By Caroline K. <twfkak@yahoo.com>

Rated G

Submitted March 2007

Summary: Dr. Sam Lane's thoughts during the episode "Home is Where the Hurt Is."

A/N: Thanks to Classicalla for the GE!


She thinks that I wanted a son, and that's not true.

She thinks that she never lived up to my expectations, and that *is* true, or closer to the truth than I like to admit.

But I saw something special in Lois from the very beginning. When she was still just a tiny little girl, clutching tightly to one of my fingers as she toddled beside me, I saw that she had the potential to be extraordinary. And you might think that all fathers see that in their children, but it's not true. I never saw it in Lucy, however much I wanted to find it there. But Lois… Lois had that mysterious, intangible thing that separates the merely good from the truly great. She had such a fire in her belly that I almost envied her at times. Because I've never been extraordinary. I've reached for it, I've yearned for it, but I've never achieved it. I've spent my life chasing greatness, but I have very little to show for any of it now.

But I knew, even when she was just toddling along at my side, taking four steps for my every one… I knew that she would surpass me one day. I knew that she would be everything I dreamed of being. She would be the Lane who would be remembered.

She would be extraordinary.

So, no, she didn't live up to my expectations. I expected her to be something more than just a journalist, and she knows that, however much I try to hide it. I expected her to marry someone more interesting, more important, than a mere farmer's son from Kansas, yet Clark Kent's diamond sparkles on her finger. But I've finally realized, maybe too late, what the weight of all those expectations has cost us. I can see that Clark thinks she's extraordinary just as she is… and he's right. I wish I had been able to see that all along.

But I see things more clearly now.

He's dying. He's dying, and my little girl is looking at me with those huge eyes that still have the power to pierce my heart, and she's counting on me to make him better. She is trusting me to do something truly great, for once in my life, and to save the life of a dying Kryptonian.

There are things a doctor sees, and there are things a father sees, and as her tears wet his fevered cheeks, there is no way I can miss that this man is more than just a friend to her. He is more than just a hero. He is her future… her life… her love. This strange visitor from Krypton is also, somehow, the farmer's son from Kansas, the one I thought too inconsequential for my daughter, and he is dying and she is counting on me to save him. I will do it if it's in my power.

But if I do, I know that her life will be anything but ordinary. I know that she will, without a doubt, be the Lane who will be remembered. I know that to stand by this man's side, to be his partner, she will indeed have to call on every bit of that fire, that fight, that passion that I saw in her all those years ago when she toddled along beside me.

And in the moment that I realize she's finally met my expectations, I also feel a strong urge to protect her from the difficulties she's sure to encounter in this life she's chosen. I feel a fierce pride warring with an equally fierce fear. I feel a love for her so powerful that it knocks the breath from my chest, and I realize for the first time that I want her to be *happy* far more than I want her to be extraordinary.

With Clark, I believe she can be both. So I will save him if I can, and it will be my one quiet act of greatness — my gift to my beautiful daughter. For once, I will meet *her* expectations.

For once, I will do something extraordinary.