Notes: This is part of my Love Over Time Universe. Please visit my profile for the order of the stories.
Lizzie sighed, crossing and uncrossing her legs awkwardly, glancing again at the group of girls to her side, standing together twirling long locks of hair, fluttering eyes, posing for the passing boys. With a groan she reached into her clutch and slid her cell out, glancing at the time. "Damn you, Mom," Lindsay cursed as she recalled the conversation with her mother.
"Come on, Lizzie. You and Anna used to be such good friends," Chloe commented as took a seat at the dinner table.
"Like three years ago. Mom, it's her sweet sixteen. She's invited everyone, that includes the people she doesn't like, and I happen to be one of them. And don't forget, that Anna wasn't that good of a friend.
"Ohhhh!" Connor nodded and swallowed his food quickly. "That's the little witch who pushed you into the pool on a dare. White blouse and all." Connor chuckled, shrugging when Lizzie glared.
"Lizzie, there have to be other people you know. Just go. You never go off anywhere," Chloe said gently and reached for the carton of lo mien. "Oliver Queen! Get in here now!"
With a roll of her eyes Lizzie turned her head, watching her father's approaching figure, cell glued to his ear.
"And get off that damn phone!"
Oliver stopped and glared at Chloe from across the table. "Yea, okay, yea. Look...yea, I know. Hey...let me call you back." With a frown he hit the end button. "Yes, sweetheart."
"Don't get cocky with me," Chloe shot back with a cocked eyebrow, stabbing her plate with her fork and twirling the noodle, not looking away from him once.
"I thought you liked me cocky?" He said suggestively and walked around the table, pulling out the chair next to her.
"Uh, stop it." Lizzie groaned. "Can we finish talking about the fact that I don't want to go to Anna's party."
"Are we still talking about this?" Oliver asked as he took the plate Chloe handed to him. "Don't go."
Chloe shot Oliver a quick glare then turned back to Lizzie. "Look, stop making excuses for staying in Lizzie. Go out, have fun." A snort at her side drew her attention away. "What?"
"You," Oliver chuckled and grabbed the bag of egg rolls, "'Go out, have fun.' Pot meet kettle." Connor chuckled and Oliver winked over the table. "Your mother's idea of fun consists of computer servers."
"You're right, Oliver," Chloe snapped and grabbed the egg rolls from him, "because time spent with you is taxing on my patience. You or a computer that doesn't talk back? The decision is easy." Grabbing the last egg roll from the bag she tossed it from the table and turned to Lizzie. "You're going."
"Mom!" Connor chuckled to her right and Lizzie snapped her head around to face him. "Shut it!"
"I am not listening to this all-." Seeing the egg roll disappear from her hand she turned to face Oliver and glared. "Oliver Queen..." She reached out to grab her stolen egg roll but he avoided her easy enough.
"Over the hill I may be, but my reflexes are still quicker," he said with a grin and took a bite.
"You'll pay for that," Chloe grumbled and turned back to her food.
"I have no doubt."
"Come on, Lizzie, it isn't that bad," Connor said with a shrug. "Two, three hours max. If it's that bad, send a virus to the security, set off the alarms."
"Connor, don't give her any ideas. It's hard enough to keep your mother from running the world from her personnel laptop."
"I can run it from my phone," Chloe quipped smartly and leaned towards him, opening her mouth slightly with wide expectant eyes.
"Don't turn those big green eyes on me." He said and held out the egg roll for her to take a bite. "You're lucky I've got the hots for you."
Chloe ignored the chorus of groans and grinned.
Unfortunately she hadn't taken her brother's suggestions seriously enough. At this point she was of half a mind to call Aunt Lois and complain about mean petty popular girls. At least she might take pity on her and send Uncle Clark to swoop her up. Not many people would disregard her mother's wishes besides Aunt Lois.
"You have probably the most sour expression of anyone in this room."
Lizzie turned at the sound of the deep, amused voice. Looking up she found boy, about her age, dark hair, and a smirk that would have made her heart skip a beat if it hadn't been for his rude comment. "And that was probably the worst introduction I've ever heard." In no mood for someone else directing their negativity towards her she turned her head and looked out over the crowd.
"Maybe, but the look on your face is a bit more entertaining."
Slowly, Lizzie got the feeling that her unwelcome guest wasn't leaving anytime soon. Turning her head she looked up again and found him grinning. "What do you want?"
"Entertainment." He pulled out the cushion chair that sat next to her and took a seat, propping his arm on the table. Glancing down he frowned "What is this?"
"What?" Lizzie asked, forgetting his rudeness and confused by his question.
"This." He pinched the shimmery pink material between his fingers and rubbed it.
"A table cloth," she said simply and turned from him, eyes finding Anna, red curls cascading down her back, glad in a green dress, pressing her hand against the chest of a tall attractive boy as she giggled. With a sigh Lizzie looked down at her own dress, frowning at the blue material. Green was her preferred choice, but knowing that Anna would be decked out in green she had shied away from it.
Sighing again she turned to the young man, narrowing his eyes at him. "If you're here to make fun of me, get on with it." His brow raised, and she frowned in return, realizing that she was only amusing him. "What?"
"You. Overall there doesn't appear to be anything wrong with you. You aren't poor, your dress is nice enough, although blue isn't really your color, your looks are decent, yet here you sit...alone."
Something snapped in her at his comment, temper flaring, but her self control remained in place. "And yet I have nothing kind to say about you." Turning away again she was determined to ignore him.
"So, my only guess would be that you aren't friends with anyone here. Either by choice or someone else's."
He was baiting her, and she didn't like it. "It was a mutual decision." He didn't respond and for that she was grateful. Hopefully, if she ignored him, then he'd just get bored and leave.
"You would think you would be grateful for some attention."
The leash on her temper tightened, only because she knew he was hoping for a reaction. Turning to face him she narrowed her eyes at him, tensing at the smirk on his face and the amusement in his dark eyes. Turning away from him she stood, and walked away, dress swishing around her thighs. Screw the party, she was ready to go home. Once through the double doors she unsnapped her clutch and reached for her phone. A hand on her elbow stopped her, pulling her back around. Her stomach clenched in panic and then she spun, bringing her fist back and twisting her arm from the hold. It all happened in a matter of seconds, but to Lizzie it felt like minutes. The hand on her elbow tightened and hand stopped her fist from connecting, holding it mid air. Lizzie prided herself on her ability to protect herself. You weren't the daughter of the Green Arrow and walk away without knowing how to fight. So it was a little disconcerting that someone had so easily grabbed her and disarmed her. Wide eyed she started at the same dark eyes she had just attempted to escape. Even he seemed to be slightly shocked, eyes opening slightly. "You!"
"Sorry?" He asked more then stated. "If I let you go, promise not to have another go."
"I wouldn't count on it," Lizzie snapped.
"I promise to play nice."
"I could care less." If she pulled away Lizzie didn't believe for one second he would stop her, but she didn't pull away and he didn't seem to be any rush to let her go. Finally, she sighed. "What do you want?"
Slowly he released his grip, dropping his hand from hers. "To find out what the rush is all about."
WIth an annoyed sigh she crossed her arms and cocked a hip to the side. "Soon? The company here leaves a lot to be desired, and that includes your own."
His lip twisted, as if he was fighting against a grin. "I can promise you, I can be very entertaining."
"I doubt it." Lizzie jutted her chin out, determined to be stubborn. But her animosity didn't seem to have any effect on him.
Holding out one hand, palm face up. "Try me."
For a brief moment her determination was shaken, her interest peaked. "You're rude."
"Only sometimes. But you won't be bored."
"I'm not looking to be entertained." She should have turned away a long time ago, leaving the tall, attractive boy behind, but there was just something about it, something that drove her a bit crazy, but made her attracted to him none the less.
"Then maybe just some fun," he suggested, cocking an eyebrow and offering her a crooked grin.
"Fun?" Lizzie asked warily, not sure if she wanted to know his idea of fun.
"You can't tell me your idea of fun is punching unsuspecting guys."
Against her will her mouth twitched, and Lizzie knew he could see the smile on her face. Slowly she lowered her arms from her chest and lifted her hand, placing it into his, breath catching at the large, warm hand that encircled her own. "I don't even know your name."
Oliver cursed as he slammed on the breaks, just avoiding the car that stopped short in front of him. "Damn you, Chloe." It was her idea to force Lizzie to attend the sweet sixteen their daughter had sworn up and down she wanted nothing to do with. Somehow it was him picking her up. Realizing the car in front of him wasn't going to move up cursed and shifted the car into park, pushing the door open. The car in front of him opening almost immediately. "Well, I should have figured," Oliver began as she shut his door, "you drive all your cars like a mad man."
Turning at the familiar voice Bruce smirked. "Driving like an old man now?"
"Don't start with me, I don't want to be here anyway, now I have to deal with you."
"I promise you, Queen, being around your bright personality isn't exactly the highlight of my day, your wife on the other hand..."
Oliver pointed a finger menacingly at him. "Don't you start."
"Since I'm in town maybe I should drop in. It would be rude of me not to." Noting the way Oliver's eyes narrowed in annoyance Bruce grinned. "Still feel like you have competition."
"Not at all, but I don't have to like what you're insinuating." Determined to move on from discussing Chloe Oliver looked about, noting the teenagers milling about, getting into various car. "What the hell are you doing here?"
"I do have my own son."
Oliver turned back to Bruce and cocked an eyebrow. "That's right. I have to admit, when I found out you had a little love child running around I was amused for weeks. Anytime I needed a laugh I'd pull out an old tabloid. 'The results are in, Bruce Wayne father of three year old boy'. Sure you don't have anymore rug rats running around?"
"Positive," Bruce said darkly.
"That's a shame." Oliver shrugged and looked out over the crowd again, trying to spot Lizzie. "How old is he now?"
"Seventeen." Finally catching the familiar profile of his son Bruce nodded. "Over there against the staircase. With that girl in the blue dress." Smiling to himself Bruce added, "Obviously he has the same affect on woman as his father."
Shaking his head Oliver chose to ignore Bruce's boasting, glancing at the tall dark haired boy and then frowning as he turned his eyes again to look for Lizzie. His eyes didn't have to stray far though. Turning towards Bruce he narrowed his eyes, slowly turning his head back again. "There? The blond girl?"
"Son of a bitch," Oliver growled and then was moving, crossing the distance of the lawn in record time, even if it seemed to half a football field long, Rich people and there lawns. The boy leaned forward, propping one hand behind Lizzie, there faces only inches apart. Over his dead body... "Elizabeth!" She jumped leaning away from the dark haired boy, eyes turning to him in alarm. "Get down here now." She seemed to falter, looking back at the young man. "Lizzie!" Oliver didn't miss the way she looked longingly up at the boy and slowly step away. The boys arm not dropping until she pushed it away.
"Dad, what are you-?"
Hearing Bruce's voice Oliver cursed his luck. "Shut up," he mumbled in response. If Bruce Wayne thought for one minute he was going to start teasing him over his daughter he had another thing coming.
"Brennan, I don't think I met your new friend."
The over friendly way in which his father was acting gave Brennan cause to pause, unsure how to respond. Lizzie responded for him though, much to her father's annoyance it would appear.
"Lizzie," she said hesitantly, glancing at her father then back at the other man. The resemblance between Brennan and the man across from her was obvious.
"Lizzie, how nice to meet you." Bruce held out his hand. "Bruce Wayne."
Mouth gaping open slightly Lizzie extended her hand, shaking the man hand briefly then stepping back closer to her father's towering figure. Glancing up at him she noticed the sidelong glance he gave her.
The change in Lizzie was immediate, from the look of slight shock on her face to the way she withdrew towards her father. Something was going on that Brennan wasn't picking up on and he was getting the sneaking suspicion that his father was enjoying it, much to everyone else's expense. "When are you ever this pleasant?" Brennan asked irritably. It took him hours to get this girl to warm up to him, then suddenly she hears Bruce Wayne and she's closed off again, not to mention the fact that her father looked murderous.
"Forgive Oliver for being rude. Brennan, this is Oliver Queen, Oliver meet my son Brennan."
Oliver shook the boy's hand, taking pity on him slightly, considering he seemed to be the only clueless one. Lizzie at least had some inkling as to why he was upset with the most recent turn of events. "Come on Lizzie, let's get going."
Lizzie gaped slightly, feeling as if something should have been said. The chances that Lizzie might meet Brennan again were slim, but it only seemed right to say something, but that was impossible, not with her father towering over her and Bruce Wayne standing there like he had just eaten the canary. Now she understood her dad's annoyance. But Brennan, he was different, at least she liked to think so. "Dad, I..."
"Come on," he said sternly, already retreating.
Lizzie's gaze followed her father's retreating figure and then she turned back to Brennan. While she looked lost, he seemed annoyed. The carefree, teasing boy was gone, replaced by something slightly darker. "Bye," she said softly and took one step backwards, waiting to see if he replied, but it didn't take her long to realize that there would be no response. It dark eyes had hardened slightly, empty of emotion. Turning on her heal she hurried after her father.
Bruce turned to his son, who avoided eye contact by heading to the passenger side of the car. With a roll of his eyes he followed.
When the door shut and the car was in drive Brennan spoke, eyes trained ahead. "You couldn't resist, could you?"
"I probably could have toned it down a bit. But Brennan," Bruce began, trying to choose his words carefully and not anger his son anymore, "even if I'd been on my best behavior, Oliver Queen wouldn't have let you within ten feet of his daughter."
Wondering why, Brennan turned to his father. "What did you do?"
"Well, putting aside the fact that I've hit on his wife constantly for over twenty years-."
"Really?" Brennan gestured angrily. "You don't get enough play with the single woman, you have to hit on the married ones to?"
"Please, not only am I not serious, but the chances of his wife leaving him are non existent. Besides," Bruce shrugged, "if he thought I was serious he would have killed me a long time ago."
"Oh right, I'm sure that could happen." Brennan bit out angrily, recalling his father's past time.
"Yea...see that's the other thing." Bruce glanced over at Brennan and winced slightly, feeling slightly guilty for what he was about to tell his son. "Oliver Queen, he's the Green Arrow. His wife, Chloe Queen, runs the Justice League as Watchtower. Any person connected with any hero isn't getting within ten? feet of the Green Arrow's daughter. Sorry."
Instead of telling Bruce how he ruined things for him once again Brennan turned to look out the window, watching the large mansions pass in the darkness. It was just a chance meeting, they'd spent a couple of hours together, it wasn't anything. He was sixteen after all and she lived in Star City, he lived in Gotham. The more excuses he could come up with, the more it eased away the sting that the revelation had left behind.
"I don't care."
Chloe stopped, open mouthed, and watched her daughter's retreating figure stomping up the stairs, heals hanging by her fingertips. Turning back to Oliver, she cocked an eyebrow. "What did you do?"
"Nothing! Why is everyone mad at me! Uh!" Slamming the door he left Chloe behind him, heading towards his office.
"Ollie..." She started, following him. It wasn't until he stopped at the small bar in his office and uncorked a bottle of scotch did she try again. "What happened?"
Pouring a generous glass he turned to her. "I pull up to pick her up, and do you know who your daughter is getting flirty with?" Chloe cocked an eyebrow, waiting for a response. "Bruce Wayne's son." Chloe snorted and pursed her lips, obviously fighting a smile. "You're serious? You think this is funny?"
"Ollie..." Closing the distance she pressed her palms against his chest. "So?"
"Putting aside the fact that she is flirting, this is Bruce Wayne's son, the same guy who has been hitting on you since we got together. Now his son is hitting on our daughter."
"Ollie, Lizzie is smart, she isn't going to be taken by some fancy words."
"I know that, but I know Bruce Wayne, and this kid is the spitting image of him."
"Oh? So he's cute?" At Oliver's glare she chuckled. "Come on, Ollie. They live in Gotham."
"That isn't even it. Bruce thought it was the funniest thing. I know what he's thinking. Can't get with my wife, so the fact that his son is having more luck with my daughter must be making his day." For some reason he hoped Chloe would feel his pain, she only rolled her eyes in response, wrapping her arms around his waist.
"Hey," Chloe said gently, propping her chin on his chest, "so what? This kid, there may be nothing wrong with him." He growled and looked away. "Hey," she reprimanded and slapped his back, "it's over. Calm down and apologize to your daughter. It sounds like the only people who aren't to blame are her and this boy."
"And when she runs into him again?" He asked, waiting to hear her solution for that.
"She won't." Sliding her hands from his waist and up his chest Chloe wrapped her arm around his neck. "Okay? It was just a chance meeting. They live in different cities, Oliver. Don't get yourself bent out of shape about it." Pushing herself onto her toes Chloe pressed a kiss to his lips and smiled against them. "Okay?"
"Fine." He sighed. "But if your wrong, I'm holding you responsible."
"Ohhhh, promise?" Chloe asked haughtily, smirking.
Tapping her ass gently he dropped his forehead against her. "Don't tempt me, woman." But he was already pressing his hand against her ass, pushing her hips against his own.
"Now where would be the fun in that?" She whispered just before his lips closed over her own.
Lizzie held her gun close, descending the steps, listening carefully. The site had been vacant for year, but her source thought otherwise and that Karras had used the building for smuggling recently. Everything seemed gone though, there wasn't a sign that business had been conducted there, but she suspected otherwise.
Something connected with her hand, her gun flying out of her hand. Reaching fast, she spun away, searching in the darkness. Another hand reached out, she blocked, knocking it away, but her attacker was faster, and made better use of the shadows then she did. With a well placed kick to the person's side he released a manly grunt, loosening his grip slightly, enough that she twisted away and was able to escape, running up the steps.
His hands were on her again and Lizzie elbowed her attacker, only coming into contact with something hard, and hurting herself more then she probably hurt him. Using her head she threw his back, making contact. The attacker growled angrily and swung her around, slamming her into the wall, both hands holding her wrists tightly. "If you hurt me it will be the last thing you do."
The low grating voice shook her, but she saw no face, only the the black arms in front of her. Then he moved into what little light illuminated the room and she gasped.
"But I know better then to hurt a Queen." Batman said lowly. She stared back at him, eyes wide.
"My father wouldn't like that." The mouth, exposed by the mask?, smirked.
"Or your brother." Batman added. "You know who I am."
It was a statement, but Lizzie could hear the question behind it. Slowly, she nodded and his hands fell away. "That was eight years ago."
Finding her gun, Batman grabbed it and handed it over. "You don't easily forgetting having a crush on the Green Arrow's daughter."
Her cheeks flushed slightly, not just at his words, but at the tone of his voice.
"Let's go." He pushed a hand against her back, ushering her towards the steps.
"Where?" But she let him guide him anyway
"Somewhere not in the vicinity of your father or mine."
Breathing was difficult at the hint in his words. The last thing she ever expected was to run into Brennan Wayne, even if she was investigating a crime in Gotham. The meaning behind his words was obvious. Eight years had passed, but he seemed just as interested as he did then, and she couldn't ignore the small flare of excitement at the possibilities. Her father was going to kill her.