Chapter 26

I battle a Lamppost

I got to see Clark a lot soon than expected. I knew that he'd arrived back at Metropolis a day before me. I hadn't thought about it, but since he'd been away from Metropolis for some days, he'd probably be busy 'cleaning' up after all the crime that had blossomed in his absence.

Diana and I stepped off the train the same afternoon, breathing in the nice, fresh and homely polluted air of our city. I don't care what other people say, the pollution in Metropolis smell different than the one in New York, and I like the one in Metropolis better.

As we left the train station, suitcases rolling along behind us, snow crunching underneath our boots, we chatted aimlessly about this and that, not taking great heed to our surroundings.

"No I swear Fabian totally dropped his drink all over that poor woman and her dog. He's really clumsy. It's kind of adorable." Diana said between laughter.

I giggled briefly at the mental image. "You know, I've never actually met this fabled Fabian." I grimaced and Diana sent me a look. "Sweet Elbereth, please make sure I never say that again."

Diana nodded sternly at me. "Friends don't let friends use stupid word plays." She said.

"Anyway, I was thinking, since you haven't met Fabian yet, we should totally do a double date some time."

"Sure," I shrugged casually, "Except I don't have anyone to bring with me on a date. I'm still horrifyingly single."

Diana gave me a sly look and jabbed her elbow into my side. "You can just ask Clark to hang out as friends. Say that your friend has invited you to hang out with her and her boyfriend and because you just know that you are going to feel like the third wheel, he could come along and keep you company."

I stopped walking and studied her. "That's actually pretty clever." I said.

She shrugged and kept walking. "Years of practice have refined my skill in the ancient and sacred art of manipulating men."

Suddenly, a scream was heard behind us, followed by a loud blast. Dropping my luggage, I turned quickly on the spot, wiping my hair out of my face when it covered my view because of the sudden movement. My eyes trained over the scene behind us, trying to pin point where the noise had come from. Out of the corner of my eye I saw Diana doing the same.

It wasn't difficult to see what was happening. But it was difficult to believe. What appeared to be a huge robot was in the middle of turning the nearest building into its personal punching bag. Rubble was falling down on the street, pedestrians narrowly avoiding being hit, screaming as they went. The robot was huge. It had to have been at least ten to thirteen meters tall. It was shaped like a normal human body, with elongated arms that moved like snakes. Instead of a head, a dome shaped glass cube revealed a small man. It was too far away for me to see him properly, but he looked small and fat.

"Oh my-" Said Diana from next to me. With a small sigh of relief, I saw a blue and red figure flashing around the robot, punching at it, causing huge dents to appear in the hull, while its arms flailed around and tried to return the favor.

I caught sight of another man in a green suit flying around the robot too and aiding Superman. I recognized him to be Green Lantern, part of the Justice League. I was a bit star struck for a moment. Green Lantern was here!

With a start, I realized that the robot was moving this way, now only fifteen meters away. I grabbed a fierce hold on Diana's arm and started running in the opposite direction. "Come on!" I yelled.

Diana didn't need to be told twice. We both dropped out luggage and ran for it. Around us, people were still panicking and screaming. It seemed the robot had already been in this end of the street, judging by the damage. The street was destroyed, the asphalt filled with big holes. I saw several cars on fire as we kept running. A building in front of us had partly collapsed, covering most of the road in bricks, steel and semi-intact walls. Behind us, another deafening blast was heard.

I dared to take a look behind us, my heart immediately leaping into my throat at the sight of the robot brandishing a lamppost before throwing it away, straight towards Diana and I. I let out a strangled scream and frantically tackled Diana to the left, both of us falling and rolling painfully down the street, our previous running adding to our momentum. The lamppost missed my right leg by mere inches before skidding further down the road, stopping once it hit the rubble left by the collapsed building.

I leaned up on my elbows, my gaze fixed on the fight going on in front of us, too cowardly to check my body for injuries. Diana groaned painfully next to me but sat up nonetheless. I knew that we weren't going to be able to move in the near future, so I silently prayed that the robot wouldn't come further towards us.

I watched with an almost grotesque fascination as Superman and Green Lantern fought the robot. With a small cheer I watched as Superman ripped one of the arms clean off, dropping it unceremoniously on the road. Green Lantern summoned a huge green hammer, hitting the robot repeatedly on its glass dome head, until the glass finally cracked.

I let out a whoop of joy when Superman flew through the shattered glass and grabbed the little man by the collar, dragging him outside after knocking him out. Green Lantern made a green bubble around the unconscious man, trapping him effectively.

After a brief conversation the two heroes looked around, taking in the damage around them. The street was mostly cleared of humans by now. In the other end of the street, the people had all run into the park, which was located right next to it. In this end, everyone had been fleeing, leaving Diana and I as the only ones still on this side of the collapsed building. No one appeared to be seriously injured.

I soon locked eyes with Superman, who quickly approached us, Green Lantern behind him. I slowly sat up, groaning painfully at the aching in my entire body. I was never going tackle anyone on asphalt ever again.

"Are you alright, ladies?" Superman asked. His worried eyes were fixed on me, and I returned the stare. He offered me a hand up, which I gladly took. Green Lantern silently helped up Diana.

"Yeah," I answered, feeling a bit dizzy, my body swaying slightly from side to side. My eyes widened and I puffed out air as I sat down on a piece of broken wall. "I think."

Superman didn't say anything as his eyes ran over my body and then Diana's, which I found a bit odd. "You'll be fine. No broken bones or internal damage." He said, and I realized that he'd been x-raying us. There was a brief silence in which Superman and I locked eyes again, trying to have a silent conversation. I could almost feel Diana's confused and slightly suspicious look. I had almost forgotten how electric and captivating his blue eyes were. Green Lantern cleared his throat, which sent both of us out of the trance we'd apparently been in. Superman blinked once and turned towards Green Lantern, who was still keeping the mad man from the robot in a green bubble prison. Now that he was closer I could see that he really was small and fat, his dark hair greasy and unruly. In an incredibly cliché twist, he was even wearing a white lab coat. He looked exactly like you'd imagine an evil scientist type to look.

"I have to go. Got a special delivery for the police." Said Green Lantern. He flew off once Superman gave a confirming nod.

"Thank you for your help." He added once Green Lantern was hovering in the air above our heads.

"Anytime. I'll see you back at the Watch Tower." Green Lantern flew off, the green bubble following after him. Superman turned back to us. "It's safe now, but I would still advice you to go home. Can't be too careful." He stated.

Looking over at Diana, I saw that she was too busy staring at him, a look on her face like her head was about to explode from being so close to Superman, so I nodded for the both of us. "We'll leave as soon as we get our luggage back." I pointed further down the wrecked street just to let him know that it wasn't that far. I had fully intended to get my luggage back by myself, but before I could protest, he'd zipped down the street and grabbed our suitcases. He flew back and handed them to us before giving us a polite nod and blasting into the air, disappearing in the cloud cover.

Stunned, Diana kept looking up into the sky where he disappeared. A shudder ran through my body from the cold. I suddenly remembered that it was still winter, and even though the snow had started to melt the day before, it was still cold outside. And now I was drenched because of our little tumble. I nudged Diana in the ribs and grabbed my suitcase.

She looked back at me and did a double take. "You're bleeding!" she exclaimed and pointed at my head. I lifted a glowed hand and touched my left temple, where the throbbing came from. Pulling it back, I saw that it had indeed been stained crimson.

"It's fine." I promised, "It doesn't hurt that much."

We continued to walk away, strangely unaffected by the strange thing that just happened.

"So, what was it with the intense eye-sex you totally had with Superman?" Diana piped up after a while of walking in silence. I rolled my eyes. We were just almost squashed by a lamppost thrown by a huge-ass robot, and she notices Superman and I maintaining eye contact afterwards. Priorities.

"I dunno." I shrugged. "Maybe he just thought I was super hot."

Diana smirked at me. "Doesn't explain why you totally returned the look."

I feigned a look of innocence. "He's Superman. Who doesn't want to have eye sex, if not sex, with him?" I felt an overwhelming urge to tell her the truth, but I managed to squash it down.

It's not my secret to tell, I thought.

She shrugged her shoulders. "True."

We grew silent again. I could feel my body steadily turning sorer. In the heat of the moment and with the adrenalin coursing through my body, I couldn't feel much pain, but now that I was safe again and the adrenalin was going away slowly, I could definitely feel my dangerous rolling across the road adventure.

"You know, you kind of saved my life back there." Diana said quietly and shakily. I realized that I had. In the moment it was more of an instinctual reaction to get the both of us out of the way, so I hadn't thought much of it.

"I suppose I did." I didn't know what else to say, so I left it at that. We reached the end of the road where we would have to split and leave for our own apartments. We stopped and turned to each other.

"Thank you." Said Diana, a sincere look on her face. I smiled playfully and punched her shoulder.

"Hey, no problem. You're my best friend. It's in the contract that I have to get you out of dangerous situations."

She laughed, which was a relief. I felt better knowing she wasn't too traumatized.

"Right. So next time you ever end up in a dangerous situation, be sure to call me."

I swallowed a guilty lump "Of course!" a bruise was forming on her forehead, making me grimace. "Remember to check yourself for injuries when you get home. I think I got us both pretty banged up."

She nodded and pulled me in for a rare hug. Pulling back she told me goodbye and to get home safe and look over my own injuries.

Soon, I was on my way by myself. Once I got home, I saw, unsurprisingly, Clark waiting by my front door. He heaved a visible sigh of relief when I came around the corner, pulling me in for another hug. "Thank goodness." Said Clark.

I smirked at him. "Hi Clark, have a good Christmas holiday?" I said, acting like everything was as it should be and I didn't currently have a wound on my forehead that was dripping blood down my cheek. He laughed, probably more out of relief than amusement, as I pulled out my key and opened the door.

"It was fine, thank you." He replied and followed me upstairs. He didn't even need to ask to know that he was welcome.

Once we got inside my apartment, he began fretting over my wound. I shrugged off my jacket and asked him to turn up the heat in my cold apartment while I checked myself for more injuries. I went into the bathroom and pulled of all my outer layers. They were soaked from rolling around on the road. Other than the cut on my temple, my right hand was scratched and dirty, and my both knees and left elbow were painfully throbbing from when I'd tried to cushion my fall, bruises already starting to form. I was glad I had worn all those clothes to keep warm, or my injuries would've been a lot worse. If it had been in summer, I wouldn't have been wearing a big fluffy jacket or sturdy boots, so my fall would undoubtedly have been a lot more painful.

The cut on my temple looked worse than I suspected it really was, if you looked past how dirty it was. I could see that the blood was mixed with brown water and tiny pebbles, probably from when I face planted the asphalt.

I pulled on a pair of grey jogging pants and a sweatshirt just as Clark knocked on the door and asked where I kept my medic-kit.

"They're in here," I said as I pulled my hair into a ponytail. "I'll be right out."

I grabbed the small red box with a white 'X' on it and unlocked the door, stepping outside. Clark almost pouted at the sight of my bloodied temple. "Come sit down." He ordered, walking into my kitchen. I followed after him and hopped onto the counter next to the sink, using my left hand.

I watched silently as he soaked a cloth under the faucet before turning his attention to my poor head.

"You picked a hell of a time to come back." He said his tone humorous but face serious. He placed his cloth-free hand on the top of my head, tilting it slightly upward so he could see the damage better. I concentrated hard on breathing normally, greatly affected by the close proximity.

I shrugged. "Timing is everything, as they say."

I hissed from pain when he gently placed the cloth briefly over the wound, before wiping away the blood. A disapproving sound came from his throat and his eyebrows furrowed as he saw how dirty the wound was. His other hand, which had been keeping my head in place, came down and started removing the small pebbles manually. Once he'd gotten rid of most of them, he resumed cleaning away the blood.

"It looks worse than it really is." I said almost breathlessly, doing what I could to remove the frown on his face. His features softened slightly. "I know." He cleared his throat. "But I can't help but feel responsible for this."

I reached up and grabbed hold of the hand that was wiping blood away. I pulled at it and he moved it down because we both knew that I obviously wouldn't be able to force it down if he didn't want me to. He did still have super strength even when he wasn't Superman.

"Clark, how on earth could this be your fault? You can't blame your own existence for everything."

He smiled fondly at me and removed my fingers from around his wrist with his other hand, keeping mine in his and resumed wiping clean my wound. "You're right, sorry."

I squeezed his hand once and then I let go. His hand came back up and held onto my head again. Once he finished he studied the wound closely.

"So how bad is it?" I asked after a moment. His eyes went from the wound on my temple to my eyes. I resisted the urge to swallow nervously at the close proximity we were still in, and the intensity of his gaze. The way we were positioned, me sitting on the counter with slightly parted legs, and him standing right in front of me, almost between my legs, making us almost at eyelevel and the sudden intense stare we got going on was disconcerting in the best way possible.

The stare only lasted for a few seconds, in which my heart jumped into my throat because he leaned closer to the point where he really was standing between my knees, our faces inches apart. Then he stepped back, creating not only physical, but it seemed also emotional distance between us. He washed the cloth under the faucet, giving me time to get a hold of myself again and stop acting like such a love struck idiot. Even though that was exactly what I was.

Water stained red dripped from the cloth. It was strangely fascinating to look at.

"You won't need stitches." He said, his hypnotic eyes unfortunately (or luckily?) focusing on the cloth in his hand instead of on me.

"Good." I nodded. He patched up the minor wound by taking a cloth and fastening it with band aids. It wasn't the most professional solution, but my medical supplies were running pretty low so it was the best he could do.

"Give me your hand." He said once he finished his own held out, palm up, waiting for my hand. I offered him my right hand, which was starting to hurt by now. He inspected it for a moment before telling me to wash it in the sink. I jumped down from the counter, not expecting my knees to hurt. They did. I buckled under the unexpected pain. Clark's lightning reflexes saved my ass as he quickly reached out and steadied me.

I washed my hand, which looked much better once I got all the grime off it. The scratches weren't that bad, and I expected the hand to get better very soon.

I found my stride to be in a slight limp, which was probably why Clark suddenly seized me around the waist and put me effortlessly back onto the counter. My stomach curled at the sensation of his large warm hands around my waist.

The ending to this chapter is so lame, but I just wanted to get it out now because I'm in a hurry.

A couple of weeks might pass by before the next update, as I'm about to begin a very large project in school that will crave all of my attention.

Anyway, I hope the Clark fluff was satisfactory since he was absent in the last chapter.

Don't forget to review ;)