Title: Three Paths
Summary: A telepath, an empath, and a technopath are stuck in an apartment together, while the rest of their band is out saving the world. However will they amuse themselves?
Notes: Takes place many months after 1x08, sometime in the indiscriminate future when all the heroes have contact with each other and come together every now and then to get something or other done. Unbetaed.
Matt Parkman shook his head with a sigh, sitting heavily in the chair. "I can't believe Nathan called me here to babysit. I'm a telepath for god sakes; I should be out there with them, helping."
Peter Petrelli lifted his head from the couch where he was resting, a large white bandage wrapped around his bare torso. "Cracked ribs might make it hard for me to move around, but I'm not really a baby to be babysat."
"Neither am I, if you want to get technical." Micah Sanders didn't look up from the computer he was busy dismantling on the floor of the apartment, assorted tools littered around him. "And mom had a good point about how you'd be completely defenseless. They've got dad for recon. Mom, Claire, and Nathan should be able to take care of the rest."
Matt continued to grumble, despite knowing the kid was right. "They couldn't have called Isaac or... what's his name?"
"Mohinder?" Peter interjected suddenly, earning a suspicious look from Matt. "He's flying to London to meet with some top genetic research hotshots or something."
Matt continued staring suspiciously at Peter. "Did you just read my thoughts? Not even another telepath can trick this telepath."
"I'm an empath, actually. Which is a lot wussier than it sounds." Peter stared at the ceiling ruefully.
"You're not an empath, you're a mimic. But either way, it's not wussy." Micah spoke up, rubbing his index finger against a circuit board. "You get to steal people's superpowers. Remember that time the cops were after us and you were totally invincible because of Claire? That was awesome. And very useful."
Matt looked at Peter, impressed. "You used Claire's powers? I bet that must have been a rush." He sighed. "I'm no good at remembering all these technical terms for the crazy things we can do."
Peter slowly sat up on the couch and peered at Matt. "I think you should try harder... considering that the FBI want to create a special task force of super heroes, with yourself as the lead hand. You ought to pay attention to stuff like this from now on."
"Hey, get the hell out of my head!" Matt sputtered, laughing a little bit. "Or else... I might have to tell Isaac something about you and a certain beautiful lady when he comes back."
Peter chuckled, a little embarrassed and a little amused. "Now I remember why they don't like it when we're in a room together."
Matt grinned. "Because we get competitive?"
Peter nodded brightly. "Let the telepathic games begin."
"Face it, you'll never beat me. This right here?" Matt tapped at the side of his head. "Impenetrable."
"You better watch out, I've been practicing." Peter sat up as straight as he could without hurting himself, psyched to go head to head with Matt yet again. As much as he felt like a cheat for not really having his own special defined power, it was a thrill whenever he had a chance to bond with someone and use their powers on his own. Besides, battling Matt for telepathic supremacy was fun.
Micah huffed, finally looking up from his work. "Grownups are weird."
"You just keep paying attention to that computer, Micah." Matt turned to the child momentarily before concentrating on Peter again. "Let the telepaths play."
"He's not a telepath, he's not even an empath. He's a mimic." Micah spoke to them like they were completely missing the point.
"A mimic? Micah, I'm pretty sure my powers are empathic, so just let us 'paths play our little game." Peter replied.
Micah stood up and walked over to the couch, watching as Peter and Matt stared into each other with serious expressions on their faces. "I'm a 'path too, if that's what we're calling ourselves now."
"You're a... what are you, actually?" Matt asked quizzically, tearing his attention away from Peter, who turned to Micah as well while laying back down on the couch to rest.
"A technopath." Micah replied plainly.
"There's actually a term for it? Neat." Peter quipped.
"Very neat." Micah nodded, picking up a remote control, one he had modified a few days ago, from the table. No one could use it except for Micah, as it had no buttons to press on the outside. Micah held the remote briefly and without a word the radio on the shelf was blaring loud hip hop beats and the lights in the kitchen turned on. "I might not be able to read minds, but I can make your car drive off the road."
"But you have to have direct physical contact with whatever you're controlling, right? I mean, you have to be touching it." Matt asked the young boy.
Micah sighed, not the typical carefree sigh of a ten year old child. "I'm working on that."
"Hand me the remote?" Peter asked, holding out his hand to Micah.
Micah passed the small black gadget to Peter with a flutter of excitement. "You've never used my powers before. Are you going to try?"
"I am most certainly going to try." Peter murmured, gripping the remote in both hands and slowly closing his eyes. Seconds ticked by in silence, but nothing happened. Peter opened his eyes with a disappointed frown.
"It's okay, Peter." Matt said comfortingly, dipping slightly into Peter's thoughts. "None of us are multi-talented like you are; I bet what you do takes more skill than all of us put together."
"Except Hiro." Peter remarked with a self-deprecating smile, tossing the remote onto the table.
Matt nodded with laugh. "Except Hiro, I'll give you that. That guy has skills."
Micah chewed at his lower lip thoughtfully. "Peter..."
Peter looked at Micah curiously and read the boy's thoughts without thinking, surprised at what he heard in the boy's mind.
"You want Peter to try again?" Matt asked, obviously having heard the same thing Peter did. It was a good thing Micah was the one who accepted everyone's special powers the easiest. Anyone else would have bristled at two telepaths peering into their heads. Micah just took it as a fact of his very strange life.
"Yeah." Micah picked up the remote and pressed it back into Peter's hand. "You were really close, I could tell."
Peter took a deep breath and closed his eyes once again, Micah leaning against the cushions with an intense look in his eyes. Matt was struck by how three random people of varying ages from all over the country were sitting together, discovering the amazing talents that made them the brightest hope for the future. He counted himself lucky to have been found by these people. And their work had only begun...
The television suddenly sparked to life, causing Matt to jump in his seat. Peter whooped happily as Micah's eyes went wide, thrilled that Peter had succeeded.
"Hey guys, check out the TV..." Matt said, captivated by the news report. The anchorwoman was talking about a controversial case about a man found guilty in initiating a building collapse, who had just been freed on bail by an anonymous individual, only for police to discover that the man was no longer in custody.
"Nathan! He did it." Peter said with pride.
"They all did it, together." Micah corrected with gravity, no doubt thinking about his mother and father. "And we've got a whole bunch more to go."
"But you know what this means, right?" Matt asked Micah with a friendly nudge.
"Claire owes me twenty bucks! I knew their plan would work." Micah got up and dashed over to his backpack, going to count out his money to see if it was enough for a certain power amplifier he had been dying to purchase and take apart.
"While he's busy, are you still up for some friendly competition?" Peter asked, sticking his chin out confidently.
Matt grinned and sat up straighter in his chair, suddenly appreciating the fact that he was the one they had called to watch over Peter and Micah. "Prepare to go down, Petrelli."