Chapter 1 - Wonderings
AN: OK so here is the start of my second fic, for those of you who've read my first 'Questions' you may notice that there seems to be a bit of theme running through here. Each story is a complete stand-alone though and does not relate to the other – despite the name and questioning theme.
AN2: Purely as a note of formatting Lance's notes that are scribbled down are in bold type in bullet points. His thoughts on those notes are in italics. Hope that reads ok.
Disclaimer: I do not own Arrow or any of the characters whatsoever. CW owns it all.
Lance couldn't stand puzzles and this one had been bugging him more than anything else for a while now. Instead of getting closer to figuring it out though the puzzle had just got worse. He was sure that if he could just sit down and work it all through without interruptions for once he would be able to work it out – the answers were just there, just out of his reach. He knew he wasn't going to get any sleep tonight until he worked through it. Maybe if he wrote all down, like a case, then it would make more sense and the answers he was searching for would reveal themselves. Couldn't hurt, after all nothing else he'd tried so far had worked.
He got his case notebook out, but it was the personal one he kept for his private case notes, things that weren't part of the official investigations and started to write things down.
- Sara works with Arrow.
- Arrow knew who Sara Lance was. It was clear that the Arrow hadn't been surprised by Sara calling him in.
- Arrow can contact Sara. The Arrow had been able to contact Sara even though he, her own father, hadn't been able to.
- Sara trusts Arrow to fight. Sara trusted him and didn't worry about needing to keep him safe. So that meant she knew he could fight, really fight – like her. Heck I know the Arrow could fight, I've seen evidence of it enough times!
- Sara trusts Arrow with identity. Sara had also trusted the Arrow with her real identity before it had been revealed to anyone else. Yet even though he knew she was Sara Lance he hadn't been surprised she was alive.
- Arrow not surprised Sara alive. Everyone in Starling City knew Sara had died when that damn yacht had sunk though, right? So why had the Arrow not seemed surprised she was alive? For that matter just how long had the Arrow known that Sara was alive?
- Arrow knew Sara fights, kills. The Arrow hadn't been surprised by Sara's abilities, or her willingness to kill. But the Arrow had been worried about her killing in front of him. That meant he cared about her, right?
- Oliver not surprised Sara alive? Oliver Queen was another person who hadn't seemed surprised that Sara was alive. Oh sure he'd tried to act surprised - but Oliver's acting wasn't up to much and Lance had always been good at telling when that kid was lying, or so he'd thought...
- Oliver knew Sara alive? So did that mean that Oliver had already known; if so how had he known, and for how long?
- Oliver lied – Sara not dead. Yet Oliver had said Sara had died. Why? Had Oliver believed that? Or had he always been covering for her?
- Oliver & Sara yacht, island. Both Oliver and Sara had survived the yacht, that island?
- Oliver & Sara dating. Oliver and Sara were already back together (much to Laurel's horror, and he had to admit he wasn't particularly impressed either). But it didn't seem like they had only been back together the week or so it had been since Sara had officially been 'back'.
- Sara not worried Oliver's safety. If Sara had kept being alive from him because of fears for his safety, and Oliver had known, then why wasn't she worried about Oliver's safety? It was clear she still cared for Oliver so why wouldn't she worry about her boyfriend's safety.
Boyfriend huh, hmm, Lance still wasn't sure how he felt about that either for that matter! Mind you, he did have to admit he now referred to the kid as 'Oliver' even in his own thoughts, instead of 'Queen' like he always used to.
This was not helping, every question or point he wrote down seemed to raise more questions of its own. Lance sighed, he was close to giving up but decided he would take a break and then give it one more try first. He went and got a coffee figuring he was going to need the caffeine, and stood at the window thinking over everything he'd written down trying to see if a pattern would make itself clear.
Maybe if he tried comparing his notes something would stand out. Was there anything similar between the points he'd made? Lance looked back over them comparing and finding more and more similar points as he went, much to his surprise.
Both the Arrow and Oliver seemed to know Sara was alive before anyone else had. That meant she hadn't worried about the safety of either. Clearly there was no need to worry about the Arrow's safety, that guy was more than capable of taking care of himself. But Oliver Queen? It was also clear that Oliver had been less than honest about what had really happened when that yacht had gone down. Sara hadn't been willing to expand on those five years either, so Oliver wasn't the only one being reluctant or less than honest here.
He already knew that the island hadn't been deserted like Oliver had told everyone. After all, you don't get tortured on a deserted island and Lance would never forget the look on Oliver's face or the tension in his body during that polygraph when he'd forced the kid into admitting how he'd got those scars. Truth be told he'd been more than a little shaken by that admission himself.
The polygraph, that had only happened because Lance had been so certain that Oliver was the Vigilante, or the Arrow as he wanted to be called now. He'd only backed down because the Vigilante/Arrow had been seen across town while Oliver was at his Mansion throwing that stupid party. Though, when he thought about it, Lance realised that the Arrow had only been seen. Sure some gang-bangers had been taken down, but there had been a dinstinct lack of arrows at the crime scene he seemed to recall. Something he hadn't picked up on at the time.
However, Lance hadn't known that the Arrow worked with others back then either. Now he knew, even if he couldn't prove it, that Miss Smoak worked with him, and he definitely knew that Sara worked with him too. Miss Smoak also worked for Oliver, in fact she always seemed to be with him despite the fact that she insisted she wasn't sleeping with him like the rumors claimed. He couldn't help thinking Oliver better not be sleeping with her while he's dating my daughter!
Lance's mind went back to the polygraph again and Oliver's admission of torture. He'd known that something must have caused the scars in that doctor's report, but still, torture? That was the last thing he'd expected to hear. What the hell would anyone want to torture the kid about anyway? He suddenly realised that nobody else had ever mentioned it, or the scars. When you thought about how much the kid was in the papers, and that the paparazzi were all over him (especially since he'd returned from the dead), it was pretty impressive that Oliver had managed to keep something that big completely hidden. Maybe the kid was better at acting than I thought after all...
Lance refilled his coffee cup before going and sitting back down at the table and looked back over his notes. He sighed, taking a deep breath, before picking up the threads of his thoughts again.
Sara wasn't worried about Oliver's safety. Oliver had survived torture and five years on a not-so-deserted island. Sara had learnt to fight, had learnt some truly amazing skills that had stunned him truth be told, in her five years away. So if she'd learnt to fight in that time, did that mean that Oliver had too?
Why had Oliver told everyone Sara had died, had gone down with the yacht? He must have had a reason to do that. Queen (as he thought of pre-island Oliver) might have done that just to make things easier for himself, he had been too selfish to care about anyone else, but Oliver? Lance just couldn't reconcile that selfishness with the Oliver he'd come to know and - though he'd never admit it to anyone - grudgingly respect since his return. So, if he had known that Sara was alive - and Lance now thought Oliver probably had known - then there must have been a very good reason for doing so. Sara had made Lance keep it a secret to protect the rest of their family and it had been the hardest thing he'd ever done. If Oliver had kept it a secret for that long then he was a far better actor than Lance had ever given him credit for. So what else has he been hiding?
Did that mean that Oliver could fight too? Did they both learn on Lian Yu? Is that why Sara wasn't/hadn't been worried about Oliver's safety with that whole League thing? If Lance was right, and Oliver could fight too, did that mean that he really was the Arrow? Could Oliver be the Arrow after all?
If Oliver was, then did that mean he had set-up the whole thing with that other(?) Vigilante being seen whilst he had a hundred witnesses, not to mention the GPS tracker confirming his location at the Mansion? Was I right all along? You couldn't deny that the Arrow had shown up shortly after Oliver's return; and when Oliver had disappeared after the destruction of the Glades the Arrow had also disappeared.
No. He couldn't be, because that would mean that he'd pulled the wool over Lance's eyes – after he'd been on the right track! Arghh, this is driving me mad! Much as he was loath to admit it the evidence was looking more and more like Oliver Queen was the Arrow. Could that really be?
Lance realised he had come as far as he could on his own. He decided that he needed to speak with Sara; he needed answers to all these questions, she owed him that much after everything they'd been through and him agreeing to keep her secret for those months until she was ready. Time for Sara to answer some questions, he thought grimly.
AN3: Thanks for coming and reading my new fic, I really do appreciate it! Please let me know what you think, if you like it then don't forget to fav & follow, and as always reviews are truly golden and keep me writing! If you have any suggestions on what you'd like to see next please let me know. I don't promise to include them but I will definitely consider them :) Thank you!