New Kid on the Block
Disclaimer: No copyright infringement intended. I own neither of the universes nor the characters.
Distribution: The Nook
Spoilers: Season seven finale of SG1. Season 3 of Smallville
Rating: PG-13, or slightly higher
Clark Kent woke from a deep sleep, or was it a dream?
"Kal El, you are needed." That was the recorded voice of his biological father, projected through the Fortress of Solitude. Clark debated; should he listen or roll over and go back to sleep?
"Kal El, if you return to sleep, your world may not exist when you awake."
Clark bolted up in bed. Martha and Jonathon Kent had never issued so effective a threat.
"Come at once," the Fortress paused and then continued chagrinned, "You may have need of your human female."
The Fortress and his father Ihated/I Chloe. Things must be truly dire. Clark sped-dressed and raced to Chloe's apartment. He opened the window that she left unlocked for this very purpose, entered, and started a pot of coffee.
He shook her, "Chloe, wake up."
She opened her blurry eyes and rubbed them. "Clark, what are you doing in my bedroom?"
"The Fortress woke me up," Clark started. "It said that it's the end of the world if I don't go down there… and bring you along."
Chloe immediately started grousing. "What are we, on some TV show like Buffy? Out to stop our own apocalypse?"
In spite of the circumstances, Clark laughed. The coffee maker stopped dripping so Clark poured rich, fragrant liquid into Chloe's biggest thermos with plenty of creamer and sugar. Then he waved the thermos under Chloe's nose. She grabbed for it but Clark yanked it away.
"I'll give it to you as soon as you get outta bed and get dressed – warmly."
"You're as bad as your old man," Chloe grumbled.
Clark stood there tapping his foot until Chloe threw off her covers. He saw her nightie, blushed and realized that he really should wait elsewhere. He turned his back and grabbed Chloe's cell phone. He called her work and left a message with her supervisor saying that Chloe had a cold and wouldn't be in for a couple of days.
"Alright Farmboy," Chloe teased. "Hand over the caffeine and no one gets hurt."
Clark turned around and looked Chloe over; she had dressed in many, many layers and had on her winter coat, hat and mittens. Clark approved. It wouldn't be good if Chloe ended up catching a real cold after this… adventure. Clark handed over the coffee, but before letting her take a sip, he picked her up at super-speed and ran out of the apartment and out of Kansas. Somewhere between Texas and Panama, Chloe shrieked his name in disgust but Clark didn't bother answering until they had arrived at the Fortress.
He set her gently on the ice and earned a punch to his arm for his troubles. "Was that necessary?" Chloe grumbled.
"Yes," the Fortress answered. "Time is of the essence. A Son of the Ancients is attempting to use the outpost weapon against the alien incursion. I cannot guarantee his success. Anubis is most determined to destroy this planet. Kal El has no transportation with which to flee."
Chloe's fingers itched for a keyboard so that she could do some research. "Do you know this Anubis Big Bad?" she asked.
"He attempted to destroy Krypton once, but we had superior technology and none were willing to betray the whole for his pitiful rewards. Anubis has now turned his attention to this lesser prize. The humans have withstood his plans surprisingly well given their limits."
Chloe and Clark rolled their eyes at the condescending tone.
"I have prepared disguises," the Fortress continued. "And a crystal that will download the Ancients' language into your heads temporarily."
A blast suddenly rocked the Fortress. "The battle is expanding and the humans are losing ground."
Chloe and Clark needed no further prompting. The clothes were laid out. Chloe put hers on, hoping against hope that they'd be warm. Surprisingly, they were. When she turned around to face Clark, she was surprised to see an older stranger in his stead. There was a definite resemblance to Clark in the chin, height and breadth of the body, but he had grey hair at the temples. From the surprised look on the older man's face, Chloe must look different as well. Those strange dark eyes hardened.
"What have you done?" he asked the Fortress.
"I made use of the images available to me. You now resemble my wife and me. "You are now Jor El and Lara."
It was a very egotistical move. Chloe knew that Clark and been asking for a visual of his mother, with the Fortress refusing at every turn. To produce one now could distract Clark from the dangers.
"Pick up the Ancients' crystal. Time is fleeting." Another explosion rocked the Fortress.
The two picked up the Ancients' crystal and were slammed with information. Chloe did get a download of a weird Latin-like language into her head, just as the Fortress as promised. But she was also informed that it was her job to protect Kal El from the humans during and after the fighting. And Kal El was expected to do some serious fighting while flying. Chloe knew that a sane Clark had never flown, as did the Fortress. Included in the download was information about the red kryptonite (housed in a lead-lined jewelry box) that Chloe was to slip to Clark, if she didn't think he could fly without it.
"Manipulative Old Man," Chloe grumbled internally. He/it was making her do the dirty work. Had he/it deliberately taunted Clark with Lara's image now?
"Ready?" Clark asked.
No. Chloe fingered the box in her pocket and decided. "Let's do this."
Clark picked her up again and sped towards the fight without hesitation. He was a natural hero; Chloe would have considered it for a moment or two more. Clark stopped and an aerial battle was being fought overhead with sleek sci-fi spaceships.
"Do you know which side is our side?" Chloe asked.
Clark grinned. "The ones with the 'USAF' painted on the sides?"
"With super sight," Clark countered. "The weapon should be somewhere in the ground here…"
"You mean in the ice?"
This time Clark said, "Smart aleck." He barely paused as he used his ex-ray vision to search.
"The Fortress gave me some red kryptonite."
Clark stopped and his jaw tightened. "He doesn't think I can get it done without it."
Clark stared wistfully at the sky. "I wish."
"If it helps any, I believe in you."
Clark smiled. "I found them. Are you ready to be Lara?"
"As much as I'll ever be."
Clark picked her up yet again and by the time she had finished blinking, she was in an ice cavern with four military types people. Clark set her down, nodded to a couple and then was about to leave. His battle was outside.
Chloe grabbed his jacket. "Cl-Kal El."
He looked down at her. She put her arms around him and whispered. "I don't think you need it but it's in my left coat pocket. Be safe."
Then he was gone and she was alone to face the music. The four people were staring at her. Or rather, three were, the fourth one was puttering around a futuristic chair.
Chloe sighed and bowed (she didn't know she could bow like that) and spoke in the Ancient language. "Greetings to the Son of the Ancients."
The Fourth –the old man- smirked at her and continued with what he was doing. The younger cute guy who was probably the least military translated her words into English. He stumbled a bit with the language but finally asked Chloe. "You Ancient one-possibly."
Chloe thought about saying yes, but Clark's powers were not similar to what they knew and he would be showing off out there for the Air Force to see. "We are refugees who had sought safety. Kal El is assisting your fight while the Son of the Ancients readies the weapon. Please order your ships to assist or ignore him. He will not harm those of the United Lands."
Cute Guy translated the conversation for the others. The only woman of the group gave warning to the pilots not to aim for the red blur sharing the sky with them. From the reply Chloe overheard, Clark was already doing some serious damage and taking hits to protect the Americans.
Stupid hero complex. It better not get him killed.
Old Man spoke Ancient flawlessly, but he winced as he did so. "There's a problem. Help? Please?"
Chloe edged around the three others and knelt beside the old man as he revealed a panel in the back of the chair. Ice crystals had disrupted the flow of power. How did she know that? And would she be able to keep this knowledge for her next physics test? Chloe scraped off the ice with the lead box in her pocket and reconnected the purple crystal to its proper place. She glanced at Old Man and saw that his eyes were closed in pain.
"It is done," she whispered.
Old Man smiled and then he opened his eyes. "Thank you, Kryptonian."
Chloe helped Old Man to his feet and into his chair. She stood back as the power flared and then a bright stream of …something… raced out of the cavern to attack Anubis. It was only a moment but it seemed like forever. Then the stream of light ended. Chloe stood back as the Old Man and his friends exchanged a few words and then the Old Man positioned himself into the stasis chamber and activated it. Even though some part of her knew what was going to happen, she was still startled to see the ice form around the man.
The three remaining stared at their friend for only a moment before turning in unison to face Chloe. The plain old Earthling in disguise took a step back. Where the heck was Clark? What was taking him so long? He had better not gotten hurt and was putting them into a very big mess.
The cute young guy was talking. "Name mine Daniel." He pointed at the girl, "Sam," and the intimidating man, "Teal'c."
Chloe decided she might as well answer, "Lara." And since they seemed in a listening mood, she tried to plead Clark's case. "Please don't come looking for us after. We are refugees. Krypton is gone and we just wish to live in peace."
"Next time? What then?" Daniel argued. "Go'uald not stay Earth in peace."
Chloe didn't like the possibilities. She didn't like knowing that this wasn't the first time that an alien invasion had threatened Earth. She didn't want to know that more were very possible. Clark would want to help (stupid hero complex) but Chloe didn't want to give them a Kryptonian sign that might lead them to Smallville. So she compromised, "Kryptonian. When the Ancient name for our people is used, we'll know. If you misuse it, we will know."
Daniel bowed. "Thank you, neighbor-honor."
A breeze. Chloe turned, knowing that Clark had arrived. He was sweaty and a little crispy in places, but as Jor El, he looked enough like Clark that he was darn good looking. She had lived in the country for too long if the sweaty farm boy look got her engine revving.
"Good?" He asked.
Chloe nodded. "What took you so long?"
"I had to help a couple pilots land."
"We should go."
In unison, Clark and Chloe turned toward the military and bowed.
Daniel was still stuttering out his thank-yous as Chloe hopped into Clark's arms and they sped to the Fortress.
"So, did you fly?" Chloe asked as soon as they stopped.
Clark grinned like a little boy. "Extended jumps. Very extended."
"Can you take me?"