Rating: PG-13 for mild swearing and violence
Characters: Elle Bishop, Peter Petrelli
Spoilers: Through season 2
Word Count: 1, 471
Written For: quasi_hayley
Prompt: She's a sociopath with paranoid delusions - let's see some! Elle going off the rails whilst still hanging onto the new sensation of being a 'hero'.
Author's Notes/Summary: Future fic. My first fic from Elle's POV. While I don't know if I got the letter of the prompt, I hope I got the spirit. Much love to ladybug218 and liuseth for their awesome beta skills.
The smell of burning flesh filled her nostrils, making Elle smile. The sound of the man's screams filled her ears, signaling it was time to give him a break.
"Now, what have we learned here today?" She ran a hand through his singed hair. Clutching at a clump, she pulled his head back and whispered in his ear.
"I will never hurt my little girl again," Elle answered for him.
The shudder that tore through his body assured her that her words had penetrated past his moans. Elle released the man's head, giving it a none-too-gentle pat.
"Let's not have this chat again. I'll tell your daughter you said hi."
Elle straightened, tugging the hem of her jacket down from where it had ridden up slightly during her ministrations. Satisfied that everything was in place, she turned and walked out from the shadows of the alley to the sunlight of the busy street.
There was more work to be done.
"Please, you have to help us. There's no one else we can go to."
The words drifted to Elle through the window and, with nothing better to do at the moment, she shamelessly listened in on the conversation.
"I'm sorry, ma'am. We're full up. You could try Saint Trinnian's over on Ninth." A man answered.
"I told you, we've been everywhere else." The woman sounded close to hysterics and Elle thought that might be fun to watch. Unfortunately, she was on the street and the woman was in the building.
"If you don't let us stay here, then my husband is going to kill us."
At that moment a child started to cry. Elle wasn't sure why, there was obviously nothing in it for her, but she felt the need to do something to help. After another bout of pleading, the woman was forced to leave the office, and Elle was waiting at the foot of the stairs.
"Um, hey. I – I think I want to help you." The words came haltingly to Elle, who had never felt the desire to help another person before. She knew there must be some kind of protocol for this. Maybe a guidebook somewhere?
Instead of being grateful, the woman shifted her child in her arms, scornfully looked Elle over and then practically sneered. "And what can a tiny thing like you do for us?"
Angry at the unexpected response, Elle was about to tell the lady off when the child – a little girl – turned her head to Elle. She had bright blue eyes that glistened in her tear-streaked face. Elle vaguely recalled seeing her own face like that, back when she was little. Her resolve strengthened.
"Oh, you'd be really surprised at what I can do." Her voice was sugar sweet, and she held up a hand to allow a small bubble of energy crackle to into the air.
That had been what started it all. Elle was now wandering the streets, visiting women's shelters, finding the names and addresses of the most hurtful men in the city. She followed them, waiting until they were alone and then pounced. Using her diminutive appearance, she'd allow herself to be lured into a dark alley, or the man's home. And then she got creative.
For one, she had stuck her hand in the bathtub he was sitting in, letting a little energy ripple through her and into the water. Sure, she got a little singed too, but the laughter that bubbled up at his screams made the pain worth it. Besides, she was used to pain.
With another, she waited until he was sitting on the toilet before she sent enough electricity through him to practically weld him to the seat. That was still her favourite.
So far, the media hadn't made the connection between all the men. But Elle knew it was just a matter of time. All she needed now was a catchy name.
"Something a hell of a lot better than fucking Wonder Woman," she muttered to herself.
"How about Electric Avenger?"
Elle spun around from where she had been leaning against the wall, around the corner from her latest target.
The last she'd seen of Peter…well, she didn't like to think about that. But the sight of him now still produced a small flutter in her stomach.
"Come to beg me to take you back?" Elle's blue eyes flashed.
"What colour should your costume be?" Peter continued as if she hadn't spoken, his crooked smile not reaching his eyes. "Blood red?"
"Electricity is blue, you idiot." God, it felt good to banter with him again. "I'm thinking cobalt blue. No lightening bolt, though. Too cliché."
"I know what you've been doing, Elle," Peter became serious. The big party pooper.
"Been reading my thoughts, Petey? Gives a whole new meaning to Peeping Peter."
"Whatever." She waved her hand as though to brush away the correction. Seeing him tense at the gesture made her realize that he was prepared to go head-to-head with her. The idea of fighting him aroused her.
"I'd much rather you were in my bed than in my head." Elle smiled seductively. "Then I could play with you instead of myself."
"You have to stop. We don't want any attention being drawn to people like us."
"Adorably talented? No, that's me. You must mean boring people." Laughter danced behind her eyes when he frowned. She knew she had hit a nerve. Peter had always wanted to be someone who did great things; a real hero wannabe.
"You might think you're doing something good, but it's too dangerous."
"Says you." Peter was beginning to bore her.
"There are a few of us who've banded together. They say."
"Ooh. Like an orgy?" Elle clapped her hands together in mock glee.
"To hide, you mean." Elle didn't try to hide the scorn in her voice.
"To keep the government from using us."
"Yeah, well I'm more tired of hiding than of being used," she snapped.
"You have to stop."
Peter's hands hung loosely at his sides; his trench coat fluttering behind him like wings. Elle couldn't help but admiring his dark good looks. And then he spoke again.
"Or I'll have to stop you."
"You can try."
Energy burned from Elle's eyes like fire. Her blonde hair lifted around her head, borne on currents of static. Cupping her hands, she allowed an orb of electricity to form.
She could see the surprise on Peter's face. He'd had no idea how her powers had grown. She had been busy the past six months.
"You left me, Peter. You left me alone with a dad who hates me."
"I'm sorry - "
Elle watched as Peter seemed to expand a little. Was that him absorbing her powers? What would Daddy do for that observation?
Thinking of her father made Elle angrier.
"All I wanted was for you to be nice to me…to like me." Her voice was now husky with pain and power.
"And now, I don't need you."
Elle released the orb and saw Peter brace himself. When it didn't connect, she was rewarded with another surprised look on his dark features. And then his attention was taken up by protecting himself from the tree falling towards him.
Elle didn't let up on the onslaught, even though he was struggling to keep the tree from crushing him. Using her energy, she hurled anything that wasn't nailed down at him. Garbage bins, trash, a mailbox, and a tricycle from a nearby lawn. As she threw the objects, she began to yell.
"You aren't the only one whose powers are getting stronger, Petey. And you're not the one who can stop me."
Movement from the corner of her eye gave her a moment's warning. Spinning, she ducked. Her quick action meant the bullet grazed her jacket, hitting the wall behind her.
"Fuck. You. ALL."
Gathering the electricity around her, Elle used it to lift herself into the air. She felt a burning and let it radiate outwards. Two more figures had joined Peter, trying to deal with the enormity of the situation. They looked like ants scrambling in the dirt. She laughed at their feeble attempts.
"Electric Avenger is so comic book, Petey baby. I'm much more than that. I'm fucking vengence, and you better not forget it."
With a final push, Elle sent an electromagnetic pulse out - knocking her adversaries, and the power, out for a three-block radius. But not killing them. She was beyond that now.
Gently, she sank back to the ground. Tugging the hem of her jacket down, Elle turned to walk away. She'd have to deal with her target another day.
As she walked past Peter, she brushed his hair back from his face.
"I'm Electric Vengence. Remember that."
And then she was gone.