Zombie Season


gillian_icon.gif peyton_icon.gif

Scene Title Zombie Season
Synopsis While some people may stay dead, there's some dead people who just don't stay down. Peyton tells Gillian of the survival of one of the biggest cockroaches of all time. Who may or may not crave brains.
Date March 9, 2010

Peyton and Aaron's Apartment

Getting to here from Staten Island took a lot longer than Gillian ever remembers it taking. Having to go through Jersey was bad enough in the feet of snow, whether it's been plowed off. But getting to Jersey was harder. Less plowing done on Staten Island. The ice in the morning kept her from leaving for a couple hours, too. Likely, she'll be forced to go home when the snowing is bound to start up again. The key on the door clicks until it opens. Her boots are still wet from sloshing to the doors, and she steps inside to look around as she begins to take off her heavy coat, sprinkled with snow from drifts and wind.

"The snow was cute for about a day, but it's really pissing me off." Which makes getting here even more difficult. "I hope someone's home and awake." She has a couple more stops to make before she goes back, but she really wanted to see at least one of them while she fought her way in town.

Why hasn't she answered her cellphone?

Peyton is home, which is actually surprising, if not to Gillian, as she's spent more of her time away after the argument with Aaron Sunday afternoon. She spent all of Monday away from the apartment, and has only returned for the use of her shower and a change of clothes. She walks down the hallway, hair wrapped turban-style in a purple towel, though she's already dressed to leave once again. Her eyes widen with the quick shock and startle that one gets when seeing someone unexpectedly, even if it's her friend. "Gill! You scared me…" she exhales, a weak chuckle after the confession of fear. "Everything all right? We haven't seen you a couple of days." But then, Gillian is never a for-sure houseguest-slash-roomie, having more than one place to call home.

"I— yeah, I meant to come by early, but after I went to the Lighthouse all this fucking snow decided to fall from the sky, and travel is insane," Gillian says with a shrug, before she raises her hands up. "Here I am, though. I came to pick up a few of my things and say bye for a while. I was planning to move back to the Lighthouse for a while, but…" She trails off, glancing toward the bedrooms in the hall. For a moment, there's guilt in her eyes. She must be worried about what Aaron will think of this change… even if she's been gone for a while now. "I know I'll see you often enough, thanks to Card, but Aaron… I was going to see if he wanted to come to the Lighthouse and maybe teach the kids how to play guitar or something…"

"He'd probably like that," Peyton says, to the latter first, and she smiles at the former. "Don't worry about me or hurting my feelings. You know mi casa es su casa, whenever you need it — if you need to get away from your crazy brother or if the kids are giving you a headache, you have a key and you have a bed, Gillian." She unwraps her hair from the towel, and flings the towel down the hallway toward the bathroom. She'll pick it up later.

"You'll have to call Aaron — we're pretty much on opposite schedules and … probably not really talking at the moment. I'm sure he'll be sad you're gone, and would be happy to see you at the Lighthouse," Peyton says in a matter-of-fact way, glossing over the fact that she and their fellow friend have been fighting. She moves into the living room proper and nods to the couch for Gillian to sit. "Um. I don't know if you got my messages to call or anything? There's something I need to tell you."

Crazy brother… or undead sister. The season of zombies, this one, between Cardinal and Jenny… whether it's actually Jenny or not.

"I'm afraid not. I have a new phone, which I just picked up today," Gillian says, reaching into her coat pocket and pulling it out. It looks cheap, a grocery store phone. But it probably has texting now, as most do. "My last one's probably under a snow drift somewhere. I lost it when I took the Lighthouse kids sledding in Midtown." Not even sure where she lost it, just that she'd not had it when she went to look. "So I didn't get any calls or messages, sorry."

Walking over to a nearby table, where they would write down numbers and contact, she scribbles in her new phone number, which she has to look at. Not memorized yet. With the last number down on paper, she looks back over, "So what's going on?"

"Thanks," Peyton says with a nod at the table. "I'll text you so you have mine in your system." How handy. The trivial exchanging of numbers gives her a moment to steady herself, to tell her friend that yet another person from her past has returned to the living.

"Gabriel is alive," she says softly. "Eileen asked me to look through his eyes. Some things have happened that made her suspect he was back." She lets that sink in, watching Gillian, waiting for her friend's reaction.

Season of zombies indeed.

Almost immediately, Gillian's hand twitches, cause that's what she was moving when it was told. Turning away, she makes it difficult to read her expression, as her hand reaches up to touch against the scar that's still there. "I— I didn't even know…" She trails off. Denial is a step that part of her really seems to want to take, from the way she's shaking her head, almost so small she may not realize she's doing it. An unconscious gesture.

But then it stops.

"He had a tattoo. He got it the year before last, in November… The same time I got the one on my upper arm." Well, the hands added to it at least. But close enough. "It was this stylized circle thing, tribal. On his arm…" The hand shifts to touch a place on her arm. Without context, it's hard to even understand where she's going…

She looks back, dropping the strange topic to ask a question, "What did you see? When you looked."

Peyton shakes her head, not following Gillian's train of thought. Why is she telling her about the tattoo? "I … the first time, just weird… different images. Like I was flying and something else, and then him punching a mirror. I couldn't hold it — it hurt. It's never hurt before. The second time… same kind of confusion, but eventually it kind of settled and I could tell where he is." She doesn't offer the location. "Close by. In the city."

She sighs. "I told Aaron that he's not welcome here, and not to let him in at all. The reason they were worried — but you have to know, they don't think it's him now — Wendy's murder, and that Jane Doe murder… I think they were worried it was him. But Elisabeth said it didn't sound right, because of the details of the scene. And … and Eileen called me to tell me it's a copycat or maybe a doppelganger. If it's a doppelanger… if it's someone who looks like him, you need to be careful. Test him somehow."

"That does sound… strange. That's never happened before?" Gillian asks, curious, and thoughtful, though still visibly bothered by everything that's she's heard. It makes her want to be in denial, but… "We don't really get newspapers at the Lighthouse, but I did see the first one…" But that didn't mean she thought it would be him. Wendy's murder… The woman isn't one she's met (they kept not meeting), that she knows of— even if she actually has. She does sound familiar, and for good reason.

"I— I think… yeah— I'll be careful." There's something secret keeping in the way she's diverting her eyes, as if she knows she has something to say, but is trying to decide whether keeping it to herself will do more harm than good…

"Even if it's not him, if it's someone like him, Gillian… whoever it is has Wendy's power now, if they actually were able to steal it like Gabriel could," Peyton murmurs, words of warning earnest and worried. "She could tell other people's powers. So if it's Gabriel or someone Gabriel-like, they have that power. They'd be able to tell what any of us could do, and maybe want to kill us for that power. And if he has anything like shapeshifting…" she shakes her head. The ploys and schemes the murderer could use are too frightening and too many to list. "I'm hoping it's just a copy cat, someone who couldn't steal the powers like Gabriel. Liz said there were medical tools used, so he … he's at least missing some power that Sylar had." She slips toward the end — she'd vowed to herself to call him Gabriel while talking to Gillian, but she's afraid of him, even if he's innocent this time.

Gabriel, Sylar, in some ways he's just as painful to talk about. Tavisha she misses. Sylar she barely knew. Gabriel hurt her as badly as the other man in her life the last time they spoke…

"It's possible. What is it with power thieves, anyway… It seems they're a dime a dozen, these days… or at least we always seem to hear about them and quake in fear." Gillian says quietly, still looking away. If it wasn't for the fact that some of them have been very scary, it may not even seem like there's that many. Arthur, that guy in Antarctica. "Sylar." And now possibly Copycat.

Peter was only scary when there were two of him. Or to those who have the missfortune of falling in love with him.

"I'm not sure what we can do besides speculate. Keep an eye out. See any more of these attacks happen…" And pray it's not one of them? "Honestly if he's a killer who takes powers he already had a shopping list. It's called the Registration." This comment makes her snort, slightly.

"True enough," Peyton says with a little shiver. "Anyway. I thought you should know. He's alive, and hopefully that's a good thing, if he was a better person like people seemed to think he was, before you all went away. I worked with him once, but he didn't say much to me." It still bothers her that she unknowingly had worked with a serial killer. "Eileen was all beaten up, too, but she didn't tell me what happened. I think maybe it has to do with the Russian stuff that everyone's worried about. Liz and all."

The clairvoyant sighs. "I'd keep any eye on Sy- Gabriel, but Cardinal and Liz said not to. Cardinal said he … he infected people in the past." Kazimir. Arthur. She chews her lower lip. "Call Aaron and let him know you're all right. He won't show it, but I'm sure he's probably worried about you since I showed him a picture of Gabriel and told him not to let him in and who he was."

"His ability infected people who suddenly had it, but I don't think it works like that. It changed Peter when our abilities all got swapped around, and… It's probably not that," Gillian says, shaking her head, but this time not in subconscious denial. "It's probably like the defense that people got against Arthur— when he had the ability to find you. When I had many abilities I was able to defend against it. I know your ability is a little different, but it could just be him defending himself against it."

Not in the same way she did, probably, but… "Unless you suddenly have his ability, I don't think it can 'infect' people like that." Kazimir was affected cause he possessed him. Peter cause of the power switch. Arthur cause of stealing Peter's power…

"But you should be careful anyway. I'll call Aaron. Or try to stay long enough so we can talk in person."

Peyton listens, nodding. "Right. I definitely don't have his ability. Or at least I don't think I do. My guess was it was a defense, too — which scares me because no one else has done that ever," she says. "It shouldn't surprise me. I just… if he could tell it was me, that makes me nervous, but less so if it's not him that's doing these murders." These murders. It sounds so impersonal, and yet one of 'these murders' was Wendy. Her friend. Her fellow survivor. Her eyes tear up and she turns to head out of the room. "I … I'm going to go finish getting ready and head out. Hang out as long as you need."

These murders. If what she suspects now, it means her sister is one of the murders that had been copied. And whatever it is that happened to Stef…

Walking closer to Peyton, Gillian lifts a hand, as if trying to stop her, but she doesn't make it close enough to make physical contact. "All right. I'm going to go into my room and pack up some things while I wait around to catch Aaron." Cause in person beats a phone call. She won't even try to reinitiate the conversation, by the sounds of things. "I'll see you later," she says, as she disappears into 'her room'. Likely they'll see each other again at the library.

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