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Fic: Lost Boy 9/? - Hope

 

Lost Boy 9/? - Hope

Disclaimer: Not mine.

A/N: I ended up writing this sans the cliffhanger I was originally planning. (Wasn't that nice of me? I accept thank yous in the form of shirtless Matt Bomers and reviews.) I have also already written almost the entire next chapter, and I have a bazillion ideas for future parts once I have this upcoming bit done… So hopefully I’ll have more up soon. *fingers crossed*

Peter watched, annoyed, as his knee continuously bounced up and down, just barely grazing the edge of the picnic table he was seated at. He’d tried to make it stop, but only succeeded in making the other one start, and so had placed his hands on them to hold them still only to have passerby give him odd looks - no doubt wondering who the crazy man was, physically restraining his own knees. So he’d let go. And now it was bouncing again.

It wasn’t nerves, exactly, that was causing it. Not nerves like the first time he walked Elizabeth to her door, wondering if he should try for a goodnight kiss, or like the first time he’d stared down the barrel of a gun and thought Oh, God, I could die.

It was more like how he felt after Neal had made him that offer to help catch The Dutchman.

He wasn’t entirely sure what that meant.

He did wonder, though, what it said that so much of his life these last several years kept coming back to Neal.

“P’tr!”

Speak of the devil.

He stood just as little arms wrapped around his leg, and he looked down to see a mop of dark curls and something with plastic eyes looking at him.

He glanced up to see where Elizabeth was and noted with some relief that she was only a few yards away, walking towards him with an indulgent smile on her face.

“Lookit I got!” Neal cried, releasing Peter’s leg and thrusting the plastic-eyed thing towards him. “Itsa dog! Dug tuh dog! He tawks!” He pressed it’s paw to demonstrate, and Peter smiled and told him it was nice, and secretly thought it sounded a lot like an instructor he’d had at Quantico. Kinda looked like him too.

Elizabeth gave him a kiss, and handed him a bag of takeout that she’d picked up from their favorite sandwich shop. “It reminded him of Satch,” she informed him, “and I realized I hadn’t gotten him any toys or anything so I told him he could get it.”

Neal was running the toy back and forth along the picnic table, talking to it in hushed tones.

“Neal,” Peter suggested, “why don’t you take, uh, ‘Dug’ over and show him the slide while we set up lunch?” He pointed to a playground across from their table.

Neal happily ran (and as adult-Neal Peter had wanted to bottle his energy for personal use when it felt like his experience - not age- was catching up to him, but now, simply looking at child-Neal made him tired) over to play.

Peter took a moment to look at his wife, really look at her, her eyes trained on Neal as he ran up the playground equipment. She looked happy. She was smiling the smile she wore the day her business cards arrived and she saw “Burke Premiere Events” in embossed gold lettering for the first time. The smile she wore the first time he introduced her to someone as “this is my wife, Elizabeth Burke.” The smile she wore when her world was perfect.

God, she was beautiful.

“Have a nice day, honey?” he asked, turning away and setting out their lunch spread.

“Mm-hmm. We went shopping. Picked up a booster seat and Dug and some Johnson & Johnson shampoo and bubble bath so we don’t have to worry about him getting it in his eyes.”

Normally, at that point, she would ask how his day was going, but apparently not this time. Not when he’d started the day searching for answers she didn’t want to find.

“I went looking for Mr. Muriuki,” he told her. “The man who owned the idol.”

She didn’t look at him, was still watching Neal who was lying on his stomach across a swing, holding Dug out in front of him like he was flying. Her shoulders tensed.

“I went back to his penthouse. I figured if anyone would know how to reverse this, he would.”

Her back straightened a little more, and she made a sound like she’d strangled her breath in her throat.

“El, look at me.” She didn’t move, remained as still as a prey animal the instant before it’s fight-or-flight response kicks in. “El, please.”

She turned, and her eyes flashed, and he knew then that she chose fight, but he spoke up quickly, before she got the chance.

“The place was cleared out, El. Mr. Muriuki’s gone.”

Something like hope sparkled in her eyes when he told her “I don’t know how to change him back.”

A/N: Also, fun fact. I actually researched to find what I thought to be an ‘appropriate’ name for Mr. Idol-owner-guy. “Muriuki” is a Kikuyu (ethnic group found in Kenya) name meaning “rebirth”. I’m oddly proud of this. :p


Comments

longbca
Feb. 13th, 2011 06:24 am (UTC)
Think you killed my ovaries...