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The Return of Lex Luthor 93/?


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 

It all started here 

Go back a step

 

Chapter Ninety-Three

The squeak of Bruce’s wheelchair could be heard through the house. Julia sighed. Bruce had had further surgery to repair the damage to his spine and he was now getting about in the chair. But with Bruce being mobile, he tended to try and get in everyone’s face, wanting to know what everyone was doing.

She’d had a stair lift installed so Bruce could get from his bedroom upstairs to the gym downstairs. A physical therapist was now employed full-time so Bruce could get back on his feet. But progress was slow and Bruce was frustrated. Julia was constantly having to play peacemaker.

“What are you doing?” he asked, coming in to the kitchen.

Julia was preparing vegetables to go into the oven for a roast chicken dinner.

“Preparing dinner.”

“Can you leave that for five minutes?”

“Bruce, I have to cook dinner.”

“Why don’t you hire someone to do that?”

“Because then we’d have to bring someone else in on the secret and I really don’t think you want that right now. What’s wrong?”

“Nothing. I just need you for five minutes.”

Sighing, Julia wiped her hands on a towel and followed him out of the room and into the den. Damian was happily lying on the floor of the den, surrounded by brightly coloured baby toys. Despite his early start, he seemed to be close to the right development stage for a two month old.

There was just one thing missing. He wasn’t wearing a diaper.

“Where’s his diaper?” she asked.

“It was soiled, so I took it off. But now I don’t know how to get the new one on.”

Julia frowned at him. “You don’t know? Bruce, I ask you to do one thing and that’s keep an eye on Damian. I showed you how to change his diapers.”

“I know,” he said, “but watch.”

As Bruce manoeuvred himself down onto the floor next to his son, he took the clean diaper. As soon as he tried putting it on the boy, Damian began to cry.

Julia bit back a laugh. Damian clearly didn’t like wearing diapers, but it looked like Bruce was too afraid of the boy to even try.

“Have you tried talking to him?”

“No,” Bruce said, looking up at her. “Am I supposed to? I mean, he won’t understand me anyway.”

“Well, no, all he understands right now is that you’re trying to put something on him that he doesn’t want. He doesn’t know it’s for his own good.”

“So what do I do then?”

“Talk to him. Soothe him. Keep your tone soft. And keep talking to him until he stops wriggling. And if he doesn’t stop that, make him stop.”

“I don’t want to hurt him,” Bruce protested.

“You won’t hurt him. Not if you do it right.”

Bruce held up the diaper. “You do it.”

“Chicken!” she commented, getting down on the floor beside him. Bruce glanced at her but said nothing.

Julia pulled her son toward her.

“All right buster,” she said, her tone light. “I know you don’t like it, but too bad. You are not the boss of Mommy, you hear me?” Damian just gurgled in response. “And don’t you talk back to me squirt,” she chuckled. “I’ve got the measure of you young man. Yes I have.” As she talked to him, she pulled his legs up, unfolding the diaper under him, ignoring the way he waved his legs about, putting on the diaper quickly. “You are just like your father, you know that? Both as stubborn as the other.”

Damian gave what sounded like a laugh.

“I’m not stubborn,” Bruce said sulkily as Julia picked her son up.

“Oh I beg to differ,” she told him, watching as he pulled himself back up into the chair. She plopped his son in his lap as soon as he was settled, then handed him a brightly coloured rattle. “Come back to the kitchen with me.”

“Why?”

“To keep you out of trouble, that’s why.”

“Don’t treat me like an invalid, Julia,” he said, even as he wheeled himself back into the kitchen with her.

“Then don’t act like one. You are perfectly capable of doing things for yourself, but you insist on me doing things for you. And don’t keep using Damian as an excuse.”

Bruce made a face which made it clear he resented the fact that she was onto him.

“And don’t make that face, either. You know I don’t like it when you sulk.”

“I’m the one stuck in this chair,” he grumbled.

“That may be, but you’re the only one who can get out of it,” she said as she went back to her work. “You know what the doctor said. You need to give it time. Your body has experienced a massive shock. It takes time for the nerves to recover. Or have you forgotten what it was like for me when I hurt my back?”

“That was different.”

“Maybe by the extent of the injury, Bruce. But if you recall, I came very close to being paralysed too. And I remember how frustrated I was when I wasn’t allowed to do anything. So don’t think for a second that I don’t appreciate how this feels for you. Because I do.”

“You’re right. I’m sorry.”

Julia put the vegetables in the oven, then turned and looked at Bruce, who was looking down at the baby in his lap. Damian was playing with his shirt button, oblivious to the discussion going on above his head.

Bruce knew she was watching, but he couldn’t help it. The baby seemed so small and helpless, yet so perfect. It was hard for him to believe that this was his son, yet he could see himself in Damian. And that wasn’t his ego talking. The boy really did look a lot like him. Strong features, dark hair. He seemed to have his mother’s nature though, which Bruce was grateful for.

She had been amazing in the last two months. She had put up with a lot, he knew that. And there were times when he wondered why. He had been a bastard to her for so long, even before this had happened.

“I don’t deserve you,” he said.

Julia sat down beside him and took his hand. “No, you don’t,” she said bluntly. “But you got me.”

“I’m sorry,” he sighed.

“For what?”

“For being such a head case. For treating you so badly.”

“Bruce, I’ll be honest with you. There were times when I did wonder if I would be better off going back to Lex, even if I didn’t agree with the things he’s done. Because Lex has learned to show me his feelings. He’s learned not to hide away from his emotions. And he’s become a better man for it. But I don’t love him. Not a lifetime kind of love. Falling in love with you was the best and the worst thing to happen to me. The best because you taught me so much about who I am and what I want to be. And because of that I now have Damian. And the worst because you’re really not all that good for me. Bruce you have a darkness inside you that I don’t understand and I don’t think I ever will.”

“I do love you,” he told her, and he meant it.

“I know you do. But love isn’t enough, Bruce. For a relationship to work, you need to be willing to share all of you, not just part of you.”

They’d had this discussion before, but Bruce hadn’t wanted to hear it last time.

“I don’t know if I can,” he admitted.

They hadn’t talked about the night he’d broken down. It wasn’t that he didn’t want to, or that he was ungrateful for what she’d done. He just wasn’t ready to admit what had happened. Julia hadn’t said a word to anyone, and for that he was grateful to her.

He sighed. “So where does that leave us?”

“I guess the same place we’ve been for the last year or so. I’m not saying I’m happy at the way things worked out, but maybe it was for the best. Because I have come to a point in my life where I can accept things. And I accepted a long time ago that you would never be open with me enough to make it a lasting relationship. I mean, I still have those feelings for you and that’s not going to change but I ...”

“Marry me,” he said, interrupting her.

Julia stared at him, startled. Even Damian looked up at his father with the makings of a surprised look on his face.

“What?” Julia asked.

“Marry me.”

She blinked, her expression suggesting she was struggling to put the right words together.

“Bruce ...”

He knew her answer, even before she said it.

“Why not?” he asked.

“I think you know,” she said. “Bruce, you have to ask yourself whether you’re asking me because you love me or because you think it’s the thing to do. And I know you love me. That isn’t in question here. But we shouldn’t get married just because we have a child, and he needs two parents. We’d both end up miserable knowing there are sides of each other we just can’t reconcile. I mean, I admire what you do as Batman. You pour all your passion and all your anger into being Batman. But where does that leave us?”

“There was passion between us. You even said it was better than being with Lex.”

“Yes, I did say that. Not to boost your ego or anything.”

“Of course not.” He grinned.

“I’m not saying the sex wasn’t great between us because it was. And maybe I hadn’t had a lot of experience at it before I met Lex. Or you. But I know when something feels good and I had that with you. But what happens when passion dies Bruce? What’s left for us then?”

Bruce had to admit she had a point. What did they really have going for them other than passion for each other. And their son. She was right. Love wasn’t enough. But he could make it enough. He just had to convince her of that.

Determined to prove himself worthy of her, Bruce worked harder than he ever had to get himself out of the wheelchair. He’d always been tough on himself before, keeping himself in peak condition, but now he pushed himself even further. The therapist tried to get him to slow down, but he refused.

At night he ended up unable to sleep due to the pain he’d inflicted on himself. But he’d learned a long time ago to work through the pain, to be the master of it, and he wasn’t going to let it stop him reaching his goal.

After the third sleepless night, Julia had clearly had enough.

“Bruce, you’re pushing yourself too hard. You haven’t slept in days because you refuse to take the medication and you won’t slow down.”

“I need to do this. I was taught that my enemies will not care if I’m tired or in pain. I need to master it.”

“And who taught you this? Ra’s al Ghul? The same man who destroyed the mansion and tried to kill you? The leader of the League of Shadows who wanted to destroy Gotham for its decadence? My biological father?” She shook her head and sighed.

He had to admit when she put it that way it sounded completely screwed up. But he’d considered those lessons important nonetheless. Bruce didn’t want to tell her that part of it was him wanting to prove himself to her. She deserved a man who was whole. Not a cripple.

Julia crouched down beside him.

“Bruce, do you think I care about you being in this chair? Or that you can’t be Batman right now? I didn’t fall in love with Batman. And maybe the Bruce Wayne I fell for, the Bruce Wayne I believed in, was just a mask, but somewhere along the way you had to start believing in that man too.” She shook the chair a little. “This? This is just a tool. It’s not an extension of you. And you don’t have to push yourself so hard to prove yourself to me.”

The sound of Damian crying in the nursery could be heard over the baby monitor and Julia got up to go to their son. She paused in the doorway of his study and looked at him.

“Bruce, if you want to prove yourself worthy to me, you won’t do it by pushing yourself beyond your limits. The doctors have told you, the therapist has told you, you risk doing more harm than good by doing this. And it won’t change things between us. I don’t care about you being in that chair. But I do care about the kind of man you are.”

As she left the room to tend to Damian, Bruce wheeled himself to the window and looked out into the pouring rain. Gotham seemed to be always dark, even on sunny days, and it was a reflection of the darkness in his heart.

He wished Alfred had been here to counsel him. Alfred had always known what was deepest in his heart. He’d been always ready with an ‘I told you so’.

He sighed. He’d been prepared to give up being Batman for Rachel, and Alfred had eventually told him that if Rachel hadn’t died, she would have chosen someone else. Julia had chosen him, despite Lex continually trying to get in the middle of things. He knew why. Lex might love her, but he still had a problem letting go of his possessions, and he still thought of Julia as his. When Lex had told him he’d won, Bruce had known that Lex was only giving up on Julia’s love, but he was still like a spoilt child unwilling to share his toys. He kept pursuing the friendship knowing it would drive Bruce crazy.

“Tell me what to do Alfred,” he whispered.

But there was no answer from Alfred and he was lost. He looked down at his hand, unsurprised to find it was trembling.

He hadn’t been aware of her returning until strong arms came around him, holding him.

“Let go, Bruce.”

His face was wet with tears he hadn’t even realised he’d shed. He wasn’t even sure what he was crying for. Lost opportunities. Lost friends. Family. All he knew was he was crying harder than he’d ever had before, even when he’d lost his parents.

He found himself brushing his cheek against hers. She smelled so good. There was a hint of her perfume – a light floral scent that she used subtly. He had never liked women who used heavy perfume. It often overpowered his senses. But Julia had always preferred lighter scents. He could smell the soap she used underneath the perfume, and a hint of baby powder. She’d obviously just changed Damian.

He felt her lips brush his cheek and he turned his head, trying to seek those lips out. He reached up, pulling her down to his lap, kissing her as if she had the power to cure all his troubles just with her lips.

Bruce began to feel a tingling in his nerves and something he hadn’t thought was possible. Not while he was still recuperating.

Julia pulled off, glancing automatically down at his lap. Then she laughed.

“Guess there’s life down there after all,” she commented.

“Ha, ha, very funny,” he remarked. “You wait until I’m back on my feet again, woman. I’ll show you how ‘lively’ I can be.”

“Why wait?” she said.

Now what the hell did she mean by that, he wondered later that night as he settled in bed.

There was a knock on his door. “Come in,” he said automatically.

Julia came in, wearing a short negligee that hugged her curves in all the right places. She’d lost all her baby weight – most of it in the first month. Bruce felt a stirring below.

“You know, wearing something that short should be illegal,” he commented.

“Depends,” she returned.

“On what?”

She glanced down and it was obvious she could see where the sheet was beginning to tent out. She sat down on the bed and cupped his erection. Bruce tried to squirm away from her, feeling a twinge of pain in his back.

“Julia, I don’t know if I ...”

“Then let me,” she said. “I can do most of the work, if you’ll just let me. I know you want me.”

“I do.”

“And I want you.” She gently pulled the sheet back, undoing the button on his pyjama pants.

“You don’t have to do this,” he told her.

“Shush,” she told him as she bent down, taking his shaft in her hand.

Bruce lost himself to the sensations as he felt her licking his shaft, keeping her movements gentle so as not to cause him more pain. But even as she took his cock in her mouth, he wanted more. He wanted to feel her around him.

“Julia,” he said. She kept going. “Julia,” he said more forcefully.

She lifted her head, letting him go with a soft plop. “What is it?”

“I ...”

It must have been her empathic ability because she seemed to understand exactly what he wanted.

“It’s okay,” she said. “I get it.”

As he watched, she took off her panties and moved up to straddle him. Placing both hands either side of him, she looked deep into his eyes as she lowered herself on him. He closed his eyes, laying back. This was much better.

She was being careful not to get too forceful, in case she hurt him. But he wanted it harder and faster. He placed his hands on her hips, exerting enough pressure to get her to move faster. She got the message, changing the rhythm. Knowing she needed release as well, he pressed his thumb to her clit, stroking hard until she cried out. He felt her muscles squeezing him and it took him over the edge.

She lay curled beside him afterward, hand on his chest, stroking lightly. He sighed. Okay, so it hadn’t been up to their usual standard. But he knew he wasn’t up to anything else.

“Stay with me,” he said.

She kissed him softly. “Of course.” She snuggled into his side, her hand still on his chest as she dozed off.

He hadn’t just meant tonight.


Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
ctbn60
Dec. 12th, 2010 06:09 pm (UTC)
Julia is EXACTLY what Bruce needs. This was an amazing chapter. I like watching Bruces heart melt for Damian. That was VERY hot between the two of them. I didn't think Julia would sleep with bruce again but it was really hot so I don't care...lol

Loved this.
phoenixnz
Dec. 13th, 2010 05:27 am (UTC)
They both needed it at that point. I guess Julia wanted to show Bruce that his life didn't have to change too much just because he's in a wheelchair.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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