2007-08-06: DF: Hand-Me-Down Futures


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Summary: Self-fulfilling prophecies are amazing things.

Dark Future Date: August 6, 2009

Hand-Me-Down Futures

Deveaux Building Rooftop

The pigeon coup still has a few origami pieces hidden within, protected from a majority of the sudden spotty weather that decided to drop rain on them, but there's threats that they may get soggy if they're too close to the wire that would have kept the pigeons inside. Not the way it's being used now. The dried blood stain where he slumped over to lay down and finish bleeding has washed away some, though it'd been visible for a while. He'd been dead before he slumped over. Two bullets may have remained behind, but the third is safely in the pocket of a young man who suddenly lands on the rooftop. Flying in the rain is actually new to him. He's never done it. Clothing soaked in multiple places, he doesn't noticing anything on the rooftop right away except— well… him. Hair short, it slicks back easily when he runs his fingers through it. At least it's a warm rain.

"The future is a funny thing, Peter Petrelli." The figure sitting on the rooftop ledge is shadowed, feminine, clothed in a dark trench coat made for a man, but one her size. She's unperturbed by the rainfall, letting the droplets soak into her blonde hair. "A flash of what could be. When you see yourself, you have to wonder… Is what you see inevitable? Or does it happen because you've seen it, and so you know where to be and when?" Kate's head tips upward to regard the sky. "A few heavy clouds and the rooftop of a building I haven't been to in years…" She looks over her shoulder now to the younger version of the man she's married to now. "And you."

It's rather creepy, to land, barely have a chance to recover from the flight, and end up having someone address you. Peter glances over surprised, tilting his head in the direction of blonde hair that he doesn't quite recognize. The voice is recognized to an extent, but it still sounds… different. Time and age does that to people, and the rain isn't helping either. "What are you— who…?" He's half worried to look around and make sure that there's no one else here to jump out of the shadows and shoot him. Coming back here after what just happened may not have been the best idea. But that voice… even if… "Mara?" he asks, putting a hand up to block some of the rain so he can see more clearly. Even then it's difficult.

The look on her face is pained, but only briefly. "Do you still call me that? How far back are you from?" She swings her legs back over the ledge, planting them firmly on the rooftop once more. She doesn't move to rise just yet. "I wasn't sure you'd come. I just… hoped." The years haven't been entirely kind to her. She's thinner now, far thinner, than she was - is - where he's from. But when she smiles at him, somethings just never change.

"At least I don't have to explain it to you," Peter muses softly, casting a glance towards the pigeon coup. All the paper cranes (or ducks mostly) are the same as the last time, which means Hiro hasn't returned to read any of them. What happened to him? He turns his eyes back to her, cautiously approaching. He knows enough— and he can't help but cast a second glance, in the direction of the fading bloodstain and the two left behind bullets. At least he had a change of clothes. No blood stained shirt, or pants— but he's definitely wearing clothes not his style. They're… drag work clothes, actually. "I— called you Katy a few times— but it was sort of— I just wanted to cheer you up…" He looks a little embarassed, having a hard time keeping his eyes on her. "I'm from a little over two years ago."

Kate drags her fingers through her damp hair and tries to recall events from that time. "So, before you and-" She presses her lips together and gives Peter a skeptical and cautious look. "How long have you been here and what do you know? This is dangerous. Knowledge of the future isn't something people are meant to have…" She probably knows that better than anyone.

"Knowing about the future doesn't make it inevitable," Peter says, looking off towards the skyline of the city. They'd had clues, but why would it make it inevitable. "We kept you from dying in your apartment— we stopped the bomb from exploding in New York— we can fix this too." And having her tell him that it's wrong… not just dangerous but outright… "I don't know enough yet, but I'm working on that. I've been here a little over a week."

Kate nods solemnly. "Tell me what you know so far. I'll fill in the gaps as best I can." She slides off the ledge and makes one step toward Peter. Suddenly, she dances off to the side as though something had burned her. She doesn't even look down to see the bullets that she's giving a generous berth to. She can feel them and she doesn't want to look.

Probably for the best. There's a lot going on where those bullets are concerned, so it's a good idea not to go into that— or the one in his pocket, either. Peter's been holding onto it as a reminder. "I know there were storms— caused by people like us— they call us Evolved now…" He seems to think that's a silly name, from the way he shakes his head a little. Giving a distinction to them just… seperated from from everyone else even more. "Not sure who caused the storms, but someone told me that Sylar aquired a wind power from a Company Agent's younger sister— so he might have caused it, or some of it. We became public knowledge— war broke out. Us versus them. And then… Nathan. The— his election, and what he— regular people are being put into camps— I know he even sent Heidi into one." There's a flinch. "And— I'm fighting against him, in ways that a lot of people don't like." There's a pause, before he adds almost reluctantly, "And I was told we're married…"

There's a look close of horror on Kate's face. He knows. She should be relieved that she doesn't have to tell him herself, but somehow… she just can't be. "Okay. So… It's August. August two-thousand-seven. In September, something's going to trigger a vision for me. I'll hit the floor, and I won't wake up. Not for months." She raises her arms to gesture to the world around her, turning a slow circle. "I'm going to see this. The ruins of New York City. And it's going to put me in a coma." She drops her arms to her side again, the fabric of the sleeves slapping against the main body of her trench coat wetly. "And when I wake up, I'm alone. And you're the only person I tell about all of this. And then… I watch it happen. All over again."

In September. Peter makes a mental note, because that's the first time anyone's been able to give him a indication of time, and he knows it may no longer be accurate anyway. Him just being here may change the timeline— how much— he doesn't know. And what'd happen if he doesn't make it back? Shaking his head, he looks towards her again and listens, while the rain pours around them, on top of them, threatening to leave him even more soaked than he'd been from the flight. "It doesn't have to happen that way anymore— it's not… written in stone. That's why I'm here— because visons and paintings, none of it was enough. Hiro helped me get here— he's done this before— seen the future— changed it. It's not… it doesn't have to happen unless we let it happen."

"Peter, I…" Last night, in her Peter's arms, after he'd taken her to bed and left the troubled corners of her mind, it hit her. "I don't want it to change." Kate shakes her hair, the uneven hunk of blonde hair on her left side falling into her face and sticking there with the rain. "If it changes…" She takes a step back, tears stinging at her eyes. Even with the moisture on her face, it isn't difficult to tell when she starts to shed those tears. "Why did you have to come?!" Her screams pierce the air, echoing into the empty sky. "You aren't supposed to be here! You aren't supposed to see any of this! You aren't supposed to know any of this!" It's already changed. Just him being here now… He knows. He knows. He's going to change it. Change it all. Change everything. She drops to the ground, wrapping her arms over her head and crouching down into herself until she is so small. "Noooo…" she wails mournfully.

There'd always been chances of people who don't want things to change, and Peter can't help but flinch a little at what she yells. The state the world is in, it's hard for him to believe someone would allow all this to happen just for one thing… But at the same time he understands completely. Moving closer when she drops down, he kneels to lay a hand on her shoulder. "Mara— Katy, listen… This world isn't— look at all the people who've suffered and died— who've… changed so much they're not anywhere near who they… I haven't met myself— I'm not even sure it's safe, but from what I've heard— that's not who I want to be… Maybe… maybe he can handle what— what he became— but…" He doesn't seem to think that he could, which is weird, since he's supposed to be the same person, technically?

Kate doesn't pull away from Peter, but she doesn't lean into his touch either. "A lot of people don't like who you are, but I love you. And- And if it changes…" She sniffles miserably. Hazel eyes peer through blonde matting, "Even if you go back and I still go into that coma, I'll come out of it and you won't need to know what I saw. You won't need anything from me." Her whole body trembles - fear and anger in equal parts. "You won't love me."

Someone's going to be hurt— there's not just her, either. Peter knows that Cass and Lachlan have a baby— what if that baby requires what happened to even be born? What if they never get to hold her, never get to name her— look into her eyes. That's something he's not sure he can tell them, because what if it never happens. This… this would be another one. There's a long sigh, his eyes lower, rain causing a curled lock to fall against his forehead, curling near his eyebrow. "I'm sorry. But I can't— let this world fall apart. I can't let all of this happen. Even if it's not all bad— the parts that are bad…" He trails off, shifting his hands to her face to push back her hair.

"What are you going to do when you go back, Peter? What are you going to tell me?" Kate doesn't tell him that in her initial vision of the world as she knows it, she had no idea they would end up together. The woman he knows will never know the extent of what she's missing. "August." She brings up the month again. "I've just left my apartment because he found me, right?" She doesn't feel the need to say who. He should know. "God… You don't even know. You've had so much given away just by being here, but you don't even… know what's been going on in front of you in your own time."

"I don't know yet— I don't even know if I can get back, honestly," Peter has to flinch as he says that, glancing away towards the pigeon cage again. He hadn't made the trip on his own, and the ticket back hasn't responded to his messages yet. He's really starting to get worried. What if Hiro got captured or killed? What if he decided to jump to another time to figure things out? What did the first message even say? He has no idea. What he does know… "I'm trying. I really am. I don't know what more I can do. I don't know if I can tell you about… this. It would hurt you too much. I'm not sure I could."

"I know you don't love me yet. I'm just that whore your brother used to sleep with who may have her heart in the right place." Not that he would ever put it that harshly, but it's not exactly an inaccurate descriptor of the woman she used to be. "I've never told my husband when I fell in love with him. I knew he didn't love me… I'm not sure he really loved me when he asked me to marry him. I know he does now, but… I got lucky. Do you want to know what made me fall in love with you?"

"I never thought of you as a whore," Peter says, giving her a look as if he's insulted she would think so poorly of him. But her relationship with his brother might have some taint on things. There's a quiet moment where he considers what she's telling him, and then he nods, sitting back on his feet while he kneels down in the rain. Right now, he needs something positive— something that he can carry with him if he can keep doing this. And maybe knowing will help… because right now so many people who are supposed to love him, dislike him. "What was it?"

Kate smiles in spite of her pain. She's trying not to reach out to him. It's almost like cheating. Sure, it's Peter, but it's not her Peter. "The first time we met, when you came to see me in the hospital. You told me things would be okay. And for a moment, I realised that if I had met you first, I wouldn't have looked twice at Nathan. I mean, it wasn't love at first sight or anything, but I felt something." Her expression grows wistful as she continues to wax nostalgic, "The clincher was… You were always bitching about how I wouldn't decorate my place. I didn't want to rebuild or let go of the past. So… You show up at my door one day, and you've got this bottle in a bag. And I'm thinkin', 'This is fab. Peter's brought me more gin.' But that wasn't it at all." She grins wider. "It's this bottle, but there's no booze. It's sand." Tears well up in her eyes again and she presses her lips together again. "It's this great… It's a bloody piece of art. It's Manhattan. It's beautiful in purples and- I still have it. Every time I move, it's the first thing I make sure goes to my new home. You gave that to me, and I loved you immediately."

"It was in one of the bottles of schnapps you'd brought me," Peter nods, remembering it as he keeps a marginal distance, pondering what to do about this situation. It means a lot to her— that bottle. And now he knows how much it meant to the one he'd given it to. The one who'd be there when he went back. "I wanted to thank you— for being there for me while I'd been in the coma. For visiting me— sitting with me…" There's a trailing off, and his eyes look down. She already knows it hadn't been a gift of love. There's something he feels he must be honest about. "I was in love with someone else. But that doesn't change that I cared about you— and that I wanted you to be able to rebuild a piece of your life that I helped take away…" Saved her, but destroyed her home at the same time. Hence the desire to get her started on redecorating.

"Don't worry about it, Peter," Kate says bitterly. "You make up for all of it when you kill the murdering bastard before he can kill us all." Jaw set, it's amazing the little mannerisms she's picked up from her husband. In some respects, it must be like looking into a mirror for him. "You can't ever tell me - her - that this future even exists. Maybe the woman I used to be will recover from you never returning her feelings." She just isn't that woman anymore. She can't even speak as though she is. And if Peter has his way, that woman will never be her. "I need you to tell me to do one thing, though, Peter." Now, she reaches out to take his hands. Her eyes are wide and desperate, still shining with tears. "You have to look at me and tell me to get cured. Tell me to have Mohinder inhibit my ability entirely. You have to tell me to do this."

With his hands taken, Peter looks at her quietly, a serious expression starting to form, but one so much softer than the man she knows. He's listening— even if he doesn't agree with her method, he's listening. Hurts to know how much he's breaking her heart, but there's just some things he can't… "I don't know what happens to you if I change things— I don't know how this works at all." Hiro might be able to explain. She might not cease to exist, but they might take another path where the love she wants is never returned as she wishes it to be. "All right," he says after a moment, taking a slow breath befor he leans in and presses his forehead briefly against hers. Their noses touch. A gesture very similar to what her own husband does, only not quite. Something far less tense in this, a softer acceptance, trying to return affection in the only way he knows how. When he pulls back, he releases the hold on her hand so he can push her bangs out of the way and kiss her forehead. "I'm sorry." For breaking her heart, for maybe never being able to give her what she wants— but maybe that one message will be enough. "I should go. You should too— it's getting late."

Kate's whole body trembles with the contact. Intimate and detached. She nods shakily as he pulls away. "Just… remember one thing. I know you don't ever see yourself loving her, but she… has the potential to become who I am now. Just like you have the potential to become the man I'm married to here. He's a magnificent bastard. He doesn't have a lot of friends, because he makes the unpopular choices that nobody else has the guts to make. Just remember… Even though he doesn't have as many friends as he could, as you do now… I stuck by him and I love him with my whole heart. I wouldn't change a thing if it meant losing him. And I don't think he'd change anything if it meant losing me. We may be different people than we were two years ago, but I can tell you that she - your Kaydee - will always be there for you. Consider a loyalty like that before you just toss her aside." On that note, Kate climbs to her feet and pulls a gun out of the right pocket of her trench coat, only to tuck it into the waistband of the back of her pants. She shrugs her coat off and holds it out the younger man. "Here. This'll actually fit you. I'll go through some of my husband's things and leave a couple changes of clothes up here for you tomorrow morning." With a soft sigh, she starts to head to the access door. "Be safe, Peter Petrelli."

"I would never just toss her aside. Not even when we don't agree on things," Peter says, looking into her eyes for a moment before he straightens. Who he is— magnificent bastard— that's the first person he's heard who didn't seem to hate him. And now he can understand at least that much. After everything he's lost, he still had someone who needed him. In a way they're similar like that— they both need to be needed. The coat is taken quietly, and he holds onto it for a moment before he slips it on. Clothes that he would wear are nice— because relying on barely fitting work clothes isn't working out to be very flattering. And the coat does fit perfectly. A little looser on him than his older self— but only because he's worked out more. "This is how you knew to find me, isn't it? You knew you would give it to me."

"I saw myself standing on this roof, in the rain, and wearing this coat. This is my husband's coat. I have one of my own. I couldn't figure out why I would wear it. Except to fulfill my own prophecy." Kate shrugs with a slightly amused smile, "I don't try to understand how the visions work." The smile fades, "But yes, I handed you the coat just before I came out of my vision. Keep it. If you don't take it back with you, throw it in the Hudson. I… I'm avoiding repeat visions."

"The way I go through clothes… it probably won't last a week," Peter says with an unfortunate glance down at the coat. He'd like to, though— maybe he'll leave it somewhere safe and come back for it when he knows he's about to leave. "Thank you. I'm— for what it's worth… I'm glad we met." He seems to mean that, too. "It's nice to know not everyone hates… the man I could become." That's been difficult on him, as she might understand, married to another him as she is. Insecurity runs deep. With a sigh, he looks into the clouds, and then starts to move towards the edge. With a glance back, he pauses, and then jumps right off the building. No splat follows, because he's climbing back up into the dark sky and flying through the rain again, coat whipping around at his feet.

Kate lingers on the rooftop, watching the visiting Peter disappear into the distance. What follows is an unleashing of her anger in the only way she knows now. She kicks and pounds the wall of the ruined shelter. For now, the pain is both cathartic and liberating. She'll have to explain the broken hand to her husband when he gets home.

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