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Gilded Genesis :: Chapter 4 :: Collision
[feeling] happy :: surprised you're so n
Title: Gilded Genesis :: Chapter 4 :: Collision
Author: rebelle_elle
Artist: therisingmoon
Word Count: 1,720
Rating: PG
Type: Gen
Characters/Pairings: Daphne Millbrook, Samson Gray, Elle Bishop, Peter Petrelli, Mohinder Suresh, (Claire Bennet), (Noah Bennet), (Isaac Mendez), (Nathan Petrelli), (Gabriel Gray), (Audrey Hanson)
Warnings (sexual context, non-con, violence, strong language, characters death, etc) None
Daphne Millbrook runs an errand for Samson while Mohinder and Peter meet.

Daphne Millbrook sat across from Samson, her skin crawling. She wouldn’t even be here if they hadn’t caught her trying to lift the Mona Lisa. And if they thought she didn’t know Samir had been helping them to double-cross her, they were stupider than they looked. She was still amazed how so few people seemed to understand she was light years ahead of them.

“What have you found?”

She held up a video tape. “Claire Bennet and a friend have been hanging around an abandoned gravel plant and making videos.”

“Anything interesting?”

The way he was eying the video tape made her feel uncomfortable all over again, and she slowly set it on his desk and pushed it toward him. “That’s for you to decide, since you’re paying me.”

He took the tape, not taking his eyes off of it. “Did anyone see you?”

Her head tilted as she wondered just how stupid he was. “I’m too fast for that.”

“Hm.” He took the tape and tapped it thoughtfully against his desk before holding it up for her to see. “No one must ever know about this. Understood?” At her nod, he lapsed into thought again.

While she waited, Daphne glanced around the office. There were so few pictures of his son in here that it had taken her ages to find out Gabriel Gray was related to him. Word around the Company said there was something wrong with the guy, and that was why Samson didn’t put him on many cases. When Gabriel did go out, there was someone willing to put him down; so far it had always been Noah Bennet. Daphne wondered what kind of guy Bennet was. She’d heard he was ruthless, but no one ever said much more about him than that, like he was the boogeyman or something. Maybe that was how he’d managed to protect his daughter for so long. And what sort of organization would let someone like Gabriel Gray run around when his own dad was willing to have him put down like an animal?

Samson’s voice startled her, though she was confident her reaction was too quick for him to catch. “All right, Daphne. I have another task for you. Hopefully one that will prove more of a challenge.”

Elle almost missed the article in the paper. The train wreck had dominated the news, with the notice of a cheerleader appearing days later. That was what caught her eye - “Hero Cheerleader.” That was what they were calling one Jackie Wilcox. They’d talked about how she’d remained anonymous but finally admitted she’d been the one to save a man from a burning building; her clothes had bloodied and burned but she had remained unscathed. She’d been downplaying that, but the cops had been perplexed. A miracle, they called it.

It made Elle hungry.

Daphne Millbrook was a thief. Or at least, she had been. There was a time she had thought she’d never be able to walk again, much less run. And now, she could run over water. She was the fastest thing on two legs, and she loved it. At this millisecond, she was racing a train in New York, and she was winning. Per usual.

The thievery was a sort of victimless crime that had come about through a need to support herself. It was something she had the ability to do, and she had done it. It was actually sort of fun, most of the time. It wasn’t as if she could go home, after all. Not after the things she said to her father.

Only now, Daphne was more than a thief.

She ran in a blur up the steps – it was faster than an elevator – and stopped outside the door to the loft. She shook her head to get her hair back in its triangular shape and knocked.

The man who opened the door didn’t look like the painter junkie she’d been expecting, but she had a job to do. She slid past the guy with the glasses, and by the time he’d turned to follow the scattered dust and paper in her wake, she was already gone, several paintings tucked under her arm. She hadn’t gotten them all, but it was a start.

Samson was in a good mood; it was the only reason he was tolerating the FBI Director’s attitude. “I don’t think you understand me,” Samson said at last, interrupting. “I want Audrey Hanson back on the Sylar case.”

“I don’t know how you even know about the Sylar case,” the Director complained.

Samson cut him off and kept his tone light. “I know about a lot of things. But let’s stop wasting time. I’m going to give you a number, and you’re going to call that number. You’re going to say that Samson Gray wants Audrey Hanson on this case. The person on the other end of the line is going to tell you that if Samson Gray wants it, Samson Gray gets it. Am I being clear enough for you?”

The Director sighed. “Mr. Gray, I don’t know what to tell you. But Agent Hanson had a... had some mental trouble.”

“She believes someone with superpowers has turned into a serial killer. I know. I want her on the case.”

He could hear the Director’s confused mumbling on the other end of the line.

“Call the number, Director.” He heard a familiar knock at the door and set the phone back in its cradle. “Come in.”

Daphne strode inside, her arms full of canvases. “I’m just dropping these off. I have to go back for the rest. Hey, that painter doesn’t look like he shoots up a lot. He had on a suit and everything. Even his glasses were in good shape.”

He looked over them greedily. “Horn-rimmed glasses?” he asked absently.

“Yeah, I think so.”

“Noah Bennet. I wonder why he’s there… You said there are more paintings?”

Daphne did a double-take. That had been Noah Bennet at the loft? The man assigned to put down Gabriel Gray if the guy stepped out of line? She swallowed and tried to play it cool, even though inwardly she was having what she felt was a completely justified panic attack. “Yep. At least ten.”

“And you’ll get them for me, I’m sure, Daphne. Because if you didn’t, it would mean you were disloyal, and disloyal people don’t last very long here.”

Daphne swallowed again. That had sounded like a threat, and Samson was even leering at her. And why wouldn’t it be a threat? The man was willing to put down his own son.

Samson took a sip of his chilled water, and Daphne took that as a sign she was dismissed. She ran out of the building in a blur.

Daphne had nearly reached the loft again when she screeched to a halt outside one of the Petrelli election offices as a crowd spilled onto the sidewalk. Through the gaps, she could see Nathan Petrelli himself walking to his car, flanked by bodyguards. Old money. Obnoxiously wealthy money. Not that he seemed like a bad guy. A shark, sure. Everybody knew he was a shark. But who wouldn’t be tough after his mom had been sliced and diced in an alley by thugs? Rumor had it that the people responsible had never been caught. Daphne had sometimes wondered if Petrelli had found the thugs after all and taken care of it himself. His platform was about being tough on crime, after all.

She walked over, listening as he greeted well-wishers.

“You gonna vote for him?” the guy next to her asked. She glanced at him; he wasn’t much taller than she was, wearing a long tan jacket over a red sweatshirt. He flipped his dark bangs out of his face and looked at her with a half smile.

“Don’t plan on it.”

His hair fell back in his face as he turned to her in surprise. “Really? Why not?”

They were both distracted when a man with olive skin and thick black curls called Nathan Petrelli’s name, asking if Nathan had noticed anything unusual lately, if he had been able to do anything most people couldn’t. He tried to push past Nathan’s bodyguards, who shoved him away.

“I don’t really plan on staying in the country much longer,” Daphne said thoughtfully. She was a little surprised to realize she was truly considering it. After all, she could outrun the Company – she could outrun anything. And she was tired of that pit of fear in her stomach whenever she met with Samson or the other Company founders. And she was definitely tired of being the Company’s lapdog.

But the guy wasn’t paying attention to her any longer. He put a gentle hand on her back as he moved past her. “Excuse me.” He headed toward the man and picked up the book that had fallen to the pavement. “‘Activating Evolution?’ This is that book about people evolving, with superpowers and stuff, right? You’ve read this?”

Daphne rolled her eyes as they shook hands. If only they knew.

Without a glance behind her, she set off for Europe.

Samson eyed the paintings as he waited for the others to arrive. Daphne was taking too long, and something had either gone wrong, or she had abandoned him. He expected it was the latter.

Not that it mattered. The paintings she’d delivered told him what he wanted to know. Immortality and another collector of powers such as himself, all gathered in one place. He chuckled as he considered how helpful the universe was being. First having to go to that camp with the others, then the Company… Angela had seen it coming, of course, but he was confident he’d stopped her before she’d had a chance to warn the others. He hadn’t been able to take her abilities without it looking suspicious, but her sister’s ability…

The only problem he could see was that he would have to go to Odessa, Texas. For this many powers, though, he’d do his best to stomach it. With his cancer progressing, he was willing to be inconvenienced to find a cure. He hadn’t become this powerful just to die.

He sat at his desk and logged back into his computer. Time to find out about the Wildcats homecoming.

Link to fic master post: here

Link to art master post: here

Chapter Three || Chapter Five


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