Banner By: Kyra_and_Co
Chapter Fourteen: Baby I Need You
‘Alas We Aspire’
“Where are you now...oh oh, I'm so lost till you're found. Look through my word. I'm mine, your yours, look through my word’s, You're mine, I'm Yours. Alas we as fire, feel the flame, take me higher. Alas we aspire.” –Amy Stroup
Chloe bounced slightly or as much as she could, excitement flowing off her in waves when the elevator chimed and Oliver gave her a sideways smile. “Fifteen minutes, Sidekick…twenty at the most. You should be home resting.” She waved him off as she walked off the elevator. “Oh, stop being such a buzz kill…Emil only put me on bed rest to get you to shut up…we both know it.”
She gave him a warm smile as he pressed his hand against the small of her back, guiding her towards the double doors. It had been close to three months since Lex had kidnapped him and surprisingly since then things had died down quite a bit.
When the police arrived at the scene and found the underground facility along with some of the documents Chloe had put together, they’d taken Lex into custody. Within days they received the video tapes of the kidnapping and several recordings of blackmailing phone calls to Tess before the kidnapping took place.
Lex was booked and tried and it turned out that most of his old connections chose to back Tess instead of him, leaving Lex to fend for himself. He was sentenced to fifteen years in a federal state prison and with no chance of parole.
Chloe’s small palm stroking his arm pulled him from his thoughts. He glanced down at his girlfriend and grinned, his hand moving down to rub her rounded stomach. She was one week away from her due date and he was both excited and terrified.
She tilted her head to the side and raised a questioning eyebrow. “Penny for your thoughts?” Oliver grinned as he tapped her nose lightly. “A penny? Is that all I’m worth to you, Sidekick?” Her face softened. “You’re worth more than all the money in the world, Hero…” He gave her a warm smile, cupped her cheeks and placed a quick kiss against her lips.
“Have I mentioned lately that you’re gorgeous?” Chloe rolled her eyes and snorted, slapping his chest lightly as she continued making her way towards the doors. “Flattery will get you nowhere.” He came up behind her, discreetly glancing at his watch, making sure they weren’t too early.
He wrapped an arm around her as he spoke near her ear. “Is that so?” She nodded as they pushed open the doors to Watchtower and as soon as they were over the threshold, there was a loud chorus of ‘Congratulations!’ Chloe blinked, startled, before a beaming smile broke out on her face.
She glanced up, and along the banister was a banner that said ‘Congratulations Graduate’. She glanced around at the smiling faces of her teammates and friends and tears pooled in her eyes. Damn hormones. Bart was the first in front of her holding out a bouquet of tulips in one hand and a medium sized box in the other.
He grinned. “For the prettiest blonde I know.” Her eyes glistened as she reached out placing a light kiss on the younger man’s cheek before taking the flowers. “They’re gorgeous Bart…thank you.” He winked and held out the box to her. “I got you something even better than flowers though.”
She arched an eyebrow, “Oh yeah?” He nodded and motioned for her to take it. She took the box and opened it. Her eyes widened as she took a large whiff of the food in the box. “Oh my god…this smells delicious.” He smiled and pointed. “This is the best pizza on the east coast. New York City at its finest…taste it while it’s hot.”
She hesitated for a second before lifting the slice in one hand and taking a bite. Her eyes fluttered shut as she groaned. He wasn’t kidding. It was probably the best pizza she had ever tasted. She nodded at him before swallowing and speaking. “Amazing!”
She offered Oliver some and he bent down and took a small bite, nodding in agreement as he glanced at the younger man. “Nicely done.” Dinah rolled her eyes and shoved Bart gently out of the way. “Stop hogging the woman of the hour…we all have stuff for her.”
Bart pouted as the rest of the team chuckled. Dinah gave Chloe a sheepish look and presented her with a slim looking black leather briefcase with a bow on it. Chloe handed Oliver the pizza, wiping her hands off slightly before taking it in her hands.
“Wow Dinah it’s beautiful…I really love it.” She shrugged. “It’s not much…but I thought maybe you could use it for that new job you applied for.” Chloe paused, glancing up at the other woman. “Thanks…” She leaned forward hugging the other woman, her stomach bumping into her slightly.
They chuckled and Victor cleared his throat as he pushed away from the mainframe, a green wrapped box in his hands. AC stood off to the side next to Bart while Tess and Emil leaned against the computer console, watching on with smiles.
Chloe smiled at Victor and he handed her the box, a cocky grin on his face. “I’m pretty sure you’re going to like my gift the best.” She went to open it, but AC’s voice stopped her as he waved an envelope at her. “Open mine first…please…” She glanced between the two and Victor rolled his eyes, but motioned for her to go ahead.
She took AC’s envelope, slid her finger under it and pulled out a piece of paper. She grinned. “You rescued and adopted a Dolphin in my name…AC this is awesome! Are we allowed to go see it?” He grinned. “Yup…as soon as you pop out the kid I can take you…not before then…too many things to hurt yourself on.” She nodded and pulled him into a hug. “I love it…thank you.”
He stuck his tongue out at Victor and moved back next to Bart. Tess made a sound in the back of her throat and Chloe glanced up. When they had first rescued her, Tess had decided to turn over a new leaf and of course Oliver being Oliver had been skeptical about her change in heart.
But not Chloe. She could see something in the redheaded woman that she didn’t see in many. Determination…hardworking…and a willingness to do whatever it took to keep the people she cared about safe. A common desire to rid the world of injustice, even if Tess’s way had been different than hers, and so she befriended her and in the last three months Tess had become a valuable asset to the team.
Chloe had trained her on all things Watchtower knowing that once the baby was there, she’d have less time to be the eyes and ears the team needed. It had been touch and go there for a little bit, everyone sort of resenting the fact that she’d come in and taken Chloe’s place, but Chloe explained that it wouldn’t be forever and that she and Tess would share Watchtower duties.
If she was being honest, the truth was she respected Tess for everything she’d been through with Lex. Not many people could come back from what he’d done to her, but she was strong and Chloe needed someone else like that around.
She shook her head slightly and smiled at the other woman. “Yeah?” Tess took a few steps forward and gave Chloe a small smile. “I saw your application at the Planet the other day. It finally made its way up to me…and I think this goes without saying, but I’ll say it anyway. The job is yours if you want it.”
Chloe stared at her and swallowed hard voice soft. “I don’t want special treatment because we know each other…that isn’t why--” Tess lifted a hand and cut her off. “I know that, and I’d never insult you by doing that. I’m the last stop…if your application had been rejected it never would have made its way to my office…like I said the job is yours if you want it….but the position won’t be available right away…in about four months…we have someone transferring out.”
Chloe nodded wiping a tear from her eye. “Thank you…and I think you know I’ll accept.” Tess grinned, “Try to act surprised when you get the call from the desk.” Chloe chuckled. “Will do…” Her voice trailed off and Victor started to hand her the present again when Tess spoke.
“Sorry I have a gift too…if Victor doesn’t mind waiting again.” He let out a long sigh a motioned for her to go ahead. “Why not…we want to save the best for last anyway right?” He grinned and Tess rolled her eyes. She turned towards the computer console and riffled through a few things before pulling out a small metal box.
She took a few steps towards Chloe and Oliver frowned but said nothing. “All those months back…with the whole Doomsday thing…well after destroying that crystal…a lot of what happened can be put on me. I never said sorry for what happened to your husband…”
Chloe pursed her lips, body tensing slightly as Oliver passed a hand over her back in a soothing gesture. She took a deep breath and the tension drained from her body. When she didn’t say anything Tess continued. “I know you’ve been looking for Lois…and I think I know what happened to her.”
Chloe took a step forward, eyes wide, voice quiet. “You know where she is?” Tess hesitated and pulled open the box, a small ring sitting inside. “I did some research on the ring…the night Lois disappeared…we fought in the Daily Planet bullpen…she picked up this ring and disappeared. From what I’ve read in your files and all the information…it looks like this ring can time travel.”
Chloe’s mouth dropped open before she tried to speak, but couldn’t. Oliver scratched the back of his head and raised an eyebrow at Tess as he spoke. “Are you trying to tell me Lois is…in the future?” She nodded. “I think so…I’m not sure how to get her back yet…but I wanted you to know I’m working on it.”
Before the redhead could say anything else, Chloe’s arms were around her pulling her into a hug. Tess was startled by the sudden movement. She and Chloe weren’t exactly touchy feely. She patted her back stiffly and glanced at Oliver for some kind of help.
He stood there just looking amused as Chloe finally pulled away and met Tess’s eyes. “You don’t know how much this means to me…thank you…I’ll help research it…there might be some information that isn’t in the system…”
Tess nodded. “Sounds good.” Chloe wiped her eyes and Tess moved back towards Emil who shot her a warm smile. She flushed slightly and returned it before glancing back over at Chloe. Oliver arched his eyebrows, not missing the exchange and made a mental note to talk to Emil about it later.
Victor glared around the room before looking at Chloe. “Now…my gift finally.” She chuckled and took the box which was slightly heavy. She unwrapped it and frowned at the plain box. She moved over to the desk put it down and lifted the lid.
The sound that came from her throat was incredibly undignified and Oliver was pretty sure it was some kind of teeny bopper squeal. “Oh my god…oh my god…Victor!” She glanced between him and the laptop sitting on the desk before her, eyes wide and sparkling as she took in the shiny surface, opening it up and gasped at the strange design of the keyboard.
It had a camera and all kinds of add on gadgets towards the side. The memory alone was more than she’d ever seen on a machine. He pointed as he spoke. “It’s up to date with all of Queen Industries’ latest software, including a few I tweaked in my own special way. The IP address is untraceable and if this computer can’t hack into Fort Knox than my name isn’t Victor Stone.”
She turned and Oliver thought she was going to explode at the excitement in her voice. “I don’t think I tell you enough how awesome it is having you on the team and that you totally get the inner geek in me…have I mentioned I love you?”
He chuckled and winked. “Any time you want to leave Arrow, I’m more than willing to take his place.” She bit her lip and shook her head as Oliver frowned and spoke. “Hey…cut it out or you’ll next mission will be in Antarctica…” They chuckled as Chloe moved quickly back over to the laptop.
“I can’t wait to use it. Tonight I’m going to---” She paused and suddenly the entire room was quiet. She frowned and felt a large pressure in her stomach before there was a small popping noise and suddenly Chloe could feel water beneath her feet, followed by an even more uncomfortable feeling between her legs.
She reached a hand out to the desk, the other flying to her stomach. “Oh god…” Oliver was by her side in seconds as Emil moved out from behind everyone while Oliver spoke. “What’s wrong…you okay Chloe?” She frowned. “I don’t…” Emil came to her side and glanced down.
He grinned as he looked up at Oliver and Chloe. “Your water just broke…looks like it’s time to have a baby…” Her hand gripped Oliver’s arm tighter as she spoke. “But we still have another week…” Emil shook his head. “No you don’t…come on…to the hospital…Oliver, go grab the car I’ll walk Chloe down.”
Oliver stood there, shock on his face before he shook himself out of it, his heart pounding in his ears. “Okay right, the car…I’ll get the car,” he turned to Bart, “Run to the penthouse, grab the overnight bag by the front door.” He glanced around the room and grinned. “We’re having a baby!” Emil shook his head as he ushered Chloe out of the room while Oliver opted to take the stairs.
Chloe frowned. “Where’s Oliver going…is he leaving? HE’S LEAVING ME?” Emil pursed his lips. “He’s just running to get the car ready…we’re going to take the elevator, come on.” She started asking for Oliver in the elevator before the doors were even shut and Emil sighed. It was going to be a long few hours.
Oliver held her hand as she laid there screaming as Emil sat scrubbed up between her legs, alternating between telling her she was doing a good job and to push. Chloe’s sweat-slicked head dropped against the pillows as she sucked in several large breaths, tears streaming down her face.
“I can’t do this…it’s too hard…do it for me…I’m so tired…” Oliver tried not to chuckle as his face softened, the scrubs making it difficult for him to maneuver. “If I could I would…you can do this though, Sidekick…don’t you want to meet her? Come on…no one’s stronger than you.”
He brushed her hair out of her face as Emil’s voice broke through their conversation. “Okay Chloe, last few pushed let’s go…come on push.” Oliver helped her lean up as she yelled, face scrunched in concentration and pain and then loud wails erupted in the room and she let out an exhausted breath, her body sinking against Oliver slightly.
His eyes followed Emil’s every move as he held the baby up and grinned at him. “Want to cut the cord?” Oliver glanced at Chloe and she nodded. He moved towards Emil in a daze, gazing at the tiny baby in his arms and his heart warmed.
His hands shook slightly as Emil showed him where to cut and before he handed the baby to the nurse and she sucked her nose and cleaned off some of the afterbirth. Maura was wrapped in a pink blanket and the nurse made her way over towards Oliver.
“Would you like to hold her real quick?” He swallowed heavily and nodded as the nurse placed the baby carefully in his arms. He took a few steps towards Chloe, tears slipping down her cheeks as she watched Oliver with her daughter…their daughter.
They’d talked about it a month ago…and he said if she was willing to let him be there, then there was nowhere else he wanted to be. She held her arms up and Oliver carefully shifted the tiny baby into her arms. She moved the blanket slightly and she was overwhelmed at the sight of her.
This tiny baby…this little person was what kept her going…the light at the end of the tunnel. She’d been the reason Oliver had stayed…the reason they got to know each other…her little miracle. Chloe brushed the pad of her thumb against the baby’s cheek and spoke softly.
“Hey there baby girl…welcome to the world…” Oliver pressed a kiss at the top of Chloe’s head and she glanced up as he pulled back. She could see the tears in his eyes as he spoke with a bright smile. “You did amazing…I’m so proud of you…”
She nodded, green eyes meeting brown and when she didn’t say anything for a second, he gave her a questioning look. She took a deep breath…it was time…she was finally ready. Her voice was soft and choked with emotion. “I love you…I’m so in love with you…” He tilted his head to the side, cupping her cheek as he let out a relieved breath. “Good…because I’m in love with you too…”
She let out a small sob mixed with laughter as she leaned up while he leaned down, their lips meeting halfway. When they pulled apart, he glanced down at them, brushing his hand over the baby’s head gently. “We love you too, Maura…” Chloe smiled between them and she waited for the feeling of dread to fill her, but it never did.
No foreboding or worry tainting this moment. She caught the glimpse of contentment on Oliver’s face as he leaned over her slightly, playing gently with Maura’s fingers as he spoke to her softly and that’s when she realized the feeling wouldn’t come, because this moment right here…what she had with Oliver and the family they would have with Maura…this was right.
She’d finally found her happy ending and though she and Oliver both had to break and hit rock bottom to get there, it didn’t matter…because out of the ashes of destruction, pain and hate had been born, redemption, forgiveness and love…And Chloe was going to bask in every single second of it.
Oliver looked up at Chloe’s thoughtful expression and smiled. He couldn’t believe they had a baby. She might not be his by blood, but she’d be his in every other way that counted. Maura had given him a purpose and Chloe had saved his life…now he’d spend the rest of their lives showing her how much that meant to him…for better or worse this was his life now and he couldn’t wait to dive in.
Epilogue: Look After You