2008-01-03: The Next Step


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Summary: Peter finally tracks down Gabriel at Gray and Sons, but he doesn't expect to find Elle there as well.

Date It Happened: January 3rd, 2008

Log Title

Brooklyn, NYC - Gray and Sons

An hour or so has passed since Elle and Gabriel arrived back at Gray and Sons. The cab ride was mostly quiet on the way over, save for the occasional direction given to the cab driver. The majority of Gabriel's time spent since the made it back to the shop back was to making the place somewhat functional. A table of watches and tools was cleared to serve as a space for plates, drinks, things of that nature; two chairs accompany the table. Currently, he's in a different room that functions as a kitchen of sorts, although all it has is a small refridgerator, a microwave, and a coffee pot. It serves its purpose on those longer days at work. He's standing in front of the coffee pot, watching it as it makes tea— one of the few things he went out and picked up once he found the shop could serve as a temporary hideout.

Now that she's broken free of the Company and is apparently in hiding, Elle isn't quite sure what she ought to be doing with herself. She's currently seated in a chair at the table, toying with a clock she picked up from one of the tables. Her earlier statement about being able to do 'whatever [she] wants' was probably a little lofty, at least until she's sure the Company isn't going to abduct her again. "What are you planning on doing now?" she asks absently, poking at the exposed arms of the clock and nudging them forward and backward in time.

With a folded up paper map in his hands, Peter approaches the watch shop and checks the street signs one last time. The push pin punched a hole through the map along this street, between these two streets— meaning he must be at the block here. Walking down the street, he looks for any buildings that might stand out, since it doesn't give an exact address, unfortunately. Of course… Gray and Sons… a watchmaker and repair store— that gives pause and makes him stare. After a moment's pause, and as if to answer Elle's question, he walks right up and knocks on the door. "Hello?"

"I don't know," comes the response from Gabriel as he reaches out, grabs the steaming pot of tea,a nd pulls it frmo the coffee maker. There's two small glasses nearby, and he pulls them closer with his free hand. Filling both glasses, he sets the pot down and takes them to the table, placing one in front of Elle. There's already a cup of sugar on the table, but Gabriel ignores it as he sits down Eyes falling on the clock that Elle is toying with, he gives her half of a shrug. "I guess.. I haven't really thought about it," he admits, looking up at her.

Then there's a knock on the door. Gabriel visibly tenses, eyes moving towards it. He catches the voice easily with his ability of superhuman hearing, and he relaxes a bit, looking back towards Elle. "It's Peter," he says, moving towards the door and looking out through a crack in the boards a moment, before moving to open it.

Setting the clock down on the table, Elle pulls the mug nearer to her and adds some of the sugar to her tea. She's stirring, staring somewhat distantly at the liquid, when the knock at the door comes. If it was the Company, they wouldn't have knocked; Elle knows that, but still, when Peter knocks on the door, her heart skips a beat and she draws in a sharp breath. She's only reassured when Gabriel announces who it is, suddenly realizing both that she's been holding her breath and that her hands had tightened around the mug. Still more on edge than she had been before, Elle turns her attention to the door, watching.

"Where the hell have you been?" Peter asks in a rather deep tone as soon as the door is open enough that he can see for a fact that it is Sylar who's answering the door. "Do you have any idea how worried I was that you'd be taken in by someone or— you said you'd be there when I got back." He actually reaches through the door to grab the other man by the shirt and give him a little shake. He sounds like he'd been worried. "I passed out the first time I tried to find you, and then I got nothing until today. You'd seen how weak I was just from teleporting." He didn't even leave a note or anything. …Someone else is here? He doesn't notice at first.

"I can explain," Gabriel says, looking down at Peter's hand when it starts shaking his shirt, and he steps back to open the door the rest of the way, whether Peter lets go or not. This will reveal Elle to him, but he lets Peter know before he can even make it inside. "Elle is here," he says, turning in her direction. "I went to apologize to her and aside from that, I've been wandering the city. I only arrived here a couple days ago. There's a lot you need to hear."

Shrinking down in her seat when Peter immediately begins questioning Gabriel, Elle takes her mug in both hands and sips her tea, watching them from over the edge of the mug. She hasn't seen Peter since he brought her home in admittedly rough shape, and in what little time has passed since then, so much has happened. When Gabriel mentions her, she flicks a glance to the open door, lowering the mug to rest on her knee as she sits with her feet drawn onto the chair with her. "Hi, Peter," she says, her voice pitched to carry.

The hand doesn't let go until the man mentions the other person that's here. At that point, Peter steps fully inside so the door can close, and pulls back his hand to shove the map into the pocket of his coat. "Oh— you still should have left a note. You said you would be there when I got back. I trusted you." And it doesn't look like he's quite forgiven him, yet, an angry set to his jaw even as he looks past toward Elle. Her being here is a surprise, but one he's not quite able to deal with just yet. "Why are you here? I though that…"

"I'm sorry," Gabriel says, shrugging his shoulders. "I don't really know what else to say, Peter. I've been busy." Somewhat busy, anyway." I know I left, I know I said I wouldn't, and I could have left a note, but I couldn't just sit there." He turns his eyes over to Elle, watching her for a moment before looking back at Peter. "I had to apologize to Elle. Other things have happened, too. It's probably for the best that she tells you." With that said, he moves to the table, taking his seat, plus a sip of tea from his glass. There's another chair nearby, a few feet from the table, should Peter feel the need to use it.

"I left the Company," Elle states plainly, her eyes downturned now that she's speaking again. She ought to be proud of it, but the manner in which she left was not what she had in mind for her new life, and she isn't certain he'll be pleased, either. Not wanting to divert attention away from the man Peter came to see, she was prepared to leave it at that, until Gabriel had to go and mention 'other things.' Wincing, she looks back up to Peter, somewhat sheepishly. "Bennet came for me. Knocked me out, left me in my father's office. I woke up, we fought, and I left." She's leaving information out now, shifting anxiously in her seat. "I can't stay at my apartment. They're going to come for me. I tried calling you, but no one answered, so I came here instead."

"You left the Company…" Peter repeats quietly, almost as if he doesn't quite understand or perhaps believe. The anger starts to fade away as he shakes his head, running his hand through his hair. "Why— did they find out you were helping me?" He glances over at Sylar and gives his own hint of a grimace. "You're okay, right? They didn't— they just knocked you out? Nothing else?" Though he sounds as if he has a legitimate worry about what they could do to her. "I have a new phone— I just got it this morning. The number should be working soon— but how did you know to come here?" He didn't even know to come here.

All Gabriel can do is really watch Peter and Elle, his eyes traveling back and forth between them as they speak. He fidgets slightly in his chair, though the reason is unclear, and he takes another drink of his tea. Deciding that Peter might want one (and to smooth him over), he gets up and steps into the small kitchen, grabbing another glass and the pot of tea. He has nothing to say at the moment, so he just pours a glass of tea and makes his way back to the table, setting it down on Peter's end as he once again takes his seat.

Sitting up straighter in her seat now, her arms wrapped tightly around her legs, Elle rests her chin on her knees, reluctantly looking back to Peter as he speaks. "I think so," she says, a frown taking over her face. "I don't know how much they know. They knew the pills were missing before, but they didn't know who took them." Reaching to take her mug of tea from the table again, she considers his other questions. "Nothing else," she replies with a shake of her head, and it sounds almost as if there's a word she isn't saying that is meant to be at the end of that phrase: yet. Taking a sip of her tea, she glances briefly to Gabriel, her mouth twitching in a swift little smile that's gone just as quickly, then back to Peter. "I didn't really know to come here. It was a long shot, but I figured it was worth trying. This was his life before."

"Then you probably shouldn't stay here, either of you," Peter says, glancing between them. "Bennet's smart enough to look here— and if they even suspect why you were helping me…" He rubs the hand through his hair, the frustration visible. "I can give you two cash to get a hotel room or something— or one of those by the week apartments. They don't tend to ask for much more than proof you can pay." Reaching into his pocket, he pulls out the pill bottle, it shakes a bit in his grip as he holds it up so that the man can see it. It still has a couple doses in it. "You didn't take this with you."

It's with reluctance that Gabriel turns to Elle, his eyes darting over to Peter occasionally. "He might be right, this probably isn't the safest place for us to be," he says, but not before returning the small smile she gives him. "He's right about Bennet. He's good at what he does, and your father will want the best on this. It's why I didn't think you should be alone." He glances up at Peter when he begins to shake the pills, his eyes widening in surprise, and a sheepish expression passes over his face, but he quickly recovers. "I didn't want them. I needed some way to defend myself. Besides, I… haven't needed them." There's a quick glance to Elle, but then he's looking at Peter again. "I'm sorry, Peter. I wasn't trying to worry or betray you."

"Oh, they suspect." This is where Elle starts to feel very, very naive, her cheeks flushed with colour. "They know he was in my apartment. They probably know I'm here right now. It's like what I said about the warehouse - if I could find it, the Company can, so it's not safe either. I just… didn't know where else to go." She doesn't like feeling helpless, nor does she like having to look over her shoulder every few minutes, and she's only lived this way for a matter of hours. She can't imagine how it will feel after days, weeks, months. Will it have to be months? Listening to Gabriel, she nods absently while he speaks, deciding not to point out that she knows more about Bennet's skill as an agent than either of them is likely to realize.

The pills are shoved back into his pocket and Peter continues to frown, but that's his usual expression. "I was just trying to help you. And now getting these has…" He doesn't even finish, but he glances toward Elle and shakes his head, turning away for a minute to run his hands over his face. It's a gesture he often does when frustrated. "The warehouse was just a temporary solution anyway," he admits, letting his hands drop away. "It was going to need to be demolished soon into the New Year." With that said, he turns back in their direction, looking between the two. "I can take you somewhere else. Find you a place to stay. Hotel with ajoining rooms or something. And you can get those disposable phones— like the ones we used when you helped me escape."

"I know you were trying to help me," Gabriel responds to Peter, his voice low. There's shame in it. "I can start taking the pills again, if that's what it's going to take. I wanted to be able to protect myself. Now I need to be able to protect others." He looks up at Peter, eyes narrowed slightly, but not in anger. "You can't always be the hero, Peter," he says, his voice still low, and he turns his eyes back towards the table. He reaches out and grabs his glass of tea, taking a long sip from it as he listens to Peter's words. At the mention of a place to stay, Gabriel turns his eyes towards Elle, watching her. He doesn't say anything, but rather takes another sip of tea. It seems he's going to leave this one up to her.

Dropping her feet to the floor and rising from the chair, Elle holds up her hand as Peter speaks, shaking her head. "It wasn't your fault, Peter," she argues, taking an absent step towards him. "I don't think it had anything to do with the pills." No, she thinks it had everything to do with the other major lapse in judgment she made - namely, storming into the warehouse looking to kill Sylar. That's when this whole mess started. "You don't have to take us," she says, but her words are more an apologetic sense of imposition than they are a protest. "We can find somewhere…"

"I'm going to help you, because it's my responsibility. I brought this upon both of you," Peter says, stubbornly shaking his head as he tries to think of a few of the hotels that they stayed in during their run from the Company the first time, as well as others he knows of just from looking around on the street. "I'm not going to sit there and baby sit you, but I need to know where to find you." Because his other method doesn't work half the time…

"We can take care of this," Gabriel offers as well, not yet standing from his chair. "We can tell you where we are if you want to know. Once we find somewhere safe…" He trails off, falling into silence as he thinks. He isn't sure where to go from her. Sure, find somewhere safe, but then what? Elle's on the run from the Company, he's on the run from… pretty much everyone. "I can sell what watches I have that work. There's plenty here, there has to be a pawn shop will take them. It will give us-" He glances at Elle, before looking back to Peter. "-at least me some padding. From there we can figure out the next step."

"No, Peter's right." Elle looks to Gabriel now, holding a hand over her mug as she speaks. "It's easier if he takes us. For all of us. If the Company intercepts us on the way, we're better off. If he gets the rooms and pays cash, it's less for the Company to follow - no one will have seen us, and no one's name is on the room." She smiles anxiously then, glancing back to Peter for half a second. "He's done this before, and he's still alive. He knows what he's doing." And it's a gesture of good faith, for both of them, if they allow Peter to help them.

"Half the time I think I'm only alive and free cause the Company has some plans for me," Peter says with a bitter sound to his voice as he adds, glancing toward the watches and clocks. "Selling those is probably a good call." There's no additional ticking coming from his own wrist, though he almost always wore a watch before. Not at the moment, it sounds like, and looks like when his sleeve drops down. "Two of you stay together— see if you can find a pawn shop, and I'll find a hotel and pay for it— pick up some pre-paid phones and then come back in about… an hour and take you straight to the room." Which is when he suddenly glances at his bare wrist. "Maybe I should borrow one of those watches for this. If you have your abilitiess, you can go in and out invisible— together. No one'll ever have to see you in the hotel at all."

Looking at Elle at the same time she looks at him, Gabriel gives her a nod before turning his attention back to Peter. "We should be able to find one that will buy them," he says. "Then we'll meet back here to go to the hotel. IF we can, we'll get anything else we need while we're out." At the mention of Peter needing to borrow a watch, Gabriel looks down at his wrist, then turns to the large assortment of timepieces he's collected. "Take whichever one you need," he says, moving over to a table where a large box lined with velvet lays. He begins collecting watches he knows that works, setting them all into the box carefully. Should Peter see one he likes before it makes its way into the box, he'll set it aside. Once he reaches a certain watch he pauses, grabbing a different, smaller box in which he carefully sets it, alongside with special tools needed to fix it. His multilens go into the box to complete the set, and after placing it on the table next to his glass he goes back to collecting more watches.

The notion of Gabriel selling his watches is somehow sad to Elle, and she watches him collect the timepieces to sell with a faint frown. She doesn't say anything to dissuade him from his plan, as she knows she has a limited amount of money and her bank account is dangerous to use, if it's even accessible any more. "Give me an idea of what they're worth on the way," she says to Gabriel, "and I'll do it." She's liable to make more money than he is, after all, given that she's an attractive young woman. And not a man previously hunted by the FBI. "It won't take long."

Stepping over, Peter looks down at the timepieces and chooses one mostly in black and silver— though it could be white gold or platinum for all he knows. Who can tell how expensive this stuff is. Either way, he changes the time, matching it to that of the clocks that look right on the walls, and sticks it on his wrist. "Some food wouldn't hurt." At Elle's subtle reminder, he closes his eyes a moment and a baseball cap appears in his hands, one for a hockey team, actually. He reaches over and pushes it down on top of Sylar's head. "That should help a little… I'll try to get a hotel with a fridge— likely'll have a coffee maker too. I'll see what I can do about a microwave." The more expensive ones would require more than cash, though… even if he mind-warps them. "I'll set you up for a week to start. We can always move you to another if you have an emergency." He checks his watch again. "One hour enough then we meet back here?"

The watch Peter chooses is indeed black and silver, an old analog watch from 'Baume & Mercier', one that he picked up a few years ago. He can remember where he got almost every single one of his watches; that is, at least the ones he bought or collected personally. Once he's finished with packing all the watches he know will net them some cash, he turns back to Elle, setting the box down near her. "This should get us a decent amount." When he turns to Peter, the next thing he knows a baseball cap is being pushed down on his head, and he pulls back a bit. Re-adjusting it once Peter's hand is out of the way, he can't help but feel like he looks foolish. A straight black baseball cap, sure, but a hockey team? He doesn't normally wear things.

Stifling her little giggle at the sight of Gabriel in a hat, Elle finishes the last little bit of her tea and takes her coat from the back of the chair, pulling it on. When she's fastened it, pulled on a knitted hat, and slipped on a pair of gloves, she takes the box from the table and tucks it under her arm. "Alright, Master of Disguise," she teases, standing on her toes to reach up and flick the hat, "let's go." To Peter, she offers a quick smile and nod. "An hour's good. We'll see you then." Pause. "And thanks, Peter," is her afterthought, spoken in a genuinely grateful tone.

"See you then," Peter says to the two of them, before he closes his eyes and disappears, a sound of distortion left in his wake. A familiar sound, at least— they've both seen him do this more than once. Safest way to travel. The Company certainly has a difficult time following him thanks to this prefered method of transportation. Beats running around the city invisible.

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