Disclaimer: Superman, 'Superman Returns' and Batman are own by DC comics and Warner Bros. This story is intended only for my own entertainment and the one of who may read it.



Kal-El hovers high above the stratosphere, his eyes shut as usual, and although he still keeps an ear opened just in case, surveying the world is not his main motivation right now…

He wants to take a moment to himself, a moment to rest and think, just to sort out his feelings about what has happened since he returned from his trip to Krypton.

His heart is filled with conflicting emotions: joy to be a father, not be the last one of his kind anymore; pain to know he'll never be able to be his son's real 'Daddy.' Richard is Jason's Dad, and as sure it is, no one could be better for the job; he's just the perfect type of man… the perfect type of husband. Kal-El clenches his jaw at that thought. It was all is his fault; he left Lois alone. Now he was making her suffer even more by returning and forcing her to choose between him and Richard.

It's not fair. He doesn't want Lois to have to choose, just as before he left for Krypton, when their relationship was already impossible. Although he had been desperately in love with her then, he knew their love was doomed because she only knew and loved one side of him: Superman. She only saw the mighty stranger in him, the power and wonder he had in himself. It never occurred to her that he could be anyone else and live among common people. If it had, she would have immediately realized that he was Clark; glasses and goofiness couldn't have been enough as a shield for her. She was and still is a great reporter after all!

Kal-El had been really hurt when he had realized this after the one night they spent together. He had decided to bring her to his Fortress of Solitude to tell her everything: his life, his love for her... But they got carried away and passion got the best of him. He had kissed her and the next thing he could recall is that they where in bed for the most memorable night of his life. Unfortunately it had ended shortly after with a call for help from Asia that had forced him to return her to her apartment in Metropolis before flying away. Later, as he made his way back to her, he was so happy with the earlier events of the evening that the infuriated look she gave him as he landed on her balcony was like a cold shower. All the courage he had gathered to tell her the truth about his real identity had vanished in an instant.

The next few days he tried to let things go as he couldn't find the strength anymore to tell her the truth about himself. It didn't help that she was passing her anger onto Clark because Superman was away "saving more stupid fools who couldn't take care of themselves properly." Then there was this article about scientists finding Krypton… Maybe it was fate; a way to escape this sudden great solitude that had seized his soul. Without a second thought he had left all behind, thinking, like a fool, that it was a fantastic idea.

Now that he has returned he's found himself in the middle of a total mess. Things have changed but not the things that should have. Lois has been mad at Superman for leaving. Of course she's been mad! She's always been mad at him for some reason… But at least she still had feelings for this side of him. Clark, in the other hand, has seemed to be simply erased from her memory and he realizes now that it's what hurts him so much, even more than to see her in the arms of another man. And now there's Jason, his son. Richard's son…

Kal-El feels so close to happiness, but totally incapable of reaching it. During the last hour, after visiting Jason, pure joy had filled him as he surfed in the clouds, bathing in the regenerating sun. But now he feels empty. Some slight exhaustion and pain from his scar remind him that Luthor must still be out there somewhere. He couldn't have died. He would have to find him, and soon.

With that last thought he dives in the clouds.