gillian_icon.gif sylar_icon.gif

Scene Title After
Synopsis The morning after between two people who can't know enough about the other.
Date November 30, 2008

Siann Hall: Gabriel and Gillian's Apartment

Meow. Meow.

Not the best way to wake up after a night like that. But it beats bombs going off, or someone screaming bloody murder.

There's an orange feline that's found it's way inside the room, somehow opening a door that'd been closed, and he's now near the foot of the bed demanding feeding in a pleading voice. Tangled in sheets that… had once been tucked in neatly, Gillian's eyes open, blinking quite a few times as she looks around, adjusting to the hint of light peeking in the window. The sunlight tells her it's morning, or nearly there— or that they slept all day. The only thing she's wearing, besides the tangle of sheets, is her watch, which would tell her the same if she looked. 8:27. AM. It'd be well dark by now if it were the evening version.

Instead of the watch, or even the meowing cat, her eyes get distracted by someone else in the bed with her. Just as unclothed. He doesn't look like a murderer when he's asleep.

Her hand reaches up gently to touch one of his eyebrows, tracing a line toward his temple— to his jaw. And she's ignoring the insistant meows of Chandra. Meow.

Hard to imagine what somewhat like Sylar might dream about. Do they fuel his ambitions or do they only punish him with guilt he doesn't feel when awake? Right now, it's hard to tell, as he lays there completely still, blank and peaceful. Perhaps he doesn't dream at all.

It's the combination of a gentle touch to his face and the insistent meowing of a ginger cat that finally draws him to consciousness, twitching away from Gillian's hand, much in the same style that Munin pointed out to him, the tendency to recoil, but it doesn't seem voluntary, half-asleep as he is. A moment later, perhaps he's gone straight back into warm, blank sleep, but then his eyes open, alertness eerily instant, and he turns his head to look at her with vague comprehension. What a surreal evening to wake up from.

"You're still here," he notes, voice rough from sleep.

"Still here," Gillian confirms in a light voice, a smile beginning to show through. It makes dimples appear in her cheeks as it widens. Her skin is somewhat flushed, not in the same way as earlier in the evening, but definitely for some of the same reasons. Not embarassment, though— she shows little of that. Doesn't even try to tangle the blankets for a hint of modesty. He knows all of her tattoos now. Even the one in latin, in a area that almost no one not in their position would get to see.

No man's property.

"You didn't think I would be?" she asks in the same tone? A lot of the tension has disappeared from her heart, from her breath, but that could be having just woken up.

Meow. Meow. Meow. :|

"It might have been smart," Sylar says, but he doesn't elaborate on that just yet, a lingering pause before he glances down the length of the bed. Modesty might have been something he knew well, years ago, but after remaining with the Company for something like a year, with cameras observing you constantly, people monitoring every inch of you, you learn to shed it like a skin.

Still, he raises a hand to grip the bed's headboard, pulling himself up to just partially sit, hand then lowering to pull sheets over himself. "Used last night to derail everything and take off before I could wake up." The thought did cross his mind, somewhere in the heat of last night, but it hardly mattered at the time. He's not sure it matters now, seeing as she didn't.

Sylar's head lands with a gentle thunk back against the headboard, eyes shut. "What does the cat want." Meow. Meow.

"That's not why I did this," Gillian says in a light voice, letting him move to sit up, and shifting a little herself. But she's shifting to stretch, laying out on the bed fully and spreading her arms above her head, even flexing her feet so her toes point. There— now she can sit up. Only then does she do so, with no attempt at all to cover. He already claimed them, anyway. "I'm not leaving," she adds, in the same tone she used with her other demands from last night.

Though a little more tired.

"I think he's hungry. One of us usually gets up and feeds him before now— and I don't think we fed him last night, either." She glances over the edge of the bed, looking at him. The tribal tattoo of a red sun with black rays stands out on her pale back, as does the tribal display at her lower back.

His gaze slides to her, observing out the corners of his eyes. Not for the first time, Sylar wishes he had something like Peter's ability to read thoughts rather than just send them— and of course, he does, but both previous experiences had been all kinds of terrible. Curse. The original holder of this power hadn't been wrong. "I didn't get a chance before I left last night," he confirms, voice mild, almost as if he's detached from the domestic conversation as he studies her. "Your note you left me was concerning. For good reason. Did you seek him out?" Whatever anger he has is carefully veiled.

While he may not be able to read thoughts, Gillian's heartbeat can be an indicator of when she lies, or omits things. There's a glance from where she'd leaned over to look at the cat and hesitates. Visibly and audibly. "No. He didn't seek me out." It's truth enough, but the reason for the hesitation comes clear when she twists to sit on the bed, fully facing him. The chinese dragon coiled on one side of her chest is fully visible, as is the star on her ribcage and the biohazard symbol on her thigh. "I was trying to find out about… you." There's a wince. "I didn't know either of the Peter's would show up. I brought my gun just in case the other one did. But it was an address that he gave me— the other Peter. The one we're going to kill. Some… loft apartment. South of the radiation zone. Belonged to a painter. Chavez or something. The other one just happened to stop by."

"Mendez," Sylar corrects. "Isaac Mendez." His eyes shut in sort of a resigned way. "Did he. Yeah I'm sure it was a big coincidence." Considering the way he often phrases things, the sarcasm might have to be detected only if you squint, but it's there. The fact that it was a coincidence is utterly dismissed by Sylar - he doesn't trust Peter, either of them, enough to not track down Gillian whenever he wanted. "You believed him," he goes on, with his eyes still shut. "You wouldn't have arranged that meeting at the basketball courts if you didn't. After everything, those paintings, you believed him."

"I don't think he had everything right," Gillian says carefully, her tone of almost reined in. Her eyes stay on his face, though his eyes are closed, and only now does she begin to move to get off the bed— not that she has much in the way of clothes in this room. She ends up walking over to where he keeps his clothes, looking for a shirt to slip on. "A lot of what he accused you of was fueled by hatred. And the idiot didn't even realize that he was the one going to destroy the city in his story— it doesn't mean he had everything right. But I believe the other him needs to die. I'm not sure the idiot does. And I'm afraid of what will happen if you ended up fighting the two of them fighting each other." Afraid…

She takes in a slow breath before she pulls the shirt over her head. He's tall. She's not. It covers her fairly well, modestly. Though she might have had an advantage naked, she's giving it up. There's a slow inhale before she faces him, a hint of her readying herself. Meow? Is it food time? No, not yet, Chandra.

"Do you kill people to get their ability?" Maybe it's the night before, all the scares, her sister's reported death, or something else entirely… but she's not exactly being brave when she says this. Trusting, maybe. Resigned might be a better descriptor.

When he opens his eyes again, he's mildly surprised to see that she's dressed the way she is, unable not to sweep his gaze over her before reining it back in to observe his own hands when her question becomes clear. There's a silence, before he's moving to sit at the edge of the bed, facing her, sheets still draped over his lap as he brings them with. Bare shins are suddenly targetted by an insistent cat, who hopefully rubs the length of his body against them, and Sylar gently, absently, nudges the feline away. Chandra. Naming him had been funny at the time.

"Like I said," Sylar says, elbows coming to rest against his knees. "He didn't lie to you. Doesn't mean he's not wrong about some things but…" His head tilts to the side in a gesture of conceding the point. "…not that." He looks at Gillian, almost warily. "It's my ability… to see how things work. But I don't think you're looking for details."

Not that. Gillian isn't smiling anymore when she raises her hands up to rub over her face, and finally push highlighted hair out of her eyes. Brown with red— when she'd had black hair the first time they met. Not that. If he could hear her thoughts, he'd hear that repeated a lot of times. The way her heartbeat sounds, some of the anxiety has returned, though when she looks at him again, lets her hands drop, it's pushing back to normal. "And the only reason you didn't kill me is because you couldn't use my ability on yourself? Is that the only one?"

"At first," Sylar says, without hesitation. He shoves the sheets aside, gets to his feet to pad over to where he keeps his clothes as well. There's a sort of restless agitation about him as he moves, the limp from a few days ago gone despite the fainter bruises at his right kneecap as he opens a drawer to root around for clothing. "But you know things are different now. Whatever Peter thinks about why you're with me still, he's wrong about that." His voice is so neutral that it's hard to tell if he's lying, telling the truth, despite the agitation obvious in the way he moves.

Considering where that's very close to where Gillian went to get the shirt she's thrown on… she has a rather good vantage point to watch his movement across the room and to the clothes. Also means she's fairly close to him when he roots around for them. Her hand reaches out to touch his wrist, potentially trying to stop his search with just a touch, but her hand is shaking a little. Only when she realizes it does her jaw tighten and she actually grabs his wrist. Can't shake if it's grabbing onto him. "Things are different, Gabriel," she agrees, but then she looks up to meet his eyes. "I know why I'm still here." She's not just talking about why he's let her live in this case. "But why aren't you getting rid of me? You don't need me to fight one Peter, especially not with the other helping you."

He stops, gaze looking down at the hand circling his wrist, gaze traveling up her arm, up and up— relatively speaking— to her eyes. "Maybe after your little talk with Peter you feel like you can trust him," Sylar says, somewhat coldly. "But I don't. No secret agent, no last minute strangleholds? If he goes back on his word and the Company comes bearing down on me, I want to stand a fighting chance." It's a logical explanation. But not the only one. "Or do you think I should be locked away too?"

The flinch is visible, both in the way Gillian draws back her hand, and the way she looks away from him. The explaination seems to have hurt. She even takes a few steps away, pushing that hand through her hair as she walks over to sit on the bed— and get ankle assaulted by insistant cat. "I don't trust him. He works for the people who tried to kidnap me, the people who killed my sister." There's a harshness to her voice, directed at at something not present. Supposed to be directed at something not present. "That's why I insisted on a neutral area. One his people already knew about." Wilkins Park. Where they attacked her. Logical explaination is cold.

If Sylar notices her hurt feelings, he doesn't acknowledge it, resuming getting dressed with his back turned to her. Jeans, a dark red button down shirt, almost too dressy for this hour, but he doesn't really care. He just wants to be dressed. He doesn't flinch at the mention of Jenny, of who killed her, mouth twisting in something between a smile and a grimace that she can't see from her vantage point, before he turns back to her, doing up the buttons of his shirt. "You pulled out your gun," he says, tone flat. "When we were at the park. Who were you going to point it at?"

There's that wince again. Gillian stands up from the bed, bending down to pick up the cat. She got the shirt he might want to wear, and it's about to get orange fur all over it. "Him," she says firmly, hints of insult dancing in her heart. "If he didn't keep his word, I would have pointed it at him." There's truth to her heartbeat. She'd intended those bullets for the man with the scar. Not that they would have mattered, if he's anything like his double.

"I'm going to feed the cat." And as she just said, she starts to move, with cat, to the door out of the bedroom. Wearing only his shirt.

"You…" The word barely has a chance to come out, clipped short by the time she's walking out of the room, an exasperated exhalation of breath from the killer, who casts a baleful look away as she walks out. She's not lying, unless she has optimal control over the way her body reacts to herself. Seconds tick by in his emptied room, before he's finally moving out to join her in the rest of the apartment, though stops at the doorway, arms resting against the frame. He only watches her from this vantage point, not exactly unreadable. Disturbed. Something.

As she carries the cat into the main part of the small apartment, Gillian steps over the discarded clothes, on the floor. Including her coat, with said gun that she had intended to have almost out before the man even appeared. It didn't quite work that way. Without a word, she puts the cat down and adds food to a bowl, which she kneels down to lay at the cat's paws. She doesn't stand again right away, staying where she is, watching him begin to eat. "I don't know who you are when you're not around me," she says, using a conversational tone… in the kitchen. If someone didn't have enhanced hearing, they might assume she's talking to the cat. It's an admission. She stands up again and looks through the apartment enough to make eye contact.

With someone else, she'd have to raise her voice. With him, she doesn't have to. "Petrelli told me something that didn't have to do with you. He told me about a future that he saw— where I'd end up in a concentration camp for Evolved. I won't end up like that. Not his Company, not the government." That might sum up her feelings of resignation. She'd rather die than end up like that. "And I don't want you to end up like that either," she adds, answering the question she didn't.

A different future, or maybe the same, the events staggered and mutually exclusive. Sylar files this little piece of information away. "And so we need each other," he says - an offering, an olive branch. How much does he need her? He's powerful enough on his own but he's not infallible. Not as concrete as the fact that he has and will continue to be her protector, but it's something. He moves further into the apartment, taking a seat nearby the window— a gold wristwatch, feminine, not one of Gillian's— lies on the little table area he'd set out for himself, and he picks it up without really thinking about it, rubbing his thumb around the face of it. "If it's any consolation, I don't know who I am around you," he responds, eyes still on the watch he promised to fix for Odessa.

Does she need him? Gillian has phone numbers she can call, at least one other place she can go to, and all it would take is to sneak out one day when he gives her the freedom to do so and never come back. Instead, she moves back to where she can better see him, fondling some other woman's watch. There's a small nod at his 'consolation'. "You're not the only person who's someone else half the time. And I like who you are when you're around me." She's speaking quietly still, same tone as before. There's that anxiety again in her heartbeat, but she's also looking over his mostly clothed form at the same time. "I'm going to take a shower. If you hadn't gotten dressed already, I'd invite you to join me."

That breaks some self-imposed tension, a mild if somewhat disbelieving laugh echoing thinly through the apartment. "Maybe another time," Sylar says, but he puts down the watch, and stands, moving towards Gillian and resting his hands on her arms - which are covered in sleeves, so he kisses her, just once.

And all Gillian will feel is the barest of mental twinges, like the emergence of a headache, and nothing else. When they can meet eyes again, Sylar's expression yields nothing. "I just need… some time to think."

"You have time," Gillian says, letting the kiss stay as long as he wants it, though she looks mildly disappointed at how brief it is. The knot in the back of her head is still tied off for the moment— which she's grateful for. Abilities would have ruined an otherwise enjoyable night. "I'll be here," she assures, truthfully from the sound of it. But there's a mild change in her heartbeat as she moves away toward the room that's hers, to find clothes that she can change into after showering.

It seems to say that she'll be here. For the moment.

It's a good thing she's walking away, as Sylar closes his eyes, hands coming up to press against his temples as if trying to keep the sudden surge of thoughts contained in his own head. "I'll be on the roof," he says, almost a murmur, and it's not a strange place for him to go - often she'll probably have found him brooding up there, to do his thinking.

This is a thinking of a different kind.

Sylar manages to make it out of the apartment before it really starts to hit him, before he has to use the walls of the hallway to guide his progression. It takes longer than it should, but soon, he sits on the ground of the roof, back against the ledge and simply listening. It's not bad, this time, but a strange and unfamiliar anxiety is the worst of it. A hurt. But it doesn't take as long as usual. Perhaps, despite the knot Gillian's tied around her ability, her own talents helped - or maybe he's just stopped fighting the surge of thought and feeling, the overlay set in place in rapid time.

Either way, Gillian is only just emerging out of the shower before she'll find herself pinned to a wall. For reasons that have nothing to do murder.

The shower doesn't have quite the profound thought making, but when Gillian steps out of the shower, the room is steamy, the mirror fogged over with moisture. Skin warmer than normal, she obviously opted for a steaming shower. The sudden impact against the wall takes her by surprise, as does the intent. A pleasant surprise. "Gabriel," she whispers breathlessly. "Done thinking already?" she asks with a smile that forms on her lips. Short sentances may end up being the key, for a while, because she's otherwise finding herself occupied— Again.

"Didn't take as long as I guessed it would," Sylar agrees, equally breathless, linking his fingers with hers and drawing her arms up. The ying/yang tattoo is what catches his attention, momentarily distracting him, fingers smoothing down her palm, her wrist to touch the ink that scars it. "I like these," he tells her, as his gaze switches to the tribal-rose tattoo on her other arm. "Permanent. Can't go away, right?"

And he continues to take her by surprise. Gillian's eyebrows raise, wet hair sticking to her scalp and looking darker thanks to being wet. The red highlights are barely visible, even in the light. Her breathing is midly unsteady as she leans in to press her lips against his. "More or less," she replies softly against his mouth, smile forming. "I like to think of them as… memories. Helps… to have a reminder… every so often." She can't be aggressive this time, though, with the way he has her held, but she certainly isn't passive. Her fingers clench around his hand, and she presses her damp legs up against him as well.

"You want one?" she asks, voice teasing.

Probably because he's not quite himself, and liable to surprise. Unlike the last two times, Sylar doesn't have a problem with it. He's not scared, or shaken from traumatic memories that aren't his. What memories that do surface may jab, but outcome is anger, and he can relate to anger. Here and now, he's not ploughing too deep through the mind currently open like a book in his own. There are other distractions. He responds to the way she shifts against him by shifting back against her with a smile very similar to her's. "I do," he answers. "After." A kiss, almost playful, another difference. "We can do that after."

"After," Gillian shares the same sentiment, in a very similar tone. While she might be wondering what's come over him— she's definitely not going to question it. Whatever it is, she seems to like it. When he kissed her the last time, before he walked off to think she'd been disappointed nothing else would probably come from that night.

November 29th: Not An Accident

Previously in this storyline…

Next in this storyline…

November 30th: Colin Farrell Can Probably Skate
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