2010-01-10: Burdens



Date: January 10th, 2010


Peter wakes up to his mother and remembers the day before.


Petrelli Safehouse

Staten Island, New York

A long, mostly dreamless sleep seemed to do some wonders for Peter. With his phone off, and in the pocket of his pants, he's not answering, or even being notified of any calls. Hair falls into his face, and to the side, easily pushed back by his mother's attentive hand. Fully clothed under the thick comforter, he didn't even get to take his shoes off. But that didn't effect his sleep. It helped that he'd been drugged.

But sleep has to end eventually. The first sign of awakening comes in a shift of his head, pulling away as his eyes blink open. Breathing quickens and he starts to stir further.

"There you are." The hair above Peter's eye is brushed aside as his eyes open. Who knows how many times the same gesture was made while he slept. His mother is sitting on the sleeping bag with him, her back to the wall, on top of the blankets. She does not look quite as comfortable — nor as well-rested. In fact, she looks tired, even pale.

Angela smiles lightly, but her eyes are watchful, concerned, waiting for that moment when the person, upon waking, remembers where they are, what day it is, and what they've done the day before. But she was watching him long before his eyes opened. "Your friend let me in. Said she helped you sleep. She wasn't kidding. I was beginning to wonder if you'd ever wake up."

The voice helps get him to push himself up, moving away from the hand as he does. The comforter falls away from his upper body, pooling at his waist as Peter looks blinks until he can see well. How long was he asleep? What friend? Why did he need to be—

It takes a few moments before everything sets in, and the startled and surprise melts into realization. And…

His shoulders slump a little, and he begins to move to get off of the mattress. Which is about all that the bed really is right now. "You didn't have to stop by, mom."

"Sure I did. You weren't answering your phone." Mother logic; don't question it. Angela stays where she is for a moment, but it doesn't take long for her to push up from the bed herself, more slowly making her way. She doesn't even comment on how he needs a real bed. Dark eyes track on Peter. "I suppose you didn't check your messages."

"I turned it off," Peter says after a moment, moving until he can get to his feet. He looks down at himself as if surprised he's fully dressed. His clothes are crumpled. How is it possible he isn't covered in blood right now… He shakes his head and looks back at her. "I would have checked when I woke up. Sorry."

Angela spends a moment watching Peter, her expression a serious one. Knowing. When isn't it. She steps around the mattress, closer to her son. "I know where you were last night. I also happened to catch the news." Separate statements; same meaning. "It had to happen."

"I don't know that," Peter says, moving away from her to head to his table, reaching to touch the newspapers on it as if they're important. They're a few days old. "There might have been other options. I don't know that she was irredeemable…" He tried to redeem Sylar. Why couldn't he have given her a second chance too? "I— It's done."

"Sacrifice and risk go hand in hand. But you don't have to keep this burden, Peter. Iit was what had to be done, but you don't have to let it weigh you down. We've been down this road, haven't we, it can take you to a place you don't want to go." Kaito's death wasn't all that long ago, in the grand scheme of things. Angela follows, a hand splaying upon his back, his shoulder blade, as if to gain attention she already has with her voice. The touch has another purpose. Comfort. Persuasion. Understanding? Take your pick. "I could call Rene; he could take the memory from you."

"The burden is mine, mom. You can't just erase it," Peter says, shaking his head at the offer, but not pulling away from her hand. His palms lay flat against the table, meaning he's a little bent over, but not too much. "Taking the memory doesn't change that it happened, either. And whose to say I won't get it back. I— I need to deal with it. This may not be the last time I have to do something like that." Especially not with how things are going right now.

"Thought I'd ask." It's more than she would have done once upon a time. Peter isn't wrong, in her eyes, not this time. That is… "If you think you can handle it." If he can't … well, that's another story. Angela pats the young man's back in circle. "You might not believe me, but I was hoping it wouldn't come to this. Look ahead, Peter, not behind you. It's good timing — things were only getting worse out there. I barely managed to escape myself, before the New Year. I've been staying with an old friend but I don't want to bring this down on her."

In order to help people, he has to be able to handle. It's not really an option, one way or another. Peter straightens, letting his hands fall away from the table as he leans into her hands. "Things will get worse. I just hope they won't get as bad as…" As the future he saw, reversed. "There's going to need to be a lot more done. But— if you need help, I know someone who's good at getting new identities. As long as you can get some cash, I can help with that."

"All I need to do is to wait, until this is over." Angela's hand falls away as she tightens he lips into a thin, concerned line and steps back, She still stands near Peter — at his side, watching, watching. "Things can always get worse." She'd know; she's seen it. If she knows for sure what the future holds this time around, however, she has been keeping it to herself. "I just don't want you to get lost, that's all."

"I know, mom," Peter says, closing his eyes for a few moments. "I won't get lost." As long as he keeps busy, he won't get lost. And luckily he has a housemate who won't let him get lost. Or so he hopes. "Just stay safe, please."

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