2007-04-18: Chance and Coincidence

Starring:

Drake_icon.gif Angela_icon.gif

Summary: Drake stops by the Petrelli mansion in search of Claire.

Date It Happened: April 18th, 2007

Chance and Coincidence


Petrelli Mansion

Having stopped by the Bennet's without any luck, Drake decided to stop by the Petrelli's to see if maybe Claire was hanging about. He couldn't reach her on the cell, so, he thought this may as well be a good second place to sniff out. After ringing the bell, he sways back, and forth on his heels as he looks around the impressive yard, raising a brow up slightly. His backpack is slung over one shoulder, having just got out of a tutoring session at the library.

It's almost a full minute before someone answers the bell, but when the door swings slowly open it isn't Claire Bennet whose slim shape fills the frame. Instead, Drake is greeted by a much older brunette whose hair is so dark that it borders on black. Angela Petrelli arches one finely-shaped eyebrow at the youth standing on her doorstep, her lips pursing into something that might be a smile — but if it is, it isn't a very nice one. "Can we help you?"

Turning around to face the door once it opens up, Drake's smile slowly drains as he clears his throat. "Ah. Um… Hi there. I'm.. Drake Maxwell, a friend of Peter's. I was wondering if Claire was around?" He sways a bit on his feet once again, awkwardly, shyly as he lifts his chin up a bit to allow his blue eyes to settle into hers. "Her phone is turned off, so.. I was just taking a shot in the dark to see if she'd be around."

Although Angela's face — for the most part — remains a tight mask of neutrality, Drake might catch a subtle shift in her demeanor. As she breathes out, the stiffness in her neck and shoulders visibly lessens, and she takes half a step sideways, making room for him in the doorway. "Well," she murmurs, her steely gray eyes never leaving his, "I don't know what surprises me more — the fact that my Peter has friends, or that there's a handsome young man calling after my granddaughter." Her smile thins. "Please, come in."

Why does Angela come off as a Black Widow for? Drake looks a bit awkward, and out of place as he glances over his shoulder, then back to her. "So.. um… your grand daughter? OH, you.. you're Peter and Nathan's mother?" Oops, did he spit out the other brother's name? "Ah. Um.. Ok." He says, stepping in past her to take a quick look around the large house, then turns his attention back to her. "Peter has a lot of friends, actually. He's kinda like.. the coolest guy I know." He says, chuckling.

Angela is quick, but not quick enough to keep from wincing at the mention of her eldest's name. Once Drake is inside, she closes the door behind him and, with a gentle click, fastens the lock. "Then I should show you his high school yearbook," she says in a stiff voice, but rather than head for the nearest bookshelf, she leads the teen into the kitchen where a tray of snickerdoodles is cooling on the top of the stove, filling the room with a sweet and inviting aroma. "How is he doing these days, hm? Any closer to saving the world?"

Save the world? Oh dear, the mother is in on it too? Drake pauses for a moment, before squinting his eyes a bit. ".. What do you mean?" He asks, throwing out the question as innocently, and as curiously as he can. If he's walking into a trap, he's going to at least try to tip toe around it. "I haven't seen him put a red cape on, and try to save Lois Lane or anything."

"That's just as well," Angela says with a small sigh as she moves behind the counter, opens the top drawer and removes a wooden spatchula. "It's not that I don't approve," she adds, almost as an afterthought, slowly turning the spatchula between her fingers, "but it's very difficult to look good in spandex. Cookie?"

"Sure, I'll take a cookie. Um… I.. didn't catch your name, ma'am." Drake says as he plucks a snicker doodle off the plate, giving it a slight examination, before taking a nibble off the end. "But, really, Peter is great. He's one of the nicest guys I know, and easy to talk to. Kinda like a big brother, ya'know?" He shifts a bit on his feet, before saying. "So.. um… I take it Claire isn't here?" Why did Angela lock the door for? Things are starting to sink in, at least, for the moment.

"Just call me Mrs. Petrelli, dear." Angela places one atop the other and lays them on the counter. "And no, she isn't — but I never know when she'll stop by, so there's always a chance she'll decide to grace us with her presence." The lights in the mansion's kitchen are much brighter than in the hallway, and though the Petrelli matriarch's eyes are far from going bad, she can at least get a better look at Drake now that he's sitting down. She scrutinizes him in silence, boldly letting her gaze roam up and down, and then back up again. "You don't have anywhere to be, do you?"

"I have a feeling that even if I did, I wouldn't have much of a choice in the matter." Drake says with a soft breath, swallowing tightly in his throat. This is far more intimidating than meeting Noah. At least he smiled, a lot, and didn't lock the door. Then again, Claire was home at the time. Reaching up to tug on the collar of his shirt, he clears his throat. "So.. um.." He really doesn't know what to say. He's dumbfounded.

"You want a glass of milk to go with that cookie, don't you, Drake? Of course you do. Those snickerdoodles will dry your mouth right up — no wonder you're looking so nervous." Angela turns away from Drake, toward the fridge, and grasps the handle in her long pale fingers. "Tell me, did you meet Claire through Peter, or was it the other way around?" A moment later, the fridge is open, there's a half-empty gallon of milk on the counter, and Angela is rummaging through the cupboards for a clean glass.

"I met Claire at Starbucks, where I work at part time. I met Peter through.. chance, and coincidence brought me into realizing the two of them are related. Peter and I became friends after I helped him birthday shop for Claire a few weeks ago, and we had the chance to really talk, and get to know each other. Nothing too dramatic." Drake says as he clears his throat a bit. "Ah, yes.. I'd like some milk, please, ma'am." He says politely as he rubs the back of his neck in his typically nervous tick manner.

"Starbucks?" Angela lets out a little laugh, shaking her head as she pours Drake a tall glass of milk and uses a napkin to wipe some excess dribble from the rim. "You can do better than that." Despite having known the teen for only a few minutes, she sounds as certain about this as the sky is blue and water is wet. "This is New York. There's an opportunity around every corner — why waste your time catering to the low-fat, lactose-free whims of a bunch of self-important soy junkies?" She slides the glass across the counter to Drake. "How do you feel about filing?"

"Well, I am.. um.. only sixteen ma'am. I really took the job just so that I could get an early start on integrating myself into the work force, and getting some experience under my belt. It's.. only part time." Drake feels like he's on a job interview, or something. This is so, so, weird. "But, thank you for your.. confidence.." He trails the last word out, as if it was almost a question. "Filing? I.. I don't know if I have any general feeling about it. You mean like.. organizing folders, and paperwork? I could do that. I type fairly good." He pauses. Wait, why?

"My husband used to own a law firm," Angela explains as she screws the cap back on the milk and returns it to the fridge. "I'll put in a good word for you with the gentleman who's taken over — he owes this family a few favours, and while it would still only be part-time, I imagine it will look much better than 'barista' on your college application." She's smiling again, this time with sincerity. "Of course, if that doesn't interest you, I'm also in the market for a personal assistant."

"Ah, well.. I was sure that Barista would be a step up from burger flipper at Mickey D's, ma'am." Drake says with a chuckle as he wrings his hands together as they are placed on the top of the kitchen table. At the second suggestion, he looks.. curious. "A personal assistant? For.. yourself, ma'am?" Well now, that does seem interesting. "What would that.. entail?" Biting on his bottom lip for a moment, he draws the cold glass of milk over towards him, then goes about dipping his cookie into it, giving it a slight swish to soften it up, then takes a bite before it could fall, and plunk into his drink.

"Nothing that you're not capable of," is Angela's answer. "I'd like to spend some more time with my grandchildren, and if I'm running all over town dropping off and picking up my dry-cleaning… well, that makes it difficult. I could use some help around the house as well — the office hasn't been reorganized since Arthur died, and Nathan tells me that I should watch my spending."

So, errand boy. "Well…" Drake trails off a bit in thought, finding himself at a cross road. He thinks that she may not be the type to take No for an answer, or would appreciate any kind of refusal. The matriarch is imposing, indeed. "Sure. I could do that for you. I think it would be a great change of pace. I don't do much on the weekends anyways." Just keep smiling, and it will all be over with.

"Then we're agreed." Angela retrieves her purse from its place on the kitchen table and pulls out what looks like a business card but is only a blank rectangle of paper. On it, in elegant scrawl, she writes the number: 283-3898. "I imagine you'll have to talk it over with your mother," she says as she passes the paper to Drake, "but once she sees things our way, I want you to give me a call on my cell so we can make arrangements."

"Oh, I don't think my mother will mind. She really has been wanting to meet Claire, but.. she works graveyard at the hospital, so it's never really a good time to bring her by, and really introduce the two." Drake says with a smile on his face as he takes the card from her, tucking it into his pocket. "So.. what do you do now, ma'am? Are you retired, or still work?" He asks, rubbing the bridge of his nose for a moment, glancing around the house. It practically screams rich. "Were you into politics also?"

"No, but as I said — Claire's grandfather was a lawyer." As though that explains everything. "You don't get rich being a politician, dear. Not unless you decide to marry into wealth and glamour." As Angela speaks, she packs several snickerdoodles into a plastic baggie and tightly pinches her fingertips together along the Ziploc seal. "Here," she says, "for the road."

"Oh, well… yes, I suppose lawyers make a lot of money." This much money? Geez, maybe Drake needs a new career field. "Thank you, ma'am." He says politely as he takes the bag from her, placing it to the side next to his half finished glass of milk. "So..you mentioned Peter saving the world." He says, venturing out a bit.

Angela's shoulders lift into a slight shrug. "It's what he believes he's doing, I suppose. One patient at a time." She begins leading the way back out into the hall, trailing her fingertips along the glass tiles on the wall. With each step, the staccato crack of her heels echoes through the mansion. "We were all very disappointed when he told us that he wanted pursue a career in nursing, but that's my little boy — stubborn. I can't blame him, though; it must have been very hard for him, growing up in Nathan's shadow."

He's a nurse? That is something Drake didn't know. "But, helping people is definitely a selfless job. It takes a lot of guts to watch people in pain, and to do your best to help them out. I can't even watch those medical shows on TV without feeling my stomach turn. It takes a lot of smarts to do any kind of medical. Lots of math." He says, furrowing his brows as he follows after her. "Nathan is a pretty cool guy. He's real serious."

"Nathan," says Angela with a small smile, "is older. He has experience under his belt that Peter doesn't. Still, we're all idealists at one point or another — their time just happens to be now." Arriving at the front door, she turns the lock once more and then the handle. Sunlight floods into the mansion's entryway. "Try not to believe everything they tell you. The boys mean well, and their hearts are in the right place, but— Well. That's a conversation for another time."

Furrowing his brows, Drake has taken a great deal of mental notes. "Um… OK." He says, giving her a quick, winning smile, before stepping out into the sunlight to feel the warmth graze across his face. Ahh, fresh air. "Well, it was nice meeting you, Mrs. Petrelli. I'll call you in a few days regarding the job offer. Thank you for the opportunity." He turns to face her, shouldering his backpack once more, stuffing the cookies into his jacket pocket.

"You're very welcome, Drake. If you see Claire, tell her that she’s missed. It gets lonely in this big old house — she should stop by for coffee, if she has time." Angela curls her fingers around the edge of the door, idly drumming her manicured nails against the dark wood. "I still owe her a birthday present."

"Peter got her a gift card. I got her some old vinyls. She's really into the oldies, and some of that new Indie type music. Unsigned garage band types. But, I'll let her know, and see if I can pick her brain a bit subtly to see if she needs anything." Drake says, then lifts up a hand to wave, before turning and heading down the sidewalk with a bit of bounce to his gait. Whew. "Bye, take care!"

Although Angela does not return the wave, she waits until Drake has turned the corner before she shuts the front door and leans back against it, letting out a long, slow sigh of contentment. That was surprisingly easy.

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