Through the Looking Glass
as told by: Abby Wynters
I walked into my bedroom, shutting the door and the real world out behind me. The smell of acrylic and oil paints filled my senses and my body immediately relaxed. This was my world, the world where I left who I was. When I entered this room I was no longer Abby Wynters, a simple sixteen year old, introverted girl. I had no friends outside this room. This room was everything to me. I painted a world I felt apart of, but never lived beyond my canvas. I flipped the light switch and looked around, everything had paint on it. The room itself was painted fully like the metropolitan New York. I scribbled a note in bright orange acrylic paint in the corner reading: "Kirby Plaza, New York City". After the room painting adventure, I needed to know what I painted, it was just too real for me. Easels of a variety of sizes stood in the center of the room in a spiral outward, tallest at the center, all painted the same color of orange. I do not remember organizing my equipment that way or painting them that way, but I feel too compelled to let it be to change it. Oil water was painted on acrylic green tile at the base of the stands, giving it a fountain look. A few feet away lay a man with spiky hair, a pool of blood around his torso, his head cocked to the side and his blank, white eyes staring upward.
His name is Sylar, but I do not know him. That's how my gift works. I mix up my primary, secondary and tertiary colors with a side of black and white, pick up my brush and approach the canvas. I don't remember painting any of the paintings in my room. All I remember is closing my eyes and focusing on the gift and letting it out. I blink and I have a full painting in front of me and I'm down on paint. More often than not, I don't understand what I painted. I notice that I have a set of recurring characters, all but two painted on the walls around me.
I turned around and looked at the wall and the closed door behind me, directly beside the door frame, lay a young man, slumped up against a pillar, his head leaning up against the wall, staring listlessly at the ground. The black jacket he wore hung open, showing four bullet holes in his bloodstained olive green shirt. I crouched down and I ran my paint-stained hand over his face and wounded chest. Matt Parkman, it took me a while to figure out who he were. Nine paintings with dialog and finally a name for him. A young Indian man knelt beside him on one knee, his right hand checking the wounded man's pulse while staring upward. I focused on him as I stood up. Mohinder Suresh, I looked over at my bed and spotted his father's book laying on the sheets. Activating Evolution. His book explained to me what my gift is, Precognition. However, I don't know if these events have happened, are happening, or will happen.
I walked over to right-hand wall of my room, over to the forms of four people. Two adults and two children. The dark skinned man supported by the smaller blonde woman. Both had wedding bands on their left hands. D.L. Hawkins and Niki Saunders. He had a large blood stain on his shirt with a bullet hole at the center, his olive drab jacket partially obscuring the wound. His right hand coated in blood, the blood of man named Linderman, the reason he had a bullet in him. A few other paintings procured that information for me. The woman appeared unburdened by the weight of her husband, judging by some of the other, and more gruesome, paintings I've painted of her, she seemed to have what Chandra Suresh described as enhanced strength. A young boy, no older than eleven standing off to the left of the adults. His name's Micah Saunders from what I could gather from my gift. A young girl with long brown hair stood by him. I am not certain on who she is at all. I believe her name is Molly Walker. She is a rarely occurring subject, but seems pivotal in Matt's and Mohinder's stories. I've painted so many pictures of all of these subjects, save Micah and Molly, that I've actually been able to place them in a tentative timeline. D.L, Niki, Micah, and Molly all staring upward.
I turned around and walked over to the opposite wall. A girl, no older than me, blonde haired and dressed in an expensive outfit, her arms at her sides stood there, a gray handgun hanging loosely from her right hand. Behind her a man with horn-rimmed glasses stood clutching his side, his other hand resting on her shoulder. Claire and Mr. Bennett. From what I gathered, Claire was his adoptive daughter. Claire had a very prominent role in my paintings, Mr. Bennett as well.
Finally, I looked up. On the ceiling a starry night with a large explosion filling up most of the surface area, a shockwave emanating from the blast. I believe that I painted the ceiling by literally flinging paint off my brush at it. I am still amazed at the result. I have also no idea how or why this would happen. I thought it might be Ted Sprague, but I painted his death at the hands of Sylar and in the mural all over my room, Sylar is dead on the ground. It couldn't be Ted or Sylar. It seems that I'll never get an answer.
I walked over to my bed and straightened out the sheets, seeing the painting I made on it. I cloudy sky with a green Symbol painted onto it. I know that Symbol very well. Every one of my school notebooks has that Symbol inscribed somewhere. Everyone painting and drawing I make has it somewhere. It is even scarred on my skin directly over my heart. I fell walking down a hill and hit a sharp rock which gouged that Symbol into my skin. The Symbol resembled an 'S', but with a small dash on the inside of the upper bend and two small dashes on the inside of the lower bend. The Symbol seems to haunt me. I don't know what it means. I know from one of my pictures, Niki has it tattooed on her right shoulder blade. Someone only referred to as the Haitian has it as a necklace. Everyone I've associated that Symbol with has some special ability, so I've come to figure it just means special.
I looked at Chandra Suresh's book lying open on my sheets. The page on Precognition staring up at me. I seem to never turn from this page, and if I do it is only briefly to look up something before turning back. I slammed the book closed and walked over to the thirteen easels standing in the middle of my room. All of them sporting a different painting of mine. All thirteen portraits of major players in the world I live in. I picked up the furthest painting from the center, a painting of an African-American woman with long, wavy hair and a red beaded necklace. Simone Deveaux. The colors were all faded and dulled. I didn't paint it that way. I originally painted it with bright and vivid colors. But then one day I painted her in a door way with two bullet holes in her chest and blood staining her clothing, a few days after that her portrait faded. I took the painting off the easel and flipped it over, her name and some other facts scribbled in my scratchy script.
I placed her portrait and grabbed the painting on the easel next to hers. Isaac Mendez. Someone that could do what I do. I have painted him painting something else so many times. Including a never ending painting. I was painting a picture of Isaac painting a picture of me painting a picture of... well, it didn't end. I'm sure he knew of me as I know of him, through our art. It doesn't matter anymore, however. I ran my fingertips over the dulled paint. I walked over to my closet and opened up the portfolio bag labeled "Isaac, solo subject". I flipped through the various paintings on thin Bristol board until I reached the last one, a painting of Isaac's body laying on his studio's floor, the top of his head removed and his brain missing. An involuntary shudder ran through me and I closed up the portfolio and walked back to his portrait on the easel. That night, his painting faded.
I sighed and walked past the other pictures. One stood at the center of everything, Peter Petrelli. I shook my head and looked down at the ground below his easel. There were easily fourteen paintings laying on the ground around his easel. It seems that all I'm able to paint lately is him. Half of these paintings have been his exploding. Somehow. I walked past all this paintings of people I'll never meet, but also the only people I could call my friends. I live through my paintings, since my life was so boring and contrite. How could I possibly be interested in the day-to-day politics of teenagers when I keep having visions of epic battles, good, evil, life, and death? Everything outside my room seems frankly boring to me.
I let out another sigh and walked over to the corner of my room, where I do all my paintings. I lazily mixed up my paints and piece of flat board canvas and placed it on my working easel. I grabbed my long handled flat brush and stared at the canvas for a few second before letting my eyes drift shut. I could feel my gift welling up inside me, spreading from my chest to eyes and hands. I can feel its pulse as my hand starts to move on its own accord.
I open my eyes and lean my head back, dropping my brush onto my palette. I stared up at my ceiling for a beat before looking at my canvas. Once again it was Peter Petrelli, but this time the painting was different. He was sitting at a desk, paint supplies everywhere. A canvas board lay in front of him and a depiction of myself painting on its surface. In thick black paint across my face where the words 'Who Are You?!'. Peter was leaning back in his chair, massaging his temples to soothe a headache.
So, Peter wants to know who I am. I frowned, not knowing how to go about this. Then it dawned on me, if he can communicate with me this way, intentionally or not, I can do the same. I picked up my brush again scripted in thick black paint the words 'My Name Is Abby, Peter'. I laughed soundlessly to myself at this, its ridiculous to think that I could actually communicate with him this way. I placed the painting on my desk to my left and put up a new piece of canvas. I closed my eyes and let the gift flow.
I opened my eyes and looked at what I just painted. Peter again, this time a new painting of me painting on his canvas with the words in the same black script 'How Do You Know Me?' written on it. I stared at the painting amazed. This communicating was actually working. I dipped my brush in my rapidly decreasing black paint and scawled out 'I've Been Painting You And All Your Friends For Sometime. Is It All True?' on it.
I tossed that painting onto the desk on top of the other one, put up a fresh one and activated the gift again. I opened my eyes and saw his reply. Him with another painting of me painting and the words 'Depends On What You Painted. Be Careful, Though, Someone Would Want To Hurt You If He Found Out About Your Power' written on its surface. I glanced over to the floorboards by my bedside where I keep all my Sylar pictures hidden from view, specifically my view. I wrote out 'Sylar, I Know. He Won't Go After Me, Though'.
Tossed that painting back and started up another Precognition painting. I opened my eyes and saw Peter staring quizzically at his painting with my statement on it. 'How Do You Know That?' he asked me. I glanced at my black supply and grabbed my tube of black acrylic paint and squeezed out the remaining three-fourths of the tube. I had a sneaky feeling that I'd be using it tonight. 'He Killed My Other Friend, Isaac, And Stole His Power, So He Has No Reason To Come After Me, I'm Not Even A Threat,' I replied.
Another painting hit the pile and I grabbed a blank piece, tossing it up on my easel. I stretched out my arms, as they were starting to get sore from all this painting. I closed my eyes and started. Upon opening them I saw red letters on a white canvas. 'How Astute Of You, You're Just A Lonely Painter Girl. I Have No Reason To Kill You. You're Nothing To Me.' it read. My heart started to trip hammer in my chest and I felt myself start to hyperventilate. I closed my eyes tightly and flashes of all the paintings of his murders flashed through my head. I could only think of one thing to do. I threw white paint over his words and dipped my brush in my light green paint and wrote in clear, bold words. 'Thank You.'
I closed my eyes and activated my power quickly and took a deep breath before I opened my eyes. On it was Sylar, grinning at me in front of his painting of me terrified at my easel. I used my power again and saw a picture of Peter looking worriedly at his canvas, it had the same painting I had just erased. 'Are You Okay?' was all that was written on its surface. I sighed and painted onto the surface. 'Scared Shitless, But Very Thankful That He Doesn't Want to Kill Me.'
I put up a new piece of canvas, noting that I was barely denting my stock of supplies. I had more painting and drawing supplies than most any art store. I closed my eyes and nervously let the ability flow. I opened my eyes and it was Peter again, this time with a painting in front of him that looked like Jackson Pollock's work. I frowned and grabbed a new piece of canvas and tried again, maybe something went wrong. I opened my eyes and saw just the Pollock-esque painting that Peter made. I frowned and tried again. Same Painting. I growled and put my brush down and stood up. I started wandering around my room, frustrated. I just didn't get it, but since Sylar was watching what we were doing, I decided I shouldn't ask. I glanced back at the painting from my position at the door, looking at it from a side angle. I gasped and started to see words. I walked to the side more and saw the words 'Let's Finish This Conversation In Private.' and a phone number. I stood there debating it for second, running the possibility that it might be a trick from Sylar. Well, in that case I better call him, since my life might depend on that.
I pulled out my cell phone and punched in the number and hit 'send'. I held the phone to my ear and let it ring. I heard it ring four times as I walked around my room and stopped by my bed. "Hello?" A nervous, male voice asked.
"Peter?" I replied, my voice shaking. Please let it be Peter. Please let it be Peter. I begged to my self over at over that it would be him and not Sylar on the other end of the phone.
"Yeah, Abby?" Peter asked in return. I felt onto my bed in shock. I forgot to breathe, I forgot to answer. I always believed that the people in these paintings of mine were real, that all this happened for real, but to talk to one of them, the main one of them in fact, I was beyond worlds. "Are you there?"
"Yeah," I replied quickly, sitting up in my bed. "You're...real..." was all I could say to him.
"Yes, I'm fairly sure I am," he replied, I could easily picture that teasing smirk of his on his face at that moment.
"Its just, I've been painting a huge bunch of you for around eight months now. You guys have been my life, and to find out you're real and I'm not necessarily crazy, I'm ecstatic," I explained to him.
"You said you've been painting us? Us as in whom?" I walked over to my portraits in the center of my room.
"Simone, Isaac, Mohinder, you, Nathan, Hiro, Matt, Niki-slash-Jessica, D.L., Micah, Claire and the guy in the horn rimmed glasses mainly. That's the core subjects of my paintings. Through in around thirty other people and that's what I paint. Is Isaac really dead?" I asked abruptly, I just had to have confirmation from someone involved. I was certain, but I needed to hear it.
"Yeah, Sylar got to him. You didn't mention Sylar in your list of people," he pointed out to me. So it is confirmed, the only other person that really understood me was dead. I walked back over to the floor board by my bed that creaked.
"No, I didn't. I don't have many paintings of him. But I do have a painting of the remains of everyone he killed," I said quietly.
"I'm sorry," Peter said slowly, evident sympathy in his voice. "No one should have to see that much death," he added.
An uncomfortable silence reigned for a few seconds. "Yeah, especially at sixteen," I told him, trying to lighten the mood.
Peter dodged the comment. "So, have you told anyone about your power?" he asked me. I actually scoffed at him in response.
"Are you kidding me?" I asked incredulously. "Telling people I can paint the future? That'd get me instutionalized so quickly, even for where I live," I told him, actually laughing.
"And where would that be?" Peter asked me. "I've never been able to get a location on you from my paintings."
"That'd be a good thing, seeing how dangerous your life is, I'm glad I'm where I am. Opposite coast," I told him, giving him a slight hint. "And considering how you're going to blow up, I'm even more glad I'm this far from Ground Zero,"
"Thanks, that makes me feel so much better," Peter said dryly. I laughed. "Is there anything you can tell me that can help?"
"Well, depends on what you already know," I replied crypitcally, tracing the Symbol on my bedsheet idly with my free hand.
"Am I going to kill half of New York?" Peter asked me.
I looked up and saw the explosion on my ceiling. "No, I don't think you will," I replied honestly. "Here, I'll tell you what. If I paint something that you need to know about. I will call you imediately, deal?" I asked him.
"Deal," he replied. "Um, look, it's around four a.m. here in New York, so I really need to get some sleep, considering how hectic every day of my life is now," Peter explain.
"No problem, I'll let you go, just, thank you for confirming I'm not crazy," I told him. I could almost here him smile over the phone.
"My pleasure, I'll talk to you when you call next," Peter replied.
"Night," I resonded and he echoed my statement. We hung up and I flopped back on my bed, a huge smile on my face. I'm not crazy after all. I'm just a prophet of some kind or another, helping them out. But it does seem that for the time being, I'll be living my life through the looking glass.
- Through the Looking Glass (Heroes)