House of Cards


claudine_icon.gif peter_icon.gif

Scene Title House of Cards
Synopsis A delicately balanced mountain of lies begins to find itself on shaky foundations, as Peter starts to question the nature of his hospital stay.
Date September 24th, 2008

Primatech Research: Level 5




The rhythmic beeping of the machinery Peter is hooked up to is the same as it is every day that Claudine checks on her patient. Bound once more to his bed within the cell in Level 5, Peter Petrelli remains consistently unaware of his condition or the predicament that has found him imprisoned here within the Company's confines. In fact, his mental state has left him so divorced from reality that he isn't even aware he is a prisoner — yet. Still no signs of improvement, with his abilities seemingly gone without a trace. He remains as harmless as an ordinary person, and one who has, through manipulation and deception, come to be compliant to the Company's wishes.


After all, as far as Peter is aware, he is a danger to himself and those around him. Though, even if he may not be aware of it, that idea may not be entirely far from the truth.

A knock can be heard on the door as the good doctor steps into his room. A warm smile curls onto her lips as she chirps brightly. "Hello, Mr. Petrelli, how are you feeling today?" she asks curiously as she immediately heads on over to his restraints, starting to loosen them. She's here now afterall and therefore she can let him go, or rather give him some movement.

"Is there anything I can do for you?" she asks curiously.

Stirring Peter from sleep, Doctor Salonga is presented with a groggily half-awake Peter, who awkwardly smiles at his clinical overseer with a somewhat distorted smile. "Oh, morning already?" In a windowless cell as he is, there is no way for Peter to be aware that it is well past seven in the evening. As his restraints are released one by one, Peter manages an awkward smile to Claudine.

"You could take me for a walk." He offers with a hopeful, if not somewhat joking smile. Peter seems to have become keenly aware of his confinement, though perhaps not the extent of it. His eyes wander sleepily towards the large glass window, for once not finding the looming man watching him today. His eyes eventually wander back to Claudine as his ankles are unbound, legs moving from side to side in their freedom. "Makes it kind've hard to sleep, being pinned down like this…"

There's a moment's pause as she starts communicating with a few of the superiors. She closes her eyes for a few moments before shaking her head. She sighs softly looking over towards Petrelli. "I'm sorry, Peter. I think we both know the answer toyour question.." and that's a no of course.

Claudine finishes undoing his restraint before pulling on over a chair and picking up a tote bag that she brought with her. "But chin up! I brought you a few things. Here's a DVD, it's remote, and of course, several movies." The movies range from sci fi to romantic comedies to horror. She doesnt know what he's into, and she hasnt bothered reading his mind to find out as such. "It plays music as well, so there's big-band like you asked and a bit of classical. I think that will help you sleep at night though.."

Eyeing the portable player, Peter looks back up to Claudine. He doesn't pay much concern to the obvious answer to his earlier question — as much was expected from him. "So, how's the prognosis?" His brows raise, sitting up on the bed he is more often than not restrained to. "None of the doctors in here will tell me about what's been going on. They've been taking a lot of blood samples," His brow tenses, and Peter looks out the glass window before peering back at Claudine. "There's no chart at the foot of my bed either, so…" So this is starting to really bug me. "I was just wondering if maybe you guys could, you know, tell em what I'm still in observation for? I… I don't think I need to be chained to a bed on suicide watch." His expression turns into something of a grimace, uncertain and anxious.

"I'm sorry, Mr. Petrelli. I guess I should be a bit more forthcoming with you."

There's genuine concern on her features as she sighs and runs her fingers through her hair. She takes a deep breath and eases on down and crosses her legs under her breath. "We've noticed something unusual in your blood count. Your blood cell count is quite low, and while you look fine, we just do not want to release you until we know more about what is going on. It's for your own health, our best specialists are trying to diagnose it though. We didn't say anything because..well, that's my doing. I did not want them to stress you out. My apologies.."

She seems quite apologetic about this, but she's a decent actress. She is a Company agent afterall.

Watching Claudine for a time, Peter nods slowly and breathes out a heavy sigh. His eyes downturn to his hands, and he cracks an awkward smile, "I'm just all sorts of a mess, aren't I?" His brows raise, a crooked smile spread from ear to ear before he rolls his shoulders in a defeated sigh, not moving up from the bed as he stares blankly down at the cover of one of the DVDs. "If it's not one thing it's another with me, no wonder no one has come by to check on me…" His fingers curl against his palms, closing into fists before opening slowly again as an awkward and self-depreciating laugh slips past his lips. "I'm an embarrassment."

"What am I? Chopped liver?"

A hearty chuckle escapes her lips as she tries to add a little brevity to the situation as she has visited more often than she really needs to. She smiles warmly and crosses her legs to get a tad bit more comfortable before reaching out to pat his leg gently. "Chin up, Mr. Petrelli. Why do you say you're an embarrassment? Everyone makes mistakes.."

"That's not what I — " Peter cracks a reluctant smile and shakes his head, one hand running through his hair, "I just, it'd be nice to actually see someone I know, you know?" Furrowing his brows, Peter looks hesitant to speak up again, but then only affords Claudine a smile as he slides his legs off of the bed, setting the portable DVD player aside as he slowly stand sup straight, twisting his back and raising his arms above his head.

"I'm a public humiliation," He says after a few moments, eyes directed down at the floor. "My brother's working so hard to get that senate position, and I'm throwing myself off of roofs and… and acting like an embarrassment to the whole family." One hand moves up to his forehead, and Peter's fingers feel something out of place. His head quirks to the side as his index and middle fingers begin feeling the crease of the scar that cuts across his brow and down his cheek, "W-what is…" It seems he finally noticed.

"That's from your landing.." she explains, wrinkling her nose as she chews on her bottom lip before looking down towards the floor. Oh, why does he have to ask all the hard questions when she's the only one around? So. Not. Fair. Good thing she can make things up on the fly, and the video surveillance would make it available to the other agents.

"And you're not a public humiliation, Mr. Petrelli. You need to be strong so you can get better." she says, smiling cheerily.

"Is…" Peter seems more concerned about the scar now, "It's huge, I…" Peter looks around for a moment, only now noticing that there's no mirrors in the room. "Just — I mean, how bad is it?" Looking at Claudine with a worried expression, Peter keeps running his fingers up and down the length of the scar, "H-How long was I out for!?" Finally realizing that he also wasn't bandaged when he came to, his eyes dart about the room frantically before looking back to Claudine. "How long was I unconscious for a scar this deep to heal this fast? T-that — That would have taken weeks!" What the hell is going on here Peter takes a step back from Claudine, None of these doctors have said what hospital I'm at. Why does my head hurt so much!? Peter winces and holds the side of his head, then looks back up to Claudine. A scar like that would take weeks to heal, why wasn't that mentioned before? My injuries? This doesn't make any sense! He's panicking, things are starting to not make sense on a scale a bit too large for him to cope with.

Oh. This one is a toughie. A definite toughie. She closes her eyes and her cheeks flush a bright tinge of red as she chews on her bottom lip while wrinkling her nose for a few moments. She takes a deep breath and sighs a little before looking towards him. "Mr. Petrelli..can you keep a secret? I will answer everything if you promise not to say anything.."

Peter hesitates, standing on the other side of the bed, breathing hastened. By now his hands have come up to find that his hair has been trimmed as well, cropped close on the sides and short on the top, a completely different hairstyle than he last remembers having. There's a marked look of concern in his eyes as he looks back down to Claudine, "Start explaining." There's a firmness, adamancy about Peter now, something he seemed to be lacking not long ago, "Tell me… tell me what the hell is going on."

"I was the first one who saw you. There was blood all over your face, but before the other doctors could come..I.." and she looks down, doing her best acting. She hesitates, not quite sure how to say it, as she has to make it seem sincere afterall. "I..I dont think I can tell you my's too much to bear.."

"Saw me?" Peter narrows his eyes slightly, looking at Claudine suspectly, "What're you talking about." He begins to back away a bit more, eyes flitting over to the glass window, then back again, "How long was I unconscious for." Peter's tone of voice becomes more forceful, and when he says that his hand moves up to his head, Hurts, damnit. He stumbles once, covering his face one one hand, eyes lifting back up from where they dizzily swim to Claudine, staring at her between his fingers. "What happened to me?"

"When you came into the ER, there was a big cut on your face. I..healed it.." Oh yes, she's a good actress, closing her eyes as she barely makes the last part above a whisper. She waits for his reaction as she starts crying, or at least forcing tears from her eyes.

Peter stares, blankly, at Claudine. His brows lower, eyes narrow, no way in hell. "You think that's funny!?" It seems Claudine's attempt has backfired, "You think that's funny, just because I…" Peter curls his hands into fists, storming past his EKG machine before shooting a sharp glare at Claudine, "Just because I had some delusions you can make fun of me for it!?" His voice is raised, temper and blood-pressure flaring, "Was I in some kind've coma? Why didn't you tell me I was out for so long!?" Peter is furious at this point, he's gone so far to convince himself that his delusions of flight were just that, delusions, and now this.

"I healed it. I would've done enough to make sure you wouldnt scar, but the other doctors were coming. If you want to be angry, then fine.." she says, seeming genuinely hurt as she closes her eyes and turns around, not facing him. She eases on up and takes a deep breath, breathing heavily, just to add to the effect.

Peter tenses, his hands clenched down at his side, and now he doesn't know what to believe. Is she serious? Does that mean I can actually fly? His mind races as he turns to the side, hands raking through his hair, why am I so angry? He's trying to puzzle things out, thoughts are coming to him but the answers are all clouded in that damaged head of his. Finally, Peter looks back towards Claudine with a suspicious expression. "This is some kind've test. You're screwing with me, trying to see if I'm still crazy. Well it's not going to work!" Peter storms back over to the bed, "I know people can't fly, people can't heal others like that!" He looks down at the restraints, then back up to Claudine, "I… I know I was wrong, I don't need you trying to…" He falters, eyes narrowed, this is too much, none of this makes sense, "I don't know what's going on, but I'm done. Did my mother commit me, is that it?"

"You believe what you want then." She turns back around, definitely looking hurt as she chews on her bottom lip. Her own mascara is slightly smidged as she starts to put him into his restraints once more. "I have other patients to look after, you take care and rest.." she says, sounding just a bit bitter. Her acting wasnt that good..or is this still part of the act?

Watching Claudine for a moment, Peter just nods slowly, looking down at his right hand is slid through the restraints even while he's standing. He climbs back up into the bed, hesitant to make anything more of a scene in case this was some weird psychological exam. First chance I get, I'm going to see what the hell is going on out there. Peter's eyes focus on the door to his cell as he remains quiet, settling down on the bed as his arms and legs are restrained. Next time she lets me out, m'gonna figure out where the hell I am, and what's going on. Somebody's going to start giving me straight answers. His suspicions were abound now, Was I in a coma? God, is that why Nathan hasn't come by, or mom? Or did they just throw me into a mental institution and lock me up for life, He affords a feigned smile to Claudine, "Thanks… for the movies." A somewhat odd change of tone, he doesn't seem to be a very adept liar. Too many weird things going on. Play dumb, Pete, play it cool. You can figure this out… Peter relaxes his head back down against his pillow once he's restrained fully again. Just not right now.

Mental note. The patient is starting to figure out the weirdness. Surely this will go into the report. Claudine just starts distancing herself from the patient once more, losing her warm demeanor as she just shrugs her shoulders. This time, he's held just as tight before and once he's set up, she starts to head towards the door, not saying anything.

The silence in the room is broken only by the monotonous beeping of the EKG and EEG monitoring Peter's vitals once he's hooked back up to them. With his eyes staring blankly up at the ceiling, Peter's trying to put togther the pieces of a puzzle he can't even begin to imagine the size of. What seems strange now, seems out of place and so unfamilar is just the beginning of something far more disconcerting.


And it's only a matter of time before someone slips up.


And the truth comes out.


Memo to the rest of the medical staff: Do not release him anymore…

September 24th: Pizza and Plotting
September 24th: Back To The Stage
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