Elements Of The Past


sf_asami2_icon.gif sf_kaylee_icon.gif

Scene Title Elements Of The Past
Synopsis After taking a leap of faith, Asami asks Kaylee to take another one with her.
Date January 15, 2020

Upper East Side

It's not unusual for the sound of some motorcycle rocketing through Manhattan to occasionally filter its way to the relative seclusion of the neighborhood the Petrelli residence is located in. It's far less often, though, that such a sound draws near.

When Kaylee turns to look in the rearview, she sees the offending vehicle on approach to her own quickly. The cherry red Aprilia RS is mounted by a feminine figure not dressed at all for the elements, work jacket blazing in the air behind her as she leans forward over the bike. She well-exceeds the posted local speed limit to race up to the car as it nears the gate of the Petrelli grounds, but slows as soon as it seems like the bike might overtake the car.

In fact, she slows to reach the other vehicle's speed, then shoves the black visor up on the red helmet she wears once she's in view of the rear passenger seats.

It's… Asami?

"Kaylee!" she shouts, possibly deafened by the ride she took to get here. "Do you mind if I come in?"

When she recognizes the rider, the vehicle slows a little. Brows lift at the fact she’s on a motorcycle, almost appreciative, maybe even a bit jealous of her freedom. Still after the briefest moment of hesitation, Kaylee gives a short nod. Then angles her head towards the gate of the community as an indication that the woman should follow her.

After a short chat at the guard shack, the gate is opened for the both of them. The rather large man watches the helmeted Asi suspiciously as she passes, even giving her the eye point. Clearly, he doesn’t agree with letting her in. Maybe it’s the motorcycle.

But who is going to argue with a Petrelli?

There is a short jaunt through rows of tall brown stones, some large, some small, but all clearly million dollar homes. It’s the biggest of them that Kaylee is headed for and when they turn into the drive, they don’t stop there. There is a garage, open and waiting for her to pull the car into.

There is a look of concern as Kaylee gets out of the car, watching the other woman, as she steps to the back of the car.

Asami ignores the look of the guard, sticking close to the vehicle. She pulls back more to the passenger side, slipping in beside the car when Kaylee pulls into the garage. She looks over her shoulder as the red motorcycle is keyed off, chest rising and falling like she might as well have run here rather than have taken the bike. Wrestling her head free from the helmet, she turns to look at Kaylee properly, one hand running back through the helmet hair.

"Hey," she greets coarsely. Putting the kickstand on the bike down, she lets the bike's weight come to rest on the concrete; lets her own feet rest on solid ground. Windswept, Asami looks like she could be better. This close it's easier to see she's a little more casual than business in her wear today— a thin brown jacket she wears over a red pullover nice enough looking, but the hood pooled at her neck definitely drags the ensemble down a notch.

For a moment, she seems not to know what to say, but then she smiles, joking, "Happy Friday. I've… uh, had a hell of a week." She's a little tense, but she does her best to put it aside. With a short laugh, she wonders, "Would you be up for an early happy hour?"

“Hey you.” Is returned easily with Kaylee relaxing a bit, now that her arrival didn’t seem so urgent. There is a smile for her friend, “Early Happy hour? You must have had a bad week.” Lifting her key to point behind her, the car beeps two tones to tell them it was locked. “You know what? Why the hell not. I have plenty of options or I could open ”

Touching the woman’s arm to guide her out of the garage, Kaylee gives Asami a knowing look, “I have a nice 61 red or I have plenty of the harder stuff, like vodka.” There may even be juice to mix it with in the fridge. Glancing over at the bike, Kaylee again looks rather impressed. “I like the bike. Always wanted to learn how to ride one, but my dad protested like you wouldn’t believe.”

Looking back at the bike, Asami's look shifts again, for a moment troubled, but she laughs her way past it. "It reminds me of my youth, to tell you the truth. I started hanging out with this gang specifically to get under my dad's skin, learned how to ride by street racing." Self-conscious, she rubs at the side of her neck. "Anyway, a friend let me borrow it. But I have to tell you it felt nice… being able to just fly down the street while everyone else was at a standstill."

Great word choice, Asami.

Heading through the door, it's like a weight's off her shoulder. She's safe. Kaylee has seen her relax similarly when they've spent time together before; with Asami being herself rather than a closed-off expat executive… but it's never been quite this visible. "Honestly, a red sounds great. We should get that and then…"

She lets out another small laugh, this one more nervous. Guarded. "I should tell you about my day."

“I have to admit, I’m curious to hear,” Kaylee sounds amused as she leads her up the stairs into the mansion.

Asami won’t have a chance to tell her, until after a quick stop in the kitchen to steal a platter of meats, cheeses, and crackers, plus the promised wine and glasses. Kaylee takes Asami into the one place the girls don’t go, the dance studio.

“Hope this is okay,” Kaylee asks her voice echoing, her heels are kicked off without ceremony or thought to tidiness. The place was immaculate, with a tiny sitting area to one side. A pair of antique chairs and a small table situated next to the only window; the rest of the expansive room is dedicated to the dance floor. “Personally, I’m not in the mood to deal with the girls and they won’t bother us here.”


Turning half across the room, with wine and platter in her hands, Kaylee stops and turns to see if Asami follows.

Asami pauses in the doorway to appreciate the vast space, the wine glasses in her hands so she can have the pretense of helping as they head to a more private spot. She's never been in here before, and stepping in here now, into Kaylee's confidence…

Does she deserve this?

She realizes that's not her choice to make, but it's one that weighs on her regardless.

"It's lovely in here," Asami assures, and sets aside the glasses to work off her boots, collecting the stemware again to go slide-stepping across the smooth floor on socked feet to the sitting area. She glances down through the window for just a moment before coming back to the more comfortable indoors. With a sniff to clear her nose from the chill of the outdoors, she shrugs out of her brown jacket, lays it on the back of the chair.

She picks up a bit of meat and cheese to sandwich between her finger and a cracker, looking to Kaylee. "You want to go first? I'd rather not just talk about me all night."

That's partly true. The other part of her selfishly wants to hold on to every moment possible before things change, for forever.

“What is there really to say about myself?” Kaylee says with a bitter laugh, as she works to open the wine bottle. The bottle even looks old with his red wax seal and the label looking a little worse from wear, it reads Chateau Lafite Rothschild 1961. It’s not her most expensive either. “My candidate lost the election and my kids are growing too fast and don’t talk to me nearly as much as they used to. Too many meetings and all that.”

Kaylee gives the other woman a rueful smile as she hands her one of the glasses. “My same old life.”

Undoing the button on her own jacket, and picking up the remote for the sound system, Kaylee settled into the seat across from Asami. “But, I am really curious about what got you turning a bit rebel biker and looking rather… stressed. I can see you trying to hide it, but…” The way Kaylee lifts her brows at her friend, it’s obvious she can see it.

Bite taken, Asami settles into a sit opposite Kaylee. The pour she receives is accepted gratefully, with a small lift of her glass, her smile straining as she's called out on looking stressed. "I've never been good at my poker faces around you, have I," she notes wryly, taking a long drink of the wine to clear her palate and open her mind.

Her mind wanders as her gaze roams to the window again. Just how much the day weighs on her shifts in magnitude again when she has to blink moisture from her eyes.

"I don't even know where to begin," Asami admits, setting down her glass and leaving her hand lying over the base of it. "A few hours ago I thought I'd be working late again. I hadn't even realized it was Friday, I was so caught up in the grind, and then…"

Her brow knits, eyes going down to her glass. "An old friend reached out suddenly. They didn't have good news for me, Kaylee, they…" It's involuntary she trails off, remembering the rush, the adrenaline. The roof.

"They asked me to take a leap of faith because they were worried I might be in danger," she leads with, her index finger dragging back on the base of the wine glass. "And it turns out I was."

"I— I'm…"

Asami shakes her head abruptly, and gives her gaze to Kaylee, because she deserves at least that much. Her look is earnest, for all that her stress, her anxiety manifests. "This is going to sound crazy, but do you trust me?"

“Nathan used to say I was too observant for my own good,” Kaylee says with a touch of smugness and a quick dismissive shrug of her shoulders. Giving the glass a swirl, she takes a sip.

Then while Asami is talking, Kaylee takes a moment to turn on the music on low. The sweeping instrumentals of Giselle quietly fill the space around them. Not too loud, but enough that it is another shield of privacy.

The mention of danger is concerning, but that could be anything not just physical, but then Kaylee question leveled at her gets a short laugh, “Asami, we’ve known each other how long? Not to mention I let you teach my youngest to use swords,” swords? “Of course, I trust you.”

About then, Kaylee’s gives a charming, if rather digitized, series of notes that Asami recognizes as the woman getting a text. Whatever Kaylee was seeing on her phone, it gets a confused frown.

“Would…” The word draws out as Kaylee rereads the message again to make sure she even read that right. There is a soft, huh, before she looks up at her friend and asks rather smoothly, “Would this danger be that you’re wanted by the Feds for hacking the Pentagon?” The phone chimes again, before she really frowns. “I think you better explain, because,” She taps her phone and then turns the headline towards the other woman.

“According to this, you’re a wanted and very dangerous criminal,” Kaylee’s expression is one of mixed emotions. She’s fighting herself over this.

The smile Asami had started to wear in return fades when Kaylee gets that text. Her stomach sinks with dread. But no— surely she's overreacting, right? She just needs to finish what she was saying, not let herself get deterred.

But Kaylee doesn't look up right away. And then when she offers her phone up, Asami's shoulders sink, one hand going to her mouth as she reads the subtext under the headline. Wanted fugitive evading apprehension opened fire on officials late Friday afternoon.

Opened fire? She'd never even had a weapon!

When Asami looks back up, she sees Kaylee's trust, she sees it withstand this bit of news, even if just. And who knew how much longer it could hold? She takes in a short breath, her words coming quick now. "I'm not— I'm not dangerous, Kaylee. I swear to you. I didn't do the things they accused me of. It's a lie. What happened… what happened is…"

She comes to her feet, trying to force down her anxiety with that jarring movement. "My friend who I just mentioned— they reached out just before those agents arrived. They warned me, and told me to go to the roof. I did, I gave them the same trust you're giving me now, and I…"

"I jumped, Kaylee. And something—" Asami can't help the wonder that enters her eyes and expression now as she rushes to explain. "Something incredible happened."

Kaylee watches Asami as she talks, lips pressed tight as she tries to decide what to think. It’s a struggle, not because she doesn’t trust the woman, she’s known her long enough for that… But because there was still a part of her that worried if she was getting the wool pulled over her eyes. Plus, there was the reputation of the Petrelli Foundation to think of.

A wanted fugitive was after all in her home.

Still Kaylee wanted to help, and knowing her daughter Jac would do it if she didn’t…

Lowering the phone and letting it rest in her lap, Kaylee looks confused by that last bit. Looking like she is having a hard time believing that. “Wait, you jumped?” Kaylee knows what the building looks like and the distances. “How is that possible?”

A little flutter of anxiety and doubt was starting to coil in Kaylee’s stomach.

"I jumped," confirms Asami, just as incredulous. She starts to smile, because it all sounds crazy, but not entirely in a bad way. "Kaylee, I… I was scared for my life, but I jumped."

And she's clearly still here.

She looks back to her friend, smile beginning to fade, excitement toning back in the face of the reality of the situation. "They came for me not because I hacked anything, but because I can do something. Something I didn't know I could. Something— something they don't want anyone to know about."

Asami slides one socked step back on the dance floor, her hand balled and lifted to her chest. She swallows hard as she looks at Kaylee.

And then with all the reverence of prayer, she closes her eyes and begins to tilt her head back. She lets peace and the sensation of floating on a breeze take hold of her, and lifts one leg slightly off the ground, like she might be stepping onto a ladder.

The other foot slips from the floor after, and neither touch again. Asami lets the floating sensation take hold, living in the wonder of it for two long breaths as she hovers inches, and then two feet above the ground. Her eyes open and look to the ceiling, then she turns her look to Kaylee.

Her expression is timid for all her excitement, all her anxiety. This is how she survived, she says without saying.

And then she looks down, and her stomach sinks with her fear of heights.

"Shit." In a flail of limbs, Asami goes falling to the floor without a shred of grace to it, ending up on all fours. She starts to breathe heavily, but she's fine other than that. She's fine. Everything's fine.

"I'm not the only person who can do something like this," she stammers out, too afraid to look up again, to see just how Kaylee is looking at her. Slowly, she sits back on her haunches, hands folding in her lap as she tries to make that lift of her eyes happen anyway. "The government— they don't want anyone to know. Somehow, whatever they were doing to keep me from doing this before, it… it failed. So they made up some story, and…"

Hesitantly, Asami finally looks up properly.

“What? What are you—” This wasn’t something Kaylee expected when Asami stood up. A part of her really thought her friend had maybe hit or head or something.

What Asami sees when she looks up is a wide-eyed Kaylee with her mouth agape, like she had planned to say something else but the words were caught in her throat. Her mouth snaps shut and Kaylee swallows. The glass she was drinking out of is slowly set on the table.

“Y-y-y-you just… you just flew!” Kaylee couldn’t believe what she just saw. A hand presses to the side of her head and she gives a nervous laugh. “If I hadn’t had a full work over, I’d wonder if I was seeing things again.”

Her hand moves to cover her mouth, Kaylee’s head starts to shake in denial, “I don’t understand. I mean… you see it in movies… it’s not supposed to be real, b-b-but you flew.”

Coming up onto her feet again, Asami slowly stands, trying to avoid anything else that might be considered shocking. "I feel like a movie plot at the moment, rambling about the government being after me like I'm some— some experiment that got out of its cage, but…" Her arms lift out from her side in a helpless gesture. "It's real."

She takes in a breath, shaking her head and sighing out, "I can barely wrap my head around it, but… it's real."

With a sudden furrow of her brow, she steps forward to take Kaylee's other hand. "My friend who helped me— Violette— they told me to lay low, and if I could, to get in touch with Gillian of all people. That somehow, she'd understand." Smiling weakly, she asks, "Please. Can you help keep me out of sight, help get me in touch with Gillian? If— if this all too much, just give me her address and I'll go."

"But I didn't know where else to turn. Who else I could trust." Smile fading, her mouth hardens into a solemn line. "I'm so sorry for bringing this to your doorstep, Kaylee. If I'm asking for too much, I completely understand." Asami begins to step back again, starting to let go of Kaylee's hand.

Kaylee’s hand tightens, preventing Asami from slipping away, holding onto a very real hand. It was something she hadn’t been sure about a few moments earlier. “No.. It’s…” She swallows and shakes her head, “It’s okay. You can stay and I’ll most certainly get you in touch with Gillian. She’s the only one I’d trust with this until we have more answers.”

Studying the other woman, Kaylee lets her go finally, “There is a safe room in the cellar, behind the back most wine rack. It’s not fancy, but it should keep you safe if anyone shows up. Jac doesn’t think I know about it.” There is a crooked smile, because kids always underestimate their parents.

“Shit,” Kaylee says in sudden alarm. There was one problem they didn’t think of. “The guard saw you come through the gate.” And Asami was a regular at the Petrelli Mansion.

Asami's grasp sures again firmly around Kaylee's, a tightness in her chest. She could, and will, cry about this. Later, though, in the safety of that hidden room. "Thank you."

With the alarm, she takes pause, letting go so she can wipe the tiny bit of moisture at the corner of her eye. "I was in that helmet, though…" she reasons at first, then recalls she didn't replace the visor. Her eyes close hard at her own mistake, and she takes in a deep breath. "Slightly… modified plan. I need to take the bike and go, then, so they know not to look here. I'll come back in a little while, after the sun's down. I'll… I'll fly past the gate, so they won't know."

Can she handle that?

She'll have to.

Asami forces a smile. "It's okay. It was my idiot move. And this lets me get the bike back to its owner, or at least somewhere it can be found by her." The pronoun shift is gradual, but it's coming. It's still impossibly strange to think of v.iris as someone different than she imagined, even if there's all those similarities. "If you're able to get in touch with Gillian by then, great. If not… if there's a computer I can borrow, I can hopefully get back in touch with Violette."

It sounds like a plan to her. A roundabout plan, leading her right back here, but a little safer. "If the police show, you can tell them you sent me off, refused to have anything to do with me. The gate cameras will prove it, so hopefully… hopefully that'll be enough, right?"

She nods firmly, indicating that's more a rhetorical. A nervous laugh finally escapes her and she rubs at the side of her neck. "God…" Asami murmurs. "This is all crazy."

There is a huff as Kaylee gather’s her wits, which ends up being a nervous laugh at the muttering. “No. No no no. This, my friend, is completely and utterly fucking bonkers,” she counters to Asami’s assessment of the situation. She thought she had it bad with seeing a little boy everywhere she goes.

“However, your plan sounds solid to me and you will be safe here,” Kaylee says, draining her glass and refilling it almost immediately. “I’ll make sure to leave the door to the back garden unlocked for when you… “ she gives a short, somewhat strained laugh… “fly in.”

It was surreal saying those words.

Asami’s glass is snatched off the table and a lot more wine is splashed into - a lot more - before offering it back to her, “I think we’re going to need more wine to make it through tonight. God, I hope Gillian is as open minded as I think she is.” No matter how much she trusted her.

Kaylee manages not to sound as stressed as she felt, “My In-laws must be turning over in their graves right now.”

Asami lets out a quiet scoff. "The dead don't give a shit about scandal, I thought," she notes with mirth. She smiles as she takes her glass back, drinking a long sip before she pauses, glass still to her lips. With a sigh from her nose, she swallows and sets the glass back down on the table reluctantly, looking back to the window. "I should… go now though, before it gets any later. Before there's a chance of running into the cops outside."

"I'll be back," she repeats, because it helps ground her in the moment. There's safety in that thought— or at least, she hopes there will be. "Soon as possible." Asami takes in a deep breath, feeling her cheeks slightly warm from both the little bit of wine and the adrenaline from everything that's happened, all the emotions that came with it.

She moves from the table to sit down on the ground while she tugs her boots back on, wanting to make sure they're tight. Then she comes back for her brown jacket, slipping it back on over her shoulders. "Definitely can't wait to come back and finish off that bottle," Asami indicates with a good-humored grin.

For a moment, Kaylee allows herself to feel that amusement and a small sense of normality, letting it dash aside the butterflies in her stomach. Maybe the wine helps. It doesn’t last long, before the anxiety and worry crash over those feelings, leaving her with a sense of dread.

Moving to stand and show her friend out again, Kaylee still manages a small, if worried, smile. “It’ll be here for you, cause I can’t drink this all myself,” though a part of her really wants to try, “so be careful and come back safe and sound.”

Kaylee looks down at her cellphone as it chimes again, “I’ll get ahold of Gillian in the meantime.” In another life the two would have been sister-in-laws, they both felt. Kaylee often mourned that loss of kinship.

Asami glances down to the phone as well with a touch of worry, the ping from the outside world encouraging her forward. She loops an arm around Kaylee's shoulder once more for luck and support both before heading together out of the studio.

The bottle and wine glasses are left behind, waiting patiently for the two's return.

In the distance, sirens wail; a thing overwhelmed by the sounds of a motorcycle revving loudly down the residential streets. The gate isn't locked to prevent exit, so on a sensed approach, it begins to roll open. When the guard realizes and tries to halt it from his heated booth, the gate has already rolled enough to the side that Asami is able to slip through on the bike and peel off down the road, heading north.

She opens the throttle to the point the front wheel picks up off the ground, and the guard runs out of the security booth with his phone pressed to his ear, watching the direction Asami takes off in.

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