So this is kinda weird. It's best defined as an AU of a Heroes AU I've been writing forever with a Gilmore Girls crossover thrown in for fun. :: shakes head :: I hope that's not as confusing as I think it is. Please read and let me know what you think, I've had this idea forever but I'm still wavering between writing out the whole thing or keeping it locked away in my feeble brain. If even just a couple of people are interested I'll probably keep at it.
I know its kinda heavy on Heroes, but keep in mind this is just the prologue-type thing. From here on out is chiefly GG setting. If you have no Heroes background at all (shame on you!) just know that they have super powers. ::shrugs:: I tried to make things pretty clear. Okay! Enough from me, please enjoy!
Nathan's father had always been his hero. Arthur Petrelli was strength, power and authority disguised beneath an Armani wrapper. A crowded sidewalk would instinctively part before him. One sharp askance look was efficient to silence even his equally stubborn grown son. He had been a grim man, unaffectionate as a husband, a harsh task master as a father, but Nathan loved him.
Now he was dead; one of many casualties of a civil war driven by greed and megalomaniacal appetites.
Arthur had always warned that there could exist no lasting peace when a select group of individuals wield enormously supernatural abilities. Jealousies would naturally arise in such a setting. Those with imagined, assigned or acquisitioned 'power' would always covet the true God-given power of advanced people. Groups of watch dogs within their community were assigned the all-absorbing task of discreetly auditing the federal government for any signs of red flag behavior. They had been prepared for an attack from their elected officials. They hadn't been prepared when a small but potent faction of their own kind turned militant; targeting those they considered threats, those who dared to question their actions and those who were misfortunate enough to get in their way.
As every yin will have its yang, the good guys were swift in forming their own defensive team of advanced and non-advanced folk with Arthur Petrelli at its head; at least, until recently.
Even though Nathan had attended the funeral a mere hour previously, he still couldn't believe that his father was truly gone. As the newly appointed head of the Petrelli household, he knew that he should be welcoming mourners to the reception at their palatial estate alongside his mother, but he had turned coward at the sight of the black mass crowding into his family's home, seeking refuge in his father's office. Arthur would have been ashamed.
He perched on the corner of the historic wooden desk that had been as much a part of Nathan's perception of the elder Petrelli as had been his dry wit and penchant for punctuality. The grieving son released a ragged sign as he lifted a heavy silver frame from the desk top.
Arthur and Angela. It was from a professional photo shoot, as were nearly all the photographs in the Petrelli household. Anything less formal would not have been fitting, not for the Petrellis. Nathan was surprised to see a tiny drop of liquid land on the protective glass, slightly blurring his father's characteristic smirk. It was the only tear Nathan had allowed himself since learning of his father's death.
The whispered tattoo of stiff leather dress shoes on hardwood floor drew his attention to the door. He hadn't heard it open, but there stood his kid brother, looking lost and very young in his new suit.
Nathan placed the photograph in its proper position, then wordlessly extended an arm to the red eyed teenager. Peter was instantly at his brother's side, wrapping his arms around the larger frame. "You abandoned me down there," he murmured into the familiar crook of his big brother's neck.
"Yeah, sorry," Nathan whispered into the mane of gelled hair. They remained entwined for a moment, each offering and receiving the comfort that was unavailable outside of the fraternal relationship. When the moment was right Nathan held his younger brother at arms length. "We need to talk," he said ominously.
"What's going on, Nate?" Peter asked as he stepped backward to seat himself in a chair beside the intimidating walnut desk. He would never presume to sit in his father's beloved leather recliner. Nathan shrugged out of his confining jacket, draping it neatly across the back of a chair. This wasn't going to be pleasant. Peter watched, intrigued, as his brother loosened his tie. He was visibly flustered and Nathan Petrelli was not easily flustered. The unfamiliar nervous movements did not bode well.
"Peter…Pop's death has really opened my eyes," Nathan finally managed to say from his position in front of their father's bookshelf, standing akimbo with his back to Peter. "We thought he was invincible, invulnerable. And now he's dead." He peeked over his shoulder to meet his brother's guarded look."I'll be damned if I'm gonna let the same thing happen to you."
Peter raised a hand, silently asking his brother to stop. "What are you saying here, Nathan?"
"I'm saying you're done," Nathan spat out vehemently. "You're not having anything to do with this war or any of the psychos on either side."
Peter burst out of his seat, his eyes flickering dangerously. "You can't just decide that! If we have any hope of winning, I need to be here, you know it."
"All I know is that you're a target. Too damn powerful for your own good. I'm not gonna sit around and wait for them to find you, Peter."
"So, what, you want me to run away?"
"You're going into hiding."
"I'm not asking you, kid," Nathan followed his brother to the door, slamming it shut when Peter moved to exit. "Ma agrees. This is for the best."
Peter worked his jaw, tightly clenching and unclenching. "I won't go."
"Don't have a choice."
The teenager smirked mischievously. "Hey, Nate, I can fly, and I have lots of other useful abilities. You can't force me anywhere."
Nathan lowered his head to stare into his brother's hazel eyes. "So you're willing to sacrifice our family so that you can do whatever the hell you want? How very noble of you."
"What are you talking about?" Peter asked, squinting suspiciously.
"Don't be a moron," Nathan scoffed. "What do you think will happen if one of their guys comes here to find you? You think they're just gonna leave everyone else alone? Ma? Heidi? Claire? Baby Monty?" He inwardly cheered as he witnessed his expressive brother's resolve begin to crack and crumble like the worm-eaten façade of a condemned building. He reached out to knead at his brother's slim shoulders. "Me? You know how they operate. Pete," the conflicted teenager looked up, "what's it gonna be?"
Peter averted his eyes from his brother, pained by the plumes of triumph blossoming behind his veneer of concern. "It's like you said, Nathan, I don't have a choice."
He'd do what was necessary to protect his family. He would sacrifice his friends, his identity, everything he'd ever known or loved. He'd hide away in whatever bunker or bomb shelter his brother had chosen for him, biding his time.
He did not, however, have to be happy about it.
Peter slouched further down into his seat, wallowing in self-pity. If the state of his situation hadn't been poor enough, Nathan had absolutely forbidden the use of any abilities in, around or en route to Podunk, Connecticut so instead of flying or teleporting Peter had been forced onto an old Greyhound. It smelled.
He looked up when the bus driver announced their near proximity to Stars Hallow; the home of Nathan's old friend Luke Danes. Nathan had attempted to tell his brother a bit about Luke and Peter's alias as his nephew.
"Jess Mariano," he had said in Peter's room the night before Peter was to leave. "The real Jess lives with his father in California and even though some of Luke's neighbors know of his nephew's existence, no one's ever met him so it should work out pretty well."
"Fan-tastic," Peter had drawled dispassionately, refusing to look away from his video game. Nathan didn't push him to elaborate. Their relationship had been, to phrase it politely, strained ever since Peter learned of his looming departure.
'Someday he'll understand,' he thought as he closed the door behind him. 'I hope.'
Peter snapped out of his reverie when the cumbersome vehicle lurched to a stop. Here we go, Petrelli. He hoisted his brand new army surplus duffle bag to his shoulder. His mother had originally packed his belongings into a matching Louis Vuitton travel set, but to Peter's immense relief, Nathan had rejected the luggage immediately.
"Jess Mariano is just an average kid, Ma, he's not a crusty society brat." Angela had sniffed haughtily at her son's reprimand and sent the maid for "average travelling accoutrement, whatever that may be".
As his fellow travelers filed slowly off the bus, Peter looked through the smudged windows at his new surroundings. One word jumped to the forefront of his mind: Tiny.
His turn arrived to step into the brilliant sunshine. A man in a backwards cap and large flannel shirt greeted him hesitantly. "Jess…"
Peter nodded coolly. "Luke."
They stared awkwardly at one another. Peter wanted his brother.
What had he gotten himself into?
So…yes, no? I think its fun, I'm excited to have actually written a little of this story that's been running around my mind for ages. I love Jess, Peter and Milo in any form.
Oh, and if you really liked this and want just a bit more back story, feel free to check out my AU Heroes fic, Eighth Grade History. I don't think its necessary though. Thanks for reading!