Summary: Post An Invisible Thread, the Heroes S3 finale. Matt knows better than anyone the limits of a mind. No person can be truly removed from within their own mind. So if he couldn’t remove Sylar, what did he do to him?
Disclaimer: I don’t own Heroes in any way, shape, or form. Please don’t sue.
Author’s Note: I began writing this story as a way of fighting insomnia, and it wound up contributing to the insomnia as I wrote it over and over in my head.
Gabriel jerked awake, panting, one hand clutching at his chest. The blood, the bodies, his father – a dream. It was all a horrific nightmare. He exhaled quietly and groped at the bedside table for his glasses. A small arm snaked it’s way around his bare torso, hand resting on his stomach and rubbing lightly. Gabriel relaxed and leaned back against his wife.
“Nightmare?” Elle asked, her cheek snuggled sleepily against his back. They’d been married for almost two years at this point, and it was a fairly idylic marriage. Her slightly rounded stomach pressed up against his back – she was almost six months along, and while they’d been careful to make sure they didn’t know what it was going to be, Gabriel had a sneaking suspicion that it would be a baby boy.
“Yeah…” He shook his head. “It was horrible. It was as if we hadn’t lost our powers.” He turned over and slipped his arms around his wife, holding her tight against his chest. “I killed you,” he whispered, a sick sound in his voice.
Elle cuddled her head up under his chin. “You wouldn’t do that, even if you still had your powers,” she whispered, pressing a soft kiss to his throat. “I know you, Gabriel.”
Gabriel didn’t say anything – the dream felt so incredibly real. Killing her, gaining the lie detector power – he could replay it all in his head as clearly as anything that hadhappened in the last two years. It was one of the most realistic nightmares he’d ever had, and he’d had a hell of a lot of nightmares since the end of his life as Sylar. But she was right – he wouldn’t do that. He loved her, even when he had been Sylar. She was his Angel… with or without the broken watch. His arms tightened around his wife. She was right, of course. It was only a nightmare. “Sometimes your faith in me scares me a little, Elle.”
She smiled, though he couldn’t see it from where she was nuzzled into his throat. “Why? Because you don’t have it in yourself?”
“Something like that.”
Elle smiled again and kissed her husband’s chin lovingly, then wriggled out of his arms. “Come on. Big day today. I have to finish cooking.”
Gabriel smiled again, remembering – today was Thanksgiving. The first time the Grays/Petrellis (sometimes he still honestly couldn’t decide what his last name should be) would be hosting it in their new house. He got up after his wife. “That’s right. We’ve got a bird to cook.”
“I have a bird to cook. YOU have to keep me company so I don’t freak out.” She smirked. “This is the first time I’ve ever done a big family meal in my life, and I’m not going to pretend that I’m not scared.” She wrinkled her nose at him as she dressed. “Why couldn’t you be like a normal man and only come with ONE mother-in-law?”
Gabriel laughed, dressing in some comfortable pants and a blue t-shirt. He’d get dressed up before their guests started arriving. “It isn’t like I picked this, you know.”
“Oh, like you don’t love it. Having two moms who dote on you over everything you do?” She stuck her tongue out at him, then made her way out of the bedroom, one hand on her slightly bulging tummy.
Gabriel smiled. It was only a nightmare, after all. And they would have a lot of company today. The Petrellis, his biological family, were coming over. His biological mother, Angela, and his brothers, Nathan and Peter. You’d never know that they’d started out actually knowing each other as complete and total enemies – one might even say arch enemies – now Gabriel looked forward to his brothers presences almost as much as his two moms. That’s right – two moms. Gabriel Gray was actually Gabriel Petrelli by birth. But his adopted mother, Virginia Gray, was very much still part of the family, and was another guest to dinner tonight. Both moms doted on their son, but Virginia was a special case – she loved Gabriel as her ONLY son, and occasionally got into arguments with Angela that Gabriel found wholly embarassing. And loved every minute of. So yes, he had to get up.
Since the day of that second eclipse, when all of their powers had suddenly stopped working just as suddenly as they’d begun with a previous eclipse (what ever happened to those things being seriously rare?), it was as if all of them had snapped out of a dream, or something. They really were one big family – right down to the Bennetts, related through Claire being Nathan’s biological daughter. Claire and Noah were also coming for dinner today, so the whole family, biological and adopted, would be in one place.
Which was why Elle was so nervous. Last year, Thanksgiving had been at the Petrelli home. But earlier this year, at Angela’s birthday party, Elle had blurted out that she thought it would be great if everyone would come over to their place for a big family meal. Before Gabriel had even had a chance to stop her and warn her how stressed she was going to get, the plans had been made. And he had to hand it to his wife – she was handling it very well, for someone who’d never done this before.
“Elle! Elle, are you alright?” Gabriel shouted, running out of their bedroom and into the kitchen to find Elle standing over the turkey, which was on the floor, looking for all the world as if it had just been dropped out of the sky.
Elle, for her part, looked as if she was about to cry. “It slipped… I was trying to wash it.”
Gabriel quickly went to his wife, kissed her, then bent over and picked up the turkey, putting it in the sink. “It’s ok. We’ll just wash it again. See? It’s-” He cut himself off, looking at the turkey in the sink… if they’re drained of blood, then where was all that blood coming from that was draining down the sink?
He jumped and looked at Elle, then back at the sink… the non-bloody sink, with the bird sitting in it as if it intended to take a bath. “Uh… Sorry… Sorry, baby.”
Elle looked at him worriedly and hugged him. “Sweetie, if you’re still that tired, you should go back to bed. I can take care of it here, now.” She blinked up at him. “You were just staring at the sink. You stopped in mid sentence.”
Gabriel shook his head and hugged his wife in return. “Yeah… I know. I thought I saw something. It’s alright.” He kissed her, slowly and lovingly. “I’ll let you get back to work.”
Elle smiled. “Turn the parade on, will you? And put the TV where I can see it?”
Gabriel smiled – Elle loved parades. She loved everything that made their life normal and average. And he couldn’t blame her. His obsession with being special was long gone, and he was more than content to be normal – especially when being normal made him feel more special than being “special” ever had. “I’m on it, babe.”
He walked into the living room, then returned, pushing the smaller of the two TVs, the one with the stand that was on wheels, into the doorway between the living and dining rooms. He left it where Elle could see it from the kitchen., turned it on and made sure the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade was on, then headed back into the living room. The guests would be arriving soon.
As Gabriel passed the sewing kit that had a prominent place in the living room, he glanced down at it. It was open, and a pair of scissors were sticking out at an odd angle. He reached down, picked them up, and then froze. The scissors were covered in blood, as if they’d been embedded in someone’s chest. He dropped the instrument and jumped back from it as if stung by a bee, staring at it… But the moment his eyes found it again, it was a perfectly normal pair of silver sewing scissors, now lying on the floor.
“Gabriel? Are you alright? What fell?”
“Nothing. I just dropped the scissors…” He trailed off as he picked the sewing impliment up again and considered it carefully. This nightmare was taking a long time to wear off. Then again, with all the things he’d done, he was lucky that he didn’t have more days like this. He replaced the scissors in the sewing kit, closed the lid, then walked over and sat down on the couch, clicking on the big screen TV. Bleh. Football. Football is the only sport ever on, on Thanksgiving. Why was he even surprised? He settled back, absently listening for Elle needing any help, or for the doorbell to ring. The guests should be arriving, soon.