by Creedog VanDrey

Category: Smallville
Genre: General
Rating: K
Language: English
Summery: Jimmy captures the world through a lens. Clark merely saves it.
Spoilers: Season 6, nothing specific.

A/N: Another artsy character analysis. I might just be turning into a real writer.


Jimmy aspires to be a photojournalist. Chloe sometimes wonders if he missed his calling in life to art photography.

Jimmy once told her that a photographer could take a picture of anything, anything at all, and if he was gifted enough and found just the right angle and snapped the picture at the exact right instant, that the whole of the image would be greater than the sum of its parts. She challenged him to do that with her trash bin. He silently accepted it by leaning to the ground and rummaging through her garbage for a few minutes. After retrieving a Polaroid camera, he knelt down and snapped a picture.

When the image developed, Chloe noted that he had made it so that a few partial headlines were visible at the top of the heap. In the background was slightly out-of-focus front page article about a celebrity divorce. In the foreground were the headlines, stating fragments such as "poverty-stricken" "low-income neighborhoods" "rampaging malaria" "crisis in Africa". A testament of what made the paper… and what didn't. She had to buy him dinner that night.

Now, a glossy 8-by-10 sits on Chloe's desk, which had completely grasped her full attention. She even remembers when it happened. She, Clark, and Jimmy had just finished investigating a superpowered menace. There's been so many of them, Chloe doesn't quite remember which one it was, but she remembers what transpired afterwards as clearly as if it had just occurred. They were about to go to Chloe's favorite sandwich shop. Clark had suggested it; Jimmy wished he had thought of it first. He also wished that Clark would take a hint and leave him and Chloe alone, but Clark's always been pretty oblivious to subtle cues. Then, it happened. It happened so quickly.

In the black-and-white photo is Clark, kneeling down, his arms wrapped protectively around a young girl of about eight years wearing a Catholic school uniform, clutching the lapels of Clark's jacket as if her life depended on it. In the near background is a car, its hood wrapped around a street lamp. In the far background, across the street, is a nun with a dozen other schoolgirls, as well as a few pedestrians. While they're all out of focus, their body language clearly states their traumatized states. Because he keeps his camera around his neck at all times, he was able to snap the picture less than thirty seconds after the accident. In fact, the smoke is still only beginning to appear out of the car's hood.

Chloe wants to believe that it's only coincidence, but somehow Jimmy can always capture something amazing each time he takes a picture, as if the universe is perfectly coordinated to set a scene just right every time the photographer presses the red button on his camera. In the picture, the wind is blowing some leaves into the air. A few airborne leaves circle around Clark and the girl, suggesting the shape of a sphere, a bubble around the two. All around them is chaos and fury, but inside that bubble is Clark, a wall of protection, sheltering an innocent child. Peace just come anew.

"Bright eyes?" comes the voice which jars Chloe out of her trance. She looks up to face it, dropping the picture face-up. Looking down at it, Jimmy states, "I think I'll call it 'Haven.' Whatta you think? Any good?"

Softly, she remarks, "It's amazing. Would you mind if I kept it?"

Jimmy enthusiastically responds, "Sure, no problem. Didn't make the paper and I got copies anyway. Any particular reason?"

Chloe, with effort, expressed to him, "It reminds me of how lucky I am to have people in my life who care about me."

"You mean 'cause the girl reminds you of that? Or maybe 'cause of how C.K. saves everybody… somehow… all the time?" He paused before modestly adding, "Or maybe 'cause it reminds you of me and my half-decent picture-takin' skills?"

"All of the above," she replies simply and distantly.

Jimmy just nods, perplexed, and ambles off, leaving Chloe to her thoughts and watering eyes, which float back and forth between the subject of the picture and the signature of the artist.

A/N: These are really hard. You have the pick the absolute right words and syntax and everything!

©2006 Godeerc VanDrey Enterprises, Inc. Created Thursday, December 28, 2006. Finished Saturday, December 30, 2006. Updated Wednesday, January 17, 2007.