Title: Birthday Girl
Summary: She changes, evolves, and grows more beautiful each year. But she's still Elle and he's still Adam and that's all that matters.
Spoilers: Only for 2-8, "Four Months Ago…"
Adam Monroe lived more days than he cared to think about, but over a dozen years later this day in particular stood out to him. At the time when he usually received his pills, Noah Bennet came in accompanied by a small girl whose hair was as pale as corn silk and who had large blue eyes shining with excitement. Adam sat up on his bunk, watching them carefully. "Well, Mr. Bennet, this is a surprise. I don't suppose you've come to let me out?"
Bennet avoided the question. "This is Elle. From today onward, she is going to be providing you with your pills and meals."
The immortal watched as Elle sat on top of his table, legs swinging back and forth. "She is now?"
"Elle is Bob's daughter," Bennet said. Adam raised an eyebrow of disbelief; Bob had never mentioned a daughter. Bennet just nodded. "He wants her to do her part here, so she'll be taking care of you."
"Well, then…" Adam smiled softly at her. "Hello, Elle. I'm Adam."
"I know." Her large blue eyes watched him as she grinned. "It's my birthday today. I'm ten."
Adam's smile grew larger and out of the corner of his eye, he saw Bennet smiling softly as he cleaned his glasses on a handkerchief. This girl had already charmed him. "Happy birthday, then."
"How old are you?"
"Quite a bit older than that," he said, chuckling under his breath.
Bennet replaced his glasses and cleared his throat. "The pills, Elle."
She hopped off the table, taking the small drinking cup and plastic container of pills over to Adam. With a nod to her, Adam quickly swallowed it down. He held the empty cups out to her, but as she went to take them, she ran her hand down her arm, letting out blue sparks across his skin. Jumping in surprise, the cups fell out of Adam's hands and fell to the floor.
Elle burst into loud giggles as Bennet frowned. "Elle, you aren't supposed to do that. Just give him the pills and leave." She was still laughing until he said, "Your father will be very angry with you if you don't."
All excitement and laughter drained from Elle's face as her eyes widened in fear. She quickly picked up the cups and moved back to Bennet's side without a look at Adam. Bennet rested a hand on top of her head. "She'll be back tomorrow."
Adam nodded, though his brow was furrowed with unanswered questions. "Very well then. I'll see you tomorrow, Elle." Bennet and Elle moved towards the door and at the last moment, he said, "Have a good birthday, Elle."
The young blonde looked back at him with the ghost of a smile before the door closed behind her and Adam was left alone with his thoughts.
"Hi, Adam!" Elle said as she entered the room, kicking it closed with her foot.
"Good morning, Elle," he said, smiling at her. "What have you got there?"
"I brought you a cupcake!"
He took the small pastry from her outstretched hand. "Well, thank you very much. Is this for your birthday?"
Her eyes lit up. "You remembered?"
"I don't have much to do in here. I try to focus on things like that."
"Yeah, it's a birthday cupcake. Mr. Bennet brought them for me. He says that his wife and daughter make them all the time." Her voice softened and she looked momentarily sad. She perked up for a second as she whispered conspiratorially, "Don't tell my dad though. I don't think I was supposed to bring you one."
"Your secret is safe with me." Standing up, Adam set the cupcake lightly on his table, sitting down at one of the chairs. Elle handed him his pills and water, which he swallowed. He nodded at her hands. "That's a very pretty bracelet."
Elle held up her wrist, letting the small heart charms jingle. "My daddy gave it to me. And now that I'm eleven, he says that today he's going to teach me something new with my powers."
Adam's reaction wasn't nearly as excited as Elle's was. "I see." His eyes fell on the bracelet again. "What's that made of? It looks like…stainless steel."
She shrugged. "I dunno. But Daddy says he has a necklace and earrings to go with it if I do good at the new stuff today."
After a moment, he nodded slowly. "Well, thank you again. I hope you enjoy it."
"Thanks! See you tomorrow, Adam!" Elle waved at him before skipping towards the door and closing it.
Hours later, Adam lay on his bed, eyes trained on the still uneaten cupcake resting on his table. He had thought intensively about the steps needed to make the cupcake, calculated the creases in the wrapper and now he was counting each individual sprinkle. He was desperate for anything that would distract him from the high-pitched screams of pain that echoed around him.
Adam almost didn't hear the door opening and closing as he lay on his back in bed. Opening one blue eye, he smiled as the bright spot in his day came closer. "Hello, Elle. How're you today?"
She shrugged. "Okay, I guess."
Swinging his legs over the side of his bed, he frowned at her. This wasn't the bright Elle he knew. "You don't seem okay. What's wrong?"
"It's your birthday, right?" He phrased it as a question although he already knew the answer. She simply nodded. "Then you shouldn't be upset. You're a teenager today."
She rested against the white walls, long blonde hair curtaining her face. "Adam, what do normal teenagers do?"
"I couldn't tell you. It's been a very long time since I was a teenager. I'm sure things have changed in three hundred and fifty years."
Slowly, Elle scuffed her ballet slipper against the floor, running a hand full of bright blue electricity up and down the wall. "Oh… I…I was just wondering."
Adam leaned against the wall opposite from her, crossing his arms over his chest. "Have you asked your father about it?"
She shook her head quickly. "Well…I mean…kind of. He says that I'm special and special people do things differently."
"He's correct," Adam admitted grudgingly. His expression softened as she rolled her eyes, the electricity growing stronger. "Are there certain things that you don't want to do differently?"
Elle sighed heavily. "I dunno. High school? Maybe some friends. The only people I get to see are old guys like Bennet and Mr. Petrelli and Mr. Parkman."
"Well, you're not old old."
"I'm quite a bit older than Parkman and Petrelli."
"Yeah, but you don't look old." She shot a playful bit of lightning at him. "You don't even look old enough to be my father. And I'd really rather be with you than Bennet. He always seems like he's watching me. It's creepy."
Adam couldn't disagree with that as Elle remembered why she had come, bringing him the pills. As Adam swallowed them down, she perched on the bed beside him. "Adam, if I tell you a secret, do you promise not to tell?"
His blue eyes met hers and he nodded slowly. "Sure, Elle."
She took his hand in hers, intertwining their fingers as her electricity ran up his arm. "Promise promise promise promise promise?"
Prying her hand away, he shook out his arm to get some feeling back into it. "I'm a man of my word and I won't betray your promise."
She leaned back, wrapping her arms around her legs and hugging them. At that moment, she looked more vulnerable than Adam had ever seen her and his heart ached. "I…I want to see boys. Real ones. And…maybe go on a date, just one. I don't think Daddy will let me though. And…I want a kiss. Even if it's just a small one. But I don't think anyone will want to."
Adam chuckled lightly as she sat up, face a picture of anger and hurt. "I'm not laughing at you," he said. "I just thought it was funny that you thought that no one would want to kiss you. Elle, I assure you that when you grow up, there's going to be a line of people willing to get locked up here just to kiss you."
She hesitated for a second, happiness brimming. "Really?"
"I have been around for a long time, and I have yet to meet a man who wouldn't think you're beautiful."
Squealing with happiness, Elle through her arms around his neck, hugging him as she shocked him. Adam tried to ignore the pain as he patted her back lightly. "Thank you, Adam!" Hopping off the bed, she trailed her arms down him, letting off what he could only assume was her happy powers. "I have to go now! See you tomorrow!"
Shaking his head, Adam smiled at her retreating form. Then he lay back down on his bed, waiting for his limbs to regain feeling and his head to stop spinning.
"Hi, Adam!" Elle greeted him on the day of her fifteenth birthday.
"Hello to you too. You seem to be in a good mood."
"Everyone should be in a good mood on their birthday," she said, boosting herself up on his table.
Adam watched her appreciatively. The teenage gawkiness of the last few years had melted away to this form of a beautiful young woman. In addition, the mini-skirt, tight blouse, and strappy heels she was wearing weren't doing anything to deter the section of his mind he attempted to ignore. Even repeatedly telling himself that he was almost four hundred years older than her and quite possibly her great-great-great-great-great-great-grandfather didn't daunt him from smiling at her in a way that was slightly more than friendly. "I'm glad to see that you're having a good birthday," he said. "I would have gotten you a gift, but I just didn't get a chance to go shopping. Maybe next year."
Giggling, Elle stood up and moved over to kneel on his bed next to him, watching carefully as he swallowed the pills. "You're silly today."
"You're infectious," he said as she took his hand, running her fingertips gently over his palm, using only enough energy that his hairs stood on end. "Is your dad doing anything special today?" When she didn't answer, he said, "Did he remember?"
She shrugged. "He knows it's around somewhere. We're working with cars tomorrow."
"To teach you how to drive? You can get your permit now, correct?"
"Well…he wants to know what my power can do with cars, what kind of control I may have over them. I'm sure driving will come soon." Her hands gently traced his face, along his brow bone, cheekbone, jaw, as if drawing on him with electricity. As her soft fingers brushed his lips, he groaned softly, but not from pain.
He took her hand off of his face gently, and, as a show of mercy, she just held his hand, caressing it in her own. "So," he said, clearing his throat. "Any other plans?"
Elle shook her head, but continued to smile. "No, nothing really. It's still amazing though. Like a step towards freedom."
Adam's heart contracted painfully. He remembered feeling the same optimism. After the first few years, it had faded. Now, after decades of captivity, he was hopeless that he would ever feel the sun on his face again. He didn't have the heart to crush her dreams. "I'm glad to hear that, Elle."
"Don't worry," Elle said, hugging him again. "I'll come visit you still."
He smiled and gently wrapped his arms around her. "I'm very glad to hear that."
For a long moment, Elle lay against him, just snuggling and not electrocuting him, much to his surprise. Adam rubbed her back in slow circles, marveling in how perfect she felt against him. His chin rested on top of her soft hair and after a second, he brushed his lips against her forehead affectionately.
Eventually, Elle pulled away, blue eyes searching his. She still seemed happy, but her eyes held a silent question that Adam wasn't sure if he could answer. His eyes darted away from hers briefly before returning back. Elle smiled and stood up. "I'd better go." She tapped his nose with the tip of her index finger, shocking him quickly. "Bye."
She stumbled backwards to the table where the cups were and her eyes were still trained on him as she walked towards the door. After a quick wave and long smile, she left. Adam buried his head in his hands and sighed. If he wasn't immortal, he was positive that this girl would give him a heart attack and it would have nothing to do with her powers.
Any other person in the world would have been scared if Elle had walked up to them carrying very sharp-looking scissors, but Adam couldn't have been happier. "Does this mean what I think it means?"
"Haircut time!" she announced, grinning widely and pushing her own long blonde hair behind her shoulders.
"Finally," he sighed. Standing up, he stretched and sat down in his chair by the table. "My hair is getting far too long."
She ran her hand through his hair, letting sparks fly from her hands. "I dunno. I kind of like it. Long hair is fun."
He smirked at her as she circled him several times, eyes him carefully. "Well, you look good with long hair."
"You do too," she said. Finally, she stopped in front of him. "The usual?"
Nodding, he watched her carefully, eyes roving up and down her body, over the tight pencil skirt and low-cut blouse. "If you would, please."
He thought that he saw a slight blush on her face as she moved behind him. She wrapped a towel beneath his head, letting her hands stroke the bare skin of his neck, caressing his jaw, moving up to massage his earlobes. Adam bit his bottom lip, holding back a moan. This was new.
He suddenly felt water on top of his head, soaking his hair. Her skilled hands ran through the wet locks, separating them and combing them out. "So," she said conversationally. "What's new?"
Chuckling, he said, "The haircut. It's the newest thing since…the last haircut."
Elle clicked her tongue disapprovingly. "That's no fun."
"Tell me about it."
She was silent for a few minutes before asking, "Anything important coming up on that mental calendar?"
Adam paused, pretending to think for a moment. "No, not that I can see for the next week or so…"
"Oh. Okay." Elle continued cutting his hair, using her fingertips to massage his scalp. Luckily, she had enough sense not to use her powers as her practiced hands shortened his hair. "So, Daddy's letting me go out with him more. So you may not see me for a while."
"I'm very sorry to hear that. Though I'm glad you're getting what you want." After considering his words and inflections, Adam felt that he had done enough to hide his true emotions at the idea. Depression and fear would not do well for him.
"I won't disappear forever, silly. I mean, I'll come back. I just have important things to do now." She sounded proud, if a little unsure.
"Yes, I'm sure anything is more exciting than bringing me pills and cutting my hair every few months."
He felt her shrug. "You're not that boring… Sometimes it's fun. Plus, Daddy and the Haitian don't let me use my powers as freely as I can with you."
Once she had finished, Elle used the towel to gather up as much of the loose hair as possible. Adam ran his hands over his shorter hair. "That's much better. Thank you, Elle."
She smiled at him. "You're welcome."
Adam rolled his shoulders, watching her watch him. "Do you hate it short?"
Elle blinked in surprise, then shook her head. "No, it's nice either way." She stood back and looked at the hair covering the floor. "I'll get someone to come clean that up. Or," she added after a moment, "I can come do it. I have to bring you your pills anyway."
"Whichever you wish, Elle," Adam said, though he wished that she when she came back that she would have an excuse to linger.
"I guess I'll do it later then." Holding the scissors and comb in one hand, she took one of his for a moment, playing with his fingers.
She pulled away and was almost to the door when he said, "Happy birthday, by the way. Seventeen's a big number."
Elle turned towards him, eyes big with surprise and thrilled awe. "You remembered."
Smiling, he said, "Well, of course I did."
Edging towards him, Elle put the stuff back on the table as she leaned against it. "No one else has. I thought you might have forgotten too."
For what he felt may have been the first time, Adam reached out and took her hand, squeezing it comfortingly. "Elle, I will live for a very long time and I promise you that no matter how many years it is, I will never forget your birthday."
She allowed him to pull her towards him without question and she rested against his sitting form before lowering herself into his lap. One of his arms wrapped around her hips as the other caressed the bare skin of her leg after the hem of her skirt. Her fingers ran all over his bare skin, providing the lightest touch of static shock she was capable of, setting his nerves even more afire.
"You're almost an adult," he said quietly, almost to himself.
"I'm not a kid, anymore." It started as a protest, and ended almost sadly.
"Oh, believe me, I know." Adam sighed. "And I haven't changed a day since you've met me."
Her voice was very small as she said, "So?"
Adam took one of her hands in his and gently rubbed it before bringing it to his lips and kissing it softly. Seemingly overwhelmed, Elle rested her forehead against his, looking deeply into his eyes. Then she pulled away, standing and starting to leave.
"Elle," he called and she looked at him after a moment's hesitation. At a loss for words, Adam simply said, "The scissors."
Her eyes fell on the table and she nodded to herself, then went to grab them. Before he knew what was happening, she leaned down and placed a long, sensual kiss to his cheek. "Thank you for remembering my birthday," she whispered in his ear.
Adam's eyes followed her form as it left his room, then passed outside of his window. "Always, Elle. Always."
"Adam. Adam, wake up."
His eyes sprung open and tried to adjust to the dim lighting. The small sparkle of electricity was the first thing he saw. "Elle?"
"Hi," came the familiar voice, obviously excited.
He sat up and rubbed the sleep out of his eyes. "Is something wrong? What's going on?"
"It's 11:55. I turn eighteen in five minutes." Adam's eyes finally adjusted to the light given by her electricity as well as the dim night time lights from the hallway, and she looked slightly nervous. "It's big and I thought you were the only one who would appreciate it."
"I appreciate it very much," he agreed. "Please, sit."
Elle moved on to the bed and leaned on him. "You hate me for waking you up," she said matter-of-factly.
Adam shook his head, wrapping an arm around her. "On the contrary, I'm honored that you would wake me up for something like this."
Holding out her watch between them so they could watch the seconds tick, Elle said, "I'm glad. I wanted to share it with you." He caught her eye and they smiled at each other before she snuggled closer.
A minute later, Adam was counting it down. "Five, four, three, two..." He kissed her cheek. "Congratulations, Elle. You're now eighteen. Do you feel any different?"
"I don't know," she said. "Should I?"
He decided to be honest. "I don't know."
"I do feel good though. I'm happy I'm here with you."
"As am I." Adam ran a hand through her soft blonde hair, gliding his fingers through her silken locks. His hand rested on the back of her neck as she took his other one in both of hers, holding it tightly, eagerly. Eyes searching hers, Adam felt as if his heart would beat out of his chest.
Throwing caution to the wind, he leaned his face towards hers. Elle backed away shortly, then tilted her head up to his. Adam's lips found hers, meeting at first hesitantly, then with a flood of passion. There was a soft mewling at the back of Elle's throat, which spurned Adam on, leading him to kiss her with more fervor.
His hand moved from the back of her neck to the small of her back, pulling her against him. Elle let go of his hand to cling desperately to his shirt, pressing herself to his body. Adam pulled away, gasping for breath as he watched the grin grow across her face.
Lightning danced off the skin of his face from her hands as she pulled him towards her again, kissing desperately. Adam had no problem with that, drowning in her taste and feel. "God, Elle," he murmured against her skin as his lips moved down her neck, suckling the place where her neck and shoulder met.
"Adam," she moaned, straddling him with her knees on either side of his legs. He pressed her body flat against his, reveling in the feeling of her curves and flesh and skin. Adam was utterly intoxicated, all five senses overloaded with ecstasy.
She didn't protest as he leaned back on his bed, Elle still on top of him. His lips moved back up to capture her mouth, fingers digging into her hips. Their lips separated and as he panted with want and need, she whispered in his ear, "More. Please, I need more."
Groaning louder than he should have, Adam rolled her underneath him. She arched up against him, softly calling his name into the darkness as his lips trailed down her neck, tongue gliding across her collarbone.
The two kissed deeply as her hands ran over his shirt, feeling the hard muscles of his body. Elle was preparing to remove his shirt when a light turned on a ways down the hallway. Grabbing his arms in fear, she held tightly. "My dad…"
When his brain clicked in, Adam rolled off of her, attempting to catch his breath. "You should go."
She nodded quickly, rolling off the bed and straightened her clothes. "Adam…"
He pulled her down for one last, deep kiss, trying to convey all the mixed emotions that he was feeling. "Go."
After one more look from her deep, blue eyes, Elle ran out the door and in the opposite direction of the light. Adam breathed deeply as he pulled his blanket on top of him, rolling to face the wall. His brain was still working on comprehedning what had happened when his door opened and the light turned on. Without looking, he knew it was Bob. He pretended that he was sleeping, not moving until the lights were completely off. Only then did he open his eyes and roll on to his back, trying to remember the feeling of Elle against him.
The next day, he paced the length of his room what seemed like a thousand times, eagerly awaiting Elle to show up with his pills. His heart fell as the Haitian came in, carrying the usual cups. "Where's Elle?"
"Elle will not be returning," the other man said, looking at him with the usual disdain that he shared with everyone.
Although a million questions were sitting at the tip of Adam's tongue, he bit back all of them and just swallowed his pills. Once the Haitian had left, Adam sat down hard in his chair, trying to think about what he would do, how he would cope now. He put his head in his hands in a desperate attempt to control his emotions. These feelings, the utter emptiness and aching pain, were not new to him. He could remember it from the time before when Yaeko was taken from him.
Once again, Adam Monroe's heart was broken.
"She's going to be here any minute," Peter said from behind his wall, sounding antsy.
"Just follow the plan," Adam said, stretching on the bed. "It'll be fine." Something nagged at the back of his mind, and it wasn't just the stabbing pain of his heart that happened at exactly this time every day. "Just one thing."
Adam swallowed hard. "Make sure to wish her a happy birthday. It's her birthday today."
"Oh. Um, okay."
Elle's voice carried between the walls even as she was just greeting Peter. Adam bit his bottom lip and tried not to listen, but the masochistic part of him was unable to drown out the sound of her voice. They did their usual tête-à-tête, Peter pretending to take his pills and Elle shocking him far more than a normal person should be able to stand.
It was the flirting that hurt him the most. The way it sounded as if she was all over him. How she was with him the way she could never be with him. Adam took a deep breath in an attempt to calm himself, but didn't rely on it working.
Finally, it seemed as if she was about to leave when Peter said, "By the way, happy birthday."
There was a momentary pause, then a squeal. "Oh my God!" In his mind, Adam saw her hugging Peter, holding that perfect body against him. A second later, Peter screamed in pain, so she must have gotten him pretty good. Adam couldn't help but smile lightly at that.
Elle must have left, because Adam heard the toilet flushing, taking the pills with it. He drowned out Peter's words as he walked to his hallway window, watching in agony as she walked past without even a glance his way. "Happy birthday, Elle," he whispered to her.
Almost as if she heard him, Elle looked over her shoulder and met his eyes. He managed a small smile at her, relying on his eyes to convey everything. She gave him a shaky smile back, the very picture of the beautiful, vulnerable, strong, amazing woman he loved. Even as she walked away, Adam knew he would never forget her birthday: the day he met, fell for, and lost his love of a thousand lives.
A/N: My first Adam/Elle fic and I think they're my new favorite couple. In fact, it's my first time writing either of them, so I'd love to get feedback on them. This was originally written just for me, and it was a bit steamier. Not quite NC-17, but firmly placed under M, so I took out a few parts that would put it over a T rating. If you want to read the naughty version, let me know and I'd be happy to send it to you.
I don't recall Elle ever getting an exact age, but for the purposes of this fic, she's 24 in season two because Adam said it was six years ago, and…math. It's fun. If they did give her an age and I missed it, well…we'll just keep that our little secret.
Questions, comments, reactions and reviews are greatly appreciated.