"Loves Me, Loves Me Not"

by Denise (kdsch123)

PG, possible spoilers for Season 6

Character Study, Chlark, Chlimmy

Summary: Chloe Sullivan seeks answers while trying to decide between Clark Kent and Jimmy Olsen.

"Loves Me, Loves Me Not"…Damn….

The friendly little flower met a messy end. Chloe looked down at the pile of white petals on the desk, and at the velvety yellow middle bobbing on it's green stem in her hand. A messy end and no answers given. "So much for your powers as a fortune teller." She said, sweeping the petals from the desk and into the trash in one fluid motion. There were eleven more chances for an answer sitting in a white glass vase. Bought with the original purpose of brightening up her desk in the basement of The Daily Planet, the daisies were now Chloe's oracles, cheery sacrifices to her need to know. Chloe reached over and took a flower from the vase, thinking about Clark. If she let herself think about it, the kiss she and Clark shared not five steps from this very desk was still there on her lips, she still could feel the pressure of his lips on hers. If she closed her eyes she could feel his arms around her, and it made her tremble. Chloe twirled the daisy in her hand, thinking of all the times Clark had held her in his arms, looked into her eyes or brushed away hair from her face. How many times had his broad shoulders been between me and disaster, Chloe asked herself, pulling the petals from her latest victim, chanting the words in her head.

"Loves Me, Loves Me Not, Loves Me.…."

Moments that came back to her in dreams, things that may have happened when she wasn't herself, passionate kisses, the warmth of Clark's body and his scent, things he said didn't happen or dismissed with a shy smile and kind words. So much of her young life had been spent loving Clark, that it was hard to see it any other way. Learning his secret, protecting him, caring about him. Time invested, loving him when other girls had turned his head, weeping for him when Alicia died, counseling him through his relationship with Lana. Had it been wrong to take a step back after that crazy Thursday when the world shifted on it's axis and Clark actually kissed her back and looked at her like he was seeing her for the first time? How could wanting to be sure that his eyes were shining for her be a bad thing? She looked down at the desk, and at the petal in her hand. Was that a "loves me" or a "loves me not"? Chloe pulled out daisy out of the vase, while the frenzy of the Daily Planet went on around her. Thinking about Clark was a sure way for her train of thought to completely jump the tracks and veer off into a pretty dreamland where Clark was just as crazy about her as Chloe was for him. It wasn't that he hadn't given her those clues, either. Some place deep down inside of him, Chloe was sure that Clark loved her desperately, but deep down inside didn't do a damn bit of good if it didn't get up to the surface to live a little. But she would gladly turn herself inside out for him, if he asked her to. It was just part of who Chloe was, and she thanked God daily that Clark wasn't the kind of person to take advantage of that.

Something Grandmother Sullivan had always told her came to mind, as Chloe began peeling the petals from this flower.

"It's always good when a man is a little more in love with you than you are with him." Remembering Grandmother Sullivan's soft brogue made Chloe smile. Grandfather Sullivan had been an object lesson in that idea. Chloe thought about that, remembering how Grandfather carefully carried a cup of strong Irish tea to her Grandmother every morning before the day got started, how he'd sing "Annie Laurie" to her as they washed dishes together, and how every year, on a day that meant something to both of them and the rest of the family wondered about, a bunch of daisies would miraculously appear on the well scrubbed kitchen table. Chloe so wished she could ask why those daisies would show up, but both of her grandparents were gone now, and Gabe was sweetly clueless about his parents love life. Lois had no idea either, but she and Chloe would often try to decipher the story from remembered clues, and their stories were probably more wild and unbelievable than those two sweet people from Galway would have believed. Or maybe not.

"Loves Me, Loves Me Not, Loves Me, Loves Me Not…"

Then, there was Jimmy Olsen. She'd be lying if she said seeing him appear through the doorway that day after what seemed like moments since Clark left her had given her a thrill that jolted her down to her socks. Jimmy, a fresh and simple and open as the flower in her hand, and yes, he was crazy about her. There was no ignoring that. They had shared something very special that during that summer internship, and Chloe had been mature enough at the time to realize that you didn't always spend the rest of your life with the person you shared your 'first time' with. The funny thing was, that was a long time ago, and she and Jimmy seemed to be in a different place, he was the one that was now seeking her out, would settle for what she was willing to give him and no more, insecure around Clark, but not enough to hold back what he thought or how he felt. Chloe could appreciate that kind of honesty. Jimmy Olsen was definitely more interested in Chloe than she was in him. So a plus on the Grandmother Sullivan scale of love. And, Chloe always laughed so much when she and Jimmy were together. There was no problem larger than what movie to see or what kind of ice cream to try, and something very reassuring in being with Jimmy, a reminder that normal was nice. Well, unless she had to defibrillate him save him from alien seed pods, but really, that could happen to anyone. Chloe looked up, and through the glass partition, she could see Jimmy at work, studying pictures he'd taken. He was much more slender than Clark, and his red hair always made Chloe smile, just as his earnest blue eyes never seemed to ask for more than a smile from her. The glass kept him from feeling her eyes on him, and Chloe was glad he didn't turn around. She dropped her eyes back down to the desk, and smiled down at the piles of white petals. There was two daisies left in the vase, and Chloe laughed at herself as she swept the loose petals into the garbage can.

"Hey." Clark's voice made her look up. He grinned, holding a white paper bag out to her. "Brought you some lunch." He looked down at the snowdrift of daisy petals in the garbage pail and frowned. "Problem with your flowers?"

"Um…thanks." Chloe smiled back, taking the bag. "No, not really. What brings you to Metropolis?"

"Just thought I'd stop by, see how you were doing." Clark reached out and touched the daisies. "Listen, Chlo', I wanted to…"

"Hey, Chloe." Jimmy appeared beside Clark. "Ready to go with me to City Hall for the Mayor's press conference? We can get lunch on the way…oh, hi, CK."

"Hi." Clark said. "Well, you're busy, Chloe..I'll talk to you later, okay?"

"Yeah, Clark, I'm so sorry." Chloe picked up her purse and grabbed the lunch Clark had brought her. "I'll eat this at City Hall. Thanks." She walked away, feeling Clark's eyes on her and wishing it was all somehow easier, that the choice would simply make itself. All through the press conference, Chloe found herself wondering what it was that had brought Clark to Metropolis to talk to her, what had inspired him to bring her lunch. There was no time to call him right then, but Chloe promised herself she would.

Later, when Chloe got back to the Daily Planet, she found one daisy in the vase and the petals from it's companion on her desk, the yellow center resting on the bed they made peacefully. One petal sat alone, apart from the others, and Chloe picked it up and stared at it for a long time, before she grabbed her bag and her cell phone to head out the door.

"Loves Me, Loves Me Not, Loves Me…"