Erase and Rewind - Prologue

Dinah Laurel Lance sat on the hard bench in one of the holding cells at the precinct, waiting for...Something. For something to happen. She hugged her knees and stared at a spot on the concrete wall, trying to sort out what had happened.

Her head was still reeling. She’d been trying to uncover the truth about Sebastian Blood—she still couldn’t believe her gut had been right, and she’d actually followed her instinct—enlisting the help of Arrow of all people, when shit had hit the fan and everything had gone to hell.

She’d returned home to find police raiding her place, finding all kinds of prescription and non-prescription drugs she didn’t know she had lying around. Some of the prescription pills were hers, two bottles her psychiatrist had prescribed after weeks of therapy sessions—sleeping pills to help her get some rest and anti-anxiety medication for her panic attacks. Panic attacks she didn’t have anymore, not for weeks, hence the barely touched bottle. The rest wasn’t hers, yet the police had found loads of drugs in her apartment, placed in plain sight.

Funny how that worked. She’d had her father over for dinner right before she’d gone onto her investigative mission with Arrow, yet Quentin Lance had had no idea his daughter was abusing meds. He hadn’t seen a single pill bottle lying around in her apartment, yet a few hours later, there they were.

It must’ve been magic.

Or someone pulling the strings.

Since Laurel didn’t believe in magic, it had to be the latter.

The son of a bitch set her up! Sebastian Blood set her up. She’d come too close to the truth, and he’d done what needed to be done to shut her down. No one would believe her if she went public with what she knew. Who would take the word of a drug addict over that of the city’s future mayor?

She smiled grimly. She had to give him props for his thinking. He knew what he was doing. He’s ruined her reputation in one masterful stroke.

Now, here she was. Locked up. Waiting.

An hour later her boss, DA Kate Spencer, walked into the precinct lockup and stood in front of Laurel’s cell, hands clasped behind her back.

“A fine mess you’ve gotten yourself into, Laurel,” she said coldly.

Laurel looked away from the wall. “Would it help if I told you I was framed?”


Laurel nodded.

Spencer sighed. “Okay, I’ll bite. By whom?”

“Sebastian Blood.”

Spencer laughed. “Sebastian Blood! You’re saying Sebastian Blood set you up.”

“Yes,” Laurel said calmly. She knew no one would believe her, he’d make sure of it, but that wouldn’t deter her from telling the truth.

Spencer shook her head. “It’s common knowledge addicts will say anything. I talked to your psychiatrist. She claims she’d never peg you for an addict. She isn’t very good. All of the prescription drugs found in your apartment were prescribed by her. Did you steal her prescription pads, Laurel?”

Laurel slowly turned her head and gaze back toward the wall.

“The appeals have already started, and you’ve been here less than a day,” Spencer continued. “Thank you for ridiculing the office. Needless to say, you no longer work for me. I’ll make sure you’re disbarred. I'll charge you with possession, theft, and negligence. You’re free to go, though. You made bail.” Spencer paused. “Don’t you want to know who paid it? It wasn’t Oliver Queen, it was Sebastian Blood.”

Laurel merely blinked.

“The man you’re accusing of setting you up paid your bail. I’d be appropriately sorry and thankful, if I were you.”

Only when her former boss left did Laurel turn her head back toward the bars. A minute later, a uniformed officer came to let her out of the cell.

She walked through the precinct, conscious of stares following her. The silence that’s descended the moment she was led out of lockup was oppressive, and it weighted on her like a stone. Her father was nowhere to be seen. She was sure he’s been ordered to take the rest of the day off when she’s been brought in.

She signed for her belongings and walked out of the precinct into the blinding light of flashes and a barrage of questions thrown at her from the horde of reporters. They’ve probably been waiting for her from the moment the news of her arrest hit.

Stone-faced she pushed her way through and lifted her hand to hail a cab. The questions and flashes never stopped. She was half-convinced they’d follow her all the way to her apartment. They didn’t. She listened to her voice mail in the back of the taxi. There was a message from Joanna, begging her to call her, and one from her father, telling her they had to talk. Nothing else.

No message from the person she wanted to hear from the most. He hadn’t even come see her at the station. She’d been locked up for the better part of the day, it was all over the news. Yet, there had been no peep from or sight of Oliver Queen. She didn’t expect for him to slip a file between the bars or pay her bail. She would not have minded a visit though, a sight of a familiar face that perhaps didn’t look at her with contempt. Alas, not a single fuck had been given.

So much for friendship.

She knew something was off the moment she stepped inside her apartment. However, her instinct screamed at her a little too late. Someone pushed her from behind, sending her sprawling into her living room, and slammed the door behind her.

Her hands and chin smarting, she looked up, and cursed softly. No wonder he’d paid her bail. They’ve been waiting for her.

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