Banner by miss_morrygan
Title: The Announcement
Summary: One year ago Oliver Queen and Chloe Sullivan's romance ended, but when Oliver finds out that Chloe is about to marry someone else he realizes that he has to find a way to win her back before she ends up married to the wrong man
Characters: Chloe Sullivan, Oliver Queen, Lois Lane, Clark Kent, and several original characters
Rating: this chapter T
Disclaimer: I own nothing!
Oliver stared at Chloe's retreating form as she marched from the kitchen and out the front door after Jake Winston. The three friends continued to stand in silence until they heard the car Chloe and Jake came in make its way back down the Kent driveway.
"Well that didn't go like I planned," Lois said, finally breaking the silence in the room.
"You think," Clark turned toward Oliver, "what the hell happened in here?"
Oliver didn't respond just kept his eyes locked on the front door.
Lois took a single step toward Clark. "That guy is far worse then we realized." she told him shaking her head in disbelief.
"Well do one of you wanna fill me in on what exactly happened, because I gotta say, I think was actually starting to make some progress with her… at least until she came in here and saw Jake bleeding with Oliver standing over him."
Oliver ran his hands over his face and finally turned toward the pair, "I let him get to me, he wanted this to happen and I played right into his hands." He walked across the room and sat down on one of the stools by the island counter, "I know I shouldn't have… but the things he was saying, it was like I had no control over my own body."
"What did he say?" Clark asked.
Oliver began to give Clark a brief run down what he had heard of the conversation between Jake and Lois, and what the other man had said to him as well, but when he reached the part where he had to tell Clark about Jake's bragging over his special way of comforting Chloe he couldn't continue. His hands clenched the edge of the counter, his grip so tight that his knuckles were white.
Lois placed a comforting hand on Oliver's shoulder and picked up where he let off.
Oliver tried his best to tune out the words. When she was finished Clark looked between the two of them his eyes wide.
"You're right," he told Lois, "he's far worse then we thought." He walked to the counter and sat in the stool beside Oliver, "so now the question is… where we go from here? Because I can guarantee you after tonight getting through to her is going to be nearly impossible."
They sat in silence for several minutes before Lois finally spoke first, "I think I may have an idea."
Lois walked across the kitchen, picked up the phone from the wall.
"What are you doing?" Clark asked speeding over to her and snatching the phone from her.
Lois stared at him wide eyed, "what do you think I'm doing. I'm calling Chloe."
Clark lowered the phone back to the cradle, "maybe you should at least give her the time it takes to get back to Metropolis to cool down," he suggested.
Lois nodded in agreement and allowed Clark to lead her over to the kitchen table. Lois slid down in the nearest seat and Clark followed suit in the chair opposite her.
Oliver waited until they were both seated before questioning Lois, "So you wanna fill us in on this genius plan of yours?"
Jake swung the door to the apartment open causing it to slam against the inside wall, and stormed inside, "I hope you can finally agree that I was right about your friends Chloe."
She slowly closed the door behind them and turned to look at him.
"They're never going to let us be happy together." He ground out.
"Jake, I really don't think Lois meant for things to turn out like this tonight."
"Really, well what do you think she expected to happen?" He crossed his arms over his chest and glared at her, "she invited your ex-boyfriend to a dinner that she was supposed to be her way of putting the past behind us and starting over… and not just any ex-boyfriend the man you and everyone else in your world consider the love of your life, who by the way came back to town within a day of our engagement being announced. You can't possibly think that this is all just a series of unrelated events?"
"I'm not saying that," she admitted quietly, "but I know this is not what Lois thought would happen," she said pointing to his swollen nose.
Jake stormed into the kitchen and returned a moment later with a small ice pack pressed against his nose, "Chloe, I think maybe it's time you made a choice when it comes to me or your…"
Chloe cocked her head to the side when she heard her cell phone ringing from inside her purse; she quickly crossed the room thankful for the break away from the conversation with Jake that she was sure was going to end badly.
When she pulled her phone from the bag she narrowed her eyes at the name on the caller ID. It was either Clark or Lois calling from the house phone at the Kent farm.
Chloe pressed the talk button and lifted the phone to her ear without saying a word.
"Chloe?" Lois said her cousin's voice was soft and she could already hear the apology coming, "Chloe I'm really sorry about what happened tonight?"
"Which part Lois? The part where you set up an ambush or the part where my fiancée got punched in the face."
"Both? I really never expect the night to turn out like that, but I want to make it up to you. I know you probably are going to need a few days to cool down after everything, but we did have plans to go dress shopping this weekend, maybe we could talk then," Lois suggested.
"All right, but Jake's mom is meeting me there too. Maybe we can grab a cup of coffee at the Talon and talk after."
"Sounds good, I'll see you then."
"Bye, Lo." She disconnected the call and turned to see Jake staring her down.
"Well what was that about?"
"Lois just wanted to apologize, and ask if we could talk over a cup of coffee after looking for dresses Saturday."
Jake glared at her but said nothing before storming from the room.
Chloe stood outside the small dress shop waiting for her future mother in law to arrive. She looked down at her watch and realized that both she and Lois were already over twenty minutes late. She sighed heavily and leaned back against the outer brick wall of the building.
A few more minutes passed before she saw a sleek black town car with tinted windows pull up in front of her. The driver stepped out and opened the door revealing an annoyed looking Charlotte Winston, she stepped out and made her way over to Chloe.
"Chloe, how are you?" she asked coldly lowering a swift kiss to each of Chloe's cheeks.
Charlotte looked past Chloe and eyed the building behind her with distaste.
"I'm fine Charlotte, thank you for asking, how are you?"
"I'm well; although I'm surprised you seem to be doing so well especially after that horrible display your friends put on the other night."
Chloe's body tensed, of course Jake had told her, would it really have been too much to ask for him to wait until after the day she was going to be stuck with his mother for several hours trying on dress after dress.
"It was a difficult evening for everyone." Chloe said with a swift nod.
"Yes well, for my son more then anyone else I'd imagine… after all he was the one who was assaulted."
Chloe clenched her jaw and tried to remind herself that she was Jake's mother and had every right to be upset what Lois and Oliver had done.
"You know Lois will be here any moment, so maybe we should just head inside." she suggested desperate to end this conversation immediately.
Chloe spun on her heel and walked into the tiny Smallville dress shop; Charlotte following closely behind her. It had been three days since the blow up during what was supposed to be a dinner to get over all the issues between Jake and her friends, instead it had all been a set up by Lois to try and make Chloe see the 'error of her ways'.
Aside from the phone call from Lois that night, she hadn't spoken to her cousin, Clark, or Oliver since then and while after his behavior that night she was perfect fine not talking to Oliver, she was sad that her and Lois hadn't actually had a chance to make up yet.
"Chloe what exactly are we doing here?" Charlotte Winston asked her voice dripping in disgust as she looked around the tiny dress shop. "Don't you think it might be easier to find an appropriate dress in one of the higher end shops in Metropolis?"
"Oh I don't know about that," A voice said from the doorway.
Chloe's eyes shot up and she couldn't fight the smile that erupted on her face at the sight of Lois standing there with two cups from the Talon, one in each hand. All the anger she was still holding toward her cousin was pushed aside for the relief she felt about no longer being alone to deal with Charlotte. Lois walked across the shop and handed one to Chloe before turning toward Charlotte, "Sorry Mrs. W, I had no idea what kind of coffee you drink." she said with a shrug.
The older woman glared at her, her lips in a firm line and her eyes narrowed, "Lois, I thought I asked you not to call me that."
"Oh right I'm so sorry." she replied dramatically.
"I'm sure you are."
Lois smirked at her then turned to look at Chloe, "anyway, did I miss anything?"
"No we just got here too."
"Great, so where do you wanna start cuz?" She glanced around the shop but before she could start looking an older woman came from the back of the store.
"Chloe, dear? I'm so glad you made it." She walked around Lois and Charlotte and wrapped her arms tightly around Chloe.
She hugged the woman back and smiled, "Mrs. Heinz, It's so good to see you."
The woman pulled back and looked at her sternly, "Chloe. How many times have I told you to call me Gertrude?"
"Sorry," she looked over at the two other women, "let me introduce you." She held at her hand, "this is my future mother in law, Charlotte Winston." She looked back at the older woman, "Charlotte, this is Gertrude Heinz, she is by far the best dressmaker I have ever had the pleasure of meeting."
Gertrude held out her hand and smiled at the other woman, "Hello Charlotte, it's so nice to meet you."
Charlotte held out her hand and stared down at the woman, "pleasure."
"And this is my maid of honor and cousin Lois Lane," she lowered her voice in an exaggerated whisper, "she may be here shopping for her own wedding dress in the not too distant future." she teased wiggling her eyebrows at her older cousin.
Lois rolled her eyes, "Smallville hasn't even proposed yet Chlo."
"Well something tells me it's only a matter of time."
"Maybe we should just worry about you for now cuz."
"I couldn't agree more," Charlotte interrupted, "it's a three hour drive back to Metropolis after we're finished here, so we should probably get started."
"Right," Gertrude said obviously taken aback by the other woman's clipped tone, "I'll be right back."
She moved toward the back of the shop leaving the three women standing in uncomfortable silence.
An hour and four bridal gowns later Chloe stood in front of one of the full length mirrors. The dress was perfect amazingly simple yet elegant at the same time. Chloe ran her fingers over the intricate beading over the bodice.
It was perfect.
She stepped from behind the curtain covering the dressing area and glanced at the three women waiting on the other side She eyed them nervously hoping they all liked it as much as she did, "well?" she asked after several moments of silence.
"Chloe, you look beautiful." Lois said moving toward her.
"Thanks, Lo." She looked toward the other two women.
"She's right Chloe, It looks amazing on you," Gertrude told her, "Don't you agree Charlotte?"
"I'm not quite sure." the woman answered taking in Chloe's appearance as she looked her up and down. She placed a finger to her chin, "You know I spoke to several women at the club whose daughters are getting married and they took them to this amazing designer in Metropolis…"
"I've already found an amazing designer,' Chloe interrupted looking in the direction of Gertrude, "and this is where I'll be getting my dress," she told her firmly.
"Well if you insist," she walked over to the rack that Gertrude had wheeled out earlier in the day and pulled another gown from it. "I think this dress would be acceptable." To say the dress she held out was beautiful wouldn't do it justice, a sleeveless gown, with gorgeous beading along the bodice and trim. Chloe had actually been drawn to this dress first but had quickly pushed aside any visions of her wearing it. The green accents all over the dress had made that choice for her. It really would have been perfect if she had been marrying… well… not Jake.
"No green." Chloe said firmly.
"Chloe, I'll have you know that green is the ideal wedding color this year." Charlotte informed her sternly.
"No green," she repeated staring the older woman down.
Lois's eyes drifted between the pair. "I think Chloe's right," she said finally, "don't get me wrong," she said looking toward Gertrude, "it's a beautiful dress, but I think this dress," she pointed to Chloe, "is the right choice. Besides, Chloe shouldn't just go with a dress just because the color is what's 'in'."
"I agree." Gertrude chimed in, "she looked toward the hem of the dress, "we will have to hem it slightly… you are rather short dear."
Chloe and Lois both laughed loudly.
"Yes well if you are set on this one, then I suppose you should have it," Charlotte relented sighing heavily, "but I hope you won't be offended if I head back to the city now… it is a long drive after all."
"Of course not." Chloe responded silently thanking God that the woman was finally leaving and maybe she could find a way to enjoy the rest of her shopping excursion.
Charlotte walked across the shop and picked up her coat she had discarded over a nearby chair shortly after they'd arrived. She pulled her jacket on and exited the shop not saying another word to any of them.
"Well thank God she's finally gone," Lois said echoing Chloe's thoughts. She lifted her coffee cup to her lips and downed the remainder, "I'm empty," she said glaring at the offending cup, "I'm gonna head across the street and grab a fresh one," she pointed out the window and toward the Talon, "Would either of you ladies like something?"
"The usual," Chloe answered with a smile.
"You got it, what about you Gerdy?"
Gertrude laughed at the older cousins new moniker for her, "maybe just a cup of tea?" she asked with a smile.
"Sure thing… I'll be right back," she told them exiting the shop.
"Well that was… interesting," Gertrude noted leading Chloe toward a small platform in front of one of the sets of mirrors.
"I'm so sorry, Gertrude."
"For what dear?"
"Charlotte," she answered simply, "she was horrible to you."
The older woman waved her off, "do you really think she's the first nightmare of a future mother in law I've had to deal with."
"No, I suppose not," Chloe couldn't help but smile at the other woman's candor.
"I hope that son of hers is worth it."
Chloe didn't respond just stared blankly at her reflection in the mirror before her. When she didn't answer Gertrude shrugged it off, "so when can I expect a copy of your Wedding announcement? You know I don't get anything but the Smallville Ledger."
Chloe laughed, "Okay that's it for Christmas you're getting a subscription to the Daily Planet, delivered here seven days a week."
"I'm perfectly happy with my small town paper Chloe," she said with a pointed look.
"Don't let Lois hear you say that, she's the Planets star reporter, you know?"
Chloe nodded slowly.
"Well maybe I'll give it a chance, but I still expect a copy of that announcement, and soon."
"You got it… Gerdy." she teased.
Gertrude laughed heartedly, "That cousin of yours is certainly an… experience."
"That she is." Chloe agreed with a chuckle.
Oliver stared at the long deserted highway in front of him. Three days ago had been that awful blow up at the Kent Farm, and he hadn't spoken to anyone since then. After Chloe stormed out, Lois and Clark had done their best to comfort him, but unfortunately all her could see was the look of disdain in Chloe's eyes when she'd told him to stay away from her.
It was an image he couldn't seem to shake away.
Chloe had been mad at him plenty of times in the past, both before and during their romantic relationship, but the harshness in her voice and the coldness in her eyes was… well it was different then anything he had ever experienced from her.
Part of him wanted to do what she asked of him, just leave her alone, Chloe Sullivan deserved someone far better then him anyway, but he couldn't do that. The things he had heard from Jacob Winston's mouth that night proved that. The man couldn't be trusted… not with Chloe.
He knew Lois was certain her plan to stay as close to Chloe as possible and wait for the time when she knew Chloe would be most receptive was going to work, but he wasn't so sure.
He firmly believed the time for schemes and 'accidental run ins' between the two of them had passed.
When Lois had stormed into his apartment the other day, she had told him that they would be dress shopping in Smallville, and he was willing to bet he knew where. Chloe had once told him about Gertrude Heinz and how if she ever got married again, her and all the woman in her wedding party would wear dresses by the woman she swore made the most beautiful wedding dresses she had ever seen. He also knew the shop was right across the street from the Talon, so all he had to do was wait there to see her when she stopped by for her unavoidable double mocha latte fix and beg for her to give a chance to explain about everything that had happened at the Kent farm three days prior.
He pulled up in front of the Talon and walked inside. As soon as he walked through the door he saw Lois making her way in his direction. When she looked up and saw him she smiled brightly and walked over to him.
"So I'm glad to see you haven't thrown in the towel. When I hadn't heard from you after the other night, I started to worry."
"I'll never give up on her Lois… is she still over there?" he asked pointing to the small dress shop.
"Yeah she is, and actually," she lifted one of the three cups in her hands to her lips and took a small sip, "I think they got my order wrong… it may take me a while to go get it replaced."
Oliver glanced around the nearly empty coffee house and smirked, "because it's so packed in here?"
"Exactly, maybe you should head over there instead of waiting for her to show up here,' she suggested.
"Who's the third cup for?" He asked, hoping she wouldn't tell him that Jake had come to Smallville with Chloe.
"Gerdy," she answered simply.
"Gerdy?" He asked.
"You'll meet her once you get there, and I'm certain you'll love her as much as Chloe seems to."
"Now go,' she nudged him gently with her foot and turned on her heel then headed toward one of the nearby tables.
Oliver turned and left the coffee house, and ran to the small shop across the street. When he reached the dress shop he peered through the front window, and that was when he saw her.
Chloe stood on a small platform. The white dress she wore looked perfect on her. She was a vision.
He couldn't stop himself from walking through the front door. At the sound of the bell above the door chiming as he entered Chloe's head shot up, her radiant smile fading at the sight of him standing in front of her.
Pictures of dresses
Read Chapter 13 HERE!