Title: VENERATION [A Wedding-Based Story]

Status: Ongoing

Author: SayItRight

Pairings: Smallville's Lois Lane and Clark Kent, as well as a number of series (e.g., Kara Zor-El/Jimmy Olsen), shipper (e.g., Dinah Lance/Oliver Queen), DC Comics (e.g., Diana Prince/Bruce Wayne, Dinah Drake/Larry Lance), and slash pairings (Bart Allen/Stuart Campbell).

Summary: Following Lois and Clark's eight-month-long engagement, the weekend of their wedding arrives. But even amidst romance and revelry, latent tensions give rise to conflict between the couple, their families, and their closest friends. [AU; Set post-"Pandora"] [Romance/Drama]

Rating: PG-13ish - For sexuality, some profanity, and occasional violence.

Fair Warning: If you are in any way disconcerted by or disapproving of the queerer aspects of the world in which we all live, then this ain't the tale for you, darlin'. Mmkay?

Disclaimer: With the sole exception of this original story, I own nothing. I claim nothing. I am not profiting. I intend no infringement.

Notes: (1) The continuity for this story, which takes place a few years into Lois and Clark's coupledom, departs from the Smallville universe as of "Pandora"; that is to say, absolutely nothing from "Disciple" onward happened as far as this story is concerned. The only events that bear on this story are those depicted on Smallville itself up until the end of "Pandora," and those depicted in my four previous stories - "Revelation," "Illumination," "Consummation," and "Affirmation." That said, this story demands no extensive knowledge of either the show or my other fics. (2) Although this story respects the Smallville universe up until "Pandora," I have not treated the canon as gospel. Certain aspects of characters' personal histories and dynamics have been tweaked.

Contents: Three parts ("Friends," "Lovers," "Family"), each containing multiple chapters.

Lastly: Please, let me know what you think. Any and all feedback is much, much appreciated.

[Progress Update: (March 3, 2013) *Sigh* Well, PART TWO, CHAPTER NINETEEN is officially kicking my ass, which means I won't be able to update today. I'm hugely sorry for the further delay. I'll check back in later in the week. Hopefully, I'll have better news by then. To all those bearing with me, thank you so much for your patience. Cross my heart, I'm getting right to writing as soon as I'm done posting this message. Cheers!]


PROLOGUE


He found the two of them alone in a viewing gallery, staring down through a glass window and into the operating room below in silence. Startled, they turned to him as he threw open the door and charged directly at them.

His fist connected squarely with Clark's jaw. Chloe, aghast as much by the eruption of violence as by the sight of Clark staggering back a step, cried out.

"Shut up!" he shouted over her, too beset by rage to concern himself with whether he'd inflicted any actual pain on the man opposite him; it was enough for him that he'd made his sentiments perfectly well known. "She trusts you! She'd do anything for you!" he raged on at Chloe. "And this is how you repay her faith, her loyalty? Damn it, we told you, both of you, that something like this would happen eventually! We told you that as long as she doesn't know, she's at risk!"

Chloe, glancing through the open entrance for passersby, whispered to him that while she understood how upset he was, the public venue in which they were situated was ill-suited for such frank speech.

"Oh, now you see reason?" he demanded, breathing malice with every word. "Where was that level head this past year? Where was that good sense when you were helping Clark here play the closest thing you have to a sister for a fool, when you were helping him lead her down the same road that ended with you losing your husband?"

Clark, devastated by the events of the last few hours, stepped in front of Chloe and insisted that the only person at fault was himself.

"Bullshit," he countered, invading the space directly before Clark. "You say that because you think you're sparing her the guilt you finally feel, but even you're not self-deluded enough to believe it. What you've yet to realize, though, is this: She doesn't care. She's known all along that she is as much to blame as you are - and she does not care. Because she would rather be complicit in your lies than do right by the woman none of us deserve to love. That's the kind of person you call your closest ally, your best friend. And that, hero, is the only kind of greatness you've ever inspired in her."

Neither Clark nor Chloe spoke a word to him in response.

Disgusted with them both, he turned away and slowly approached the window at which they'd initially been standing. His already swollen eyes brimmed over with yet more tears upon him seeing the patient lying unconscious on the operating table, a team of surgeons working furiously to repair the damage to her abdominal cavity.

It was too much for him. He couldn't bear another moment.

Before he quit the room, though, he turned back to find Clark's gaze. "If she dies," he said to him, his voice breaking, "I'm telling her family everything - if only to give them the chance to kill you before I do."