A while back I posted something on my live journal about a fic I had
dump in my head that I didn't know what to do with. Since it all just
dumped in there in a near completed form, I wrote it out. But I never
posted it. I didn't think anyone would be interested. But I showed it
to Van_El and he said I should post it. So here it is. It's Clark's
PoV... one of many that I now have swimming in my brain He's rather
upset at me, you see, for making him out to be a wuss in my fan
fiction. He says that he never got to explain himself very well...
except to a very angry and emotionally torn Jason. Which is right.
Clark tends to keep to himself unless he's pushed. Which leads me to
ask myself... How totally wrong is it that I'm having
conversations with fictional characters that I didn't even
invent? Yeah... so anyway. Here's the fic
How totally wrong is it that I'm having conversations with fictional characters that I didn't even invent?
Yeah... so anyway. Here's the fic.
Unlike anything I have ever known.
Stabbing. Biting. Throbbing.
But I force my way through it, knowing that if I don't accomplish this task, everyone could die. And if I do accomplish this task… then I could die. But that's doesn't matter.
I don't need to live. Not really. I've seen how things have progressed without me for five years. I've seen how life has moved on and the world has survived. This planet doesn't need me as much as I like to think it does. The people have managed quite well, all things considering. They need me now, though. And I will finish this and put an end to this catastrophe if it's the last thing I ever do.
It very well may be the last thing I do. I feel it deep within me as I push the rock higher and higher. The pain intensifies with each second. And I know that it's killing me.
My heart is pounding in my chest. Too rapid, I know, but I keep pushing up… up… higher and higher as my heart races faster and faster. I'm sweating, unable to breathe. The air seems too thin. The higher I go, the closer I am to leaving the atmosphere. And I need air to breathe. But I go higher and higher until the momentum is enough to keep me going. I can not die. Not yet. Not until I've completed this one task.
The further away from Earth I travel, the less gravity holds me until I feel it completely relinquish its grasp. I can feel the weight of the rock in my hands diminish. And it floats away from me. I stop and watch it go. Further and further away.
But my heart is still pumping too quickly as my breath vanishes from my chest. There is no air to inhale. My strength is gone. I have nothing left to give. There is nothing more for me to give out.
And so I give up.
Weak and defeated, I allow my eyes to slide closed. My body relaxes. My mind let's go of the worry – the fear. Yet the pain is still there. The pain will always be there.
The air holds me and I float. I exude no effort to move. I simply am. Just me and the pain of every wrong choice pressing me backwards.
I chose to be here now. I chose to come back and try again. I chose to leave. I chose to make the woman I love forget me.
And the pain is the consequence.
What other choices will I make that could cause pain to others?
I fall back… back… deeper and deeper into my pain, into my heartache. And it burns. The fire builds around me – inside me. I sink further and further down as realization crashes around me. I should not have left. I should not have returned. I should not be here now.
This will be my final act. There is nothing more I can do. Nothing more I should do. It slams into me with such force I physically feel the power of it.
And suddenly, the pain is gone. I have let it go. I have let everything go. I have to. It is the only way to set right the mistakes I have made. To let go of the past. Let go of my father's disappointment. Let go of the failed expectations of the people of this planet. Let go of Lois.
So this is what it feels like to die?
The nothingness inside of me is dark. I'm an empty shell. A body that no longer works. And there is no desire inside of me to make it work. To open my eyes. To live again. What would be the use?
I have often wondered if I could ever experience death. It gives me some relief to know that it's possible. It's so close I can taste it. Right there. Within my grasp. And I want it to take me and end my suffering. It is calm here. Quiet. I don't think I've ever felt this much rest. I just want to sleep and never awaken. Here in the black. In the quiet.
Someone touches me. It shocks me that I can feel this touch. I haven't felt anything but the pain and the emptiness for so long that I've nearly forgotten how gentle a touch can be. Soothing. Loving.
Someone is speaking to me. In the dim recesses of my mind I hear that voice like the wind whispering against my ears. Like the touch, the voice is comforting and full of love. Abruptly, my mind recognizes the voice and sends a shock wave through my motionless body.
I went five years with only the memory of that voice. A voice I craved and tuned into where ever I was. A voice I would recognize anywhere. My Lois.
Only she wasn't mine anymore. I lost her to another man. No. I chose to leave her and she found it in herself to go on without me. To live without me. To love again.
What is the point of life without her?
She is whispering so softly that I have to strain to hear her, to make sense of the words filling my consciousness.
"I wanted to tell you that…"
What could she possibly say now? She said it all in her article. The world doesn't need Superman… and neither does she.
"I need you to know about Jason."
I know that name. The little boy with the myriad of illnesses. The child she has with another man.
"He needs you."
I don't understand.
"He's your son."
The words are clear and exact and yet my brain can't fully comprehend the meaning.
"I should have told you sooner. I should have told you on the plane but Richard was there and he doesn't' know… Jason doesn't know, either."
Her voice shakes… along with the whole foundation of my existence.
"He's your son and he needs you to get well."
My son. The words echo in my head amid the blackness. My son.
"Please, don't leave him."
Leave… my son. I have son?
The mental recesses of my brain kick in and go into over drive trying to work out this impossible situation. I can't have a child. At least not with Lois. A Kryptonian and a human cannot have a child together. I was told so ages ago.
I feel her touch my lips. The sensation of her lips against mine. Which I haven't felt in over five years. She is kissing me… and I am powerless to respond. My mind is still reeling from her declaration that I have a son to be able to react normally to her kiss.
Why would she tell me this? Why would she come here now and say such things? Especially when they can't be true. Richard White is the boy's father. I saw them together. I saw Lois with them both. A happy family. I watched Richard pick away at the food the boy wouldn't eat, the way a father does. I heard Richard fuss over the boy doing school work, the way a father does. The way my father did.
Suddenly I am reminded that it was Jonathan Kent who did those things for me… not Jor-El. The man I think of as my dad is not the man I think of as my father. And yet I needed them both. They both influenced me and changed me and were vital to my character.
Could Jason be in the same situation I was in? Having two fathers?
Jason… "Munchkin" they call him. His face comes into my mind. Small and innocent. A wild mop of brown hair on his head, shading his pale face. Like his mother. With expressive, wide eyes. Bright blue. Almost unnaturally so. Like…like his father?
Like my eyes?
Can this be true? Can this be real? How old is the boy… Jason. Jason is his name. How old is Jason? Five? He would just be five. If he were mine. And I remember that he is five. And I know Lois wouldn't lie to me about this. As angry as she is toward me, she isn't cruel. She wouldn't say this if it weren't true.
And then I feel another touch – fleeting and brief and so warm it penetrates through to my very soul. The touch of another set of lips, smaller and softer than Lois' were. A child's lips. Against my forehead.
He was here? Lois had brought him here? She brought him here to see me before I… died? Before I left again? She brought him to me to convince me to stay? Is that it?
As if I could leave now.
I left her. I made the choice and I left Lois. I've known since the moment I returned that I had made the worst choice ever in leaving her. I should not have left her. And now I find that she had a child. My child. My son. I not only left her, but I left my son. The son I was told I would never have. My flesh and blood.
Unlike anything I have ever known.
Stabbing. Biting. Throbbing.
But this time, the pain isn't physical. It's centered in my heart, in my soul. It's centered around the child I never knew existed. Was told could never exist. My son. Jason.
My heart races in my chest, willing me to go on. Get up. Live. My breath quickens, forcing me to life. But the darkness is thick and heavy.
I have to fight it. I have to find the light. I have to for the sake of my son.
I inhale deeply, taking air into my lungs as fully as possible. I can still smell Lois's lingering perfume. And something else. Something… unfamiliar. I can't place it, but it is similar to Lois's scent. With a touch of plastic. Like a crayon?
Like a child.
My mind snaps into attention in that moment as a flood of thoughts over whelm me. How can it be that for five years my son has lived on this planet and I can't even recognize his smell? How is it that I can't recall the exact sound of his voice? I have never played with him. I can't even name his favorite game or toy… or food. Can he read yet? Can he ride a bike yet? When is his birthday? Oh God… I don't even know when he was born! Does he have a middle name? I know nothing about my son other than his address and the fact that he is sickly.
My body reacts to that last thought.
My son is sick. Why? What did Lois say he took? What were the medications? What were they for? Could it be that the reason he is ill is because his father isn't human? Am I the cause of his illness? And what, oh dear God, what can I do to help him?
My son. My flesh and blood. My only living relative. The very thing I went in search of five years ago when I left the planet was waiting right here for me. The irony is chilling and cuts me to the core.
My son needs me. And I need him.
The blackness begins to fade, slowly, but surely. Black becomes gray becomes white. Bright white. Stark and cold. Blurry. It's difficult to make out anything specific. I blink my eyes and try to focus on what is in front of me. The ceiling. To the side of me. A window. I can see the hallway of a hospital and a nurse and a police office. To my other side. Another window. I can see the sky… and the sun.
And I can feel the warmth. The strength. The power flooding my system. I will my body to soak up every atom of radiation. It penetrates into my body giving me the power I desperately need in order to move.
First my hand. And then my arm. Hesitantly, I pull myself forward and up into a sitting position. I blink once, then twice.
I'm still here. I'm awake. I'm alive.
I'm a father.
Nothing matters more than that last thought. Not the sound of a siren peeling in the distance. Not the cry for help I can hear from someone under attack. Not the voice of the nurse coming to check on me.
I have to move fast. Did I have it in me to move fast enough? A deep breath later and I was fully dressed.
The nurse rounds the corner… I open the window… and I am flying.
I keep out of sight, not wanting to draw any attention to the fact that I had left the hospital, for I was now very aware of the fact that there was a mass of people holding vigil waiting for news of my recovery. But I can't speak to them. I can't speak to anyone right now. There is only one person I need to see and I'm not fully sure where he is at that moment.
Five years. Five very long and lonely years I had spent away from him. I wasn't going to waste another moment.
Did he know who I was? Did he know who he was? Did he inherit anything from me other than the color of my eyes? Did he have powers like mine?
A horrific thought wracks through my soul. The kryptonite. That boat had been breached by the growing land mass of kryptonite. Had it hurt him? Had he felt the same pain I had felt? He seemed fine on the plane. That was the last time I'd seen him, and I hadn't even really looked at him then. Dear God. Let him be all right.
I scan the crowds of people swarming the streets around the hospital and he isn't there. I scan the offices of Daily Planet… and he isn't there. I scan the house on Riverside Drive.
And find him.
Lois was tucking him to bed. A frown marks his perfect, beautiful face. "Will you tell me if he gets better?" he says.
"I promise, Munchkin." She kisses him and brushes his hair away from his face. "You get some sleep and try not to worry, ok?"
"Ok, mommy." He blinks and rolls over onto his side, hugging the over sized pillow against his tiny frame.
I watch him from a distance for a while uncertain of how to proceed. What can I say to him? What am I allowed to say to him. Lois had said that Jason didn't know. She hadn't told him about me. About… my relationship to him. Did she not want him to know? Or was he simply not ready to know?
That had to be it. No one was ready at the ripe old age of five to learn that they weren't exactly human. I hadn't been ready to hear that until I was eighteen even though I had known for a long time that the Kent's weren't my biological parents. Jason believed Richard to be his biological father. He wasn't ready to learn otherwise. I had to respect that, much as it pained me.
Feeling brave and needing to be near him, I quietly enter his room and listen to his gentle breathing. The slow inhale and exhale of his lungs sooths me, as does the angelic expression of his sleeping face. I can't resist the pull he has over me. I need to be closer. I need to be close to my son.
Quietly, careful not to awaken him, I kneel at his bedside and look over his body with thorough inspection. Everything seems normal. I can see no traces of the illnesses Lois spoke of. His internal organs appear fine and functioning normally… except for his lungs. They don't seem right to me and I vow to myself to investigate what can be done to help him breath more easily. But other than that, he is fine. More than fine – he is perfect.
I repeat the words over and over again in my head.
My beautiful, amazing, gentle son.
I don't know when I will have the chance to tell him everything in my heart. I don't know how long it will be until I can safely tell him the whole truth of who I am and who he is. I hope it will be soon, for there is so much he needs to know. So much I need to share with him.
And above everything, I need him to know that I will always be here for him. I will always watch over him. Protect him. Love him.
So I say to him the words that were spoken to me by my own father so many years ago. And I hope that even though he is asleep, the knowledge of my love for him will seep into his heart and make him feel whole. For he is not alone. He will never be alone.
And for the first time, neither am I.
I touch him then. Tenderly I place my hand against his head and feel the warmth of his skin. I feel the flow of life in his blood. The beat of his heart. And I marvel at his features – so like Lois… and yet somehow like me. I feel immensely ignorant for not noticing it before. I wish he would wake up so I could look into his eyes, but I don't dare disturb him. Instead, I smile at him. A real smile. One that I cannot refrain from expressing.
Unlike anything I have ever known.
Consuming. Fulfilling. Breathtaking.
And in this moment, this one perfect, fleeting moment, there is no room for pain. Not while he is happy. Not while my son is safe and protected and loved. Not when I have found the missing piece in my life.