Well here it is, the final chapter of The Honeymooners and I'm sorry it's taken so long.
I've had so much fun writing this and I really appreciate all the feedback. I also appreciate how you stuck with me during the long chapter breaks, so this final chapter is dedicated to all of you.
Thank you so much, Irish Rose.
Previously on The Honeymooners:
When she finally rolled onto her back and opened her eyes, she found the face of the man who had satisfied her so completely, smiling at her. The expression on his face was one she'd never seen and his smile of happiness made her smile.
"Hi." That simple word conveyed so much and when Lois felt a tear slip out of the corner of her eye, he reached up with a gentle hand to brush it away. "Sleep well?"
"No. Thanks to you." She felt her own face heat with the memory of where that hand had touched her during the night.
"But you don't look like you minded too much." If anyone else but Clark had said that, they would've sounded much too cocky and sure of themselves. "I know I didn't."
"Of course you didn't, it was me." As if she needed to say anything more.
"And it's not going to be anyone else but you for the rest of my life." He leaned over and kissed her.
"Forever and for always, huh?" She touched his cheek and her fingers tingled against the friction of the early morning stubble.
"Or maybe even longer." He laughed softly and kissed her again.
"Are you thinking about something permanent?"
Was he proposing?
"Lois, I think we're as permanent as permanent can be. Don't you?" He seemed to deflect her unasked question.
"Permanent enough to think about marriage?" She found herself asking him, though she wasn't sure why. Clark Kent was not a one-night stand kind of a guy and the fact that'd they'd made love wasn't something either of them had taken lightly.
"Are you proposing?" He leaned close and nuzzled her hair with his lips.
"I may be an independent woman, Smallville. But if anyone's going to propose in this relationship, it's going to be you."
"And is there any kind of a deadline I'm working with?" His warm breath against her ear as he laughed, made her heart squeeze hard in her chest.
"When I get tired of waiting, I'll let you know." She twined her fingers into his hair as he kissed her shoulder again.
"I don't think you're going to get tired of waiting, Lois." She felt him shift as he kissed a sensitive spot he'd found the night before, just behind her ear.
"Clark?" It amazed her how he seemed to be the only man alive who could render her nearly speechless with a simple touch. But the way his hands were starting to roam, he was sending an unmistakable signal to her.
"I told you that you weren't going to get tired of waiting." He explained with a smile that made her heart melt and Lois shook her head.
"I thought you meant-" She lost her train of thought when she felt his hand skim her hip and the pair of blue eyes that wouldn't let her look away, deepened in color as he made it clear that he wasn't talking about a proposal. At least not yet.
But that was all right with her.
At the moment, they had other things to do.
And now the final chapter of The Honeymooners:
Chapter 31: For Always and Forever
When he told her she wouldn't get tired of waiting for a proposal, he wasn't kidding. Because six months after they made love for the first time, they were married.
Clark got the ball rolling toward their wedding day when he proposed to her on Christmas Eve. It was an intimate setting at the Kent farm with just the two of them and their parents and he later told her that he'd already decided to pop the question before she'd given him his Christmas present.
When he got down on one knee that evening and presented the ring to her, it was the very ring she'd been enchanted with when she'd spotted it in the jewelry store window next to the Regent Hotel.
It was the afternoon she'd taken a walk around the block while Clark was taking care of his Blur duties. She had no idea that he'd seen her there, so it made the ring that much more of a surprise.
"Honey, would you put the mugs on that tray for me?" Mrs. Kent pointed to it on the island. "Clark and your father will be back any time now. It's gotten colder outside and I think they'd appreciate having something hot to drink."
"Mrs. K, you know the cold doesn't bother Clark." Lois smiled at her and then did as she was asked. "And Dad just ignores it."
"I know." She nodded. There were tears in her eyes and it wasn't the first time that evening Lois had seen them. But just as quickly, she blinked them away. "I sometimes forget that my little boy isn't human."
"We're going to have to tell my dad about that. Eventually."
"You've talked about it?" It was obvious from the look on her face that she wasn't expecting to hear that.
"We both agreed that it's not fair to keep this from him." She explained. "I don't like keeping secrets anyway and with my dad's expert interrogation skills, it wouldn't take much for him to get me to spill my guts."
"You're right." Mrs. Kent agreed with a firm nod. "And seeing as how-"
She stopped short and turned to face the coffee maker. The coffee hadn't finished brewing yet, so she got the cream pitcher out of the refrigerator, a small bowl of sugar from the counter and set them down on the tray.
"Seeing as how, what?" Lois asked and couldn't help but notice that the normally unflappable Martha Kent was suddenly a bundle of nerves.
"Don't mind me." She deflected as she picked up the full tray and carried it out of the kitchen, tossing instructions over her shoulder. "When the coffee's done, please bring it out to the living room."
"Sure thing, Mrs. Kent." Lois shrugged and frowned in confusion. Something was up with Mrs. K and she didn't have a clue what it could be.
Come to think of it, her father had had a barely concealed grin that late afternoon and she was pretty sure it wasn't because her relationship with Clark had become more intimate.
She heard the front door open and found that she had a smile on her face at the sound of Dad and Clark laughing. It was a strange sound to hear from the both of them because Clark hadn't laughed much since Mr. Kent passed away. And the General seemed to lose any semblance of humor after her mother died.
So to hear the two men she loved most, who were normally much too serious, laughing, it definitely warmed her heart. And the feel of Clark's hands on her shoulders a few minutes later didn't hurt either.
"Hi." He pressed a kiss to her hair. "I thought I'd come in and give you a hand."
"What's the matter, Smallville? Think I can't handle a pot of coffee?" Her cheeks warmed as she felt him crowd his body against her back. "Besides, your hands are kind of busy right now."
"But my lips aren't." His voice rumbled near her ear. "So what are you going to do about that?"
"Let me turn around and I'll show you." She answered and he stepped back enough to let her do just that. She then snaked her arms around his waist as his slipped down around hers.
The look in his eyes made her face warm even more because she saw how his undisguised happiness lit him from within. It had been there since the night they'd made love and that lit her from within, knowing she had the ability to make him feel that way.
She tipped her face up as his soft lips came down to meet hers. Clark's hands began a slow descent to her lower back and one went beyond. Her fingers itched to pull the tail of his shirt loose so she could touch him, but she was able to remain coherent enough to remember that their parents were a few feet away in the living room.
"I don't suppose we could sneak upstairs?" His warm breath brushed across her cheek.
"As much as I love that idea, you know we can't." She whispered in his ear and then nipped the lobe gently with her teeth.
He tensed and then retaliated by firmly cupping her backside with his hand and pressed her against his body so he could show her in no uncertain terms what she was doing to him. "Then you can't do things like that."
"Touché, Mr. Kent." Lois was sure she was about to swoon, but Clark's other hand at her waist held her close against him and she knew she wasn't going anywhere.
Lois could feel him begin to tremble and knew it was taking a special kind of strength for him not take her right there in the kitchen. "Before we do something to embarrass our parents, and ourselves we should probably get out there."
"Yeah." She didn't particularly want to let him go and that was something that oddly brought her comfort, because she knew that he didn't want to let her go either.
"You never used to blush before." He reached up and put his hand to her cheek, running a gentle thumb across her skin. "And now you seem to do it all the time. I like that."
"And whose fault is that?"
"Mine." He admitted proudly with a smile and dropped his hand. And then he blushed. "If you wouldn't mind taking the coffee, I'll be right behind you."
"Smallville?" Lois looked at him curiously as he turned to face the counter.
"It's okay, Lois." He glanced over his shoulder. "I just need a minute."
It didn't take her a second to realize what he meant and she nodded her understanding. The evidence of what they'd been doing would have been obvious and he didn't want to embarrass Lois or his mother.
"Just don't take too long or they're going to figure out why." She got the full pot of coffee and leaned up to kiss his cheek. "Okay?"
"Okay." His face reddened even more. "You're the only girl I've really had this problem with."
"You're welcome." She found herself giggling with delight as she walked out of the kitchen and into the living room. She saw a glance pass between Clark's mother and her father and they were smiling. "Clark will be out in a minute."
"That's fine, honey." Mrs. Kent told her. "In the meantime, why don't you put that down? I'll start pouring as soon as my son gets out here and then we can all open one gift."
"But it's Christmas Eve." Lois stated the obvious.
"Not that it ever made a difference." Her father chuckled and took it upon himself to pour a mug of coffee. "My apologies, Martha. But it's cold out there."
"It's all right." Mrs. Kent smiled at him and then looked toward the kitchen. "There he is."
"Thanks for waiting." He glanced toward Lois as he walked into the living room and took a seat next to her on the couch. "Shelby wanted to play so I had to wash my hands."
"I've never seen a dog that wants to play so much." Lois's father commented seeming to miss the look that passed between her and Clark. "The last couple of times I've gone back to Washington and unpacked, my clothes have been covered with fur."
"Shelby does have a way of leaving an impression." Mrs. Kent laughed and began to pour coffee into the other three mugs. "Clark, honey why don't you get the gifts while I do this and we can each open one before Sam goes back to town."
"Are you sure Mom and I can't talk you into staying?" Clark asked the General as he got up and walked to the tree, picking out four small gifts. He turned back around and handed one to his mother and to the General, who shook his head. "I can't seem to talk Lois into staying either."
"Smallville, we'll be back in the morning." She patted his knee as he sat back down next to her. He then turned her left palm over and set a package in her hand. Lois's heart hitched as she stared at it and tried not to guess what it could be. It looked like a ring box, but for all she knew he could have bought her earrings.
"Lois, why don't you go first." Mrs. Kent prompted her gently. "Since this is your first Christmas together with my son, I think it's appropriate."
"Okay." She answered cautiously as her father sat forward and put his coffee mug down. Mrs. K had tears in her eyes again and Clark looked kind of nervous. And now, so was she. "Here goes."
It was so neatly wrapped and Lois was a little hesitant to open it. Clark seemed to think that she was trying to figure out if it was his handiwork because he shrugged.
"I asked Mom to wrap it for me." His voice cracked and then his face flushed. "I needed it to be just right."
Lois's hands started to shake because without saying it, she knew he wasn't giving her earrings; it was something much more permanent. She took a deep breath, carefully unwrapped the package and in her hand was a velvet ring box.
She took another breath and when she opened it, couched inside was the ring she'd seen in the jewelry store window next to the Regent Hotel. "Clark?"
How did he know?
His hands were trembling as he took the box from her hand and pulled the ring out. He got up off the couch and went down on one knee, holding the ring in front of her. "I know it might seem a little soon to be doing this, but we've known each other for five years and you know me better than anyone."
"Clark." He was actually going to do it.
"And at the risk of sounding a little over confident, I think I know you better than anyone, too."
"Clark." She could feel the tears begin to gather in her eyes.
He hadn't made her wait.
"We've been through a lot together and you've always been there for me whether I've wanted you there or not."
Lois couldn't stand it anymore and she nodded. "Yes."
"I haven't asked you anything yet." There was a look of joy and exasperation on his face, her very favorite expression.
"The answer is still yes."
"Well did you ever stop to consider that I wasn't going to ask you to marry me?" He was trying so hard not to smile, but failing miserably.
"Smallville, you're down on one knee and have an engagement ring in your hand. That's kind of a dead giveaway."
"Never could get anything past you." He reached for her right hand and squeezed it. "I'd like to finish my proposal now."
Lois nodded her approval and blinked furiously to keep from crying. Part of her agreed with him that it did seem a little soon, but a larger part felt that the time couldn't be more perfect because they'd taken five years to really get to know each other.
They'd seen each other at their best and at their worst and still managed to remain friends. And as a surprise to the both of them, they had finally found the love of their life in each other.
"I know it might seem a little soon to be doing this-"
"You already said that." She tweaked him and he gave her that look.
"Sorry." She giggled and put her free hand on his chest, feeling the nervous thumping of his heart under her fingers.
"What I'm trying to say is this. When I dream about where I want my life to be, it's with you, Lois." He held the ring out and his eyes had begun to sparkle. "And you'd make me the happiest guy in Smallville if you agreed to marry me."
She answered by getting off the couch and down on her knees in front of him. She put her hands on his broad shoulders, leaned up and whispered her answer in his ear.
"Then this belongs to you." He whispered in response and leaned back so he could slip the ring on her finger. "Merry Christmas, Lois."
"It certainly is, Smallville." She agreed before sealing their new engagement with a kiss.
It had been a day he'd never forget because six months after he and Lois made love for the first time, they were married. It was something that had been in the back of his mind since Thanksgiving, but the closer that it got to Christmas Clark couldn't help but feel that it was much too soon to propose to her.
While it was true that they'd known each other for the last five years, and he knew without a doubt that she knew him better than anyone, marriage was something that she probably wasn't ready to even consider. And to be perfectly honest, Clark wasn't sure he was ready either.
But if that were really true, why had he found himself in front of the very jewelry store window two weeks before Christmas where he'd seen Lois that fall afternoon when they were staying at the Regent?
And after being shown the ring she'd been looking at and holding it carefully between his thumb and forefinger studying it, why did he suddenly want to see it on Lois's hand? Simple.
He wanted to spend the rest of his life with her.
That feeling grew even more so, after Lois gave him an early Christmas present of herself and Clark knew that his life was finally where he used to wonder if it could be.
So on that Christmas Eve, with some help from his mother, he pledged his life to her.
"What I'm trying to say is this. When I dream about where I want my life to be, it's with you, Lois." He held the ring out to her and could feel the tears in his eyes. "And you'd make me the happiest guy in Smallville if you agreed to marry me."
She answered by getting off the couch and down on her knees in front of him. She put her hands on his shoulders, leaned up and whispered her answer in his ear. "Yes."
"Then this belongs to you." He whispered in response and leaned back so he could slip the ring on her finger. "Merry Christmas, Lois."
"It certainly is, Smallville." She agreed before sealing their new engagement with a kiss.
And then as suddenly as she'd kissed him, she pulled away to give her father a stern look. "You knew about this, didn't you?"
"I stumbled into the battle plan at the last minute and became aware that young Kent here had planned on pulling out the heavy artillery." Lois's father shrugged unapologetically and picked up his coffee mug, taking a sip. "So what about you, Lo? I don't see a gift for your new fiancé."
Fiancé. He liked the sound of that.
"If you must know, General Nosy-" Clark's head dipped as he hid a smile at Lois' use of her father's favorite nickname for his oldest daughter, 'Miss Nosy'. "I already gave Clark his Christmas present."
"Fair enough." He smothered a grin behind his coffee mug.
Clark stood up and held his hand out to Lois, who took it and he helped her up from the floor. A moment later when she was on her feet, General Lane had that same hand in his. In what would have been a crushing grip for a human male, Clark made a pretense of wincing slightly. He figured it, as it rightly turned out, was what Lois's father would have expected.
"I didn't do the job of I should have taking care of my little Lo, so I expect you to do better by her." The serious words were from a father full of regrets. "She had to come second too often because of my job, but you don't have that excuse."
"Dad." Lois voiced a soft admonition as she put a hand on Clark's arm. "Clark isn't like that."
"I know you might think I don't have the credibility to speak to him like this, but I am your father. And as imperfect as I am, it doesn't mean that I don't want what's best for you."
"General Lane, you don't ever need to worry about your daughter." Clark tried to reassure him and felt Lois' hand slip into his. "She'll always come first with me, no matter what else is happening."
"Daddy." Lois let go of his hand and walked around the coffee table to take her father's in both of hers. "Clark is just like his dad. Mr. Kent was a caring and giving man who loved his family and loved this farm. He gave his full devotion to both and Clark will do the same with me and with his job."
"I just can't help but think about what happened with the Queen boy."
"I know." She nodded. "But you've seen for yourself that Clark and Oliver are two totally different men. Ollie couldn't make room for me, but Clark always has and he always will."
For always and forever.
"I just want you to be happy, Lo." He sighed and looked decidedly uncomfortable. Clark knew that Lois's father wasn't used to expressing his feelings and it showed.
"I know." She got her arms around her father and after a moment, his closed around her.
"I don't say it like I should, but I do love you." His eyes closed briefly. "And I am very proud of you and what you've done."
"Thanks, Dad." Lois seemed to hesitate in letting him go and Clark couldn't help but feel that they were finally starting to mend their fences. A glance at the smile on his mother's face reinforced it, but then she had her arms around him and Clark would bet she was crying.
"I'm so happy for you, honey."
"Thanks, Mom." He held her close and was so glad she was there.
"So now that the proposal is out of the way, when are you going to tie the knot?" Lois's father asked as they all sat down again and Clark reached for Lois's hand.
"That's up to Lois." He answered as he ran his thumb across the ring that was now on her finger.
"Thanks a lot, Clark." She tugged on his hand. "This isn't just going to be my wedding; it's going to be ours. So I fully expect you to help me with everything."
"You know I'll do what I can." Clark smiled at her and the smile she gave in return made his heart thrum with happiness. "So when do you want to get married?"
"Well, short of eloping I don't want to drag this engagement out." Her eyes went wide and he had the feeling Lois was berating herself for putting her foot in her mouth. "You know what I mean."
"I know what you mean." He leaned over and kissed her cheek. "What would you say to June? It'll be long enough for us to plan a wedding and decide where we want to go on our honeymoon."
"Oh." Lois frowned in thought. "I guess that's something we need to talk about."
"One thing at a time, honey." Mom laughed softly. "If you do decide on June, you'll need to find a place soon to have the ceremony."
"We'll need to find a place for the reception, too." She kept frowning. "And since Clark and I aren't made of money, it can't be too expensive."
"How would you feel about having the reception here?" Mom suggested. "The front yard is always beautiful in the late spring and there would be enough room for some tables and chairs. And I'm sure Clark could come up with something for a small dance floor."
"When the weather gets a little better, I'll find a good spot and start taking measurements." He looked at Lois. "If you want to have the reception here."
"Where else would we have it?" She put her hand to his cheek. "Some of the happiest times of my life have been on this farm."
"Okay." He brought his hand up to cover hers and the warmth that had begun to fill his chest when she'd said 'Yes', began to spread through the rest of his body. It was the same feeling he'd had just a few days earlier when he'd taken Lois into his bed and truly made her, his.
"But that still leaves the ceremony." She was starting to fret and Clark was doing his best not to smile because Lois Lane always thought she in control of any situation she found herself in.
Except this one.
"I was thinking that we could have the ceremony at the chapel where Mom and Dad were married." He glanced at his mother and after she nodded Clark turned his attention to Lois. "They had a good marriage and I like the idea of starting our lives in the same place they started theirs."
"I like that idea, too." Lois gave him a soft, brief kiss. "You're a handy guy to have around, Smallville."
"So you've told me." He quipped and when she narrowed her eyes at him, it only made him smile.
"Sarcasm does not become you."
"But being engaged to you does." He assured her and then gave into the sudden urge to kiss her back. The minute her hands framed his face and her warm lips were pressed against his, he wanted to take her down on the couch so he could feel her soft curves beneath him.
"Maybe later." Lois's warm, breathy whisper grazed his ear and he smiled.
She'd done it again.
"There's no maybe about it, Lois." He promised her and started at the sound of General Lane clearing his throat.
"So how about a toast to start this engagement off right?"
"And I've got just the thing." Clark's mother got up from her chair and headed toward the kitchen. "Sam, would you give me a hand?"
"Sure thing." He boosted himself up from his own chair and followed.
"Yeah?" He zeroed in on a spot behind her ear and nuzzled it. He could hear the acceleration of her heartbeat as his lips started to track down her neck, but Lois's hands were on his shoulders and she gently pushed him away.
"Not that I'm not enjoying that." Her face was flushed and she was trying to be serious. "But do you realize that my dad just did what your mom asked him to do?"
"And?" Clark didn't quite understand what she was getting at.
"Clark, my dad gives orders. He doesn't take them." She looked at him with frustration.
"Lois, she wasn't giving him an order." He grinned and took her hand. "She asked him for some help and he helped her."
"And that's because good manners never go out of style." The General's amused voice made her start and when Clark looked toward the kitchen; he had a champagne bottle in his hand. His mother was right behind him with four champagne glasses in her hands.
"Besides, it never hurts to be nice to the woman who's going to be my daughter's mother in law."
Lois glanced over her shoulder and she admonished him. "Dad."
He only laughed and set the bottle down on the coffee table. "You always told me that diplomacy was never my strong suit."
"It's all right." Mom put the glasses down and she was shaking her head in amusement. "It's a nice change from dealing with all the lobbyists who try and say the right things so you'll vote for a particular piece of legislation."
"That's my problem at the Pentagon." He rolled his eyes in exasperation and Clark could see where Lois had gotten the habit from. "Damn pencil pushers think they know better than the soldiers in the field." He then glanced at Lois and to Clark's surprise, his face flushed. "That's why I didn't argue when I got orders transferring me to Fort Riley."
"Fort-" That was all Lois could manage.
"The very one." Her father looked uneasy.
"Will you be back before the wedding?" She seemed to find her voice and reached for Clark's hand.
"I'll be in Kansas by the end of January." He nodded. "So, yes."
Clark's mother cleared her throat at the sudden tension in the room and then she smiled. "I guess it's my turn with some good news."
"Mom?" He looked at her and tried not to anticipate what it might be.
"You know that I've been trying to decide whether to run for my own term." She began. "The truth is, I've missed this place and I've missed waking up in the bed I shared with your father for all those years." She took a deep breath and continued. "I've worked hard to make a difference during my time in the senate and help the people of Kansas, but it's time to come home now."
"Are you sure about that?" Clark asked because he didn't want her giving up something that meant so much to her. "Kansas needs you."
"Yes, I'm sure." She nodded. "When I was home in October, I got to spend those few days being plain old Martha Kent. And as easy as it was to fall back into my roll of being Jonathan's wife and your mother, I realized that being back in Smallville didn't mean I'd have to stop serving my neighbors.
"I've been doing that since the first time I helped your father throw sand bags during a rainstorm and it made me a part of this wonderful community in a way nothing else could have."
"I don't remember that." Clark remarked, but wasn't surprised. That's what his parents had always done; pitch in whenever they were needed.
"Jonathan and I had just gotten married and we hadn't adopted you yet." She told him. "Besides, now that you and Lois are getting married, I'd like to spend more time at home for that. And if Lois wouldn't mind my help-"
"Since you've actually been through this-" Lois smiled at her. "I could use your expertise."
"Hardly expertise, honey. Just an extra pair of hands when you need them."
"I'll take it." Lois got up from the couch and stepped over to his mother and hugged her. "I can't imagine getting through this without you."
"You'll get through it, Lois; with or without my help." She laughed and then Clark heard her low voice. "Now why don't you say something to your father. I think he's feeling a little left out."
Lois nodded and turned to face her father, who suddenly stood. "Fort Riley, huh?"
"The end of January?" She asked and Clark heard the nervous flutter of her heart.
"That's what my orders say." He nodded and seemed to be trying to gauge how Lois felt about his transfer.
"So that means I won't have to worry you won't get back from Washington in time to give me away." The flutter slowed to its normal rhythm and her stance relaxed a little.
"Nothing will stop that from happening." He assured her and took an awkward step toward her. "I'm happy for you, Lo; I am. I worried for a long time that you wouldn't let anyone close enough to see what a wonderful girl you are."
"Dad." Lois shook her head and Clark knew she didn't want to believe it.
"Don't Dad me, Lois." He shook his own head. "You're stubborn and headstrong; you get that from me. But you have your mother's big heart and her unshakable loyalty to the people you love."
"Which does includes you, you know." She told him and there was a hint of amusement in her voice. "Even when you drive me crazy."
"It's a two way street, missy." He cracked a reluctant grin. "You took a lot of pleasure in doing just that to me, too."
"That's true." And then she laughed softly, taking her own awkward step forward. "I've got to say, it's going to be weird having you so close."
"You and me both." He sighed. "But I expect we'll get used to it."
"I hope so." She admitted and Clark knew it hadn't been easy for her to say it.
"So do I." The General nodded his agreement and without another word, he had his arms around her shoulders. Lois' arms wound around his waist and they held each other close.
But they both seemed to realize at the same time where they were and pulled back. He cleared his throat and Lois walked back to the couch and sat down next to Clark.
"I'm very proud of you." He whispered and kissed her cheek.
"We have a bottle of champagne here that's going to get warm if we don't open it soon." Lois's father cleared his throat again as he picked up the bottle.
"Why don't you do the honors." Clark suggested and Lois's father looked a little dubious.
"I haven't done this in awhile." He forewarned. "So watch out for a flying cork."
"You can do it, Dad." Lois laughed. "Just order the cork to behave."
"That's enough out of you." An eyebrow went up, but he was smiling. A few moments later, he'd worked the cork out with a muted 'pop', poured the first glass and handed it to Lois. He handed a second glass to Clark and a third to his mother. He poured the last glass for himself and put the bottle down as the three stood up. "If you don't mind, I'd like to take the lead here."
There were no objections, so he continued.
"It's no secret that Lo and I had a rough go of it while she was growing up. But in spite of our butting heads on a regular basis, she grew up into a fine young woman who I'm proud to call my daughter. Now she's found a young man who sees in her what I saw in her mother and I can't help but think that young Kent here is very lucky to have found her. So, Martha if you would raise your glass with me I'd like to say congratulations to both of our children and wish them many happy years together."
He cleared his throat yet again and Clark's mother was nearly in tears.
"I don't think it's possible to top that, so I'll just say this. I wish our children the same happiness that I shared with Jonathan and that they continue to build on the wonderful memories they've created together. To Clark and to Lois."
She raised her glass and Sam raised his. Lois' hand was shaking terribly in Clark's and he suspected that she was as close to tears as his mother. He cleared his own throat and had to blink to keep his eyes from flooding.
Lois took a small sip and then set it down before she let go of Clark's hand and walked around the coffee table to her father. He couldn't tell what she was thinking and even Sam looked a little wary as his daughter approached him.
"I didn't know you had it in you." There was clear emotion in her voice and it was obvious that her father's heartfelt toast had gotten to her and she threw her arms around his neck. "Thank you, Daddy."
Sam got his arms around her and patted her back gingerly, self consciously. But the sound of his jack hammering heart revealed just how much his daughter's words meant to him. "I meant every bit of it."
"I know." She answered him quietly. "That's why it meant so much."
Clark looked at his mother and smiled, and then he had his arms around her shoulders. "You're a very lucky young man."
"I know." He grinned. "And she'll probably remind me of that for the rest of our lives."
"And you wouldn't have it any other way, would you?" Her laugh was soft and she hugged him to her.
"No, I wouldn't."
"Good answer, Smallville."
"I thought you'd like it."
It was a beautiful day for a wedding, everyone had said so.
It was the perfect day to say 'I Do' to Clark, after walking up the aisle on her father's arm to pledge her life to the man who'd made her life complete. But to be fair, she knew that she'd made his life complete, too.
And one of these days, they'd become a real family when their children started coming along.
To Lois' surprise, and a bit of consternation, she knew she wouldn't mind if they came sooner rather than later. Because the maternal feelings she'd experienced with Ellen and Sam in her dream were like none other. And having Clark there by her side as they raised their children together, made the appeal of parenthood that much greater.
He looked so handsome in his dark suit that day. He chose to forgo a tuxedo and his neatly brushed hair made her want to run her fingers through it to muss it up because that was her favorite look on him.
Mussed up hair because he'd been doing something as important as Blurring around Metropolis or something as simple as driving the tractor across the newly prepared rows as he planted the new corn crop.
It made her happy to see how he'd finally been able to incorporate the different parts of his life into one life and to feel the satisfaction that came from being not only the Blur, but an up and coming cub reporter for a major newspaper and a farmer like his father and grandfather.
Each of those facets of his life and his devotion to her were what made Clark Kent a whole and complete man. And it was one of many reasons that she loved him so much.
She was surprised that Mrs. Kent, Martha, had been able to get away from Washington as much as she did during those six months. But as she explained on her first trip home after the engagement, there was a lot about her job she could take care of just as easily from the farmhouse as she could from her office.
'The wonder of modern technology.' She'd told Lois as she opened her laptop to check on messages from her office the day Lois was being fitted in the dress she would wear.
She'd been unable to find something that she was happy with, so Martha had presented the dress she'd worn when she married Jonathan, for her consideration. She admitted that it might not be a style that Lois would like, but there was something about the layers of lace in the full skirt that did appeal to her.
And how appropriate was it that she and Clark took their vows in the very place where Martha had worn it?
To put a couple of cherries on top of their happy day, Clark and Chloe had nearly repaired their friendship. Lois had told the both of them in no uncertain terms that they were going to be spending a lot of time together because she wanted Chloe to be her maid of honor, and they'd better figure out a way to bury the hatchet.
They'd done as she'd asked and while it was painful to watch at times, they did try. She had the feeling though, that because of what had happened they would never again be as close as they'd once been. That had begun to happen anyway, because she and Clark confided in the other more than anyone else. But Martha would've said that's as it should have been.
The other development was that Oliver was still seeing Deanna, the girl he'd brought with him to the Regent all those months ago. As far as Lois knew, it was an exclusive relationship and the effect on her friend was almost miraculous. He'd quit drinking and during the reception all Lois saw was a club soda with a twist of lime in his hand; even Dad was impressed.
And it took a lot to impress the General.
They didn't spend a lot of time apart and Lois thought that was due to the fact that Deanna didn't know anyone other than her and Clark. But on further observation, she could see that they didn't particularly want to be apart.
And while family loyalty should have prevailed, Lois had ended up tossing the bouquet in her direction and hoped that Chloe would understand.
"Have I told you yet how incredible you look?" She felt the touch of a familiar pair of hands on her shoulders and a kiss in her hair. "I'm glad you took Mom up on her offer."
"Oh, please." She giggled and loved that he had that power over her. "You're glad that it's strapless."
"That, too." His warm breath was near her ear as he laughed and her stomach coiled tight with a deep need for him. "Mom's getting a little concerned that we're going to lose our reservations, so she's asked that we step on it."
"And I suppose you're volunteering to help me out of this?" She turned her head to see his smiling face.
"If I did that, we wouldn't be leaving this room anytime soon." He admitted with a blush. It amazed her that he still did that because he'd gained so much confidence in the last year; he wasn't so much her shy farm boy any longer. "So I'll change in Mom's room and you can stay here."
"You sure about that?" She asked coyly, even knowing what his answer would be.
"I'm sure we'll have plenty of time for that after we get to the hotel." He raised his eyebrows at her.
"I still can't believe that you agreed to a week at the Regent." Lois turned to face him. "But I thought it was really sweet of Ollie to give that to us as a wedding present."
"And what's going to make it that much more special is that he was able to get the suite we stayed in." He suddenly looked uneasy at the idea. "Lois, you know that I appreciate what he's doing; but that room isn't cheap."
"I know you do." She agreed. "But he knows what it means to us and it's not exactly like he's hurting for money."
He nodded, but still looked uncomfortable.
"Clark, I understand how you feel because I feel that too." She reached out for his hand. "He's trying to make up for what happened and we need to accept it in the spirit it was given."
"A whole week in a honeymoon suite with you?" He smiled and squeezed her fingers. "I think I can do that."
"Yea." She smiled back at him. "There's something else you can do, too."
"Not if I don't get out of here." He leaned in and gave her a quick kiss. "So before my mother or your father comes looking for us, I need to change."
"Have I told you yet how incredible you look?" She knew she was repeating what he'd just said to her, but she was sincere. "Until last year, I could never picture you in a suit because I couldn't see you as anything more than a farm boy; but you surprised me."
"And if I'm lucky, I'll be able to do that a few times while we're married."
That was going to take some getting used to, but the rings she and Clark were wearing were going to make that task much easier.
A soft knock on the door got Lois and Clark to turn and when it opened, Mrs. Kent was standing in the doorway. She looked really lovely in her pale lavender summer dress and her cheeks flushed. "I don't mean to interrupt, but it is getting late. Your father put the suitcases in the car, so you don't need to worry about that."
"Thanks, Mrs. K." Lois responded automatically and felt her own face warm in embarrasement. That was taking some getting used to as well; calling her new mother in law, Martha.
"You're welcome." She laughed softly, aware of the same thing and pulled the door closed.
"I wish I could remember to stop calling her Mrs. Kent." Lois sighed.
"I know what you mean." It was Clark's turn to laugh and he nodded. "Your dad's been trying to get me to call him Sam since Easter. But every time I see him in that uniform, I feel like I should call him 'Sir'."
"The uniform was his way of intimidating any guy I wanted to date." She felt the need to tell him. "Though with you, I honestly don't think he realizes that he's doing it because you're the only guy I know who Dad really likes."
"Well considering that we're married now, I'd hope so." He grinned and Lois felt her face flush at the word 'married'. "Besides, I like him too. The truth is, if it hadn't been for him and your mother I wouldn't have you."
"You are so sweet." Lois felt her eyes tear and then launched herself into his arms to kiss him. "And you're mine."
"I think you've got that backward, Lois." He kissed her back, very softly and reluctantly let her go. "So before your dad takes his turn to knock on that door, I need to get out of here. When you finish changing, come down to Mom's room."
"Or you could come back and get me." She flashed him a suggestive grin.
"Which would defeat the purpose of going to my mother's room." He gave her his best exasperated look even as he blushed and kissed her again. He sighed before he walked to their bedroom door, stepped outside and closed it behind him.
Her bashful farm boy was still there.
And she wouldn't have it any other way.
Lois had told him once that her career at the Planet would always come first. But that was before she'd found herself, in her own words, inexplicably in love with him.
And after the dreams they'd had during their stay at the Regent, while her career was still important to her, Clark had become more important. More to the point, she wanted his babies in the very worst way and for Lois; it was such a new way of thinking.
For Clark, it was something he never thought he'd ever hear. To know that a woman loved him so much that she'd willingly go through a pregnancy carrying a half-Kryptonian baby, not knowing exactly what that would mean for them.
But Lois being Lois, she wasn't thinking about that. Clark knew that she didn't see him as a Kryptonian, she just saw him as her Smallville and as the man she wanted to be the father to her children.
Though to be truthful, she wanted him to be a father to Ellen and Sam.
Those were images he still carried with him and he knew Lois did, too. A precocious five year old daughter who was just like her mother and an infant son who fit so perfectly in the crook of his arm and had eyes as blue as his fathers. They would be the only two people in his life that he would love as much as his wife and his parents.
When Lois had finished changing, she met him at his mother's bedroom door and they went downstairs. When they got to the front porch, the small contingent of guests was gathered in the yard and Clark took her hand, ready to run the gauntlet of merry birdseed throwers.
Before they made a run for Lois's car, their parents stopped them just outside the screen door to give them hugs and heartfelt words of good luck. Clark could hear the rushing of Lois's heartbeat as her father held her close and knew she was close to tears.
He expected to hear a joke from the General, about his good little soldier not crying. But from the sound of his own rapid heart rate, Clark knew it wouldn't come because this was a moment that meant so much to Lois's father, too.
His own mother's eyes were full of tears and she put a trembling hand on his chest. "I wish your father were here to tell you this."
'Tell me what?'
He gave his mother a questioning look and she smiled bashfully before pushing herself up on her toes and reminded him quietly in his ear. "Always be a gentleman in bed."
"Yes, ma'am." He smiled with some embarrassment at the advice that Dad had more than likely received from his own father and hugged his mother. "We'll be home in a week."
"Honey, do try and spend as much time as you can with Lois." A look of concern crossed her face and Clark knew what she meant.
"It's all right, Mom." He reassured her. "Oliver and the others will be taking care of things this week so I won't have to."
"And they have my help if they need it." Sam chimed in softly. "I've already talked to the Queen boy about that."
"Dad, why won't you call him Oliver?" Lois sighed. "I thought you two had called a truce."
"We did." He shrugged and offered nothing else in the way of explanation.
"Whatever." She shook her head and after hugging Clark's mother, she took his hand and pulled him down the porch stairs and they were immediately showered with handfuls of birdseed.
Clark and Lois had finally told her father about his origins and his abilities when the Lanes and Kents had gotten together for Easter. It surprised Clark that his future father in law had accepted his story as easily as he did, though looking back it shouldn't have because Lois had accepted it just as easily.
Oliver and Chloe were standing at the fence waiting and hugs and handshakes were exchanged.
"Don't worry about anything this week, big guy." Oliver smiled at them. "We've got everything covered so turn off that super hearing of yours and spend the time with your new wife."
"Will do." Clark agreed and opened the passenger door for Lois.
"And don't even think about checking in with the Planet." Chloe admonished her cousin. "The basement will survive with the two of you gone for a few days."
"Don't worry, Chlo." Lois laughed. "This big lug will be keeping me too occupied to think about work."
Big lug? That was a new one.
"Whatever." Chloe rolled her eyes and looked very much like her older cousin. "So did you ever decide what your new name is going to be?"
"Well, you know that I was thinking about going with Lois Lane-Kent. But after talking to Mrs. K, I realized that giving up my name won't change who I am." She looked up at Clark and smiled at him. "So from now on, you can call me Lois Kent."
He liked the sound of that.
But he wouldn't have objected if she'd decided to keep Lane or go with Lane-Kent. The most important thing was that she'd married him.
"Who knew that Lois Lane would go with the traditional?" Oliver teased her with a grin. "I wouldn't have been surprised if you'd talked Clark into changing his name."
"That's enough out of you, Mr. Green Jeans." Lois huffed and her ex only laughed. "Kent is a good name and I won't mind having it for the rest of my life."
"Me, either." Clark felt his face warm with possessive pleasure and reached for her hand. "Your dad is making a point of tapping his watch, so that's our signal to get the heck out of here."
"As if you're objecting." She leaned up and kissed his cheek before she got in the car. She then looked up at him and tapped her own wristwatch. "Let's go."
He nodded his agreement and found himself face to face with a girl he'd once considered his best friend. "Lois thinks she's indestructible sometimes, so I'm depending on you to keep her out of trouble. You're the only one who can."
"I will, Chloe." He put a hand on her shoulder. "Try not to worry."
"Clark, you do know who we're talking about?" She laughed softly and he gave into the impulse to put his arms around his friend and hug her.
His chest then warmed with a particular happiness he'd felt since Lois had accepted his marriage proposal and he shrugged. "That's what's going to make our life together so interesting."
"And you're not going to get it started standing here talking to us." Oliver quipped as the wedding guests converged on the car. "So get the hell out of here and get your marriage off on the right foot."
Clark nodded again and walked around to the driver's side of the car and got in. Lois handed him the keys as he closed his door and after putting the key in the ignition, he started the car. He secured his seat belt and with a wave to their parents and everyone who'd come to see them get married, he started down the drive to sounds of the last of the birdseed pelting the car.
"I never realized what a talker my cousin is." Lois sat back. "And it's the first time in a long time I've seen her smile."
"Haven't you heard?" He spared her a glance before putting his attention back on the narrow dirt road. "Weddings make people smile."
"I think ours left people scratching their heads." She giggled and Clark knew he'd never get tired of the sound. "I mean seriously. Who would look at us and see a couple?"
"I would." He answered honestly and Lois laughed again.
"Well now, sure." She told him. "But can you honestly tell me that you could see us as a couple even a year ago?"
She had him there because he hadn'tbeen ready yet and even now, couldn't help but wish he had been. It would have saved so much heartache for the both of them.
"I was too afraid to." He finally told her. "So much had happened that I didn't trust myself and I didn't want to hurt you more than I already had."
"Fair enough." She replied. "The important thing is that we're together, we're married and no one will ever make you as happy as I will."
Leave it to Lois to state the obvious.
"No one will ever make me as crazy either." He added with a smile as he came to the end of the drive and turned on to the main road, heading to Metropolis and the beginning of the rest of their lives together. He then reached for her hand and squeezed it.
"I love you, too." She squeezed back and refused to relinquish his hold.
It was with a strong sense of déjà vu that he drove the car back to the same hotel that had put them on the path to a lifetime together. Only this time they truly were honeymooners.
And ten months later they were the proud parents of a baby girl.
Ellen Martha Kent.