The wind blew fiercely across the rooftop, causing his mostly unkempt mass of hair to fly every which way. He knew the wind was cold. It was always cold from sixty-eight stories up. Not that it bothered him, though sometimes he wished it did. He only felt a small sting of chill against his skin, but it was easily ignored. A superficial feeling only created by his knowledge of the facts. He knew it was cold, therefore he felt it.

His doctor thought he was delusional.

He wondered if maybe, she was right.

He ran his finger along the cool metal of his father's helicopter. He wondered if he could lift it. He wondered what would happen if he threw it off the roof. Would his father get mad? Would he actually yell? He knew the answer was "no" automatically. It always was when it came to father's emotions. He was always so calm and collected about everything. Even when he was mad you could never tell. He wondered if throwing the helicopter off of the roof would make his father believe him about his abilities. All the times he'd tried to tell him, he was too busy with a deal. Or simply ignored the "nonsense" his father said he spoke. He thought it was an odd comment for his father to make. Because rarely did he ever speak.

He peered over the edge of the roof. Stared at all the lights moving down below. How the mellow twinkle of so many people's lives danced below him like a ballet. He liked how the noise of the city barely reached him from up here. He knew he could hear the noise of the traffic easily if he really wanted to. But he didn't. He took his time to enjoy the silence.

He came up here to get away from the tornado of clothes and belongings his brother was throwing around the house. He was still surprised that his father was actually sending him away. His brother hadn't done anything too horrible for at least a year. But last week, for no apparent reason, his father told him that he'd come up with a grand opportunity for his brother. Something to "straighten him out" was father's words. He was going to let him run one of the fertilizer plants they owned out in the country. He also got to stay at the castle that father had shipped brick by brick all the way from Scotland. His brother wasn't very fond of the idea. So less so that he didn't even bother to yell when father dropped the news. He just walked out of the office. He's pretty sure that was the first time he'd ever seen his brother simply walk away from something.

Father was in Japan for some big conference. "Multi-billionaires of the world" or something to that extent. He wasn't even home to see his brother off. Just left a list of instructions about plant management and union contracts and other various business related things he had no interest in.

He walked closer the edge, let his toes hang over.

He remembered the first time he discovered he could float. He was dreaming about space (he always dreamt of space for reasons he didn't know) and woke up hovering a few inches above his bed. Two seconds after opening his eyes he fell back onto the sheets. He didn't know how to explain it then and doesn't know how to explain it now. But for those few precious moments he felt special. Ever since that day he'd tried to float by will, and in time, became mildly successful. He made the mistake of trying to show his father, but he was busy with some depositions and waved him off. He never even noticed his son was floating six inches above his desk.

He knew instinctually never to show his brother. He was already hated enough for reasons unknown and he didn't think it wise to feed any more fuel to the fire.

He dreamed of flying one day.

But floating would have to do for now.

He took a small tentative step past the edge and closed his eyes as he concentrated. Breathing evenly he took another step. And another, and another. When he finally opened his eyes again he was staring at the roof of his building from thirty or so, feet away. He looked down past his shoes and saw the maze of lights below and smiled softly to himself.

His mother had once told him practice makes perfect.

He wanted reach the other building across the street, but knew that now was not the best time to attempt it. His brother knew about his hiding place on the roof and could, at any minute, decide to look for him there. He walked back slowly, trying keeping his concentration, when the door to the stairwell flew open and he lost it.

The stars seemed to shine so high above him before his body rolled with the momentum of the fall and suddenly bright lights of the street below screamed toward him. He threw his arms in front of his face. The wind rushed past, making his ears pop. He wasn't scared. It wasn't the first time he'd fallen off the roof. He just hoped he wouldn't hit anyone when he came crashing down the sidewalk. He thought it funny how many thoughts one could have when they seemed to be plummeting to their doom. Many people would be praying to god. He wondered if he finished his geometry homework.

The sidewalk cracked underneath him and he heard the gasps and shouts of shocked pedestrians. He shook his head in a daze and made sure to cover his face with his hair. Some old woman screamed when he rose to his feet and she fell to the ground clutching her chest. He took a moment to feel sorry for causing such a commotion; he never intentionally would harm anyone, before taking off in a blur toward the back door of the building.

Two seconds later he was back in his room, changing clothes and hiding the street battered one's under the bed. He heard his brother calling his name as he shoved his shirt under the sheets, and he made his way out into the living room.

"Clark," his brother said. "I thought you were on the roof."

I was, he replied.

"I just came from there."

I heard you coming and snuck back down, he said.

His brother looked at him suspiciously. A look he'd learned to ignore over the years. If anything was the slightest bit out of the normal for his brother, it always meant something was up. Something against him.
He watched as his brother took a seat on the couch and stared out the huge fifteen-foot windows.

"I think I might actually miss this place," he said.

Smallville might not be that bad.

His brother's eyebrow arched in the way it always did when he disagreed with you.

"Trust me Clark," he said running a hand over his smooth scalp. "I've been there once and it was enough."

When did you ever go there?


Before what?

"Before you," he said. "And before this." Pointing at his head.

He moved his eyes away from his brother's baldhead. His brother had been bald as long as he could remember. He'd only seen hair on him in old pictures. The ones his brother hadn't found where mother hid them. The one's he hadn't torn to pieces.

His eyes wandered to the group of photographs along the other wall. The one's that made them look like an actual family. The posed and proper, not a care in the world photographs. The one's where only he and his mother smiled. The one's where his father and brother remained stoned faced. His eyes locked on a particular portrait. The last one taken before things had changed. Before mother died. Before his brother started getting into trouble. Before father had grown even more distant. Before he chose not to speak so much. He remembers a seemingly normal childhood. Full of happiness, other than a few brotherly spats, and love from his mother. Father he was never sure of and still isn't.

He remembers mother's love and caring. Father's harshness and discipline.

His brother stood next to him.



Do you still think about mom?

He felt his brother's eyes on him, but he kept his gaze on the photo.

"Everyday Clark," he said. "Everyday."

He looked at his brother finally. Moments like these were few and far between. They rarely ever spoke to each other. And Lex was hardly ever nice. He thought that maybe it was just because he was leaving. Or maybe, if it was physically possible, Lex actually had a heart buried underneath all the fury.


He looked back at the picture.

He felt Lex move away. Heard him walk down the hall and the front door open and close.

When he was sure his brother was gone he let himself fall to the floor and threw himself into the fetal position. This fall had hurt a whole lot more than the last one.


As he lied in bed that night he stared up at the ceiling wondering what the house would be like without Lex around. He knew it would be a whole lot quieter. That was a given. But he knew it would feel emptier too. They hadn't had a nanny since he was twelve. She had died only a few weeks into her post. If he remembers correctly they went through quite a few nannies. Mainly because Lex kept seducing them. Everytime he slept with one she would be gone the next day. Father never did much to discourage this behavior. It sometimes scared him how unphased father could be by Lex's actions. He simply kept hiring more nannies, slowly working his way up the age bracket until finally coming to one old enough to where Lex wouldn't touch her no matter how large the amount of spite he meant to cause. He remembered liking Agnes all right. But she died so soon. Father came to the conclusion that he was too old for a nanny after that.

Father was never around much. Being the head of a multi-national corporation meant many days away from home. His father was far too busy 365 days out of the year. Too busy to even sire his own children apparently. Both he and Lex were adopted.

He wasn't sleepy.

He hardly ever slept.

He let his mind wander back to times that didn't seem so bleak. Times before father's and Lex's little civil war. Before he became virtually non-existent in both of their eyes. Times full of mother's smiles. Times before he discovered he was a freak with all these different abilities.

He remembered the one time he made the mistake of asking why Lex didn't have any hair. How Lex became furious and pushed him to the ground and pummeled him mercilessly. How he begged and pleaded for Lex to stop. How he felt no pain, and had no marks. Lex was curious why his little brother wasn't bleeding or bruised, but only until he pushed him halfway across the room and into the wall. Lex's concussion kept him from remembering the whole incident. He knows it's the only time he was ever glad he hurt someone.

He wasn't sure how much time actually passed before his eyes finally started to get heavy. He was only sure that Lex hadn't come home yet, and most likely would be staying out all night for one last party in Metropolis.

His last thought before falling asleep was about the couple in the red truck. And what his life would have been like if they adopted him instead of the Luthor's.