D. L. Hawkins
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|D. L. Hawkins|
Leonard Roberts as D. L. Hawkins
|Last appearance||"Four Months Ago..."|
|Portrayed by||Leonard Roberts|
Daniel Lawrence "D. L." Hawkins is a fictional character played by Leonard Roberts in the TV series Heroes. The father of Micah Sanders and husband of Niki Sanders, he has the power to phase through solid objects.
Six months prior to most of the series' events, D. L. was a construction worker. He and his wife Niki were having financial troubles and construction didn't pay very well. At one point, they considered letting Niki's father, Hal, into their lives. Because he is successful in the stock market, Hal seemed like he could be a good grandfather and help them financially. However, they soon realized he was still the same abusive, short tempered man that Niki had tried to forget and did not accept him back into their lives. At some point, D. L. began leading a group of criminals who all wore skull rings. Ultimately, he left the gang before they stole two million dollars and killed a security guard, but he was arrested for the crime. Frustrated by police and his general situation, he discovered he possessed the ability to phase through solid matter. Although he did not consider it freedom, D. L. used his power to escape prison in hopes of clearing his name and protecting his family.
As of the third episode, his mother Paulette and son had both apparently been in contact with him. They also believed him to be innocent, although Niki was not as sure. D.L.'s mother Paulette is apparently captured by The Company sometime after this.
Character's storylines 
D. L. first appeared near the end of "Hiros", the fifth episode. Niki's home had been placed under heavy guard by police due to their suspicion that he would come to her. Despite this, D. L. was able to enter the house and spy on his family. In the sixth episode, D. L. revealed his presence to Niki and Micah. He tried to convince his wife that he was innocent, and traveled with her to an undisclosed facility. Within, they found the mutilated corpses of several men. After Niki and D. L. returned home, he found out that she was the one who had framed him and taken the $2 million. They fought, and during the fight D. L. used his phasing abilities to reach through Niki's abdomen to choke her. D. L. ran, taking a worried Micah and the money, leaving Niki on the floor. Over the course of the next few episodes, D. L. drove his son far from Niki.
Micah was upset that they had left his mother there, but D. L. said they couldn't go back. They stopped when they came across two cars that had collided in the middle of the road. D. L. phased his arm through the window to unlock the door, and he pulled the female passenger from the burning vehicle. The car exploded just as he was carrying her away from the car, but through the actions of Hiro Nakamura, a Japanese man who had also stopped time to help out, both D. L. and the woman were saved. Afterward, Micah told his father that he was proud of his heroism.
That night, they stopped at a motel, where D. L. caught his son playing with an out-of-order pay phone. D. L. told Micah he would always love Niki, but that it wasn't safe for Micah to be with her because she had changed. Micah told his father that his mom was sick, that she had an alternate personality that she didn't seem to be aware of. Micah insisted that they must help her, and D. L. reconsidered his position. Micah then admitted that he had called her and told her where they were staying. D. L. hurried Micah into the passenger seat of the car, and as he was getting in to the driver's seat, he was shot by Jessica, Niki's alternate personality. Though the first shot hit him in the shoulder, he was able to phase in order to allow another bullet pass through the side of his head. He ran with his son into the nearby woods, laying a false trail to lead Jessica away from them. They found an unoccupied cabin, and D. L. unlocked the door from the inside to find some bandages. Jessica finally tracked them down and she fought with D. L., but after Micah was thrown against some rocks, Niki was able to reassert herself over Jessica, and D. L. connected with her again. However, the family reunion was short lived. After Niki realized Jessica was too dangerous, she turned herself in to police as D. L. and Micah watched helplessly.
Two weeks later in "Godsend", Niki's actions have cleared D. L. of the murder and robbery charges. D. L. has also given the 2 million dollars back to Linderman, though Linderman reserves the right to ask a favor of D. L. at anytime. With Niki in jail, D. L. takes care of Micah and is still recovering from his injuries. While D. L. is unhappy to see his wife in jail, Niki believes it is for the best. In "The Fix," D. L. is having trouble taking care of Micah and himself. D. L. uses his powers to covertly contact Niki. He finds her sedated, lying on the floor in a room with padded walls. Upset over this and his situation at home, D. L. looks for a way Niki can escape her room. Niki, however, is still resigned to imprisoning herself, and says D. L. is being unfair. After being given a bit of advice from Niki, D. L. returns home without her. There, he waits and worries because Micah is late coming home from school. When Micah finally returns, D. L. sits him down and begins to have a heartfelt discussion. He says that he's trying to find work, and be a good father, but he'll need Micah's help. They both agree to try harder, and Micah says he has something that might help. Micah then opens his backpack and pours out hundreds of twenty dollar bills that he had obtained by using his technopathic powers from ATMs around the city.
Niki returns from containment in "Distractions" with Jessica as the dominant personality. Although no interaction between Jessica and D. L. is shown until "Run!", it's quite apparent that both D. L. and Micah are oblivious to Jessica and her job as an assassin for Linderman.
When Niki and D. L. are revisited in "Parasite", D. L. confronts Jessica about the picture of Nathan Petrelli Niki left on his pillow. Apparently, Niki "overcame" Jessica for a short period of time and planted the picture without Jessica's knowledge. He questions her about what Linderman is making her do with Nathan, and she explains that there's nothing to worry about. After kissing her, he turns around and the smile he had on his face drops into a frown indicating that he's still suspicious.
In ".07%", D. L. has realized that Niki and Jessica switch on and off, and he is not happy with this. He also does not like that she works for Linderman. He says he will take away Micah later on that evening, since he is concerned about his son's safety, though Micah ends up leaving with Linderman.
In "The Hard Part", Jessica and D. L. argue about their son Micah's whereabouts, and D. L. blames Jessica for his disappearance. He leaves, intending to rescue Micah without help. Niki pleads with Jessica to assist him, saying that he will die without her help. Later, D. L. and Jessica phase through walls and into Linderman's office. They find detailed files on their whole family, including Micah. D. L. is angered to find that they had been used. He believes that he and Niki are the only people in the world with powers and are some sort of science experiment run by Mr. Linderman. The pair attempt to determine Micah's whereabouts, and find a painting of Micah in what appears to be a burning New York City.
D. L. and Niki travel to New York City to rescue Micah and confront Linderman. However, while meeting with Linderman, he jumps in front of a bullet meant for Niki. Severely wounded, he quickly kills Mr. Linderman by phasing his hand into his head. Immediately following this event, in "How to Stop an Exploding Man", D. L. manages to escape from the office with Niki via phasing before Linderman's guards can find them. Niki leaves D. L. by the elevators and promises to return soon with Micah after she initially hesitates to part from him.
Mohinder Suresh and Molly Walker later come upon D. L., who is lapsing into unconsciousness, and Suresh gives Hawkins minor medical treatment as they think of a way to escape; they are soon rejoined by Niki and Micah. Using Micah's technopathy, the group all go to the bottom floor and out of the building, where they witness Peter Petrelli and Sylar facing off in Kirby Plaza.
In the episode "Kindred", Niki and Micah visit D.L.'s grave before leaving Las Vegas.
In the episode "Four Months Ago...", it is revealed that D.L. has become a firefighter to make his son proud. He receives a medal for going into a burning home and saving a trapped girl. However, Niki has to be medicated to prevent any new personas from surfacing. She stops using her medication and shortly manifests a new personality called Gina, an alias she used as a runaway. She repeats this pattern, leaving home without telling D.L. or Micah. Unaware of the new personality, D. L. tracks Niki to Los Angeles, believing that Jessica has taken over again. He finds her dancing with a stranger in a club; when she sees him, Niki's personality resurfaces and she leaves with D. L. As they leave, the stranger shoots D. L. in the chest at point-blank range. The wound is apparently fatal, as the next scene is that of D.L's funeral.
Alternate future 
In "Five Years Gone", in an alternate future where New York City is destroyed by a nuclear explosion, D. L. is mentioned when Future Hiro asks Mr. Bennet, currently working to hide people with "harmless" powers, where he is. It is also implied that Hiro brought D. L., along with a number of other characters, to Mr. Bennet for protection. Future Hiro wants D. L. and his ability in order to stage a raid on President Nathan's holding facility without the help of the then-unwilling Peter Petrelli. D. L. is assumed to be dead, presumably killed by Sylar, since the serial killer is shown using D. L.'s phasing ability.
Powers and abilities 
D.L. Hawkins has the ability to phase through solid matter, though it has not been confirmed whether he is able to perform this whilst through liquid or gas matter. When he is phasing through something, its surface will warp slightly, like a liquid in slow-motion. D.L. can phase specific parts of his body, such as phasing his arm through a door to unlock it from the opposite side. D. L. can also phase others as long as they remain in physical contact, though his passengers generally experience discomfort.
As evidenced by his threat to Jessica, D. L. is able to revert his passengers to their corporeal state before successfully moving their bodies out of the solid matter - though whether it would be fatal is unknown. He can also use his power offensively. The most prominent example of this is when he kills Mr. Linderman by phasing his hand into Linderman's head and subsequently unphasing it. D.L. is also able to use his powers defensively, allowing objects such as bullets to simply pass through him, as seen in "Fallout". However, he has not demonstrated an ability to "phase out" objects that are already lodged deep inside of him.
D. L. first displays his powers in episode five's on-line graphic novel, which details his escape. While being questioned by police, D. L. snaps when an arrogant officer makes a crude remark about Niki, unwittingly phasing out of his handcuffs to choke the man. Later, after at least one failed attempt, D. L. manages to phase out of his jail cell.