Gargoyle Tails 4:
A Jihad By Any Other Name is Still a Crusade

by Desslock

4:15AM, September 11, 2001

       “I hope Brooklyn gets back soon,” Angela said lazily as she lounged with Broadway and Lexington.
       “Why?  Do you have something you need to tell him?”  Lexington asked.
       “Just the same thing I want to tell you.  That I am with egg and that you’re going to be an uncle.”  Angela said.
       “Your what? That’s great.  How long have you know?”  Lexington exclaimed.
       “Just a couple of weeks now.”  Angela answered.
       “Well I bet Brooklyn will be excited to hear he’s going to be an uncle, I can’t wait to see the look on his face.”  Lexington said as he shook Broadways hand in congratulations.
       “Bet it’s almost as funny as the look on your face was.”  Broadway said.

5:15AM, September 11, 2001

        Gliding through the air, Brooklyn was lost in thought about how his life was with the clan and over his latest heartbreak.  Just then Brooklyn became aware of a shadow that came across him.  Looking around for the source of the shadow, Brooklyn was greatly concerned when he saw Demona heading towards him.
        Why me?  Thought Brooklyn as he was chased through the skies over New York City.  I just go out for a little air and I end up being chased all over the city by this psycho.
        Seeing that dawn was only a matter of minutes away, Brooklyn quickly dove for the roof of a near by building.  Finding a good hiding place, Brooklyn hoped that he could hide there until nightfall again, and then he could make his escape.


 5:50AM, September 11, 2001

        Demona had given up her hunt for Brooklyn for now.  He had chosen a well concealed hiding place during the chase, not that it mattered much since he would be stuck there until nightfall.  Feeling the first rays of daylight strike her skin, Demona doubled over in pain as she transformed in to her human form.
        Standing up as though nothing had happened, Dominique simply picked up the suitcase with her human clothing that she had pre-positioned the day before.  Taking one last look around, Dominique had to admit that she always did like the World Trade Towers, not only did they provide a great view of the city, but were an excellent place for a gargoyle to take off from.  Realizing that she had a couple of hours until her first meeting, Dominique quickly put on her human clothing before going to a restroom to freshen up a bit. 


 11:00AM, September 11, 2001

       Dominique Destine considered her self-lucky, she had finished her early morning business meeting ahead of schedule and had left the World Trade Center buildings not fifteen minutes before the first jet had crashed in to it.  
        Stupid humans.  Dominique thought, only they would do something so vile to themselves.  But then again this suited her just fine.  
        After the buildings had collapsed, Dominique tried to get as close as possible to the destruction so she could revel in the lose of so many human lives.  Because the air was still think with dust and debris it had been easy for her to approach the wreckage unnoticed.  Standing not more than a block from the wreckage, Dominique wore a smile upon her face until she found the one thing she was not expecting to find.
        Looking down at her feet, a face was staring back at her.  It was made of stone, and had several large chips and cracks in it and was missing everything below the neck.  None of this prevented Dominique from recognizing the fact that she held Brooklyn’s head in her hands.
        She didn’t know that he had been on one of the Twin Towers.  The force of this revelation almost sent her to her knees.  Yes Brooklyn was part of Goliath’s clan, and was her enemy.  She knew that he hated her, but this was not something that she had been expecting, the lose of a gargoyle by the hands of humans in a terrorist attack that was aimed at humans.
        Cradling Brooklyn’s head in her arms, Dominique began to run.  She didn’t know where she was going, nor did she really care, all she wanted to do was to get away.


5:15PM, September 11, 2001

        As the gargoyles awoke, they noticed that something was different about this night.  Having lived in New York City for a number of years now they were used to the sights and sounds of aircraft flying over the city.  But for some reason there has no sound of aircraft tonight.
        In addition to that their nostrils were effect by a unique smell that none of them had every smelt before.  Something that was acidic, smoky, oily, dusty, and had an almost charred smell to it.
        Looking around, Lexington was surprised to see that Xanatos had his entire defense batteries activated and had three of his steelclan robots actively patrolling around the castle.  
        “Goliath, we need to talk.”  Xanatos said as he approached the clan.
        “What is the meaning of approaching us in your battle armor Xanatos.”  Goliath asked.
        “Goliath, today, while the clan was in hibernation, we were attacked by terrorist.  Two jumbo jets crashed in to the World Trade Center buildings destroying both of them.  Another plan was crashed in to the Pentagon.  All aircraft in the nation have been ground.  Its bad Goliath, we are practically at a state of war.  Casualty estimates are up to six thousand.”  Xanatos said somberly.
        “Oh my god.”  Hudson said.
        “Has anyone seen Brooklyn?”  Angela asked.
        “No, not since last night when he left.”  Broadway said.

 7:20PM, September 11, 2001 

        Landing on one of the castles outer walls, Demona was quickly set upon by both Goliath and Xanatos.
        “What do you want Demona?”  Xanatos asked, obviously not in a good mood.
        “We are in no mood for your trickery tonight.”  Goliath added.
        “I am not here for any sort of trickery tonight.  I am here for a different reason.”  Demona said.
        “And just what is that reason and what are you carrying in your arms?”  Xanatos asked as he noticed the covered bundle in Demona’s arms.
        “I saw the attack on the World Trade Center towers today.  I know the humans say that they expect to be over six thousand dead from the attack.”
        “Why do you concern your self with the number of human deaths?”  Goliath asked.  
        “Because I know that their reports are wrong, the number is closer to six thousand and one dead.”  As she spoke, Demona showed Brooklyn’s head.
        “NO!”  Shouted Goliath as he rushed to Demona to more closely examine the head.
        “I’m afraid its true Goliath.”  Demona said slowly.  “I found his shattered body in the ruble this morning.  Despite everything that has happened between us Goliath, I knew that you would want his body returned to you.  This was the best I could do.”
        “Thank you, the rest of the clan will appreciate that you made this effort.”  Xanatos said as he laid a hand on the shoulder of the grieving Goliath.
        Slowly rising to his feet while still cradling the head of Brooklyn, Goliath looked Demona square in the eyes.
        “We need to talk to the clan and let them know what has happened to Brooklyn.  Will you please come with me and do this Demona?”
        “Wait just a minute Goliath.  We can’t just let Demona go walking around the castle.”  Xanatos said.
        “Yes I will join you Goliath.”  Demona said, obviously not caring about what Xanatos had just said.   
        A few moments later both Goliath and Demona entered the main living area of the gargoyles.  A deafening silence fell over the room as the clan realized that Demona was with Goliath.
        “Mother, what brings you here?”  Angela asked.
        “There is something I needed to tell you.”  Demona said haltingly.
        “What do you need to tell me?”
        “It concerns Brooklyn.”
        Suddenly Angela began to feel sense of dread rise up in her.
        “Is, is Brooklyn alright?”  Angela managed to ask.
        “I’m am sorry my daughter, but I am afraid that he is dead.”  Goliath said.
        “He’s dead.”  Angela repeated softly as she slowly fell to her knees.
        “Angela!”  Broadway shouted as she sprang to her side.
        “Are you sure about that Goliath?  How do you know?”  Hudson asked.
        “Because I found he shattered body at the World Trade Center today.”  Demona said.
        “She then brought this information to me a few moments ago.”  Goliath said as a way of backing up what Demona had just said.
        “No, he can’t be dead.”  Angela sobbed.
        “Angela.”  Goliath said as he embraced his daughter.
        Approaching Demona, Lexington asked the question that had been on his mind.  “I don’t get it Demona, this isn’t your style.  Why did you bother to come here and tell us about Brooklyn?”
        Facing the small, green gargoyle, just so she wouldn’t have to watch her daughter mourn the loose of one of her clan, Demona answered.
        “Today, when I saw the towers collapse, I has happy at the lose of so many human lives.  But all that changed when I discovered Brooklyn’s shattered body.  That was one of the last things I was expecting to find, so the shock of it killed any joy I felt.  This terrorist attack had not just effected humans, but had now included us gargoyles as well.”


 8:50PM September 12, 2001

         Broadway held Angela in his arms as she continued to weep over the loose of Brooklyn from the terrorist attack.  There was little he could do to comfort her as he too was crying over the loose of his rockery brother.  Even though he had always tried to be as strong as his rookery brothers, Broadway had to admit that this was a situation that was worse than anything they had experienced since the death of the clan.
        “Angela.”  Broadway said softly.
        “Yes.”  Angela said through her sobs.
        “ I know how you feel about Brooklyn.”
        “No you don’t!”  She yelled.  “He was clan, he was close to use he was…”
        Grabbing Angela’s shoulders, Broadway spun her around to face him.  “And what makes you think he was any closer to you than I was?  We both suffered through the destruction of our clan and the betrayal of Demona.  We saw humanities hatred toward us, and the rare love a few humans had for us.  I know better than you might think about how much his loose affects us.  So don’t try to tell me how much it hurts you, because it hurts me more!”
        Surprised at Broadways statement, Angela became very quite before speaking again.
        “I was very close to Brooklyn too.”  Angela said.  “He and I shared some private times together.  We talked a lot, he confided in me about some of his fears, his concerns, and his dreams.”
        Broadway became very quite as he thought about what Angela had said.  He knew that Angela had always been more friendly towards Brooklyn than to Lexington, now he was finding out just how much so.  Broadway also considered the fact that perhaps he did not want to know the answer, that instead things should be left alone.  That now was not a time to be jealous and to soil his memories of Brooklyn.


 1:00AM September 12, 2001

         Elisa Maza walked up to her partner Matt Bluestone as he handed her a cup of coffee.  Both officers had been on duty for close to seventeen hours now, and it looked like they would stay that way for at least the next twelve.
        “Elisa, are you alright?  You look pretty pale.”  Matt asked in concern.
        “I just got done talking to Goliath.  He said that Brooklyn was killed at the towers this morning.”  Elisa said expressionlessly.
        “My god.”  Matt said as he lowered his head.
        Although neither cop wanted to admit it, suddenly the impact of the day’s events hit home and truly shook them.


 2:40AM September 12, 2001

        Demona and Goliath stood on one of the castle’s battlements and stared in the direction that the Twin Towers had once stood.
        “That was a very compassionate thing you did tonight, coming here to let us know about Brooklyn.”  Goliath said.
        “I know.  I also know that some in the clan still find it hard to believe that I am not here to cause trouble.”  Demona admitted.
        Changing subjects, Goliath asked.  “How do you feel that we are going to be grandparents?”
        “I feel torn Goliath.  I now realize the monster that I had become.  I was so wrapped up in my own hate and self pity that I would go so far as to destroy any and everyone that opposed me, even gargoyles.”
        Turning to face Goliath, Demona continued to open her soul to her former mate, and the one person she still carried about more than anyone else in the world.
        “I still disapprove of your beliefs Goliath.  I do not believe that humans and gargoyles will ever live in peace.  I also know that I was wrong to want to kill or hurt gargoyles.  After today I have changed my mind, I will never again hurt a gargoyle.”
        After several seconds of silence, Goliath asked the question that finished Demona’s statement, even though he already knew the answer.
        “And what of your hatred toward humans?  Do you still hate them so much that you will continue to seek their destruction?”
        “Yes Goliath, I will not rest until they are destroyed and gargoyles are safe.”  Demona said.
        “That’s what I thought.”  Goliath said.
        “You’re not angry about my decision?”  Demona asked looking at Goliath in mild surprise.
        Placing his hand on Demona’s shoulders, Goliath talked not down at her, but simply to her.
        “You have lived a hard life for much longer than I have and have seen things that have caused you to harden your heart.  While I still disagree with you about humans, I know that this is something that only you can answer for your self.  In the past you were willing to destroy both humans and gargoyles who opposed you, after tonight you have decided that you do not hate gargoyles who disagree with you as much as you once thought you did.”
        “What is your point Goliath?”  Demona asked beginning to become annoyed.
        “My point is this.” Goliath said in a slightly raised voiced before softening it again.  “My point is that it took a while, but you changed your opinion about gargoyles.  Perhaps given enough time you will also change you mind about humans.  Until that happens, I will be waiting for you.  Waiting for the day I can welcome my angle of the night back in to the clan.”
        Demona simply stood there and let Goliath embrace her as his words sunk in.  After several minutes Demona broke the embrace and wiped a tear from her eye. 
        “Thank you for being honest with me Goliath.  Now if you don’t mind, I would like to say goodbye to our daughter before I leave.”

        Years later, as historians and scholars wrote about the events on September 11th and they tried to be as accurate as possible with dates, names, and figures, one truth would always escape them.  In the final analysis, the number of casualties was higher than anyone could know, and age old hatreds, some a thousand years old, were laid aside for the greater good.