Title: She's His ManPairing: Chloe/Duke OrsinoFandom: Smallville/She's the ManRating: T+-MDisclaimer: Don't ownSummary: When Chloe is sent to Illyria as a boy for her own safety while Lex tries to find the traitor in his camp, she quickly makes friends with her roommate, Duke Orsino. Bored, she decides to become Illyria's official matchmaker, and has no idea that she's making Duke doubt his sexuality considering he thinks she's a boy and he's growing more and more attracted to her.
"Can they see us?" Sebastian went slowly, carefully, to stand in front of Olivia protectively, his gaze on the army of shadows on the other side of the now transparent obsidian.
"I don't think so." And yet Malcolm's voice trembled as he reached out and grabbed hold of Andrew's arm, his gaze also on the creatures. He lifted his free hand and waved it. There was no reaction from the things on the other side. He let out a breath of relief and let go of his hold on Andrew's arm. "No. They can't see us."
Olivia sighed in relief. "If they can't see us, does that mean they can't get through?"
"I don't know." Malcolm wasn't sure why everyone thought he knew all the answers. Sure, he was the Dorm Director, and progressively cooler as the days went by, but that didn't make him all-knowing.
"Sebastian, you and Olivia keep an eye on those things." Andrew took in a deep breath. "Malcolm, you try and figure out how to undo whatever you did."
Malcolm opened his mouth to protest that whatever was happening wasn't his fault, but faltered under Andrew's look and sighed. "Fine. But if I make things worse it's all your fault.
"When we get to the Mirror of El, it will probably be guarded by wraiths." Raya sent the three young Terrans a look. "My Crystal will keep most of them back, but there are some, like General Zod, who are so strong they can fight the crystal to some degree. Because of that, once we get into the cave where the Mirror is housed, everyone needs to run without stopping towards the Mirror and not look back."
"We need to pick up speed too," Chloe agreed. "The countdown sequence will almost be over."
Raya nodded and then stopped before she pointed to something. "Look. There. That is the cave."
They could see the entrance into the ground, dark and nearly hidden in the howling sandstorm.
Raya reached out her hand to Tess. "We should hold hands and not let the other be separated."
Tess sighed and looked at her gun. "Considering they are shadows this will probably be useless anyhow." She flipped the security on and stuck it in the waistband of her pants before she wrapped her hand around the one Raya offered her, and then reached out and grabbed Chloe's.
"Hold Duke's hand, not mine." The blonde slipped free. "I have to be the last one to go through."
Duke's eyes narrowed. "The last person is the most vulnerable. You should-."
"She's right," Raya interrupted. "I'm assuming that the reason why the other prisoners have been unable to go through, and are searching so desperately for her, is because she's bioprogramed the Entrance and Exit."
"What does that mean?" Duke wanted to know.
Chloe nibbled on her bottom lip. "It means that it reacts to my biological makeup."
Tess' eyes widened. "In other words, you're the only key."
The blonde nodded. "I wanted to trap Lionel, but I also didn't want to allow anyone else in here to escape unless I wanted them to."
Raya eyed her and gave a small nod. "Hold hands all." She lifted her crystal from its place around her neck and held it in front of them. "Once we are inside we have to ran as fast as we can. I will lead with the Crystal of El, and Chloe will be behind us, closing the portal before it self-destructs."
Tess and Duke silently took each other's hand.
Duke reached for Chloe's and held his tightly.
"Okay." Raya nodded. "Let's go!"
And with that, the group took off as fast as they could towards the mouth of the cave.
"You're distracting him." Andrew's turned to Sebastian. "Just keep an eye out and tell us if those things start to move, or if you see Chloe and the others." He then returned his attention to Malcolm, hand on the boy's shoulder as he asked something too low for the others to hear.
"When did he get so bossy?" Sebastian muttered to Olivia.
The girl shrugged and kept her gaze on the creatures on the other side. "Did you know?"
"Nope, it's why I'm asking."
"No, I mean, did you know Cody was a girl?" Olivia licked her lips. "Because I know that there had to be signs, clues, but I can't think of any."
"Don't feel bad, I mean, I think most people were fooled." Sebastian gave a little shrug. "I wasn't sure whether Cody was a girl, or whether he was gay. So I wasn't a hundred per cent sure either. I kept crisscrossing in my theories."
Olivia sighed. "I never suspected he was a girl at all!" She flushed in embarrassment. "I kept imagining our life together, with us going to college and him finally falling in love with me." She palmed her face. "I feel like such an idiot."
"Duke thought he'd turned gay," Andrew offered from where he stood next to Malcolm. "I wouldn't feel so bad if I were you."
Olivia eyed the soccer player and smiled slightly because it did make her feel better knowing that she wasn't the only one sexually confused by this whole situation.
"I don't know what I'm doing here!" Malcolm clutched at his hair, his outburst drawing their attention to him as he threw his head back in despair. "I'm not a xenolinguist!"
Movement caught her attention, and Olivia's eyes widened. "Guys!"
Everyone turned towards her to see Duke, Tess, Chloe and someone else rushing inside of the cave, and the shadows racing twoards them as one. The girl in front held out some sort of crystal which burnt brightly and drove away the darkness, but in the far back of the cave, they could see the darkest shadows slowly fighting their way forwards.
"Hurry." Andrew raced towards the mirror. "We're right here!"
Malcolm looked up at the lights, which had almost completely disappeared, and joined Andrew's side. "HURRY!"
Chloe broke away from the group and raced towards the symbols etched into this Mirror of El. With Raya at her back, crystal out to keep the wraiths at bay, she pressed and switched enscriptions around, before she slammed her hand down into the small obsidian-black bowl of water. It burned, but she tried to ignore the sensation as the necessary inscriptions lit up, readying the portal for one Kryptonian and three Terrans.
"Go through!" Chloe yelled. "We don't have much time left!"
Tess stared at the obsidian in wariness before jumping through the blackness and disappearing from sight.
"Come on!" Duke turned to Chloe.
"I have to be last!" She remined him.
"I'm not leaving without you!" Duke glared at her.
Raya eyed them. "Male Terran!" When he turned towards him she threw him the crystal, which he caught, and then she jumped through the portal.
Duke rushed to Chloe's side, holding the glowing crystal out towards the wraiths. The creatures shrieked and yet tried to draw closer.
Something caught hold of Chloe's ankle and she screamed as she was yanked so hard she fell to the ground. Chloe looked up at a horrified Duke and held out her hand towards him seconds before she was dragged out of the quasi-protection of the blinding light and into the multitude of shadows.
"No, no, no!" Tess went to race back but hit a wall, finding herself unable to cross back over and help as Chloe was dragged deep into the darkness. Her screams were audible even to those on the other side of the Mirror.
"Duke!" Olivia slammed her hand into the mirror frantically. "Do something! Get her! Duke!" She then screamed and backed away when shadows raced at the mirror, only to slam hard against it like Tess had previously.
"She must've programed it so that only organic creatures can pass through to this side, and not those of shadow." The blonde girl who'd come back with them stepped forwards and placed her hand on the smooth wall that separated them from the other side. "I am surprised that a Terran was able to acquire this sort of knowledge."
"That's bro for you." Malcolm gave a little proud smile before he turned to the girl. "Any idea what is happening to the gateway?"
The woman looked up in surprise. "I forgot!" She hurried to the side of the portal and looked around desperately before she slammed her palm down onto a random stone. Specific lights flickered before they turned off. "The self-destruct option has been deactivated." Raya then went to the symbols and began to move things around, her eyes narrowed darkly.
"Self-destruct?" Malcolm's voice squeaked before he turned to Sebastian in horror. "See what you almost made me do?!"
The creatures covered the mirror in their desperation to escape, and blocked the other's view of what was happening on the other side.
"What about the countdown?" Olivia turned to the stranger. "Is that off too?"
Raya shook her head. "She has password protected the shut down sequence."
"Damn it, Cody." Sebastian ran his hand over his face.
Olivia turned her gaze back to the wall, frustrated because the creatures kept them from seeing what was happening... and terrified because the sound of Chloe's screams had stopped. The blonde slammed her fists into the wall in growing panic. "Hurry up you guys! Hurry up!"
Chloe awoke to the sound of howling. She brought a hand to her head and upon feeling wetness on her fingers she forced her eyes open and could see blood coating them. Something flew out of the light, and she sat up qucikly, which caused her head to hurt even more. The girl's eyes widned as she realized that she sat on the ground inside of the circle of light cast by the Crystal of El, which lay on the ground between her and...
"Duke!" Crying out in horror, Chloe hurried towards the unconscious guy, who was bleeding profusely from his head. His body had been slashed viciously and he was losing too much blood. "Duke, wake up!"
He groaned and opened his eyes blearily, disorientation visible in his orbs.
"We have to get out of here." Chloe reached out and grabbed the crystal, raising it and causing the wraiths around to shriek as the light brightened and drew them away.
Duke cried out as she slowly helped him to his feet, her arm around his waist, trying to sustain his weight as they limped their way towards the portal, which was covered by those wraiths trying desperately to get out.
"Come on, Duke, work with me." Chloe tried to keep him awake and could feel him struggling to stay awake, nearly falling asleep over and over again on his feet from blood loss. "Just a little further, Duke. We're almost there."
He stumbled and nearly fell, nearly dragged her down with him.
Groaning, Chloe hurried the pace and used the momentum to stumble towards the portal, the intense light causing the wraiths to shriek and race away from them as they tumbled through the mirror onto the other side, collapsing hard on the ground.
Chloe pulled out from under Duke and hurried next to Raya, switching some symbols around in time for the countdown to speed up and a loud series of beeps warned of the closure right before the Mirror went obsidian once more, apparently lifeless. Pushing the Crystal of El into Raya's hands, Chloe turned and hurried back to where the others were trying to help Duke to his feet. "Duke? Duke, we're safe." She cupped his face and stared up into his pale features. "Baby, please, you have to stay awake. We're going to get you to a hospital." She turned to Raya. "I'll take you afterwards."
Raya nodded, and as one, the group escaped from the warehouse, the gunfire still heard but far away by now.
There would be many questions asked later, but for right now all that mattered was getting Duke to a hospital.
"So, I don't know how they got our numbers, but I got a call from Oliver Queen." Andrew returned with a bottle of soda for Malcolm, who had been pacing a storm since the doctors had taken both Chloe and Duke away for treatment. "They have a lot of questions, about the Mirror and about Chloe and why we left... but I told him that I couldn't talk right now."
Raya, the alien girl, looked around the hospital in fascination, asking Olivia what this and that was, and the other girl was patiently explaining the different "Terran" things to her.
Sebastian and Tess sat down next to each other and were involved in a low, apparently serious conversation.
Finally Chloe emerged, pale and bandaged but otherwise fine.
Olivia gave a cry and raced into the girl's arms, hugging her as she broke out into sobs.
Chloe whispered something to her and held her tightly. She was probably comforting the girl but from the way the girl sobbed harder Andrew didn't think it was working.
Malcolm moved towards her and, the second Olivia let go, gave Chloe a much briefer hug. "I was so worried, bro."
"How is Duke?" Andrew came towards them. "Have the doctors said anything to you about him?"
Chloe nodded and brought a hand to her forehead. "He's lost a lot of blood. They gave him a transfusion and said that he'll be fine. They, uh, they called his parents." She took in a deep breath. "Raya and I need to go somewhere, and we'll leave after they've arrived to be here for Duke."
"Where do you have to go with the... her?" Sebastian visibly kept himself from saying 'alien'.
Tess looked up from her phone. "Mr Luthor is on his way." She made a face when her phone beeped. "So are Oliver and his gang. If you don't want to answer questions about her you should probably go now."
Chloe looked between them before she nodded, grabbed Raya's hand, and quickly pulled the alien away with her.
"Do we really trust this alien?" Malcolm wanted to know.
Andrew sighed. "I don't think we really have a choice, do we?"
Sebastian merely grinned. "Aliens."
Clark hadn't known what to expect. Chloe Sullivan was the last person he'd expected to call his cellular, especially considering that she was supposed to have disappeared without a trace, but the moment he'd heard her voice (as well as her telling him where she was and ordering him to superspeed to her) Clark had done exactly as she'd asked. He'd been shocked, of course, to know that his best friend knew about him, that that was the reason why she'd been in danger in the first place, and he felt like a crappy friend. But his shock over meeting Raya overwhelmed everything else at that moment.
"I never thought I'd ever meet another Kryptonian." Clark stared at the pretty blonde in shock.
"You have grown, Kal-El." She hugged him tightly with a watery smile. "Your father would've been so proud."
"You knew my father?" Clark whispered, unable to believe his ears. There was someone who could tell him about his birth parents, who could help him understand things he'd thought he never would.
"I was his assistant, and I considered your parents my friends." Raya pulled away, apparently close to tears.
Chloe cleared her throat. "Could you keep Raya with you until this all blows over?" She looked pale and hurt and vulnerable and Clark felt guiltier despite the fact that he hadn't known what was going on. Maybe, it was because he hadn't known what was going on that he felt so guilty.
Clark nodded. "But what about you?"
"I'll be fine." She gave him a weak smile. "There are people trying to find out about you, they call you the Traveler, and while they helped save me I don't trust anyone with your identity... I don't want them to know about either of you." She looked between him and Raya. "When this trial ends I'll come back to Smallville and I'll get Raya the papers she needs to live like one of us. Just, uh, keep her out of trouble until then."
"I don't need someone to-." Raya huffed.
Clark nodded to Chloe. "I will."
Chloe gazed down at her phone when it rang. "He's awake." She looked up and hugged Clark. "I love you, Clark." And with that she let go and raced away from him as fast as her legs could take her.
"That Terran is a good friend to you," Raya noted with odd approval.
Clark nodded, a small smile tilting his lips. "She really is."
"Is he okay? What did he say? Did they let you see him?" Chloe hadn't cared that she was being rude as she hurried back into the hospital. She ignored Lex, and Oliver and his crew, and went straight to Andrew, to the one person she knew would be just as worried about Duke as she was.
"His parents are in with him now, they're the ones who let us know." Andrew placed his hands on her shoulder. "They said he was asking about you, so I figured that that meant he was fine."
Chloe gave a little cry before she threw herself at Andrew and held the boy tightly as she cried.
He hesitated a second before he hugged her back, obviously emotional as well and yet trying to be strong for her.
"Chloe." That was Lex's voice.
She took in a deep breath and pulled away from Andrew as she turned to Lex and wiped at her eyes. "Hey Lex."
He motioned towards a distant corner.
She nodded and moved with him, leaving the others behind as she stared at his shoes.
"They didn't find my father, Chloe, and you disappeared without any help of ours." There was definite question in his tone.
Chloe took in a deep breath and looked up at Lex. "They're not going to find Lionel ever again, Lex. I-I won't answer any questions, but I can tell you that he's never coming back." She licked her lips. "The company, everything, is yours now."
His eyes proved that those answers weren't nearly enough to satisfy his questions, but that he knew now wasn't the time to push, so he wouldn't. That didn't mean he wouldn't come to her again about this though. "The media are all over this, I'm surprised they're not here already, but they were at the warehouse." He took in a deep breath. "We can spin this to work in our favor." And with that he turned and left, his hands in his pockets, obviously about to make the press spin the story he wanted them to.
She frowned at the unfamiliar voice and turned to see Oliver and two other people. One was a handsome man and the other a pretty woman. "Hello."
The woman, who'd spoken earlier, came closer. "I am Patricia Swan, and this is Jason Teague."
Chloe nodded and waited for this to go somewhere.
"We're Veritas." That was from Jason.
The blonde's eyes widened as she recognized the society's name from something Lionel had told her once. "I see."
"You know who we are, good." Patricia smiled and came closer. "We need you to come with us."
Chloe shrugged out of the woman's hold when she touched her. "I'm not going anywhere with you." She took in a deep breath and tried again, more civilly this time. "I heard something about you all trying to help me, and I thank you for that, but I got out of my cell all on my own and I don't owe you anything."
"Ungrateful-" Jason hissed.
Patricia cleared her throat. "We're not like Lionel, Chloe. We don't mean the Traveler any harm. We just-."
"You just what?" Chloe narrowed her eyes. "You want to know? You want to mess with this person's life? You want to feel privileged by knowing something the rest of the world doesn't?" She stepped forwards. "Even if I did find out who this Traveler was, I'd never tell anyone." She took in a deep breath. "You might really want to help this Traveler out of the goodness of your hearts, but the more who know, the more in danger this person will be. The less of a normal life this person will be able to live." She narrowed her eyes. "If you're really not like Lionel Luthor, you'll respect that and let the issue fall."
Jason shook his head and stormed away, muttering against her.
Patricia looked conflicted before she followed after Jason.
Oliver, who hadn't said a thing till then, rested a hand on Chloe's shoulder. "If the Traveler is ever in any danger, you know how to get in contact with me." He then grinned. "They might be pissed off right now, but in time Patty and Jace are going to realize something."
The tired blonde looked up at him. "What will they realize?"
He leaned in closer and whispered in her ear. "That what you just did was exactly what you should've done." He then pulled away, winked, and left, his hands in his pockets. "See you later." And with that he gave her a salute and walked away.
Chloe watched him go, a little curious about Tess' ex.
"You're Chloe Sullivan."
The blonde turned to see a kindly looking, yet visibly tired and pale woman. "Yes. That's me."
The woman sighed. "I am Duke's mother. He wants to see you."
Chloe's eyes widened. "Can I?"
The woman gave a small smile before she nodded. "We can only be in there for a couple of minutes since he needs his rest, but yes, come."
Chloe gave the other's a wide smile before she hurried after Duke's mother.