2010-04-02: Sins Of The Father



Date: April 2, 2010


After KeLyssa Leaves, things get serious…

"Sins of the Father"

Tracy's Safehouse — New Jersey

Continued From A (Not So) Modest Proposal

Tracy's gaze follows KeLyssa out with a bit of a blink and disbelieving roll. She seems relieved she's gone, giving Nathan a look that clearly expresses her thoughts: was she serious? Whatever the case, she's quick to move on from the quirky Southerner. "I told you Peter wouldn't understand our plan." Told-you-so out of the way, she sips her coffee, brows raised pointedly yet again. "That's why you need me Nathan, I know how to work any angle."

Once KeLyssa's out of range, Nathan turns to Tracy, shooting her a similar look. He's still not convinced that was some kind of joke. He takes off the sunglasses finally, setting them on the table and revealing his very puffy, very bloodshot eyes. "I know you did. Pete doesn't get it. My mother doesn't get it — " he raises a hand as if to allay any objections " — I didn't tell her about it, for the record. She's special in her own way." Nathan rolls his eyes. "And yes, it's incredibly apparent I need you. I'm glad we're on the same team here." Clearing his throat he clarifies, "That's why I'm not staying there, I don't need any of my family trying to talk me out of this…"

"I … figured something had happened," Tracy states — matter-of-fact, but very slightly softer than it could have been. She didn't pry. She still doesn't. What she does say is: "Good, don't let anyone talk you out of it. Some people might not understand but we do. I am— glad you're here. It's easier to plan."

"The Protocols found my mother, I rescued her… she admitted to essentially having me taken by them." His eyes narrow as he shakes his head. "She knew all of it. That they'd threaten the children… all of it." She didn't have to ask him, Nathan needed to volunteer the info to someone. Particularly someone who didn't matter to his mother, who, he still cares about despite it all.

Nathan inhales a deep breath very slowly, "I'm glad too." He issues her a gentle smile. "And not just to plan." He reaches over to give her shoulder a squeeze. "I like your company. Lately it seems like you're the only one that understands any of this." He sighs ands shakes his head a little.

The squeeze to her shoulder, for whatever reason, seems to come as some surprise to Tracy, however mild; she looks down to the hand before smiling faintly in turn. "Your mother sounds like a winner." She pauses as if apologetic, but the emotion never quite makes it to a sincere level. "Sorry," she says regardless. The talk of Nathan's family beyond his brother stirs an unsettling memory in Tracy and, quite out-of-sync with the rest of their conversation, she leans in, vexed, her voice taking on a slight hush, disquieted. "Nathan…" she ventures. "Your family… they…" How to say this.

He shrugs a little at the apology about his mother. There is nothing for Tracy to apologize for; his genes are what they are, there's nothing anyone can do about that. Not now. Not ever. Not really. His eyes narrow slightly at the unfinished thought. "They…?" Nathan's voice matches Tracy's voice as his head tilts and he stares at her intently.

Tracy has no way of telling how much Nathan knows, not now that he's had his memory back for quite some time, and her gaze holds a good deal of wariness. She's hesitant, and that's not something frequently shown. "I… don't… know… how much you know about your father and what he was involved in. This was… years ago. But I think you should." Bad timing, she realizes, with how Nathan feels after his night of "forgetting", but she slowly presses on. "I learned something… before I knew you."

There is little to say. There's little he would put passed either of his parents now. Nathan can feel his mouth dry as his stomach bubbles. Whatever Tracy knows it can't be good. He inhales a deep breath in an attempt to quiet his mind. It's moments like these, he appreciates his time at the monastery. "What do you know about him?" Him. Arthur. The man who goaded Logan — not that Nathan's darker parts needed encouragement isn't called Dad or Father, no, he's simply referred to as 'him'. That man.

"I know he could take abilities away." That isn't what she's trying to tell Nathan, however. No, there's something much more than that. This is a strange twist to the day and despite bringing it up, Tracy doesn't seem especially motivated to go on, but she also seems to feel it's important. "First I … wanted to find him, only by then he was dead. I told… Peter some of this. He came to me asking me… questions… I had just found this doctor— he said he knew Arthur. Your father, only I didn't know it then. They — he and the doctor, Dr. Zimmerman — they knew about a formula…"

Nathan flinches. Visibly flinches as he remembers Pinehearst. His eyebrows continue to furrow with concern as he closes the space between them even more as if anticipating the words between them could hurt others. His voice is now hushed, "A formula to make people have abilities, right?" His lips purse. Logan's memories haunt him, drawing goosebumps to his arms. With a shiver he envelopes himself in a kind of hug, but just for a moment before lowering one hand to the table and another instinctively to his head.

"Yes," Tracy says adamantly. Little does she know that her version of the story is an earlier one — it's the only one she knows, save for a guess or two about what happened later. She turns in her seat to lean forward further in, one hand set on the table and the other on her knee. "Dr. Zimmerman gave me my ability," she admits, clearly harboring resentment, a hiss to her words. "I don't know how involved your father was, but he knew and he tried to take the formula from him Dr. Zimmerman— "

Nathan's vision is cast downwards as he swallows. Tracy's ability is synthetic. Something is starting to make sense. Blinking hard, he begins to tie all of these things together: Logan's memories, the formula, Arthur's involvement. "He got it; he had it," he says quietly. "Used it again, wanted to make an army of people like us." Nausea strikes him as his face pales. His hands drop to the table, dealing with Logan's past still isn't easy, even if he's accepted the monster as part of himself.

"I was only a baby." Tracy's lips press into a frown for a second, her unease gradually turning to concern for Nathan more than herself. "I'm sorry Nathan." He's obviously dealing with memories of his own. For her, pieces of the puzzle are finally coming together. "All this … playing God, I suppose what I mean is that I don't exactly trust your family. When you got your memories back, I honestly wasn't sure what you'd know. What… you had been involved in. Who you were."

"I'm so sorry, Tracy," Nathan whispers as he runs his hands over his face, and then through his hair, simultaneously trying to wipe the news off his face and allay his headache. His stomach goes uneasy again. Something feels off. "Did they do it to others? Do you know?" his voice is a husky whisper. "I'm sorry. I am sorry." The apologies continue. His eyebrows furrow as he attempts to meet Tracy's gaze, "I don't trust them either. Not anymore." Nathan's resolve firms along with a tightened jaw.

"I don't know," Tracy admits honestly. "Dr. Zimmerman was in an institution when I found him. Something… happened to him. I didn't talk to him for long. I was… I was so angry then, that all this was forced on me without my … say, I almost froze him." So much has been forced on Tracy without her consent since then, all because of that very ability that she was given. Watching Nathan carefully, her gaze meets his, as expressive as he is apologetic. "It's not your fault. What happened to me was so long ago." Thirty-five years, to be exact.

"I know someone who would. She knows everything, apparently," Nathan scoffs bitterly. Yes, he's still angry. "But it was my father. He did this to you. He pushed more than once." He clamps his eyes shut, thinking through everything. Opening his eyes, he reaches over to squeeze Tracy's hand, "Tracy, I need your help. I need you to remind me every day of who these people," his family, "are. I can't be one of them — I can't play god. I can't give into demands just because of some presumed events that may or may not happen. Please. Please."

Tracy doesn't say anything to the request with many pleases at first, but hopefully she doesn't have to. Her hand tenses before slowly holding on to Nathan's. The woman's face is wholly serious, even dire; for once the softest thing about her is her eyes, capable of so many icy glares. Not now. Her determination is gradually coming to the fore, though, and after awhile Tracy states with resolve: "If that's what it takes."

Nathan nods determinedly. "Thank you," he whispers. He releases her hand slowly before sliding his chair from the table, picking up both of their coffee mugs and walking them to the sink. He's broken and he knows it. It's entirely different than when he'd lost his memory. When he'd lost his memory, he didn't know exactly what he'd lost. Now he's fully aware: his wife, his kids, and now his family in a way, unless he can make Peter understand. It seems impossible, but there's a chance.

Nathan grips the edges of the sink leaning towards the sink, staring at the drain, secretly longing for a simpler life.

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