Author: fieldagent85 PM
Jonathan helps Martha confront her feelings after the three months she spent alone.Rated: Fiction T - English - Drama/Romance - Martha K. & Jonathan K. - Words: 854 - Reviews: 1 - Favs: 5 - Published: 11-07-08 - Status: Complete - id: 4641139
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
It was their second night back. Jonathan's and Clark's. And in the two days they had been home, Martha had been mostly quiet. The house that was empty for three months – still and lonesome, abandoned – was now filled with the boisterous steps of their large feet, the echoing vibrations of their unbound laughter, and she had yet to wrap her mind around this sudden return to normalcy.
For two days, they left her to her silence. Both knew they could not possibly fathom what she had gone through all summer, and until she was ready to tell them, to talk about it, they would let her have whatever she needed. Even if it meant giving her space when all they wanted to do was be near her again.
Clark didn't see it, but Jonathan was well aware of the quiver in her voice whenever she did speak, the tears that always seem to be building, but systematically blinked away. He recognized well the signs of a woman who above all things needed to cry.
The second night, he encouraged Clark to go to his fortress after another quiet dinner. Martha instinctively began tackling the dishes after clearing the table without a word. Once Clark had gone, Jonathan came up behind her, reaching forward to turn off the faucet. For a moment, she didn't move, didn't turn, didn't question him. When that moment was up, his firm hands touched her shoulders, turning her to face him, and when she looked up at him, her eyes were glistening so that he could hardly see the steel blue behind the moisture.
Without giving her a choice in the matter, he pulled her against him, his strong arms wrapping around her, holding her with three months' worth of fervor. She was reluctant to let the moisture go – she hated to cry in the presence of her boys, either one – but his hold on her seemed to be encouraging the tears to fall, insisting that she be weak. And she had never been able to refuse him.
The tears came in a flood beyond her control, ten tears for every day she spent alone, every meal she ate by herself, every bill she struggled to pay, every book she read to him at the hospital, every stray thought about Clark's whereabouts, every morning she woke up alone. Soon she was sobbing into his shoulders, barely breathing. His arms only tightened against her as he kissed her hair and whispered soft reassurances in her ear.
Lifetimes seemed to pass before she was finished, but the passage of time did nothing to weaken his hold on her. She pulled back a little, her eyes red and tired, frowning at the large stain of tears she had left on his plaid shirt, the same shirt she had wrapped his pillow with all summer. Without giving it a second thought, she quickly offered to throw it in the washing machine.
With a knowing, amused smile, he leaned down to kiss her. "No," he said simply, then kissed her again when he saw the disappointment plain on her face. "You are going to take a hot bath, relax, and then I'm putting you to bed."
And when he made love to her that night, for the first time in three months, it was as if he was trying to erase them. To soothe the pain, to vanish the tears, to prove to her that he was alive. He was alive and she was his life. When it was over, neither spoke for several minutes; neither could. Eventually gathering her in his arms again, he held her as he had when she'd been crying, and whispered, "Do you know how much I love you?"
She closed her eyes. It didn't matter whether she did or not, her response was inevitable. "How much?"
"Enough to stay alive for three months."
The words lingered long after they were spoken, ringing in her ears, causing her to feel both happiness and sadness simultaneously. After another long moment, she could feel him tensing up, perhaps fearing she was unimpressed or had fallen asleep. Instead she lifted her head to look back at him, smiling brightly. "Do you know how much I love you?"
It appeared as if he was trying to smile, but emotion had fallen too heavily on him. "How much?"
Her smile turned into a bit of a smirk then, but the glimmer in her eyes was unmistakable. "Enough to keep you alive for three months."
He looked down at her silently for a moment, shock registering on his face, before finally breaking out into hearty laughter. "I guess I ought to thank you for that, huh?"
Pushing herself up a little, she leaned forward and kissed the smile from his lips, only to have it reappear again. "I think you just did. Not that I would object to being thanked again."
After that night, Jonathan Kent wasted no opportunity to thank his wife – and his gratitude did abound – but it was she who was truly thankful.