Martha… She Just Knew

By Sara Kraft (

Rated: G

Submitted: March 2023

Summary: From the moment she held him in her arms, her heart knew that he was hers. But given the bizarre day they had, her mind took a little longer to catch up. This is the first story in the Martha… series of vignettes.

Story Size: 1,894 words (10Kb as text)

Read in other formats: Text | MS Word | OpenOffice | PDF | Epub | Mobi

Author’s Note: This has…well, it’s been sitting in my heart and mind for quite some time, but I was always hesitant to write it — in part, because it’s a bit emotional for me, being an adoptive mom myself. Granted, my baby definitely did not show up in a spaceship, and while she has created her own superhero persona (FastGirl!), she doesn’t actually have superpowers (I don’t think…at least not of the Kryptonian variety). In any case, I love how this came out (it surprised me in a lot of ways), and I hope you do too!

A huge thank you to SuperBek for the encouragement and support and the BRing! I’m not sorry I made you cry. <3

Stories in the Martha… series:

Martha… She Just Knew
Martha… A Heart So Big
Martha… A Gift From the Stars


As much as she knew it should weigh heavy on her heart — that a mother somewhere out there was missing her baby — a tendril of hope had wound its way in and through her troubled thoughts. Martha gazed down at the infant sleeping in her arms, and her heart swelled. There was something about him, his brown eyes and black hair and the way he seemed to just fit so well right in her arms.

Jonathan was wary, just being cautious, she knew, but she’d managed to convince him that there was nothing to be done about anything until the morning. And so it was that she found herself on their couch at 2 a.m., holding the precious bundle after he’d had his fill of the mixture of condensed milk, water, and karo syrup she’d made earlier.

Spring so far had brought heat and humidity, with very little rain for the crops, but she was grateful for the breeze blowing through the screened windows. The sound of the crickets trilling and chirping faded in and out as the wind shifted. She kept the boy bundled tightly despite the still-warm air in the farmhouse. He’d had no clothes, only the deep blue blanket he’d been swaddled in and a cloth diaper she had already hand-laundered twice.

Martha settled back further into the couch, shifting to bring her legs tucked up by her side and propping herself against the arm of the couch. The baby stirred lightly, his lips moving almost soundlessly before he settled again with a tiny sigh.

If she had to guess, she’d say the little guy was only a few months old. He was a relatively calm baby, too, though her heart twisted at the thought that maybe he’d learned to be silent from being put inside that capsule. God knew how long he’d been in there.

It seemed unthinkably cruel, putting a poor, helpless baby into some sort of spacecraft and launching him into orbit. She and Johnathan figured it had to have been the U.S. or the Russians, in their state of constant competition to see who could make the best and first advancements in the area of space exploration.

Regardless of who had subjected the infant to countless hours enclosed in a small space without food or attention, she and Jonathan had talked at length after they’d found him and secreted away both him and the capsule back to the safety of their home.

Martha had wanted to get the baby out of harm’s way, certain that whoever had crash-landed a baby in Shuster’s field would be after him in due time. Jonathan had at least found it a prudent suggestion to get everything, especially the baby, out of sight until they knew what and whom they might be dealing with. But he’d been warningly cautious in telling her that they were not to keep the baby — he wasn’t theirs.

His tiny nose, his precious lips, and his long eyelashes, fluttering slightly as he dreamed…just looking at him, Martha felt a tug, a yearning deep in her gut that she was having trouble ignoring. Ever since she’d first held him in her arms, she’d felt it.

But Jonathan was right. This little boy was not theirs. And somewhere out there, there was a mother missing her son with a fierceness that rivaled Martha’s desire to be a mother.


Eight hours earlier…

Martha sat in the passenger seat of their old, red pickup, quiet and deep in thought on their ride into town. She’d been feeling strangely bereft and uneasy since the young couple had left their home just an hour ago. They’d decided, given the peculiar visit from the young couple, in addition to the strange city folks Jonathan had seen wandering around Shuster’s field, that they would go have dinner at Maisie’s and…just see if anyone else had seen or heard from any of the strangers.

The more she replayed the conversation with the young couple in her mind, the more she was troubled by it. Finally, she spoke some of it aloud. “‘I know if I were to find a baby, I would be the most grateful woman in the world.’ Why would I say something like that, Jonathan? And why would we tell perfect strangers intimate details of our lives? We haven’t even told our parents that we can’t have children.”

“I don’t know, Martha. They just…seemed…” Jonathan trailed off and shook his head, running a hand through his thick brown hair while keeping the other hand on the steering wheel.

“That’s not what you say when a couple comes to your home and tells you they’re looking for a baby!” Martha fussed.

He shrugged, and she knew he was at a loss just as much as she was. “You’re right,” he agreed. “They didn’t strike me as suspicious at all, but when you think about it, the very fact that they showed up out of nowhere looking for a baby was suspicious…”

“And she didn’t look like…well, not that I know what a mother who’s lost her baby looks like, but she wasn’t it. She was…she didn’t seem like a mother in distress, but I do know she cared about the man a great deal — that was plain to see.”

Jonathan hummed in agreement, and they rode the rest of the short way in silence.


Now, reflecting back on the day’s events as she sat holding the baby boy on their living room couch, she couldn’t help but think that their trip to Maisie’s had been a waste of time. No one else seemed to have heard neither hide nor hair of either the young couple or the strange duo out by Shuster’s field. Not that she and Jonathan had asked outright — they hadn’t wanted to bring any attention to the matter if they’d been the only ones.

Martha had been wondering if she’d been overthinking the whole day, but as they’d rumbled down the old, dusty road towards home…that was when they’d seen it. Seen him.

Falling out of the sky like…

Martha’s breath hitched at the memory, and she snuggled the precious bundle just that much tighter as she remembered only hours ago when they’d found him. Her li — the little angel.

He fell from the sky, Jonathan! What are the odds that we see that flash of what we thought was a meteor just as we’re driving by Shuster’s field? We wouldn’t have even been out if it hadn’t been for…

Try as she might, she was tired of fighting against the feeling that was so right and so strong within her chest, within her soul. This boy was hers. She didn’t know how, and she didn’t know why. But…

She just knew.

Just as she’d somehow known that the young man was sick and that the woman cared for him deeply. They couldn’t have been the boy’s parents — they would have been more distraught, surely. She knew they wouldn’t be back to ask after the baby again.

The suspicious-looking men might well come back, though. They’d predicted the landing site accurately but not the time. She’d need to tell Jonathan to get rid of the spacecraft, somewhere no one would find it. And anyone who came searching for a baby now?

She would know. She would be able to tell whether their intentions were kind and honest; if they were anything but, she knew she’d protect this baby. Martha Kent valued honesty, but the last thing she’d ever do was let anyone hurt her boy.

Her boy.

Her heart clenched, and she felt the tug again, deeper this time. She closed her eyes, her brow creased, and let out a quiet sigh.

She’d heard the creak and heft of Jonathan coming down the stairs some time ago, and she knew without looking up that he’d been quietly watching her for a few minutes now. She held her breath, waiting for the gentle admonishment she knew would come.

“I was thinking we’d name him Clark,” Jonathan said, his voice rough with some sort of emotion she hadn’t heard since their wedding day.

Her breath came out in a whoosh, and she looked up at him, her eyes full of tears and hope. Love for the man in front of her and the boy in her arms overflowed, making her take a shuddering breath in. All she could do was nod.

“Anyone who comes looking for that boy after what they did to him… They don’t deserve him. We’ll protect him. Raise him as our own. We’ll do what we need to do.”

“Thank you,” she whispered.

Jonathan made his way over to the couch and sat down next to her. She leaned into him, resting her head on his shoulder, and she felt him press a gentle kiss against her hair as he put his arm around her. Around them — her and Clark.

And she knew in that moment that everything was as it was meant to be.

She just knew.


Twenty-seven years later…

Martha was struck by the sight of her there across the town square, the woman standing next to Clark in the middle of the Smallville Corn Festival, this Lois Lane who had somehow stolen her son’s heart from the moment he’d laid eyes on her.

She’d seen her picture before, of course, but a small, black and white photograph next to her byline was a sorry representation of how stunning she was in person. But that wasn’t what had set Martha’s heart racing. It was the sight of them together, Lois standing next to Clark as they faced her.

She’d seen this sight before. Lois’ hair had been a bit longer then, and Clark had…that’s right — he had looked a bit ill. She’d never made sense of that day or that night, and truth be told, she’d not remembered what that couple had looked like until this very moment. But the one thing she did remember was that the woman had cared very much about that man, probably even loved him.

However they’d managed to get to 1966 that day…well, she’d probably never know. But there was something about all this that was always meant to be.

She just knew.


Read the next story in the series: “Martha… A Heart So Big.