Charlie/Noah -|- Welcome Home
Noah stared blankly at Charlie, was it really too late? Had those years that Noah had been gone changed him so much that there was nothing left to save? He could barely bring himself to consider that as an option. He didn’t want to believe that, out of everything, he just couldn’t. While Noah was gone he wanted nothing but the best for his best friend. And now he was talking as though he didn’t know him? That just wasn’t an option for Noah. He knew him better, there was something else. There was always something else. Ah, there it was, Belle.
“You’re full of shit and you know it. Yeah, you grew up, so did I. Life happens, but don’t come at me with that ‘I don’t think I ever loved her’ bull shit. We both know you’re lying. Don’t come up with that as an excuse because you fucked up. I know you better than anyone and you know it.” As the words kept coming, Noah was in mild shock, was Charlie seriously under the impression that they Belle was better off without her? He let out a sigh end ran his hand through his hair, and took another long drink of the beer.
Noah felt more responsible for Charlie now more than ever. After all, he was the one who left Charlie without a best friend. Were his actions dignified in that sense? Charlie didn’t even know what happened, just that Noah was going to leave. Noah and Charlie lived their lives together more so as brother than anything else, and than Noah just left. That was the worst part of it, Noah’s guilt weighing him down, it was his fault for causing this to happen, or not being there to stop it. Part of him knew he was being irrational, he couldn’t of predicted it. In the end, all he wanted what was best for his friend. And while Charlie acted as though everything in his life was fine and dandy. Feeling as though he struck a nerve, Noah tensed, preparing for Charlies response.
There it was, that’s the Charlie that Noah knew, he was somehow protecting those he loved despite the fact that he managed to estrange himself from all of them. Was it really so difficult for them? They were adults after all, they should be able to protect themselves. But he knew Charlie wouldn’t be able to just allow his sister to do that, Noah knew this because even as kids, he would never admit it but he was fiercely protective of her sister. He allowed his friend to rant, let out everything that had been weighing him down. Noah watched as he paced the apartment. He had a point, if they weren’t careful, they could easily die. Noah stood up and walked over to his best friend.
“Listen, I don’t act as though I have everything planned out. But your sister needs you if she’s putting herself into that much trouble. She’s not better off without you, everyone messes up, that’s a fact of life. You can make it better. So don’t spend your time moping around acting like you’re someone we both know you’re not.” Noah placed his hand on his friend’s shoulder, “I’m sorry, but I have this feeling like it’s only going to get worse from here, they’re planning something man.” He warned. It was true, when he was imprisoned, he would occasionally glean information, not enough to figure out what they were planning. But enough to know that if Noah didn’t figure something out, everyone was in danger.
“We can fight this, you know that, right? I mean, there are tons of us. Don’t you want this to go away?” He asked his friend.
Charlie knew that what Noah was saying couldn’t be closer to the truth because he did still love Belle. His biggest lie in life would be saying that he never loved her at all because he still loved her. He loved everything about her, the way she brushed the hair from her face when she was feeling self conscious or the way she liked to do that silly little dance when she got excited. Charlie Cunningham was head over heels in love with that girl, he always had been but he’d pushed it aside for so long that he wasn’t sure he was willing to admit out loud. “Fine, yeah at one point I was a love sick little puppy chasing a girl around but that’s not real life anymore Noah. She’s with Beaumont, she’s about to be the first lady of the United States.” Charlie said quietly. Charlie knew he couldn’t let Belle marry Vince, not when something was so wrong about all of that. Vince was up to something and he wasn’t the kind of guy Belle deserved, fuck Belle deserved a nice guy like Noah if he was being completely honest.
Brushing his hands through his hair in frustration as he tried to gather himself together and compose himself. He felt like he was falling apart, all the walls he’d built up over the last few years were quickly falling apart and it was all because of Noah. Noah who refused to give up, refused to believe that this was who he was. Then again he hadn’t had to put up with years of this to give up on him. Regardless Charlie was breaking and the cracks in his façade were showing more than ever. Eyes turn to Noah and he lets out a heavy sigh that seems to echo off the walls of the large open living room.
“What am I suppose to do Noah?” Charlie said with a heavy breath once more and the stress of it all hung on his words. “Belle hates me, Sara hates me. I killed our dad Noah. She’s never going to forgive me, she’s never going to want my help.” His voice was shaky now and he almost choked on the words as he spoke them and once more the pacing began. Sara was the most important person his life, through everything they’d always agreed that it would be the two of them against the world, no matter what happened with their parents and he’d failed her. He didn’t blame her for hating him, it was almost easier if she hated him because than there was no way he could let her down anymore. Not when he was already such a massive failure.
“Do you really think there in this much trouble that they’re going to come for them?” Charlie asked worriedly as he turned back to Noah staring him down now. He knew that they’d gotten themselves wrapped up in some serious stuff but he wasn’t aware that it was this serious. “How much trouble are they in Noah? I need to know. In their life or not I need to make sure that they’re going to be okay. I know that they won’t accept me back, not after everything that I’ve put them through. You don’t understand what I’ve done to them, everything I put them through. It’s easy for you to say it’s going to be okay, to look at me like I’m the guy you used to know, the guy who was like a brother because you haven’t been here to see the things I’ve done. You haven’t seen how I’ve treated everyone.” Charlie said his voice rising with every word, getting more and more worked up with everything he was saying. “They can’t just forget that. I want to just go back but I don’t think I can.”
Ideally? Nothing, but if I had to. I’ll just go with the strip club.
Strippers! Cake! Let’s do it.
I don’t even care - live a little right? God… I haven’t been to a strip club in like… since I’ve been gone actually.
STRIP CLUB!!! Here we come buddy! See I knew you’d come around to my way of thinking with a little nudging in the right direction.
Or maybe we could just avoid the strippers a cake altogether cause I know where that was headed.
But if you really thinks it’s necessary to take me out for my birthday…..fine.
No stirppers!? What kind of birthday is that?….. Fiiiine its your birthday, whatever you want you should get. So what would you like to do for you birthday if not in indulge in strippers and cake?
That’s how you celebrate birthdays, man. But I guess I owe ya half a dozen birthdays anyway, so I’ll deal.
Shoving my face into a cake before or after the strippers, by the way?
Face in cake should probably happen afterwards, given that the strippers wont appreciate you getting cake and frosting all over their bountiful bosoms. Pretty sure that’s no good for business…. on second thought it could be pretty good for business.
Guess who’s just going to stay inside all day and try to get through the day a quickly as possible tomorrow?
Oh cute you think you’re getting off that easy. I think I have a cake to put in your face. Not to mention birthdays should be celebrated with strippers and booze and that your birthday will be. So put on your big boy pants Theroux, its time to party.
Charlie/Noah -|- Welcome Home
Noah let out a lengthy sigh, he wasn’t sure how to feel about his best friend. So much was different, part of him knew that Charlie wasn’t the same anymore. He practically worshiped his father, and now? He acted liked it was no big deal… despite the fact that he killed him. How? Is what Noah was thinking, he killed his own father to protect his sister. But still, upon learning everything that had happen with Charlie, Noah couldn’t help but feel like the person he was looking at wasn’t the Charlie he knew. And that scared Noah more then he cared to admit, he sat there, somewhat awestruck. A wave of dread crashed over him, was he responsible? Was his departure what cracked his best friend? Charlie was his rock when no one else was, when they were kids, he felt like they could rule the world together. Noah shook his head and pushed his thoughts to the back of his head, and brought his attention back to his friend.
“Whatever helps you sleep at night, Charlie.” He smiled, shrugging. He didn’t understand why Charlie had adapted to such a different life since he left. One of the things that Noah would never consider Charlie when they were in high school was a womanizer, while he wasn’t the nicest of individuals he never would have said that way back when. He was happy with Belle, and now she’s off to get married to someone who isn’t Charlie and he’s acting as if life is just fine and dandy. “Sure you are, because you’re totally just going to move on with your life, C’mon bro, I know you.” And as much as it scared Noah, he felt like Charlie was slipping out of his fingers.
Noah took a deep breath and took a long drink of his beer. “I’d like to say I’m not - but I am. After…after I left, I was taken by the government, and after a few years I escaped. I know how they think, Charlie and I want to stop it. They….they used my powers to abduct others and I had no choice.” Noah ran a hand through his hair, talking about it was weird, it made the whole thing so much more real to him. “It won’t be long before they come after me, and…they know about everyone from Devil Town - I’m not sure why, it was above my head, but they’re letting everyone continue their lives - but they’re keeping tabs on everyone. They know everything about our weak spots.” He warned, that was new information, everyone from Devil Town were known by them. It was just a matter of time.
“Sara could be in danger Charlie, and maybe Heidi, her daughter. Charlie, you can still help her, you can make it work. And don’t you dare talk about how high and mighty you are in New York. I don’t care that everyone wants to be you or with you.” Noah scoffed, looking Charlie in the eye, his anger growing, he wasn’t sure what was wrong, but he wasn’t acting like Charlie, and now that he was back, he could begin to mend the wounds that he created, all he wanted was his friend back. And he’d be damned if he couldn’t. “I’m not stupid, I can see right through this, Charlie, you want to help her. Hell, I wouldn’t be surprised if you already have. We’re in danger Charlie, all of us. Even you, even your sister, even Belle. It’s only a matter of time, we both know that. So the choice is yours, I know you want it to stop. So don’t act as though you care, because if you don’t, you’re not the Charlie I knew.” He said, his heart dropping in his chest as he spoke the words. Noah knew that if anything that would snap him out of it, if only for a minute. Noah wished that he didn’t have to do this, because words like that shouldn’t be spoken to his best friend, but he had too. And it hurt him more then he’d ever care to admit.
Noah’s words unhinged Charlie but he tried to hold the look of contempt, trying to hold onto the façade that he cared for nothing but what was around him right now but Noah was right. Noah did know him. Beyond all of this at the end of the day there would never be one person who knew him better than Noah. Swallowing down the rest of his beer trying to push back the lump in his throat as he stared out the open windows of his apartment, the tree tops of Central Park staring back at him from below. “Don’t kid yourself, Noah. It’s been ages. You don’t know me anymore.” Charlie said in a voice that was so disconnected he wasn’t even sure it was his. “I’m not that foolish knuckle head, love sick puppy you knew in high school. Life happened.” Charlie muttered darkly and he was sure it was visible on his face as he sunk even deeper into the recesses of his dark mind. “I don’t need Belle, I don’t think I ever even loved her.” Charlie lied. “She’s better off without me, I’m sure she will make just the ever perfect first lady, even Beaumont is the biggest fucking tool around.” Charlie began to ramble, the rage seeping into his words. Belle deserved better, but Vince Beaumont was the farthest thing from better.
It was the next things that Noah said that really caught Charlie off guard and while he wanted to keep the illusion of just not caring he couldn’t help the knee jerk movement as his head snapped to look Noah when he mentioned that Charlie may have already been helping Sara. He knew then he’d probably given himself away and that his emotions where written all over his face. He’d fought forever to suppress these feelings. Things he only let himself relish in when he was parading around the city behind a mask saving people. He comes to a standing position in almost a second and he’s pacing the living room in an attempt to avoid his watch full eyes. ”You don’t honestly think I don’t know she’s in trouble.” Charlie says and the outburst just keep coming and once the floodgates have opened Charlie can’t hold back any longer and he feels like everything he’s been holding back in the last 5 years are just flooding out all at once.
“I’ve got Sara traipsing around the globe with her little band of blondes trying to save the world, while I chase them down trying to make sure they don’t get themselves killed. It’s bad enough their trying to help people with powers, there putting themselves right into harm’s way with their stupid little Charlie’s Angels operation. Meanwhile I’ve got the only girl I’ve ever loved about to marry and diabolical asshole looking to take office so he can do god knows what. It’s not like the alternative is any better though because that asshole Cliff is going to tear this world apart if he because President too.” Charlie rants and his feet carry him back and forth across the sleek hardwood floors of his apartment and the small voice in the back of his head is telling him to shut up and just stop talking. That he’s letting to much out in the open, but its only now in this moment that it really become clear just the toll all of this has taken on him, and the circles can be seen ever so slightly under his eyes. “I don’t just spend my free time stalking the night for nothing; I know what kind of trouble we are all in. The only thing I ever wanted for Sara was for her to grow up, have a cute little family, a nice normal life. Instead she’s putting her life on the line trying to make sure her little girl has a future.”
Finally Charlie starts to rein himself in and the weight of everything that was weighing on him is now slightly lighter than it was just moments before but he also realizes that he’s just laid all his secrets out there for Noah giving himself away completely. Turning away from his oldest friend Charlie’s eyes train back on the wide open scenery on the other side of the large glass windows. “I’m well aware of the risk of all of this Noah, I’m aware because I’ve been living with them. So don’t. Don’t act like you have it all figure out.” Charlie said defensively, his pride more hurt that he’d failed at keeping this to himself. Even if a huge part of him was relieved to have this out there in the open for his best friend to know.