Me and You

May 10, 2016:

Oliver and Melody take a break from training to talk.

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

Plans were set in motion, and they were fast approaching the meet/ambush with Lockdown and everything was looking settled. Still, there were secrets abound; she didn't tell him that she spoke to Deathstroke on the way to their meet, or that she left briefly to meet with Bruce Banner to put him on the trail as well on this elusive group. But she figured, more help the merrier. One of the technical kind and the other of the stabby kind. It was about to get nasty.

But, until then, the only thing she really could do was train. Thankfully, due to her previous associations, she was well on to learning to at least hold her punches and take an easy hand when it comes to fighting, instead of slamming into everything head first and leaving a path of destruction in her wake. Though now? This part.. it was the hardest of them all.

A name. And a stupid outfit.

"I.. don't think I can actually move in this.." Melody complains a little, tugging the fabrics down even lifting her knee to try to bend it to her chest. "Can't I just wear a pair of jeans?"


"Sure you could." Oliver states back, a smirk on his face. He has been incognito in the lair for the past week, but has finally started reaching out quietly to the campaign leaders to let them know that he has had the flu and to let that information stay quiet. If anyone asks that he was in some business thing. It was a calculated plan; make it sound like business to cover up having the flu. That way no one would ever think that he was covering up going after Lockdown by covering up the flu with a cover up of a business trip. It makes sense if you don't think about it.

"The whole point of it is to conceal your identity, to keep people safe. I can handle myself. But what about my friends and family who can't? What about the Maple?" Queen tilts his head. He's remained patient the entire time when dealing with Melody, something that he is surprised about in himself. "Besides, some of us need kevlar."


"I guess." Melody mumbles, stretching her arms out so that the fabric could slide easily into place. She walks back and forth as well, lifting her knees like a prized horse or champion, stretching to get used to the way she'd have to move and quick if the time were to come. "You're right. I should be used to this by now." She glances up towards him, then takes a little step forward to try to poke at his arm.

"How are you feeling otherwise? All healed up? Do you need another injection?" She takes a moment to look down towards his ankle. "I know it's weird, but really. That's the only way I could have helped you without sending you to the hospital."


Oliver looks at his ankle and shakes his head, "I'm fine, thanks. Honestly I would have healed in time for this. At least enough to do what needs to be done. The herbs I brought back from the island are very effective for such things." The explanation is a good enough one for how he doesn't die constantly. "You've been doing well, at least I think you have. It's an adjustment I know, to enter this realm of trying to show restraint when we can. But make sure you know Mel, that if the choice is between you or them, you choose you."

The man straightens some then, arching to stretch his back. "I think the key becomes trying to avoid getting put into those situations where we have to make that choice. The SHIELD person I reached out to seems to be onboard; although apparently the rumors of Queen's death are spreading. I have no idea how I'll keep that from being a thing."

—-

"Not quick enough, though." She doesn't ask for an explanation, even though she kind of wanted to. She knows enough about Oliver Queen which could be damaging, and at this point asking for more would be just a little too much to put on his shoulders. Even -she- had a hard time telling everyone everything that is necessary to know about her abilities. "But I also have to choose you too, right? You can't be mayor if you're dead. Or unless you're -undead-, but.. it's clearly obvious you're not."

She finds a spot to settle down upon the floor, steepling her fingers, staring straight ahead to calm herself. "Ugh. SHIELD. Who are they? Not like the organization but this person who's on board. You didn't tell them about me did you?" Paranoia! Whee! "And.. while I'm opting to say that you should come out and have them come to get you again, I don't think that'd work with the current plan you put in place. I guess we just have to be fast."


"No, they don't know anything about your involvement. That's the other reason for the costume. Youll just be a partner; so they won't have any reason to look beyond that hopefully. The more you look, and act, like me the less likely it is that people will suspect anything." Oliver goes and sits down on the floor across from Melody.

"They come for the bait, we take them out, and try to squeeze some information. Then life returns to… the sort of normal it's been. Except for the fact that SIGMA will still be after me, just down one of their tools. And then the criminal elements of Gotham and all the other issues that'll creep up. So really we're just knocking off one of the threats."


"Good. Though you still didn't tell me who they were." She wasn't going to press, it was for the better, really. "So if I'm going to act like you, I need to download you. Instead of me training with you, I need to watch you move, how you react, how you function. How about tonight, we go out there and patrol. I'll just stay behind though and let you do all the work." She grins a little at that, then watches as he settles down.

"And then the others will come down the line I suppose." She states as a finality, her lips pursing a tiny bit. "But why? Other than the threat on your life. Why are you taking on Gotham too? Isn't being Mayor enough?"


Oliver is quiet for a few moments while he is in thought before replying. "Being Mayor is simply to provide a window of legitimacy to what needs to be done. But we know that the real issues in Gotham can't be solved with politics. It is a cancer, rooted deep in the system. If we only treat one area, the cancer will find a different place to hide and grow. So we have to excise both. The surface and under the surface."

There is definitely a passion, a tone of dedication in Oliver's words and it stretches to his green eyes. "It'd be far easier to sit in the mansion and do nothing. But that won't keep people safe. Besides Melody; this is a war. At least to me it is. And wars can't be half assed."


Melody didn't know why she was frowning as he spoke. Maybe it was the fact that she left the home willingly to fall by the waysides. Or at one point in time, she was part of the cancer that infected the city. How in the world she's attempting to return to do good after the potential damage she's caused? She felt ashamed.

"You're a little frightening, Oliver Queen." She states quietly, her hand drawing up to rub hard at the back of her neck, "So, I guess there are a few things I should tell you then, since you're going all out. I used to be friends with Two-Face. Or.. I don't know if I still am. But, you need to be careful, Oliver. He's not something I'd want to trifle with."


"Neither is the Joker, or the Mystic Underworld." Oliver says quietly. "Neither is a government conspiracy group trying to take over the world. Make no mistake Melody, I know when I'm in over my head. That was about two months ago." A small smile touches his lips, "The difference is, I know I'm in over my head. That means we get to play smart."

Leaning back on his hands, the smile remains there. "I was part of the problem you know. Before the island. Spoiled brat, drugs, booze, caring about no one and no thing but myself. I ask myself a lot, who do I think I am trying to be a hero? I've killed, I've done horrendous things to survive but that doesn't justify it. It's when I start thinking like that I remind myself, I'm not a hero."

His voice softens, "We aren't heroes. We're just trying to be better than the villains and to stop them from hurting others. That doesn't' make us heroic. It makes us self preservationists."


There was a little hitch in her breath that resembles a slight laugh, a smile curling upon her lips as her head dips low to allow her fingers to blow through her scalp. His words were deep enough to cut through the core of her, to make everything seem.. a bit more easier to digest. Perhaps that's what she wanted to achieve all along. To not be a hero, just a person who wanted to survive and see the world survive as well.

"You're not a hero but you have a hero's name." Melody points out, just a little jab. Her foot gone out to lightly kick his shin. "That island made you a strange man."


"A strange place will often produce a strange result." Oliver cryptically explains before slapping at the foot that kicked his shin. "Careful, old man bones right there. Don't want to get me all hurt from being brittle." He's quiet for a few moments before shaking his head.

"A hero is up to th epublic to decide. And if you think about it, that's really what happens. You're either a vigilante; doing things because you want to or a Hero, who is doing things because you want to. The only difference is how the public views you. You stick with it long enough, eventually you become a hero until you do something they don't like. Then you're an outlaw, or worse. That is why it is so important that we are consistent in what we do. That we try to stick to who we are and uphold a standard. That let's the people know what to expect, both the citizens and the villains."


Melody jerks her foot away, immediately capturing it with her hands to rub as if she were totally wounded. "That was hard enough to break my dang foot!" She was teasing of course, but the seriousness takes hold.

"But.." She frowns slightly. "I'm more prone to like.. fall from that grace than you are. Being something like that for the people.. I don't know." She frowns a little, then shakes her head. "I know we can't just operate from the shadows at all times, someones going to know what we're going. But, that's a huge thing to put on someones shoulder who's prone to just.." She closes her fingers into a fist, then 'phsawws', wriggling them around to mimic an explosion.


"If it isn't put on your shoulders, you will never know what your shoulders can hold, withstand." Oliver counters steadily towards the girl. "No one is perfect. But make no mistake, there are expectations now. You'll disappoint me; the same way I'll disappoint you. Thinking otherwise is just flat delusional. The difference is, do we trust each other that when errors occur, they are accidents and not malicious." Reaching out, he gently nudges Melody's shoulder.

"You've never been given a chance I think to be yourself but to have expectations. You blow up? You blow up. It's who you are. We work to get better at controlling and managing that. But I'm going to trust when it does happen, you aren't doing it to hurt myself or someone else, that you're doing it because we are both still learning."


The nudge wakes her up just a little, her gaze finally lifting towards his, then settles upon something else within the room. "And if I do or when I do disappoint you.. you wouldn't.. leave right?"

She slides back a little to stand, immediately unzipping the vest that she has on, the t-shirt underneath near faded but reads something akin to Five Finger Death Punch. "Chances are lately.. I do it to hurt myself. So I think we'll be good in that department."


"Nope. Not planning on leaving, not without saying something at least. But, here is something to consider. If we're partners in this, and you do something to hurt yourself; by proxy you are hurting me." Oliver tilts his look at Melody when he says that. "It is an all the time thing now. Every day. Not being perfect but being aware of consequences."

"But you are. Like.. will. In a sense." She doesn't look at him through all of this, but it all makes sense. "Alright." She finally relents, turning to take those few steps in to reach out and offer a hand for him to stand.

Not that he's old or anything.

"Me and you then. You and me. Train or eat. Your choice."


"And Overwatch. You haven't met her yet. But you will." Oliver takes the offered hand to help him up. "She's the eyes and ears for us. She keeps us safe. She's compromised a bit at the moment so I'm keeping her compartmentalized for safety, but we can't do this without her."

"Eat. Always eat before training so I have energy. Plus, I don't want to get hangry while trying to teach you to use a bow."

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