FTitle: Best Man
Author: gunnman (William Gunn)
Rating: PG-13
Disclaimer: All characters belong to DC Comics, Warner Bros., Al Gough and Miles Millar.
Spoilers: None
Placement: Two years after Clark is teamed up with Lois at the Daily Planet
Quick Summary: Lois calls Chloe after Clark asks her to be his Best Man.

Best Man

"Lois, what's wrong? Why are you calling me at this hour?" escaped the small speaker on the handset.

"Chloe, did you hear about Clark getting married!?!" Lois asked perplexed at the tumult of her emotions at the news.

"No, he hasn't called me yet. Who is he going to marry?" Chloe asked. Chloe felt a little jealous that Lois had heard first, but she knew Clark had long ago succumbed to Lois's charms. Though he had never admitted it to her, Clark was in love with Lois, of that she was positive. Anyone who knew Clark could tell, it was obvious in the way his voice changed when he talked about her. And if you missed that, the look of joy in his eyes whenever they were together was another cue.

"The new District Attorney, Mayson Drake. She's crazy; she actually thinks Superman is as bad as your Batman. Superman works within the law, yet she still sees him as a vigilante. What Clark can possibly see in her I'll never know?" Lois shot out rapidly.

"Well I've never met her, but Clark just doesn't ask anyone to marry him?" Chloe said patiently, trying to slow down the conversation and let Lois think about what she was going to say.

"What? Let's see he married Alicia, then asked Lana after she was already engaged, hell he even asked me." Lois stated with amusement.

"He what? You never told me. When?" Chloe asked totally confused, Clark had never mentioned anything about asking Lois to marry him. He hadn't even told Lois his secret yet.

"It was about a year ago. We had been going out, I thought as friends until he told me he loved me and asked me to marry him. I told him I love him as a friend and just don't feel that way about him. I could tell he was hurt, but it was the truth. I didn't want to lead him on. He was a little distant and we only talked about work for a few weeks, but he got over it." Lois said remembering how the happiness slowly faded from Clark's eyes as she told him she only thought of him as a friend."

"Lois, why didn't Clark tell me about this?" Chloe asked heartbrokenly.

"I asked him not to tell you. I didn't want you to know. I know you still love Clark, you may have given up on a relationship, but he is still there in your heart. I didn't want to hurt you too." Lois admitted shamefully.

"So, you broke his heart and then forbid him from telling his next closest friend. You of all people should have known he needs to get things like that off his chest. You do remember the brooding Clark you first met. At least he found someone to make him happy." Chloe admonished.

"I don't know about that. Mayson moved to Metropolis soon after Clark proposed and she practically threw herself at him. I mean Clark was still hurt and she took advantage of him. Then today Clark asks me to be his best man. Can you believe that me. I told him I would think about it. I mean traditionally best man is a man after all." Lois rambled.

Chloe huffed and responded "Lois, the best man is a position for his best friend and that is you. It is not unheard of to have a 'Best Woman' or 'Best Person,' though I do admit it is not very common. He seems to be telling you that you are still extremely important to him. Lois don't you dare hurt him again, just because you are finally seeing Clark as a man and not just a friend."

Lois excitedly interjected "What!!! Where did that come from? I never said that!!"

Chloe smiled imagining Lois's reaction and wondering how such a great reporter could be so dense. She smoothly answered "Lois, if you aren't finally seeing 'you're Smallville' in a new light, why are you so upset? Don't you want him to be happy?"

"Of course, I want him to be happy. I just don't think Mayson Drake is good enough for him." Lois responded dragging out the woman's name in derision.

Chloe asked pointedly "Does she care for Clark?"

Grudgingly Lois answered "Yes."

Chloe admonished "Clark obviously cares for her or he wouldn't have proposed. So what, no one but Lois Lane is good enough for Clark?"

"Me, Clark deserves much better than me." Lois said regretfully.

"Well he obviously thought you were pretty special to have asked you to marry him. And now he feels that this Miss Drake is special. I don't know if it's my place to tell you this, but I will. … Clark's greatest fear has always been to be alone for the rest of his life." Chloe said confidently.

Lois thought a moment and said "I can see that. Though I never really thought of him as adopted, I can see how an adopted person would seek out a place to belong. Actually, that reminds me of the first year we met. I asked him about being a jock and he said he considered himself an 'outsider'. But, that's just it; Clark deserves a 'Martha' to his 'Jonathan'. He can't settle for the first woman to say yes."

Chloe admonished "Lois, how do you know he's settling? Maybe she is his 'Martha', hell maybe you are his 'Martha'. Did you never consider that? You have made a huge difference in his life; you were able to keep him from withdrawing into himself. You were the one to always keep him honest with himself. I knew him years longer than you, but it was you that tempered his brooding nature and made him truly see who he was. I may have loved him Lois, but you stole his heart just being yourself. Now, he has found someone he thinks he can make a life with, don't begrudge him your support."

"I'll try Chloe; I still don't think she's good enough. But, I do trust Clark; so if he thinks she's good enough, who am I to argue?" Lois said.

Lois sounded like she was trying to convince herself, so Chloe decided to come at Lois form another angle. "Lois, how did you feel when you and Clark weren't talking?"

Lois thought about it a second and admitted "I felt really bad; I didn't realize he saw me that way. I didn't mean to hurt him. I swear I didn't."

"That's not what I asked Lois. How did you feel when it was business only?" Chloe asked again more pointedly.

"I missed him; it was the hardest couple of months of my life. Okay!" Lois exclaimed perturbed that Chloe would back her into a corner like that. When Chloe didn't respond Lois expounded "What do you expect when your best friend suddenly treats you like a leper? I understand that he was trying to cope with just being friends, but suddenly it was like a part of me was missing."

"Lois, are you sure you don't have feelings for him?" Chloe asked gently.

"And what if I did? It's too late now. I'm not going to make him choose between Mayson and myself." Lois exclaimed her voice almost a whisper as she finished.

"Tell him how you feel Lois; I know he still loves you." Chloe encouraged.

"No Chloe, it's too late. I denied how I felt for too long. It's just like I feared, when the right man came along I wasn't even paying attention. I'm not going to put Clark into a position like that." Lois replied resignedly.

"I'm sorry Lois; I didn't mean to upset you." Chloe said sympathetically.

Lois sighed and responded "Don't worry about it Chlo. I needed to hear it. I guess I better let you go. I'm going to call Clark and tell him I accept his offer. I really want him to be happy, I just hope someday I find someone as wonderful as Clark."

"You will Lois, I'm sure of it. I'll talk to you soon. I love you, Lois." Chloe replied.

"I love you too. Thanks Chloe." Lois said before she hung up the phone.

The End??