By anonymous5658 & Julie Slisz <SliszJK@JAYNET.WCMO.EDU>
Submitted February 1999
Summary: Lois and Clark are devastated when their son is abducted by a crazed scientist. However, it becomes a race against the clock when Lois and Clark are infected with a deadly Kryptonite-laced virus. Will Lois and Clark find their son in time to save him — and themselves?
It all started when Perry White, Editor in Chief of the Daily Planet, partnered Lois Lane with Clark Kent. If you were to ask Clark when he first knew he loved Lois, he would say it was the moment when she interrupted his job interview. However, it was a long time before either of them would admit their love. And of course, they had plenty of obstacles to overcome. Lex Luthor on more than one occasion, Mayson Drake, Detective Daniel Scardino, Lady Zara and the people of New Krypton, and Dr. Maxwell Deter. They had had more than their share of relationship problems, which mostly started the day that Lois found out that Clark was Superman. But, despite it all, everything came out pretty good. Now, they were happily married and had started their life together.
The biggest hurdle Lois and Clark had to jump came a few months into their marriage. They hadn't really talked about it much, but after a while it was evident that they both wanted to have a child. The problem came when they found out from STAR Labs that it would be physically impossible for Superman and an Earth woman to conceive. It was made even worse when they found out that, due to their lifestyles, they would not be able to adopt. Lois blamed herself for this. It was her "dangling over the jaws of death" that insured that no adoption agency would ever put a child in her care. Lois was so looking forward to having Clark's child or at least raising one with him, and Clark was so looking forward to being a father. The news was disheartening to both of them. So, after meeting with the Kryptonian Council, where they found out that Lois could actually become pregnant and survive, they were thrilled. But nothing could describe the feeling they had when they found out that their dream had come true. Lois and Clark were going to have a baby.
The pregnancy was similar to that of a normal human, except the gestation period was almost a month and a half less. The first time Lois woke up with morning sickness, Clark was right there with her, holding her hair back. When Lois started having fears of motherhood, Clark was there to calm her by expressing his fears too. Clark was holding her hand at the first sonogram, and he was there when they learned they were having a boy. They even made time to go to Lamaze classes together.
Lois and Clark particularly loved talking to people about the new baby. Martha was the only woman Lois could talk to about every aspect of her pregnancy, but she still enjoyed telling people about how her ankles had begun to swell, and how she enjoyed shopping for baby clothes.
The most exciting moment for Lois and Clark happened late one Wednesday evening, when Lois went into labor. Eleven and a half grueling hours later, on September 18, a beautiful baby boy came into the world — part human, part Kryptonian, and a testament to the legacy begun by Lara and Jor-El so many years ago. They named him Jordan Andrew Kent.
Thanks to the new baby, Lois and Clark did not do much celebrating on their first anniversary, though they didn't mind. Perry understood when Clark was out for a few days; they'd warned him that there might be complications with the pregnancy, so he was lenient and let Clark take a few weeks off to help Lois. While Lois did survive the pregnancy, it took a toll on her strength. Lois and Clark shared most of the responsibilities of parents. Lois slept most of the day, and only got up for a few hours. Clark would constantly tell Lois to go back to sleep and let him quiet the baby down and feed him. Lois treasured those moments when she could sleep, and during those times, Clark got to bond with his son. He would rock his little boy on the patio, and watch him while he slept. Clark even sang to him when he couldn't fall asleep or when he wasn't feeling well.
By the time Jordan was about three months old, Lois was back to her old self again, and, through several hours at the gym each week, she soon had her trim figure back. Lois had begun going into the office, and when the day was over she would rush to pick Jordan up from daycare. Over the next few months, Lois and Clark introduced Jordan to solid food, and when he was seven months old he got his first tooth.
Lois would stay with Jordan and read books to him while they waited for Superman to return from his latest feat. Later, when Jordan began walking, he would run to meet his daddy. Lois and Clark had had some trouble deciding how to handle the Superman situation, and they decided that after Jordan could talk with a good enough vocabulary and in complete sentences that people other than his parents could understand, then it would be all right to let him know. They decided to keep Jordan away from Superman when they were in public and avoid having Superman at the townhouse. When Jordan had grown old enough to understand, Clark would sit him down and explain to him about Superman.
When Jordan was eleven months old, Clark and his son were very close, just like Jonathan and Clark. Jordan adored his dad and Clark was enthralled by his son. When Clark would come home from work, he would ask Jordan what adventures he'd had that day, and Jordan would take his hand and show him where he'd found the best hiding place, or found a lost toy. Then they would play around on the floor or out on the patio. Lois always enjoyed watching them, and she noticed how Clark used the same gentleness with their son as he did with her. He was always aware of his strength and went to great lengths to insure his family was never harmed by it.
On Jordan's first birthday, the Kents threw a small party at Clark's childhood home, with both sets of proud grandparents in attendance. After he blew out his candle, Jordan smashed his face into the icing like any normal one-year-old child. The whole family played games outside with Jordan, and when he fell asleep in the afternoon Lois went to put him in the bedroom. Everyone else was in the backyard talking while the men barbecued. Conversation was limited, though, until after Sam and Ellen left, because they didn't know Clark's secret. When Clark finally found some time when he could talk to his parents alone, he told them about his plans for his and Lois's anniversary. He planned to surprise her and that was hard to do.
When Lois finally returned from her chore, Clark told her that he was planning something for their anniversary, being careful not to divulge too much information. After much cajoling on everyone's part, Lois finally agreed to let Jordan spend that weekend with Martha and Jonathan.
Finally, their anniversary weekend came and both Lois and Clark were excited about the whole thing — Lois because she had no idea what they would be doing, and Clark for keeping it all a secret for so long. Lois was a little surprised when Friday night was spent sitting on the couch watching old movies and eating popcorn. But Clark had a good reason; they never had time to do that anymore. Lois and Clark were on a story or Superman was needed or Jordan didn't want to sit still.
On Saturday night, Clark took Lois to the opera and then out to dinner at Michelino's Ristorante Italiano. Lois enjoyed the restaurant more than the opera, but that is just the kind of person she was. She liked opera, but if she had to choose between a night at the opera and dinner at the fanciest restaurant in town, she would pick dinner. And this was definitely a fancy restaurant. Some of the wealthiest people in Metropolis had been vying for a table for months. One good thing about Superman was that he received a lot of gratitude for the things he did and, since he didn't do very many domestic things, he usually passed the rewards on to his good friends, Lois and Clark. This was one of those occasions. A few weeks back, Superman had saved the owner's daughter from a car accident. The owner had shown his thanks by giving Superman a table at his restaurant on any night he wished. So Superman had called Mr. Michelino last week and set up a date Saturday night for Lois and Clark. So here they were, alone for the first time since their child was born and nervous in each other's presence again.
"I can't believe we're actually here. Isn't this place beautiful? I wonder who they got to decorate it? The food smells wonderful. I'm so hungry. This wine is excellent; I wonder what year it is."
"Lois, Honey, you're babbling."
"Am I babbling? I don't think I'm babbling. You're just not talking very much. Yeah, you're right, I am babbling, Clark. I just don't know what to do here; I feel like we're on our first date again."
Clark took her hand and raised it to his lips. "Did I tell you how beautiful you look tonight?"
"Yeah, but it wouldn't hurt to hear it again."
"You are the most magnificent woman I've ever seen."
"Oh, Clark," she said and raised her hand to touch his face, "I've missed this so much."
Just then, their food arrived and halted any further conversation. So caught up in the wonderful food and being alone again with her husband, Lois lost track of how much wine she'd consumed. Clark, on the other hand, was quite aware that his wife was becoming slightly tipsy. After her third glass of wine, Clark asked the waiter for the check and proceeded to guide his very relaxed wife out to their Jeep.
On the drive home, Lois was very quiet. The only indication that she was still awake was the slight kiss she'd place every now and then on the palm of the hand she was holding.
By the time they got in the house and to their room, Clark was having a hard time keeping himself under control. When Lois put her arms around him and whispered, "What are you waiting for?" visions of a dream he'd had long ago when their relationship first started came sweeping over him and thoughts of control were lost. And so, Lois and Clark spent a wonderful night renewing their intimacy and relishing their first night of uninterrupted passion in over a year.
The next morning found Lois and Clark back at The Planet.
"Didn't they say they were going to take him to the park?" Clark suggested as Lois hung up the phone with a disappointed look on her face. Jonathan and Martha were bringing Jordan back to Metropolis that morning. Lois wanted to see if everything had gone okay, but every time she called they either weren't there or didn't answer the phone. Clark had heard them say that they were going to take him to the park, but he didn't know when or to which one.
"Sure, I think I remember something about that. Besides," she said as she got up from her desk and walked over to Clark, "if I can't trust your parents with our son, who can I trust?" She sat down on his desk and leaned over to kiss him, but when his head turned suddenly, she backed off, anticipating his departure to try to save someone or something. When Clark did something like that, you had to expect Superman to pop out of nowhere. She knew that a few times last night Superman was needed and Clark had chosen to stay with her. And she knew that today she had to return to sharing him again with a world that needed him as much as she did.
Clark switched on the radio and listened to the emergency broadcast. " … The lava is now approaching the small town of Wagosi; it appears that the volcano has been dormant for years but erupted this morning anyhow, without warning. Again, a volcano has erupted in Northern Japan and is now endangering the lives of the residents in Wagosi … "
Lois looked back at Clark to see what he was planning on doing and to wish him luck in doing it, but all that was there was an empty chair. Assuming he would be a while, she went back to her desk, picked up something and began looking for Jimmy. She needed copies made and research done on her current story, which was something about the congressman and his proposal on school uniforms.
About twenty minutes later, she returned to her desk with several thick folders and picked up the phone. As she dialed, she heard the newsman on the radio expressing his, and everyone's, gratitude for Superman's help in Japan, though he didn't bother to mention what it was Superman had done. Lois smiled and continued to dial the number. After letting the phone ring 12 times, she hung it up and decided to call again in a little while.
From across the room, Perry called Lois into his office. When she walked in, he closed the door behind her. "Lois," he asked, "if you had a choice between a trip to the Bahamas and a week in Europe, which would you choose?"
"Why?" Lois wondered. This wasn't your everyday question.
"Well, I wanted to take Alice on a vacation somewhere, and I can't decide. So I thought another woman's opinion might help, and I thought, who better to ask than you? So what do you think?"
"Well, let's see, which does Alice like more, a warm sunny beach or cold snowy mountains?" Personally, Lois would have chosen Europe because it was full of big cities and shopping centers, but she wasn't sure Alice would feel the same way.
"Geez, I don't know. She always loved them both." Perry thought about it a minute, "Maybe she likes the skiing a little bit more." If he'd really known the answer to that question he wouldn't need her help, but he didn't say anything about that to her.
"Well, then, take her to Europe. They have beaches and mountains there," she suggested. "And I haven't met a woman yet who doesn't love Italy."
"Thanks, Lois, I don't think I'd have thought of that." He made a note of it, and then asked, "So, where'd Clark run off to?"
"Well … he … um … went to pick up something, I can't remember what." In a case like this, less was more. She tried to make it sound like she was telling the truth.
"For the story?" he asked, believing her story but still curious as to why Clark was always running off doing something.
"That or dinner." She was being as vague as possible. "All he said to me was 'I'll be back; I have to pick something up.'" Well, this wasn't true at all, but if Clark had said something, it might have been that. Besides, he was probably picking people up to move them out of the way of flowing lava.
"Well, I'll just have to wait and see what that something is."
"Well, I'm going to go call Martha to see if they had any trouble with Jordan over the weekend." She got up and walked to the door.
"Let me know if that something Clark had to pick up was anything important."
"I will." As she walked back to her desk, she saw Clark come off the elevator, straightening his tie, and Lois rushed to intercept him before he could tell Perry anything different than she had.
"So, what did you have to pick up?" she asked as she grabbed his arm and gave him that 'don't blow it' look.
"Huh … " He had know idea what she was talking about until he saw the look on her face. "Oh, it just occurred to me that we were out of milk." He smiled at the save, then went into Perry's office to tell him about the volcano in Japan. When he was done, he and Lois sat down at her desk and she started to tell Clark about her concerns.
"I called again and there is still no answer," she said with an anxious tone. "That was more than a half an hour ago, so I'm a little worried why they aren't answering."
"So," Clark said while rolling in his chair over to her, "They just might still be at the park. If you can't get ahold of them, I'll get Superman to go take a look and then you can stop worrying because there's nothing wrong." He leaned forward and kissed her and pushed himself off her desk's corner to roll back to his own.
She smiled as she picked up the phone and hit the redial button. But once again, no answer. Clark got up and headed for the hall to the conference rooms. Shortly after another one of those gusts of wind from nowhere, Superman returned and, with Lois, left. They flew to their townhouse only to find a mess and two sleepy grandparents.
At the townhouse, the elder set of Kents had been trying to get the newest member of the family to take a nap. Lucky for them, Jordan had not yet developed any superpowers, and it was a good thing. A one-year-old has bad enough temper tantrums without being able to hurl toys into orbit. Of course, Jonathan and Martha had already handled a young boy like this when they'd raised Clark.
Ten minutes earlier they had ordered pizza and they were trying to get Jordan down for his nap before it arrived. Just as he began to fall asleep, the doorbell rang. It was the pizza, and naturally Jordan forgot all about his nap.
They sat down, and as Jonathan picked up his third piece and Martha bit into her second, the door burst open, and a man and woman came in. One hit Jonathan on the head; the other went for Martha. She struggled but the pizza was drugged and the sleeping medicine was beginning to kick in. Martha managed to rip a patch off of her assailant's jacket before being tied to a chair in the other room. Martha soon fell asleep. The woman grabbed Jordan and they left, Jonathan unconscious on the floor and Martha asleep in the other room.
After they'd been asleep for an hour or so, Jonathan came to and untied Martha. Though still groggy, he tried to call the Daily Planet to get in touch with Lois and Clark, but neither of them were there. As soon as Jonathan hung up the phone, Lois and Superman came in through the window.
"Martha, are you okay?" Lois asked as she caught Martha before she fell. "What happened?"
"I'm fine," Martha said. "Just tired, that's all."
"Where's Jordan?" Clark asked after he realized that no one was holding him. "Is he okay?"
"Those men," Jonathan sighed. "They took him."
"What men?" Lois asked.
"The ones that did this," Jonathan suggested.
"I think one was a woman," Martha pointed out. "She probably took the baby. Here," she handed a piece of cloth to Lois, "I ripped this off her jacket before she could tie me up. Maybe it can help you find who did this."
"I've never seen it. You?" Lois handed it to Clark.
"No." Clark sat down on the couch and started shaking his head.
"It's okay," Lois tried to comfort him, "We can get Jimmy to find out where it came from."
"I should have listened to you."
"What do you mean?" Lois frowned.
"You knew something was wrong, and I didn't listen." Clark was angry at himself. "I should have checked sooner."
"Don't blame yourself." Lois objected, "If I were you and you were me, I probably wouldn't have listened to me either, if that makes sense."
"I understand you, but I could have stopped them. I could have done something."
"It's okay. We'll find him." Lois put her arms around him and they just sat there together. They needed to draw strength from each other, just like they always had.
Jonathan called Perry and filled him in on the situation. Perry said that Lois and Clark didn't have to come in, but everyone knew that they would show up regardless.
As soon as Lois and Clark made it to the Planet, they hunted Jimmy down and gave him the patch along with instructions to find out where it came from and then to start a list of names related to Lois and Clark in any way. In their line of work, Lois and Clark had made a plethora of enemies that would have loved to get their revenge. So they always assumed that was the reason for the misfortunes inflicted on them.
Superman flew off to take a look around the city to see if he could find Jordan. By the time he returned, without having found the missing child, Jimmy had finished a list of people. Lois and Clark took the list home to go over it. After carefully going through the names, they found four that had experience in creating drugs and medications of all kinds, two with actual motives, and only one who could be connected directly to the description of the man and woman Martha had seen.
Professor Xavier Kemlar, a renowned engineering chemist, once experimented on some of his students at a local university, without their knowledge of the testing, using a drug he'd invented. Lois and Clark had stumbled onto the story and printed some incriminating evidence, which led to his arrest. He was convicted and sentenced to time in jail. Recently he finished his time and was released to the care of his eldest sister, Elsa Rogers.
Lois and Clark had found their man, and Elsa was probably the woman that tied Martha up. The two reporters felt better knowing whom they were dealing with. Lois called Jimmy and had him begin looking for the last known whereabouts and photo IDs of both Ms. Rogers and Prof. Kemlar.
Clark heard an alarm going off and flew to help. He needed the time away to put his mind on something else.
Back at the townhouse, Lois sat on the couch wrapped in her favorite blanket holding Jordan's stuffed hippo. It was his favorite toy. She remembered how she used to sit in this very same spot and hold Jordan. She used to read his books to him, and they'd sit there and wait for Superman to return from his latest feat. The only thing different this time was that when Clark returned, Jordan wouldn't run to meet him.
As Superman started home, he pictured his wife sitting there alone, without their son, and mentally scolded himself for leaving her at a time like this. He began to fly faster, anxious to get home. He wanted to be there for her. Superman came in through the same window he always did and saw Lois just as he'd imagined. He changed into Clark and sat down next to her. As soon as he was within reach, Lois wrapped her arms around him, wanting to feel the strength of their love, the strength he had once said was stronger than him. He returned the hug, and they made themselves comfortable in each other's arms.
"Are you all right?" Clark asked as he gave her another squeeze.
"I'm fine," she lied.
"Fine?" Clark echoed. "Honey, talk to me."
"I told you, I'm fine," she stressed.
"Lois, in the past when you said you were fine, you were far from fine, so talk to me."
"Okay, Clark, I'm not fine. I'm upset, depressed, sad, angry … "
Clark interrupted her, "You have every right to be angry with me, Lois. I failed. I failed you, and I failed our son. I don't deserve to be Superman and I don't deserve to be a father."
"Clark, don't be ridiculous. It's not your fault."
"But it is my fault, Lois. I'm the strongest man in the world and I couldn't even save my own son."
"Clark, things happen and I've been in trouble before and you've always gotten me out of it. You'll get Jordan out of this too."
"Thank you, Lois, for never losing faith in me."
Tears came to Lois's eyes as she said, "I miss him. I can't believe how empty I feel."
"I know what you mean. When I was flying home I kept thinking that Jordan is out there somewhere probably wondering when we're going to come get him."
"I have this feeling that he's okay," she admitted. "But I'm not sure I can believe it."
"Lois, if you think he's okay, that makes me feel much better, so I think I'll trust your feelings."
"I bet wherever he is, whoever is taking care of him is probably very frustrated."
"Because he's not that easy to get to sleep." She leaned over and kissed Clark. "I think he takes after his dad."
Clark kissed her on the forehead and they just sat there. After a while Lois fell asleep and so Clark carried her up to bed, being careful not to wake her.
Somewhere south of Metropolis, Jordan was wide awake and furious. Elsa tried to calm him down, but it was hopeless. Finally, she remembered the sleeping drug, dipped a popsicle in it and gave it to the energetic child. In a few minutes he began to calm down, and at last he fell asleep.
Prof. Kemlar came in through the skylight and set a black duffel bag on the table. "No one saw me," he reassured Elsa. "Thanks for watching the kid. Did he give you any trouble?"
"Not after he ate that popsicle!"
Prof. Kemlar began taking off all the equipment he had used. Elsa came over to the table and opened the bag. She lifted out a small silver box with a latch and lock on the front.
"Where's the key?" she asked.
"Right here." He pulled a key out of one of the many pockets he had. He opened the box up and pulled out a vial full of a chocolate colored cream.
"Is that it?" Elsa asked. "That cream is going to give you power?"
"Dysprosium by itself doesn't do much at all."
Prof. Kemlar saw the puzzled look on Elsa's face and continued. "I have two formulas that will help. The first one is this mixed with edetate disodium and a little bit of ordinary isopropyl alcohol. This one gives a person the symptoms of STAMP," he said as he mixed the ingredients.
"What the heck is that?" She really couldn't believe him.
"It's a disease, but the symptoms are a little fun to watch. Narcolepsy with a twist, and mild insanity." He chuckled. "I call it Nedia. This mix is for the people we just don't like."
"Like the Kents?"
"Yes." He was happy she understood. "Now, the other mix, which takes very little dysprosium, a lot of sodium citrate, and just as much dihydrogen oxide, has two outcomes that vary with the person consuming the mixture. Some die, and the rest become extremely susceptible to suggestion. I call this one HDS."
"Where do you come up with these names?" Elsa asked sardonically.
"I'm not sure; it's sometimes a combination of letters from the ingredients. Usually, though, it's just the first thing that pops into my head," Prof. Kemlar explained.
"So do they have cures or is it one of those forever diseases?"
"Well, I know the cure. But it should take a while for anyone else to figure it out, but I can just have those people killed if they try to give it to everyone."
"So what about Superman?"
"Well, when I worked at STAR Labs, I got my hands on this." He went to the closet and pulled out a metal box and opened it to reveal a green glow. "Kryptonite. I made it into a cream that you are going to add to a batch of cookies along with the Nedia. Do you know what Superman does when he's not being super?"
"Ever met Clark Kent?"
"You're kidding." She looked into his face. "You're not kidding; how do you know?"
"I found out a while back. Dr. Klein fell asleep in his office and mumbled the whole story in his sleep. Have those cookies sent to the Kents from Dr. Klein, as a 'sorry-your-kid-is-missing' type of thing."
Elsa took the jar with the mixture in it and went to the kitchen to get started. After the cookies were done, she arranged them in a basket and made the card. She got her things together and made her way to the delivery service.
Lois rolled over and opened her eyes to find Clark lying next to her, staring at the ceiling. She leaned over and kissed him. "Hmm … what time is it?" she asked as she started to yawn.
"It's 9:18," Clark said.
"Wow, I haven't slept this late since before … " She stopped in mid-sentence. On any normal Saturday, Jordan would have had them both up and running before 7 am.
"So I talked to Jimmy this morning," he began.
"How long have you been up?" she wondered.
"A cruise liner hit a reef in the Florida Keys around seven. I figured I'd let you sleep."
"Thank you." She kissed him and got up to put away the blanket she had from last night.
"Anyway, Jimmy hasn't found an address for Kemlar yet but he says he has a few more places to look."
"That's good." Lois closed the door to the linen closet and they both headed for the kitchen. When they were halfway down the stairs, the doorbell rang. "I'll get it. You go make us some coffee." She opened the door and to her surprise no one was there. When she went to get the paper, there stood a medium sized cookie bouquet. She picked up the bouquet, grabbed the paper, and went inside. She began reading the card out loud as she handed the paper to Clark and set the cookies on the counter.
"'To the Kents, Best of luck finding your child. God bless you. Bernard Klein.' I wonder how he knew." She paused. "Oh, Jimmy must have told him."
"Or," Clark held up the paper, "it could have been this." There in black and white was printed, "Reporters' Son Falls Victim to Revenge," with a picture of Lois, Clark, and Jordan underneath.
"That makes it sound worse than it originally did," Lois admitted.
"So how does cookies for breakfast sound?" Clark said jokingly.
Lois picked up two cookies, stuck one in her mouth and the other in Clark's. She put her arms around his waist and began reading the story over his shoulder.
When they had finished reading and eating cookies, Clark gave Lois a kiss, turned into Superman, and flew out the window to help rescuers in Texas find a man trapped in a well. When he returned, he noticed that he was feeling a little tired and somewhat different. Lois was concerned and made him x-ray the cookies to see if they were the source of the problem. He took a rather close look at the cookies and found them to be laced with Kryptonite. After assuming that it wasn't Dr. Klein who sent the cookies, Clark took them over to STAR Labs to see if they contained anything else.
"It must have been Kemlar," Superman thought out loud.
"Kemlar? As in Xavier Kemlar? What does he have to do with this?" Dr. Klein asked.
"He's the guy Lois and I think took Jordan." He heard an alarm go off. "I'll be back in a minute." And he was gone.
Dr. Klein was used to that because it was a Superman thing to do.
The Kryptonite in the cookies had shut down Superman's immune system so that the Nedia could affect him. Both Dr. Klein and Superman were a little confused about why the Kryptonite had not affected his powers, but since it hadn't already, he assumed that it wouldn't do anything in the future either.
The alarm that Superman had heard was from a jewelry store in downtown Metropolis. While he was flying to the scene, the Nedia kicked in and in an instant, he was unconscious. He dropped out of the sky and went through the window of an office on the sixteenth floor of a building nearby the jewelry store. Mr. Edwards, the man who occupied the office, was startled by the crash and was even more surprised when he realized it was Superman lying on the floor. After a few minutes, Superman woke up and flew out the hole that he had made on his way in. As soon as Superman realized what had just happened, he flew back to the office, asked a few questions and apologized, then took that information to Dr. Klein.
"Is there a cure?" Superman asked.
"Well, I'd have to run some more tests and then analyze the drugs we found but that could take anywhere from a week to several years." Dr. Klein had learned to be blunt with Superman. "Oh, wait, we have this new software that I've been waiting to test out."
"That's great. How long will that take?" he said with a bit of sarcasm.
"I'm not sure but it should only take an hour or two. Superman, did anyone else eat these cookies?"
"Lois had two or three which means she should be affected, too, right?"
"We've tested to see what effect Kryptonite would have on a human, so that shouldn't be a problem, but she has ingested the drugs. Do you know where she is right now? We should probably go get her."
"She's at the Planet, but I don't think I should bring her and she probably shouldn't drive herself."
"You call her and tell her not to move, and it might be a good idea if you got someone to keep an eye on her until I get there." Dr. Klein left and Superman picked up the phone.
Lois wasn't at her desk, so as Clark, Superman explained to Jimmy the seriousness of her illness. Jimmy said he would find Lois and keep her in Perry's office until Dr. Klein got there.
Just as Jimmy hung up the phone, he heard a scream. Naturally, he grabbed his camera and went to see what had happened. Another reporter had just finished making copies and turned around to find Lois unconscious on the floor. After taking some pictures, Jimmy had two guys carry her into Perry's office.
Superman waited patiently at STAR Labs, but after he realized how long it had been, he called the Planet. Jimmy told him that they had left an hour or so ago and should have been there already. Just as Superman hung up the phone, Dr. Kelly came in.
"Eureka! We found it, Dr. Klein." He looked up and realized that Dr. Klein wasn't there. "Where'd he go?"
"He went to pick up Lois Lane and bring her here," Superman explained, "but they should have been back by now. Did you find a cure?"
"Yes, we're making it into a pill that you and Lois can swallow. But it won't be ready for about 15 minutes."
"Finally some good news." As soon as he finished saying this, Dr. Klein burst in through the door, his hand covering a bruise on the back of his head.
"Superman," he winced in pain, "someone kidnapped Lois."
The president was coming to Metropolis for his triennial visit. So, as any villain would, Prof. Kemlar had planned everything he possibly could and he had everything all worked out. He'd done some surveying with the help of a few friends and found out that the Secret Service was most likely going to order Chinese take-out that night. He was going to slip some of the sleeping drug into the food, and then, after everyone was asleep, and the President had ingested the HDS, he would go in and start using the President like a puppet. Back at the warehouse, Prof. Kemlar got his things together and prepared to leave by putting on his equipment. >From across the room Lois shot up, wondering what had happened, and saw Jordan sitting on the floor playing with some toys. She scooped him into her arms as tears began sliding down her cheeks.
"Good to see you up and moving," a voice in the shadows said. "But I think next time we'll go with a smaller dosage so you don't sleep quite so long."
"Who's there?" Lois asked as she noticed she was surround by metal bars. "Where am I? What are you talking about?"
"Aren't you Little-Miss-Nosy?" a female voice said, dripping with sarcasm.
"I'm sure you already know, but I am a reporter. It's my job to be nosy." Lois had an interesting habit of not caring how much trouble she was in.
"You might want to watch what you say and how you say it; I have a rather low tolerance level." Elsa was telling the truth.
"You're Elsa, aren't you?" Lois had remembered the research she'd done on Prof. Kemlar. "Elsa Rogers?"
"I see you've done your homework, but I really must be going now," she spun on her heels and went back into the shadows.
"Wait!" Lois demanded to no avail.
Prof. Kemlar came in and began getting his things together so that he could go through with his plan to use the President.
"Kemlar?" Lois guessed.
"Lois, I think I should advise you to leave me alone. You have no protection here and you don't want to have to leave your son alone, do you?" He was warning her.
"Are you saying you'll kill me if I don't shut up?" She asked without thinking first.
"That is precisely what I am saying," he affirmed.
"He won't let me die," she said to herself, trying to assure herself, perhaps a little too loudly.
"'He' being who? Clark? Superman?" Prof. Kemlar heard her and wanted to let her know he knew the super-secret.
"Both," she revealed.
"Mrs. Kent, perhaps you didn't know this but they are the same person. Clark is Superman's not-so-secret identity. Did you know you were married to Superman?" He was making a mockery of her.
Lois's head slowly rose and Jordan let out a giggle. She stood up and walked over to the section of bars nearest to Prof. Kemlar.
"What makes you think that Clark is Superman?" she asked, seemingly calm.
"Do you know Dr. Klein? Oh, you must; you were the one who referred Superman to him." He turned back to his things and continued to get ready.
"What does he have to do with anything?" her voice fluttered. She was positive that Dr. Klein knew Superman's secret. He was one of the few people they had told. 'Could he have known before?' she thought to herself.
"You've either just realized that you are in real danger or you have a health problem I didn't know about." He continued, "Did you by any chance eat some cookies this morning Lois?"
"Yes, I did." She spat the words out at him.
"Well, those cookies were a little present from me. You see, they were laced with Kryptonite and a nasty little disease I invented called Nedia. So, about right now, you should be a Super-widow, and pretty soon you'll be dead and little Jordan there will be an orphan.
Back at STAR Labs, Superman was having a tough time keeping his cool.
"What!? Did you see who it was?" Superman was losing his calm manner and he had a good reason.
"No, this man came up from behind and hit me, and when I woke up, Lois was gone."
"I have to go find her."
"But the disease — you aren't fit to go off and fly around; you could hurt someone."
"Here it is." Dr. Kelly said. "Here are four pills. Take one now, one in an hour and give the other two and the same instructions to Lois."
"Thank you." Superman took the pills, put one in his mouth and swallowed it, then put the other three in the tiny pocket of his suit. "Can I go now?" He was acting like an impatient child.
"If you must." Dr. Klein didn't want him out in his condition. "But please be careful." But before he finished, Superman was gone.
Superman decided to take Dr. Klein's advice and so he changed into Clark and took a cab instead of flying, hoping that he wouldn't have another 'episode' in the cab. As soon as he got home, he found a bottle for the pills and set them on the counter next to Lois's medicines. Just then he fell unconscious again.
Jonathan and Martha came in and saw Clark in a heap on the floor. They dropped their stuff and ran to see if they could help. They were clueless as to what was wrong, having been elsewhere when it was all figured out.
Jonathan suggested putting him on the couch so they each grabbed an arm and started pulling. As soon as his head hit the pillows, Clark woke up and startled his parents.
"Clark, what happened?" Martha was both worried and confused.
"It's okay, Mom, it's just part of this disease."
Clark made it seem like it was not a big deal. He'd forgotten that they didn't know.
"Disease?" Jonathan repeated.
"Clark, you can't get diseases," Martha pointed out. "How can you have a disease?"
"Well," Clark said matter-of-factly, "if the virus is laced with Kryptonite, I can." The phone interrupted him; he started for it and then continued. "Professor Kemlar, this man I did a story on when I first got here, just got released and apparently has a grudge. We think he's the one who took Jordan, and now," he sighed, "he's taken Lois, too." He picked up the phone, "Hello?"
"C.K." It was Jimmy. "I got you an address."
"For Kemlar?" Clark held his breath.
"Yeah, it's a warehouse out in Wixonville."
"Wixon Valley?" Clark corrected him. He'd been there several times but had never heard of Wixonville.
"Um … yeah," he said as he checked his notes.
"Jimmy, you're the greatest." Finally, Clark knew where to find his family.
"I know," Jimmy said smugly. "It's 519 Chanooka. You know where that is, or do I need to find a map for you?"
"No, I know where it is." Superman had been in that area before, and Clark figured he could find the place again. "Thanks, bye."
Clark hung up the phone and turned around to find Jonathan and Martha watching him. They were still rather confused; they didn't know all the details. "We found them," Clark said.
"Clark, if you're sick, you can't go get them; maybe this is one time you should call the police." Martha was the ever-worried mother.
"No, Mom, it's different this time. The Kryptonite hasn't affected my powers, so, as long as I don't black out on the way, I'll get there just fine." And with that, he was gone.
Superman took to the air in the direction of Wixon Valley. Even though he was flying faster than he ever had before, the anxiousness to get to his family made it feel like he was going at a snail's pace. Right before he reached the warehouse, he popped the second pill in his mouth and almost instantly felt the effects of the disease disappear. With renewed strength he burst in and saw Kemlar about to leave.
"Hold it right there, Kemlar!"
"Well, well, well, if it isn't Clark Kent himself." At Superman's dazed expression, Kemlar continued, "Did you really think people were too stupid to see past a pair of glasses? Really, how stupid do you think we Earth people are?"
Feeling it was futile to dispute the point and wanting to get down to business, Superman said, "Where are my wife and son?"
"Right over there in that cage, but you see, Superman, you're too late to save the lovely Lois. The Nedia's already done its job."
At that, Clark glanced in the darkened corner of the room and saw his son sitting on the floor playing beside his unconscious wife.
Then, pandemonium erupted as shots were fired behind Superman's head. The bullets hit his body and ricocheted in all directions.
Too distracted by the sight of his love lying on the floor, Superman failed to catch the bullet that struck Kemlar in the chest, killing him instantly.
Elsa threw down her weapon and ran sobbing to her brother's side. The police arrived then and Superman turned Elsa over to their custody. Superman grabbed his wife and child and flew home at breakneck speed.
He put Jordan in his room and laid Lois down on their bed. He put the first pill in her mouth and forced her to swallow. Then he picked up the phone and called Dr. Klein.
"Dr. Klein, this is Clark. I've got Lois at our house and I just gave her the first pill. Her vital signs are very erratic. What should I do?"
"Well, Clark, if the disease has done its worst, there's nothing you can do. But there is the chance that, in an hour when you give her the second pill, she'll be okay."
Clark hung up the phone. It had only been five minutes. How was he supposed to wait 55 more before he knew if Lois would live?
He lay down beside her on the bed and wrapped his body around hers.
Her skin was so cold and clammy. Seven minutes.
Clark didn't know what else to do so he started speaking out loud to Lois, like he'd seen done for coma patients on TV.
"Do you know, Lois, I fell in love with you the moment you walked in and interrupted my job interview that first day at The Planet? I know it took me a while to realize it and it took you a while to admit you loved me too, but at that moment I felt a connection to you different than anything I'd ever felt before. I could see past that tough-girl exterior and I saw that you had been hurt so many times and you felt you couldn't trust anyone and I remember thinking I'd love to show you that you could trust me. You can't leave me, Lois. I couldn't go on. You have to come back to me." Tears started streaming down his face, tears that no super power could stop. "We have a beautiful baby who needs you just as much as I do and you just can't leave us, Lois. We wouldn't make it without you." Clark lay there for a while, just holding Lois, wondering if it might not be the last time he got the chance.
He glanced at the clock. Just one more minute to go. Those sixty seconds took an eternity for Clark but as soon as they were over, he forced the second pill down Lois's throat. About two minutes later, Lois started to moan and her eyelids fluttered open.
"Clark, Kemlar said you were dead."
"Well, I'm not dead and I'll tell you everything that happened later; now, you get some rest."
"Clark, where is Jordan? Right before I passed out, Kemlar had just given Jordan some of those cookies to eat."
Before she had even gotten the words totally out of her mouth, Clark had made it to the baby's room and back.
"Lois, I'm taking Jordan to Dr. Klein."
"Not without me you're not."
So with Clark holding Lois and Lois holding Jordan, the Kents made their way to STAR Labs. Papers were scattered everywhere as they landed in Dr. Klein's office.
"Dr. Klein, we need you to make two more pills; Jordan ate some of the cookies too."
"Dr. Kelly," Dr. Klein said, "make two more of those pills ASAP."
"So, did you catch your bad guy?"
Not wanting to go into too much detail, Clark said, "Yes."
Dr. Kelly came back with one pill. "I combined the doses and diluted it some since he's smaller. This ought to do the trick."
Clark gave Jordan the pill and proceeded to take his family home.
Back at the townhouse, Martha and Jonathan were anxiously waiting for Clark to come back, fearing that the disease had overtaken him. They had just returned from The Planet where they had filled Perry in on the details of what was happening, careful to leave out any details that might point to Clark being Superman.
Not even five minutes after they got back, Clark, Lois and Jordan landed in the living room.
Jonathan and Martha ran to pick up their grandson, thankful that he was alive.
The telephone rang and Lois rushed to pick it up, "Hello … Well, thanks for calling to tell me." As she hung up the phone, she turned to Clark and said, "Elsa Rogers is dead. She wrestled a gun away from one of the officers and killed herself. Martha, Jonathan, could you please stay with Jordan? We have a story to write."
Headline on the front page of The Daily Planet 'REPORTING FAMILY REUNITED.'
Lois laid the latest addition of The Planet on Clark's desk, "See, Clark, I told you that you'd get Jordan back."
"This time I did, Lois. What happens when there comes a time I don't?"
"There won't, Clark. You've always come through for me and you'll always come through for Jordan because you are a super man. And I don't mean your powers. If you were just an ordinary man, I would love you just the same and I'd be able to depend on you the same too, and I mean that this time."
Clark raised her hand to his lips. "I love you, Lois."
"I love you, Clark."