AN: This is set in the same AU as In the Shadow of my Father and Being Jason White. If you've been keeping tabs on my 12days Clois fiction, this is set about two months after the fic After All and a week before Green Eyed Monster. If you've not read any of my other fics, all you need to know is that Lois was previously married to Richard for a long time. A little over a year after he passed away, Lois and Clark were able to reconnect and rekindle their relationship. Jason is married to a woman named Kate and they have a three-year-old son named Eric.
Mucho thanks to htbthomas. Without her suggestions, this fic would be rated PG-13, so if you like the ending then you need to thank her, too. To hellish red devil for unknowingly reassuring me that I made the right decision by putting Jason as the best man. To van-el for feeding the plot bunnies.
The sunlight was the first thing I noticed. It's usually the first thing I notice, and I always welcomed it, but today it meant even more to me. I hadn't slept much, but I'd kept my eyes closed and tried to shut out the world enough to rest. With the sun up now, though, that would be pointless. One thing Lois was most concerned about for today was having bad weather. February was not generally a good weather month for Metropolis, so I knew she would be smiling when she saw the sun. If I could have woken her up myself to point out the beauty of the day, I would have. However, upon the insistence of her sister, I hadn't seen Lois for over twenty-four hours. And I wouldn't see her again for another eight.
Eight hours to go. Eight hours until I had everything I'd ever wanted.
Someone needed to pinch me, please. For a moment I thought I was dreaming.
I quickly flew through the window of my apartment and landed in the middle of my nearly empty living room. Jason came around the corner, catching me off guard, a shocked look on his face.
I frowned. "Um… yeah."
"China?" he repeated. "Today?"
"Would you rather I let them all die?"
"No," he said quickly. "Of course not. But it's… today."
"Yes, and as powerful as I am, I can't tell tectonic plates not to shift on my wedding day."
He smirked. "Mom is freaking out, you know."
"You talked to Lois?" I was desperate for news from her, even if it was to hear that she was angry with me.
"Yeah, and she wants me to remind you that your alter ego needs to be out of commission by three o'clock today, or else."
"Four," I corrected. "I don't have to be there until four."
"No, you have to be there at three to sign papers and get settled and make sure everything is ready."
"Right," I sighed. "Right. So then, why are you here so early?"
He rolled his eyes. "To keep you sane."
I laughed. "Jason, I told you that I'd be all right. If you need to go and be with Kate and Eric—"
"I need to be here. Trust me."
I could tell I wasn't going to win this battle. "Three o'clock, huh? So, what do we do until then?"
He glanced around my apartment at the stacks of books and piles of papers I had kept from over the years. "Pack."
12: 36 pm
"You really should eat something," Jason told me.
"I'm not hungry," I replied, not looking at him.
"Fine, but if your stomach growls in the middle of the ceremony, don't expect me to have any sympathy for you."
I hadn't thought of that before, but the idea of actually putting food in my mouth right now terrified me. I wasn't feeling right, and for me, that was very strange. My stomach was knotted and twisted, and if I didn't know any better, I would say I felt nauseous.
"You okay?" he asked.
"I'm fine," I lied, and I normally avoided lying flat out to Jason these days.
He saw right though me. "You're lying, but that's okay. I understand."
I looked at him to find him smiling at me, a gentle, knowing smile that calmed me down… ever so slightly.
"You want to fly these boxes over to Mom's?" he asked. "Get some fresh air. You don't look like yourself."
"I could," I sighed, not liking the idea that he had noticed I wasn't feeling exactly normal.
"Or I could just put them in my car and drive them over later."
I took the box from him. "That's okay. I'll be right back."
"Where's your tux?" Jason asked.
My mind went blank.
He laughed at me. "And the rings? Do you know where those are?"
Again, my memory failed me.
"How about your vows? Did you type them out?"
I remembered writing it out and memorizing it, but just what I memorized wasn't coming into my mind. It was as if all important and pertinent knowledge was rapidly seeping out of my brain the closer I came to four o'clock.
"I had it… um… um… um… the whole thing was written… and the rings were…"
Jason nodded. "You feel like you've been hit with the stupid stick, don't you?"
I slumped. "Is it that obvious?"
He laughed again. "And you said you weren't going to need me today." He walked into my bedroom and came back out with my tux. "First, put this on. And no super suit underneath, please. You are Clark Kent today."
I took the hanger from him, smiling sheepishly.
"I'll get your studs and cuff links and the boutonniere."
"And the rings?"
He smiled. "Don't worry. I'm sure you didn't throw them away. We'll find them." He turned to walk back into my bedroom, muttering, "X-ray vision has to come in handy sometime, right?"
2: 02 pm
Dressed fully in my tux, I waited as Jason pinned on the little orange boutonniere Lois had selected to my lapel.
"Your heart is about to thump out of your chest," he observed.
"I know," I groaned, willing myself to calm down.
He finished his work and patted my shoulder. "There. You look good, but um…" he pointed to his eyes. "You need your glasses, Clark."
"Oh, oh yeah." I fumbled around on the table to pick them up, knocking over a glass of water in the process. I swore under my breath as Jason grabbed some tissue to wipe up the mess. "What's wrong with me?" I meant it as a rhetorical question, but Jason answered all the same.
"But I shouldn't be."
He looked back at me with an unreadable expression.
"I shouldn't be nervous," I repeated. "I love her, Jason. I love her with all my heart."
"I know you do."
"This is the right thing to do. This is what I've wanted since… since… I first met her."
"Then why am I nervous?"
Jason blinked and looked away, lost in thought. After a good long moment he sighed and met my eyes. "You're supposed to be nervous on your wedding day. I'd be worried about you if you weren't. It's one of, if not the most important day of your whole life, and you want it to be perfect. It's only natural for you to feel nervous about that. And it doesn't have anything to do with your future or if you're worried that you've made the right choice. This is just about wanting today to be the most special and wonderful day—" he swallowed hard, "in honor of the woman you love."
I didn't know how to reply to that, for I hadn't been expecting him to say something so deep or meaningful. It was exactly what I needed to hear and described my feelings to perfection. "Wow, Jason, that's… beautiful. Thank you."
He shrugged, his eyes darting away from mine again. "I didn't come up with it, so don't give me the credit. I was told the same thing on my wedding day. I'm just passing on the information."
"From whom?" I asked before thinking it through clearly.
Jason's body language and the fact that he still wasn't looking at me spoke volumes. Even still, in a very soft voice he said, "Dad – er – Richard told me." He wet his lips. "He said that Uncle Perry told him when he and Mom…"
The sentence went unfinished. We stood in silence for a few moments. This kind of thing usually happened whenever Richard was mentioned. Jason would forever think of Richard as "Dad," and no matter how much it broke my heart, I had come to accept it. I had also come to accept that part of the distance between us came from the fact that Jason was always worried he was being disrespectful to Richard's memory. Even though Jason supported my relationship with Lois, and even though he insisted on being able to tell people he was my son, I knew I would forever be his "biological father" where Richard would always be "Dad."
"Well, that was uncomfortable, wasn't it?" Jason said, forcing a smile. "I shouldn't have brought it up."
"It's okay, Jason," I offered. "I understand. And I appreciate it all the same." I hoped Jason could see that I wasn't lying. There was no reason to be uncomfortable about the past – not today. Not when I would finally be getting everything I had ever wanted.
A sudden calm fell over me in that moment, taking me by surprise. I breathed in deeply, evenly, and smiled an honest smile. "I think we should go over the vows before we head over to the site."
"How much did this place cost, anyway?" Jason asked as we entered the hall where the wedding would take place.
"Don't worry about that, okay?" I said. "I have it covered."
Not wanting a repeat of her first wedding, Lois requested something different and unusual for a location. No church. She had wanted for us to be married outside under the stars, but that wasn't very practical in February. Instead, I pulled a few strings with one of my friends who worked in the Museum of Natural Science and rented their planetarium for the reception as well as the adjacent hall for the actual ceremony. Our guests would go right from the wedding into the reception area for dinner under the stars.
As grand as it seemed, we didn't have that many guests – less than a hundred. That was another one of Lois' requests – that it be as small as possible. Considering that my family now consisted of people who were all part of the wedding party, and my only friends were also Lois' friends, the majority of the guests were from her side.
The last requirement Lois gave me was that she wanted the tables decorated in the exotic flowers I had used the first time I took her to the Fortress. Given that Birds of Paradise were very large and rather unusual looking, they didn't work well in a traditional bridal bouquet. Lois had selected various other flowers to be used in addition to the Birds of Paradise.
My only real request was that Lois would wear white. She fought me tooth and toenail on that one.
"I've been married before, Clark," she had argued. "I have a grown son. I'm obviously not a virgin!"
"But this is my first wedding, and I'd like to see my bride in white, please."
"I'd rather wear something tan and non-traditional."
"Lois, please. Do you want me to show up in a plaid shirt and some jeans?"
She rolled her eyes. "I'll see what I can do, but I make no promises."
I had promised her that I wouldn't "peek" through the walls to see her before the wedding, and the closer we were getting to the hour of the ceremony, the more difficult that promise was to keep. I knew that once Lois arrived, the temptation to peek would be nearly irresistible.
"Do me a favor," I said to Jason. "Don't tell me when your mom gets here."
He frowned. "Why not?"
"So I don't break any rules."
He squinted at me, thinking for a moment, and then asked, "What rules are you talking about?"
"Seeing the bride before the wedding."
Jason sighed in relief. "Oh, that rule."
"What rule were you thinking of?"
He shrugged and turned bright red in the face.
I turned red as well.
"Although, that would require seeing the bride before the wedding, I suppose," he added under his breath.
Someone really needed to pinch me. I'd nearly said as much to Jason, but I didn't dare for fear that I'd blink and miss a moment of the most beautiful sight I'd ever seen.
Lois was walking towards me, dressed in what I could only describe as the most perfect wedding dress she could have chosen. It wasn't quite white, but rather the palest cream, yet it didn't bother me the slightest. It seemed to accentuate her olive coloring and dark hair to the point where it almost did look white. The v-neck line and the way the fabric draped over her body did little to hide those sensual curves that drove me wild. The way she looked at me, even from this distance, told me that she had chosen this dress for the very reason that she knew it would garner a specific personal reaction from me. She had succeeded. Everything about her look, from the subtle makeup to the fact that she left her hair down where it could brush over her shoulders, drew me in. She really did look like she had stepped out of one of my dreams.
I inhaled deeply, my eyes never leaving her face. The smile she offered me warmed my heart and set my mind spinning. Whatever it was that I was supposed to do or say next, I hadn't a clue. It didn't matter anyway. All that mattered to me was this woman, and that her smile was for me and me alone.
Moments later, she was beside me, with her hand in mine. The judge she had asked to marry us was rambling something about commitment and integrity. Not that those things weren't important – not that I didn't agree with him on every aspect – it was just that I couldn't concentrate on anything but Lois and how divinely beautiful she was.
Before I knew it, it was my turn to say my vows to her. Everything I'd written or practiced left my mind, just as Jason had told me they would. I looked into her warm eyes and moved my mouth in the hopes that what I would say would be coherent.
"I love you, Lois." So far, so good. "I've loved you for nearly as long as I can remember. You've been everything to me. My co-worker, my friend… and now today, you become my wife. You've given me your trust, your love… a family." From the corner of my eye I caught sight of Jason smiling serenely at the two of us. "You've given me so much more than I could have ever hoped for, and I sometimes wonder what I did to deserve it all. I promise to spend the rest of my life giving back to you that same trust and love that you've shown me. I promise to support you in all your crazy schemes." Lois chuckled and squeezed my hand. "To never try and change you or stifle the fire that burns in your spirit. It's that fire and passion that drew me to you. I just want to make you as happy as you've made me, because I love you with all my heart."
I really had no idea what I had just said, but whatever it was, Lois seemed to like it. She smiled brightly up at me, wet her lips, and squeezed my hand again. "Clark. When I try to think of why I love you and want to spend the rest of my life with you, I don't even know where to begin. There are so many reasons. You're such a decent and kind person. You've always made me want to be better – and you've changed the way I see the world. You say that you don't want to change me, but you already have, Clark. I'm not the pessimistic, jaded, hard-hearted reporter I once thought I was. You've made me hopeful for the future – a future with you in my life. I can't promise that life will always be easy, or that I won't ever be temperamental. I'm still a realist. But I can promise to love you as deeply as I know how for the rest of my life."
I wanted to kiss her. Everything in my being told me to kiss her, but I knew there was one more thing left to do. The judge asked for the rings and little Eric stepped forward, looking very dapper in his tiny tux, holding a white pillow with two gold bands secured in the center by a ribbon. Jason bent down and helped his son with the rings before sending Eric back to his mother. Lois slipped one ring on my finger before I did the same to her. I looked at our hands for a moment, taking in the sight of the elegant, matching, and yet simple bands we had selected. My heart pounded in my chest as I realized the moment I had waited for all my life was nearly here.
"Ladies and gentlemen," the judge said. "Having exchanged vows and rings before these witnesses, and by the power given to me by the state of New York and the city of Metropolis, may I be the first to present to you Mr. and Mrs. Clark Jonathan Kent."
I didn't wait for permission to kiss her. I didn't need it anymore – at least not from the judge. The only permission I needed was from Lois, and she seemed more anxious to kiss me than I was to kiss her, if that was possible. Her mouth met mine passionately, almost hungrily. Had it not been for the applause and the few catcall whistles, I would have been more than happy to carry her out of the hall and find some secluded place to be alone with her. But that would have to wait.
"How much longer until we can leave?" I mumbled against Lois' ear.
"You're the one who wanted a big wedding, Smallville," she teased. "We haven't even cut the cake yet!"
I groaned when I realized there was a whole host of traditional things a few weeks ago I had insisted on doing that I was now thinking were silly and pointless. I really didn't want to even eat the cake let alone cut it. I didn't care who caught the bouquet. And I certainly wasn't looking forward to dancing in front of everyone.
Lois just laughed at me and kissed me in reassurance. Our kiss lingered a bit longer than was publically acceptable, but I really didn't care. Wasn't this the whole point of getting married? So that we could show our affection publicly?
Lois broke away with a satisfied grin plastered on her face. "Believe me, Clark, you aren't the only one who can't wait until we can be alone."
I blushed scarlet, but didn't deny the sentiment.
Considering that I'd nearly dropped cake all over Lois' beautiful dress when I tried to feed it to her, and that Lois had almost fallen over while trying to drink champagne while our elbows were linked, it didn't surprise me that I was completely nervous when it came time to dance with her. I was certain that I would step on her toes and inadvertently crush her bones. How fitting would that be - that I'd have to spend my honeymoon feeling guilty about breaking my brand new wife's foot?
I'm not sure how she did it, but Lois somehow managed to calm me down enough to get me out on the dance floor in front of everyone. "Just relax," she said softly, smiling up at me and wrapping her arms around my middle to hug me. "I won't let you fall," she added with a wink.
Lois glanced over her shoulder, drawing my attention away from her and to the fact that Jason was currently standing next to the piano. Jason had found an excellent jazz trio to play for the reception as part of his own contribution to the wedding – the Mark Williams trio. Lois had asked him to play, of course, but he insisted that he wanted to attend as a family member and not part of the crew. I couldn't argue with him on that count, so it surprised me to find him taking the place of the pianist he had hired.
"Can I have everyone's attention, please?" he said into a microphone. "It's time for the bride and groom to share their first dance. Mom, I know I told you that I didn't want to play tonight, but the truth is that I just didn't want to play all night. When Mark told me what you had selected for your first dance, I couldn't resist asking him if he wouldn't mind if I stepped in for one number. Seeing as how the best man is supposed to give some kind of a speech, and I'm much better expressing myself with a piano than I am with words, I hope that you accept this in lieu of a speech. And so Mom… Dad…" His voice dropped significantly. "This is from me to you."
We listened for a moment as Jason and the two other musicians started in on a jazzy rendition of "When I Fall in Love" before actually starting to dance.
"Did you know he was going to do that?" Lois asked.
"Not at all. Did you?"
"Nope. Looks like he pulled one over on us."
I drew her in closer to me and she rested her head against my shoulder. As nervous as I was just moments before, I couldn't deny how right it felt to hold her like this – how easy it was to just simply sway to and fro to the melody in the background. I would have to thank Jason for this moment.
"Mind if we cut in?"
I turned to find Jason and Kate dancing beside us.
"Not at all!" Lois said, stepping out of my embrace. "I think your amazing gift to us a few moments ago entitles you to at least one dance."
"And being your only son… what does that get me?"
"A piece of very bad wedding cake!"
He laughed and started dancing with Lois, leaving me alone with Kate.
"Care to?" I asked after a very awkward moment.
We danced in silence for what was only a few seconds but what seemed like an eternity. Kate and I got along fine in recent years… so long as Jason or Eric was with us. I'd spent very little time alone with her. That led me to at least one question.
"Oh, we sent him home with a sitter after dinner. He was so worn out, and I didn't want him getting too fussy and making a scene in the middle of your beautiful reception."
"So you and Jason get the evening off for a while?"
"Yes. We don't get to do that very often between Jason's career and having Eric to look after. But we make it work."
I followed her gaze over to where Jason and Lois were dancing. It was obvious from the way Kate looked at him that she loved him very much. As if he was able to feel her gaze, Jason turned his head to look back at her. He winked, and then went back to talking with his mother.
"Thank you, Kate," I said, "for letting me steal Jason away from you all day today."
"Oh, don't mention it," she laughed. "I was busy helping Lois, anyway. One way or the other, we wouldn't have seen each other much today ."
I nodded, and we again fell into silence. An odd sort of sound caught my attention. At first I thought it was the drums, but the rhythm was too fast for the music. Then I noticed that it was too faint for anyone to really hear – anyone who didn't have super hearing, at least. And the source of the sound was standing right in front of me. I glanced down at Kate, thinking I was picking up on her heartbeat, but the sound was too rapid for a human heart. Correction: it was too fast for an adult heartbeat.
I gasped. "Kate!"
She looked up at me, startled. "What?"
Why hadn't she told me she was pregnant? Why hadn't Jason told me? This was such wonderful news, I couldn't fathom that they wouldn't want Lois and me to know about it. Or maybe Lois did know… and they just hadn't told me? Or maybe, just maybe, Kate didn't even know yet. I hadn't picked up on the sound until now. She could be very early on in her pregnancy. I opted to pretend I hadn't heard anything and simply offered a, "Nothing," as a reply.
I felt her stiffen in my arms. "Don't tell Jason, okay?" she said in a voice so low it was barely audible, even for me. "He doesn't know. I just found out a few days ago and I didn't want to worry him. He's been so distracted by this wedding and the tour that he has coming up that I thought it would be best to tell him after the wedding."
I didn't know what to say, so I just stared down at her wide eyes.
"Please? I promise I'll tell him tonight."
"Kate," I smiled, "I'm not going to say anything to him. As much as I don't like keeping secrets from him, I know that this is something he should hear from you."
She sighed in obvious relief. "Thank you."
Once the music had ended and I knew Jason was safely on the other side of the noisy room, I turned to Lois and said, "Did Kate tell you anything important in the last few days?"
Lois blinked up at me. "Why? Did she tell you something important?"
"She didn't tell me. I kind of… heard it… on my own."
"You heard it?"
"I heard the heartbeat."
She gaped at me. "So, then you know?"
"Yes, and I take it that you know, too."
"She told me two days ago. She was nauseous and I tried to force some medicine on her."
I winced. "Now I really feel badly for keeping Jason away from her all day today."
Lois wrapped her arms around my middle. "Hey, none of that. If Kate had wanted Jason home with her today then she would have asked him to stay home. She isn't the type to just sit back and let someone else tell her what to do."
"True. Sounds like someone else I know," I teased.
I don't think I'd ever blushed as furiously as I did when Lois offered me her leg right there in front of all our friends and family. My boss was there. Lois' sister was there. Our son was there! Somehow I was expected to pull up Lois' dress and take off the garter that was somewhere hidden up high on her thigh, and I had to do this in front of a whole crowd of onlookers.
I had always considered myself a modest person. I didn't like the way people, especially women, felt it necessary to show off so much skin these days. So the idea of Lois baring her leg for everyone to see did not sit well with me. Lois had gorgeous legs. Those legs were mine and mine alone to ogle. But as Lois had reminded me earlier, I had asked for this and so I pretty much had to follow through with it.
Slowly, carefully, trying not to show any more leg than was absolutely necessary, I pulled the hem of her dress up and over her thigh. A series of oohs and whistles came once everyone caught sight of the delicate garter trimmed in blue positioned just above her stockings. I was sure I'd turned an even darker shade of red by this point.
Ron Troupe, who had earlier clapped me on my back and congratulated me for finally catching Lois, called out a hearty, "Take it off with your teeth, Clark!"
Lucy, his wife, had proceeded to swat at him for his remark.
I wasn't going to take his suggestion. I was a gentleman and Lois was a lady who deserved more respect than that. I gently slipped the garter down her leg, letting the dress once again fall to the floor. The small crowd of unattached men gathered around and waited for me to toss the garter out to them. To my embarrassment, Jimmy caught the garter. Jimmy – who worked with Lois and me – was now in possession of an item that Lois had worn on her upper thigh all night long. The thought made my stomach flop.
"Whose idea was it to do a bouquet and garter toss?" I asked Lois.
"Yours," she reminded me.
"No, I mean, originally. Who first thought of it? Because whoever they were, they needed to have their head examined."
The door to the limo stood wide open. We were only moments away from freedom. Bubbles surrounded us as we ran down the steps at the front of the museum. After a final hug and kiss on the cheek from Jason, Lois slipped into the back of the limo with ease. Jason hugged me, really hugged me, before I joined Lois in the back seat. With a quick slam of the door, we were blessedly alone.
Alone at last!
Lois was laughing, looking radiant as ever. She tossed her head back and closed her eyes as she settled into the cushion of the seat. "I'm so glad to be out of there!"
I leaned closer to her and took her face in my hands. "Me, too."
I slid my mouth over hers, kissing her without restraint as I had longed to do since the moment I had woken up that morning. Her hands circled my neck and drew me in for a deeper kiss. Her leg slid up and over mine, resting between my legs in a rather provocative location.
"Did I tell you how beautiful you look in this?" I asked between kisses.
"I think you mentioned it."
My mouth traveled down her neck to kiss her shoulders and any other bare skin I could find. "I've been going mad for you all day."
"I can tell," she sighed.
She hummed questioningly.
"Pinch me," I repeated. "I want to make sure I'm not dreaming."
She laughed at me.
"I love you… Mrs. Kent." I'd waited so long to be able to call her that.
"Lane-Kent," she reminded me.
I kissed her deeply.
"So Mr. Kent," she mumbled against my mouth. "Your place or mine?"
I grinned, "Let's go to our place."
My heart was pounding violently in my chest. My skin was on fire from her unrestrained touch. The electrifying sensation of being intimately joined to Lois, being deep within her body, brought me to the edge of sanity. She loomed over me, her mouth and hands working their perfect magic over my exposed and all-too aroused body. I lost all sense of thought or reason as our passion grew in intensity. My body was operating solely on pure instinct, moving in a heated rhythm as old as time itself. My hips met hers thrust after greedy thrust, rising higher and higher, deeper and deeper into her.
Her voice trembled as she called my name. It was the most intoxicating sound, hearing my name like that, and it nearly left me undone. Her back arched, and with a long, drawn out moan she shattered around me. Two more desperate thrusts and the tightly wound muscles in my body gave way to sheer, ecstatic, unadulterated pleasure.
She slumped forward out of exhaustion, her body still trembling from the tiny aftershocks of lovemaking. I clasped her to me, holding her hips in place so that we would stay joined as we drifted down from our sensual high. I let my eyes close so that I could revel in the sensation of the unparalleled, incomparable feeling of her naked body draped over mine.
A moment later, I felt the softness of a pillow under my head. It was then that I realized I was just now able to feel the pillow- not only the pillow, but also the bed. Were we just… Had I been…?
With her face buried against my neck, Lois chuckled. "That was a first."
I swallowed hard. "Are you okay?"
She turned her face to smile at me. It was a satisfied grin the Cheshire Cat would have been proud of. "I'm wonderful," she purred.
"I didn't hurt you?"
She eyed me and then kissed me - hard.
"I guess I got carried away," I said against her mouth.
"And took me with you! Well, you'll get no complaints from me."
Our lips met in a few more slow and lingering kisses.
"Would you like…"
"… to be carried…"
"…over the threshold again?"
She pulled away to gaze down at me with a wicked glint in her eyes.