Author: bigbadwolfeboro aka Tarot (me)
Disclaimer: I don’t own Heroes or any of the characters.
Spoilers: Season 1 all the way through Season 4 Set During 1999
Characters: Claude Rains, Charles Deveaux, and Daniel Linderman mentions of Arthur No pairings
Rating: PG13 as most kids might not get this.
Summary: Attempting to explain how Claude survives being shot by Noah Bennet and taking a really long fall.
Saving Claude Rains
That was the first sensation assaulting Claude’s senses as he woke.
Musta passed out, Claude thought.
It hurt too much to even attempt moving. Claude had been shot three times. Two bullets had hit him in the chest going straight through, the other had deeply gouged his right upper arm. Claude was fairly certain that his back was broken as were several other of his bones.
Will I bleed to death or will a member o’ the wildlife kill me for tea? Claude mused, oddly unafraid. He started to laugh at the irony of his situation but all he could manage was a gurgling choking sound and it hurt too much to keep making it. He almost blacked out from the pain. Claude was pretty sure that he was hallucinating, when, sometime later, he’s not sure how much later as it’s hard to tell, he heard voices, familiar voices.
“OK, Charles, it’s down to you. The tracker says he’s around here somewhere but I don’t see him.”
“Daniel, I’ll find him. If he’s invisible, that means he’s still alive. I owe him. I got him into this mess. The least I can do is get him out.”
That’s gotta be Charles Deveaux.
“If Arthur finds out---” Daniel Linderman began.
“He won’t. Once you heal him and we get safely back to the car, I'll make sure you forget all about this. Besides, Arthur can’t read my mind.”
Claude debated calling out to let his seeming rescuers find him.
Do I dare trust them? Deveaux, he convinced me to sign on to this stupid Company and Linderman healed me up right before they tested their prototype trackin’ gun on me to tag me.
Claude paused a moment, considering. So many over the years, even before he’d become an agent, had betrayed Claude’s trust. Most recently Thompson, Haram, Spektor, and Bennet had been added to that list and Claude wondered if it was worth the risk to trust Linderman and Deveaux.
So many mistakes. So many in danger or worse. All because of me. Maybe it would be better if they didn’t find me.
Claude considered the possibility.
Can’t fix anythin’ if I’m dead. Can’t help anyone. Can’t make up for what I’ve done. Can’t make sure they don’t find---
Claude’s train of thought was interrupted by footsteps. For an agonizing second he feared they were actually moving away. Claude wasn’t sure if they were leaving or if he was blacking out again but he decided to try to call out at that moment.
Reckon I’ll chance it. Can’t really torture me; I’m in too much pain already.
Claude tried to call out but all he could manage was a gurgling sound.
Fantastic! Me bloody lungs are probably punctured. Probably wind up dyin’ any road. Claude mused sarcastically and he couldn’t help but start laughing again or rather trying to laugh. It’s that same sickly gurgling choking sound he’d made earlier. It hurt but Claude couldn’t stop himself. He was going into shock and nearly hysterical. Claude was also starting to go visible.
“Son of a---! Linderman! Get over here! Hurry or even you won’t be able to save him!”
Claude’s vision was hazy and tinged with red but he could see Charles Deveaux leaning over him, a horrified expression on his face. Claude’s hysterical gurgling laughter only continued. Claude would have made a snarky sarcastic pun about what a bloody mess he was literally, but all Claude could manage was the wet sickening noise he was already making.
Claude could hear Linderman’s frightened exclamation and he sounded close. Slowly, it seemed, Linderman’s familiar and now horrified visage came into Claude’s view.
“Just hold still, lad. We’ll soon have you right as rain.”
Claude’s hysterical laughter only intensified. Right as Rains you mean. Claude thought and would have said aloud had he been capable of forming words. He felt Linderman’s hand on his arm. The hysterical choaking laughter ceased. Claude coughed a bit, and then, for the first time in seemingly forever, Claude took a breath without pain.
Sometime later, Linderman looked dizzy, like he was about to collapse himself. Claude, for his part, felt a thousand times better. He was just a bit sore and bruised and no longer felt like he was close to dying. It still all felt surreal to him, like a nightmare that he couldn’t awaken from.
At least the pain is gone.
“I’m sorry, Claude, you’re still gonna have scars from where you were shot. On the upside, the bullets when straight through and I’ve managed to heal all the major damage, the bleeding, the crushed organs, and the broken bones. You’re still quite bruised.”
“Easy, Daniel," said Charles, moving to help Linderman sit down. He then moved over to Claude. “For What it’s worth Claude, I’m sorry for dragging you into this mess. It’s my fault. I wish I could fix things better, but, right now, the best I can do is make sure you live to do what you do best: disappear.”
They’re lettin’ me go free?!?!? Claude’s brow creased in puzzlement.
“There’s clothing, money, and a few basic supplies in this knapsack. That should get you by until you can find something. I have no doubt you will.” Charles paused then added, “One more thing, Claude, none of this ever happened. Bennet shot you -as much as that hurts it’s best you remember it- Bennet shot you. The bullets went right though. You fell and passed out. You woke up here, sore but alive. These supplies were probably left behind by some hikers or campers. Neither I nor Daniel Linderman were here, you were just very lucky.”
Claude was dazed and confused and dizzy. He blacked out again, feeling like the forest was spinning. When he came to he was alone in his blood covered clothing with a knapsack nearby. He was quite sore but alive, Slowly Claude stood and began rummaging around in the knapsack. He found clothing, removed his own ruined clothes, and put it on. He took his old clothes, put them in a pile, and burned them. Claude wasn’t sure where he would go now but he was glad to have survived.
Some distance away on a road, Daniel Linderman was sitting in a car with Charles Deveaux. Daniel was looking confused.
“What was I saying, Charles?”
“You were telling me how well things are going at your casino and how you don’t like the fact that you have to go to this meeting in
“Oh, yes! Quite right! But I’m sure there was something else-“
“There was nothing else, Daniel,” Charles cuts him off, his tone serious. “We had lunch; you cooked. Then we went for a drive. Now, we’ve got to get us both to the airport or we’ll be late for our flight.”
“Yes, of course. Can’t be late. It’s not proper.”