My Enemy, My Friend
I heard birds chirping loudly and I grunted as I shifted slightly in bed. I reached an arm out and came in contact with a warm body. I smiled. I opened one eye and pulled her against me. She groaned and buried her head further into the pillow.
I chuckled softly and dipped my head to her neck and gave her a chaste kiss before settling back on my pillow. She turned so her face was against my chest and I opened my eyes fully. Hers were still closed, but a small smile graced her features.
She sighed and I smiled. I looked at the clock and my smile disappeared. As much as I’d love to stay in bed all day, I do have a business to run and I have a very important meeting at ten today. I glanced down at Chloe and ran a hand through her hair as I spoke softly.
She twitched her nose and snuggled her head closer to my chest. I gave her a half smile and carefully slid her off my chest, moved to the edge of the bed and placed her head on my pillow. I watched as one of her arms went under the pillow and the other came up to rest by her face.
I stood and walked over to the closet. I grabbed a suit and went into the bathroom. I showered, got dressed and by the time I moved back into the room it was nine o’clock. I was putting on my watch when I heard Chloe’s groggy voice.
“Ugh…my head hurts. Where are you going?”
I turned in her direction and grinned.
“I love the bed hair.”
She tossed a pillow in my direction, I jumped out of the way and it crashed into the dresser. She pouted and I laughed.
“I have a ten o’clock meeting with Tess.”
I watched her frown. She spoke with concern in her voice.
“Oliver…maybe meeting with Tess isn’t the best idea.”
“Canceling wouldn’t be a smart move. We need to act like nothing has changed. If she finds out we know something…then I might as well just announce from Luthor Corp tower that we’re the people who keep breaking into Lex’s facilities.”
She nodded and I watched her fidget with the covers. I sighed. I’m not sure if she’s worried that I’m meeting Tess or if she’s still upset about last night. Either way I was going to have to have a talk with Clark today. When she finally made it up here last night she was visibly upset. Apparently it wasn’t as easy for her to be unaffected by Clark as she had hoped.
I walked over to the bed, and sat down for a second. She glanced up and gave me a crooked smile, which I returned.
“Why don’t we grab lunch after my meeting with Tess?”
“Sure. I should really get home though.”
“Sorry I kind of left you without a car. I’m probably going to take the company car to Metropolis today. So, why don’t you take my car home? The keys are in the round plate by the front door.”
She raised an eyebrow.
“You’re going to let me drive your car?”
“As long as you promise to take good care of her.”
“I’ll meet you at two at the Ace of Clubs?”
She nodded; I leaned in, gave her a kiss and headed out of the apartment. I took the elevator down to the control room and started for the front door when I heard voices in the kitchen. I detoured from the front door and went to go see who was here. I walked in the kitchen and saw Bart and Clark talking.
They looked up when I entered. Bart nodded in my direction and Clark tensed.
“Morning Oliver. What’s the deal, I got a call from the doc this morning, said he was coming by today. We move up our physicals?”
I turned my attention to Bart and spoke.
“Yeah, he’s coming by to check Chloe out, so he figured since he was already in the area we might as well kill two birds with one stone.”
“Makes sense. Stretch and I were just talking about grabbing breakfast. Feel like joining us?”
I shook my head.
“I have a meeting soon. Actually do you mind if I steel Clark for a few minutes?”
He shrugged and I glanced toward Clark.
“Can I talk to you for a minute?”
We walked out of the kitchen and moved into the media room for some privacy. I watched Clark cross his hands over his chest and lean against the wall.
I watched him quietly for a minute before I spoke.
“Listen, I know you just came back and things might be a little awkward, but I think it’s time we cleared the air.”
“Cleared the air?”
“Yeah…Clark, I know that before you left you and Chloe were very close.”
I paused and I saw his jaw clench, but his facial expression never changed.
“Things are different now though.”
His voice was hard when he spoke.
“I’m aware of that.”
“The two of you aren’t where you were.”
He glared at me slightly before speaking.
“Get to your point Oliver.”
“I think maybe you should just give her some space. Cornering her a night after everything that’s happened…well maybe that isn’t the best way to handle things.”
He took a step toward me, but I held my ground.
“What I do and don’t do concerning her Oliver is none of your business. I didn’t corner Chloe. I simply asked how she was and what has been going on while I was gone.”
My eyes narrowed.
“After the way you left do you really think it’s any of your business to ask? Correct me if I’m wrong, but you are the one who decided to sever your friendship with Chloe. You wanted a clean break…you got it. Don’t go stirring up old friendships unless you plan to apologize for the way you acted three months ago.”
I was definitely pushing my luck and Clark was about three feet away from me now. His eyes furious and his jaw clenched as he spoke.
“You have no idea how hard it was for me to leave her here Oliver. Don’t presume to know what was going through my head or my heart. Walking away from Chloe was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do, and coming back here…seeing the two of you together…it cuts deeper than you know, but I made a decision and no matter how hard it is…how painful, I plan to stick by it.”
I swallowed hard as he moved back a step and continued speaking.
“Don’t think I don’t see you rubbing it in. The small touches here and there, the smiles, and fleeting looks. On some level you knew what she meant to me. You were the one who always told me I should man up and recognize what I felt. Well I did…and even after I finally accepted it, I left to protect her.”
The anger in his face died down and he shook his head as he walked to the door. He angled his body to look at me and I could hear the raw pain in his voice when he spoke.
“When have you ever had to give up something or someone that you cared about more than yourself? You and I, we aren’t friends. I’ll work alongside you because we have a common goal, but that’s where it ends. We’re done Oliver.”
He turned back around and walked out of the room. I sighed. This isn’t what I wanted…I didn’t realize my actions were hurting him so much. I mean yeah, I knew he’d be angry, but that’s as far as I thought it would go; at least until he was back long enough to realize his feelings and fight for her…but he has realized them…and he’s not going to fight…
He walked away…and I’m not exactly sure what to do about that…
I glanced at the video feed as I sat at my desk. The project isn’t working. I sighed as I shut the laptop. Staging Lex’s death was easy. After finding out people knew Lex was alive it became clear that decoys needed to be set up. So, when the Green Arrow “killed” Lex it wasn’t exactly shocking. Someone was bound to try sooner or later.
All these months I haven’t just been recruiting meteor infected teenagers to try and defeat Doomsday. That was a cleverly placed cover. Each time a new recruit came in we’d perform a full battery of tests on them and the ones with powers that were usable; we’d take to a secure location and use their DNA to ‘fix’ Lex.
Unfortunately, the whole process was taking a lot longer then I had originally hoped, but I think I’ve finally found a solution to that. Originally I thought if I could somehow get Clark to trust me, I could use his DNA. That hadn’t worked the way I anticipated, but as the old saying goes, when one door closes another opens.
I grinned as I sifted through the lab print outs of ‘donor X’. I’ve finally found the person who can restore Lex to his former self and they’ve been right under my nose all along. How I didn’t see it is beyond me, but after the most recent disturbance at one of Lex’s facilities it’s all become clear.
I was startled out of my thoughts by a buzzing sound. I cleared my throat before pressing the intercom button on the phone.
“Miss Mercer, Mr. Queen is here to see you.”
“Send him in.”
A few minutes later the door opened and Oliver walked in with a wide grin on his face.
“Mercy, aren’t you looking lovely this morning.”
I rolled my eyes and stood.
“It’s Tess, Oliver.”
He feigned ignorance.
“Oh, that’s right. My apologies.”
I motioned for him to sit before I took my seat again. He sat across from me, and held up an envelope.
“Here are the quarterly numbers you requested.”
I took the envelope, opened it and started flipping through the papers. Everything looked in order. I glanced up at him, smirked, placed the envelope down, leaned back in my chair and crossed my legs, slowly. I noticed his eyes glance down for a brief second before he met my eyes.
He frowned slightly.
I rolled my eyes, put my legs down and stood.
“I left some papers that I wanted to give you back at the mansion in Smallville. I’m heading out there now. Are you hungry? We can make our way back there so I can get those papers to you and I can have the chef make some breakfast.”
He stood as I came around the front of the desk and opened his mouth before closing it again. I angled myself right in Oliver’s line of view as I bent down to grab the jacket I discarded earlier. When I glanced back up at him I saw him swallow hard and I smiled to myself.
I raised my hand to his chest and he followed it as I slid it down. I was at his stomach when his hand grabbed my wrist and stopped its decent. I glanced up at him with a mischievous smile, but when I met his eyes they weren’t playful.
He spoke in a level voice as he stepped away from me.
“Sorry Tess. We’ve been playing this cat and mouse game for too long. I’m over it. Besides, I’m seeing someone.”
I raised an eyebrow, crossed my arms across my chest and chuckled. I spoke in an amused tone.
“Oh really, and who might the lucky girl be?”
He smirked at me slightly as he spoke.
“I believe you know her, Chloe Sullivan.”
Well…if that wasn’t the damndest thing…my laugh grew louder for a second.
“Lois Lane’s cousin? Well isn’t that rich. How do you think your old girlfriend will feel about your current one when she gets back from her little ‘sabbatical’?”
“Lois and I haven’t been together in a long time. I’m sure she’ll be fine with it.”
Oliver is a lot of things, but a world class liar isn’t one of them. I could see the tension in his frame as he spoke. I still haven’t figured out why Oliver lied about Lois. I was hoping that he would have let something slip over the past three months, but nothing.
After that little bump on the head I woke up just in time to see Lois vanish into thin air. So I knew she hadn’t taken a so called ‘sabbatical’. In order to protect myself from being linked to the incident, after Oliver made up his lie, I contacted Chloe in a panic about Lois being gone. I made up some lie about needing her to ghost write until she came back.
She fell for it hook, line, and sinker. To be honest where ever she was, I couldn’t care if Lois Lane ever found her way back. Oliver interrupted my thoughts when he spoke.
“Listen Tess, it’s late and I have other things I need to do today. If you really left papers for me in Smallville, just get them to me the next time you’re there. Call me if you need anything else. I’ll be in town for a while.”
I leaned back against my desk again and nodded.
“I’ll see you around Oliver.”
He nodded and as he reached the door and opened it, I called out to him.
“Tell Chloe I send my regards.”
He paused for a second before continuing out the door and shutting it behind him. I smirked. Sooner or later I’ll find out what you’re hiding Oliver…it’s only matter of time…and trust me our paths will be crossing soon enough…
I angrily made my way back to Smallville. Who the hell did Oliver think he was? Chloe’s boyfriend or not he had no right to rub their relationship in my face. What does he think, that it didn’t hurt to leave Chloe standing there crying? I shook my head and slammed the barn door open.
I walked to the back where I kept the key. I grabbed it and took off to the caves. I was there seconds later. I placed the key in the slot and waited as the light shone and I was transported to the arctic once again. I glanced in front of me and saw my fortress.
Oliver wanted to lecture me…fine. I wanted to work with him. I wanted all of us to work together to bring justice to the world, but apparently he has a different agenda. So, while he figures out what’s going on with Lex and his relationship with Chloe…I’m going to find a way to get Lois back.
I walked into the fortress and moved over to the console. I started moving around crystals and lights started flashing. I glanced around and waited for Jor-el’s voice to echo around the ice cavern. I moved in front of the beam of light and jolted as it knocked into me.
There was determination on my face as I fought to focus through the fast pace at which knowledge was being sent through in my head. I closed my eyes and concentrated. I was going to find Lois…and bring her home…Oliver was right…I needed to clean up my own mess. Lois disappeared because of the ring Rokk gave me…
And when I get back with Lois, we’ll see exactly what she thinks of how Oliver has been spending his time…