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A Sylar/Claire fic.

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Disclaimer: Nope, don't own Heroes. I'm not that awesome.

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A/N: This was number 71 on my list of Sylar/Claire fics to write. I blame/thank my sleep-deprived mind for coming up with this one.

Basically, Claire goes from hating Sylar for always being around, to needing him to stay with her forever.

I hope you guys like this one, I know I'll love writing it.

As always, please read and review, I live for feedback!

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Eighty years ... eighty long years had passed since she'd seen him last. They'd parted ways as enemies, even though for all intents as purposes, he'd been 'good' then. Not 'good' in her eyes ... she never had been able to forgive him. Not actively evil, as she'd preferred to call it. With all the powers he had kicking around, she'd told him in no uncertain terms that he was a ticking time-bomb. He would go off at any minute, and she wanted him as far away from her as possible when he did.

She'd been upset, then. After all, her father had just died of a heart attack. She'd retreated from the world for a while, until Peter finally snapped her out of it. By then, it was too late to take back what she'd said to Sylar, even if she'd wanted to. He'd left. To kill more innocent people, she assumed.

Now, eighty years later, everyone she had once loved was dead. Her mom had died not long after her dad, and Lyle been a victim of a hit-and-run when he was in his late-forties. Peter had 'let go' a couple years ago, wanting to be with Emma in heaven.

Now she was all alone. She'd stopped allowing herself to get close to people that some others called 'friends'. She couldn't bear having to watch them die, or having to leave them in a few years, because she couldn't tell them her secret.

In all honesty, it had been years since she'd even thought about him. After eight decades without him, he'd been little more than a passing thought throughout the years. Until now.

She was putting away her latest batch of groceries when she heard a knock on the front door. Claire sighed, thinking it was the neighbor's kid again. He was constantly losing his guinea pig, and would knock on every tenant's door in the building until he found him again.

"Simon, I haven't seen Freedom," Claire spoke as she opened the door, but was surprised to see it was not the sweet, little, freckle-covered neighbor boy. Far from it.

"Hello, Claire," he greeted, one hand on the doorframe, the other resting calmly at his side.

"Sylar?" she breathed out, but after the momentary fear and surprise passed, her anger quickly reared its head. "What are you doing here?" she gritted out, contemplating slamming the door in his face.

"Nice to see you, too," he commented, sliding into the room before she could prevent him.

Claire glared at his back, briefly thinking of her neighbors before closing the door. "What," she repeated, "are you doing here?"

He sighed, turning around and sticking his hands into the pockets of his dark jeans. "I came to talk."

She blinked, staring him down. "You want to talk?"

"Yes."

Claire pursed her lips together, holding back a spiteful retort before she made her way back into the kitchen.

He followed her at length, not wanting to get too close for her discomfort.

"Talk ... you want to talk," Claire repeated, confusing him as to whether she was talking to him, or the universe in general. "Well, let's see ... what could you possibly want to talk about? How've you been for the last eight years? Do any sight seeing, meet any interesting people? Scalp any poor, unsuspecting Specials?"

"Yes, yes, and no," Sylar answered.

"Oh, no more scalping? Now that you don't need to get your hands dirty, you just kill them after you've stolen their powers?"

Sylar replied, "I haven't killed anyone in almost a century, Claire."

Claire paused with her hand on the jar of strawberry jam, not looking at him. "I don't believe you, Sylar," she replied.

"I haven't been Sylar for many years, Claire," he responded.

"You'll always be Sylar," she corrected, emptying out the last of her bags and crumbling the garbage into a pile.

He sighed deeply, moving around to stand next to her by the counter. "Still stubborn as ever, I see. I guess we both have that in common."

"We have nothing in common!" she gritted out, gripping the edge of the counter. Still, after all these years, the mere sight of him made her furious.

He placed one hand on the countertop, staring down at the top of her hair. "Some things have changed, yes ... more than you know. But we're still a lot alike, Claire. ... Neither one of us wants to die alone."

Claire felt the anger seething within her, and finally she couldn't take it any more. He came into her life all of a sudden, shocking her world, and now she just wanted to scream - or kill him - or both. She pulled a knife out of its holder on the counter, turning to face him. He seemed to take a step backwards. "We're nothing alike. I used to be a person, Sylar. I used to feel pain." She took the knife and stabbed herself in the gut, twisting it for good measure. "I didn't feel a thing. I can't, not anymore." Claire pulled the knife out of her gut. "You took that away from me. You did this to me, because you're a monster. You're never gonna change. And unlike me, you can feel pain." With that, she took the knife and forced it into his own gut. "How does that feel?"

He blinked, his hands coming up to his stomach. "Like you just killed me."

Claire scoffed. "Don't be so dramatic," she replied, pulling the knife out of him with a sharp tug.

He gasped at the feeling, blood beginning to run through his shirt and over his fingers.

Claire blinked, looking from the wound to his eyes. "What's going on? Why aren't you healing?"

He opened his mouth to answer her, but his legs didn't seem to want to hold him up, and he slowly crumpled to the floor.

"Sylar!" Claire yelled in surprise, dropping to her own knees. "What the hell is going on?"

"I ... tried to tell you ..." he spoke, trying hard not to choke on the blood that was beginning to make its way up his esophagus. "I ..."

"You what?" Claire asked. "What did you do?"

He lolled his head to the side momentarily before he found the strength to right it, looking up into her green, confused eyes. "It took me a long time, but ... I finally found someone with ... Arthur Petrelli's kind of power."

Claire's mind worked furiously to understand what he was saying. "I don't understand ... what did you ..." It suddenly appeared to dawn on her. "Your powers ..."

"I got him to take them away," he confirmed, coughing. Little spurts of red came with the cough, and they both knew he didn't have much time left.

Claire's eyes widened, and she looked around her kitchen, spotting a towel hanging off the stove. She jumped up and grabbed it, coming back to his side and putting pressure on the wound. "You idiot," she spoke as she held the towel down, trying to stop the bleeding. "Why the hell did you do it?"

He looked at her like the answer was completely obvious. "Don't you ... remember? What you said ... to me ... the last time?"

Claire tried to figure out what he was talking about, her mind flashing back to that day.

~ "I won't work with you," Claire commented viciously. "You're a killer."

"You've killed before," Sylar reminded her.

"You enjoyed it," Claire admonished.

Sylar eyed her heavily. "And you didn't enjoy it - just a little bit - when you rammed Brady's car into that wall?"

Claire blinked rapidly. "How do you know about that?"

Sylar smiled softly. "I have my ways."

Claire's nostrils flared in annoyance, hating that he was once again comparing her to him. "That was a different situation. I didn't kill him, and I actually felt bad afterwards."

"You think I don't feel remorse for the people that I killed?" he asked her, his brow furrowed.

"I know you don't," Claire declared.

Sylar sighed. "You're wrong."

Claire shook her head. "I don't care what you think, Sylar. I'm done. I won't be forced to work alongside a psychopath. My father wanted me to get away from this all? Well, he's getting his wish."

When she walked away, Sylar pursued her. "I do care what you think, Claire. You and I ... we'll outlive all of these people. We'll still be here when -"

"Only because you stole my power!" Claire yelled, drawing looks from the few people around them as they made their way out of the building. The Company had upgraded itself since Primatech had burned down, but it didn't look that much different. "That's what you do, Sylar! You take other people's powers. You're a psychotic thief!"

Sylar pursed his lips together for a moment, seemingly lost in thought. "What if I got rid of them all, Claire? Would you see me as a person then?"

Claire rolled her eyes. "You'll never give up your powers, Sylar. You're nothing without them."

"I could be -"

Claire stopped him before he could say anything else. "Just leave me alone, Sylar. These powers might make you unstoppable, but underneath it all you're just a deranged killer. Whatever the Company says about you - whatever Peter says about you ... we both know the truth. Stay away from me, or I will kill you." ~

Claire couldn't believe that he'd actually done it. That, and that he hadn't killed anyone for over eighty years, just because of something she'd said. "Why would you let me do this?" she asked him in a softer voice, her tiny hands not doing much to stop the bleeding.

Blood was beginning to leak out of his mouth, and his eyelids were starting to flutter.

Claire shook her head, clenched her jaw tightly, and threw herself to her feet, running into her bedroom and tearing through her closet. She pulled a box out of the back part of the middle shelf, quickly punching in the combination. As she made her way back to the kitchen, she forced her thumb against the fingerprint scanner on the box, verifying her identify. Next, she spoke the words, "Claire Bennet" shakily into the voice-verifier, and then the box finally sprung open.

He was still conscious, but barely.

Claire practically growled as she gripped syringe in her hand, tearing off the sealing tip. "You stupid, moronic, son of a bitch!" she snarled, before stabbing the syringe into his arm, allowing the liquid to flow into him.

The formula took effect almost immediately. His body shook and trembled briefly, easily accepted the return of his powers.

"What - what are you doing?" he asked her almost immediately, knowing that his Intuitive Aptitude had returned.

"I'm not a killer, Sylar," she reminded him. "Take my power."

He blinked feeling his vision blurring.

Claire returned pressure to the wound, not knowing what else to do. "Come on, Sylar, take my power."

He tried to shake his head, but that only brought on another bought of coughing. When he finally regained himself enough to speak, it was with an extreme amount of effort. "I'll always be a ... monster in your eyes, as long as I have these powers," he told her. "Forgive me for what I've done, Claire ... let me die."

Claire shook her head. "No, you don't get off that easy."

He chuckled heavily at that. "I assure you, there's nothing easy about dying from a gut wound ... I'm fairly certain you sliced through the lining of my stomach."

Guilt flooded her, and she grabbed his hand. Not knowing what else to do, she forced his hand against the back of her head. "Dammit, Sylar, just take my powers."

"Not Sylar," he spoke, his voice distant and weak.

Closing her eyes, Claire inhaled sharply before uttering, "Gabriel ... please."

His eyes met hers briefly, and Claire could have sworn she felt an odd tingling run through her body, but then the light went out of his eyes, and his lids drooped closed, his entire body motionless on the ground.

Claire closed her eyes in defeat, her body trembling slightly. By all rights, she should be pleased that he was finally dead. She couldn't explain her shaking body, or the wetness the burst from behind her closed eyelids, a couple tears spilling unwillingly from her eyes to fall against his blood-soaked shirt.

Seconds later, the body lying on the floor of her kitchen sprang to life with a gasp of breath, his entire body tensed.

"Sylar!" Claire exclaimed, aware that she still had his hand placed behind her head when his fingers tensed, sliding through her hair slightly.

It was a few moments before he coughed out the blood that had pooled in his mouth, clearing his airway, and when he did, he glanced up at Claire. "You saved me."

Claire wanted to deny it, she wanted to pummel him into she felt better, but she couldn't. She was barely keeping it together.

"Why? Why not just let me die? I know it's not just about not wanting to kill me ... I was ready to let go," he told her.

"You don't get to do that," Claire responded, dropping her hand from his where it rested behind her head. "You don't get to just leave me all alone in this screwed up world. Not after ... how could just give up your powers like that?"

"I knew you'd never look at me like anything other than a monster, as long as I had those powers," he admitted.

Claire realized that she'd almost been hoping that he was lying before, when he was dying. She hadn't wanted it to be true, that he'd done this for her. Now he was saying it again, and she couldn't take it. She tried to pull away from his side, but his hand remained at the back of her head.

"Wait, Claire. Just ... I'm not expecting you to suddenly jump on my band wagon, but I ... I need you to know that I have changed," he promised. "I'm not the monster that Sylar was."

Claire blinked a few more tears out of her eyes, and after a moment, she nodded her head. "I know. ... Gabriel, I know."

He smiled softly at her use of his real name, but the sigh of relief was drawn from his lips when she brought her head down towards him, lowering her lips to his. His eyelids fluttered briefly, carefully returning the pressure against her lips. His hand tightened slightly against her hair, the tendrils moving under his fingers.

Claire whimpered slightly against her mouth, parting her lips to encourage him to take the kiss just a little bit further.

He took the cue, flicking his tongue out to meet hers delicately, and then with a bit more fire behind it. He urged Claire to slide over him more, until she was laid out against his body, the spotless fabric of her shirt becoming stained with the blood from his shirt.

She broke the kiss after a few minutes, looking down at him with slightly dazed eyes and puffy lips. "Don't leave me," she whispered in a pleading voice. "Don't ever leave me alone."

He nodded his head, dragging a loose lock of golden hair behind her ear as he cupped her face with one hand. "I won't."

"Promise me," she urged, her tiny fingers digging into the front of his shirt.

He nodded again, drawing her down for a quick, passion-fueled kiss. "I promise.

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The end.

Well, what did you guys think of this one? Like it, hate it?

I tried to keep it from going AU, but I dunno ... did I succeed?

Reviews are appreciated, flame if you must, but constructive criticism is much more useful.

Until next time ...!