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Chapter 2: Changes
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by Knight Mysterio

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Eyrie Building...
Xanatos's Office...
10 A.M. ...
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Owen sat in Xanatos's chair, a luxury he rarely indulged himself, and finished up work on some files his employer had left for him. He sighed, truly happy for the first time in a while. He looked at his hand, still solid stone from when he dipped it in the Cauldron Of Life, and debated changing it back briefly, just long enough to finish his work quicker, so he could get to experimenting with his magic, taking full advantage of the loophole in Oberon's decree that Xanatos had discovered.

But no. The Puck is many things, but a cheater he is not. While in Owen's form, he would keep Owen's handicaps.

He finished up the report that he was working on and sighed. He laughed, one of the rare times he allowed himself an emotional response in his human form. Standing up, he stretched, yawning mildly, and prepared himself to change into his natural
form.

The intercom buzzed. "Mr.Burnette?"

Owen sighed, and answered. "What is it?"

The security guard at the front desk replied, "A pair of detectives, a Mr. Matthew Bluestone and Miss Elisa Maza, are here, wanting to talk to Mr. Xanatos. Should I just send them away?"

Owen frowned, confused. Why are they here? The gargoyles won't wake up for hours yet. And why would they want to see Mr. Xanatos? he thought.

Out loud, he said, "Send them up. I'll talk to them when they get here."

"As you say, sir."

Owen nodded and frowned again, deeper this time. He sat down in Xanatos's chair, and debated on all the possible reasons why Elisa and Matt would want to see Xanatos instead of their friends.

All the reasons he thought of worried him.

After a few minutes, he heard the elevator down the hall ding. There were some footsteps intermixed with nervous conversation, eventually growing louder as Elisa opened the door to the immense office, both of them stepping inside.

The two detectives stared at Owen for a moment. Matt finally gathered up his courage and said, "Is Xanatos here? We need to ask a favor from him."

Owen shook his head. "Sadly, no. Mr. Xanatos just yesterday took his family on vacation to Japan. I have been left in charge, though, so maybe I can help you?"

Elisa sighed, and collapsed in a nearby chair. Matt folded his arms. An eyebrow twitched in frustration. Owen's own eyebrow raised in curiousity.

"Hrm. I take it something bad has happened."

Matt leaned up against the door, and nodded. "Somehow, the station found out about Elisa's relationship with Goliath. Someone made a recording of Elisa being kissed by Goliath tonight, and sent it to the stationhouse, calling over the Assistant DA. They all saw the tape, and now Elisa's been fired. And judging by the expressions of everyone we saw, there's no way the Union's going to help her keep her job."

Owen's eyes widened in surprise. "Oh my."

Elisa laughed weakly. "It gets worse. I'm up on criminal charges, including terrorist-related ones, because they think I helped the clan blow up the clock tower."

Owen frowned. "What about Miss Robyn Canmore?"

Matt shook his head. "Released. Some shrink got her off, claiming she was just trying to take credit for something she didn't do."

Owen nodded. "And, why did you want to see Mr.Xanatos?"

"We figured he owed the clan and Elisa a favor or fifty to make up for what he's done, so we thought we could borrow some of his lawyers to get her off the charges, and maybe find her a new police job."

Owen frowned again. "Hrm. Well, as you know, Mr.Xanatos is on vacation, and he is the only one his lawyers will listen to. I could try and contact him, but it could take a few days."

Matt looked away. Elisa just sighed, staring up at the ceiling.

Owen looked them over, and then remembered the list of spells Mr. Xanatos hadwanted him to practice. There were two that had been double-circled, as if he wanted those to be practiced most of all.

Temporary and Permanent Physical Transformation.

Owen frowned. An idea to cheer the detectives up had occured to him, but still, it was almost as if Mr. Xanatos had anticipated he would need these spells. Did it have something to do with that odd phone call he recieved?

Owen shook his head, dismissing the thought for now. "There isn't anything I can do for your legal problems, but perhaps I can give you a night or two of fun and relaxation."

Both Matt and Elisa looked at him, confused.

Owen smirked. "If you are willing to wait, I assure you that you won't be dissappointed."

Elisa frowned, but nodded.

---------------------------------
Later that night...
---------------------------------

Elisa and Matt spent the day at the castle. Owen showed them to a bedroom with two beds of straw, a replication of what was used for peasants during that time. The two detectives woke up stiff-necked and sore, and hoping that whatever it was Owen had planned, that it was good.

Owen walked by their room, looking in with moderate curiousity.

"You're awake? Oh good. Come now, your friends are about to wake up."

The two detectives traded looks, and got up, following Owen up to the main tower, where the clan chose to rest during the day, Elisa going up to Goliath, Owen and Matt staying down with the others.

They came up just in time to see a spectacular sunset wash over the skyline of the city. The two detectives sighed and smiled, soaking in the last of the warmth as the sun set.

"Beautiful," Elisa said, smiling wistfully.

As the sun vanished over the horizon, her attention turned to the stone statue of her... her beloved, Goliath. She smiled as that thought passed through her head. It had been hard to accept at first, but she really did love him, with all her heart and soul.

Darkness fell completely, a comforting blanket over the city. Cracks started to appear on the massive form of Goliath, as his stone shell began to fall off of his body.

Elisa stepped back, smiling, as Goliath literally exploded out of his stone sleep, flexing his powerful body and shaking off the shards that clung to him.

Goliath sensed someone behind him and whirled, his eyes glowing. When he saw who it was, he laughed, going over to hug Elisa tightly.

The big gargoyle smiled, EXTREMELY glad to see her. He'd never admit it to her, wanting her not to worry, but he had been falling deeper and deeper into depression. He had been just as lonely as she was over the past few months.

He smiled down at her and said. "Elisa! This is a very pleasant surprise indeed! Did you finally get some time off?"

Elisa chuckled weakly. "I guess you could say that, yeah?"

Goliath blinked, confused. "What? What do you mean?"

Elisa proceeded to explain the events of last night, from her arrival at the station to being fired by Margot Yale.

At the end of the story Goliath was pacing around, enfuriated.

"And there is nothing you can do?" he demanded.

Elisa shook her head. "Not just yet. We thought we could call in a favor from Xanatos, but that crapped out quickly, since he's not even here."

Goliath snarled, then sighed. He hugged Elisa tightly. "I guess I was right, you do have some time off," he said, attempting a weak joke.

Elisa laughed. The sound had no humor in it. "C'mon. Owen said he had something planned that would cheer us up."

Goliath nodded and picked her up in his arms, gently leaping over the side wall to join the others. They spread out from where they were talking with Matt and Owen, and from their expressions, mainly the anger on Broadway and Angela's faces, Goliath could tell that Matt had just updated them on the situation.

"Goliath, what are we going to do? We can't let that... that IDIOT get away with firing Elisa!!" Broadway asked, his eyes glowing.

Goliath sighed, setting Elisa down. "There's very little we can do. You remember her television interview with MacBeth, she's almost as anti-Gargoyle as the Quarrymen."

"Still, father, there has to be something we can do! Maybe we can arrange a television interview, tell our side of the story! The whole city can't hate us!" Angela said, almost pleadingly.

At the mention of 'television interview,' Hudson looked interested, but said nothing.

Owen, in a rare moment of rudeness, interjected himself into the discussion. "If I may, this is an issue that can be dealt tomorrow evening. From the way the two detectives described their situation, Elisa will not be charged with anything right away. I would like to offer something to get the clan cheered up, Matt and Elisa included."

Matt nodded. "Yeah, you told us about that. What have you got up your sleeves?"

"A bird," he said, grinning widely.

Everyone stared at Owen, utterly confused. A pigeon promptly flew out Owen's arm. It fluttered around him, and exploded in a flash of light that temporarily blinded the clan.

When the light faded, Puck floated above them all, laughing wildly.

Brooklyn frowned. "Wait a minute, I thought you couldn't use your powers unless you were training or protection Alexander."

"Contract loophole. It's a bee-YOOtiful thing," he giggled, "It allows me to 'practice' whatever spells I want, so long as I teach them to Alex later."

Puck smiled and floated out over the cityscape. "I'm offering a chance for Matt and Elisa to unwind with the clan. But I cannot give this unless they accept it freely."

Elisa and Matt traded looks, and then looked to the clan. Lexington, Brooklyn, and Broadway shrugged, being completely indifferent to Puck ever since he revealed himself to be Owen.

Hudson smirked, getting an idea of what the Puck had in mind.

Goliath frowned at him, and said, "What's the catch? Offers from the Third Race usually have strings attached."

Puck chuckled. "Did you know that your accent gets thicker when you're in a bad mood? And my answer is simple: No catches, no strings. This is for your enjoyment tonight."

Angela bit her lip, nervous. "It's up to the two of you, really," she said.

Matt and Elisa frowned and looked at each other again.

Finally, Matt laughed. "Aw, hell. We could use the break."

Elisa chuckled. "Okay, Puck. We accept your offer."

Puck grinned, and cracked his knuckles. He floated out further, spreading his arms out as lightning began to wrap around his body.

"Stand still you two, because this is going to hurt," Puck said, laughing.

The lightning that had gathered around him flew forward, striking the two humans with shocking suddeness. The clan stepped away from Matt and Elisa as they screamed in agony, their bodies starting to change...

The changes Elisa went through were familiar. Her muscles swelled, tearing through her jeans and shirt, bulging out against her jacket. Her skinned shifted colors ever so slightly to a darker tan, as a pair of black, powerful wings burst through, tearing her jacket straight downthe back as they shot out of her, spreading to their fullest span, wings as dark as her hair, with lengthened to her waist. Her hands twisted, becoming four-fingered talons as her shoes became painfully tight, shredding as her feet transformed into powerful, hooked, claws. Elisa's eyes glowed bright red as her screams of pain changed, becoming a roaring battlecry as she changed internally. The last thing to emerge on her was her tail, her spine slowly lengthening as her tail appeared, ripping through the back of her jeans.

The transformation Matt underwent was a bit more dramatic. His hair lengthened and thickened as his body bulged out with muscle, becoming larger even than Golaith as the sleeves of his trenchcoat, along with most of his clothing, was reduced to tatters. His skin changed, becoming dark blue and covering itself in scales. Twin horns grew from his forhead, sweeping back over his body as his face changed, his mouth and nose extending, becoming a beak. More draconic than gargoyle in appearance, Matt roared, his eyes glowing bright white.

The transforming lightning faded, and the two new gargoyles collapsed, Goliath catching Elisa before she fell, and the Trio rushing to hold up Matt.

Puck smiled widely, admiring his handiwork.

"But it still needs something..." he said, snapping his fingers.

The tatters of Matt and Elisa's clothing changed, Elisa's becoming a midnight black loincloth and top that vaguely resembled Demona's usual outfit, Matt's becoming a sleeveless trenchcoat, green loincloth, and armored chestplate.

Elisa groaned, and looked up into Goliath's eyes. She smiled warmly, remembering what it felt like the first time she changed.

Goliath stared into Elisa's face, so beautiful even when she was human. But now, like this, to Goliath's eyes Elisa was angelic. He desperately wished that she could stay this way forever.

But he pushed that thought aside. It wouldn't be fair to ask that of her.

Elisa chuckled mildly, letting Goliath help her up off her knees. She grinned toothily, her fanged face and pointed ears giving her a mildly foxish appearance. Goliath's heart melted at the sight.

She is so beautiful... he thought.

Elisa laughed. "I take it you like what you see?"

Goliath nodded. "Immensly."

Matt, for his part, was having a harder time recovering from the transformation. He tried to stand up, but ended up having to brace himself on the parapet, not used to the new center of gravity his larger body and new appendages gave him.

Broadway chuckled, mildly amused by this despite himself. "Looks like he's having trouble adjusting to his new form."

Lexington smirked. "Seems that way."

"Maybe we should help him, maybe give him a flying lesson or two." Broadway said, turning to the smaller gargoyle and grinning.

"Of course, we'd have to get approval from the second-in-command," Lexington said, grinning right back. The two turned to Brooklyn, who had an evil grin on his face similar to their own.

Puck chuckled. "I figured all of you could use some time to relax. The rest of it can be taken care of when the spell wears off. You'll be like this for two nights and one day, changing back to normal at the second sunrise. Enjoy yourself kids, I have other matters to attend to."

And with that, Puck vanished.

Matt finally got himself balanced. He smirked, and flexed his powerful muscles, spreading his wings to their full, impressive span.

"Very nice. I like this," he said, looking himself over.

Brooklyn turned to Goliath and said, "Why don't we give the newbie some flying lessons? Angela, Bronx, and Hudson can stay and guard the castle while we go on patrol."

"Following seperate paths of course," Broadway said.

"After all, it looks like you two want to be alone," Lexington added.

Goliath and Elisa traded looks. "Go easy on him," Goliath said. Elisa surpressed a laugh as they both got up on a parapet. She looked down over the city and shuddered.

Goliath smiled half-mockingly, sensing her discomfort. Elisa grinned weakly. "Hey, gimmie a break. This is only the third time I've had to jump off a tall building."

She looked down again, down through the clouds, and gulped. "Of course, neither of the first two times were exactly this HIGH..."

Goliath grinned lovingly. "Relax, my angel. Always and forever, I will be there to catch you," he said, "Now come."

Gracefully, holding on to each other, they leaped off the parapet, spreading their wings to catch the wind, and glided off into the night.

Brooklyn watched them for a moment, his face darkening briefly with jealousy. He dismissed the thought and turned to Matt, who was testing his wings and grinning widely. He hadn't noticed yet the evil grins on the faces of the Trio, nor Hudson's indulgent smile or Angela's barely surpressed laughter.

Matt frowned as he realized he was about to have his own gliding lesson. "You guys aren't gonna pull anything on me, are you?" he asked, not turning to the others.

"Of COURSE not!" the Trio said all at once.

"Good," Matt said, and hopped up onto the wall. He tried to stand up, but made the mistake of looking down.

"Holy God..."

The Trio traded wicked looks. Angela came over to them, gripping Broadway by the shoulder, turning him around. The others noticed his stopping and turned with him.

"Promise me you guys, that you won't hurt him. He is our friend, after all,"

Broadway smiled, placing his hand over Angela's. "Relax. We're just gonna make him think we're trying to crash him." He smirked, saying, "For the most part, anyway."

Angela giggled, smiling warmly.

Brooklyn tried to not look jealous at her smiling at Broadway. He almost succeeded. Thankfully, no one noticed. He smiled, and gestured for the others to come over to Matt.

"C'mon guys, let's get going." The three young Gargoyles gathered around Matt, who had already jumped up onto the wall. Brooklyn and Broadway turned to face Angela and Hudson, and bowed gracefully.

"Dear lady, we bid thee farewell," they said as one.

Then they pushed Matt off of the wall.

To Matt's credit, he knew enough to spread his wings and catch the air, so he didn't simply plummet to the ground.

However, saying that he was somewhat out of control would be putting it mildly.

"Guys?! HELP!!" Matt cried as he swooped down towards the busy streets below.

The Trio traded high fives and leaped after him.

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Somewhere over Broadway (no, not the gargoyle)...
A few hours later...
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Elisa stared down at the city, holding hands with Goliath as they glided easily through the air, the big gargoyle letting her lead their way. They swooped, buzzing an apartment building as they rose up into the sky.

Goliath laughed at her bravado. She flew in the air like she owned the sky, as if this was how she was truly meant to be...

He sighed wistfully. For another day, he thought. He smiled warmly at Elisa. They had been gliding hand in hand for quite some time, Goliath letting her get the hang of gliding. But now....

"Elisa, you have progessed remarkably for someone who has only been gliding twice. But I was wondering, if you felt comfortable enough to go on your own..."

Elisa stared at him, her already wide smile growing, "Goliath, do you really think I can?"

Goliath laughed, "I believe so, yes. Besides, I want to see how you look flying free through the night."

Elisa blushed slightly. Goliath smiled warmly, and guided them higher into the air, keeping a tight grip on her hand. Finally, when they had flown just high enough to skim the tops of two massive towers, Goliath let go.

Elisa gasped, just barely resisting the urge to fold her wings in as she shot up high into the sky. She laughed, her lithe, powerful young body slicing the air as she flew, a literal almost angel of the night.

"Goliath this is so WONDERFUL!" she laughed, turning a somersault in mid-air and continuing on.

Goliath grinned widely. She has adjusted so quickly, it's almost like she's been gliding her whole life... "Be careful, though. Don't do too much at once."

"Yes DAD," Elisa said, laughing as she leveled out her flight. She stared down at the city in awe, overjoyed at the fact that she was flying free, without fear of falling, only the wind holding her aloft.

Goliath just smiled, watching as his angel flew through the night, claiming the skies as her own, silently wishing that this would last longer than two nights...

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Several hours later...
Back at Castle Wyvern...
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Puck smiled to himself as he flitted about the castle, amusing himself by making the images in the various paintings move.

As much of a trickster as he was, he always did like the feeling he got when he did something nice for someone. And he'd have a second chance soon, as he just got an idea on how to mobilize Xanatos's lawyers, or "Shark Battallion," as he liked to call them.

He hoped that the clan was having a good time, because he certainly was.

For the most part anyway.

There were some things still nagging at him. Something about Xanatos's phone call...

He shook it off and checked the time, calling over a clock that was being chased by a baloney sandwich he had turned into a Power Ranger.

"Hm. The clan should be heading back by now."

As if on cue, a loud crash resounded through the lower halls, followed by an enraged bellow and a mix of laughters.

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Up on the castle grounds...
Around the same time...
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Matt flapped his wings desperately, trying to get some lift as he plummeted towards the castle. But he couldn't get straightened out in time and crashed hard into a wall, sending rubble down on him as he landed. The Trio traded high fives and landed near their seemingly unconcious friend, checking to see if he was all right.

They got their answer a second later when he stood up, roaring angrily and throwing the bricks that landed on him aside. His eyes glowing bright white, he stomped towards the three of them with intent to maim.

"You said you wouldn't pull anything on me!"

Broadway chuckled. "That we did."

Lexington grinned. "We indeed promised that we wouldn't pull anything on you."

"Right away, at least," Brooklyn added, smirking.

Matt just snarled louder, still stomping towards them. Broadway and Lexington traded nervous looks, starting to back away. But Brooklyn just held up a calming hand and said, "However, if you'll remember, we did indeed keep that promise, and give you decent gliding lessons at first."

That stopped Matt in his tracks.

Brooklyn's smirk widened as Matt tried to figure out what to do next, trading a discreet high-five with Broadway.

Matt snarled angrily. He just wasn't used to having things like this happen to him. He was about to say something when Goliath and Elisa came back, hand-in-hand.

Hudson came out of inside the castle, humming quietly. He smiled when he saw the couple arrive. "Ah! Goliath! Elisa, lass! How was yuir second flight together as the same species?"

The two of them blushed. Hudson smirked. "A good night, then."

Elisa smiled warmly. "You could say that, I guess."

Hudson grinned. "Tell us about it tomorrow night, lass, if ye so wish. The sun's about up and we should get ready to sleep."

The Trio nodded and started to climb up a nearby wall towards their favorite perches. Matt sighed, staring up after them. He walked over to the wall and looked it over curiously, trying to figure out how to work this.

Matt stared up at the others. Angela, Bronx, Hudson and the Trio had already taken their favorite spots for the day. Goliath and Elisa were climbing up to the tallest tower, simply digging their talons into the wall and going up as if using a ladder.

Broadway chuckled, and started to say something, but Brooklyn shushed him. "I wanna see if he can figure it out on his own," he said.

Matt sighed, staring at the wall again. He slammed his hand into the wall experimentally, his claws digging easily into the stone.

"Hm," he said. He dug his other claw into the stone, higher than the first one this time, careful not to crush the rock in his grip. He then tried digging his feet in, slowly stepping upwards. When he didn't fall, he tried it all again, slowly moving up the wall towards the others.

Brooklyn smiled when Matt finally came up to join them. None of them noticed Puck's arrival, which was to the imp's preference. He wanted to see how things were going without getting in their way.

"Told you you'd learn tonight," the red-skinned gargoyle said, smiling warmly.

Matt just glared at him for a few moments, then chuckled. Hudson just stared at the draconic gargoyle gravely. "Ye've learned the basics, lad. But now comes the difficult part. Tomorrow we ALL go on patrol. Ye'll be facing dangers from our point of view now."

This caused nervous looks to pass between Matt and Elisa, who was listening in. Goliath smiled warmly at her, cupping her cheek in her hand.

"Don't worry, my love. No matter what happens, I will always protect you."

Elisa smiled warmly, kissing Goliath quickly.

The sun started to rise. The clan got in their various resting spots, Matt choosing a spot next to Hudson. Elisa and Goliath stood on top of their tower, smiling at one another and turning to face the new day.

One by one, the gargoyles took a frightening position as the sunlight washed over them. Their bodies stiffened, their skin and clothes turning gray and hard, becoming stone for the day.

Puck chuckled again, and turned to leave. Owen had business to take care of this day, and when the clan woke up, he planned on following them in case they needed help.

But something about Matt caught his eye. He flew up to the petrified gargoyle and looked him over. It took him a moment, but then he realized that Matt had turned into stone of a different color.

"Blue. He's turned... blue...."

It was true. Matt, instead of turning into gray stone like the others, had turned into what could be considered blue jade.

"Blue... stone. Bluestone. By Avalon, Puck. You've turned this poor boy into a living pun on his name!"

The trickster drifted back into the castle, laughing wildly. It took him a while to get control of himself.

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The next night...
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The sun faded from the sky, darkening the city. Nine gargoyle statues slowly cracked open, the creatures inside bursting out of their shells with mighty roars.

The clan traded happy looks with each other, chatting politely. Up on the tower, Goliath smiled at Elisa, brushing flakes of stoneskin off of her shoulders.

"How are you tonight, my love?" he asked.

Elisa grinned. "Better than I have been in a while. I feel great! I've NEVER slept so well!"

Goliath smirked. "Slept like a rock, eh?"

Elisa groaned, smacking him across the back of his head. Goliath laughed, but his expression turned serious enough.

"Elisa, you told me a few days before our relationship came out that you were working on a major case, an... arms deal, of some kind? Has anything else happened on that?"

Elisa frowned, trying to remember. After a moment, her eyes widened in shock. "Yeah. It's supposed to go down TONIGHT! There's a major shipment of military weapons coming in near East Harbor in Queens."

Goliath nodded, saying, "All right. Then that's where we'll go tonight." He jumped off the tower to join the rest of the clan, Elisa following close behind.

Hudson chuckled as Brooklyn whispered something into his ear, turning to Goliath as he landed. "So how are we doin' things tonight, lad? Who's goin' out and who's stayin' to guard the castle?"

Goliath shook his head. "No one is staying behind tonight, not even Bronx. Elisa has told me of a major shipment of military weapons coming into our city TONIGHT. We cannot allow them to reach the streets."

Matt nodded, "I'm with you on this, but how? If Elisa's and my informants were right, Tony Dracon's men are behind this. And they've got to be ready to deal with the clan by now."

Goliath's frown deepend, but he simply shook his head. "We will simply have to be more cautious then. And make SURE that none of the weapons reach the street."

The clan traded nervous looks amongst each other. They knew what Goliath meant. He wanted all of the weapons destroyed. But only Matt and Elisa were familiar with using guns at all. And to make things worse, it would take them a while to get to the dock, arriving at only a couple hours before sunrise...

Goliath continued speaking, splitting the clan into groups that would attack the shipment from different angles. Hudson, Lexington, Broadway, Angela and Bronx glided off to the south, while Goliath, Matt, Elisa, and Brooklyn glided over to the north.

The two police officers traded nervous looks. There was one last detail that they hadn't mentioned, one that might complicate matters greatly, but in Goliath's current state of mind it wasn't likely that he'd listen...

----------------------------------
East Harbor....
Queens...
Several hours later...
----------------------------------

Several men milled about the ship that had just pulled in. All of them wore black business suits, and all of them were looking very nervous.

BANG!

"Dammit, be careful! Some of this stuff tends to go boom if dropped!" snarled a man in a red suit, a white skunk-streak going through his light black hair. The thug who had dropped the box yipped and picked up the box, moving more slowly this time.

He ran a hand through that hair, sighing nervously. It had taken far too long for his lawyers to get him out of jail. He had had too many close calls from his cellmate, Tomas Brode, trying to kill him. And on top of that,he was still nervous about the gargoyles coming after him before he could get his business set up again. It had been sheer luck that this arms transport deal came out at the same time he was freed.

A woman standing next to him, clad all in black, her face hidden by the wide collar of her trenchcoat and the brim of her hat, snorted.

"Your men aren't exactly winning my confidence in your ability to handle this, Anthony Dracon."

Dracon sighed weakly. "Well, what do you expect? Ever since the Quarrymen came out, those damn gargs have been sighted everywhere now. Those things have it in for me, I swear it."

The woman just chuckled. "Do not fear the gargoyles, Mr.Dracon. Not tonight at least..." she said, checking the time on her wristwatch.

As if on cue, several thunderous roars were heard, followed soon after by the screams of several of Dracon's men running, some of them firing their weapons.

Dracon cursed long and loud, drawing a revolver from inside of his jacket. He turned to his client, but she had vanished completely.

"What the..."

------------------------------------------------------
Elsewhere...
About two hours before sunrise...
-----------------------------------------------------

Matt roared, and lashed out at two thugs. His talons shredded the machine guns in their hands, and sent them running for cover. Brooklyn pounced on Dracon's right hand man, Glasses, as he aimed a bazooka at Matt's back. The missile exploded harmlessly in midair. Glasses, a few seconds later, landed NOT so harmlessly in the bay.

Elisa whipped her tail, taking the legs out from underneath three thugs, sending them sprawling. She snarled at them, her eyes blazing red, and they ran. Elisa smirked, looking around for more opponents. She never noticed the blonde thug taking aim at her with an AK-47.

Goliath did, however. He ripped the weapon out the man's hands and bent it into a pretzel. The man screamed and ran.

Brooklyn finished off one the last remaining opponents, throwing him into a dumpster, and turned to Goliath. "Where the hell are the others?!"

Goliath snarled angrily, looking towards the skies. "I don't know, they should be here by now!"

"Um, guys? We have other problems," Elisa said, sounding nervous. The others turned in his direction, and saw, to their surprise, the thugs running off and leaving their weapons behind.

"I have a bad feeling about this," Goliath muttered.

"And you should, too," chuckled a woman's voice.

Before anyone could react, a woman in a black trenchcoat appeared, bursting through a pile of boxes. She picked up Goliath and threw him HARD, sending him colliding with Matt and knocking both of them far down the docks. Elisa tried to tackle the woman, but she just grabbed her by the throat and squeezed hard, choking Elisa, but not enough to kill her. Brooklyn she dispatched simply by kicking him in the head. The force of her blow knocked the young gargoyle senseless, sending him flying across the docks.

Elisa groaned weakly in the woman's grasp, staring fearfully at her. She tried to kick away, to dig her talons into the woman's arm, but she was simply too strong, too durable.

"Who the hell are you..." she gagged, struggling weakly as the woman tightened her grip around Elisa's neck.

The woman smiled. "I am the first of Thirteen, Elisa, once of the Maza family, now of the Wyvern Clan. I am Varua The Titan. And you'll thank me for this later."

She reached out with her free hand and broke Elisa's wings. The gargoyle screamed in agony as white hot pain flaired through her back.

Varua chuckled, then let go of Elisa and punched her in the chest.

Blood spouted from Elisa's mouth as she flew backwards, feeling her ribs collapse underneath the force of the blow. Her entire body went numb and she collapsed near Goliath just as he pulled himself from the wreckage of the crates he and Matt had landed in.

Elisa whimpered, turning to Goliath and holding out her hand. "Help me... please..."

"ELISA!!" he bellowed, his voice agonized. Roaring, he turned to the woman who threw him, but she had already vanished. Brooklyn and Matt were slowly picking themselves up, but he barely noticed. He was at Elisa's side, gently lifting her into his arms.

Matt groaned weakly, clutching his head as he stood up. Then he noticed Elisa's condition.

"Holy God... What happened?!"

"I... I don't know!! That woman must have done this! We... We need to get her back to the castle!" Goliath said, whimpering. Elisa moaned weakly, shivering in his grasp as he stood up slowly. He looked around desperately. "But there's no place to climb high enough for lift, and I can't risk dropping her..."

Matt's mind was racing, he had absolutely no idea what to do. Goliath was right about their situation, and to make matters worse, they had nowhere NEAR enough time to get back to the castle. They had flown too far! "Dammit, PUCK!! Get us back now!! This wasn't suppossed to happen!!!" he bellowed

A bright flash of light blinded the both of them, and the next thing they heard was Puck's voice, saying, "You're right. This wasn't. And just be glad I decided to keep an eye on you two."

When their vision cleared, Goliath and Matt found themselves back in the castle. The rest of the clan was there as well, in various states of damage. Hudson and Bronx had severe burns on their hides, and Angela was nursing a shredded wing. Lexington was knocked out completely, his hands looking like they had been crushed, and Broadway's arm was bending at a very inappropriate angle.

"You guys weren't the only one with difficulties. Some nutcase in a Quarryman battle-suit attacked them before they could get three blocks away. It was sheer luck that I got to you four when I did," Puck said as he hovered above them all. Angela and Hudson, when they saw the condition of Elisa, started towards her, but Puck sat them back down.

Goliath held out Elisa to the fae. "Please... You have to help her..."

Puck shook his head, visibly frustrated. "Dammit, Goliath, if I could do magic like that, I would have done it already. The best thing I could perscribe is stonesleep, but she'll be changing back into human when the sun comes up."

Puck landed, getting face to face with Goliath. He looked down out Elisa, his eyes glowing for a moment, as if he was looking inside her, and he shook his head.

"What's *cough* the prognosis, doc?" Elisa asked, trying to laugh.

"You won't survive the change. Your internal injuries are far too severe. It's sheer luck that you weren't killed outright."

Goliath's eyes started to glow with rage. Elisa held on tightly to Goliath, frightened for her life.

Puck paled and started to back up. "There is some thing I could do, but..."

"Do it," Goliath snapped. He looked down at Elisa's limp, barely breathing form.

"Goliath, I really should mention..."

"Whatever happens, I will take responsibility for it. DO IT!" Goliath snarled, tears starting to form in his eyes.

"You heard the man you pixie jackass! DO IT!" Matt screamed, his voice edged with fear.

"Puck... Please..." Elisa gasped.

Puck sighed. "Fine. But you better have meant what you said about taking responsibility, big guy." A glowing white aura surrounded the fae. An echo came to his voice as he cast his spell. "Because even as I speak these words, Elisa Maza will be no more. Never again to see the sun, Elisa Wyvern forever more!"

Lightning shot from Puck's fingertips, dancing around Elisa's body for a moment. The lightning and aura faded quickly enough, and the fae sighed.

"There. It's done. All we can do now is wait for the sun to rise and repair you all."

Goliath didn't notice. He Elisa close, tears streaming down his faces, praying that she'd survive and cursing himself for being careless enough to let this happen. The others gathered around, asking Matt questions about what happened and then going over to give comfort to Elisa and Goliath.

Puck sighed weakly, and went into the hallway, giving the clan some privacy. Staring out of a window, hoping that he did enough.

Two hours later, the sun started to warm his face. He was slowly drifting off to sleep, when he heard Matt's screaming from inside the lounge he had set the clan up in. He flew back inside and found, to his relief, that Elisa and the others had turned to stone for the day. The screaming was because Matt's transformation was reversing itself, limbs rearranging back to normal formation and withdrawing back into his body. When the transformation finished, Matt collapsed, exhausted.

Puck chuckled weakly, and helped him up into a chair.

"Will... Will she be all right?" Matt asked as his breath came back.

Puck nodded. "You'd be surprised at what stonesleep can heal. She'll be fine, it's just that she'll never be human again."

Matt frowned, and he slumped over in the chair, his strength slowly returning. "You can't reverse the spell?"

Puck shook his head. "Spells of this nature no one can reverse, except possibly Oberon," he said. He turned and smiled at Elisa. Matt just sighed weakly.

"She may have some trouble adjusting to her new life at first, but in four years, she'll be just fine. She'll more than likely be happier as a gargoyle than as a human."

Matt looked up at him, confused. "What happens in four years?"

Puck just smiled and said, "The Breeder's Moon."

Matt blinked. "What?"

Puck's grin turned wicked. "Breeder's Moon. Gargoyle mating season. A rather interesting time, I should say, especially with a gargoyle's 'unique' mating habits."

Matt's eyes were steadily widening. "Maybe we better talk about this..."

"Sure. I'll fill you in on some things that Goliath may have 'neglected' to mention to either of you out embarassment..."

Puck sat down in mid-air and began to speak. Neither noticed the small device in the corner of the room, as small as a flea and just as unnoticable...

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Somewhere Else...
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Three dark figures sat around a table, watching a hologram of Puck talking with the thoroughly confused Matt. The female asked, "So it's confirmed, then."

The younger man nodded. "Our agenda is a four-year one, to be completed on the Breeder's Moon. Sound about right to you, Gillian?"

The older man nodded, smirking. "Spread the word to our agents. The Illuminati's plan must be fully implimented within four years," he said. He turned to the woman and asked, "Is Varua active?"

She nodded. "Yes. She's currently with that fool, Tony Dracon."

"Good. Tell her to get ready, and to follow the instructions in the envelope she has with her. She will be the first to test them..."

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To Be Continued...
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Token Disclaimer: All characters in this story save for any originals are copyrighted to Disney and Buena Vista.  (Sadly enough.)  All ORIGINAL characters are copyrighted to me.  The following story takes place 3 months after "The Journey."  I'm disregarding the rest of the idiotic "Goliath Chronicles," as I refuse to acknowledge them as canon.  Breeder's Moon concept copyrighted to Terese Sinclair and used with permission...