2007-08-29: DF: Spinning Compass


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Peter and Molly meet on the Rooftop of Destiny and find that the other is not at all what they were expecting.

August 29th, 2009:

Spinning Compass

Deveaux Building - Rooftop

The Rooftop of the Deveaux Building. Still frequented these days, even if the building itself is in disrepair. Central Park is visible in one direction, the rest of the city in another. The pigeon coups have no new origami cranes, and hasn't since the last one that Peter folded up and placed into the wired mesh frame. No response. Still. It's worried him, but he's just about given up on this form of communication. What he brought with him this time, though, is a small, battery operated radio. His brother resigned from office. And his broadcast was interrupted. After that… nothing. There's music playing, but no new news. The night is cool, thanks to the cloud cover of the whole day, but still rather humid, sticky. He sits near the edge of the roof, up against the wall that he'd been sitting when he first saw his brother in this time.

The Deveaux Rooftop. The rooftop of destiny. Really, it shouldn't be the highway where old acquaintances and friends meet up, but there's something about it that just lends itself to just such occasions. If Peter has felt like he's had a bit of a shadow for most of the afternoon and into the night, well, that's because he has. Molly's been keeping to the shadows and trying to make sure that she's unnoticed, but this is seriously a curiosity. And even now Molly can't pass up a good mystery. Though she doesn't have invisibility or the possibility of softening her footsteps, she's still small and knows how to hide. From the inside of the ruined, small greenhouse, the girl peeks out through the broken glass at Peter and his radio. She's trying to puzzle him out, a curious and thoughtful expression mirrored murkily a couple of different times in the shattered glass fragments still hanging on to their frames and on the ground. Curious, she shifts her feet, some glass making a soft tinkling sound on the ground. Without a curse or any other sort of noise to give her away, she quickly ducks down to the ground, hopefully out of sight.

The glass falling to in the greenhouse actually gains his attention fairly quickly. Peter looks up and tunes out the music for a moment. It'd been a boring song anyway. Reaching, he turns it down until it's barely a whisper, pushing himself to his feet. A few times he'd thought someone had been following him, he'd even slipped into invisibility to avoid it, but now— Once he's on his feet, he starts to move towards the source of the noise, the greenhouse that had been cleared out after the owner died. No longer does it house life— no more than the pigeon coup. Only a few pots remain to even show what it's function bad been back in the days past. "Hello?" Every time he'd been up here, he had a surprise meeting with someone from his past. "Hiro?"

Slowly, Molly rings around, hoping that she can find a place to hide or to slip out. Peter's invisibility before holds no meaning to her, as she wasn't using her eyes to track him. It wouldn't matter where he went, she could find him. Molly is certainly not Hiro, but she's also not sure she really wants to actually face this man. She's almost certain she knows who this is - what he is. What he represents. Her curiosity to him was a morbid thing, a moth drawn to a flame. She just couldn't help herself. But, now that she sees him, this is not what she wanted. Unfortunately, there's no good place to hide in a cleaned out greenhouse. Pressed up against a corner, should Peter enter the greenhouse, he'd easily see her. She doesn't look much different from her younger self. Her hair is shorter, only shoulder length, but still very blonde. She still has that innocent look on her face when she's not actively pulling it into a sneer or a smirk and she gives the door a very trapped look. Oh, this isn't fun. This isn't what she wanted. In fact, she looks a little scared.

With no where to hide, it doesn't take long for Peter's eyes to fall on the young now-teenager. Even in the lack of light, he can still see her, and recognize her. There's a visible blink, as if stunned, and he actually steps back a little. She's the last person he expected to see here. Then after a moment, he registers her fear and spreads his hands in an attempt to comfort. "It's okay— It's fine— I'm not…" Here to hurt you. Is she looking at him like that because she knows the man he became in this time? That look of disgust or fear or hatred— he'd seen it before. But he couldn't believe such an innocent little girl would look at him like that. "Molly? It's all right— really." He comes in peace?

No no no, it's not alright. Molly just stares at Peter in disbelief, in shame, in something she even she can't describe. The young girl he knew is dead in many ways, gone in this time forever. Slowly, she rings her way around, trying to keep the same distance between the two of them. The disbelief, fear and shame gradually melt into suspicion. "You're dead," she tells him with something like accusation. "You're supposed to be dead. I shouldn't be able to find you." It's not fine. This is wrong. This is all wrong!

"…What?" Peter asks, not really understanding what she's saying at all. There's no— what does she mean by that? Everyone's told him what he was up to since he got here— what this other self had been doing, but never did they outright seem to believe he was— supposed to be dead. Shouldn't be here, sure, but… "I'm not dead. I— I wasn't— Well, maybe I've dead a few times, but not— permenantly." There's a lot of differences between dead-dead and dead. And he's never been dead-dead. Just dead once every month or so. "Look, it's— you don't have to be afraid of me. I'm just— Remember when we saw each other in the Plaza? Two years ago? When you hugged me and… that's the last time we saw each other. Cause I'm like Hiro— I'm from— just after that."

There's a glare and then Molly takes off, pushing past Peter if she has to so that she's no longer trapped in that ruined glass house. It's claustrophobic and she can't deal with it at the moment. "No! Stop it!" This is what she was afraid of, this is what she didn't want to hear, about who this Peter is. Matt, Mohinder…everyone, they all changed, all became a part of this time and it was easier for her to discard them. This Peter…this Peter is her old hero of the past. Right in front of her. Reminding her of old times, of how she used to be, of how things were before this future. Of family dead and those she has helped Sylar kill. "Stop it. You can't be here."

The only thing past him is the rooftop, which is certainly not safe for a young girl to be running on. "Molly, wait— hold on!" Peter looks shocked as she runs right past him, out onto the rooftop. It's a pretty decent sides rooftop. Turned down as it is, a soft song starts to play, though too soft to really be recognized just yet. Moving after her, he reaches out to try and snag her arm, worried that she might do something silly like… run right off the roof. "I'm going back, I just— wait a minute. Why…?" Why is she so afraid of him? He understood some of the others, with what he'd turned into, but this little girl… it almost hurts as much as the way Elena yelled at him, pointed a gun at him. Almost. If only because she's so innocent and sweet— or the one he'd known had been.

The more he talks, the more frantic Molly gets. She brought this on herself by following him, but it was something she couldn't stop herself from doing. The moment that Peter snags her arm, the girl uses her forward momentum to yank forward on Peter to hopefully pull him off balance and then moves to sweep his legs out from underneath him, giving him a forceful shove on the chest to help with the action. This is not the Molly he knows. This Molly is not sweet, she is not innocent, and she is not as silly as she may seem. "You. You're not supposed to be here." While innocent and scared before, now she looks angry, murderous even. "You're not supposed to see us like this. Stay dead."

That certainly was not what he expected. Peter gets knocked down onto the hard rooftop, blinking up at the clouded over sky for a moment, before he looks up at her. She just— yeah— Little lessons with Elena and Eric or not, he'd never expected a little girl to push him down quite like that. Especially not this one. Pushing himself up into a sitting position, he blinks. "Molly— I don't understand. What— what did I do? I'm not dead." He's been dead so many times, though, but why would anyone… doesn't want him to see them like this— stay dead. It contridicts so much of what he's heard people say— except… "I'm going to fix this." He's said it so many times in the month he's been here— he still means it.

"You can't fix this." Molly looms over at Peter, ready to fight, to flee to do whatever she needs to to get this through to him. "You already told me that. Two years ago. You'd fix this. You'd kill him, you'd make sure that he never hurt anyone again. But you didn't. You lied." She looks like she's about to kick him, to jump on him and stomp, to do something painful. But, then, she just takes a step back, shakes her head and when she looks at him again, she smirks and tilts her head a little. It's a gesture eerily reminiscent of Sylar. "You always try and fix everything around you, but you can't even fix yourself. You couldn't stop yourself from exploding, you couldn't stop Sylar. You couldn't even save your brother."

"I didn't— I wasn't…" Peter looks visibly wounded. How can someone really argue with a girl when they know that— he really had failed her in a way. The one of this timeline didn't kill Sylar. He already knows this. He lied about killing him to everyone. But he hadn't. And— she's not wrong. He hasn't been able to fix himself. He never has. His brother stopped him from exploding and he'd always relied on the strength of others. However… "I didn't know what I do now— I've been here over a month now, Molly— it's— things will be different this time. I know more. I can stop things from happening." He didn't save Nathan. "I can stop Nathan from turning into what he has. I can stop Sylar this time…" He has to believe he can.

There's no quarter, no sorrow for hurting Peter - either physically or mentally - Molly doesn't care about feelings any more. Crouching down, she inches forward just slightly so that she's all but eye level with Peter. "Peter. Peter Peter." It's a sigh, as if she's correcting a particularly silly child. "Oh, you don't even know." How would he? Sylar's ruse was so good that not even Peter's brother knew he had been had. "You can't stop this; you can't fix anything when you're dead. You lose, Peter. He kills you and takes over your life. You've been dead for years. A month in this place isn't about to help you. You'll stay dead this time." With her index finger, she points right at his neck. Then, her smirk turns into a satisfied grin and with an unhurried movement she draws a line right across it - effectively decapitating him if she had Sylar's power. "Game over."

Dead. Dead for years. The finger that draws an imaginary line across his neck gets looked at wordlessly, eyes staring. Peter can't even blink yet. The finger attracts his eyes far too much— he can't look away. That's impossible. Someone would have noticed, wouldn't they? Someone would have— everyone mentioned how much he changed. How different he was. How terrible, how mean, how reckless… the little regard he had for human life, the lives of his teammates— all of it. "That's— I'm dead?" He has to ask— he has to clarify. He's really starting to hate this rooftop. Maybe he'll stop coming up to it when he needs to think. But now he knows and— "Son of a bitch," now he stands up. That man— he's hiding in his body. He's killing people with his face. It has to change— he can't let this happen. "It's not over. I'm getting a second try at this." He just has to do things differently, change things. Make a different choice.

The shock the disbelief that crosses Peter's face is enough for Molly. The girl rocks back on her heels and then stands once Peter does. "It was the most wonderful secret. The best practical joke that only I knew the punch line to." That's the most that Peter will get as a confirmation of his status as living or dead. But, really, it should be enough. The girl is a little unhinged, but she speaks the truth. And she can see it dawning on his features once it sinks in. All she does is laugh at his determination. "A second chance. Oh, he'll love that. A chance to kill you twice. How wonderful. Not that he already needs your power. I guess it will just be for the principle of the thing. The sport of it." When did the girl get so interested in blood, when did she stop being afraid of it?

Wince. The fact that Sylar doesn't need his ability at all makes Peter worried, but it's not really the point here— It's going to happen again. Maybe before he has a chance to leave. Which actually… "Good. I'm not sure I can leave this place knowing he's walking around with my face." He'd already made mention with Lachlan about wanting to find him, wanting to try and fight him, finish what he couldn't two years ago. Little did he know, right? But this man's already killed him— more than once. And he can't afford to die. Too many people are counting on him. It's her demenor over this topic that gains his attention most. "What happened to you, Molly? This isn't the girl I knew back in Kirby Plaza."

There's a flash of annoyance that passes across Molly's face at the question, at his stubbornness. It's not like she didn't expect it. But, if Peter was expecting a sobbing confession of what happened to her over the past two years, well, he's sorely mistaken. "I'm not, no no." She's still here to tell him the truth. Taking a few mincing steps backwards, she still has that unnerving smile on her face. "I was attacked by a herd of moose," she replies at first. "No, that's not it. I found out that Santa Claus wasn't real." She could go on for awhile like that. But, no. Instead, despite the fact that she just stepped backwards, she takes a few steps forward to get in Peter's personal space. So she doesn't have to speak very loud. "He found me. And he kept me. And he thought I was just such a lovely toy. Wasn't I just a good girl when I found people for him? All but handed him new abilities to collect? Doesn't that just make it easier on me?"

Part of him is horrified. That man, walking around with his face. No wonder all of his friends noted his complete disregard for the people that worked under him. No wonder they hated him. No wonder he'd been unable to save his brother… Mourning himself will happen later. Right now, Peter's found a new determination to fix this. And all he has to do is make sure he doesn't fail this time. Sylar found her— turned her into this. He shakes his head, disgusted, and… guilty. He failed her. "I'll just have to kill him before he finds you this time around." This kind of determination may just get him killed again. But what else would she expect from him? This is who he is. "You're not an object— you're more than your ability. I don't want anyone— not the Company— not Sylar— to treat you like that." That's why he'd sent what he did to Mohinder. He'd hoped the man would act on it eventually. If not— he'd intended to try and get her out of there himself. Save the whole world if he has to— one person at a time.

Molly gives Peter a snort of derision at his heroic attitude. Maybe he still has hope, still thinks he can beat Sylar, but Molly can't really think of a world without the mass murderer. She's not sure what that would be like or if she would be able to exist in it. "Like you killed him the last time?" She's not below petty, below the belt comments. "Please. Everyone was right about me. I'm too dangerous to exist. If Noah Bennet had been smart, he would have shot me three years ago when he had the chance. It's the only way any of you would ever be safe." Rolling her eyes at the sentiment, she turns away from Peter. She doesn't sound upset or sad about her lot in life. She's far beyond that. "I'm a tracking system. That's what I've always been. The first time I actually met you, you only came to me to find someone for you. That's the way it always is. It just upsets you that I ended up on the other side."

"That's not true. You're more than that. Why do you think I— you're the only person who…" Peter shakes his head. How can he argue with a girl who's obviously been driven insane? He really can't. She's seen too much, she's caused too much. She's not the girl he knew, not the one he gave the choice to. She's changed. She's not the moral compass that she'd been before. "Things'll go different. I'll plan better. I'll change something. This place— I'm stronger now— I've picked up more abilities. Abilities I wouldn't have had two years ago. I'll beat him. I'll find a way." It won't happen again. He can't let it. "I'll save you." He'll save himself.

It's true, there's no arguing with Molly. Really, there's no rational talking with her, either. There's not much she can do normally other than use her ability. That's just the way she turned out. There's very little she could be the compass to. Her own moral compass swings wildly in all directions. "If you say so." The girl throws a glance over her shoulder. For some reason she couldn't stop following him around, she needed to see who this Peter was. Now that she has, she's not sure what she got out of it - if anything. Then, there's a shrug. "Things can't go differently if you're dead." A sentiment echoed by others, but rings hollowly from her. Without a goodbye or any other sort of farewell, she moves for the door and the stairs, away from Peter and this ghost from the past.

"I won't die," he says in a last hint of defiance. But the former nurse makes no move to stop her. As soon as she leaves, Peter walks over to the pigeon coup and looks down at the pieces of folded paper inside the hutches. He's going to need a moment. The radio switches over to an announcer, this one just repeats the resignation speech from before, then goes into other news. The serial killer known as Sylar is still at large, had killed again in the last week. Unknown where he is now. THen it mysteriously switches to mentioning the terrorist attack earlier in the month, and how one more of the passangers had finally succumed to their wounds, increasing the amount of people killed by the act of the terrorist Peter Petrelli by one more. That's the last straw. He doesn't even look at the radio when he lifts his hand towards it and it flies into the side of the greenhouse, crashing through the window and shattering on the wall.

Now… now he can break down.

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