2007-09-04: Save The Cabs, Save The World


Nathan_icon.gif Peter_icon.gif

Summary: Along with other important mission statements to do with stopping a tornado and the deaths of millions. Peter returns and Nathan doesn't kill him.

Date It Happened: September 4th, 2007

Save The Cabs, Save The World

Hyde Park - Nathan's Den - Petrelli Mansion

It's early morning. The boys have left for school by this point, and someone is bounding up to the front door, fumbling with the lock, and then opening the door quickly. Luckily he didn't lose his keys in the future. Peter's dressed in… what look like work clothes from the Bronx Zoo. They even have patches to show where they came from. There's a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle bag over his shoulder, and the front page of a newspaper in his hand. He missed. He'd planned to come back at the end of July, or August. And he missed— but that's all right. The storm hasn't happened yet. First thing first… he's looking for his brother. Sitting room? Office? He'll check them all until he finds him.

Fortunately for Peter, Nathan isn't at his campaign HQ. He very well could be and in fact, that's where he's going to be heading, adding recently faxed sheets of paper to his briefcase while also on the phone - who says it's only women who can do multitasking? "Like I said, I'd love to," he's currently saying into his cellphone, which is trapped between one raised shoulder and his ear as he buckles up his suitcase. Seriously needs a PA for around the mansion. "And Heidi would be willing but I told you, Peter's out of town. I know. No, I can't— you know what, I'll call you back."

An abrupt ending to the conversation? Maybe. But Nathan's attention is caught by the distant sound of a door slamming opened and closed. Picking up his briefcase, he starts for the door— when rather suddenly, it swings open. The briefcase falls from his hand as Nathan comes face to face with Peter, and he barely has the presence of mind to look him over, or take in his strange appearance. His senses are currently overloading on the fact that his brother is all of a sudden here.

"…I'm going to kill you," Nathan states, flatly, and then he's moving forward - likely not to kill, however, if the plain relief in his eyes has anything to imply.

That didn't take long at all. When Peter comes face to face with his brother, he looks a little winded, as if he ran most of the way to the Mansion. He did, so it's an accurate assumption. The newspaper is dropped to the floor, but the TMNT bag still hangs on his shoulder as he suddenly darts forward and hugs his older brother. Almost a desperate hug. Then again, he has been gone for a month— so this might not be too much of a surprise. "You can kill me again later," he promises, just closing his eyes and holding on for the moment. It's almost too tight— his shoulders are shaking a little, and it has nothing to do with running twenty blocks when the cabs refused to pull over for him. It has everything to do with where he's been the last month, most likely.

Nathan curses under his breath as he winds up simply accepting the hug, rather than throttling Peter or any number of the things he had visualised occurring, like a lecture, or hell, even punching the younger man, because it's been a long damn month. Instead, Nathan hugs back just as fiercely at first, an arm almost crushing the TMNT bag and hands gripping, giving an irritated grunt in response to Peter's words. After a moment, his grip slackens - and Peter's doesn't. The hug actually comes as a surprise to Nathan, now that the initial shock has worn off - he has a right to be relieved and clingy as a result, but presumably, Peter knew exactly what he was doing. So it's with some confusion that he says, "Well you can let up, I'm not armed."

When the younger of the two brothers finally pulls back, Peter raises a hand to rub at his eyes and turn away briefly. He's not tearing up, really— that's just a trick of the light. He's… tired. Yes. That's it. Actually he does look rather tired— as if he hasn't slept much at all in the last week or so (or month). If anything it's the closest to how he'd have looked when he was studying for exams or something— the type of 'can't sleep, must work' that people sometimes get. "Sorry— didn't mean to be gone that long." Still looking away. Still has hand close to his face. "Thought I could just… come back the same time I left." Didn't work out that way, apparently. Now he looks back. No moisture in his eyes, really— just a glistening from the light is all. "Are you okay?"

What a question! Well compared to the him two years later? Nathan is great. He's whole, for one thing, all ten fingers in place, cleanshaven and recently showered, in a nicely fitting grey suit and a tie that would be perfectly fine if not for what appears to be glowing blue stitched through rich red silk. The Nathan that Peter had seen more recently would probably kill to be here right now, married and confident and healthy with a relatively clean slate to work with. However, this situation is not something the current Nathan is grateful for, it seems, because he spreads his arms in exasperation, eyes narrowed. "Yeah, I'm fine, Peter. Except for the fact that you disappear for a month into the future without telling me and everyone's been worried to death over— what the hell are you wearing?"

At that moment, Peter's appearance strikes Nathan - not just the clothing, but how tired he looks, and maybe that trick-of-light glimmer in Peter's eye, and as quickly as it came, the anger fizzles out again, giving away to wearier annoyance. "Jesus. Come on, siddown." He moves to take Peter's arm and guide him further into the office, leaving his briefcase on the floor.

For a brief moment, Peter can't help but look at his brother's tie— terrible as it may be. It almost makes his mouth quirk towards a smile, but it doesn't quite work out. Relief— but he's not quite ready to smile fully just yet. Maybe it's the too tiredness. "Sorry— I would have called you, but you would have talked me out of going, and— I really needed to do this, Nathan. I think I have enough information that we can stop everything from going wrong, but— I had to do this." He almost seems to be begging his brother to understand that— which is good when he's gathered up into the office and offered a seat.

The bag is pulled off his shoulder and sat down, and he looks down at his clothes. "Sorry— didn't have much to choose from before I left. Was either this or…" A bloody burnt rag of a pair of clothes. He'd kind of ruined most of his other ones. Regeneration is not always your friend. At least not to your clothes. "There's a lot that— I think we can stop the tornado. Stop the tornado, stop everything— that's the way it looks. The tornado starts… a lot of what goes wrong…"

Nathan is moving towards a small cabinet as Peter takes a seat, glancing down at the childish backpack Peter sets down in confusion. No matter. Two lowball glasses are taken out, and while he doesn't have ice handy, he has things to fill it. Two small, low servings of an expensive brand whisky is poured into each glass, and Nathan makes his way back, offering one out to Peter. "The tornado," he repeats, and manages barely not to eyeroll. Because it just keeps coming up even though it seems completely unlikely, a shadow-threat like a far off storm. But he shoves his cynicism to one side, because he wants to understand this - understand exactly why Peter had to do this, what he's supposed to be saving the world from now. "What do you mean, starts? What starts?" He didn't manage to wring a lot of details from Cass as to what's so bad about the future - just her death, really, and general Badness.

"Everything," Peter says ominously, but he takes the whiskey first and sips some of it. Surely the lady in the future will forgive him for drinking under these circumstances. One glass won't hurt anything. "Look— a lot happens in two years, Nathan— there's… I don't know where to start. The tornado happens— it— we— all of us— what we can do— it sort of becomes public. Maybe not individuals, but— they call us Evolved. And then a war starts— Sylar's a big part of that. Not just him, either, but a lot of Evolved— a lot of normal people— they all start fighting. I didn't see much of the country, but New York was pretty devastated, I'm sure a lot of the major cities were." There's a long pause, hesitation. He looks across at his brother. How is he supposed to tell him everything? There's just some things that are difficult to tell… "If we stop the tornado the rest won't happen…"

With answers like 'everything', Peter, Nathan may in fact hurt you, as a slightly stormy, warning expression plays out on Nathan's features. He stays quiet, however, as the explanation deepens, Nathan taking a sip of his own drink. He lifts his gaze to meet Peter's at that last part, raising an eyebrow. "Maybe," he says. "But eventually the world's going to know about us. Even without a tornado, can you really predict there won't be a war anyway?" A rueful smile, and he reaches out to touch his brother's arm. "This is why I would've talked you out of it, Pete. You're gonna get it into your head that it's all on you to stop— 'everything', as you put it."

There's a wince. Peter knows what his brother's saying, but… "You didn't see it, Nathan. You don't know what's going to— what happens. It's— we have to stop it. Desiree— she's the psychic who saw what took me two years in the future— she told people that if we stop the tornado, everything changes. That's the key. If I don't stop it then— so many people will die." He could start listing off names, but he doesn't know if he wants to pull those cards out yet. "I know I'm not in this alone— I know you'll help me. But without this information— without all of this— we wouldn't know enough to stop it. We wouldn't have even found out who really caused the tornado. Everyone thought it was Sylar." Again. This sounds familiar. "It wasn't me either. It's someone completely innocent, though, and if we can help her then— it won't happen."

It's true, the tornado is damaging enough that it Has To Be Stopped, no matter whatever else Peter saw. Doesn't mean Nathan has to one hundred percent back Peter's decision to make like Marty McFly. "Then I'm glad someone has a clue," Nathan says, and what goes unvoiced but implied is 'I just wish it wasn't you, damnit'. He then arches an eyebrow at Peter. "You know, didn't we have a discussion about all of this prophetic crap? How if we even see a glimpse of a future, that's enough to make it happen?" Nathan's motivation to destroy a painting not so long ago, a point Peter made when a divorce almost came true.

"This is different," Peter insists quietly, looking down into his glass and avoiding eye contact for a moment. "Unless you want me to let everything happen the way it did— I doubt even the one person who begged me to let things stay the way they were would have asked me to do that when it all ended…" Kate. Wince. This is definitely not going to be an easy topic to go into. Glancing back, there's a moment where he seems about to say something, and then… "I'm not going to let everything happen the way it did. Even if I can only change a few things— then I'll change those things." And one of the few things he knows he can change… "I'm going to need to take a flight to Massachusetts this weekend." …Why?

Nathan shakes his head. "Not saying you should let it be," he says, gently, a little resigned. He finishes off his whisky, sets the glass aside. "I just don't want to see you kill yourself over fixing things that might be inevitable." He holds up a hand, as if to ward off argument, there. "I don't know how it works," he adds, undermining his own point because really, who knows how time travel and alternate futures work? Besides Hiro. "If you can stop the tornado— and Cass's death," he knows that much, at least, "then that's a good place to start." Those points alone are valid reason for Peter to be so determined to fix the future - it's why Nathan doesn't dig deeper as to what Peter saw. Right now. He rubs the back of his neck with some irritation at this next announcement. "Do I wanna know why?"

"If it's inevitable, I'm dead anyway," Peter says, shaking his head a little as he pulls his phone out of his pocket. It needs to be charged, but— he'll do that soon. He doesn't need to buy the plane tickets right now. So much to explain— so little time to do it in. He puts the phone down for the moment. He'll plug it in soon. "I need to see Elena— I need to tell her to come back here before… I need her to help me with this. I don't want to wait two years to fix things with her."

"Dead?" Nathan repeats, for a moment mentally floored. That was an unexpected revelation. "No, hold on." Elena can wait, apparently (because hell, she's living here), as Nathan fixes Peter with a look. "You're dead in two years time?" Now he has questions, and he sums up mostly all of them with: "Jesus, who else?"

Millions of people? That'd be the easy answer, but… "I was one of the first to die— Sylar killed me," Peter says quietly, not looking at his brother, paying a lot of attention to his phone. "No one knew, though— he took my place— pretended to be me. He had regeneration so… he might have killed Claire, I don't know." That's one of the many things he doesn't know, but considering how she'd been one of his favorite mice to hunt… "Monty was killed during the war. Elena's younger siblings…" The children. "While I was there… Cass died. Jack and Elena both nearly died. Mara died." There's a long pause. Now he does look up towards his brother. "You died."

Monty was killed. Nathan narrows his eyes, takes a breath as if preparing to yell at Peter for even saying that, for even implying that this is a possibility, but the list continues and Nathan reigns in his temper to listen. Cass dead, Jack almost dead, Elena almost dead, Mara— God. Nathan is already reaching for Peter's drink to down, but that pause followed by that admission makes him stop. As if the list before that hadn't meant he had a personal investment in this. He wants to ask 'how', he really does, letting Peter keep his drink as he clasps his hands together, studying the floor. But a more pressing question surfaces. "Heidi?"

The drink that his brother started reaching for is handed over. The older Petrelli might need it more. Peter's had a month to deal with that world, and it changed him more than just physically. His hair is a little longer, curling onto his forehead. He pushes the locks out of the way a bit. "As far as I know she was still alive— in one of the camps for humans. But I don't— I'm sure that Jack and the Saints will make sure that she's okay once they finish their revolution. It'd just started— the day that I left— they were taking back the country." Yesterday. Tomorrow. It— doesn't really matter. Part of him might wish the timeline would disappear once he left and starts changing things, but at the same time… he doesn't want it to. Too many precious things left behind.

The glass is taken with a grateful nod, sipped from. See, Nathan? This is what you get for asking. More questions. "Camps. Revolution." He shakes his head. "Are you sure you only skipped ahead two years? This is sounding more and more like Germany sixty-something years ago." Obviously not, however. "How could things get that bad that quickly?"

"I don't know— all I know is it was like stepping into a completely different world," Peter's looking at his brother, but he can't help but understand just how scary it might seem. It's a good thing he didn't bring too much from the future— there's so much information, videos— that he could have brought. "You're not going to die— and neither is anyone else. I won't let it happen. We'll stop the tornado and… everything changes." But— considering certain things, he's leaving out part of his other plan. Stop the tornado is just Plan A.

Peter's reassurances gain a nod, but not much else. Nathan has some thinking to do. Of course he wanted a bad future stopped, he liked Cass, liked his city - but there's clearly so much more to it than that, and it's a little unnerving when you're suddenly hooked into something so grand and involved when you didn't think it was even a good idea. Now it seems like a good idea, this whole time travel thing. Now it seems like it all has to be fixed. Not just because of his death, either, that still seems like an abstract and strange concept - your own death usually is. No, Peter's death, Monty's death… jhgfdjkg.

Suddenly, the desk phone rings, and Nathan starts, automatically picking the headset off the cradle - and back down again, cutting off the call. He's not up for pretending to be a normal would-be senator right now. All the same, he glances at his watch. "I need to go to the HQ," he says, finishing off Peter's drink and standing. "Elena's back in New York, by the way. She'll be at class." To provide an explanation as to why he'd know such a thing, he shrugs and adds, "She's been staying here for most of August."

As his brother stands up, so too does Peter. The TMNT bag is left on the couch where he discarded it, and the phone is shoved back into the pocket of his work clothes. He'll recharge it in a moment. HQ. "Nathan it might…" Be a good idea to quit politics. That's what he's about to say, honest. But then his brother says the E-word. "What? She's in— but she's supposed to be at MIT already and— that's what…" He looks off to the side for a moment. Things are already changing. "What class? Where on campus?" His brother knows everything. It doesn't quite register yet that she's been staying here— that's where she was going to stay before the Spain trip anyway— until her family got situated. But then MIT happened and…

"Well I don't know the exact room, Pete," Nathan says, a little dryly, "but she'll be in the science building, on the main campus. East of Washington Park." …so almost the exact location. And he would know - he crashed his car just in front of it. "Wait around there and you'll see her eventually, I'm sure. She'll… want to know you're back." The almost phonecall, discussion of Elena, seems to bring Nathan's mind back to the present, reminding him of the hard month beforehand. He sighs, then grabs Peter's sleeve to drag him into a second hug, more weary than the desperate cling from before. "Thanks for coming back," he says, again with that careful mix of sarcasm and something more genuine. "We'll talk later. This— " He releases Peter with a shrug. "It's more than I expected to take in."

The second hug is extended, mostly by the force of the younger brother. Peter closes his eyes again. "Thank you— I'll find her." Somehow. He'll storm into every room if he has to, but— science building narrows it down. He'll run into the first room he sees. Watch that be the one. When he does let go, he keeps his hand on his brother's arm and squeezes mildly. "Yeah— I know. Took a while for me to get used to all of it too." Nearly broke him a few times, but— what doesn't break you makes you stronger, right? "I really missed you." Even if they had one night to bond in the future, it's been a month. And that brother died. Because he'd been too weak to kill Sylar. "You might— want to reconsider going back into law… Politics doesn't look like it's a fun place to be for the next few years." It's… a small comment. There's a lot he needs to tell him, but that's one suggestion he can make.

Nathan takes that comment as flippant, casting Peter a wry smile. "I don't know, it sounds like politics needs someone sane at the helm," he says. Petrelli shoulder squeeze. "I missed you too." He moves away, now, picking up his briefcase. "Need a ride? You can take the car to NYU once I'm done with it, if you want." Because he's being driven into work, damnit. Driving is lame.

"Then you better stay sane," Peter says, leaving it at that. Without everything else… he does believe his brother could be a good President, or Senator— or any of the other things that he might become in politics. "Yeah, I'll use the car. I need to get dropped off at my apartment for a few minutes too— but it beats walking. They didn't really have cabs in the future, Nathan. I walked more in the last month than I have in my entire life. And flew too." He flew a lot. Much faster than walking. Moving to grab his TMNT bag, he'll ride in the car with his brother over to HQ, then take the car for a portion of the day.

Nathan glances back at Peter - or rather, specifically at what he's wearing. "Yeah, you might want to see about getting changed," he says. "Unless you're wanting Elena to run right back to Spain or something." The comment is necessary because he's the older brother. Peter isn't spared just because he's been through a month of hell, after all, even as Nathan holds the door open for him. "No cabs, huh?" That's just plain bizarre

"It could be worse— I could have shown up in bloody clothes practically hanging on by threads," Peter says, deathly serious, though it could sound flippant. It isn't. He had very few choices. "But yeah— I want my own clothes." Hand me downs weren't nearly as awesome. And after he found out the coat his… "wife" gave him actually belonged to Sylar? It got left in the future. "It was really weird— but the streets were pretty empty." Unless one counts the armored cars.

Bloody clothes hanging— Nathan gives Peter a resentful look. Don't make me worry unless you're gonna explain it, it communicates, but otherwise… Peter is here, and alive, so Nathan lets it go. "Really?" he says, of cars, as they move through the mansion. "So the economy goes to hell along with everything else, but at least the news of no cars in New York will keep the hippies happy," he says, dryly. "The future must be stopped."

"Yeah— save the cabs, save the world," Peter teases at this point, clapping his hand against his brother's back, and actually smiling, partially.

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