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The Return of Lex Luthor 73 (Part Two)/?

The Return of Lex Luthor

 
Genre: Drama
Characters: Clark, Lois, Lex, OC, Perry White, Justice League

Pairings: Clois, Lex/OC
Rating: Mostly PG but some chapters R
Disclaimer: The characters of Smallville and the DC comic universe belong to the producers, writers etc. The original character is mine but is not, I repeat, not a real person, although they are drawn from real life for the sake of realism. Any resemblance to anyone, living or dead, is coincidence.

Summary: Lex Luthor returns with a few surprises. And he seems to be a changed man. Can Clark trust him? Should he?

a/n: Banner by the lovely and extremely talented [info]ctbn60 

a/n: This chapter kind of got away from me, so I'm posting it in two parts.

It all started here 

Go back a step

 

Chapter Seventy-Three (Part Two)

“Lex, Jor-El’s analysing her,” Clark said, as Julia was bathed in a bright, white light. Lex stared at it, fear and trepidation freezing his heart, as cold as the environment in which he now stood. “He’ll see what damage has been done and he might be able to repair it. But it may take a few hours. Will you be warm enough?”

Strangely, Lex wasn’t freezing to death. He could only assume that Jor-El had raised the ambient temperature to prevent Julia from freezing to death and he was also reaping the benefits. He found a place to sit. Clark sat beside him.

“You really do love her, don’t you,” Clark said.

“It surprised me too, to be honest,” Lex returned. “But I know I’ve burned my bridges with her. She still loves Bruce.”

“I know. Bruce is my friend but I swear, sometimes I want to strangle him.”

“You and me both,” Lex snickered. “She deserves better than Bruce Wayne. Better than me.”

“I’m glad you said that.”

Lex sighed. “We’ve talked a lot, Julia and I, about what happened over the past few years. I know now that she wouldn’t come back anyway, even if she did love me. Because of what I’ve done.”

“You could still change.”

“It wouldn’t be enough. I know that. Look, Clark, you and I ... maybe we’ll never have that friendship again, like we used to. I’m not sure I can completely trust you, because of what you are, but ...”

“I’m still me, Lex. I’m still the Clark you met all those years ago.”

“A little older, a lot wiser, though.”

“True,” Clark admitted.

“She said something. About why you never told me the truth. Was it really to protect me?”

“You did have a bad habit of getting hurt, Lex.”

“And you blamed yourself for that?” Clark looked surprised. Lex elaborated. “Julia told me how you used to feel responsible for the meteor freaks. You know, I had one of my scientists run a simulation of the cataclysm on Krypton. And the ship’s trajectory. They discovered something. The reason the Kryptonite landed here was because it was attracted to your ship’s magnetic field. That’s why it poisoned the earth around Smallville. But if there had been no ship, it still would have drifted through space and landed on Earth eventually. Years later, perhaps, but it still would have ended up here.”

“That’s, uh, good to know,” Clark said.

“So, there’s no way you could have been responsible for the mutations. And I never blamed you for the loss of my hair. Like I once told you, I began to see it as a blessing, not a curse.” He touched his head a little self-consciously. “But Julia was right when she said I didn’t take any responsibility for the things I did. The decisions I made. I had no right to blame you for it and I want to apologise for that.”

“Thanks.”

“I still wish you had told me the truth. I would have protected you.”

“Do you remember Sam Phelan?” Clark said.

“I never forget a crooked cop,” Lex said.

“Phelan found out about me. He saw me use my powers to stop a bus. Then he tried to use my parents against me to make me do something illegal.”

“Like steal Alexander’s breastplate?” Lex said.

“Yeah.”

“I knew there was something going on. That’s why I tried to warn you about Phelan.”

“I was fourteen, Lex. I didn’t exactly make a lot of good decisions that year.”

“Who does at that age?” Lex sighed. “So I’m guessing you were afraid that if your friends knew then there’d be another Phelan who would use that knowledge against them to get you to do something you didn’t want to do. I get it now.”

“You know, I didn’t know what I was until the day you crashed into me on the bridge.”

“Finally,” Lex said, raising his eyes heavenward. “He actually admits the truth.”

Clark nudged him and chuckled. He started to say something but Jor-El interrupted.

“Kal-El, I have completed the analysis. The mutation has grown exponentially. She will die unless the damage is repaired.”

“Can you stop it? Can you repair the damage?”

“It will take time, but it can be done. I cannot completely reverse the mutation.”

“So she’ll remain an empath?” Lex asked.

“Yes,” Jor-El said simply. “But she will be able to control what she reads from others.”

“Do it,” Clark ordered. Lex raised an eyebrow at him. He wasn’t used to a Clark so decisive. Clark just looked at him and shrugged modestly.

Lex settled back. “You were saying that you found out what you were when I ...”

“Well, actually it was the day after. When I came home to find the truck in the driveway.”

Clark trudged slowly across the gravel driveway, backpack on one shoulder. As he stepped into the yard, he looked up and stared, wide-eyed, at the big red truck with the blue bow. Martha was just getting on to the tractor.

 

“Hey Mom, whose truck?”

 

Martha sat down. “Yours.” She reached into her pocket and took out a card. “It’s a gift from Lex Luthor.”

 

Clark took the card from her and read the note inside. “’Dear Clark, Drive safely, Always in your debt, The maniac in the Porsche.’”

 

He looked again at the truck. It was the coolest thing he’d ever seen. And it was his.

 

“I don’t believe it.” Martha was getting off the tractor as Clark looked at her. “Where are the keys?”

 

“Your father has them,” she said, patting him on the shoulder.

 

Jonathan was using the chipper when Clark went looking for him. He turned off the chipper, taking off the earmuffs, and walked toward him.

 

“I know how much you want it, son, but you can’t keep it.”

 

Jonathan kept walking past the barn. Clark turned and looked at him.

 

“Why not? I saved the guy’s life.’

 

Jonathan turned and looked at him, continuing to walk over to his workbench.

 

“So you think you deserve a prize?”

 

“That’s not what I meant,” Clark protested. Jonathan put his gloves down on the bench beside him, snickering. “Look, how about you drive the new one and I’ll drive the old one?” Clark suggested. “Everybody wins.”

 

“This is not about winning, Clark,” Jonathan said, grabbing the hammer.

 

“It’s not like the Luthors can’t afford it.”

 

Jonathan paused at the stairs, putting the hammer down. He turned back to Clark.

 

“Do you want to know why that is? Do you remember Mr Bell? We used to go fishing on his property. How about Mr Guy?” He began hammering in a nail. “He used to send us pumpkins every Hallowe’en. Well, Lionel Luthor promised to cut them in on a deal. He sent them flashy gifts.” With that he pulled the keys out of his pocket and twirled them on his finger. “Only once they’d sold him their property, he went back on his word. He had them evicted, son.”

 

“So you’re judging Lex on what his father did?”

 

“No, Clark, I’m not. I just want to make sure that you know where the money came from that bought that truck.”

 

Feeling put out, Clark decided to ignore his father and trudged up the steps toward the loft. Jonathan sighed. “Clark!” Clark paused. “I know you’re upset. Son. But it’s normal.”

Angrily, Clark threw down his backpack and his jacket and turned, going back down the steps.

 

“Normal?” He went to the chipper and turned it on. He clenched his hand into a fist and waved it in the air. “How about this? Is this normal?” He dropped his hand, forcing it into the chipper.

 

“Clark!” Jonathan called out in panic. He ran to the chipper to pull Clark’s arm out of the machine. But the machine coughed and spluttered. He pulled Clark’s arm out to find it completely unscathed. The only damage was to his shirt.

 

“I didn’t dive in after Lex’s car. It hit me at sixty miles per hour. Does that sound normal to you?” Clark’s voice was full of questions. “I’d give anything to be normal.”

 

Clark brooded in the loft for a while, until Jonathan came up the stairs.

 

“It’s time, son,” he said.

 

Clark lifted his head, but only briefly glanced at his father.

 

“Time for what?”

 

“The truth.” Clark looked up as Jonathan sat beside him. He was holding something wrapped in cloth. “I want you to take a look at something.” He slowly unwrapped it. It looked like nothing Clark had ever seen, and it had strange markings. “I think it’s from your parents. Your – your real parents.”

 

Clark took it from Jonathan and stared at the markings.

 

“What does it say?”

 

“I’ve tried to decipher it for years, but it’s not written in any language known to man.”

 

What? Clark thought that sounded weird.

 

“What do you mean?”

 

“Your real parents weren’t exactly from around ... here.”

 

“Where are they from?”

 

Jonathan’s eyes turned outward, toward the sky. Clark followed his gaze. It was almost as if it was out into space.

 

Oh come on, Clark thought. This sounds ridiculous. Sooner or later, someone was going to jump out from somewhere and tell him it was all a practical joke.

 

“What are you trying to tell me, Dad, that I’m from another planet? And I suppose you stashed my spaceship in the attic.”

 

Clark had been up to the attic many times and he’d never seen anything. This had to be a joke.

 

“Actually, it’s in the storm cellar.”

 

“So he took me down to the storm cellar and showed it to me, and I realised it wasn’t a joke. And I got so upset I just ran.”

 

“Wow! That’s incredible, Clark.”

 

“All I’d ever wanted was to be normal. Play football with my friends.”

 

“But you realised then that was never possible. That must have been hard.”

 

“What was harder was having to pretend. To let people treat me like I was a geek, even though I knew I could be better than them in every way.”

 

Of all people, Lex realised that he and Clark were a lot alike. Both with fathers who thought they knew better about what their sons needed. But at least Jonathan had done what he did out of love. Lionel had done it to bully Lex. To force him to be ruthless. And look where that had got him.

“I bet Jonathan’s proud of you, though,” he said. “Proud of what you’ve become.”

“I’m sure Lionel would have been, in his own screwed up way.” Clark looked at Lex. “At least I didn’t throw my father out a window.”

Lex said nothing. Part of him deep down wanted to challenge Clark to prove it. But he wasn’t sure he could face the thought of Clark being able to do just that.

“Congratulations. On the baby, I mean.”

“I didn’t think you noticed.”

“Oh, I noticed. This probably sounds terrible, but I’m kind of glad Julia lost the baby. I think I would have been a worse father than Lionel.”

Clark shook his head. “Maybe not. You know what mistakes Lionel made with you. You would have had a chance not to repeat them.”

“I never should have done what I did to her, Clark. I really thought I was justified. The hormone treatments. I thought I could make her stay if I gave her what she wanted. Instead, I almost killed her.”

“It sounds to me like Julia forgave you a long time ago for that.”

“But I can’t forgive myself. If she had died because of what I did, I ...”

“You would have buried yourself in work and probably become your own worst enemy. It’s always been the way you deal with pain, Lex.”

“Is that really how everyone sees me? As the ruthless, cold-hearted businessman?”

“’Oh wad some pow’r the giftie gie us, to see oursels as others see us’.”

Lex raised an eyebrow at his old friend. “Clark Kent, quoting poetry? And Burns for that matter. Never thought I’d live to see the day.”

“Ha ha,” Clark said.

They talked for hours, for the first time seeing each other as grown men. Maybe not as friends, but not as enemies either. Both joined in mutual concern for Julia, who seemed to be sleeping peacefully.

Several hours later, Julia began to stir. She opened her eyes and slowly sat up, frowning at them. “You know, people are trying to sleep around here. Which is impossible with you two yapping like old ladies.”

Lex looked at Clark, who chuckled. “Guess that means you’re back to normal. For you anyway.”

Julia aimed a swat at him, then looked at Lex. “Did hell freeze over or something? Because I never thought I’d see the day when you two actually called a truce.”

“Trust me, it’s only a temporary ceasefire,” Lex said, with a smile at Clark.

“Yeah, don’t get used to it,” Clark returned.

“Funny guys. Really, you two should take the show on the road.”


Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
ctbn60
Aug. 20th, 2010 06:28 pm (UTC)
Fantastic! Totally fantastic! I loved this chapter. The last three were PERFECT!!
phoenixnz
Aug. 20th, 2010 06:59 pm (UTC)
Clark and Lex are going to need to work together to defeat what's coming, so I knew I needed a way for them to cease the hostilities.
jlvsclrk
Aug. 21st, 2010 02:41 pm (UTC)
Oh my, this chapter did my Clex loving heart a world of good - so marvellous to have them sit down and talk through their history. Dare I hope that all will be well with Julia? I guess I'll just have to keep on reading!
phoenixnz
Aug. 21st, 2010 08:13 pm (UTC)
All I'll say is that this had to happen. Clark and Lex needed to learn that they could work together when they needed to as they are going to need each other's respective abilities to face what's coming.
As for Julia, she's fine. She will also be the glue that holds them all together. Lois is Clark's humanity while Julia is Lex's.
eternal_moonie
Sep. 3rd, 2010 06:24 pm (UTC)
GREAT new chapter honey, first AND second part! *hugs Leanne*
phoenixnz
Sep. 3rd, 2010 07:27 pm (UTC)
Thanks hon, glad you liked it. One more update on this story to come.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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