Marco let out a sigh of relief as the NTAC building came into view. It had taken him almost three hours to get back after he’d manage to teleport himself halfway across the city. It would have been fine if he’d had his wallet on him or had been able to teleport himself back again. Instead he’d been dropped into the middle of Seattle with no money, no cell phone, and no amount of clicking his heels and saying ‘there’s no place like home’ got him back to NTAC.
Thankfully, Marco still had his NTAC ID badge around his neck or he might have had trouble getting back into the building. With hundreds of people developing new abilities every day, security at NTAC was tighter than it had ever been before. They’d already met one 4400 who could impersonate people and there was Tess Doerner who could compel people to do anything she wanted, what else could rear its head now? As it was, Marco made it through security without issue and headed straight back to the lab to try and get control of his new ability.
Back in the theory room, Marco slipped his phone and wallet into his pocket – just in case. He put all thoughts of work and the search for Jordan Collier to one side and searched the promycin database for anyone with an ability like his. There was no-one listed in the database who could teleport but no-one had attempted to record the abilities of those who’d survived the promycin ‘flu yet. So far they’d not seen any duplicated abilities but they’d only recorded a few hundred promycin positives on top of the original 4400. There was no telling what they would find after they started investigating the survivors.
Looking around Marco realized that the theory room was empty - he had spent most of the afternoon struggling back through Seattle and it had gotten late. Normally the building would be busy in the evening, cases often kept agents working long hours and Marco wasn’t sure how much of a social life his colleagues had had outside this place, but the Government hadn’t started to replace any of the staff killed by the promycin ‘flu and the survivors were preoccupied with funerals or their unexpected new abilities. No-one would notice if Marco snuck off early, he could finish his work tomorrow.
Grabbing his bag from his locker, Marco made to leave for home and then paused. Maybe he didn’t have to get the bus back. His apartment wasn’t that much further than he’d manage to project himself earlier. Marco had mentally gone through everything that had happened as he’d teleported. He’d been examining the photo of a Jordan Collier mural and had wanted to take a closer look. The next time Marco had glanced up the mural had been right in front of him.
It had been scary at first but Marco had also been relieved. They’d seen so many abilities that were terrifying. Danny Farrell had inadvertently killed his mother and 9000 people. Teleportation was harmless, even useful if Marco could learn to control it.
As a scientist, Marco was naturally curious and he wanted to try out his ability again. The first time he’d teleported Marco had been looking at a photo of where he wanted to go. Maybe all he needed something to help him visualise it. There were photos taped to the inside of his locker and Marco was sure that at least one of them was taken in his apartment.
While he searched, Marco dislodged a stack of paper and they spilled onto the floor. Marco bent down to collect them and the first thing he picked up was a snapshot of him and Diana. It had been taken when they’d still been dating. They’d come in after dinner and Maia had surprised them with a camera. Diana had been caught in a rare, unguarded moment and Marco hadn’t been able to bring himself to throw the picture away. In the back of his mind he’d hoped that one day they might get back together.
“Diana?” Marco’s head shot up and he found himself staring straight at Diana.
“What are you doing here? How did you even get in here?” Marco looked around them to discover that he was standing in the middle of Diana’s apartment, still holding the photo. Looked like his theory worked – but now he had to explain that to Diana.
“Uh – .”
“It’s Marco’s ability.” Maia had appeared from the bedroom.
“To randomly appear in my living room?” Diana asked, ever the sceptic.
Maia nodded with a grin. “Marco can teleport. It’s really cool.”
Maia seemed to be much more accepting about Marco’s new ability than either he or Diana was, but then Maia had come to terms with her own ability years ago. Now, for Maia, it was normal to be able to see the future. Her attitude helped alleviate some of Marco’s nerves and he grinned back. “Really? It works once I’ve learned to control it?”
“U-huh. Soon you’ll be able to move other people with you.” Maia practically beamed. “We’re going to go to Disneyland!”
“Okay, just back up a minute here,” Diana interjected, “Marco can – I can’t believe I’m saying this – teleport wherever he wants to go?”
“It does sound a little farfetched, doesn’t it?” Marco still wasn’t sure if he quite believed it and this was the second time it had happened. Teleportation was something you saw on Star Trek and while they’d seen some incredible things since the 4400 had returned, Marco was still struggling to let go of the basic laws of physics.
Diana shrugged. “I have a daughter who can see the future. After everything we’ve seen, it’s not that strange.” Then her own curiosity perked up. “So how does it work, you just think of where you want to go and you’re there?”
“Right now it’s only happened while I’m looking at pictures.” That was how it had worked so far at least. “But I think so.”
“I guess that brings back to why you’re here.”
Maia answered that one for him. “Because it’s where he’s supposed to be.”
Maia nodded again. “Only, don’t kiss in front of me. It’s still gross.” With that, she bounced back into her bedroom and left them alone in an awkward silence.
“So…” He trailed off, not sure what to say. If he was honest, Marco did want Diana, but he wasn’t going to admit that first. Not when Diana had broken up with him, one rejection was more than enough for him.
“Yeah…” Diana stopped as she noticed the photo that was still in Marco’s hand. She took is from him and examined it, curious. It was enough to make Marco find his voice again.
“It’s from a long time ago, I only just realized I still had it when it fell out of my locker – ”
“And you were looking at it when I found you in here.” Diana’s expression was almost wistful as she tore her gaze from the photo. Then she looked up at Marco in realization. “So Maia was right, you did want to be here.”
“It wasn’t intentional, I was just thinking about old times and then – ” Marco realized he was rambling but couldn’t make himself stop.
“Marco.” Diana interrupted him stepping into his personal space. “Just shut up and kiss me.”
Marco was shocked at Diana’s apparent change of heart and paused for a moment looking for a catch. Diana gave an impatient huff at his hesitation and tugged him towards her. As their lips met it was as if they’d never been apart and Marco realized just how much he’d missed this.
He wrapped an arm around Diana’s waist and pulled her up against him. They kissed for a long time, finally breaking apart only to breathe although Marco didn’t let Diana out of his arms.
“Not that I’m complaining, but why the change of heart?” Marco asked.
Diana looked up at him. “You’re still here. And we worked, didn’t we? I miss that, I miss you.”
There was a long silence that Diana finally broke by changing the subject. “Would you like to stay for dinner? My meatloaf has gotten better.” Marco laughed and she gave him a small smile in return. “I mean it this time.”
“How could I resist a Diana Skouris Special?” Marco grinned. “Do you need any help?”
“You could set the table?” Diana asked. She leaned forward and kissed him again. “Maia will be glad that you’re staying.”
“Just Maia?” Marco raised an eyebrow.
“All right, I’m glad that you’re staying.” Diana folded her arms in fake indignation as she responded. “Happy now?”
Marco thought about it – he had an ability that wasn’t dangerous, he was slowly learning to control it, and he was rekindling romance with the one woman he wanted to be with. A romance that had a blessing from a precog. Thousands had died and the entire world had changed, but things were finally starting to look up. “Yeah,” Marco replied, “I am.”