and is looking forward to meeting your clan.”
        “Why was it necessary to nurse her back to health?”  Goliath asked as the two walked towards the very center of the Xanatos empire.  “A stone sleep should have taken care of all but the most sever injuries.  Unless she doesn’t turn to stone, just like Rick.”
        “You’re correct on the assumption.  She doesn’t turn to stone during the day, and also like Rick she makes the claim of being human at one time.”
        “This is most interesting, and bothersome.”  Goliath commented. 

        A couple of hours later a much drier, warmer, and well feed Kenny followed his new friends on a tour of their home.
        “Man does he ever stop eating?”  Kenny asked as Broadway munched on his third apple since leaving the kitchen.
        “Not that I know of.”  Lexington said.
        “Hey I have to keep my energy up you know.”  Broadway said.
        “Yeah, it might be hours until his next snack.”  Angela teased.

        An hour later Kenny asked his tour guides where the bathroom was.
        “There’s one around the corner and down the hall.”  Lexington answered.
        “Thanks, be back in a minute.”  Kenny said
        After Kenny had rounded the corner, Broadway asked Lexington what he thought of Kenny.
        “He seems ok.  He’s not psychotic or possess any strange powers.”  Lexington said half in thought.
        “I like him, he seems nice enough.  A little more personable than Rick was, he’s more like Brooklyn.”  Angela said.
        “You think so?”  Broadway asked.
        Lexington was about to say something when a loud scream came from down the hallway.
        Racing down the same hallway that Kenny had gone done not more than a moment before; Angela, Lexington, and Broadway found themselves facing two gargoyles locked in a fight.  The first one, Kenny, had his back against the wall and was trying desperately to keep his opponent from reaching his throat.
        The second gargoyle, the one trying to strangle Kenny, was female with red hair.  Her skin was a light green color similar to that of Lexington’s.  She appeared about the same size as Angela, but with her wings flared in anger it was difficult to estimate her exact size.  With her eyes glowing in anger, it was impossible to tell what color they were, but the way she was snarling left little doubt that she had a healthy set of teeth.
        “Who the heck is that?”  Angela asked.
        “Never mind, just brake those two up.”  Lexington said as he attempted to intervene between the two.
        Grabbing the female around the waist, Angela attempted to pull the two combatants apart with little success.  However, Angela’s tugging did allow Kenny to break free and retreat to a safe distance.
        “Kenny what happened?”  Broadway asked as he helped Angela to restrain the struggling gargoyle.
        “I don’t know.  I opened the door to the bathroom and she was in there using it.  I guess I startled her because she screamed.  I shut the door and tried to apologize, but then she attacked me.”  Kenny answered.
        “Lexington, Angela, Broadway.  What is going on here and who is that?”  Goliath asked as he pointed towards Kenny.

 A couple of hours later…

        “Ok, things have officially gone weird now.”  Kenny commented as he watched the Manhattan clan turn to stone as the sun rose over the horizon.
        “I see you didn’t know that the gargoyles had that ability.”  Xanatos said.
        “No I didn’t.”
        “I can see why, you're not like most gargoyles.” 
       “Not like most gargoyles?  I don’t even know what a “normal” gargoyle is supposed to be like.  Especially since I’ve never been one before.”  Kenny said.
        “That’s why we want you to talk to this other gargoyle.  Like you she is new to the gargoyle way of life.”  Xanatos said
        “But she tried to kill me.” 
        “True, but she is much calmer now.”
        “Even if she doesn’t want to kill me, she might not want to talk to me.” 
        “Well you can either try to talk to her or you can try to talk to the gargoyles.”  Xanatos said as he made a slight sweeping motion with his hand.
        Looking at the clan as they sleep in their stone slumber, Kenny decided that Xanatos did have a good point.
        “What?  To busy running your business to spend an afternoon to make a new gargoyle feel welcome?”  Kenny said sarcastically.
        “Actually yes.”  Xanatos said with out missing a beat.  “But not to worry, I have arranged for Owen to be at your service should you need anything today.”
        “Is he like Jeeves?”  Kenny asked.
        “Something like that.”  Xanatos said as he slowly opened the door in front of him.
        Following behind him, Kenny found himself standing inside a large room that was full of couches and chairs.  There were also several desks, small tables, bookshelves, a large stereo system, and a big screen TV.  Sitting in the middle of this room on one of the couches was a red headed female gargoyle.
        “Kenny, I would like to meet Tammy.”  Xanatos said.  “Tammy, this is Kenny, a gargoyle just like you.” 
        “Hello.”  Kenny said.
        Ignoring his outstretched hand, Tammy stared hard at Kenny.
        “I’m sorry if I startled you earlier.”  Kenny apologized.
        “Hell of a way for me to meet the other gargoyles Mr. Xanatos.”  Tammy said.
        “Believe me it was not my intention for us all to be introduced that way.” 
        “Humpf, well try harder next time.”  Tammy said as she stood up and stretched.  “I don’t know about you guys, but I’m starved.  What is there to eat?”
        “Ask the butler.”  Kenny said.
        “There are a variety of items in the castle’s kitchen which the staff will prepare for you.”  Owen Berrnett said. 
        Taken by surprise, Kenny stammered out, “What?  Where did you come from, how did you sneak up on us like that?” 
        “Cool, he came out of no where, just like a magician.”  Tammy said with amusement as she watched Kenny’s reaction. 

        An hour later, both Kenny and Tammy sat at a table in the courtyard of the castle enjoying breakfast.
        “I haven’t eaten this well in a while now.”  Kenny said.
        “Me neither.  My brother used to cook for us on Sundays, he made these great omelets.”  Tammy added.
        “How many siblings did you have?”
        “You mean do I have?”
        “Have, had, its all the same, its not like they know who we are now.”
        “That’s a cruel thing to say, I still have two brothers, two parents, and lots of other family out there.”  Tammy said defensively.
        “I’ve got a brother out there too, but I know he sure doesn’t know that I’m still alive.  Both our past lives have been erased.”
        “No, not entirely.  I still remember my past.”  As Tammy spoke a few tears ran down her face.
        Uh oh, now what have I done?  Kenny thought.  First I surprise her and she attacks me, and now less than six hours later I have her crying.
        Luckily, for Kenny at that moment a butterfly flew landed in front of Tammy.
        “Oh he’s beautiful.”  Tammy said while wiping the tears from her eyes.  As the butterfly began to fly away, Tammy stood up and began to merrily chase it.
        “She certainly is in touch with her emotions.”  Owen said as he began to clear away the dirty dishes.
        “Man, how do you do that?  Do you have any idea how unnerving that is?”  Kenny asked annoyed that yet again he had been taken by surprise. 


October 9, 1996

       Freezing at the sound of the vehicle coming his way, Brooklyn quickly dropped to the ground and hid in the tall grass.  Leaving behind a trail in the early November frost that covered the ground, the old pickup truck came to a halt.  Watching as three figures climbed out of the truck that had parked not more than a hundred meters from his location; Brooklyn decided that he would go the opposite direction.  That was until he heard them mention something that gained his full attention.
        “Come on Billy don’t you want to see the gargoyle I found?”  Asked a tall lanky kid of seventeen with freckles. 
        “No not really Frank.  I could have gone to the movies with Sara tonight instead of stomping through old Mr. Peterson’s fields just to see some gargoyle you “claim” to have seen.”  Answered Billy with little enthusiasm. 
        “So how come you’re here with us instead of out at the movies with Sara?”  Asked the shortest of the three.
        “That’s a good question Matt, how come Billy isn’t out with Sara tonight.”  Frank asked as he stopped and turned to face his friend.
        Grinning slightly as he walked up face to face with Frank, Billy replied.  “Because her brother Ryan said he would kick my butt if he caught me making out with her again.”
        “That’s awesome.  You da man.”  Matt said in good cheer.
        “No kidding, I guess we underestimated you Billy.”
        “So did Sara, till I showed her.”
        “Yeah right, I’ll believe that when I see it.”  Snorted Matt.
        “Suit your self.”  Billy said as he began to reach for his belt buckle.
        “You do and it won’t be Ryan kicking your butt tonight.”  Frank threatened good naturally.
        His interest peaked at the mention of the word gargoyle; Brooklyn followed the three youths as they made their way across an open field that lead to a small stream.  Sliding down the steep banks of the stream, Frank and company stepped under the small bridge that spanned the stream.
        “Man, there’s nothing here.”  Matt said dejectedly.
        “Oh really?”  Frank said as he turned on his flashlight.  Almost instantly, the photons of light began to alternately be reflected or absorbed, depending on their wavelength, by the creature that lay on the ground in front of them.
        “Holy spit, you weren’t kidding.”  Billy said.
        “Is it alive?”  Asked Matt.
        “I don’t know.”  Answered Frank.  “It was here earlier this afternoon, so if it is dead it couldn’t have died that long ago.
        “Lets take it back to town, I bet the city museum would pay good money for this thing.”  Billy said.
        “But first we should make sure that it won’t hurt us.”  Matt said as he began to lift a large rock with every intention of bashing in the head of the gargoyle.
        Suddenly a low growling sound drew the attention of the trio.
        “What was that?”  Asked Billy in a worried voice.
        “I don’t know, but I’m making sure it didn’t come from that thing.”  Matt said as he cocked his arm to throw the stone at the gargoyle in front of him.
        Suddenly something blurred by and knocked both Matt and Frank on their butts.
        “What the heck was that?”  Billy asked suddenly very afraid.
        “It was me.”  Brooklyn said as he raised his arms and wings in an attempt to make him appear larger and more threatening than he was.
        Apparently it worked, as Billy soon left two things behind.  The first was a small puddle where he had been standing; the second was a cloud of dust as he set new records for the quarter mile dash.
        “Dddon’tt hhurt me.”  Frank stammered as he and Matt stood up again.
        “Than leave, NOW!”  Roared Brooklyn.
        With in a matter of seconds both Matt and Frank were well on the way to breaking all speed records set by their friend not more than a minute ago.
        Taking a minute to calm himself, Brooklyn picked up the dropped flashlight and shone it on the gargoyle.  As Brooklyn approached the gargoyle on the ground, he first noticed the long hair, which made him guess it was a female.  The second thing he noticed was how dirty she looked, almost as if she hadn’t bothered with personal hygiene in about a month.  The smell that came from her reinforced that theory, along with two other smells. 
       The first was the smell of cheap alcohol that seemed to come from every pore of her body, while the second smell was stronger, sharper, and slightly sweet.  Brooklyn couldn’t place it until he picked up the cigarette that was dangling from her lips.  He had seen small tightly rolled things like this before back in New York.  Shaking his head, Brooklyn crushed out the joint, returned to the still unconscious gargoyle and put her on across his shoulders.

 October 10, 1996

        “Who the hell are you?”  Asked the female gargoyle as she awoke from her drunken stupor and laid eyes on Brooklyn.
        “My name is Brooklyn.”
        The minutes slowly passed as the two sat in silence.
        “Where did you come from?  I thought I was the only gargoyle around.”  Amanda said.
        “You were, but then I showed up.  So I guess that kind of changes your assessment then doesn’t it.”  Brooklyn said.
        “Who are you?  You must be some one that I know.  Otherwise where would you have come from?”
        “I’m from New York City.”
        “New York City.  I don’t know anyone in New York.”
        Again the minutes slowly slipped by as the two sat there and waited, until Brooklyn spoke.
        “I’ve told you my name, what’s yours?”
        “Nice to meet you Amanda.”
        “Why did you come here?  And why are we in a cave?  The last thing I remember was passing out under a bridge.”
        “You did.  Fortunately, I was there to save you from being attacked, captured, or worse by some humans who had less than a friendly disposition towards gargoyles.”

        A short time later Brooklyn turned to stone as a new day dawned.  Taken by surprise by the turn of events, Amanda intended to make use of the opportunity to leave. 
        Just as soon as my head stops throbbing, She thought.
        Leaning back against the cave wall, Amanda closed her eyes and tried to take slow steady breaths.  Slowly her heart rate and breathing slowed, as did the throbbing in her head.


        Amanda awoke to sound of someone growling and the sensation of stone chips being showered on her skin.  Turning her head towards the direction of the sound, Amanda was surprised to see a gargoyle awaken from its stone slumber.
        “But, but, how did you do that?”  Amanda asked as she began to stand up.
        “Do what?  What do you… hey!”  Brooklyn said as he raced to catch Amanda as she fainted.
        Laying her down, Brooklyn found her pulse to be weak and rapid while her breathing was shallow.  In addition Amanda’s cheeks were flushed, her skin felt warm yet dry.  After a few seconds Amanda began to stir as consciousness returned to her.
        “Don’t try to move to much, you're dehydrated.”  Brooklyn said.
        “I’m fine.  Just leave me alone.”  Amanda said defensively.
        “Sure, I could do that.  But then how far do you think you will get?  Unless you happen to like crawling on your hands and knees.” 
        At that Amanda shot Brooklyn a dirty look that if translated in to words would never have made it to a Disney movie.
        Ignoring the ugly look he had just received, Brooklyn simply stood and walked to the mouth of the cave.
        “I’m going to get some water for you.  If your smart you’ll stay here and wait, if not, well I’m sure you won’t get too far.”
        Turning back around, Brooklyn leapt to the sky and flew off.

        Returning to the cave that he had spent the day in, Brooklyn sighed as he saw Amanda’s barely conscious form laying mere feet from the entrance.  Opening the small knapsack he carried with him, Brooklyn fished a bottle of water from the bag and knelt down.  Opening the bottle, Brooklyn took a quick whiff of the contents, the strong smell of chlorine telling him that the disinfectant tablets were working.
        Gently lifting Amanda’s head in to his lap, Brooklyn spoke to her.
        “Here, drink some of this, it will make you feel better.”
        After a few sips of water, Amanda slowly opened her eyes and looked blankly at Brooklyn’s face.  Not only was he in a dominant position over her, the small amount of light in the cave made his beak like face look mean and dangerous, yet Amanda felt no fear.  The fact that he was aiding her should have made her feel safe, yet she felt nothing.  The feel of his skin against hers, something Amanda hadn’t felt since May, should made her feel happy, but she didn’t. 
        Despite all the reasons that Amanda had to feel good, safe, happy, pleasure, or any one of a thousand other emotions that most people prefer, she felt none of these.  Instead, after all the months Amanda had spent feeling fear, sadness, or bitterness, she now felt the next best thing.  She was comfortably numb.


 November 17, 1996

       “Come on Broadway, why don’t you want to go to the concert with me?”  Angela asked.
        “Because I just don’t.”  Broadway said.
        “Humpf.  Fine then, be like that.”  Walking to the other side of the room, the female gargoyle stopped so that she was standing directly between Lexington and the television.
        “How about you Lex?  Would you like to go out on a date?”  Angela asked as she put a hand on her hip.
        “Um, I don’t know.”
       “Why not, its not like anyone else is going out with me tonight.”
       “Still I think Broadway sort of has dibs.”
       “No, go ahead Lex.  I won’t stand in your way.”  Broadway said.
       “Well I was looking forward to watching my new anime tonight.”  Lexington answered as he tried to look for a way to get himself out of the verbal crossfire.
        “Oh come on Lex, it’ll be fun.”  Angela teased as she let her tail slide across Lexington’s legs.
        “Ok, you guys convinced me.”  Lexington said as he stood up and began to follow Angela.

        Landing in Central Park a short time later, Angela, Lexington, Kenny, and Tammy sat in a large tree as the out door concert began.
        “Thank you for inviting us to come along with you.”  Tammy said as she sat down next to Lexington.
        “No problem.”  Lexington grinned.
        “How come Broadway didn’t come along too?”  Kenny asked.
        “He just didn’t want to.”  Angela said dryly.
        “To bad, he’s going to miss a great Tchaikovsky concert.”
        “Tchaikovsky.  You mean this is a classical concert?”  Tammy moaned.
        “Yeah, no fair not telling us what kind of concert it was.  I thought it would be a rock concert or something.”  Lexington said sounding equally disappointed.
        “Hey if you don’t like it then you two can leave and Angela and I will stay here and enjoy it.”  Kenny said.
        “Sounds good to me.  Come on Lex, let’s go see if we can catch a movie or something.”  With that Tammy took to the air.

        “What’s bothering you Lexington?”  Goliath asked the young gargoyle.
        “It’s Broadway and Angela, it just seems like they don’t get along as well as they used to.”  Lexington confessed.
        “Every relationship has difficulties.  In time they will work things out.”
        “If you say so.”  Lexington said sounding less than convinced, but swallowing his comment that Goliath was probably the last person to be giving that kind of advice.  “But both Angela and Kenny have been gone a long time.”
        “What do you mean, I thought you and Angela went to the concert with Tammy and Kenny?”
        “We did at first.  But when Tammy and I found out that it was a classical concert, we decided to leave.  Angela and Kenny stayed behind for the concert, but it should have been over hours ago.”
        “Hmmm.  I see.”


        Looking at his calendar, David Xanatos saw that it was almost December 1st.  Which meant that in another day or two he would be flooded with reports from his vast financial empire about the previous month’s earnings, and projections for the current month.  Rubbing his chin in thought, Xanatos paged his faithful assistant.
        “Owen, are we still able to track the location of Brooklyn?”  David Xanatos asked.
        “Yes sir, currently he is still in South Western Tennessee.  He has been there for the past month now, there is the possibility that our tracker has malfunctioned and is sending inaccurate data.”
        “Yes that is a possibility, but something tells me that’s not the case.  I wonder what Brooklyn could have found that is so interesting?”


 December 12, 1996

       “Amanda, do you know where we are?  Amanda?  Where are you?”  Looking around he finally spotted his companion as she was landing near a tree.
        Following her to see just what was so interesting that she would take off on her own like that, Brooklyn soon landed where Amanda had.  Looking upward, he saw that she had quickly climbed half way up the tree and was intently focused on something.  Climbing to join her and to get a look for him as to what was just so interesting, the branch they both sat on gave a low creek and sank down a fair amount.
        “Amanda.  Amanda.”  Brooklyn called her name to no avail.
        Following her gaze outward Brooklyn saw what she was so focused on, two people, a man and a boy, playing in the yard in front of a trailer home.  The man was older, fifty-five maybe sixty, a bit over weight, balding, and looking quite the bit like a hick wearing his overalls.  The boy was around ten years old, lean but active, his long sandy blonde hair gently swayed in the wind.
        “Do you know who they are?”  Brooklyn asked.
        “Well who are they?”
        “They are my family.”
        “Your family?” 
        Turning to look back at the two again, the young boy happened to turn around so that Brooklyn could see his whole face.  In the front of the hair was a distinctive cowlick, his nose had a slight upturn look to it, and in between the two were a pair of green eyes.  Brooklyn knew where he had seen these features before.
        “He’s your son isn’t he?”  Brooklyn asked.
        “Was my son, now he is just another motherless child.”
        “What do you mean motherless?  You're still alive, couldn’t you still care for him?”
        “No, it would be too difficult.”
        “How?  It's not like you turn to stone during the day…”
        “Trust me, it would not work.”  Amanda interrupted.
        “Well at least he has a father to raise him.”
        “Lucky him.”  Amanda said bitterly as she turned and leapt in to the sky.
        Brooklyn couldn’t help but to stand there awestruck for several seconds before joining her.
        “Amanda, Amanda, talk to me, what’s wrong?”  Brooklyn asked as he caught up to his companion.
        Turning to face Brooklyn, Amanda had tears streaming down her face.  “It's not fair, life is not fair.”  She sobbed.
        “No, life is not fair.  But I will be, I’m willing to listen if you’re willing to talk.”
        Reaching out with her hand to take Brooklyn’s own out stretched hand said more than any words she would have choked on at that moment.  Slowly and gradually changing the direction of their flight, the two gargoyles simply enjoyed each other’s company as they headed home for the night.

       Wrapping a wing around Amanda as they entered the small cave that they had been living in for the past few weeks, Brooklyn bit back the questions he had so Amanda could open up when she was ready.  Guiding her towards the pair of chairs they had, Brooklyn carefully set them a few feet apart, and slightly off center, so they could talk.  After a few minutes with no response from Amanda, Brooklyn became bored and decided to make some hot chocolate to make use of his nervous energy.
        Placing a cup in front of Amanda finally drew a response from her.
        “Thank you Brooklyn.”  She smiled.  “You’re so sweet and thoughtful.  That’s why I feel comfortable around you.”
        “I always try to take care of the ones I care about.”  Brooklyn said.
        “I guess I owe you an explanation for my behavior this evening.”
        “You don’t need to tell me now, it can wait until your ready.”
        “The boy we saw is my son.  The man is my father.  I haven’t seen them since I was changed almost six months ago.  I don’t even know if they know I am missing, all I know is that they are afraid of me in my current body.”
        “If all the records about you have been erased like you say, and others have said, then it is possible that their memory was erased too.”
        “Perhaps, but then why couldn’t my memory have been erased too?  Instead I have to remember all the times my father would be drunk, the times he would beat me, or molest me.  I remember all the happiness I had from my son Johnny; he was the one thing I did that I had a choice over.  Someone I could raise so that he would not be a loser.  And now, now all that is lost to me.  Now my son, my one source of pride and happiness is being raised by my father.  My father, the biggest source of pain and hate in my life.  I have the strength to kill him, and if I did then who would raise Johnny?  Some foster family?  It’s not fair.  Damn it!  It’s not fair!”  Amanda screamed as tears ran down her checks.
        His eyes wide with astonishment, Brooklyn was at a loss for words, instead all he did was wrap both an arm and a wing around Amanda as she shook with sobs.
        “Its ok Amanda, cry all you want.  I’m here, I’ll take care of you.”  Brooklyn softly spoke in to her ear.

        Yawning wide Amanda’s eyes finally focused enough to take in her surroundings.  The first thing they came across was Brooklyn, frozen in stone yet laying there looking at her.  She didn’t remember much of last night, she had stopped to look in on Johnny, and then Brooklyn had been there for her as she spilled her guts.  Vaguely, she remembered going to bed, but that was all.
        Looking at her watch Amanda saw she had a few hours until it would be night.  Good, I can make use of this time then Amanda thought.
        With the sun disappearing beneath the horizon, a new day began for Brooklyn as he awoke from his stone slumber.  But something was different from when he went to sleep; he was the only one on the pile of blankets and sheets that passed for a bed that he and Amanda shared.  Plus there was the smell of hot food in the air coming from behind him.
        “Well good morning there handsome.”  Amanda said as she placed a couple of plates on the makeshift table they had.  “Breakfast is almost ready, how are you feeling?”
        “I’m fine.  I would ask how you’re feeling, but I guess that is an obvious answer.”

       After eating, the two young gargoyles decided to go for a walk through the woods.  Because neither one spoke as they walked hand in hand, the sound of the night came through loudly.  Crickets chirping, animals burrowing, insects buzzing, deer foraging, and guns clicking as rounds were being chambered.
        A shot rang out somewhere in the forest and Amanda staggered and then fell to her knees before Brooklyn caught her.
        “Amanda, Amanda, are you ok?”  Even as Brooklyn asked he could see that she wasn’t, the wound was high in her chest and there was a lot of blood everywhere.
        “Brooklyn my sweet, always caring.”
        “Shhh, don’t speak, save your strength.”
        Shaking her head Amanda indicated that she knew the end was near.  “Its ok Brooklyn, I know I’m about to die.”
        “Don’t say that Amanda, I’ll take care of you.”
        Placing a finger on his lips to quiet him, Amanda continued “Brooklyn, do you know what I liked about you the most?  It was the fact that you accepted me as I am, even when you first meet me and I was drunk, dirty, and a pitiful sight.  No one else except Johnny has ever done that.  That is why I love you, you have shown me unconditional love.”  As she spoke her eyesight became blurry with tears.
        “I know, Amanda, I love you too.  And I always will in my heart.”
        Leaning down, Brooklyn kissed Amanda for the last time in life but not in love.

        Noisily crashing through the thicket a short time later, two hunters came out in to the open.
       “Hey bubba did you see me hit the deer?  Put the bullet right in its neck, we won’t have to chase it for long before it dies.”
        Eyes glowing with anger, Brooklyn jumped upon the hunters.  Plunging his hand in to the abdomen of one, he pulled it out in an upward motion.  The bloody trail of intestine that came out ensured that the end would come quickly.  Turning to face the other human, Brooklyn grabbed the man’s throat and squeezed it until a snapping sound was heard.  Releasing the now limp body, Brooklyn stood there for a minute trying to slow his breathing.
        What have I done?  I’ve killed humans; I’ve killed innocent people.  I’m no better than Demona.  Brooklyn thought with disgust. 

        A short time later, standing before the makeshift grave that he had dug for Amanda, Brooklyn wept for her one last time.  To bad it had to be now, in another couple of weeks it would have been Christmas, and we both would have had something special to celebrate, Brooklyn thought sadly.  Standing up and looking at the moon, he realized that there were only a couple of hours until daylight.  Not wanting to spend the day in the cave, Brooklyn decided to collect just a few things before continuing his trek westward.


 December 22, 1996

        “Hey Athena, I heard a rumor that Rick is planning something special for us for Christmas.  Do you know anything about it?”  Hannibal asked his partner as the two passed the time during their guard shift.
        “I’ve heard some rumors, but why are you asking me?”  She replied.
        “Oh come on, like Rick doesn’t tell you things.”
        “What?  Are you implying that I get special privileges him?”
        “I didn’t say that, only that other than Harper, he spends the most time with you.”
        “That’s because he thinks I’m a good conversationalist.”
        “So what do you talk about in your conversations then?”  Hannibal said with a smirk on his face.
        “About ways that we can make your life as miserable as possible.”
        “Ah ha, I see.  A likely story.”
        Athena simply gave Hannibal a universal gesture that let him know how she felt about the conversation.
        “Is that a threat or promise?”  Hannibal chuckled.
        Suddenly his attention was drawn towards something else.
        “Look up there” He said to Athena.
        “It looks like a gargoyle.”
        “Yeah I know, but no one is supposed to be coming this way tonight.  And Harper did say that this site was to be well protected while the weapons evaluation is going on.”
        “Your right, I guess we had better go and investigate then.”

        Rick stood with his arms crossed as he waited for the van to arrive with Athena, Hannibal and whomever this unknown gargoyle was that they had captured.  About an hour ago he had received a call from the weapons evaluation complex that there was some kind of disturbance.  Now he waited, and silently worried that neither Athena nor Hannibal had been hurt.  Although he looked calm, the rhythmic tapping of his tail was the only thing that betrayed this outward appearance.
         Finally the van arrived and backed up so the doors were facing him.  When they opened out came Hannibal and Athena, neither one looking much worse for the wear. Rick let out a slight sigh of relief at this sight, but between them they carried a stretcher with a gargoyle on it.
        Taking a closer look at the unmoving body in the stretcher, Rick recognized who it was, Brooklyn.
        “Take him to my quarters.”
        “But shouldn’t we take him to the aid clinic?”
        “That won’t be needed.  Once day light comes he will turn to stone and that will heal all of his wounds.”
        “How do you know that?”  Athena asked.
        “Remember I had a life before I meet you guys.”


        Awaking from his stone sleep, Brooklyn found himself in unfamiliar surroundings.  Lifting his body to a sitting position, Brooklyn realized that he was lying on a bed. 
       Now how did I get here?  He wondered, the last thing he remembered was being in a fight with a pair of gargoyles.  Hearing the sound of a doorknob being turned, Brooklyn turned his attention to the now opening door and watched in surprise as Rick walked in.
        “Good to see that you’re awake Brooklyn.”  Rick said.
        “Good to see you too.  I assume your going to tell me where we are and how I got here, or do we get to play twenty questions.”
        “Same old Brooklyn.  For your first question, you are in my room at the training complex the Roughwings stay at.  As for your second question, you were brought here last night so you could receive medical attention.  Which of coarse you didn’t need, but they didn’t know that at the time.”
        “Who is this they you keep speaking of, and who are the Roughwings”?
        “The they I keep referring to are members of the Roughwings, they are my clan.”  Rick explained.
        “Your clan?”  Brooklyn asked in surprise.  “When you left New York, you still didn’t want to admit that you were a gargoyle, and now you have a clan of your own.”
        “I guess a lot can happen in six months.”
        “You can say that again.”
        Indicating for Brooklyn to follow him, Rick said, “As long as you’re here, I’ll give you the nickel tour.”
        As they walked through the large complex that served as the training/ living are for the Roughwings, the two friends exchanged stories of the how’s and why’s that fate had brought them back together.  Yawning, Rick glanced at a clock and saw it was almost six in the morning.
        “I didn’t realize it was so late, I had better get some sleep for tomorrow.  I’ll take you to the room we set aside for you.  By the way your stuff is already there too.” 
        “Thanks Rick.  Even though I would have liked for you to stay with us in Manhattan, it looks as though you are doing pretty well on your own.  You have a clan, and a nice place to stay.”  Walking in to the room that had been set-aside for him, Brooklyn stopped, turned, and asked the question that had suddenly popped in to his head.
        “By the way, just who pays for all this stu…”  The rest of his sentence cut off as he turned to stone.
        Sighing, Rick knew that sooner or later he was going to have to tell Brooklyn the truth, but for now he had dodged the bullet.


        The next evening, the Roughwings were all gathered in a large room that had several small tables along the walls and a large round table in the center.  On all the small tables were large amounts of food, turkey, duck, roast beef, ham, potatoes that were prepared in four different ways, enough rolls to feed thirty people, twelve different kinds of fruits and another twelve different kinds of vegetables.  On the round table were seven sets of plates, silverware, and drinking glasses.
        “Seven places, I wonder who the extra guest is?”  Duke wondered out loud.
        “Probably Demona, heck she paid for this so I bet she wanted to join us.”  Machiavelli answered.
        “Come on Harper, you can tell us, who is it?”  Hannibal asked.
        “Sorry guys, but I’m in the dark about this one too.”
        Just then the door opened and in walked two gargoyles.
        “Good everyone is here.  Before we get started I would like to make an introduction.”  With that Rick indicated towards Brooklyn.  “Roughwings, this is Brooklyn, he’s from New York.  I know some of you have met all ready but just consider this a formal introduction.  Brooklyn, meet Harper, Machiavelli, Hannibal, Duke, and Athena.”

        During dinner there was much eating, drinking, conversation, and merriment from all.  Harper showed off his musical skills by playing his flute, while the rest of the clan showed their lack of singing skills as Rick lead them in a badly mangled iteration of Jingle Bells.  Machiavell was freely letting the jokes fly as Duke played with his food by juggling several rolls in the air while Hannibal read some of his poetry.  Everyone that is, except for Brooklyn.  He spent most of the night in thought, and stealing glances at Athena.
        “You seem to be spending a lot of time looking at Athena.”  Harper leaned over and whispered to Brooklyn.  “You know you might have more success if you actually talked to her.”
        “She just reminds me of someone.”
        “Well then, you must be a lucky guy then.”  Harper said with a wink.
        “Brooklyn, have you met the other gargoyles yet?”  Machiavelli asked casually.
        “No, what other gargoyles?  Just how many of you guys are there?”  Brooklyn’s interest now peaked.
        “Aries, Ivan, Genghis, and our boss Demona.  Maybe you can get a job from her like the rest of us.”
        Shooting Rick a dirty look, Brooklyn loudly slammed his glass on the table.  “What the hell are you thinking Rick?  You’re working for Demona.  How long were you planning on keeping that from me?”  Brooklyn demanded.
        “We only work for her as advisors and security.  That’s it.”  Rick said.
        “Advisors, what do you advisor her about?  Better ways to kill people.  I thought you were a good guy, just a little miss understood.  Guess I was wrong.”
        “That’s not fair Brooklyn.  Just because I work for Demona doesn’t mean I’m at her beck and call.  Other wise I would have told   her about you.”
        “Like that means anything.  Sooner or later she will find out that I’m here.  Thanks for helping me Rick, but come tomorrow night I intend to leave.  I can’t stand to be in the same building as her.”  Brooklyn said as he tossed his napkin on his plate and walked out of the room.
        “Brooklyn wait.”  Rick said as he began to stand up.
        “No wait.  He doesn’t want to talk to you Rick.  Athena, go and talk to him, and keep an eye on him.”  Harper said quickly.
        “I don’t get it.  What was that all about?”  Duke asked.
        “Demona has sworn to destroy Brooklyn and his clan.  They have a history together, little of it good.”  Rick answered.  But he sure seemed a lot more venomous this time.  I wonder what could have happened over the past few months.

        “Brooklyn are you ok?”  Athena asked as she almost jogged to match Brooklyn’s rapid stride.
        “What do you think?”  Was his cold reply.
        “I can see your hurt.  But that’s no reason to take it out on Rick, he’s just doing what he thought was best.”
        “What he thought was best?  What a joke, why the hell is he here working for Demona then?  That’s not what is best.  He’s just helping her to kill all humans in the name of gargoyles.”
        “You’re not serious are you?”
        “As a heartattack.”
        “But Rick would never do anything like that.  He wouldn’t go around killing people for no reason at all.”
        “Then why is he involved with Demaona?”
        “Because of us.”
        Now it Brooklyn’s turn to be confused.  “What do you mean by that?”
        “About three months ago Rick became our leader and faced a real desperate situation.  We were being hunted down by some elite military units and were out of supplies.  Rick decided that the best way for us to have shelter, medical supplies, and to be safe was to find someone who was rich enough they could provide those things.  Demona happened to be the first one he ran in to.  You see, he didn’t do it because of any ideals that he has or any ideals that Demona has, he simply did it for us.”
        “I didn’t realize that.”
        “Well you didn’t give him the chance to explain.”
        “Yeah your right Amanda.”  Brooklyn said as he lowered his head.
        “Who is Amanda?”
        Snapping his head up, Brooklyn stammered out an apology.  “Sorry about that.  I was thinking of somebody else.”
        “Well who was she?”  Athena asked again.
        “She was someone I cared a great deal about.”
        “I see, what did she look like?”
        “A lot like you, but she had longer hair and green eyes.”
        “Well I guess I should be flattered that you called me by her name then.”  Athena said as she laid a hand on one of Brooklyn’s arms.  “What happened between you two then?”
        “What do you mean?”
        “You said you cared a great deal about her.  Implying a past tense, unless I am mistaken.”
        “No you’re not mistaken.  I would just rather not talk about it.”
        “Ok, then shall we return to dinner?  I bet everyone else is still there.”  Athena said while offering her arm.
        “Sure, why not.  I do owe Rick an apology.”
        “There you go, that’s the sprit, I’ll even be your date for the night then.”  Where did that come from?  Athena thought, It must be the wine starting to talk.
        Halfway to their destination, Brooklyn began to hesitate.
        “What’s the matter Brooklyn?”  Athena asked.
        “I just don’t feel like being with a crowd tonight.  And I don’t think I can talk to Rick right now, I should wait a until tomorrow when I am more collected.”
        “Ok.  What would you like to do then?”
        “Well since I don’t know my way around here I will need an escort to my quarters.  Do you know where I can find one?”  Brooklyn said with a small grin.
        “I’m not sure, maybe if you ask nicely one will appear.”
        A short time later, the two of them stood in front of Brooklyn’s quarters.
        “Thank you for putting up with me tonight.”  Brooklyn thanked his escort.
        “No problem.  Now can I ask you a favor?  Can I use your bathroom, I really got to go.”  Athena almost pleaded.
        Walking out of the bathroom a few minutes later, Athena happened to pass by a small picture sitting on a table.  Picking it up she looked at it and wondered.
        “Brooklyn, is this a photo of Amanda?”
        “Yes it is.”
        “When was it taken?”
        “Not long before she…. Not long ago.”
        “Brooklyn, you’re crying.”  Athena said with surprise as she touched a teardrop that ran down his face.  “I thought you would be more like Rick, he rarely shows emotion like that.  I can see why Amanda would have fallen for you.”  As she spoke, Athena laid a hand on the side of his face.
        “It was so unfair the way she was taken from me.”  Brooklyn began to sob.  “We were just walking in the woods when she was shot by some hunters.”
        Wrapping her arms around him, Athena held Brooklyn as he cried and told his sad tale.

        “Duke, Hannibal make sure that Mach gets back to his quarters ok, he’s had a little to much to drink.”  Harper said.
        “I don’t have to much drink.  I make it.”  Machiavelli slurred.
        “Sure you can son, but what if Duke can’t make it.  Better to go in buddy teams.”
        “Any word on Athena or Brooklyn?”  Rick asked his friend after Machivalli and his escorts had left.
        “Nope, not a peep.  Do you want me to go find them?”
        “No.  Athena is a smart girl, she can handle anything that might come up.”
        “That’s what was me worried.”  Harper muttered.
        “What was that?”
        “Nothing.  I will see you in the morning then, good night.”
        “Good night.”  Rick responded before deciding to follow up on a hunch.
        Walking a nice slow and leisurely pace gave Rick time to organize his thoughts.  He was going to apologize to Brooklyn for not being honest with him, and to let him know that at least on his part there was no bad blood between them.  Finally arriving at the private quarters of his Roughwings, Rick made his way down to the end of the hallway.  Standing before Brooklyn’s temporary quarters, Rick saw that the door was open.  Sticking his head in to look around, he found his two lost gargoyles.  One of them, Brooklyn, was lying in bed and asleep.  The other, Athena, was gently pulling a blanket over Brooklyn. 
        Wow, they sure moved fast.  I’m going to have to ask them about this tomorrow.  Rick thought with amusement as he backed away and left them in peace.


The End