Title: The New Circle
Fandoms: Smallville/Secret Circle
Characters: Chloe Sullivan, Clark Kent, Pete Ross, Lana Lang, Whitney Fordman, Greg Arkin, Nell Potter, John Blackwell, Gabe Sullivan, Lex Luthor, Davis Bloome, Jason Teague, Tess Mercer, Oliver Queen, Patricia Swan...
Disclaimer: Don't own
Summary: Chloe Sullivan had a normal-ish life before the circle and John Blackwell turned her life upside down and gave new meaning to the unexplained weirdness that goes on in Smallville. Now life's a witch, she's a part of a circle she's not too sure she wants to be bound to, and not only do they have to worry about Witch-Hunters, but unknowingly to them another circle is on the hunt too.Wanna thank tenshinrtaiga for betaing!SPOILERS for Secret Circle Series Finale. Don't say you haven't been warned.
At first it was a twinge, a ripple of unease that gradually intensified into a fire within. Nell had shaken it off as nothing, smiling at Mr. Peterson as he picked up his usual Tuesday rose for his very lucky wife. She was running a very profitable business and there was no way that a little bit of a fever was going to affect her. No way in hell.
It was probably just something brought on by stress.
But then Mr. Peterson left and as Nell tried to breathe in more, she gripped onto the side of the counter and cried as she bent over in agony, that heat blossoming into an inferno and consuming her from within.
Crying out, she tried to move, but ended up on the floor, screaming.
The brunette paused, taking a deep breath and listened as the girl hurried to catch up, her footsteps echoing behind. Lana felt horrible for the way that she was avoiding Tina, but Aunt Nell had been explicit in her orders and after the attack Lana was all too understanding of the reason behind it. Still, it made her feel like such a terrible person to just ignore the girl like this.
"Lana." Tina gasped as she reached her side.
Sighing, Lana turned towards her friend and gave her a little smile. "Hey, Tina."
"Have you been avoiding me?" Tina, as ever, got straight to the point, eyes narrowed. "Have I done something to offend you? To make you not want to be my friend anymore?"
"No." And Lana felt like the lowest of the low, reaching out and placing her hand on Tina's. "I'm so sorry you feel that way, Tina, but I have things going on now and because of them I've had to take a step back from everything right now. You know I'm not lying because I've quit cheerleading and working at the Beanery too."
"I know," Tina mumbled, stepping closer. "But I've also seen you hanging out with those guys and Chloe Sullivan." Her face was dark with emotion. "If you have time to hang out with them then why can't you find any time to spend with me?"
How to explain this without giving everything away? "I'm doing a special project and they're helping me with it."
Tina's eyes widened. "I could help too."
"No." Lana cleared her throat, seeing the way Tina's expressions fell. "Our project requires only six people, and Chlo makes the sixth."
"Chlo," Tina whispered, face a sneer. "Is she your new best friend or something?"
"Tina." Lana sighed.
"Is it the fact that I dress like you?" Tina took a step back, hands clenched at her side. "Or the fact that I'm too clingy? Or do you just like her better? Is it because she's blonde and "plucky"?"
"That's not it." Lana took a step towards her. "This has nothing to do with me liking Chloe better than you."
"Then whys as she invited to be a part of this group and not me?" Tina snarled at Lana.
"It wasn't my choice who was a part of it," Lana tried to explain yet knew that she couldn't without telling Tina everything, and it hurt her.
"Then whose choice was it, huh?" Tina wanted to know. "Tell me something Lana! Or-!" The girl's words were garbled in her throat as she grabbed it, beginning to cough, pale skin going visibly pink. "Lana?"
"Tina? What's-?" And then it hit Lana with a ferocity that nearly drove her to her knees. The brunette hit the lockers hard as a fire seemed to have taken over, her insides feeling as if they were filled with boiling water.
They'd tried getting to the shack where the Chance Harbor Circle practiced their magics, and yet halfway there Davis, Oliver and Tess were knocked to the ground with the force of the magic that seemed to want to incinerate them from within.
Davis watched, writhing in agony, as Oliver and Tess reached out and held each other's hands, biting back their screams of pain.
At that moment he hated them and what they had even more than he ever had.
"How can you kill witches?" Cassie snapped, horrified.
"Because they're weak," John scoffed, as if this should be obvious. "And their weakness has kept us victims for two thousand years. The time has finally come for a cleansing." He came towards them, his conviction burning in his eyes. "Let's scorch the earth. Let's burn the weak blooded… and clear the way."
"For what?" Cassie asked softly, feeling as if now she'd finally get all the answers she'd ever wanted from her father.
"For the other Balcoin children," he declared, confirming her darkest suspicions. "Four more born in other towns, raised in other Circles and they're coming here to join you."
Cassie felt shocked stupid. She'd expected one more but four?
"Jake's grandfather was right," Diana whispered, shaking her head. "You want to form a Circle of Balcoin witches."
"A perfect Circle; the purest race." He didn't deny it, breathless, almost in awe as he spoke to them. "Together you will be a weapon more powerful than any crystal skull." He grew more subdued. "We'll be able to destroy the Witch-Hunters once and for all… or anything that stands in our way." His voice lowered to a whisper. "We can change the world." His gaze rested on them. "As a family."
"So, is Chloe family too?" Cassie asked, seduced by the thought of finally having some answers. "Is that why I see her? Because she's a Balcoin too?" She raised her chin at her father's expression. "Because if she is, she doesn't seem to realize it."
John eyed Cassie oddly before smiling. "She's your sister… but to keep her safe she had to be led to believe otherwise."
Diana took in a ragged breath.
"Did you raise any of your kids?" Cassie wanted to know spitefully.
He chuckled, not answering her question. "I think you will like her. She's got a spirit like yours."
Cassie honestly didn't know what to say about any of this.
The skull on the table behind him moved and John turned immediately, seeing Adam crawling into the room.
"NO!" he yelled, flinging his hand and causing the teen to fly violently into the wall.
"Adam!" Cassie and Diana yelled simultaneously.
Landing on the floor, Adam screamed, his skin visibly burning from the inside.
"The spell's burning him!" Cassie turned to Diana, desperate. "It's burning all of them."
Chloe looked around her, eyes wide. Chaos was rampant as the sound of ambulances could be heard everywhere. She didn't know what was going on. Whatever it was, it wasn't affecting everyone, only a small percent, so it obviously wasn't airborne and yet she couldn't think of anything that could do this sort of damage.
All around her students were on the ground, screaming, holding their stomachs as their skin visibly burned; a fire seemed to be slowly consuming them from the inside out. The school had been on lockdown quarantine in case this was some sort of contaminant, but Chloe couldn't think of any sort of variable that linked those affected.
The infirmary was overly filled with the afflicted; the school nurse clearly over her head considering that the most she did all day was read her magazine. Now she fluttered around, in a near panic, trying to keep everyone's boiling fevers down and yet no amount of cafeteria ice seemed to be working.
In fact, they were beginning to steam as they evaporated off of the burning skin.
Lana and Whitney were in there as well and while Chloe wanted to stay with them she knew there was nothing she could do to help. Also, there were other symptoms that were appearing along with the burning agony. Some of the students were losing their sight, their hearing and their mobility. Whatever this was, it was crippling them… and Chloe didn't know where the rest of her friends were.
They might be fine, mightn't be affected, or they might have collapsed into the pool and could be drowning at this very instant.
It was why she took off running, terror fueling her adrenaline.
Cassie tried to use her dark magic against the barrier and yet no matter how hard she pushed, it wasn't strong enough. Adam's screams as he withered on the ground not two feet away were proof at how little she was actually accomplishing. Ever since the night when she thought she was going to die and her dark magic had activated, she'd felt near unstoppable and yet this was a slap in her face and proof that she wasn't as invincible as she'd led herself to believe all this time.
"My dark magic is not strong enough!" And it killed her to admit it.
John used his own magic to slam Adam up into the ceiling, as if the boy was burning to death too slowly for his tastes and he wanted to give a little hand in speeding things up.
"What do we do?" Diana asked behind her.
And then it hit her.
"I need your power," Cassie whispered, turning around to face her sister, the one whose dark magic was still untapped and sealed deep within her. A part of the blonde knew that Diana was never going to truly forgive her for this, but another part didn't care, merely watching as Diana suddenly grabbed her own throat and began choking, Cassie's dark magic weaving about her and sucking all the air out from around the girl.
Diana collapsed to her knees, coughing, gasping for air. "Cassie…What – what are you doing?!"
Cassie just stared into her sister's dark eyes, forcing the dark magic to curl around her stronger, blocking out any air that might be slipping to her, voice calm as she answered, "I'm killing you."
Everywhere, people were dragging others towards the infirmary. Chloe tried to be alert to everyone's faces, trying to find the rest of her friends, not just Circle members. She spied Van moving through the throng, someone on his back. It seemed like a guy but she couldn't be sure who exactly it was.
One of the doors to the teachers' lounge opened and Principle Kwan and Mr. Hanson appeared, dragging a handsome bald guy between them, the guy screaming, withering in their grip, his skin burning up just like the students.
This must be Lex Luthor. His suit was Armani and there was no one else she could think of who'd wear something like that in a high school.
"You!" Principle Kwan looked up at her. "Go and stay with the other! We'll come back for him!" And with that they were gone.
Chloe stood there, torn. She wanted to continue on looking for her friends, but Principle Kwan had given her an order.
Suddenly Pete appeared around the corner, half holding Clark, his eyes widening in relief when he saw her. "Chloe!"
She hurried towards Pete and a screaming Clark. "Have you seen Greg?"
"Van's taking him to the infirmary." Pete nodded. "Whitney and Lana-?"
"Are there already," Chloe whispered.
"What the hell is going on?" Pete hissed in utter confusion and helplessness.
"I don't know." Chloe's gaze went to Clark when he screamed. "Just take him, I have to-"
Pete nodded, adjusting his hold on Clark before beginning to take him towards the infirmary.
Clearing her throat, relieved to know at least how her friends were, Chloe pushed into the teachers' lounge and followed the sounds of the grunts and cries of agony coming from the floor.
For a second the blonde was shocked at just how good looking this guy was, but the sound of his cries of pain shook her out of her daze and she looked around before hurrying into the teachers' kitchen area. She wet a towel and flung open the fridge, pulling out some iced cubes and wrapping the towel around it before hurrying back to the guy.
"It's going to be okay," she promised him, not sure he could hear her considering that some of the patients had lost their hearing.
"Burn-" he managed to get out before screaming in agony, his green eyes clouded over as they turned blindly on her.
Whimpering, Chloe knelt down over him, hesitating only a second before bringing the wet towel and ice to his face. "It's going to be okay. You'll be fine."
He reached out and clasped her arm painfully.
Hissing in pain, Chloe just changed the hand she held the towel with, whispering over and over again that he'd be okay as she slid the bag over his burning flesh.
As she stared up at Cassie's eyes, Diana couldn't see a friend, much less a sister. She couldn't understand why Cassie was doing this, couldn't fool herself into thinking this was a rouse to get John to come into the barrier so they could escape. No. For whatever reason, Cassie was truly trying to kill her and if Diana didn't do something about it, she would die.
That thing inside of her, the thing that connected her to John and his darkness, the thing she'd suppressed all this time – it begged her to let it take over, if only for one minute.
And Diana was weak. She wanted to live.
The brunette let go of her hold on that dark power and it erupted from her like a scream, the force sending both her and Cassie flying in opposite directions, through the barrier and against the walls.
"I'm so sorry," she whispered, seeing the way his body was blackening from the burning, each scream and cry almost hurting her. She didn't know why she felt guilty, only that she did. "I'm so sorry."
Tears slowly made their way down her cheeks before falling through the air and hitting his face, the sound they gave as they made contact was almost a hiss… as suddenly the black began to seep away from the tears.
Chloe watched in awe. As each of her tears continued to rain down on his face, they began chasing away the charred darkness, revealing clear flesh beneath.
His screams and writhing were lessening as well.
It was then that Chloe realized this was a spell.
And somehow – somehow –.
Wiping at her eyes, Chloe collected her tears on her thumb before bringing it to his parched lips, which moved against her thumb, his tongue lapping at her tears… his lips less chapped immediately.
Just as she was about to smile she realized the healed parts of him were blackening once more, his groans growing more painful, and she realized that whatever she'd done wasn't permanent. As soon as her tears dried it was gone and this man was dying in her arms again.
John's words about her being stronger, being able to do things no one could understand or even imagine, Pete's comments on instinctive magic; they rushed through her mind and Chloe just believed in both of those men's comments. She closed her eyes, breathing in deeply, knowing that her instincts were to save, hoping her magic was as strong as John swore it was as she leaned down and pressed her lips to his.
The man went still under her, his grip on her arm growing even more painful, yet she pressed on, concentrating on the image of him healing, of the blackness going away along with the pain and the burning.
She could feel the heat within him, feel the agony, and yet she wasn't truly affected. It was as if she was aware yet unable to feel it herself. She could sense something inside of him, most probably the magic that was affecting him, and it felt familiar in a way that sickened her. This reminded her of when she'd been with John and yet the thought that he could be behind this made her nauseated to her core.
She pushed those thoughts out of her mind, focusing on the thought of healing, on the image of this man getting better.
That hand loosened on her arm, before sliding up to cup her cheek as those lips slowly kissed back.
Diana's dark magic had awoken.
That was all that was going through her mind as Cassie pushed herself to her feet and rushed to the table, grabbing the crystal skull before her father could and shoving it out towards him as she tried to channel its magic to kill him, to stop him forever.
"Together we're stronger than he is!" she yelled to Diana.
"What are you doing?" John turned towards her, one hand still aimed at Adam, who was dying on the floor.
"Reversing the spell." Cassie replied.
"Stop!" he yelled, outstretching the hand with the Balcoin symbol burnt on it towards her.
Cassie could feel his dark magic hit her and it was all she could do to stay on her feet and not slide backwards. If she hadn't been holding the corrupted crystal skull and channeling its amplifying powers, she knew that she wouldn't even be conscious right now, not at all a match for her father's incredible power.
"Think about this Cassie," he hissed. "Think about our family."
And that was when it hit them all. Cassie could see Diana and John both gasping as the supercharging of Balcoin power once more brought an impression of the other Balcoin daughter. Chloe. Cassie could sense her presence in the back of her mind and while she couldn't see her, couldn't know what the other girl was doing, she did know something through this bond.
Chloe did not want this.
In fact, the reason why her presence was getting so strong was because… she was fighting the spell.
John's eyes widened. "No."
Cassie could feel a trickle of blood trail down from her nose as the power got too intense. She wouldn't be able to hold on much longer.
Suddenly Diana appeared behind her and clasped her hands over Cassie's onto the corrupted crystal skull, adding her dark magic into the mix. Suddenly Cassie's head didn't feel like it was going to explode anymore, a groan of pain escaping John's lips as suddenly he wasn't at an advantage anymore.
He fought them with every ounce he had, his skin beginning to burn like his victims and yet ten times faster, consuming him as he fell to his knees.
"Just stop fighting it," he groaned, on his knees trying to get closer, failing. "We share the same blood!"
Cassie could hardly hold on any longer and could feel Diana just as tired as they forced their powers through the crystal at their father.
"The same!" he yelled, before collapsing.
Cassie and Diana cried out, gasping for breath, staring down at John Blackwell.
He was a burnt husk.