Epilogue

As soon as Superman found himself back in his own universe, there was only one person he wanted to see. The woman who had captured the heart of the man in the cape; his wife, Lois. No sooner had he gotten back than he flew straight to their home, plucked her from where she stood, whisked her outside and spiraled into the sky, their lips locked in a passionate kiss. As they soared higher and higher into the sky, the warmth of the yellow sun seeped through his pores and rejuvenated his body, just as the warmth of Lois's sweet mouth rejuvenated his weary soul.

After many long minutes, the kiss finally broke off. Superman rested his forehead against Lois's, and gazed into her eyes.

"Let's have a baby," he whispered.

Her jaw dropped. "Are you serious?" she breathed. "I mean, I know we've talked about it before, but… I mean, do you really want to try to have one? Do you think we're ready?"

He answered by plunging in for another kiss.

Weeks passed. Superman, now at home in his role as Clark Kent, husband, snuggled in bed with his wife. The idea that he had proposed after returning home from his time travel adventure had proven to be much more complicated than he'd first realized. After consulting both their trusted friend Dr. Klein from S.T.A.R. Labs and Lois's father, Dr. Sam Lane, the conclusion that they had come to was that it was physically impossible for a Kryptonian man and an Earth woman to have a child together.

"I'm sorry," Lois said, softly.

"For what?" Clark replied.

"I'm sorry that Daddy can't find anything wrong with S.T.A.R. Labs' data. He doesn't think we'll be able to have kids."

Clark almost had to laugh, and wonder if telepathy was secretly a super power that Lois possessed. She always seemed to know what was weighing on his mind.

"I have not, for one second, doubted in us," Clark said gently. "We live the impossible. A child is something brought about by love, isn't it? Well then, that above all else has got to be possible for us."

Lois smiled and ran her hand tenderly over Clark's. Clark smiled back, reassuringly. Just then, he got that faraway look in his eye that told Lois that his super hearing had picked up something.

"Clark, what're you hearing?" she asked.

"I'm not sure," he replied.

"Well what does it sound like?"

He turned and looked back at her. "I can't actually believe what it sounds like," he said.

Lois and Clark went downstairs together, following the noise that Clark had heard. As they opened the sliding door to the foyer, they were met with a sight that took their breath away. A white bassinet sat in the middle of the room. Inside the bassinet was a tiny baby, wrapped in a red and blue blanket. Lois's hand went to her chest, in disbelief of her own two eyes. Inside the bassinet with the baby was a card, which read simply, "Lois and Clark, this child belongs to you."

Wells, Clark thought, beaming. He told us he would take the baby someplace safe… well there's no safer place than with me and Lois. If we're really not able to have children of our own, then we'll raise this baby with all the love and support that we would have given our own kids.

The baby cooed as Lois picked him up from the bassinet and cradled him in her arms. Finally, Lois Lane and Clark Kent were parents, as they had longed to be, and had a child that they could share their love with. This child would be truly blessed.

Across the cosmos. Another planet, where fire burned from its core and shot out of craters, scorching the sky and casting a dreary blackness of ash and soot all over the land. The inhabitants of this world referred to it as Apokolips. A solitary figure looked down over the denizens of this planet, his loyal subjects, from his tower. He was a huge, hulking brute. His skin was gray and brittle like granite, and his eyes burned red like two embers set deep within his skull. He was born Uxas, son of Yuga Khan and Queen Heggra. The name by which he was now known and feared was Darkseid.

His silent brooding was interrupted by an earsplitting "BOOM!", as the air behind him was ripped momentarily apart. A yellow light shone through a hole in space and time, and Tempus stumbled forward through the Boom Tube, clutching his wrist. He slowly rotated his hand, frowning at the chunks of red kryptonite that were still embedded deep in his flesh.

The Boom Tube closed behind him, and Tempus was left staring up at Darkseid, who towered over him.

"Tempus," Darkseid muttered in disgust, his voice like a low rumble of thunder. "You have failed me."

For once in his life, Tempus was at a loss for words. "I… um… that is… well… Oh come on, big guy! This is just a little setback! We can bounce back from this!"

"The alternate reality that we created ceased to exist several minutes ago," Darkseid continued. "All our preparations were for nothing. The other Supermen are already starting to reappear in their own universes."

Tempus and Darkseid were joined by a third individual, cloaked in a purple robe. He was Desaad, Darkseid's lackey and a master of the art of torture. "Lord Darkseid," Desaad said with a slight bow.

"Yes, Desaad?"

"We were only able to transfer 47 of Brainiac's memory banks before he went off-line, sire."

"This disappoints me further," Darkseid said with a scowl.

"Listen, Big D!" Tempus cried with a shrug. "We're still in control as long as the dopey kid has the fake key, right? We'll just start all over again!"

"Fake key, sire?" Desaad inquired.

Darkseid produced a metal, octagonal disk. "Indeed. This disk is a key that came to Earth with Kal-El's space ship. I had Tempus go into the past and replace it with one of my own design. The language that Kal-El believes he is reading as Kryptonian is actually a native language of Apokolips, and the messages he believes are from his father, Jor-El, are in fact coming from me."

"Brilliant," Desaad said with a delighted smile.

"But ultimately useless," Darkseid declared. "You have wasted my time, Tempus, and proven yourself worthless to me. Desaad, you may torture Tempus to death."

Tempus's eyes went wide in fear, and he backed away from he wickedly grinning Desaad. "Whoa, now, don't you think you're overreacting a little here, Big D! I mean, we can just try again! I mean, we've got a time machine! We can do this thing as many times as we want! Duh!"

"Now that the time travel technology is in my possession, your role has become unnecessary, Tempus," Darkseid replied, coldly. "I have no further use for you."

"Um, actually, sire, there is one bit of good news," Desaad added. "It seems that there was a survivor of the end of the alternate reality."

"Oh?"

"Yes, sire… the baby survived. The time travelers took the child with them."

Darkseid did not react to this news. He merely continued to stare down at the abysmal planet that stretched out beneath him. Then he raised his hand to his mouth, and clenched his massive fist. "The child of the Last Son of Krypton and the Princess of the Amazons," he mused. "He would have the potential to be the most powerful being in the universe." Darkseid finally turned away from his view of Apokolips. "I may have use for you after all, Tempus. You have one final chance to redeem yourself."

"Oh, anything," Tempus said, pitifully, still backing away from Desaad. "Name it, Darkseid. What is it that you want me to do?"

An unholy smile crept across Darkseid's lips.

"Bring me the Son of Kal-El."

THE END