2007-05-04: Monopoly And Other Games

Starring:

Peter_icon.gif Elle_icon.gif Nathan_icon.gif

Summary: Peter and Elle visit Nathan. Electroblonde and Flying Man have themselves a verbal sparring match conversation.

Date It Happened: 4th of May, 2007

Monopoly And Other Games


The Petrelli Mansion

It's late evening, well past sunset, when a taxi pulls up in front of the mansion carrying Peter and Elle. Making sure any security guards that might have been placed after the incident see and recognize him, he approaches the front door with his girlfriend on arm and pulls out a key (after all, he has a key to this place) and unlocks the door, leading his girlfriend into the Foyer. She'd stayed here with in him the past, but that past has been removed from her memory, so this is practically the first time. "Not sure if anyone will still be awake… but hopefully someone is," he says, closing and locking the door behind them.

Elle looks about at the place. "Nice place." she says, as she looks about at the mansion. She enters with him, dressed in black skirt, green blouse, and heels. Oh, and the pretty sapphire ring Peter got her. Shiny! She looks about. "How many people stay here?"

Someone is indeed awake, and that's not counting the guards that quietly ghost around outside. Heidi may be getting some sleep, and it's definitely past bedtime for Monty and Simon, but Nathan is doing his insomnia thing. Luckily it's not so late that he can be accused of this, and he probably will amble upstairs later on, but the fact remains that he can't sleep right now, currently writing out something at his desk in the study. No radio is on, no TV, so he hears the door as it starts to be unlocked. Folding the piece of paper into an envelope, he sets this aside, and wanders out to see who the guards have let in.

By the time he reaches the foyer, he catches the tail end of what Elle has to say, and so he responds by way of greeting. "Usually more than we count on." Nathan's dressed casually, having spent the day at home, in dark slacks and a blue sweater and— socks. With an argyle pattern on them. Don't judge.

As his brother appears to answer the question, Peter leaves his jacket on as he moves a bit closer to his brother and touches his arm. A touch of greeting, but one that's definitely warm and welcoming, "Hey— sorry I'm stopping by so late. I wanted to see how things went." The way he looks implies what he means. The talk. The one he walked out on. Maybe he'll sneak upstairs to ask Heidi how her side of it went, because as he glances around that's where he figures the woman is. "And I wanted to bring Elle by. She's never been here— not that she can remember." To her, he explains, "You actually stayed here a while, we had a room upstairs. Right now it's just Nathan's family and our mom, I think."

The blonde there looks over at Nathan as he arrives. "Can't say that I remember…" she answers Peter, before looking back to Nathan and offering her hand for the politician. "Nice to meet you. Without being tied to a bathroom chair."

The first response Peter gets to that is a shrug. It went, the shrug seems to imply. Nathan then nods to Elle, stepping closer as to take that hand and shake it. "Well, we don't do that kind of thing here," he says, so dryly that the joke is actually a little hard to find, but it's there. One would hope so, anyway, unless tying people to bathroom chairs is another Petrelli tradition that got veto'd.

Once the hand is withdrawn, he slides both into his pockets, casting Peter a half-smile, almost a bitter one. "It went fine," he says, with a slightly dismissive shake of his head. "I'm pretty sure she thinks the whole thing is insane, but," another shrug, "likewise. Thanks for paving the way into that particular conversation, in any event. She doesn't hate me, if that's what you mean." Again, it's all very dryly delivered, the seriousness hard to pick out from the sarcasm. Nathan glances to Elle. "Good thing you two never had this problem."

Tying people to bathroom chairs is definitely not a past time that Peter would approve of. In her case… it had been deemed necessary. Still, he can't help but look sheepish as she mentions it, glancing down and to the side as the two shake hands. When Nathan speaks, though, his eyes drift back up to the man's face and he nods. "Yeah— you're welcome." Then he glances towards Elle, and hopes she understands this without doing the usual Company 'wipe her mind!' response to someone seeing and learning about abilities. Even if all he says is, "All we had to deal with was her trying to electricute me for being a stalker when she forgot that we knew each other. But— yeah, never had to deal with that particular problem."

Elle nods. "It's a lot easier when you can handle things openly. Of course, you don't have to worry about your wife being a sociopathic killer. Least as far as we know about." Okay, so yes, Elle is being a little bit of a smart-ass. "But, now it's all just one big happy family again."

Peter gets a quick 'I really question your love-interest choices sometimes' look, here, but otherwise, Nathan smiles at Elle. Because she throws lightning. "Right, that's exactly what it is," he says, in that totally sincere-sounding way of being somewhat sarcastic at the same time. A little moody and bitter, perhaps. "One big happy mutant family, as it were. No offense." Okay, rein it in, Nathan, you like these people. Well you like one of them, the other one is still a question mark. "Did either of you want a coffee or something?" The 'something' is silent for 'hard liquor'.

"Happy /mutant/ family?" Peter repeats, giving his brother an odd look, before he steps towards Elle, the self proclaimed sociopathic killer, and leans in to kiss her lightly on the lips before he says, "Why don't you get something to drink. I want to run up stairs and check on Heidi and the boys and maybe pack a few things to take back to the apartment." No, he's not leaving his brother alone with a sociopathic lightning thrower as a punishment. He trusts that she won't hurt his brother, and that the two can find some way to get along. Even then, he shoots his brother a quick glance and adds, "She's not much of a drinker, so don't hand her a bottle of gin." That's for Maras, not for Elles. Without much else, he's making his way up the stairs. To a) be the fun uncle, and b) make sure that Heidi isn't hiding up there out of fear of her husband and brother in law.

Elle smiles. "Sure. Some coffee sounds great. Hope we're not intruding too much." See? She can be personable. Really! This is the sane face.

"Heidi's word, not mine," Nathan says, by way of explanation, giving Peter a bland smile. At the gin comment, Nathan narrows his eyes at Peter but says nothing. He wasn't intending to do shots with his little brother's gee-eff, really! That would be a whole other adventure, no doubt. Turning back to Elle once Peter makes his way out the foyer, he nods once. "Well it wouldn't be the first time," he says, gesturing towards the kitchen and heading that way. "But no, you're not." Once there, coffee making is… really as difficult as pressing a button. Damn snazzy coffee makers. He gets out a couple of mugs, and a third for Peter should he meander on down. He doesn't seem too alarmed about being left alone with the lightning thrower, save for a few glances here and there. "So. You and Peter." They've likely already had this conversation, just not one that Elle can remember.

Elle nods, as she moves to follow Nathan out to the kitchen. Where there is coffee. "Peter and I. He told me about what happened with Heidi. Any ideas why?" Yes, this IS what she considers small talk, why?

Nathan glances at Elle over his shoulder, grabbing the sugar container before moving to the table-y area in the center of the room, setting things down, then leaning on it. "Why what? Why she was kidnapped?" he asks, to clarify.

Elle nods. "Why that." She takes the sugar, and adds appropriately, before looking to the refrigerator. "Cream in here?" She looks back over her shoulder to Nathan. "I figure there's a finite number of reasons, and I'm hoping it's a nice, simple, mundane one."

"Cream in there," Nathan confirms. He doesn't actually touch the sugar, just waits for the coffee machine to finish doing its thing. "It wasn't simple, but it was mundane enough, until we came along. They wanted me to make contact with some prosecutor, I'm not so clear on the details." Actually, he has a few, but this he doesn't reveal to the blonde. He taps his fingers against the table absently. "Heidi hasn't met you yet," he informs her, and gestures absently. "When you stayed here, she was still on vacation."

Elle nods. "It'll be nice to meet her. Peter speaks pretty highly of you two." She takes out the cream, and comes back over to the table. "And just needed to check up. Anything something happens and the name Petrelli's attached to it, there's a decent chance that it's going to be something that the Company's involved in, or wants to know about."

"That so?" There's a telltale click, and an absence of mechanical purring from the coffee machine, and Nathan moves to fill the mugs, keeping his black as pitch and handing Elle hers to dilute as she wishes. "Here was me thinking we were attempting to part ways with the Company," he says, a slightly prompting tone in his voice. Keep talkin', sparky.

Elle looks amused. "Given the background of the Petrellis with the company…whether that's your brother's contract, your arrangement with Mr. Linderman, or your mother…let's just say that I doubt there's going to be a parting of the ways any time soon. Not to mention my relationship with Peter." She does, in fact, dilute hers, adding sugar and cream both. "But, I just figured I'd find out. Since if it -is- just mundane, you might need…or want…someone to take care of the problem."

There's a twitch of an eyebrow raise when Elle points out her own connection with Peter as one of the many ways they have ties to the Company, but Nathan doesn't voice his disapproval. He just watches her, and at that last offer - that takes him by surprise a little. He wasn't really expecting her to go down that road. "As far as I know, the problem's dealt with," he says. "Not sure if anyone that wasn't on our team actually made it out alive." Another bland smile - if he can talk about this stuff to anyone, it'll be the psychopathic killer. Not that he really knows that about Elle, but he has his own assumptions. "But if something arises again from this, you'll likely be hearing about it."

But he backtracks to something Elle mentioned, almost gesturing to rewind the conversation. "The contract," he says. "Did he sign something with them after all?"

Elle nods. "Just figured I'd make the offer. Given that you're almost family and all that. Peter is…a little too idealistic to consider some of the solutions that have to happen sometimes, and I don't think you are. And no. He didn't. That all got derailed by the recent little fiasco."

"Probably for the best," Nathan says, and otherwise, leaves the talk of contracts alone when it's confirmed nothing was signed. Not that the Company can really operate within conventional law anyway, but Nathan still has to put some importance in such things. As for the offer, well, what can you say to that? Nathan's smile to Elle is a little uncertain, because she doesn't /look/ like a hitwoman, now does she? But she almost talks like one. And it's not like she doesn't have the means to back that up. Family, huh? "It's appreciated," he says. "If I knew anything more about this group, I'd probably tell you." A vague frown, and he brings his coffee up to sip before shaking his head. "I don't usually operate this way, but you're right. It doesn't pay to be idealistic."

The electroblonde nods. "Mostly. Daddy wasn't happy, at all. But I think we've worked things out to an arrangement. Think of it like the arranged marriages back in the medieval days…the ones that were as much political as anything else. Though it helps that Peter -is- so sweet. But as long as he and I are together, it's a little insulation for him and his friends, as long as they keep a low profile." What goes unspoken but is easily read between the lines is that rescuing kidnapped people is not exactly low profile. "And that's okay. You might find something out. I know that political people have lots of contacts. Always best for people to play to their strengths."

Throughout this, Nathan almost looks amused, as if coming to realise there's more to unpack about her words than he first assumed. "You know, Elle, if you got something to say to me, you're free to just say it," he says, still maintaining that tone of conversation, largely unthreatening, as well as unaccusing, despite his next words. "I'm starting to think that the Company got what it wanted out of erasing your memories. Not hard to remain loyal if you don't remember betraying them."

Elle shrugs her shoulders. "I'm just talking, Nathan. Nothing else." But he stings her with that next comment. "I haven't -betrayed- anyone. Not the Company, and not Peter. One's my professional life, one's my personal life. I can keep them separate." Her voice is a little more snappish there.

He raises his coffee mug in a sort of 'I concede to that' at her first comment. Her next words, however, almost make Nathan smile, in a bitter way. "Maybe you can," he says. "But what happens when their interests start clashing? You know how…" He trails off, glancing to the door, as if still wary about talking about these things in his home. His voice lowers. "You know how powerful Peter is, and as much as I want him to stay uninvolved with this Company of yours… well like you pointed out, that's a little impossible. And we won't always be working to your agenda - some things can't stay low profile, for instance." He wants to say more, that much is plain, but he stops himself, whether out of wariness or what's smart to keep to himself.

The blonde looks back. "Then I'll tell you what I told him." And she, too, pitches her voice a bit lower, whether in response to his, or based on what she's saying. "Right now, the best thing in the world that Peter…or the people close to him…can do is to give me as much information as they can. Because if it's something that might align with the Company's goals, I can lend help. If it's something they'd be neutral to, I can probably sway them to your side. And if it's something they'd be outright opposed to… at the very least I might be able to run some interference."

The look Nathan gives Elle is one of obvious debate - does he believe her? Maybe not entirely. But for now - and for Peter's sake - he can only hope that she's being honest. He does something that he doesn't usually do - he seems to give Elle the benefit of the doubt, and nods once. "The Company's goals have been a problem for me in the past," he says, quietly. "So you can forgive me for seeking alternative solutions. But," shrug, "noted." He takes another draw from his coffee mug.

Elle can't help a faint smirk at the comment. "Well, I suppose you can blame your mother for that as much as anyone else." But she takes a sip of her own coffee, and seems pleased enough to be holding her own in the little battle of words.

"I know," Nathan says, raising an eyebrow at Elle, but he doesn't seem to take offense. He seems almost flippant, but there's clearly more to it than that. "She and Linderman both. Let's just say we don't really discuss that one over family dinners." He shakes his head, a little dismissive. "Either way, I want to make sure that kind of thing doesn't happen again to anyone in my family, including Peter. I'm sure you, as his girlfriend and not just Bob Bishop's little girl, can appreciate that."

Elle nods. "I can." she says. "Look. I understand that you're going to be protective of your family. And I understand that me being who I am probably makes me seem like the Antichrist as far as that's concerned. But I don't want anything to happen to Peter. That's not a mission, that's not a cover, and that's not a game. That's the truth."

A short silence descends over the kitchen as Nathan considers her, then peers into his coffee mug, swirling the contents. "Well. I wouldn't say Antichrist," he says. "That's a little far. Just a Company agent who forgot she was in love with Peter and may just be faking it really well." He looks back up at her, raising a hand as if to surrender that already. "I'm not saying you're lying. I think you're putting in the effort to amend what happened. Maybe it's even working. But Peter puts a lot of faith in people, and I play the devil's advocate. It's nothing personal."

Elle looks thoughtful a moment. "If you were anyone but someone in Peter's family and you said that to me, I'd probably fry you." It's very matter-of-fact. "Peter went through a lot for me. If I wanted him down, I could have done it on a dozen chances before now. I'm not acting. Not on this."

The sort-of-but-not-really-but-could-be threat seems to do its job. Nathan's expression is a little 'there will be no frying in this household, young lady' as well as wary, and that hand drops to slide back into a pocket, the other hand still gripping his coffee. He pauses, and has to add: "I don't think you /want/ to harm Peter. I just think you're capable of it. But I believe you." And then, he squints at her. "How're you at Monopoly?"

Elle blinks. That's out of left field. "Never played it." she admits. "Board games weren't a real consideration."

Why yes it is! Maybe Nathan doesn't like the idea of getting zappy-fried. Or maybe it's a genuine concern. An enigma! He smiles easily at her response, bringing his coffee up to finish, before moving to turn his back on her and rinse out his coffee mug, setting it aside so someone else hired to do so can put it away later. "Good to hear," he says. "Peter cheats at it anyway." Or! An offering of peace. Who knows.

Elle nods. "I -think- he mentioned it. I'm not 100% sure, but I think so. I'll have to have someone show me how to play it." Possibly acceptance of olive branch. "Your wife's okay after things, then?"

"Pick the top hat, if you do, not sure if anyone in the family picks that piece," Nathan says. Because everyone has their piece, sadly enough. He turns back to her, leaning against the counter and arms coming up to fold, shrugging. "Peter healed her just fine," he says. "She got roughed up more than I'm sure was necessary, but it's been taken care of."

Elle nods once. "Whoever he picked that up from, that's a really handy thing to have. Beyond that, she's taking finding out about you and Peter all right? Or is there damage control needed?"

Nathan's head tilts to the side, a fraction. "I think it's a shock to her," he says. "I don't know, she'll either come to terms with it or we'll just have to get past it. How do you mean, damage control?"

The blonde looks back at him. "You know exactly what I mean by damage control." Given who she works for. "When people know things that they're better not knowing."

Yeah, he did. Nathan's expression is grim, now, but his 'no' doesn't burst forth immediately. Hard to say if he's actually considering this offer or not, a hand coming up to rub the back of his neck wearily. Instead of point blank refusal, or acceptance, he just points out, mildly, "Peter would never forgive either of us. He loves Heidi."

Elle looks back at Nathan, calmly. "And loving her's fine. But if she can't come to grips with it, which is worse? Letting it break things up because she can't handle it, or…conveniently fixing that?"

Again, no immediate, straight-forward answer. Nathan squints at her again, a small, questioning smile tugging at his mouth. "Considering what you just went through, I'm surprised you're going there. Other people deciding what you can and can't deal with, or know." And despite this, Nathan's gaze breaks from Elle's, considering the wall for a few seconds. "Let me think about it. Wait and see if things are damaged beyond repair."

Elle's voice gets just a little colder. "There's a big difference. What happened to me was vindictive, spiteful, and was done to steal my happiness away from me. This would be to let someone -keep- their happiness. Intent makes all the difference in the world, Nathan."

A hand goes up to make his point, his gaze returns to her. "It's still the same brand of mindfucking," Nathan says, rather bluntly. Hand drops again, and he lets out a sigh. "But you're right, and I want her to be happy. Peter won't see it that way so I would like this to remain between us, at least until I know what to do. I'd like to give her a chance, first."

Elle nods. "Understood. If you decide something needs to happen…give me a call. I'll do what I can." A wryly amused grin. "For a potential brother-in-law, and all that."

Oh god. Luckily, that line strikes Nathan as more funny than terrifying, and he grins across at Elle. He drops the subject, however - the fact that he's even considering this offer makes his gut twist in guilt. Can Heidi handle this knowledge, versus, can Nathan live with knowing he did this to her? He has a lot of thinking to do. He takes his weight off the counter, at that point. "Simon's probably roped Peter in to a late night storytelling, I should go remind them it's quarter past ten," he says, moving for the door, although he then lingers there to add a, "Elle. Thanks." An obviously uncertain, wary thanks, as if Nathan is unsure as to what it's for, but a thanks all the same.

Elle nods. "It was an interesting conversation. I look forward to some Monopoly." Because she does so love games.

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