Disclaimer:All characters, except Kayla, Joyce, and Benjamin, are not mine.
The night was cool with the taste of late autumn and the coming of winter. I knew that snow would fall before it was December, but I didn’t mind. Being outside with my new best friend on my shoulder felt great. From my place on the parapets, I looked up into the clear, star-filled sky.
The sound of wings overhead caught my attention. Looking in the direction that the wings passed, I saw a gargoyle coming near where I was. Zazu flapped into a secure, safe corner, while I got into a battle stance, ready to fight off the intruder. The gargoyle landed a few feet away from me. I noticed that it was a female. And she was also in a fighting position.
“Who are you? What are you doing here?” I demanded.
“Jasmine? Is that you?” the female gasped.
“Who are you?”
The female stepped forward. “It’s me, Kayla”
“Kayla!” I exclaimed. “How did you find the clan?”
“I heard a rumor that you lived on top of the Eyrie Building. And they were right.”
“Yes, they were,” I turned to Zazu. “It’s okay. It’s just a friend.” The hornbill flew over and landed.
Kayla gaped at the bird, “Zazu? Wow, you’re real!”
“If gargoyles are real, then so am I,” Zazu grinned.
The two of them talked to each other. Kayla told her story of being friends with the clan and becoming a gargoyle. Zazu told Kayla about going to Agrabah, then coming here.
“Guys, I’m going to take care of Rose,” I told them.
“Who’s Rose?” asked Kayla.
“I’ll go with you.”
“Okay.” Kayla and I walked inside with Zazu right behind us.
We entered Rose’s nursery, and I went up to her crib and looked down. Rose smiled, cooed, and waved her arms.
“Hi, there, little girl,” I greeted, picking her up. I fed her, burped her, then, placed her on a blanket that was spread out on the floor. Kayla knelt down and watched as Rose crawled on the blanket.
“She’s beautiful,” she commented.
“Yes, she is,” I agreed.
“Who’s the father?”
“It looks pretty obvious.”
I smiled and watched the rose-colored gargoyle crawl around. She crawled over to the wall, dug her claws into the stone and pulled herself up. On her feet. She let go of the wall, then, promptly fell down. She pulled herself up again, but held onto the wall with one hand. Then she took her first, unsteady step. Then, another and another.
I gasped, “Rose is walking.”
“I’ll get the others,” Kayla said. “And maybe a video camera,” she added.
Five minutes later, footsteps were thumping down to the room. I looked quickly at the door and saw the whole clan in the doorway.
Brooklyn walked into the room, kneeled down next to me, and held my hand. Everyone else came in and watched Rose as she continued her walking.
“You two must be very proud,” Goliath rumbled, softly.
“We are, Goliath,” Brooklyn answered. “We are.”
“This is Kayla Johnson coming to you live from a nursery in Castle Wyvern on top of the Eyrie Building…,” Kayla reported through a microphone attached to a video camera, which was panning around the room, focusing on each of us. Broadway and Lexington made faces and waved at the camera when their turns came.
When the camera focused on Angela, she did what any camera-shy person would do. She covered the screen with her hand and said, “Turn that thing off!” Kayla ran out of the room, laughing, with Angela right behind her.
Later that night, Kayla asked me if I wanted to meet her friend, Joyce Smith. She even said Zazu could come. The two of us agreed to meet Joyce. We decided on meeting at the front door of their house at seven in the morning.
At ten minutes to six, the next morning, I glided around the city and picking a place to land where I would change and walk to Joyce‘s house. I selected an alley about two blocks from the house. I landed and watched as the sun started to rise. From there, Zazu watched as I changed to a human. I slipped on my cloak and shoes on, Zazu perched himself on my shoulder, and we set off down the sidewalk.
As I approached the house, there were two figures there. Upon closer inspection, I found them to be Kayla and, obviously her friend, Joyce.
“Hi, Kayla,” I greeted.
“Hi. Joyce, this is Jasmine. She’s also a gargoyle at night. And that’s her friend, Zazu,” Kayla introduced.
“It’s nice to meet both of you,” Joyce said. “I hope you don’t mind my asking, but do you have any of Kayla’s “new talents”. You know, huge appetite, increased strength, accelerated healing?” Joyce whispered.
“I know I have increased strength, but I don’t know about the other two,” I whispered back.
“Okay. Well, let’s get this show on the road. Where do we go for breakfast?”
We picked a local teen hangout to grab a quick breakfast, at least where Joyce and I were concerned. Kayla had a huge breakfast. Afterwards, we took a bus to Broadway(the area, not the clan member). As a joke, we saw The Lion King, live on Broadway.
After the show, we continued going to places that the gargoyles were named after. We went down Lexington Avenue, went on a boat cruise around the Hudson Bay and down the Hudson River, went to Brooklyn, back to Manhattan, and went to Central Park, where we stopped for lunch.
Standing in the line of an outdoor café, I saw a teenage boy sitting by himself. With his blond hair and blue-green eyes, he looked familiar. Then, it dawned on me. It was Benjamin, whom I met in spring of 1996.
Telling the guys where I was going and my order, I wandered over to my human friend.
“Hi, Benjamin. Long time, no see,” I greeted.
Benjamin looked at me, confused. “Do I know you?”
I brushed my hood back, so he could see my hairstyle. “Do you remember we met in an alley in uptown, you were escaping Demona.” The male’s eyes lit up with shock.
“Jasmine? Is that really you?”
“Yes, it’s me.”
“Sit down. I want to know how you became human again.”
I told him about how magic helped me to regain my human form in the daytime. I explained the spell’s entire details. I finally excused myself and left. But not before receiving Benjamin’s telephone number and address. I went back to Kayla, Joyce, and Zazu.
“So, who was that you were talking to? He’s cute” Kayla asked, nodding at Benjamin.
“It was someone I met last year. He also had a bad experience with Demona.”
“It seems like everyone I meet had a run-in with Demona,” commented Kayla.
“I know, it seems that way with me, too.
The truth was, I wanted to end this conversation. Demona and I were friendly with one another and I didn’t want to dwell on Demona’s evil deeds that she’s done in the past.
“What should we do this afternoon?” Joyce asked, thankfully changing the topic.
We planned to take a tour to the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building, and the Brooklyn Bridge.
About mid-afternoon, we were taking a leisurely stroll down the Lower East Side, when suddenly five armored people surrounded us. Kayla, Joyce, and I dropped into fighting stances.
One man whipped out a knife and ran at me, knife raised. As quick as lighting, I grabbed the wrist, the hand with the knife in it, before it could touch me. I tightened my grip on the man’s wrist, and I saw him grimace in pain. The blade clattered harmlessly to the ground. I, then, pushed him back with my shoulder. He laid on the ground, clutching his wrist.
I whipped around to face my next opponent and quickly disarmed him and probably gave him some bruised ribs and a broken wrist. I turned to Kayla and saw her holding an unconscious Joyce. All the other attackers had grabbed their comrades and left.
“Is she going to be all right?” I asked.
“I think so. It looks like a tranquilizer dart. She’ll wake up soon.”
“The question is,” interrupted Zazu. “are you two all right?”
“I’m just fine, Zazu,” I said. “No cuts or scrapes.”
“I’m fine, too,” Kayla added.
“Me, too,” a third voice said.
“Joyce! You sure you’re fine?” asked Kayla.
“Yeah, they didn’t use much sedative in the dart.”
“Well, let’s get going.” Kayla and I helped Joyce up and we went back to our stroll and kept walking and window- shopping up until we reached the 23rd precient building. Looking up at the remains of the clocktower, I remembered the explosion after the clan and I hid. It was a terrible sound. When we came out of hiding, I couldn’t believe the destruction. All the charred electronics, the burned rubble, the broken glass...
“Jasmine? You okay?”
I shook my head and focused on the tower, which was, right now, being rebuilt. I looked at Kayla.
“I’m fine, Kayla. I was thinking about last year.”
“You were in the explosion, weren’t you?”
“Yes, I was one of the members that wasn’t injured.”
“Come on. Let’s get dinner before sunset comes,” Zazu said.
We walked inside a restaurant, ordered, and brought our food to a table. Fast food was better than a formal wait on in restaurants. We could leave as soon as we finish our meal.
As soon as we walked outside, we dashed into the alley on one side of the place. Kayla and I removed our shoes, and cloak, and waited.
There was a pang and I gasped. I heard Kayla groan and I heard cloth tear. When my wings sprouted, I heard a pain-filled cry and Kayla exclaim, “Joyce! What’s wrong?”
With my change done, I turned, and ran to Joyce’s other side. I grabbed one of her hands. Somehow, it didn’t feel like her hand. I looked down. It was a light turquoise hand with claws. I saw wings sprout from her back. Looking at her face, I noticed that she didn’t have horns.
“It’s the dart!” Kayla exclaimed. “The dart’s turning her into a gargoyle! This is Demona‘s doing!”
When Joyce finished changing, she fell to her knees and taking short, ragged breaths.
“Breathe deeply, Joyce,” Kayla instructed.
“How did this happen?” Joyce managed to say.
“It was that dart you were shot with,” Zazu informed her.
Joyce groaned. “Great, now what do we do?”
“I think we better get you looked at by the castle doctor. He helped me,” Kayla decided.
“How? I don’t know how to glide.”
“First, you need to climb up to the roof by putting your claws in the brick,” Kayla instructed. I sunk my claws into the wall to demonstrate.
Joyce followed our instructions. Her glide was a little shaky, but not too bad.
We went up to the castle, told Joyce how to land properly, then landed ourselves. Joyce followed us, but landed on her face.
“Oops. I guess I need to work on landing,” Joyce grinned.
“Maybe,” Kayla said. “We might be able to reverse it.”
Kayla and I reported Joyce to Dr. Wolfe, and explained what happened. Dr. Wolfe put Joyce through some tests, while we waited anxiously.
Joyce came out of the examination room and sat down with us. Now that all the hectic moments before were gone, I could see Joyce’s features more. She had light turquoise skin, bat-like wings, and a long, graceful tail.
We waited for half an hour, and finally, Dr. Wolfe came out. We looked at him expectedly. He cleared his throat.
“Kayla, it seems like Joyce is completely a gargoyle, yet she has some slight abnormalities in her DNA,” the doctor reported.
Kayla nodded, “Thanks. That’s all we need to know.” We walked out into the castle hallway.
“What was he saying?” Joyce asked.
Kayla looked at me. Kayla had explained to the clan and me when we first met what Demona had said her in regards to her blood tests. It was exactly the same thing Dr. Wolfe had just said. We knew what happened, but how to tell Joyce?
“Well, what Dr. Wolfe means is that you’re a gargoyle at night and human in daylight,” Kayla said, bluntly.
Joyce’s skin became a shade lighter. “W-What?”
“I’m sorry Joyce. We should have just ignored those armored people,” Kayla apologized.
“Or not have walked down that street,” I added.
“We didn’t know. I need to get adjusted to this form first,” Joyce said.
“First, we tell the clan,” Kayla said. “Then you get adjusted.”
Kayla, Joyce, Zazu, and I, then, headed down the hall to find the clan and tell them what happened.
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