At the Star City bay, Oliver is overseeing clean-up attempts when Thea and Alex come by. Alex notes that Oliver's approval ratings is up ten points, just as a reporter calls Oliver over and asks how he feels to inspire so many people. Oliver says that he isn't surprised that the people showed up. Diggle comes over and says that he has his brother home for the holidays, even if he's in a cage. Oliver promises that they'll get Andy free of Damien's mind control.
Felicity and Laurel are talking to students when a drone flies overhead and opens fire. It prepares to open on one girl, and Oliver tackles her just as Felicity takes control of the drone and crashes it into the bay.
Later, the news is running stories on the terrorist attack. Oliver and the others are at the lair and watch the news, and Laurel confirms that no one died. Oliver is sure that it's HIVE, and refuses to give the news any comments. He insists that they need to learn why controlling Star City is so important to Damien, and tells Diggle to find out what he can from Andy.
Five Years Ago
Taiana and Oliver head to the sea, and she finally calls a halt and says that she just wants revenge on Conklin for killing her brother. Oliver assures her that if they can stop Reiter from getting what he wants, she'll have her revenge and he needs her diving skills to do so.
Diggle goes to Andy's cell and figures that he won't talk. He shows his brother photos of Carly and Andy Jr., and says that Carly cried for months because she thought Andy was dead. Andy finally says that HIVE faked his death and made him untraceable, but Diggle wonders why he didn't reach out to his family. He tells Andy that Damien attacked the bay and hurt a lot of people, and the HIVE neuroblockers are no longer in Andy's system. Diggle says that Andy isn't his bitch, and Andy insists that he isn't anyone's bitch. His brother asks if he was running drugs and weapons in Afghanistan, and Andy says that he did what he had to do. When Diggle says that he's giving him the chance to redeem himself for what he did, Andy says that he doesn't know what Damien wants with the aby.
Felicity arrives at the loft and Donna greets her. She's relieved to see that her daughter is okay, and Charlotte explains that she's decorating for Oliver's campaign holiday party. Felicity warns that they might not have it, and goes to have a party. Donna screams and then shows Felicity the diamond engagement ring that Oliver hid among the decorations. Felicity is shocked that Oliver is going to prpose, and Donna hugs her.
At the bay, Oliver meets with his team and says that they're going to have to tell the truth and ask the city for help. He warns that it will make them targets, but they insist that they can take care of themselves. Oliver then addresses the press and identifies Damien as the leader of the Ghosts and the HIVE. He promises to distribute Damien's photos to every news outlet in the country.
In his headquarters, Damien watches the newscast. He shorts out the screen with his powers and one of his underlings congratulates him on becoming famous.
The team returns to the lair and Laurel mans the new hotline. Felicity's decorations for the holiday party are there, and the team tells Oliver that they can't put their lives on hold or cancel the holiday party. Oliver gives in and tells them to have Quentin get extra security for the party. Once the others leave, Oliver asks Felicity... if they did the right thing. He figures that Damien will retaliate, and Felicity promises that they'll be ready.
Five Years Ago
As they reach the bay, Oliver tells Taiana that Reiter is looking for a mystical artifact and shows her the map he stole from the mercenary.
Thea is getting ready for her party when Malcolm comes in. He wanted to see how she's feeling, and Thea assures her father that she's fine since Damien used his powers on her. Malcolm says that he's had his people looking into it, and they've confirmed that Damien's effects on Thea had nothing to do with his powers from the Lazarus Pit. He's worried that they are dealing with universal forces he doesn't understand, and makes Thea promise to be careful.
At the campaign office, the party starts and extra security men cover all the doors. Curtis and his husband Paul come over, and Felicity stumbles over saying that she's engaged. Thea calls Oliver over and Curtis and Paul talk about how he hid Curtis engagement ring in a soufflé. Felicity remembers Oliver starting to do the same thing when they were in Ivy Town, and goes to find Donna. She's kissing Quentin, and Donna introduces him to Felicity as her boyfriend. He's surprised to learn Donna considers him her boyfriend, and Felicity asks to talk to Donna privately. Quentin quickly excuses himself and Felicity explains that Oliver was going to propose to him three months ago before they moved back to Star City. Donna wonders why Oliver didn't do it then, and Felicity confronts Oliver and tells him that Donna found the engagement ring. Oliver points out that everything changed when they came back to Star City, and he needed some time to rethink things. What they're doing is dangerous, and Felicity insists that she chosetheir life and wonders why they can't have both.
Damien comes in with his Ghosts and easily disarms the security guards with his powers. He informs the customers that the guards outside are dead, and says that he's there to talk with Oliver. Damien explains that since he can't have Oliver's allegiance, there's a price to pay. He then throws Oliver through an office window, and has his men take Felicity, Diggle, and Thea.
Once HIVE leaves, Donnna goes to Oliver. He promises to get Felicity back and staggers out, Quentin talks to Oliver privately and says that he didn't make a move because he didn't want to give away that he's working for Oliver. While he goes to see what he can find, Oliver tells Alex to get everyone home, pay for it out of the campaign fund, and stall the police.
Soon, Green Arrow is fighting his way through the Ghosts looking for Damien. They know nothing, and Oliver returns to the lair. Laurel hasn't learned anything from the hotline, and tells Oliver not to blame himself. She insists that they can all protect themselves, including Felicity. A call comes in from the DA to Laurel saying that they have something on the hotline, and Oliver heads out to beat up some more Ghosts.
Five Years Ago
Taiana gives Oliver a quick lesson in free diving but warns that it won't be enough. He assures her that he can handle it and says that he'll be back from the submerged ship in a few minutes.
At the station, Quentin is coordinating his people when Laurel comes in and says that she got a tip on the hotline... about Quentin. Quentin talks to her privately and says that he's working for Damien to keep Laurel safe. Then he's been working undercover for Oliver, who understood that there was nothing Quentin wouldn't do to protect Laurel. Oliver calls them in to the lair and says that he's found nothing. Malcolm strolls in and easily pins Quentin. He points out that his daughter is in danger and tosses Oliver a HIVE encrypted phone. Oliver points out that they can't trace it without Felicity, and says that his only option is to trade himself for the others. Quentin warns against it, but Oliver says that it's all on him.
At his HQ, Damien meets with the HIVE directors. They demand to know what his progress is on Genesis, and says that the mayoral campaign's interest in the bay became a concern. Damien gets a text and tells the directors that things are going to get interesting.
A short time later, Damien meets Oliver at the bay and compliments him on calling on a HIVE phone. Oliver is sure that his friends are alive, and Damien says that he hasn't made his point yet. He takes Oliver into his HQ and checks him for weapons, and then takes him to a gas chamber. Damien talks about how humanity needs a reset, and he's going to demonstrate what they have planned. Oliver will help them once he becomes mayor.
A man is escorted in and Damien thanks him for his service. The Ghosts lead him into the gas chamber, and gas--The Bloom--is pumped in. as the man collapses, Damien explains that his people were skimming the bay for a particular algae. He sees the man goes down and tells his scientists to adjust the ratio of the Bloom.
At the lair, Quentin and Black Canary prepare to head out. Malcolm warns that he can't take his assassins with him because he can't pit the League against HIVE. He knows where Oliver is because Oliver tagged himself with the nano-technology he used before. Quentin points out that he might as well go with them because his cover is blown, and Malcolm steps out to give them some privacy. Laurel tells her father that he's staying behind, and he promises to avenge her if she dies.
Damien shows Oliver the cells with his volunteer believers. Felicity is in one cell and Damien leaves them to say their farewells. Oliver says that he has his absence covered when his team storms the HQ, and says that he had to trade himself for her and the others. Felicity says that she is the one who decides if she needs anyone's protection, and points out that they're fighting through danger instead of running away from it. She figures that's the point of marriage, to face danger together, and says that if Oliver had asked her then she would have said yes.
Five Years Later
Oliver swims into the freighter and finds a trunk with the geographic survey map he needs to find Reiter's artifact. He swims back to shore and a shark moves in.
The Ghosts bring Oliver and Felicity to the gas chamber, where Thea and Diggle are imprisoned. They drag Felicity into the chamber with the others, and Damien figures that if he kills them then Oliver will have nothing to fight for. Oliver runs to the glass as the gas pumps in, and Felicity says that she loves him. As they collapse, Black Canary and someone dressed as Green Arrow break in and take out the Ghosts. Damien strolls out and Black Canary cracks the glass with her canary cry. Oliver breaks it and they head out.
As Damien and the directors walk out, Green Arrow fires an arrow ahead of them. Damien dismisses the directors, and Green Arrow fires an arrow. Damien easily catches it, but it explodes. However, Damien teleports behind him and sends him telekinetically flying.
Black Canary wonders where Malcolm is.
Damien chokes Malcolm, dressed as Green Arrow, and lifts him into the air. Oliver tackles Damien as he prepares to finish off his opponent.
Felicity and the others reach the cells. As they wonder whether to leave them there, the cell doors open. Black Canary unleashes her canary cry but it quickly runs out. As the HIVE believers move in, Quentin arrives and opens fire. The team takes on the believer, and Quentin's backup arrive.
Damien beats Oliver to the floor, and Malcolm shoots him. He tells Oliver to get clear, and Malcolm drives an explosive arrow into the floor next to Damien. He mutters an incantation as the explosion takes out the building.
Back at the lair, Felicity isn't convinced that Damien is dead. Oliver says that Malcolm left to attend to League business, and Felicity points out that they have a surprise to get to.
Five Years Later
Oliver arrives at the shore and explains that a shark attacked him. Conklin arrives with his men, and figures that Oliver is a spy as Oliver passes out from blood loss.
Diggle goes back to Andy and says that Damien has a cult of believers. Andy tells his brother to believe what he wants to, but Diggle is sure that the man he knew kept him going when he didn't see the point. Angry, Andy says that Diggle didn't see the man he really was in front of him the whole time, and Diggle says that he will treat him like a ghost and walks away.
Damien, alive and well, leads the HIVE directors out. They're concerned that Damien is deviating from the plan, and he assures them that he's leading exactly where they need to be. He takes them out tocornfield and says that the air in the underground chamber is perfectly breathable. Phase 4 is on schedule, and one director wonders about Oliver.
Felicity and the others take Oliver to the bay where people have gathered to hear his speech. They've set the whole thing up so that he can show the people he won't back down. Oliver takes Felicity up with him and says that they're going to show the terrorists that they're not going to let the darkness win. He turns on the lights revealing the clean harbor, and Oliver says that he is grateful for one person in particular. Olvier says that Felicity is the one who lights his way, and goes to one knee to propose to her. She agrees and they kiss as everyone applauds.
As Oliver and Felicity head back in their limo, Felicity assures her fiance that all she cares about is him. As they kiss, two SUVs cut them off. Ghosts get out and open fire into the limo. Oliver covers Felicity with his body
Damien goes to an apartment where a woman and her daughter are decorating a tree.
Oliver crawls into the front and drives the limo off.
Damien hugs his daughter.
Once they're clear, Oliver pulls the limo over.
Damien puts the star on the Christmas tree and hugs his wife and daughter.
Oliver pulls a bleeding Felicity out of the limo.
Written by Gadfly on Dec 10, 2015