You Have To Break A Few Eggs


helena_icon.gif gillian2_icon.gif

Scene Title You Have To Break a Few Eggs
Synopsis Helena and Gillian discuss things while one of them makes an omelette.
Date June 16, 2009

Cat's Penthouse

Arriving by any of four elevators, visitors will find they open into three foot corridors facing wide double doors made from sturdy southern pine which swing outward and have the strongest locks available. The stairs lead to single doors, also outward opening, at the end of three foot corridors. Entry requires both a key and a keycard; other security measures are a video camera and voice communication terminal at all doors. The 4th Street side has floor to ceiling windows interrupted only by the access points. Cream colored curtains are normally kept closed.

This level has enough space for sixteen apartments. There is an office space with reception area, conference room, and executive office; a room for archery practice and other forms of physical exercise; a very well appointed kitchen and dining area; a music zone with an array of instruments, electronics, and amplifiers; an entertainment area with an HD set covering an entire stretch of wall from floor to ceiling; a locked room where security footage for the building is recorded and can be monitored; a laundry room; a staircase for roof access; central air and heating; the main bedroom and a few smaller guest rooms; plush deep wine carpet everywhere except the kitchen, laundry room and bathrooms; and track lighting everywhere overhead. The light levels can be lowered or raised in the entire place, or selectively by segments. The overall decor suggests the occupant is a woman.

And so they're back at Cat's. The Encyclopedia Brunette has stepped out to take care of some errands, and that more or less leaves Gillian and Helena in the penthouse, awkward and alone with each other. Helena has for the most part stuck to the kitchen, raiding the fridge for eggs and items that can go in an omelette. When in doubt? Cook. At the moment she's chopping mushrooms on a cutting board in swift but careful chops.

Time in the penthouse with someone who'd been looking at her with narrowed eyes the whole time up on the roof… Gillian stands near the doorway of the kitchen, having wandered there to watch her begin cooking. No offer to help with the cutting of mushrooms, but the fact she has kitchen knives may have part to do with why she hangs in the entrance of the room. There's silence except for the chopping of mushrooms for a moment before it's finally broken with a whispered voice, "I didn't do much with Pinehearst. Goodman gave me money and I withdrew most of it as cash for later— but I only ever went to see them three times. And Teo knew about the first one— the others were recent." And she knows about the last one.

Helena's no longer looking at her quite so narrowly, but there's definite tension between the two women. "You don't have to explain that to me." she says evenly as she scrapes the mushroom into a bowl. The knife gets set down, and now it's time to start cracking eggs.

The knife goes down. Gillian watches it a moment before looking at the young woman cracking eggs now, "I know I married Peter in the future you went to." This conversation may not be good for her omelette making at all.

Helena cracks the egg expertly on the edge of the counter and pulls it apart with her fingers to let the yolk and white drip into the bowl. "That future doesn't exist anymore." she says, reaching for another egg. "Do you know how it came to pass?" She doesn't demand to know how Gillian found out. She doesn't think it matters.

Steadier hands than she has. Gillian nods, quietly, "I know it doesn't exist anymore." It could have. It doesn't now. But there's so much that might have changed already. She does shake her head at the end part, whether she's looking at her or not, watching the woman cook. "No, I don't know how it happened."

"I'm guessing you wouldn't bother to tell me that you know if it didn't matter." Helena says. Crack. "So why does it matter?" Egg drips into the bowl. A third is reached for. Either Helena has a big appetite or she's making enough for two. Possibly three.

"I can't bring it up just 'cause?" Gillian asks, giving her a long look, though there's another pause before she inhales and adds, "I doubt it matters anyway. That future you saw doesn't exist, and he…" her voice trails off, biting down for an instant. That's when she opts to take it another direction, moving it away from her question, "It was one of the other time travelers. Niles. He told me to stay away from Pinehearst and to not marry Peter Petrelli. It actually kept me away from Pinehearst for a while."

"It matters." Helena says. "And you don't just say things for no apparent reason. He what?" she asks, for the moment ignoring the fork in the conversational road.

There's a tick of her tongue against the roof of her mouth. "Guess I could've brought it up when you dragged me off to your room," Gillian admits, losing the possibility of saying that she just hadn't had the chance before. She had had plenty of chances before she slipped out of the Dispensery. "Second time I went to Arthur it was to ask him to find Peter. He had Gabriel's ability— I knew he'd be trying to stay away from people, but that— I didn't think it would let him stay away from people. And I was right— it didn't. When I found him he'd already killed someone. Split his head open with a wrench."

Helena flinches. "It's not the first person he's killed. Probably won't be the last, knowing Peter." She's not dismissing it as such. It's just…acknowledgment. And once more, ironically enough, the murder isn't entirely his fault, or at least that's what Helena tells herself. "And what did you do when you found him? Did he try to attack you again? Did you convince him to get Gabriel and go back to Pinehearst to be fixed, or was that his idea?" There's no blame in her tone, she's trying to piece together what happened.

And it would be the darker haired girl's turn to flinch. Gillian even closes her eyes for a moment. "I tried to get him to go to his father, yeah. I— " She shakes her head. It was dumb at the time, it's dumb in retrospect, but it's not the point. "We talked a little— I didn't know he'd killed anyone until… after. I just wanted him to come somewhere. To get help. To… I didn't fucking know. I thought I could keep it from happening." The killing. She knows it wasn't the first, probably not the last, but… doesn't mean she wanted to stand by and let it happen. "He said he would help me with his ability again. It's all about emotions— so he… he made me feel what I felt when you showed up again." Her eyes settle on her. "I don't know how much of it was Gabriel's power— and how much of it was… He tried to take your ability through me. Luckily I'd picked up healing somewhere."

"The weather system out by Coney Island?" Helena guesses, nodding. "I felt it, knew it wasn't normal." Whatever other kinds of sensations she may have gotten from it, if any at all, she doesn't mention. "What did you feel, when I showed up again?"

"Would be surprised if you didn't— even if it didn't last too long," Gillian admits, still able to look at her. It'd lasted about the length of a song. A few minutes. But enough to draw attention from someone who could sense those things. "I was jealous," she admits quietly, though there might be more to it. "In some ways yours is one of the easiest ones for me now. At least to access. Control not so much, but I know how to make it come on."

After putting in about eight eggs - this omelett's going to be huge - she grabs a fork and starts scrambling, curving the bowl along her arm. "Why were you jealous?" she asks. The fork makes whisking sounds and clatters against the bowl as she works, and yet she doesn't look away from Gillian, standing there at the kitchen's entrance.

There's a sudden tilting of her head, as if that's an obvious question, "Why do you think?" Gillian shakes her head, pushing away from the door and stepping just a bit closer. "I'm not even sure when it happened. Didn't realize it did until Niles told me not to marry him and I didn't think 'I would never do that.'" Not about Peter, at least. Her mind went a different direction. She'd told Eve almost the exact same thing.

"I know what I think, but I wanted to see if you'd say it." Helena replies, setting down the bowl and picking up the knife. She uses it to scrape the mushroom slices into the scrambled egg and then sets it down. "Your marriage to Peter came about in the wake of a tragedy." she says. "A tragedy that I have absolutely no intention of facilitating." Next goes in the cheese. "I also have no intention of stepping aside where Peter's concerned, regardless of how fate seems to be trying to twist things. And I'm not interested catfights, melodrama, or trying to force Peter to choose. I mean, we don't even know if any of us are going to come out of this Pinehearst thing alive."

"Figured it'd have to be something," Gillian says quietly, looking at the food for a moment. When she speaks, her usual raspy voice is reserved, resigned, and rather quiet. Accepting really. "Every major thing I've done since I met all of you… I've gone in pretty sure I'm not coming back. Every time I've gotten lucky. But that doesn't mean I don't think it can still happen. And it doesn't mean I'll stop throwing myself into danger, either." There's another pause, before she starts to move back to the door frame, as if she may disappear through it. "He really did want me to tell you he was okay— and that he missed you," she adds, the same kind of resignation, with an added touch of tension.

"I didn't think you were lying." Helena affirms gently. "And I appreciate you passing on the message." The egg scramble is poured into a waiting pan, already on the burner. Turning a knob she notes, "I appreciate you being honest, too." Even if it took Gillian a while to get there. "I was under the impression that Gabriel has feelings for you." Helena observes, fighting the urge to fold her arms. "What about him?"

What about Gabriel? Gillian's tried to talk to people about that more than a few times. Eve. Peter. Teo. Gabriel. And it makes her pause at the door frame, with her back to the blonde woman. "Half a year ago you couldn't even call him Gabriel," she says with a shake of her head. "I don't know. I think I kept too many secrets that came back to hurt him in the end. Not sure he wants my help anymore, much less me." The tense tone is even worse for a moment, before she says, "I'm not great at cooking, so I'll leave you to it." Feet continue to try and pull her away.

"Half a year ago doesn't matter much anymore. For some things, what matters is now." She half turns and nudges the omelette a little with a spatula. "I'll plate it and bring it out to you when it's done." Then suddenly, "You know what's funny?"

That makes Gillian pause again, a few steps through the door, but not far enough that she can't turn and look back, "What's funny?"

"People told me in the future that you and I were good friends." Helena says musing. "You were going to be one of my bridesmaids." The comment isn't deliberately cruel, but it is perhaps, said without thinking.

Not deliberate. But Gillian faces away again, tension in her shoulders. Going to be. That tension in her voice is a little thicker when she asks the inevitable question, "I'm guessing you died before the wedding?" Otherwise why the tense— and— it explains everything, really.

"Terrorist bombing." Helena's tone is hard to read. "Not us. Humanis First. And not just me. Thirteen others, near and dear. It won't be happening this time around."

"Course not," Gillian says simply, though the mention of Humanis First makes her frown a little. They've been popping up in the news a lot more since they got back— Sometimes turning up dead. "Wouldn't be much a point going to the future if you didn't make it matter, right?" she says with a laugh.

"You mean coming back to the past? Going to the future wasn't exactly voluntary. Believe me," Helena adds, her tone momentarily bleak, "I wish I hadn't. I'd be a lot happier."

"Gabriel didn't choose to go to the future either— and because he did, the world was saved from Kazimir and a virus," Gillian says, now looking back at her. "Maybe the future you saw wasn't that bad— but if you think things happen for any reason at all— you went there for a reason." There's a long look, before she shakes her head, "I'll be out there. Don't burn yourself," she adds. It's kind of a farewell, without being quite the same.

It's sound counsel. "I suppose you do have to break a few eggs," - a fine metaphor for the pain she went through, "To make an omelette." She turns back to her cooking, watching the liquid yolk turn into something solid enough for her to flip over.

"Guess it sucks when you're the egg," Gillian adds at the end, actually smiling a little in a way that shows dimples, before she moves the rest of the way out of sight.

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