2008-04-05: The Magic Feather


Kory_icon.gif FuturePeter_icon.gif

Guest Starring:

Sasha (as NPC'd by Felix)

Summary: While the parents are away, the babysitter takes little Sasha out for a bit. Scarface clone is very different than his normal persona, too. But there's a reason for this trip.

Date It Happened: April 5, 2008

The Magic Feather

Midtown, NYC - Orangeby's

Kory has been off the scrips and gotten a clean bill of health from Dr. Cottage and his sidekick, whose name isn't spelled 'Volleyball', just pronounced that way. But the gang at the Lair still insists on treating her like she's made of spun sugar. If she looks even a little tired, they gang up and insist on her getting out and going home to bed. If it wasn't such an obvious sign of their affections, the comic book girl would find it completely infuriating.

Too early to go home to the new apartment, even though it really does need unpacking. Too early for Randall to be off work.

So she instead pops into an Orangeby's and orders a burger. Of which she takes two bites. And then decides she would rather have a fudge and butterscotch sundae, and a box for the burger and fries.

It's not too early for the door to open and a young man dressed in dark clothes to step inside with a little girl. "Now if anything starts to happen, we'll go back, but I want you to meet someone. She's really nice. Was hoping she'd be in the comic book store, or dog walking, but… you should meet her anyway." Peter's trying his best to keep holding the girl's hand, even with the whole situation. Unlike the first times the girl met him, he's been smiling a lot more since he showed up to babysit her. There's moments of seriousness still, but something about this Peter seems far more easy-going. The scar still sits on his face, but his hair actually has loosened til it hangs over his forehead, rather than slicked back all the way. And he teleports and stops time. Which he's done more than a few times for the young girl he's babysitting.

Even while she's biting down, his eyes catch her, free hand coming up to wave. That's decidedly unPeterlike…

Blink. Blink blink. Peter? Peter! … No, wait. Peter with the scar. Blink. Blink blink. Anyone looking might just think it was brain freeze from taking too fast a bite of butter cream and fudge ripple. Kory tilts her head, and waves twice — once to Peter, and once to the small girl beside her. Brown eyes tilt to that sweet little face, finding it familiar. But it's been a rough few months, and the recognition doesn't come just now.

Sasha looks up, trustingly enough. Hey, mom and dad handed her to Scarface Petrelli with their blessing, so it all seems okay for now. "Okay," she says. "Can I get an ice cream?" Here's hoping he's as much of a soft-touch as Dad.

Oh yes, he's a very soft touch, "Of course you can get ice cream," Peter says, reaching into his pocket and pulling out cash. Luckily cash from this point in time, too. "What flavor do you want?" he asks, giving a universal gesture for 'we'll be right there' to Kory as he approaches the counter to buy said ice cream. Whichever flavor she wanted is purchased, as well as a sweet tea for himself. Once they have both, he let's go of her hand and marches her over to the young woman with her burger. "Kory. I'm babysitting as a favor and I wanted her to meet you. Sasha, this is Kory."

Kory favors the little girl with a bright, warm smile. "Hi, Sasha. Nice to meet you." She nods approvingly at the child's taste in ice cream. "I think we're gonna get along just fine. How much are they paying you an hour to babysit Peter?" she asks, winking playfully.

Which would be chocolate, chocolate, and more chocolate. "Thank you," she says, sweetly. Someone's drummed manners into her, at least. She offers Kory a non-sticky hand with confidence. "Pleasedtomeetyou," she rattles off.

Chocolate is everyone's favorite! In some form or another. Peter just has his sweet tea, but he moves to sit down with the woman, motioning Sasha to follow. "I'm not getting paid in cash. Her parents are helping me with a problem." Involving his mom. And he's with them. Technically. It's hard to explain. He's currently in two… make that three if they count the one in Level 5… places at once. "We've actually talked about this girl a couple times. Remember the… first time we met?"

"I was asking her how much they were paying her to babysit you," Kory says, in that faux-pouty 'you're messing up the joke' voice. But she doesn't harp. Scarface Peter doesn't get to smile much. And then he's described where Kory knows the girl from. "Oh! Yes! I remember now." With a prompt like that, she'd have had to have suffered brain damage to not remember. Peter's working for her parents; Kory absorbs that without comment. "Enjoying springtime in New york?" she asks the little girl gently.

"It's busy," Sasha says, blue eyes wide. "And warmer. We were in Russia, and it was SO cold," She mimes shivering, no doubt helped by the ice cream. "And then we were here." She realizes she might've said too much.

"Oh. Really?" Peter says, obviously not having understood the joke. It takes him a moment before he says, "…I don't need babysitting…" It comes off indignant, before he smiles a bit. It was just a joke. And he messed it up. "I'm paying her in chocolate ice cream." At her realization, he shakes his head. "It's all right. Kory knows about me." Quite a bit more than the little girl does, even. "Have you solved your… networking problem, yet?"

Kory was about to come up with some plausible explanation for how they got from Russia to New York, but the truth is better. And Peter tried to make a joke. "Wow, you're a good influence on him, Sasha," Kory compliments the child. "And my …little issue? No. Not so much. Everybody says give it time, but I guess it's PTSD or something and I will just get that issue resolved when I resolve some of the others."

Sasha wipes at her mouth, daintily, with a scrap of napkin. "Are you sick?" she asks Kory, more softly, looking her over. "You don't look sick." She looks up at Peter. "You don't look so hot either," she adds, and pats him consolingly on the leg.

"I had a little injury is all," Kory explains to Sasha. "I'm better now. Almost." She grins broadly as Sasha declares how Peter looks. "Peter doesn't take good enough care of himself because he's taking care of everybody else."

"I'm split in two pieces right now," Peter says with a hint of a pout at being insulted by a young girl. He takes in a slow breath and glances around. No one's sleeping in the area, and hopefully nothing will go wrong with his suggestion. It's the woman's words that make him smile almost sheepishly. It's a weird sight, considering the scar, the terrible future he's witnessed. But being split in two helps. This small piece of him isn't quite as drown in the sorrows… "I was thinking that… meeting Sasha might help you," he finally says.

Sasha hugs Peter with an arm, by way of apology. "You're tired. You should probably have a nap. My mom makes me take naps, even though I am -seven-," she says, with a hint of indignation. "But then, so does Dad. I mean, he takes naps, too," she adds, perplexed. "But also makes me take them. Good," she says to Kory. And then she looks between them, hastily wolfing down the last of her ice cream. "How can I help?"

Kory raises a brow. Split in two pieces? She tilts her head, a little bewildered. She thought he was a Future Peter, not a partial clone of Peter. It's confusing. She doesn't want to disturb or frighten Sasha; given she remembers the circumstances of Peter's first meeting with her. "Naps help you grow," Kory tells Sasha sagely. "It's not a 'you're a baby' thing. It's a 'grow up big and strong' thing. I bet your mother and father would agree with me, since your dad takes naps too." She raises both brows now, pausing to have a spoonful of her sundae before adding, "I'm curious about that one myself, Peter. Do tell."

Naps are not on the list of Peter of the Future's things to do, but he nods a little at her. "That's part of it, actually. I think that… you remember what happened when we first met…" He glances down at his tea. Ahem. He never did quite say this to Kory, and he knows it's kind of a bad thing to talk about in public, especially… he leans over toward Sasha and asks, "Did they teach you how to… do what you do… to just one person?"

Oh, that. Sasha's face wrinkles in consternation. "No," she says, crumpling the napkin in her hand. "I…with the medicine, I can't do that at all. It makes mom's magic go out of control. And they….I haven't been practicing. We've been running from the bad guys," She nods to Kory, apparently willing to concede the point.

Kory reads a lot, so her mind works in odd ways. Odd 'what would be next if this were a plot' ways. She wrinkles her nose pensively at Peter, eyes drifting up thoughtfully as she recalls the strangeness of the night they met. A moment of mulling it over and the pieces fall into place. That was the first night she realized she could dreamlink. "…" She's silent a moment, before finally shrugging over another spoonful of fudge ripple. "Oh well. It's the thought that counts."

Hrm. "I know that you're already helping me. Normally when I'm doing this, I'm not aware of myself," Peter explains softly, without really explaining it well. He's a clone right now. "But I know things I don't normally know, so I know you're still having an affect on me. Maybe you can… concentrate on her? If anything goes wrong I'll stop time again and get you somewhere safe." The only power he has that can go out of control is that. No threat of going nuclear today.

"I'm doing it a little bit now?" Sasha says, still looking chagrined. She wipes her hand hastily on more napkins, and then suggests, "Maybe if she held my hand. Touching seems to make it….make it worst," she says, nervously.

"Well, it won't be worse for me, it will be better," Kory says, smiling down at Sasha. "Even if you make my magic go out of control, nothing bad will happen." A bunch of random strangers dreaming about each other for a few seconds out of an evening? Not worth the concern; or, better phrased, perhaps, as worth the risk. She takes her napkin to make sure her hand isn't sticky, then offers it to Sasha. "I'm willing to try if you are."

"You might've just been doing it when I… became like this," Peter amends a little, though it could also be he's gotten stronger since the last time he did it. "Her… 'magic' is pretty harmless." Unless Benjamin Winters has made everyone in the area fall asleep around a guy who just happens to have precognative dreams… Those three combined could be considered dangerous.

Sasha squares shoulder, sticks out her chin like she's preparing to be brave about a shot, and offers Kory her hand. "Okay," she says, quietly.

"What a trooper," Kory compliments the little girl, and takes her hand gently. She has no idea what it's supposed to feel like, so she cocks her head, and lets her eyes drift halfway closed, as if trying to tell whether she feels different on the inside. "Thank you, Sasha," she whispers out of the side of her mouth. "For being brave and trying to help me."

"Your magic… can also help people, Sasha," Peter adds softly, perhaps revealing his real reason for doing this. As far as he knows, all she's ever heard is how bad it can be, how terrible it can be… "I guess there's no way to test if it worked now…"

She makes a little face, like she's concentrating. Maybe this will help? But Sasha doesn't relinquish her grip on Kory's hand.

"No way to know unless I try," Kory says, still holding Sasha's hand gently. She bites her lower lip with her front teeth, and takes a slow, deep breath. "The first person I ever dreamwalked to," she tells them, unworried of being overheard in the hubbub of a busy restaurant, "Was my brother. I can always reach his dreams easiest."

"Is he very far away?" Peter has to ask, looking at the connection between their hands. The real version might be able to help her out better, but the clone only has the one ability. It can't really help, unless something goes wrong.

"No," Kory tells Peter, shaking her head but smiling to confirm her positive attitude. "He's been staying with friends." Her smile widens, and she tightens her fingers on Sasha's just a little bit. "And …and I think I have him. Sasha, you did it. You brought my magic back."

That's good news? Right? Sasha's grin is tentative. But then she says, "But can you do it if I'm not here? Or is it like Dumbo and the magic feather?"

Really? Yat— wait. Peter actually feels the urge to make a gesture, to stand up and raise his hands in the air. They start to come up, but he catches himself and puts them down. And then the little kid makes a good point. His mouth opens a moment, and then looks between them. "…We'll have to find that out later, I guess."

Kory considers that question. It's a good one. "I don't know. I'm hoping it was just asleep and you woke it back up. I'll tell Peter and let you know if it turns out different than I'm hoping, okay?" She reaches over to offer the little girl a hug. "Thank you for trying for me. That was really nice of you."

Sasha accepts the hug, returning it gently. "Well, maybe you need more than one treatment," she suggests.

"If your parents need me to babysit again, maybe she can show you the comic book store. It's got some really cool books. Or the dogs she walks," Peter says, actually smiling much more than the scarred face probably should. It looks very odd on the Peter from the Future. Blame the influence of Hiro's emotions on his clone.

"Any friend of Peter's is a friend of mine. Especially cute little girls who help give me my magic." Kory winks. And leans over to kiss Peter's cheek. "Thank you for thinking of this for me." Clearly it means a lot to her; but she doesn't want to get all watery in front of Sasha. Or in front of Scowly Future Peter Scarface Clone Guy. Because even though he's Peter, he's not her Peter. So to speak.

"It's nice. I mean, to be out. I was kind of tired of being in Russia. I mean, the snow was fun to play with, and the train was neat. But I missed it here," Sasha says. "And you're welcome. Dogs? You have dogs?"

A hand reaches to touch her shoulder, but Peter doesn't try to get a hug, the kiss is more than enough. He's still smiling "I'll just be glad if it works. But it was also for her." He looks at Sasha. "I think… people need to see that their… 'magic'… can help people too…" He knows well what it's like to believe the power he's been given can only hurt people. It has happened to him more than a few times. And he's not usually this optimistic anymore. Another trait of this particular clone.

"I walk dogs for people all over the city, but I'm going to get a puppy of my own soon," Kory explains to Sasha. "If Peter can bring you to visit again, I'll make sure we get you some time with a dog or a puppy, okay?"

"This is your job?" Clearly, this is a revelation for Sasha. "I bet that's nice. You get to play with them, but you don't have to pay for their food, or take care of the bad ones," She's already scheming. "Dad says we can't have a dog, at least until we get a real house."

"Next time, I'll call first," Peter says, giving her that much. He hadn't thought of it at the time. He's usually more responsible than that. "If her parents let me babysit again…" He may not have technically been given permission to leave Russia, but… too late now!

"Yep, this and the comic book store, and one besides," Kory says, finishing off her own ice cream. "I should get going. There are people I need to let know what's going on." She meets this Peter's eyes. "But any time you want to come see one of the dogs, as long as it's okay with your family, it's okay with me." She gently ruffles Sasha's hair, and heads for the cashier. "It's okay, Peter. I won't tell." She pauses at the cashier and then heads out.

A few minutes later, a waitress comes by with a $20 gift card for Sasha. And a balloon.

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