Summary: What Clark doesn't know, won't hurt him. Too bad that doesn't apply to everyone.
Warnings: Minor character death
Title, Author and URL of original story:'Nex',Lasha, http://archive.skyehawke.com/story.php?no=12601
Clark was watching us tonight.
I looked up from the latest Warrior Angel and saw that little frown between his beautiful eyes, and I knew that he'd been thinking again as he watched the two of us reading together. It was just a brief flash, and then his smile was back, his total adoration shining through like a beacon.
After Warrior Angel had once more brought Devilicus to justice, and our small boy was tucked safely into the bed down the hall, Clark joined me in our bed. There had been desperation in his kisses, an all-consuming hunger that surfaces from time to time...and leaves me branded with the marks of his possession. Clark never speaks to me when he succumbs to this rush of passion, depending on his eyes and hands and mouth to convey his need without words.
And now he sleeps beside me with an occasional quiet murmur, words suppressed by day escaping from his dreams.
Forty weeks and three days of gestation...and 1766 days outside the womb. I can almost hear our boy's sputtered protest, "I'm five and a half!" as I sit here in the dark...remembering how it all started. But even the banner day of his conception wasn't the beginning, not by a long shot.
If I had to choose one fateful act...one specific date...then it was about ten years ago on a bridge. A fitting place for change, representing passage from one life to another, but not merely symbolic…not when accompanied by the protest of screaming metal and a river full of water that sought to end it all even before it began.
Survival of the first trial set the keynote for the rest, rivaling Hercules' tasks in the dangerous climate of Smallville. There were secrets and lies, fights and reconciliations...and marriage.
More than one marriage for both of us, never successful.
Another failure had been looming on the horizon.
With Clark's secrets no longer a sticking point, he begged for help from his best friend. Raised to revere the sanctity of marriage, he fixated on the need for a child, insisted it would be the means to bind together a fraying love.
A love that might not have ever existed, despite the protestations on both sides.
After all, marrying the billionaire's best friend, after losing the billionaire, hinted more of revenge against the second than devotion to the first. But no matter...Clark would have his every desire fulfilled, because what good would having all those billions of dollars be if they couldn't be used to make a best friend happy, fill his green eyes with joy and laughter?
That money paid for the fairytale wedding with the billionaire's ex-wife...the wedding where that same indulgent billionaire read an Elizabeth Barrett Browning poem to the beaming bride and groom:
"My own Beloved, who hast lifted me
From this drear flat of earth where I was thrown,
And, in betwixt the languid ringlets, blown
A life-breath, till the forehead hopefully
Shines out again, as all the angels see,
Before thy saving kiss! My own, my own,
Who camest to me when the world was gone,
And I who looked for only God, found thee!
I find thee; I am safe, and strong, acid glad.
As one who stands in dewless asphodel,
Looks backward on the tedious time he had
In the upper life,--so I, with bosom-swell,
Make witness, here, between the good and bad,
That Love, as strong as Death, retrieves as well.
That money and dedication...that was all that it took to make Clark's dream of a child come true. The day for the implantation of the first alien-human hybrid arrived right on schedule. Three friends celebrated and, a little later, everything that had been done to make the impossible happen was stored away safely in the same room where the rest of Clark's secrets still lived. Just two people have ever known the location...and neither of them is Clark.
Of course, now there's only one.
The pregnancy was going surprisingly well, weekly checkups at the facility making sure there were no complications. With all the monitoring and close supervision guaranteed by the Luthor clinic, Clark was finally convinced to take the week-long assignment in Vienna for the G8 conference...the one Perry White had been so insistent on Clark taking, despite the imminent birth. Clark had been worried but, with his job on the line, he reluctantly boarded the plane for an hours-long flight that would have taken him less than a minute if he had flown the distance as Superman.
Of course, he wasn't Superman, then. He'd been desperately trying to lead a mundane life as a reporter, a family man. A simple life, but sadly one without any friends, except for the one that his bride couldn't drive away with her demands for constant attention.
It's unfortunate that Clark still regrets missing the birth of his son. He was, in fact, above the mid-Atlantic when the first cut was made to free his child from the womb. By the time he arrived at the secret clinic, it was done.
He hadn't been able to detect the feeble cries in the room buried beneath the earth and surrounded by lead. Even if he had, he wouldn't have been able to decipher the cryptic commands regarding polysyllabic medications designed to thin blood and elevate heart rates.
He hadn't heard the damning words launched from a bitter woman who'd discovered the truth...too late.
Like Blackbeard's wife, she'd trespassed where she didn't belong...and had paid the price. The knowledge she'd gained hadn't been enough to save her after she'd miscalculated and foolishly chosen the wrong hiding place for her cumbersome body. Martha Kent would have been a much safer harbor for Clark's wife than the bottom of a closet in a Metropolis penthouse she'd called home one marriage before. It was a pity that she hadn't had any friends she could have called on for help, but that was no one's fault but her own.
For the most part.
It sometimes amazes even me what a few well-timed words can destroy.
Of course, they can also rebuild.
A deliberately misinterpreted dying wish, and Jonathan Lang Kent was christened Conner Alexander Kent...Kon-El in Kryptonian...the child that held Clark's heart in the palm of his tiny hand.
And mine, for the last 2049 days.
As he still does now, knocking at our bedroom door with a whimpered, "Papa, I had a bad dream." It's only a matter of seconds before he's a small whirlwind settling in the center of our bed, looking up with watery eyes and explaining, "You weren't there, Papa. I dreamed you were gone."
Clark looks across at me, his green eyes haunted for a moment at the thought of his child losing a parent...another parent. His fingers comb through dark curls so like his own, that shimmer with a hint of russet in the sun, and he places kisses on teary sky-blue eyes that close in relief when he says, "Don't worry, Conner, it was just a bad dream. It isn't real."
With a feather-light touch, he traces the freckles that pepper Conner's pale face, and then he looks back up at me again and makes a promise to all three of us.
"Papa and I will never leave you."
Notes: Many thanks to my beta, jakrar, who always makes my stories better.
Standard Disclaimer: I do not own any of the characters herein. The characters of Lex Luthor and Clark Kent as well as any supporting characters are the property of their creators and DC Comics. Gough/Millar Inc and the WB Network TV own Smallville. Any deviations (or deviant behavior) from the originals, however, is mine.
Feedback is both welcome and appreciated.