Chapter Twelve: The Parts of The Whole
‘The Knight in Shining Leather’
Three hours. It had been three hours since Chloe’s call disconnected from Watchtower and Oliver was slowly losing his mind. He glanced down at the spare set of arrows he kept at Watchtower, and reached down running the rag over the head of the arrow, cleaning it…getting it ready.
The rag glided off the titanium and he swallowed hard as it glinted in the light. How could he have let her walk away from him…even for a second? How could she ignore his warning? He glared down at his equipment.
He was angry with her, and that realization only made him feel more guilty. But really what had she been thinking? The one women who made them go over their plans three times before implementing them, who made sure they updated their equipment on a regular basis; who never let them leave her sight after a mission until she had a chance to look them over, who valued their lives so highly that everything she did was to protect them, was also the one women who threw her fate carelessly into the wind.
Chloe had always had a tendency to undervalue herself, but he thought that lately, he’d shown her that she meant something to the team…to him…that she was more than his Sidekick…more than Watchtower. To him she was Chloe.
The person who made him smile more in a day then he had on his own in months. The person who knew he liked caramel popcorn and always kept a secret stash for him at Watchtower. The person who wasn’t afraid to call him on his shit.
Chloe was the person he looked forward to seeing most in his day…and Oliver wished he’d realized it sooner. He wished it hadn’t taken a stupid undercover mission to get him to open his eyes.
But it didn’t matter. He knew now and he wasn’t letting her go without one hell of a fight. He had lost too many people in his life and there was no way he was letting Chloe join that list. He’d find her and bring her home…there was no other option.
Victor stared at the screen in front of him and sighed as he hit yet another firewall while trying to hack into the code of the scrambler that was being used to reroute the phone number to the facility that Chloe was being held at.
This was all his fault. He should have made sure that they set up their own cameras. They’d been there early enough to do it, but he’d just thought that it would be easier to tap into the existing feed. He’d cut corners and look where it had gotten them.
If he’d set up his own camera’s then when the lights had gone out he could have changed the lens effectively giving the camera its own type of night vision and they would have been able to see who and where she was taken.
He let out a grunt of frustration when he broke through the firewall only to be hit with another one. He slammed his fist against the desk, denting it slightly. This was going nowhere. It had already been three hours and at this rate it could take days to locate her.
Whenever they were in trouble, Chloe went to any lengths to find them and she did it quicker than he did apparently, which was ridiculous since he was Cyborg…Victor reached up and pinched the bridge of his nose. He needed a sign, something that would narrow down her location…or he wasn’t sure he’d be able to find her in time.
Dinah stood in the kitchen staring at the coffee maker. Something was wrong with it and she had no idea what it was. She pushed the button and nothing happened. She flipped a switch and it made a gurgling sound and then nothing.
She glared at the machine and slammed her hand against the side of it causing it to shake. But it still just sat there. She braced her hands against the counter and bent her head down. This was all her fault. She shouldn’t have been dancing with AC in the middle of a mission.
Sure they had by keeping an eye on things around them, but obviously they were distracted enough to let Chloe get kidnapped. Even the coffee machine knew that which was probably why it refused to work for her. If Chloe were there, she’d be able to get it to work in seconds.
That’s what she did. Dinah closed her eyes as she felt her emotions bubbling to the surface. When she’d first become a part of the team, she’d always sort of felt out of place being the only girl, but when Chloe came aboard…that had changed.
The tiny blonde hurricane had made it her mission to get to know her and give her someone to open up to, someone to trust…someone she could call a friend. Chloe wasn’t just Watchtower...she was one of Dinah’s closest friends. She didn’t know how they were going to find her, but she knew there was no way in hell she was giving up until they did because Chloe had never and would never give up on them.
Mia sat on the small ledge of the circular stained glass window, arms wrapped around herself staring out at nothing. The entire night had been a bust. Chloe was gone and Oliver was…well she didn’t really know what he was because he refused to talk to her or anyone else on the team.
He just sat at Chloe’s desk polishing his arrows. No one approached him, J’onn had said that he needed his space and so they were giving it to him. She could hear Carter, Clark and J’onn going over tentative strategies while Courtney took notes on what they guys were planning.
A hand on Mia’s arm drew her from her thoughts. She glanced up to find Bart standing there and she swallowed hard, voice slightly hoarse when she spoke. “Hey.” She shifted spreading her legs slightly so he could step forward between them.
He cupped her cheek and brushed a thumb against it. “Hey mamacita…you okay?” Mia leaned into the caress and nodded her head before sniffling slightly. The truth was, she wasn’t sure if she was okay. She’d never seen Oliver so broken before. After everything he had done for her she hated being helpless and not being able to help him.
And on top of that, aside from Oliver the person she had been closest to lately was Chloe. He had encouraged her to get to know the older woman, told her that if there was anyone in the world she should trust aside from him it was Chloe and he had been right.
Over the past few months Chloe had listened to her talk about everything from boys and school to her many different foster parents. And not once had she ever judged her. Chloe was like an older sister to her…she looked to her and Oliver for approval.
They were people she could count on and now, one was gone and the other was broken. She shrugged catching Bart’s eyes. “I don’t know…what are we gonna do Bart? What if…what if we can’t find her…” Mia’s voice broke and Bart swallowed heavily as he pulled her into his arms, speaking softly against her ear.
“Whoa there…don’t go given up on the team just yet Speedy…we’re gonna find Chloelicious…save the other women and call it a day…we’ve been through worse…it’ll work out.” He let out a heavy sigh before continuing. “It has to.”
She wrapped her arms around him and nodded as he rubbed her back lightly. Bart had to believe everything would be okay. This team was his family and if Oliver’s reaction since Chloe was taken was anything to go by…he wasn’t going to be able to hold it together without her. None of them would be. Oliver might be the leader of The Justice League…but Chloe was the heart.
A loud beep sounded in the room from the main monitor stopping several conversations and gaining everyone’s attention. Victor glanced to his left and sucked in a deep breath, his eyes widening. Oliver noticed the change in his posture and stood slowly, voice tense as he spoke.
“What’s wrong Vic?” He turned in his chair, his eyes meeting Oliver’s across the room, a slightly incredulous look on his face, “It’s Chloe…her com’s back on line…we found her…”
Lana pressed her back against the wall, as she watched the last light in the hallway go out. She’d spent the last hour and a half detailing their plan of escape to Chloe. Then another hour after that reworking a few things to make it work for the four of them.
She was confident that if they all did their part they’d be able to get out. She glanced behind her and nodded. Chloe moved forward with the scalpel Lana had stolen from the doctor and went about picking the lock while Maria and Crystal got the needles that they’d stolen ready.
Chloe’s voice was whispered as she worked on the lock, “Now remember, when we open this door there are two guards right at the end of the hall. One of them has a weapon, but you guys haven’t been here this long for them to just shoot you at the first sign of escape. It’s most likely a last option.”
There was a small click and Chloe grinned up at Lana, “Got it, looks like all those years of breaking into places to get stories for The Torch came in handy after all.” Lana chuckled lightly before glancing at Maria and Crystal. “You guys ready?”
Crystal nodded, voice hard. “I’ve never been more ready for anything in my life. The next walk-through isn’t for another fifteen minutes. Watches set ladies…let’s do this.” Chloe stood to full height and Lana turned the lights out in their room right before Chloe quietly pulled open the door.
Lana made her way out of the room first, bare feet hitting the cool tile. She motioned for Maria and Crystal to come out next and they did flanking her sides. Chloe brought up the rear, closing the door silently. They took a few steps forward and Crystal switched places with Chloe.
She and Lana walked forward and as they got closer to the end of the hall they could hear the guards talking. Chloe’s heart hammered in her chest. Sure she’d taken a few self defense classes with Lois and Oliver had taught her a move or two, but it wasn’t much.
Lana had taken kick boxing with her and Lois, but she’d also had a personal martial arts trainer in the past. Something her psychopath of a husband had insisted on, most likely so she could get out of situations he put her in.
The two guards were dressed in black fatigues and their backs were facing them. Chloe swallowed hard and met Lana’s eyes. The brunette nodded and they moved forward at the same time, lunging and knocking both men to the ground.
Though Lana and Chloe didn’t weigh much, the surprise of an attack they had not been expecting sent them sprawling, weapons flying from their hands and right as they were about to shift to grab their assailants Crystal and Maria came forward jabbing the needles directly into their necks.
They struggled for a few more minutes knocking Chloe and Lana off of them in the process, but right as the dark haired man gripped Chloe’s arm enough to bruise, his body went slack and he slammed onto the ground with a thud.
Lana’s breathing was heavy as she and Chloe lay on the floor arms holding them up as they caught their breath. Maria arched an eyebrow, “Did it work?” Lana took her foot and shoved it into the man passed out on the floor in front of her.
She let out a long breath and nodded. “Yeah…looks like. Let’s get the hell out of here.” They pushed themselves off the ground and Chloe grabbed one of the guns and tossed it to Lana before picking up the other one for herself.
Crystal and Maria exchanged bemused looks before glancing back at the two women in front of them, Crystals voice slightly amused when she spoke despite their situation. “Do this often do you?” Lana and Chloe both let out breathy laughs before turning to her. “You wouldn’t believe us if we told you.”
They had just taken a step forward over the guard’s bodies when suddenly the alarms sounded, bright red lights flashing as sirens blared. Chloe swore. “Damn it…okay guys we gotta run…this way come on.” She took off down the hall and she could hear the pounding of feet following her.
She glanced over her shoulder and saw Lana, Crystal and Maria hot on her heels. She turned back around trying to focus and remember which ways they had turned when the guys brought her there. She could hear voices shouting and she wasn’t sure where it was coming from.
Chloe licked her lips, gun clasped tightly in her hand as they continued to run. She hoped that wherever they were Oliver and the team had figured it out and were on their way…because she wasn’t sure what protocol was in this facility and she really didn’t want to get caught and find out.
Oliver had just finished suiting up when Victor called out to the team. “Alright guys…does everyone know what there are doing?” They nodded as he brought up the blueprints of the facility on the computer. Chloe’s com hadn’t stayed active long, but it had been long enough for Victor to triangulate her position and narrow down the area that she was in.
Less than thirty minutes later he’d been able to pull up a complete map of the area and by process of elimination he was able to find out which facility she was being held at. Twenty minutes after that he’d had the blue prints up and they were putting together an extraction team to pull the girls out.
He pointed to the entrance of the facility and glanced at Clark, “Bad news Boyscout, if this is one of Lex’s facilities like Chloe said then it’s most likely built with a reinforcement layer of Kryptonite. So it looks like you need to sit this mission out.”
Clark sighed, “I hate that he knows my weakness.” Oliver nodded as he loaded his arrows onto his back and spoke mood slightly lighter than it had been hours ago. “Be glad he hasn’t shared your weakness…which still baffles me on all kinds of levels. The guy knows your Superman, but does nothing about it…”
Clark shrugged, “That’s a story for a different day, right now we need to focus on getting Chloe, Lana and those other women out of there.” Oliver nodded as he put on his glasses and attached his voice distorter. He walked over to the map pressed on the touch screen and enlarged it.
He motioned to the different entrances as he spoke. “Bart you’ll go ahead of us with J’onn and do a quick sweep of the facility. I want to know how many guards are at each entrance and what they’re packing.”
He motioned to the back entrance. “AC and Carter are coming in through the back and Dinah and I will be coming through the front.” Mia frowned arms crossing over her chest. “What about me?” Oliver glanced over at her and shook his head. “You and Courtney are gonna stay behind and help Victor with Tech support.”
She glared at him, “That’s not fair…we want to help Chloe too.” He took off his glasses and pursed his lips. “And you will from here.”
“Oliver--” He cut her off voice stern, but not mean. “No…I can’t worry about something happening to you while I go there…I need to focus Mia. I can’t have both you and Chloe in danger…just…give me this one okay…please.”
The pleading look in his eyes made her sigh and she nodded before plopping down on the couch next to a quiet Courtney. Oliver gave her a tense smile. “Thank you.” He glanced back at the rest of the team. “Bart you’re going to grab Crystal Deverox, AC you’ve got Maria Caffrey, Carter you take Lana, and I’ve got Chloe…any questions?”
He looked around the room and no one said anything. He turned on his com linking up to Watchtower. “Arrow online.” and everyone followed suit. “Canary online.” “Aquaman online.” “Impulse online.” “Hawkman online.” “Martian Manhunter online.” “Cyborg online.”
Oliver put his glasses back on and flicked on his distorter a smirk appearing on his lips. “Alright team…let’s go kick some ass…”
Regina moved down the hallway quickly glancing down at her phone. Lex had just made his way to the facility and was waiting in the main corridor. She winced as the sirens continued to blare around her. She had no idea how they’d gotten out, but she prayed they made it to an exit before someone caught them.
She pushed open the last door in the hallway, walked through and came face to face with Lex Luthor. She swallowed hard and nodded. “Mr. Luthor.” He gave her a once over before nodding. He was irritated at having to come down to a facility he hadn’t yet been connected with.
They escaped and he was positive it had to do with Chloe. His jaw clenched. She had been making his life miserable since she was fifteen years old, by now one would think he’d have learned his lesson, apparently not. His voice held a hint of irritation as he spoke eyebrow raised.
“Doctor Wright…tell me …how exactly four women managed to gain control of a locked down facility?” Regina glanced behind him towards the security guards standing there and glared at them. “Well apparently Mr. Luthor you need better security.”
He pursed his lips and she let out a small sigh. “I don’t mean any disrespect, but you don’t have me here to play babysitter to a bunch of twenty-something year old women. You have me here to do a job…which I did.”
She held out a piece of paper to him and he glanced at it before taking it. “What is this?” She cleared her throat. “I was able to fix Doctor Bernstein’s model. I’ve successfully created the first few embryos. They are ready and waiting for implantation.”
Lex gave the woman in front of him a surprised look. Throwing Doctor Bernstein to the wolves had obviously been the right choice, it looked like Regina Wright was pulling her weight enough for him to let her mouthy comment about security go.
“Nicely done Doctor Wright.” She nodded and suddenly a different alarm sounded letting them know that a new level of the facility had been breached. Seconds later everything went silent. One of the guards moved into the room, breathing heavy. “We got them…they are en route back to the main room now.”
Lex shook his head, “No, please take my wife into the first exam room and make sure she’s unconscious. Bring Chloe into exam room two and prep her for the procedure. The other’s can go back in to the main room.” The guard nodded and on his way out of the room he paused glancing over his shoulder, “Should I make sure she’s unconscious as well.” Lex’s eyes were cold as they turned on the man in front of him. “No…I want her awake.”
J’onn stood in the bushes eyes focusing on the building a few yards in front of him trying to see if he could sense how many people were inside. The facility hadn’t been as far away as they thought. It was a small town outside of Metropolis.
A town that had supposedly been destroyed in the last meteor shower. A rush of air made his jacket blow up around him and he glanced to his left a grinning Bart at his side. “Okay we’ve got four entrances. The main one in the front, the back entrance and the two side entrances. I counted about twelve guys total, just on the outside.”
J’onn nodded and spoke into his com. “Did you get that Cyborg?” Victor had just finished hacking into the facility’s security feed and bringing up the schematics as he responded. “Yeah…I’ve got the blue prints coming online now.”
He clicked a few buttons and seconds later several heat signatures lit up on the schematics. He grinned, “Okay heat signatures are up we’re good to go. Everyone in position?” Oliver glanced to his right at Dinah who nodded before he pressed the bud in his ear. “Arrow and Canary are good to go.”
Carter pressed his hand against his ear, mace at the ready. “Hawkman and Aquaman are also good to go.” Oliver glanced at the facility and took a deep breath, and spoke into his com, determination coloring his voice. “On my mark…we go in…”
Chloe Struggled against the two men as they pushed open a door and brought her into what looked like an exam room. Her heart pounded against her chest as she saw an examination table, stirrups attached to the end set up in the middle of the room.
She tried to throw her body weight against the men holding her, but they didn’t budge. They had caught them on the second level of the facility, literally feet away from one of the exits. She and Lana were steps away when the shot had been fired.
Maria cried out and hit the ground and after everything that they’d all been through in the last few hours…Chloe, Lana, and Crystal hadn’t had the heart to leave the other woman there, which in turn made them all get caught.
Several guards came, three men dragging Crystal and Maria off in one direction, two men taking Lana in another and two pulling her through a different wing. They had tossed her in a small closet, thrown a hospital gown at her and told her to change.
When she hadn’t listened right away one of the guards came and attempted to do it for her. He now had a broken wrist and she had a very sore cheek. Twenty minutes later when they threatened to kill her friends she put on the gown and they’d none too gently brought her here.
When she felt herself being lifted onto the table she renewed her struggle. She wasn’t positive what was going on, but she had a pretty good idea and there was no way she was letting this happen. Oliver would come…the team would come…they had to because there was only so much she could do from inside.
When she was strapped down to the table by her arms and her feet were placed and secured in the stirrups the guards back off as she yanked against her binds. She lifted her head and glared at them. “If I were you I’d be gone by the time I get off this table or I swear to go…you’ll pay for this…”
The main guard opened his mouth, but before he could say anything a door on the other side of the room slid open. Lex walked into the room with Doctor Wright next to him, a tray full of all kinds of equipment that made Chloe’s stomach sink.
Lex tsked before waving off the guards as he moved towards the table Chloe was secured to. He shook his head, hands in his pockets. “You never learn do you Chloe…years of trying to outsmart me and you still just don’t get it. You’ll never win…You and your….Justice League. I might not know who they are…but I’ll find out eventually…just like I found out about Clark.”
He smirked and she glared at him, voice surprisingly even. “You’re a bastard Lex…and let’s just be clear about something…you might be like your own version of a cockroach…but I’ve stopped your projects in the past…my team has brought you to your knees…and they’ll do the same with this.”
His lip curled up at the side as he stepped up to her and leaned his face down within inches of hers, “I’m almost positive you’re right…but the question is will they do it in time…” He pulled back and motioned for the doctor to bring everything over.
Regina set everything for the procedure up as Lex pursed his lips and gave Chloe a thoughtful look as he spoke. “You know I had every intention of letting you off the hook with this…I figured you’d try to help me find Lana, I’d steer you in the wrong direction and then these women would just miraculously reappear…but you had to keep pushing.”
He sighed and shrugged, “Though I should have known better…pushing is what you do…isn’t it Mrs. Queen…So have you and Oliver slid past the point of no return yet?” He arched an eyebrow as he picked up a scalpel from the rolling table.
“I sure hope you have, or it might be awkward to find out his wife or should I say fake wife is pregnant with his child.” Chloe’s eyes widened and she shook her head. “That’s not possible…you can’t do this…” Amusement danced in Lex’s eyes at the hint of panic in her voice.
“Of course I can Chloe…we might have genetically altered things to create our own embryo, but you didn’t think we wouldn’t find a way to make enough of the DNA match the couple we’re implanting so as not to cause suspicions did you?”
She swallowed hard as Regina spoke in a soft voice, “We should put her out for the procedure Mr. Luthor.” He glanced at the doctor before turning back to Chloe eyes hard. “No…I want her to know exactly what we’re doing…”
Regina hesitated for a second before sitting on the small stool and moving between Chloe’s parted legs. Lex shifted so he was standing near the head of the table arms crossed against his chest, voice holding a hint of sarcasm. “Don’t worry I’ll make sure I stay on this side of the table…wouldn’t want to offend your modesty…though I can’t say I’ve never thought about it.” He winked at her and she cringed. “Alas I am a happily married man though…”
Chloe snorted, fear spiraling through her when she felt the cool metal of scissors against her hip as the doctor cut the side of her panties. “Oh you mean the wife you kidnapped? What do you think Lana’s going to say when she finds out about this…she’ll never stay with you Lex…never.”
He leaned in very close to her, warm breath hitting her face and she turned away. She felt a cool breeze brush against her skin as her panties were pulled from her while Lex spoke. “Lana will never find out. And with all the times you’ve supposedly cried wolf over the years…the only thing you’ll accomplish by telling her is losing her friendship…she won’t choose you over me Chloe…no one ever chooses you.”
She winced at his words, tears pooling in her eyes and she turned her head away from him. He moved back and when she faced him again her voice was choked. “Just tell me why…why do you hate me so much? There was a time when we were friends Lex…when you stood up for me…protected me…and now all you do is hurt me…just tell me why that’s all I want to know.”
He studied her face and he could see the genuine honesty in her words and he swallowed hard while shaking his head. “I don’t hate you Chloe…on the contrary. You fascinate me. Don’t get me wrong…you annoy the hell out of me, but in the best way possible. I’ve never met anyone quite as extraordinary as you…and that’s when it struck me that you would be perfect for this project.”
He leaned against the wall as Doctor Wright worked on Chloe making her wince as the cool metal instruments were placed on and in her body. He tilted his head to the side catching Chloe’s eyes again as he continued speaking.
“Your genes themselves baffle me…your genetic make-up is unique…and Oliver, well he’s the picture of health. Imagine combining your DNA and creating a genetically altered embryo from it? I had to try it…” Chloe sucked in a deep breath.
She wanted to cry, to beg him to just leave her alone, but she wouldn’t give Lex the satisfaction. She wondered where Lana was and if the same thing was happening to her. She felt a sharp pinch and bit her lip as Lex’s voice flowed through the room.
“Is it ready?” Regina swallowed hard and nodded. “I’m implanting now.” Chloe lifted her head slightly and glanced down at the woman her voice pleading. “Please don’t do this…how can you help a monster like him…it’s wrong…it’s a violation in the worst way possible playing God like this…you’re a woman…how can you do this to me?”
There were tears in her eyes and right as Regina looked up to say something Lex spoke, voice sharp. “Do it now…” She caught Chloe’s eyes and there was an apology in them as she slid tip of the loaded catheter into her body depositing the fluid containing the embryos into the uterine cavity right as the facilities intruder alert went off.
Lex’s head whipped towards the door as he swore, “Damn it…” He motioned to Chloe, “Get her up and out of here now.” Regina frowned. “Mr. Luthor she needs to lie still for 2 -3 hours I can’t just move her.” He glared at the doctor in front of him before nodding and pulling open the door, as guards ran past. He called out to them. “What’s going on?”
One man stopped gun raised as he spoke, “Someone has infiltrated the facility sir. They are making their way down now. They’ve neutralized the first level.” Lex grit his teeth and nodded. “Kill anyone who comes down here.”
“Yes sir.” The guard took off down the hall before Lex called out. “I’ll be back, make sure you finish off the procedure.” He turned and slammed the door behind him as he left. As soon as he was gone Chloe sobbed and Regina stood up. She went about frantically moving around, voice soft as she met the younger woman’s eyes.
“I’m so sorry Chloe…I’m going to help you get out of here though…I won’t finish the procedure and if I get you up and moving it’s possible that implantation won’t occur…it’s not one hundred percent…” Her voice trailed off and Chloe arched an eyebrow voice hoarse. “You’re the informant…”
She nodded. “I tried to keep you away from here…he would have killed me if I didn’t do what he said…I…” The doors burst open and several guards came in Lex behind them and Regina’s eyes widened. She took a step back and he motioned for two guards to grab her.
She screamed as they dragged her out of the room before he looked at Chloe, “Looks like you’re team finally found their way here…too bad they didn’t make it in time…” He turned towards the guards and pointed at Chloe, voice hard as he walked out of the room. “Watch her…don’t let her out of your sight!”
Relief filled her at Lex’s words…they found them…she knew they would. She closed her eyes, a tear sliding down her cheek as she waited. Oliver would come for her…she knew he would.
Oliver pointed his arrow and released another two into the men that came barreling towards him and Dinah. He pressed the side of his com, “How many more heat signatures Cyborg? Am I getting closer?” Victor typed quickly, eyes squinting as he glanced around the readout of the facilities layout.
“Go down the hallway, I want you and Canary to break off at the end. Do you read me Canary.” Dinah touched her com, “Loud and clear, which way am I going?” Victor clicked a few more buttons. “Canary you’ll break off to the left. Be ready for two more men. Arrow go to the right. Head to the end of the hall and make another right. There’s a room on the left hand side that has five heat signatures…I’m pretty sure that’s where Chloe is.”
He nodded as they reached the end of the hall and glanced at Dinah. “Stay safe.” She nodded. “You too Arrow.” He heard some static in his ear before Carter’s voice came through, “We’ve got Lana.” AC’s voice was next, “And we just found the other two.”
Oliver nodded to himself as he ran to the end of the next hall and turned right like Victor said. His breathing was heavy as he spoke, “Good…take them out and get help…I’m closing in on Tower…this facility is going down in t-minus fifteen minutes…Count it out starting now.”
He took a deep breath and bracing himself before kicking down the door. Four heads whipped toward him and as the first gun was raised he pulled up his bow and shot off an arrow knocking the gun from the guy’s hand.
When the next one charged him he punched him, blocked his hit and then slammed him into a wall. He was in the process of fighting the third one when the one who had the gun originally got up and lifted it again. He spoke into his com through gritted teeth. “A little back up would be good about now…I need Bart.”
He pulled the guy who was hitting him up as the gun went off. The bullet logged into the guards back and Oliver smirked at the guy holding the guy. “I think he was on your team…” As he raised the gun again there was a gust of wind and all three men were unconscious on the floor. Bart glanced up and grinned. “How do you like that Bossman…”
Oliver opened his mouth right as Dinah’s voice came through the com, “A little help here…son of a bitch I liked these boots.” Bart shook his head and was gone. Chloe sat up and swallowed hard before clearing her throat. “Help a girl out would you?”
Relief filled him at her voice and when he looked up he froze. Her eyes were red-rimmed, tear marks on her cheeks. She was sporting a pretty large bruise on one side of her face and several on her arms. She was in a hospital gown, legs spread and strapped to metal things, with one arm bound to the bed. He hesitated and even with the distorter she could hear the worry in his voice. “Chloe…”
Her voice was soft, but he heard the waver in it. “Get me out of here…now…” He was moving before she even finished her sentence. He felt sick to his stomach when he saw her underwear on the floor and glanced around at the instruments there.
He unhooked the binds on her before lifting her gently in his arms. Chloe immediately wrapped her arms around him and buried her face into his neck, her grip tight as she clung to him. “Are you okay…” Her warm breath hit his neck as she spoke in a mumbled voice.
“Did you get the others?” He nodded as he walked over the men and out the door into the hallway. “Yes…answer me Chloe…are you okay?” She paused and tightened her grip even more which only served to worry Oliver.
“I will be…” His stomach fell and he felt his eyes tear up under his glasses. He couldn’t ignore all the evidence around him…he had been too late. She’d counted on him…and he didn’t make it in time. He pressed the com in his ear again, “I’ve got the package…I’m on my way out….what’s everyone else’s twenty?”
Victor glanced at the monitors. There were still a few heat signatures, but the rest of the team was out. “The team’s out…they’ve cleared a path for you Arrow…there are still some heat signatures in the west wing of the facility.” Olive’s jaw clenched.
“When I’m out…blow it.” Victor frowned and outside the facility the team glanced at each other slightly perturbed by Oliver’s orders. “Arrow…” His voice was sharp. “That’s an order…they have until I make my way out of this facility...initiating radio silence.”
He turned off his com and stepped down the last hallway before glancing at the woman in his arms. “Everything’s gonna be fine Sidekick…I’ve got you.” She nodded against his neck releasing the tension in her body before her whispered words broke the silence. “I know…take me home hero.” He nodded as he carried her out of the facility all the while wishing he had managed to find her sooner.
Chapter Fourteen: The Beginning in The End