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25 January 2007 @ 01:12 am
Isaac/Simone: Paint By Numbers  
Oh, man. It has been so long and I’m very out of practice with the ficcing. Thought I’d get back into the swing of things with a little dabbling in my newest obsession, Heroes!

Title: Paint By Numbers
Fandom: Heroes
Length: 994 words
Disclaimer: Don’t own the Heroes franchise in the least.
Pairing: Isaac/Simone
Rating: G
Summary: More often than not, it is the operative word that betrays their idyllic existence. Difficult.
A/N: Spoilers only for the first couple of episodes of the season. Thanks very much to exitsign and vexia for the wonderful, wonderful beta jobs ♥ Any mistakes in this are mine, since it was revised after being reviewed by the beta brigade

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From the moment of inception, it has never been effortless.

It has, by no means, been child’s play – this thing between them. At times, it can be the most inconsequential of remarks that incense him into deeming it all a waste of a venture.

“You take suffering for your art to a whole new level, don’t you?”

It is an innocuous enough statement; one that is so laced with suggestion that he cannot contain himself as thoroughly as he might like.

And so he shifts away from her as she enters the room, his jaw clenched in misplaced fury over all that is beyond Simone’s comprehension and control, because this is how they have evolved.

“I thought we were trying, Isaac.”

Her voice is quiet and so encumbered with defeat that it infuriates him. He continues flexing his canvas with colour, refusing to acknowledge her presence - refusing to glance at either her or the incriminating syringes clasped in her hand.

This interminable succession of apology and clemency and affirmation - it is the thing that grinds him down. It is not her fault; it is not her fault at all.

But he knows what is to come. All else – all else – pales in comparison.

Simone lingers by the doorway for what seems an eternity. He prepares for the customary onslaught of lambaste and reprimand, for their bickering has earned itself an excruciating sense of predictability.

Yet the lecture does not eventuate.

“I’ll drop by tomorrow,” she says, placing the objects of their demise amongst the watercolours and acrylics. It is the only way she knows how to illustrate precisely what it is that he is destroying.

He paints his repentance and his regret, into a horoscope not yet known - each brushstroke in perfect synchrony with the staccato footsteps of her departure – and as the abstraction persists with each passing clock strike and prophecy-inducing dose, it occurs to him that he might be a saviour of sorts.

A hero, perhaps: to some poor unfortunate soul.

Isaac Mendez goes to bed on an empty stomach, troubled with the percussions of an aching heart.


More often than not, it is the operative word that betrays their idyllic existence.


It is a difficult relationship, as discussed with the merest of her acquaintances over fine wine and the sort of music reserved for matters such as these. It is a difficult state of affairs, as relayed to the newest therapist at the helm of his small circus who proffers guidance with an open book and a closed fist.

It is difficult to muster the strength, summon the valour to acknowledge that all is not as it once was.

Simone remembers a time when there may well have been a certain glory to their disputes. An interlude whereupon each quarrel was a challenge – an excuse to engage in exchanges of wit, of wisdom and of all that was to come – and each argument was not so in nature, but rather a premedicated scheme to resolve all of their theoretical differences between the sheets.

There had been a place for poetry in their yesteryear; a seat reserved at the dinner table – though they possessed no such thing – for a teasing that did not wound, and a quip that did not condemn.

But in the aftermath of their clandestine battle, it is not so simple. Romance is no longer seminal to their feuds.

Yet when push comes to shove, she - in spite of everything - cannot quite fathom all that they have become.

And all that they might have been.


He wakes to discover Simone weeping in the loft, arranging several of his more pretentious pieces against the wall with a diligence that frightens him.

The first time he made her cry, he floundered as she methodically organised his brushes – neat, little rows and trivial, little bundles – all helpless and hesitant and criminal. He had stifled the urge to shoot up for three days afterwards and they had both thought that perhaps it would all be a little easier for it.

It has been a while since they have mislaid their perception of hope. He does not know where along the line it all came to pass.

“Sometimes I don’t even know if we’re on the same page anymore.”

He is ashamed, so terribly ashamed to acquire a form of temporary relief in the finality of her tone, and wonders where it was that they went wrong.

“How can we be, Simone, when you insist on being chapters ahead?”

“Excuse me?”

She does not understand him and perhaps he does not want her to; she does not believe the way he does.

“I just, just – oh for God’s sake, Simone, stop trying to help me when you barely understand me.”

She falters, stunned by his utterance of something that they have both known and never broached.

“Who exactly do you think is going to understand you, Isaac? Who do you think is going to believe you?”

It stings; the less persuaded part of him knows she is right.

“Isaac, you need help. God, we need help. You’re made for something more than - ”

“- shooting up and predicting the future for it?”

She falls silent and cannot hold his gaze, for grief. He questions if they might have completed each other’s sentences with such swiftness, or reiterated each other’s names so prolifically, in happier circumstances.

“I don’t think I can try anymore, Simone.”

And it is hands on hips and feet to the floor all over again. He knows that her intent is not to humiliate or debase, he knows this. Yet, Simone is being pragmatic and rational and he hates her for it.

Reality seldom bodes well as a territory for the creative.

Well into the night, after the silence and the narcotics have addled his mind, he believes that he still loves her – convinces himself that she will return by dawn, as always.

Somehow, for them, belief has not quite been enough.
Current Mood: awake
Current Music: KT Tunstall - Suddenly I See
shiny_rosieshiny_rosie on January 24th, 2007 03:24 pm (UTC)
Heartbreakingly beautiful. Funnily enough I just happened to be listening to The Veronicas and their song "Nobody Wins" happened to start playing while I was reading this (lyrics here: http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/veronicas/nobodywins.html). I found it oddly appropriate. Anyway, really loved this story. You capture them both wonderfully.
arachnophobic;: { heroes || in a bulletproof vest }ishibishispider on January 25th, 2007 04:22 am (UTC)
Do I spy a John/Aeryn icon? Squee!

Aww, thank you so much ♥! I'm so glad you enjoyed it and that song just about sums up what I was aiming for with this ficlet. What appropriate background music :D

Thank you so much once again!
mystery_sockmystery_sock on January 24th, 2007 05:25 pm (UTC)
That's really beautifully written.
arachnophobic;: { heroes || your taste in my mouth }ishibishispider on January 25th, 2007 04:23 am (UTC)
Thank you so much ♥ I'm so glad you enjoyed it, thank you for taking the time to read it!
zizyzizy on February 5th, 2007 05:56 am (UTC)
I can't say enough good things about this fic, I just love it. Really descriptive and wonderfully written :) Great job!