Not Ready To Make Nice
The waves crashed to the beach in front of her as she watched them. She couldn't remember the last time she had moved. Every time she moved her leg it ached, if she turned her head the slightest amount pain would shoot through her, reminding Elle of everything that he had done. She could still feel her skin splitting, and see the look in his eyes as he had leaned over her. She hadn't tried to stop him, not when he had tried to kill her, nor when he had stood his eyes still as dark as the sky beyond him, Elle hadn't even tried to stop him when he ran down the beach away from her.
For the second time in a few short weeks she was all alone again. Just when everything finally seemed to be falling into place for her, it shattered at her feet. Maybe he was right, maybe people can't change. She wanted to believe that she had. She was going to prove that she had.
When the sun began to rise further in the sky, Elle pulled herself to her feet. Walking slowly, she moved towards the water. The pain shot through her every time she put her foot down on the soft sand. Once she reached the water's edge, she pushed the cut off jeans down her leg, over the bandage. Elle removed that as well, leaving it in a pile on the ground. Leaving the shirt she was wearing beside them, she stepped slowly into the water. Her breath left her as the water crashed into her. It stung as the salt met the wound on her leg, but she walked further in, ducking her head under the waves.
Elle turned around when the water met her shoulders, for the first time she noticed the houses beyond the sand. They had the abandoned, never lived in appearance of a holiday home. There were no cars in any of the driveways; the houses were more than likely empty. They would have a phone inside, clothes.
Everything a girl could need.
She was late. To be honest he wasn't expecting her to turn up, the gun tucked into the back of his jeans was there in case this turned out to be an ambush of some kind. The large clock on the wall behind him still read ten fifteen, the man behind the window had no idea where it was, but it was coming. Peter was tempted to ask him again, but the look he had given him before told him that wasn't a good idea.
The phone call had come out of the blue, after she had left them outside of Pinehurst he had never expected to see her again, let alone have her calling him. She needed his help. Once he figured out who had rung him, he'd been tempted to hang up, but then he'd heard it in her voice.
"I don't know Elle, you aren't exactly trustworthy. I know you went after Claire..."
"Yes, I screwed up. I picked the wrong side, damn it Peter! I need your help. I can't do this by myself."
"Do what? You know it's impossible now that he's..."
"There's a way, a weak spot. We hit that, and we can do it. Please Peter - I really need your help."
Her voice broke when she pleaded. He'd never heard her do that before. She was always in control of her emotions, especially the weak ones.
"Where are you?"
It was twelve hours after that conversation, all of which Elle had spent on a bus. She didn't elaborate further over the phone, giving him the barest amount of details. He didn't know what to tell his mother, so he didn't tell her anything. Now that the Haitian was back in the country, she didn't have a real purpose for him. He'd excused himself for a few hours, and been waiting her for the last thirty minutes. There was no part of him that trusted Elle Bishop, she had done nothing to earn it when he'd been in her company, nor had she since he'd left.
He wasn't going to trust Elle, but he couldn't deny that what she wanted to do was exactly what he wanted. It didn't matter that he had done something he wanted to do, saving him from doing it. He was a problem, and they couldn't ignore it, leaving him out there to do all that he wanted. They had to deal with him now, and fast. Elle wanted to do it, and he wasn't going to stop her. He was going to help her.
The bus pulled into the station in New Jersey.
Elle remained in her seat in the back, watching all the elderly couples walk off slowly. When all of them were gone, Elle stood slowly, and made her way off the bus. Sitting in one place for several hours caused her a great amount of discomfort, the moment she stood it shot through her, increasing with every step. She stepped heavily onto the ground outside of the bus, looking through the crowd for him. He told her he would be here, he had arranged the ticket for her after all, but whether he would show is another matter.
Maybe he'd send the Haitian, take away all her power, and then get rid of her some other way. He could more than likely be setting her up, after all that she'd done, she wouldn't be surprised. If she could do this without him she would, but she couldn't do it by herself. Peter was the most motivated person she could think of, other than Noah Bennet, but Elle couldn't trust him. He'd sooner kill her just as soon as they were done with him. It had to be Peter.
Elle walked around the back of the bus, almost tripping over a suitcase as she walked slowly, an arm reached out and steadied her. They helped her out of the way, Elle looked up at him carefully.
"You're late," he said tersely.
"There was an accident on the highway," Elle said quietly. Peter wasn't looking at her. He looked at the crowd, the concrete beneath their feet, even the torn poster on the wall. "Are you by yourself?"
"Yes, are you?"
"Who would I be with?"
He turned his attention to her then, a cap pulled low over his forehead made it impossible for her to see his eyes. "Him."
Of course, Elle thought to herself. She turned around to face the crowd, leaning against the wall. "Trust me Peter. I am not with him any longer."
"What happened? I heard you two were partnered up by my father, what went so wrong that you want to kill him?"
She looked at me quickly, before starting to walk away. "It doesn't matter Peter, what's done is done, believe me – nothing can change it."
Peter started after her, guiding her out of the station towards the car. They stopped to let the cars pass by them. He took the chance to take in what she was wearing for the first time. None of it matched, and it didn't fit. She was swamped in an old faded sweatshirt, and shorts. To top it off she had added a knitted hat, she looked nothing like the person he had met seven months earlier. She looked more like someone you would find huddled under the bridge, covered in newspaper.
"Why are you wearing that hat? You look ridiculous; it's nearly eighty degrees out here."
Reaching out he pulled it off the top of her head, immediately Elle grabbed it off him, pulling it back on, but not fast enough.
"What the hell," pulling her across the road quickly, Peter stood in front of her. Elle kept her eyes down, "He did that? When?"
"After we left Bennet's, after he found out that he's not really a Petrelli. I don't want to talk about it," she said firmly. "Can we just go? The sooner we figure out where he is, the sooner we can be done, and I'll be out of your hair."
"He's not my brother?"
Elle shook her head, folding her arms around herself. "No."
He moved closer to her, resting his hand gently on her shoulder. "He tried to kill..."
"Yes, of course he bloody tried. I don't know why he stopped, I was broken," she said bitterly, leaving her eyes on the ground. "I couldn't change apparently; I'm no good, even for a reformed but not reformed anymore serial killer."
"You fought him off, that's good," Peter said softly, squeezing her shoulder lightly in what he could only assume to be reassurance.
"I didn't fight him off," she laughed harshly, looking up at him. "I was going to let him, like some idiotic bint, I was going to let him kill me. In that moment I believed him, everyone thinks it. I'm useless, dangerous, and not incredibly bright. What good am I?"
"You thought it Peter; you used me to get away. Everyone uses me, so when the one person who I thought didn't think that way about me, tells me that I am no good, I believed him. I was ready to die."
It was there again, she was so confident in the words she said, but she gave it all away. Her voice broke, and he didn't miss her eyes watering. She blinked, and the hardness was there once more.
"What about now?"
"Now, I want to get some decent clothes, and then I want to kill that son of a bitch."