This story was Nominated for Best Angst fic
Story Banner & Letter Photos By: Andrea
Title: We’re Real
Pairing: Chloe-Centric Oliver/Chloe implied
Word Count: 1,510
Prompt: “I never meant to hurt you!” Miss_Morrygan
Chloe sat at her desk. They had spent most of the day running a recon mission, but it was late and by now everyone had checked in and gone home. Everyone except one person, her mind cried out to her. It had been a month since he disappeared.
A month with no word, no sign that he was alive and out there somewhere. Her fingers grazed the small envelope she held in her hands. Scrawled in his messy script was her name. J’onn gave it to her tonight, said he wanted to wait as long as possible…just in case.
They’d been searching for weeks, but they were all getting tired of the false hope and near misses. Chloe knew how much it hurt their team every time they came up empty. She could see the looks of failure on their faces.
She wouldn’t make them keep doing this. She couldn’t. It wasn’t fair, they needed to move on. They were heroes and this world needed them. When she told them, they were startled. Dinah had been the first to lash out and argue.
Next was Bart, and she took everything they had to say in stride. The yelling accusations, the angry hurtful words and when they were finished she stood and spoke calmly.
When she told them he wouldn’t want this, that he brought them together for a purpose and he’d be disappointed if he could see them in shambles now, they knew she was right.
When the dust had settled they all agreed that tonight would be the last time they expended man power to search for the Green Arrow. If they came up empty…it was over. They’d move on. She kept them out later than ever and when they still found nothing she called them home.
That had been when J’onn placed the envelope in her hands. Said Oliver had given it to him with strict instructions that if anything happened he was to give it directly to Chloe. She’d almost lost it then in front of all of them.
The pain that ripped through her chest was almost too much to bear as she turned away from the team to keep her pain hidden, but they’d seen right through her feeble attempts. It was the first time they saw her break since it happened.
Dinah and Bart had felt awful about their earlier words. Victor and A.C. wanted to comfort her and J’onn knew what she needed right now was to be alone with her thoughts so she could grieve freely. He led the team out, gently shutting the door behind him.
That was hours ago and still she hadn’t been able to bring herself to open the letter in her hands. She took a deep breath, it was time. She had to know. She took one shaky finger and slipped it under the lip, pulling it through the paper slowly.
The ripping sound filled the room and when she reached inside and pulled out the folded sheets of paper she brought it to her nose and she could swear his scent was on the paper. Chloe closed her eyes taking everything in as a single tear slipped down her cheek.
Her eyes fluttered open as she moved the letter, unfolding it, her eyes scanning the writing on it.
Chloe dropped the paper on the desk, grasped her stomach and sobbed. Tears streamed down her face as the pain in her chest deepened. She had known all along. She tried not to get attached but she couldn’t help it. It was Oliver. To him she wasn’t just a Sidekick even though it was his favorite nickname for her.
She was his partner, his equal and he never treated her like anything else. She wasn’t sure how long she cried for, but when she couldn’t get anymore tears out she stood slowly and glanced around the Watchtower. It wasn’t the same without him.
She took a deep breath and moved through the room toward the mainframe. If Oliver was dead she’d know it in her heart, but she didn’t. She couldn’t feel that emptiness and that’s why she had the team looking.
She didn’t care how ridiculous it sounded. She would know. She powered up the global map and glanced around it. Oliver was out there and she was going to find him and bring him home.
Chloe Sullivan’s fingers flew across the keyboard typing frantically and somewhere not far from her brown eyes struggled open, a whispered name leaving his lips before falling into unconsciousness once again.
Sequel: You Were Right