Characters/Pairings: Matt, Peter, Sylar, Hiro, appearances by Ben
Spoilers: Vague S3 for Heroes, S2 for Lost
Warnings: Some violence and some pure, unadulterated crack!
Disclaimer: Heroes belongs to Tim Kring, NBC et al., Lost isn’t mine either!
A/N: Written for kethni and boudecia7’s Matt-a-thon for the prompt: “WHAT IF Matt Parkman = the pilot. Like, what if he was undercover as a pilot for some police case either investigating the Island specifically or the island hijacked his mission by the plane crashing there, and all the weirdness of the island goings on are actually explained by people having Heroes-verse style superpowers.”
Summary: Matt goes on a rescue mission. And damn, it really goes badly.
Matt had to figure out a better way of finding people.
Especially ways that didn't involve imitating a pilot, trying to quietly hijack a plane, crashing on a tropical island, and getting plucked out of the cockpit by a monster.
Especially when that monster turned out to be Sylar.
Matt spared a glance for the ruined plane below, feeling really bad for the three people who had come to rescue him, only to see him go flying to his presumed demise. Crunches and roars echoed through the forest, driving the would-be rescuers before them, as Sylar grinned like a kid on a roller coaster at this exercise of his plethora of powers.
It was only the calm and easy presence of both Peter and Hiro at Sylar's side, making soothing gestures at his perfectly justified panicked expression, that kept him from putting Sylar's mind in a mental blender and hitting puree.
As the noises receded and calm returned to the dripping wet foliage, Peter grinned sheepishly at Matt.
"Hey." Peter looked fit, tan, and not at all like someone who'd been gone for months in an alleged Far East Gitmo, sent there by his brother to rot.
"Where the hell have you been?" Matt demanded. "I've been looking for you for months ever since your asshole brother practically kidnapped everyone with an ability except for me-."
"How'd you manage that?" Sylar drawled. "Did you vote for him, Parkman?"
Matt flipped him the bird, his head throbbing with pain and heart still racing with adrenaline. "I'm a telepath, idiot. I heard the commandos coming and convinced them they'd already checked my apartment and found me dead. I've been looking for the rest of you for months!"
"They dropped us here, and we've been..." Peter considered his word choice carefully. "Busy."
Matt snorted and spat bloody phlegm. "At least a hundred people just died-."
"Whoa, whoa, we didn't do that! I swear!" Peter protested.
"Technically," Sylar muttered.
"Look, we've just been trying to keep anyone from stumbling over us. There's some other guys on this island, other than the plane people, I mean." Peter paused for a moment. "And don't call Nathan an asshole."
"Fine, whatever, I can't believe you're still loyal to him."
"Oh no, we just don't call anyone an asshole but Ben."
"Long story. Um... let's get you back to the others, and we can tell you what's going on."
Matt clutching his pounding head and followed the three into the woods, getting soaked with rain and sweat as they pushed their way into the tropical growth. Hiro pushed a bottle of water into his hands and Matt drank it gratefully, feeling better by the minute. And with feeling better came the sudden return of clearer thought.
"What about all those people? Why did you scare off those crash victims? We need to go back and help them!" Matt said, stopping dead.
"We've been trying to!" Peter said, turning around. Sylar stopped and leaned against a tree, smirking slightly, and Hiro just looked guilty. "I swear, we've been trying for months..."
Matt paused and double-checked his watch. He'd be sending the manufacturer endorsements for their shock-proof casing: it was still working. And yes, he had only been unconscious for a few hours.
"I just crashed," Matt said.
Peter's eyes slid over to Hiro, who blushed. Oh, this was not going to be fun.
"What?" Matt asked flatly.
"When they dropped us off, I hit my head," Hiro said with great solemnity. "My power, it went..." He waggled his fingers back and forth.
"Haywire?" Matt suggested with a sinking stomach.
"Yes, yes. We were all over the island in many times, not good."
"Yeah, but that wasn't the worst part," Peter said. "I, uh, borrowed his power to try to get us back here. Except we accidentally picked up a few of them," Peter jerked his thumb back towards the beach, "in the backwash. And then I got the hiccups."
"Very bad," Hiro confirmed. "Skipped some of them through time."
"And now you're trying to fix it."
"Without Ben as much as possible," Hiro said.
"Asshole," Sylar muttered.
"Who the hell is Ben?!" Matt demanded.
"Come on, let's get you back to the others and we'll explain." Peter looked Matt over and ducked under his arm to help him walk as the world tilted a bit around him. Then Peter sneezed violently, and the world shifted a whole lot more.
Matt had a sudden sinking sensation in his stomach that had nothing to do with the bump on his head upon seeing the sudden change in foliage.
"Did we just time shift?"
Peter was ominously silent as Sylar sighed dramatically.
"Maybe?" he said.
"Peter!" Hiro yelled.
Five days and a half-dozen time and space shifts later later, Matt came stomping up to Sylar, a murderous expression on his face.
"Where've you been, Parkman?"
Matt didn't deign to answer the question, he had his own curiosity (or rather, accusation) to satisfy.
"You shape-shifting son-of-a-bitch, you're who they've been seeing!" Matt accused. "I thought these guys were hallucinating."
Sylar smirked. "I got bored waiting for the Wonder Twins over there to fix time. Be thankful I'm being nice."
Matt growled under his breath. There were too many strange things going on here, more than could just be explained by the incursions by the mysterious Others (Peter had managed to dodge questions about Ben since Matt had woken up). Sylar toying with the Oceanic people (any everyone else he'd seen) like they were his own personal reality TV show only explained some of them.
"Ok, fine, what about how everyone's been healing up so fast?"
"Claire," Sylar said succinctly. "She's been bleeding into the spring water."
Since Matt was taking a drink of said spring water, he paused, swallowed convulsively, and put the bottle down.
"What? I thought you wanted to help these people." The smirk on Sylar's face was starting to reach shit-eating proportions.
"Who is Ben?" Matt asked, desperate to get the conversation on some topic that didn't involve bodily fluids.
"Let Peter show you. I'm sure you trust him more than me."
Sylar turned on his heel and stalked off into the tropical foliage while Matt resolved to give him nightmares for a week.
"That's Ben?" Matt asked incredulously, parting the palm fronds carefully.
Peter nodded stiffly as Matt took in the view of the relatively short, middle-aged guy with receding brown hair standing in the doorway of his bungalow. Then Ben turned and Matt felt a chill go down his spine for no good reason as he caught the look in his eyes.
"And why is he an asshole?"
Peter hesitated long enough for Matt to be sure he was thinking up a lie. "Peter..." he warned. "Don't make me read your mind."
Peter sighed extravagantly. "Look, back during one of our time shifts, we met this guy. Claimed he knew everything about this place. And... I listened to him. I didn't know he could have taught Nathan lessons in doubletalk."
Matt was reluctantly impressed.
"He claimed he could help us, said he knew the island-."
"Except he learned about it from us in the past!" Sylar whisper-yelled from the other side of Peter.
Peter gritted his teeth. "We promised him some things before we knew who he was. And we can't risk war with the people under his thumb when the Oceanic people are still trying to survive. I didn’t want to risk messing with the timeline any more than we already had!"
“You and Sylar are a two-man army! What’s stopping you from marching in there and stopping him?”
“Claire,” Peter said succinctly.
Matt felt sick. “Bleeding into the spring water wasn’t her idea, was it?”
Peter shook his head. “If we go up against him directly… bad things will happen.
Matt pondered that, looked over at Hiro, and got an inkling of an idea. Because from what he’d seen from spying on the poor Oceanic people, Ben’s crew had been a hell of a lot less nice to them than they had to Peter’s crew.
"Is there a time when Ben ever interacts with the Oceanic people?"
A few time-shifts, one tossed lunch, three allergy attacks, and five yelling matches later, Peter had managed to find the place he'd been talking about. And in a relatively correct timeline, for a damn wonder.
"Ok, so what the hell is that?" Matt demanded.
"The Swan? That's the Hatch."
"Why build it there?"
"It's a research station. On top of a magnetic anomaly."
Something in Peter's voice, the slightly strangled tone, made Matt turn to Sylar for answers. The man might be a serial-killer psycho, but he didn't have much a reputation to protect.
"You remember the German?"
"Level 5 prisoner from Primatech. Magnetic powers," Sylar explained briefly.
"Oh God." Matt knew exactly where this was going.
"He tried to kill us when we landed here. I killed him during one of the early time shifts. We buried him. The ground turned into the island's biggest superconductor." The last was said with a superior grin, and Matt had to keep himself from breaking into a smirk at the complete and utter absurdity of it all. Sylar was starting to rub off on him.
"And Ben ends up here?"
"He's going to try to con the Oceanic people, pretend he crashed on the island on a hot-air balloon."
Matt smiled flatly. "And he's going to lie."
"Creatively," Sylar said.
"And I guess it would be really bad if, say, some of the scarier Oceanic people caught him in a lie?"
"Like Sayid?" Sylar's grin turned feral. "I like that guy."
Peter looked like he was about to object when Hiro elbowed him in the side. "What are you going to do?"
"Just make sure they find a few extra hints about his 'backstory.' That’s all," Matt said.
Peter pondered that, and nodded reluctantly.
"Then maybe, just maybe, do you think if we keep Ben occupied a bit, we can maybe concentrate on rescuing Claire and getting out of here?!" Matt nearly yelled, weeks’ worth of frustration coming to a head.
"...about that," Peter began, starting to blush. Matt knew he wasn't going to like what he was going to hear. He didn't bother to give Peter a chance to explain.
"That's it! I'm never coming to rescue you guys again!"
There was a long pause, broken only by falling drops of water and the songs of frogs.
"Ok, fine, but since you're here, do you want to watch Ben get the crap beaten out of him?" Sylar asked.
"Is there popcorn on this rock?"