2007-11-25: Her Nightmare

Warning: contains Heroes Season 3 Material

Note: all italicized parts of this scene are excerpts from Claire's nightmare (aside from when she remembers Peter's words) — the rest is actual occurances IC.


Claire_icon.gif Sylar_icon.gif

Summary: Her nightmares plaguing her, Claire finally decides to take matters into her own hands.

Date It Happened: November 25th, 2007

Her Nightmare


Things blur together sometimes between the world of man and that of dreams. Intense fantasies give birth to longing and fuel the imagination. When dreams and fantasies are penetrated and ripped asunder by the fierce and brutal darkness of nightmares, everything changes. Secret places are fed, watered and nurtured by hate and fear.

Claire Bennet walks on.

Her legs are clad in tight black pants and a black leather coat is pulled over her torso, blending with the growing shadows that draw strength from the failing sunlight. Only the red turtleneck sweater she wears gives any color at all to her ensemble. Her hair is pulled back in an austere ponytail. Over her shoulder, there is a black messenger bag. Without hesitation or any outward sign of fear, the Bennet girl with her thick smudges of black eyeliner and dark grey shadow marches onward into the rundown Bronx ghetto, marching as a soldier to war. In her hands, there is a manila folder, stolen from her father's office. The neat, computer-generated label on the tab is labeled plainly in bold letters:


A bare apartment containing nothing but a used, overstuffed chair, a bed in the room just off of the hallway, and a killer.

The killer sits, waiting patiently. He isn't waiting for Claire Bennet, no, but rather waiting for the answers that seem to never come. Why is he this way?

Was it those who pushed him, such as his overbearing mother, who always drove her son to be special? To be something more than he was? She got what she wanted. A son who was "special." Son. She wasn't even his own flesh and blood. Now, however, he has found that flesh and blood. Found someone who knows what he was, knows what he can be, knows what he /wants/ to be. No longer a monster. Someone with purpose.

Yet… it's still there. Still fighting to consume him whole. To completely take him over, and turn him into the horrendous, horrifying monster he could be, yet he struggles with not to be. The hunger.

Unaware that such fundamental changes are happening, Claire stalks her prey. No longer will she play the damsel of this tale. Her parents are talking of moving. Lyle would have to leave all of his friends, barely earned. All of it, because she can't seem to stop this cycle. And now, now somehow this monster's even found a way to begin taking over her dreams.

There's no peaceful place left for her.

With the trained grace of a body that knows how to do what it's told, Claire silently climbs the stairs of a rundown apartment building. Into her bag, the file goes. Out comes the Company issued tazer, also stolen from her father's house stash. In her pocket, there's a brand new iPhone. She doesn't have to kill him right away. She just has to knock him out first. Then she can take her time in figuring out how to take out the monster permanently. Then she can call her father and get the accolades for finally ending this never-ending nightmare. This ouroborous who writhes and threatens to consume her entirely.

Claire looks down the stairs already climbed, heaves a sigh, and then continues walking.

The killer stalks his prey, a sociopathic murderer stealing through the night. She doesn't know he's coming— she never does. He likes it that way. The surprise of showing up at her door unannounced, the fear that immediately sets in.. he thrives off of it. It feeds his hunger. Tonight, his hunger will be fed.

The murderer once known as Gabriel Gray shifts in his chair ever so slightly— his eyes are aimed at the window, directed towards the failing sunlight outside. So many thoughts run through his head, struggling against the hunger— but the hunger is what drives him. It's what makes him what he is. He wants to fight it, but taking other's abilities all for himself… is it something he can stop? Is it something he wants to stop? It was like this before, when he first found out he could do what he did. His ability to see what made the others tick, to understand how their own ability worked… and to be able to take it for himself. What made him this way? She didn't help. His mother didn't help either. But isn't it his evolutionary imperative? Isn't it what he wanted? The watchmaker's son became a watchmaker— and he had always wished that he would be special, that someone would come and say his family wasn't his real family. His mother may have drove him to it, but deep down, it was a desire of his own. Now that he's come closer to obtaining that— knowing now that his family was in fact not his own flesh and blood— why fight it?

She doesn't know he's coming, but yet she does at the same time. She always knows he's coming. Because he is always coming. And now she waits. Waiting for the inevitable strike. The mouse paralyzed by fear in the gaze of the cobra. In a tiny circle of light on concrete and air, surrounded by dancing shadow, Claire Bennet waits. She waits for her moment.

She pauses on the landing that gives her the glimpse of Sylar's door, Claire's breathing speeding up by reflex. He'll be here. He'll be just beyond that door. And then she'll do this one thing. This one task that will save everyone she loves. Lyle won't lose his friends. Sandra and Noah won't have to leave another home behind. Peter will never have to do this himself, and he will remain forever her stalwart white knight, pure and chivalrous. All she has to do is this one tiny thing. This one little thing. She will be his hero tonight. She will do what he cannot. Her hand instinctively clenches around the tazer, and then she keeps walking down the hall, one slow step after another.

Where he wasn't before, he is now. She may be aware of the change— the darkening of the light, the whisper of death, the cold, chilling touch down the nape of her neck as Sylar places his hands on her shoulders, appearing from behind her as if he were there the entire time. A small chuckle escapes his lips, the sound of a hissing snake heard somewhere underneath, more a feeling than an actual sound— a killer ready to strike, his voice a whisper against her ear. "Hello, Claire."

The battle between remorse and evil fights on in Sylar's mind, his thoughts bouncing back and forth across an already confused mind. He actually told Peter to kill him. His brother. His own flesh and blood. Peter can't know about their connection. There's no way he could know. Yet if he does— but does it really matter? Peter Petrelli is one man, one piece in the jigsaw of a puzzle Sylar calls his life. Yet, if the killer is really honest with himself… he somewhat enjoys the hunger. The thrill of the hunt, the satisfaction of taking on an ability all for himself. There's really nothing quite like—

A sound. In the hall. With nothing but his thoughts, the apartment is as quiet as can be, save for the ambient sounds coming from outside, but even they are muffled by the closed window. His head snaps to the left, superhuman hearing picking up the sounds of steps in the hallway. He waits, eyes focused on the door, to see where they end.

Her body twists, revealing a knife in her hands. She moves to plunge the knife into Sylar's chest. To end this. But somewhere in that fateful arc, the butcher's blade glimmers out of existence as though it was never there. Her balled up fist, small and impotent, is the only thing that lands on the solid wall of Sylar's left breast.

Down the hall she continues to sneak, until at long last, Claire is at the man's door. She sets her hand upon the knob about to try it, but then …then she stops. Her eyes squeeze tightly shut, and she bites her lower lip so hard it begins to draw blood. Why is she stopping? She's right here. She would have the element of surprise! This is what she wants.

But then Peter's voice breaks into her thoughts. You're not a killer. You're not a killer, he said, and you shouldn't have to be one.

Claire's hand draws back from the doorknob abruptly, rattling it just the tiniest whisper of a bit, as though it burned her and eyes wide. That hand hovers for a moment at shoulder height. This isn't her. This isn't who she wants to be. She takes a step backwards. Then another. Before she knows it, the tazer has slipped from her slack hand. The noise startles her and is like a gun of a race, triggering a buried prey instinct as she turns and starts racing away at top speed, so horrified that she can't even think to be quiet about it anymore. Her stomach is churning, acid burning against her empty stomach. She shouldn't have come.

This was a mistake.

The fist strikes his chest, and while most people might feel pity at her situation, Sylar feels nothing of it. His smirk grows, wider and wider, his eyes boring into the young woman's with malicious intent, the hunger plainly visible behind them. He's here to take her power. He's here to finally claim what is rightfully his, what he has tried to claim for so long— and there's nothing she can do to stop it. He doesn't even raise his hand as it starts, using the power of his mind to slice into her skull, the cut beginning as blood spills down over her forehead.

The footsteps stop at his door, and the killer continues to wait, turning his body towards the sound as he continues to watch the door. No one should know he's here. He hasn't returned to this place for a long time. Is it someone at the wrong apartment? Mailman? The fact that no knock comes doesn't exactly worry Sylar, but it does make him curious. They must have realized they have the wrong apartment. Shortly after this, the doorknob betrays the person on the other side of the door. The small, barely audible noise falls on his ears, amplified over and over. The soft thud of something hitting the floor. The sound of someone racing away at top speed. And as soon as the racing footsteps betray the fact the person is running, Sylar's curiousity wins over— he quickly moves to the door, opening it as soon as he is within reach.

There's no mistaking her blonde hair, her run— he's seen it all too many times before, the cheerleader running away from him. His eyes widen in shock, surprise, and amusement as he realizes what he's witnessing: Claire Bennet running away after tracking him down. He's almost too late. The shock of what he's seeing delaying him longer than it normally would take for him to seize control of the situation. Before Claire can get too far, however, the killer raises his hand, making a pulling motion as he does— Claire will find herself suddenly unable to move any further, caught in the killer's telekinetic grasp.

This was a mistake indeed.

He is the nightmare.

Her back is arching as she fights to get just a little more speed. A little more distance. Claire's arms pump at her side, trying to give herself just that much more energy to get away. Her breath comes in hysterical gasps for air, desperate cries for oxygen. She's barely hit the second stair before her foot refuses to hit the third. It just… stops.

Claire's panting, sobbing breaths echo in the hallway as she frantically tries to push it down. Fall, she wills it. FALL. Her legs twitch as she keeps fighting to run, but it's no good. It's no use. She can't run. She can't stop trying, though. And she doesn't.


As soon as Claire is in his hold, the killer extends two fingers, curling them as if to say 'come here.' That's exactly what Claire does. She floats down the hallway, every second and every inch bringing her closer and closer to the killer, until she's no more than five feet from him. He turns her in mid-air, a smirk already spread across his face as he addresses her. "Sitting in an empty apartment, thinking about what's mine… and fate would have it that it would come running right into my arms." Sylar frowns at Claire, his head dipping down a bit, as he bestows on her a look of pity, which soon turns into amusement. "Hello, Claire. Won't you step inside?"

And they do just that. He backs into the apartment, pulling her with him until they are both fully inside. The door slams shut, the sound echoing loudly off of the hallway.

To Be Continued…

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