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Topic: Stegro's Arrowverse - Heir #02 - Heir Apparent (Read 127 times) previous topic - next topic

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Stegro's Arrowverse - Heir #02 - Heir Apparent
Heir Apparent 

Chapter 01 - Homecoming 


Oliver Queen is alive! The Starling City resident was found by fishermen in the North China sea five days ago, five years after he was missing and was presumed dead following the accident at sea which claimed 'The Queen's Gambit'. Queen was a regular tabloid presence and a fixture at the Starling City club scene. Shortly before his disappearance, he was acquitted of assault charges stemming from a highly publicized drunken altercation with paparazzi. Queen is the son of Starling City billionaire Robert Queen, who was also on board but now officially confirmed as deceased. Initial reports indicate an unknown female was also found though this, along with her possible identity, are unconfirmed.

So much had changed in the years he had been gone. And yet, so much had not. Staring out the hospital window gave Oliver a sense of perspective that nowhere else had given him. He recognised the city before him. It had been his home. Now, now he wasn't sure what it was. 

"Beloved?" a voice called from the door to the room. Oliver turned to look at his wife of almost a year. "Are you well?" 

"I am. It's just a lot to take in," Oliver said. He gazed at her and wondered how he had been so lucky in his life to have found her. "Have the doctor's cleared you?" 

"Of course. I am in excellent shape," she replied, stepping fully into the room, the door shutting softly behind her. "And you?" 

"They are worried about how many scars I have. Also some of my fractures that never properly healed," Oliver explained. "We knew they would ask questions." 

"And you told them what we discussed?" his wife questioned. She had full trust that Oliver had held to their story but wanted, needed to confirm in case there were any slight changes that had appeared during discussions with the doctors. 

"I've been stranded on an island for five years, alone for two of them. I don't think they completely believed me but we didn't expect them too," Oliver revealed, knowing why she asked him as she did. 

"Then we proceed as we have planned," she stated, turning to enter the ensuite of the hospital room. Oliver turned back to looking out over the city. He heard voices in the corridor, a man and a woman's. The man was one of the doctor's that had examined him, while the woman's voice was familiar. As they spoke, Oliver realised the voice belonged to his mother, which was soon confirmed by the doctor as he warned her about Oliver. They stopped speaking and Oliver heard the door to his room open once again. 

"Oliver?" his mother called out to him. Oliver turned to look at his mother, tilting his head to the side slightly as she stood before him for the first time in half a decade. 

"Mom," was all Oliver managed to get out, his voice filled with emotion. He slowly moved over to stand in front of his mother, watching as tears welled in her eyes as he approached. 

"My beautiful boy," Moira said as she broke down, hugging Oliver tightly and pressing a kiss to the side of his head. She squeezed him tighter, not wanting to release him, reassuring herself that he was real and there. Their embrace was broken by the sound of someone in the ensuite. Moira stepped back and turned as the door opened and a woman stepped out. 

The woman appeared to be about Oliver's age with long black hair and olive skin. Moira couldn't pinpoint her ancestry, nor why she was in the room with her son. 

"Mrs Queen, it is a pleasure to finally meet you," the woman said and Moira was taken aback; was she meant to know who this was? 

"Ah, and to meet you as well, nurse?" Moira queried uncertainly. The woman glanced from Moira to Oliver. She appeared to be about to say something when Oliver spoke instead. 

"I think that's my queue," Oliver announced, moving to stand next to this woman. "Mom. I'd like you to meet Nyssa. My wife." 

#Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow# 

The trip to the Queen Mansion was a quiet one. Moira had barely spoken after Oliver's pronouncement, and then only to offer directions to first Oliver, and by extension Nyssa; as they exited the hospital and then to the driver to take them back to the Queen Mansion. She had travelled in the Bentley, obviously not expecting Oliver to have company. This had forced Oliver and Nyssa to travel separately; Oliver in the front with the driver while Nyssa sat in the back with his mother. Moira had sat and stared out the window, resolutely opposed to saying anything regarding Oliver's marriage. Oliver was beyond happy when the mansion came into view, and not just because it offered him the chance to see his sister and his home again. 

The driver pulled the Bentley around to the front of the mansion before pulling to a stop. Moira wasted no time, opening her door and climbing from the car before the driver could open her door. The driver continued to the trunk, opening it and reaching for the box that Oliver and Nyssa had brought with them. A hand on his shoulder stopped him and he turned to see Oliver standing there, reaching for his box.  

"I've got it," Oliver said. This and the look from Oliver was all it took for the driver to back away, allowing Oliver to lift the box out of the trunk. Nyssa stepped up to his side and he offered her his free hand. Looking up, Oliver saw his mother watching him, the briefest of smiles ghosting her face. Oliver and Nyssa stepped up to the front door as Moira turned and opened the double doors into the house. 

"Your room is exactly as you left it," Moira said as she led them into the house. "I never had the heart to change a thing." Nyssa released Oliver's hand as he set the box on the ground just inside the doors, giving him a moment to take in the house he hadn't seen in years. Nyssa noticed an older man approaching from a room off the foyer. 

"Oliver," he called happily. "It's damn good to see you." Oliver stepped up to the man, looking him up and down before shaking the offered hand. "It's Walter..." the man, Walter, introduced himself. He had taken Oliver's silence as not knowing who he was. "Walter Steele." 

"You remember Walter, you're father's friend from the company," Moira urged. Oliver looked at his mother before glancing back at Walter before stepping past him. He didn't see the look that Walter and Moira shared behind his back, but Nyssa did.  

"It's good to see you, Raisa," Oliver said as he stepped up to an older, raven-haired woman wearing a maid's uniform. She was smiling with abandon. 

"Welcome home, Mr Oliver," she greeted with genuine, overflowing excitement. She broke her gaze with Oliver to look past him at Moira. "Mr Merlyn phoned. He wants to join you for dinner." 

"Wonderful," Moira said merrily. Oliver didn't react as she expected him too at hearing that his best friend would be joining them. Instead he looked towards the top of the stairs "Oliver? Did you hear that?" She asked as he moved to the bottom of the stairs. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Thea descending the steps before turning and pausing to look down at her brother. 

"Hey, sis," Oliver called up in greeting. Thea stared at him for a moment before her face broke into a smile as she practically skipped down the stairs. 

"I knew it. I knew you were alive," She confided happily as she rushed to hug him. "I missed you so much." 

"You were with me the whole time," Oliver reassured his sister as he returned her hug, his hand on the back of her neck. He glanced at Nyssa who seemed to have been forgotten for the moment and noticed that she too was touched by the reunion. Their hug broke apart and Thea glanced around the foyer, noticing for the first time the woman standing just inside the doors. 

"Who are you?" she asked curiously, wondering if Ollie was hurt. 

"Thea, I have someone I'd like you to meet," Oliver said, wrapping his arm around his sister's shoulders. "This is Nyssa. My wife." 

#Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow#

Nyssa glided into the room she would share with Oliver. She had wanted to familiarise herself with the layout but now found herself looking at her beloved as he examined himself in a mirror, standing there with only a towel around his waist. 

"What do you see?" Nyssa asked as she stepped up behind him. 

"A stranger," Oliver proclaimed softly, almost sadly, as he looked over his torso, noting the various scars and tattoos that adorned it and remembering how they came to be marked upon him. "After 5 years, everything that was once familiar when I looked into this mirror is now unrecognisable." 

"You are my husband," Nyssa declared as she wrapped her arms around his waist. "Do you recognise that?" 

"I do," Oliver replied as he wrapped an arm around her. Thunder echoed from outside, causing Oliver to break his gaze from the mirror to look outside. "Storm's coming." 

"It is," Nyssa agreed. "You should dress. Dinner will be ready soon."  

#Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow# 

Oliver was looking at a photograph of himself with his father when the front door opened behind him. 

"What did I tell you?" a familiar voice said from the doorway. "Yachts suck." Oliver couldn't stop the chuckle that came from him as he turned and looked upon smiling best friend. 

"Tommy Merlyn," Oliver declared as he stepped into a hug with Tommy. 

"I missed you buddy," Tommy stated. Before more could be said, Walter called the two men into the dinner room as the food was ready. They men parted and followed Walter through the house to the dining room. Tommy passed his eyes over everyone in the room before settling on an unfamiliar face. "And who is this beautiful woman?" 

"My wife," Oliver deadpanned to Tommy's shock as he stepped past him and went to sit next to his wife. "Nyssa, may I introduce Tommy Merlyn. Tommy, Nyssa." 

"Of course, I have heard so much about you," Nyssa said, smiling across the table at Tommy. Tommy recovered and stepped around the table to sit in his own seat.  

"Given how I remember us spending our time, nothing bad I'm sure," Tommy said, back to smiling. He would be having a chat with Oliver later to find out the details of his nuptials; nuptials that no one seemed to have shared with anyone. 

Dinner was filled with innocuous conversation. Oliver ate very little as he sat at the end of the table and observed everyone he remembered so differently. So much had changed while he was away. And they didn't even know how much. 

"What was it like there?" Thea asked innocently, looking at Oliver. Conversation ceased around the table as everyone looked across the table at Oliver. Oliver glanced at Nyssa before he met Thea's eyes. 

"Cold," Oliver said evening. Thea just stared at her brother and Oliver knew that his answer would not be sufficient to quell his sister's curiosity. 

"Tomorrow, you and me, we're doing the city," Tommy interjected, trying to lighten the mood. "You've got a lot to catch up on. You're welcome to join us Nyssa." 

"Thank you for the invitation, but I think I might rest for the day," Nyssa replied. "The past few days have been quite an abrupt change to what I have become used too. Oliver, you go. Enjoy time with your friend." 

"That sounds like a great idea," Moira stated happily. 

"Good," Oliver announced. "Then I was hoping to swing by the office." 

"Well, there's plenty of time for all that," Walter hedged. "Queen consolidated isn't going anywhere." 

Further speech was interrupted by Oliver catching Raisa as she tripped on the carpet. One hand caught the fruit bowl she was carrying while the prevented her from falling further then she already had. 

"Oh, I am so sorry, Mr Oliver," Raisa apologised as she recovered. Oliver responded in Russian, to everyone's surprise. 

"Dude, you speak Russian?" Tommy exclaimed. 

"I didn't realise you took Russian at college, Oliver," Walter said. 

"I didn't realise you wanted to sleep with my mother, Walter," Oliver retorted calmly, no emotion in his voice. Silence descended upon the room as glances were exchanged. 

"I, I didn't say anything," Thea claimed as her mother looked at her pointedly. 

"She didn't have to," Oliver explained. Moira swallowed and looked at Walter, nodding. 

"Oliver," Moira started, taking Walter's hand. "Walter and I are married. And I don't want you to think that either one of us did anything to disrespect our father." 

"We both believed that Robert, like you, was, uh, well, gone," Walter added uncomfortably.  

"It's fine," Oliver said after a moment. He looked at his mother before he rose from the table. "May I be excused?" Moira thought for a moment before she nodded. 

"Hey, don't forget about tomorrow, buddy," Tommy called as Oliver walked out of the room. Nyssa looked around the table and saw the looks of sadness on their faces. She could tell that they were starting to realise that the Oliver that returned to them was not the same one that had left them five years ago. 

"Please excuse me," Nyssa said as she stood and went after Oliver. She found him in their room. "Oliver?" 

"I'm sorry Nyssa," Oliver apologised softly. "I thought I would be able to cope being around them again." 

"You have nothing to be sorry for," Nyssa said as she approached her husband. She could see the struggle that he was going through but she wasn't sure what she could do to ease the pain. "I think that both you and your family will need time to adjust to each other. Five years is a long time." 

"How did I get so lucky to find you?" Oliver asked his wife with a soft smile. 

"You washed up half dead on a beach," Nyssa deadpanned. "And it was I that found you." 

"True," Oliver stated, more relaxed now then he was. 

"We should try and get some sleep. It has been a long day," Nyssa stated. "The first of what I believe will be many." 

#Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow#

"Couldn't sleep?" Nyssa heard Thea ask as she entered the kitchen.  

"This house, it is not what I am used too. I felt the need to explore a little of it," Nyssa said carefully, not wanting to insult her sister-in-law. "That was an hour ago." 

"Yeah, that can happen," Thea agreed. "And after three years living on a deserted island with only my brother for company. I can see why you would still be awake." 

"It was better then being alone," Nyssa declared coolly, trying to insinuate what Oliver had gone through before her arrival, as their stories went. "I don't think I would have survived if I had been alone." To her credit, Thea remained silent at this remark, considering Nyssa's words. Seeing that she had made her point, Nyssa turned to leave. "Goodnight Thea." 

"Goodnight," Thea called after her as the door shut. Nyssa made her back towards Oliver's room when she heard the sounds of one of Oliver's nightmares. He hadn't had one of those in a while until they had returned to the island; they had become more frequent then. What worried her though was the other sounds; Moira and Walter moving about. 

Rushing ahead, she heard Moira calling Oliver's name, trying to wake him. Knowing how dangerous Oliver could be if startled awake, Nyssa ran faster. She entered the room, seeing Oliver thrashing about beneath the open window, rain pelting him, just as Moira started to try and shake Oliver awake. 

"Oliver, wake up!" She called loudly over the storm as she shook his shoulder. "Oliver..." 

Any further words were cut off as Oliver startled awake and his instincts kicked in. Nyssa watched as Oliver grabbed his mother's arm and flipped her over him onto the floor, bringing his hand down to her neck, intent on crashing her larynx. 

"Oliver!" Walter and Nyssa shouted together. Oliver blinked and looked down at his terrified mother and what he was about to do. Scared, he threw himself away from his mother, backpedalling until he was hunched in a ball beneath the windowsill. Walter moved to comfort Moira as Nyssa slowly approached her husband, trying not to startle him further. 

"It's ok beloved," Nyssa murmured softly, trying to soothe Oliver even as she rubbed his back. 

"I'm sorry," Oliver said shamefully. "I'm so sorry." 

"No, it's ok, Oliver," Moira stated, as Walter helped her up. "It's alright sweetheart. You're home, you're safe," Moira soothed, the mother in her coming out. 

Nyssa couldn't help but think to herself as Moira continued to soothe her son. "For how long?"

 
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Re: Stegro's Arrowverse - Heir #02 - Heir Apparent
Reply #1
Chapter 02 - Starling City

Oliver was eventually able to fall asleep about an hour before dawn; spending the intervening time holding Nyssa as she slept. He enjoyed watching her sleep; it reminded him of the first night after the Amazo that he had been able to sleep without a nightmare waking him. It had been their wedding night. She had been so beautiful that evening.

Oliver awoke to the sound of the shower running and the feeling of a warm but empty bed. He sat up against the headboard and waited for Nyssa to finish. Soon enough the water shut off and Nyssa exited the bathroom, a towel wrapped around her body.

"Did you leave me any hot water?" Oliver asked, smiling at his wife.

"Maybe," Nyssa teased as she sat on the side of the bed next to Oliver. "6 months without a hot shower definitely makes you appreciate them."

"Imagine what 2 years would do then," Oliver countered. "But it was necessary. We couldn't be found in perfect health, it would raise too many questions. 6 months gave us the proper look of a struggling yet surviving couple. Especially as I am supposed to have been there for 5 years."

"It has also relaxed you more. You seem less like Al Sah-him and more like they would expect Oliver Queen would be," Nyssa commented. "They may even get a glimpse of the Oliver that only I have seen."

"He only exists because of you," Oliver stated matter-of-factly. "If your father had had his way, there would be nothing left but Al Sah-him. You were able to save the Oliver that was born when my father's boat sank."

"He was worth saving. He still is," Nyssa observed as her expression changed. "The plan for today?"

"I'm with Tommy for the day. I'll have him drive us past the factory so I can check on it," Oliver said. "You?"

"I thought I might familiarise myself with the city," Nyssa offered. "And check that our equipment is ready. I feel, uncomfortable without access to all of my weapons."

"Naked is more the word," Oliver grinned.

"Perhaps," Nyssa replied as she stood and dropped the towel. "You should get ready. Tommy will be here soon," She said as she sashayed back into the bathroom. Oliver groaned softly, considering if he should have a shower now as well.

#Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow#

Nyssa was in the foyer speaking with Walter when she heard Oliver and Tommy descending the stairs behind her.

"I think that's my cue," Walter said as he noticed the two men. "I should be going. Thomas, I expect you to take it easy with him. It is his first day back"

"Oh definitely," Tommy promised. Walter eyed him for a moment before looking at Oliver.

"And you too. Take it easy," Walter instructed. 

"I will," Oliver replied with a smile.

"Nyssa," Walter said in farewell as he picked up his briefcase.

"Walter," Nyssa responded as Walter headed out the front door.

"I'll wait for you outside," Tommy offered as he moved to follow Walter. "I'll bring him back in one piece Nyssa."

"You better. I would hate to have to hurt you," Nyssa said calmly. Tommy smiled in response before disappearing after Walter. Nyssa turned back to her husband and caught the look on his face. "What is it?"

"I just caught Thea about to sort what I think was Oxycodone," Oliver described. Nyssa's face dropped into a scowl, several different thoughts passing through her mind. "You can't kill her friend."

"I can," Nyssa deadpanned, clearly considering it. "But I won't. It wouldn't solve the problem."

"No, it wouldn't," Oliver agreed. "Tommy's waiting. I will see you later."

"Be safe," Nyssa offered.

"Love you too," Oliver replied as he kissed his wife before walking out the door.

#Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow#

Nyssa had been driven into the city by the same driver that had driven them from the hospital to the mansion. He had left her with a phone number to call him to pick her up before departing to run several errands. Nyssa had quickly contacted the local League safe house so as to ascertain the readiness of their equipment and was informed it was all present and awaiting delivery. Now she sat in a small coffee shop across from Queen Consolidated, quietly observing the world beyond the window. Her observations were disrupted by a commotion behind her.

"Frak! Take a hint. NOT INTERESTED!" a bespectacled blonde told a man standing over her as she sat at her table, trying to enjoy her coffee.

"C'mon, it's just dinner," the man tried to reason as the blonde rolled her eyes. "Dinner can't hurt."

"No, but what you want after it can," the blonde challenged.

"You'd enjoy it," the man countered. "I'd make sure of it."

"I sincerely doubt that," the blonde responded. Nyssa was starting to dislike this man. His manner and bearing was condescending.

"Felicity, just say yes," the man demanded, losing his patience. Nyssa was now annoyed.

"I already said no Brandon," Felicity stated as she looked up at him. "Now, would you please leave me alone?"

"Felicity, you have been dodging me now for months. It's time that..." Brandon's speech was cut off by his yelp of pain as his arm was twisted up behind his back.

"I believe Felicity. It was Felicity, wasn't it?" Nyssa asked Felicity as she grasped Brandon's wrist. Felicity could only nod in astonishment. "I believe Felicity made it quite clear that she would not be having dinner, or anything else with you. I suggest you do not pester her anymore. Do I make myself clear?" Nyssa enunciated, applying more pressure to his wrist to get her point across.

"Yes, yes. Let go for god's sake," Brandon yelped out. Nyssa released his wrist and he quickly beat a retreat, leaving the store without a word; Nyssa watching him leave.

"How, how did you do that?" Felicity stammered out. "Why would you do that?"

"Just something that my father taught me when I was younger," Nyssa said as she turned back to face Felicity. As to why. No woman should ever suffer at the hands of men."

"Wow. I need to remember that one," Felicity observed. "I'm Felicity Smoak.

"I am Nyssa," Nyssa introduced herself, catching herself before she said more.

"Good to meet you Nyssa," Felicity smiled. "Would you like to join me?"

"If I'm not intruding," Nyssa said.

"I insist," Felicity confirmed. Nyssa smiled before retrieving her drink and joining Felicity. "So what brings you here today?"

"Just exploring the city. I'm new here," Nyssa explained truthfully. "And yourself?"

"Lunch break," Felicity admitted, glancing out the window. "I work at Queen Consolidated."

"Do you like it?" Nyssa enquired honestly.

"It's alright. It's not perfect but it's a stepping stone," Felicity said cheerfully. "Have to start at the bottom before you can reach the top right." 

"You do indeed," Nyssa confirmed as her phone started to ring. "Excuse me." Felicity nodded as Nyssa stood and stepped away for some privacy. "Hello. When was this? Are they both alright? Yes, of course I'll be right there. I'm in a coffee shop outside Queen Consolidated. 5 minutes," Felicity heard Nyssa's side of the conversation.

"Everything alright?" she asked as Nyssa turned back to her.

"I'm not sure," Nyssa said as she pocketed her phone. "I have to go I'm afraid. It was nice meeting you. Hopefully we will see each other again soon."

"You know where I work if you want to find me," Felicity stated. "It was nice meeting you too."

"Goodbye Felicity," Nyssa said as she turned towards the door.

"Goodbye Nyssa. I hope everything is ok," Felicity called after Nyssa. She watched as Nyssa waited on the sidewalk before a Bentley pulled to a stop in front of her. She climbed in the back quickly before it left the curb, disappearing into the traffic. Felicity had a gut feeling that she would be seeing Nyssa again soon then either of them thought.

#Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow#

"Oliver!" Nyssa called as she entered the Mansion. She had passed what were obviously two detectives as they had left the grounds and was now concerned about Oliver. She had been told on the phone that he was fine but to her, fine was a relative concept.

"In here Nyssa," Oliver called from the Den. Nyssa walked in to find Oliver sitting with Tommy, Moira and Walter. "We're fine."

"What happened?" Nyssa asked.

"We were drugged, kidnapped and then apparently some weirdo in a green hood rescued us and killed all three gunmen," Tommy gushed out. Nyssa glanced at Oliver with a raised eyebrow but was only met with a blank stare. "I need a drink. I'll see you later buddy," Tommy said as he got up and left the room.

"I have some business calls to make. I will see you at dinner," Walter stated as he followed Tommy out.

"Are you sure you are alright?" Nyssa asked as she took Tommy's place beside Oliver. 

"I'm fine," Oliver confirmed with a soft smile.

"Nyssa, could I ask you to excuse us for a moment," Moira said to Nyssa. "I would like a word with my son."

"I'll be outside," Nyssa said after looking at Oliver and seeing him nod. 

"Thank you Nyssa," Moira acknowledged as she watched her leave. Once the door shut behind her, Moira redirected her attention back to her son. "Oliver, we should discuss what happened today."

"What about it?" Oliver wondered, curious what his mother was doing.

"Oliver, someone kidnapped you and Tommy today," Moira explained as if Oliver hadn't been there. "We need to determine why. Who knew where you were going to be today?"

"Just the people in this house," Oliver answered, seeing his mother raise an eyebrow at his response. "Are you suggesting Nyssa had something to do with this?"

"I'm not suggesting anything," Moira replied calmly. "But as you said, only the people in this house knew where you were going to be today."

"NO!" Oliver exploded, standing. "I trust Nyssa with my life. I've had to."

"I can understand that Oliver," Moira said, trying to placate her son. "But that was then. Now though..."

"I can't believe my own mother is suggesting this," Oliver growled angrily. "She is my wife."

"No, she isn't," Moira stated. "I had some checking down. There is no marriage certificate issued for you and Miss Raatko. You are not married."

"Perhaps not legally. We married each other on the island," Oliver argued. "But if you want it legal, we can make it legal quickly enough." 

"Oliver..."Moira started but was quickly cut off.

"Once I am legally declared alive, Nyssa and I will be taking a trip," Oliver explained clearly, anger still evident in his voice. "When we return, you can greet your, now legal, daughter-in-law."

"Oliver, there is no need to do anything rash," Moira reasoned, desperately trying to assuage her son. "We can work something out." She watched Oliver get a far off look in his eye as he stared at the wall behind her before he took a deep breath and refocused his attention on her.

"6 weeks," Oliver said calmly. "I will give you 6 weeks, mom."

"6 weeks to do what?" Moira asked, surprised at Oliver's sudden calm.

"You have 6 weeks to organise a wedding fit for a Queen," Oliver deadpanned. "After that, Nyssa and I will take care of matters ourselves. We've gotten quite good at it over the years." Not waiting for his mother's reply, Oliver walked out; Moira being too shocked to do anything but let him go. Nyssa met him outside, as she said she would.

"Are you alright?" Nyssa asked, concern evident. "I heard everything."

"I knew you would. And I will be," Oliver replied softly. His face then hardened. "We have other problems though."

"The kidnapping," Nyssa stated, falling instep beside Oliver as he headed upstairs. "I take it more happened then what will be in the police report?"

"They wanted to know about my father," Oliver revealed. "If he made it to the island. If he told me anything. I got loose before they could ask anything else."

"This changes things," Nyssa pointed it. "We are going to have to move up our plans."

"We are," Oliver agreed. "Call Namir. Have him deliver the equipment to the foundry tonight. No deaths but no witnesses either."

#Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow#

"Oliver," Moira called as he and Nyssa exited the mansion the next morning. Oliver had had another nightmare but thankfully it had only woken Nyssa. "I'd like to introduce you to somebody," she said as she stood next to Walter and a tall, well-built man. "This is John Diggle. He will be accompanying you from now on."

"I don't need a babysitter," Oliver said with a smile towards Moira before looking at John. "No offence."

"None taken, sir," John replied calmly, not having been offended.

"Darling, Oliver's a grown man," Walter reasoned. "If he doesn't feel the need for armed protection..."

"I understand," Moira interjected. "But this is something I need." Oliver couldn't think of an argument and so smiled at his mother before looking at the bodyguard once again.

Soon John Diggle was driving Oliver and Nyssa away from the mansion and into Starling City.

"So what should we call you?" Oliver asked cheerfully. He saw John glance at him in the mirror before focusing back on the road.

"Diggle's good," he answered. "Dig, if you want."

"You were a soldier?" Nyssa enquired.

"Yes ma'am. 105th Airborne out of Kandahar, retired. Been in the private sector a little more than 4 years now," Diggle answered before looking in the mirror again. "I don't want there to be any confusion, Mr. Queen. My ability to keep you from harm will outweigh your comfort. Do we have an agreement? Sir?" Diggle asked. He heard the rear doors to the car open and close and he glanced into the back to find it completely empty. He slammed on the breaks, not believing that the two of them would exit the vehicle while it was still moving. He jumped out and opened the rear door, finding the backseat empty. He stood tall and looked around, to no avail; Oliver and Nyssa were gone.

#Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow#

"Any trouble Namir?" Oliver asked as he and Nyssa walked up to the stack of crates and boxes in the center of the abandoned steel factory. The assassin dropped down from where he had been hidden in the rafters and kneeled before them.

"None Al Sah-him. All has been quiet," Namir reported.

"Good," Al Sah-him responded impassively. "If you have nothing else to tell us, you are dismissed."

"As you command, Al Sah-him," Namir accepted before he stood and left out of the rear of the factory.

"So do you think your mother will approve of our wedding?" Nyssa asked as she walked around the pile of boxes. 

"I would say it is a bit late for that," Oliver said as he stepped up to Nyssa. "We are already married after all. This would just be making it legal."

"I don't care if it's legal," Nyssa said as she draped her arms around Oliver's neck.

"Unfortunately, the rest of the world does," Oliver said before kissing Nyssa deeply. They held the kiss until they were forced to break apart for air. "We should get started. We have a lot of work to do."

"We should," Nyssa agreed as she stepped back and took her jacket off. Oliver followed suit before he pick up the first of the crates and started to move it deeper into the factory.

They spent the rest of the day moving all their equipment into the basement before unpacking and setting it up. Oliver made arrows as Nyssa set up and uploaded files to their computers. Before long they were working out, inverted crunches while hanging from the ceiling pipes or climbing up and down the salmon ladder he had built for Oliver while Nyssa preferred more grounded methods; though she indulged herself with a few trips up and down the ladder.

They then sparred against one another; first hand to hand before transitioning to metal batons and then on to practice swords. After that, came archery. Oliver was putting together his black recurve bow as Nyssa stepped up to him, already prepared.


"Ready beloved?" Nyssa asked as she watch Oliver handle his bow with almost as much love as he handled her. "Sometimes I wonder if I should be jealous of that bow."

"Never," Oliver stated confidently as he finished assembling his bow. He strapped on his quiver and stalked over to where Nyssa had moved too; ready for their little game. "How many?"

"Only 9," Nyssa said as she turned to face the empty space.

"Ready?" Oliver asked. Nyssa nodded calmly so Oliver knocked over the container of tennis balls, sending 9 of them bouncing out in front of them. They each calmly began to draw, nock and fire arrows, steadily pinning the balls to the wall. The final ball was practically split in two as 2 arrows had pierced it.

"A draw," Nyssa observed. "I dislike draws."

"I don't mind them," Oliver said with a soft smile. "Beats losing to you all the time."

"You have yet to beat me though husband," Nyssa stated. "Even with all you prodigious natural talent."

"Perhaps one day, I will," Oliver smirked as he looked at the clock he had hung on an empty pillar. "It's getting late."

"Who will you be starting with?" Nyssa asked as they both walked back to the computers.

"Adam Hunt. A friend is working on a case and I owe it to them to make sure they do not get hurt," Oliver said as he brought up information on the screens. "He has swindled over $40 million from the cities underprivileged, and gotten away with it by bribing or killing those who stood in his way. I think it is time he returned that money. One way or another."

"This friend. She, would be Laurel Lance; Sara's sister?" Nyssa asked.

"Yes," Oliver admitted sullenly, remembering. "I owe it to the family to make sure nothing else happens to them."

"This crusade cannot be about one family, Oliver," Nyssa said calmly. "It has to be about more than them. It must be about the city as a whole."

"And it is," Oliver agreed impassively. "Adam Hunt is just a convenient place to start."




 
Lorad [Show/Hide]
Lt. JG Donna 'Chance' Petterson [Show/Hide]
PO1 Mickayla MacGregor [Show/Hide]
Samala [Show/Hide]

Re: Stegro's Arrowverse - Heir #02 - Heir Apparent
Reply #2
Chapter 03 - Time's Up

"Do I want to know how many weapons you have on you?" Oliver asked as he admired Nyssa. She was wearing an off the shoulder crimson dress that finished mid-thigh, complimented with a pair of Louboutins. 

"If you're lucky I'll let you try and find them all later," Nyssa answered sweetly as they descended the stairs of the Queen Mansion the following evening. Tommy had organised a 'Welcome Home' party surprisingly quickly and now they both were on their way there. Oliver had managed to convince his friend to hold the party at the building located conveniently across the street from Adam Hunt's penthouse. "Do you think he will acquiesce to your demand?"

"I doubt it. Until I have a reputation and a precedent set, most will try to fight rather than cooperate," Oliver answered as they approached the front door, Oliver opening it to allow Nyssa through, then closing it behind himself. "I already have my gear stashed on the roof. It won't take long to convince him that he was incorrect in doubting my resolve."

"Be careful beloved, Nyssa cautioned as they approached the waiting car. "Enough ants can overwhelm the spider."

"I will," Oliver promised as he opened the rear door, only to find John Diggle already sitting there waiting for them.

"Put on your seatbelt, sir, ma'am," John said with a smile. "Wouldn't want you to miss your party." Oliver smiled as he stepped aside to allow Nyssa to enter.

"Mr Diggle, how are you this evening?" Nyssa asked, smiling in amusement.

#Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow#

Oliver and Nyssa descended the stairs slowly into the party, eyeing the crowd warily; neither of them liking crowds very much even if they were occasionally useful. They paused for a moment so that Oliver could check his phone but no words were exchanged as Oliver showed his wife that Hunt had yet to act. As he pocketed his phone again they saw Tommy approaching them, even as he waved at the DJ to cut the music.

"Everybody, hey!" Tommy called out, getting everyone's attention. He looked up to the stairs where Oliver and Nyssa still stood. "Man of the hour! Whoo! Now, let us please give him the welcome home he deserves."

"Go, be Oliver Queen," Nyssa whispered. Oliver glanced at her before slipping on the face of Oliver Queen, billionaire party boy and descending into the party. Queen's 'We Are The Champions' sounded out as he made his way up to the stage.

"Thank you very much, everybody!" he yelled out as he accepted a shot from Tommy, downing it without hesitation. "I missed Tequila!" he shouted as the crowd cheered and the music started back up. Oliver descended from the stage and joined up with Tommy as they looked out at the party. "Is there anyone here that I actually know?"

"Well there is him," Tommy said as he looked at Diggle standing in a corner, watching Oliver. "Does he wipe for you too?" Oliver chuckled as Tommy wrapped an arm around his shoulders. "And then there is her," Tommy said as Nyssa glided up to them. "Wow."

"I will take that as a compliment," Nyssa commented with a smile as she stopped next to Oliver, also gazing out at the crowd.

"It was meant as one," Tommy confirmed, flashing her a smile before sipping his drink. They watched the crowd for a while before Nyssa felt, more than saw, Oliver stiffen. She followed his gaze and saw what had caused his reaction; Thea buying some sort of drug.

"Back in a minute," Oliver ground out and Nyssa wordlessly followed him leaving Tommy behind. Diggle saw their movement and followed behind discreetly.

"Ollie, hey!" Thea said in greeting as Oliver gasped her arm and separated her from her friends. "This party is sick! Hey Nyssa."

"Thea," Nyssa said in greeting."

"Who let you in here?" Oliver demanded quietly.

"I believe it was someone who said 'Right this way Miss Queen'." Thea replied, her voice dripping sarcasm.

"Well, you shouldn't be here," Oliver stated.

"I'm not 12 anymore," Thea pointed out harshly as she pulled he arm free, her eyes narrowed at her brother.

"No, you're not," Oliver agreed. "You're 17."

"Ollie, I love you," Thea said derisively. "But you cannot come back and judge me, especially for being just like you."

"He knows it cannot have been easy on you Thea, while he was away," Nyssa said, trying to calm the heating exchange.

"Away?" Thea scoffed, looking at Nyssa then back to her brother. "You died, Ollie. You and dad died. I went to your funerals."

"I know," Oliver started.

"No, you don't," Thea cut him off as Oliver caught a glimpse of the pain that Thea had been holding in. "Mom had Walter, and I had no one. You guys all act like its cool; let's forget about the last 5 years. Well, I can't. For me, it's kind of permanently in there! So I'm sorry if I turned out some major disappointment, but this... me, is the best I could do with what I had to work with." Oliver could not meet his sister's fiery gaze as she turned back to her friends. "Let's bounce," she said and led the group of girls away.

"Are you alright?" Nyssa asked her beloved, her concern evident.

"I will be," Oliver replied, clearly disheartened. "Did you get it?"

"Panache of a thief," Nyssa pointed out as she held up the packet of pills. 

"Thank you," Oliver said as he took the pills and dumped them in the nearest trashcan. Nyssa didn't miss the satisfied look that Diggle shot at Oliver.

"Ollie," a woman's voice sounded out and Nyssa looked around to see Oliver standing before a well-dressed brunette.

"Oh, you're here," Oliver said, clearly surprised that this woman was here.

"Tommy," the woman exclaimed. "He pointed out that we have too many years between us to leave things as we did. And I may have been a little harsh before."

"I don't think your father would agree, Laurel," Oliver replied. Nyssa now understood who she was; Laurel Lance. 

"Is there someplace quieter we can talk?" Laurel asked. Oliver glanced at Nyssa and saw her nod her head minutely. 

"Yeah," Oliver replied, holding out his arm to guide laurel out of the club.

#Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow#

"Something I can help you with, sir?" Diggle's voice called out as Oliver made his way along the service passage. 10pm at come and gone and Hunt had done nothing.

"I just wanted to be alone for a moment," Oliver answered as he stopped next to his bodyguard. Oliver could appreciate this man's devotion to his job but now it was starting to become an annoyance.

"I would believe you, Mr Queen, if you weren't so full of crap," Diggle said with a light smile as he gestured at a pair of nearby doors. "Party is this way." Oliver sighed as he walked over to the door and tried to open it.

"It's locked," Oliver pointed out. Diggle looked at him for a second before stepping in front of him to open the door himself. As he stepped past his principal, Oliver's arm shot out and wrapped around Diggle's neck in a chokehold, leading to his unconsciousness seconds later.

"A bit drastic, don't you think?" Nyssa asked as she appeared out of nowhere.

"The man is extremely good at his job," Oliver pointed out appreciatively as he laid Diggle out on the floor gently. "Unfortunately, that was becoming a nuisance."

"I look forward to your explaining this," Nyssa said, smiling. "But for now, go. Others are awaiting your arrival."

"Be back soon," Oliver said as he kissed Nyssa's cheek, ignoring the look she was giving him. "I'll be careful."

"You had better," Nyssa called to Oliver's departing back. 

#Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow#

As soon as the doors dinged open, Oliver sprang into action. He swiftly launched two arrows, eliminating two of the 6 guards in the hall before using his bow as a quarterstaff to beat the two guards closest to the elevator into submission. He had previously cut the power to the lights and now he used the shadows to mask his movements as he lunged behind a pillar as the last two guards opened fire blindly. 

When they stopped to reload, Oliver sprang back into action. He threw his bow at one guard, disorientating him with a blow to the head while springing up onto a column and down onto the sixth guard who had been distracted by his bow toss. With practiced ease, he broke his neck before retrieving his bow and the still disorientated guard. Lining him up with the glass doors to Hunt's office, he gave him a swift kick, launching him through the glass to the accompanying sounds of more automatic gunfire.

Oliver fired an arrow at the one man he could see before stepping through the broken door. He again used his bow as a quarterstaff as he deliver 3 quick blows to the head of a man, breaking his nose, before a final blow to his throat; crushing his larynx. He turned to face Adam Hunt, even as he pulled, nocked and fired a pre-prepared arrow into the wall behind hunt.

"You missed," Adam Hunt observed snidely, even as Oliver aimed another arrow at his heart.

"Did I?" Oliver mocked. Before anything else could be said, his bow was kicked aside; the arrow impacting the desk harmlessly. Oliver could do little to prevent Adam Hunt fleeing the room, screaming into his phone, as he was focused on defending himself from the flurry of attacks launched at him by this man.

They grappled, punched, kicked and threw each other around the room before Oliver was able to gain the upper hand; which was promptly snatched away as the man drew a knife from his jacket. Oliver matched him with his own knife; a gift from Nyssa for his last birthday. 

With a blade as long as his forearm, S-shaped cross guard and an inch long pyramid spike on the hilt, it was a formidable weapon; made all the more so by the skill of the wielder. Oliver had lost count of the number of men he had killed with a knife, he only it was less than the number of men he had killed with a bow.

The man was momentarily paused by Oliver's presentation of his knife but quickly shook it off and lunged forward. Oliver parried and traced his blade up the man's arm, leaving a nasty cut in its wake. They grappled, stabbed and sliced at one another until Oliver was able to disarm him and flip him onto his back; unfortunately within reach of a previously dropped weapon. Oliver raced for the desk, diving over it as the man came up firing. Oliver felt a bullet impact his chest even as he threw a Flechette. The firing stopped but Oliver didn't notice; his landing had rendered him unconscious.

Oliver came to with the sounds of heavy footfalls approaching. He guessed it was the SWAT team that had been waiting outside with the other police that were present to prevent his intrusion; even as he had infiltrated behind them. He rubbed his chest and pulled loose the mangled bullet that was lodged in his armour.

"Lay down your weapons, or we will open fire," the cops screamed as they advanced towards him, unaware of his position. They stopped at the broken door and shined their weapon lights around the room, searching. "I repeat, lay down your weapons..."

Without hesitating, Oliver pulled two flechettes and threw them at the SWAT officers, disarming them. He launched himself around the desk, kicked his bow up into his hand as he passed it and dived through the window; all the while a path of bullets was traced behind him, ironically by Detective Lance. He hooked his bow over the cable he had secured there earlier and rode it down; time to get back to the party.

#Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow#

"Detective!" Oliver called as he and Nyssa slipped through the quiet crowd. A SWAT officer had silenced the music while Detective Lance was currently confronting Tommy; or was it the other way round. "This is a private party."

"Yeah?" Lance shot back. "Well, there was an incident at Adam Hunt's building tonight. You wouldn't know anything about that now, would you?" He challenged.

"Who's Adam Hunt?" Oliver asked, his boredom in their conversation evident. 

"He's a millionaire bottom feeder, and I'm kind of surprised you aren't friends," Lance explained snidely. 

"I've been out of town for a... while." Oliver said mildly. Tommy let out a soft laugh. Even Nyssa had to force herself not to smile. 

"Yeah." Lance agreed. "Well, he just got attacked by the guy with the hood. The same guy that saved your asses the other day." 

"The hood guy?" Oliver asked, surprised. 

"Yeah." Lance replied. 

"You didn't find him?" Oliver asked, then smiled cheekily. "How about I help you out? I'm going to offer a reward. Hey, everybody!" Oliver turned around and shouted to his fellow partiers. He held up two fingers. "$2 million to anybody that can find a nut bar in a green hood." 

The crowd cheered in response, and Oliver turned back to Lance. The older cop walked right up to Oliver, getting in his face.

"Did you even try to save her?" he demanded. Nyssa, saw the immediate effect that his words had on her husband, and stepped forward to support him. Hilton, Lance's partner, also saw what was happening and interceded, putting a calming hand on Lance and pushing him away lightly. 

"Ok, he said quietly, "Let's go, partner." Lance, though, wouldn't be deterred. 

"Did you even try to save my daughter?" he demanded angrily. 

"Sara wouldn't want this." Hilton said, leading Lance away. "Partner, let's go." Oliver's face was set in stone, as the cops left, but after a moment he made his way onto the stage. 

"It's way too quiet in here!" he yelled with a smile, throwing out his arms. "This is a party!" The crowd cheered as Oliver made his way off the stage. Tommy came up to him, giving him a strange look even as Nyssa stared at her beloved, clearly worried about how Oliver was coping with Detective Lance's accusations. She knew what had occurred on the island; Oliver had kept nothing from her when she finally asked what had happened on Lian Yu.

"Some coincidence," Tommy observed, "I mean, you asking to have your party here, and Hunt getting robbed right next door... and by the same guy who rescued us at the warehouse." His tone inferred he was suspicious, and Nyssa couldn't blame him; they would have to be more careful in the future. Oliver, however, just gave him a tight smile. 

"If I were you, Tommy, I'd just be glad you're alive." He advised calmly. 

Tommy stared back at his friend; for the first time since they had met, he truly felt like he didn't know the person standing in front of him. "What happened to you on that island?" he asked haltingly. 

"A lot." Oliver and Nyssa replied simultaneously before walking away. 

#Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow#

"The redistribution of the stolen money has been completed," Nyssa stated, turning to face her beloved. She had tried to speak to Oliver when they had returned o the mansion the previous night but he had claimed tiredness and gone straight to bed; in his defence, he had gone straight to sleep, a unique even in itself. Now though, she would not be denied. "How are you?"

"I'm fine," Oliver answered, hoping Nyssa would drop it but knowing that she wouldn't; he wouldn't have. He turned to face her, being met by her relaxed yet determined face, one eyebrow raised and all.

"You know I hate that word," Nyssa pointed out. "Now I will ask again, and then I will beat an answer out of you husband. How. Are. You?" Oliver exhaled slowly, buying himself a moment to organise his thoughts.

"I'm alright. Just memories and old feelings," Oliver explained sadly. Nyssa let him be for a moment, knowing he would explain as he always did. "I just wondering if things could have been done differently. I maybe events had gone a different path. If I have known then, what I know now..." Nyssa stilled Oliver with a hand on his chest, over his heart.

"What's past is prologue," Nyssa said simply as she looked up into his bright blue eyes. He said nothing, accepting her words as the truth before a smile graced his face. Nyssa couldn't keep the smile from appearing on her own. "What?"

"To think that I had only read one book in the four colleges I dropped out of and it was about a man trying to get home. And it helped me on the island," Oliver started, still smiling. "And now, 5 years later, I recognise that you just quoted Shakespeare's The Tempest." 

"It was an interesting read," Nyssa said in mock protest. She didn't resist as Oliver lent down and kissed her passionately.

"I have to check that they know the money went in," Oliver said after breaking the kiss. "I'll be back soon."

#Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow##Arrow#

Oliver had approached CNRI, hoping to be able to tell if they knew if his recent transactions had been noticed, when he spotted Tommy's car parked in an alley. His curiosity getting the better of him, he approached it when he spotted Tommy and Laurel walking along the alley towards it. He stopped and perched silently on a fire escape as their voices filtered up to him.

"I thought maybe you and Oliver went mano-a-mano again." Tommy threw out, spiking Oliver's interest, "I saw you two head out." 

"There's nothing between Oliver and I," Laurel said with finality. "Not anymore." 


"Here I thought the only thing between you and Oliver was us," Tommy offered.  

"I wouldn't exactly characterize us as an 'us', Tommy." Laurel said teasingly. Tommy stopped and turned to face her. 

"Then what would you call it?" he asked. 

"A lapse." She decided after a moment of thought.

"That's quite a few lapses" Tommy said with a grin. "Your place, my place, my place again..." they both laughed. 

"Oh, come on, Merlyn." Laurel said with a smile. "We both know that you're not a one-girl type of guy." 

"Depends on the girl." He announced. Laurel couldn't help but smile back at Tommy's charm. 

"I have to go back to work." She said finally, turning to walk away. 

"Dinah Laurel Lance," Tommy called out, using Laurel's full name Oliver noticed. "Always trying to save the world." Laurel tuned around and smiled. 

"Hey." She said, "If I don't try and save it, who will?" she gave him a small wave, then turned and walked away. Tommy smiled and got in his car, and unnoticed by either of them, Oliver sat perched on a fire escape high above, watching it all. He couldn't find it in himself to fault them for getting together during the time he was gone. After all, he had been dead and even gotten married himself. Oliver hoped that his friend was more serious than he had been in the past, even as he climbed the fire escape back to the room.

A shift in the wind as he alighted the ladder onto the roof brought a fresh scent to his nose. He had company.

"You can quit skulking about," Oliver called to the silent night. "I know you are there." As if appearing from the shadows themselves, 3 men dressed in the garb of the League of Assassins stepped into the open. Their masks hid their identities however what was interesting was the coiled red viper that was sewn onto the left breast of their jackets. "What do you want?" Oliver growled.

"Our mistress tasked us to watch you," the closest of the assassins spoke. Oliver regard him as he took a step closer. "It is said that she has great plans for you."

"Watching implies not being seen," Oliver stated calmly.

"It does," the assassin agreed. "However, we believe that her plans could be accelerated if you were brought before her."

"Ambition is a dangerous feeling. It often leads to foolhardy actions," Oliver said as his mind worked. "I won't be accompanying you."

"As you wish," the man said as he turned away. He quickly turned back, pulling a knife as he did so only to be met by Oliver swinging his bow at his head; an unavoidable blow. Oliver pivoted around the swing, drew, nocked and fired an arrow into the furthest assassin's heart before blocking a sword strike from beside him.

A flurry of blows ensued, all of which Oliver blocked effortlessly. An opening presented itself and Oliver took it, burying his knife into the assassin's throat. He turned to face the last assassin, the one he had struck first, only to find the rooftop empty; the assassin had fled.

"So it begins," Oliver said quiet to the once again silent night.
Lorad [Show/Hide]
Lt. JG Donna 'Chance' Petterson [Show/Hide]
PO1 Mickayla MacGregor [Show/Hide]
Samala [Show/Hide]

Re: Stegro's Arrowverse - Heir #02 - Heir Apparent
Reply #3
Chapter 04 - Reappearance Repercussions

"Ma'am, I truly do not know," Dig answered Moira Queen honestly. He tried not to think about what Oliver Queen was up to, even as his gut told him that he was most definitely up to something. 

"And he truly doesn't," Oliver said jovially as he and Nyssa walked into the room. Moira stared at them balefully before speaking. 

"Then perhaps you would like to share where it is you both run off to," Moira said, her exasperation clearly evident to everyone present. 

"I've been stuck on an island for 5 years. Nyssa for 3," Oliver began to explain. 

"I know that Oliver," Moira pointed out. 

"Mom, we were alone," Oliver said, shooting his mother a look. "Being back, it gets, overwhelming at times. Nyssa and I, we need to get away from everyone, everything." 

"I see," Moira said after considering what her son had said. 

"We will try and curtail our disappearances," Nyssa offered. "Perhaps try and find somewhere on the grounds where we can go to get away." 

"No, that's alright. I'd rather that you promised to take Mr Diggle with you when you need to get away," Moira proposed calmly as she stepped in front of her son. "There is a maniac out there, hunting the wealthy and you have already been kidnapped once since you got back. It's not safe." 

"Oliver's life was saved by that maniac," Nyssa pointed out. 

"This isn't a game," Moira said with a glare at Nyssa. She focused back onto her son, looking him in the eyes. "I lost you once. And I refuse to go through that again," Moira stated plaintively. 

"Okay," Oliver replied after a moment. Nyssa could hear the genuine remorse in his voice; something she wasn't used to hearing. "Dig's my guy." 

"Thank you Oliver," Moira said gratefully, turning to walk out of the room before she stopped and looked back. "About our conversation after you kidnapping. How does Saturday December 1st sound?" 

"That sounds lovely," Nyssa answered after glancing at Oliver and receiving an almost imperceptible nod in return.  

"Wonderful. I'll begin making initial arrangements and appointments for us," Moira stated calmly, still not happy at Oliver's ultimatum. 

"I'm looking forward to them," Nyssa said to Moira's retreating form.  

"Sorry to give you much grief," Oliver said to his bodyguard. Dig walked around the couch, buttoning his suit as he moved and stopped in front of Oliver. 

"I served three tours in Afghanistan, Mr. Queen. You don't even come close to my definition of grief," he declared stoically. "But I will say this. Ditch me one more time, and no one will have to fire me," he stated before he turned and headed out of the room, passing Thea on his way. 

"Hey Thea, where are you going?" Oliver called out to his sister, surprising her as she hadn't seen him there. 

"Not sure. Probably somewhere loud and smoky though," She replied, crossing her arms and looking at her brother and Nyssa. "And don't worry, I'm going to go get drunk. No need to steal my stash." 

"Thea, do you think this is what dad would have wanted for you?" Oliver asked as he stepped closer to his sister. He was worried about how she was acting and was trying to get through to her. 

"You see, that's the thing. Dead people don't want anything. It's one of the perks of being dead," Thea argued. 

"I was dead," Oliver countered. "And I wanted a lot." 

"Except for your family," Thea said spitefully. "Instead you went and tried to start a new one. You went and got married. Or at least as close as you can get to married on a deserted island in the middle of nowhere. I didn't even need to overhear you and mom to know that," She pointed out coldly. "You know, you have been home a week and all you have done is avoid mom, ignore Walter and judge me," Thea said as she turned and started walking away. "Don't wait up." 

"She's right," Oliver said as Nyssa stepped up behind him, wrapping an arm around his waist. "I have done all those things. Even though I haven't meant too." 

"We knew it would be hard coming home," Nyssa reminded Oliver. "We spoke about it while we waited." 

"I know," Oliver acceded reluctantly. "I just didn't think it would be as hard as it has been." 

"Nothing worth having is easy to obtain," Nyssa pointed out. "I'm proof of that." 

"You are," Oliver said, somewhat happier. 

"Talk to her. Make an effort. Show her that you are trying and maybe, just maybe, she will meet you along the way," Nyssa proposed. 

"What would I do without you?" Oliver wondered as he wrapped his arms around his wife. 

"That's easy," Nyssa quipped before kissing Oliver. "You wouldn't have made it this far. 

#Arrow# 

"Everything alright, Oliver?" Moira asked her son as their limousine drove through the city on it's way to Queen Consolidated. 

"I'm fine," Oliver replied, staring out the window. "Just remembering."  

The rest of the drive was made in silence and Oliver soon found himself standing on the sidewalk outside his family's company, helping first his mother and then Nyssa from the car. Dig had climbed out of the passenger seat where he had travelled and once Oliver had shut the door, Dig knocked on the window and the car pulled away into the traffic once again. The four of them made their way up the stairs and into the foyer where Walter was waiting for them.  

"I hope the traffic wasn't too bad," Walter offered in greeting. 

"It was fine," Oliver said as he looked around.  

"Yes, well, why don't we head upstairs?" Walter suggested as he motioned them towards a bank of elevators. Everyone started to follow by Nyssa pulled up short. 

"Actually, if it is alright, I might just wait down here," Nyssa said, somewhat awkwardly. "I might go get a coffee of something." 

"Are you sure dear?" Moira asked, actually surprised that Nyssa did not want to come inside. 

"Quite sure," Nyssa replied. "You continue without. I'm sure you have lots to discuss." 

"As long as you're ok," Oliver said. "Dig might be open to keeping you company if you want." 

"No, he is your bodyguard. He should be with you," Nyssa proclaimed. "Go. I'll be fine." 

"Alright then," Oliver said, leaning in to kiss her cheek. "I'll call you when we are on our way back down then." 

"Perfect," Nyssa said. She stood in the foyer and watch as they all entered one of the elevators, the doors shutting and whisking them up into the tower. As soon as they were gone, Nyssa turned and walked up the main desk. "Hi, could you direct me to a Felicity Smoak?" 

#Arrow#

"Oliver, as you can see, we have modernised quite a bit," Walter pointed out as they exited the elevator onto the executive level of the main tower. While the elevator banks were set into a vibrant, green marble, the rest of the floor was all steel and glass. Oliver whistled in awe as Walter led him, Moira and Diggle along the short corridor towards his office.  

"Are you enjoying yourself?" she asked, seeing the smile on her son's face.  

"Yes, I am," Oliver said truthfully. It was good to be in this building again. He had good memories of being here. 

"I remember when your father used to bring you here when you were a boy." Walter said cheerfully as they all entered his office. Oliver noticed Diggle took up position by the door, something he doubted his mother or Walter even noticed. "You always were so excited."  

"Dad let me drink soda in the office." Oliver revealed wistfully, his mind wandering back.  

"Ah!" Moira exclaimed happily, smiling. "So that is why you enjoyed coming here."  

"Queen Consolidated's success of late is a result of its targeted diversification." Walter began to explain as Oliver looked around the office. "We have been making impressive inroads into cutting-edge fields like bio-tech and clean energy."  

"That' sounds promising." Oliver interrupted, as he looked out the window to the city below, his city.  

"Sweetheart," Moira said, beckoning her son to join them. "Oliver, Walter and I have something we would like to discuss with you. Come, please sit." She motioned towards one of the chairs in front of Walter's desk. Oliver looked at her warily.  

"Mom, it makes me nervous when you ask me to sit down," Oliver stated. The three stood awkwardly for a moment, before Walter continued.  

"Queen Consolidated is about to break ground on a new site for the Applied Sciences Division, and we would like to honor your father by dedicating the building in his name," he announced.   

"That's nice," Oliver agreed, nodding. 

"There's more," Walter started. 

"We'd like to make an announcement at the dedication," Moira added in a measured tone, "That you will be taking a leadership position in the company."  

"No." Oliver adamantly said without pause.  

"YOUR company." She emphasized.  

"No, I don't want to lead anything." He fired back strongly, then looked at Walter. "Besides, Walter is doing a great job here."  It was the first...kind....thing Oliver had said to or about Walter since he got back, and the elder businessman was stunned momentarily.  

"You said that you wanted to be a different person," Moira urged Oliver. "And you are Robert Queen's son."  

"I don't need to be reminded of that." Oliver replied, his voice suddenly cold.  

"Well, obviously you do," pressed Moira, disregarding her son's change in tone and posture. Walter walked up next to Moira and put a reassuring hand on his wife's back.  

"Everyone here understands that this transition is going to be extremely difficult for you," Walter offered, trying to settle the runaway conversation. 

"Thank you, Walter." Oliver said, the civility he had tried to build crumbling slowly away. "Which part, though? Everyone fantasizing that I got my MBA while I was on the island? Or the fact that my father's CFO..." Oliver caught himself before he finished what was on his mind. It wouldn't help to antagonize an already tense situation. "I'll think about it." 

His mother's disappointment was obvious to Oliver as she turned away from him. Oliver, for his part, was ashamed at his outburst. Moira walked towards the door, then stopped and turned.  

"You know, five years ago, your irresponsibility was charming, to a degree," She said. "It is a lot less so now." She then turned and walked out of the room. Walter studied Oliver for a moment before turning and following after a moment. Dig looked on, no judgment whatsoever on his face. As a soldier, he knew what it was like to come home to a world you didn't recognize anymore.  

#Arrow# 

"Hello Felicity," Nyssa said as she stepped around the corner of her cubicle and lent on the edge.  

"Nyssa. Hi," Felicity exclaimed. She had been engrossed in a computer problem and had been oblivious to the woman's approach. "How are you? What are you doing here?" 

"I am well, thank you," Nyssa replied, unable and unwilling to hide her smile at Felicity's reaction to her presence. "You said that if I wanted to find you all I had to do was look here at Queen Consolidated." 

"I did say that, didn't I," Felicity said, remembering her own words from the previous week. "So why did you want to find me? Not that it's a bad thing you trying to find me. Is it?" 

"I believe that will be up to you to decide," Nyssa responded, answering Felicity's babble. "I came looking for you because I enjoyed our coffee together last week and I was wondering if you would like to join me again." 

"Ah, ok," a bewildered Felicity said. "I don't usually go on coffee dates with anyone. Actually I don't usually go on dates at all. Long story. This isn't a date date, is it?" 

"No, I don't believe it is," Nyssa replied, off put by Felicity's strange yet oddly endearing speech habits. 

"Oh, that's good then," Felicity said, her relief obvious. "I'm not sure what I would say if it was. I've never had an attractive woman ask me out on a date before. Oh, my god. I just said that out loud, didn't I?" 

"You did," Nyssa said, smiling at Felicity, who was blushing deeper as the seconds passed. "Thank you for the complement." Nyssa's words caused Felicity to blush even redder then what she already had. "So, about that coffee?" 

"Yes, coffee. I love coffee," Felicity babbled, trying to distract herself as she grabbed a notepad on her desk. "Here is my phone number. Call or text me when you wanted to catch up and we'll work something out." Felicity tore off the top sheet and offered it to Nyssa, who took it. 

"That sounds lovely," Nyssa said as she pocketed the piece of paper. "I should leave you to your work. I think I have distracted you enough." 

"From this?" Felicity asked, indicating her workspace. "This I could do with my eyes closed or in my sleep. You showing up is actually a respite from the tedium that is my work here." 

"Well, I'm glad I chose to come find you today then," Nyssa said with another smile. "I will be in touch. Goodbye Felicity." 

"Bye Nyssa," Felicity replied cheerfully. She watched Nyssa walk away before turning back to her work. "And back to the grind." 

#Arrow# 

Oliver and Dig descended in the elevator in silence, Dig already having called for a car. The two walked purposefully through the foyer and out into the sun where they had to fight their way through a sea of reporters to the Bentley waiting at the sidewalk. Dig got Oliver in, then walked around and got in on the other side.  

"The driver will be here in a minute." He said as they settled into their seats, the reporters still shouting questions to them from outside the car.  

"Okay. I've already texted Nyssa," Oliver replied tersely, still thinking about what happened in Walter's office. They were silent for a few moments before Dig spoke.  

"You know, I spent the first 27 years of my life in Starling City, and the next five in Afghanistan." He started. "You want to know what I learned?"  

"There's no place like home?" Oliver replied dryly, not really in the mood to speak. Dig smiled at his response and shook his head.  

"No, just the opposite. Home is a battlefield." He explained calmly. "Back home, they're all trying to get you. Get you to open up, to be somebody you're not sure you are anymore or could ever be again." He paused and looked at the young man. "Or I could be wrong. Maybe after five years on a deserted island, you're not as messed up in the head as you have every right to be,"  Dig observed. 

"She is why I'm not," Oliver said as he looked out the window. John followed his gaze and saw Nyssa stepping out of the foyer of Queen Consolidated. She looked around for a moment before she fixed her eyes on Oliver and headed towards him. Dig wondered, not for the first time, what really happened on that island as he climbed out of the car. 

#Arrow#

"Do you think Somers will testify?" Nyssa asked that night as she lay on their bed. "If he is involved with the Triads, I doubt it will be as simple as threatening him once." 

"I agree," Oliver said as he stepped out of the bathroom. "But, he, like everyone else, will get an opportunity to do the right thing. And when he doesn't, I will be there to convince him to do it." 

"I have found you can be rather convincing when you want to be," Nyssa observed. 

"I had a good teacher," Oliver replied as he sat on the bed next to his wife. "My concern though is the Triad. They have a tendency for killing those that get in their way." 

"And currently Laurel is putting herself in their way," Nyssa pointed out. 

"Yes," Oliver stated. "What should I do?" 

"Protect her," Nyssa said simply, as if it was obvious. "Besides, I think it is time I met Laurel Lance myself." 

"Should I wear armour?" Oliver teased. 

"Do you think it would save you?" Nyssa retorted to Oliver's chuckle. Nyssa smiled at him before speaking again. "What are you going to do about Thea?" 

"Thea," Oliver said quietly. "I never considered how my absence would have hit her, and now being back and seeing it. It worries me how much she becoming the person I was." 

"Then how are you going to stop it?" Nyssa asked her beloved. "No one is beyond saving. Talk to her." 

"You said that this morning," Oliver pointed out. 

"I did," Nyssa agreed. "It was good advice then and it still is now." 

"What do I say to her though? I can exactly tell her the truth," Oliver said. 

"No, you can't," Nyssa replied and she lifted her hand to rest on Oliver's chest over his heart. "But you will know what to say when you need to. Trust yourself." 

"Don't suppose you have any ideas about my mother's idea for me to join the company as well?" Oliver wondered idly. 

"I don't," Nyssa declared, amused. "But I am sure that we can think of something. Together." 
Lorad [Show/Hide]
Lt. JG Donna 'Chance' Petterson [Show/Hide]
PO1 Mickayla MacGregor [Show/Hide]
Samala [Show/Hide]

Re: Stegro's Arrowverse - Heir #02 - Heir Apparent
Reply #4
Chapter 05 - Relationship Revelations

"Attorney for shipping magnate, Martin Somers, has confirmed his client has no intention of testifying, maintaining his innocence in the wrongful death of Victor Nocenti. Nocenti's body was found four weeks ago. We'll keep you updated as more information becomes available."

"Obviously Somers requires more convincing," Oliver growled as he glowered at the morning news report on the TV.

"We thought he might," Nyssa said as she reclined on top of the bed, admiring her husband's physique, even as he reached for his shirt and began putting it on.

"Wait, how did you get those?" Thea asked as she entered his room through the open door. Oliver scowled in annoyance, even as he turned and tried to close his shirt. Nyssa stayed silent and still on the bed, choosing to watch rather than act. She was curious about what Thea's reaction would be to Oliver's scars, which she had obviously seen.

"Don't you knock?" Oliver grumbled.

"No," Thea declared forcefully as she strode up to her brother and forced him to turn around to face her. "Mum said there were some scars but she didn't..." Thea explained as she gently wrested the edges of her brother's shirt from his clenched hands and drew it open to completely reveal his torso; and all the scars upon it.

Nyssa watched the look of horror appear on Thea's face and recognized what it was; the beginnings of an understanding of what Oliver had gone through in the 5 years he was away.

"I'm..." Thea started before she had to stop. She took a moment to steady herself before she continued. "Oliver, what happened to you out there? What happened to you both?" Thea asked as she looked across the room at Nyssa, looking to see if she had any similar scars. Nyssa did have a few, but they weren't where you could normally see them.

"I don't want to talk about it," Oliver said as he pulled his shirt free and began buttoning it. Thea scoffed at his words.

"Of course you don't," she said angrily. "You never want to talk to me about anything. The only thing you want to know about me is my social life," she accused, turning to walk out. Nyssa was about to call out when Oliver spoke.

"Wait!" he called out, stopping Thea from leaving. He took a deep breath as Thea folded her arms in defiance. "I'm sorry Thea," he started. "I've been told that I need to, get better, at talking about what happened to me while I was away. But I'm not ready yet." Oliver said all this while looking Thea in the eye, hoping she would understand what he was trying to say. "Okay?"

"Do you have a second?" Thea asked after staring at her brother for a moment. Nyssa could tell she meant privately.

"Sure," Oliver responded simply.

"Good. There is something out back that I want to show to you," Thea explained before glancing at Nyssa. "I won't keep him long." Oliver looked at Nyssa and saw her nod her encouragement as he grabbed his jacket before he followed his sister out.

Thea led him down and out of the mansion and into the backyard to a clearing where two headstones had been erected. They read:

Robert Queen 

1958-2007 

A leader, a husband 

 

Oliver Queen 

1985-2007 

A loving son and brother, whose light was diminished far too soon
 


"Sometimes I'd come out here, when I felt...whatever," Thea said as she stopped in front of her father's headstone. She knelt down and brushed away the stray laves that had settled on it before she spoke again. "Mom stopped going out about a month after funerals. Soon, she stopped talking altogether. I'd come down here because the house was so quiet." She pointed at her brother's headstone. "To talk to you." Oliver could tell from her voice that she was trying not to cry. He knew he should say something but wasn't sure what to say. "Stupid stuff. What boy I had a crush on or what I was doing that day. Sometimes I couldn't help it and I'd ask, beg, you to find your way home to me, Ollie." She stood and turned to face her brother. "And now, here you stand. But the truth is, I felt closer to you when you were dead." She paused to brush a single tear away before focusing back on her brother. "I understand that it was hell there, but you need to understand that it was hell here too. You gotta let me in, Ollie," Thea implored her brother. "You have to let someone in. And not just Nyssa." Finished, Thea stepped past her brother and walked away, leaving Oliver to stand before the pair of headstones. Oliver looked down at his headstone, thinking about everything his sister had told him and wondering how much he could, should share.

#Arrow#

"Still sure you want to do this?" Oliver asked Nyssa as they walked down the hallway, Oliver carrying a brown paper bag.

"I am," Nyssa replied. "You have told me much about her but that is all from the past. I would like to meet the woman that was able to grasp your heart for a time."

"I didn't exactly treat her nicely," Oliver admitted. "Then or now."

"We all make mistakes beloved," Nyssa said as she placed a hand on Oliver's cheek. "But it is how we move on from those mistakes that makes us who we are. You still want her friendship? Show her that you can, and still want to be a friend."

"I love you," Oliver said as he kissed Nyssa.

"I know," Nyssa replied with a smile.

"Here goes," Oliver said as he continued down the hallway to Laurel's door, knocking softly. Shuffling was heard from inside before the door was opened, revealing Laurel standing there, her face blank. "Hi."

"Oliver," Laurel said emotionlessly.

"Are you ok? There are cops parked outside," Oliver asked. Both he and Nyssa had noticed the officers, courtesy of Detective Lance no doubt, stationed outside. They weren't sure how effective a defense they would be against Triad assassins but they might at least give some forewarning.

"I'm fine. They are from my dad. And how am I supposed to stay away from you, like you advised me to do, if you won't stay away from me?" Laurel wondered sarcastically. "What are you doing here?"

"It was pointed out to me recently that since I have been back, I have been cold and distant which has hurt those around me," Oliver tried to explain. "I was advised that it was probably a good idea to change this behavior before the damage I have done becomes too much to fix."

"And what? You thought you would start with the first person you pushed away?" Laurel pointed out angrily.

"By pushing you away, I thought I was protecting you," Oliver reasoned, pausing before continuing on. "But then I saw you at the court house yesterday and it made me realize that I had hurt you. I am sorry for that." 

"You're going to have to do a lot more than a pretty speech, Oliver," Laurel said, still angry.

"I know. But I will do what I need to do to win back your friendship," Oliver declared steadfastly. "And in the spirit of that possible friendship, there is someone that I want you to meet," Oliver said as he stepped to the side to reveal Nyssa behind him. "This is Nyssa."

"I remember you. You were at the court house yesterday. And at Tommy's party for Oliver last week," Laurel said, her mind already working, connecting the dots. "Oh my god. You're her. The woman that was rescued with Ollie."

"I am," Nyssa admitted. "Though I would appreciate it if you would keep that to yourself."

"When I first heard the news, I hoped it might have been Sara, but then Ollie showed up and Sara didn't," Laurel said sadly. "It almost felt like losing her all over again."

"I am sorry for your loss, Laurel," Nyssa consoled. "I too, have lost a sister."

"Then you know what it feels like," Laurel confided.

"I do," Nyssa confirmed. Laurel stared at Nyssa for a moment before glancing at Oliver and stepping back from the door, admitting the two of them inside. "Thank you," Nyssa said sincerely as she looked around.

"Wow. This place hasn't changed. It's still how I remember it," Oliver observed as he too, looked around.

"Well, I haven't had the time to redecorate," sniped Laurel as she walked past the two of them.

"Laurel, I admit I'm a jerk," Oliver announced, stopping Laurel in her tracks. "5 years ago I was a jerk and now, after the island and everything that has happened, I am just a damaged jerk." Laurel turned to look back at Oliver and saw the look on his face. What surprised her though was the look of annoyance on Nyssa's. Laurel decided to take pity on Oliver, though not before filing away the look on Nyssa's face for later.

"What's in the bag?" She asked, indicating the bag that Oliver was still carrying.

"5 years on an island gives you a lot of time to think. I thought of a lot of things on the island but there was one thing I thought about every day," Oliver said as he reached into the bag. Nyssa smiled too as Oliver had shared this memory with her. "I actually dreamed about it, and I promised myself that if I ever got off that island, that I would do it again with the two of you."

"Oliver..." Laurel started accusingly.

"Eat ice cream," Oliver said as he pulled his hand from the bag to reveal a large tub of mint chocolate chip ice cream. Laurel couldn't stop the smile gracing her face, joining the ones on Oliver's and Nyssa's.

#Arrow#

"This is better than I remember," Oliver said with a smile as he dug into the carton with his spoon. It had been a long time since he had eaten ice cream.

"It is amazing," Nyssa added happily. "Oliver told me that it was good but this is beyond good."

"You've never had mint choc chip before?" Laurel asked, aghast at the thought.

"I did not have many luxuries growing up," Nyssa revealed evenly. "Ice cream was not one of them."

"I can't imagine what it would be like to grow up without ice cream," Laurel said. "Can you Ollie?"

"No, no I can't," Oliver agreed, thinking. "Raisa always had my favorite in the freezer."

"What's on your mind Ollie?" Laurel asked her ex. She could still tell when he was thinking too hard.

"My mother wants me to take up a leadership position at the company," Oliver replied. Laurel couldn't help looking at him as if he had to heads. Oliver smiled at her look. "Yeah. Take my rightful place."

"I'm having a hard time picturing you as master of the universe," Laurel remarked casually. Oliver and Nyssa could tell she was being honest, not mean, when she said that, though she missed the quick glance they shared.

"Yeah," Oliver commented Oliver through a tight smile. "After five years on an island, I have plans. Things that I want, that I need to do. I can't be doing them if I am at Queen Consolidated all day every day, attending stockholder briefings and board meetings."

"Oliver, last time I checked, you were an adult," Laurel pointed out. "You can say no."

"Apparently he tried," Nyssa replied casually. "Moira was, less than impressed."

"Well then show her rather than telling her," Laurel reasoned. "Be the kind of man that you want her to see you as. Trust me. Years' worth of experience dealing with a disapproving parent here."

"I believe you," Oliver stated. "I have been on the receiving end of your father's disapproval."

"My father blames himself more than he blames you," Laurel admitted as she leant back into the couch. "He thinks that if he and Sara were closer, maybe she would have told him about the boat rip and he could have stopped her."

"It is sometimes hard for fathers to relate to their daughters," Nyssa observed quietly. "Especially if those daughters are strong willed. Something Oliver tells me Sara was."

"He spoke about her?" Laurel asked, surprised.

"Yes," Nyssa answered. "We spoke of many things during our time on the island. Our pasts, our presents and our future."

"Sorry, pasts, presents and future?" Laurel recapped slowly and concisely. "Singular?"

"Yes, Laurel," admitted Oliver. "During the years we have been together, Nyssa and I, we have grown close. Closer than I thought I could be with anyone."

"Even me?" Laurel enquired, a tear welling up in her eye.

"At first, no," Oliver stated calmly. "But after I thought about all the pain and suffering I have caused you and your family, I realized I could never be with you like that. Not after what I had done."

"So you two?" Laurel asked, her implication clear as she wiped the tear in her eye away.

"For almost 2 years now," Oliver said softly, pausing before continuing. "There's more."

"Do not tell me that you knocked her up while you were abandoned on a deserted island!" Laurel practically shouted. "I cannot believe that you are that irresponsible."

"What, no!" Oliver objected. Seeing Laurel calming down, he added the salt. "We married each other."

"What?" Laurel exclaimed, focusing all her attention on Oliver, her intensity almost palpable.

"We married each other," Oliver repeated slowly. At Laurel's continued glare, he tried to explain. "We never thought we were getting off the island. And by that time, our relationship. Too us it felt right to do that."

"I am not going to comment on you getting married on a deserted island," Laurel said, taking a moment to breathe and compose herself. "How did your mother take the news of your marriage? Given its lack of legality."

"She was far from impressed," Oliver admitted with a soft smile. "I may have convinced her to organize a proper wedding rather quickly by threatening to take a trip to Vegas if she didn't."

"I bet she loved that," Laurel deadpanned.

"She was not impressed, that's for sure," Oliver replied before his look saddened. "I am sorry."

"You apologized already," Laurel stated, clearly not wanting to talk at the moment.

"And after everything I have done," Oliver remarked. "It will never be enough." Silence descended on the room as no one spoke or even moved. Then Oliver thought he heard something. "Did you hear that?"

"Hear what?" Laurel asked in confusion; she hadn't heard anything. Oliver deftly grabbed the kitchen knife he had used to open the ice cream with; it was dull but his instincts demanded he arm himself and it would work in a pinch. Nyssa had also focused on her senses more even though she was furthest from the window that seemed to have Oliver's attention and closer to the front door. And then she heard a noise as well.

"There is someone at your front door," Nyssa declared at the same time her beloved spoke.

"There is someone on your fire escape," Oliver stated as he climbed to his feet; listening but taking note that Nyssa was also up. He heard more noises so he grabbed Laurel's arm, pulling her to her feet. "Come on!"

"What?' Laurel asked in obvious confusion; she still hadn't heard anything as the three of them began to move through the apartment. And then all hell broke loose.

The front door crashed inwards as a large Asian man wielding an Uzi broke in. Oliver pulled Laurel down and back into the apartment as bullets sprayed above their heads. Nyssa moved back as well but found herself separated from Oliver. The Asian man emptied the clip of his weapon before he spied Nyssa. Smiling an empty grin, he dropped his gun and drew a dagger.

Oliver searched for a way out of the apartment, even as he pulled Laurel along behind him. He was aware of the gunfire stopping behind him but before he could look, a second man crashed through the window into the apartment. Oliver ducked down further and continued into another room, Laurel close behind as he looked for a way to take out the attackers without Laurel seeing what he could really do. Their movement was halted, however, when a short Asian woman with long white hair stalked into the room, a small knife in each hand.

Nyssa was about to engage her opponent when she saw Diggle approaching the apartment, drawing his firearm when he saw the man threatening Nyssa. Nyssa quickly decided that John eliminating him was a better option and stepped sideways even as Diggle entered through the broken door; firing at the man engaging Nyssa. He fell to the ground as Diggle turned and fired at the second attacker, taking him out of the fight as well before he was disarmed by the short, Asian woman.

Recovering quickly, he relieved her of one of her knives before quickly parrying several thrusts from the other blade she held. He wasn't fast enough, however, to stop her from sweeping his legs out from under him; sending him crashing to the ground. The woman pounced on him, rendering him defenseless and was about to stab him when the blade she still held was knocked from her hand by a thrown kitchen knife. They both looked sideways to see Oliver recoiling from the throw. A quick glance back at Diggle and the woman lunged out the ruined door, retreating in haste from the suddenly uneven fight.

Oliver watched John climbed to his feet and retrieve his weapon, even as Laurel ran into his arms, crying. Oliver saw Nyssa come around the corner, looking as serene as the day he married her.

"Are you ok?" Oliver asked calmly. Nyssa smiled and nodded as Diggle approached him.

"Mr Queen, are you hurt?" he asked loudly. "Are you hurt?"

"No. No, I'm good," Oliver replied as he mind processed what had just happened.

"This," Diggle remarked as he indicated the apartment. "Is why it is a good idea to have a bodyguard." He continued as he moved around the apartment, checking on the two assailants he had shot and securing their weapons.

#Arrow#

"I can't believe that just happened," Laurel said to Nyssa as they sat on the couch. Diggle and Oliver were across the room, speaking to a Detective. "How can you be so calm? We almost died."

"This is not my first brush with death," Nyssa remarked casually as she looked at Oliver. "After the first few times, you start to react differently."

"You really love him, don't you?" Laurel asked when she realized where Nyssa was looking. 

"Very much," Nyssa replied honestly, switching her gaze to the woman beside her. "More than I ever thought possible."

"How did you know he loved you like you loved him?" Laurel wondered idly, unable to stop herself.

"He did something impossible," Nyssa said slowly. Laurel could almost see Nyssa go through the memories of something in her head. "He saved my life."

"How?" Laurel asked, curious. She had never pegged Oliver for the lifesaving type.

"A story for another time," Nyssa hedged. "Suffice it to say, he proved his love to me, though it was almost a year before I returned it in kind."

"Really!" Laurel exclaimed in surprise. "Now I definitely..."

"Laurel!" Quentin Lance's voice echoed into the room before the man himself appeared through the broken door, stepping past several uniformed police officers. He was clearly out of breath but didn't pause as he spotted his daughter and ran over and enveloped her in a hug.

"Daddy!" Laurel said, glad to have him here.

"Oh, thank God," Lance proclaimed openly. "Are you alright?"

"I'm ok," Laurel assured her father before asking a question she didn't want an answer to, but knew she had to ask. "Those cops that you put on me. Are the..."

"They..." Lance started slowly, not wanting to hurt his daughter.

"I went outside to ask them for a light," Diggle cut in, relieving the Detective who hadn't noticed his approach. "I found them both dead in their car."

"Mr Diggle. My thanks," Quentin said in genuine gratitude. "Feel free to run every red light in this city if you want too."

"Just doing my job, sir," Dig explained evenly. Quentin though, shook his head in disagreement.

"No. Your job is to protect him," Quentin stated as he looked at Oliver, who now stood beside Diggle. He stepped in front of the man and snarled in his face. "It seems that whenever you are with one of my daughters, people end up dead. You need to stay away from Laurel or so help me, the next time that you disappear, it will be permanent."

"Detective," Diggle said in an advisory tone.

"Dad!" Laurel exclaimed at the same time. "If he hadn't been here, I'd be dead right now."

"No, Laurel..." Quentin started, turning to face his daughter but was interrupted by Oliver.

"It's ok," Oliver uttered appealingly. "I understand."

"You better," Quentin said as he moved back to his daughter. "Who are you?" He asked as he noticed who he thought was a detective was actually not.

"I am Nyssa, Detective Lance," Nyssa replied casually as she introduced herself. She was imagining a horrible death for the Detective, but was fighting the urge to actually do it; too many witnesses.

"Right," Lance said dismissively. "Well, make sure you have given a statement before you leave."

#Arrow#

"This should help," Oliver said as he walked and tossed Diggle an ice pack. He had noticed the man massaging his hand since they had left Laurel's apartment. "I'd say thank you, but I'm almost sure that would not cover it."

"Well, like I told your Detective friend. I was just doing my job," Dig replied, standing as he held the ice pack on his hand. "Besides, if I remember correctly, I think it should be me thanking you."

"What for?" Oliver asked as he put a confused look on his face.

"The knife," Dig stated simply. Oliver nodded as if he finally understood what Diggle was referring to.

"The knife," he said. "I got lucky."

"That was a kitchen knife, Mr Queen. It wasn't even weighted properly," Diggle explained. "Yet, you threw it with accuracy across a 10-foot room."

"Like I said, I got lucky," Oliver hedged. Diggle stepped up to Oliver; close enough to be confronting but far enough to be respectful.

"I'm not the kind of man you want to take for a fool, Mr Queen," he stated in a firm voice. "Do you understand me?"

"Yes," Oliver replied back, knowing he was right. Dig just looked at him, as if examining him.

"And I think just beginning to understand the kind of man you are," Diggle said observantly.

"Shouldn't take you long. I'm shallow," Oliver quipped. "And tired, so have a good night," Oliver remarked as he turned and walked off towards his room.

"Good night, sir," Diggle called after him as he flexed his hand before reapplying the ice pack.


 

 
Lorad [Show/Hide]
Lt. JG Donna 'Chance' Petterson [Show/Hide]
PO1 Mickayla MacGregor [Show/Hide]
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Re: Stegro's Arrowverse - Heir #02 - Heir Apparent
Reply #5
Chapter 06 - Stepping Up

"We have a name," Oliver said as he sat at one of the computers in the Foundry. "Chien Na Wei. Also called China White. She is one of the top assassins for the Triad."

"Mr Diggle again impresses me," Nyssa noted as she read the file over Oliver's shoulder.

"There isn't any way I can change your mind is there?" Oliver queried, even though he knew the answer already.

"No, there is not," Nyssa enunciated with finality as she straightened up before moving to a sealed case on one of the tables they had set up. "Somers will have undoubtedly increased his security since your last visit. And the Triad, after failing to kill Laurel, will be seeking to clean up any evidence of their involvement."

"All true," Oliver agreed as he stepped up behind Nyssa and wrapped his arms around her waist. "But you just want to hurt someone. Having to hold back earlier tonight and allowing Diggle to 'save' you hurt your pride."

"I dislike being coddled," Nyssa said as she fiddled with the combination lock on the case. "And yes, it hurt."

"Alright then," Oliver said, as Nyssa unlocked and opened the case. He released her to go about getting himself ready. "We leave in 20."

"I'll be ready," Nyssa stated as she lifted out the black compound bow.

#Arrow#

"You were right, Somers has increased his security," Oliver observed as he and Nyssa stood atop a cargo crane surveying the docks.

"And that is not counting the 4 Triad assassins entering the dock from the north," Nyssa added. "Though Chien Na Wei is not among them."

"Alright. You take the Triad and I'll get Somers," Oliver said as he started to walk away along the catwalk.

"Be careful husband. She will be out there and it would be difficult to explain new knife wounds," Nyssa pointed out as she continued to observe the assassins.

"You too," Oliver replied before stepping off the catwalk.

#Arrow#

Oliver crept along the top a shipping container until he was above two of Somers' men. Pausing for a moment to check if they heard his approach, however unlikely, Oliver then jumped off the container and landed heavily on one of the men. His arm snapped out and he used his bow to swipe the legs out from the other man before punching the man under him in the face, knocking him out. Standing, he kicked the second man in the head as well, with the same result. As he was about to walk away, a radio crackled.

[Wallace? Wallace, you copy?] A man's voice asked. Oliver knelt to search for the radio and found it as the man spoke again. [Wallace?]

"Wallace isn't here," Oliver said menacingly into the radio. He took a moment for dramatic effect before continuing. "But I am." Oliver dropped the radio and took off towards Somers' office, not even pausing on his way to draw and fire an arrow into another guard on an overhead catwalk; the impact sending him over the rail and plummeting to the concrete below.

#Arrow#

The four assassins moved as one as they made their way through the stacks of containers. Nyssa could almost admire their skill if it wasn't for the large deficit in their situational awareness.

Using the containers, Nyssa moved swiftly and silently past them to a point ahead of them and crouched on the edge of a container. Her black robes and armor combined with the shadow of a tall sack of containers behind her, ensured she was next to invisible to them. Her keen eyes observed their advance as her lips pressed together in anticipation behind her veil. As the four of them passed beneath her, Nyssa stood and stepped off the edge of the containers.

Landing effortlessly and with the agility of a cat, Nyssa charged forward, drawing her sword with her right hand while already swinging her bow at the last man with her left. She struck the man in the temple and his collapse into unconsciousness alerted the other men to Nyssa's attack, but it was too late. Nyssa advanced through them, hamstringing the second to last man before he could turn to face her. Dropping and pirouetting around him, Nyssa lashed out with her leg, catching the next man behind the ankles and knocking him to the ground before finishing her spin and rising up to face the last man.

He pointed the gun he was carrying at Nyssa but before he could shoot, Nyssa pounced forwards and brought her sword across his abdomen, slashing him deeply. The Triad assassin dropped his gun in favor of trying to stem the considerable flow of blood from his wound. Nyssa turned on the final Triad member still able to fight as he rose from the ground, a pair of knives clutched in his hands. 

Nyssa remained still, bow held across her body and sword at her side, waiting for her opponent to make the first move and he didn't disappoint. He advanced on Nyssa, who waited until he was almost upon her before she stepped back, clumsily swinging her bow in a wide, backhanded arc. The Triad assassin stepped back to avoid the blow but was unprepared for Nyssa's snake-like reflexes as she lunged forward and stabbed her sword into his chest; the tip of her blade slipping neatly between his ribs to pierce his heart.

Recoiling, Nyssa examined her handiwork as the man crumpled to the ground; his body twitching spasmodically as life left him. Nyssa wiped her sword clean on his jacket before sheathing it and departing in search of her husband.

#Arrow#

Oliver leapt down to the next walkway beneath him even as he released the arrow from his bow; its flightpath unerring as it struck one of Somers' guards in the chest. Continuing forward, Oliver nocked and fired multiple arrows; each one of them impacting one of Somers' paid gunmen, sometimes with deadly accuracy. As the last guard yielded his life to gravity, Oliver saw Somers run into a building ahead of him.

"Somers!" He yelled, even as he jumped from the walkway he was on to the ground and gave chase. Oliver's pursuit of Somers was short; his youth and superior foot speed eating up the distance between them. Entering a large, round room; Oliver nocked and fired an arrow, pinning Somers to a crate at the other end of the room as it impacted just above his left shoulder.

"Oh, God, no, no, no..." Somers pleaded as Oliver stalked towards him, making a show of drawing and nocking another arrow.

"God can't help you," Oliver growled in his raspy vigilante voice. "Tell me the truth about Victor Nocenti." To intensify his request, Oliver fired into the crate; the broadhead slicing his suit jacket without cutting skin.

"I can't!" Somers declared. "The Triad will kill me!"

"The Triads not your concern at the moment," Oliver snarled in response as he drew and released another arrow into the crate; this one drawing blood from the inside of his thigh as it impacted the crate below Martin's crotch.

"Alright, alright!" Somers cried out. "The Triad was the one who killed Nocenti. It wasn't me!"

"Acting on whose instructions?" Oliver shouted. Once a response was not immediately forthcoming, Oliver shot a fourth arrow into the crate; right over his head. "Whose?"

"ALRIGHT! It was mine," Somers confessed hurriedly, his concern about where the next arrow would land overriding his fear of the Triad. "It was mine. Nocenti said he was going to the cops. That he would testify against me." Oliver watched as Somers' face paled even further as he focused on something behind the archer. Oliver looked behind himself and saw Chien Na Wei standing there, knives in hand.

"Impressive," Oliver complimented.

"Move away from him," she ordered in Mandarin.

"Make me," Oliver challenged in flawless Mandarin as he swapped his bow to his right hand.

Chien Na Wei wasted no time and sprang forward, knives flashing out in rapid strikes. Oliver used his bow as a quarterstaff to parry each strike while retaliating as an opening presented itself. He managed to kick her back but the Triad assassin merely rolled back up to her feet and lunged forward. Oliver was impressed again as her skills rivalled some of the best that both the League and H.I.V.E. could offer. They continued to clash until a loud speaker echoed a voice across the room.

"This is the Police! Lay down your weapons or we will open fire. I repeat, put down your weapons!" the voice ordered. Oliver and Chien Na Wei exchanged a glance before they both retreated in opposite directions; Oliver noticing that during the fray, Martin Somers had slipped away.

#Arrow#

Martin ran. He wasn't thinking about where he was going; all he knew was that he wanted to be nowhere near the crazy archer or the insane assassin. He was almost to one of the employee exits when suddenly his right foot was jerked into the air. 

By the time he got his bearings, Somers found himself swinging gently around in the air in a slow circle, from a cable looped tightly around his ankle. He looked around and caught a glimpse of a hooded figure, dressed in black and holding a short bow. When he swung around again, the figure was nowhere to be seen.

#Arrow#

Oliver exited the row of warehouses and tossed his bow up onto a container before clambering up himself. Grasping his bow, he ran along the row of containers before leaping to the next row and continuing towards where he was to meet Nyssa. As the row came to an end, he dropped to ground and started to run when a familiar voice called out.

"Freeze!" Lance yelled as he emerged between two containers, his service weapon pointed at the vigilante. Oliver froze, his head down. "You twitch and you're dead," Lance promised as he took a step closer, his experienced eyes taking in details.

The vigilante was a male who stood approximately 6 feet tall and appeared to be well built. He was dressed in green leather pants and jacket, boots and had a green fabric hood. A short, curved Japanese sword was attached to the quiver of green fletched arrows, which in turn was strapped to his back while a large knife hung at his right him. A large, black bow, maybe 4 feet long, was grasped in his left hand. His left forearm had small arrows attached to it with more of them in a holster on his left hip.

Lance's eyes were drawn back up as the archer turned his head to look at him, revealing a black mask with dark green nose ridge that, combined with his hood, concealed everything but his eyes.

"Bow down, hands up," Lance instructed, taking a second step closer. They stood there for a few moments, staring at one another before the archer's right hand shot out at him. Lance's weapon was knocked to his hand and Lance couldn't stop himself from looking first at his hand, and then at his weapon pinned to the side of the container behind him. When he turned back to look at the vigilante, the man was gone.

#Arrow#

"Admiring your work?" Oliver asked as he stepped up next to his wife on the overhead crane. Below them, SCPD officers were staring up at Martin Somers as he continued to swing slowly in the gentle breeze.

"Perhaps," Nyssa admitted as she turned and looked at her husband. "And your ministrations?"

"Detective Lance has Somers' recorded confession. Between that and Somers' fear of the Triad, he'll talk," Oliver revealed satisfyingly. "We should go. We can't spend all night watching them struggle to get him down."

"It would be mildly entertaining," Nyssa admitted cheerfully. "But mundane after a while."

"True," Oliver said as they walked along the gantry. "Besides, I need to speak with Walter before the ceremony tomorrow. I have an idea regarding my mother's desire for me to join Queen Consolidated."

#Arrow#

"Thea, can I come in?" Nyssa asked after she knocked on her sister-in-law's door.

"Sure Nyssa," Thea called from inside. Nyssa opened the door and stepped inside, shutting the door behind her. "I'm almost ready," Thea said from her bathroom.

"No need to hurry. We still have a few minutes before your mother expects us downstairs," Nyssa replied as she looked around the room. The style was much the same as Oliver's was, just more feminine. What drew her attention though were several trophies on Thea's desk.

"Whatcha looking at?" Thea asked as she stepped out into the main area. 

"Your trophies," Nyssa answered without turning. "I didn't know you were interested in Archery."

"I was when I was younger. Got pretty good at it too," Thea said thoughtfully. "I stopped a few years back. Didn't seem important anymore."

"My father insisted I learn from almost the time I could walk. I enjoyed it and I became 'most proficient', in the words of my father," Nyssa revealed, turning to face Thea.

"You know, there might still be some of my old stuff down in one of the basement storerooms," Thea said after a moment. "If you want, we can check it out this afternoon after the ceremony and see what's down there."

"I'd like that Thea," Nyssa responded happily. "We should go. Your mother will undoubtedly be waiting for us."

"Eh, she should be used to it by now," Thea half-joked even as she picked up her bag and followed Nyssa out.

#Arrow#

"Well, this is a surprise," Tommy said as he stepped up to Laurel, who smiled back at him, amused. "Did you show up here by mistake?"

"By invitation, actually," Laurel clarified, still smiling. "I was invited last night, by Oliver."

"Last night?" Tommy enquired, trying not to sound jealous.

"Is that jealousy or surprise in your voice?" Laurel wondered, smiling playfully.

"I just, I don't want him to find out anything. Not yet," Tommy said seriously. "Oliver has been through a lot."

"Tommy, we have all been through a lot," Laurel pointed out. "Besides, Nyssa was with him."

"Nyssa!" Tommy choked out, glancing up onto the stage where Nyssa, Moira and Thea sat.

"Yes, Nyssa," Laurel confirmed, her smile now turning predatory. "Someone else you forgot to mention."

"Ah," Tommy started but was saved by Walter as he and Oliver took to the stage; Oliver taking a seat between his mother and Nyssa while Walter went to the podium.

"Good afternoon, and thank you all for coming," Walter began as everyone quietened down. "Welcome to the future site of the Robert Queen Memorial Applied Sciences Centre." The crowd applauded politely. "This will be a building that will stand as a monument to a man, whose company, and vision are his greatest legacies. And to tell you more about it, another one of his many legacies, his son, Oliver Queen." Walter stepped aside to allow Oliver to take the podium while Walter sat in his vacated seat.

"Good afternoon everyone," Oliver began slowly. "I am here today, to help dedicate this building to my father, Robert Queen," Oliver said as he looked at the crowd before him. "And I am supposed to say that I will be taking my rightful place at Queen Consolidated. The prodigal son returns home and becomes the heir apparent. But I'm not going to do that," Oliver continued, much to Moira's dismay. Walter reached across and grasped his wife's hand, reassuring her even as Oliver turned to take in the looks of disbelief on his sister's face and Nyssa's reassuring gaze.

"To do that, to take my rightful place, I would have to be my father," Oliver stated to the crowd's silent confusion. "But I'm not the man he was. I'm not even half the man that he was. I never will be. My name is not Robert Queen," Oliver declared adamantly. "My name, is Oliver Queen. As Walter kindly said earlier, I'm one of his legacies. And it's time I showed I was worthy of being one," Oliver said, pausing to glance at his mother's bewildered face. "To that end. I will be taking up, I guess you could call it, an apprenticeship. Yes, that sounds about right. An apprenticeship, under Walter Steele, to learn about my father's company, my family's company. I never obtained my MBA but I will prove to everyone that I can be better than what my past actions have shown me to be. And, with just a small truckload of luck, I might prove worthy to one day lead Queen Consolidated as ably as my father Robert did, and my Step-father Walter does. Thank you."

The media immediately started to shout questions but the Queen family, Nyssa included, stepped off the stage and walked away from the crowd, stopping only when they were far enough away to allow a modicum of privacy.

"Well, I think that went well," Walter said as they all gathered round. "Oliver and I still have to have some photos taken but you three don't need to stay for that, if you choose not to."

"Nyssa and I were going to check something out back at home, if that's ok?" Thea asked, still digesting her brother's speech; and what he had said.

"Of course Thea," Moira agreed. "You two take the car back. I'll borrow a car from the company pool. I feel the need for some shopping."

"Mom?" Oliver asked, unsure how his mother was handling his announcement.

"We'll talk later Oliver," Moira assured her son, taking his hands in hers. "But I am proud of you."

"Thanks mom," Oliver said as his mother turned and walked away.

"We'll see later you Ollie," Thea said as she stepped up to her brother. "Nyssa and I have plans. Oh, and nice speech."

"Thanks Speedy," Oliver said with a small smile before looking at Nyssa. "Love you."

"Love you," Nyssa replied before walking after the already departing Thea.

#Arrow#

Namir was checking a pair of cameras that monitored one of the approaches to the League safe house when a silver sedan pulled into the open lot. It was rare for a vehicle to come to this area; rarer still for one to stop. Dropping down to the edge of the roof so as to remain undiscovered, he watched as a second car appeared and pulled to a stop beside the first; a long, black limousine. And then he was truly surprised.

Moira Queen, Al Sah-him's mother, exited the sedan and entered the limo. The windows of the limo prevented him from seeing any of the other occupants of the limo but Moira Queen meeting another car in an abandoned area was important information in and of itself. Al Sah-him would want to know.

#Arrow#

"What are you two doing?" Oliver asked as he stepped onto the grass behind his sister and Nyssa.

"What does it look like we are doing Ollie?" Thea asked as she released her arrow, not turning to look at her brother until it had hit the target. "We are practicing Archery."

"I noticed Thea had several trophies for Archery from when she was younger and I told her about learning it myself," Nyssa related. "She proposed that we see if any of her old equipment was of any use."

"I remember you saying something about wanting a bow once," Oliver replied as if recalling a memory. "I guess I forgot."

"Well most of my gear was in good condition, so we are just mucking around a bit," Thea said as she nocked and fired another arrow. "Nyssa is almost as good at it as I am."

"Your sister is quite a competent archer," Nyssa complimented Thea while looking at Oliver. If Nyssa said that, then Oliver knew that Thea was good but there was still a lot of room for improvement. She had called him competent once or twice before, for various skills.

"See, I still got it," Thea boasted as she fired again before turning to her brother. "Want a turn Ollie? Between the two of us, I think we can teach you."

"Nooo. No thank you," Oliver declined, holding his hands up in surrender. "I am liable to shoot myself in the foot or break a window or something."

"Really?" Thea exclaimed. "The house is behind us. You're shooting away from it."

"Exactly," Oliver pointed out. "Besides, there is something I need to take care of. I will see you both later."

"See you later," Thea said, already reaching for another arrow. Nyssa said nothing, merely smiled and turned to watch Thea again. Oliver smiled at the two of them before turning away and heading through the garden to the clearing that Thea had shown him yesterday. Two workmen stood off to the side at a respectful distance and Oliver crossed the grass to stand before is father's headstone.

"I never realised how hard it would be," Oliver began softly, hesitantly. "Reconnecting with Mum, Thea, everyone, after being away for so long." Oliver took a breath as he struggled to hold his emotions in check. "I didn't know how painful it would be to keep the secrets I need to keep." Out of the corner of his eye, he saw Diggle bring the car around closer to where he was and stand by it.

"You asked me to save this city. To right your wrongs," Oliver continued. "I will, I swear. But to do that, I can't be what everyone wants me to be. I have to do things my own way," he explained sadly. "Which means, that sometimes to honor your wishes, I may need to dishonor your memory. I'm sorry," he finished softly, almost silent. He gaze at the stone for a moment before he stood, turned and started to walk away.

"Take it down," he ordered as he pointed at his own headstone. The two men walked passed him to begin their work as Oliver made his way over to Diggle and the car.

"Will you be going out tonight, sir?" Diggle asked as he held the door open for his principal. Oliver climbed in and sat before answering.

"Definitely," Oliver declared as Diggle shut the door.
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Re: Stegro's Arrowverse - Heir #02 - Heir Apparent
Reply #6
Chapter 07 - Stepping Out

"You're wounded," Nyssa observed as Oliver set his bow down onto the bench. "What happened?"

"I'm not sure," Oliver admitted tiredly as he sat on a stool. "Entry was easy, as was taking out his two guards. Made it to the roof and confronted Holder. But before I could get anywhere, a shot rang out."

"You?" Nyssa asked as she started to gather some medical supplies.

"Him," Oliver answered as he gingerly took off his quiver and sword. "It was a good shot too. Judging by the wound, his heart was destroyed on impact. I shot off a few arrows towards where I think the shot came from as I sought cover. Two more shots were fired; one missed completely while the other hit the wall I was behind. This is just a fragment," Oliver said as he indicated his wounded arm before removing his jacket.

"You're probably lucky you were not the target then," Nyssa pointed out as she set the supplies down next to her husband. She had learnt long ago that unless the injury was serious or he couldn't reach it, he preferred to treat himself. "Who else would want him dead?"

"A man as corrupt as James Holder; I doubt he got to where he was without having made a few enemies," Oliver said as he picked up the forceps and began probing his wound for the bullet fragment. "Question is, which one of them wanted him dead," Oliver pondered as he finally grasped and withdrew the fragment. Swapping the forceps for a needle and thread, he began to sew his wound shut.

"We can determine that later," Nyssa stated from the chair where she was sharpening one of her many knives. "You have an early start in the morning. It's your first day at Queen Consolidated as Walter's apprentice."

"Yes it is," Oliver affirmed as he finished with his arm. "I am surprisingly looking forward to it."

"I don't doubt that it will be a challenge for you," Nyssa teased with a smile. "Like me, you find business dealings to be boring."

"True," Oliver confirmed as he stood to put a shirt on before sitting back down, wincing slightly. "And yet a part of me desires the challenge that it will bring."

"Not to mention the opportunities," Nyssa added. When Oliver didn't answer, she looked up at him only to seeing a look of considerable discomfort on his face. He stood up but immediately staggered into the table beside him, using it to hold himself up. "Oliver!"

"The bullet!" Oliver exclaimed as he looked around for the dish he had dropped the bullet into.

"Poison," Nyssa determined. She turned to grab the bottle of water she had been drinking from even as Oliver threw himself across the foundry; practically sliding into the box he had brought with him from the island. Fumbling with the lock for a second, he opened it and searched around for leather pouch. Finding it, he opened it and took a large pinch of the contents; herbs from Lian Yu.

He threw the herbs into his mouth and took the offered bottle from Nyssa, drinking hastily. Once swallowed, he handed the bottle back to Nyssa, who managed to grasp it just before Oliver passed into unconsciousness and collapsed to the concrete floor.

#Arrow#

"Oliver!" Nyssa called joyfully as Oliver gasped awake from where he had been laying on the floor. His eyes darted around the area, taking in everything before his eyes found Nyssa.

"How long was I out?" Oliver asked, having noted the sunlight streaming in.

"Most of the morning," Nyssa said as she pointed at the clock on the computer screen. "It is 10 past 7.

"Crap!" Oliver said as he pulled himself into a seated position.

"Indeed," Nyssa agreed, happy that her husband was still alive. She would need to show him how happy another time. "If we do not leave now, I am afraid that the first impression you give Walter will not be a positive one."

"Let's go," Oliver said as he hoisted himself to his feet.

#Arrow#

"What happened?" Oliver asked as he and Nyssa walked up next to Diggle, who was standing in the doorway to the sitting room. Inside, Thea sat unhappily on the sofa while Moira and Walter spoke with two police officers. 

"Is Thea alright?" Nyssa asked, concerned.

"She is," Diggle answered as he turned to face the couple. "The cops brought Thea home. Her and some friends broke into a clothes store and tried on some dresses last night," Diggle explained. "Lit up the breathalyzer like a Christmas Tree."

"What possessed her to do that?" Nyssa wondered tiredly.

"I have no idea," Diggle replied as he looked first at Nyssa then at Oliver. "So how was your evening, sir? Ma'am?" He asked in a monotone voice. 

"You mean after I went to the bathroom at dinner and never came back?" Oliver retorted smoothly.

"I guess I will be watching you pee from now on," Dig said before turning his attention to Nyssa. "Ma'am?"

"I went looking for my fiancé, Mr Diggle," Nyssa stated calmly. "As you can see, I found him." Oliver couldn't help the smile on his face as he stepped into the sitting room, Nyssa a step behind him. His smile disappeared as he approached Thea.

"Thank you, officers. Moira and I appreciate what you have done," Oliver heard Walter say to the two men. "I'll see you out." Oliver stepped to the side to allow Walter to lead the two men from the room before he refocused his attention on his sister, as did his mother.

"Last time is was public intoxication and now we can add breaking and entering," Moira started dismally. "My, how we are moving up in the criminal world."

"What were you thinking Thea?" Nyssa asked, trying to understand.

"I was thinking they had some pretty killer outfits," Thea replied sarcastically as she climbed tiredly to her feet. "You should check out the merchandise, you know, when you pay off the store owner."

"Go get ready for school," Moira ordered her delinquent daughter. Thea stopped to stare at her mother.

"You know, I was thinking of taking a sick day," she said as she stared at her mother, challenging her. Moira sighed wearily.

"Fine, then get some sleep," Moira conceded. Thea smiled at her as she ambled from the room.

"You look like crap," Thea pointed out to Oliver as she passed him.

"You're going to let her play hooky? Oliver asked his mother in disbelief.

"When Thea gets like this, I've found it best to give her her space," Moira reasoned regrettably.

"She's testing you," Oliver challenged.

"Yes. But who did she learn that from?" Moira pointed out.

"Mom, when I was Thea's age, you and dad let me get away with murder," Oliver described. "Looking back, knowing what I know now; I could have used less space and more parenting," Oliver declared before he turned and left the room. 

"I'm sorry about that," Nyssa apologised. 

"No, it's ok. Perhaps he is right," Moira said contemplatively. "I have let them both get away with a lot over the years."

"I can't say if it was right or wrong what you let them get away with," Nyssa observed softly. "My father was quite strict with my upbringing."

"Robert was always able to get through to the two of them," Moira reminisced. "What about your mother Nyssa?"

"She died when I was very young," Nyssa revealed sadly. "I never really knew her."

"I'm so sorry my dear," Moira said in sympathy. 

"It is quite alright," Nyssa affirmed. "I came to terms with her loss long ago."

"I see," Moira stated. She paused a moment before continuing. "Your father. Will he be coming to Starling City soon? I would like to meet him."

"Regrettably his schedule is quite busy but he has promised to be here for my wedding," Nyssa explained more cheerfully. "He has yet to break a promise to me."

"Well I look forward to his arrival," Moira offered. "Unfortunately it seems he will miss Oliver's and your engagement party then"

"He is aware of this," Nyssa said. "He said that he would be sending someone in his place to represent him. My father is a little old fashioned."

"No, that's fine," Moira conceded as she turned to leave. She hadn't gone far before she turned back to Nyssa. "By the way, we released a press statement announcing the engagement. No pictures were included but that just means that they will be more rabid in their attempts to procure one."

"Perfect," Nyssa whispered as Moira left the room.

#Arrow#

"How much would it upset you if I hurt your mother?" Nyssa asked as she entered their room, barely stopping herself from slamming the door as she closed it. Oliver could quite clearly see from the bathroom that she was annoyed, apparently at his mother.

"I guess it depends on how much you hurt her," Oliver said as he finished trimming his beard. "What did she do?"

"She released a statement announcing our engagement to the media," Nyssa stated. "Without our permission."

"Ah," Oliver said as he walked into his bedroom, stopping in front of his wife. "Well, it was bound to happen sooner or later."

"I don't disagree," Nyssa hedged, distracted by her husband's attire, or lack thereof. "I merely wish that she had consulted with us before releasing anything. We do not even know what she released."

"I'm sure we will find out. After all, the media loves my family," Oliver quipped as he dropped his towel. "Did you discover anything about the bullet? I assume you examined it while I was out."

"The calibre is indeterminable due to it being a fragment," Nyssa started slowly as she watched Oliver dress. "But I did determine the poison the bullet was laced with. Curare."

"Rare, and deadly," Oliver noted as he buttoned his shirt. "Any leads?"

"Interpol, cross-referenced with the League's files, gave me a file," Nyssa revealed. "He is a mercenary, a gun for hire. He has called all over the world. Markovia, Corto Maltese, half of Europe and here in America. Interpol has code named him Deadshot."

"I hate mercenaries. They will do anything for money. Almost always without any sense of code, morality or honour," Oliver declared, finishing his tie and reaching for his jacket. "We have to track him down. He just went to the top of the list."

"We'll need to find the bullet that missed you," Nyssa pointed out. "That will give us a trail to follow. I can also check out where he took the shot from. See if he left anything behind. Though I doubt it."

"You never know," Oliver said as he straightened his tie in the mirror, taking a slow, deep breath. "I guess I'm ready."

"You look ready," Nyssa agreed. "I love you. You will do well."

"I hope so," Oliver replied. "Love you too."

#Arrow#

"I see the media haven't wasted anytime," Oliver observed as they approached Queen Consolidated. Even from a block away, both he and Walter could see the army of reporters that were practically encamped at the building's main entrance. Only a handful of security guards held them back to allow employees, clients and others to gain entry.

"Between your speech last week and the news of your engagement, I'm surprised they weren't laying siege to the mansion," Walter joked. "Unfortunately for them, we won't be using the main entrance."

Without direction, the driver drove them past the reporters and around to the entrance to the underground carpark. They passed through the security checkpoint without incident and pulled up next to the main elevators. Diggle got out to open the doors but both Walter and Oliver were already exiting the vehicle; neither being the kind of man that required a door to be opened for them. Diggle fell into step behind the two men as they walked the short distance to the elevator. They waited less then a minute before they were on their way up.

Walter led the way out of the lift and onto the executive level; Oliver and Diggle trailing behind as Walter entered his office. Gina was already inside, laying out several folders on Walter's desk.

"Good morning Mr Steele," Gina welcomed her boss. "Mr Queen, Mr Diggle."

"Good morning Gina," Walter replied as both Oliver and Diggle nodded. "Were you able to reschedule the teleconference with the Vancouver office?"

"Of course Mr Steele," Gina confirmed. "It is now at 2pm this afternoon. This leaves your schedule free until 11.30am to meet with Mr Queen."

"Thank you Gina," Walter said as Gina smiled and left the office. Diggle followed her out and took a seat in one of the lounge chairs that were outside Walter's office. "So, Oliver. Where would you like to start?"

"I'm not sure Walter. This is all new to me. I honestly have no idea how to run a company," Oliver admitted honestly. "What do you suggest?"

"Well, I normally start my day much as you watched just now. I arrive and Gina is almost always here before me. She confirms my schedule for the day with me in case of any changes that have occurred," Walter explained. "Gina also organises the first files that I need to review and then exchanges them as the day passes."

"Sounds like I am going to need someone like Gina then," Oliver noted, his mind already working.

"We are already organising someone," Walter stated as he glanced down at the files in front of him. "We have also organised a schedule of sorts for you. At least something to begin with."

"Were you able to work out the details as we discussed?" Oliver asked, Walter now having his full attention. They are discussed his role before the ground breaking ceremony and what his role would entail.

"Yes. It was oddly enough, quite easy," Walter remarked. "Full days Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Tuesdays and Thursdays you will finish at 1pm. I have also had someone look into the title for the former steel factory in the Glades and they assure me that it can be legally re-purposed."

"Excellent," Oliver proclaimed in genuine happiness. "This is going to be great."

"I admit, when you first told me your plans I was worried about your commitments," Walter said, clasping his hands together. "Now, I'm starting to see the positive, and practical side to your plan."

"I've never been one for a lot of theory," Oliver described. "I've always learnt better by doing."

"Something your educational record can attest to, I'm sure," Walter commented in jest. "Now, was there anything else you want to discuss before I show you to your office?"

"Just one thing," Oliver responded. "My knowledge of technology is, at best, 5 years out of date. I think I'm going to need some sort of advisor to help me understand all the technical aspects of the work Queen Consolidated does. At least in the short term if not permanently."

"I had not considered that," Walter said as he stood. "Leave it with me and I'll see what I can do. Now, to your office."

#Arrow#

"So, what do you think?" Oliver asked as he waved his arms at the open space of the ground level of the foundry. "Great space for a nightclub, right?"

"Sweet," Tommy said as he moved further into the factory, Diggle following a few steps behind. "Though I suggest you do not call it 'Queen's'." 

"Dancefloor here. Bar along that wall. Private office up there," Oliver described as he laid out his vision.

"For the private one-on-one meetings, I would imagine," Tommy suggested with a smile. "Maybe the occasional two- two-on-one meeting?"

"I'm married Tommy, or soon will be," Oliver declared firmly. "That was the old me."

"Man, are you sure you want to do this?" Tommy asked his friend seriously. "It's not like you have any experience in this department." Oliver didn't say anything as he shot Tommy an insulted look. "How about tomorrow night, we go and scope out your competition. Max Fuller has a new club opening up downtown. It's called Poison."

"Max Fuller?" Oliver asked.

"That's him," Tommy nodded.

"I slept with his fiancé," Oliver pointed out blankly, a little disgusted with his past actions.

"Yeah, but it was before the wedding," Tommy noted with a smile.

"It was at the rehearsal dinner," Oliver deadpanned.

"The rehearsal dinner is technically before the wedding, right?" Tommy joked. "And besides, who stays mad at a castaway?" Tommy's phone chimed and he looked at it. "Anyway, I have to roll. I'll see you later, man. Good place!" He called as he walked away, slipping his phone into his pocket.

"See you," Oliver said, turning his attention to his bodyguard. "So, what do you think?"

"Well, I'm here to provide security, sir," Diggle pointed out dryly, his eyes playing across the empty foundry. His gut was telling him someone was watching them. "Not a commentary."

"Oh, come on, Dig, do me a favour," Oliver said in earnest. "Please speak freely."

"Well," Diggle started before pausing to compose his words. "This is the Glades, right? Your rich white friends wouldn't come to this neighbourhood on a gamble."

"I AM Oliver Queen," Oliver pointed out. "People would stand in line for 3 hours if I opened my club here."

"And would anyone who actually lived in the Glades see a dime of those cover charges?" Dig asked pointedly.

"I make it a success, we gentrify the neighbourhood," Oliver explained.

"I was wondering when you would get to that," Dig scoffed loudly. "The rich, white knight swooping in to save the disenfranchised. And all by his lonesome with no one to help him."

"Wow!" Oliver exclaimed. "You really don't think much of me, do you?"

"On the contrary, sir," Dig disagreed. "I actually have a very high regard for how, perceptive, you are," Diggle said before he turned and walked out of the foundry. Oliver cast another look around his future nightclub, waiting for Diggle to be far enough away.

"Namir!" Al Sah-him summoned once he was satisfied with the bodyguards position. The assassin dropped from the rafters directly above him and kneeled. "Why are you here?"

"Ra's al Ghul commanded us not to aid you in your crusade to save this city," Namir explained. "However, I observed something recently that I believe you should know."

"But you cannot decide if it would be breaking his command or not?" Oliver finished.

"I cannot, Al Sah-him," Namir confirmed.

"Rise, my old friend, and tell me what you saw," Al Sah-him stated firmly. "I command it."

"Thank you," Namir said in gratitude as he rose. "The afternoon after the Queen Consolidated ceremony. Moira Queen drove herself to an abandoned lot near our safe house. There, she met with someone in a black limousine. I could not make out the license plates on the vehicles, nor who was inside the limousine. The meeting lasted perhaps 15 minutes before the two parties departed separately." 

"Thank you, old friend, for this information," Al Sah-him expressed. "Fear not that you have broken Ra's al Ghul's command. This information..."

"Sir!" Diggle called as he stepped back into the foundry to his principal standing there alone. "It is time we leave. You wouldn't want to be late for your jeweller's appointment."

"Definitely not," Oliver asserted as he walked towards Dig. "Thanks Dig, what would I do without you?"

"Oh, I'm sure you would manage sir," Dig said as Oliver walked past him. "You appear to be doing well enough so far." Dig turned to follow Oliver but stopped to look around the inside of the Foundry once more. His gut was telling him that someone else was in there. Seeing nothing, he exited the foundry.

#Arrow#

Nyssa was annoyed. She had spent almost the entire previous day searching for the bullet that had missed her husband but had not been able to find it. She would be returning to the area again this morning to check the last few buildings that she had not checked the day before.

Oliver had already left for the morning with Walter and John Diggle, allowing Nyssa to make her way through the mansion without disturbance; at least until she heard Moira and Thea arguing. 

"No, we are paying off store owners to keep your record clean, so clearly, it hasn't been working," she heard Moira say.

"And what? You're going to teach me?" Thea scoffed. Nyssa could imagine her standing there with her arms crossed. "It's Oliver, isn't it? His judgemental hypocrisy is rubbing off on you."

"I do not need my son to tell me how to parent you," Moira retorted. "You'll be home by 4."

"Or what?" Thea challenged snidely. "You're going to call the cops on me?" Nyssa heard Thea pick up her bag before heading to her door. "Tell them I said hi."

Nyssa had enough time to duck back against the wall and watch as Thea sauntered down the hallway. Nyssa knew that Thea was on a destructive path. She just hoped that she could redirect Thea's course before she hit something that wouldn't give way before her.

#Arrow#

"That was not easy to find," Nyssa said as she watched her beloved examine the bullet she had finally found. They were sitting in his new office on the executive level of Queen Consolidated; Nyssa off to the side and hidden from the door by a large, leafy plant. Diggle had left to get some lunch after extracting a promise from Oliver not to leave his office for anything other than an emergency. 

"Drain pipe?" Oliver asked nonchalantly, rolling the bullet between his fingers; trying to judge its size through the bag it was in.

"Not quite, but it was halfway up the wall of a building," Nyssa revealed. "If anyone had seen me scaling from the wall, it would have been quite difficult to explain."

"Good thing no one saw you then," Oliver teased, casting a smile at his wife as he put the bullet away in a draw. "American 7.62 millimetre round. Has Namir contacted you with any information about our shooter?"

"No, he has not," Nyssa answered as she watched her husband. "Expecting company?"

"Walter arranged for someone to be assigned as my Technical Advisor, at least temporarily, to help me understand all the new technologies I will be dealing with. They should be here any moment," Oliver explained.

"Should I go?" Nyssa wondered, though she knew the answer.

"No," Oliver replied. "You're to be my wife. They will meet you sooner or later. Sooner is better."

"Does this, Technical Advisor, have a name?" Nyssa enquired, curious.

"Ah," Oliver paused as he searched his desk for a piece of paper, finally finding it. "Felicity Smoak." Nyssa was about to comment when the subject of the conversation stormed into the room; her irate focus squarely set on Oliver. 

"I've got one question," Felicity demanded as she stopped directly in front of Oliver's desk. "Why am I being fired?"

"Miss Smoak, is it?" Oliver asked so he could confirm who he was speaking too.

"Yes," Felicity answered before continuing. "And I am without a doubt the single most valuable member of this company's technical division. That's including my so-called 'supervisor'. Letting me go would be a major error."

"So I have been told," Oliver agreed calmly. "Which is why you aren't being fired."

"I'm not?" Felicity asked, her righteous fury and indignation dead. "Uh, I assumed that was why I was called up here."

"It's not," Oliver stated clearly. "You know who I am?"

"Of course I do," Felicity said, now unsure of her position. "You're Mr Queen."

"No, Mr Queen was my father," Oliver clarified, maintaining his calm demeanour. 

"Right, but he's dead." She shook her head, suddenly embarrassed. "I mean, he drowned." She closed her eyes, trying hard to compose herself. "But you didn't, which means you could call me up to your office and listen to me babble. Which will end." She lowered her gaze and counted. "In 3... 2... 1..." she raised her head again.

"As I was saying," My name is Oliver," Oliver said, introducing himself. "And as I'm sure everyone that work's here is aware. I'm new here. I was told you could help me?"

"Uh? Am I being made your Executive Assistant?" Felicity asked, indignation rising up in her again. She seethed again and exploded before Oliver could speak. "Did you know I went to M.I.T? Do you know what I majored in? Here is a hint; NOT the secretarial arts."

"Again, that is not why you have been called up here," Oliver stated before looking behind Felicity. Felicity turned to see a woman, perhaps mid-30s entering the office, holding a tray of three coffees. "Thank you Hanna. I trust you got one for yourself as well."

"You're welcome Oliver," Hanna addressed Oliver. "Mine is already at my desk."

"Good," Oliver said.

"One Earl Grey tea for Oliver. One Green Tea for Miss Raatko," Hanna said setting two of the cups on Oliver's desk before turning to Felicity. "One Caffe Macchiato for Miss Smoak."

"Ah, thank you," Felicity said in astonishment as Hanna left the office. "How did you know how I like my coffee?"

"Because I told him," Nyssa revealed as she finally spoke up from where she was sitting. She had been enjoying the interaction between Oliver and Felicity but now she felt it was time to calm things down. And judging from the look on Felicity's face, it might take some effort.

"Nyssa?" Felicity exclaimed, shocked to find her friend in Oliver Queen's office. "What are you doing here?"

"Visiting." Nyssa said with clarifying.

"You know Oliver Queen?" Felicity asked in surprise. "I thought you were new in town."

"I am new in town Felicity," Nyssa assured her friend as she stood. "But I have known Oliver for some time."

"You have?" Felicity quizzed, clearly confused. "I don't understand."

"Felicity, have you read the news this morning?" Oliver asked, thinking that would clear things up.

"Of course. You're the headline," Felicity said, calming a little. "Oliver Queen Engaged! Oliver Queen to wed Island Sweetheart! The headlines continue."

"Were any names mentioned in those articles?" Nyssa guided her friend as she walked over to Oliver's desk and picked up her tea, takin a sip.

"Obviously," Felicity stated as if Oliver was asking a stupid question. "Oliver Queen and Nyssa Raat... You!"

"Yes, Felicity," Nyssa confirmed to her friend serenely. "Me."

"Oh my God!"
Lorad [Show/Hide]
Lt. JG Donna 'Chance' Petterson [Show/Hide]
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Re: Stegro's Arrowverse - Heir #02 - Heir Apparent
Reply #7
Chapter 08 - New Acquisitions 

"That wasn't very nice Oliver," Nyssa said in an amusing tone as they entered the club Poison. "He does have a job to do." 

"Yes, and if he was inside, it would be to kill the mood," Tommy jested as they looked around the dim, loud club, the sounds of music and laughter filling their ears. "I need a... Oh wow!" Tommy exclaimed in surprise. Nyssa followed his eyes and saw Laurel approaching them. "Doesn't you going out and having fun violate some kind of a law? Either your father's or the ones they carved on stone tablets?" 

"That's cute, Tommy," Laurel quipped, shooting Tommy a look. "Oliver, Nyssa. I didn't think I would see you here." 

"Just checking out the competition," Oliver explained. Further conversation was stalled by a new arrival stumbling drunkenly into Oliver. 

"Big brother!" Thea shouted in greeting, stumbling again. "Oh! I am so wasted right now. There is... there is literally two of you," she said, waving a finger between Oliver and an imaginary Oliver.  

"I thought you were grounded Thea," Oliver said sternly. 

"I am," Thea noted, crossing her arms in defiance. "Thanks for that, by the way." 

"Thea, I think you should go home, " Nyssa offered, not happy about seeing Thea this way. 

"Nope, I think I want another drink," Thea disagreed, turning to walk away. 

"You're done for the night," Oliver stated, grasping Thea's arm. 

"Let go of me Ollie," Thea ordered. When Oliver didn't she pressed on. "What are you going to do Ollie? Drag me home? Tell mom?" 

"Thea!" Nyssa exclaimed. "I think you're hanging with the wrong people." 

"Really! You're one to talk," Thea replied as she looked at Laurel and Tommy with an evil glare. "How much do you know about these two 'friends' of yours anyway?" 

"Thea, maybe you should just..." Tommy started but Thea cut him off. 

"Tommy, I think your BFF deserves to know," Thea said snidely. 

"Let's go Thea," Oliver said as he tried to lead Thea away, but she wasn't going anywhere. 

"What? You going to tell me that they told you they have been screwing while you were gone?" She shot back as she gave Laurel and Tommy a satisfied look, even as the two of them found it hard to face Oliver. Oliver meanwhile, maintained his gaze at Thea. 

"Look man, I-" Tommy began to say. 

"Tommy," Oliver spoke softly, cutting his friend off. "It's ok," he said earnestly as he glanced at his friend before looking back at Thea, his anger evident in his gaze. "You and me, we're done for tonight." 

"Take your hands of me!" Thea yelled, pulling her her arm free. "You're not my father," she hissed angrily. "And you're barely my brother." Oliver just stood there and watched as Thea stormed off into the crowd. 

"I'll find her," Nyssa announced as she pursued Thea, hoping to prevent her from getting into, or more appropriately at the moment, causing trouble. Despite her best efforts though; Thea was gone. 

#Arrow# 

"Laurel, where is Oliver?" Nyssa asked as she returned to the bar to find Oliver and Tommy gone. 

"Max Fuller and his bouncers took them off somewhere," Laurel replied. "Probably to beat them up. Max doesn't like Oliver very much." 

"Are we going to allow that?" Nyssa enquired.  

"No," Laurel answered, suddenly determined, as she pulled away from the bar and going in search of the boys; Nyssa in tow. Soon enough they found a curtained off area with the sounds of a struggle beyond. Laurel led the way in and Nyssa watch as she efficiently handled the smallest of the men she didn't recognise; almost effortlessly putting him on his ass. "So is this over Max? She asked her target, confirming to Nyssa that this was Max Fuller. "Or are you going to have your boy's pound on me next?" 

"You four," Max started as he ungracefully and gingerly pulled himself to his feet. "Consider yourselves banned for life. Now get the hell out of my place!" 

"Your club sucks anyway," Tommy called out as Max and his bouncers left. 

"Are you both alright?" Nyssa asked as she ran her eyes over Oliver. 

"We will be," Oliver replied with a smile to his wife before looking at Laurel. "Where'd you learn to do that?" 

"Cop dad, remember?" Laurel reminded. "He made me take self-defence classes." 

"Laurel," Oliver began gently. "About what Thea said." 

"Oliver, Tommy and I don't need your blessing," she pointed out abruptly. "And I don't need your forgiveness." 

#Arrow# 

"Alright," Diggle said as he led Tommy, Oliver and Nyssa into the Big Belly Burger restaurant. He waved at a woman behind the counter who returned his wave with a smile. "Why don't you guys take a seat while grab a couple of burgers and some ice for those faces." 

"She is pretty cute," Tommy said casually as he also smiled at the woman. 

"Tommy!" Nyssa exclaimed at the same time Diggle spoke. 

"That's my sister in law," he said, levelling he steely gaze at the man. 

"Who I will never speak to or look at," Tommy immediately declared. "Ever. And now I am going to go grab a booth. Far over there." 

"She isn't wearing a wedding ring," Nyssa noticed as Tommy headed towards the back of the restaurant. 

"Brother not in the picture?" Oliver asked politely. 

"Yeah, you could say that," Diggle replied as he headed towards the counter, leaving Oliver and Nyssa to follow after Tommy. Nyssa's phone rang before they reached him and she stopped to answer it. Oliver continued on and as he sat down, Tommy spoke. 

"Hey, about Laurel," He began shakily. "I was going to tell you. I was. I was just trying to work out the best way to do it." 

"To tell someone that was legally declared dead that you slept with their girlfriend?" Oliver asked seriously. "Tommy, there is no greeting card for that. And you don't have to explain." 

"Look, it was wrong," Tommy stated, equally serious. "And I am sorry." 

"I was dead, Tommy," Oliver said quietly. "Dead." 

"No, man, you were with Laurel," Tommy cut him off. "And whether you were dead or not. You are my friend and being with Laurel; I violated that friendship in something like 50 different ways." 

"Thank you," Oliver replied honestly. "But it is alright." 

"You are being really cool about this," Tommy observed after a moment. Before Oliver could respond, Nyssa sat down, a phone held to her ear. 

"Beloved, your mother has a question about the wedding," Nyssa said, glancing at Tommy. 

"Tommy, could you give us a minute please?" Oliver asked his best friend. 

"Sure," Tommy said cheerfully as he stood. "I can see now why you are being so chill about this." Oliver and Nyssa watched him walk away before Nyssa put her phone down. 

"Namir called," Nyssa explained. "He was able to find the address that this Deadshot stayed in the last time he was here in Starling City. And he got us a name; Floyd Lawton." 

"Then we hope he is a creature of habit," Oliver said coldly. "The address." 

"1700 Broadway Pell Hotel. Room 52," Nyssa replied. "I will go with you." Oliver was going to say something to dissuade her but Nyssa's glare caused the words to retreat from his mind. 

#Arrow#

"Approaching room 52," Nyssa heard Oliver say through the earpiece she wore. He was across the street in the hotel where the mercenary assassin Deadshot stayed last. 

"I am ready," Nyssa replied. She was currently perched on the rooftop across the street with a clear field of view in case Deadshot tried to escape out of the window. She crouched lower to the roof to hide her silhouette as she waited and watched. She reached to draw an arrow but flung herself to the side instead as a familiar sound pierced the night air; an arrow impacting the roof where she had ben moments before. 

"Nyssa al Ghul, our mistress demands your presence," a male's voice announced. Nyssa stood and turned to face her attackers. She found two of them, a man and a woman, dressed the same as the 3 who had confronted her husband during their first week in Starling City. 

"I think not," Nyssa countered and was about to warn Oliver when gunfire erupted from the hotel behind her. Her attackers took advantage of the distraction; the man nocking and loosing another arrow as the woman advanced on Nyssa; drawing a katana. 

Nyssa avoided the arrow while launching one of her own at the archer before redirecting her attention to the swordswoman as she drew her own sword. They exchanged strikes and were soon joined by the archer wielding a gladius.  

"Nyssa, do you have Deadshot?" Oliver asked in her ear. 

"Priorities beloved," Nyssa replied while parrying the gladius with her sword and blocking the katana with her bow. Nyssa was impressed by their teamwork as they left very few gaps to exploit. Nyssa was about expose one of the gaps when an arrow hit the man in the shoulder. 

Nyssa searched for the source of the arrow and found Oliver standing in the broken window of a hotel room, a second arrow nocked. Nyssa turned back to her attackers only to be blinded by the detonation of a smoke bomb. When the smoke cleared, she was alone. 

"Are you alright Nyssa?" Oliver asked concerned. 

"I am beloved," Nyssa assured him as she retrieved her own and Oliver's arrows. "What of you? I heard gunfire." 

"I'm good. But Deadshot escaped," Oliver said, disappointed. "I have his laptop though, complete with bullet holes." 

"Perhaps your new Technical Advisor can be of some assistance," Nyssa offered sweetly. Memories of the earlier meeting fresh in her mind. 

"Perhaps," Oliver agreed as police sirens drew nearer to them. "We should go." 

#Arrow#

"Good morning Felicity, how are you?" Oliver greeted Felicity as he almost ran into her when he stepped off the elevator, briefcase in hand. 

"Good morning Mr Queen," Felicity replied in surprise, not expecting her new boss to arrive right then. "I am alright thank you. Though still confused about what my new job is." 

"Felicity, remember our conversation yesterday? My name is Oliver," Oliver chided gently as he walked into his office ahead of Felicity. "As to your new job. It's rather simple. My knowledge of up to date technology and its current and possible future applications is, to be fair, virtually non-existent. Your job, help me to understand that technology. I can't very well run a multi-billion dollar company without knowing what is and is not possible." 

"I don't believe anything is impossible," Felicity quipped without thinking. 

"Excellent," Oliver noted cheerfully. "My friend was in some sort of accident yesterday and his laptop was damaged. I told him that I would have someone look at it and see if anything could be retrieved." 

"Well, I can't be sure until I see the laptop," Felicity started as Oliver pulled said laptop from his briefcase and placed it on his desk. "But I can have a look. What kind of accident was your friend in? Cause these look like bullet holes." 

"He didn't specify," Oliver hedged before continuing. "I know he likes to use guns and is a pretty good shot." 

"Uhuh," Felicity expressed, pausing in her examination to look at him over her glasses. 

"If there is anything that you can salvage from it, it would be greatly appreciated. Now, I have to go see Walter about the auction tonight," Oliver said before he stood and headed out of his office just as his executive assistant sat down. "Good morning Hanna." 

#Arrow# 

"Thea, may I come in?" Nyssa asked after knocking on Thea's door. She heard some shuffling from in the room before the door was opened. Nyssa immediately noticed that Thea had been crying. "Are you alright Thea?" 

"Yeah. Just been thinking, and remembering," Thea explained, wiping her face with her sleeve. "What did you need?" 

"Nothing Thea. I just came to see you, to see how you were," Nyssa explained. 

"I'm fine Nyssa," Thea replied, causing Nyssa to glare at the 17-year old. "Really. You don't have to worry." 

"And yet I do, Thea," Nyssa said. Thea said nothing in response so Nyssa switched tactics. "Do you know what a crucible is?" 

"Something in chem class?" Thea retorted, no idea what Nyssa was getting at. 

"Correct. Oliver had no idea when I asked him the same question," Nyssa replied, smiling at the memory. "But not what I was referring too. I'm talking about an event or experience that is very difficult." 

"Never heard of it," Thea stated, growing impatient. 

"Well, someone once told me that, sooner or later, we all go through a crucible," Nyssa explained. "Most people believe that only two types of people that go into a crucible; the ones who survive it and grow stronger because of that experience' and those that perish," Nyssa said, hoping to be getting through to Thea. "But, I was told, and I believe they were right, that there is a third kind of person. They choose to stay in their crucible, accepting the pain and embracing it because it is all they know anymore. To them, it is easier to learn to love the fire, until it consumes them." 

"What does this have to do with me?" Thea queried, confused. Nyssa said nothing, hoping that Thea would understand what she was trying to say. "The island. That was Oliver's crucible." 

"One of them," Nyssa confirmed. "Just as Oliver's and your father's death was one for you. And now, with Oliver's return, I think that you are in another crucible. So, what kind of person are you?" Nyssa questioned before departing without a word, leaving Thea to ponder. 

#Arrow#

"Were you able to recover anything?" Oliver asked as he entered the room set aside for Felicity. It was bigger than her old cubicle but wasn't as large as his office. 

"Yes, and it was not easy," Felicity said as she indicated the disassembled laptop, wires coming off various parts of it and going to another computer. "It looks like the last few images your friend was looking at were the blueprints to the Exchange Building." 

"Why does that building sound familiar?" Oliver asked as he stared at the screen with the blueprints on it. 

"Because it is where the Unidac Industry's auction is to take place tonight," Felicity supplied cheerfully. 

"Right," Oliver deadpanned. 

"I don't know if this is overreaching or not, but your friend, why couldn't he get his own people to look at his laptop?" Felicity asked. 

"Floyd Lawton has a company?" Oliver asked incredulously. 

"No, but Warren Patel does," Felicity replied, looking at Oliver curiously. "Who is Floyd Lawton? Your friend?" 

"An employee of Mr Patel apparently," Oliver answered calmly. "And no, not anymore." 

#Arrow# 

"Here he comes," Nyssa announced steadily from her place on the rooftop. "I hope you are sure about this." 

"We don't have a choice," Oliver said. "The Exchange Building is surrounded by three towers. Lawton could get a shot off from virtually anywhere and we can't cover an area that big, especially as we will be at the auction. We need the SCPD's help." 

"Here it comes. Detective Lance just exited the building," Nyssa stated, sinking lower onto the roof. She watched as Oliver pounced on Detective Lance from behind and pinned him to the hood of a patrol car using an arm lock. She listened as he explained the situation before leaving the reassembled and wiped clean laptop as evidence. As Oliver disappeared into the shadows of the alleyway, Nyssa slinked off into the night; they had an auction to attend. 

#Arrow# 

"Good evening Detective Lance and how are you?" Nyssa said cheerfully, smiling as Oliver and her walked up to the Detective, who was absently rolling his shoulder. "Are you injured?" 

"I'm fine thank you Miss Raatko," Lance replied cordially before looking at Oliver. "Well, don't you scrub up nice?" 

"We're here to support my family," Oliver said with a tight smile. 

"Yeah! Well, god help me, me too," Lance remarked somewhat crossly. 

"Thank you," Oliver said quietly, almost whispering. Lance scoffed at him before walking off into the crowd. Oliver and Nyssa watched him walk away before they spotted Diggle and moved over to speak to him. 

"Hello John," Nyssa said in greeting.  

"Ma'am, sir," Diggle replied, glancing at them before returning to his scanning of the room. 

"Dig," Oliver greeted his bodyguard. "Got your eyes open?"  

"That is what I am here for, sir," Diggle replied, shooting Oliver an annoyed look. "That and answering patronizing questions." 

"This guy better hurry up, the auction is about to start," Oliver noted plainly. "He is out of time." 

"Sir?" Dig asked, worry and confusion clear on his face.  

"We heard the story on the radio," Nyssa offered. 

"Oliver, Nyssa!" Walter exclaimed happily as he joined the three of them. "I am so pleased you were able to attend." 

"It would have been irresponsible of me not to," Oliver reasoned before dropping his voice. "Walter, the radio said that some of the Unidac bidders were murdered. Shouldn't we be a bit more careful? My mum has already lost one husband." 

"Well, if Moira shared your concern, she wouldn't be here," Walter replied, unconcerned. "And she definitely wouldn't have brought your sister." 

"Thea!" Nyssa exclaimed as they both looked up in shock to see Moira and Thea standing nearby. They made their way over to join them leaving Walter behind. 

"Hi," Oliver greeted as he signalled Diggle over. 

"Oliver, what a nice surprise," Moira started but Oliver ignored her. 

"I need you to get them out of here," Oliver told Diggle. "Right now." 

"Oliver?" Thea asked, suddenly worried. Any reply was cut off as Detective Lance tackled Walter to ground at the same time as the sound of glass shattering filled the room; a waiter falling to the ground, his white jacket turning red. 

Screams erupted from the frightened attendees as Oliver and Diggle grabbed Moira and Thea and hurried them from the room. More shots echoed into the room and several more people dropped. 

"Are you ok?" Oliver asked Thea once they were out of the line of fire. She shook her head and Oliver redirected his attention to his mother. "Are you hurt?" 

"No, I'm fine," More replied, shaken. "Where is Walter?" She suddenly asked, terrified. Oliver glanced back into the room long enough to see Lance leading Walter out of the room. 

"He is fine. Lance has him," Oliver reassured her. "Nyssa, we... Nyssa!" Oliver couldn't see his wife. 

"Sir, I have to get you out of here," Diggle started, trying to usher the three of them before him. 

"No, them. Them!" Oliver ordered sternly. "I have to find Nyssa." 

"Oliver!" Moira called after her son as he ran off. 

"Go, go," Diggle demanded, pointing at an exit. "I'll find him ma'am. I will find him." 

#Arrow# 

"I was wondering when you would join me," Nyssa said as Oliver appeared on the roof; already stripping out of her evening dress. 

"Had to get Thea and my mother out of sight," Oliver said as he started stripping. Once down to their underwear they each pulled a duffle bag from where they had earlier hidden it and proceeded to gear up. "Deadshot is in one of those two buildings. You take the one on the left. And be careful," Oliver advised as he returned their bags to where they had been hidden. 

"I always am beloved," Nyssa stated even as she drew and nocked a grappling arrow; Oliver soon doing the same. They each fired at their respective buildings before stepping off the roof and zipping away. 

They never noticed Diggle appear on the rooftop behind them. He began to search the roof but was interrupted by the sound of shattering glass and gunfire from a neighbouring building. Approaching the edge, he saw the cable stretching between the two buildings. Making a snap decision, he re-entered the stairwell at a run. 

#Arrow# 

"Drop your guns," Oliver yelled as he took cover behind a column. 

"I admire your work," Lawton replied as he reloaded his wrist gun. "No point in asking for some professional courtesy then. 

"We're not in the same line of work," Oliver snarled. "You are a paid murderer." 

"You have taken lives as well," Lawton responded, slowly searching. 

"For the good of others, unlike you," Oliver retorted, slinking away from Lawton, looking for a better position. 

"So I'm smart enough to get paid for my services," Lawton scoffed as he moved to where he thought Oliver was hiding. "Makes me the smart one," he said as he sprang forward for the kill. But Oliver wasn't there. 

"Not there," Oliver said from behind him. Lawton dove to the side, his arm out and firing at Oliver even as the archer released his arrow. Lawton felt the pain in his side from the arrow but pulled himself upright and drew his backup Glock 18. Struggling to his feet, he lent out from the column and sprayed bullets at where Oliver was hiding. 

Oliver ducked as bullets ricocheted around the room and as soon as the gun clicked empty he threw himself out into the open, nocking and releasing before he hit the ground; firing at a recoiling Deadshot. He landed with a thump on the hard floor but was rewarded with a second thump moments later. Standing, he saw the body of the assassin on the ground, an arrow in his right eye. 

The glass shattered behind him as Nyssa entered the building, surveying the area even as she landed. 

"What is it with the eyes beloved?" Nyssa quipped playfully. "Always the eyes." 

"Just lucky I guess," Oliver replied. He was about to say more when a groan sounded from behind them. Turning as one, Nyssa with an arrow nocked and drawn, they found Diggle slumped against the stairwell doorframe; blood flowing from a gunshot wound in his left shoulder. "Shit!" 

They ran over to him and quickly triaged his injuries. Along with the gunshot, he had a further two grazes on his left arm. And then there was the Curare. 

"Give him this," Oliver ordered as he pulled out a small ampoule. "It will slow the poison." He handed it to Nyssa as he tore off John's sleeve and tied it around his shoulder as a makeshift dressing. "Help me get him up." 

#Arrow# 

John awoke later, he wasn't sure when. Minutes, hours, even days could have passed for all he knew. He looked around, examining his surroundings; he was in some kind of industrial building. He struggled to sit up, his vision blurring slightly as he did so but he finally managed it. 

As his vision cleared, he was met with the last thing he expected to see; the familiar face of Oliver Queen, dressed as the Vigilante but with his hood down. 

"Hey Dig."
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Re: Stegro's Arrowverse - Heir #02 - Heir Apparent
Reply #8
Chapter 09 - Revelations of Innocence and Guilt

"Hey Dig," Oliver said to his bodyguard as Diggle struggled to his feet.

"Oliver?" Diggle asked, shocked at what he was seeing. His eyes flicked around, taking in his surroundings before refocusing on Oliver." You're the vigilante." He stepped forward and took a swing at Oliver, but he was still weak from the Curare and his technique was slow and sloppy. Oliver sidestepped him and Diggle crashed into the table that Oliver had been leaning against.

"Easy Dig," Oliver advised calmly, somewhat expecting this kind of reaction. "You were poisoned."

"You son of a bitch," Diggle growled, though it sounded more like a groan. He tried to throw another punch but Oliver caught it and forced Diggle back against the table.

"Come on," Oliver started as Diggle glared at him. "I could have taken you anywhere, could have taken you home, the hospital. I could have left you," Oliver explained. "Instead, we brought you here."

"We?" Diggle asked before he heard the footsteps behind him. He turned and was shocked to see Nyssa walking into the room wearing a combination of black and red robes and armour while carrying a bow and two duffle bags. "Nyssa, you're helping him?"

"Of course I am," Nyssa replied as she set her bow and bags down. "Why would I not help my husband?"

"I don't believe this," Diggle exclaimed. "You both lost your minds on that island."

"Found a few things along the way though," Oliver quipped. "My beautiful wife for one."

"Her and archery classes it seems," Diggle scoffed. "Have I forgotten anything?"

"I also found clarity," Oliver stated as he moved to stand right in front of Diggle. "This city, our home, is being slowly poisoned. It is being killed by a criminal elite and as long as they maintain their wealth and power, they do not care who they hurt."

"And what? You two are going to take them out one by one?" Diggle asked scathingly. "Just the two of you?"

"No, John," Nyssa denied. "We would like for you to join us."

"Special Forces out of Kandahar. It's practically perfect," Oliver stated. "You're just like us."

"Oliver, Nyssa. Neither of you are soldiers," Diggle scoffed as he stood up straighter. "You're criminals. And murderers," he declared before turning and staggering out of the lair. Behind him, Nyssa and Oliver stared at him calculatingly, Oliver letting out a sigh.

#Arrow#

"Where have you two been?" Laurel asked before Nyssa and Oliver were even through the front door. 

"Laurel, how nice to see you," Nyssa greeted politely, ignoring her question.

"What are you doing here Laurel?" Oliver questioned tiredly. 

"I heard about the shootings at the auction. And I wanted to make sure that everyone was OK," Laurel explained.

"You did?" Oliver asked, surprised.

"Yeah," Laurel replied, her expression hardening. "Except that when I got here, I found a family terrified for the both of you. They had no idea where you were."

"Oh," Oliver said simply. He had been so caught up that he had completely forgotten to let them know that they were OK.

"That is my fault I'm afraid," Nyssa admitted. She withdrew her arm from under Oliver's jacket and presented her bandaged wrist for Laurel to see. Even Oliver was surprised at her forethought; her wrist wasn't injured as far as he knew. "In the panic, I slipped and hurt my wrist. Oliver took me to the hospital to have it looked at. It is just a sprain though. It will be fine in a few days."

"He should still have called someone Nyssa," Laurel argued. "He needs to remember that people care about him and they are going to worry when he disappears after being shot at."

"I don't think he was shooting at me," Oliver offered softly. "But you're right. I should have at least called."

"Your family deserves better, Oliver," Laurel stated. "Someone who cares about them too," Laurel said. Finished, she stepped past the two of them and headed for the door.

"Thank you for coming Laurel," Oliver said as he turned around. 

"Despite everything that has happened Oliver, I still care about the lives of those in this house," Laurel admitted. "Maybe you should too." Oliver said nothing as the door shut behind her.

"Wow, that was a little harsh," Thea said as she walked up behind Nyssa and Oliver. "You both OK?"

"We will be, Thea," Nyssa answered. "My wrist will heal and ruffled feathers smoothed. And she was right; we should have contacted you."

"I'm not going to lie, that would have soothed a lot of frayed nerves to know you were both OK," Thea declared smartly. "Ollie?"

"I'm good Speedy," Oliver replied. "Just the second time in a few hours that a friend has pointed out major flaws in my character. It tires you out."

"Yeah, it does," Thea agreed. She closed her eyes as Oliver kissed her forehead before he headed for the stairs.

"Good night, Thea," Oliver said as he began to wearily climb the stairs.

"Good night," she called back.

"I'll be up in a moment Oliver," Nyssa said. Oliver waved his hand before he disappeared from sight. Thea turned to walk away as well but Nyssa stopped her. "Thea, can I speak with you for a moment?"

"Sure," Thea replied, brought up short. 

"I want to ask you a question and I do not want to upset you by asking it," Nyssa stated, trying to warn Thea. 

"Sounds serious," Thea said, crossing her arms. "Ask."

"What would you say if I asked Oliver if we could move out of the mansion and get an apartment in the city?" Nyssa enquired. "Not that I don't like it here. This place is unlike anything I have lived in before. Just, with the wedding coming up, I feel that we should have our own place to call home."

"At least I will have a place to crash if I get too wasted to come home," Thea noted casually. At Nyssa's sudden glare, she continued. "I don't know how mum will react to it, but I think it's a good idea. And I don't think I want to live in a house with two married couples."

"Thank you, Thea," Nyssa said as she turned to walk away. Another thought came to her and she stopped. "Would you be interested in going in search of an apartment with me? I am still unfamiliar with the city and could use the knowledge of someone who was born here."

"I think I'd like that, Nyssa," Thea stated with a smile. "This is going to be great. Oh, don't forget, the caterer and the decorator for the Engagement party will be coming around tomorrow afternoon."

"I remember, Thea. But thank you," Nyssa said. "I think I will head upstairs now. Good night."

"Good night, Nyssa," Thea replied.

#Arrow#

Oliver shot upright, instantly awake and breathing hard. Focusing, he got his breathing under control before checking to see if he had woken Nyssa. Thankful that he hadn't, he slipped from the bed; sleep would not be returning to him tonight. Though they were now few and far between, Oliver still had nights where his memories plagued him, and on those nights, sleep was not to be had. Padding carefully across the room, he threw on a robe before slipping quietly through the door and heading downstairs; maybe some TV would relax him.

He was surprised to find that Thea had beat him to it as she was sitting in the lounge in her own robe, munching on a packet of chips as a news report played on the TV.

"Couldn't sleep either?" Thea asked as Oliver entered the room. Oliver shook his head as he sat down beside her, taking a handful of offered chips.

"No," he said as he looked at the TV. "What's this?"

"Peter Declan," Thea replied, as if the answer was obvious.

"Who is he?" Oliver asked, clearly not knowing who Peter Declan was.

"The guy that killed his wife," Thea explained, though her explanation did not change the uncomprehending look on Oliver's face. "Right. The guy killed his wife in their daughter's bedroom. Complete psycho." Oliver studied the news report, listening to Declan proclaiming how much he loved his wife Camille. "So why can't you sleep?"

"Bad dreams," Oliver declared.

"About?" Thea queried, hoping that Oliver would open up to her, even if only a little.

"The past," Oliver said, pausing a moment to straighten his thoughts. "Things that I have done to get to where I am today. Things that I have experienced."

"Sounds like a lot," Thea noted, trying to get Oliver to continue.

"It is," Oliver confirmed. "More than I ever thought I would go through. Or could survive."

"I wish I had been with you," Thea declared, trying to bond with her brother. "I could have helped you get through it."

"Thea, you were 12 when the boat sank," Oliver noted with a soft smile. "And I never want you to have to go through what I did. To do the things that I have done just to survive."

"You haven't turned out so bad," Thea said. "At least when you're not being a jerk to basically everybody."

"There is that," Oliver said, causing Thea to try to hold back a smile. "I know it may not seem like it most of the time, but I am not the same person I used to be. I wish people would see that."

"Ollie, people will see that," Thea stated calmly. "But you need to be yourself as well. And you need to be relaxed about it."

#Arrow#

"Good morning Moira," Nyssa said as she entered the sitting room to see Oliver's mother reading the newspaper while drinking a cup of coffee. In the room with her was a tall man with a rigid bearing, dressed in a suit.

"Good morning Nyssa," Moira greeted her future Daughter-in-law, her eyes not leaving the paper. "How is your wrist?"

"Feeling much better thank you," Nyssa replied as she rubbed the re-wrapped bandage on her wrist. She was about to speak again when Oliver entered the room behind her.

"Oliver, how did you sleep?" Moira asked, still not looking up.

"Fine, thank you," He responded calmly, his eyes noticing the man. "We have a visitor."

"Yes," Moira confirmed. "Mr Diggle's replacement."

"Replacement?" Nyssa questioned in a concerned tone. "Is John alright?"

"I believe he will be fine Nyssa, despite his injury," Moira replied. "He did however, tender his resignation this morning."

"His reason," Oliver asked, trying to seem nonchalant.

"He said that that he didn't approve of the way you were spending your evenings," Moira explained in a disapproving tone. "Especially as they usually start with the two of you ditching him. I can't say that I disagree with him."

"Hmm," Oliver hummed in relief as he crossed the room, extending his hand in greeting to the man. "Hi."

"Good morning Mr Queen," the man said, shaking Oliver's hand. "My name is Rob Scott and I will be your new body man."

"That is quite the handshake you have there, Rob," Oliver said cheerfully.

"I spent 5 years with Monument Point M.C.U. SWAT," Rob explained.

"Ah," Oliver said, nodding sagely. "I feel safer already."

"Thank God, we can finally stop hearing about this awful man," Moira declared, drawing Oliver's and Nyssa's attention to the TV where a news report about Peter Declan was again playing.

"Declan's execution is set for midnight 2 days from now." The news anchor was saying. "Camille Declan's former employer, Jason Brodeur, released a statement saying, quote, 'I hope this gives Camille the peace she deserves.'''

"Jason Brodeur?" Oliver remarked, glancing at Nyssa to see that she had caught the name as well.

"What was that Oliver?" Moira asked, looking at Oliver.

"The murdered wife, Camille Declan, she worked for Jason Brodeur," Oliver noted.

"Apparently so," Moira agreed, looking at her son curiously. "Why?"

"No, reason," Oliver said nonchalantly as he turned to his new bodyguard. "Say, Rob, it's time for me to head into the office. Could you please get the car ready for me?"

"No offence, Mr Queen, but I have been briefed on your tendency to disappear with warning," Rob revealed. "If it is all the same to you, I would prefer to keep my eye on you at all times."

"Mr Scott, we are over 20 miles from the city," Nyssa pointed out bluntly. "If you do not drive us, how else are my fiance and I supposed to get into the city?"

"Right," Rob noted with a nod before exiting the room. Oliver looked down at his mother with a smile.

"I like him," Oliver remarked before walking out of the room.

"I will see you this afternoon Moira," Nyssa said as she followed Oliver out. She found him waiting for her. "We are not taking the car are we?" Oliver just smiled in return before leading her though the house towards the garage. Checking to make sure that Rob had already exited with the Bentley, they entered and approached where Oliver had parked his new bike, a Ducati Diavel; out of sight behind another car. "Do you plan on letting him catch you at all today?"

"Sure, I'm at Queen Consolidated most of the day," Oliver quipped as he put on his helmet. Nyssa didn't reply as she put on her own helmet and climbed onto the Ducati behind Oliver. Starting the bike, he revved the engine before accelerating out of the garage. They roared past the front of the house, waving at Rob as he stood beside the Bentley waiting for them. Nyssa turned to watch as he unthinkingly waved back at them before shouting something that she had no hope of hearing over the powerful engine of the Ducati.

#Arrow#

"I like this bike," Nyssa announced after removing her helmet. 

"I told you that you should have bought one," Oliver said as he held out his arm to help Nyssa off; climbing off once she was down.

"I think I might return and purchase one," Nyssa proclaimed, gazing at the bike. Oliver could tell that she was hooked. Nanda Parbat didn't have bikes so she didn't own one, despite knowing how and in fact being quite a good rider.

"Go ahead, just try not to hurt anyone when they ask you if you can afford it," Oliver joked.

"I would never try to hurt them," Nyssa noted casually. "If they are hurt it is because they deserved it."

"Uhuh, and that pub owner in London?" Oliver questioned snidely. 

"He was a pig. No man but you may touch me without my permission," Nyssa declared adamantly. "And he should have regained most of the use of his arms by now. I cannot be sure about his hands though."

"Hmm," Oliver hummed in agreement. "What about this Peter Declan?"

"His wife worked for Jason Brodeur. A name from your father's list," Nyssa said. "You think something is amiss."

"I'm not sure," Oliver commented. "But I think that we should look into it. See what SCPD found as evidence."

"It cannot hurt," Nyssa agreed. "If Mr Declan is innocent, then we must do what we can so that his daughter does not become an orphan."

"Alright then. Take my bike," Oliver said as he wrapped his arms around his wife. "Have your new bike delivered to the Mansion. I will meet you at the Foundry later."

"You will," Nyssa agreed before kissing Oliver. Enjoying the embrace, Nyssa reluctantly broke it to climb back onto the Ducati. Oliver lent in once more to kiss Nyssa as he handed her the key.

"Be safe," Oliver said.

"And you Beloved," Nyssa countered before starting up the bike. Oliver stepped back and watched Nyssa depart the parking garage before he turned towards the elevator; time to be a businessman.

#Arrow#

Nyssa pulled up next to the Foundry just as the sun was beginning to set, parking inside so that the bike was out of sight. As she removed her helmet, the sound of a girl's screams assaulted her ears. While not uncommon in the Glades, these screams were both quite close and quite desperate. Hooking her helmet onto the handlebars, Nyssa quickly slipped out of the warehouse and onto the roof of the neighbouring building; heading towards the origin of the screams. Adjusting her course as the screams moved, Nyssa realised someone was being chased and redoubled her efforts to close the distance. Soon enough she was standing on the edge of a building, looking down into a dead end alleyway as three large men approached a short, slim girl.

"Comere girl, we aren't gonna to hurt ya," one of the men slurred as he took a step forward. The girl said nothing, just kept backing away from them; her head turning constantly, her eyes searching for a way out while checking that the men hadn't got closer. Nyssa could easily see she was terrified, and also trapped.

"Stop running girl," another man ordered, his voice clear and steady. "Save your strength. You're going to need it for what we have planned."

"Yeah, you might even enjoy it," the third man said even has he rubbed his crotch. "If you try really hard." 

Nyssa had seen and heard enough to know what they had planned and she was incensed. Scanning the alleyway below her, she spotted a metal pole she could use as a serviceable weapon before she dropped off the roof. Her descent and landing accomplished without noise, Nyssa retrieved her weapon before advancing on the trio from behind and announcing her arrival.

The girl could do nothing but watch as the exotic woman appeared from behind her would be rapists and commenced her attack. First, Nyssa twirled her pipe around her body to build momentum before lashing out at the last man to speak; the pipe connecting with his head and dropping him. Keeping the pipe moving, Nyssa danced to the side and used the ends of the pole to deliver a flurry of blows to the legs, arms and body of the next man before kneeing him in the head as he collapsed in pain. The third man, the drunk, overestimated his abilities and charged at Nyssa, clearly intending to crash tackle her. Nyssa merely dodged to the side with the nimbleness of a cat before lashing out with her pole again; this time catching the drunk across the lower spine, hard. He collapsed to the concrete, his stomach contents cushion his fall somewhat. With one last twirl and flourish, Nyssa turned to examine the girl.

This close to her, Nyssa could actually see that what she thought was a girl was in fact a young adult, perhaps 20 years of age. She had short black hair and some bruising around her face. Her clothes were functional and a little ragged but her boots were new and hard wearing.

"Are you alright?" Nyssa asked as she slowly approached. The girl's eyes, previously locked on the fallen forms of her attackers shot up to look at Nyssa.

"How did you do that?" the girl asked, astonished. "Why did you do that?"

"How is easy if you know the way," Nyssa stated clearly. "As to why. No woman should ever suffer at the hands of men." 

"You're new around here aren't you," the girl observed. 

"No, I have not been in Starling long," Nyssa confirmed. "I am Nyssa."

"Sin," the girl replied, stuffing her hands into the pockets of her pants.

"Why are you out this late, Sin?" Nyssa asked, curious but already guessing the answer.

"Nowhere else to be," Sin stated. "No one to go home too."

"Do you have a home?" Nyssa enquired.

"I have a few places I can crash," Sin answered. Nyssa examined the girl for a moment before coming to a decision. She pulled a pen and a notepad from her jacket and scribbled an address down before tearing the piece off and handing it to Sin.

"If you want a place to stay for a while, be at that address at 11am tomorrow," Nyssa said, turning to leave. "If not, I wish you well for your future."

"Why would you help me?" Sin asked, suspicious.

"Why not?" Nyssa retorted without stopping or turning back to face Sin. Sin just stood there, staring at Nyssa's retreating form before a groan from one of the men startled her. She raced out of the alleyway and looked around; but Nyssa was nowhere to be seen.

#Arrow#

"What kept you?" Oliver asked as Nyssa entered the basement.

"Had to deal with a situation," Nyssa answered. "It was dealt with. And yes, they are alive, unfortunately."

"Killing everyone is not the solution," Oliver intoned, as he turned back to face the computers. "But anyway, I have the research on the Declan case."

"And?" Nyssa asked, moving to stand next to Oliver.

"Open and shut case. No alibi, and all the forensics pointed at him. Including the murder weapon," Oliver explained. "He was tried, convicted and sentenced."

"But..." Nyssa offered knowingly.

"But, Camille Declan worked for Jason Brodeur," Oliver said. "And Jason is on my father's list so I think that there is a good chance that Peter Declan is being framed. I don't know why yet, but if he is, then I am going to find out."

"He is to be executed in less than 48 hours, Beloved," Nyssa stated, reading the files on the screen. "That is not a lot of time." 

"No, it is not," Oliver agreed as he stood. "Peter Declan is going to need a good attorney.

#Arrow#

Nyssa waited and watched as Oliver entered Laurel's apartment. She could hear their conversation from inside but couldn't make them out as Oliver had disabled the lights. Shifting her footing a little, she suddenly felt like she was being watched. Mindful of the previous attacks on her and Oliver, Nyssa bolted upright and nocked an arrow; scanning the rooftops around her slowly. There!

On a taller building on the next block stood a figure on the corner of the roof. The distance was too far to make out a lot of details but Nyssa could tell that the figure was female, was dressed in black and the lower half of her face was covered. But what puzzled her the most was that the woman allowed her blonde hair to hang freely and billow in the night breeze. Considering what to do with this woman, Nyssa slowly relaxed her arm though she kept her arrow nocked. She was again surprised when the woman simply turned away and disappeared.

"Nyssa, I'm finished here," Oliver's voice echoed into her ear. "Meet me at the bike."

"Moving Beloved," Nyssa replied, casting a last glance up to where the blonde had been perched. Seeing nothing, Nyssa returned her arrow to her quiver before moving off across the rooftops to meet with Oliver. Things were starting to get complicated. First the assassins and now this blonde woman. What would be next?


 
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