Spoilers: I should mention that these scenes may spoil you for upcoming episodes of S10, so beware.

A/N: This story could be the last installment after Different and Homecoming, but you could also see this as a stand-alone story if you want. You don't have to read those stories to know what's going on here. I hope you enjoy it, and there will be at least one more chapter. Please read and review. Thanks! :D

~o~o~

A Mother's Love

Lois stood outside the door of her father's house and wondered about her strategy of arriving late in the evening and calling ahead by only an hour, but she figured if she came late enough, her father couldn't run off with 'Army duties' and he would be forced to talk to her about her mother.

"Daddy," Lois addressed her father pleasantly as she entered his house. "Lucy, sweetie," she hugged her sister, happy to see her.

"How are you, Lois?" Lucy asked happy but also very curious why her sister has come home out of the blue.

"I'm ok, Luce, it's good to see you." I guess we'll get the small talk out of the way. Coming to her father's base after all these years was something she had to do for her own sanity, and after finding complete and total happiness with a man, a very special man, she couldn't put it off any longer. They were her only family and after what Clark had gone through with his father, he could be very persuasive sometimes.

"How are you, Lo?" General Lane finally addressed his daughter. "You look well."

"I'm fine, Daddy. How are you?" Lois hated small talk and uncomfortable silences. After entering the living room and everyone was seated, the air became tense with silence.

"Let's dispense with all the pleasantries, Lo. Why did you want to see us? Did you get your job back?" Sam asked as he took a seat across from his girls.

Of course, he heard about that. "Yes, I got my job back at the Planet."

"We're happy to hear it, Lo," the General said meaning it.

"Look, I know it's been a while, but …" Lois began.

"A while? It's been years Lo," Lucy said. "Why this sudden interest in your family?" Lucy asked and crossed her arms on the defensive.

Lois didn't think it would be this hard, but she had no one to blame but herself for ignoring her family for so long. They were practically strangers now. It wasn't right. She sighed and decided to just spit it out. "I'm getting married in a few months."

"Married?" Lucy asked shocked. "I can't believe it, to whom?" But then Lucy remembered a very handsome young man her sister couldn't seem to stop talking about when she visited her years ago, even though they seemed to dislike each other. "Clark Kent?"

"Yes, Clark and I will be getting married in the spring."

"I remember him, Lo. Wasn't he that tall, gangly teenager you were living with in Smallville? Are you serious?" Her father couldn't believe it.

Lois sighed knowing he would react this way, because neither of them had seen her or Clark since meeting him years ago. "He's not a teenager anymore. He's a grown man and he works at the Daily Planet too."

"Oh, you work together? That must be very convenient," Lucy said smiling and couldn't help snickering. Her father gave Lucy a look and she quieted.

"How long have you two been dating, and why haven't you brought him to meet with us before now? Are you ashamed of your family, Lo?" Her father wanted to know.

"Of course not, Daddy."

"Then, why now?"

"Because, I told you, I'm getting married, and I wanted …" Lois hesitated.

Lucy sensed something was amiss, and took her hand. "You wanted what, Lo?" She asked her sister.

Lois stared at their joined hands feeling encouraged. "I wanted us to be a family, like when …" She couldn't finish.

"When Mom was alive?" Lucy finished for her, reading her clearly.

Lois stared at her sister. Maybe we aren't strangers at all. Her eyes filled with tears as she squeezed her sister's hand. "Yes, Lucy, like when Mom was alive."

Her father stiffened not liking the direction of this conversation. "Well, I don't see how we can do that, Lo. Your mother has been dead for a long time now," Sam said not looking at them.

"I know that, Daddy, but I was hoping we could … talk about her for a while. We haven't done that in years, and I miss that connection we share. She was our mother, Daddy. You act like she didn't exist, but she did."

Sam got up from his comfortable chair and began to pace, and then he turned to stare at his beautiful daughters, so like their mother. He closed his eyes for a moment, and steeled his heart against it. He didn't think he could do it, talk about her now after all this time. He knew it was wrong of him not to talk about her, but maybe if he talked about her, the pain would lessen, because it hadn't lessened, not at all. He could still see her beautiful face the day they had gotten married, their first date, their children playing with her, laughing with her, all the memories were flooding his mind.

"Daddy?" Lois tentatively asked her silent father.

Sam took a deep breath, opened his eyes and put off the inevitable. "It's late, Lo."

"Please, Daddy?" Lois pleaded with her father.

Sam rubbed his eyes and pretended exhaustion, but actually he stopped the tears that threatened to fall. "We'll talk in the morning. It's late, goodnight" he said and left them staring after him.

"Well, he didn't say no," Lois said encouraged, then turned to her sister and smiled. "I missed you, Luce."

"I missed you too, Lo," Lucy said as they hugged each other. "So, you and Clark Kent? Please tell me how this came about. I want all the details and don't leave anything out."

Lois raised an eyebrow at her sister. If you only knew!

~o~o~

Lois couldn't sleep as she tossed and turned, not used to this house or this bed. Her cell phone rang and she answered it. It was Clark.

"Hey, how did it go?" Clark asked his fiancé.

Lois sighed and tried not to sound defeated. "Well, it wasn't terrible, but Daddy is being stubborn."

"I'm sorry, but please don't give up, honey. He could come through for you."

"I hope so," Lois said, but then she heard a noise. "Hold on a minute," she said and went to her bedroom door.

"Lois?" Clark asked and wondered what was happening.

"I can't believe this. Daddy just left the house without saying goodbye. Damnit!" Lois exclaimed, although she wasn't surprised.

"I'm sorry, honey."

Lois was furious with her father, but he may come back in the morning but he may not. Daddy hated emotions, hated feelings being out there, but she had to tell him how she felt. "Clark, I'll call you back in a few minutes."

"Lois, what are you planning?"

"Nothing, I'll call you back, I promise," she said and hung up before Clark could talk her out of it.

~o~o~

Lois was about to give up her search for anything about her mother. She had gone into the attic, the basement, one other bedroom, but she decided not to disturb her sister and then she entered her father's room. She hadn't been in there in years because it was off limits to her and her sister, reminding her of his constant authority and her fear of her father, but she was not afraid of him, not anymore. This was way too important to her, to all of them.

Then she found it, a box of videotapes dated years and years ago, and one tape in particular marked … Ella. Lois put her hand over her mouth, not believing this tape had been in a box in her father's bedroom for all these years, and how he had never showed it to them. What was on this tape? Were there others?

Lois searched the box again, but this was the only one marked with her mother's name. The others were dated later after her mother's death. Her heart began to pound, and then she went in search of a videotape player, and was shocked to find one hooked up to a television in her father's bedroom, as if it had waited for her and this moment to see this tape. Holding her breath and saying a prayer, she turned on the television and the videotape player and inserted the tape, making sure it was rewound from the beginning.

She pressed play, and there before her was her mother, Ella, but the first voice she heard was her father's:

"Are you sure about this, honey? The girls …" Sam said not sure she should be doing this.

"It's for our girls, Sam. Please promise me you'll show this to them when the time is right," Ella pleaded with her husband.

"Ella, please," Sam tried to change her mind. "I don't know about this."

"Sam, please do this for me."

Sam sighed. "Alright, for you, Ella, anything for you," he replied.

Ella smiled and said "Thank you, Sam," and then began her speech.

Ella closed her eyes for a moment and then stared directly at the camera.

"My beautiful girls, I love you both so much. I'm making this tape as my final goodbye to you and to your father. I wish with all my heart that I could be there for you, for all the memories and happier times you'll share together as a family. All the 'firsts' of your lives … your first day of high school, your first day of college, your first date, your …" Ella tried to smile, but wiped at her eyes with a tissue. "Your wedding days," she continued with a whimper.

"Ella," Sam tried. "Maybe you should stop for a minute. Let me turn this off and we can continue later."

"No, no, I'm alright," Ella said and straightened her spine. "My beautiful Lois, honey, I know this will be hard for you to accept because you are the oldest, but please be there for your father. He'll bury himself in his work and maybe even …" She stopped and raised her eyes to her husband. "Maybe he'll go on like this never happened, pretending like I'm still here, that everything will be fine, as long as he doesn't accept it, accept that I'm gone."

"Ella no," Sam interrupted her. "That's not true. I wouldn't do that to them."

"I know you have every intention of being there for them, but you have to promise me that you won't ignore them, that you'll help them, Sam. They'll need you now more than ever. Please don't hurt them like that. You have to promise me."

Lois couldn't watch anymore, as she stopped the tape. It happened just as her mother had feared. Her father did exactly what she asked him not to. She burst into tears, and tried with everything in her not to hate her father for keeping this tape from them, for disobeying her mother's wishes, for hurting them in the worst possible way. How can I forgive him for that?

"Lois?" It was Lucy coming into her father's bedroom. "What are doing in here?" She asked rubbing her eyes.

Lois turned her head and discretely wiped at her eyes. "I'm just waiting for Daddy. He can't ignore us anymore, Lucy. I won't let him," Lois said determined to confront him.

"Were you crying?" Lucy asked watching her closely, but then she saw the television was still on. "Were you watching some sad love story or something?"

"Yeah, I was. Come on, go on back to bed," Lois said and led her back to her room. "I'll see you in the morning, and hopefully Daddy will be here to talk to us about Mom."

"I hope so, Lois. I can't tell you how many times I've tried to get him to open up about Mom, but he just won't."

Lois was determined. "No more Lucy. Daddy owes us that much and more. Good night, honey."

"Good night, Lois."

TBC!

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A/N: I want Lois to confront her father, but there was more on the tape. Please tell me what you're thinking. Thanks for reading. Reviews are love.