I know this is short...but I've been really blocked on this story lately and I just wanted to post a bit of something! Enjoy!
Generation of Leaves
Dawn scowled at the paper from Clark's couch. "'Justi-Girl, who says that her first name is Anya, allowed herself to be interviewed by a MetroPulse reporter yesterday,'" she read aloud. "Seriously Clark, what the hell? Are they just stupid?"
"You're the one who didn't claim a name until after Jimmy gave you one," Clark replied mildly over his cup of coffee. "You should just accept it. Áine is too difficult, and since the other major city papers picked up Justi-Girl after the Planet's article, your image is associated the name."
"But it's just so lame."
Clark raised an eyebrow. "Do you think 'Superman' is the height of class and substance? Hero names are not known for their panache Dawn."
The younger girl just folded her arms and sulked. "It's still annoying."
"So wait six months, get a new costume and reinvent yourself. Make up a story of triumph that means you feel like Justi-Girl is behind you."
Dawn tilted her head. "You think that would work?"
"Well it always seems to work for the X-Men," Clark shrugged.
There was a thoughtful pause. "Speaking of comic-book types," she began.
"I don't know if any of the other people you read about in papers are real, I don't go looking for them and they don't come to Metropolis."
"But don't you ever go to Gotham? I mean, it's like two seconds for you. Me...us, whatever. I'm saying it doesn't take a whole lotta effort. Don't you wanna know who guy is?"
"Don't really care," Clark shrugged. He took a bite from a bagel and washed it down with a swig of coffee. "He's doing good for the world Dawn, why should I interfere? Would you like it if he showed up demanding to know the identity of Justi-Girl?"
"I'd just say her real name is Anya and she likes pina colatas and getting caught in the rain," Dawn scowled again. "Seriously, it says that. I made NO reference to that song – I don't even like that song. And I hate coconut!"
"Your life is a never-ending tragedy Dawnie," he grinned at her, which made her frown harder. "Okay, stop pouting. It's time for us to head out anyway."
"Us? Pfft, you is more like. I don't have class for over an hour."
"And you're not hanging out in my apartment leeching off my neighbor's wireless anymore. Just because you flirted the poor kid into sharing his network key doesn't give you the right to use all his bandwidth downloading obnoxious pop music."
"But...I'm poor," Dawn whined. "Internet is expensive – and this is way more reliable than leeching off my neighbors. This guy at least has a dedicated line. And it's not like he's here mourning the loss...okay okay!" She crumbled under the stern glare of her 'brother'. "I'll come with you and...walk to school. Lame."
"Like I said, it's a tragedy."
They stopped short just outside his door, where a guilty-looking Lois Lane was poised to listen. Clark quirked an eyebrow and Dawn folded her arms.
"Hey there...partner of mine..." Lois laughed nervously. "I was in the neighborhood and thought we might...walk to work together!" She said the last just a hair too quickly.
Dawn grinned widely. "Tell you what, I'll let you two go on to work and I'll catch the subway to school." She leaned up and pressed a quick kiss to Clark's cheek before darting down the hallway.
Lois watched her with a vague air of puzzlement. "Is she always like that?"
"More or less," Clark smiled fondly. "I feel like I've known her my whole life." He paused and frowned slightly, unpleasant thoughts invading his mind. He shook his head. "She's a great kid."
"And she's your sister," Lois folded her arms as they began to slowly walk down the street. "You still haven't explained it. Mystical sibling comes out of nowhere? And don't go saying it's just that I never ask about your family, I've been to Smallville, there were no pictures of a little sister and pictures of you were everywhere. So what is it?"
"Well," he hesitated before launching into the story they'd developed. "The truth is, I was adopted. I don't like to talk about it, Mom and Dad don't like to talk about it...it was painful for them. Dawn found me because she was doing a research paper on closed adoptions and 'how closed are they really', because her mom had given up a baby before she got married and Dawn wanted to find it. Turned out she did, it was me."
"Wow," Lois looked a bit guilty. "I didn't realize your family was so complicated."
"It's not really such a big deal though, because they're still my parents. Dawn's mother, Joyce, passed away a couple years ago and her dad is pretty much out of their lives...so she wanted some family. She still has her sister, but I think things are a bit awkward for them sometimes."
"Then it's good!" She proclaimed. "You have Dawn, Dawn has you, you get someone to coddle and nag, she has someone to leech off of and irritate, it'll be just Lucy and me. Hey, I bet she'd get along with Luce!"
"No offense Lois...but I think Dawn's a bit too grounded for Lucy," Clark grinned. "As fantastic as the Lane and Kent team is, I think it's destined to be the only one."
"I'm going to assume you didn't insult my sister, because otherwise I might have to throw you in the bay. First rule of big-sibling-hood Clark – the only person who can insult your little sister is you."