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15 August 2008 @ 11:01 am
[ficlet] Family (PG)  
Title: Family
Author: tiptoe39
Rating: PG
Summary: Written for the timestamp meme. Set one year after Fathers' Day. Thanks to prism_miss for the prompt!
Author's note: A little angsty is this one. Just a little. Also written in a hurry.



Matt fingered the strings of the navy apron and looked around at his former apartment. He'd never noticed before how desolate the place was. Without the sunny smile and destructive wake of a child at play, it was a dusty and dreary old place where the air didn't move and the floorboards creaked. He'd lived here, he thought, for nearly a half-year. OK, so it'd been another half-year since he'd been there, but he could have sworn it was brighter.

When Peter had finally found him and brought him back from that desolate desert, the first thing he'd done was call. It had been Molly's smile he'd seen on the horizon, his oasis, calling to him. And it was her voice he'd heard in his dreams. But when the phone clicked into use after a few rings, the voice on the line was an unfamiliar woman.

He'd verified the phone number with her. She had an accent. What the hell?

"Then this is Mohinder Suresh's apartment?" he'd said.

"Yes, it is, who is this?"

"This is Matt Parkman. I lived there. Is Molly around?"

"Molly is... at school," she said.

"Still?"

"No. She is away at school. She lives..."

"WHAT!?"

His outrage had been fierce. The sheer presumptuousness of Mohinder to think he could take her away somewhere again. First the Company, now this... and who was this woman on the line, anyway?

Mohinder had called him back. They'd exchanged some sharp words. And that was all there was, for a time. Mohinder had refused to give him Molly's location. "It's for her own safety," he'd insisted.

Well, screw Mohinder. He had his own way of doing things. There was no way he had to go see that arrogant son of a bitch to drag the information out of him. He'd do what he did best and be a detective.

He did find her, of course. They'd given her an assumed name and put her in school in Montreal, of all places. When he found her, she was speaking French with five other girls and thinking horrible, vicious thoughts about the surrogate father who'd sent her away and the other one who'd simply disappeared. When her mind whispered just like his father at him, Matt recoiled and ran away.

But he'd come back today. As the calendar turned to June, he'd started to feel a bizarre nostalgia. When he glanced at a calendar and saw the letters, hard and obstinate on the page, he understood why.

Father's Day.

His senses swung into a time warp, and again he was tasting orange juice and feeling coarse fabric stretch against his fingers. For a moment, he was a father and they were a family. He and Molly and Mohinder. He'd felt so close to both of them. Now he closed his eyes and inhaled the scent of the dusty past, willing himself back to that day, that feeling.

"Matt."

The word was a whisper behind him. Matt turned, letting the apron strings slip from his fingers and fall against the garment where it hung on the wall.

Mohinder had lost weight, and his face was dotted with unshaven, uneven stubble. The eyes that took him in were sunken, and his legs and arms were knobbly and frail, as though they'd been pulled like taffy. He didn't smile, didn't hold any expression on his face, just walked forward into the room on unsteady feet.

"What happened to you?" Matt whispered.

Mohinder swallowed and shook his head. "It's been a very long time," he said quietly. "I'm surprised to see you."

"I'm sorry," he said. He shouldn't have been sorry -- he'd spent months thinking about how much he despised Mohinder for betraying him like that. But one look at those hollow cheeks and it was impossible not to feel sorry. Mohinder resembled nothing so much as a junkie. He looked like he'd forgotten to eat for months.

"We got that nearly a year ago." Mohinder gestured at the apron.

"I know." A halfhearted smile twitched across Matt's lips. "I was just thinking about it."

"I suppose it's no longer appropriate to say Happy Father's Day, then?" Mohinder said.

"Whose fault is that?" Matt snapped.

"Matt, please don't start." He sighed. "I've been through a lot."

"Yeah. I know." This man irritated him. "Like sending away my little girl without even asking me, like shacking up with some strange woman the minute I was gone. You've had it real bad."

"Why are you being this way?" Mohinder's eyes weren't so much accusing as pleading, and that irritated Matt even more. Anger he understood, but whatever Mohinder was feeling, it was something he just didn't grasp. And it felt sanctimonious somehow, like Mohinder was a better quality of person for not being angry. Matt felt patronized. Heat prickled along his spine.

"Did you think I wasn't going to find Molly?" he said. Mohinder gave a little gasp. "Yeah, I found her. And you know what? She hates us. She hates both of us. For not having the guts to stick by her and protect her like we promised."

"I did it to protect her." Insistent, but only at half-strength.

"Yeah, so did I," Matt said. "Leaving when I did. Didn't help. Didn't matter. Just made me a carbon copy of my dad." The words felt like bee stings, sharp and suicidal little jabs. Matt felt his anger fall under their weight, and he relented. "We owed her better than what we gave her, Mohinder. We should have been fathers to her."

"World's Best Dads." Mohinder moved to the apron and touched the lettering gently. "If we'd only known then."

He was right up next to Matt now, the bony shoulder just touching his, and as Matt looked over he felt a well of sympathy touch his gut. "What happened?" he whispered, frowning, wanting to brush the oily hair out of Mohinder's blinking eyes. "How did you get this way?"

Mohinder just shook his head again. "Power corrupts," he said simply.

"Mohinder..."

"Oh, my God."

A third voice. They turned.

The girl with her hands over her mouth and tears spilling chaotically down each finger looked like a young lady. As though she'd grown up overnight. She was a full head taller, and her shape had begun to get a little bit curvy. Her hair was tied back into a tight ponytail. She was wearing three bracelets on one wrist. Her suitcase had fallen over with a clunk as they turned, and it lay forgotten on the floor. And in another beat, she was in their arms.

Tears and joy and laughter all mingling, they fell to their knees in an ecstatic triangle, holding each other and squeezing and whispering things they would never remember later. Mohinder tried to scold her for coming home, but she hissed "Shut up, Mohinder" just once and that was that. Matt kept pulling back, trying to hold her at arm's length to look at her, but she wouldn't have it and kept wriggling back into his embrace. You're here, you're here, I love you, I missed you kept rocketing through Matt's mind in both their voices, and it was like a symphony.

"Happy Father's Day," he whispered to Mohinder when his sobs had subsided somewhat. Molly's head was still between their shoulders. Mohinder stared at him for a blank moment. Matt felt his heart twinge. How had he not known until know just how integral Mohinder was to this equation? It was the three of them, not the two of them, that worked so well together. Molly was here, and Mohinder was here, and he was here, and the three of them in one place made it a family.

If just for here, and if just for now, a family.

:end:
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lea1-santomelea1santome on August 15th, 2008 04:14 pm (UTC)
at this time I was asking how did Matt to leave the desert.
Go unpleasant surprise took Matt to hear the voice of a woman and learn that Molly lived in Montreal.

How did Maya disappear


en este momento me estaba preguntando como hizo Matt para dejar el desierto.
Vaya desagradable sorpresa se llevó Matt al escuchar la voz de una mujer y enterarse que Molly vivía en Montreal.

¿Cómo hiciste desaparecer a Maya?

Tiptoe39: mysterioustiptoe39 on August 15th, 2008 04:39 pm (UTC)
you tell me. :D

i decided to leave it as an open question.
lea1-santomelea1santome on August 15th, 2008 04:48 pm (UTC)
Can anyone say that I am obsessed to send Maya to the moon. I will do some good may decide to surrender the officer.
Or maybe he has thought about travel the world
or go back to the convent.

Puede que alguien diga que estoy obsesionada en enviar a Maya a la luna. Voy a hacer un poco buena maya decidio entregarse a la policia.
O tal vez ha pensado en viajar por el mundo
o volver al convento.
Tiptoe39: eviltiptoe39 on August 15th, 2008 05:56 pm (UTC)
i think the convent is a good place for her.... or the moon, that works, too. :D

:is evil:
lea1-santomelea1santome on August 15th, 2008 09:08 pm (UTC)
Vale Joker, I said I was going to do a little good, and not to send Maya to the moon, because the kill, but send the convent (the same convent where he found Alejandro).

You may want to be part of an NGO, and wants to help others, no matter where this much, but it has to be away from our kids.

Vale Joker, he dicho que iba a hacer un POCO buena, y que no envio a Maya a la luna, pues la mataria, pero la mandaría la convento( el mismo convento donde Alejandro la encontró).

Tal vez quiera formar parte de una ONG, y quiera ayudar a los demás, no importa mucho donde este, pero tiene que estar lejos de nuestros chicos.
biggerbeansbiggerbeans on August 16th, 2008 03:05 am (UTC)
Woman, your fics do something to me. You are a pro at pulling my heartstrings. I never ever cry when I read sad book or watch sad movies, but damn, I was tearing up here. You rock so hard.
Tiptoe39: cmere youtiptoe39 on August 16th, 2008 03:20 am (UTC)
don't cry! it's only a fic. i'm so glad you like. :hugs:
biggerbeansbiggerbeans on August 16th, 2008 04:14 am (UTC)
No! Not only a fic! I swear, when you write it's art. I might be wrong when I ask this, but did I hear something about you thinking about writing a full-out novel at some point?
Tiptoe39: thank youtiptoe39 on August 16th, 2008 04:20 am (UTC)
ee hee. yes, um, blush, um, yea i have a few novel ideas. i'd like to start writing a little bit maybe professionally, maybe some short stories or something, but i don't know, i don't think my writing is *subtle* enough for like literature.... sigh.. well, never mind, i will take the compliment and say thank you! :D :D
saavikam77: M3saavikam77 on February 1st, 2009 04:53 pm (UTC)
*wibble* O_O Oh, Matt... I'm glad you addressed the events of the last season/arc in this, harsh words and bitterness and all, and that they still managed to have a happy ending. :) Just perfect!