2007-04-03: Central Park Trajectory

Starring:

Nathan_icon.gif Drake_icon.gif

Summary: Drake and Nathan meet in Central Park. They talk about being safe, being normal, and being heroes.

Date It Happened: 04/03/07

Central Park Trajectory


Central Park

It's become a routine, now. Go for a walk in the park, even if it's a massive park like Central Park, when one is feeling under pressure. Somehow, this never really occurred why he was campaigning. Go figure. But now, Nathan walks down a familiar route, with a capped cup of coffee in one hand and his cellphone in the other. He dials a number, presses the device to his ear, and sighs in irritation when it seems no one answers. Back into his pocket. Nathan stops in front of a fountain - newly turned on now that the weather is warmer - and indulges in a sip of coffee.

Sitting on the edge of the fountain is Drake, strumming away at his guitar slowly as he plinks out a few notes here, and there, looking a bit lost, sullen. His hair, instead of being spiked up, is sprawled into his face a bit in a messy, windblown manner. There's also a gym bag settled near by him from an earlier work out at the gym which followed his soccer practice. With a soft sigh, he reaches up with a hand to push his hair back, then tilts his chin upwards to stare at the sky, as if he was asking it a question or two.

It's a big city, and Nathan isn't expecting to meet anyone. So he doesn't notice Drake, not at first, though the guitar plinking gets his attention, for a moment, as if reminding him of something. Then, it's recognition, identifying the young man as Claire's Boyfriend. He has two options, now. Run away, or say hi. But perhaps he's a little sick of feeling awkward, so he speaks up, just loud enough to get Drake's attention. "So, you play?" he says, with a nod to the guitar.

Tilting his head up slightly at the voice, Drake turns his attention towards Nathan, nodding his head as a smile touches the end of his lips. "Yeah, I do. Been playing for a few years now. Guitar and piano." He says, motioning for the once politician to join him. "You know, my mother voted for you." He says with a look of amusement on his face as he leans back a bit, planting a hand behind him. "She said you were the best candidate at the time, and was surprised of your land slide."

At the offer, Nathan moves to sit down next to the teenager, coffee cup clasped in his hands between his knees. "Well I think that one caught everyone by surprise," he says, with a half-smile. "A victory like that…" He shrugs once. "Well it didn't last long. Tell your mother thanks, though."

Nodding his head, Drake plays a few more notes along the guitar, before saying, "So.. you're Claire's biological father, huh?" He asks, drifting his eyes up towards him, offering a grin. "Now I'm not sure who's butt I should be kissing. Yours, or Mr. Bennet's. Though from what Claire has told me 'bout him, it probably will be his." His fingers drum against the wood of the guitar for a moment, creating a light thumpity, before going back into the song.

Nathan isn't sure whether to be relieved that Drake knows the truth, or even more awkward. Somewhere in between, perhaps if the slightly stilted chuckle is anything to go by. "Claire would be right. If you're gonna brown-nose someone, it'll want to be Mr. Bennet. But I guess a good word from me can't hurt." Or be at all effective. "How long you been dating Claire?"

"About.." Drake pauses, trailing off for a moment. "I'd say… two.. maybe almost three months… we met at my work. I'm at Starbucks part time. She kinda came in and I teased her about her coffee choice, and we got into conversation. It turned into a walk and a hot dog, then, I guess we just started seeing each other along the way." He says with a smile on his face, genuine. "She's a really great girl, you know that, right?"

The story is so desperately cute and normal that Nathan seems almost disbelieving, watching Drake carefully as the brief story is wrapped up. Everyone else seems to meet in such direly strange circumstances, after all. Looking thoughtful, he goes to drain some more coffee when Drake poses that question. "She's… yeah, I know she is. I'm sure you know that better than me."

Drake shrugs his shoulders upwards a bit with a smile. "I don't know 'bout that. It seems that everyday I hang out with her, I learn something new. Though.. lately.." He trails off a bit before working his fingers a bit together. "Lately I'm starting to get really worried." He admits, before glancing upwards to the sky once more, as if searching the clouds for an answer, a reply, a sign. Anything. "Aren't you?"

Now, Nathan looks at Drake curiously, if guardedly. He evades this last question, looking away from the teen to follow that gaze up to the sky, perhaps trying to spot what's being searched for. "Worried, huh? What's on your mind?" he asks, as if testing the waters, here.

"Sylar." Drake says the name as if it was hard to work past his lips. His teeth grit once more, before he pushes himself up to his feet, smoothing his shirt down. With a shake of his head, he glances to Nathan for a moment, before allowing his blue eyes to flick about the park, watching the population frequent, and move about.

/Oh/. Nathan also can't help but glance around. Such a behind-closed-doors subject seems almost strange to talk about in the middle of Central Park, but what can you do. "I think that worry is on everyone's minds," he says, quietly, getting to his feet as well. "Just know there are people dealing with it as best they can."

"He has his powers back, and he…. he called Claire on her phone the other day. She wasn't doing so good afterwards." Drake murmurs quietly to Nathan as he shoves his hands into his pockets. "Hiro says that .. he and I may be the only two that can stop him. I just.. I don't know.. Peter he's.. he's so strong. But.." He stammers out, before squeezing his hands tight for a moment. Looks like he really needs to let things off his chest.

If it's possible to look sympathetic as well as cautious and guarded, Nathan manages it. "So you, too, know Hiro." Surprise. "Why—" Nathan glances around again, paranoia upping as more if revealed into this conversation. "Why would you and Hiro be the only ones?" The look on his face communicates one question: who /are/ you exactly?

Glancing back from the sky, Drake looks back to Nathan, and says, "Cuz, we both have nothing but time on our side. I suppose." He says, leaving it at that as he gives himself a bit of a hug tightly, shivering from a cold breeze that tickles the back of his neck. "I don't know. I just need to talk to him again, and work out some things. I.. I shouldn't even be rambling to you about this." He pauses. ".. Sorry."

"No, don't be sorry," Nathan says, and he almost smiles, now, in vague amusement. "Only so many people we can talk about this stuff with, right?" He pauses, considering something. "We all want the same thing, I guess. Just make sure you don't get yourself in too deep, we can't all be heroes, no matter what Nakamura says." A restless shrug. "You should— Claire knows how to contact me, if you want." God, what is this, Mimic Peter Day? Nathan looks a little uncomfortable even at this vague offer, but makes it he does.

"Yeah.. I hear you. I just.. I don't got any guys to talk to about this, you know? My best friend is a girl, and there is Claire, but.. she doesn't want to talk about this stuff. She wants to be normal and detached. I'm.. fine with that, really. I mean, it's cool to be normal, but with all of this hanging over my head.. with.. tornados, and a virus, and Sylar.. and the fact this girl who I'm falling head over heels for may be in danger. I just.. I feel like there is this weight, crushing me, and sometimes it's hard to really breathe, you know what I mean?" He says, turning back towards Nathan. "I.. I just.. I don't know what to do. I feel useless."

"Hate to break it to you, but feeling useless is sort of the norm, here," Nathan says, mildly. He looks a little hopeless, as if he doesn't know what to tell the kid. "There's really not much we can do at this stage. How do you stop a tornado? Claire wants to live a normal life, and maybe you should try thinking about following suit, as much as you can get away with."

"I'm trying. It's just.. that phone call has thrown me for a loop. He /called/ her. I mean.. what's next? He ends up becoming the janitor at our school, leering at us through the window, making snipping motions with his fingers? I haven't even met the guy and I know he's the boogie man. I'm scared shitless, but.. I mean.. I can't just let that on, you know? I can't tell her that, or well, let my friends, or even my mom know what's going on." Drake looks completely frustrated as he gives his fingers a flex. "I just don't know why it's so hard to find this guy and put him down. I mean.. what about.. " He pauses, sighing. "This just has been a crazy year. I feel like it's all happening too fast, yet at the same time, not getting anywhere."

"Like there's only so much time to go and it still keeps going? Yeah, I think I get that," Nathan says, tossing his now emptied coffee cup into a nearby bin, and sliding his hands into the pockets of his jacket. "The guy's evasive, he… I don't even know what he can do, either, if that's at all reassuring." Probably not, Petrelli. Try again. "Listen, I can't encourage you to find someone and talk about what you're dealing with because we have to be careful in who we talk to. Guess all I can say is you should stay off the map as much as possible so Sylar doesn't find out about yet another way to get to Claire, and if it's too much… let me know. Or Peter, seems you know him."

"Yeah, I know Peter. I tried to help break him out with a group of idiots who had no clue what they were doing." Drake says with a laugh. "I got to talk to him a few times. Your brother is -awesome.-" A bit of the fanboy leaks out for a moment. "It's just.. it's crazy, isn't it? How all of us.. we're all connected in some way. It's like we've been put on some sort of trajectory in life to bump into each other, even if for a moment." He stubs his toe into the ground a bit. "Do you think that Claire and I should.. I dunno.. go on a break or something? Spend some time apart? That way.. you know, Sylar can't target me to get to her?"

With a flicker of a smile, when Drake calls Peter awesome, Nathan glancing away to again scout out the immediate vicinity. Then… wait, what? Nathan squints at Drake. No, not at the meeting on the roof… but. Yes. In the other group. A hand comes up to pinch the bridge of his nose, but he doesn't bring it up. Would rather not /ever/ bring that up. "Yeah, he's something," he agrees absently, before focusing on this next point. Oh boy. "I don't… know about a break, exactly. I don't think she should be alone. But I think that you both need to be careful about where you go and when."

"I really don't think that she should be out in the open as it is. Until I work things out with Hiro, and try to see what he's thinking, I don't know if I'd be much of a help to Claire if it all hit the fan. I mean.. I'm.. I'm good at what I do, I just don't think I'd be -that- good to stop someone of his caliber. I think at this point, it'd be best if Claire.. was.. well.. with someone else, like Peter, or you or.. I don't know, the Marine Corp. I just feel that her being out in the open is the worst thing. He can take her at anytime practically. And.. if it's true, if he gets her, then he'll become invincible." Drake says with a set of his eyes, narrowed in thought as he lets out a breath. "I'd be willing to give up my dating life in the public eye with her if it guaranteed her protection. I'm hardly the kind of guy that'd selfishly throw a fit about it. I mean, we're.. kids. Dating isn't that big of a deal. Not when it comes to do this."

"I think what you need to /not/ do is think you can play hero on your own," Nathan says, almost sternly. He's no amazing father, but sometimes he can't help a paternal streak now and again. And those last few comments seem to gain Nathan's approval, in a strange way. People speaking in practicalities is so refreshing. "Claire's— Claire's dad, I think he has more than a few tricks up his sleeve in keeping Claire safe. But if she were at my estate, Peter would be there to protect her, and he's the only person I could say able to take down this guy." This sounds like Nathan is admitting something he'd rather not. He frowns a little deeper. "So you're welcome to try and talk her into it. Either Sylar will get what he wants, soon, or he'll be taken care of. I think until then, Claire's safety has to take precedence over your dating."

Drake nods his head. "Alright. I'll talk to her then. Knowing her, she's gonna throw a fit about it though. She doesn't seem to be the sort that lies to be .. caged. I guess you can say." He lets out a soft sigh, furrowing his brows. As far as the hero remark goes, he doesn't say anything on the topic. He is sure Nathan would flip if he found out he actually was a costumed vigilante playing Bat-Man at night. Everyone has their secrets, right? He'll just stick it on a postcard and mail it to a website if he needs to let that one out. ".. So.. I know that.. you're like us, but.. what can you do?" He asks curiously.

"No, she doesn't," Nathan agrees. He doesn't deny she'll throw a fit - hence why he's sending the boyfriend to do it! Ha ha! This small victory doesn't get it in the way of the derailing Drake's question causes, eyebrows rising in surprise, then he shifts a little where he stands in restless annoyance. People just know too much, sometimes. But then, it was probably obvious. "Well, why don't you go ahead and tell me yours first."

Growing quiet for a moment, Drake cracks a grin slightly as he raises a brow. "I really don't know the scientific name for it, but, I control, and manipulate time, or at least the flow of it." He says with a tilt of his head, taking a step towards him, before he blurs out of sight, where his voice creeps out from behind the politician. "I can speed it up, and slow it down. A few seconds can be an hour for me, or vice versa. I've even been able to dodge rain drops."

Turning towards the voice, Nathan looks just a little alarmed, raising a hand. "Okay, good. Great. That's something. Let's keep the practical demonstrations for another less outside time, okay?" he says, with an ever so wary smile.

"You know, in the time it took for me to do that, I could have got us both hot dogs." Drake says with an amused grin on his face as he heads back over to the fountain to pick up his guitar. "I should get going, sir. I have practice at the church. We're going over a few new songs, and I sing at the choir there." A church boy also? "Anyways.. um, thanks for letting me talk things out. I feel a bit better, easier to breathe, you know?"

"That's good," Nathan says. "Breathing is… it's an important thing to do." He hesitates, before shrugging once, kind of looking at something else as he continues, voice pitching down a little quieter. "Flying. That's. What I can do." Claire thought it was cool, didn't she?

"Yeah?" Drake says as he turns to Nathan. "I would trade you in a heartbeat. That's the coolest power, ever. Next to of course Claire's. I'm just pretending to be Neo, but you get to actually.. touch the clouds." He smiles even brighter. "Get even closer to God, I suppose." With that, he shoulders his guitar and plucks up his bag. "See you later, sir." He says, then starts off once more, letting out a soft yawn, but at least looking a bit perkier in step.

"Bye, Drake," Nathan says to the teenager's back, his voice touched with amusement. Closer to God. A nice idea. He glances up at said clouds, and after just a moment, he shrugs, and turns to head in the opposite direction.

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