the first time i saw it i thought of slade!

Journey of Love and Acceptance - Oliver Queen/Olicity Meta

After I processed yesterday’s spoilers, I’ve a need to talk about a bit about.

Season Three opens with Arrow now a hero to the citizens of Starling.  Crime is down, people feel safer, and Captain Lance even calls off the Anti-Vigilante Task Force.  Basking in his success, Oliver believes he can finally have a private life and asks Felicity out on a date.

A lot of people are saying it’s too soon, took a dislike of it, etc. But I had to look at it as an important part of Oliver’s development as character.

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befitandchase  asked:

Felicity/Oliver/whoever starts feeling like an outsider. (Because right now that's how I feel and I'd really appreciate something to relate to.)

Felicity edged around the group of baby vigilantes filling the lair.  It was the right thing, bringing in Curtis and Rene and Evelyn.  But it changed the dynamic in the lair, for good and for bad.  Good: she wasn’t alone with Oliver anymore, which … had been a little bit nerve-wracking, in the same way her parents interacting was a little awkward.  

But on the bad side … she was surrounded by people who could fight and wield weapons, could go toe-to-toe with bad guys and knock them down.  And that made her feel a little wistful for the old days.  When yes, she was surrounded by vigilantes, but they all respected her for what she could do.  Not that Curtis wasn’t fully understanding of what she could do, but if she wasn’t around, he could step in and help out–he had done that before, after all. 

It brought back memories.   When Starling City was falling apart in the wake of Oliver’s “death” and she felt like there was nothing she could do.  When Oliver and Sara were involved and she felt unnecessary.  When her father had disappeared–because of her mother’s ultimatum, she now knew.  

Why were the moments when she felt most like an outsider were when the most important man in her life was missing?  Even more than she had growing up in Vegas, a girl with thick-framed glasses and big books, with a mother she loved but didn’t really like.  

But Oliver wasn’t missing.  Even if he might only kinda be the most important man in her life.  He was right here, leading the group through some kind of training drill that made everyone except him look like baby storks.  But after a moment, Oliver told them to start preparing their equipment and he walked over to her.  

Felicity turned in her chair towards her computers, trying to look busy.  Not that she needed to try hard, since there was a lot of work to do, a lot of searches to run, a lot of information to gather.  

“Hey,” he said quietly.  She could almost feel the weight of his hand on her shoulder, like he had done a hundred times last year.  But he hadn’t touched her since they had broken up.  Not even a casual brush of the fingers when he handed her something or when they were moving past each other.  

“Are you okay?” he asked.  “You seem … I don’t know.”  

Pressing her lips together for a moment, she gave him a bright smile.  “Everything’s all ship-shape here, Captain.”  For good measure, because she hadn’t been quite ridiculous enough, she saluted him.  

Oliver ducked his head, a smile just barely visible before he schooled his expression.  “Okay.  But if you need to talk … well, you don’t have to talk to me, but you’ve got your mom and Curtis, and I know they both are willing to listen.”  

Of course Oliver wouldn’t do anything to offer himself up.  He assumed she only wanted to talk to him about Arrow-related business.  Like they hadn’t been friends before they were involved.  But it had been months.  They had managed to work together by rebuilding the lair, getting Oliver back on the streets, even deal with their fight when she argued for expanding the team while Oliver dragged his feet.  

Weren’t they at least friends now?  Or couldn’t they at least try to be friends?

He was turning to walk away, and Felicity suddenly wanted to talk to him.  Like they used to, in those late hours in the lair, when Digg had gone home and it was just them, with no one waiting for them, with no reason to go home.  

“Don’t you ever feel like an outsider?”

Slowly, Oliver turned to look at her.  “An outsider?”  

Felicity nodded.  “Like … you’re a kid standing outside the toy store on the last night of Hanukkah, surrounded by all these kids who are talking about how they’re going to get that fancy microscope or the pretty doll in the window, and you just … you wish you could say the same, but you know you can’t.  And you feel all alone.”  

It was a silly analogy–she knew that as soon as it was out of her mouth.  Because when had Oliver ever wanted for a material possession?  But as she looked up at him, she thought she saw something in his eyes that said he did know what she meant.

“I have felt that way,” Oliver offered.  “Shado and Slade had a real connection between them.  They both could fight–they knew how to survive–and I couldn’t.  Not at first.  And … there were other times, too.”

Felicity nodded slowly, a quick memory flashing through her mind.  Of her and Diggle laughing together, and Oliver standing off to the side, not saying anything … like he felt left out.

“So what did you do?  When you felt left out with Slade and Shado?” Felicity asked softly.  Because it was still rare for Oliver to talk about those days on the island.  Even though the rest of the team was off to the side, talking and banging away, it felt like the two of them were in a bubble.  

Oliver smiled a little.  “I worked my ass off to get better.  So I’d have something to talk about when I felt left out.”  

She let out a soft laugh.  “I don’t know if that would work for me.  But it’s good to know what a different option is.”  

His smile grew, becoming closer to the smile she had gotten so familiar with–but never used to.  Oliver’s face was made for a smile.  Perhaps she thought that because it had been so rare to see a smile there and she had never gotten used to it, but … no.  Oliver Queen was meant to smile.  To have laugh lines around his eyes, to have eyes the color of the sky with no clouds to dull their shine.  

“Hey, Oliver, if you’re done, we’re ready,” Rene said, full of that ebullient energy which had made her feel like he should be on the team.

But right now, she was wondering if she could tank his credit score.  

“Thanks, Oliver.  You guys should get out there,” Felicity told Oliver, moving to check her computers.  

“Okay.  But … more later?  You can tell me more about what’s bothering you?” Oliver asked, hesitant and shy and sweet.  

Felicity managed a quick smile and a nod, because if she tried to speak she would be sure to say something either embarrassing or way too honest or both.  

To her shock, Oliver let just the tips of his fingers touch her shoulder before he turned away to rejoin the others.

And now, Felicity didn’t feel so much like an outsider.