By VirginiaR. <LC.VirginiaR@gmail.com>
Submitted: June 2013
Summary: The great thing about Lois is that she always surprises Clark. Another “Prankster” rewrite.
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Despite the loud cheering fans at the Nets game on his television, Clark could hear someone walking up to his front door. He turned to look who it was in time to see Lois start pounding. Nothing like having the woman of his dreams descend upon him unannounced.
Ah, shucks. Clark grinned for a moment.
Sadly, it appeared as if Lois wasn’t there to profess her undying affection for him. He had often fantasized about that happening, especially after it actually had happened last year. Usually those dreams didn’t include a harem outfit like the one she had been wearing that night, but she has never looked quite like this.
Lois was dressed in sweats with her haired pulled back into a sloppy makeshift ponytail. She carried a couple of pizza boxes, a six-pack of diet soda, and a pile of videos. It looked like she had come to stay for the duration, and he was slightly surprised that she wasn’t also dragging a suitcase. Since this wasn’t Lois’s typical M.O., he guessed something must have happened to spook her. He had an inkling of what it could be.
“Coming,” Clark called, clicking off the television and jogging up to his front door. He opened it, and before he could speak again, Lois had steamrolled over him and down the steps.
“Hi. I had a sudden urge for pizza and a Mel Gibson movie, and since I know how much you like pizza too, here I am,” Lois said, heading to his dining room table and setting down two large pizza boxes.
Was she expecting someone else to join them, or was she really hungry?
“Great. Come in,” Clark said with slight trepidation.
“So, what are you in the mood for?” she asked, flipping through the videos. “I have ‘Lethal Weapon’, ‘Lethal Weapon 2’, and ‘Lethal Weapon 3’.”
“Is everything all right, Lois?” he said, descending slowly into his living room.
“Does something have to be wrong for me want to spend time with my best friend?” she asked.
Clark smiled. He liked being the person Lois came to late at night when she didn’t want to be alone. “No, of course not. Whichever one you want to start with is fine with me.”
“Let’s start with the first one, because it’s best to watch movies in order,” she said, nodding and setting down the other two movies. “This is great. We should do this more often. What are you doing tomorrow night?”
“I’m watching ‘Lethal Weapon 2’ with you,” he replied, taking a slice of veggie and meat-lovers pizza, his favorite.
She grinned at him. Apparently, that had been the correct answer.
He sat down on the sofa. Lois stuck ‘Lethal Weapon’ into his VCR and then joined him.
Clark decided he needed to broach the subject of her sudden home invasion before the movie started. “Lois…?” was as far as he got before the phone rang.
Lois’s eyes widened with panic. “Clark, no!” she gasped, diving over to him and clutching his shirt in her hands. “Don’t answer it!”
Yep, it certainly had something to do with witnessing Griffin murder his old cellmate over the telephone directly in front of them that afternoon.
They both watched the phone ring once, twice, and then not again.
“It must have been a wrong number,” Clark said.
She nodded and exhaled. “Right. Wrong number, no problem. That happens all the time in the big city, right?” she mumbled, letting go of his shirt and returning to the other side of the couch.
“Lois, do you want to tell me what happened?” he asked.
“Nothing happened,” she said, jumping to her feet and heading into Clark’s kitchen. She removed a couple of plates out of his cabinet and returned to the dining room. She took two slices of everything pizza, his favorite, and put them on one plate, before moving that box to the side. Then she opened the second box to remove a slice for herself.
With one whiff, Clark smelled cheese, sausage, and mushrooms. Ah, that explained the two pizzas.
“I mean nothing important,” Lois went on as he watched her. “Griffin called me.”
“What?” he gasped. “What did he say?”
“Oh, the usual,” Lois said with a shrug. “Lois. Hi. How are you? Long time, no see. I’m going to kill you.”
“Kill you? What? Did you call the police?” Clark sputtered, his heart racing. He hated this part of their investigations.
“Clark, I’m a professional reporter. This is not the first threat that I’ve ever received. These things… they… they…” She stuck her pizza into her mouth and chewed. “They never pan out.” She sounded anything but terrified. If anything, Clark felt more scared on her behalf than she appeared to be.
“Well, maybe not, but I’d feel much better if you stayed with me tonight,” Clark said, his protective genes leaping to the surface.
“Oh!” Lois said, tilting her head and gifting him with a smile of endearment. His offer had seemed to shock her, and she didn’t seem to know quite what to do with it. “Oh… I… well… Oh… if it would make you… you feel better, I guess I…”
“Don’t make me twist your arm, or anything,” Clark grumbled.
“Don’t get me wrong, Clark,” she said, handing him his plate, sitting back down, and resting her hand on his chest. “I do appreciate the offer. I don’t want to go home.”
“Lois, you’re always welcome to stay here,” he reassured her. “I would never force you to go home.” He took a bite of his pizza and then tossed her a teasing grin. “In fact, you’re welcome to move in, if you like.”
“Watch out, Smallville, I just might take you up on that offer someday,” she replied, causing him to choke on his pizza. “How about tonight?”
He set down his plate and turned to face her, placing one knee on the cushion and one elbow on the back of the couch. “Excuse me?”
Lois pointed at the television. “Oh, I love this movie. Mel’s really funny in it.”
Clark picked up the VCR remote and paused the film. “Lois, what’s going on? Why don’t you want to go home?”
She stood up and went to retrieve a soda from the dining room table. She opened it and took a gulp. “Who says it isn’t because I’m in love with you, and I’m ready to move our relationship forward?” she asked.
Clark knew better than to hope for that possibility, especially since she said that with an air of innocence that wasn’t genuine. He raised a wry, disbelieving eyebrow. “Lois…”
She groaned, sitting back down next to him. “Fine! The truth is that after Griffin called my mother descended on me unannounced and uninvited for a weeklong visit. After suffering Griffin’s antics all week, I decided I didn’t need to deal with her too. I told her that she was welcome to stay at my apartment, but that I was just heading out on a long undercover assignment with you.” Lois sheepishly grinned at him.
Clark crossed his arms. “So, you’re hiding out at my apartment from your mother?”
“And Kyle Griffin, a man who’s been stalking you all week, doesn’t scare you, but you come running for cover at my place because your mom visits?” he said incredulously.
“Well, yeah,” she admitted, taking another bite of pizza. “You don’t know her, Clark.”
“No, I haven’t had the pleasure,” he responded.
“Griffin… he’s just the psychopath of the week, but Ellen Lane…” She shivered. “Well, she’s my mother,” Lois said this as if Clark would understand this horrible monster she described.
“I love my mother.”
Lois held up her hands. “First of all, Clark, everybody loves your mother. Second of all, your mom isn’t a typical mom. She’s warm and sweet and supportive and loving and funny and great cook…”
“Yes, I know, Lois. She’s a mom after all,” Clark interrupted.
“No, Clark. That’s just it. She’s no ordinary mother. Most moms aren’t like her,” she went on. “Your mom is like ‘Super Mom’!”
Clark shifted uncomfortably in his seat, because of how close to the truth Lois had come with that description. Returning to the topic at hand, he said, “So, what you’re saying is that your mom is as close to winning parent-of-the-year as your dad is?”
“Exactly!” she exclaimed.
“I’m sorry, Lois,” he said, and he was. It was bad enough having one bad parent, but two… It was incredible that Lois had ended up as lovable as she was. “So, to placate your mother, you want to fast-forward into a relationship with me? Or is it that you want to go undercover as my girlfriend?” He wasn’t sure exactly how he felt about that. Oh, sure, he’d probably go along with it, but at what expense?
“No, of course not. I would never do that to you, Clark,” Lois insisted. “Third of all, I do love my mom. I just can’t stand being around her.”
“Lois…” He tried to interrupt, but by this time Lois had launched full swing into babble mode.
“My mother hadn’t been there five minutes before diving headfirst into her latest complaint. Currently, well, since I graduated from high school really… she’s been on this kick about how I’ve wasted my life,” Lois went on, holding up her hand to stop him from getting a word in edgewise. “This will clarify why I want to avoid my mother, Clark. Somehow, this morphed into her saying how if I had only said ‘I do’ to Lex last summer, I could now be happily widowed with billions of dollars to my name. In her opinion, I could now be doing whatever I wanted to do with my life.”
“I’m sorry, Lois,” he said again softly, imagining how painful it must have been for Lois to lose the man she loved in such a horrible manner, no matter how much a scum sucking sewer rat the man had been and then have her mother be so cavalier about it. “I didn’t know.”
“I tried to explain to her that I am living the life I want to live,” Lois kept going as if Clark hadn’t spoken. “Then she said, ‘but I’m alone, and did I want to come home to an empty apartment every night?’ Before I could correct her that my life wasn’t empty, she told me that I couldn’t count my fish as lifetime commitment.” She looked at Clark with an expression that clearly read ‘can you believe her?’ “I mean, how could you not? They’re with me until they die; if that’s not a lifetime commitment, I don’t know what is.”
“Seems pretty cut and dry to me,” Clark agreed more to himself than anyone else who might possibly have been able to hear him over her roaring river.
“I tried to explain that I hadn’t been marrying Lex for his money.”
“I know that, Lois,” he said, even though she wasn’t asking for his opinion on the subject. He set his hand on hers. “I’m sure Luthor died knowing that you loved him for him.”
She stared at Clark. Her hand in his shifted so that their fingers laced. “I didn’t love Lex, Clark.”
Clark was unable to hide the shock on his face. Her previous rejection of Clark’s feelings, of his love, reared its ugly head, and washed over him like a foul stench. The only thing stopping him from drowning in it was her thumb rubbing the back of his hand. He couldn’t look at her, so he merely stared at their joined hands. A hundred questions raced through his mind but never reached his lips out of fear of losing her caressing thumb and squeezing fingers.
“I don’t know why I accepted his proposal. Maybe partly it was out of rebound, needing to be wanted by anybody after Superman rejected me,” Lois went on.
Clark inwardly cringed two fold; once out of the horror that his words as Superman might have pushed Lois further into the arms of Luthor, and once as Clark because even though she had known that Clark had loved her, she had still preferred Luthor to him. He wanted to pull his hand from hers, but knowing that he was partially to blame for Lois accepting Luthor’s proposal had somehow shutdown his ability for self-preservation. He felt as if he deserved the pain that he was currently suffering.
“But I think it was mostly that I was thrilled with the idea that the most influential man in Metropolis wanted me. A part of me thought that with his connections, I could be an unstoppable force as a reporter. It wasn’t until I was sitting around twiddling my thumbs at LNN that I realized that Lex would never let me be…” She sighed. “Me.”
Clark shook his head. He couldn’t understand how anyone could be lucky enough to have Lois and would want to change who she was. “So, you were marrying him to further your career?” he asked.
“It was a safer reason than marrying him for love,” Lois scoffed. “I knew that I didn’t love Lex. I only admired him for his great philanthropic achievements and his business acumen, and I thought that would be enough for a happy marriage. My mother had loved my father, and it had crushed her when he cheated on her and kept on cheating on her, and I didn’t want to put myself in that position. I don’t want to ever become my mother, Clark.”
He could feel her looking at him, and he shifted his gaze to meet hers. “You won’t, Lois.”
“I had thought myself in love with Claude, and he used me. I had even thought myself in love with Superman, but he was right. I don’t really know him. As I stood in front of the mirror to put on my veil that morning of my wedding, I realized that I didn’t want a marriage without love, that I have romantic notions, which I couldn’t brush aside, and…” She closed her eyes. “That I want so much to be loved with passion. I couldn’t see Lex loving me that way and, sadly, not Superman either.”
“So, you weren’t dreaming of becoming Mrs. Superman before walking down the aisle to become Mrs. Luthor?” he teased, though he could felt the acid in his stomach churning for being so petty.
“No. Firstly, I don’t picture myself as a ‘Mrs. Anybody’; I’m a very solid ‘Ms. Lane’. Thank you very much. Secondly, after Superman told me last spring that he doubted he could ever have a relationship with me, I realized how absurd it would be if we did. How could I have a real relationship with a man who has never told me his real name? Thirdly, I didn’t want to marry Superman or Lex, because I was thinking only of…” She exhaled. “— you.”
Clark’s jaw dropped. He must have misunderstood her. Hugh. Yes, she must have said that name. She couldn’t possibly mean him. Either way, his voice seemed caught in his throat, not that he knew what to say to that announcement anyway. He continued to stare at her, and she continued to stare at him as the seconds ticked past. It was as if Clark could hear every clock in the neighborhood, in the city, ticking in slow motion in his ears.
“Oh, please, Clark, say something!” Lois insisted after a full minute of this. “I just told you that I love you. You can’t leave me hanging.”
His mouth, which he had finally closed, fell open again, and his eyes opened widely. Lois loved him? Clark Kent him? Silly, bespectacled, farm boy from Kansas him? Why?
“I know I treated you horribly, and you have every right reject me, which is what I figured would’ve happened if I told you how I felt at that point, so that’s why I continued with the wedding. But by the time I got to the altar, to Lex, I couldn’t go through with it. I didn’t want to spend the rest of my life with him.”
“Me?” he finally gasped. His voice sounded rough and dry. Yes, he needed a drink. He should go into the kitchen and get himself a glass of water, but he discovered he couldn’t move. “You love me?” He waited for her usual disclaimer about loving him ‘like a brother’, but it never came.
Lois’s nervous face relaxed into a smile, and she reached up to caress his cheek. “Why not you? Are you dating someone else?”
He shook his head. “There’s no one else,” he murmured. How could there ever be? He had been in love with Lois since the first moment she barged into his interview with Perry.
She scooted closer on the sofa. “Why not?”
What could he say to that? The truth would be that he only wanted her, and all other women paled in comparison. That much admission of love would send Lois bolting to the hills as it had done when he was trying to convince her not to marry Luthor last spring. He shrugged. “I live a busy life. I don’t have much time to date.”
“Uh-huh,” Lois replied, moving closer.
Their knees touched, and it was the most electric feeling that had ever passed through his body. That was saying something, because he’d actually been electrocuted, struck by lightning, and repaired downed power lines in a thunderstorm…
“Lois, you need to talk to your mother and tell her how you feel. You can’t hide out at my apartment or tell me you love me to convince me to let you stay…” Clark insisted, knowing there was no way she actually loved him. Anyway, how could Lois stay at his apartment for a week and not find out he flew around in bright blue tights and a red cape?
“Do I need to tell you that I love you to convince you to let me stay here all week?” she whispered, moving even closer. Now, their thighs met.
He swallowed. “No,” he admitted. “You were welcome to stay at ‘pizza’.”
Lois threw back her head and laughed. She turned her back to him, kicked off her shoes, and scooted towards him until her back rested against his front. She slid her hand into his once more and wrapped his arm around her shoulder. Turning, she kissed his cheek. “Thanks, Clark. You’re the best.” She snuggled more against him.
Time seemed to slow down again, and Clark savored having Lois in his arms.
“Clark,” Lois murmured. “I don’t want to face my mother.”
He smiled and kissed the top of her head. “I’d never let that happen without me.”
She ran her hand over his stomach, and he could feel his nerves twitch at this gentle touch. “I knew you loved me,” she stated, melting into him. “But I wouldn’t want to chance losing you by introducing to her.”
“Lois, if almost marrying Lex Luthor didn’t scare me away, I doubt your mother would,” he murmured into her ear. He wanted so much to kiss her, to have this fantasy become a reality, but truth be told, he didn’t quite believe Lois when she said that she loved him and wanted to be Mrs. Clark Kent. Well, technically, she hadn’t said that. She had said she would keep her name. “Or are you worried that your mother wouldn’t…” His eyes shut. Why would her mother want Lois to date Clark, let alone fall in love with him? He was just a nobody farmboy reporter from Kansas, and Lois had almost been Mrs. Lex Luthor. If she could capture Luthor, she could have anyone.
“Wouldn’t what, Clark?” Lois asked sharply, turning to face him. She now was lying on top of him, her face just inches away from his.
He was afraid Mrs. Lane would change Lois’s mind and convince her daughter that Clark wasn’t good enough for her, but he refused to admit this fear to Lois. “Nothing. It’s not important,” he murmured, his voice cracking as his eyes darted to her lips.
If he told her the truth, would he lose the opportunity to kiss her? Should he kiss her? Did she mean anything that she was saying or was she only teasing him? Would kissing her, and admitting that he still had feelings for her bring them closer or scare her off? Although they couldn’t get much closer than they were now… not without a ring and a marriage license.
Lois pressed her lips together, and not in that good kissing kind of way. “Like you? Was that what you were going to say?” she said with a bit of annoyance.
He sheepishly glanced away and at the television, realizing he had never turned the VCR off pause.
“See, I told you! You haven’t even met her, and you’re afraid of her,” Lois went on. “She’s a horrible, evil woman, Clark! She makes you doubt yourself and those around you. She says she only wants the best for me, but I don’t think that’s true. She only wants what she wants for me, not what I want.”
“What do you want, Lois?” he asked, knowing what he wanted was still lying on his chest.
“I want to make a valuable contribution to Metropolis and the world. I want to know what I do makes a difference and makes people respect me for my hard work,” she said.
Clark already had that. Well, Superman did. What he wanted was more simple, and yet more difficult to obtain. “Is that all?”
“I want to win a Pulitzer Prize before I’m thirty,” she added, causing him to smile. “Okay, buster, what do you want?”
He wanted a woman who would love all of him, with whom he could settle down and put down permanent roots, but mostly he wanted a family of his own. He didn’t know if that last part was possible though. He shifted uncomfortably under her scrutiny. “It’s getting late. We better start the movie, if we’re going to watch it.”
Lois didn’t budge. “What do you want, Clark?”
“I want a drink of water,” Clark said, scooting out from under her and heading into his kitchen. He took a glass from his cabinet and filled it with water, drinking it down without stopping. When he set down his glass and turned around, he found Lois standing not two feet away.
“What do you want, Clark?”
“I want all those things you mentioned, Lois,” he said vaguely.
Lois crossed her arms. She knew that he was omitting something. “I want the truth, for once, Clark.”
Well, here went everything. “Okay, here’s the truth. I want what my folks have. I want a family. I want a woman to love me, despite my tendencies to run out in the middle of a conversation or order cheese through the mail or know strange obscure facts about things and the world. I want a woman who would stand up to her folks and tell them that she loved me and nothing that they said would change that, even if she’s from well-off doctor’s family, and I’m a just a farmboy from Kansas. I want someone who comes over late at night because there is no other place she’d rather be than where I am, and not just because she’s too scared to be at home. I want to be her first and only choice because she loves me as much as I love her.” His voice faded, and he knew he had said too much.
She was quiet as she absorbed his words. “Is that all?”
Since he was already chest deep in the quicksand, he said, “And I want that woman to be you.”
Lois raised a skeptical eyebrow. “Prove it.”
He walked past her and sat back down on the couch. “You prove it,” he shot back. She was the one who had barged into his apartment spouting words of love. She had started it. He picked up the VCR remote and started the movie again.
She sat down next to him on the couch and once more tucked herself under his arm as Martin Riggs screamed across the screen. Her fingers rested on his stomach for a moment and then moved up his chest to his neck and the back of his head.
Clark pulled his gaze off the screen and focused on her. “I didn’t mean that, Lois. You don’t have to prove anything to me,” he murmured, not wanting her to kiss him because she felt goaded or dared into it. No one liked a challenge more than she did.
“Do you think I would ever let anyone ever tell me what I can and cannot do? Who I may and may not love?” Lois asked. “Do you think I’d let your fear stop me from kissing you?” She pulled his head towards hers.
“No,” he replied, closing his eyes in anticipation.
She stopped, close enough for him to feel her breath on his lips. “No?”
“I don’t think even Superman could stop Lois Lane from taking what she wanted,” he murmured, closing the distance between them and pressing his lips to hers.
Lois opened her mouth, probably to contradict him, but Clark took the opportunity to occupy her tongue in another manner. She protested this move by pulling him closer.
When Clark felt that either he should shift his position to better accommodate her on top of him or hers to have him cover her, Lois let go of his lips and rested her head on his shoulder. He tried to concentrate on the movie again, but he could only think about kissing Lois and how he never wanted it to end.
Her fingers danced across his chest again, and then down his arm to his hand where they laced with his fingers. “Do you really think I could?” she asked.
“Yes,” he replied, having no idea what she was talking about, but if Lois put her mind to something she usually accomplished it. “Do what?”
She chuckled. “Prevent Superman from coming between us, if he wanted to.”
If Lois kept kissing him like that, Superman would be putty in her hands. “I hope he doesn’t come between us,” he said.
“I won’t let him,” she said, securing Clark’s love until the end of time.
He kissed her head right above her ear. “Neither would I.”
They settled back to watch the movie again.
“Do you want me to call my mom and tell her she better get used to the fact that I’m in love with you?” she asked.
Yes. “There will be plenty of time for us to face your folks, Lois.”
She let go of his hand and started rubbing his chest again. Before long, they forgot about the movie as they explored each other’s mouths.
“Clark,” Lois murmured.
“Lois,” he replied between breaths.
“I guess there’s only one thing left for us to do,” she continued.
“Uh-huh,” Clark mumbled as Lois kissed down his neck and turned his willpower and brain to mush.
“Win me that Pulitzer.”
My apologies to Ellen Lane and all mothers everywhere.
Gratitude: Many thanks to my wonderful and inspiring Beta, Mrs. Luthor, who didn’t complain when I sent her this story to read during finals. She didn’t return it to me until she was done studying either. She’s very Lois in that way.
Disclaimer: I don’t own these characters. Jerry Siegel & Joe Shuster created the characters in this story as they were portrayed on the Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman television series, developed by Deborah Joy LeVine. I borrow the characters from time to time from Warner Bros, DC Comics, and the heirs to Siegel and Shuster, when they invade my psyche and demand I write what they tell me. I did borrow the setting and some dialogue from “The Prankster” episode written by Grant Rosenberg, but the rest of it was inspired from watching this episode one too many times, having a wicked sense of humor, and spending a week with my mother.