Disclaimer: Blah blah. Blah blah Lex, blah blah Lana, blah blah. I do, however, own the housekeeper! She's so cool! She's my favorite character now.

Note: This is Part 5 of The Saga. The Saga is my little series of Smallville stories which read as follows: Just Friends, As Close As You'll Ever Get, Too Close, Hypothetically, and now Lonely. And just as a note! Since Part 2, the Romance genre has been slowly slipping out of this series. Well, IT'S BACK! Ha ha ha. (Now it can slip away again? Never mind.)

There he was, sitting at his desk, with another bottle of bourbon and another shotglass. Lex stared moodily at the full bottle. He had actually been happy today. He didn't know why. Now it seemed impossible, though he didn't know why he was depressed, either. He remembered last night, how the bottle just seemed to empty itself. I shouldn't do it again, he told himself. I won't. He opened the bottle and filled the glass. "Just one," he said very firmly. But after he had downed it in one swallow, he couldn't think of anything to do besides drink another.

Lex wasn't an alcoholic. He knew what those were like. He just needed to think, and to stop being depressed. It wasn't like he drank all the time. A glass a day, maybe, and one with dinner, but that was social drinking, normal drinking. He was just so, so lonely tonight. Last night had been a little different. He hadn't even realized he was drinking. Tonight he knew perfectly well, and he didn't care. There was no one in the mansion but his housekeeper and she hated him. It wouldn't kill her to clean up one more bottle, anyway. It wouldn't kill him, either. He never got sick. Not since the meteor shower.

After the second harsh glass, Lex stopped and got up from his desk. His office was large and forboding. The pool table in the corner was covered for the night, and he didn't want to check his email again. The Metropolis scientists would never analyze his rock. He looked out the window. Same view as last night. Exactly the same. Suddenly it irritated him the way the vista outside his window never changed. Why should he have to look out at the same damn wheat field every day? He shook his head and headed back to his desk.

For a moment he just stood there, staring at the bottle. It was filled with golden liquid, standing on the table innocently like bottle of ginger ale. Lex laughed. It was like ginger ale with benefits. His laugh sounded unnaturally loud in the deathly silence that drove him to check his email four times a night and drink bourbon until he started comparing it to ginger ale. He poured himself another glass and sat down. Maybe tomorrow he wouldn't be so lonely, but tonight he was desperate.

A knock came on his door. "Come in," he said automatically, startled. His housekeeper entered.

She took one look at the glass in his hand and said, "You empty that bottle and I beat your hide." His housekeeper was a portly Hispanic woman who looked like she'd been through a war. He believed her when she threatened him. He put up his hands in surrender and set the glass down. "Besides, you have a guest," she said. "An underage guest. Put the bottle away."

Lex leaned forward. "Who's the guest?"

"A Miss Lang?"

His eyebrows raised. "Show her in," he said, surprised.

"I will," she said dryly. "You pay me, don't you?"

Lex put a hand to his temple when she left. He needed new help. Curiously he checked his watch. 10:21. What was Lana doing here so late?

"Here she is," announced his housekeeper. "You give me a call if you need anything, honey," she told Lana, who had appeared in the doorway. The woman gave Lex a look that spoke of torture should he empty that bottle. He smiled fondly. She rolled her eyes and shut the door behind her.

"Lana Lang," he said. "What brings you to the House on Haunted Hill?"

Her lower lip was trembling and she was twisting her fingers. He realized that something was very wrong. "Lana," he said in a completely different tone. "What's wrong?"