spongetastic: (Afterglow)
[personal profile] spongetastic
Written in 2008

Adam took the wheel that morning. He wasn't a mind-reader like his companion so he couldn't be sure what was going through the boy's mind. Still, he could feel the awkward tension between the two of them. He'd been feeling it all morning. He allowed it for a while, thinking Peter needed the time. But after the silence stretched on for more than a few minutes, Adam realized he had to do something about this.

"Peter, is something bothering you?"

"I'm just thinking," the empath responded. His eyes were focused on the view outside his window.

"..About?"

"Lots of things. What will happen when we see Victoria, how we'll get to the virus... stuff like that." Adam frowned a bit, drumming his fingers on the steering wheel. He knew there was more to this but didn't want to press the boy.

"... Adam? What was it you said to me last night?"

"I said a great many things last night," Adam pointed out with a grin. He glanced over and was pleased to see the boy was blushing.

"I mean when you started speaking Japanese."

"Did I?" Adam asked, trying to play innocent. He thought for sure Peter had been far too occupied to bother paying attention to that. "I lapse into it at times. Though I think I was just repeating things I already said in English."

"Well..." Peter was grinning a little, now. Very encouraging. "Yeah, I kind of guessed that. But what was the last thing you said?"

"You should know that one," Adam said with amusement. "Because you responded. I said 'good night'."

"Not that. The thing you whispered to me. It was... ashita... something." Adam gripped the steering wheel very tightly. It was only thanks to his many years that he didn't swerve off the road. He wondered if Peter could see (or possibly feel) his panic.

"You heard that?"

"Yeah." Adam dared another glance but all he could see from Peter was innocent curiosity. "What does it mean?"

"Nothing," the older man replied. He hadn't meant to say it, and Peter was definitely not meant to hear it. But since he had, Adam now had to wonder if Peter didn't already guess the word's meaning. "Is that what's bothering you?"

"No." Peter looked away again. "It's just that things got a little... carried away last night."

"You find something wrong with that?" Adam wondered, raising an eyebrow.

"I would've said something if I wanted you to stop," Peter answered with a shake of his head. What Adam saw of the boy's face was bright red. "I just don't know what to do from here."

"Whatever you're comfortable with," Adam shrugged. "I would never force you into something, Peter." The boy nodded quietly. That little talk helped ease the awkward feeling. Adam was relieved that Peter seemed willing to at least think about continuing things between them.

Peter, for his own part, had a lot of feelings to shift through. He certainly didn't regret what happened last night but there was still the looming threat of the virus to think about. And of course, Caitlin. He still cared about her a lot. He knew Adam would understand if he wanted to take his time with this. Adam always seemed to understand.

"Adam," he spoke up. "Aishiteru. Is that right?"

"Yes," the man answered. "... That's right."

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Peter Petrelli

October 2013

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