Started and Finished: December 13, 2002

Last Episode Seen Before Writing: Skinwalker

Pairing: Chloe/Lex

Rating: PG-13

Category: Drama, Angst

Spoilers: Any of Season 1 or 2 is game. Nothing major.

Summary: Lex has changed, and Chloe won't take it anymore.

Disclaimer: I do not own any of these characters.

Author's Note: I love Lex. Really I do, but the thought of him going bad has been haunting me lately. So, if you don't want to read a 'Lex gone bad' fic, then skip this one!

All The Time


"Daddy, you're hurting me," little Alex told his father, fear registering in his eyes as Lex gripped his arm.

"Stop it, Daddy!" Mary demanded, standing up for her younger brother that she loved so much. Her bottom lip stuck out as she got ready to cry.

At that moment Chloe burst into the library, running at her children's yelling. Chloe scooped baby Alicia off of her blanket by the couch, wiping away her tears. "Lex, let him go," she said fiercely.

*Here we are, what is left of a husband and a wife

four good kids who have a way of gettin' on with their lives*

Lex turned ice blue eyes on his wife. "He has to learn not to snoop in matters that don't concern him."

"Lex, he's just a child. He's only five. He doesn't know any better," Chloe said, urging Lex to unhand her son.

"He's a Luthor," Lex said, as if it were the answer to everything.

Mary wrapped her arms around her mother's leg, peeking at her father from behind her mother.


*I'm not old but I'm getting a whole lot older every day
It's too late to keep from goin' crazy
I got to get away*

Chloe's hand went to Mary's head. "Look at them. Look how afraid they are of you, Lex. Your children are afraid of you." When Lex didn't reply she started to get angry. "Let go of my son, now," Chloe said, her voice full of venom.

Lex huffed, letting go of Alex roughly. Alex rushed to his mother, tears staining his beautiful face. He took residence on Chloe's free leg, gripping it tightly.

"What happened to you, Lex?" Chloe asked, her voice almost a whisper.

*The reasons that I can't stay don't have a thing to do with being in love
And I understand that lovin a man shouldn't have to be this rough*

"I'm the same man you married," Lex threw back.

"No," Chloe shook her head. "The man I married was caring, compassionate, determined to do the right thing. You're different."

"Mommy?" Alex asked, turning wet eyes up to his mother.

"What, baby?" Chloe asked, looking down at him.

"Why does Daddy hate me?"


*You ain't the only one Who feels like this world left you far behind
I don't know why you gotta be Angry All The Time*

Chloe started to cry at those words. She looked at Lex before turning back to her son. "He doesn't hate you, sweetheart, he just gets mad."

"What did I do to make him mad?" Alex asked, the tears still streaming down his cheeks.

Chloe took a ragged breath, kneeling down onto the plush rug.


*Our boys are strong the spittin' image of you when you were young
I hope someday they can see past what you have become*

She set Alicia on her lap, and pulled Mary and Alex to her. She turned her head up slowly to look at Lex. "I know what you are," she said.

Lex's steel eyes didn't show any emotion as Chloe continued to talk.

"You've turned into your father," she said, her words filled with utter sadness.


*I remember every time I said I'd never leave
What I can't live with is memories of the way you used to be*

"I am not my father," Lex finally spoke up, his voice slightly unsteady.

"You're not? Then look at our son. Look at him," Chloe pressed. "And tell him you love him."

Lex looked at Alex. Alex's blond hair fell into one eye as he looked fearfully at his father.


*The reasons that I can't stay don't have a thing to do with being in love
And I understand that lovin' a man shouldn't have to be this rough*

"He knows how I feel," Lex said, bristling slightly.

Chloe straightened her shoulders, scooping Alicia into her arms again. She stood. "I'm leaving."

"What?" Lex asked, trying to read Chloe's face.

"I'm taking the children and we'll be out of this castle tonight," she said with a firm nod.

Lex scoffed. "Where would you go?" he asked, daring Chloe to find an answer.

"I've already talked to Lana. She said we're welcome anytime. Goodbye, Lex," she said, looking into his eyes for a moment. "Come on children."


*You ain't the only one Who feels like this world left you far behind
I don't know why you gotta be Angry All The Time*

"Mama. Mama!"

"Hmm?" Chloe asked, turning to her son.

"It's Alicia's turn to walk across the stage," the young man told her.

Chloe smiled at her now grown son, then turned to watch her youngest daughter receive her diploma.


*Twenty years have came and went since I walked out of your door
I never quite made it back to the one I was before*

"Are you okay?" Clark asked, leaning around Lana.

Chloe smiled at him sadly. "Yeah. I think so."

Lana put an arm protectively around her best friend. "You've raised three great kids."

Chloe's smile grew as she reached across Alex for Mary's hand. "Yeah, I know."


*And God it hurts me to think of you
For the light in your eyes was gone sometimes*

"Mama? Did you see me?" Alicia asked, turning her full-watt smile on her mother.

"You bet I did, baby," Chloe replied, hugging her daughter tightly.

"Aunt Lana," Alicia said, hugging her aunt.

"You looked beautiful," Lana said, running her fingers through Alicia's fiery red hair.

"Hey, munchkin," Pete greeted, moving in for his hug.

"Uncle Pete," Alicia complained. "I'm almost taller than you."


*I don't know why this old world can't leave well enough alone*

"You'll never be taller than me," Clark said, grinning at Alicia.

"That's because you're a skyscraper," Alicia teased, her tone so much like her mother's at that age.

Chloe smiled. She glanced at a distant point, feeling something pulling her. Across the stadium Lex stood at the door, a silent spectator. His eyes locked with Chloe's for a split second before he turned to leave.


*The reasons that I can't stay don't have a thing to do with being in love
And I understand that lovin a man shouldn't have to be this rough*

Chloe knew he would come. She had felt it. Ever since they left she always sent him the flyers about their children's various sports games, recitals, or important events. Every time it was the same thing. He would come, watch from afar, then leave without a word.


*You ain't the only one Who feels like this world left you far behind*

"Chlo, time for food," Pete said, licking his lips hungrily.

Chloe nodded absently, watching Lex's retreating back. "Okay."

Clark narrowed his eyes, searching for the point Chloe was looking at. When he didn't see anything, he put his arm around Chloe's shoulders. "And time for monster ice cream sundaes. What do you say kids?"

Alicia, Mary, and Alex all nodded their approval.

Pete added his arm to Chloe's shoulders and the group walked back to the waiting cars.

*I don't know why you gotta be Angry All The Time*