Part 15

My name is Jessica Luthor. I am a wife of a remarkable man, a friend of true heroes, a mother of three wonderful children. I used to live on Earth.

Now the Earth is no more. We needed to relocated to another planet. Only 40 percent of the whole population survived.

It is true what they say - nothing but people matter.

Only as simple as it is - we never fully understand it.

Maybe now we have a second chance. We cannot jeopardize it. We need to learn to live according to this rule. Once we have gotten this chance, we cannot waste it.

It is now or never.

It is the brave new world.


Lily & Oliver

Lily was beyond elated when he finally opened his eyes.

He'd closed them once they'd landed on Earth 2 like he'd needed to make sure the woman he loved would be all right before he gave up.

Only Lily never wanted to lose him. She never wanted him to give up on his own life and now, thanks to Emil, he had a change at surviving. His wound was patched up and he would live.

Lily couldn't quite understand why the VA wasn't administered to any of them, but Emil assured her that he was working on it.

As soon as Oliver was stabilized, Lily didn't even care about the VA anymore, she just wanted him to survive. Even if it turned out that the cure wasn't working on the new ground, she would be happy to live one human life with her lover.

Finally, he opened his eyes and was welcomed by her beaming smile.

"Welcome back," she said when placing her hand on his cheek and stroking it gently. He leaned into her touch.

"Are we saved?" he just asked.

"We're on Earth 2, so yes, we are saved," she answered.

"God, I thought I was dying," he confessed when releasing a sigh a relief. "And that would be pretty anticlimactic since I decided I wanted a shot with you."

She just smiled brighter in response.

"Lily, I need to apologize for how I treated you," Ollie suddenly said in a serious voice when sitting up.

"I actually wanted to hear that," she admitted.

"I'm sorry I hurt you. I promise I will never do it again. I just… I wanted you to live… even if I chose differently."

"But you still changed your mind just like I knew you would," she said. "What matters is the new life we have on this planet, Ollie. I forgive you for everything you've done on the previous one."

"I feel like I need to spend a whole eternity making it up to you," he confessed.

"I can live with that," she laughed.

In that moment Emil came through the door and directed himself to Oliver to check his bandages.

"What happened to the VA?" Lily asked out of curiosity. "I thought you would administer it to Ollie as soon as we land."

"Well, you would have to ask your father that one," the mysterious answer came. "All I can tell you so far is that Oliver will live and there's no need to panic. Although I do recommend seeing your mother."

"My mother?" Lily got scared. "What's happening to my mother?!" She and Oliver shared a worried look.


Jessica

I wasn't getting better and I knew it. I was slowly dying and there was nothing they could do for me. I was holding on though and I wouldn't leave my body that easily. I wouldn't leave this new world. I certainly wouldn't die. Not now when we were finally here. Not when everything worked out.

Not when I had a growing daughter and another who apparently fell in love with the wrong guy. Only I'd done the very same thing, hadn't I?

"Lex…" I wheezed as I was talking with difficulty. "There's something…" I started.

"Shh… please, don't try to talk. It'll be all right. Emil will find a solution on time. We already have something, but he needs to run some tests. You'll be fine. You'll live," he kept on telling me as he was stroking my hair.

Ever since we'd gotten here, he hadn't left my side. It was a completely new world and he was the leader, but he chose to stay with me. People understood though. They didn't want to see him breaking as they trusted him, they followed him. They already needed to get used to a new planet, it would be a little too much for them to choose a new ruler again. For now, they listened to Clark who was talking to them in Lex's behalf because they trusted Superman.

"I just need you… to forgive Oliver," I continued anyway. "Nothing matters, Lex, nothing but us. People. Love. It's all real when… when the rest is not, when the rest… we lose eventually."

"You want me to actually congratulate Lily on her wonderful choice of a life companion?" Lex asked sarcastically.

"No, I just want you… to respect her choice. I realized… Lex, when we got together… they all said it was a mistake. They all warned me. Even Clark. And look where we are now."

Lex sighed and closed his eyes. He seemed to do that a lot lately as though it could protect him from the images he couldn't erase from his mind. Images of Lily kissing his enemy, of Lily telling him she loved Oliver Queen.

"Lily was right. Old grudges have no sense. Not really. Why do you even hate him so much?"

"Jessica, I…"

"It's true," I interrupted him and he let me because I was already so weak. I had no strength to argue with him. "First it was the boarding school… then the vigilante act and… my relationship with Ollie and… and then… you two were ok for quite some time until I saved his life and you hated him again. I would never leave you for him and he never really loved me. He was just lost. He said so himself."

"Yes, and I could have forgiven him, I even did when I… when I felt guilty for killing his family, even if that wasn't really me and… now he's fallen for my daughter. After he pined for her mother."

"You had a problem with Connor, too," I noticed. "I don't care anymore. Lily is happy with Ollie and we'd both seen her when she wasn't those three years… Lex, tell me you did not see how miserable she really was. She acted like her life had no sense anymore."

"So you actually accept their relationship?" Lex just asked.

"I don't think we have any other choice."

"We?"

"Yes, we. It's our daughter, our family. This is a new life and a new planet. The past is in the past, buried. We start fresh. Ollie did safe my life, you know. If Lily hadn't gotten him to come, I would've…"

"Please, stop," Lex asked me. "I can't go through that again. I can't even talk about it."

"Then you need to accept him. And you haven't even thanked him for what he did. Isn't it better to have me by your side? To have a daughter who's happily in love than the other way around?"

"Mom!" Lily just walked inside the room with Oliver, but he stayed in the door. "Mom, how are you feeling?" she asked when making her way to me.

"Good," I lied. Lex knew that, but maybe I managed to fool my daughter. Judging from the look on Ollie's face, I had a chance only at deceiving her. "We've talked with your father and… Oliver," I said to him till I still had the time to do it. "I do accept everything and I thank you for saving my life. You've always been a wonderful friend and even if this relationship with Lily is something I would have to get used to, I'm glad that she's happy and you're happy. Maybe you need each other. At least she's not dating anyone I know nothing about."

"Jess, you know how much this means to me," Oliver told me when he finally dared to actually come inside. "I promise I will never hurt her. I will take care of her."

"You better," Lex hissed. "Because if in a hundred years you'll suddenly decide that…" he started.

"Lex, that was with Chloe and I knew pretty fast that it might not actually work out. With Lily I am sure it will," Oliver interrupted him.

"I hope so," Lex said to both his and Lily's astonishment. "Otherwise I'll kick your ass from here to the place where Earth used to be. And I also need to thank for you saving my wife's life. For that alone…" Lex rose from his seat and reached his hand to Oliver. "You saved the woman I can't exist without. I really appreciate that."

We were all touched. It was nearly a historic moment. I was only sorry that it took so many tragedies to make people understand their behavior.

Then… there was something wrong… I… I was…

"Jessica!" Lex turned back to me and paled. "Call Emil! NOW! I don't care about his tests! He needs to carry out this procedure!" he turned to Oliver.

And then, there was only darkness.


Clark

"Clark!" Lois called him from across the hall.

He was very busy now, flying around, helping people settle down, giving speeches, covering for Lex, giving people hope… And he was exhausted, but he was also happy in his own way. His life might've been screwed up completely, but he had a purpose again. People still saw him as a hero and he needed to become one again for them. He had his powers back as the Sun was yellow, although it seemed smaller and its rays were lighter as it was really young. It wasn't the Sun they'd used to know on Earth and this planet, even though it resembled the Earth structure, wasn't Earth either. As Clark was flying, he saw that. There was more oceans and they were scattered in a completely new order. The land was more green though and he thought that Oliver would like that. The city was ready, but the workmen still worked on raising more buildings. They wouldn't make more than people needed though, the more green lands and animals, the better and healthier the world was.

And now Lois caught him. He was nearly afraid of what she might say.

"Clark, I'm tired of yelling at you," that one he didn't actually see coming.

"You…" he started, but then stopped. He was too shocked.

"Let me speak," she told him. "I've done a lot of thinking and…" She was shaking, "and I need to let you go."

"Lois, I'm s…" he started, his guilty mode on.

"Don't say you're sorry, please." She raised her hand to keep him quiet. "This obviously isn't working and I know we have a daughter together, but I'm a modern woman and I'd rather she have a father that loves her than a house in which there isn't really any love between her parents. She'll understand. She's already got used to it and…" Now Lois started crying. "I need to let you go, Clark. I want to be mad at you, but now… now I'm just sorry. I'm sorry this relationship hasn't worked out."

"Lois, I…" he tried to say something again.

"I already said I don't want to hear any more apologies! I know that you don't feel the same for me anymore, but you still came back for Lara and for that I am grateful because you proved that you still are the good man that I once fell for. But we can't fool ourselves and keep pretending everything's going to be all right. It's not just one life we have and it'll probably be a whole eternity, so spending it when not loving each other… It'll just make us miserable. So this is me letting you go."

"Lois, I truly am sorry," he finally said, feeling sad as well. Feeling like a failure. He'd used to think once that life could be so simple, that he could just find a girl, marry her and love her forever. He'd never anticipated this.

"I know. Me, too. Take care of yourself, all right? Also, do me a favor and be happy. You need to be. If you're going to be the hero you are, you need a normal life, too, to balance them well. Goodbye, Clark." She placed her hands on his chest and then she turned around and walked away.

This wasn't the fairy tale he'd used to imagine with her. In a fairy tale he would stop her and tell her that he'd made a mistake, that he did love her still and wanted her back. But this was reality and he really didn't want that life with her anymore. And it didn't make him a bad person, just one that had failed at something. Just… human, he realized.


Lois

"There you are," she heard a very unpleasant and very familiar voice. She froze. Didn't really know what to do, where to run and if she should run at all. If Clark had his powers back, he surely did, too.

"Zod," she said his name and turned around, facing him. "What are you doing here? You should be dead." Play it calm, just be calm, she kept on telling herself.

"I am here to kill you," the answer came and her face whitened in fear. Her heartbeat accelerated and the only thing that she could think of was her little daughter. She needed to survive for her and for her only. She had nothing else left anyway. "I want to make Kal-El suffer," she heard.

"No!" Lois screamed and started running. She needed to make it. She needed to…

He was faster.


Clark

She told him to go and find his happiness. Lois had set him free, given him a choice. She wanted him to take what he wanted for himself. Surprisingly, there was only one person on his mind once he focused - Imra. He had no idea when it happened, but he'd fallen in love with her. She'd healed something inside him, given him happiness, a reason to go on. It was sudden, it struck him like a lightening, but in the same time it seemed to be more intense than what he'd ever felt with Lois. Maybe it was just like Oliver had said about Chloe. He'd loved her dearly at the beginning, but then something changed. Maybe it was the price to pay for the eternity, the price to pay for so many years of living. Lily found her love late, too. Alex still hadn't found it. Lex and Jessica had always seemed to have it, but again, they'd been through so much it must've been considered a payment.

Clark knew what he wanted now and he would get it.

He found out her new address and walked to her home. She made him feel like human and he wanted to be one tonight. With Lois he'd always been the hero. With Imra he was what he'd always wanted to be, although he was mature now and would never give up his powers in order to truly be human.

He now stood in front of her door. It was the same, yet different like every single thing on this planet. Everything except them, people. There would be so much of getting used to for them, but they had to do it. This was for a longer stay than before. This planet was new. It was like living on Earth in the era of dinosaurs, not that there were here, too, but they still needed to secure the city with a force field in fear for animals that were so different, but their anatomy was yet so similar.

Finally, Clark knocked on the door.

Imra opened and stilled, surprised to see him.

"Clark, I told you to…" she started.

"I know, but there's something you need to know," he interrupted her.

"I don't need any more of emotional trauma. My best friend just died a violent death and I-I feel fucking guilty because I used him while he loved me and apparently I could never love him back!" she screamed. "So go! Just leave me the fuck alone!" She tried to shut the door in his face again, but he stuck a feet in.

"I had a talk with Lois and she… she let me go, Imra. This relationship… it just wasn't working anymore and we decided it would be for the best if we split up and go our separate ways in search for happiness."

"So what?" Imra scoffed at him. "You came to me for sex because your wife let you go?"

"No, that is not what I came here for," Clark denied. He wished he could've told Imra that he would be a free man, a divorced man soon, but… what did a little piece of paper saying that he was Lois's husband mean in this world anyway? It wasn't like they took the papers with them. They all burnt with the Earth. True marriage was paradoxically of Jessica and Lex, not Clark and Lois. "I know I hurt you and I am sorry for that, but you need to know that… I was lost when we two started… seeing each other…" he continued a little awkwardly, not sure how to call their relationship.

"Nice euphemism," she cut in again, folding her arms on her chest.

"Would you please just listen to me?!" he got angry. "I came back to Lois only because I thought I owed it to Lara, but Lois made a few good points herself and… anyway, I realized something, Imra. I knew that before, but I never let it into my head because I knew it was all futile… but it's true and I can't change how I feel. I love you. I have fallen in love with you. I want no one else but you," Clark finally confessed, looking her deeply in the eye. "So please, forgive me. Let's start over."

"Let's?" she repeated, her eyes getting glassy. "You can't be serious!"

"Imra…" he made a step towards her.

"NO!" she screamed. "You won't hurt me or humiliate me again!" She pushed him when using her powers and he flew backwards, just enough for her to close the door.

He couldn't believe that just happened. Didn't she love him? Jessica assured him that Imra felt for him, so why…

He could just stand there, gaping at the closed door. His heart was broken and the pain was so severe and so new to him that he started wondering if he'd ever had his heart broken before. He thought he had, but apparently he hadn't.


Jessica

I woke up.

There was no pain, no burning feeling in my back, no fever. I could breath, I could hear… everything so well. It was like someone had given me a completely new hearing that was so sensitive to all those noises.

Then I heard it.

"Zod."

"I am here to kill you."

And her neck snapping…

"NO!" I sat up on the bed, screaming. My eyes opened widely and… my vision seemed to be better, too, I noticed.

"What? Honey, what is it?" it was Lex who just got to me. "Tell me."

"It's… Zod…" I finished when the door to the hospital room swung open and Zod walked in. "And he killed Lois," I informed, still in shock. In a moment the pain would kick in. The lost. The…

"Yes," Zod smirked at us. "Finally, a revenge on Kal-El and you," he pointed me. "I will make you hurt so much you wish you were dead."

It happened so fast that I barely registered it.

One second Zod was standing there, the next he was running into Lex, his fist clenched, hitting my beloved one straight in the heart and throwing him at the opposite wall where he… No, I realized in an even bigger shock when the wall actually crumbled and Lex found himself in the next room.

"NO!" I screamed. "NO! LEX!... You killed him!" I turned to Zod, hardly able to believe my own words. Lex couldn't be dead, I thought. No, it was just too much. I was too raw already. Too many losses… and the Earth… the world… and…

Then something struck me and clearly Zod thought the same thing - even if he was a superalien that just threw Lex at the wall, was the wall supposed to crumble like that? It was nearly impossible to do it to a living being and…

And Lex was standing in the hole, completely all right. He didn't even bleed.

And I just opened my eyes even wider, struck with another shock.

"Jessica, help me," Lex asked me.

"Hah?" I just gaped. Help with what exactly? I wondered.

Lex was by Zod's side in no time and he was strangling him. "Grab him! Help me!" he called to me again.

I didn't understand any of this. I should've been dead, yet I was alive and well. Was this some new kind of VA? I ran to them, but I found myself right by their side and I didn't even know how. My feet didn't seem to even touch the floor, I was so fast.

I grabbed Zod when Lex still held his neck and… he just broke it. He literally broke it.

There was an inhuman scream and two phantoms got out of Zod's body, ripping it apart and then feeling through the window.

That was why when Clark walked in and took in all that happened

I could just stand there, looking at Lex, then at Clark. What the hell? Was this some bizarre dream I had? Or maybe I was dead?

"The fuck…?" I just murmured under my breath.


Clark

He might not be in love with her anymore, but he still heard her when she needed help. His body was so used to reacting to her calls that right now, as Imra pushed him away, he heard Lois. He heard Lois calling for help. He could nearly feel her fear. She was afraid of something. She didn't want to leave her daughter.

Only when Clark finally reached the hospital, the attacker was already gone and all that was left was Lois's body lying on the floor.

He still had hope that she was alive. She needed to be for Lara. She couldn't just be dead!

When he finally reached her, he saw that her neck was broken. If her opened eyes and turned head weren't enough, an X-Ray he did with his eyes was. Her neck was truly broken and there was nothing he could ever do to bring her back. His daughter just lost a mother.

"NO!" Clark screamed as it dawned on him. "NO!"

Then he heard other screams from the the room nearby and he reached it, only to see Zod's body being ripped apart by two phantoms that flew away through the window.

"Oh my God, Lex!" Jessica yelled and Lex took her into his arms. She was shaking, still couldn't understand anything that just happened, but she reveled in the feel of his body around her. She'd almost lost him again and she needed to make sure he was there alive and healthy.


Jessica

We never expected this.

We never expected to bury one of our best friends in the first day we got to this new world. Yet, we were doing it.

Lois Lane-Kent was dead. Killed by Zod. We still had no idea how Zod had managed to sneak on board. We just knew he was finally gone. The war had been won, but there were casualties.

I remembered them all, from the very beginning. Every single person I'd ever cared about: Lana, my first unborn child, Lex (although he'd come back to me), Jonathan Kent, Martha Kent, Tess, Chloe, Connor, Rokk, Lois… the list seemed to have no end. But it must end now. We would make sure of this.

I, Clark and Lex would. Soon, I was sure the whole world would follow us. There were still two phantoms on the loose, but we would hunt them down and destroy them.

There was no way of creating VA under this Sun again, I'd found out from Lex when he finally told me about his secret project to preserve life. VA would deplete the Sun again, give us half the time on this planet of the time we could've had.

But there was another way.

A better way.

We were indestructible now.

Whatever Emil had been working on on Lex's behalf was 'the suit', made thanks to Clark's and Lara's blood samples and the DNA taken from the meteor infected and also from the Legion's members. The suit that was like a second skin or our own new skin, the suit that was giving us powers nearly similar to those of Clark. None of us could fly or see through solid objects or shoot fire from our eyes, but we were strong, we could superspeed and nothing could ever hurt us again. Lex had apparently come up with that idea when Lara had been born without powers, but with invulnerability. It was a miracle child, the child that saved us. There was a reason to why she was born that was also giving a meaning to Lois's life that was so foolishly wasted by Zod.

I looked up from the grave and hope entered my heart.

I looked at Clark who stood, holding his daughter close to his chest, hugging her now. She lost her mother, but I was sure she would have the best dad a child could ever hope for.

Oliver and Lily were happy together, unbreakable. They seemed right for each other and I finally stopped worrying.

The most important relationship yet, was here, right when I was standing. It was me and Lex. Hundred plus years and still together, still in love, still desiring each other.

This was a brave new world and a new chance. We wouldn't waste it, I was sure of it. There would be no one else to die. The darkness was over.

It also came as a revelation to me: no more prophecies. We'd thought it'd been over before, but it truly was over just now. And we survived.


Clark

"Clark," he heard Imra's voice as the crowd by Lois's grave - the very first and probably last one in this world - dissipated.

"Imra," he turned to her with obvious hope in his voice.

She just shook her head sadly at him.

"I just wanted to say how sorry I am for your loss," she said when coming closer and looking at him.

"Imra, I… this doesn't change any…" he started desperately, but she shook her head again.

"Everything's changed, Clark. Here, on this Earth I have a new chance and I won't waste it. I just wanted to say how sorry I was for you, especially for Lara because she lost her mother. Goodbye."

"Imra!" he called after her again, but she was already gone, using her newly developed superspeed to find herself as far away from him as possible.

When she finally entered her house, she bent in a half and started crying. The pain was almost too much. It began in her heart and then shot out in all directions like it was affecting every single of her organs.

Only she couldn't come back to Clark. It wouldn't be right. He'd hurt her way too much.

She needed to forget.

Find a way to live on this new planet.

A way to live without him.