It all starts with Moira's lie. In truth, it's not just that. It's a plethora of things really but Oliver blames Moira for all of his frustration. Nevermind the fact that far too many people have come to know the truth of how he spends his nights and where he spends them. Or the fact that now he also has Roy and Sara weighing in their own thoughts about how he should go about saving his city. And Felicity often has to remind him that Starling City is just as much their home as it is Oliver's and that they're just trying to help. He knows she's right but they're no closer to finding the man in the skull mask and now it has become nearly impossible for him to look his sister – his half-sister- in the eye.
He calls his mother a liar. He pulls away from her because of her newest lie. And then Diggle points out that he has been lying to literally everyone since he returned from the island last year. Oliver tells himself Diggle wouldn't be comparing him to his mother if he knew exactly what she had lied about. But Dig's words echo in his head far too often. The loneliness that had only begun to subside comes crashing back down on him with a force so strong he finds it difficult to breathe at times.
Oliver's world starts to spiral.
He can't bear to be at home because his mother is there and he can't look at her without feeling sick to his stomach, can't erase the mental image in his head of her with Malcom Merlyn of all people. The feelings of anger, hurt, and betrayal run too deep. It doesn't help that a clueless and increasingly worried Thea keeps trying it get Oliver to make amends with Moira. It's not fair to Thea but the truth would destroy her and Oliver refuses to let that happen.
He can't go to the Foundry because there's always someone else there. Sara, Roy and Diggle all train there just as he does and he finds it more and more difficult to train in the space that he had set up for himself because the rage that he unleashes on the practice dummies gets everyone asking him questions about what the hell is wrong with him. Oliver can't tell them. He can't look Roy in the eye and tell him that the girl he's in love with- the girl that is helping Roy keep it together- is the daughter of a man that is responsible for the deaths of eight of his friends. He doesn't want to see the looks of pity he knows he will get from Sara and Diggle or hear the consolation speeches that will inevitably follow. But he's also so sick of them telling him to calm down.
Thea Queen is Malcom Merlyn's biological daughter. Oliver never, ever wants to say those words out loud. This is his sister. That's all there is to it. He loves her and he will not let this destroy her. He will not make this public information so the world will always be able to use it against her. He never wants to speak on this subject. He doesn't want anyone else to know. And so he asks Felicity not to tell anyone else and is surprised and extremely grateful when she offers no arguments and only nods.
But Oliver refusing to voice the statement doesn't make it any less true.
The worst part is that there is absolutely nothing that Oliver can do about it. This causes him to snap at everyone for the smallest and stupidest reasons. He's kept secrets before-still has so many that he's guarding from everyone- but this feels different. This is not his secret. It's someone elses. And Oliver worries that this secret in particular is the one that will drive him off the deep end.
He thinks he'd go crazy if it weren't for Felicity. Lately he finds himself sitting at his desk more and more often wondering what he would do without her. He always comes to the same conclusion: If she weren't here, he would have gone insane by know.
She understands his frustration and knows the real root of his anger, she doesn't yell at him to calm down or offer him false hope that they will find the psycho that is injecting random people pulled off the street with Mirakuru. More and more bodies keep turning up. And they are no closer to finding out how many people that have been injected with the serum have survived and how many have been killed by it.
He's taken to pacing as a way to keep his rage from showing. But anyone can see how angry he is by the way his fists clench and unclench as he walks, itching with a strong desire to hit something as his mind replays imagines of Slade, of Ivo…of Shado.
It's always Felicity that brings him back. A gentle hand on his arm and he snaps out of the memories and can think with a level head again for a little while. Until his mother turns up yet again on the evening news or another corpse with bloody eyes shows up in the Glades. There's no one he can talk to, no one that understands what he's feeling. No one but Felicity.
This is why he ends up at her door the first night. He doesn't initially know why he's there. All he knows is that he needs to talk to someone and no one else will understand. He paces around her living room for a long time as she babbles but he can see her nervousness. She wants him to talk to her and she's ready to listen whenever he's ready to discuss whatever is on his mind. So he talks. He barely remembers all that he said, all he knows is that some time that night he had actually broken down and Felicity had pulled him into her arms and held him until he stopped crying. If he closes his eyes, he can still remember the scent of her perfume and the feel of her hand running through his hair and rubbing soothing circles on his back.
He doesn't go there intending to stay. They fall asleep on the couch and neither really makes anything of it. They're closer than ever but they're still only friends. Felicity makes them both breakfast in the morning. She fills their time with talk of what he needs to do at the office that day and adds in random comments about random things that don't really matter. She never brings up Thea or Moira unless he has a scheduled meeting with them. She always lets Oliver choose when they talk about his family. Oliver knows she's trying to distract him to keep his anger and hurt at bay and he can't find the words to tell her how much he appreciates her efforts. Especially considering that they are often very successful. So he thanks her politely and says nothing more on the subject.
It turns into a weekly thing. And then a daily thing. He rings her door bell so often that she just hands him the spare key one day without saying a word. He doesn't need to ask to know what the key is for.
He wonders if he's intruding; after all, she spends almost all of her time with him and now he's also taken over the guest bed room of her apartment along with whatever little free time she has to herself during her very busy days and nights. But she gives him the key herself so he guesses she doesn't mind. There's also the fact that she's started making dinner for two instead of just herself every night.
Oliver doesn't really know when the empty closet in Felicity's guest bedroom becomes filled up with his clothes. He doesn't know when he starts adding things like mens shampoo and after shave to the grocery lists that Felicity sticks on her fridge every week. He also can't remember when he started buying pints of mint chip ice cream and putting them in her freezer or when he started pulling those grocery lists off the fridge door and buying the items from the supermarket himself. All he knows is that at some point, these things happen and it feels like the most natural thing in the world.
He doesn't think much of the fact the he remembers that Felicity loves pineapple pizza or that he's memorized what she orders from that Chinese place three blocks from the apartment. He pays no mind to the fact that he knows exactly how her hair looks when she pulls it free of the pony tail, or how it looks when she's just taken a shower or gotten out of bed. He doesn't realize that he's come to remember what day of the week she cleans the apartment or that he's actually started helping her clean it. He doesn't notice that he remembers what goes where in her kitchen or that he can recognize her neighbors and they recognize him. He doesn't remember when she started alternating between making his and her own favorite breakfast foods in the morning.
Oliver thinks nothing of the fact that he and Felicity have been living together for a good two months- doesn't realize it even- until he unlocks the door one evening to find Felicity half naked in the living room. It is only when Oliver stands in the door way, staring at the blonde in shock as she scrambles to cover herself up, jumbled words of explanation pouring out of her mouth, that he actually stops and really thinks about all of this.
Oliver doesn't know when this became a habit.
Then again, he thinks, most people don't realize when they develop habits. And he certainly didn't mean for any of this to happen. All he knows is that it has happened.
When did he stop needing to ring her door bell to enter her apartment? How exactly did it reach this point?
"Oliver! I knew you had that meeting with Isabel and the company investors tonight and I didn't think you would be home so soon so I figured I'd just try on the new dress right here and-"
The word home echoes in his ears as he stares at a very flustered Felicity pulling the dress up around her shoulders. Oliver feels slightly light headed as realization hits him like a ton of bricks.
She stops short as he moves to come stand right in front of her and turns a bright shade of red as he carefully zips up the latest addition to her wardrobe. He vaguely recalls sitting on the couch channel surfing while she sat next to him with her tablet deciding which color she wanted. Once she's properly adjusted the dress that compliments her every curve, Oliver rests his hands on her shoulders and gently pushes her back until he is holding her at arms' length and admires the outfit.
"How do I look?" she asks quietly and Oliver looks back up at her face to see that she is still blushing profusely.
She stands in front of him in a forest green dress and high heels with tousled golden hair cascading down her shoulders. She's breath taking.
"You're beautiful." Oliver whispers before his arms move from her shoulders to her waist and he pulls her against his chest. She returns the hug but when he gives no indication of breaking the embrace, she pulls back slightly and looks up at him with a puzzled expression. He can see the question in her eyes but before any words leave her mouth, he bends his head down and presses his lips softly against hers.
This feels right. And suddenly, everything makes sense. Suddenly, he's hyper aware of everything that's been going on between them for the past two months, maybe long before then. Suddenly, he understands why he couldn't make things work with Laurel, and why it just hadn't felt right with Sara even after the night he'd spent with her when she had been freed from the League of Assassins. It's Felicity that he needs. He's never been one to believe in destiny, never thought two people were meant to be, but kissing Felicity, he thinks he might have been wrong, that destiny exists and has led them both to this moment.
He just hopes that she feels it too.
When he feels her wrap her arms around his neck and return the kiss, he knows that she is where he belongs.
A/n: This is my first Arrow fic. And it's Olicity! This just popped into my head after 2x13 and I had to write it. I hope I did alright and that I didn't make Oliver OOC. I wasn't sure. Enjoy!