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Fic- Whatever it takes 2

Title- Whatever it takes 2/?
Author- Faythbrady
Show/Ship- Heroes, Sylar/Claire, Peter/Emma
Disclaimer- I have magic powers. You will believe I own it all.
Summary- Peter and Emma's engagement party kicks off. Sylar really doesn't like crowds.
A/N- My first ever Heroes fic. With thanks to those on the Sylar/claire livejournal comm who offered fics. Gracias. Please let me know if my voices are off, like I said first ever Heroes fic.


Chapter 2

He could soar three hundred feet in the air in seconds; he could alter every cell in his body to become someone else completely; he could even, at a pinch, knock off a convincing Monet in a matter of hours but he could not seem to make a cake without covering both himself and the kitchen in icing sugar.

It was impossible.

He'd tried using both his freezing and his disintegration skills but all that left were cold piles of the stuff everywhere. Apparently the key molecular state of sugar... was sugar. He'd even tried becoming Delia Smith to see if that helped, but no, and here he was, guests arriving any minute, covered in icing sugar.

“Hey man, did you find the bottle open--” Peter's voice faded as he peered into the kitchen. He took one look around, noting the apron-toting serial killer with white powder everywhere. His face cracked into a beaming grin. “Wow.”

“Don't,” Sylar warned him as he wiped at the counter, sending a white dust cloud into the air. It hung around for a second and then settled right back on the counter top.

“Dammit!” Sylar threw the cloth at the surface and glared menacingly at the offending confection.
Peter snickered.

“It's not funny,” Sylar growled, “this is the fifth time I've tried cleaning this.” His frustration was evident as blue sparks flickered between his hands and Peter didn't even try to stifle the laugh that erupted.

“The mighty Sylar defeated by sugar. If I knew that this was all it took--”

“Sugar is evil,” Sylar decided as he swept one hand over the counter. His telekinesis caused it to hover over the surface and with a grin he sent it sailing into the bin. “Aha, got you.”

In defiance a small poof of white dust hung over the bin, settling back on the surface. Sylar's grin dropped.

Peter realized that now might be a good time to intervene as static slid over his friend's hands. Sylar might be redeemed but he still had one hell of a trigger temper.

“Why don't I clean the rest of this up and you go change.”

Sylar frowned. “What's wrong with how I look?”

Peter bit his lip. “You dressed before you baked right?”

“Right.”

Peter reached over and ruffled Sylar's hair. It rained snow white flakes.

Sylar took a deep breath and let out a stream of curses that had Peter gaping. When he'd finally run out of creativity, he dropped his shoulders and swiped his hands on his apron.

Peter leaned against the counter. “I didn't even think that last one was possible.”

“It's not,” Sylar breathed deeply, trying to calm himself, “at least not without telekinesis, contortion and a pineapple.”

“I'll take your word for it.” Peter slapped him on the back sending another cloud into the air. “Go freshen up, buddy, I got this.”

Sylar nodded and reached up to rub at the back of his neck. He knew his muscles were tense and it was due to more than his ongoing battle with confection. He'd always hated social gatherings.

Gabriel wasn't exactly Mr. Popular at school and his mom had never made a secret of the fact that she hated visitors. He had gone through most of his life without one friend staying over let alone a house full.

But Peter was sociable. Peter was forever inviting this one and that one over, and being Peter's roommate meant that he had to get used to being in a crowd. It made his teeth ache and his back itch but he had to deal with it.

Of course this being Peter's engagement party there was going to be plenty of people that Sylar knew, a few of whom he liked, fewer of whom actually liked him. That didn't mean that unpleasantness couldn't erupt. People with a grudge and alcohol made for a dangerous combination; but Sylar couldn't deny Peter and Emma this.

Not since Peter had taken him into his home, offered him a roof and a shoulder and a friend. Once Peter had realized that Sylar had been living in hotels and his victim's houses and that he didn't really have anywhere of his own, he had insisted that Sylar come to live with him.

Everyone thought Peter was crazy, allowing his brother's murderer into his home, but not everyone knew the truth; that Peter had needed someone just a badly, if not more so, than Sylar.

The death of his brother, the truth of his own abilities and his fragility had knocked Peter down. He had been scraping at a very dark place and he had needed Sylar to help him crawl and claw his way out of the dark hole he found himself in.

For once, Sylar's empathic mimicry came in more than handy and he held Peter while he grieved and healed when Peter erupted and stayed silent at the 'family' gatherings where Peter pretended to be okay. Until he was.

Now that both of them were as healed as they were ever going to be, Peter had made his commitment to Emma and for some unknown reason that meant inviting all of the people they had ever known to come and eat them out of house and home. And he was supposed to enjoy it. And not eviscerate them all.

Still, at least he had both Emma and Peter as back-up should any craziness start.

The ringing of the doorbell startled him out of his thoughts and a genuine smile slid over his features. Emma was probably early, wanting to spend as much time with her new fiancee as possible. Or she'd come to check on them and make sure that Sylar hadn't caved and just opted to order pizza

Sylar reached for door, dusting off his sleeves as he yanked it open. “I didn't let him order, I swear--”

He trailed off as he was faced, not with the tall blonde deaf doctor, but a short blonde suspicious graduate.

“Claire.”

She swallowed hard and her eyes skittered away from his. “Uh, hey.”

“Hey.”

He drank her in. She was a sight for sore eyes. Despite living not too far from here and being devoted to her uncle, Claire managed to avoid the apartment and, as an extension Sylar, as much as possible, opting to meet Peter in restaurants and coffee shops. It hadn't been missed by Sylar that although Emma, and even Angela, were often present, his own invitation was habitually mislaid. Not that he could blame her, but he did wish so much--

Still she was here now and dressed in a short deep-blue dress that set off her eyes and her honey-blonde hair to perfection. She was beautiful and growing up nicely. She was also staring uncomfortably over his left shoulder.

There was a moment of awkward silence.

“Can I come in?”

Sylar jolted. “Yes, of course, sorry. Please.” He stepped back and she reluctantly followed him over the threshold, eyes searching for her uncle.

Remembering Emma's words, he sought for something nice to say.

“It's good to see you.”

She shifted uneasily. “Where can I put this?”

For the first time he registered that she held a tray in her hands, something that smelled good.

“The kitchen. What is it?”

“Lasagne,” Claire shrugged, “Peter asked me to bring it, is... is he here?”

Sylar almost sagged at her obvious desire to get away from him. But he had expected this. He would be met with opposition at first, he just had to deal with it and forge ahead.

“He's in the kitchen.”

She nodded and tried to move past him

“You look lovely, Claire.”

She paused and her eyes flickered over him. There was a twist to her lips as she answered. “And you look interesting.” She flitted past him, leaving him frowning in confusion.

Hearing her greet Peter with far more warmth Sylar decided to go and freshen up. It was when he looked into his mirror that he understood her hidden grin.

With a white apron tied to his waist; trousers, shirt and face liberally smeared with white dust and hair sticky and speckled, he looked like an extra from a bad Japanese horror movie. Hardly the suave, sophisticated charmer he had hoped to show. It was a great first impression- Sylar the friendly ghost.

He groaned out loud and headed to the bathroom.

>

By the time Sylar had re-showered and changed the guests were arriving and he was forced to play nice with others.

Emma reached up and kissed his cheek as he passed her in the kitchen, reaching out for more nibbles. Thankfully the kitchen no longer resembled a battle zone.

“You clean up good,” Emma beamed at him.

“Thanks. Are you having fun?”

Emma gestured at the air. “Everyone is.”

Sylar looked up to the ceiling where he could see tendrils of purple and pink and soft blue swirl around the lampshade. He'd gained Emma's ability not long after their encounter with Samuel and it had been one of the first abilities that new Sylar mastered without the use of scalping. Those pastel colors meant peace and happiness and contentment. Everyone was having fun.

He smiled. “Good.”

“Ah there you are, babe,” Peter said as he edged into the room, “Noah's arrived.”

Sylar stiffened as the man in the horn-rimmed glasses sauntered into the room like he owned it.

“Emma!” he greeted and then his face fell as he registered the room's other occupant. “Gabriel.”

Sylar twitched and he clenched his fists. “I don't go by that anymore. My name is Sylar.”

“My mistake.” The smirk twitching around Noah's face made Sylar itch to just punch him out. He knew that Sylar wanted to disassociate himself from his origins as much as possible. Gabriel Gray was a scared, insecure little man who'd handed his soul over to devil in a Faustian deal to make himself special. Sylar was the result and he was not going to turn his back on all he had done and all he had achieved by resorting to renaming himself after that spineless wreck.

He was Sylar- the good, the bad and the psychotic.

He grabbed a drink and bit back on the snarl that wanted to slide from his mouth.

“So, I hear you found an re-animator,” Noah smiled slightly, “I always found that to be a truly creepy power. Not the creepiest I've ever heard of,” his eyes flickered towards Sylar, “but even so.”

“Nah, Justin was a good kid. He used it to bring the frogs in Bio class back to life.” Peter grinned, “It was kinda fun to watch actually.”

“Still, resurrection?” Noah inclined his head.

Sylar knew what was coming even and he braced himself against both the attack and the insinuation.

“That's an impressive power wouldn't you say, Sylar?”

“Cut it out, dad.”

Noah's whole demeanor changed at those three words. “Claire!”

The blonde stood in the doorway and folded her arms over her chest as she glared at her father. “You just can't help yourself, can you?”

“What?” His protestations of innocence weren't fooling anyone and Claire huffed.

“Taunting, manipulating. You can't switch it off, can you?”

“I was just having a friendly chat with Peter, Emma and Gabriel.”

“Sylar.”

Noah didn't even spare him a glance. He moved closer to his adopted daughter and lowered his tone. “How are you, sweetheart?”

“Still mad.”

Noah tried a sympathetic smile. “It's been five years, Claire-bear. Can't we at least talk about this?”

“Sure. I'll pencil you in for never, how's that sound?”

Sylar wanted to applaud. Claire had graduated with honors from the Class of Sarcasm. She had the right tone down and everything. Even Noah could tell that she wasn't relenting on this.

“You have to forgive me sometime.”

She eyed him carefully. “And that will be on my time, when I'm good and ready and not before. Until then you could help by not harassing people at my friends engagement party.”

Claire turned on her heel and walked away. Noah gave him one last glare and stalked away in the opposite direction.

“Well, that was... awkward.” Sylar cleared his throat.

Peter nodded and then grinned. “But hey, bright side, she's upgraded you to 'people'.”

“Well thank you, that gives me real hope,” Sylar deadpanned.

“Glad to help, buddy,” Peter slapped him on the back. “How about you go talk to her?”

He wandered off before Sylar could answer, assuming that he would just take the opportunity to speak to the girl he so wanted.

And of course he would.

It did take a while before he managed it, though. Edgar wanted to show him some new moves he had picked up which required him to stand still and allow knives to be thrown at him, much to the delight of Noah Bennett. Then Ando wanted to show him pictures of Kimiko's sonogram and Valerie, a new member of the Carnival family, wanted to get better acquainted- she was well endowed but was also sixteen and more than slightly drunk. He pointed her tipsy self towards the coffee and tried to avoid Hiro's over enthusiastic welcome.

It wasn't until the party was in full swing, when the alcohol and conversation flowed in equal measure, and with complete lack of inhibitions, that he finally found her again.

Sylar took a deep breath and headed out after the ex-cheerleader. She was standing on the balcony, staring out at New York City in the fading sunlight, her hair a halo of gold.

He stepped out and leaned against the door, staring at her as she all but shone.

“Take a picture,” she said, “it'll last longer.”

“It would also be considered stalking.” He quipped. “Besides, we both know that you and I will outlast any photograph.”

Claire inclined her head and shifted away from him. “I guess we will at that. Huh.”

“What?”

“I just... never thought about it like that. I mean, I figured I'd live beyond my parents and friends and everyone else but I always thought I'd at least have photographs to remind me what they looked like, you know in centuries to come.”

Sylar frowned at her sad tone. “I didn't mean to bring up bad thoughts.”

Claire shook her head. “Guess I'm not really in the party mood tonight.”

“Problems?”

She glanced over her shoulder at him. “Nothing you'd be interested in.”

“You might be surprised.”

A smile teased at the edges of his mouth. He was interested in everything about her. He cared about ill fitting shoes and class assignments and the jerk who cut her up on the freeway. He cared about bad hair days and the last book she'd read and what made her want to scream. He cared about the minutia of her day in a way that no one ever had, or would. Hell, she could even talk about her period if she wanted. He just wanted her to talk to him.

“Is it your dad?”

Claire scoffed. “When isn't it? My father, the original company man. Making the world safe from us freaks.”

“Is that what you were doing?” he asked quietly. “Protecting me from him.” He knew that there was an edge to his voice that made her turn and stare at him

“What?”

“I don't need your pity Claire.” Her attention, her affection and her love, but never her pity. “I can take care of myself.”

“Without resorting to decapitation?”

“Almost five years clean,” Sylar tried not to let her words sting. “One more month and I get a medal.”

That made her smile and he felt a thrill of vindication. He had made her smile. Him.

“Yeah, Peter told me the other day you were gonna treat it as an anniversary.”

“You were talking about me?”

It wasn't delight in his voice as much as trepidation. Exactly what had Peter told her about him? Had he blurted Sylar's little secret and the reason Claire was deigning to speak to him was out of a sense of pity? Why were they talking about him in the first place? Paranoia was a difficult habit to kick.

Claire frowned. “I guess. You live with Peter, you crop up in conversation.”

Disappointment laced his next words.

“Of course. No other reason.”

She stared straight at him. “What other reason would there be?”

Sylar wanted to challenge her, to ask her if she would ever see him as a man and not a monster but the words stuck and suddenly all he anted to do was make her smile, to knock that shadow off her shoulder. He mustered all of his considerable charm and shrugged.

“Oh, you were telling Peter how handsome, charming and devastatingly attractive I was and that you were secretly pining for me.”

Claire raised an eyebrow, her grin as much disbelief as it was amused. “Really?”

Sylar gave her a sheepish look, but it was patently false. She was almost smiling at him and he felt like he could move mountains. “It's hard being this amazing.”

“Not to mention modest.”

Sylar could have cursed Peter. He really did have some shitty timing.

“Great party Uncle Peter,” Sylar said with a roll of his eyes. “I particularly like the astral projection kid spying out the girls bathroom and the spirit medium doing the time warp.”

“Oh god, really?” Claire let out a laugh.

“Even freaks gotta have fun, Syle, cut it loose.” Peter beamed at him. “How about you go dance?”

Sylar sipped his beer. “You're not my type.”

“Who is?” Peter smirked at his dark look, warning him not to say anything else.

“Isn't it obvious?”

Sylar spun to look at Claire, shock and dread swelling in his stomach.

She knew.

“What?”

“Hiro,” Claire giggled, much more at ease now that she wasn't alone with him, “it's all that hero worship. 'Brain man, brain man'” she mimicked, “he totally adores you and you let him get away with it. Anyone else you would have sliced by now.”

Peter laughed aloud at the horror and disgust on his face. “She has a point, Syle, you do let Hiro get away with a lot.”

“You're also not dead yet,” he pointed out through gritted teeth, “ a fact that can be remedied at any time.”

“Now don't be like that,” Peter said, “not when I was going to ask you to be my best man.”

For the first time in his life Sylar's brain went wonderfully, unnervingly, completely blank.

“Wha-”

Peter stepped closer. “Would you be my best man?”

“Are you insane?” Panic flooded him. “Me, best man?”

“Yeah.”

“Peter, do you have any idea what people would say. What your mother would say? Do you even want these people turning up at your wedding? It's one thing to harbor a monster and give it a second chance, it's another to place him at your right hand on your wedding day!” Sylar did not realize how loud his voice had gotten until Claire shushed him.

Peter didn't care. “First up, don't call my best friend a monster, okay. Second, I don't care what these people say. It's my day, my special day and I'll have who I want by my side. It would have been Nathan.”

“But I killed him,” Sylar reminded him, for once not caring that Claire was stood by his side. This was too important for Peter to throw away. “I'm the reason he won't be there, Peter.”

“And we've been through all that. I've forgiven you even if you haven't forgiven yourself. You are the reason I'm here, Sylar, and the reason Emma is alive. The reason we're all alive and not buried under Central Park. Over the past eight years, even if only three of them were real, you've become my best friend and I want you there with me. If anyone else has a problem, well then screw 'em.”

Sylar recognized that tone and his shoulders stiffened. “You're not going to give in on this, are you?”

Peter grinned. “Not even a little bit.”

Sylar watched him for a moment and marveled at the capacity for forgiveness that that this man showed.

“Then I accept. I'll be your best man.”

Peter clapped him on the back in a half hug and Sylar shook his head. Mad.

“The four of us will have to meet up soon to talk weddings and things.”

“The four of us?” Sylar frowned. “What kind of wedding things?”

“Dresses, cake,” Peter shuddered. “Apparently getting the right kind of flowers is essential to wedded bliss.”

Sylar blanched.

Ok, maybe this was Peter's odd form of revenge. Take a self proclaimed love-sick fool and force him to talk weddings.

“I think I'll just turn evil. Again.” He said.

“Oh no, pal,” Peter shook his head.”You are as in this as me now. I'm counting on you to help me ward off the girlie bits.”

“As a girl, hey!” Claire punched her uncle's arm. “It won't be that bad.”

“Really?”

“It'll be much worse,” she grinned evilly and Sylar was impressed. “We need in depth discussions on the right kind of fuchsia and whether you guys should wear cummerbunds.”

“Cummerbunds?” Sylar shook his head. “Forget it.”

“I don't even know what that is and I'm terrified.” Peter said. “There is no way you're leaving me alone with Emma and Claire.”

“Claire?”

“I'm the maid of honor,” she said. “Emma asked me earlier.” She paused. “Is that a problem.”

A problem? Didn't the best man and the maid of honor have to organize things together and walk down the aisle ahead of the golden couple and dance together?

Problem?

Suddenly this wedding was the best thing that ever happened to him.

A slow smile slid over his features. “Problem? Not at all.”

Comments

( 22 comments — Leave a comment )
lil_insanity
Oct. 24th, 2010 04:36 pm (UTC)
It's great!! I can't wait for the next chapter!
faythbrady
Nov. 14th, 2010 08:07 pm (UTC)
Chapter 3 should be up in the next few hours, once i'm done tweaking.
gerriv
Oct. 24th, 2010 07:00 pm (UTC)
OMG! This story is FANTASTIC! You have the "voices" of all of the characters down to a T. I can't wait for the next chapter, reading this is almost like watching and episode of the series. You are really doing a great job and it has made my day!
faythbrady
Nov. 14th, 2010 08:08 pm (UTC)
Thank you, I'm glad it made your day. I love reviews like this. :)
thegreyhawke
Oct. 24th, 2010 08:39 pm (UTC)
YAY!
The hallelujah choir just rang: you wrote another part!
Again, I can't comment enough about how good the 'voices' are, spot on. I agree with gerriv in that its like watching an episode. Pleeeease continue! :)
faythbrady
Nov. 14th, 2010 08:08 pm (UTC)
Re: YAY!
Thank you, that's great to hear. It's hard getting 'new' sylar's voice down. Next part up soon.
(Anonymous)
Oct. 24th, 2010 09:42 pm (UTC)
minor detail
So I love how this story is progressing. The one critique I have is that you said past eight years even if only the last five were real. Peter was in Sylar's brain prison for 5 years.
faythbrady
Nov. 14th, 2010 08:10 pm (UTC)
Re: minor detail
I know, I meant last three. Five in his head, three in RL AND I called it Jacobsville instead of Josephville- that's what you get for watching LOST and heroes at the same time. duh. All changed now, thank you for pointing it out.
fbdarkangel
Oct. 25th, 2010 01:03 am (UTC)
this is great!
faythbrady
Nov. 14th, 2010 08:10 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much. Nice icon!
firestonedust
Oct. 25th, 2010 04:13 am (UTC)
Mmmmyes
I am sooooo pleased by this story. You are wonderfully fun, and I cannot wait to see the awkward progression of Slyar's relationship with Claire.
faythbrady
Nov. 14th, 2010 08:11 pm (UTC)
Re: Mmmmyes
Thank yo, i like a healthy dose of humor with my angst. I should invent a new category- Hangst or something. :)
annabanana815
Oct. 25th, 2010 05:50 am (UTC)
love it! i appreciate that sylar isn't going by gabriel. its one thing that irks me in many fics.
faythbrady
Nov. 14th, 2010 08:12 pm (UTC)
*Distracted by icon*
...
Thanks.
Yeah, same here. We went through such a fuss to get people to call him Sylar, why would he go back?
bycuriosity
Oct. 25th, 2010 11:38 am (UTC)
This is sooo good! Please continue with this fantastic story! You made my day...thanks a lot!!!
faythbrady
Nov. 14th, 2010 08:12 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much.
devon380black
Nov. 12th, 2010 07:57 am (UTC)
this story made me laugh the first time i read it...

It's good to read a fic where sylar is not really all gabriel...hehehe...
more please.. :)
faythbrady
Nov. 14th, 2010 08:13 pm (UTC)
Good, that's how i like it. Laughter is all good. enjoy.
ccmom
Dec. 12th, 2010 02:23 am (UTC)
OMG! Best man? lol Loved this.
revdorothyl
Dec. 17th, 2010 03:38 am (UTC)
"...not without telekinesis, contortion and a pineapple."

Your Sylar cracks me up in a way that seems very in character, but Peter and Claire are certainly holding their own in the sarcasm and snark in a wonderfully non-vicious way.
devilsduplicity
Jan. 9th, 2011 05:22 am (UTC)
D'aaawww, this chapter was just absolutely wonderful. Makes me feel all warm and fuzzy on the inside. *O*
(Deleted comment)
( 22 comments — Leave a comment )

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