Date: April 5th, 2010
Peter drops in on Nathan and happens to find Tracy, too.
Rolling out of bed, Nathan runs a hand through his hair, lazily — dressed in only his navy blue pyjama bottoms. It had been a sleepless night and KeLyssa hadn't come back. With an equally lazy yawn he stands while reaching both arms towards the ceiling and stepping towards the window. As he lowers his arms to his side, he glances at his right arm before shaking his head and running his fingers over the black tattoo of celtic knots — that of his former gang. It feels like a lifetime ago he got that.
A glance is given to the bed and to Tracy — he doesn't want to wake her though if she is sleeping, and so he stares pensively out the window.
Tracy happens to have been awake for some time, but her pose curled comfortably on her side, blonde hair tucked behind one ear, remains still and serene. However, her eyes open, already alert for the day, already thoughtful. She tracks Nathan's wandering around and continues to say nothing, staying just as still for awhile yet — but eventually, she breaks her stillness by snaking a bare arm out to the small table beside the bed, picking up the cell phone to lie there to check the time, and the unlikely possibility of missed messages. She would have heard it.
There's some things that destroy polite manners. Abilities seem to have done that for Peter. With teleportation, he almost never knocks anymore— his future self had pretty much stopped completely. It just wastes time teleporting into hallways he doesn't know well, when he could go straight to the person in question.
That's usually what he does these days. When it doesn't completely fail.
Today it doesn't. Lucky them.
A puff of air expands to make room for him as he folds space to place himself in this new location. He's facing his brother, and doesn't notice the woman in the bed at first, "Nathan, I need to borrow you to— " his voice trails off as something catches in the corner of his eye, movement. He looks…
There's a twitch of his eyebrows, his forehead tenses, and then he looks away, back to Nathan. "It's— It's Claire's birthday. I wanted to do something for it and figured you should be there."
The appearance of SURPRISE Peter, is enough throw Nathan off his balance, at least a little. Staring at random forestry out the window that transforms into his younger brother is enough to set him off course. He takes a step back and nearly trips. When the words register, his, "Geez, Pete! You could kill a guy from a heart attack doing that!" He attempts to catch his breath, while raising a hand to his chest. "Don't you knock anymore?" his expression is good humoured, at least as a smirk edges his lips.
As Peter's gaze turns to the movement, Nathan's follows, but only for a very small second. "So…" he glances out the window again "…Claire's birthday?"
Tracy immediately tenses when she realizes there's suddenly another presence in the room, hearing the voice before seeing its source, and she shoots to sit up faster than she likely would have thought possible of herself. Fortuitously (at least for her), the woman is clothed, at least in part, sheets giving way to a white, lace-trimmed, but modest shirt. With the surge of adrenaline and a healthy dose of caution, she can already feel a very cold defense mechanism springing to her hands as they press into the pillow behind her, fingers digging into the fabric.
… It only takes a second for Tracy to recognize who the intruder is, though, and she instantly relaxes. In comparison to angry, wide-eyed alarm, the look that takes over the woman's face is rather blasé. While the brothers talk about "Claire", she only folds her hands on the sheet in front of her.
"You always seem to say that, and you're always surprised when I appear," Peter says, shaking his head a bit. Cause really, it shouldn't be a surprise anymore. It saves time and it's convenient. Yeah, it could be startling, but… "I don't like to travel publicly. Not right now. Maybe when things go back to normal and I can actually take a car places, I can start knocking again." There's something annoyed in his voice, whether it's the commentary, or the audience…
"Yeah, it's her birthday. I said I'd throw her a party and get you to come, so get dressed."
"You appeared right in front of my face… I'm not sure who wouldn't be surprised, Pete." Except maybe their mother. "Now? It's ridiculously early and I have things I have to do here…" like try to figure out what to do about KeLyssa (but only if she comes back). "…and a little warning would be appreciated."
As if on cue, there's a small rap at the door. "Ms. Strauss!" a small voice calls on the other side of the door. "I had a baaaaad dream… annnnnd I heard noises! Lots of noises! Like Mr. Petrelli… he shouldn't yell so early…"
Recognizing the voice, Nathan rolls his eyes and raises a hand to his head, murmuring, "I thought she lived in the kitchen…"
Tracy makes no bones about watching and listening in on Nathan and Peter — it can hardly be called eavesdropping, under the circumstances. And, under the circumstances, her expression remains cool, if mildly annoyed. Until, that is, the rap on the door. Just an instant she almost looks more alarmed than she did when someone teleported into the room. "Just a secooond…" she calls out with restrained exasperation, shooting a glance to Nathan after the fact. Tracy reaches down to the bottom of the bed where a simple white robe lies amidst the linens and slips it on, lashing it shut as she slides out of bed to open the door a crack. "Don't worry, everything's fine," she says to the little blonde girl outside. After a moment's thought, she swings the door open all the way. "Why don't you go tell Mr. Petrelli all about your dreams."
Little… blonde girl? Peter blinks in confusion at the voice, and looks toward the girl when the door is opened. If he felt bad about teleporting in, he might feel even worse all of a sudden. Who? he seems to ask as he directs his eyes at Nathan. Who is very accurate to what comes out of his mouth a moment later. "Um— are you busy? With— ?" Okay, so he doesn't say who?, but his tone certainly implies it. What is it with his brother and blond girls, anyway?
Nathan shoots Tracy a shrug followed by a distinct look. Clearly he's none-too-thrilled about this entire situation. Between Peter's entrance, the ten-year-old's bad dream, and being out by said ten-year-old he wishes he could redo the morning. "Thanks Tracy," he smirks, verifying his companion's identity without needing to directly answer him. The statement is followed by a small shrug.
"It was reaaallllllly scary," the child explains wide-eyed to Tracy, and then she nods emphatically. "I bet he'd understand! He drinks milk out of the bottle!" Somewhere, somehow, in her child-brain this makes perfect sense. The little curly haired blonde skips over to where Peter and Nathan are standing, issuing Peter a small scowl and then whispering all-too-loudly — so loudly, in fact, that anyone in the room can hear, "Mr. Petrelli, who is he?!" She can't very well share her dream with a stranger.
"Nathan," he corrects again with a sigh. "He is my brother."
"Oh," she manages before her lips curl upwards into a broad grin, "Did he sleep over?!" This seems to be a very exciting prospect. "I love sleepovers!"
Nathan's cheeks redden as he shakes his head again, "No."
Tracy would easily be content with doing the morning over, too, but despite her cool demeanour, she may just appear to be the least annoyed, and most unruffled, among the adults. Turning away from the open door, she looks straight at Peter and addresses him directly. "She has an ability," she explains frankly, just the slightest hint of impatience to her words. "Like everyone else who's staying here." That ought to give Peter a hint about where he is, if he didn't already know. A safe house, not unlike his own, but obviously … there are some differences.
She whisks off to a sparsely filled closet behind Nathan to rifle through it, speaking with her back turned. "If you have to go, Nathan, I have it covered here."
"Oh. How many people are staying here?" Peter has to ask, looking at the girl and tilting his head to the side, wondering what ability she has, and what he might have just inadvertently picked up. "Hi, my name's Peter. I'm this lug's younger brother," he points at Nathan, trying to smile despite the tension for the little girl's sake. How many of them are there?
It seems he meets a new one every day. "I need to borrow Nathan for a while, though, but I guess you can still have Aunt Tracy take care of you."
"Are you sure?" Nathan asks Tracy. "What about …." KeLyssa. "Not that I'd be very helpful with that…" Reason doesn't appear to be what KeLyssa is looking for.
The blonde girl's dark eyes stare at Peter intently, still not quite sure, but she likes his smile. "Do you drink milk out of the bottle?" She narrows her eyes at him, but she's smiling so it's probably part of some game. She glances from one brother to the other and then nods at Peter. "I bet Aunt Tracy would love to hear my dream…" She skips over to where Tracy is standing and points to a particular blouse in the closet, "I like that one."
After she traipses away, Nathan turns back to Peter, "So. Is Ma still there?" The question sounds neutral enough.
The much older blonde in the room does a double-take at the moniker Aunt Tracy. "Nine," she answers Peter decisively while turning back to the closet. "Including us." Eight, if KeLyssa doesn't come back. She gives the child a vaguely skeptical look, but smiles ever-so-slightly and chooses the indicated blouse which, unsurprisingly, is a faint shade of pink. A few items of clothing over her arm, she leans down to speak to the little girl. "Just— go on downstairs, alright," Tracy says pleasantly enough, smiling. "I'll be down in a few, you can … tell me then."
Tracy answers Nathan on her way past the brothers, striding toward a door in the bedroom that must indicate a bathroom. "Unless you rigged KeLyssa with a GPS device while I wasn't looking, I don't know that there's much we can do."
Nathan knows how to dodge questions, Peter knows how to too. So he latches on something else instead, "Is someone missing? If you have a photograph I might be able to find them. It's not a promise, but it's a possibility. I could give it a few tries in the next couple of days if she hasn't come back, too." He tried so many times with Nathan and it failed. Maybe if he knows the person less, has less emotional attachment, he'll actually suceed in using the little girl's ability.
Instead of flying into the ceiling.
"If you have a picture I can look for her during birthday party."
"Ok-ay! I like sitting at the table anyways~" the blonde girl chimes in a sing-song voice before skipping out the room and presumably downstairs to the kitchen.
"I swear she sits there, waiting all day long," Nathan smirks before he sighs and shakes his head at Peter "I don't have a photo. I don't tend to walk around with pictures of my staff." That would just be weird. "And I have no idea where she would've gone." Now it's Nathan's turn to extract clothes from the sparse closet.
Tracy takes a moment to add a suggestion. "There might be one in her apartment." But she doesn't know where that is; Nathan does, as she remembers the mention of it. "Or online." Newspaper article. Facebook. "Plenty of opportunities to have your face on the internet." And with that sage advice of logic, she disappears, calmly closing the bathroom door behind her.
"What's her full name? I'll glance around and see if it comes up," Peter says, based on Tracy's suggestion, even as he watches his brother beginning to get clothes on. No, he's not going to let him out of birthday party with his daughter! "Just so you know, I went ahead and bought you a card and a present. I figured you probably forgot. Despite the fact she's your daughter." Yes, he's saying that on purpose.
"KeLyssa Gallagher. She's been in two different safehouses and we know she was on their radar again," Nathan replies pulling a white t-shirt over his head. "Can't I just like… meet you there?" he asks again, shaking his head. "And no, I didn't forget." For once — they even talked once upon a time. "I was going to stop by later today." His jaw tightens some. "For Claire." Beat. "And to talk to Ma."
"You actually remembered? Well, good, you can stop by on your own, but if you don't show up in a few hours, I'll come and find you," Peter says, shifting his coat around, before glancing one last time at Tracy. KeLyssa Gallagher. He'll look into that first, then teleport back to the house. "Mom is still there, though. I bet she'll look forward to talking to you. And buy her your own present while you're on the way. It'll mean more from you."
And then— he's gone. As quickly as he appeared.