AN: I have to tattle on myself. When I started writing this fic, I had no mention of Christmas whatsoever. I don't know how I missed that part of the challenge, but it was Barbara who said, "Where's the Christmas part?" So then I started thinking of how to add something in…and what came to mind is what you will find here in part three. I could have posted just this section to meet the challenge requirements, but I already had all that other stuff written, and I didn't want to just toss it out. So…the fic grew in length until it was a true three parter. I know the rest of the story wasn't really Christmassy, so I hope this makes up for it.
Obviously I have to thank htbthomas for telling me I had to write about Christmas! To sillybella for the spacing. And to Hellish for being so observant.
It was morning. I could tell from the light streaming in through the window. But I didn't want to open my eyes just yet. I just wanted to lie in my bed and bask in the afterglow of an amazing, passion-filled night.
I smiled to myself as I remembered in vivid detail every touch, every kiss, every thrust of his body against mine. We made love like teenagers, randy and wild and out of control. And after a short nap, he roused me from slumber with feather-light kisses and we made love once more. His dedication in giving me pleasure had not gone unnoticed; I had found myself in the throes of sensual abandon far more than once.
Instinctively, I reached out for him, brushing my hand over the other side of the bed only to find it empty. My eyes flew open in fear. Not only was the bed empty, but it was cold. Too cold. He hadn't been here for a while. The sheets would have been warm from his elevated body heat.
I panicked and sat up straight in bed. I couldn't possibly have dreamed it all up, could I? No dream I'd ever had of him was that detailed… or that good. "Clark?" I worriedly called out into the room. "Clark?"
He appeared in the doorway dressed in the same jeans and shirt from the night before and grinning madly. "Good morning! I wondered when you would wake up."
I breathed a sigh of relief and reached out towards him.
He approached the bed without any hesitation and kissed me. Taking my hand, he sat down on the bed and asked, "Did you sleep well?"
"What are you doing awake?" I groaned, slightly put off by his perkiness at such an ungodly hour of the morning.
He looked at me as if I had worms coming out of my ears. "It's eight. I'm always awake by now. The sun's up."
"It's Saturday," I whined. "I sleep in on Saturdays."
"Sorry," he said sheepishly. "I don't usually stay in bed once the sun's up."
"Is this some sort of habitual farm boy thing?" I drawled.
"No, it's more of a Kryptonian thing."
I hadn't been expecting that. He'd said twice now that the sun was up. I should have known that the sunshine would draw him out of bed.
"Sorry," I sighed. "I wasn't thinking."
"It's okay," he laughed.
"I just was really looking forward to waking up in your arms," I admitted, pulling on his arm and bringing him close enough for me to kiss his mouth.
I deepened the kiss, wrapping my arms around his middle and pulling him towards me again. His mouth opened and his tongue met mine as I started to lie back against the bed, bringing him down with me.
"Nuh uh," he hummed, pulling away from me. "No, you don't. I have something to show you before we get all caught up in that again."
"Clark," I whimpered, collapsing back onto the bed. "I don't want to get up."
"But I have a surprise for you."
"And I have one for you," I grabbed his arm again. "If you come back to bed, I'll be more than happy to give it to you."
He kissed me again, and for a brief moment I thought he just might give in to me, but it wasn't to be. He stood up and tugged on my arm, signaling that I was supposed to get up, too. "First my surprise…and then yours. Okay?" He tossed my pajamas at me. "Get dressed."
I groaned and started to slip into my clothes. "Do I have any choice in this?"
"Not really. You have a choice between walking into the living room or being carried into the living room." He put in helpfully.
I lifted my arms up towards him playfully, thinking he was joking about carrying me. He wasn't. Swiftly, as if I didn't weigh a thing, he scooped me up in his arms and carried me into the other room as if I were a princess.
What I saw there left me momentarily speechless.
The whole room was decorated for Christmas. One glance around told me that I was wrong – the entire house had been decorated for Christmas. Garland draped the mantle with red-and-white stockings hanging from shiny brass hooks. A huge Yule Log sat on the center of the table with four tall candles jutting upwards out of the middle. Miniature figurines of snowmen and Santa Clause covered the bookshelves. Two oversized planters of poinsettias stood on either side of the doorway. From the stair railing hung more garland, looped generously over the handrail with large, red bows. And lights – everywhere I looked there were lights twinkling and dancing in random patterns.
But the main focus of the house was standing in the corner: the Christmas tree. It was tall – so tall it nearly touched the ceiling – and thick. I don't think I could ever remember seeing a tree with such thick branches. It didn't look real, it was so perfectly beautiful. And the ornaments made it seem as if a designer had decorated it. It was all-white with touches of gold and silver and the most divine-looking angle perched on its top.
My mouth hung open as I took it all in. Clark lowered me to my feet, holding on to my waist to make sure I was steady. "Do you like it?" he whispered in my ear from behind me.
"Like it? It's amazing!"
His arms wrapped around me and he kissed my neck. "I couldn't stand the thought of you not having a tree."
"This is more than a tree, Clark."
"Is it too much?" I could hear the worry in his voice.
"No, it's – wonderful. How did you do this?"
"Lois," He bent his head over my shoulder to try to look at my face. "It didn't take me that long."
I closed my eyes, realizing how stupid I must have sounded. Of course it wouldn't take him long to do something like this. He was, after all, the fastest man on the planet.
I looked around the room again, trying to absorb every detail. "Where did you get a tree like that…and at this hour of the morning?"
"Oh, just a place I know that has really great pine trees."
"I think it's the most beautiful tree I've ever seen, and I mean without the decorations even. You have to tell me the name of the man who sold it to you so I can use him again next year."
Clark chuckled. "I didn't buy it, Lois."
I swiveled around to look up at him. "You stole it?"
"No, I got it from the forest."
I was almost afraid to ask my next question, for there weren't many forests close to Metropolis. "Which forest?"
"A forest…in the Alps."
"You went to Switzerland for my Christmas tree?"
He shrugged. "They have the best trees."
I nodded in understanding. "Pretty impressive, Clark."
And then my senses took notice of the most delicious aroma coming from the kitchen. "Is that coffee?"
"Uh huh," he hummed.
I walked into the kitchen to find two neatly arranged place settings at the counter.
"Want a cup?" he asked, coming around the counter and pouring me some coffee.
I took it from him and nearly came undone from the flavor. "Oh, this is delicious! What brand is it?"
"Columbian," he said casually.
I swallowed hard. "As in…from Columbia?"
He nodded and held out a plate. "Are you hungry?"
"Croissants?" I marveled, picking up one of the fluffy pastries. "Let me guess – fresh from Paris?"
He grinned. "You're starting to catch on."
"And you are spoiling me rotten."
He leaned on the counter, resting on his elbows. "Yes, I am. I've waited years to be able to spoil you like this, and I intend to continue spoiling you for the rest of your life."
"I can agree to
that." I leaned over towards him and gave him a gentle, chaste
"So then… where's my present?"
I laughed. "Don't tell me you went through all this trouble decorating the house and didn't buy me a present! I know you too well for that, Clark Kent."
"Well, yes, I do have a gift for you, but first of all, it's not Christmas Day, and second of all, I think I'm going to take it back and get you something else."
I frowned. "Why?"
"Well, I bought it about a month ago. In light of everything that happened last night," his cheeks turned the most delicious shade of pink, "I think I need to give you something more… personal."
"Hang on a sec. You bought me a present a month ago?"
"Why?" I was surprised by this information simply because he hadn't given me a gift in years. He used to give me the silliest, most pointless presents all the time when we would meet up at the annual office party. Every year, like clockwork, Clark had given me something so random and bizarre that I actually started looking forward to his gifts. But he stopped the tradition about six years ago… when he told me who he really was.
"Well," he said, joining me on the other side of the counter and pulling out a chair for me to sit down. "Jason invited me over for Christmas and told me you would probably be there."
He sat down in the seat next to mine. "Oh, come on, Lois. I know you were mad at me for a long time, but did you really think I was such a jerk that I would come to a Christmas party at my son's house without bringing gifts?"
"But you haven't given me a present in years."
"No, I haven't," he said, taking a sip of my coffee.
I was curious. "Why did you stop?"
"Because you were angry at me. I didn't want to risk giving you a gift only to have it thrown at my head."
I gave a small laugh and looked down at my croissant. "You used to give me some of the most insane presents, Clark. But they always made me laugh."
"They weren't insane," he countered.
I smirked at him. "Yes, they were. And so totally random."
He shook his head. "There wasn't anything random about any of them."
I scowled at him. "Clark! They were like gag gifts – the kind of things you give to a coworker as a joke."
His eyes met mine. "You thought they were funny?"
"They were funny."
He hummed thoughtfully.
He had to be kidding me. I started running down the list of gifts in my head. "You don't think one of those cheap, little metal Eiffel Tower figurines is a funny gift to give to a friend?"
"I saved you at the Eiffel Tower once."
"There were terrorists and they put a bomb on the elevator. For some unknown reason that I still don't understand, you thought it would be a good idea to climb under the elevator and hitch a ride."
I blinked in amazement. That stupid figurine that I laughed at had actually meant something to him. It should have meant something to me, too, only I hadn't understood at the time. How many more of his random gifts had a hidden meaning?
"Okay," I pondered. "How about that silly, little toy helicopter?"
"That was for the first time I flew with you."
I sighed, completely baffled at how it was I hadn't thought of that.
"The coffee mug," I challenged. "What did the coffee mug mean?"
"It had a picture of Niagara Falls on it."
My heart was racing in my chest. Had he really been sending me gifts all these years that were symbolic of our time together and I was simply too clueless to notice?
"The gift card!" I said, convinced I'd actually found one that had no meaning attached to it whatsoever. "You gave me a ten-dollar gift card to the House of Thi, which was some of the worst food I ever ate, mind you."
"Yeah, it wasn't really very good food." He cocked an eyebrow at me. "Why do you think I only gave you ten-dollars worth? You should have taken the hint and only spent ten dollars."
"So, that one didn't have any meaning!" I crowed in triumph.
He shifted in his seat. "Actually it did, it was just rather obscure. I went there for lunch one day and saw that the centerpieces – these exotic orange flowers – were the same kind of flowers that I brought to you… at the Fortress… when we were together."
My insides turned into a gooey mush at his words. All I could do was gape at him in wonder. I covered my mouth with my hand as the full realization of what he had done for me sank into my brain. I had laughed at those gifts – mocked them – even made fun of some of them. And now I found, to my utter amazement, that each and every one had represented a special memory for him – for us. I stifled back a sob, but couldn't stop my eyes from filling up with tears this time.
"Are you all right?" he asked, placing a comforting hand on my knee.
"No, I'm not all right! I've missed so much! We've wasted so much time!"
Before he could say anything more, I took his face in my hands and pulled him to me, kissing him deeply, soundly. "I love you," I professed. "With all my heart, I love you."
"I love you," he echoed.
I nearly leapt into his arms, I wanted him so much. My brain was on overload; from the decorations to the food to the gifts to the knowledge that he loved me and had always loved me, even when I was awful to him…it was too much, and not enough at the same time. I clung to him, pressing my body against his and marveling at the joy of having him at long last.
He stood up, still holding me to him, and drew my legs around his waist. Effortlessly, he carried me to the bedroom, planting hot kisses over my neck and throat all the way. Within what seemed like mere seconds, we were on the bed, naked, our bodies and limbs intertwined and writhing in desperate need. Our passion was unrestrained and wild with reckless abandon. We reached the peak of fulfillment as one and soared over the edge into our own private heaven. And when it was over and the passion was spent, I draped my body over his and enjoyed the journey back to earth, completely sated and delirious with relief and happiness.
He kissed the top of my head and held me against his side. "I told you I'd come back to bed after you saw my surprise," he teased.
I chuckled. "Just promise me that tomorrow you won't get out of bed so early."
I was starting to drift off to sleep when his voice called me back. "Lois?"
"Is there anything special you want for Christmas?"
"I have what I want," I said honestly. "I only ever wanted you."
"You know, Lois, you never lost me."
"Hum?" I was too sleepy to understand him without explanation.
"Last night… you said you lost me once. I'm telling you now that you never lost me. I was always yours."
I rose up slightly to look into his handsome face. There was so much that still needed to be said. So many things still to work out. But for now, all that mattered was that he was here with me – in my arms – and he loved me.
He kissed me one last time before I fell into a peaceful slumber. "And I always will be."
AN: I intend to add more to this story line in the future. After all, in my mind, shortly after this moment, the phone rings and it's…Jason. Is anyone else curious to know what Jason said when he found out his parents – his REAL parents – were sleeping together? Hehehe….