Author's Note: This story was written as an RPG between me and my friend Jenna. Jenna is playing Sylar and Mohinder, and I'm playing Peter and Matt. This story takes place right after Sylar gets his powers back at the end of season two, so spoilers up to that point. (We decided to ignore Peter's girlfriend, Caitlin, who is stuck in the other timeline, because we just didn't care that much about her.)
Disclaimer: I do not own any of these characters, and I am not making any money from these stories.
Warning: Non consensual disciplinary spanking of an adult in a child's body by an authority figure.




Twisted Fate Chapter 1


Stumbling down the alley way; he could feel his powers coming back to him. Sylar's face split in a self-satisfied grin. No longer was he subdued to walk the earth without his newly reacquired gifts. He had earned them! The rest of them didn't deserve what he had. His mother had told him he was special, and he knew no matter how much he had doubted her before; he knew it to be true now. They would all know the truth soon enough.

Every sound amplified as he honed in on Dale's contribution to his ever growing list of abilities. Sylar searched his mind tentatively unlocking the hidden talents he'd stolen until his mind lurched and his eyes flickered back into recesses of his eyelids. His memory exploded into pictures and fragmented speech like a downloading computer as he fought to recall Mohinder's list. It didn't take long; his smile grew into a Cheshire cat's grin as he mentally processed the next closest 'special' person.

Her name was Alice Monroe, a twenty-two year old college student of biology at CUNY in Queens. Just a short ride on the subway and a couple mile walk, and Sylar was entering her neighborhood. He glanced around taking in his surroundings as he strolled down the sidewalk. The buildings looked like cookie-cutter doubles of red bricked apartments with sets of gray concrete steps. Most of the windows on the bottom floors had bars firmly built into the building's structure and all the fire escapes were pulled up from the street's access signifying the crime rate in the area to be proliferating. Sylar detested these neighborhoods. It reminded him of walking to work at his father's shop, reminded him of his mother, of his old life, of being Gabriel.

He shook his head grimacing as if he'd tasted something fowl. He wasn't Gabriel anymore, he was Sylar! Sylar pushed all of those memories away, he was different now. He was special now. And he was about to become even more special he thought as a smirk played across his lips. 1425 NE Bruins Ave. He was here. He climbed the stairs finding her last name easily on the apartment's intercom and depressing the button for Apartment 3E.

"Hello?" the young woman queried.

Sylar responded in a cheerful tone, "Is this Miss Alice Monroe?"

The voice on the other end replied, "This is her; May I help you?"

Sylar smiled wickedly retorting to himself, "More than you know." He tuned his super sensitive hearing to the door lock as he used his telekinesis to move the tumblers into place and unlock the door.

He moved deftly down the hall to the stairwell leading up, and before long, he was standing in front of her door hands twitching in anticipation. What new power would he be acquiring this time? It was like Christmas because he never knew what he was going to get. Sylar gripped the door handle mentally willing Zane's powers to liquefy it. As it dissolved, he gently pushed the door open to peek inside.

The sound of clamoring dishes and the faucet running could be heard, and Sylar didn't miss a beat as he moved up behind her and whispered into her ear, "Hello Alice, you've got something of mine, and I've come to collect it."

The girl gasped dropping the plate in her hand to crash on the floor as she spun around in utter shock to face him. He enjoyed the rush of power he felt at her panicked expression as he thought, "Yes, you should be afraid." She tried to run from him, but he snagged her arm in one hand as he brought his other hand up to make his trademark incision across her forehead.

The girl started to scream grasping the arm that held her in place. Her hands began to glow a bright white and Sylar could feel a surge of energy blast through the very core of his being. He immediately released the girl as he was blown back across the kitchen his face contorting as his whole body was wracked with pain. Every joint hurt, every muscle burned like it was on fire. He stumbled awkwardly back as the girl, still screaming, ran out the door of her apartment.

Sylar collapsed onto the floor withering and screaming himself as he was unable to do anything more. After two minutes, of what seemed an eternity to Sylar the pain finally subsided. He was drained of all his energy weakened by the girl's attack.

He hadn't comprehended yet that his clothes were ten sizes to big as he wearily stood. The color drained from his face, and his eyes widened in horror at the fact he was just tall enough to be eye level with the kitchen's faucet. The realization of his predicament finally registered as he growled in dismay, "That bitch shrank me!"

His heart began to race as his face fell in shock. Through the reflection of the stainless steel he could see his face. She hadn't shrank him, she'd regressed him into a child. He backed away from the sink taken aback by this new found knowledge. Numbness washed over him as his back hit the refrigerator door and he slid down into a crouch. This was not good. Being shrank he could deal with; there were lots of short people in the world, but being regressed into the form of a child? That was going to cause problems on a lot of levels.

After the initial overwhelming shock had subsided; he sighed grateful of the fact that at least his mind was intact. Sylar stood and walked through the apartment and into the bathroom; he wanted to see himself, to in some way really verify that his previously conceived notion was true. The youthful face that stared back at him he recognized as himself at around age seven. He ran his hands up and down the sides of his cheeks still in awe before his super hearing brought him back to reality. He could hear people moving around down the hall to enter their apartment and knew he had to get out of here before the girl returned with the authorities or worse, came back and zapped him into a fetus!

Sylar ran into the girl's bedroom to search for something to wear. He had to settle on a plain white T-shirt and a pair of black booty shorts, which thankfully hung almost to his knees and had a tie to hold them on his hips. He would have to get new clothes ASAP! Even more important would be a pair of shoes he thought begrudgingly as he stared down at his bare feet. That would come later. Right now, he was starving! He raided the girl's refrigerator stuffing his face with half of a cold cut and pocketed an orange for later. On his way out, he noticed a crumpled up wad of ones and a five lying on the coffee table. He snagged the money up greedily and headed out the door.

Several hours later, Sylar had been walking aimlessly trying to decide what to do next. He looked up at the sky realizing that it was starting to get dark, and he would have to find someplace to hide. Being in the body of a seven year old was already irking him. He was tired, his feet hurt from walking on concrete with no shoes, and because he no longer had his jacket he was cold.

The frown he was already wearing contorted into a pout as an overwhelming feeling of helplessness washed over him. The feeling made anger well up in him; these familiar feelings brought him back once again to Gabriel, the man he'd left behind. He thought restlessly, "This isn't a big deal, I still have my powers right?" The conformation did little to ease his worry as he climbed into an apartment's segmented covey of bushes. He tried to sleep, but ended up lying there for an hour before his uncomfortably drove him to move on.

He dusted as much of the dirt he'd accumulated from lying on the ground off, which wasn't much seeing as he was wearing a white T-shirt, and wandered into a diner to get out of the cold and sat at one of the tables waiting expectantly. The two waitresses in the diner exchanged looks before one came over to speak with him.

Her name tag read June, and she leaned down into a squat to get eye level with him as she asked in a Southern accent, "Hi there honey. Are you hungry?"

Sylar had turned to face her responding quickly, "I want a coffee with two creams."

The girl looked surprised at his response as she asked, "Where are your parents?"

Sylar was already in a bad mood, and this line of questioning was expected but also served to annoy him further as he spat, "I'm not a child. I've got a medical condition… like Emmanuel Lewis… the guy that played Webster?"

The waitress' eyes glazed over in uncertainty before some sort of recognition of what he was talking about dawned on her, and she smiled, "Oh yea! I've seen that show! That's got that cute little black kid in it don't it?"

Sylar ground out, "Yea. Now, can I please get my coffee?"

The waitress feeling that she had offended him shook her head quickly replying, "Oh sure thing sir."

She went back to the counter and poured him his coffee returning with a bowl of creams to place next to him as she added, "Sorry about the confusion… you just look… well you just look so young! But you probably get that all the time don't you?"

Sylar nodded, "Yea." He didn't look at her instead turning his attention to the TV hanging on the wall where the news was playing. He hoped the woman would take the hint that he wasn't in a conversational mood.

After getting no more than a one word response the woman's smile dropped slightly and she went back to her co-worker. He could hear them whispering about him from the other side of the diner, but it didn't matter, as long as he could stay here out of the cold for awhile. He pulled the wad of cash out of his pocket. Twelve dollars; it was enough to get an egg breakfast. That would let him stay at least a few hours, and that would be late enough for him to find a suitable place to hide until morning.

He had ordered the breakfast when the waitress had come back to refill his coffee and while eating, he zoned out on the news. He had almost choked on his eggs when a blurb about congressman, Nathan Petrelli, came across the screen. The news was just talking about his political standing and his recent hiatus. That wasn't what Sylar had cared about. Peter had flashed across the screen in one of the highlight reels being noted as in the man's family, his brother to be precise.

A rush of adrenaline coursed through him as new ideas sprung to mind. Sylar turned waving the waitress over to him hurriedly.

June rushed over asking, "Is there something the matter with your food sweetheart?"

Sylar shook his head excitedly, "Oh no, no. The food's fine; do you happen to have a phone book?"

The night had been sleepless. He had hoped on the subway shortly after hurriedly finishing his breakfast and riding it until the seven O'clock work crowd had started to board to eat up time; it helped that it was warm and in the early hours secluded. He stared down at the receipt in his hand. Scrawled across it was an address to a Manhattan apartment for a Peter Petrelli.

Sylar beamed feeling quite clever. He would find Peter; he remembered his many powers, one of them being the power to become invisible. He licked his lips at the thought of having that power among all of Peter's powers. And with that ability alone, it wouldn't matter how old he looked, he could… get away with murder. He chuckled to himself as he exited the subway.

It didn't take more than an hour to find Peter's apartment, and he was reassured of the fact he actually lived at the residence when he saw Peter's name in the row of tenant's mailboxes. His energy renewed at the thought of taking the man's powers for his own, but the day before and the sleepless night were catching up to him, and after another hour of waiting, Sylar needed to rest a little. He sat inside the apartment's steps dozing slightly as he waited for Peter to come out.

Author's note: Telepathic speaking indicated with 'stars'

Peter was startled by the loud sound of the shots, and turned in time to see Nathan falling to the floor. Peter caught him and eased him to the floor, not quite able to get a grip on what was happening. He yelled, "Nathan! Nathan!"

Getting no response from his brother, Peter grabbed Nathan's face to get him to look in his direction and yelled, "Nathan!" over the roaring crowd. Nathan's eyes were shut, and Peter could feel wet sticky blood on his hands under Nathan's back. He knew Nathan was going to die. But then he wondered if his blood would do the same thing for Nathan that Adam's blood had done. It was worth a try. Peter turned to Matt and said telepathically, 'I need to get in a room alone with him. He needs some of my blood.'

Matt nodded in understanding. Matt yelled at a couple of the security guards, "Pick him up. We need to get him out of the line of fire!"

A couple of men helped Peter pick up Nathan and carry him to the back room. When they were in the room, Peter thought to Matt, 'I need a needle!'

Matt thought back, 'I don't know where to get one. The ambulance will have one.'

'I don't know if we can wait that long!' Peter realized he had one in his medical bag that he took with him when he was doing hospice care. He looked back at Matt and thought 'I'll be right back. Don't let anyone move him, and spread the rumor that Nathan had a bullet proof vest on.'

'Why? He wanted to expose this not keep it secret!' Matt thought puzzled.

'And they shot him for it!!' Peter went out the back door and turned invisible, hoping Matt would do what he wanted. He opened a window, and flew out. He flew very quickly to his apartment, got the needle out of his bag, and flew back. The whole trip only took a couple of minutes.

While still invisible he put the needle in his own arm and drew some blood. He walked into the room, walked around the security guards who were trying to put direct pressure on the wounds and perform CPR at the same time. The needle stayed invisible while he held it, and no one noticed the small dot on Nathan's arm while Peter injected him with his blood.

While Peter was gone, Matt had gone out and told the press what Peter wanted them to believe. It took a few minutes, and by the time he was done the ambulance had arrived. He showed them back to the room where Nathan had been taken, only to find Nathan awake and trying to reassure everyone that he was fine. Matt's eyes caught Peter's. 'What happened?'

'My blood fixed him. The same way Adam's blood and probably Clair's blood would.'

'''''''''''''''''''

Peter stayed with Nathan for most of the night, the two of them talking about exposure, and threats to their life. After the incident, they both agreed to lay low for a few days. They needed to take some time and think things through before they did anything else. Peter caught a few hours of sleep at Nathan's house before heading home to his own apartment to get a change of clothes.

As he was walking up the stairs in the early morning light he saw a young boy sleeping on them. Trying not to scare the boy off Peter leaned down and touched his shoulder. He shook it gently and said, "Do you need some help?"

Sylar blinked sleepily, exhaustion weighing heavy on his whole being. He lifted his head and fought back the smile that threatened to erupt across his lips. He couldn't have been more elated to see Peter not only standing in his vicinity but being the one to confront him. After Peter asked him if he needed help, the smile he had tucked away came out as he thought 'I know lots of ways you can help me Peter' but he responded, "Really? You'll help me? I think I'm lost. I was with my parents on the subway, and I got off the train without them. I've been looking all over for them but I just can't find them. Can you help me find them?" He gave his best puppy dog eyes as he thought, 'I can already taste your powers; all I need is a little privacy and one slip of you letting your guard down. They're going to be all mine soon enough.'

Peter was shocked as he read the boy's thoughts. He'd mostly been reading them to make sure the kid wasn't a run away or lying to him, but he'd never expected something like this. There was only one person that knew him by name and wanted to steal his powers. Sylar. But Sylar was an adult, and this person in front of him looked to be about seven or eight. He looked closely and could see a resemblance. Peter shook his head once and hoped his shocked expression hadn't given him away. He thought he'd recovered from the shock pretty quickly. He needed time to think about his next move, and he needed advice. His brother needed time to rest and take care of covering up yesterday's events, so Peter's second choice was Matt.

Trying to play along Peter said, "Your folks must be worried sick. I have a friend down at the police station. I'm sure he'll know what to do to help."

Peter dug his car keys out of his pocket and said, "How about I give you a ride down to the station, and I'll stay with you until they find out where your folks are."

Sylar considered his options for a moment, 'Going to a police station isn't going to get me alone with him, but if I don't go he's going to get suspicious. I have to just play along, be patient. It's not like the police are going to find my 'parents' anyway. If worse comes to worse, they'll stick me in some orphanage, and I'll have to start back at square one. At least I'll have some shoes. My feet are killing me!' Sylar grimaced feeling the now blisters flaring from the soles of his feet as he stood to follow Peter. A ride in a warm car on a comfortable seat sounded so good right now. He stared up at Peter crinkling his eyebrows in uncertainty as he asked warily, "You're not going to just leave me there are you?"

Peter looked down at Sylar and saw that he was walking very carefully and slowly. Peter's first thought was to pick the kid up the same way he would one of his nephews, but as soon as the thought popped into his head, he pushed it away thinking that Sylar deserved whatever discomfort he was experiencing. He also thought that if he himself had been turned into a kid, he'd hate being picked up. So instead he slowed down his pace to match Sylar's.

He answered him, "No I'm not going to leave you there. I'll stay with you until something gets resolved." As they walked Peter thought to himself that he couldn't let Sylar out of his sight because he might try to kill someone else.

When they got to the car he unlocked the doors and got into the driver's seat waiting for Sylar to get in as well.

Sylar followed suit mentally taking in the interior of Peter's Nissan as he climbed in. He said nothing only examining every move Peter made in pure curiosity. Even though Sylar wouldn't admit it, the man fascinated and infuriated him. He sighed tiredly and leaned back in the chair thinking, 'I can't wait to see what makes you tick Peter. You won't be more special than me; and once I get your powers, I'm going to go back to Queens and take that little bitch's powers that did this to me.'

As Peter drove towards the station he thought back to the times he'd fought with Sylar, while still keeping his mind open to Sylar's thoughts. He wanted to make sure he had a list of all Sylar's abilities in mind so that he wouldn't be taken by surprise. 'We can both use telekinesis and control radiation. And I hate to admit it, but last time we fought he had better control over both abilities. I wonder if his powers are still as strong now that he's small.'

Peter listened to Sylar and heard him thinking about the person who had turned him into a child. He'd have to find out if Mohinder had a guess as to who that was. His mind turned back to the problem at hand. 'We both have Isaac's power to draw the future. That could be a problem. Better not let him have anything to write with. Mohinder said that Sylar has enhanced hearing, and he can liquefy things as well.'

Peter pulled up to the station and parked. He turned to Sylar and said, "We're here. Ready to go in and tell my friend how you got separated from your folks?"

Sylar nodded, "Yea." He thought to himself, 'Let's get this over with' as the two exited Peter's car and gradually made their way towards the police station.

Peter went in making sure Sylar was next to him the whole time. He hoped that Matt was in already today. Last night after they'd gotten Nathan home, Matt received a call from Mohinder asking him to come home and help him with Molly. He hadn't gone into details, but as he was leaving, Matt had told Peter and Nathan that Sylar was in town and to be careful.

Peter went to the front desk and said, "I need to see Matt Parkman please."

The front desk agent told Peter and Sylar to take a seat while he called Matt. Peter sat down and waited, trying to figure out what he was going to say to Matt.

Sylar sat next to him silently observing Peter a moment before bringing his attention to the surrounding room to take in all possible exits in case something were to go down. After mentally taking note of the lobby, Sylar glanced back up to Peter with a quizzical expression as he wondered, 'Parkman…' His eidetic memory filtered back to Kirby Plaza, 'His name was on the policeman's badge that I slung his own bullets back into his chest. If it's the same man, I wonder if he has powers to?'

He wanted to strike up a conversation with the man in front of him, but wasn't sure what to say to him. He realized that since the car ride was so short, the two hadn't really spoken since they first met. He hadn't even asked Peter his name. No better time than the present he thought, "What's your name?" he queried seeing where the conversation would lead.

Listening to Sylar's thoughts, Peter was relieved to hear that Sylar didn't know what Matt's ability was, because if he did, the plan would never work.

Even though Peter had plenty of reasons to hate Sylar, reasons to kill him even, he found himself wanting to find out what made Sylar tick. He answered, "My name is Peter. What's yours?"

Sylar opened his mouth to speak, "Sa… Sam. My Name is Sam." 'Almost slipped that one up' he thought before returning his attention back to the conversation, "Thanks for stopping to help me." Sylar was genuinely happy Peter had wanted to help him verses just calling a cop to collect him.

Peter never would have guessed he'd hear that from the person who wanted to kill him. "Sure Sam. I'm glad I'm the one who found you."

The agent at the front desk called out to Peter and said, "Officer Parkman said he can see you now. I can show you back to his desk."

Peter stood and said, "I know the way thanks."

He turned back to Sylar. He didn't really want to leave him out here alone, because he could try to hurt someone or run off. But he also didn't want Matt's face to give it away when he told him what was really going on. Peter said, "Hey Sam, do you think you can sit here and wait for me for just a few minutes?"

Sylar had rose when Peter had and hesitated a worried look crossing his features when Peter had asked him to stay, but he relaxed thinking, 'I don't have to go with him; I'll just tune in my hearing to find out what they say about me.' He smiled widely as he responded, "Sure. I can stay here."

"Thanks." Peter walked back towards Matt's desk, thinking about what he was going to say out loud to make sure Sylar stayed.

Matt saw Peter and said with surprise, "Hi Peter, what are you doing here today? Is Nathan okay?"

Peter reassured him, "Nathan's fine. I'm here because I need your help with something else." He thought 'Play along; someone is listening in.'

Matt nodded, "Okay, what can I help you with." Then thought, 'what's really going on?'

"When I went home this morning I found a little boy sleeping on the steps to my apartment. He told me he got separated from his folks, so I convinced him to come here with me." Peter thought to Matt, 'I need time to tell you. Pretend to fill out paperwork.'

As an afterthought Peter said out loud, "Though I think he may be a runaway, because he doesn't have any shoes, and his clothes don't look like his own." He could tell Sylar had been suspicious about being left out front. That should help explain it.

Matt said, "Have a seat while I fill out this preliminary paperwork, and then we can check the missing children's report."

Peter sat and Matt picked up a pencil and scratch paper. He started scribbling on the page and looked at Peter. He thought 'Tell me.'

Peter thought, 'The boy is out in the lobby, but the boy isn't lost, the boy is Sylar.'

Matt stopped writing and looked in the direction of the lobby, which he couldn't see from his desk. He looked back at Peter and thought, 'What are you talking about?'

'One of the people like us must have the ability to make people younger. I read his thoughts, so I know it's Sylar, but he's not an adult anymore, he's seven or eight with all his adult thoughts still intact.'

Matt said, 'Does he still have his powers?'

'He hasn't demonstrated them, but he thinks he does.'

Matt realized Sylar was the person listening in, and continued to scribble on the page. He said, "Can you give me a name and general description of the child?"

Peter said, "He said his name is Sam. He's got dark brown hair, white skin, and he looks like he's seven or eight."

Matt thought back to Peter, 'Having him younger is the perfect opportunity to catch him. Do we know if it's permanent?'

'I don't know. But he knows who did it to him, so we could find her and ask once we figure out what we're going to do with him.'

Matt thought, 'I'll pretend to go check the missing person's report, and then I'll go to a soundproof room and call Mohinder. Come up with a plan and then I'll let you know what's going on.'

Peter nodded in understanding. Matt stood up and said, "Let's go ask him for a last name, and then I'll check the missing children's report."

Peter stood as well and headed out towards the lobby.

Sylar listened intently to the mock conversation giving a small chuckle at Peter's Runaway theory as he thought, 'Yea, have fun looking up that lead.' When he heard that they were coming to ask him for a last name, Sylar hastily looked around the room honing in on an office supply holder where it had several items. He saw a pack of post it's and decided that Post was his new last name.

He whipped back around to face the two men before they came around the corner unable to keep the smile from creeping across his face, 'This is going to be a piece of cake; maybe I can even figure out during our little interview whether tubby there has any powers to.' Sylar mused.

Matt was too amazed at the sight of a child Sylar to be offended by the tubby remark. He had a hard time trying to keep the shock off his face, but attempted it. He tried to bring up the reassuring smile he would give to most kids he saw on the job who were in difficult situations.

Peter said, "Sam, this is Officer Parkman. Matt, this here is Sam."

Matt squatted down to be on eye level with Sylar, wanting to get a good look at him. He said, "Hi Sam, it's nice to meet you. I just need to ask you a few questions."

Sylar hated the fact that Matt had to bent down to get eye level with him; it made him feel somehow inferior, but he tried not to show the distress these feelings caused. To make himself feel better, he sat up straight so that he was now in fact looking down at Matt. He smirked satisfyingly as he nodded his head and replied, "Okay. What do you want to know Officer Parkman?"

Matt asked, "Could you tell me how you got separated from your folks?"

Sylar had thought out this story long before he'd met up with Peter, and he had it pretty well detailed. He lied, "We were coming in town to visit my Grandma. When we arrived on the bus at the… Port Authority? Yea… that's where it was. We got on the subway to get to grandma's house. We were riding for awhile… and I got bored. The doors kept opening, and I just wanted to see what was on the other side. I went outside, and the doors closed again, and the train left me." He did his best to sound the part of a lost child pretty sure any adult would buy the story coming out of a seven year olds mouth.

Matt was impressed with how sincere Sylar sounded. If he didn't know who it was, he would have believed the lie. He nodded and said, "Okay, that's good. Now I need to know your age, your full name, and your parent's names."

Sylar sighed thinking, 'This is going to take forever! I'm so tired…' The lack of sleep along with the fact he could feel this body growing and using up more energy than he had been accustomed to left him feeling drained. He answered, "seven; Sam Post… and," he hadn't thought of parent names, but decided it would be okay just to use his own parents first names, "Virginia and Timothy." The mention of his mother's name brought a pang of guilt as he thought, 'I never meant to hurt you mom, but I'm going to make you proud now. You'll see."

Matt shared a look with Peter as he stood up. He thought 'He's tired. That's good; he'll be more likely to let his guard down. I'll go call Mohinder.'

Matt looked down at Sylar and said, "Okay Sam. Thanks for the information. I'll go see what I can find out."

Peter said, "Thanks Matt." and sat down next to Sylar to wait. A few seconds later Peter realized he hadn't had breakfast yet, and he was hungry. He looked over at Sylar and said, "I'm gonna go get something to eat out of the vending machine while we wait. You want something?"

Sylar's stomach growled in response to Peter's query as he nodded his agreement and responded, "I'm starving!"

Peter walked over to the vending machine and got a couple of bucks out of his wallet. "What do you want?"

''''''''''

Matt had made it to a soundproof room and dialed Mohinder's cell phone. As soon as Mohinder answered Matt said, "Hey it's Matt. I know you've got your hands full today, but I need your help."

Mohinder had just left the house after the sitter had arrived. He had planned to stop by the lab and run a few diagnostic tests on a few new samples of DNA the company had brought in. He replied, "Certainly, what can I help you with?"

"Peter is here, and he brought Sylar with him, except Sylar isn't an adult anymore, somehow he's been changed into a seven year old."

There was a small pause on the other end before Mohinder found his voice, "He's what? Back up a minute. Sylar is a child? How can that be? Have you contained him?"

"Pete said someone like us changed him into a child. I've seen him with my own eyes, and I've read his thoughts. It's Sylar, just in a younger body. We haven't contained him, because he doesn't know that we know who he is. He hasn't used his powers yet, but that's only because he thinks he has us fooled. He's pretending to be a lost child, and we're playing along. I thought you would have some ideas on how to contain him without him using his powers."

Mohinder clucked his tongue as he thought aloud, "Okay I think I've got a plan, I'm almost to the lab right now; I think if we administer a stronger dose of the modified Shanti virus we can strip him of all his powers. The modified serum hasn't been tested on a superhuman yet, so it may kill him, but I'm more than willing to take that chance. The only problem is that the virus won't have an immediate effect. It is quick, but not quick enough for Sylar not to retaliate. We have to figure out a way to inject him with the serum before he can access his powers."

Matt was willing to take the chance that the serum might kill Sylar too. He'd killed Molly's parents along with numerous other people. He said, "He was thinking that he was tired, so it might be fairly easy to take him unaware. I have tranquilizer guns here at the station. I could keep him here for a while, wear him out even more, and then let Peter take him somewhere. I can shoot him with the tranquilizer, and then once he's out, you can give him the serum."

Mohinder pulled into the parking garage across the street from his lab as he responded, "That sounds good. I can be ready and available to meet you in about an hour and a half, meet me at the Star Bucks at 17th between 8th and 9th Ave. There are several back streets in that area since it's the warehouse district, there's also a pizza joint down the road you can have Peter distract Sylar by taking him there, so we can meet and set up an ambush."

"Okay, that sounds like a good plan. I'll see you at Star Bucks." Matt hung up, and walked out of the soundproof room. He went to his desk and did check on the missing children's report in case Sylar was listening in.

Mentally he called out to Peter, hoping he'd be able to hear him even though they weren't in the same room. 'Peter can you hear me?'

Peter was sitting next to Sylar, eating some chips, and drinking some bad coffee. 'I can hear you.'

'Mohinder has a serum that he thinks will inhibit all of Sylar's powers. We plan to set up an ambush, shoot him with a tranquilizer to put him to sleep, and then inject the serum. Are you up for that plan?'

'It sounds like it's a good plan. Better then anything I've been able to come up with.'

'Good. I'm going to come and work with Sylar for a little while to give Mohinder a chance to get the serum and meet us. Then when we can't find 'Sam's' parents, I'll let you take him out to lunch at a pizza place near 17th. We'll set up the ambush outside of it.'

Peter poured the chip crumbs that were in the bottom of his bag into his hand, and tossed them all in his mouth at once. 'Sounds good.' He looked over at Sylar and said, "Not the healthiest of breakfasts, but my potato chips tasted pretty good. How was yours?"

Sylar smiled responding, "Good. Thanks." His smile faded as he looked away and thought, 'I wish you wouldn't be so nice to me. It's going to make feel bad to take your powers from you later.'

Peter was kind of amazed to hear that Sylar would feel bad about anything. First about his mom, and now about Peter himself. And for the first time Peter wondered exactly how evil Sylar really was. Before he had much time to think that over Matt came out to the lobby.

He said, "There weren't any reports for missing children matching your description Sam."

Peter wasn't actually surprised about this, but pretended to be. He looked up at Matt and said, "Are you sure? I mean his parents must have told the police that Sam was missing."

"I'm positive. No reports of kids gone missing from the subway at all."

Peter and Matt both looked at Sylar, wondering what he'd say about it.

Sylar acted surprised as well as he responded, "They've got to be looking for me right? Maybe they haven't noticed I'm missing yet," he stated in mock worry as he thought, 'Yea, that sounds like a response a seven year old would think.' He peered back up between the two adults to gauge their reaction to his answer.

Peter and Matt looked at each other for a second and Matt thought, 'I wouldn't buy it if it were a real case.'

'I wouldn't either' Peter agreed. He looked back at Sylar said gently, "Sam, if there's anything that maybe you're not telling us, I want you to know it's okay to be honest with us."

Sylar's brow crinkled in dismay he had to think of something more convincing. He exchanged glances back and forth before an idea struck him. He lowered his eyes and mumbled, "Maybe they aren't looking for me. There always too busy getting drunk to care." 'I hope this spin on my story is believable; it'd work on one of those Lifetime Channel movies,' he thought nervously. He was too close now to have his plans fall apart.

Peter and Matt exchanged another look, and Peter thought, 'Ask to talk to me on the other side of the lobby.'

Matt said, "Could I speak to you for a minute Peter?"

Peter smiled at Sylar and said, "I'll be right back."

He got up and the two men walked to the other side of the lobby where Sylar could see them, but a normal person wouldn't be able to hear them unless they were yelling. Peter said, "You think he's a runaway?"

"Probably."

"How bad do things have to be at home to run away at seven?"

Matt stole a glance over at Sylar and said, "Pretty bad."

"Look it may take you a while to find out what really happened with the kid. I'm a certified hospice care nurse, and I'm also registered to take in foster kids thanks to my brother's campaign manager. So how about when we're done here, you let me take him home until we find other arrangements."

"Are you sure?"

Peter looked back at Sylar and said, "Yeah."

Matt thought, 'That sounded convincing to me. Let's see if he bought it.'

They walked back to Sylar and Matt said, "Hey Sam, I'm going to take you back to my desk and ask you a few more questions okay?"

Sylar had to fight back the smile as he overheard their conversation. As the two approached he bit his lip to keep himself from looking happy as he thought, 'Yes! I knew my plan would work! Now it'll only be a matter of time before I no longer have to worry about looking like a child.' He listened to Matt's question, and nodded his agreement and followed Matt back to his desk.

Sylar had to fight back the smile as he overheard their conversation. As the two approached him, he bit his lip to keep himself from looking happy as he thought, 'Yes! I knew my plan would work! Now it'll only be a matter of time before I no longer have to worry about looking like a child.' He listened to Matt's question, and nodded his agreement following Matt back to his desk.

As soon as they got to Matt's desk he had Sylar sit down, and Matt pulled out a stack of paperwork to fill out. He looked at Sylar with a smile and said, "After we've gotten this taken care of, then I'll have you work with our sketch artist, to come up with a picture of your folks."

Sylar answered Matt's questions his boredom level growing as an hour of questions passed. He mentally drifted off and caught himself using his telekinesis on one of the pencils in Matt's pen holder cup. He snapped back to attention but not before the cup tipped over spilling the contents all over Matt's desk. Sylar hoped Matt hadn't noticed, but his reaction would be a good tell tale sign as to whether Matt was familiar with powers and be suspicious or if he'd merely chalk the occurrence up to a random act of gravity.

While Matt was busy with Sylar, Peter had gone to the lobby and asked the person at the front desk about a lost and found, explaining that the boy who was with him didn't have any shoes. He was soon shown to an area with a large pile of lost and found items that had been left behind. He found a pair of sneakers that didn't look too big and took them.

Matt saw the pens spill all over the desk and immediately gave Sylar a scrutinizing look, before putting the pens back in the cup and setting it upright. Matt thought to himself, 'I guess that means his powers are working.' before continuing with the questions as if nothing had happened.

Sylar grinned wickedly as he thought, 'Good, he doesn't suspect anything.' After another five minutes of Matt's questions, Sylar sighed audibly as he lay his head on his folded arms and kicked his feet back and forth hitting the bottom of his chair's seat to let Matt know he was tired of filling out paperwork as he thought, 'Gods how many more questions is he going to ask me? I might slice my own head open just to get this over with.'

Peter arrived and heard Sylar's thoughts. He went up to them and said, "Hey Sam, I found some shoes that might fit you. Wanna try them on?"

Peter thought to Matt, 'Are we about ready to go?'

Matt thought back, 'We still have half an hour to go, but I can have him work with the sketch artists now.'

Sylar's face brightened as he saw Peter and he whined internally, 'Please get me the hell out of here!' When Peter presented him with the shoes; he smiled widely as he thanked him and put them on. They were almost the perfect size running about a half size to big, but Sylar was content just to have something on his feet. He gave Peter an imploring look as he questioned, "Are we done?"

Peter shook his head. "Sorry Sam, I know it's boring, but this will help get you reunited with your parents."

He turned to Matt and asked, "How much longer until you're done?"

Matt shuffled his papers and stood. "I'm done with Sam for now, but he needs to see the station's sketch artist, and describe his parents to her, so we have a picture. If you two want to wait here, I'll go get her."

Peter nodded while Matt walked off. Peter turned to Sylar and said, "Hey Sam, I wanted a chance to talk to you alone anyway. I spoke with Officer Parkman, and he said that if we can't find your parents today, then you can come home with me and stay at my apartment until we find your folks. If you want to that is."

Sylar positively beamed, "Yea? I'd love to come stay with you!" He gave Peter a wide grin as he thought, 'My plan couldn't have worked out more perfectly; I didn't even have to ask him if I could stay with him!' He looked at the blinking wall clock above the entryway; it was almost 11AM. He rubbed his burning eyes looking back to Peter with a pout, "How much longer do we have to stay here? Can't we just go to your house now and come back here tomorrow?"

Peter shook his head, "Sorry, you still have to work with the sketch artist. But how about after we're done here I take you out to get some Pizza for lunch on the way home? I'm not much of a cook."

Sylar nodded his head in agreement sullenly. His stomach growled as he thought, 'Pizza actually sounds very good right now.' Matt came around the corner with a woman in her mid thirties; she smiled warmly down at Sylar and introduced herself, "Hi Sam, I'm Barbra, and Officer Parkman here has told me you're going to come with me to do a couple of sketches."

Sylar nodded in agreement, and Barbra held out her hand for him to take. Sylar hesitated momentarily but decided even though he didn't want to hold the woman's hand, if he did just go with the flow, he'd move this whole process along a little faster. He took a hold of the woman's hand glancing back at Peter and Matt circumspectly as the woman started to lead him away.

Peter watched Sylar walk away and then thought to Matt, 'You need to go in and stay with them. Make sure Sylar doesn't get the chance to draw on anything. He may be able to draw us ambushing him.'

Matt nodded in agreement, gathered some paperwork, and headed off with Sylar and Barbra.

Peter thought about it for a second, and realized it might not be a bad idea to see a glimpse of the future right about now. If Sylar was going to find out that he'd been tricked, and end up hurting them, Peter wanted to know about it ahead of time. He grabbed a sheet of paper and a pencil off Matt's desk, and went into the men's room.

Peter found a stall, shut and locked the door, held the paper up on the stall wall, and let himself go into the trance like state that allowed him to draw the future. His eyes turned white and his hand moved across the paper without his awareness. Ten minutes later his eyes went back to normal, and he looked at the picture in front of him. He stared at it for a good two minutes, trying to understand why in the world he would have drawn that, and how the event shown could possibly be in his future. Shaking his head, he ripped it into little pieces and flushed it down the toilet, not wanting Sylar to accidentally see it.

As he was walking out of the men's room he thought to himself, 'Well at least that means the serum should work.'

He sat at Matt's desk and waited for Sylar to finish with the sketch artist.

The artist was fast, and Sylar was fascinated by her talent to draw the details he described. He wanted to pick up a pencil himself and see what scene would lie before him, but now was not the time especially not with Matt sitting right across from him. 'Why did you have to come.' Sylar thought angrily, 'I hate this! I can't wait until I can stop playing these stupid games. By tomorrow this time I'll have Peter's invisibility, and I'll no longer have to worry about being stuck in this child body.'

It took about ten minutes per picture, and by the time Barbra was finished Sylar was impressed to see his Uncle Jacob and his across the way neighbor, Natalie. He smiled at the likenesses thinking, 'The perfect pair of never to be found parents.'

He glanced between each of the drawings and back to Barbra as he commented with a wide smile, "Your drawings look just like them!"

Barbra smiled back responding, "Well then I guess I've done my job sweetheart." She rose to her feet and ruffled his hair playfully before adding, "Don't you worry now; everything is going to be okay. I'm going to take these pictures downstairs to have them run through a database, and in the mean time, Officer Matt here is going to take good care of you." Barbra gave Sylar a small squeeze on the shoulder and a warm smile as she gathered her supplies to leave.

Sylar's grin widened as he turned to Matt and thought, 'Finally! Now, we can get the hell out of here!'

Matt found it disconcerting and kind of creepy to hear the thoughts of a serial killer coming out of a smiling little kid. He would be happy to have Sylar contained and away from him. He stood and led him out to Peter who was waiting. Peter smiled at both of them and then said to Matt, "All done?"

Matt nodded and said, "Did you fill out the paperwork for taking Sam home while we were gone?"

"Yep, it's all done."

"Well then I guess you two are free to go for now. I'll need you to call me tomorrow morning to check in, and of course if we hear from Sam's parents, we'll let you know right away."

Peter held out his hand to shake and said, "Okay. Thanks for all your help today Matt." Then he thought, 'I'll be waiting at the pizza place until I hear from you.'

Matt shook and said, "No problem." Then thought, 'I'll let you know where we're doing it as soon as I talk to Mohinder.'

Peter turned to Sylar and said, "Ready to go?"

Sylar brightened eyes gleaming as he thought, 'I've been ready to go since before we got here!' He replied excitedly, "Yes!" and grabbed Peter's hand to help move him towards the door as he added, "Goodbye Officer Matt!"

Matt watched the two of them leave, and then told his supervisor he was checking on a lead before leaving. On his way out he signed out a tranquilizer gun. The tranquilizer guns were actually there to be used on wild animals, but Matt thought that Sylar fit the bill. He just had to use the lowest dose darts they had, which were meant for dogs, and hope it didn't kill him. Once he had the gun he headed out to his car and headed to Starbucks to meet Mohinder.

When Peter felt Sylar take his hand and pull him towards the door, he couldn't help but think it felt somehow 'normal'. It was very much like what both of his nephews would do in the same situation. He let himself be led to the car, and drove the two of them to the pizza place. It didn't take very long to get there, and as Peter was getting out of his car he said, "What do you like on your pizza?"

Sylar beamed clearly happy to be out of the police station as he told Peter, "Pepperoni and sausage please!" The car trip was only about five minutes, and by the time they had arrived at the pizza joint, Sylar's stomach was growling in protest.

Mohinder had arrived, ordered a latte, and sat in the back corner awaiting Matt's arrival. His nerves were shot since he'd spent the past hour and a half going over scenarios of the soon to be conflict with Sylar. The man was an animal, and although not in Mohinder's nature, he would just as soon kill Sylar for good then just try and put a leash on him. What if the serum didn't work? What if Sylar was able to get the upper hand? All these worries had plagued him since Matt's previous call. He was staring off distantly thinking over their plan when he spotted Matt heading towards him. He quickly rose to greet him, "Matt, it's good to see you; I was about to call."

Matt nodded. "It's good to see you too." He looked around at all the people and said, "Should we talk outside?"

Once they were outside with no one close enough to hear them, Matt said, "I have the tranquilizer gun in the car, and Peter should be at the pizza place with Sylar by now. Do you have the serum?"

Mohinder replied, "Yes, I've got it right here," he lifted his hand out of his jacket pocket to reveal a capped syringe filled with a yellowish liquid, "Let's go find Peter's car so we can get in position."

The pizza place Peter had brought Sylar to was one of those famous New York style buy by the slice joints, and to Sylar's pleasure the slices were ready made. His mouth watered as he followed Peter to their table and crawled into the booth.

Matt followed Mohinder and once they found Peter's car, they found an ally to the side of it. Matt scoped it out, and pointed to the building across the ally from the Pizza place. He said, "I'll go up to that fire escape with the tranquilizer gun. You stay behind that dumpster until Peter has a chance to make sure Sylar's really out."

As they were eating, Peter thought about Sylar. He seemed like a normal happy kid, and if he couldn't read his thoughts, he'd certainly be fooled. He took a bite of his pizza and said, "What do you like to do for fun Sam?"

Sylar paused in mid bite unsure of what to say. He looked down at his pizza and shrugged noncommittally before taking the bite and chewing slowly. As he chewed he thought, 'I don't know anymore. Playing with new powers and becoming better than I could ever be before.' But he couldn't say that, so he thought about his other interests before looking back up at Peter and responding, "I like to read… and I like to learn how things work."

Peter could understand playing with new powers. He'd been working on controlling his new powers since receiving each one. "Learning how things work huh? I've always been more interested in how people work then things. But come to think of it, when I was about your age I took apart one of our VCRs to try and find out how it worked. My mom didn't see it as a useful activity and sent me to my room for an hour. Do your parents help you find out how things work?"

Sylar found it hard to respond to these personal questions as he answered, "My dad did… I mean he does. He builds …stuff" Sylar frowned as he cursed himself. He had had to stop himself twice from giving Peter too much information. The food filling his stomach was close to a sedative with the level of exhaustion he was currently feeling, and these types of questions unnerved him. He didn't like to think of his parents, they reminded him that he was Gabriel before Sylar, and Gabriel had a conscience. Gabriel felt guilt. Sylar changed the subject, "What do you like to do for fun?"

Peter caught snippets of Sylar's indirect thoughts of guilt, and not wanting to feel it. Peter thought about the question for a second and then said, "Well I guess the truth of it, is that I like to help people. I mean I'm a nurse, so it's my job to help people, but even when I'm not at work, I enjoy life most when I'm helping others. Though I do have to admit to enjoying reading the occasional comic, and going to the movies."

Sylar smiled at this, "A nurse huh? I thought only girls were nurses," he teased. He felt a pang of guilt his smile faltering as he turned to stare off out the store's window and thought about how nice Peter was, 'How can I kill this guy? He's like a real hero. No. I have to, even if I don't want to, otherwise I'll be stuck like this! Gods, why couldn't you just be a jerk Peter? You'd make this so much easier if you were.'

Peter had meant what he said. He did like to help people. And after reading Sylar's thoughts he couldn't stop himself from thinking that he could help him too. Peter knew there were crazy people out there who just didn't know the difference between right and wrong. But Sylar obviously did know. And that meant there was hope. Peter chuckled at the nurse comment. He'd heard that plenty of times, and gave his standard easygoing answer, "Most of them are. I guess that makes me special."

Sylar's eyebrows knitted in frustration as he growled inwardly, 'I want to be the only special one!' He turned away from the window to glare at Peter before getting control of his anger as he mumbled tiredly, "Can we go to your house now?"

Peter hadn't heard from Matt yet, so he looked down at his half eaten pizza and said, "Sure, as soon as I finish this." Then he called out mentally, 'Matt? Are you here?'

Matt had just gotten into position on the fire escape when he heard Peter's voice in his head. 'Yes. We're both in the ally to the side of the Pizza place. I'm on the fire escape to the left, about one story up with the tranquilizer, and Mohinder is hiding behind a dumpster on the right. We're as ready as we'll ever be.'

Peter thought, 'Okay. We'll be out in a minute. If you don't get him with the first shot, you and Mohinder stay out of the way while I try to contain him.'

Matt gestured to Mohinder to let him know Peter was coming. Peter looked at Sylar and said, "Okay, I'm ready. Let's go."

Sylar grinned at Peter and slid out of his seat as he grabbed up his paper plate and threw it in the garbage. He thought to himself as they left, 'I'll have to wait till he's asleep before I can take him. I think I will need to get some sleep first. It's going to be dangerous enough trying to take him without being out of it.'

Peter was wracking his brain, trying to come up with some kind of reason to go into the ally. The car was on the other side of the building. But then he was inspired. As soon as they stepped out of the building Peter put a hand on Sylar's shoulder and said, "Sam, if you're going to be staying with me for a while, I think there's something you should know. Can you keep a secret?"

Sylar's eyes widened in curiosity as he nodded yes, "I can keep a secret."

Peter looked around to see if anyone was watching, and then pointed to the ally. He said, "Let's go over there where no one can see. I want to show you something I can do. I don't want you to get scared later if you see something... unnatural."

Sylar's grin grew impossibly big as he thought, 'You're going to show me your powers aren't you Peter? I'd love to see what you can do, or should I say what I'll be able to do.' He responded excitedly as they strode over to the alleyway, "I don't get scared. Show me! What can you do!"

Peter thought to Matt, 'I'll be distracting him with a demonstration of my powers. I'll try to get his back to you.'

Matt thought back, 'Okay.'

After they were halfway down the alleyway, Peter made a show of looking around, and once he was sure Sylar was in position, Peter held out his hand in front of Sylar's face to make sure he was looking at it and said, "I can be invisible when I want to." Peter's entire body disappeared.

Matt aimed the tranquilizer at Sylar the second he saw him. And as soon as he saw Peter disappear, he pulled the trigger. Matt had always been a pretty good shot, and the small dart hit in the center of Sylar's right butt cheek.

Sylar had been watching Peter with a greedy grin plastered across his face when he felt the sudden pain. His eyes bulged as he yelled out, "Ahh!" He spun around quickly snatching at the area the pain erupted from. He pulled the dart away from his body looking at it in awe struck horror before stumbling backwards onto the ground.

His head felt like he was under water and his vision blurred as he blinked furiously trying to fight the overwhelming darkness that threatened to over take him. The last thing he saw was Mohinder's face leaning down over him as he said, "Nighty night Sylar."

As Sylar faded out of consciousness Mohinder pulled the needle out of his pocket and injected the serum into his arm. He looked up at Matt as he ran down to meet them and stated, "We need to get him out of here."

Matt said, "My car's just down the block."

Peter, who had reappeared while Mohinder was injecting Sylar, shook his head and said, "If he wakes up and the serum didn't work, I'm the only one who has a chance of fighting him. He needs to stay with me."

Peter leaned down and picked Sylar up, surprised at how light he was. "I'll take him in my car. Where are we going?"

Mohinder let out a deep breath, "We can't take him back to the lab, it's too risky, and Molly is at home with the sitter, so our place is out of the question. Unless you two have a better idea, Peter's place is the best I can think of." Mohinder saw how carefully Peter had picked Sylar up. It was unnerving to see Sylar sleeping so peacefully as a child. He looked so innocent and vulnerable. He leveled his eyes on Peter warning him, "If the serum doesn't work, you realize you'll have to kill him don't you Peter?"

Peter's grip on Sylar got a little tighter. He wasn't ready to commit to that. There had been times when Peter was ready and willing to kill Sylar. This wasn't one of them. "We'll cross that bridge when we come to it. I'll meet you at my apartment."

He carried Sylar to his car and lay him down in the back seat, being sure to buckle him in. The drive to his apartment didn't take very long. He pulled up, got Sylar out, and carried him up the stairs to his apartment. Once he was in, he put Sylar down on the couch. A few seconds later Matt and Mohinder showed up. Matt looked at Mohinder and said, "Should we tie him up? Will that even matter if the serum didn't work?"

Mohinder wore a scowl as he responded to Matt's query, "I don't know if it will help, but it certainly can't hurt. How much time do we have before that tranquilizer wears off?"

Matt said, "Well for a large dog it would take somewhere between half an hour to an hour, so I'd say about the same for him."

Matt turned to Peter and said, "Do you have any rope?"

"I have some in my car." Peter went back down to his car to get the rope out of his trunk that he'd previously used to tie things to the top of his car.

While Peter was gone Matt asked Mohinder, "Does the serum work right away, or does it take time to get into the system? Will an hour be enough time?"

Mohinder shook his head in frustration as he responded, "It's a new strain than what the company designed originally. If it works at all, it should work immediately. Now all we can do is wait and hope for a positive result."

Peter came back with the rope, cut a small strip, and used it to tie Sylar's hands behind his back. He cut another strip and tied Sylar's ankles together, being careful not to make the ropes too tight. There was still plenty of rope left over, so Peter looped it around and under the couch, and tied both ends of that to the rope that held Sylar's hands together. Sylar was lying on his side, but could sit up comfortably with the ropes the way they were. He just wouldn't be able to get up off the couch. Once Peter was done, he turned to Matt and Mohinder and said, "Anything else we should do to get ready?"

Mohinder replied, "We need to discuss what we plan to do with him. Even if his powers have been effectively subdued, we can't just let him go. He's a major threat even now. Maybe turning him over to the company is are only real option since turning him over to the police will be a waste of time. No one in the justice department is going to believe he's Sylar, and we all know the manipulative little jerk will just play innocent until he's able to get away."

Matt nodded in agreement. "I agree. If we send him to the company, he'll be off our hands, he won't be able to hurt anyone else, and they have a long list of special people on their payroll who can help contain him. Maybe even wipe his memories, so he won't be able to remember who he is or what he's done."

Peter said with conviction. "No. We can't send him to the company. If that's our only option, it would be more merciful to kill him. I spent some time there voluntarily, and that was bad enough. You're right; they probably would remove chunks of his memory. Being without his memory won't make him better; it will make him more crazy. But my guess is that they'll try to use him as their own personal assassin. The company decides they don't like one of us, and Sylar here gets to track us down, kill us, and get our powers. The company isn't an option."

Mohinder crossed his arms in frustration retorting, "Then what is an option Peter? What? Are you going to keep him? Matt and I certainly aren't going to bring him home with us!"

Nodding in agreement Matt agreed, "Molly's already been traumatized by Sylar more then once. I don't want him anywhere near her."

Peter looked at Sylar lying there, and looking so peaceful. He knew that there was good in him still, and he wasn't willing to give up on that. No matter what he'd done in life, Nathan had never given up on him, even when his parents had. Peter nodded and said, "Yes. I'll keep him."

Mohinder was surprised by this admission as he stated warily, "I hope you know what you're taking on Peter." He shook his head as he looked over at Sylar and added, "I think I need another cup of coffee."

Peter walked into the kitchen and said, "I'll make some. Matt you want some too?"

"Sure."

Peter made coffee, and wondered if he was crazy. He was about to open his home to someone who wanted to kill him. Once the coffee was started, Peter picked up the kitchen phone and dialed his brother's number.

After three rings Nathan answered his cell phone after reading the caller ID. Instead of hello, Nathan said, "I'm kind of in the middle of something Pete. Can it wait?"

Peter knew Nathan was desperately trying to cover up last night's event. Peter said, "Sure. Call me when you can."

"Okay, I will." Nathan hung up.

Peter sighed and hung up as well. A few minutes later he was handing out mugs of coffee, and they all sat down to wait for Sylar to wake up.

Sylar's head pounded and he felt sick to his stomach as he blinked awake. He squinted against the harsh sunlight the shined through Peter's living room window. He was still out of it as the tranquilizer left him quite foggy. He looked at the ceiling fan and slowly drifted his eyes downward. As soon as he felt that his hands were tied, his brain immediately became fully alert as he sat bolt up right. Panic began to overtake him when he realized with a sinking feeling that his powers were no longer there. *I can't hear anything! I can't use my powers!* He glared across the room at the three men like a wild animal that had been backed into a corner as he yelled, "What did you do to me!"

Matt turned to Mohinder and said, "The serum worked. He can't use his hearing."

Peter looked at Sylar and said, "We used a tranquilizer to put you to sleep, and then once you were asleep, we gave you a serum to take away your powers."

Sylar gave Peter a look of awe, "But how…?" He felt so many mixes of emotions, anger, fear, betrayal, and despair. He wanted to cry, but wouldn't give them the satisfaction and instead lashed out desperately trying to dislodge his hands and feet from the ropes binding him.

Mohinder snarled in response, "It doesn't matter how Sylar, all that does matter is that you're no longer able to hurt anyone else."

Peter didn't think Mohinder's tone was helping. He understood why he hated Sylar, and knew it was justified, but lashing out with that hate was only going to make things worse. Peter turned to Sylar who was violently trying to get away with no luck. He ignored Mohinder and said to Sylar, "You're going to hurt yourself. Just calm down and we can talk."

Sylar turned his dark eyes onto Peter thinking, *What do you care if I hurt myself?* He struggled a moment longer before deciding that it was a pointless exertion. He stared hateful eyes at the three of them settling his glare on Peter as he thought, *Okay, this is getting me nowhere. I need to play along and see what I can do to get free.* Sylar ground his teeth in aggravation as he spouted, "Talk. I don't see as I have much of a choice in the matter… you've got a captive audience after all."

Peter decided to just lay it out there and see how Sylar would react. He walked over and sat on the coffee table a few feet away from Sylar so he could look him in the eye while he talked. "Your powers are gone; you're stuck in the body of a seven year old. The three of us can't just let you go because we know you're a murderer and you'll kill again given the chance. That doesn't leave us with many options. The police aren't going to believe you're Sylar, so we can't have you put in jail where you belong. We won't..."

Peter looked over a Mohinder for a second and said, "I won't give you up to the company, because I couldn't live with myself if they tortured you or made you their personal assassin. So I've decided to keep you here with me for the time being."

Sylar's gut churned at Peter's admission. As he thought, *I'm really stuck like this? And HE'S going to be in charge of keeping me? It's okay. Don't panic. I can get away from him; what's he going to do to keep me here… lock me in a closet?* He gulped back the tightness closing up his throat as he leveled his eyes on Peter and gave him a sly smile, "You're going to keep me? Like I'm your little pet?"

Mohinder bristled at Sylar's tone as he replied dangerously, "We don't have to bring you to the company Sylar, but I'm sure we could still arrange to have your mind wiped. Believe me when I say, you're getting a far better deal staying here with Peter. If I had the choice, you would have been put down like the rabid dog you are."

Sylar's smile only widened at Mohinder's indignant anger as he thought, *So righteous, just like your father. You both think you're better than me. Well, I proved you wrong didn't I? I'll get out of this just like I got out of every thing else you've thrown at me.*

Peter scowled over at Mohinder and said, "You're not helping."

Matt turned to Mohinder and said, "Sylar's just playing along right now. He's biding his time until he can escape. Even tied up and powerless he's pretty smug about his ability to get away."

Peter quickly thought to Matt *Don't let him know I can read his thoughts too.*

Matt sent a thought to Mohinder, *Don't tell Sylar Peter can read his thoughts.*

Peter said to Sylar, "Matt here can read your thoughts."

Sylar's eyes widened in momentary shock before settling back into an angry glare hatefully directed at Matt. He felt violated by the intrusion, and he purposefully thought at Matt, *So, you're reading my thoughts are you? That'll be a neat ability to acquire when I get my powers back and slice your head open to take it from you. Your friend here can't hold me forever.* He grinned sadistically trying to unnerve Matt with intimidation and doing his best to screen his thoughts to only project hate and loathing as he responded nonchalantly, "You found me out; guess I should have known you wouldn't have been that gullible, but after our first meeting in Kirby Plaza… well let's just say I wasn't giving you any gold stars in that department."

Mohinder was on the verge of backhanding Sylar just to wipe the snide grin off his face as he took a step forward leaning down into Sylar's face with a grin of his own, "This all coming from you whose literally half the man you were. I really don't think you of all people have any right to accuse anyone of being gullible."

Peter stood up and got in between Mohinder and Sylar, looking at Mohinder, "I understand why you hate him, but taunting him isn't going to help. I think you should go. I've got this under control."

While Mohinder and Peter faced off Matt shoved a thought it Sylar's mind. *If Peter can't control you, I can.* Then Matt concentrated and forced a suggestion into Sylar's head. **You're tired, and you can't keep your eyes open.**

Peter glared at Matt and thought loudly, *You should go too!*

Panic coursed through him as Sylar felt the mental suggestion taking effect, and he realized he was powerless to stop it as he began to slump forward eyes fluttering uncontrollably.

Mohinder stared at Peter in disbelief. He wanted to tell Peter he was insane for trusting himself to keep Sylar but bit his tongue as he straightened to stare one last time at Sylar before turning towards the door. He remarked to Peter as he stormed over to the chair holding his jacket, "If you need me, you've got my number Peter. Come on Matt; let's get out of here before I do something for the betterment of mankind."

Matt turned to Peter and said, "Be careful, and call us if you need help."

"Thanks again. Both of you." Peter said with sincerity.

Matt turned and left with Mohinder.

Peter looked back at Sylar and could tell he was falling asleep again. He wasn't sure how long it would take, for Sylar to wake up again, but decided to take advantage of the situation to grab a shower and change clothes, especially since Sylar was still tied up.

Fifteen minutes later Peter was clean and in new clothes. He walked out to check on Sylar and found him still asleep. He sat down on the other side of the couch and thought about what he was going to do while he waited for Sylar to wake up.

Sylar eyes moved rapidly back and forth behind closed eyelids a small sweat breaking out on his forehead. He was surrounded by darkness running where? He didn't know, but he couldn't escape whatever it was that was chasing him. His footsteps echoed in his mind as they slapped the dirty city alley street. The rain poured down upon him and his heart raced as he reached a dead end.

There before him was a large chain length fence, and as he started to climb the fence, it continued to grow longer and longer. The overwhelming need to reach the top plunged him further up the never ending fence until he could see nothing but miles of fence line leading up to the darkened rainy skies. The rain obscured his vision, and he felt his muscles shake. He couldn't hold on much longer. He gasped looking back down into the endless void below as he struggled to hold on to the fence.

The wind picked up, its speed shifting the fence to and fro as the roaring rain pounded down onto to him and he finally lost his grip. He screamed out, "Noooo!" as he fell into what seemed oblivion. His screams were abruptly cut off as he felt strong hands clasp a hold of him and stop his descent into the void. He swiveled his head back eyes wide with shock to see Peter flying them upward as he said, "Don't worry; I've got you."

Sylar gasped sitting straight up. His heart was pounding in his ears as he thought, *Just a dream! It was just a dream.* He spun around to see Peter was sitting next to him, and a chill ran up his spine as he wondered what the dream could have meant.

As Peter was considering his options, he looked over at Sylar and noticed that he was tossing and turning. He wondered if he could tap into someone's dream, but didn't attempt it. Then he wondered if he should try to wake him up. He said, "Sylar?"

A few seconds later Sylar sat up suddenly. Peter listened to Sylar's thoughts as he woke up, and gave Sylar a sympathetic look. "Bad dream?"

Peter's resolve seemed so unshakable. Sylar wanted to get under his skin; he wanted to push Peter into either giving him over to the company so he didn't have to face his failures or make Peter kill him to put him out of the misery of living trapped in a child's body with Peter as his prison guard. He seethed as he thought, *Just do it Peter! Kill me! I can't live like this! I won't live in your shadow to be constantly reminded that you're more special than me!* Sylar's frustration reached a boiling point as he glared at Peter angrily and spat, "What's it to you if I have a bad dream? As far as I'm concerned this whole situation is going to be just one long bad dream. You can't keep me here trussed up like this forever! When I get away, and I will; believe me when I say that I'll make you all pay for doing this to me! I'll find a way to get my powers back again, and I'll kill you and take yours!"

Peter was sure it wouldn't be appreciated, but the strongest emotion he felt for Sylar at this point was pity. He shook his head, leaned over, and started to untie Sylar's feet. As he worked on the knots he said, "I'm not keeping you tied up, but I am keeping you here. What are you gonna do if you get away? You need to use your head here and think about the situation. It doesn't have to be a nightmare to stay here. How are you going to keep yourself fed with no money and no way to make money?"

Peter had gotten the knots undone, and took the rope off Sylar's feet. Then he started working on the rope that was around the couch while he waited to see what Sylar's response would be.

Sylar couldn't help the deep seeded frown the found its way across his face as he thought, *He's right. I've got nowhere to go, and I really don't want to be out there on the street again especially stuck in this body.* He watched Peter untie his feet as he said darkly, "I'd survive. I always have. Living here might not be a nightmare for me, but it might become a nightmare for you," he warned.

Peter had gotten the rope off the couch, and worked on the ropes that were holding Sylar's hands behind his back. "I'm sure you would survive, I just doubt it would be very pleasant. Now I don't know about you, but I want to know if you're going to stay in this state and grow normally, or if you're going to wake up as an adult one day. How about you give me the address of whoever did this to you, and we'll go find out everything we can about your... condition."

He finished getting the last knot out, and the rope came off Sylar's wrists.

Sylar watched Peter curiously as he was untied and thought, *I'd like to find out about that bitch's powers to. I hope he's right about it wearing off, if it doesn't, I'm screwed.* He smiled down at Peter as he said, "She lives in Queens; I don't remember the address anymore, but I remember the girl's name… Alice Monroe."

Peter was pleased that Sylar hadn't tried to run after getting untied. Not that it would have done him much good, but it meant that he was calming down enough to think about things. "Okay, let's look up her address in the phone book."

Peter leaned over and picked up the phone book which was on the table next to the couch. He looked her up and found the address. He wrote her address on some scrap paper that he found on the end table, and then put the book away. He stood and looked down at Sylar. "We need to go shopping first and get you some clothes that actually fit you. You look like a runaway."

Sylar gave himself a once over forgetting what he'd been wearing. He turned his palms up inspecting the dirt smudges he was covered in before turning a smirk up at Peter replying, "Yea, new clothes and a shower would be nice."

There were no windows in Peter's bathroom, so he said, "There are clean towels on the shelf behind the toilet. Go ahead and take a shower. I'll see if I can scrounge up something to fit you.

Sylar looked down the hall before looking back up at Peter warily saying, "Thanks," before walking down the hall and into the bathroom. He thought as he went, *How can he be so relaxed around me? Doesn't he realize who I am?* He sighed reaching up on tip toes to turn on the bathroom light, *Who am I kidding?* He thought looking at his sad reflection in the bathroom mirror, *I'm a nobody all over again.*

He closed the door locking it for piece of mind even though he knew Peter could open it if he really wanted to. He turned the shower on and stripped the woman's stolen clothes off climbing into the shower. He picked up the soap marveling at how small his hands were now, and as he looked around the shower it became more apparent to him his predicament and place in the world.

His aloneness was overwhelming. Before he'd had his powers, and he didn't need anyone because he felt invincible, and before his powers he'd had his mother, and no matter how annoying she'd been, he'd felt she'd at least wanted to love him even if he could never measure up to her expectations. Now what did he have? He felt vulnerable and ineffectual. He knelt down onto the shower floor curling into a ball as he let himself softly cry out his misery under the loud roar of the pounding waters.

Once Sylar had gotten himself under control, he finished washing up and wrapped himself in a clean towel. He did feel a lot better now, and hoped as he exited the bathroom that Peter had found something else better for him to wear than the dirty clothes currently piled on the bathroom floor.

After listening in on Sylar's thoughts long enough to know he wasn't going to try anything other then taking a shower, Peter left the apartment, and ran down the hallway, passing three apartment doors as he went. At the fourth door he knocked and muttered, "Please be home."

A few seconds later a woman answered and said, "Hi Peter, what are you up to today?"

Peter smiled and said, "Hi Cindy, one of my nephews is visiting me today, and he spilled juice all over himself while trying to pour it into a cup. Could I borrow some of Kyle's clothes for the rest of the day?"

Cindy smiled, "Sure, you wanna come in while I get them?"

Peter darted his eyes back to the apartment, "Actually, I was hoping you could bring them down to me. The kids in the shower, and I want to be within hearing in case something happens."

"Okay, I'll bring you over a tee shirt and a pair of sweats."

"Thanks."

As soon as the door was shut, Peter quickly walked back to his apartment and listened in to Sylar's thoughts along the way. He was thinking about being alone with no powers. It was difficult to know for sure just from the thoughts, but Peter was pretty sure Sylar was crying.

A few minutes after he'd gotten back to the apartment Cindy knocked on the door and handed Peter some of her son's clothes. Peter said, "Thanks I owe you one."

"Don't worry about it. Kyle is actually growing out of these, so your nephew can keep them if he wants."

As soon as Cindy left Peter took a good look at the shirt and said, "I doubt he'll want to keep them."

A little while later Sylar came out wrapped in a towel. Peter held out the shirt and sweat pants to him. "I hope you like Power Rangers."

Sylar's eyebrow went up in amusement as he remarked in disdain, "Better than women's booty shorts." He took the clothes and made his way back to the bathroom to change. The clothes fit well, and he couldn't help the, "pfft," that escaped looking at himself and thinking, *I really hopes he lets me pick out my own clothes!*

A few moments later he came back out as he looked to Peter thinking, *After we find out about that girl's powers, I need to find a way to get out of here.* He smiled slyly, "All ready."

Thinking he was going to have to keep a close eye on Sylar, Peter headed for the door and said, "Come on."

They got into Peter's car, and as Peter pulled out into traffic he said, "Sylar is an odd name, and it's all over the news since you're a serial killer. I'm not going to call you that in public. You wanna stick with Sam, or go with something else? What's your real name?"

Sylar tensed at the thought of giving up his name as he thought, *I'm surprised Mohinder never told you my god given name was Gabriel Gray. Not that I'm going to tell you; you've stripped me of everything, you're not taking my name as well!* His eyebrows furrowed in anger as he leveled his hate-filled eyes at Peter and said, "Sylar is my name! I'm not going by anything else!"

Cursing his own stupidity for thinking Sylar would willingly give up his name, and wishing he had thought to use Mohinder as an excuse for knowing Sylar's real name, Peter got out his cell phone. As he hit a speed dial number he said with irritation, "Sylar may have been your name when you were an adult, but you're not anymore. I will not call you Sylar when we're in public."

He put the phone to his ear and a few seconds later Matt answered, "Peter, what's wrong?"

"Nothing. I just need you to tell me Sylar's real name."

"It's Gabriel Gray, but...."

Peter, knowing that Sylar could hear the conversation, hung up on Matt before he could say anything about Peter already knowing. Peter turned to Sylar and said, "So do you like Gabe or Gabriel?"

Sylar's mouth hung agape at Peter's words as he exploded, "Don't you EVER call me that! My name IS SYLAR! And I don't give a damn what other people think! If you haven't realized yet, I AM AN ADULT! I may be trapped in this stupid body, but you're not going to treat me like a child!" They were stopped at a red light and Sylar thought to himself, *To hell with this! I bet I could run across this traffic and into the subway before he can catch me! I'll find that bitch on my own! I'm not going to put up with this crap any longer.* He unclipped the seatbelt he was wearing and threw the door open getting ready to run.

Listening to Sylar's thoughts of escape, Peter clamped a hand on Sylar's left arm, before he could actually get a foot out of the car door. He kept a tight hold on Sylar's arm and said, "You're not going anywhere. Trust me, I'm fully aware that you're an adult, but it doesn't show much maturity on your part when you won't go by a different name in public. Now shut the door and put your seatbelt back on."

A car honked behind them, because the light had turned green.

Sylar was infuriated that his plan to escape was thwarted as he yanked to no avail to get his arm away. He turned his intense eyes to burrow into Peter's as he spat, "Screw you; make me."

Peter glared at Sylar for a few seconds, and then turned his focus on the door. He used his telekinesis to shut the door and lock it. Next he focused on the seat belt, and made it come to him. He used his right hand to lift Sylar's left hand up, and then used his left hand to buckle the seatbelt in place. Once Sylar was buckled into his seat, Peter kept one hand on Sylar's arm and started driving again with the other one. "If you won't be cooperative we can't go shopping."

Sylar fought Peter until he'd been buckled back in. His smoldering eyes bored into the side of Peter's face as he screamed in his head, *I HATE YOU!* He snarled in response to Peter's threat, "Like I care if we go shopping or not." He kicked the underside of the dashboard hard enough to pop the glove-box open sending miscellaneous papers and pens scattering to the floor. Sylar smiled at his handiwork looking to Peter to see what his reaction would be.

Peter ignored the outburst and thought to himself that Sylar was acting the age he looked. Doubting that Sylar would try to get out of the car while it was still moving, Peter let go of him, and used his hand to grab his cell phone. He hit the speed dial button for his sister-in-law. After a few rings she answered, "Hello Peter, Nathan's not back yet if you're looking for him."

Peter slowed down for a red light, and grabbed Sylar's left wrist in his hand to make sure he didn't try anything while they were stopped. He said, "Actually I was looking for you Heidi."

"Oh? What's up?"

"I was wondering if you could send me a few boxes of the boy's clothes. Anything that doesn't fit them anymore. Things you'd give to charity."

"Well sure, but why?"

"I'm sorry, I don't have time to tell you about it right now, but I'll call back later tonight, and give you and Nathan the whole story. Can you have those sent to my apartment today?" The light turned green and Peter let go of Sylar again once they were moving.

"No problem. I'll have them there within the hour."

"Thanks, you're really helping me out."

"Anything for my little brother."

Peter smiled at that before saying, "Talk to you later."

"Bye."

Peter hung up and said to Sylar, "Shopping's done. Now do you think you can be civil long enough to talk to this woman, or should we have Matt babysit you while I go talk to her? I'd think you'd want to know if you were going to stay like this or not."

Sylar silently fumed as he listened in on as much of the phone conversation as he could hear. He could make out a woman's voice, but not much else. When Peter had finished his phone call and threatened to have Matt 'babysit' him, he bristled in anger as he thought, *Oh no you will not leave me with him!* He responded curtly, "I'll be civil." He crossed his arms tightly across his chest as he stared out the window brooding for the remainder of trip and thinking, *I've just got to be patient. He can't keep tabs on me forever!*

Driving in silence, Peter thought about that. It's true he couldn't keep tabs on Sylar forever. But letting him go wasn't an option either. He'd probably have to ask Matt for some handcuffs so they could both get some sleep.

Half an hour of strained silence later, they pulled up to the address Peter had written down. He turned to Sylar and said, "Keep your mouth shut, and let me do the talking. If we're lucky she won't figure out you're the one who tried to kill her."

Sylar narrowed his eyes in anger at Peter as he thought, *Please, like she's not going to figure out the fact I'm the one who tried to kill her, it is her power after all.* He replied, "I'll stay quiet," he thought, *As long as it suits me to be.*

Peter got out and made sure to keep Sylar in front of him so he couldn't run off as they walked up the stairs. He found Alice's name on the list of people who lived there and pushed the button to talk to her.

She answered hesitantly, "Hello?"

"Hello Ms. Monroe, my name is Peter, and I wanted to talk to you. I don't know if you've been contacted by a man named Mohnider Suresh, but he's got you on a list of people who are genetically different then the rest of the population. People like myself who can do things normal people can't. Can I come up and talk to you?"

There was a long pause and Peter was sure she was calling the police when he heard her say, "Come up."

Peter went in keeping Sylar in front of him, and found her apartment. He knocked on the door and waited. It opened a crack, and Peter could see that the chain was in place to keep the door from opening more then one inch wide. Alice looked at Peter, and then down at Sylar. Before she could get a good look at Sylar, Peter disappeared.

Alice gasped and heard Peter's voice say "I can be invisible when I want to."

He appeared again and said, "Mohinder contacted me, and told me that there were others out there like me. And now I'm contacting you to let you know that you're not alone."

Alice looked shell shocked and said, "But... how... I never told anyone...."

"What you can do." Peter finished her sentence for her.

She nodded and Peter asked, "What can you do?"

"I make things younger. Plants, animals, people...." Alice's eyes suddenly snapped back to focus on Sylar and her eyes grew wide with horror. "You!" She hissed.

Sylar smiled devilishly at her as he growled, "You remember who I am do you? Good. Then you know what I can do, so you better turn me back now!"

A whimper of fear came out of Alice before she slammed the door shut, clicked the deadbolt into place, and ran to her phone to call 911.

Peter glared at Sylar and then turned to the shut door. "Alice! Alice, he can't hurt you, his powers are gone! We're just here for information!"

They could hear her panicked voice, "The man who tried to kill me is back! He's right outside my door!"

Peter yelled, "They're not going to believe this kid is the one who tried to kill you!"

He didn't hear a response from her.

Sylar glared back at Peter thinking, *Great! This ought to be good.* He retorted, "Just use your telekinesis to open the deadbolt! I mean, I know you're a total pansy about using your powers, but I'm going to tell you, she's not about to open that door no matter what you say, and we don't have time for this."

Peter hissed down to Sylar, "I'm not going to use my powers to terrify the poor woman more then she already is!"

He turned back to the door and yelled, "If you can change him back, he can go to jail where he belongs now that his powers are gone!"

After a short pause with no response Peter called out, "Alice? Do the effects of your powers wear off? Alice, please give me some kind of information!"

Alice was holding the phone to her ear and listening to the reassuring words of the 911 dispatch agent telling her that the police were on the way. But she was also listening to Peter. She put her hand over the phone and yelled, "Go away! I can't change him back, and the police are coming!"

Pleased to get even that bit of information from her he said, "Just tell me how long he'll stay like this, and we'll leave. We'll never bother you again!"

Alice had noticed that they hadn't even tried to open her door. The handle hadn't moved, and they weren't banging on it or rattling it in its hinges. She wanted them gone by any means necessary, and thought giving them the information they wanted couldn't hurt. She kept her hand over the phone and yelled, "I don't know. I've never used my powers on a person before. But I turned a cat into a kitten, and it grew back into a cat just like a normal kitten would, but a little faster."

Peter called out, "Thank you so much Alice. We're leaving."

He grabbed Sylar, tossed him up over his shoulder in a fireman's hold, and started running up the stairs to get to the roof.

Sylar grunted as he was tossed over Peter's shoulder and screamed out indignity, "Put me down right now!" He squirmed to get out of his grasp fury building as he thought, *There's got to be a way to change me back to normal! She must have been lying, I can't be stuck like this!* his throat tightened and his stomach did a flip flop at the thought of no cure for his current state of duress.

Ignoring Sylar and keeping a tight grip on his legs, Peter took the stairs as quickly as he could. As soon as they made it to the roof, Peter jumped and flew in the direction of his apartment, wanting to make sure they were long gone before the police arrived.

Sylar tightened his grip on Peter's shoulder when he leapt into the air thinking, *Jesus! How many damn powers does this guy have! Unbelievable! Of course someone like him who's afraid to use them gets given such gifts!* He squirmed in an attempt to get Peter's grip on his legs looser as he mocked, "Nice move; you know you're still going to have to go back and get your car at some point. That is saying the cops haven't impounded it as evidence by then." Sylar was enjoying tormenting Peter as he thought, *If I'm going to be miserable, I won't be alone!*

Peter's grip tightened even more. "Stop squirming! I don't want to drop you. There were twenty cars parked on that street, no one is going to notice mine."

Flying was much faster then driving, and within minutes they were landing in the ally behind Peter's apartment building. He put Sylar down on his feet and said, "We'll go back and get the car tonight once the cops are gone."

Sylar growled irritated at Peter but complied. When they had landed in the back alley and Peter had released him, Sylar took several steps backwards staring at him with furrowed eyebrows and clenched fists yelling out, "Don't ever grab me and throw me over your shoulder like that again! You'll never be able to control me, I'll keep fighting you, and I will get away!"

Glaring at Sylar, Peter decided they needed to establish who was in charge. Taking one large step to cover the several steps back Sylar had taken, Peter picked him back up and tossed him over his shoulder again. He turned and started walking the two of them towards the front of his apartment building.

Sylar was enraged as he kicked, punched, and screamed, "God damn it! Put ME DOWN NOW!!!" He thought, *You're not going to treat me like this! I'll keep pushing your buttons until you have no choice but to get rid of me!*

Peter clamped an arm over both of Sylar's legs to keep the kicking to a minimum. "You can yell all you want, and it won't make any difference. You need to come to terms with your new reality. I'm bigger then you, and you are going to be staying with me."

As Peter entered the building he passed a guy coming out who stared at them with concern. Peter gave him an apologetic smile and said, "Sorry, my nephew's a little bit upset that I wouldn't let him go to the park by himself."

The man gave Peter a sympathetic look and continued on his way. Peter turned and started up the stairs.

Sylar roared, "Nephew! I'm not his nephew! He kidnapped me! Damn it! Let me go!" Sylar hoped that the man would say or do something like call the police for him, but the man just shook his head in a 'better you and not me buddy,' gesture which only served to infuriate Sylar more. As a last defense Sylar twisted to the left and bit down on Peter's shoulder.

Peter yelled, "Ow!!" and reacted without a whole lot of forethought. He swatted Sylar's butt hard with his free hand and said, "No biting."

Sylar froze instantly in his shock as he thought, *He hit me! No! He spanked me! No ONE spanks me! No one's ever spanked me!* He squalled out, "How DARE you! You jerk!" Once the initial shock wore off he struggled even harder to get away.

Reading Sylar's thoughts, Peter thought to himself, *Never been spanked huh? I guess you're in for a rude awakening.* Thinking about the drawing he'd made in the bathroom at the police station, Peter thought to himself, *I didn't think it would be happening so soon, but he's obviously not listening to reason.*

Peter hadn't been spanked much as a kid, but there had been a few times, and he knew for a fact that Nathan had spanked both of his sons once or twice. Peter made it to his apartment door, but Sylar was struggling so hard that Peter didn't want to take the time to get out his keys. He phased them both through the apartment door, sat himself on the edge of the coffee table, and transferred Sylar from his position over Peter's shoulder to face down over Peter's lap.

Sylar stiffened as he thought, *No! No! No! This isn't happening! This can't be happening!* He spun his head around quickly to face Peter with a look of shock painted across his face, "What? What do you think you are you doing?!"

"I'm spanking you," Peter answered as if it were a very normal and reasonable response to the question. He looked back at Sylar's rear and decided if he were going to do it, he should go all the way. He pulled down the sweat pants to expose Sylar's butt, and brought his hand down with a firm slap.

The words echoed in Sylar's mind and his mouth opened to protest, but before he could he felt the sweats he was wearing get pulled down along with the swift slap that followed. He was mortified that Peter would spank him as he screamed out, "No! You can't!" He bucked to get off of Peter's lap as he thought, *He can't really be serious… can he?*

Peter put his arm around Sylar's waist to make sure he couldn't get up, and brought his hand down with each word as he said, "Yes. I can."

His hand was big enough to cover most of Sylar's butt with each spank. He stepped up the tempo of the swats and said, "You've told me that you're not going to stay with me without a fight. You've told me that you're going to try and escape every chance you get. This is my answer to that."

Sylar squalled, "Ow! Stop that!" Sylar thought in dismay, *Wow! That really hurts! Okay! Okay! Got to think a way to get out of this!* Sylar kicked his feet up to cover the blows turning a worried expression up at Peter as he acquiesced, "Alright! You made your point! I'll stop fighting with you okay?"

Peter paused long enough to move Sylar from his position of laying across both of Peter's thighs, to bent over just Peter's left thigh. Then he quickly pushed Sylar's feet out of the way with his hand, and pinned both of Sylar's legs between his own. Once his target was clear again Peter resumed the spanking with a little more force. "I don't believe you."

Sylar grunted as he was moved and his heartbeat quickened ten fold as Peter secured him unmovable as he thought, *No! Please no! This is so humiliating!* He pulled and twisted to the best of his ability trying to move his ass away from being a target to Peter's heavy hand with no avail as he shouted, "Peter? Ow! Peter! Let's, let's talk about this! Ahh! I, I over reacted! I didn't mean to bite you! Oww! I was just mad!"

Peter kept swatting and said, "You didn't mean to bite me? Yeah right. That was a deliberate attack. I have been trying my best to do the right thing for you, and for the people you might try to hurt if you were free, and you've been completely unreasonable all afternoon."

Sylar tried to hold back the whimper threatening to escape at hearing Peter's words as he thought, *Oh god! He's not going to stop! This really, really hurts!* He grunted at each swat writhing about uncontrollably as he justified, "Unreasonable?! Ahh! You're not the one who just got OWW! Just got changed into a body of a kid! OW! STOP! Can't we talk about this?"

Not stopping Peter said, "We'll talk once the spanking is over."

Sylar's stomach tightened as he thought, *Over? How long is that going to take! This isn't fair! I don't deserve this!* Sylar hollered at every swat looking back with a pitiful pout to see Peter's hand coming up to connect again. He scrunched his eyes shut on the impact turning away as he thought, *I'm not going to cry! I'm not going to let him see me cry!*

Peter couldn't believe that Sylar didn't think he deserved what he was getting and thought, *Oh yes; you are going to cry.*

Peter had been pretty careful about the force he was using, knowing that Sylar's body was small compared to his now. He was spanking harder then he would spank a normal kid who didn't have the logic and experience that an adult would have, but not anywhere close to as hard as he could. He paused and said, "Ten more and it's over."

For the next ten swats Peter used more force, and waited a couple of seconds in between each swat.

Sylar's mind screamed out, *No more! No more!* with every painful swat and just when he thought he couldn't bare to take any more, Peter told him he still had ten more to endure.

The first of the ten struck him to the core as he yelled out, "I can't take any more Peter! Please! Please stop!" His voice cracked under the strain and as the second and third swats fell, Sylar collapsed in defeat and sniveled out, "I'm sorry! Okay? I'm sorry!"

When the swats didn't stop the tears came as he thought, *How did I come to this? Everything has been taken from me! I had so much power, and now I have nothing! I just have to lay here and take this, this punishment! Maybe I do deserve this? I just wanted to be special! I didn't want all this! I didn't want to be this!* Sylar couldn't hold back the sobs that escaped as he waited desperately for Peter to finish what he'd started.

Listening carefully to Sylar's thoughts Peter brought the spanking to an end. Inspecting Sylar's butt, Peter could tell there would be a couple of small bruises, and he told himself he'd have to be more careful if there was a next time. He opened his legs, reached down, and pulled Sylar's sweats up for him.

He was positive that Sylar wouldn't want or accept his comfort, but in his mind, comfort after a spanking was one of the basic elements that made up a spanking, and had to at least be offered. Peter picked Sylar up, stood him on his feet so he was standing between Peter's legs, and pulled him into a light hug that Sylar could push out of if he wanted to.

Sylar was sobbing sucking in breath after breath in an effort to stop the tears from falling. When Peter had set him back up on wobbly feet and pulled him into a hug his whole body convulsed into tremors. He felt so weak, and he didn't want to leave the embrace as he cried desperately into Peter's shoulder afraid to let go and face Peter in this vulnerable state.

Amazed that Sylar was staying put, Peter rubbed a hand up and down his trembling back and said quietly, "You're gonna be okay. Just give yourself a few minutes to calm down."

Sylar continued to sob into Peter's shirt as he cried out, "I'm, I'm not going to, to be okay! …I just don't know how to stop what I've become!" He continued cry as he thought, *I'm tired of fighting; I'm tired of being so angry and alone. I just want it to end. Why couldn't you just end me Peter? Why did you have to, to be you!"

Peter soothed, "I'm going to help you figure it out. I don't know if you think much about fate, but I do. It's not a coincidence that you picked me out of all the people you could have gone to after getting changed. We're going to work together to make your life make sense again."

Sylar's sobs had died down to a quiet whimper as he stepped back away from Peter rubbing at his eyes furiously to make the constant stream of tears stop, *Why can't I stop crying? Gods I sicken me! I'm so pathetic crying like this in front of him,* Sylar thought sourly as he looked away to the right to avoid eye contact. He mumbled a soft quavering, "Why do you care what happens to me Peter?" He turned back to look at Peter his dark eyes swollen with tears, lip quivering uncontrollably as he stated, "I'm a bad person… I've done horrible unspeakable things that can't be forgiven, but you know that, and you still tried to be nice to me even after I knew that you knew who I was. I don't understand?"

Peter had to think about that for a few seconds. He leaned his elbows on his knees and said, "I care about what happens to everyone I come in contact with. That's just who I am. I don't believe that people are inherently bad. Yes you've done horrible things, but that doesn't mean that forgiveness is forever gone to you. Forgiveness isn't a black and white thing, there are many shades of gray. And I want to help you just because I can."

Sylar studied him as he thought, *I don't think he's lying… maybe he really does want to help me be a better person? I guess the least I can do is try to start over. This doesn't have to be as bad as I'm making it.* Sylar looked down at his hands to lose focus on the world around him. He was still embarrassed, and he felt sorry for putting Peter through so much and mumbled, "I'm sorry I've been such a jerk to you today."

Peter put a hand on Sylar's shoulder and gave it a comforting squeeze. "I forgive you, and I appreciate the apology. There are some tissues in the bathroom. Why don't you go clean up, while I see if there's anything in the cupboards I can make for dinner. Then we're going to need to go over a few basic ground rules for you living here while we eat."

His stomach growled at the mention of food as he realized it had been several hours since they'd eaten at the pizza diner. Sylar didn't look up but nodded in agreement to Peter's suggestion and slowly strode towards the bathroom as he thought, *Great. Basic ground rules… I can hardly wait to hear what those are going to be.*

Pleased with the compliance, Peter watched Sylar walk to the bathroom. He stood and rubbed the spot on his shoulder where Sylar had bitten him and found the spot had healed even though the shirt was still a little damp with spit. He thought the confrontation had gone pretty well all things considered.

Getting up, he walked to the kitchen to see what he had in the way of food. Most nights he went out, but he did have some frozen dinners and some cans of food. He rummaged around and pulled a few different things out deciding that Sylar could choose, since he had no idea what he might actually want to eat, and waited for him to come out.

Sylar sighed as he entered the bathroom and turned on the light. He turned to look back at what Peter was doing, and when he knew he was safe from prying eyes, he turned his head back to his ass as he pulled the sweats down to inspect the damage there. He complained inwardly, *Damn it Peter! That's going to hurt for awhile. You didn't have to hit so hard!* The thought brought a pout to his face as he eased the sweats back up over the slightly bruised flesh and reached over on top of the counter to get a tissue.

Once he'd dried his tears, he turned the light out but lingered in the doorway watching Peter pull out different cans of food from various cupboards. He was hesitant to leave the sanctuary of the bathroom and face what was to be the beginning of a new life. *I can't stay in here forever, so I might as well go out there and face him again. I don't think it could get much more humiliating than it already has been.* After another few moments, Sylar pushed back the growing dread of the soon to be conversation of 'new rules' and entered the kitchen where Peter was waiting for him.

Peter felt a little guilty when Sylar thought Peter had hit him too hard, and he found himself justifying his actions in his head. *It may have been a little harder then it needed to be, but it was still necessary, and a lot more humane then what would happen to him if someone else got a hold of him.*

Sylar came into the kitchen and Peter was brought out of his thoughts. Gesturing to the things on the counter, Peter said, "We have some different kinds of soup, some canned chili, boxed pasta, and a few different frozen meals. Any of it look edible to you?"

Before Sylar had the chance to answer there was a knock on Peter's door. "Hold that thought," he said as he walked over to answer the door. There was a delivery man holding a large box and two shopping bags. "Peter Petrelli?"

"Yes."

The delivery man handed over the box and bags as he said, "These were sent to you from Heidi Petrelli."

"Great. Thank you." Peter put down the packages and dug into his wallet for a tip. He handed it to the delivery man and then shut the apartment door again. Walking back to the kitchen he said, "After we eat and talk, you can see what does and doesn't fit. Did you decide on dinner?"

Sylar had watched curiously from the kitchen as the delivery man came and went. When Peter had come back asking about dinner Sylar shrugged answering, "Anything is fine with me." His eyes maneuvered in a semi circle around the kitchen as if taking the place in for the first time before they drifted back down to settle on his feet purposefully avoiding eye contact with Peter. His cheeks were still flushed with embarrassment unsure how to act around Peter now that the dynamic of their relationship had just done a 1-80.

Peter understood Sylar's obvious embarrassment, because that was how he'd always felt after a spanking, and he knew it had to be a hundred times worse when the spanking came from a virtual stranger. He decided to try and draw Sylar out with some questions. But first he picked up one of the frozen meals, read the back, took it out of the box and put it in the microwave to cook. As he was putting the cans away he said, "How old are you... or were you before this happened?"

Sylar leaned against the door frame sweeping his foot back and forth glancing up every now and then to see what Peter was doing. He sighed uncomfortably at the question hating the reminder of his current state as he mumbled, "Twenty-nine." He thought, *I'm twenty-nine going on eight, and I'll be thirty next month. Happy freaking birthday to me.*

*A little older then me,* thought Peter, *That's kind of funny considering. But I doubt he'd see the humor.*

He finished putting away the cans and then said, "What kind of work did you do before you found out about your abilities?"

Sylar thought about his old life and frowned. There were several reasons he wanted to escape that life, and working in his dad's abandoned shop was one of them. He said unenthusiastically, "I ran a timepiece restoration and repair shop down in Manhattan called Gray & Sons. Family business; I took it over…" He didn't want to finish the sentence cutting it short before telling Peter anything about his family problems. He instead added, "I'm sure it's been cleared out by now and reopened under some new store."

Peter could tell that Sylar wasn't enthused about his previous life, and decided to let it drop for now. The microwave buzzed, so Peter turned and took the box out. He took a second frozen meal off the counter, got it ready, and put it in the microwave as well. Once it was cooking, he got out a fork, and put the cooked meal on the table. He turned to Sylar and said, "This one's fried chicken, and the other is spaghetti. Which do you prefer?"

Sylar followed Peter over to the table and responded, "Chicken is good."

"Okay. Be careful, it's hot." Peter left the food for Sylar and walked back towards the microwave. Leaning a hip against the kitchen counter, he waited for the buzzer and said, "What do you like to do with your spare time. I'm only asking because it looks like we're going to be spending a lot of time together."

Sylar smirked at Peter's warning as he climbed into the chair facing the steaming dinner. The smirk quickly faded as his ass touched the chair giving him a swift reminder of twenty minutes earlier. He saw Peter walking back into the kitchen and lifted himself up shifting to his knees to ease the throb as he thought slightly miffed, *I can't believe he really spanked me! That can't, no that won't ever happen again.*

When Peter asked about his interests, he thought about the library he'd accumulated at his old apartment in Queens; the walls had been lined with how to books along with many of the classics he'd tended to escape into after a long boring day at the shop. He responded, "I've always kind of been a loner. I spent a lot of time reading and tinkering with things. I always thought I had a natural aptitude with learning how things work, but now my brain feels muddled like I can't hone in on the intricacies I used to." He thought, *I guess that serum took that from me to. I've spent the past year so obsessed with building myself up to be the most evolved human, so now that I'm not, I don't know what I want to do with myself anymore.*

Keeping his mind tuned to Sylar's thoughts, Peter honestly did hope that he wouldn't have cause to spank him again, but from what he'd seen so far, he doubted that was going to be the case. While Sylar was talking, Peter's food buzzed. He took it out, and went to the table to eat his too. Frowning Peter said, "Muddled? I was on a different inhibiter for a while, a pill, and it didn't make my mind feel muddled. But if learning how things worked was an ability, then that would be gone now."

Knowing there was no use in dwelling on what Sylar had lost, Peter changed the subject. "Time to go over the ground rules. First up is no running away. You're staying here with me."

Sylar thought bitterly, *Yea, I kind of figured taking off wouldn't be on the list of can dos. I wonder if that means he plans to give me enough freedom that I could runaway? Could he ever trust me that much? Not any time soon I'm sure.* He didn't respond busying himself with eating his chicken but glancing up while Peter was talking to let him know he was if fact listening to him.

"And I can't believe I'm actually saying it, but the second basic rule will be no attempting to kill anyone. And while we're at it; no hurting anyone on purpose either."

Sylar couldn't help the small giggle that escaped at how ridiculous that statement sounded as he covered his mouth to not let the chicken he was chewing fly across the table. He swallowed and replied, "I think I can manage that."

Smiling himself, Peter said, "Good."

His smile faded and his countenance became serious again, "Now I already know that you're not in agreement with number three, but it's going to stand anyway, so you'd better change your attitude about it. I will not call you Sylar in public. I can understand why you might not want to be called Gabriel if that name brings up bad memories, but Sylar is a serial killer, and you need to think about the things that name implies before you're so quick to defend it. How about we shorten it to Sy when other people are around?"

Sylar's smile faded as well as his eyes drifted down to the plate of food in front of him and he thought, *It doesn't matter now anyway; I'm not Sylar anymore. I'm just plain old Gabriel again, so I might as well start going by that name again.* He mumbled dejectedly, "No, you're right. You can call me Gabriel from now on."

Surprised by the acquiescence after the amount of anger Sylar had shown before, Peter said, "Oh.... Okay Gabriel it is then."

He took a few bites of food while thinking that over. He was actually glad that last one hadn't been a problem, because he was pretty sure this next one was going to be. After swallowing Peter said, "Number four is that I have the final say on things. It's more complex then that, but that's the most basic way to put it. We're not equals while you stay here. You can give me your opinions, and you can tell me you don't agree, but if I tell you to do something I expect you to do it. That can range all the way from putting a dish in the sink to not causing a scene in public when we're out somewhere."

Sylar growled inwardly, *Nice. Not equals… just rub it in why don't you. And causing a scene? What, does he expect me to do? …start throwing temper tantrums?* The thought made him remember the car ride along with the events that followed as he thought, *I guess I did kind of throw a tantrum earlier, but that doesn't matter. Just because I'm in a kid's body doesn't mean he can treat me like one!* He scowled squinting his eyes angrily at Peter as he responded, "Final say on everything? If I'm adamantly against doing something, you can't make me do it! And as for a scene? Please! As long as you don't try to boss me around, there won't be any scene to worry about."

Peter had been expecting Sylar to disagree with him, and he was ready. "I'm telling you what the ground rules are to give you fair warning, not to get your compliance. Last up is number five. We are going to be working every day on rehabilitating you. Maybe you'll see this apartment as a prison, and me as a warden, but I'd much rather have you see this as a school and me as your teacher. I want us to actively think about and make plans for your future. You will grow up again, probably faster then before, and I want you to be able to find a place in society that doesn't hurt others and still lets you enjoy life."

Sylar hated to be reminded that he had no control over his future and gripped his plate in frustration. His first thought was to fling his plate angrily across the room, but knowing that would likely earn him another spanking, he thought better of it.

His jaw tightened as he told himself, *Getting angry isn't going to change this situation. Just suck it up because he's not trying to be a jerk; he's trying to help.* He let out a long breath relaxing the grip he held on his plate and responding, "I'm going to do my best to work with you Peter; you've just got to promise me you'll work with me to. This... this whole thing isn't easy to deal with, and as much as I want to be a better person, I've got a lot to adjust to living like this. I don't want you treating me like a kid, I get that you're in charge, but the whole you spanking me thing, that's not acceptable at all!"

Peter was pleased to see that Sylar was working on keeping himself under control. "I know it's a difficult adjustment. It's a big change for me too. I'm used to living alone, and doing what I want when I want without worrying about anyone else. But I can't see a better solution for your situation then living with me. I can't live with just leaving you on your own, not only because you could hurt someone else, but because in your current body people could hurt you. And I can't live with you going to the company knowing what they'll do to you."

Pausing to think for a second, Peter continued, "Spanking you isn't something I want to do again, but the way I treat you is going to be a direct result of how you act. Can you honestly say you were acting like an adult today when you were trying to run out of my car in the middle of traffic? When you kicked the glove box? Or when you were kicking and biting me to get me to put you down?"

Sylar slouched embarrassed at Peter's recollection of his behavior as he mindlessly stabbed at a carrot and thought, *He would have to bring that up.* He sighed in agitation before responding, "Okay, I did act out a little, but you can hardly blame me given the circumstances. I mean you would have done the same if you were in my shoes. I understand that my behavior earlier was out of hand, so now you can just talk to me if I'm doing something you disagree with. I promise that I'll listen better, and there won't be anymore incidents like those earlier. You're smart, so you can find an alternative to spanking right? …a more adult punishment?" Sylar justified in hopes it sounded convincing enough for Peter to agree with.

Peter doubted that any other punishment would be nearly as affective, but he said, "I'm wiling to talk about it. You seem very anxious to avoid getting spanked again, and that's what makes it a good choice in my opinion. It will hurt enough that you want to avoid it, but won't leave any lasting damage. If you're angry and acting out, a spanking will immediately change your emotional state so that you'll stop acting out. I think knowing you'll get spanked when you don't follow the rules will actually be beneficial to your rehabilitation. What kind of punishment would you suggest?"

Sylar swirled his fork around in the fragments of what was left of his mashed potatoes unwittingly pouting at Peter's words as he thought, *Beneficial to my rehabilitation? Ugh. That had to be one of the most humiliating and humbling experiences I've ever had to go through in my entire life! I think I'd just as soon die to avoid repeating it, but I can't let him ever know that!* His stomach tightened and his hands grew clammy just thinking of getting another spanking.

He knew if he was ever going to get Peter to agree never to spank him again, he'd have to formulate a good debate, *I've got to think of something he will consider equally as bad… something that'll be a worthy enough punishment to suck enough to seem like it could cause just as much displeasure.* Sylar arched both eyebrows as he looked up innocently from his plate and responded, "You want my suggestion? Well, let me think… In prisons they use solitary confinement… I guess if I do something you find disagreeable, you can always take away my privilege to move freely about the house. Kind of like a lockdown. Or maybe have me do housecleaning or some other job as a sort of community service."

Shaking his head in disagreement, Peter said, "Putting you in solitary and making you do physical labor won't produce the same results that a spanking will, but I can see them having their own benefit. So here's the deal; if you break rule number one and run away, I will track you down, and I will spank you. That is not negotiable. For the rest of the rules, I'll try solitary confinement or physical labor first. But if they don't seem to be working, or you refuse to comply when I tell you you're being punished, then I'm going to resort to a spanking. I'm a reasonable person, and you'll have plenty of warning, and plenty of time to get yourself under control before I'll take stronger measures."

Sylar sighed frowning at the realization he wasn't going to be able to talk Peter out of spanking him if Peter deemed in necessary. He thought, *At least it won't be the first option in disciplining me… and if I do run away, believe me Peter that I'll make sure you'll never catch me to be able to administer another spanking!* In response, Sylar nodded slowly as he said, "I guess that's enough of a compromise. Is that it? Or are there more rules," he asked begrudgingly.

"That's it." Peter ate the last few bites of his spaghetti, and once he'd swallowed, he said, "When you're done eating, go try on the clothes my sister-in-law sent over. And I'll clear out the bottom drawer of my dresser for your clothes. Then when that's done, I'll fly us over to go pick up my car."

Sylar glanced over to the two grocery bags and dilapidated cardboard box and then back at Peter as he replied, "I'm done eating." Without saying anymore, Sylar laid his fork down on his napkin and carefully slid off his chair. He crept over to the stack of new clothes opening the box first to peer inside at its contents. It had winter jackets, sweaters, and pants. The two grocery bags had socks, underwear, pajamas, and a few summer wear t-shirts and shorts. He knelt on the ground next to the clothes and started to pull each item out and organize them into piles. After everything that had happened in the past forty-eight hours, he needed some type of control at moment to ease his mind, and the clothes structuring served this purpose for him. He thought, *These clothes aren't too bad. At least they're mostly plain…* he pulled out a shirt bearing a, swinging on a web, Spider-man, and he smirked thinking, *cute.*

Peter cleared the table, throwing away the food cartons, and putting the forks in the sink. He glanced at Sylar to make sure he was doing what he'd asked, and then went into the bedroom. He looked in the bottom drawer of his dresser, and moved the clothes that were in there into different drawers. Once that was done he went out to the living room, sat on the couch, and waited for Sylar to get done sorting his new clothes.

By the time Peter had sat on the couch, Sylar had just about finished his clothes sorting task. He had only slept about two hours earlier, and the lack of sleep was catching up to him now as he yawned sleepily. He turned to Peter and said, "These are all around the same size as the clothes I'm wearing currently. I'm pretty sure they'll fit; do you mind if I try them on later?"

"That's fine. Just leave them there for tomorrow, and you can let me know if you need more of anything."

Peter stood up and said, "Ready to go get the car?"

Sylar smiled at the thought of flying again as he replied, "I'm ready as I'll ever be."

Giving Sylar a serious look, Peter said, "You've made it clear you don't like it when I pick you up, but I have to pick you up to fly us over there. I'm warning you, no squirming or trying to get down while we're flying, it's dangerous. If you do try to get down while we're in the air; it's gonna be thirty minutes solitary when we get back. You got it?"

Sylar hadn't planned to fuss, but Peter's warning dampened his lightening mood as he scowled and responded curtly, "I wasn't going to give you a hard time Peter, so you don't have to threaten me. I'll behave okay."

Peter picked up his keys, stuck them in his pocket. He said calmly, "I hope you do behave, but I don't know you well enough yet to assume that you will, and I wanted you to understand what I expected before we left."

Walking into the bedroom, Peter opened the window which led to a fire escape. He stepped out onto it and said, "Come on." waiting for Sylar to climb out as well.

Sylar realized why Peter had stated what he had, but he hated to hear about his ability to be dealt with if he didn't comply with an order. He watched Peter walk towards his bedroom and followed after him. He followed Peter's command climbing out onto the metal fire escape, his eyes taking in his surroundings. It was an alleyway, perfectly secluded for flying off into the night air unnoticed. A chill ran up his spine as he thought, *This place reminds me of my falling nightmare.* He let a small smile cross his face as he looked up at Peter curiously thinking, *And you saved me.* He lifted his arms to be picked up as he stated, "I think this will be more fun then the last time we did this."

Peter smiled after hearing Sylar's thoughts, and seeing him being an active participant in being picked up. Peter leaned down, put one arm behind Sylar's back and one arm under his knees and picked him up. Holding Sylar close to his chest Peter said, "I think so too."

He shot up into the sky and headed in the direction of Alice's apartment.

Sylar gazed out at the night sky marveling at the city from this distance as he thought, *This is fantastic! I'm definitely going to have to convince Peter to do this again.* It didn't take long before Alice's familiar street came in to view and with it, Peter's Nissan.

Peter had to agree, flying was fantastic, and he promised himself he'd make an effort to take Sylar out flying often. Once Alice's building came into view, Peter scoped out the area to make sure there were no people or police around, and then landed in the ally behind the building. He set Sylar down on his feet, dug the keys out of his pocket, and walked to his car. As he was unlocking the car Peter said, "It's been a long day, and we have a long drive home. You might be more comfortable lying down in the back for the ride home."

Sylar yawned silently agreeing with Peter as he more than willingly crawled into the back when Peter opened the back door. Within ten minutes of leaving Alice's street Sylar was dead to the world leaving soft snores in his wake.

As Peter was driving he checked in his rear view mirror every once in a while, and soon saw that Sylar was asleep. He looked very peaceful as he slept. Peter was tired himself, and turned the radio on low to keep himself awake while he drove.

Half an hour later he was home. He parked, got out, and then carefully picked up Sylar, trying not to wake him. Once the car was shut and locked, Peter carried Sylar up to his apartment, and phased the two of them through his door. He lay Sylar down on the couch, thinking that he'd have to do something about a bed for him soon. He took off Sylar's shoes, and knew he had to be exhausted since none of it woke him up.

Going to the small closet, Peter got out a blanket, and covered Sylar up. He thought about going to bed himself, but then decided to sit in the chair next to the couch in case Sylar woke up and tried to escape. As he sat watching Sylar sleep, Peter thought to himself that saving Sylar was going to be just as important as saving his niece had been, but for different reasons.

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