Intro: This story will tend to lean more towards an episodic nature rather than arc based. This is more due to my style of writing rather than anything else, that said there will be carry over between chapters and 'mini-arcs' that will take between one to three chapters to resolve.
If you're curious, the title comes from Kingdom Come: In the scene leading up to the climatic final battle Wonder Woman kisses Superman roughly. Norman McCay; the stories principal narrator describes the sound of the kiss as the sound of steel scraping against marble, I always liked that statement in its implicit and explicitness so I decided to adopt it for my story.
Notes on continuity: This story begins at the first episode of Season 7: Bizzaro. This is my version of what I would've liked to see happen from seasons 7-10 and beyond. I will be borrowing canon and dialogue from the comics, DCAU, D.C's Justice League books and of course Smallville while throwing in some of my own flavor. Some changes you might notice immediately.
-Clark can fly and has been able to do so for the last two years. (An ability that in nearly every incarnation he's had before he graduates from high school, so even still we're a little overdue)
-Costume redesigns for most of the character's (I've always hated the generic hooded jacket/sunglasses combo that the SVU seems so fond of using)
-Lana didn't fake her death and then run off; she just ran off and is in hiding.
Thanks: I'd be lying if I neglected to mention that the members of the SM/WW yahoo group were a huge source of inspiration for me to write my own SM/WW fic (They've written some pretty awesome stuff and I suggest that you check it out).
Warnings: First this is a SM/WW fic. Second, don't be surprised to see some changes in the canon, any changes I made were in full knowledge and were done intentionally so don't flame me about it if you didn't take the time to read this.
Disclaimer: I don't own any of the characters (too bad) they are the property of D.C./Warner Bros. No infringement is intended.
Smallville: Steel & Marble
Outer Space- 20 years ago
On the outskirts of our Solar System a large asteroid made a slow and lonely trek. The Asteroid had originated from a system some fourteen light years from Earth and through a chance encounter with a larger orbiting body had altered its trajectory and sent it on its current arc. A different day, a slightly different angle and it would have missed our solar system and have been fated to wander the cosmos for untold millennia.
But that wasn't the case.
The rock gave off an unusual green glow and massive amounts of radiation. It would be familiar to any of the citizens of Smallville; a rural town in Kansas whose only noteworthy accomplishments were the large amount of corn it produced and being the home of a recent freak meteor shower.
That would soon change.
In the meantime the asteroid made its slow and inexorable progress towards its destination: Earth.
Clark Kent crashed hard in a forest; he shook his head and tried to clear the cobwebs. He had been thrown through the side of Reeves Dam by the last of the phantoms. After nearly a year of fighting the escaped occupants of the Phantom Zone he was close to completing the task and rectifying his mistake in letting them out.
The plan to neutralize it had been simple, but then fate had thrown a wrench into his plans, this phantom evidently had the ability to copy other beings forms a feat it had managed to do to him, it had assumed his form and in doing so seemed to have gained his powers.
After taking his form the phantom had taunted him shortly before throwing him through the dam wall. "I'm you, just a little more…bizarre."
The Dam! With his super hearing Clark could detect the sound of cracking concrete and rushing water, he had to get back there; Lionel was still inside. He crouched preparing to lift off when a blur tackled him knocking him back through a tree.
The Phantom Clark rose up tall, a smirk on his face. "I don't think so Clark, you're not going anywhere."
He confidently strode over to his fallen foe and in doing so stepped into the patch of sunlight raining through the thick foliage by Clark's uprooting of the tree. He froze as a pained look crossed his features and for a moment his skin cracked into a metal like visage.
Not knowing what was going on but ceasing on the opportunity Clark quickly made his way to his feet and threw a right haymaker with everything he could put into it.
The Phantom Clark was launched like he had been shot out of a cannon and disappeared over the trees. He made to give chase but his hearing made it clear that he didn't have the time. Launching himself skyward Clark made his way to the dam, but it was too late. A great torrent of water swept through the weakened structure and made its way downstream. He caught sight of a boy standing a few hundred yards downstream of the dam, obviously paralyzed by fear as the great wave swept towards him.
Gotta stop that wave, or else that boy is toast. Pouring on the speed Clark landed in front of the incoming wave and unleashed a huge blast of his heat vision, instantly thousands of gallons of water were flash evaporated into a cloud of harmless steam. Clark gave the stunned boy a once over making sure he was okay before speeding off to the dam, as he did he heard the boy mutter "Cool."
The Phantom Clark came to and noticed he had landed on a transformer and a jagged metal spike was sticking through his abdomen, resisting the urge to panic he managed to pull out the offending piece of metal and stood on shaky legs. What the hell happened? I was about to finish off Kent but then I felt…weak.
"Hey buddy, are you okay?"
The phantom snapped his head around at the sound of the voice, interrupting him. A middle aged man with brown hair was looking over him in concern.
"I heard a noise and I- Oh my god! You got a hole in your stomach! Hold on buddy I'll call an ambulance." The man presumably reached for a cell phone but he never got near it, the man's babbling annoyed him so the phantom shot a torrent of heat vision at him that reduced him to a pile of ashes.
He needed to recuperate if he was to kill Kent, his mind flashed back to his time in the dam, when Lionel had attempted to use a piece of Kryptonite to slow him down, it instead had the opposite effect, empowering him. It seemed that when he had replicated Clark Kent's form he had somehow negated the Kryptonians weakness to the radioactive ore.
Fortunately he possessed all of Clark's memories and knew where he could go for a quick pick-me-up. Holding his stomach wound he rocketed off in a blur to the Kent Farm.
Clark had been searching for any sign of Lionel for a few minutes; however he wasn't making much in the way of progress. Much of the dam's structure seemed to be lined with lead, which was one of the only things that his x-ray vision couldn't penetrate.
"Help! Somebody help us!"
Clark heard the voice clear as a bell and he recognized it instantly, it belonged to Lois. Turning around he quickly sunk a hand into a crumbling wall and pushed. The wall fell down to reveal Lois half dragging half carrying a young boy in one hand and Chloe in the other.
"Lois, are you alright?"
Lois breathed a sigh of relief at the sight of a familiar face. "Smallville, thank God you're here."
Clark stepped through the crumbled wall and quickly assessed the situation with his x-ray vision. Lois and that boy seem okay, Chloe's out cold though I can only detect a weak pulse and it looks like its fading. She needs medical attention quickly.
"Have you called an ambulance?"
"No, my phone got swept away in the flood, do you have yours Clark?"
He did and his first instinct was to reach for it and give it to her but he wasn't sure if an ambulance could reach them before Chloe's life signs were extinguished. He glanced at Lois's anxious face and hesitated, he could get Chloe to Smallville medical center in time but not without revealing his secret to Lois.
He let out a sigh; it was like history was repeating itself when he had revealed his secret two years ago to Chloe in order to save her life. In that time Chloe had become an invaluable ally to him, hopefully this would be a decision he wouldn't end up regretting.
"Lois, I need you to grab that boy and hold him tight, as tight as you can."
"What the hell are you talking about Smallville? Chloe needs-"
Clark's voice rose sharply as he interrupted her and a measure of authority crept into it. "Just do it!"
Lois looked at him for a second before she hastened to comply. While she did he walked over to Chloe and gently lifted her up in one arm. He wrapped his other around Lois's waist and she looked up at him in surprise. "Whatever you do don't let go of the boy."
Puzzled Lois opened her mouth to ask Clark what he was talking about when suddenly the world around her blurred and the next thing she knew she was watching the Kansas countryside streak below her. She looked over to see Clark flying…flying with a grim look on his face. Okay Lane, time to wake up now.
Clark touched down lightly outside of Smallville Medical Center, he immediately let go of Lois and jogged off towards the entrance, calling over his shoulder for her to follow him. Lois watched him blankly for a moment before her mind unfroze and she started after him on unsteady legs.
Fifteen minutes later Clark and Lois stood in the E.R. after having finished giving their statements to the police who had been called in when they had showed up with an unknown young boy. Lois was still in shock about what had transpired earlier but to her credit she was starting to regain her sensibilities and was able to give her statement without arousing any suspicions.
He walked over to her and gently took her by the shoulder to lead her into a private corner of the room. He lowered his voice and looked her dead in the eye. "Lois I know you probably have a million questions and want to talk about what happened, I promise I'll answer everything but first I need to know, what happened to Chloe and why were you two at Reeve's Dam."
"Do you remember when Wes Keenan tried to kill me?"
Clark nodded, recalling the event. Wes Kennan had been a childhood friend of Lois's turned brainwashed super-soldier who had been a victim of Lex's Project Ares. He had under Lex's orders killed a senator, Lois having been a witness to the murder identified Keenan. Keenan had then tried to kill Lois, but in the attempt to kill his old friend, he briefly broke through his conditioning and his personality reasserted itself.
It wouldn't last and Clark was forced to stop him. Keenan had later died due to the injuries he sustained in the battle.
"Well right before he died he kept repeating a series of numbers over and over again, I did some digging and found out they were coordinates, coordinates to Reeves Dam. My G.P.S did the rest; I thought it had to do with Lex and Project Ares, like he was using the dam like a base or something. But before I could find anything out one of Lex's goons caught me and stabbed me, I managed to take him out but I thought I was a goner…there was so much blood." She shook her head for a moment before continuing. "I managed to call Chloe and kind of passed out. The next thing I know, there was this bright light and then I'm waking up to find my stab wound is gone and Chloe passed out. You know the rest from there."
"The question is how you're wound miraculously healed and what happened to Chloe… maybe she's been infected by meteor rocks or Lex's men did something to her or-"
"If he laid a hand on Chloe, I'll make him wish he was never born." She said darkly. "Speaking of meteor's I think it's your turn to do a little sharing."
Clark rubbed the back of his head sheepishly. "Er… maybe now isn't the best time for this Lois…"
"Why not, you heard the doctors; all we can do now is wait." She looked around and lowered her voice. "So how long have you had meteor powers?"
He sighed; it didn't look like he was getting out of this one. "Let's go outside and talk about this."
They walked a few hundred yards away from the hospital and sat on one of the benches. He started without preamble. "To answer your question I…don't have meteor powers, I was born this way."
Lois eyes widened. "So you're a mutant or something?"
"No I'm an alien, I was born on another planet."
"Alien? But you look so…"
"Human?" he offered wryly.
She looked abashed. "I'm sorry it's just-"
He smiled at her. "I understand it's a lot to take in."
"Does anyone else know?"
He noted that his was almost a word for word mirror of what Chloe had said to him when he had revealed his secret to her. "My mom, Pete, Chloe-
"Wait, Chloe knows?"
"Yeah, she's known for a few years now and she's been a huge help to me more times than I can count. Lionel and…" he stopped himself. He had been about to say Oliver but that would have led to some awkward questions. Question's he wasn't sure Oliver wanted Lois to have the answers to yet. So instead he paused before amending his statement. "And now you."
Fortunately Lois didn't seem to notice the pause. "Lionel, Lionel Luthor?"
"Uh…it's a long story."
"What about Lana?"
He shook his head and Lois seemed generally surprised. "Wow, I'd have thought if anybody knew it would've been her."
Clark really didn't want to get into his situation with Lana at the moment. "Why don't we go back inside and see how Chloe's doing?"
She recognized the change in subject and let it go. "Sure."
Clark stood and began to walk back to the hospital.
He turned around. "Yeah?"
"Thanks for being straight with me, I promise you won't have to worry about me running around and blabbing. I'm good at keeping secrets…when I need to and I hope I earn the trust you've showed me."
He smiled. "I'm not worried Lois, you've been a good friend and you've earned my trust a long time ago. I'm just sorry I couldn't be honest with you earlier."
She shook her head. "I understand, you had your reasons for keeping your secrets and if I had been you I'm not sure I'd have told me either. Come on let's get back."
The phantom Clark looked down at the piece of kryptonite in his hand, until a moment ago it had been glowing green but after he had absorbed its power it had turned clear. It had served its purpose; his wounds from his earlier battle had healed completely and he was back to full power, but it wasn't enough. He wanted…no needed more power if he was to ensure that the next time he encountered Kent he'd be able to take him down for keeps. For that to happen he needed more kryptonite. He closed his eyes for a moment and scanned through Clark's memories, finally he settled on an image of a certain rich young industrialist. He would definitely know where to get more kryptonite, if he didn't have his own private stock already. Practically salivating at the thought the phantom flew straight through the roof of the Kent barn and headed for his next destination.
Lex sat with his head in his hands in Luthor manor, project Ares was up in flames, he had a phantom looking to kill him and Lana was gone. Intellectually he knew he should probably be trying to find a way to stop the phantom or at the very least be out looking for Lana, but he just couldn't muster the energy. He had barely escaped from the dam and the image of the wraith chasing him sent shivers down his spine.
He was trying to better the world but it always seemed like something stopped him, the worst part was that no one around him seemed to understand what he was trying to accomplish or appreciate the risks he was willing to take. They always ended up betraying him, first his father, than Clark and now finally Lana. He looked down at his wedding ring and was seized by the urge to toss it in the fireplace. After everything that he had done for Lana, all the time's he had protected her, after everything she had turned out like everyone else and had left him as well. Numbly he reached for the decanter of imported whiskey he kept close by when a loud whoosh and an accompanying gust of wind caught his attention.
He stood and turned to see Clark observing him, but there was something…off about him. Clark and he may not have been on speaking terms anymore but Lex had known him for over six years, it was safe to say he knew Clark fairly well.
"Clark, what're you doing here?" Rather than any desire to actually know, he was stalling for time to assess the situation.
Clark smirked at him and moved slowly and deliberately into the foyer. "Meteor rocks Lex. I want lots of meteor rocks and you're going to give them to me."
The manner of movement, the attitude, the subtle something that seemed…off, it all clicked then, it was the phantom and somehow it had possessed Clark. Moving quickly he dashed to his desk to get the gun he stashed there.
He never even got close.
Impossibly Clark was standing in front of him and dangling his gun from one hand. "Looking for this?" he inquired innocently before crushing…crushing it in his hand as if it were nothing more than a piece of paper and dropping the twisted mass on the floor. "I don't think so. I'm not going to repeat myself again Lex, I want meteor rocks and I want them now."
Desperate Lex tried to reach out to his former friend. "Clark listen to me, you've been possessed by the wraith, I can help you but-"
He was interrupted by Clark laughing in his face. "I'm not possessing Kent, I copied him…nice try though. Last chance Lex, either give me the meteor rocks or things get nasty." As to emphasize the point he brought his fist down on Lex's desk, splitting it in half. Lex eyed the desk for a moment before looking back at the phantom Clark. "Fine, we'll do it your way. I'll take you to the meteor rocks."
The phantom Clark smirked again. "Smart choice."