All You Have To Do Is Try


helena_icon.gif matt_icon.gif

Scene Title All You Have To Do Is Try
Synopsis Matt and Helena make a deal.
Date December 20, 2008

New York Public Library

Talks between two people such as Helena Dean and Matt Parkman are better had in private. When the two leave the makeshift sickroom/operating theater, it is only to move to another sort of walled off spot, likely at one time an office or study room, to speak.

Once inside, Matt takes a hold of Helena's hand once more. "Let me show you something," he whispers.

In the blink of an eye, neither of them is in the library anymorre.

The gray world around them is a warzone, but rather than gunfire ringing through the air like birdsong might, crackles, fooms, and screams of ability-spawned energies pierce the otherwise soundless air.

"This is what I don't want. People guided only by what they fear. And if Evolved fear people like me and organizations who are trying to bring some sort of balance to it all…then anyone who isn't like Peter Petrelli, or Sylar, or…" There is a long list of Company Operatives and detainees, not to mention those whom Homeland Security has locked away, and their faces rush through Matt's mind.

Sylar, Peter, Elle, Harvey, Soren…menacing, malicious versions of their current selves run amock in the very clearing of rubble they stand in.

"I don't want a world where innocent people are left to the whims of those who are more powerful than they are," Matt continues after a moment, sneering at his own vision. "It is one thing to put people in power with an election, but people didn't, they could never chose to be ruled by this. That's what I fear, and I work every day to make sure I don't have to, even if it's just a little bit. Things aren't perfect now, but that only means we need to work harder."

"Peter…" Helena follow the figure with desperate eyes, before turning to look up at Matt. "He's not like that." she says hotly, and then taking a breath to calm herself, she says, "The world you're creating will make people who did nothing more then be born with a specific gene sequences into outcasts in their own home. There are already people slipping through the cracks in the experimentation camps, the ones who have spoken too loudly. Do you know what that's going to become? Ask Peter, he's seen it." Softly, bitterly, "The one your people didn't shoot in the back of the head."

"You still don't understand," Matt says with a sigh, then gives Helena's arm a small squeeze. The scene changes back to what can only be assumed as the thriving metropolis had the previous version never come to pass. "We can't do it by ourselves, and that Peter wasn't helping. Giving people reasons to fear doesn't help. Rickham's got the right idea with schools. What's the quote? The only thing to fear is fear itself?

"You and I are just as deserving of a normal life as anyone else." Out of a Brownstone tears a little girl, and Matt snaps his head to look at her beaming face. He shivers once with a bitter grimace, then makes her disappear. Helena's not privvy to Matt's family life.

Composed again, Matt swallows and makes the entire vision fade away so that the two are left once more in the library's shell. "As long as people don't know enough that their fear is what drives them, we're doomed. But you can help, Helena. Your people have the right idea, but you have to work with us. It's impossible for anyone to do this by themselves." Realizing that he's still holding her arm, Matt gulps and releases it to hug the blanket closer around his bulk.

"Peter wants forgiveness, and he thinks he can get it where he is, in a cell." Helena says tersely. "We both know that's not true." Lips pressing together thinly, "You think registration cards and enforced genetic idetnification is the answer? Turning your own kind into second class citizens simply creates a subsect of people that others can look on like scapegoats. The danger works both ways - there have already been attacks involving people being executed because they were found with registration cards. Why not just make us wear stars on our coats? Forcing people to sacrifice their freedom, their right to privacy? It's not right, Agent Parkman. There have to be other ways." She looks around the world presented in Matt's imagination, the girl briefly catching her attention, but not giving her much thought beyond a moment's notice. "Even if we helped you with Kazimir Volken's group, I can't say it would be unlikely for you to turn your attention on us."

The continued comparison sends a shiver of rage through Matt, contained with a tight-lipped grimace and a grinding of his teeth. "You're putting words in my mouth, Helena," he warns as cooly as he can. "The only people this extermination

The continued comparison sends a shiver of rage through Matt, contained with a tight-lipped grimace and a grinding of his teeth. "You're putting words in my mouth, Helena," he warns as cooly as he can. "The only people these doing these exterminations are the ones who screamed for those cards and tests. A government provides, Helena, and now, with Rickham? It'll provide something a whole lot different. Something better - the nasty medicine a ton of people don't want to take, but that'll help them more than Band-aids ever will. When everyone understands - when we know enough - there won't be any reason to fear."

Matt pauses, taking a sighing breath and leaning against a wall to rub his head with a hand. "Did you ever wonder why we haven't made Peter's confession public?"

"I am not putting those words in your mouth. I can show you the evidence if you're willing to look at it." Helena says quietly. "People are slipping through the cracks. People are disappearing who aren't just the unnamable Tier 3's. The assaults on people with registration cards are a matter of public record, they've been in the news. I can introduce you to people who were there." Then quieter, "Because by doing so you would destroy what little willingness people have to tolerate us, placing all of us in severe jeopardy." Helena sighs. "I don't think you're a monster, you know. But I think the path you're promoting could lead to something monstrous."

"You are putting words in my mouth," Matt repeats, obviously straining to keep his voice down, "because you assume that I think that cards and tests are the best ways to handle this. You have no idea what I believe, what I want."

Matt pauses a moment to regroup himself, swallowing and closing his eyes tight with another deep breath. Helena's small words of encouragement are like revitalizing gems, in a way.

"It's easier for the public to believe that Sylar is their culprit - Sylar destroyed their peaceful little worlds." Matt keeps his eyes closed and toward the floor as he speaks, the fingers of one hand pressed into his forehead. "And in time, he would have, just to kill off the rest of us. Peter's forgiveness is his own issue, but I'm sure he'd feel better if he brought down Sylar. And we can only help him if we're able to pool our resources. If we're chasing after terrorists, we can't. It doesn't matter what you want - killing innocents and destroying property isn't the way to get them."

"I want to know what you believe, what you you want, then." Helena peers into his face as if she were the telepath, not he. "Sylar's only part of the problem now. Kazimir's group is trying to destroy us all, and Sylar's signed on to the whole Apocalypse Right Now bandwagon. But Phoenix doesn't kill innocents." She can't say they don't deface property - their graffiti is everywhere. There's a pause. "We both know the only thing keeping Peter in that cell is Peter. He's already tried to go after Sylar - more than once, and he failed. But if you want to convince him to try again…" she sticks up her chin, "Maybe I can help you to convince him it's worth walking out of his cell for. That's the favor I want. I want to see him, to talk to him, face to face and in the flesh. Not behind a plate of glass." More quietly, "I know how terrorizing Sylar ca be." Her fists clench.

"Pheonix doesn't," Matt agrees, "but PARIAH does. And PARIAH was first - the mother of all these groups that have sprung up nationwide. If they're convinced to stop, there's a chance the others would follow suit. Helena," Matt lifts his eyes to meet hers, determination etched into his face like writing in stone, "I know you don't agree with what they do, because you're here. You're not with them.

"I can arrange for you to see Peter, but I need you to give me PARIAH, even if it's just you convincing them to stop - to work with us for a future rather than fighting against us and dooming us all." With the firepower PARIAH has, it's likely that they'll be able to bring down the Vanguard too, not to mention come close if not succeeding in putting a stopper in the throats of similar terrorists on both sides.

"How about it, Helena? A speech for a speech?"

Helena cocks her head at him. "PARIAH's dead." she says. "SCOUT raided them, and from what I can tell, did enough damage to disband them. None of my contacts within the group have responded to my calls, which means that even if remnants exist, they're so far underground that I'll only be able to reach them when they reach me." She considers quietly for a moment. "There are…other people with more resource I could talk to, but I can't make promises. And we have more resources than you think. You owe us, and so does Rickham. The fact that I'm willing to talk to people on your behalf should be enough given what we've already done. But if you think you can convince Peter to walk out of his cell and help you on your own without coercing him in some way…" she shrugs. She feels filthy even broaching the idea of wheeling and dealing with HomeSec. "And you haven't told me what you think about it all, either. That counts for a lot, you know."

Matt's been too busy to go over the PARIAH raid debriefing in detail, so he skirts over the issue to deal with the latter ones. "We can try," is all he says of Peter. Trying is the first step to anything and everything. "I think…" but Matt pauses, presumably to find the right words, "I think that so far, all of our attempts at dealing with…well, everything that has been piled up on us have been reactions. Someone hits you, you hit back and try to make sure they're not able to hit you again. And a lot of it was orders passed down from on high - Pentagon, Congress, the White House. But with Rickham in office, and with Rickham as one of us, we can expect real change. Prevention indstead of reaction. Education instead of retaliation."

Helena looks at Matt askance. "What about the people who are in those experimentation camps now? Not all of them belong there, even by your standard. You do know that Peter can see the future, right? He's had a vision that you shouldn't ignore. It could happen and refusing to at least consider it is foolish. We still have weeks to go before Rickham's in power, and even then, for him to really make changes it's going to take time that not everyone has."

"You can't ask me to answer for something I haven't seen," Matt says, but he leaves it at that. Turning to look at the door, a worried expression sets in on his face. "We should go back to check on Rickham."

"Will you let me see Peter?" Her tone is urgent, almost bordering on desperate. Trying not to sound plaintive, "Please."

"You get me the resources and cooperation I need, and yes."

Matt's halfway out the door when he says it, pulling his blanket tighter as he goes to check on Rickham's progress.

"We saved the president." she says bitterly. "You owe us for that anyway. I can't garuntee you help, I can only create the opportunity for you. If they say no, I can't do anything about it. You don't understand." She swallows hard, "I have to see him. I have to."

"And you will," Matt says over his shoulder. "It's not that I'm not grateful. I am. All I'm asking you to do is try."

December 20th: Licking the Wound
December 20th: Abby Makes a Hospital Call
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