Recent Statuses

7 mos ago
Current Desktop profile login won't work. Coincidence that Windows 7 is no longer supported on same day? Consider me doubtful.
10 mos ago
I wonder why I have no notifications, then I realize I forgot to sub to my own threads. Whoops!
2 yrs ago
I'm having way too much fun with my Legend of Zelda Encylopedia. This is the game that got me into roleplaying so have a lot invested in it's lore and stories. Too bad can't have all the games too.
2 yrs ago
It's begining to look a lot like Christmas...too bad it was already looking this way back in October...
2 yrs ago
Whew, looks like only 5 days, stupid thing showed me six just to try and scare my pants off...


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@Tortoise @Starlance @Zanavy @Xandrya

Well things had certainly taken a turn for the worse, it was also the first hint of emotion she could notice from her mind reading. The crystal clear color was shattered by a burst of orange, a quick flash of anger, well more like resentment than anything else, it was tempered by her strong mind and remained clam despite the added color. The ripple in her emotions was soon quieted however though there was an undeniable strength in her words, her English words.

Francesca looked back over to the Captain, who she noticed had picked up on this very odd facet of the conversation. She could see the realization dawn on his face that things were a little more complicated than they had first appeared. Nick asked the next obvious question but the Holy Vei was not about to be forthcoming on the subject. For a brief moment she considered perhaps she was a telepath, but that wild theory was quickly discarded, Francesca did not feel such power probing their minds and it she did that conclusions would not lead her to distrust their word.

Francesca stepped toward the Captain's side to give a very quick assessment before things developed any further, making sure to keep to a whisper so only he could hear, trying her best not to accidentally tickle his ear in the process. "She is very firm in her beliefs captain, quite the supreme confidence was it were. Someone has been supplying them with information from our side of the wormhole and no doubt been in contact for quite a while. Someone's been gossiping against us." While there was more she could say, she didn't want to appear rude in front of the Holy Vei so stopped with that observation and then stepped forward again.

"Oh Holy Vei, I urge you to not pass judgement on us so quickly. As you have noted in both our histories there have been many instances of war and bloodshed, but not all exploration lead to such dire results. As members of the ISA, we have learned to live together with many nations and races in relative harmony. We try our best to get along with each other and to extend a hand of friendship to those who wish it." Francesca cleared her throat as she tried her best to appeal to the Holy Vei, they were already under suspicion so it would be best to rock the boat as little as possible.

"I can see that you have your reservations about us, and if you desire it so we shall leave. However, I hope that you can find it in your heart to give us a chance to prove our intentions of friendship toward your people." Francesca gazed at the Holy Vei, using all her skills to read her. The Holy Vei considered herself wise beyond all others it seemed, perhaps she could use that confidence to her advantage.

"With your foresight and wisdom, I believe you will be able to see the truth of our intentions after getting to know us even a little bit better. I pray that you do not merely cast us out without out first testing us, Holy Vei." The best way to proceed was to toss the ball into the other person's court and see how they'd react. "There is much that we could learn from each other."

Location: Starling City, California - Late Evening
Issue #1.03: First Strike, Part 3

Oliver Queen breathed heavily as the last blow was struck, knocking out the last enemy with a blow to the head. That had not been a walk in the park and while Oliver had managed to avoid getting shot, he did take a few blows when he took the fight to the gangsters on the ground floor. The problem was while it had been fairly easy to main and take out their weapons, the problem was Oliver didn't have any good way to knock out or immobilize his opponents. Arrows were a much more effective killing weapon than anything else and he couldn't risk putting too many arrows in limbs or they were likely to bleed out and die that way.

"Remind me to upgrade my arsenal before my next bout. I won't be able to keep up at this rate." Oliver grumbled to himself as he quickly made sure everyone was properly unarmed, and unable to do anything else on their own. The place was a mess, full of groans, bullet holes, broken objects, and bits of blood here and there. After he was satisfied he was just about to head out to find the rest of the girls when he heard a now familiar voice from upstairs.

"So what exactly are you trying to be some kind of Robin Hood?" Oliver took a final deep breathe and felt his heart finally going back to normal levels before looking up at the young blonde. Oliver gave her a goofy grin as he made sure his bow was properly locked in place on his back.

"While I appreciate the comparison I have yet to give back anyone's tax money. In any case I doubt I'm anywhere near as noble as that legend." While he was talking, Mia Dearden cautiously made her way down the staircase to the bottom floor.

"Well I doubt anyone could take someone who called themselves Robin Hood very seriously anyway. I'm surprised you're still alive and actually won. Bows and arrows are kind of medieval tech after all." Oliver laughed at Mia's Analysis and chuckled. He certainly had to admit the Bow and Arrow was a little out of style as a weapon.

"I'd argue bows and arrows have come a long way since those days, sure a gun will always be much easier to use but there are a lot of things you can do with bow that a gun will never be able to do. If you don't mind, I think it would be helpful if you could come along and help calm the other girls down. I just hope I was able to stop this in time." Oliver's face grew stern as he walked down one of the hallways to start the search. Mia couldn't help but think of the young girl she had tried to console before they were separated, she hoped the bowman had stopped it in time too.

* * * * * *

It took a few minutes but they had finally found everyone. Most of the clients had fled when the fighting first broke out, though one had stayed behind to hide, plus the hog-tied one upstairs courtesy of Mia. The girls had thankfully stayed behind as they had been given strict orders never to leave unless they had an escort. Unfortunately, not everyone had managed to get out of 'performing', but by a rare stroke of luck, Mia found the poor girl, though her clothes were ripped and ruined, had managed to put up enough of a fight to delay the inevitable long enough to avoid the worst from happening.

Oliver gathered everyone together in a single room, just as he heard the sirens from outside, signaling the arrive of the police. "Well this is as much as I can do for you. Stick together and tell the police everything that happened to you. You're all going to be safe now."

Oliver wished he could stay but if he was going to do anything else useful, he couldn't afford to get caught by the police. Oliver turned to go when Mia made him pause with her words.

"So that's it huh? We're just going to have to fend for ourselves now that we're free?"

"No...I can assure you that more help will come. There are plenty of people wanting to help. Just keep an eye out for them!" Unable to risk staying any longer, Oliver vanished, leaving Mia and other girls alone, the one girl with the ripped clothes sobbing in her arms.

"I hope you're right, I really do."
The biggest problem with Cake was it was a character that could literally interact with anyone within communication distance at any time, much is very manageable as a sharable NPC but not as a player character. Too much to think about and too many interactions to keep up with. It was a valiant attempt however.
@Tortoise If I need to tweak an image, especially if actually putting the image in rather than a link, I'll sometimes use imgur. Otherwise though it's just an extra step I don't need and I like saving energy.

Once upon a time I had interest in drawing, then I tried it and realized I didn't have the patience for it. There's just something about seeing an unfinished work that urks me to no end, but not in a good way that makes me want to finish it. :)
Guess it just didn't like it going to my view image link, rather than just the regular page, should be fixed now in post.
<Snipped quote by Raylah>

I wanted to see it too, so I googled the keywords in the url it led to. This is what came up.

Is that what you meant to link to, @Iceheart?

No...but it does have the same character in it. Hmm...I'll see if I can fix it though, works fine for me on my end but guess there must be a better link I can get.
For this trip Francesca had chosen somewhat modest attire though still somewhat fashionable. A white, front button dress with white boots. It even came equipped with a hidden hood that she could use if there was a need to cover her hair for any reason. While simple, the clothes themselves were also had their own hidden features. The high-heels on her boots were detachable so that she could run or traverse uneven group easier, in her left sleeve was a hidden knife and attached to her thigh was a hand disruptor should the need arise. Of course these were all to be used only in an emergency and while there was the potential for them to be detected she wasn't going to go into a first contact completely defenseless.

Thankfully Francesca's mind was completely clear today so she was able to remain as calm as only a diplomat could and as white as snow. Astrid was tense, which was understandable though perhaps a bit overzealous in her preparations considering her outfit and equipment. The most obvious thing that stood out though was her uncertainty of anything religious. Religions had a way of unnerving people as often they would encounter thought processes that would differ quite from their own; however, even religion often had a certain logic and rule set that could soon be discovered. Francesca herself was actually religious, though it was much more of a private affair. One of the key questions to answer would be how the locals viewed God, or gods, or even if there was a concept of gods in their religion at all.

Soon enough the shuttle had landed and the captain ordered them to move out. "The best thing we can do now is to remain calm and try to gain as much information as possible during our first meeting. Let's try to appear as gracious as we can and try not to make any moves that could appear hostile."

With her warning in place they marched on.

Francesca had seen a lot of lifeforms in her time as an ambassador so the reveal of the species in front of them wasn't very off-putting. The Holy Vei was indeed quite a large alien, with quite the intricate pattern of colors that seemed to be used everywhere on the planet. If she had to guess, perhaps the aliens felt a very close connection with their home world, which would explain why everything seemed to be done in the same colors as well as their skin. Of course this was all just conjecture at this point, the only real unsettling thing for Francesca as the fact that the alien had completely black eyes. This was a bit of a pain as eyes were usually one of the easiest ways to tell what a creature was thinking, but when an eye was completely one color it made it harder to read through eye contact.

Francesca started to concentrate her mind on reading the Holy Vei's emotions. What came back to her was...colorless, almost like a void or an emptiness. This was a bit unsettling, usually even the calmest of creatures had at least some sort of underlying emotion to read, curiosity, annoyance, contentment even but with her there was just...nothing.

"I have a question for all of you. Why are you here?" It was a surprising question, considering she apparently knew they were going to arrive; perhaps, that just meant all she knew was someone or something was going to come through that wormhole and the prophecy itself was not very specific. Since she had specifically addressed all of them with that question, that meant she didn't have to worry about leaving initial proceedings to the captain since they had all been granted permission to speak.

"I hope you don't mind captain." Francesca stated to Captain Carabello, giving him a slight nod before proceeding. "Greetings Holy Vei, thank you for your invitation." Francesca gave short bow as a sign of respect, all while concentrating as much as possible on the alien.

"We are explorers from beyond the wormhole. Specifically, we are representatives of the Intergalactic Star Alliance and we would be honored for the opportunity to build friendly relations with your people."

Location: Starling City, California - Late Evening
Issue #1.02: First Strike, Part 2

Mia Dearden looked down the hall she had just traveled, she had been lead up a flight of stairs and down the south wing of the mansion to a room two doors down. To minimize any potential leaks of the events transpiring, the rooms used were in the middle of the mansion and a guard would be posted down the hall to keep an eye on the door. While tonight would still be her best chance to break free of the ring, it certainly wouldn't be easy.

Mia clicked her tongue in annoyance as she stood in front of the door and the guard that had lead her retreated to his position to keep watch for the night. As much as she hated doing it, she gave herself a once-over to make sure everything was in place. There wasn't too much to that would need fixing however as the client had requested a rather trashy look for her: Ripped denim shorts, a white T-shirt cut on the sides and tied together at intervals to give it a make-shift look and to expose some tantalizing skin and mid-riff. Her hair was loose, but tussled a bit to give it some body and a bit of a rough look. Her best guess was the client wanted a bit of a slutty look.

She knocked twice and a young sounding voice called for her to come in. She stepped inside the room and closed the door behind her. The room was set up nice enough with large bed, abstract paintings on the walls and plenty of rugs on the floor, mostly there to create a soft landing if anyone got a little too rough. It was a fairly modern room with a bath attached, basically everyone one would need for a little fun. Near the bed was her client, whose eyes instantly roved all over her to drink in every curve.

The young man was dressed casually but it was painfully obvious the brown-headed boy was an upper crust sort by his body language. He was too stiff to be someone who didn't know all about decorum and all that fancy stuff the normal person didn't need to know about. The youth tried to walk over in a controlled fashion but it was obvious he was ready to pounce and was just holding himself back.

"They really picked out a good one, just how I imagined someone should look who was so free with themselves." While he was trying to make it sound like she was beneath him he really didn't seem like the aggressive type, which was something she could use to her advantage.

"Hmmm, yes I doubt you've had the chance to meet many girls like me." Mia glided up to him without skipping a beat and moved a hand up his shirt, to his neck and up to his ear in one, long stroke. He was obviously quite taken aback by how forward she was being and he shook a little from her touch.

"Why don't we head on over, I think I know just how to spice things up for you." Mia cooed on her tiptoes into his ear, making him shiver in anticipation.

"Wow! WOW! I never expected this, heck ya you're so much different from those snobs by father keeps trying to set me up with!" He practically bounded over to the bed with Mia close behind, who snickered when she found what she was looking for. The initial stage of the escape was going to prove pretty easy after all.

* * * * * *

Thankfully Oliver had ended up in a section where there was nobody on lookout which made getting around quite easy. Soon enough he spotted one of the guards looking down one of the halls on the second floor, considering where he was looking it was easy to guess that one of the girls was down that way. He was an easy target as Oliver was essentially coming up from behind him from the north wing of the house, but making pin cushions of the men was not something Oliver was keen on doing.

Oliver had killed while he was on that Island but he had gotten a lot stronger since then and more skilled. Sure, Oliver knew that not every life could be saved, but he wanted to believe that even these hired thugs could change their lives around if given the opportunity. Of course most of the opportunities would have be found from a jail cell but that was the path they had chosen for themselves and they would live with the consequences.

Oliver crept up on his as soundlessly as he could but one of the floorboards decided to give him away. The guard turned and gawked when he saw Oliver in his green suit.

"The hell did you come from?" He demanded as he reached for his gun. But before he could even think to draw it, and arrow had already pried the weapon from his body and thudded into the wall behind him.

"Err...well I heard there was a costume party in the area but I guess it was one door down. They really tend to like my one trick where I shoot an apple off one of the guest's head, but since you didn't have an apple...well." Oliver grinned as the guard looked baffled at Oliver's speed and accuracy with a bow. "I'm sure you know what will happen if you try to call for help."

"Screw you!" The guard rushed Oliver, who casually leaned down into a crouch, causing the opponent to tumble over him in his blind rush. Oliver wasted no time and turned around and dealing a crushing blow to the man's nose before he could scramble back up. Blood spurted out like a geyser and it took only a short moment more for the man to black out. Unfortunately the sound of the man hitting the floor was loud enough to alert the rest of the guys stationed inside the mansion.

"The heck was that noise!" Four other guards rushed from there positions to the center area, three on the bottom floor and one on the second, it take them very long to spot the strange archer in their midst and their downed comrade.

"You're gonna pay for that green archer!"

Oliver cursed, he had hoped to be able to take down at least one or two guys first without being detected but that plan went up in smoke before it had even begun. Oliver quickly shot the other guard on the second floor with an arrow through his right shoulder, making him tumble down to the ground. All he needed to do now was quickly take down the guys inside before they could get any funny ideas about taking hostages. He doubted they would take a guy with a bow and arrow seriously however, which would be all the advantage he needed.

* * * * * *

Mia laughed as she looked down on the half-naked and hog-tied client who had so willingly went along with her idea to tie him first. So thrilled at the idea of being on the receiving end it had completely slipped his mind that he had so willing given her complete mastery over him. Before he had figured out what was going on, it was already too late and he was completely at her mercy.

"I'll admit, it was fun being in control for once but don't expect any reward from me! Girls don't like a weak-willed guy after all!" Mia blew him a kiss as he fumed on the bed while she tried to look out the window and see if she could escape that way. Unfortunately she could see someone eyeing her window, no doubt the guards outside knew which rooms were being used.

She quickly went to the door and put her ear against it to listen, what she heard next she had not expected to hear, gunshots. Mia backed up for a moment in fear, but then realized they sounded a bit far off. Taking a deep breath she opened the door and peered down the hall, the guard was gone and she could hear gunshots coming from the central area. Unsure of what to do, she figured her best course of action was to see what was happening, hopefully the shots meant a police raid was happening, though she couldn't see how that was possible.

Mia crept along the hall and then saw something she never expected, a man in a green suit running around the upstairs area while fighting off the enemy guards with a bow and arrow of all things. Was this guy mad? How did he expect to fight off guys with guns with a freaken bow and arrow!? And yet, that was exactly what he was doing.

As the man dodged a hail of bullets he noticed Mia staring at him from her concealed position in the hallway. Before she could react the man spoke.

"Oh good, looks like you're safe!" He fired a shot down below and she could hear a howl of pain from one of the men, then he quickly rolled out of the way. "I'd love to chat but I've got four other girls to check on so I'd really appreciate it if you just stayed out of sight until the cavalry arrives!"

Mia nodded and retreated down the hall, she wasn't going to have to be told twice to take cover from an active war zone. She just hoped the strange man was telling the truth.

Location: Starling City, California - Late Evening
Issue #1.01: First Strike, Part 1

Mia Dearden braced herself as the van took a sharp turn. There were no windows in the back to make sure the cargo was unable to tell where they were going, the cargo being young girls on their way to a mansion designed to cater to the richest of tastes. Essentially the location was using the tried and true method of hiding a tree in a forest. A mansion in one of the richest parts of town.

It wasn't very often Mia was sent to the mansion for work but she was young, pretty, and blonde, which hit the check lists of quite a few richer clients. Her pimp was always quite ecstatic whenever she was chosen, obviously because of the huge amount of cash that flowed into his bank account each time. Mia was also happy to go, not because she had a chance of being treated a lot better there, but because it could give her the opportunity to make a break for it once and for all.

Before long the van crept to a stop and the back door was pulled wide open, causing all the girls inside to squint despite it already being evening. Men in suits, pretending to be rich body guards, quickly motioned for them to make their way into the mansion. The girls filed out and headed toward their destination, though Mia quickly took stock of her surroundings to try and see if there was an escape route. There would be eyes watching of course but considering the location, they wouldn't be able to put up too much of a presence or risk exposing their operation, this would be her best chance to escape.

One of the girls started crying as they were marched up to the front door. One look at her and Mia could tell it was the poor girl's first time, no doubt someone was paying quite a high price for her. Mia hugged her as they went in to try and calm her down. "There, there, everything will be alright. They can't afford to treat us bad as long as we're here."

While her statement was somewhat true, about them needing to be treated somewhat better on this type of business, everything was certainly not going to be alright and Mia knew that. While she was already damaged and used to it, this girl would be changed forever after the night was over. Mia wished she could save her from her fate as well, but the best she could hope was to escape by herself if the chance presented itself.

She sent up a silent prayer as they were separated from each other and sent to different rooms in the house, the poor girl crying as she was dragged down the hall to her doom. Mia looked straight ahead as she was directed to her own buyer, face hard as stone as she readied herself for whatever was to come.

* * * * * *

Oliver grumbled to himself from his position in one of the very large trees on the mansion grounds. He didn't want to believe that things had progressed this far but the evidence in front of his eyes was quite damaging. After listening to the conversation he gleaned from the party, he had been able to pinpoint this location as ground zero for a sex-trafficking spot. It was doubly sickening as this very mansion had been one he had gone to parties at multiple times when he was younger. Had he just not noticed anything when he was young and naive? Or had he just blinded himself to the wrong being done there.

Through his binoculars Oliver watched as a white van with no back windows went into the driveway and deposited about five young girls at its front door, before driving away, no doubt intending to come back for a pickup in a few hours. The mansion itself was rather quiet and dark, meaning that there was no party currently in progress. This meant that it was being exclusively used as a temporary brothel for the rich that night. Oliver resisted the urge to chase after the van and stayed as still as he could, letting the darkness and the leaves camouflage his dark green suit. Oliver wanted to rush in right away and save the girls, but if he was found out prematurely, the girls lives could be put in danger.

Thankfully it was fairly obvious the sex-traffickers were trying to keep things pretty hush-hush as the guard placements were just above minimum security at best. They were there mostly to check for anything suspicious outside and to prevent anyone escaping from the inside, they weren't expecting much to actually happen. This would give him the chance to put his plan into action and shut down, at least this particular operation. Until he got a lead on the leaders of the crime active in Starling City, the best he could do was attempt to shut down as many operations as he could find and try to hit them financially, the most lucrative ventures being those sponging off of Starling's richest such as the one tonight.

As soon as the coast was clear, Oliver dropped and rolled on the ground toward the house, quickly rushing a climbable section of the wall he shimmied up toward a window on the second floor. After making sure it was empty inside Oliver opened the window and crawled inside. Finding a hiding spot he pulled out a small, burner phone and made the call while masking his voice.

"Hello Police? I want to report a suspicious person in Adams Heights. I think It might be a burglar." After giving his report and address, Oliver quickly shut the phone off and put it away. He would have to break it and dump it somewhere later, but for now he needed to find the girls and make sure they could be 'rescued' by the police. It would be his first strike against the criminals that were making life miserable for the poor and downtrodden of Starling City.

Green Arrow's war on crime had begun.

Oliver Jonas Queen Billionaire/Vigilante/Martial Artist Starling City, California, USA Queen Industries Heir


"After surviving on an Island for five years, I've learned a few things. The most important lesson I learned is that anybody can make a Hell on earth. That's why I do what I do, to make sure that never happens here. This city is getting pretty close though...I have a LOT of work to do to save as many lives as possible."

Oliver Queen, the young heir of Queen Industries, was on a small yacht when it was sabotaged. Oliver Queen nearly drowned but somehow made it to the shore of a small island, Lian Yu in the North China Sea. He probably would have died if it were not for the help of a fellow inhabitant named Shado.

With Shado's help, Oliver Queen survived and even thrived as he learned survival skills, Kyudo [Archery], and used his intelligence and inventiveness to create weapons and tools from what was available nearby. It soon became apparent that the island was home to an illegal operation, to which Oliver responded with Guerilla tactics, and managed to secretly supply the forced laborers with weapons long enough to plan a revolt which resulted in the expulsion of the organization from the Island.

With the island free from control, eventually, Oliver managed to get the attention of a ship which lead to his rescue from the island along with the other island survivors. Shado departed ways with Oliver once she learned he planned to go back to Starling City to inherit his position as heir to Queen Industries so he would have the tools and backing necessary to do as much good as he could in the world and especially his hometown of Starling City.

C H A R A C T E R M O T I V A T I O N S & G O A L S

I've liked Green Arrow since I saw him in the cartoons but I have to admit I never really cared for his looks that much. Then Arrow came along with a look more to my liking, especially without that atrocious goatee, so I've been considering a run with him for a while. I do think the arrowverse version is way too much batman-lite however, so I want to create something a little closer to the cartoons in character, but with some of the elements of Arrow as well.

Green Arrow is first and foremost, a man of the people, one who wants to help the poor and downtrodden as much as possible. While he loves to fight and root for the underdog he is also part of high society and knows that not everything is so black and white. His primary targets are those who exploit people, drug lords, sex-trafficking, and corporate corruption. Of course he also targets those who are a danger to the public, especially so called super-villains and the like, but his primary purpose is to make life better for others rather than bringing people to justice.


Tommy Merlin – Old friend of Oliver Queen who was with him during his party years. Still tries to remain friends with Oliver but finds him quite different from his younger days. He is a good reminder to Oliver that he is still a part of the 'upper' world as Oliver Queen.

Mia Dearden – A young girl stuck in the vile web that is the sex-trafficking ring. She is looking for a way out and the Green Arrow's activities could just be her chance to escape.

Shado – A mysterious, young, Japanese woman he met on Lian Yu who saved his life and helped teach him ways to survive and fight there. Shado was very secretive and the best Oliver could figure out was that she had an affiliation to the Yakuza and quite a bit of martial arts training. Oliver was a bit disappointed she decided to not to come with him and still wonders where she went and what she is doing.

James Cameron – Police lieutenant in the SCPD. Prides himself on being hard on criminals and has a distrust of masked vigilantes. Wouldn't mind nabbing Green Arrow along with the criminals but is more than willing to capitalize on his activities in order to take down crime.

Naomi Singh – A skilled computer analyst and software developer, her technical skills come in quite handy when having to deal with high tech crime.

Henry Fyff – A man with a passion for R&D and weaponry, Oliver has found him to be the perfect fit to help keep his arsenal updated and full of new and useful toys. Has a deep crush on Naomi Singh.

China White – A high ranking member of the Chinese Triad, China White is a ruthless gangster who is not below using any method at her disposal to ensure the Triads foothold in Starling City. A skilled martial artist, assassin, and small arms expert, her skills are not limited to employing her organization to do her dirty work.

Daniel Brickwell 'Brick' – Daniel Brickwell is a powerful mobster who has a heavy presence in The Glades part of Starling City. While his gang is dangerous, the man himself is a metahuman with skin as strong as brick making him a very hard opponent to fight against even with weapons. He prefers a more brute force approach to things but is by no means a pure muscle head.

Onomatopoeia – A strange villain who only speaks in 'sounds'. A mysterious individual with unknown motivations, but he certainly has no qualms with taking innocent lives in the process of a job.


The lights, the glamour, the women, it was a strange feeling coming back into Starling City's circle of high society. One half of him was glad to be back into his spot as one of Starling City's most adored members of society, but the other half remembered the horrors of Lian Yu and balked from the extravagance of it all. How many people could live such a decadent life in Starling City? A lot more than he wished to admit, especially when comparing them to the majority of the city.

If Oliver Queen was honest with himself he did miss the women though. I guess there had been Shado, but when survival and taking down an illegal operation were the primary concerns, there was little room for relationships. Shado had been more of a firm hand than a comforting companion anyway.

"Nice homecoming bash you got going here Ollie. I see you haven't lost your touch after 5 years." Tommy Merlin smirked as he approached Oliver Queen who had a beautiful brunette on one arm and a glass of champagne in his free hand.

"I'm rather surprised myself after 5 years in the North China Sea, kind of figured maybe I'd have lost my charm. It would appear that the mystery I acquired from my time on that island has made up for that. Women can't ignore a man of mystery after all." The brunette giggled on his arm and gave him a little squeeze. Oliver smiled back at her, she was a beautiful woman, Ellie if he remembered correctly, but apart from her looks he had realized that he felt no deeper attraction. She seemed smart and intelligent but she wouldn't understand what he would be trying to do, she was too entrenched in her ways and her station to become anything but a passing acquaintance to him.

"Well I admit, it is quite the mystery how you managed to survive so long without your prized wi-fi and night clubs!" Tommy jested as he lifted his own glass of champagne toward Oliver, who returned the gesture before they both took a sip.

At the moment they were all up in the pent-house suite of one of Starling City's finest hotels at Oliver Queen's expense. It was only natural that the prodigal son, though not of his own choice, have such a magnificent bash to signify his return to the elite circles of Star City. All the biggest names had been invited and the service was superb. It really was a colossal waste of time and money, or at least it would if it had been the Oliver of five years ago.

If there was one thing the rich loved, it was their vices, and fancy parties were some of their favorite places to spread the word of their newest amusement. Oliver made sure to keep his ears ready to snatch the latest bit of gossip and while there was a good chance some of the elites would try to share their findings with the new billionaire in town, he was also now an unknown, but he knew some of the places where people liked to talk, where a few bugs would be waiting to snatch up anything of interest.

"You certainly have a lot to catch up on Oliver. Just give me a call when you want the scoop on the hottest new digs in town!" Tommy took up a spot beside Oliver and took another sip from his drink.

"It is surprising what can change in five years, but also comforting to see what hasn't changed." Oliver took a look around at the top crust of Star City. It was the same worthless drivel as ever, it was sad it had taken five years and a lot of hell to open up his eyes to the truth. He couldn't change the past, but he was sure as hell going to make sure to change Starling City's future, before all that was left in Starling was the rich and the poor, the overlords and the slaves.

Oliver Queen had been given a second chance, and he was damn well going to make sure he did it right.


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