With the whole Chamber falling down over him, Oliver knew that his end had finally come; sadness and regrets hit him hard, and yet, he focused all his emotions on the silver lining, on everything that was- has been- beautiful in his life.
Besides, his death would be meaningful, at least: he and Darhk were the only two left in the Chamber, all of his allies, his family, by blood and not, were safe and sound, and by dying, he would be going down along Lian Hu’s idol, finally putting to rest the damn thing that had brought only destruction in so many years.
“It’s not going to be so easy, Mr. Queen. Do you honestly think that thinking happy thoughts is the way to go?” Darhk snickered, making fun of Ollie.
Ollie chuckled, the sound not too convincing, though. “Don’t know. I think it worked pretty well last time, thought.”
Darhk shook his head, looked at Ollie like he was looking at a child that kept disappointing him, and without adding anything furthermore, he gathered his mystic power and tryed to attack the archer; Ollie, though, closed for a fraction of second his eyes, got his breathing under control and then focused not on what was happening right before him, nor on the incoming attack.
His mind went to his family, to his friends, to Laurel who was now lost to them and to Felicity, always in his heart, all the friends he had made along the way, all the people who trusted him into doing the right thing- into helping them.
It wasn’t an easy feast, but Ollie was managing to counter-effect Darhk’s power; slowly and carefully, Ollie made his way to the idol, and despite the energy it was giving away, despite Dahrk’s screams of anger, Oliver managed to grab it.
The moment he did it, Darhk’s power was gone, but not only that- the artifact kept emitting this warm energy, and for a moment, Queen thought that he actually went inside it- inside the source of its power. He really couldn’t explain himself, he just felt like he was at a cross-road of energies and that there was someone, a presence, talking to him.
The histories of heroes was shattered into three long ago. Splintered to weaken your world into the crisis’ impeding arrival. You must all stand together. The timelines must become one again. It’s time for me to fix that.
Just like he had felt the presence at his side, it (She? He wondered.) was gone, and he was back into the chamber; the ceiling started collapsing, the structure too weakened by their fight, and some rubbles hit Darhk full force right on the head, as he was making his way to Oliver; gulping down a mouthful of saliva, he couldn’t help but look at the brain matter and the dark blood spilling from the open wound.
He smiled of a sad smile, thought about checking if there was a way to contact the outside, say his final goodbyes, but the he decided to not inflict further pain upon those who had been at his side- he just wanted one thing and one thing alone, being ready to embrace the same fate as the man he had fought for so long, and doing it with an heart filled with love and happiness, and not regrets.
But then, just as he saw another portion of the ceiling fall from above him, he felt someone grabbing him, and brining him to safety at super-speed.
Barry! He gasped, his eyes still closed behind the dark green mask. He had hoped his friend would be back in time to help them out, but never dared to say it at loud. After being lost into The Speed Force for weeks for the sole purpose of training and understanding his powers better, Barry was finally back! Cisco’s plan had worked, like his lightening-road and using Iris as a magnet, an anchor…
“Oliver!” As soon as he opened his eyes, he found himself in the lair, Felicity as happy as never before to see him, holding him, and to him, like for dear life, John patting him on the back, his eyes misty with unshed tears.
He reciprocated with as much desperation Felicity’s hug, and titled his head to the side to look at Barry and say a single “thank you”, but what, or better yet, who he saw, wasn’t the person he expected to be there to begin with. For, instead of Barry, there was a young woman, more or less Thea’s age, long blonde hair, the brightest smile he had ever seen on a human (or meta-human, for what mattered), and that included Felicity. All of this, clad in a super-hero outfit, red and blue with a cape, her chest adorned by a huge, golden “S” shaped shield.
“Well, glad that I’ve been of help- although I’m a bit confused right now.” The Blonde clapped her hands together, and walked right before them. “You must be team Arrow! Oliver, His ex-girlfriend, Felicity… even if you don’t look very ex-girl friendly to me…”
Felicity blushed, cleared her voice and saw that she was still holding onto Oliver. “Oh, well, you know, almost-certain-death and end-of-the-world scenarios can change a girl’s prerogatives…”
“And… that’s Thea, aka Speedy aka Ollie’s sister, John and… Mr. Terrific? Is that you?” Blondie turned to face Oliver and Felicity again, as excited as rarely before. “Oh. My. Dear. I can’t believe you’ve got one of those too! Does yours came in with T-Spheres as well?”
“Is it me, or, don’t you think it looks like Barry and Felicity had a baby and she was that baby?”
“Speaking of Barry! I’m kind of in need of recharging, and I was wonder if you could contact him for me… or, you know, one of his pals, as they happen to be, like, world’s leading experts on alternate universes and…”
“And that’s how she knows all of our secrets! Of course she is best buddies with the only other person worse than Felicity at keeping secrets!” Thea snickered, rolling her eyes.
“Actually, Barry didn’t tell me about the lair- this place I found it on my own. I X-Rayed the city on my way here to see what was happening as soon as I super-heard of your issues with Damien Dark.”
“Some people really hit the jackpot with that particle accelerator explosion…” John chuckled.
“Actually, that’s not it…” She smiled, a little sad smile. “My real name is Kara Zor-El, and I’m the last daughter of the Planet Krypton… I think I may need your help… because I think I could come from an alternate reality.”
“That’s rather unusual, but fascinating nevertheless.” Wells took off his glasses, and looked at the data coming from the young woman team Arrow had gotten at STAR LABS. “Still, I’d like to take some more tests on you as well.”
“There’s no need to, I told you, I vibed him, both of them, and he is saying the truth.” Cisco snorted, annoyed that once again Wells was dismissing him. “They all think she comes from an alternate reality- and per my vision, she does.”
Cait looked at the data, then at Cisco. “But, we do know her. Barry had teamed up with Supergirl and with Superman more than once. He, Ollie and Hal,” She hissed the name. “have even this little “league within the league” thing going on.”
“Which is where it gets strange.” Felicity looked at them, serious. “We know that. And yet, we remember this whole other life… with those small differences. Like, Kara not existing, or Wells being in truth Eobard Thawne, and this Wells coming from an alternate reality, but not Kara’s one, one where Barry had been before…”
“And the same goes for me. Even if, the longer I’m here, the more things get added. For example, now I remember having Thanksgiving at my place with Barry and Iris, too, or… Layla? She helped me find Project CADMUS and get my adoptive father back, and the time I was affected by red kryptonite and went all black and evil…” Kara bit her lips, stopping herself from saying more. “You know what? Maybe that’s a story for another time.”
“That’s not all.” Cisco crossed his arms and looked at Oliver, who still had the Idol, wrapped in a piece of tissue, under his arm. “I know what I saw when I vibed you, Queen. Tell him.”
“When I was in the Chamber, I grabbed this,” he hissed, and then he proceeded to show them the relic. “It was the source of Darhk’s power. Someone once told me that one of the first Homo Magi embedded it with the power of the, entity, I guess, they wanted to ask for power.” He took a big breath, ready to be seen as a crazy young man. “When I was in the chamber I felt a presence. Someone, or something, telling me that the timeline of the heroes had been divided in to three to weaken us before the crisis, but that it was time to make it whole again.”
Cisco nodded. “I vibed something like that as well. And I’m feeling this whole multiversal reshape through my powers. Like… I’ve suddenly been given a much bigger knowledge and understanding of them.”
Wells nodded. “If what they are saying is true, it could mean that in one of the other universes your doppelganger had a much greater understanding of your abilities- and by becoming one, you’ve been given it as well.”
“But why remembering also our old lives?” Kara demanded, hands crossed over her chest.
“Maybe it could be a temporal aftereffect, or a chronal residual still in your bloodstreams. Or maybe even magic.” Wells smiled. “The thing is, there’s nothing to do. The world has somehow been reshaped, and none of you lost anything because of it. Our planet is now filled with Wonders. The only thing we have to worry about is what this entity our Mr. Queen encountered spoke about.”
“So, now what?” Cisco asked.
“Now, Mr. Ramone, it’s time go and save the world. And I think, it may be a job for the Justice League.”