Characters/Pairings: Daphne Millbrook, Arthur Petrelli
Warnings: Threats, coercion
Disclaimer: Heroes belongs to Tim Kring, NBC, et al.
A/N: Written for tvnetworks2_las for the prompt “fast and furious.”
Summary: Daphne cannot run from her troubles.
The world was a blur, brilliant colors blending into one another, creating an ever-changing rainbow. And an unending rainbow. There was no prize at the end, no wishes to be granted. Just a swift road to nowhere.
Daphne nearly flew through the New York streets, blasting out of the city, leaving chaos in her wake. Papers flew, people and cars jerked to a halt in confusion over the hurricane wind of her passing, and animals howled and screeched at the there-one-minute-gone-the-next threat. Sound bent and crowded into her ears, snatches of syllables, car horns, all blending into a welcome cacophony to drown out the words in her head.
Her heart pounded as she skimmed over the waters of the Atlantic, too fast to sink, the fine spray of her wake drying instantly on her skin. Sea birds and snatches of whale song replaced the sounds of the city, and Daphne could no longer ignore the argument that replayed inside her head at five hundred miles an hour.
“Pinehurst could use your talents.”
“I was not asking your opinion, Miss Millbrook.”
“I don’t have to listen to this, Mr. Petrelli.”
Tears squeezed out of her eyes and were gone again in an instant. Daphne blasted past cargo ships bound for foreign ports, scraps of confused exclamations over her wake barely interfering with her mental sound loop.
“I know about your crutches, Miss Millbrook.”
It had been a one-sided argument. She’d know it the second he’d said that.
“I don’t need them now.”
“But you did. Cerebral palsy, wasn’t it? You haven’t walked since you were twelve. Until now. You’ve been making up for lost time, Miss Millbrook, ever since you gained your ability.”
Land loomed ahead, and Daphne had to dodge more traffic, darting around pleasure cruisers and fishing vessels. She nearly got herself tangled in a dragging net as tears of anger and shame blurred her eyes for an instant.
“What if I have, Mr. Petrelli?”
“You’re an exceptional thief. I would like to employ your talents.” His voice hardened. “Or you can return to your former life.”
Arthur Petrelli had held out his hand, the ill-suited fatherly expression on his face not matching his cruel eyes. She could feel the power of his ability from where she stood, a grasping, sucking power sink that would drain her dry.
“You have your choice of a cage, Miss Millbrook. Either this entire world with you occasionally at my beck and call, or…” The fatherly expression vanished. “Or your crutches again, confined to your home in Kansas.”
Daphne was back on land again, the smooth syllables of French occasionally reaching her ears as she raced over fields and vineyards. The beautiful buildings of Paris loomed, and she slowed the tiniest fraction to try to enjoy them.
“You can’t catch me.” Daphne’s voice had come out faint, so taut with rage she could barely speak.
“There is no place on Earth you can hide from me. And even you cannot run forever, Miss Millbrook. Choose. Now.”
Daphne only slowed a little as she entered her own building, and finally stopped when she was in the center of her own apartment, rich with the stolen treasures of a dozen countries. Her own gifts to herself for a lifetime of dreams deferred and freedom unfairly stolen.
She looked down, and realized her hand was still clutched around the pen she’d used to sign Arthur Petrelli’s Pinehurst contract. Screaming, she slammed it into the wall, shattering the plastic shell and splattering ink on a priceless painting. Her anger rushed through her, setting her hands trembling, heart racing, and breath going a hundred miles an hour.
“You can’t run forever either, Arthur,” she said out loud. A flash of the eye later, and she had cleaned the mess, just leaving the smear of ink on her hand. It wasn’t blood, but it might has well have been.
This race wouldn’t end in anything but blood. Daphne had come too far, too fast not to know that. Arthur would learn that too, once it caught up to him.
She couldn’t wait to see his face once she’d figured out how to lap him.