Pairing: Chloe/Tess, past Chloe/Oliver
Disclaimer: Don't own
Summary: Tess wondered just how much longer she could hide the fact that she knew where Chloe was.
Tess wondered just how much longer she could keep hidden the fact that she knew where Chloe was.
Oliver and Clark and everyone were trying to find Chloe, especially Oliver. And while once upon a time ago Tess have felt hurt and jealous by the attention and devotion Oliver was showing to someone else, now all she could feel was irritated and annoyed. But she was upset for the blonde. Chloe had traded in herself to free Oliver, and while Chloe wasn't exactly a prisoner she obviously didn't want to be found, and Tess felt that the others should accept and respect that.
Then again, she knew where Chloe was, and she wasn't exactly a worried best friend.
Or-whatever it was that Oliver had been to Chloe.
From that conversation with her in Watchtower, Tess really wasn't that sure if they'd been friends with benefits or what.
Tess knew Ollie wanted more when it came to his 'Sidekick', that was more than obvious, but Chloe was so closed off from everyone that Tess didn't know if Chloe and Oliver would have ever been given the opportunity to become something more.
Well, whatever Oliver was to Chloe, he knew that Tess had reset the Watchtower's system for the blonde, and he had a suspicion that Tess knew where the blonde was. But Tess wasn't going to tell.
She'd never been Chloe's friend.
Hell, they'd been at each other's throats, and on enemy lines, ever since the moment they'd first met.
But she respected Chloe.
Somehow, during their time in the Watchtower together, something had changed. They hadn't become friends, but they'd bonded in a way that she couldn't understand.
And it was because of that that she would keep Chloe's secret for her until the blonde decided it was time to come back home.
To her alien best friend Clark.
To her...to Oliver.
Tess cleared her throat as she got out of the car, looking around her.
It might seem carefree and wild, pure forest, but she knew there were cameras and hidden guards all over the place, and that she'd only made it this far because she had clearance, of a sort.
"They told me you were coming."
She turned and smirked when she saw the blonde coming out from behind a tree, wearing slacks and a halter top, far from what she used to wear in Smallville. "Hello to you too, Chloe."
"You don't have to keep coming to check up on me, you know, I'm being taken care of." Chloe gave her a sideways glance, curiosity in those green orbs. "And it's...weird...that you care."
"I don't." Tess huffed. "I'm curious, there's a difference."
Chloe's lips curled in a smile she giggled. "How could I ever have made such a mistake as to believe that Tess Mercer actually had a heart?"
"You'll learn, in time." Tess nodded, face serious before she couldn't any longer, breaking out into a crooked grin.
It felt so surreal, able to stand next to Chloe and actually tease her, or her tease Tess, so naturally.
"Walk with me." Chloe motioned with her head, going deeper into the woods.
Tess followed, falling into step with her. "So, how are your lessons going?"
"You know I can't tell you." Chloe replied casually, hands in her pockets. "That's the whole condition to having one confidant in the outside world. You can't know where the facility is, and I can't tell you anything about what's going on or what I'm learning. All I can do is be here and show you that I'm fine and unhurt."
"Not that I care." Tess reminded in a mock serious way.
"Of course." Chloe nodded, unable to keep the smile off of her face.
They walked in silence, shoulders brushing softly.
Tess found herself relaxing in a way not even a good kick-boxing session could accomplish.
She'd noticed this.
Every time she came to see Chloe she left feeling better, feeling light, feeling...like she wanted to come back again as soon as possible. She'd been the most shocked when Chloe had contacted her after her disappearance and asked her to restart the Watchtower...and not to let anyone know that she'd contacted her.
Tess hadn't known why, but she hadn't let Chloe leave it at that, promising to tell Oliver if she didn't meet with her.
Chloe had given her these coordinates, and Tess had come for the first time, wary to be in the middle of nowhere until Chloe came out of the foliage and told her what was going on.
Apparently she'd been 'recruited' by a special team who, in Chloe's words, were unconventional yet justice seeking, and who trained those who they felt could be of good use to the 'field' in the future. She'd been recruited against her will, them using Oliver's freedom as a tool to gain her agreement, but now that she was amongst them Chloe had admitted to feeling as if she was finally really doing something. Which, Tess had thought was stupid.
As Watchtower Chloe had been doing half of the work for the others.
But there was something about this place and these people that seemed to make Chloe feel accomplished and useful, and Tess didn't butt into that.
It wasn't her place to do so.
"What do you think Clark or Ollie would feel if they knew?" Tess asked, curious.
Chloe paused, turning towards her. "Both of them went off and did their own training, and they can't fault me doing the same."
That was a rational answer.
Still, Tess felt as if her question hadn't been answered.
"Why did you call me that time?" Tess suddenly asked, stopping walking.
"Why do you still come to see me?" Chloe countered.
"Chloe." Tess reached out and grabbed her hand, stopping her from leaving. "I-I don't exactly like you-but-I don't know." She didn't know why she felt so nervous right now, or why her mind was so preoccupied with the fact that she was holding Chloe's soft hand. "You took a big risk trusting me with that phone call-with all this information. We haven't been friends. You had no reason to trust me. You brought me back to life even though we were enemies and you could easily have just left me on that table in Watchtower." She didn't realize she'd pulled Chloe closer until she realized that there were multiple shades of green in those eyes. "I have reasons to trust you despite our...relationship...but not you me. So why are you trusting me? Why did you pick me to be the one confidant from the outside world that you're allowed to have?"
Chloe just looked up at her with the most curious expression on her face, before she cleared her throat and looked away. "I don't know, Tess. I've been asking myself that too, actually. But I just-I just felt that I could trust you." She looked up at her. "I still do."
Tess' heart and stomach did funny things at those words, and she gulped.
Up this close, Tess could see soft freckles on Chloe's cheeks, could smell her body spray, could notice the fact that she wore lip gloss.
She wondered what flavor it was.
"What are we?" Tess asked, hating the way her voice cracked slightly.
"Good question." Chloe grinned, tilting her head to the side. "Helena, Zinda and Cindy refer to it as 'frenemies'. I think kinda fits. You're not exactly my friend, and you're not exactly my enemy."
Tess smiled at the word. "Frenemy."
Chloe nodded, hair bouncing, the sunlight catching on her golden tresses.
Suddenly Tess wanted to touch them.
She had to clench her free fist to keep it from moving.
"You wanna spar?" Chloe suddenly asked randomly, grinning devilishly. "I've been training with Helena and I'm doing much better." She grinned. "If I could kick your ass back then imagine now."
Tess scoffed. "If I remember right I
was the one kicking your
Chloe placed her free hand on Tess' shoulder in a mock-comforting gesture. "You're old. Memory failure happens."
"Why you little-!" Tess laughed, grabbing Chloe's other arm and managing to use the advantage of surprise to pin her back against the nearest tree, arms up above her.
Chloe gasped as the air was knocked out of her lungs.
"I don't see much improvement." Tess teased, keeping the smaller woman pinned easily against the tree with her hands and body.
Chloe pouted at her. "I wasn't ready."
Tess raised an eyebrow.
"Fine." Chloe pouted, looking away. "It's a good thing they want me for my brain then." She suddenly sighed. "It's always for my brain."
Tess didn't like the change in the blonde. "I don't know." She heard herself mumble. "Your brain's not the only thing I find attractive about you."
Chloe's eyes widened and she looked up at Tess in shock.
Tess was somewhat in shock as well, not having expected herself to say that.
All of a sudden she realized how compromising this must look, with her saying that while having Chloe pinned to a tree.
Letting go of the blonde, Tess nearly jumped away, clearing her throat. "Well, now that I've seen that you're okay and know that you haven't advanced at all in your combat lessons, I should probably be going now."
"Uh, yeah, probably." Chloe cleared her throat as well.
"I'll, you know, come around later to make sure they haven't...you know..." She felt so incredibly awkward.
Chloe smiled at that. "Be careful Tess, I might start to think you care."
"Never." Tess scoffed, feeling much better now as they fell back into their normal banter, the strange ambient gone as they walked back towards the car.
Chloe began talking about yoga and how it was supposed to help her find her focus but she just couldn't focus enough to find her focus.
Tess chuckled in amusement, sending the blonde a sideways glance, relaxing like she always did while listening to Chloe ramble about subjects that varied from local flora to nuclear warfare.
The redhead wondered, if and when Chloe went back to her old life, if they'd be able to continue with this odd camaraderie between them.
A lump grew in her throat.
She liked having her...frenemy...
Would seeing Oliver change things?
Tess felt her stomach go queasy.
She sent the blonde another sideways glance and wondered, like she did every day, just how much longer she could keep hidden the fact that she knew where Chloe was.