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16 March 2011 @ 11:50 am
An Origin Story: 21/23  

Author:  BlueSuede
An Origin Story
AU in which Oliver's parents never died
minor spoilers for most early seasons

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Previous (Chapter 20)
Next (Chapter 22)


Chapter 21:

A Night With Our Hero...Interrupted

It was in the middle of the night that Chloe's eyes shot open. Revelation, in the form of her cell phone alarm had come to her.

Chloe had purposefully set her alarm for two o'clock, in order to remind herself that she had a meeting with Emil in half an hour. Accidentally, however, she had set it for two in the morning.

Oliver had grumbled in response to the irritating noise. "What is that?" he groaned blearily, still half-asleep.

"Nothing," Chloe had whispered. "I've got it." She'd climbed out of bed to find the offending phone and turn it off. Tossing it carelessly back in her purse, she made her weary way back to the bed, noting that she had no memory of how she'd gotten there in the first place.

"Who was it?" Oliver muttered, pulling her back to him, under the misconception that someone had been calling her.

"Nobody. Just an alarm."

Oliver would have asked why she had set an alarm for such an obscene hour, but he had already asleep again, or on the brink of it, which was why it had been particularly unpleasant when Chloe's eyes shot open and her body shot up.

"Oh my god," she said. "An alarm! It was a warning!"

Oliver, now fully awake, made a disgruntled sound and pulled his pillow over his head. "Yes it was. Go to sleep." His arm reached blindly out for her, grappling with the sheets before finding her arm and attempting to drag her back down beside him.

Chloe didn't allow it, though. She shook him off and then roughly pulled the pillow away from Oliver's head. "Ollie, I figured it out!"

"Figured what out?" he sighed, sitting back up.

"What happened!"

"Something happened?" he asked bemusedly.

Chloe rolled her eyes. "Jeez, Ollie, try to keep up."

He glared at her.

"Lionel didn't try to kill your parents."

Oliver stared at her with a skeptical expression. Then, after a lengthy pause, he shook his head and laid back down. "Okay, no more ice cream before bed for you."

But Chloe was shaking him again, not allowing him to go back to sleep. "No, I'm serious! I mean, he did when you were a kid, but not this time. Think about it! Why would he wait so long and then suddenly try again?"

"If you're asking me to try to fathom the mind of that-"

'No, that's what I've been trying to do," Chloe laughed. "I can't believe I didn't see it before," she shook her head at how blind she'd been.

Oliver arched a brow, clearly still skeptical, and propped himself up on his forearms. "All right, I'll bite. If Lionel didn't try to kill them, who did?"


Oliver blinked. Then he sighed. "Lionel. Lex. It's practically the same thing."

But Chloe was shaking her head vehemently. "I don't think so. I think Lionel is on our side."

Oliver's jaw dropped. Then he shook himself. "You've lost it, Chloe."

"Well, I mean, not on our side, per se, but on Clark's side."

"You're not making any sense."

"Come on, Ollie. Remember what you told me? About how Lionel told you about Oedipus and not being able to escape your fate?"

"Yeah..." Oliver responded slowly, not sure what point she was trying to make.

"And how about the fact that when we found Clark, he was in a factory owned by Lex?"

Oliver nodded, still confused.

"Lex was the one who kidnapped Clark. He was the one who was trying to be sure that Clark couldn't come to the rescue."

"So Lionel fits in how?" Oliver asked, ready to believe at least that much of her explanation, but not the part where Lionel was helping them.

"He was warning you. He wasn't gloating. Lionel's too smart to let on that he's got anything to do with a murder. He would feign innocence and ignorance to the last moment, no matter what. He's not going to make cryptic, incriminating little remarks like that. He wanted you to figure it out! It all makes sense!"

Oliver looked less-than-convinced. "Right. If he really wanted to help, why not just tell me flat out that my parents were heading for a watery grave?"

Chloe smirked at him. "Would you have believed him?"

"Well, no, probably not," Oliver admitted. "I would have thought it was-"

"-a trap," Chloe finished. "Exactly. We would have wasted time trying to figure out how to avoid the trap and might not have gotten there in time."

"Why not just spring Clark himself?"

"He probably didn't know where Clark was, just that Lex had him...or maybe he didn't even know that much. He just knew that if we knew your parents were in trouble, we'd find Clark first thing."

"Okay, but why would Lionel care if my parents were going to be murdered? Wouldn't he just sit back and enjoy the show?" Oliver made his last, feeble protest.

Chloe chewed on her lip thoughtfully. "I'm not sure," she answered slowly. "It's been a long time since the Lionel we once knew tried to put your parents out of the picture. Since then he's made a couple of claims to have changed. Clark said..." she paused, trying to sort out an explanation that sounded remotely plausible. "A couple of years ago, Clark said that Lionel was...kind of possessed by Clark's dead father - that's the easiest way to explain it, anyway - and since then, Lionel's claimed that he's some sort of vessel for Clark's father, that he wants to help Clark. It's obvious enough that Lionel knows Clark's secret, if nothing else. But with all the history we had with Lionel, we didn't exactly believe he wanted to help. How could we? It was too dangerous to trust him." She shook her head. "So, if we labor under the assumption for one minute that Lionel was telling the truth...then maybe he's altered his strategy. He knows none of us trust him, so he's been using that."

"We trust him to be untrustworthy," Oliver provided, remembering what his mother had said on the matter. It's almost the same thing, she had said.

Chloe nodded. "Exactly."

Oliver watched her for a moment, amused by the self-satisfied expression on her face. "You're very proud of yourself, aren't you?"

"Extremely," she said, grinning. "I can't believe I didn't figure it out until now."

"You should sleep more often," he teased, pushing himself all the way up to kiss her.

"Hmm, I guess so," she said against his lips, breath hiking when she felt his hand sliding onto her waist. "Ollie," she protested.

Oliver didn't get the hint in her tone, though, he was already pulling her back down, dragging her on top of him and moving his hands down to her thighs.

Chloe struggled to remember why she was stopping him. "Ollie."

"Chloe," Oliver breathed, his lips moving over her jaw line sensuously.

Chloe's eyes closed as she felt her thighs tensing with desire. "Mmm...Oliver. Oliver. Wait," she struggled.

The last word finally catching his attention, Oliver paused, his breath still warming her ear. "For what?" he asked.

"I have to call Clark."

Oliver drew his head away and dropped it to the pillow. "I'm assuming there's a very good reason why you have to do it right this second?" he asked, sounding not unlike a petulant child.

She nodded, trying not to laugh at him.

He squeezed his eyes shut and his hands fell away from her, indicating for her to go.

Chloe felt somewhat bad as she fled the room, but she didn't want to lose any time. It had already been months since the near fatal crash, and she didn't know what had been done to the fake pilot that Clark had dragged back to be brought into custody. That man was the only one who could prove Lex had hired him. Up until now he'd been silent, but they'd just been assuming it was Lionel, so there was no need to press him. Now, maybe they could cut him a deal if he confessed. They had more cards in their hands if they were correctly guessing who his boss was. She had to call Clark immediately or risk the possibility that he was on death row. Years of experience had taught her never to put anything off. The devil was in the delay.

A few days later, Chloe and Oliver were celebrating the fact that Lex Luthor had been placed under arrest for attempted homicide. They had been able to convince the fake pilot to testify once they promised him witness protection and a reduced sentence.

They had just received the news, and Oliver was pouring Chloe a glass of champagne.

"Well," he said, hardly believing the strange turn things had taken as he handed her the glass, "congratulations, Sidekick."

She grinned as she accepted the glass. "Thank you very much. But I imagine this is a little premature. You can hardly pretend Lex won't have access to all the layers he could ever need, and my faith in the American justice system is pretty low if I'm being honest."

"Would you not spoil my perfect mood with realism, please?" Oliver glared, taking a sip of his own glass. "Now," he added, sliding a hand over her hip, "I think that I deserve a kiss."

Chloe laughed. "Oh?"

He nodded. "Yep."

"What for?"

"For always going along with your insane ideas because my faith in you is so boundless," he grinned.

"Hmmm, you're right. That does deserve a kiss." Chloe set her glass aside so she could slide her arms around his neck and reach up on her toes to press her lips to his.

Oliver met her lips greedily, putting aside his own glass to pull her closer. Slowly he began dragging her toward the couch. "Have I mentioned," he said, running his lips down her neck, "how exceptionally pretty you are looking?"

"Hmmm, no I don't think so."

"Well you absolutely, definitely, without question are," he said, placing several kisses around her neck while he slipped a hand under her shirt to rest on the small of her back. Chloe felt her pulse quickening at the contact. The back of Oliver's legs reached the couch and he allowed himself to fall backwards onto it. Chloe laughed as he took her with him, his hands sliding over her thighs and pulling her legs to either side of him.

"Why, Mr. Queen, if I didn't know any better," Chloe smirked, her hands threading into his hair, "I'd say you were trying to seduce me."

Oliver kissed her in response. "Whether or not I'm trying is not the question. What inquiring minds really want to know is whether I'm succeeding."

Chloe's lips had already parted to respond, when the door of Oliver's apartment burst open. She toppled off his lap in surprise, and Oliver looked up to see Bart raiding his fridge as AC and Victor entered.

"Hey, 'licious!" Bart greeted. "Why are you on the floor?" he asked, frowning when he saw Oliver giving her a hand up.

"A better question," Oliver said through gritted teeth, his other hand carefully resting between his legs to hide his current state, "is what you guys are doing in my apartment."

"We came to celebrate," Bart said.

"And we brought food," AC added, lifting a couple of bags of take-out food.

"Bart insisted we get Mexican," Victor admitted, grabbing one of the bags and bringing it over to the counter to unload, "but in exchange, we got him to promise that the next three times we get take-out, we get to have something other than Mexican."

Oliver's intention to throw them all out died on his tongue with one look at Chloe. There was an amused, pleading, Oh, let's just let them this one time, look in her eyes, and he knew he'd lost out again.

"Fine," he muttered, "but I demand compensation when they're gone."

She gave him an apologetic look. "I've got a story to work on."

He dropped his head. "You are killing me here, woman."

She got up cheerily. "Have a taco. It'll make you feel better," she told him, eyes dancing as she tried to pull him off of the couch.

Oliver groaned. "In a minute."

Chloe was about to ask why, but her eyes dropped to his lap and she stopped. "Right," she smirked. "Take your time."

And so it went.

The next night, Oliver went to Chloe's place. They were passionately making out, tongues dueling, and Oliver had her pressed against the wall. Chloe was finally starting to jump on board with the idea, too. She had been nervous about the idea of sleeping with Oliver for a while, for more than one reason. There were...expectations...on both sides, or so she assumed. She knew Oliver was extremely experienced, and she was...not so experienced, to put it mildly.

But pressing desire was beginning to overcome insecurities, and Chloe had Oliver's shirt half-way unbuttoned when Lois burst in the apartment.

"You are not going to believe what I just found out," she said irritably, heading straight for Chloe's liquor cabinet and grabbing a bottle of scotch. She turned as she was pouring herself a glass and saw the two of them. "Oh, hi Oliver."

Oliver, his shirt considerably rumpled, but already buttoned back up, was leaning against the wall panting, rather red in the face. He glared at her.

"Jeez," Lois said. "What has your knickers in a twist?" She looked at Chloe, who had valiantly collected herself and was heading to get a drink herself.

"How did you get here?" Chloe asked.

"Well, I'd been planning a surprise visit, so I've been driving all day, but you haven't asked me what I found out, yet!"

Chloe closed her eyes. "What did you find out?" she asked, trying to keep herself from laughing. She glanced at Oliver, who looked ready to grab Lois by the seat of her pants and physically launch her from the room. Chloe gave him a warning look and turned to Lois, who was spilling some big gossip about how the editor of the Daily Planet had announced early retirement, and Perry White was rumored to be the new replacement.

Another evening, Chloe was at the mansion, and the thin pretense of going over plans on who to send to take care of the crime lord in Chicago was dropped almost immediately. Sitting on the desk in Oliver's study, she had her legs wrapped wantonly about him, and Oliver was doing things to her not lawful to be uttered.

And then the phone rang.

"Don't answer it," Chloe muttered breathlessly.

"Wasn't planning to," Oliver teased.

"Thank God."

The phone quit ringing and for a moment they forgot about it.

Until it started ringing again. Oliver dropped his forehead against her neck, breathing heavily. "I'll just...get rid of them. Okay? Five seconds," he begged at her frustrated groan.


"Two," he promised, yanking the phone haphazardly out of his pocket. He flipped it open. "This is Queen," he said, still breathing heavily. "This is a bad time. Can I - " He stopped. "Mom!" he said in surprise. Chloe nearly toppled to the floor. "No, no! I was just...well never mind. No, Of course I've always got time for you, Mom. No. I'm sorry. I knew you were going to call this evening, I just forgot." He looked helplessly at Chloe, who was already buttoning her shirt back up, waving a dismissive hand at him as she caught her breath.

By the time Oliver got off the phone with his parents - several hours later - Chloe had fallen asleep. Not to mention having sex with his girlfriend right after talking to his mother and father felt a bit...weird.

"The fates are against us," Chloe said over breakfast the next morning. She was eating quickly. She had to get to City Hall as soon as possible to cover a scheduled protest that morning.

"I think our friends and family are against us," Oliver said wearily, poking angrily at the omelet on his plate.

"Either way," she grumbled, snatching the coffee Mike had poured into a thermos for her. "I have to go."

Oliver rose to give her a kiss goodbye, one that made her knees weak. "Mmm...Ollie, don't," she begged. "I'm going to have a hard enough time concentrating today as it is."

Oliver chuckled and reluctantly released her.

"We'll get back to this tonight," Chloe promised, but Oliver grimaced.

"You forgot."

"Forgot what?" Chloe frowned, already in the doorway.

"I leave for Gotham tonight. Won't be back for a week."

Chloe groaned. "It's Thursday?"

Oliver nodded, a weak smirk on his face.

"Fine. One second." She ran back up to him and planted a hard kiss on his lips. "Stop by to say goodbye if you get a chance."

Oliver nodded. "Love you."

Chloe paused, a startled look flashing across her face that Oliver didn't see because she was facing away. "Love you, too!" she told him over her shoulder, already flying down the hall, now very late for her destination.

When she jumped in the cab Oliver had called for her and gave the driver his instructions, she had to stop for a moment, glancing back at the mansion before it passed out of view. She dropped her head backward and closed her eyes.

She wasn't sure if Oliver had noticed or not, but they'd finally said it.

Oliver, meanwhile, was feeling light years better than he might have, all things considered. He'd said it, and not only had Chloe not freaked out, she'd said it back.

He grinned as he took another sip of coffee.

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Next (Chapter 22)