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!
It had taken forever for Diana to get the boys to agree not to kill the others, even more to agreed to take the injured witches to the Talon, and it'd been near impossible but somehow she'd managed to convince Whitney to tend to the injured (or, errr, everyone). Even now, though, Diana could tell that the three boys wanted nothing more than to fight, although Clark seemed much less hostile towards her friends. He could understand why they'd done what they'd done, but if Chloe ended up being seriously hurt because of their ganging up on her, Diana could sense that his hostility would grow. Greg flat out ignored them all except to give them dirty, distrustful looks, he and Jake seeming to be most hostile towards each other.
Thankfully for Jake, his clothes had somehow taken the brunt of the hit, so while he was cut and scratched, things could have been a lot worse and they all knew it.
Melissa was applying the drops of herbal water Whitney had silently passed her, the girl had to apply the drops to her horribly red eyes every couple of minutes.
Adam seemed to have injured his ribs despite not having received any physical blows and was the one explaining how this had all come to happen.
Cassie sat quietly in a chair and hadn't said a word yet to anyone.
Faye held a bag of ice to the back of her head against the swollen lump throbbing there. "This was some welcome party Diana. See if I care whether you live or die ever again."
"You attacked her." Diana found herself defending Chloe without a second thought. "What did you expect her to do? Just take it without defending herself?"
"Defending herself?" Jake narrowed his eyes at Diana. "She nearly killed us!"
"But she didn't." Surprisingly enough it was Adam who was defending Chloe, gaze going to the upstairs room the blonde was resting in. "She could have easily killed us all but she didn't. I think we should give her some credit."
"Right, everything's dandy now," Faye grumbled.
"We could have handled things better." Melissa sighed, blinking hard around the liquid she was still spurting in her eyes. "We thought she was keeping you here prisoner and Faye just went all Commando and-"
"Hey! Don't blame me!" Faye cried out towards her best friend.
"Point is, we all have blame in the situation." Melissa was, as always, much more levelheaded than her bestie. "On behalf of the group, I apologize for attacking Chloe and I hope that she's fine."
Faye scoffed, looking away, lips purse rebelliously.
Melissa elbowed her.
"What?" Faye snapped at her before pouting unhappily at Melissa's expression, the girl entering an obvious sulk. "Fine." She rolled her eyes. "I should have gotten my facts straight before using magic."
"What is she?" Cassie finally spoke, an odd expression on her face.
"What do you mean what is she?" Clark wanted to know. "A witch, obviously."
Cassie sent him a look before licking her lips, visibly troubled. "I've never-I went up against dad and yet I've never felt-"
"You went up against John with the help of both the crystal and myself." Diana felt she needed to remind Cassie of that. These were her first words to her sister since their reunion. "Chloe's the Firstborn, she's more powerful than any of us."
"Especially now." Adam lowered his head.
Diana sent him a look. "What do you mean?"
"I-I-" Adam gulped, unable to look up. "I didn't destroy the crystal skull and the dark magic inside of it."
Everyone went still.
"You're screwing with us." Jake's eyes went wide. "You're Boy Scout. You're all noble and crap. It's why we trusted you to destroy it!"
"Well I didn't," Adam snapped.
"What did you do, Adam?" Cassie eyed him with worry.
Faye narrowed her gaze on Adam before those orbs widened. "You absorbed the magic for yourself!"
"Adam wouldn't do that!" Melissa snapped before turning to him. "Right?"
His head lowered further. "I felt so weak-I wanted to be able to help more, to be more useful, but I couldn't control it. It wouldn't come out when I wanted it to, acted when I didn't want it to, and it was battling me, trying to overcome me-it's why I've been so moody, so distant-so..."
Diana's eyes widened. "What-what does this have to do with Chloe?"
Adam licked his lips, finally looking up at her. "She sucked it out of me."
Greg choked on the water he'd been drinking, pounding his chest as he coughed. "She did what to you?"
"Get your mind out of the gutter Arkin," Whitney chided, turning his blues on Adam. "That would be what I felt then-why the star burned."
"The star-?" Melissa eyed him curiously.
He rubbed his fingers over the star on his palm before turning it to show her. "Whenever something happens to Chloe, I feel it through this. I felt something happening, and while I thought it might be the fight, it was probably her absorbing back the Balcoin dark magic from Adam."
"Wicked tat," Jake had to admit, eyeing the winged serpent design around the star.
Clark and Greg exchanged looks at that.
"She's powerful," Cassie whispered, seeming still stuck on that issue. "She turned the witch-burning spell on me – I didn't think it'd work on Balcoins! I – there was nothing – I can't-" She gulped, leaning hard against the sofa. "I've never been able to not do something. I-"
It was obvious to all that this had been a big blow to Cassie and she was still suffering from it, the girl stammering and deep in thought and obviously greatly disturbed. But she was also fascinated, but then again Diana shouldn't be surprised. Cassie had been the same way with John when she'd met him. The blonde had been distrustful and resentful of him, but she'd also been in awe and fascinated by the power and knowledge he'd possessed.
"So what now?" Jake looked around them. "We know that Diana's fine and she's here of her own free will."
"Can you blame her?" Faye raised an eyebrow, gazing up at the door above. "We got shortchanged on our Balcoin. I'd like to trade ours for Voldemort Barbie."
"Really Faye?" Melissa shook her head. "Stop being so hard on Cassie all the time."
"I'm the only one who ever is," Faye growled. "To everyone else, she's always perfect." Her smirk was vindictive. "Call me a masochist but I'd gladly get thrown into that wall again if it means I could actually seeher getting taken down."
Cassie didn't rise to the bait, used to Faye's rotten attitude towards her by now. "What aren't you telling us, Diana?"
Diana worried her bottom lip. "It's not my story to tell."
"And I don't see any reason why you people need to know it anyway," Greg snapped. "How I see it, the sooner you leave the better."
"Are you looking for a fight?" Jake stood up, flinching at the pain in his body and yet ready for anything that might come his way.
"Now why would I add insult to injury?" Greg sneered at the blonde. "You already got your ass handed to you by a girl."
Jake clenched his fists yet was unable to deny that.
"Diana hasn't chosen us over you," Clark spoke carefully, ever the peacemaker it would seem. "But Chloe needs her help so she's sticking around to help her. She's being a good person so I don't think you should hold it against her."
"She needs you so you're staying." Cassie licked her lips, unable to look at Diana.
The brunette didn't need the petite blonde to say it to hear the silent "I needed you and you left".
"When we stopped John from killing every witch that wasn't a Balcoin, we doomed her to servitude." Diana knew her voice was harsh, and yet the self-pitying and resentful look on Cassie's face was replaced with confusion. "Before she was even born he sold her to a Circle of witches who are here ready to bring her to heel. She's their slave. I know we did the right thing stopping him, but it's also the reason why she's stuck in the deal he made." Diana raised her chin. "I'm not going to stop until I've found a way to get her out of it."
Understanding crossed Adam's face, as it did with Jake and Melissa.
Jake backed down, obviously not sure what to say.
Cassie was silent, trying to take everything in.
Faye blinked. "Damn. Your father was Satan." She snorted in dark amusement. "And you thought he shortchanged you!"
"What happened to "that wasn't your story to tell"?" Greg grumbled, going to stand next to Diana.
"I'm sorry." Diana licked her lips. "I needed them to understand."
"Understand what exactly?" a voice asked from above them, everyone looking up to see Chloe sitting on the railing on the staircase up above. "First you say they can't know and then you blab it. Don't you think that's kind of contradictory?"
"Jesus!" Whitney hissed, eyes widening. "What are you trying to do? Kill yourself? Get down this instant!"
Chloe eyed him before doing some sort of gymnastic move and ending up standing on the railing, hands out around her as she balanced easily. "You really want me to get down?" She lifted one foot into the air ahead of her as if she was about to step off of the railing. "Really?"
"What are you doing?" Clark looked like he was about to faint. "Don't play around like that!"
"I don't know." Greg grinned brightly up at her. "It's kinda cool."
Diana stood, slapping Greg's arm as she stared up at Chloe, pale. "Chloe, step back off the railing and-"
"Okay." And then Chloe stepped off of the railing and stood in the air.
Everyone gasped, some rising from their seats.
Chloe watched them before bursting out into laughter that was more like cackles. "You should see the look on your faces! It's almost as good as hers in the bathroom!" She fell to her knees in the air, laughing. "Humans. You're so funny!"
Whitney narrowed his eyes. "Hello, Scales."
Chloe's gaze went to his before she blinked and her eyes went serpentine. "You see, that's why I like you. Everyone else underestimates you because you're not blood, but you have potential. It's why I hope you make Hand."
"Hand?" Whitney's eyes narrowed.
"What's going on?" Adam asked Diana.
Diana could only look up at the doppelgänger Chloe had told her about, shocked at how perfectly this creature (was it truly a serpent?) could mimic her sister's physical form and voice.
"She's doing well, I'm proud of her." Chloe – Scales, as Whitney called her/it – began walking down the air as if on stairs. "She retrieved something which was taken," her gaze went to Adam, "and also easily put down insurrection in her blood." Those serpentine orbs rested on Cassie. "And quite easily – I thought you'd give her more of a fight." There was obviously a little disappoint in her voice. "If they'd have known that you'd be such an easy adversary, they would have chosen to bring one of her brothers instead of you."
"No one brought me here." Cassie glared up at the doppelgänger.
"You keep telling yourself that, sweetie," Scales declared in a condescending way. "Just know that no one is here by coincidence." Her gaze turned to Adam. "Not only did she take back the power that you had taken for yourself – power that would have driven you insane, not only did she bring down her blood without raising a hand, but the both of you were yet another test for her." Scales' gaze went to the upstairs room. "You were a test to see if she could stop. If she could control the desire to kill you… especially you, Cassie. They were really pushing for her to kill you and yet she didn't. She stopped. She wouldn't have failed if she'd have killed you, mind you, but it's still interesting to find out what she's made of."
"What do you get out of this?" Greg wanted to know, eyeing his best friend's double. "Who are you?"
"You may call me Scales, I don't mind that name. I've been called far worse." She laughed, a forked tongue hissing out from between her lips and she smirked at their reaction to seeing such inhuman qualities to their friend's face. "You can let Chloe know, when she wakes up, that she's passed the initiation tests. Now that she's devoured the dark magic that was trapped in that crystal skull, things are going to getvery interesting."
"Trapped in there?" Cassie made a face. "But I thought John was – that he had – he corrupted the skull and it's magic. It was-"
"If the crystal skull was so benevolent, why do you think it was hidden and its pieces guarded?" Scales shook her head, her skin slowly turning scaly. "It was a powerful weapon because it had powerful dark magic trapped inside of it, magic only a certain Balcoin could truly control."
"My father," Cassie whispered, clenching her fists.
"No." Scales shook her head. "Francis Balcoin."
"Okay, I'm confused," Faye mumbled.
Clark took a step towards the figure who was still standing in the air. "The dark magic in that crystal skull was Francis Balcoin's."
"Ding ding! We have a winner! Someone give the cutie's muscles a little squeeze." Scales chuckled, far too amused with the whole situation. "Betrayed by his own family, his dark magic was pulled from him and stored into that crystal skull, killing him in the process and ending his reign of terror." Those serpent's eyes went to Diana and Cassie. "But you two would know all about killing daddy, wouldn't you? Don't worry, don't feel too bad. Killing family's in your blood."
Diana gulped, sending Cassie a little uncomfortable look.
Cassie lowered her gaze.
"Oh well, it'll be interesting to see what happens when she wakes up," Scales declared curiously, sending the room a look. "If she wakes up. Just between you and me, when she snuck out of her room, Francis' magic seemed to be the one in control."
"Wait, what?" Diana's eyes widened.
"Oh, didn't I tell you?" Scales brought her fingers to her lips. "But that's why I appeared."
"What do you mean she snuck out?" Cassie stepped forwards.
"She didn't. Though she did. Consider it sleep walking. Magic walking. Dream walking?" Scales tapped her finger on her lips thoughtfully before shrugging. "Whatever. Wouldn't want to be Luthor though."
"Lex?" Whitney narrowed his eyes. "Why?"
"Well, it was a Luthor who helped kill Francis Balcoin," Scales declared. "Along with a Capet and a Thoreaux. If I were Francis Balcoin's essence, I'd want revenge, wouldn't you?"
Cursing, Whitney turned and ran towards the front door.
Diana was right behind him.
Scales' laughter hissed behind them.