|They're Just Costumes
Author: Alamo Girl PM
They're just costumes...aren't they? A little Halloween fun.Rated: Fiction K - English - Romance - Words: 3,057 - Reviews: 18 - Favs: 10 - Follows: 2 - Published: 10-27-06 - Status: Complete - id: 3217232
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Disclaimer: I claim no rights to anything pertaining to the Superman Returns universe. If I did, they would be casting Jennifer Morrison from House, M.D. as Lois Lane.
A/N: This is just a bit of Halloween fun, written as a birthday fic for bistyboo1974. Happy Halloween. Eat CANDY!
They're Just Costumes…
Clark twitched a small smile as he watched the brilliant reds and oranges of the fall leaves blow past. The air was crisp and cool, and the sky had been clear as crystal. The perfect autumn day.
"Let's pick up the pace, Clark. I want to get back to the office to get my things before the grid-lock this evening." Lois shouldered her way through the crowds, balancing a cell phone, briefcase and Starbucks coffee. Clark had to admire her juggling ability.
He hitched his briefcase under one arm, and lengthened his step to catch up with her. "Um, Lois? Is something bothering you? You've been…" he paused searching for the right words that wouldn't earn him a dirty look, "…I don't know. Upset? You know…on edge… all afternoon."
Lois glanced over her shoulder at her companion, narrowing her eyes. Clark's 'gulp' was almost audible.
"I am not upset, Clark." She suddenly reached out and snatched Clark's arm before he could trip head-long into a group of kids. They were all dressed in monstrous costumes, each dangling a candy bucket from their arms and screeching at the top of their lungs.
"Watch it!" she yelled, and Clark stumbled back into her as they watched the 'goblins' scamper away. "Geeze. Trust me when I say those kids don't need any more sugar!"
Huffing, Lois strode across the street toward the Planet. Clark fumbled with his belongings as he followed, sidestepping a trio of walking pumpkins.
"I take it you don't like Halloween?" he asked mildly.
Lois jammed the elevator button. "No! No, I have absolutely no problem with Halloween. I like Halloween!" Her voice had risen, a little too enthusiastically. "Kids getting high on candy, people running around like maniacs and dressing pretty much the same way. What's not to like?"
Clark eyed her over the rims of his glasses, "Uh-huh. Let me guess – Little Lois Lane didn't get to be the fairy princess one year, and it ruined the holiday forever."
Lois glared. Clark instantly wished he'd kept that comment safely in his mouth. "Do I LOOK like a fairy princess kind of person to you?" She cocked her head at him in challenge. When she saw the apology written over his features, she sighed, "It's just, I think it's a pointless holiday. Just an excuse for people to dress up like something they aren't and act stupid."
Before the elevator opened Clark caught sight of a man and his son strolling out of the lobby. They were obviously off to a party of some kind, the boy tugging on his father's arm and telling him to hurry up. The sight alone shot a slight pang of longing through Clark's heart, wondering why that couldn't be him and Jason – off to have fun on Halloween – but it was Lois' reaction to the boy that gave Clark some clue as to her shifting mood all day.
The boy was dressed head-to-toe in a fairly extravagant Superman costume. He'd even slicked his hair back and pulled out one curl to drape on his forehead. Clark stole a glace at Lois. She was watching the boy skip out of the lobby – her face was a myriad of emotions, and none of them were festive.
Clark realized that boy had been merely one of about fifty they'd seen dressed as Superman on the streets most of the afternoon. And with every passing 'super-kid', Lois grew more and more pensive. It had been some time since Superman had made a miraculous recovery in the hospital and had immediately gone to see his son.
Seeing little boys running around in the superhero's costume was like driving the nail home – Jason was Superman's son…and she had absolutely no idea what to do about it.
"C'mon, Lois," Clark offered, trying to lift her mood somewhat, "It's just good fun. You can dress up like your favorite character from a TV show or book. For one night, you can actually be that character. And…it's the one night you actually get permission to eat all the candy you want." He smiled as the crowded elevator rose.
Lois rolled her eyes, "Yeah, well…most of us can't be pigging out on candy. And I guarantee Jason won't be OD-ing on sugar tonight."
Clark looked at her disapprovingly. Surely she wasn't going to deny the kid his youthful right to the holiday fun…? Lois saw his look and waved him off, "Oh calm down, Halloween-boy, he's going to a little costume party with his school friends tonight. He just can't eat most kinds of candy, he's allergic to chocolate and some candy dyes."
"I couldn't imagine not going trick-or-treating – coming home with a bucket load of candy and sweets," Clark said, smiling wistfully.
Lois smirked, "Momma Kent made all your costumes herself, didn't she? What were you? An X-Man? Did you do the tights and utility-belt thing? Or did you go the geek route, dress up as a scientist…or…" she smothered a snicker, "…a college professor?"
Clark frowned, pushing his glasses up. "No, actually I went as the Green Hornet the last time I dressed up." Inwardly he almost chuckled. If she only knew how often he wore a costume…
Just as the elevator doors opened, Lois stepped into his personal space. Her scent assaulted his senses, and her body brushed his front. Clark could feel a heat growing in the pit of his stomach, radiating outward. She stood there, letting her eyes rove languidly up his frame, and back down again. Before he could feel steam coming from his collar, Lois smiled.
"You'd look good in tights, Clark." And she turned and walked out of the confining elevator.
Clark heaved a sigh, releasing some of the pressure that was building within.
Tugging on his tie, he walked out into the news room.
At least he thought it was the news room. The end of the work day had brought out every costume, mask, and make-up combination imaginable. Everyone obviously had Halloween parties to get to right after work, so they saved time by changing early. People stood between the desks, admiring each other's outfits, talking about parties and helping each other with various wings, hats, tails and other limbs associated with their costumes.
"Good God," Lois muttered, weaving her way to her desk.
Clark broke out into a huge grin. "Jimmy! Nice outfit! Are you going as Elvis?"
Jimmy turned around, clad in a one-piece white jumpsuit. In his arms he held a racing helmet – his overalls were plastered with racing advertisements.
"Man, Clark! That hiatus you took must have been on another planet!" Jimmy slid a pair of dark, stylish shades on and grinned.
Lois sidled up next to Clark and guffawed, "Wow, Jimmy. Never knew you were a big NASCAR fan."
"Yep! I'm Mario Andretti! I'm picking up my date in this corvette I've rented, and we're off to the Halloween Costume ball. You are coming, aren't you Ms. Lane?"
Lois shrugged noncommittally. Clark looked at her curiously. Jimmy, however, had gathered up his things and was jaunting off – helmet strapped to his head and chanting, "I feel the need, the need for speed!"
Lois yelled, "That's Top Gun! Not NASCAR!"
As they made their way to Lois' desk, they past a couple of fairies, one devil, several black cats, two Jedi Knights, a Storm Trooper, a police officer (though Clark wasn't sure if his was a real uniform or rented) soldiers, renaissance ladies, and even one King Henry the Eighth.
Clark paused to watch a trio of young interns near his desk. They were all dressed in what looked like English boarding school clothes – pants, vests over shirts, a plaid skirt on the girl. Each had a tie with red and gold strips, and matching scarves. Their outer robes were black, with a curious patch that Clark made out to be a griffin. The taller kid was scratching at his head, and asking if the red spray-dye he'd just put in his hair would come out. The other boy was using a hand mirror to put the finishing touches on the lightning-shaped scar on his forehead. His glasses made Clark's look fashionable.
The girl had teased her hair out into a frizzy mane. She was trying in vane to hurry her male companions, lest they be late for their party, and Clark grinned when she told them the raggedy brooms they were all carrying wouldn't get them their any faster.
"I think Mrs. Rowling would approve, don't you?" Lois observed, surprising Clark. She stood at his side, her head barely coming to his shoulder, watching the gaggle of young witches and wizards file out of the news room. Clark caught her eye and they shared a smile. It was relaxed. Comfortable. And it made Clark ache for the times like these before his absence.
"Lois!" Perry White stuck his head out of his office. "Don't you think you and Kent better get out of here? You won't have time to get into costume before the ball."
Lois sighed and crossed her arms, "I didn't really think I'd have to go Perry. This is just another charity thing for the paper, isn't it?"
Perry's face hardened, a look that brooked no argument. "If I have to go to this shindig, and dress up…so do you, Lois!"
Lois' mouth curved into a wicked smile as she noticed the olive-leaf crown that wrapped around the back of Perry's balding head. Over his arm was something that looked suspiciously like a toga. Clark's mouth fell open in utter astonishment when he realized who Perry was going as.
"Hail Cesar!" Lois crowed, holding a hand up as salute. Perry just pointed at her in mock-warning, before escaping back into his office.
Clark chuckled and then fell awkwardly silent. He hadn't planned on going to the costume ball, so he hadn't rented anything to wear. And he was fairly sure wearing his 'everyday work suit'- which was currently under his coat and tie – wouldn't be a good idea.
He cleared his throat, "So, I suppose you and Richard…" he began, but found it surprisingly hard to finish.
Why wouldn't they go together? They'd been together for all sorts of functions for the last five years. He hadn't been there. So, it shouldn't have been a surprise that Clark would be going – alone – and would have to watch them enjoying each other's company. Sadly, Clark supposed he should be used to this emptiness but he knew he never would. Not when everything his heart desired was right there in front of him the whole time.
"I guess the two of you…uh…will be–"
Lois interrupted him. "Richard is out of town, so I'm going to need a date, Clark." She let the words fall out so quickly, Clark had to think a moment to register them. "Do you mind?" She asked, looking thoroughly put out, and yet, just a little anxious. As if she actually wanted him to ask her…
That possibility filled Clark with such hope he couldn't help the beaming grin that lit up his face. "Mind? No! Of course I don't mind, Lois! I think we'd have a swell time!"
Lois shook her head, bemused. "Alright, pick me up at my house at seven. And don't be late. I have to see Jason off to his party before we leave."
Clark was so excited he nearly flattened Darth Vader from Accounting as he made his way back to his desk.
Clark adjusted his black tie for the nth time. The chic, Armani-style tux he'd rented fit him so well, the clerk swore Giorgio Armani himself would have been drooling. Lois' house near the river stood silently waiting for him, the lights along the walkway casting golden pools of light against the dark lawn. A fall wreath hung on her door, and Clark wasn't surprised to see a couple of jack-o-lanterns with crooked eyes and mouths sitting by the door. Jason had obviously been the artist.
He was suddenly nervous as he reached for the knocker. What would Lois be dressed as? Would she be mad that he hadn't been able to find a costume (though he knew she'd probably be livid if she saw his real costume)? Looking at the carved pumpkins, he thought of Jason. What would he be dressed as?
A knot formed in his throat. Clark knew the boy was enamored with Superman. And while seeing him clad in cape and boots would warm his heart to no end, he knew it would be too much for Lois.
Suddenly, the door opened. Clark was so taken aback he nearly stumbled backward off the stoop. There, in front of him, was the most beautiful sight he could have hoped to see.
"Don't you dare laugh," she said in warning. Lois wore a full length gown, the color of melted sapphires. In all his travels, Clark didn't think he'd ever seen such a beautiful blue. The dress fell into a soft bell shape, the neckline swept off her shoulders – giving Clark a delicious view of creamy skin and the soft swell of her breasts.
When he finally forced his eyes upward, Lois shied from his stare and fussed nervously with her gloves. Her rich, dark curls were gathered up on her head, and fixed with strings of small crystals. A delicate headpiece of sapphires and crystals sat on her head making her look like royalty. Clark absurdly felt like bowing deeply before her. When she gave him an embarrassed half-smile, it took all his might not to lift off the floor.
Clark struggled to get his mouth and tongue to work in unison. "L-Lois! That's…I mean…You look absolutely–"
"Like a cheese ball, I know." She finished with a smirk. Clark took a step forward, until he could feel the heat of her body. He allowed his eyes to take in this vision, for whatever time he had. Lois looked soft and vulnerable…like a true princess. And he was going to make damn sure he remembered every nuance of that night.
"I was going to say amazing." He said, his voice taking on a husky, lower pitch.
Lois looked into his eyes and noted how they had become a smokier, darker shade of blue. And when a hint of a blush appeared on her cheeks, Clark had to fight the urge to sweep her off her feet and carry her off to a more private place.
But, all too soon, the spell was broken and Lois stepped back. "Come on, Jason! Your ride is here!"
Clark snapped out of his trance and noticed a min-van full of raucous kids had pulled in the drive.
Lois looked Clark up and down, smiling broadly in approval of how the tux fit him. "What? You couldn't get a costume?"
Clark shrugged, "It's what I get for waiting until Halloween night to rent something."
"Oh well, we'll just tell everyone your going as James Bond." She said, patting his arm and waving to the mom driving the mini-van.
Clark cocked a brow suggestively, and gave her his best debonair smile. "Kent. Clark Kent…" They both laughed.
Holding their gaze for a moment longer, Lois turned and called for Jason again. Clark's eyes lingered over her features, the graceful curve of her neck and the sparkle of the dress. Then it hit him – he hadn't asked Lois who she was supposed to be. He had an idea, but a playful part of him wanted Lois to have to say it …out loud.
"So, Lois…who are you going as tonight?" He tilted his head, amused.
Lois winced, and ran a hand down her dress. She looked like she was struggling with telling him the truth or not. The embarrassed flush returned to her cheeks, causing Clark's grin to grow wider.
"Alright, alright. I'm Cinderella. Okay?! Lois Lane is dressed up as Cinder-frikin'-rella. Happy now? Poke fun all you want tonight, Smallville, 'cause this is the only time you'll get to do it."
Clark held his hands up in surrender, "Hey, I wasn't sure. And don't worry, there is nothing about the way you look tonight that I would make fun of. You look beautiful."
And Lois smiled gratefully at him. For the first time, Clark was sure he was going to get to see a part of Lois' inner child. The part she kept under lock and key. The part that still believed in 'happily ever after'.
Jason finally came streaking out the front door, nearly tackling his mother in a hug. "Bye Mom! Have fun!" he said, jogging toward the car.
"Have a good time sweetie." She answered, locking the front door.
Clark grinned and returned Jason's wave. "Bye Mister Clark!" He pulled his mask down over his eyes, and Clark noticed that his costume was, in fact, red and blue.
But instead of an 'S' emblazoned on a field of yellow – a huge black spider stretched across the boy's chest.
Lois returned to Clark's side, taking the arm he offered her.
"There goes my little Spider-Man," she said. "Now, c'mon 007. These glass slippers are killing me."
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