Futures Craved


odessa_icon.gif sylar_icon.gif

Scene Title Futures Craved
Synopsis Sylar convinces Odessa to accompany him to his apartment to retrieve his cash and the two hatch a plan for the future.
Date December 22, 2008

Siann Hall: Gabriel and Gillian's Apartment

Fuck the deposit.

It's early enough for the hour to count as twilight, and the lights that line the apartment complex's hallway are sufficiently bright, maybe too much so. Snow touches soundlessly against the glass of a window that Sylar and Odessa approach to reach the door at the very end, room number 410. Only a couple of the Vanguard have ever ventured here. Munin once with pie. Ethan once to intimidate the hell out of one of the residents. One such resident Sylar is hoping to avoid this time.

He's dressed in a grey woolen coat, a black scarf wrapping around his neck. Snow is still caught in black hair, but melting quickly. It's been a ruthless winter in a myriad of ways. He presses a gloved hand to the shut door and peers at the woman next to him. Are you able to do it from out here? he projects. May as well keep his voice out of it for as long as he's trying to not be here.

It was a difficult trek to the apartment in the snow. Because of the snow. But not in the way one would imagine. Odessa's not experienced true snow yet - just that horrifically abysmal rain-snow mixture that dampens the spirits as much as the clothes. The trek is difficult for Odessa because she has to try to keep the glee and the child-like wonder out of her expression, and quell the urge to ask to stop so she can play.

Her own coat is a teal woolen thing, fastened securely around her frame. Her head is covered by a floppy knit beret in a matching shade, adorned with small wooden buttons. For a change, her heels actually match her outfit. "I think I can manage," she utters softly under her breath. She closes her eyes and presses her palms flat against the door. Her breathing is slow and deep, almost a roar to Sylar's ears. Finally, there's an eerie still on the other side of the door. "Okay," she says, voice weaker now. "Quickly."

Clocks stop ticking. The building stops settling or at least, it does in this one small area. No time, really, to ponder the influence of time stops on structural integrity, and Sylar readily unlocks the door, without a key, and steps inside. He pauses, taking a moment to be suitably startled, if not visibly. The place is, for all intents and purposes, a wreck. Marks in the wall suggest things had been thrown, broken porcelain scattered on the cheap carpeting showing exactly what had been thrown. There's even a small mark in the window where something had been hurled without enough force to smash, just break a little. There's a note on the counter, which reads, Fuck your deposit, meaningless to Sylar who dismisses it as soon as he sees it, more focused on the remaining shreds of a torn up painting. A few seconds go by as he takes a moment to recognise it. The Peter-Peter fight.

Moving on. Sylar quickly passes by it, checking the rooms without reaction. It doesn't take long. It's a low income building.

"It's clear," Sylar tells Odessa, raising an eyebrow as he glances around again. "I guess she moved on." And at a mutter, he adds, "Took the cat."

It's as though Odessa relearns to breathe and Sylar can hear time resume just as she can feel it. She steps inside the apartment and shuts the door behind her, taking in the blessed air. "It's much easier when I can see what I'm doing," she explains. She looks around the room and lets out a low whistle. After a few moments, she speaks up again. "We'll get you a new pet."

Sylar's gaze switches sharply back to Odessa, as if startled by her comment, before his mouth twists in something like an amused smile. It vanishes as soon as it starts. "Wait here." And he disappears into a bedroom, leaving the door only partially opened. A minute later, he returns, holding a crumpled paperbag and a largeish courier tube, casting a speculative, thoughtful glance about the rest of the apartment, before looking back at Odessa, taking a step towards the torn up pieces of painting. "She took half the money. I guess that's fair."

"At least she didn't take all of it." Odessa isn't quite sure what to say. Her instinct is 'well let's go get it back,' but she somehow doesn't think that's what Sylar wants. "What's in there?" A nod is given toward the courier tube.

The tube is set down onto a table nearest the window, right next to a leather and felt pouch, of kinds. One containing the delicate tools and accessories a watchmaker requires. He'd been eager to get in and out, just like before, but now that he's here and she's clearly abandoned the place, the franticness is gone. It's like walking in a tomb. Timeless, even without Odessa's ability. "Futures. Want to see?" Sylar asks, head tilted. Something catches his eye at the same table, and he picks up a delicate, feminine looking wristwatch. "Here. This is yours."

Odessa's face lights up and she gives an enthusastic nod. "You painted it? Yes, I'd love to!" Her smile is made all the brighter when he holds up her watch. Over to him she scurries to take the timepiece and fasten it around her empty wrist carefully, with only a little difficulty - given the one-handed task of it. "Ah," she sighs gratefully. "That's better. I feel complete again."

"It won't slow down again," Sylar says, not looking at her as he sets about the task of opening the courier tube. To reveal things to Odessa that he's rather sure Kazimir wouldn't want to reveal to him. Too bad. There's the sound of rustling paper as he takes out a couple of sheaths. One of which is a painting of a helicopter crashing with hellfire into a building, a future he'd dismissed and probably shouldn't have. He doesn't bother to show it off, setting it aside. "Already happened," he murmurs, but now he unrolls the other, hands out to keep it pinned flat to the work table. The painting of a wasted street in New York City, empty of people, a car rammed into a window, a storm brewing, a biohazard sign painted onto a cursed building. "I saw this," he says.

The smile falls from the girl's face, pale now with shock. Long fingers reach out to trace over the yellow symbol. "Shanti," she whispers. "Oh, no." She shakes her head, withdrawing her hand as though the painting itself had burned her. "No, no. No. This can't happen." Wide eyes fix on Sylar and Odessa clearly begs him to tell her that it isn't going to happen. "I told him she could kill everybody. He said I had to make sure that doesn't happen. I can still do that, right? The future isn't set in stone, is it?"

"It mutates," Sylar says, not looking up from the painting, staring down at it as if recalling how much worse it had been in reality. A picture doesn't communicate the faint scent of decay that clings to everything. It doesn't reflect the silence, which had been the worst thing. Longer fingers trail down the length of the street, the same one he'd appeared in. The one that still exists not a few blocks from where they stand now. He seems almost reverent. "It goes wrong. Everything goes wrong. You have to make sure it goes the way it's meant to go. The way Kazimir intends it to go."

"I don't know if I can," Odessa confesses. "I'm not qualified." She pauses and bites her lip. "I need Suresh." She knows the name carries weight to him. The meaning of it isn't lost on him the way it is on the others. "Suresh can make it work. There's no way he'd let me fuck up and wipe out the entire human race."

Sylar's head tilts a little at the mention of the very familiar geneticist. "Suresh can be played but if he's the only one that knows what he's doing, he could betray us," he says. "He's good at turning on you when you least expect it." He still recalls exactly what it felt like for the man to take a sample from his spine while still conscious.

"I may not know how to do it right, but I still know what it looks like. He can't fool me." Odessa doesn't even smile or grin at that. It would cheapen how serious she is about this. "I am very clever." Her gaze is dark as it returns to the painting, fingers tracing over lines, shades and shadows. "He won't let this happen. That's a good place to start."

Sylar nods, and then turns his body just enough to view the shredded painting on the ground. He lifts a hand, and the pieces float up and gently land on the painting in front of them, obscuring it. He adds the roll of the helicopter painting, and then finally, a largeish art notepad is taken out of the drawer of the work table. Almost nostalgically, Sylar flicks through it, glimpses of his battle against the two Peters, and this, he tosses onto the paintings as well. "You were right, you know," he says, hovering his hands over the paintings. Very much like how he had melted the glass bottles for Odessa's amusement weeks before.

"M'always right," Odessa mumbles softly. It's meant to be a jest, but sometimes there's no telling if she actually means it or not. "Too often too keep track of. What was I right about specifically this go around?" She frowns as she watches the paintings and sketches of the future, unwilling to see them destroyed, but likewise unwilling to ask him not to. It isn't her place.

The melting is a slower process, and it starts from the top and down. The artbook collapses in on itself, spilling out in an opaque puddle of paint and paper, and the paintings beneath them start to disintegrate in kind. If Sylar has any regrets about this, he doesn't show it, expression stoic. Unnatural liquid drips over the side of the table, staining carpet. Fuck the deposit. Now it makes sense. "You told me to claim my place like the princes of old," he says, repeating her words exactly. "Kill the king and take his throne."

Odessa gasps softly. "Are you going to, then?" Her eyes are wide and a flicker of merriment dances there. She's proud of him for finally coming to the conclusion she drew from day one. He deserves to be on top.

"Yes," Sylar confirms, without drama. Just a simple affirmation that he intends to take the life of everyone's enemy. He withdraws his hands, now that the paper and paint is a smeary mess of a puddle on the table. He picks up the pouch of watchmaker tools, slides it into a pocket of his coat. "But not yet. Everything needs to keep going as it is, I don't have the means to set into motion what he sets into motion."

"I don't understand," Odessa says quietly. "All he's going to do is unleash the virus. You and I could do that." She smiles a quirky little smile. Poor Doctor Knutson doesn't know the whole story.

Sylar shakes his head. "I don't think that's all," he says. "If that was all he wanted to do, we wouldn't have attempted to assassinate the President." Again, spoken casually. The paperbag filled with twenty-five thousand dollars is picked up, folding in on itself and tucked inside his coat. "It's not always about killing." Coming from this man… this is rather a huge life lesson to learn.

"No, it's about the chaos, isn't it? I mean, that was the entire point of the assassination attempt, right?" Odessa steps away from the liquid on the floor before it can pool around her shoes. She stares down at those heels now, a frown creasing lines into her face. "The Haitian nearly killed him, you know."

"Chaos, killing… they're means for something greater," Sylar says, softly, not really expecting such words to impact much on the conversation. Almost thinking out loud. He's doing up the buttons to his coat when she says that, a curious looking meeting her gaze. "Really," he says. "What happened?"

Odessa's eyes are fixed on Sylar's now as she recounts the tale of the ambush in Texas. "It was like he became this smoke, and the man he possessed was screaming - dying. It was one of the most horrible things I've ever seen." And she's watched Sylar kill a man with his bare hands. "And when I finally managed to disrupt the Haitian's ability, Kazimir nearly took me instead. I could feel it ache in my bones when that shadow came close to me. It was terrifying." And the pitch of her voice reflects as much. "That's what he can do. He drains the life out of people and can take over their very existence." She takes in a gasping breath, surprising herself with the fear welling in her. "I don't want anything like that to happen to me."

Odessa has Sylar's complete attention, which isn't always a good sign. Either way, he listens quietly, patiently, but it doesn't seem to shock him. Vaguely horrify, maybe, but that's only because it sounds familiar. Absently, he clasps his right hand over his left, as if remembering some familiar ache, gaze dropping to the ground. A pause. "I'll take care of it," he finally says, and there is certainty in his voice, but it's clear that he's disturbed. And doesn't want to show it any longer. "We should go before it gets any darker outside."

"The time means nothing to us," Odessa reminds him. And with a wave of her hands, it stops. "What's going on? You act like you know something I don't know." Slowly, she's regaining her composure. He's said he'll take care of it, and she believes him. She trusts him.

Sylar turns his head a little when time, indeed, stops. It's not reassuring— in fact, this display of ability makes him feel rather like a cornered animal, and it shows for several seconds before he visibly relaxes, doing up the last button on his coat. "I've seen more," he agrees. "When I went into the future, I saw…" He glances at the melted paintings. "I saw a lot. Kazimir's touch everywhere you go."

Time resumes after mere moments that seem to stretch on like an eternity to two beings who can feel the effects of its stillness for very different reasons. Odessa made her point. "So what do you need from me?"

He considers her for a few moments. What he needs from her, what he needs from anyone, has been another learning curve. "Loyalty," Sylar says. "And to give Kazimir no indication about what we want to do. I want him to believe the world is his the moment before I take it away."

Odessa nods her head slowly. "Can you help me get Suresh? If he thinks I'm an unwilling party to engineering Shanti, he's likely to tell me how he intends to sabotage her." There's a dark sort of light in her eyes as the corners of her mouth turn upward faintly. "I'm a very good actress. I can get what we need out of Suresh. All it will take is a very good performance on your part. Do you think you can handle that?"

In the same way Odessa's eyes lit up when Sylar spoke of his intentions to kill Kazimir, Sylar almost reacts similarly, mirroring her expression for a moment. "Yes," he confirms. The sky is blue, rain falls down, Sylar can play himself very convincingly. "It's been so long. I can't wait to visit the doctor again."

Odessa is positively giddy when she can see she's pleased the killer. She scurries forward and reaches for one of his hands, actually bouncing in place once. "This is going to be fun!"

An almost good-humoured chuckle at Odessa's antics fills the space that used to be his home, a more genuine smile tugging at the corners of his mouth even if it never does reach his eyes. Standing in the middle of a trash apartment with only half his earnings in his pocket and futures, both discarded and craved, forming a dripping puddle onto the carpet… it would be nice to have a little fun.

December 22nd: Prickly Brown Caterpillar

Previously in this storyline…
It's Everyone's Problem

Next in this storyline…
Info Dump

December 22nd: Chili and Picks at the Owl
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