Critical Mass by Djinn

"So you're saying we're stuck here?"

"I'm afraid so, Lois. The cave-in is quite extensive. Whoever lured us here knew what they were doing."

"You can't punch your way through the dirt and rock?"

"I can. If I took you with me, you wouldn't survive the trip. And if I leave you, it will only close back up and create a lot of dust."

"So I'll die faster?"

"Yes."

"You don't mince words, do you?"

"Is there a point in doing that?"

"Probably not. And strangely, I respect that. So, Wonder Woman, would you like it if I died faster?"

"Under the circumstances, you might as well call me Diana. And no, I wouldn't like it."

"Not sure I believe you."

"I don't lie, Lois."

"That'd be a lot more convincing if you could look me in the eyes."

"I can. I just..."

"Forget I said anything. Okay, so my options are: die alone, possibly rapidly, or die slowly with you? I'm leaning toward door number one. Offense definitely intended."

"I will not leave you here."

"You prefer to die with me? Not the answer I expected. You've never shown that much regard for me before."

"I will probably not die as quickly as you do. I may even have the strength to blast myself free once you are gone."

"Wow, that was snotty. Congratulations. I didn't think you had it in you."

"Apparently, you were wrong."

"I wasn't wrong about everything. Ooh, suddenly have nothing to say, Wonder Woman?"

"Diana."

"Funny, I'm not comfortable calling you that. Maybe it's because Clark is. And again, you seem to have nothing to say."

"I am considering our options."

"Sure you are, sweetie."

"Do you hate me, Lois?"

"Pretty much."

"I'm sorry."

"I think you actually are. You'd rather not be the bad guy here."

"Kal will find us."

"Nice segue way out of the minefield. And Clark will only find us if he figures out we're missing. Did you have an appointment with him this morning you want to tell me about?"

"You're right. It will take Kal some time to realize we are both missing."

"Sloppy on the dismount. You're not very good at this, Diana."

"You called me Diana."

"I'm delirious from lack of air."

"You're bitchy from lack of air. And we should conserve what air is left and stop talking."

"Stop? When I'm enjoying this conversation so much? And I didn't think you used words like 'bitchy.' Butter wouldn't melt in your mouth and all that."

"The world has made me into a paragon, but I'm just a woman."

"The other woman, in fact. My, that was a dramatic sigh. When are we going to talk about this? You're supposed to be a superhero. Show some guts."

"I am not having an aff..."

"Wow. I guess you can't lie."

"I think we should not be talking."

"I think we should."

"Fine, you talk and I will not."

"I wish you'd done that when I interviewed you. Instead of giving me that bald-faced lie."

"I did not lie. Kal and I were not..."

"So it started later. When?"

"I did not say that it started at all."

"When?"

"Lois, do not get angry. You will only use up our air."

"Our air. Our man. I'm sick to death of sharing things that matter with you."

"I too am unhappy with the arrangement."

"Ouch. The truth stings."

"Perhaps I meant it to. And I was referring to the oxygen in here, not to Kal. Why are you goading me?"

"Because you exist."

"You hate me that much?"

"I hate the hypocrisy of you. The Amazon who cannot lie. Who comes here to teach us mere mortals how to live. And how does she live?"

"That is an unattractive smile."

"I don't have an attractive one. Not for you."

"I will survive anyway."

"And again with a direct hit. Hanging around Bruce is helping you with the snappy repartee."

"I do not hang around Bruce."

"No, that's right. You're too busy hanging all over my husband. Bruce is quite attractive, don't you think?"

"If you like that type."

"I used to. Before I fell in love with the boy scout from hell. I slept with Bruce. Did you know that?"

"Does Kal know that?"

"Nope. And if he finds out, I'll know who told him. No one else knows."

"Bruce knows."

"And God himself couldn't pry it out of Bruce if he didn't want to tell. Bruce has honor."

"Bruce is obsessive."

"You seem a bit peeved with him. I doubt you're jealous that I shared his bed-more than once too. He's quite good."

"I am not jealous of you and Bruce."

"Don't tell me you blame him for what's happened between you and Clark? 'The devil made me do it' is a tired defense."

"I have not said that I am doing anything with Kal."

"You also haven't said you aren't. The distinction is not lost on me."

"I wish you would stop talking."

"Now that, I believe. It's getting warmer in here."

"You are using up all our air."

"Bully for me. Clark's great in bed, isn't he? Once you've had that, you don't want to go back."

"I am not going to discuss this."

"He can cut loose with you, can't he? He can let go and give you his full strength. Does he do that? Pound against you as you murmur, 'Oh, Kal, you're the best.'?"

"I am not going to go down this road."

"What are you doing?"

"I am trying to move these rocks."

"Move them where? And you'll use up all my air. I take issue with that. Sit still."

"I do not wish to sit that close to you."

"Well, I'd move over but there's nowhere to go. Isn't that the problem, Diana? I just won't get out of your way? What was that? I don't speak mumble."

"I said, I will outlive you."

"Not if we keep bumping our gums, you won't."

"In a normal context, both Kal and I will outlive you."

"That would be harsh if your face weren't turning so red. You really hate being the villain, don't you?"

"I'm not...it's just..."

"Remind me not to describe you as articulate in my next article."

"Will it be a hatchet job?"

"A truth epic. The untold Princess. Was he your first?"

"What?"

"You heard me. And I'll make it easy for you. Just nod if he was. Jeez, you're stubborn."

"It is none of your business."

"If you're boffing Clark, it's very much my business."

"Kal is my friend."

"Do all Amazons define friendship that way?"

"Damn you."

"Temper, temper. So he was your first."

"I did not say-"

"-Stop saying that. I'm very aware of all the things you did not say. This cave is full of things you did not say."

"What about you? You stay with him even though you think that he is with me."

"Screw you."

"Now it is you who is anything but articulate."

"Diana, go to hell."

"I live there, Lois. I live there and..."

"And what?"

"Nothing."

"And what? Tell me, goddamn it."

"And it's by my own choice. I hate myself for that, all right? Does that make you happy to hear? I despise myself."

"Hmmm. Wish I could say I was sorry but..."

"I did not expect sympathy from you."

"And I did not expect it to take this long for you to speak truth. Weren't you the goddess of truth?"

"I was."

"Guess there's no question why you still aren't."

"Miaow."

"Yeah, that was a good one, wasn't it?"

"You use words like Bruce does. To hurt."

"You're Wonder Woman. How else am I going to fight you?"

"We don't have to fight."

"You realize that is the stupidest thing you've probably ever said? You're my husband's mistress. What else are we going to do? Kiss and make up? What was that?"

"What?"

"You looked...interested."

"That was not interest."

"It was too. I know interest when I see it."

"I am not interested in you."

"Only in my husband."

"Yes."

"Aha."

"I did not mean that the way it came out, Lois."

"The hell you didn't. So...you swing both ways?"

"Swing?"

"Are. You. Bisexual? Clear enough for you?"

"Yes."

"Yes, it's clear enough for you? Or, yes, you swing both ways?"

"Yes."

"Bitch."

"You're probably right."

"Whoa, check out the long face. Why all morose, Diana? You're going to outlive me, remember? You're going to survive this when I don't, and then Clark will be all yours."

"Shut up, Lois."

"Do you think I'm pretty?"

"What difference-"

"-Answer the question."

"Yes."

"Hmmm."

"Lois, I can say a sunset is pretty. It does not mean I want to seduce it."

"Did I mention seduction? Why are you talking about it?"

"I thought that was why you were asking."

"No. It was just a question. But obviously seducing me is on your mind."

"No, it's not."

"So you don't want to seduce me?"

"I don't want to seduce anyone, Lois."

"Except Clark?"

"I am not falling for that one twice."

"She learns. No further questions, your honor."

"I can see why Bruce likes you."

"Yes, but can you see why Clark does?"

"He's a masochist?"

"Wow. That was a really good one. We'll make a harpy out of you yet."

"I've seen a harpy. They are not attractive."

"Well, at least they advertise what they're like on the inside. Unlike some people. And again with the big sigh. Have I hurt your widdle feelings, Diana?"

"No."

"I think I have. First I have the gall not to like you. And now, I won't let you seduce me."

"I never said I wanted to."

"But you do like women? You grew up on an island with only women. I mean, I've been there. I've seen how they pair up. You had women as lovers, didn't you?"

"Yes."

"Are you quite skilled? Can you send your partner to heaven?"

"I am a wonder."

"Ooh, loaded sarcasm in that one. I like it."

"You want me to be like you? Witty and caustic?"

"Is that how you think I am?"

"Yes. Hard. Cold. Tough."

"What? And you're soft, warm, and weak? Hardly. In case it's slipped your notice, Clark likes his women ballsy. He always has."

"His women?"

"Piqued the old curiosity on that one, didn't I?"

"I just wondered. I know about Lana, of course."

"And Lori."

"The mermaid?"

"Yep. That would be the one. LL, LL, LL, WW. What's next? Is there anyone else with double letter initials I should worry about?"

"I have no idea."

"Oh, but you're trying to figure it out, aren't you? You're going through the list of heroes and villains right now."

"I am not."

"Liar. Are there any?"

"I am not worrying about that."

"So, do you prefer men or women, Diana?"

"You turn on a dime, Lois. I'm not as clever as you. I can't keep up."

"Bullshit. Clark also likes his women quick."

"I'm happy you've given this so much thought."

"So? Women or men?"

"Both have their good points."

"I want specifics."

"You've never been with a woman, Lois?"

"I never have."

"Then I suggest you rent some lesbian porn. There is no doubt something out there that might excite you."

"Very snarky return of serve, Diana. I'm almost impressed. Tell me, what do you know of porn?"

"Nothing. But I'm sure you're well acquainted with it."

"Why do you say that?"

"Lois, the air is getting dangerously thin."

"Yes, it is. But I don't notice you having any trouble with it."

"While you, on the other hand, are starting to. If you would just shut up..."

"Why? Because I've got the upper hand in the conversat-."

"-Lois, I'm serious. Listen to you. You're starting to wheeze."

"Oh."

"Yes. Just be still. Please?"

"Promise me something?"

"Perhaps."

"Smart woman."

"What is the promise, Lois?"

"When I'm dead. Don't leave me here. Take my body with you when you make your big dash for freedom?"

"You are not going to die."

"Promise me, Diana. I can't stand the thought of being trapped in here forever."

"I promise."

"Did you just move closer?"

"You appeared to be panicking. I thought by moving closer..."

"Nice of you. Always thinking of the other guy. No wonder Clark loves you."

"He does not-"

"-Stop lying."

"I am not lying."

"Stop it! We're almost out of air and you're using it up with lies! Admit it. Admit you love him and you're screwing his brains out when I'm not around. Admit you're having an affair with my husband. I'm dying, Diana. You may be too. So just admit that you are the bad guy here. Just admit that you're not such a Wond-"

"..."

"Why did you do that?"

"You were using our air up, Lois."

"And kissing me seemed like the way to stop that?"

"You were crying...I made you cry. And I'm sorry."

"Don't. I can wipe them off myself."

"I am sorry, Lois."

"You know, I knew he loved you when I married him. I just thought that he loved me more."

"I think he does."

"And I think with that and thirty-five cents, I could make a phone call."

"I'm sorry. I wish I could offer you words that were worth something."

"Maybe you can. Tell me how you could do it to me? After you told me outright that nothing was going on."

"I don't know. I just...did. I've watched you with him lately. I know you're a good person, Lois. But I'm starting to hate you."

"It's called cognitive dissonance."

"I know what it is. But I am supposed to represent truth."

"You do. The truth is that you lie. And you steal. And I wish we weren't trapped here because I could hate you a lot easier before."

"Before?"

"Before you kissed me."

"It was a nice kiss. Women are...softer."

"I noticed."

"I wish I could tell you that I'll walk away from Kal."

"But you won't?"

"I won't. It would be an empty promise, Lois. I've tried already. It doesn't work."

"Try harder."

"Maybe I will."

"Liar."

"You must be getting tired. That lacked your normal spite."

"I'm not feeling very spiteful anymore, Diana. I hate you. I wish you didn't exist. But..."

"But?"

"But I'm glad I'm not dying alone in here."

"Lois. You're not dying. Kal will-"

"Clark will not find us. No one will find us."

"Don't give up hope."

"Hope? I lost hope a long time ago. Hope is a bitch who promises everything and gives nothing. Hope can go to-"

"..."

"You need to stop doing that, Diana."

"Why?"

"Because I like it."

"Is that a bad thing?"

"Yes."

"Oh."

"Your hair is soft."

"So is yours. You have beautiful eyes, Lois."

"Everyone says so. They won't be very beautiful when they're filled with dust."

"Shhh."

"Will you do it again? Only pretend I'm Clark this time. Kiss me like you'd kiss Clark."

"Lois, I don't think this is a good idea."

"Well, I do. And I'm the one dying."

"..."

"Holy crap. No wonder he wants you. Now I'm really depressed."

"Did you hear that?"

"Hear what?"

"Someone is coming. Someone is..."

"Oh, too bright. Diana, make them turn off the lights."

"Are you two all right?"

"We're fine, Kal."

"Took you long enough, Smallville."

"Nice to see you too, Lois. Come on, up we go."

"Put me down; I can walk. Diana?"

"Yes?"

"We're not finished with this discussion."

"Lois, I think we are."

"No. We're not. Clark, Diana is coming back with us. The three of us need to talk."

"The three of us?"

"Three."

"Three's an interesting number, Lois. And usually a crowd."

"Bruce? What are you doing here?"

"Just helping out."

"Nice of you."

"No, Diana, it wasn't. Why don't you help Lois outside? I need to talk with Clark."

"Yes, Diana, help me outside. I'm just a feeble human who needs your wonderful touch."

"Nice to know you're feeling back to normal."

"I didn't say that."

"You didn't have to say it. I can hear it in your tone. Come on. Let's leave the boys alone."

"Well, Bruce?"

"Well, Clark?"

"Just make the check out to the Metropolis Children's House."

"I don't know. A cave-in, Clark? That's so tired."

"You didn't say how to do it, you just bet me that I couldn't get them talking."

"I think they might have been doing more than talking, Clark."

"Yeah. I know."

"Get that look off your face."

"Hey. A man can dream."

"Those two women, my friend? That could well turn out to be a nightmare."

"And talking about things won't be?"

"You took the bet."

"Yeah, well, I'm not the sharpest knife in the drawer sometimes, now am I?"

"Nope. And you never could resist a challenge."

"Oh, shut up."

"Where are you going?"

"I've got to get my ladies home."

"Wipe that stupid look off your face."

"Better?"

"No. You're drooling."

"You want to come with? We could always use a fourth for bridge...or whatever."

"Clark, you are a sick individual."

"So do you want to come?"

"Wouldn't miss it for the world. But I'm not flying with you."

"Not my fault it makes you all hot to have me hold you."

"It does not make me hot, Clark."

"Does too."

"I will not say it."

"Fine. So, you want to go double or nothing on this one?"

"Specify terms."

"Fly with me and I'll spell them out."

"Pervert."

"And you love it. Ah, here they are. And ready to go, I hope?"

"Bruce, is everything all right? You look annoyed."

"He's coming home with us too, Lois."

"Kal, I don't think-"

"No one asked what you think, Diana. Clark invited me."

"Could you just take Lois to the apartment, Diana?"

"You want me to take her, Kal?"

"Bruce and I have some business to discuss."

"You do?"

"Run along, girls."

"Girls?"

"They sound nice together, don't they, Bruce? They look good together too. You don't mind if we watch them till they're out of sight?"

"Fine."

"You don't have to come."

"I'll come."

"Well, in the meantime, you can start making out that check."

"I've created a monster."

"Not yet. But the night is young, Bruce. The night is young."

FIN