AN: This is my first Arrow fanfiction. I really love the Oliver/Felicity relationship, not only the romantic side (although I would love to see THAT happen) but also their friendship. This story is something that came to me. Not entirely sure where it's going to go, but it will focus on them. Enjoy, and don't forget to review please! I love to hear what others think, and I'm always open for suggestions.
The rain hit the pavement in an arrangement of evenly spread little puddles, splashing slightly as they hit a solid surface. The first few drops stood out by darkening the light grey of the pavement. Then, as the downpour unleashed, it glistened in the late evening sun. Felicity looked out of her bedroom window and sighed at the scene before her. She had always loved the rain, even as a little girl. She had often sat like this waiting for the rain to start and the thunder clouds to unleash their power. Somehow it always made her feel hopeful, after a good rain pour everything always seemed so much brighter and more alive.
She sighed, knowing it would have to be a very big storm to make her feel hopeful now. The glades had been levelled, Tommy was dead, Diggle was severely hurt and Oliver… Oh Oliver, she thought as the last rays of sunshine were hidden behind the gathering clouds. Oliver had disappeared. She hadn't seen him in three days, since Tommy's funeral. He hadn't talked to her or anyone since that fateful day that changed Starling City forever.
She knew he would take Tommy's death hard. She had never expected Oliver to run. After he had finally come to free her from Verdant he had already shut out his emotions. He wouldn't talk to her. She patched him up and he left the lair without another word. She knew not to take it personally, but somehow she did feel hurt.
The last few months their team had strengthened. After their falling out, Diggle and Oliver were stronger than ever. They had regained their friendship and it seemed as if nothing was ever wrong to begin with.
She and Oliver got along as well, though there always seemed to be some tension in the air when they were together. Whether this could be accounted to the fact that she stands up to him on occasion or her secret (or not so secret) crush on the hooded billionaire vigilante she doesn't know. They were friend though and there was a mutual trust there, which was the solid foundation of their relationship. Perhaps that was why it hurt so much that he had turned his back on her now. He didn't confide in her, not that he really ever did, but he also never ran. That was exactly what he did now though.
She sighed, getting lost in the endless cycle of thoughts that had preoccupied her for the better part of a week now. As a particularly bright flash crossed the sky she let out a yelp as a hooded figure appeared on her fire escape. It took her only a second to realise there was only one hooded figure that would be anywhere near her fire escape at this time.
Another flash and she could make out his profile underneath the hood. Oliver. His body was tense as the bow he handled and though she could not see his eyes, she knew the storm outside was nothing compared to the one brewing inside him.
Shaking herself out of her reverie she stood and hastily opened the window. She cocked her head as a silent invitation to come in and he quickly followed her inside.
They both stood awkwardly, each at one side of the couch, neither moving to sit down. Felicity quickly understood that as much as Oliver seemed to be in control of everything, he was very much teetering on the edge. She would have to make the first move.
Making sure not to startle him, she started moving in his direction. She couldn't see his eyes, but she knew he was following her every move. As she stood before him she gently raised her hands and pushed back his hood, slowly but deliberately. As the light in the room hit the hidden corners of his face she felt her heart break.
He didn't need any make up to hide his face, he was already black and blue, and she couldn't help the gasp that escaped her at the sight. But what nearly made her heart stop was the look in his eyes. There was nothing there. No flicker of emotion, just emptiness.
Felicities mind went into overdrive. What happened to him? How many more injuries were hidden under the green leather? Where has he been? What is he doing here? Her mind rattled off an endless list of questions, which abruptly came to an end as he finally looked at her.
He didn't need to say anything; she could see it all on his face. He was opening up to her without saying a word. She could see the guilt, the pain and a hundred other emotions. She wanted to cry for him, with him, but she knew she couldn't. Somehow he had turned to her when it all became too much and she could draw the strength he needed from that. Acting on pure instinct she knew what she had to do.
She grabbed his right hand and led him into her bedroom. The fact that Oliver followed without a sound or any hesitation gave her the courage to continue. She turned towards him and without looking to his face, raised her hands and undid the zipper of his green vest. Next she peeled off his t-shirt and with only a slight flush of her cheeks she undid his leather pants and shoved them down, leaving him in his boxers. She ignored the many bruises and abrasions on his body, though it pained her to see him so broken. She could see they weren't life threatening. The physical wounds weren't her primary concern. With a slight tug she got him moving and sat him down on her bed. Another push and he was lying on his back looking up at her. She covers him with her duvet and resisted the urge to tuck him in.
Felicity as glad she had already changed into her sleepwear and moved to the other side of the bed. She got in under the same duvet. After only a slight hesitation she moved towards him. A tug on his left side was all that was needed to get him to face her, which was surprising. It was almost scary how complacent he was being to her unspoken commands, but she was grateful.
As they faced each other she couldn't help but notice he wasn't there with her. She needed to get through to him somehow. She raised her right hand and cupped his cheeks, slowly brushing her thumb back and forth.
The whispered name sounded loud in the silence of her bedroom. He didn't look at her, but she knew he had heard her. Giving him some time she continued her ministrations on his cheek. After a minute he finally made eye contact although his look was still empty and detached.
'Go to sleep, I'll be here as long as you need me.'
She wasn't expecting a reaction of any kind and thus was surprised when he gave a quick nod. He didn't speak; she had not expected him to. What she also didn't expect was the sudden sensation of his fingers over hers on his cheek. He removed her hand and just as she wanted to retract it completely he grabbed on to it, linked their fingers and held on for dear life. He moved their hands over his heart and finally relaxed.
Felicity watched him for a long time, long after his breathing evened out and he fell asleep. As he slept she saw the tiny frown lines in his forehead relax, the muscles in his arms unwind and the death grip on her hand lessens.
She had no idea what tomorrow would bring, but for now she was happy he was safe, alive and with her. Listening to his breaths in the night she too fell asleep.