"To End All Evil"
by Zekkers

Disclaimer: Not mine.

Author's Notes: Post-Jitters. This is scene is placed the following morning. Of course- it probably wouldn't happen, because then Lex Luthor might not grow up to be a super-villain. I'm of the opinion that if something like this did happen, things would be radically different- it would end the future as we know it. Hence the title.

I also tried to cover some plot holes in the show. And yes, I sorta left it open. I'm really an evil person that way. Does anyone care to see me continue this?

Author's Rant: Did anybody notice that Smallville isn't small? I mean- 45,000 people in Kansas would be one of the huge towns. Try 5,000 if you want to get realistic.

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The beat-up pickup truck drove forward through the open gate as the guard waved it on. The reporters milling around looked at it jealously, but the driver was unconcerned. The truck passed around the curve in the road, parking in front of the stone fortress-like mansion. A man got out of the truck, dragging fingers through blond curls before shoving work-hardened hands into the pockets of his faded jeans.

Jonathan Kent strode purposefully up to the door, the heels of his cowboy boots clicking on the flagstones as the butler held open the front door. The very proper looking man in his expensive suit looked Jonathan up and down disdainfully before turning away, adding the required 'If you would please follow me, sir. Master Lex is in his office."

The two men walked, one behind the other, through the silent echoing corridors, neither willing to talk. It was a long walk, through clean, but somehow gloomy halls, past sitting rooms with antique furniture, and statues of medieval armor. They came to a large wooden door, and the butler opened it, stepping in to announce, 'Jonathan Kent, sir.'

"Thank you, that will be all." Lex motioned with one hand, eyes still glued to the computer screen in front of him.

The stuffy man left, leaving Jonathan standing in front of the large wooden desk, the Luthor behind it almost oblivious to his presence. He was framed by large windows that were covered with gauzy curtains. A crystal chandelier hung from the ceiling, an oriental rug lay on the floor, and the walls were paneled in dark wood.

Lex looked up. "Sorry I didn't come down to meet you. I have to get the proper reports filled out by the environmental department before OSHA will let me re-open. And if the plant isn't open, people don't go to work. And then they don't get paid." He looked back down at the screen.

Jonathan nodded. "I understand. I could come back later?" He sounded almost unsure.

Lex waved a hand. "No, no. I'm almost done reviewing this- just another paragraph. There. I'll e-mail it back to the department, and they can make the changes." He looked up again. "Well, Mr. Kent, what can I do for you?"

Jonathan took a deep breath. "Talked to Clark last night- about what you did yesterday." He paused, then went on. "Talked to some of the other kids too." He looked straight at Lex Luthor. "You're a brave young man, Mr. Luthor. I'm glad my son knows you."

The young man in question just sat, frozen behind his desk, looking a little surprised. He found his voice with a soft, "Ah... thank you, Mr. Kent." It was obvious that he had expected something else, accusations maybe.

Jonathan quirked a smile. "No, thank you, Mr. Luthor." He shrugged a little. "But you're busy, and I've got more chores to do. I won't waste anymore of your time." He backed up a step. "And thanks for seeing me."

Lex quickly stood up, "Oh, it's nothing. I'm always happy to make time, I'll... walk you out."

The two left the large room, walking side by side through the wide hallways back to the entrance. The bald young man motioned towards the walls. "I really should move my office closer to the front door, but the view's better back here. Most of the rooms where first built centuries ago, and the windows are rather small. I couldn't stand working in a cave."

Jonathan grunted. "Place looks rather gloomy."

"It is gloomy." Lex replied, then set his shoulders. "You asked around? About me?" He sounded curious, not angry that Jonathan had double-checked Clark's story.

The farmer answered him, thoughtful, but looking down the hallways, not at Lex. "Martha says I'm stubborn. I know I am. Man has to be stubborn, to hold onto his land, hold onto what he's got."

Lex nodded, and they came to the front door. "It doesn't hurt to stick to your guns."

"Yeah." Jonathan stepped out, then turned around. "Martha's making chicken-fried steak tonight. With mash-potatoes and green beans and apple pie for dessert. If you're not busy, we'd be glad to have you."

A small smile turned up Lex's lips. "I'd... like that. I should know by six if I can make dinner."

The farmer grinned, "We usually eat at five-thirty."

The city born-and-bred man blinked. "That early? Uh, by four then."

Jonathan walked back to his truck. "Just give us a call."

"Sure thing."

The truck drove off, and Lex went back to his office. He buried himself in the paperwork, making notes to himself and returning some phone calls. Trying not to think about what his father had done yesterday- and how it had felt to be so betrayed.

Thinking about Jonathan Kent helped. Lex smiled to himself, as he dialed another number. The man had all but apologized. In fact- Mr. Kent had apologized- the only way a small-town farmer from the Midwest could. Clear as day, without saying the words.

Later the phone rang. Lex picked it up, "Lex Luthor."

"Son."

"Father." Lex's voice was cold, distant.

"How's everything going? The plant re-opened yet?"

"No." He glanced at the clock on the wall. "It will be by noon."

"So late? I thought you would have the local authorities well in hand by now." The voice was calculating, mocking.

Lex sneered. "We made the front page of every paper in the nation, father." He had seen the pictures on CNN.com, the two of them pulled into that ridiculous parody of an embrace. But the press had bought it- and that's all daddy dearest would care about. "You can't get that kind of publicity and then fudge the paperwork. Some grubby-pawed reporter will get wind of it."

"Still, I would think you'd be able to work faster than this." Lionel sounded bored.

Lex sighed. "Would have, but the security cameras weren't taped. I was getting the system upgraded- we had the cameras up and running, but no hardcopy was being made. It took time to get the eyewitness reports, since there wasn't a tape."

"Oh really..." His father paused. "At least you're learning."

"Yes, it was a learning experience all around." Sarcasm dripped from his words. "Now- if you don't mind, I need to get going. I have a lot to do."

"Very well. Goodbye son."

"Goodbye." Lex hung up. Leaned back, stared at the phone. He sat up, pulling open the bottom drawer to his desk. There was a black VCR tape sitting there, and as Lex lifted it, looking at the spine, the clear print reading: 'Plant 3, Tuesday'. Lex dropped it back in the desk drawer sliding it shut. Looked at the mountains of extra paperwork on his desk.

"Clark," he whispered, "What I do for you...."