Somebody to Love (SV,Clark/Lana,Adult) COMPLETE 2/17/11

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Somebody to Love (SV,Clark/Lana,Adult) COMPLETE 2/17/11

Post by Cardinal » Fri May 07, 2010 12:24 am

Title: Somebody to Love

Author: Cardinal

Genre: SV, Clark/Lana

Rating: Adult, for a little bit of sex and one scene at the very end where there is a rather intense attempted sexual assault.

Disclaimer: All the characters, except for my self-created supporting characters, belong to D.C. Comics. No infringement is intended.

A/N: This is definitely an alternate universe version of Smallville. The entire story is already complete, so posts should come rather quickly. No getting stuck because the writer’s brain takes a vacation.
Chapter 1

The American Airlines Boeing 747-400 had left Heathrow Airport in London early that morning. After a noontime layover at Gotham City’s newly refurbished Wayne International Airport for refueling and passenger transfers, the plane had taken off again and headed toward its final destination of the day, Metropolis.

The passengers aboard the shiny, aluminum-skinned jetliner were just beginning to prepare for landing. Books, portable DVD players, and laptop computers were being put away while flight attendants were waking the few remaining sleepers so they could return their seats to the upright position for landing. The plane was still in a holding pattern, waiting to begin its descent, but it was full of experienced business travelers, all of whom wanted to be ready to go.

One of the business travelers that had boarded in Gotham City was a young woman who was sitting in a window seat that looked out over the left wing of the plane. She could have chosen First Class, but she was flying at the taxpayers’ expense and thus, had responsibly opted for Business Class. She was on her way to Metropolis to start her new job as Metropolis’ Deputy District Attorney, a position which was only one rung below the District Attorney himself. The young woman’s name was Lana Lang.

Now 30, Lana had the looks of a woman years younger…except for her eyes. She had experienced a lot in the last five years and had the hard-bitten eyes to prove it. That time had been spent as a fresh-out-of-law-school prosecutor working in the Gotham City District Attorney’s office under the tutelage of none other than the legendary Rachel Dawes.

After Lana had been the lead prosecutor of the team that was responsible for putting The Joker on death row, both she and Rachel agreed that she was finally ready for bigger things. So when the number two job in the Metropolis D.A.’s office was offered to Lana, she leapt at the chance.

Lana thought about her new job as she tidied up in preparation for landing. The terms of her employment contract were more than generous. She now made plenty of money and the benefits were good, too. Moving back to her hometown and being able to live near her parents was another perk of the job.

She had already made one trip to Metropolis and, with the help of her folks, found a really nice condo. Then yesterday, movers had come to take everything she owned except for the things in her luggage. She’d be living out of suitcases for the next week or so until the moving company caught up with her, but she had enough stuff with her to last two whole weeks without wearing anything twice. To help her during the move, her mom had rented some basic furniture for her until her stuff finally arrived.

Lana was thinking over her new job’s responsibilities, when a loud ‘boom’ came from just outside her window. Startled, she turned to see what had caused the noise, and saw that an engine was engulfed in flames. The fire quickly spread to cover the entire far half of the left wing with orange-red flames. Streaming back from the wing were plumes of thick, oily smoke. The plane almost immediately began to yaw toward its left.

As the pilot fought to get the jumbo jet under control, the co-pilot grabbed a laminated checklist that covered the steps to be taken after the catastrophic loss of an engine, while the engineer immediately radioed a ‘mayday’ call to the control tower. Quick as a wink, a distant runway at Metropolis International Airport was cleared for the exclusive use of the stricken jetliner. At the same time, the airport’s firefighters were scrambled to take up positions to help once the plane was on the ground.

At this moment, Superman was hovering high over the center of Metropolis, his long, red cape streaming sideways due to the strong winds prevalent at this altitude. He looked down at the teeming masses as they made their way home from work and reflected that Metropolis was relatively carefree this afternoon. Few sounds intruded on his quiet as he listened just hard enough to pick out true emergencies.

Just when Superman thought it was time to go home and resume the earthbound life of Clark Kent, he heard what was, unmistakably to his ears, an explosion. What didn’t register in his mind, not right away at least, was the fact that the explosion had happened in midair. He turned toward the source of the explosion and went from a standstill to a red and blue streak in an instant.

It wasn’t until he saw the plume of thick black smoke trailing behind the Boeing that he realized what was wrong. The pilot appeared to be doing a masterful job controlling the massive airplane, but Superman thought he could use some help, so he altered his course to intercept the ailing plane. When he got close, he could see what had happened and was better able to assess what he needed to do.

From his position immediately under the plane’s left wing, he could see that one engine was completely gone. It had been, apparently anyway, the source of the explosion. The missing engine was something they could live without since the 747-400 had three more, but the fire had forced the pilot to shut down the second engine on this side and he was having to use full rudder to keep the plane in any semblance of a straight line.

First, Superman used his freeze breath to smother the fire, thus removing the imminent danger of a catastrophic explosion that would destroy the plane. Then, he took a position behind the left wing and slowly began exerting more and more force, so this side of the plane would end up with as much thrust as the other and make it much easier for the pilot to control the plane. Superman stayed in position all the way through touchdown, only releasing the wing once the plane had come to a final stop.

As the plane came to a halt, the passengers began cheering wildly, with the ones on the right side of the plane trying to squeeze over to the left to get at least a fleeting glimpse of Superman. As the fire trucks and other emergency vehicles raced to the side of the heavily damaged plane, the inflatable emergency slides deployed, and the flight attendants busied themselves helping the passengers prepare to disembark.

When everyone else lined up to leave, Lana continued to sit and stare out her window at the man in red and blue. She had heard about Superman and even seen video clips of him in action, but seeing him do his thing up close and personal was a whole different matter.

Watching Superman as he stood on the curved aluminum surface of the ruptured wing, with fists on hips and hair and red cape being blown hither and yon by the wind, Lana became an instant fan. Seeing his beautiful face and sculptured body, she allowed herself a moment to admit to a bit of instant lust, too. That man has the face of a choir boy, Lana thought, and a body made for sin.

For his part, Superman had seen a woman of surpassing beauty peering out at him after the plane landed. He knew that he’d remember her should he ever see her again, and briefly, he wondered what she was like…but then chided himself for letting his mind wander like that.

I mean, he thought, the chances of finding her again in a city with a population in the millions is vanishingly small…especially when I don’t even know her name. Besides, women like that are always taken…and I don’t have the time to devote to a real relationship right now anyway. His momentary fantasy taken away by the realities of life in the big city, Superman made sure the emergency workers had everything under control before taking off into the twilight.

A minute later and Superman had landed in some deep shadows on a lonely rooftop. In a split-second transformation he had completed thousands upon thousands of times, Superman reached to each side of his face and simultaneously pressed in lightly on both of his temples. As always, he was rewarded with a barely audible ‘click,’ and his synthflesh mask began to peel away in a transformation that took less than a second.

The mask was of Kryptonian design, and covered his entire head, significantly altering his facial appearance, hair style, and voice. An insignificant technology on Krypton, where synthflesh masks were used by actors to immerse themselves in a role, the mask had taken months to be recreated on Earth.

First, Superman had had to make some specialized tools, which were then used to make smaller, more refined tools, which were used to make yet smaller and even more delicate tools. Then, an exacting blueprint was made available by Jor-El, and after several failed attempts, a proper synthflesh mask was at last created.

The completed mask allowed for a complete range of facial expressions while giving him a deeper voice, best described as a rich baritone. His natural hair, which was wavy, unruly, and black, now looked to be marcelled, with a spit curl in the middle of his forehead. Even his eyes were disguised from recognition due to specialized emitters that created a small distortion, making his eyes appear to be cornflower blue instead of their actual pale jade green.

The last part of Superman’s transformation back into Clark Kent involved one more piece of Kryptonian technology: an N-space storage box. Superman kept a small, flat box clipped to the back of his yellow belt. About the size of a woman’s hand, but only half as thick, the box could hold anything that could be made to fit inside it’s opening, and since the box opening could expand like a collapsible drinking cup, all of his clothes would easily fit.

When he was Superman, the box held his human clothing, when he was Clark Kent, it held his Superman attire. All he had to do to change was pull the clothes out of the N-space box, remove his current outfit and stuff it into the box and then pull on the new outfit. The synthflesh mask then slid neatly into the box alongside his Superman outfit.

Now attired in a conservative black pinstripe suit, a red silk tie, and glossy black shoes, with the N-space box safely tucked into a pants pocket, Clark found the building’s rooftop stairwell entrance and headed for the street. He walked out of the building and into the nearest subway station. Two trains later, he emerged from the underground warren of tunnels only a block from his exclusive high-rise condo complex.

Winning a Pulitzer prize had done wonders for his bank account. When Perry hadn’t wanted to give him a raise, Clark had started seeking employment elsewhere. That threat had brought the publisher down from his penthouse office onto the news floor where he had promptly doubled the raise that Clark had been seeking.

Using his super-hearing to listen in on the conversation the publisher then had with Perry, Clark heard the publisher say, “We’re in the business of identifying and keeping talent like that, Perry. If that Kent boy had walked, you would’ve been out on your ass in a matter of days. Don’t you know that for the rest of his career, we get to refer to anything he writes as being written by a Pulitzer prize winner? That award gives him a layer of credibility with the public that can’t be earned any other way.”

Winning his second Pulitzer a couple of years later had gotten Clark another ridiculously large raise which allowed him his current lifestyle. The building had state-of-the-art security, for which he was glad. Not so much for his personal safety obviously, but he liked knowing his few possessions would be there when he came home.

Once in his condo, Clark happily switched into a t-shirt and sweatpants before starting dinner. As the electric burner heated up, he set his laptop on the kitchen counter and browsed his e-mails. Most were quickly deleted, but he sent two through his wireless print server so he could have a hard copy before he deleted them.

After a stir-fry dinner of beef, vegetables and rice, Clark walked over to his home office and picked up the laser-printed documents. The first was a late assignment from Perry for early tomorrow morning. Since half the newsroom was going to be busy covering the near-tragedy at the airport tonight and would thus be in late tomorrow morning, Clark got the assignment of covering an 8 a.m. news conference at the District Attorney’s office.

Apparently, Clark thought as he read, they’ve finally hired a new number two over there and this news conference is just to introduce…her? What’s her name again? Oh, Lana Lang. This is new, a female second-in-command. Well, as long as she’s an effective prosecutor instead of a grandstanding politician, her sex won’t matter to me at all.

The next e-mail had originally been encrypted for security purposes. The clear-text copy in Clark’s hand had been sent to him by Bruce Wayne, but Clark already knew that since only Bruce sent him secure e-mails. It read,


You’re always complaining that you don’t have anyone in the Metropolis D.A.’s office with whom you can have the same kind of trusting, working relationship that I have here in Gotham City with Rachel.

She knows of your plight and has come up with a solution. She’s talked one of her best up-and-coming young prosecutors into signing on with the Metropolis D.A.’s office as the new Deputy District Attorney. Her name is Lana Lang.

Clark, you can trust this one. She’s on our side. Take care of her, in both of your roles, and she’ll take care of you. DON’T let her suffer the fate of her predecessor, or I’ll get a big piece of Kryptonite which I’ll shove so far up your ass that a crew of cave explorers couldn’t find it.


Clark chuckled at Bruce’s threat, which he knew was only half in jest. Looks like I need to do some research tonight, Clark thought. Once again grabbing his laptop, Clark set to work. An hour later, he knew everything that was in the public domain about the career of Lana Lang. She had every appearance of being the hard-nosed, committed prosecutor that Metropolis needed. Learning she was still single, Clark shook his head and thought, She’s probably just like me, doesn’t have the time for someone in her life right now. Still, that’s the kind of dedication this job needs.

The only surprise for Clark was that there were no readily accessible photos of her. Since he didn’t feel like digging through digital back issues of Gotham City’s newspaper, he’d have to wait like everyone else. Maybe she’s hideous and that’s why she’s still single. Oh well, he thought as he shut down his laptop, I guess I’ll find out tomorrow…and once I know who she is, Superman will have to pay her a visit since Bruce is serious about me being her protector.
Last edited by Cardinal on Mon Feb 21, 2011 8:19 pm, edited 48 times in total.
"In the Name of the King"
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Re: Somebody to Love (SV, Clark/Lana, Adult) Ch 1 (pg 1) 5/7/10

Post by Cardinal » Sat May 08, 2010 1:24 pm

Chapter 2
Press Conference

Clark had taken a quick early morning flight before work and hadn’t liked the storm front he had seen brewing to the west and north of Metropolis. He mentally upped the forecasted 20% chance of rain by a factor of four and added a tan Burberry trenchcoat to his outfit of a crisp, clean gray wool suit, loosely knotted solid-blue silk tie, and Ferragamo shoes just before running out of his condo.

Clark was in a hurry since he had almost forgotten about his rare early morning assignment to cover the news conference at the District Attorney’s office. He was almost to the steps leading down into the subway station when he realized he’d been in such a big hurry, he had forgotten his briefcase. Cursing under his breath, he rushed back into his high-rise building and, making sure no one was looking, raced up the stairwell to the 27th floor. Briefcase in hand, Clark zipped back down the stairs and stepped out into the street.

Clark hustled back to the subway station and onto the first train headed downtown. The ride was long, but he checked his watch and knew for once he’d make it on time. He got on near the beginning of the train’s run, so he took a seat by a door in the mostly empty passenger car. As the train came closer to the heart of the city, it began to fill up and the remaining open seats quickly vanished.

As always with Clark, once the seats were full, he began looking around to find the person who needed his seat the most. It didn’t take him long, as he spotted a neatly dressed elderly woman get on the train at the next station. It took him most of a minute to get the woman’s attention. Once he had it, he signaled for her to come over and take his seat. In preparation for her arrival, Clark stood up and began to edge out of the way when a young executive type, who was talking non-stop into his cell phone’s Bluetooth headset, tried to slip into the newly vacant seat ahead of the older woman.

Clark wasn’t having any of that, so he reached out with his free hand and snagged the man by both his suit and shirt collars as he began to sit. The guy yelped in pain as Clark effortlessly lifted him, giving him the choice of standing again or being choked by his own clothing. He wisely chose to stand, and Clark smilingly showed the obviously grateful older lady to her seat.

When Clark turned back, the man was staring daggers at him, but Clark paid him no mind and instead, started a conversation with his newest friend. She happened to do most of the talking, going on about how rare it was to find such a proper young gentleman these days while Clark nodded politely and said, “Yes, Ma’am.”

With his attention on the woman sitting next to where he was standing, Clark had no chance to see farther back into the train car, where among the many people who admired him for what he had just done was a young woman headed for her first day at work as a prosecutor.

From her seat in the back of that passenger car, Lana had been admiring a lot more than the way the wavy-haired Adonis had given up his seat. She had also been admiring his chiseled face and jade green eyes ever since he had entered the car two stations after she had. Two daydreams in two days, Lana thought. I really need to date once in a while. Of course with my luck, if I actually dated this guy, he’d turn out to be a serial killer who preys on young women like Ted Bundy did. Oh well, at least the fantasy is harmless, so I’m gonna enjoy it.

When they reached their stop, Clark was off the subway train first due to being next to the door, but since he stopped at a newsstand long enough to buy a copy of the Daily Planet, Lana made it up the steps and onto the sidewalk ahead of him.

Going from her memory of the walking route she had planned out on her city map at home, Lana quickly oriented herself and headed for Schuster Plaza. The D.A.’s offices were located on the tenth floor of the Siegel Center which occupied the entire south side of the plaza. Clark had been to the Siegel Center many times during his career and he took the same route as Lana, but was maybe ten yards behind her.

Lana had decided against wearing a raincoat since the forecast had only been for a 20% chance of rain. The weather outside had been too fine to even admit the possibility of rain ruining her first day on the job. So when Clark first saw her from behind, he saw a no-nonsense hair bun, a conservative dark blue suit with a skirt that extended down to just cover her knees, shapely calves sheathed in hose, and plain, functional black pumps. Dangling from her left hand was a brown leather brief case.

While he admired what little he could see of her legs, Clark wouldn’t have given her a second thought except there was something in the way she walked that drew his eyes. It was a stride, almost a strut, that screamed confidence and sex appeal. Unconsciously, Clark slowly drew closer to her as they walked until ten yards became ten feet, a distance he maintained the rest of the way.

Due to the flight of fancy Lana had had about the polite man on the subway being a serial killer, her mind was particularly attuned to what was going on around her. When she heard a regular set of heavy footsteps settle in close behind her, she became slightly worried, so she looked sideways into the glass front of the office building she was walking by and saw that right behind her was that nice man from the subway. Unavoidably, she mentally added the tag, ‘the serial killer.’

Lana wheeled around to confront him, and said, “Okay, Buddy! You can stop following me and staring at my butt now.”

Surprised into complete honesty, something he normally reserved for Superman, Clark replied, “Actually, I was staring at your calves. If you want me to stare a little bit higher, you’ll need to wear something a bit more provocative.”

Clark flushed red, unable to believe he had actually said that out loud. As his eyes completed the trip from her calves up to her head, he saw the woman’s face for the first time. Despite the differences between her appearance now and yesterday on the plane, Clark knew instantly that this was the woman who had looked out at Superman after everyone else had gotten up to leave.

“You wish!” Lana huffed. So much for him being a nice guy. “If you have to walk this way, don’t follow me, Creep!”

“Actually, Miss, I’m not following you. If you’d step across to the other side of the plaza, your problems would be over, because I’m headed straight for the Siegel Center to work.”

“Really? Well, I am too.” Lana was relieved, and unaccountably disgruntled, to learn this man hadn’t been following her. “I’m sorry to have accused you of following me.”

Lana truly was sorry, a little bit of fantasy on the subway had gotten her into a little bit of trouble. Anxious to make up for her faux pas, she tried to engage the man in conversation as they walked across the wide-open plaza with its ornate Italian-style marble fountain in the middle.

“So…where do you work in the Siegel Center? What part of the city government do you work for? Are you in public relations?” Surely a guy that looks like that and has a voice that nice wouldn’t get wasted as a clerk somewhere, Lana thought. That would be a serious misallocation of city resources. Not to mention being a crime I might have to look into. Oh, get a hold of yourself, Lana. You don’t even know the guy.

“Mmm…no, not a cush job like public relations. Instead, I work for the Fourth Estate.”


“The press. I’m here to cover an early morning press conference in the D.A.’s offices.” Looking back down at his lovely companion, Clark asked, “And where do you work?”

Realizing this man would be covering her professionally, Lana didn’t want to get too chummy, so she evaded a direct answer as they reached a revolving door at the entrance of the building. When they passed through, Lana said, “Oh, this is my first day on the job. I don’t even know where to go, so I guess I need to check that building directory over there.”

Clark smiled as he watched her walk off, the confident stride/strut still in evidence and still drawing his eyes. It wasn’t until she disappeared into a waiting elevator that Clark realized he hadn’t even gotten her name.

Once Lana arrived on the tenth floor and showed her ID to the receptionist in the waiting room, Lana was whisked through a heavy-duty security door and into the District Attorney’s suite of offices. A low-ranking staffer was assigned to show her to her brand-new office which was along the far wall, right next to the D.A.’s corner office. In the outer office, she was introduced to her secretary, a pleasant, middle-aged woman named Marie Dubenion.

After introductions, Marie held up a slip of paper and said, “Mr. Bloch left a note to say that the news conference has been postponed until nine. He had to attend an emergency meeting with the mayor…something about the war on terror.”

As Lana took the note, she said, “Thanks, Marie. I’ll be in my office getting situated if anyone needs to see me.”

When Clark learned about the delay in the news conference, he took the opportunity to get in an hour patrolling the skies of the city.

An hour later, and Lana was standing at the window of her new office, enjoying its magnificent view of the Metropolis skyline. Her law books had been delivered and shelved by workers yesterday, and for the last hour she had been arranging things. Her last touch was a recent photo of her loving parents, mounted in a silver picture frame, which she pulled out of her briefcase to put right on the front of her mahogany desk. The picture frame did tend to tarnish, which involved a bit of maintenance on her part, but Lana didn’t mind. She would accept nothing less than the best for her parents.

Checking her watch, Lana realized that it was ten minutes until the rescheduled time of the news conference that would formally introduce her to the people whose laws she was sworn to uphold. Pulling on her suit jacket, she headed for the door. Let’s get this dog and pony show out of the way, she thought, I have a staff to familiarize myself with.

Lana got directions to the briefing room from Marie and headed down the hall and into a cross corridor before meeting up with her new boss just outside the back door to the briefing room. He was a lawyer and career politician named Tom Bloch. Now in his mid-40s, Tom had held the position of Metropolis District Attorney for 12 years. Having recently won election to a fourth four-year term, Tom was famous in political circles for never putting a foot wrong. To Lana that meant he was the kind of lawyer that avoided cases he might lose, even if they were clearly viable. If that was correct, then Bruce might be right. She might have to be the driving force behind cleaning up Metropolis.

Tom eyed his new top assistant up and down, seeing her ultra-conservative, some might even say ‘covered up,’ mode of dress. He wished she had chosen to make a little more of her natural assets, especially on a day like today. He knew a looker like her could have the entire city eating out of her hand in no time at all if only she’d try a little bit.

For her part, Lana could tell she was getting ‘The Look’ from Mr. Bloch. ‘The Look’ was why she tended to dress down, especially at work. She felt she was a prosecutor who happened to be a woman, not a woman who happened to be a prosecutor. Thus she had almost no social life as she turned down the many men who were only too eager to ask her out without having the slightest idea of what she was like. The few that did get to know her first tended to be intimidated by her formidable intelligence and relentless drive, rarely seeking a second date.

The strange thing was, when the man in the plaza had been looking at her, and admittedly staring at her calves, she hadn’t felt like he was undressing her with his eyes at all. All she had felt then was an open and honest admiration. Being honest with herself, she wondered how much of that was due to the fact that the guy in the plaza was really hot.

Lana sighed. She peeked quickly between the partially open door and the door frame and saw a respectable but restless crowd of news people gathered for the press conference. She didn’t blame them since they had been forced to wait an entire hour just to meet her. Curiously, she saw one seat in the middle of the front row empty except for what appeared to be a white 3”x 5” card. When she turned back to inquire about that, Tom said, “Oh, the seats in the briefing room are allocated based on the prestige and readership, or viewership in the case of the television stations, of the various media outlets.”

Tom dipped his head around the corner for a quick head count and then came back to Lana. “Since I see the reporters for the local television channels, that space must be the one being saved for the reporter from the Daily Planet.” And since the reporter is late, he must be the great Clark Kent, Tom thought sarcastically.

Just then an intern from Met U came up to Tom and Lana as they waited in the hallway and handed Tom a note. He read the hurried scribble of one of the office receptionists and then crumpled the paper in his fist, a fist he then pounded into the open palm of his other hand.

Curious, Lana looked at her boss’ clenched fist and asked, “Bad news I suppose?”

“Irritating news.” Tom pointed toward the open seat in the front row. “That seat is saved for the Daily Planet reporter, who has just called to say he couldn’t be bothered to show up on time.”

“So? It’s time, let’s start the press conference.”

“There’s nothing in this world I’d like better than to set the illustrious Clark Kent in his place.” Knowing there was a ‘but’ coming, Lana wisely held her tongue. “But, he works for the Daily Planet. Perforce, we will wait for him.”

Incredulous, Lana said, “I don’t care if he works for the White House. When it’s time to go, it’s time to go.”

Tom chuckled to himself and then looked over at Lana. “Now I know you’re new around here. The first, and most important thing, for you to learn about Metropolis is this: the public may watch the local newscasts, but they believe the Planet. So any prosecutor that wants the public on his or her side will do anything to stay in the good graces of the Planet.”


Anything, Miss Lang.” When he saw she wasn’t going to argue anymore, Tom added, “This isn’t just any reporter, either. It’s Clark Kent. He’s not quite 30 years old and yet he’s already won two Pulitzer prizes. The public doesn’t know much, but they do know that and so they tend to think anything that comes out with Clark Kent’s name on it is the gospel truth. You couldn’t pick a worse writer to piss off if you spent two weeks thinking about it.”

Lana rocked back on her heels and said, “So…we wait.”

“That’s correct. Now, let me go out there and announce the wait.”

While Tom headed out to the lectern, Lana had her arms folded across her chest and one foot was tapping out a rapid beat. Both were sure signs to anyone who knew her that she was fuming…unfortunately for her, the only ones in Metropolis who knew her that well were a few old friends from high school, and her parents.

“Ladies and gentlemen of the media, I’m sorry to have delayed this news conference an hour already, but it appears we’ll be waiting a few minutes more to have this news conference. We’re waiting on the Daily Planet to send us one of their crack staff members so we can get underway.” The audience groaned. “I’ll let you kind folks guess as to who’s late this time.” He could hear the grumbles of ‘Kent’ all the way up at the front of the room.

A three-car pile up on Interstate 470 had delayed Clark and he wasn’t able to call in to explain to the D.A.’s office until after he landed and changed back into his civilian clothes. He then refamiliarized himself with his briefing materials on Lana Lang before walking back to the Siegel Center from the building he had landed on.

Tom headed back out of the room to keep Lana company while they waited. Thankfully, the wait was a short one. They could tell by listening to the jeering from the other news people that Mr. Kent had finally chosen to grace them with his presence.

Lana was curious to see who this reporter was who thought he was above the story he was supposed to be covering, so while Tom headed back to the lectern to make his introduction of her, she peeked between the door and the frame once again and was rewarded with a sight of the kind man from the subway.

Why is he late? Lana wondered. He came in the front door with me an hour ago. She just realized she had never gotten his name in the short time they had talked. Clark Kent, she thought, the name sounds kind of dorky, but there was nothing dorky about him in the plaza.

Tom finished his brief speech, saying, “…I’d like to introduce to you, and to the rest of the citizens of Metropolis, our new Deputy District Attorney, Lana Lang.”

Lana took her cue and strode confidently to the lectern. Tom had thoughtfully lowered the microphone to a more convenient height for her, but she still had to make some more precise adjustments of her own which allowed her to put off meeting his eyes for a few moments longer.

Upon seeing her enter the briefing room, Clark’s his eyes popped open wide and his mouth fell open slightly. So that’s Lana Lang, Clark thought, so much for hideous. The stunning beauty of her face registered in his mind, but only peripherally. It was the fact that she was the same woman he had first seen looking out of the plane window that arrested his attention. What are the odds, he wondered, that the woman from the plane would meet me in Schuster Plaza and would then be the woman I was sent to cover? As a bonus, she’s the woman I’m supposed to work with to help clean up Metropolis, not to mention the fact that she’s the woman Bruce expects me to defend with my life. With screwy odds like these today, I’d better go play Powerball.

Thus it was that, by the time Lana finished adjusting her microphone, most of the males in the room were giving her admiring looks, but Clark was looking at her like he’d just been freshly poleaxed.

Lana looked out over the assembled media, took a deep breath, and said, “Hello. As Tom said, I’m Lana Lang, your new Deputy District Attorney. As my bio states, I was born and raised right here in Metropolis. I went off to college, and to train after that under one of the best prosecutors around, Rachel Dawes. Now it’s time for me to come home and give back to the city that has given so much to me.” Finally looking directly at Clark, she finished by asking, “Do you have any questions?”
"In the Name of the King"
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-----Winner, Round 15 - Best New Fic
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Re: Somebody to Love (SV, Clark/Lana, Adult) Ch 2 (pg 1) 5/8/10

Post by Cardinal » Sun May 09, 2010 11:18 pm

Chapter 3

Lana checked her watch and then took the first question, careful to avoid calling on Clark. For the next ten minutes, she answered every question imaginable, as long as it didn’t touch on her personal life. The only personal details she revealed were her age and that her parents still lived in Metropolis. When the ten minutes were up, everyone but Clark had asked at least one question and most had asked two or three.

Checking her watch, Lana said, “My greatest goal in coming back to Metropolis is to ensure that the law is enforced equally for everyone, regardless of race, sex, age, or any other factor…including wealth.” Lana looked directly at Clark for the first time since she started taking questions. “Not only does the law apply to everyone, but so do the rules…whether they work for a small-circulation tabloid or the mighty Daily Planet.”

Clark had carefully kept his temper on simmer ever since it became apparent that Miss Lang was trying to punish him by snubbing him. But now that she was publicly chastising him, he lost control and a temper that had been simmering quickly boiled over with rage.

Lana finished her statement by saying, “Mr. Kent, you kept us waiting ten minutes today. Now that you’ve waited ten minutes for us…do you have any questions?”

A number of questions raced through his mind, none of which he could actually ask. Were you born a cast-iron ***** or did you have to practice? Is it true you’ll melt when the rain starts this afternoon? And his favorite: Who put too much starch in your undies this morning?

While Clark’s questions had been running through his mind, he had successfully fought off an urge to scream, but his eyes narrowed and his jaw clenched with anger. If he had been feeling lust instead of rage at this moment, the intensity of his feelings would have incinerated Lana on the spot. As is, no one but her could see his look, and only a firm grip on both sides of the lectern kept her from taking a step back in alarm.

Lana then watched something extraordinary. Clark swallowed his rage. She had been sure he was about to unleash a stream of invective her way, but instead, his temper dissipated like morning dew under a hot sun.

Once he mastered himself, Clark said icily, “No, Miss Lang, I don’t have any questions. All of the questions a reputable reporter would be interested in have already been asked.” Looking at his so-called colleagues from the Inquisitor with thinly veiled contempt, Clark added, “As well as some that should never have been asked of a lady.”

Thoroughly humiliated by the new Deputy District Attorney, the person who was supposed to help him break the cycle of high-level corruption in Metropolis, Clark got up to leave. Before making his way out of the room, he turned back to Lana and said wistfully, “What I had planned on doing today was welcoming you back home.” Then he smiled faintly before adding, “Oh, I also wanted to congratulate you on surviving the near-wreck of that jumbo jet yesterday at Metropolis International.”

When Clark said that and walked out the door, the assembled media went into overdrive, asking Lana another twenty minutes worth of questions about her experiences inside the wounded jet. After all, having a human-interest angle might move this little story right onto the front page for the print guys, and might merit a lead story for the TV types.

As Lana watched Clark’s broad back disappear around a corner in the hallway, she wondered two things: first, how did he know I had been on that plane, and second, if he’s the one in the wrong, why do I suddenly feel like such a heel?

The rest of the morning Clark had a hard time concentrating on writing what should be, for a writer of his skill, a complete cake article. He looked up at the clock. Seeing it was 11:30, and deciding to take an early lunch, he disappeared into the nearest stairwell. After checking for any people or security surveillance equipment, he changed into Superman and blazed into the sky after speed-climbing to the Daily Planet’s roof. His destination was Gotham City and he had a bone to pick with a bat.

In minutes, he was flying low down an old dirt road, across a narrow chasm, through a waterfall, and into the Batcave. Once there, Superman pressed a red button which rang a bell in the butler’s pantry announcing to Bruce’s excellent manservant, Alfred, that someone was down below and wished to speak without coming up the elevator. Clark suspected there were other security measures in place which had long since detected his presence and alerted both Alfred and Bruce.

“Damn it, Clark,” an exasperated and groggy Bruce said over the intercom, “when will you quit flying in without calling first. I like being conscious when my guests arrive.”

Superman laughed. “About the same time you start working an eight-to-five job at Wayne Enterprises again, Bruce.” Serious now, Superman added, “Those nighttime hours will kill you someday.”

“Yeah, well, I’ve come to terms with what I am, Clark, and so has Rachel. That’s all that matters to me.” Bruce shrugged himself into a plush dark blue robe with Alfred’s help. Once the robe was belted, Bruce reached greedily for the three aspirin and glass of water Alfred had brought up with him. “Why don’t you come up the elevator? By the time you get to the conservatory, I’ll be there waiting for you.”


Bruce and Alfred didn’t even stop to run a comb through Bruce’s hair. It was a measure of Alfred’s liking for both versions of Clark, that he was allowed to see ‘Master Bruce’ completely disheveled. By the time Bruce made his appearance, Clark had already changed back into his suit and tie. When they met like this, one or the other always felt uncomfortable unless they were both in costume or they were both in civvies.

Soon, the two fast friends were sitting at the breakfast table eating a lunch, breakfast for Bruce, of tuna salad sandwiches and iced tea. ‘Brewed, not instant,’ had been Alfred’s frosty reply when Clark asked him what kind of tea they were drinking.

Once the meal was well underway, Bruce asked, “What’s got your shorts in a twist today, Clark? You normally don’t come out to see me unless you either need some time off to unwind or you’ve got a problem you can’t quite get your mind around.”

Clark took a sip of his tea to clear the bread crumbs from his throat before responding. “That’s one thing I like about you, Bruce. You’re direct. No ‘how’s the family doing’ chitchat.”

“Yeah, yeah, I know…and my farts smell like flowers, too. Get on with it already.”

“Jeez, Bruce, I thought you were rich enough to hire a guy to fart for you.” Bruce started laughing. “Anyway, my problem is that…that…person you and Rachel sent my way to help out.” Clark wanted to use a word stronger than ‘person,’ but wasn’t sure just how close Bruce was to Miss Lana Lang, so he didn’t risk it.

“Let me guess, Lana took your favorite toy and doesn’t want to share it, much less give it back.”

Clark shook his head. “Nope, not that. Your golden girl went out of her way to humiliate me today, for something that was her fault…well, it was mostly Tom’s fault, but she did earn a share of the blame.” Holding thumb and forefinger a fraction of an inch apart, Clark added, “I came thiiiiiis close to verbally tearing her to pieces.”

“So, what did you do?”

“Because I’ve always tried to be a gentleman and because I know she’s important to you and Rachel, I swallowed my pride and took the abuse.” Clark held one hand in the air and raised its index finger. “Fair warning though, if something like that happens again, I‘ll bury her on the spot.”

Bruce stared at his plate, wishing Rachel was here to advise Clark right now. She was better at this sort of thing, especially where another woman was concerned, and Bruce freely admitted that. All he could think to say was, “Lana’s always appreciated honesty and directness, just like you. If you want to get your working relationship off on the right foot, you need to tell her exactly how you feel…though she’ll appreciate it if you don’t rip her a new one in public.

“The thing you have to understand about Lana is that she’s under a lot of pressure right now. She’s a woman in a job a woman’s never held before in Metropolis. She needs to establish herself, and her way of doing business, right away. Otherwise, she runs the risk of everyone seeing her as just another pretty face.”

“Well…if Miss Lang wants to earn my respect, she has a lot farther to go now than she did this morning.” Looking at a wall clock, Clark saw it was time to change back into Superman for the flight home. “See ya, Bruce, I need to get back to work, and later tonight, Superman still has to meet up with Miss Lang to discuss her security situation.”

“Yeah, speaking of Lana and Superman, she called Rachel last night all excited because he saved her life, and the lives of several hundred other passengers, when her plane exploded. Also, I couldn’t help overhearing that Lana thinks he’s kind of hot.”

Clark couldn’t help but shake his head. “You know as well as I do, Bruce, the superhero gets all the women, but we only want the women who want the man. You’ve got Rachel…when am I going to find the woman that’s right for me?”

“I can’t answer that one for you, Clark. I think I only found Rachel because she was by my side from the beginning.”

“Lucky you.”

“Yeah, lucky me.”

“See ya, Bruce. Say hi to Rachel for me. Wait, scratch that, I may come back later tonight to talk to her myself.”

“Okay, Clark, I‘ll tell her to expect you.”

As Clark returned to the Batcave before flying home, Bruce sat and wondered. How will Clark find someone? I got lucky. Who will be able to understand his passion for what is right? Who will be able to like the super man, but love the man?
"In the Name of the King"
-----Winner, Round 15 - Favorite Lead Portrayal of Liz Parker
-----Winner, Round 15 - Best Use of a Supporting Character (Jeff Parker)
-----Winner, Round 15 - Best New Fic
-----Winner, Round 15 - Best Period Fanfiction

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Re: Somebody to Love (SV, Clark/Lana, Adult) Ch 3 (pg 1) 5/9/10

Post by Cardinal » Mon May 10, 2010 10:05 pm

Chapter 4

Having vented some of his frustrations while talking to Bruce, Clark was finally able to finish his article on the news conference. Then he spent an hour with Perry going over the various possibilities for his next in-depth investigative series. That kind of aggressive reporting was what had earned Clark two Pulitzers, an untold number of death threats, and two serious assassination attempts.

The first Pulitzer was for a series that exposed a white slavery ring in Metropolis that fed off of the countless number of fresh-faced runaway farm girls that came to the big city to lose themselves. The second Pulitzer was for a series of articles that painstakingly documented how Intergang had taken over two of the more powerful unions in Metropolis.

With Clark working hand-in-hand with the previous Deputy District Attorney, Ed Kinser, those two sets of articles had resulted in a mass of arrests and successful prosecutions. The last of those prosecutions, the one involving Intergang leader Morgan Edge, had also caused an attempt on Clark’s and Ed’s lives that resulted in Ed’s death. That case was now on hold due to a continuance the judge had ordered to allow the D.A.’s office to select a replacement. Now that Lana was on the job, that case was due to resume with pretrial motions in a few weeks.

Once Clark finished with Perry, he headed home. Looking out the windows on the news floor, Clark saw just how nasty the storm had become. He was grateful beyond measure that the temperature was in the forties; much lower and they’d be getting freezing rain or maybe even sleet. While that didn’t bother him directly, it did cause a huge number of accidents on the highways and byways of Metropolis, which always meant a long and busy night for Superman. I just hope it doesn’t freeze overnight, Clark thought, or else morning drive time will be like the Bumper Cars at the Lowell County Fair.

As Clark stepped out of the elevator and into the lobby of the Daily Planet, he thought of one unexpected side benefit of the huge storm. He remembered that Lana Lang, his nemesis and would-be assistant in the fight to clean up Metropolis, had come to work today without a raincoat or umbrella of any kind. Grinning wildly, Clark thought, Karma can be a real b!tch sometimes.

Clark had made it almost all the way to the revolving doors at the front of the lobby, when something caught his eyes. Just inside the entrance to the Daily Planet was a small business that sold Daily Planet souvenirs to tourists. Among the knickknacks was a stand of golf umbrellas. He had seen them before and thought they were gaudy as hell, since when opened, they looked like a replica of the Planet’s golden rooftop ball, or as Lois used to call it, the World’s Largest Disco Ball.

That unexpected memory of Lois caused Clark to stop and wince. Every time I think I'm over you, Lo, a random memory surfaces and stops me in my tracks. I still miss you…I think I always will.

Clark’s better nature, the side of him that Lois had loved the most, took over and he went to the souvenir shop to purchase a golf umbrella. I’d better hurry if I’m going to get this to Miss Lang in time. Clark suited actions to thoughts, heading for the nearest stairwell where he could become Superman for the short jaunt to the Siegel Center.

Meanwhile, several blocks away in the Siegel Center, Lana had just been given the file for the Morgan Edge case at the end of a long workday. After the press conference, she had thrown herself into work, meeting her new subordinates one by one as she went over their personnel files. She had asked everyone in the office, clerks, paralegals, secretaries, and lawyers to call her Lana; she wanted to make everyone comfortable with her and she thought ‘Miss Lang’ sounded too formal.

The drudgery of office work began to get to her as the workday drew to a close. Maybe it was just because she hadn’t become a prosecutor to do paperwork, or maybe it was the increasingly overcast skies outside her window. She was just wondering how she’d stay dry going home since she hadn’t brought any rain gear, when Tom knocked on her office door just before 5 p.m. to give her the Morgan Edge case file.

When Tom handed it to her, he said, “So…what part of ‘you couldn’t pick a worse writer to piss off if you spent two weeks thinking about it’ did you not understand? I told you to treat Kent with kid gloves, but nooooo, that assignment was to tough for you, and now you’ll have to suffer the consequences.” As Tom turned and went for the door, Lana could hear him mumble to himself, “Maybe I can call Perry White and apologize. Humph, one day on the job and she’s already getting this office into hot water.”

Lana looked at the thick file and was suddenly glad she had brought her briefcase this morning even though she hadn’t had anything inside of it besides her smallish purse. That problem was about to be fixed. She looked forward to her first case with relish. This is why I became a prosecutor, getting the crooks off he streets and into prison where they belong.

Lana packed the file tightly into her briefcase alongside her purse and joined the surge of government employees heading for home. She made it all the way to the lobby of the Siegel Center before she remembered the overcast skies, which had opened up and were now pouring down rain.

I'm so screwed! Lana thought. I don’t have a car, there are no subway stops closer than a trip across the plaza and two blocks beyond that, and there’s no close access for cabs, or any other vehicle for that matter, since the Oklahoma City bombing. Lana just knew the rain would be bitterly cold, too. Well it’s December, Smartass, what do you expect?

After flying through what he regarded as a torrential downpour, Clark revised his plans. He knew that, due to the slanting rain, the umbrella would do little more than protect Lana’s head; she’d be a drowned rat before getting even halfway across the plaza. So instead of just giving her the umbrella, he now planned to loan her his Burberry trenchcoat as well.

Still brooding over how to get home without dying of hypothermia, Lana failed to notice Clark until he walked right up behind her and said, “Hello, Miss Lang. Nice weather we’re having today.”

Great! Lana thought. As if I wasn’t having enough problems with the weather, the one guy I really don’t want to see shows up. Thinking back to the way she had felt when Clark walked out of her press conference, Lana thought, I really should apologize for cutting him off at the knees today. I think I could’ve gotten my point across more gently.

As Lana turned to greet Clark and apologize, she saw him standing there holding his trenchcoat out to her with one hand while he held an unopened oversized golf umbrella out to her with the other hand. “These should help you get home today.”

Lana’s intended words died in her mouth. Her first thoughts were, Why is he being so nice to me? I humiliated him in front of his peers and he literally gives me the coat off his back.

Clark held the coat so Lana could slide her arms into it, but when she did, it instantly became apparent that his coat was way, way too long for her petite frame.

Afraid Lana would be in danger of tripping on the lengthy coat, and unwilling to allow his good trenchcoat to be ruined, Clark asked, “Got any safety pins?”

“Of course.” Rummaging around in her small purse, which had been tucked away in her briefcase, Lana asked, “How many do you need?”

“Four for sure, but six would be better.”

While Lana began collecting the requested safety pins, Clark began searching for something she could stand on while he pinned up the bottom of the coat. She handed him the six pins just as he located an interior window ledge that was three feet off the ground. Pointing to the nearby ledge, Clark asked, “Would you mind? It’d make it a lot easier for me to pin up the coat.”

Unsure if she’d even be able to walk in the overly-long coat, much less climb on top of a three foot tall ledge, Lana declined, saying, “I’m not sure I should try. Can’t you just kneel down and pin them?”

Clark was already seriously annoyed with Lana as a result of the press conference, so he took what she said the exact wrong way. “After what happened this morning, Miss Lang, I’m sure you’d just love it if I’d crawl for you, but that’s not happening today.”

Jade-green eyes glazed over with a look that could be charitably described as ‘unkind,’ Clark effortlessly swept Lana off the ground, not setting her back down until he was holding her directly over the ledge.

Lana wasn’t fond of being manhandled, but she gasped in astonishment at the raw power Clark had shown. Sure, her 105 pounds weren’t a lot, but he had held her straight out in front of him at arm’s length and hadn’t shown the least little bit of strain.

While she was reflecting on his strength, Clark began to quickly and efficiently fold the extra length of his coat underneath and then pin it in place with the safety pins.
All the while, he was letting her know exactly what he thought about the early-morning dressing down she had given him.

“Please allow me to correct you on one thing, Miss Lang,” Clark said, talking just loud enough so only she could hear him. “I didn’t keep anyone waiting this morning, you and Tom Bloch did.

“First, we had to wait for an hour while Tom got to pretend to be an active participant in the war on terror and while you decorated your office. I was here on time then, Miss Lang, as you well know. When you two no-showed, I had other things to work on, so I left. True, I was ten minutes late coming back, but don’t blame me because you chose to wait. That was decided by you and Tom.”

Clark’s anger petered out, and he said, almost sadly, “If you really wanted to punish me, Miss Lang, you should’ve just started the news conference without me and let my editor nail me to the wall when I came back without a story.”

Crestfallen, Lana said quietly, “I’ll remember that next time.”

“Don’t worry, Miss Lang. If I have my way, there won’t be a next time. Someone else can cover your press conferences in the future…if I feel the need to be publicly humiliated, I’ll go dancing.”

Clark turned to walk off, but Lana managed to pull back the long sleeve of the trenchcoat enough to allow her hand to snake out and grasp his arm, pulling him to a halt. “One thing before you go, Mr. Kent.”

“Yes, Miss Lang?”

“Well, three things actually. First, I’m sorry for ripping into you earlier today. Seen from your perspective, it does look like it was my fault that the press conference was late. Second, thanks for the coat and umbrella, I‘ll get them back to you sometime...hopefully tomorrow.” Lana looked down at the tiled lobby floor and said, more softly, “When I saw you give up your seat this morning on the subway, I knew you were kind, but helping someone who’s just given you a hard time is remarkable.”

Clark couldn’t help but smile slightly at the sincerity in Lana’s voice. “You’re welcome, Miss Lang.”

Seeing Clark’s smile made Lana return it with one of her own. “That brings me to my last point. My name is Lana…it’s what all of my friends call me. I hope you will, too.”

Clark’s small smile grew into something truly worth seeing. “Lana,” he said, “that’s a nice name. I think I’m going to like saying that. My friends call me Clark.”

“Yes, I know. Clark...that sounds just fine.”

Lana buttoned and belted Clark's oversized trenchcoat around her as she watched Clark walk off into the depths of the Siegel Center. When he disappeared from view, Lana was left with two nagging thoughts.

First, how did he know I was decorating my office this morning while I waited for Tom? Second, if he just came over here from the Daily Planet, shouldn't the outside of this trenchcoat be soaking wet?
"In the Name of the King"
-----Winner, Round 15 - Favorite Lead Portrayal of Liz Parker
-----Winner, Round 15 - Best Use of a Supporting Character (Jeff Parker)
-----Winner, Round 15 - Best New Fic
-----Winner, Round 15 - Best Period Fanfiction

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Re: Somebody to Love (SV, Clark/Lana, Adult) Ch 4 (pg 1) 5/10/10

Post by Cardinal » Sun May 16, 2010 1:41 am

Chapter 5
New Discovery

Clark hurried away from Lana, not because he didn’t want to be around her, but because Superman needed to follow her home to learn where she lives. They needed to meet to discuss her security needs, especially with the Morgan Edge trial coming up. One Deputy D.A. has already been killed trying to prosecute that man, Clark thought, as he completed his transformation into Superman. That’s not going to happen twice. Superman followed Lana from fairly high up in the sky. He really didn’t want her to notice that she had, for one afternoon at least, a super-stalker of her very own.

Lana was huddled against the cold wind and rain as she made her way across Schuster Plaza. Even with Clark’s warmly-lined and fully-waterproof trenchcoat on and the golden Daily Planet umbrella tilted forward aggressively to keep the slanting rain out of her face, she could feel how miserable the weather had become. She shuddered to think of how she would’ve gotten home without Clark’s timely assistance. Due to the umbrella, Lana couldn’t see very far ahead, but she managed to make it to the steps leading down into the subway station without running into anyone.

Lana bought a token which she slipped into the slot on the turnstile on her way to claiming a seat on the train that would take her almost to her doorstep. When she sat down, the fact that Clark’s coat fit her like a circus tent earned her a lot of amused looks and a few outright stares. She didn’t mind though, the coat was warm, dry on the inside, and even smelled faintly of the sweet and spicy cologne he wore.

Lana’s stop was almost at the end of the line, so there were few other passengers left by the time she stood to leave the train. As she moved up the steps and into the early dark of a December evening, her feet sloshed through the water that was cascading down the steps from the street level. She was really glad she had worn her least fancy pair of shoes today, as she was sure being completely soaked like this was going to ruin them.

With her feet freezing from their impromptu ice bath, Lana nearly sprinted down the one block between the station and her condominium. The building doorman held the door for her, greeting her with a restrained smile and a polite, “Hello, Miss Lang.”

Startled that a man she had never met knew her name, Lana replied, “Hi! I’m sorry, I don’t know your name yet. How is it you know mine?”

“My name is Bill Edwards, Miss Lang. Management is a stickler on the issue of security, and one of the best ways they have to control who comes in and out of here is for us to know who belongs in the building and who doesn’t. So they brought a couple of photos of you for us to see, along with your name.”

“Well, Bill, they obviously didn’t give you my full name. My first name is Lana, please feel free to use it.”

“Yes, Miss Lang…I mean, yes, Lana.”

“See ya later, Bill.”

Lana winked and then hit Bill full-on with one of her dazzling smiles just before heading to the elevators. The middle-aged doorman suddenly wished he was twenty years younger and took a quick, appreciative glance at her receding form before returning his full attention to his duties.

Superman was hovering in the air, 2,000 feet above the streets of Metropolis, watching and listening to Lana’s interaction with the doorman. He had paid close attention to her the entire way home, and with everyone who had crossed her path, she had acted the same way. It’s nice to know she doesn’t see anyone as being ‘little people,’ who are beneath her notice, Superman thought.

The only exception had been a slightly overweight transit cop who was way too aggressive in his flirting on Lana’s way out of the subway station. Superman hadn’t wanted to believe his ears when he heard what the guy had said, and then he’d wanted to rearrange the guy’s teeth. He believed a man should never, ever speak to a woman in that manner for any reason.

Unlike most women, who would either take the verbal abuse and try to forget it, or try to fight crudity with scorn and derision, Lana was different. She stepped right in front of the cop, set down her umbrella and fished in her briefcase for her brand spanking new Deputy District Attorney’s ID which was in her purse.

Holding the ID up close to the cop’s face so he would be sure to get a good look at it, Lana looked at his badge number and let him know that she would be filing a formal complaint in the morning.

“What you do or say when you’re off the job is up to you, but when you’re wearing that uniform, you represent the City of Metropolis, and you will act in an accordingly respectful manner toward all of its citizens.” Lana loved the way the man’s face went milk white when he read her ID, but it annoyed the crap out of her that the man only respected her title. “Just to make sure this incident doesn’t get swept under the rug, not only will your sergeant get a complaint form, but so will your captain, the chief of the transit cops, and the chairman of the police commission.”

Superman had always admired people who would stand up for themselves. Admittedly, Lana had an advantage in that she knew the law and how to use it in her favor, but still, he had loved seeing a woman barely more than 100 pounds make a 250 pound bully back down.

Superman used his x-ray vision to see through the intervening walls so he could see which floor Lana lived on and which condo number was hers. Once he had the location fixed in his mind, he headed home to take care of Clark Kent’s mundane needs.

Clark walked into his condo a few minutes later, well and truly soaked. He had had to walk from the building he landed on to a subway station and then from his subway station to his condo. With the rain still coming down like it was in the biblical flood, that meant a drenching. Clark had been surprised to learn that Lana’s building was barely a mile away from his, and if he remembered correctly, the windows of her condo faced the windows of his.

Back in Smallville, he would’ve used his telescope to see if he could locate her rooms from here, but now having telescopic sight of his own, all he had to do was walk to his balcony and look. It was a matter of seconds for Clark to relocate her condo. He was happy to have a clear line of sight. Knowing Bruce’s personal interest in keeping Lana alive, he wondered just how much of a coincidence that was. Maybe he should check to see who owned that condominium building and whether or not Lana got a bargain price to move in, or…maybe he should just let sleeping dogs lie.

Clark changed into a t-shirt and sweatpants and started to make dinner. He planned to eat and relax just a bit before donning the red and blue one more time to visit Lana. Half an hour and two Swanson Hungry Man microwave dinners later, and Clark was ready to unwind with some music.

Since he didn’t have too many chances to spend his income, Clark had allowed himself to splurge on his stereo setup. He had the best stuff money could buy by names like Klipsch, Denon, Nakamichi, and more. The result was an audiophile’s dream, but he had one enhancement that was possessed by no one else in the world. A small, flat black box was tucked in amidst all of the other equipment. Inside was an insanely complex piece of technology put together by Clark himself using schematics supplied by his ‘library’ in the Fortress of Solitude.

Originally a tool used by Kryptonians for self-analysis, Clark had modified the device to work with his music collection. When turned on along with his one terabyte Digital Storage Device, it could read his mind and play the song whose pre-recorded profile most closely fit his thoughts and moods. Normally this was his favorite toy, so he turned on the DSD and the ‘black box’ and settled onto his black leather sectional sofa to listen.

Instead of something soothing and mellow like he was expecting, like “Kind of Blue” by Miles Davis, Clark got an infectious dance song that he had completely forgotten was still on his DSD. It had been so long since he had last heard the song that he couldn’t remember the lyrics, or even the title, until the singer started in. He was still trying to decide if the ‘black box’ was broken when he heard the lyrics and nearly choked.

Kool and the Gang - “Fresh”

Conversation is going 'round
People talking 'bout the girl who's come to town
Lovely lady, pretty as can be
No one knows her name she's just a mystery
I have seen her maybe once or twice
One thing I can say is, ooh, she's very nice
She's a lady, one I really want to know
Somehow I've got to let my feelings show

What in the hell? Clark wondered. How did I get stuck with a VH-1 Best of the 80s rerun?

She's fresh, exciting
She's so exciting to me
She's fresh, exciting
She's so inviting to me, yeah…

After being frozen to the sofa in disbelief at first, Clark decided the only woman that could possibly fit the song was Lana. He had had all he could take by this point and leapt from his spot on the sofa to shut off the offending ‘black box.’

No, no, no, he yelled internally. I do not like Lana Lang, at least, not like that.

Clark’s ‘little voice’ took exception to what it believed was a whopper of a lie and decided to speak up. Why not you big lummox? She’s gorgeous, smart, and when she wasn’t ripping you to shreds today, she was charmingly sweet.

Gorgeous? She was dressed like a librarian.

Yup, and you still couldn’t keep your eyes off of her on the way to work this morning. Imagine what she’d do to you if she tried to dress up a bit.

Okay, I admit it, she’s a babe. Score one for you. Are you happy now?

Nope. I’m going for total victory today. Since Bruce and Rachel gave Lana their unqualified support, you know she’s got the goods upstairs, too.

Grudgingly, Clark thought, Okay, that’s pretty much a given. Rachel would have fired Lana’s sorry butt if she couldn’t do the job. Instead, Bruce says Rachel pretty much convinced her it was time to take a job like this. So we can assume she has the know-how.

And she was sweet today, both before and after she reamed you out at the press conference. And for that mistake, she apologized very nicely.

Yeah, but she went a little power-mad during the press conference. I don’t appreciate being made to look like a fool. I can usually handle that all by myself.

Cut the girl some slack. She was on the job for all of one hour when that happened. She’s bound to be a little bit insecure.

Clark relented, thinking, Okay, as far as I’ll go is to admit she presents some intriguing possibilities. Fair enough?

Okay, fair enough. It’s been a loooonng time for you, I hope you still remember what to do.

Yes, and you know why it’s been a loooonng time for me. I hate to remind you, but the same reasons still hold true.

Sadly, Clark’s ‘little voice’ had to admit Clark was right. Yeah, until conditions change, you’re too dangerous for anyone to get close to…either one of you.

Knowing all he would do now was think of Lana, Clark didn’t see any point in putting off Superman’s visit, so he pulled the N-space box out of his business suit and headed for the roof.

Once dressed, Superman stepped out onto the roof and shot into the night sky. The rain had eased up somewhat, but that didn’t help him very much since his suit was still wet from earlier in the day. He finally floated down the side of Lana’s building until he came to a stop next to her railed balcony where he could see that a light was still on in her condo. Assuming she was still home, Superman floated over the railing and onto the balcony where he knocked firmly on a glass pane in the balcony’s French doors.

Lana was home. In fact, upon arriving here earlier in the evening, she had ordered a meal of delivery Chinese, cleaned up, changed into something drier and more comfortable, and was now comfortably situated on her rented couch with the contents of the Morgan Edge case file spread out in front of her on a low coffee table, when she heard what sounded like a knock on her balcony door. Dismissing what patently could not be the truth, Lana went back to her studies until a louder, more insistent knock broke her concentration.

Superman wanted to be sure Lana was home, so he took a quick peek through the drapes covering the French doors and felt his eyes nearly bug out of his head. There she was, sitting facing the balcony, wearing what appeared to be a sleep shirt and not much else. While shifting around on the couch, her sleep shirt had ridden up perilously high on her thighs, showing a large expanse of creamy smooth skin. Combining the sight of her perfectly sculpted bare legs with her long, glossy brown hair, which she had pulled out of the bun and carefully brushed out to a state of silken perfection, and the effect on him was electric.

Superman was so surprised, and so entranced, that his gentlemanly instincts were slow to kick in. He only managed to tear his eyes away from her beauty when she finally stood up in answer to his third knock. Only then did he recognize the burning sensation in his eyes for what it was: uncontrolled heat vision, a problem he hadn’t had since high school. Looking skyward, he shot off a tremendous blast of heat vision, rapidly turning a wide swath of raindrops into steam. Seconds later that steam recondensed into water droplets which then continued their downward journey. I guess my little voice was right, he thought wryly. Lana is definitely gorgeous.

Superman hoped with all of his considerable might that his current emotional distress wasn’t, umm, physically obvious, but with Lana beginning to open a drape to peer outside, he didn’t have time to check. All he saw was a tiny sliver of her exquisite face which happened to include one of her hazel eyes.

Both of Lana’s eyes popped wide open when she saw what was causing the noise. “Oh crap!” she said inadvertently. “What’s he doing here? How did he learn where I live? How does he even know who I am?” Frantic to keep Superman from seeing her in her bedclothes, Lana flapped her hands uselessly as she tried to think of what to do. Finally, seeing Clark’s trenchcoat draped over the back of a kitchen chair, Lana scurried over and pulled it back on. Once she had the buttons fastened and had the belt tightly cinched, she strode back to the door and opened it.

“Superman!” Lana said brightly. “To what do I owe this honor?”
"In the Name of the King"
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Re: Somebody to Love (SV, Clark/Lana, Adult) Ch 5 (pg 1) 5/16/10

Post by Cardinal » Mon May 17, 2010 10:35 pm

Chapter 6
The Bodyguard

Superman looked Lana right in the eyes and said, “I don’t know if I’d call this visit an honor, Miss Lang. I’m here on business, pure and simple.”

“Business with me already? I figured I’d run into you over the course of my duties here in Metropolis…just not this soon, Mr. Superman.”

Superman smiled slightly and said, “Plain, old Superman will do just fine, Miss Lang.”

Seeing an opportunity for some humor, Lana said, “Okay, Plain, Old Superman, would you like to come inside so I can close this door? Standing in this open doorway is kind of drafty.”

“But I’m soaked, I’d get your floors wet.”

“Better the floors wet than me cold.”

Reluctantly, Superman stepped inside and Lana gratefully closed the door.

“Umm…Miss Lang?”

Lana finished bolting her balcony door and turned back to her unexpected guest. “Yes? Though if Superman works for you, surely you can call me Lana. After all, you did save my life yesterday, and for that, I thank you.”

“You’re welcome, Miss La…” Superman took in the slightly dangerous glare in Lana’s eyes and changed what he had been about to say to, “…err, uhh, Lana.” A pleased smile spread across her face. “Thanks aren’t necessary though. My father once said, ‘The virtuous spirit has no need for thanks or approval, only the certain conviction that what has been done is right.’ Helping people, with the skills I was born with, is the right thing to do.”

“And yet, I’ll thank you anyway. Keep this kind of thing up, and the people of Metropolis will thank you, too. They’ll end up naming streets, schools, parks, and buildings in your honor.”

“I know, but I would much rather they honor me with actions, not words. Most people can’t do what I can, but if the people who want to honor me with speeches and dedications would instead begin to use their talents to help those in need, this city would truly begin to shine…and then maybe I wouldn’t be needed here anymore.”

The experienced prosecutor in Lana, the world-weary part of her that earned those hard-bitten eyes of hers, laughed inwardly at Superman’s naïve statement. There will always be a need for Superman in Metropolis, she thought. Even his shining example won’t change that.

The idealist in Lana, however, the part of her that had pushed her into becoming a prosecutor in the first place, cheered to hear that simple statement. If people would model themselves on him, instead of just admiring him from a distance, she thought, not only would we not need him anymore, we wouldn’t need me.

Superman knew they had some things to talk over, so he wanted to give Lana a chance to change into something more comfortable. “Lana?”


“What I have to say will take some time. If you’d like to change into something more suitable for having company than a grossly oversized raincoat, I’d be happy to wait.”

Lana nodded. She’d like to put on something nice, but what? “Don’t go anywhere, I‘ll be right back.” Just before she darted through the door to her spacious bedroom, Lana looked back and said, “You can sit down if you’d like to, the couch is covered in fabric, and in any case, it’s a rental.”

Superman thought about sitting down, but he didn’t want to end up making a puddle on Lana’s hardwood floor. Then he thought of a solution. Superman quickly located a bathroom at the other end of the condo and he stepped inside, stripped off his suit, and used his heat vision to carefully dry it before pulling it back on.

Lana was busy scurrying around her bedroom, looking for something appropriate to wear. Oh my gosh, she thought, he’s even better looking close up than he was on the wing of the plane. What can I wear? I want to look nice, without looking like I’m trying to ‘look nice.’ She settled on a simple, button-up white blouse, which she left untucked, and a pair of well-worn jeans. Liking the ‘at home’ feeling, she opted to leave her feet bare. After that, nothing would do but to tidy up her hair and face just a bit in her master bathroom.

When Lana returned to the living room, Superman was sitting on one end of the couch, exhibiting almost painfully perfect posture. You’d think he could learn to relax sometime, Lana thought, but I gotta admit, the way he’s sitting does tend to show off his chest and abs. Yummy! She managed to stop herself from licking her lips just in time, as he turned his head toward her when she made her appearance.

Seeing her enter, Superman stood and waited for her to sit before reclaiming his seat..

Before sitting down, Lana asked, “Can I get you something to drink?”

Superman smiled, but waved her off. “No thank you, Lana.”

Lana moved around the coffee table to join her guest on the couch. She folded her right ankle behind her left knee as she sat down, and then pulled a few stray strands of hair behind one ear. Just as her bottom hit a cushion, and Superman began to sit, she noticed something odd. “You’re completely dry! How?”

“Trade secret, Lana.”

Smiling at what she thought was a joke, Lana said, “I’m serious! How?”

“I’m serious, too. The less my enemies find out about what I can do, the harder it is for them to defend against me, so I need to keep some things secret from everyone.” Superman shrugged his shoulders, and Lana had to fight back a sigh. “It’s true that some things, like speed, strength, invulnerability, and flight, are well-known…but there are other things I’ve been able to keep secret, and I would like to continue to do so. Do you understand?”

Lana rolled her head from side to side as if she wasn’t really sure, but said, “Yeah, I guess so. You don’t have any reason to trust me yet, so I can see where you’re coming from.” She was anxious to learn what ‘business’ the Man of Steel could have with her, so she changed the subject, “So, down to business. What can I do for you, Superman?”

Superman turned to look at her full-on, and immediately wished he hadn’t. Her eyes looked tired, but the rest of her looked positively inviting, and that was an invitation Superman always had to refuse.

Averting his eyes ever so slightly, Superman said, “It’s not what you can do for me, Lana. It’s what you need me to do for you.”

Perplexed, Lana said, “Huh? I musta missed the day I put in a help wanted ad for a superhero.”

“You don’t even know you need me yet, but you do.” Superman didn’t know how to delicately phrase his next question, so he just bulled on ahead. “How much do you know about the death of your predecessor?”

Lana paused, not liking the direction this conversation was going, before she said, “I know he was shot while driving home from court during the discovery phase of the Morgan Edge trial.” She pointed at the array of paperwork on her coffee table. “The very case I’m working on now.”

Superman finally returned his gaze to Lana’s eyes. Lovely hazel orbs, Superman thought, Then, realizing what he had just thought, he added, Damn it, quit that you Kryptonian moron.

“It’s the very case that will get you killed, too, long before it ever comes to trial…unless I’m there to help.”

“So, you mean Ed Kinser died as a direct result of this case? How do you know?”

“Eyewitness testimony, Lana. I was on the scene within seconds of the shooting and I, umm, talked the shooters into confessing. They had been hired specifically to kill Ed and his passenger.”

Talked?” Lana showed a hint of disgust at what sounded to her like a use of questionable tactics.

“I thought I showed admirable restraint,” Superman replied, “since what I wanted to do was destroy them, bit by bit, until there was nothing left of them but dust.”

Lana reflected that it was a good thing she was on Superman’s side, and then, something else registered in her mind. He said, ‘Ed and his passenger.’ Who could that passenger have been? As far as she knew, Ed was the only one in the car, but Superman was famous for never lying, and he had been there right after the shooting, so he ought to know.

Hesitating slightly, Lana asked, “Who else died in the shooting?”

“No one, Lana. Ed had dropped off his passenger two blocks earlier at a little mom and pop Korean grocery store to buy some food before making the short walk home. Anyway, If you need more details, everything else you might want to know about Ed’s murder is all in the police reports.” Superman narrowed his eyes and said, with all seriousness, “The point I’m trying to make is, they will come after you, too.”


“I have my suspicions, but basically, there are a number of people, both inside and outside of Intergang, that fear what might happen if Morgan Edge goes to prison, and they’ll do anything to prevent that from happening.” Superman paused to allow that to sink in. “Sometime soon, I expect them to approach you and try to bribe you to drop the charges. If that doesn't work, I'd then expect them to threaten you. But once it becomes clear to them that you intend to continue the prosecution, they will try to kill you…and I intend to be there to stop them.”

Looking down at her rose-colored toenails, Lana said, “I…I…I don’t know what to say…”

Superman smiled slightly. “That’s easy, Lana. I know just what you need to say.”

Curious, she turned her head and, seeing his face out of the corner of her eye, asked, “What?”

“I need you to say ‘help me’ three times, First as a whisper, second in a normal voice, and third as a scream. This is the best way I have for categorizing the unique sound of your voice. Once you’ve done this, I’ll be able to hear and recognize your voice as it calls for help anywhere in the city and I’ll be able to be at your side in seconds.”

Lana was humbled that this man, who had seemingly dedicated his life to helping all of the people of Metropolis, would be so interested in dropping everything to defend her life. The thought of needing a personal bodyguard was more than a little bit unsettling to her, but knowing it was going to be Superman made her feel much more comfortable. “Okay,” she said, “let’s get this done.”

Lana proceeded to give Superman the vocal samples he needed until he was satisfied. Once they were done, a question occurred to her. “Why are you doing this for me? I know I’m in danger, but why are you taking a personal interest in keeping me alive?”

Not wanting Lana to know of his connection to Bruce Wayne in case she didn’t know that Bruce is Batman, Superman said, as he stood to leave, “You have friends in dark places, Lana. One, in particular, believes you are just the prosecutor Metropolis needs. His faith in you is all I need to take a special interest. Please prove him right.” He waved an arm at the city outside her condo with one arm. “I can do a lot about crime on the street, but there‘s not much I can do about the behind-the-scenes corruption that is destroying this city…but you can.”

“I’ll do my best,” Lana pledged. Not wanting Superman to feel rushed, but intuitively understanding that he felt he needed to leave, Lana walked him to the French doors. “Tell Batman ‘hello’ for me the next time you see him.” Hoping Superman would see the parallel, Lana added, “Without his help, I never would’ve gotten the Joker behind bars.”

A quirk of Superman’s eyebrows seemed to indicate he was very mildly offended that she felt she needed to remind him she needed help. He answered her by saying, “As you’ll have my help, Lana…as you’ll have mine.”
"In the Name of the King"
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Re: Somebody to Love (SV, Clark/Lana, Adult) Ch 6 (pg 1) 5/17/10

Post by Cardinal » Mon May 24, 2010 1:06 pm

Chapter 7


Superman soared into the rainy nighttime sky, leaving a starry-eyed Lana Lang behind. He spent the next hour or so in slow, low-level flights over the worst neighborhoods in the city as a form of crime deterrent before he rose to a safe cruising altitude and went to full speed for the trip to Gotham City.

Twice in one day, Superman thought, as he flew. At this rate, Bruce will have Alfred give me a semi-permanent bedroom of my own before the end of the week…and Rachel will start expecting me for dinner every night.

Back in Metropolis, Lana’s eyes had followed Superman’s flight until he had left her range of sight. Lana padded back over to her couch, sat down with both legs crossed beneath her, and with the boneless grace of a professional dancer, stretched forward to pick up the sheet of paper she had been reading when Superman knocked on her balcony door.

Lana’s eyes were on the paper in her hands, but the words might as well have been Greek since her thoughts were still focused on Superman. As she began to shake off the aftereffects of his visit, she began to think specifically about the man. She hadn’t been able to read him at all while he was visiting, and as an experienced trial attorney, that irritated her a bit. All she could tell about him at this point was that he has superpowers and a Boy Scout complex. He seems to need to help, Lana thought. That makes two guys I’ve met today who go out of their way to help others…Clark Kent and Superman.

Lana thought about the two for a minute and it suddenly occurred to her that they were both tall, dark, and handsome. If this is a fair sample of the men here in Metropolis, she thought, then I should’ve come home years ago.

It wasn’t long before Lana gave up on continuing to work. Instead she tried to clear her mind by watching television as she collected her paperwork and replaced it in her briefcase. The late evening news finally came on, and she listened while she changed back into her sleep shirt and got ready for bed.

Nothing really caught Lana’s attention until she heard the female anchor introduce a piece about the new Deputy District Attorney. Curious to see what kind of first impression she had made, Lana stuck her head around the corner while she was brushing her teeth. On screen, she saw a shot of herself with a stern expression on her face as she gave Clark a dressing down. That’s just great! Lana thought. They would choose to show the confrontational part of my press conference. I wonder how they’ll spin it.

She didn’t have long to wait. The sound of her voice muted as the reporter’s voice came on and said, “As you can see, Miss Lang is intent on punishing even the most trivial offenses. It looks like Metropolis can count on an increase in the number of prosecutions with Lana Lang on the job. Back to you, Chet and Lisa.”

Not too bad, Lana thought. That’s what I want people to think…and at least they didn’t make a big deal about me having been on that plane yesterday.

But then the male anchor, Chet Arnold, laughed and said, “Just don’t get caught jaywalking, Ted, or it looks like Miss Lang will have you serving hard time in no time.”

That son-of-a-…oooh, that kind of glib crap from a news anchor, someone who wasn’t even there, just pisses me off! He’ll end up making me look like a crackpot.

Clark, meanwhile, was sitting with Rachel and Bruce in their television room. Clark wasn’t sure why they called it that, since virtually every room in the house had a television in it somewhere, but he did love stretching out on the extra-comfortable Italian leather sofas they had in there. The three of them had just watched the same broadcast, via satellite, as Lana had.

Rachel looked over to Clark, and said, “Wow, Lana really lit you up, Clark.”

Clark had changed back into his t-shirt and sweatpants, a nicety appreciated by Rachel, who insisted Bruce leave ‘work’ down in the cave while she was home, and by Bruce, who always felt underdressed if Clark was Superman and he wasn’t being Batman.

Clark stared at his toes a bit before replying, “Yeah, she did. It was humiliating. I was only ten minutes late, and that was because Superman was needed at the site of a car accident…but I can’t tell that to Lana.” After an indifferent shrug, Clark added, “I don’t know if she’s that way all the time when she’s at work, or if that was just a one-time thing.”

“Mmm…from my experience,” Rachel said, “that’s definitely an aberration. Lana can be hard-edged when dealing with people on the wrong side of the law, but she’s usually very good with the press. I’d chalk it up to new job jitters.”

Once the news was over, Bruce reluctantly kissed Rachel, promising to be back before she left for work in the morning. Clark just got a wave from Bruce as he headed for the conservatory and the secret entrance to the Batcave. Once he was gone, Rachel stood up and gestured for to Clark to follow her out into the labyrinthine hallways of Wayne Manor.

She stopped at the first intercom box she came to, pressed ‘send,’ and said, “Alfred, Clark and I will be going for a walk in the greenhouse. Once we’re done, I’ll be going to bed.”

Over the speakers came the reply. “Very good, Mistress Rachel. Since you are in good hands, I will be turning in now myself.”

Rachel smiled indulgently at the way Alfred looked after both her and Bruce like they were still kids. Resuming her walk, she unerringly led Clark to the expansive greenhouse at the far end of the house. Even in wintertime this place was pleasantly warm, and Rachel loved the sights and smells provided by the out-of-season plant life. She found it soothing and hoped Clark would too.

Once inside, Rachel looked up at her towering companion and asked, “How are you, Clark?”

Clark nearly choked. It was such a simple question, but one he was unused to hearing from anyone but his mother. No one else ever asked him how he was doing. Even in his life as a newspaper reporter, he was known for never taking a sick day and, though he tended to be late to work, for never missing a deadline. He was dependable.

Clark looked at Rachel and said, “I’m fine, thanks.”

“Are you sure? ‘Cause Bruce said you wanted to talk to me, and the only time you seek me out to talk to is if you’ve got problems which involve a woman.”

Clark started walking and Rachel hurried to keep up. “At first, I wasn’t sure why I wanted to talk to you tonight, but after what happened today, I do. It’s not just a woman I want to talk to you about, Rachel, it’s Lana.”

Thinking she had an idea where this was going, Rachel nonetheless paid close attention. Clark had always been a good friend to her and, especially, to Bruce. Being able to give back to him in some small way was something she enjoyed.

“Despite what happened at the press conference today, I think I’m beginning to like her.”

“And? What’s wrong with that?” Rachel asked. “Lana’s a really likeable person. I’d hoped you two would become friends. Any friends she used to have in Metropolis likely date back to high school twelve years ago, and for all your good looks and charm, you don’t have nearly enough friends.”

“Oh, we’re already friends, sort of anyway, but that’s not the kind of ‘like’ I’m talking about.”

Rachel had assumed this was what Clark had meant originally when he said he was beginning to like Lana, but she had wanted him to say so himself. Admitting the attraction was the first step to giving in to it, and she thought they each could do a lot worse than to end up with each other. Believing this, all Rachel did was raise her eyebrows as an invitation for Clark to continue.

“I, umm, have an interest in Lana. A personal interest.” He ran a hand over his face and through his messy hair. “And I can’t afford that. Not after what happened with Lois. Even just being a close friend was deadly for Ed. I can’t do that to anyone else.”

“Hmm…and what do you think Lana feels?”

“I think she may like Superman. Humph, big surprise there. As for Clark Kent, I think she thinks I’m just a nice guy with time management issues.”

Rachel waited until she had Clark’s full attention before she said, “Clark, you’re the only guy I know who thinks he can run from himself. But someday you’ll learn that no matter how fast you are and how long you run, wherever you end up, you’ll always be there.”

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

“You can’t run from your feelings, Clark, you just have to deal with them…and if Lana develops feelings for more than Superman, you’ll have to deal with her, too.” A small smile flitted across Rachel’s face. “And let me tell you something, on the off chance Lana does end up feeling something for you. You’d better not break her heart. She hasn’t had that many chances at love, so she’s much more likely to fall hard when she does finally find a guy.”

Rachel thought Clark looked to be on the verge of saying something, but she could see conflicting emotions on his face. Struggling mightily to get his words out, Clark said, “Rachel, I was in the car with Lois when the bomb went off.” One of Rachel’s hands flew up to cover her mouth in shock. “For all my powers, I couldn’t save her. Lois was only three feet away from me and yet she died in screaming agony. She didn’t last more than a few seconds, but to this day, I can still recall the sound of her death cry.” Tears were beginning to flow for both of them now. “I didn’t even get to hold the wreckage of her body in my arms and say goodbye, because I had to pretend I had been outside of the car and was miraculously blown clear when the bomb went off.”

Looking at Rachel with steely determination in his eyes, Clark said, “There’s no way I’ll fall in love with another woman, only to have that happen again. I think I’d lose my mind.”

Heartsick and desperately worried for her friend, Rachel said, “Clark, I never knew.”

“Don’t worry, Rachel. No one knew. It was better that way.”

“Better for who, Clark?” Calculating quickly, Rachel said, “It’s been nearly five years since the bombing, isn’t it time you let Lois’ ghost have some rest?”

“Not yet. Lois’ ghost, as you put it, is unquiet. She calls out to me for revenge…or at least the righting of old wrongs. When she was murdered, Lois and I were looking into the connection between the C.E.O. of a major Metropolis corporation and the leadership of Intergang. Lois wasn’t the only loss in the explosion, most of our research had been in the car with us. By the time Lois had been buried and I went back to re-contact our confidential sources to reassemble the research, all of them were dead.

“Since then, I’ve attacked the problem from the other end, going after the business interests of Intergang, hoping to break them from that direction since their top-level connections to one of Metropolis’ legitimate businesses had been hidden from exposure.

“I’m going to get them, Rachel, and Morgan Edge is the centerpiece. Once he heads to prison, I think he’ll want to cut a deal to reduce his time in jail, and the only way he can do that is offer up an even bigger fish than himself.”

Rachel’s prosecutorial curiosity got the best of her and she asked, “Who? Who’s bigger than the head of Intergang?”

Clark replied simply, “Lionel Luthor.”
"In the Name of the King"
-----Winner, Round 15 - Favorite Lead Portrayal of Liz Parker
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Re: Somebody to Love (SV, Clark/Lana, Adult) Ch 7 (pg 1) 5/24/10

Post by Cardinal » Sat May 29, 2010 7:52 pm

Chapter 8
An Anchor

Rachel walked Clark to the conservatory and the entrance to the Batcave. When the door opened after Clark pressed the three-key combination that unlocked it, Rachel kissed him on the cheek and said, “Tell Bruce I send my love.”

“What?” Clark was confused. Why does she think I’ll see Bruce on my way out of town? “Sorry, Rachel, I plan on flying straight home tonight. It’s been a long day and I’m tired.”

“Don’t worry, Clark, you’ll see him,” Rachel said, as she patted him on the arm. “Just tell him I love him.”

With that Clark stepped into the old-time elevator, closed the gate, and started it moving down. When the gate slid open at the bottom, out strode a fully-dressed Superman. He was about to launch himself down the length of the cave and through the waterfall to fly home, when Bruce stepped out of the shadows to stop him.

Bruce was wearing his entire Batman suit except for the black cowl. When Superman noticed Bruce, he stopped and waited patiently since it was obvious that Bruce had something to say.

“Could you at least take off that damn plastic face of yours while I talk to you, Clark?” Bruce said.

Not wanting to offend his host, Superman reached up and pressed the twin release catches and the synthflesh mask popped off into his hands. Bruce shivered violently when he saw that happen.

“That is the creepiest thing to watch. It’s like seeing someone have their face ripped off.”

Holding his mask in one hand, Clark grinned at Bruce and said, “Rachel sends her love, Bruce. She apparently knew you’d be down here waiting for me.”

Bruce reached up and scratched the back of his head. “Sometimes Rachel’s too smart for her own good…well, at least she’s too smart for me. At least that explains why I couldn’t hear your conversation, if she thought I was going to stay, she probably took you into the greenhouse. That’s the one area of the house I haven‘t figured out how to properly bug and she knows it.” As his hand came back down, Bruce grinned. “Some guys, idiots mostly, are turned off or intimidated by a woman that might be smarter than they are. Not me though, I decided a long time ago that Rachel’s brains were just as much of a turn-on as her beauty.”

“Why do you bug your own house?” Clark asked .

“I have a lot of parties here for the movers and shakers of Gotham City. You’d be surprised how much useful information I can learn once those morons get some liquor into their systems.”

“Nah, I’ve been around too many powerful people to be surprised at what they’ll do anymore.” Clark looked at Bruce speculatively. “What do you want, Bruce? You didn’t stop me just to shoot the breeze.”

“Truth? I stopped you because you’re beginning to worry me, Clark. You’re not the same guy that suddenly appeared in the skies above Metropolis seven years ago.”

“So? I’ve changed. Who doesn’t?”

“Yeah, you’ve changed all right, but not for the better. You’re bitter, and it’s getting worse.” Clark’s eyes popped open with surprise. “I can see it in your writing, at least when you’re writing about either crime or the current state of Metropolis, and I can see it in the media reports of your work as Superman.”

“How so?”

“You’re using more force than is necessary these days, Clark. Back when Superman burst onto the scene, he did just enough to stop the bad guys and no one got hurt. Now that’s changing. I won’t cry too hard, ‘cause it’s always the bad guys who are getting injured, but it’s a disturbing trend.

“In a guy like me, that wouldn’t be so bad,” Bruce said. “I don’t have superpowers, so I actually have to hurt people sometimes to defeat them, but you don’t have to, so I’m assuming that you’re hurting people now because you want to. With the almost unlimited power at your command, the idea that you’re starting to enjoy hurting people scares the crap out of me.”

Clark couldn’t believe what he was hearing. “What happened to the Dark Knight, the man who brought fear to those who use fear as a weapon? Those armor-backed gauntlets of yours aren’t just for show, you know.”

“Yeah, they’re there to help me do my job. Help that you don’t need.” Bruce sat down in a swivel chair that had been specially built to accommodate him in his Batman suit. “You’re starting to sink to the level of the people you’re fighting against, using their own tactics against them.”

Clark gazed levelly at Bruce, neither agreeing with or denying the charges.

“What scares me the most is wondering at what point you’ll decide to change the rules of the game? When do you go from helping humanity to dictating to humanity? Those are dangerous thoughts, but they go something like this: Things would be so much better if people would just do things the way I want them to. If they won’t do it of their own free will, I’ll drag them into the new world order, kicking and screaming if I have to.

“You have the power to do this, Clark. I know it and you know it. And on the slope you’re sliding down now, the question isn’t if it will happen, it’s when.”

Clark stood there, shaken by the vision of the future that Bruce presented. “Never,” he whispered.

“You’ll want to be careful saying the word ‘never,’ Clark, it has a way of coming around to bite you in the ass.”

“That’s…not a future I’d enjoy.”

“Neither would I,” Bruce said, “because the minute you do it, I’ll be obligated to try to kill you.”

Clark knew Bruce wasn’t kidding. Idle threats weren’t his style. Bruce was one of two people in the world that knew of his weakness to Kryptonite and the other one was in a wooden-sided farmhouse in Smallville, Kansas. He knew in his heart his mom would never be able to stop him in a time of crisis, which is why years ago he had gifted Bruce with the knowledge and a supply of green-K; to give the world a chance if something went drastically wrong.

“Why haven’t you gone bad, Bruce?” Clark asked. “From what I know, you started out much closer to the dividing line between good and evil than I did, and you’ve been in the superhero game a lot longer than me, so why aren’t you out there hacking and slashing, leaving a mountain of corpses in your wake? How were you able to change? What saved you from the encroaching darkness?”

Bruce sat back in his chair and smiled. “Recognizing that there is a problem may be the first step on the road to correcting it, but asking for help is surely the second and most difficult step.” Bruce steepled his fingers in front of his face and bowed his head slightly as if to pray. “I didn’t save myself, Clark…Rachel did. She dragged me back from the edge by the scruff of my neck. For the first time since my parents were murdered, I’m in a healthy place in my life, and Rachel is the anchor that keeps me from slipping back toward the abyss.

“She’s my life, Clark. She’s the light that balances my darkness. I may fight against injustice, but now also I fight for her, for a city she loves with a passion that equals my own.” Then, very quietly, Bruce asked, “What do you fight for, Clark? I know what you’re fighting against, but what inspires you? What will you give anything to protect?

“Unless you have something of that importance in your life to act as your anchor, I think you'll continue to slide down the same slippery slope you're already on.” Bruce dropped his hands to the chair’s armrests and shrugged his shoulders. “If that happens, and I fail to stop you, then your final victory will be indistinguishable from total defeat.”

Bruce leaned forward and said, “Find that passion, Clark. Find that ‘something’ that is more important to you than life itself. Find it and never let it go.”
"In the Name of the King"
-----Winner, Round 15 - Favorite Lead Portrayal of Liz Parker
-----Winner, Round 15 - Best Use of a Supporting Character (Jeff Parker)
-----Winner, Round 15 - Best New Fic
-----Winner, Round 15 - Best Period Fanfiction

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Re: Somebody to Love (SV, Clark/Lana, Adult) Ch 8 (pg 1) 5/29/10

Post by Cardinal » Tue Jun 08, 2010 11:01 pm

Chapter 9

Official Permission

Clark stepped back into his apartment at the end of a very long day. His early morning rush to get to the press conference now seemed like it had happened an eon ago. Changed back into the t-shirt and sweatpants he had been wearing before heading over to Lana’s earlier in the evening, Clark unthinkingly turned on his stereo setup, including his DSD and ‘black box’ and sank into his black leather sectional sofa.

The first song out of the Klipsch speakers was an 80s rock classic. Clark recognized that much from the opening bars of the song. I gotta take a look at this thing and see if it’s broken, Clark thought. That’s two old songs in a row. You’d think my dad programmed this thing.

Owner of a Lonely Heart --- Yes

Move yourself
You always live your life
Never thinking of the future
Prove yourself
You are the move you make
Take your chances win or loser
See yourself
You are the steps you take
You and you and that's the only way
Shake, shake yourself
You're every move you make
So the story goes

It wasn’t until the song reached the chorus that Clark really began to pay attention to the lyrics.

Owner of a lonely heart
Owner of a lonely heart
Much better than a
Owner of a broken heart
Owner of a lonely heart

Oh, not again! Clark thought, Damn Rachel for her talk of Lana and Bruce for his talk of finding something to hold onto. That’s making me think about…how alone I am, about how alone I’ve been since Lois died…and those thoughts are just making everything worse.

As the song drew to a close, and Clark’s thoughts grew darker, he quickly shut off his Kryptonian gadget, somewhat afraid to find out what song it might choose next as a match for his thoughts. He dressed quickly for bed, wondering for a moment why he even bothered wearing anything to bed since cold didn’t bother him and there was no one to see him. That stopped him from pulling on a top to go with his drawstring pajama pants and he climbed onto his bed bare-chested. He was tired, but sleep was long in coming as his thoughts kept returning to what he had heard in Gotham City.

Among other things, Rachel had said, ‘You can’t run from your feelings, Clark, you just have to deal with them…and if Lana develops feelings for more than Superman, you’ll have to deal with her, too.’

Bruce had made things worse by saying, ‘I didn’t save myself, Clark…Rachel did. She dragged me back from the edge by the scruff of my neck…Rachel is the anchor that keeps me from slipping back toward the abyss.’

But the part that had struck him the most forcefully was when Bruce had asked him , ‘What do you fight for, Clark? I know what you’re fighting against, but what inspires you? What will you give anything to protect?’ Clark honestly had no answer to that question, and that bothered him more than he cared to think about.

There are so few people that I can even allow to get close to me, to know the real me, Clark thought, that I don’t have many close relationships of any kind. Rachel was right about that part for sure…but when two people I did let inside ended up getting killed without me being to do anything to help, how much would I have to hate someone to want to let them into my life?

Clark slept restlessly but woke up with an idea of how he could free up more time so he could do a better job of defending Lana. Whatever else happens, he thought, she will survive this case. Clark hurriedly got dressed because he wanted to be high in the sky over Lana’s condo building when she left for work. He knew her trips to and from work would be when she would be the most vulnerable.

Lana was already showered and dressed in another conservative suit by the time Superman took up station two-thousand feet above her building. The Edge case file had been reassembled and placed into her briefcase the night before. After yesterday’s unexpected deluge, Lana made sure to carefully check the latest weather report on a local morning news show. The weatherman said there should be sunny skies all day long, but because yesterday’s storm had been caused by the leading edge of a massive cold front, the outside temperature should reach a high of only 35 degrees Fahrenheit, or 2 degrees Celsius.

Lana reached into her closet for her heavy wool coat, sad that the unseasonably warm weather of yesterday morning was gone. She grabbed Clark’s Daily Planet umbrella and Burberry trenchcoat on her way out the door. Gotta get this back to him today, she thought, maybe at lunch. As she stepped into the elevator on her way down to the lobby, a stray thought made its way into her mind: How did Clark get home yesterday without his coat and umbrella? I bet he was soaked to the bone! Poor man, maybe I should make it up to him…but how?

Between her briefcase and the umbrella in one hand, and the trench coat draped over her opposite forearm, Lana was weighted down this morning. Once in her seat on the subway, Lana waited for Clark’s stop, hoping he’d get on. Not only did she want to return his coat and umbrella to him, but she also found herself looking forward to seeing him again.

No such luck, Lana thought, as Clark’s stop came and went. Not even a glimpse of tall, dark, and handsome.

During the short walk from the subway station to the Siegel Center, Lana was taking Superman’s warning to heart, looking to see if anyone seemed to be taking an undue interest in her as she passed by. The problem was, Lana was used to being stared at by all kinds of men, so telling which ones were just checking her out and which ones might be actively wishing to harm her, was not going to be easy.

And I have to admit, Lana thought, someone wanting to hurt me could just as easily use a woman to do the job. I just hope my old self-defense training kicks in and that Superman is as fast as he says he is. Hmm…maybe I should find a good dojo and start sharpening my skills.

Lana didn’t see anyone suspicious today, and she never looked straight up, which would have let her see a small shape that almost seemed to hover over her as she walked. Superman was pleased she made it to her building safely, but he continued to watch through the walls of the building until she reached the D.A.’s offices.

Superman landed on the roof of a nearby office building and walked out of its front door seconds later as Clark Kent. The Daily Planet was only two buildings away, and since Lana seemed to like being at work a bit early, it looked like Clark would be at his desk on time for once. Perry will have a stroke, Clark thought.

Besides his individually-tailored blue wool suit, a luxury that was necessary due to his broad shoulders, thick chest, and comparatively narrow waist, Clark was wearing a heavy winter overcoat, which he hung up in the coatroom immediately upon reaching the news floor. By the time Perry made it to his office, after finishing an early morning conference with the publisher, Clark had been there waiting for him for ten minutes.

“Kent!” Perry said with surprise. “What got you into work on time today?”

Clark waited until Perry settled into his desk chair before replying. “I’ve got an idea for a multi-part story I want to do, and I wanted to run it by you before I started in on it.”

Since they had just done some brainstorming yesterday without coming up with any good ideas, Perry leaned forward, put his elbows on his mahogany desk, and said, “Yeah? Tell me what you’ve got.”

“I’d like to cover the trial of Morgan Edge, but not just do it like a regular news story. You’ve got all kinds of writers that can write that kind of stuff.” Clark shifted in his seat. “No, what I’m proposing is to cover it like a reality series. I would like for the public, as much as possible, to get a feel for what a trial is like from the inside.”

Clark waited as Perry pondered the idea.

“Kent? Are you sure you can cover this trial objectively? I know how close you were to Ed Kinser, and I know that a lot of this prosecution is based on information you helped Kinser find in the first place.”

“True, but I wouldn’t be covering the case itself. That’s something any reporter can do. I’ll just be focusing on how the D.A.’s office is preparing. Since I won’t be covering the specifics of the trial, there shouldn’t be any conflict of interest.”

“What’s your focus for this piece?” Perry asked shrewdly.

“The new Deputy D.A. as she starts her new job by leaping feet first into the trial of the century.”

“What? You mean the spitfire who tore you a new butthole at the press conference yesterday? Are you sure this wouldn’t be a revenge hatchet-job?”

Clark waved off his boss’ concern.

“We’re fine. We talked after work yesterday and got everything out in the open.” Well, everything except for the fact that I’m starting to like her.

“Okay, Kent, run with it. But as soon as I detect anything that’s less than professional out of you, I’m yanking you off the job and giving it to someone else. Understand?”

“Yes, Sir.”

“Okay then, get to work.”

Clark left Perry’s office smiling tightly. Great! Now I have official permission to stay as close to Lana as needed. I know she’s gonna need me, and soon.
"In the Name of the King"
-----Winner, Round 15 - Favorite Lead Portrayal of Liz Parker
-----Winner, Round 15 - Best Use of a Supporting Character (Jeff Parker)
-----Winner, Round 15 - Best New Fic
-----Winner, Round 15 - Best Period Fanfiction

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Re: Somebody to Love (SV, Clark/Lana, Adult) Ch 9 (pg 1) 6/8/10

Post by Cardinal » Fri Jun 11, 2010 7:10 pm

Chapter 10

Lana made a beeline for her office, where Marie opened the door for her as she said, “Hi, Lana.”

Lana returned her secretary’s smile with one of her own and said, “Hi, Marie, and thanks.”

Lana set her briefcase down, hung Clark’s coat, and then hung her own coat on the coat tree just inside her door. She took a minute to walk down to the office coffee machine and grab a cup before settling in behind her desk. On the way back in, she found out from Marie that her first appointment was a general staff meeting at nine in the conference room, so that left her some time to take care of a few things.

First, she called the Police Commission to have them fax her a complaint form. She needed to follow through with her complaint against the pig in the subway terminal or else he’d think her promise was hollow and he’d keep doing the same thing to others. Once Marie pulled the fresh fax out of the machine, Lana filled it out and then had Marie fax a copy to everyone Lana had promised to send one to the night before.

While Marie was busy with the faxing, Lana looked up the phone number of the Daily Planet and called. The phone rang three times before a receptionist picked up the call and said, “The Daily Planet. How may I direct your call?”

“Clark Kent, please.”

“Wait one moment please.”

The phone rang five times and was about to be kicked into voice mail when the call was picked up.

“Clark Kent speaking.”

“Hi, Clark,” Lana said brightly, “this is Lana Lang.”

“Hi, Lana. I’m pleased to hear from you. How can I help you this morning?”

“Well, I wanted to return your coat and umbrella to you, and I wanted to thank you for sacrificing your comfort so I could stay dry, so I was hoping we could meet for lunch.”

Surprised, Clark blurted out, “I, uh, sure!” Damn, way to sound like an overeager teenager there, Clark. “Where would you like to meet?”

“Really, any place you like will be fine with me. When I lived here in high school, we lived near the edge of the city, almost in the west suburbs, so I’m not familiar with any restaurants downtown. Besides,” Lana added, “restaurants open and close so fast these days that just about any restaurant I might have known would likely be closed by now.”

Clark wasn’t sure if this could be considered an actual date, but he did notice Lana had neatly shifted the responsibility for the date to him. A lunch date, he thought, that’s a nice, safe way to start. Then he caught himself thinking about ‘a date’ and ‘a nice, safe way to start’ and wanted to kick himself. A normal relationship with any woman would be a death sentence for her. Knock it off. Clark would have declined the lunch invitation now, except he had already accepted.

So Clark quickly raced through the various options he had available within a decent distance. Nothing spicy to eat today, since I don’t know how well she tolerates that stuff, so the Thai and Indian places are off the list. I’ll also need something with a variety of menu selections in case she doesn’t like beef, chicken, or fish. Heck, she might be Vegan, in which case this will be our last date since I’m a confirmed meat eater.

“Tell you what, I’ll meet you in the lobby of the Siegel Center at noon sharp and we can walk across the plaza and take a taxi. There’s this pub called Houlihan’s that’s not too far away and serves the best bar food. Big sandwiches, steak fries, and a number of salads too. It’s a comfortable place to eat. Sound good to you, Lana?”

“That’s sounds great, Clark,” Lana said. Clark thought he could practically hear Lana smile on the other end of the call. “Noon it is. I’ll be waiting where you pinned up the coat.”

“One more thing, Lana.”


“That hideous golf umbrella is yours to keep. I bought it just for you.”

Privately agreeing with Clark’s assessment of the umbrella’s looks, Lana said, “Umm, okay. Thanks.” That umbrella’s going to hide in the back of my hall closet for years once my stuff gets here, or maybe be given to the Salvation Army. “Bye, Clark.”

“See ya, Lana…noon at the window ledge.”

Clark went on to go through his old notes to make sure he knew exactly where the case against Morgan Edge had left off when Ed had been killed. Lana, on the other hand, still had half an hour before her nine o’clock meeting, so she decided to use her secure computer terminal to access the police files on her predecessor’s death. What Superman had said the night before about the killing had triggered her instincts.

What she found out was stunning.

First, the investigation into the assassination had been officially closed since the three self-admitted assassins, a status corroborated by testimony from Superman, had all been killed in a wild brawl in the Metropolis City Jail’s exercise yard. Without them alive to give testimony about who hired them and why, there had been nothing else to go on.

Next, an even bigger shock was learning that the passenger in Ed’s car that had been let out just before the slaying was none other than her lunch date, Clark Kent. That part of the report stated that Kent and Kinser were best friends and had been working together to bring down Intergang. Clark must have been crushed! His best friend dead and all their hard work put on hold.

Lana saw a series of high-res police photos of the victim’s vehicle. All of the windows were shattered, and the driver’s side was riddled with bullet holes. According to a shell-casing count by the CSIs, each shooter used a full thirty-round clip of ammunition before they drove off. Lana looked back in horror at the photo of how her predecessor had died. Clark had to be thanking his lucky stars after missing out on that, even if he was devastated by his friend’s death…or maybe he felt guilty for surviving, a lot of survivors do.

One footnote to the case piqued Lana’s interest again. It said, almost unbelievably, that this was the second time Clark had been a near fatality in a gangland assassination attempt. She used the case number cited to look up that event and was horrified to learn that Clark had miraculously survived a car bomb that had taken the life of his writing partner at the Planet, one Lois Lane.

Apparently he hadn’t quite been in the car at the time of the blast and had been thrown clear with no injuries. The file said there was a lot of speculation going around at the time that the two of the them were linked romantically as well as professionally. Clark had told the CSIs that he and Lois had been in the middle of investigating the links between organized crime and legitimate business in Metropolis.

That poor man, Lana thought. He must feel like he’s snake bitten. His girlfriend, likely girlfriend anyway, and his best friend are both killed and he narrowly avoided death both times.

The last part of that thought set Lana on another train of thought, one she really didn’t like. As a prosecutor, she was naturally suspicious and she definitely didn’t believe in coincidences. That Clark had somehow managed to narrowly avoid being assassinated twice, while people close to him died, made Lana wonder if Clark was the innocent bystander he seemed to be on the surface.

Could he be working with Intergang? Maybe he’s been working too long on gang-related stories and has been seduced by ‘the dark side,’ or maybe he’s been intimidated into helping them. Maybe he helped set up one or both of his supposedly close friends.

Lana was truly distraught now. She thought he was one of the nicest men she had ever met and she desperately didn’t want to believe it was true…but it could be, and as a prosecutor, it was her obligation, her sworn duty, to find out for sure.

There was only one person she had met that she could trust for an honest opinion on Clark Kent, and that was Superman…but it was time for her staff meeting, so both Clark Kent and Superman would have to wait.

The meeting was long, as meetings always tended to be, and with Tom leading the meeting, it was boring, too. Nothing there really required her attention until they got to the last item of business, which was her case. She told them that she was confident she would be ready to go by the time that the judge’s continuance ran out and that, from a preliminary read-through of the case file, it looked like an open and shut case. Lana thought the meeting was at an end when Tom raised one last point of business.

“It seems that the Daily Planet wants to do a series of articles that show how we go about preparing for a big case…specifically, Lana’s Morgan Edge case,” Tom said, with a satisfied smile on his face. “Sort of a print media version of Law & Order. This looks like a chance for us to polish our image in the community, so I’ve agreed.” Lana began to open her mouth to protest, but Tom raised a finger and shot her a dangerous look that quieted her down. “The Planet is sending over one of their best for this, so we can be assured it’s going to be a high profile piece. The reporter is Clark Kent.”

Hearing that name made Lana groan inside. How am I supposed to give Clark Kent access to my preparations when I think he may be part of the problem?

While Lana was grousing, Tom had gone on speaking. “Please extend every courtesy to Mr. Kent. Perry White himself called to ask for this and assured me that they have no desire to jeopardize Lana’s prosecution by giving out specific information that Edge’s defense team might find useful, so she’ll have the right to keep anything out of the articles that may tend to hurt her prosecution.”

Lana breathed a sigh of relief upon hearing that, but it wouldn’t end up mattering if her niggling suspicion about Clark was true. Oh, how I hope he’s clean.

Now that Clark was going to be working here covering her case, Lana had to talk to Superman ASAP. She was ready to bolt the second the meeting was over, but Tom asked her to stay behind.

“Yes, Tom?” Lana asked, while gritting her teeth. She was still annoyed that he had agreed to this arrangement without checking with her first.

“Cut the happy act, Lana,” Tom said. “You’re not happy with this situation, and normally, I’d agree with you. BUT, since you went and damaged the cordial relations I’ve been careful to cultivate with the Planet, this is your chance to set things right.”

“But I…”

“Let me make this clear, Lana,” Tom said, in a low but insistent voice. “While I said publicly that you have the right to keep things out of his articles, if you exercise that right, there had better be very good reasons in each and every case. Got it?”

“Yes, Sir,” Lana said dutifully. “I understand that this prosecution has just become a public relations exercise.”

“Call it whatever you will, Lana. Just don’t pull another stunt like yesterday.” The words were never said, but both Tom and Lana knew they were implied…mess up again and you’re gone.

Lana went back to her office and, as she grabbed her coat, told Marie that she would be out for a few minutes. Then, Lana headed for the elevator and rode it as high as it would go. Once on the top floor, she found the nearest stairwell and climbed up to the roof, which was another fifty feet overhead.

She really needed to talk to Superman right now, before Clark could come over and insinuate himself into the middle of her prosecution team. Time to see if Superman really can hear me, Lana thought.

“Superman,” Lana said. “I need to talk to you.”

Clark was sitting at his desk, still going over the huge amount of notes he had stored in the bottom drawer of his desk that pertained to the Edge case, when his mind picked up on a particular sound that immediately arrested his attention.

It’s Lana, Clark thought, and she needs me.

Clark heedlessly shoved everything back into the bottom drawer and locked it before hurrying to the stairwell. Once there, he checked to be certain no one could see him and then changed into Superman.

Within seconds, Superman was landing on the roof of the Siegel Center, right next to Lana’s huddled form. Even with her heavy wool coat and the wool suit she was wearing underneath, Lana was finding the windy roof to be a little too cold for her liking. Superman pulled her into a sheltered corner of the roof and further shielded her with his body.

“What’s wrong, Lana? What do you need?”

“How well do you know Clark Kent?”

Superman wouldn’t have been more surprised if she had proposed marriage. Now where did that thought come from?

“I, uh, yes, I know him very well. We’ve worked together on a lot of cases. Why do you ask?”

“Well, I was reviewing the police files that cover the death of Ed Kinser like you suggested last night, and I noticed something that probably doesn’t mean anything, but, as a prosecutor, I need to pursue it.”

Superman’s curiosity was piqued. Maybe Lana’s abilities have let her see something that others have missed, though I really don’t know how. Despite his years in the crime-stopping business, Superman allowed himself to hope. A hope that was about to be crushed.

“Do you think there’s any chance that Clark is working with Intergang?”
"In the Name of the King"
-----Winner, Round 15 - Favorite Lead Portrayal of Liz Parker
-----Winner, Round 15 - Best Use of a Supporting Character (Jeff Parker)
-----Winner, Round 15 - Best New Fic
-----Winner, Round 15 - Best Period Fanfiction