By B.B Medos [firstname.lastname@example.org]
Summary: In this sequel to the story "Lois' Revenge," Clark shows his frito. :-)
"Characters in this story are copyrighted by December 3rd Production, Warner Brothers, and ABC. No infringement is intended in any part by the author, however, the ideas expressed within this story are copyrighted to the author."
[Author's Note: About a month or so after finishing LOIS' REVENGE, my conscience started bothering me about leaving Clark with his mouth hanging open and this sequel resulted. This takes place back during season two, around the time of Whine, Whine, Whine, but certainly before And The Answer Is. It is definitely out of kilter with season three, but it is after all a flight of fancy.]
Oh, god, was she in super trouble!
Lois closed the door of her apartment and leaned against it. Then she closed her eyes and shook her head in exasperation at her own behavior. What had she been thinking?
The simple truth of the matter was she hadn't been thinking. Not clearly, anyway. She'd been functioning on sheer willpower alone and had given barely a thought to whether her actions were right or wrong.
Never mind sane or crazy.
She was never going to be able to look Clark in the face again. Lois wasn't even sure if she was ever going to be able to look herself in the eye anytime in the near future.
Slowly, she walked over to the closest chair and sank down onto it, desperately trying to sort out the last few days of her life in her own mind.
Three days earlier, when Lois had first realized Clark and Superman were one and the same after her little artistic temper tantrum of turning both their pictures into devils, she hadn't been able to move. For the longest, she'd simply stood frozen, staring at the two matching, identical portraits, totally mesmerized by what she was seeing.
Then, slowly, the significance of the images sank in and she'd gone on a rampage throughout her apartment, stomping, throwing, or ripping anything and everything in sight. Once her initial burst of anger was expended, she'd finally started thinking again. Not exactly rationally, but, at least, with a little clear-headedness. In the middle of her first honest attempt to think things through, the phone rang and her answering machine clicked in before her addled brain had even figured out what the annoying noise was. The sound of Clark's voice pleading with her to answer the phone had been the final trigger which sent her into vigorous, if impulsive, action.
Her first response had been to rip the offending phone out of the wall, then she'd grabbed her overcoat and purse and stormed out of her apartment, the only thought in her head being she needed time to process her discovery and HE could show up at any second.
Luckily she'd been wearing an old worn-out jogging suit at the time and not her nightgown or she would've gone into hiding in a very embarrassed condition. Not that she'd ever have noticed in the first place because she'd been too busy glancing worriedly at the sky, certain a bright blue suit was going to suddenly appear in front of her face at any second.
She'd gotten three blocks from her apartment when it occurred to her to wonder about several aspects of her sudden flight. One question was first and foremost in her mind, however.
How did one go about hiding from Superman?
Particularly on foot.
God, her mind was blown. Completely blown out of orbit.
Then her reporter's instincts for survival kicked in and Lois rapidly considered her options. Luckily, she had several, most of which she knew Clark would never consider. Some of which, Mister Goody Two-Shoes would never believe she'd ever consider.
He wasn't the only one with secrets, after all.
Two hours later, she was safely hiding in the protective custody of one of her oldest friends in Metropolis. Bonnie was a childhood friend and completely loyal to Lois even though they'd grown apart through the years. It didn't hurt that Lois had covered a story involving Bonnie her rookie year as a reporter at the Daily Planet and had ended up saving the woman's life. Bonnie owed her and Lois had a standing invitation to 'visit' anytime she needed, or simply wanted, to.
Luckily, Bonnie also had the resources to make just about anyone disappear. Temporarily or permanently, whatever it took, and she promptly offered to make sure whoever was worrying Lois DID disappear. It revealed a great deal about Lois' state of mind at that point when she actually considered the idea for a few brief seconds. Then she laughed and told her old friend it wasn't necessary.
She didn't tell Bonnie it wasn't possible. At least, not by any means Lois was going to reveal to her friend. It took some convincing but she finally satisfied Bonnie the person she was avoiding wasn't an enemy but a friend, a very determined, resourceful, worrywart kind of friend. That she wasn't running away completely, just giving herself time to recover from a shock before she faced him again.
Once Bonnie was reassured Lois' life wasn't in danger, she smiled and nodded sagely, recognizing a matter of the heart when she saw it. Lois needed time and shelter while she licked her wounds, and that's what Bonnie made sure she got. For two straight days, Lois didn't have to lift a finger. Bonnie and her employees fed, clothed, pampered and generally bossed Lois around, while Lois sat mostly silent, giving all her energies to thinking THINGS through.
At the end of her second day of seclusion, Lois began to come out of her fog enough to start talking. Most of what she told her friend didn't make all that much sense, which was just as well under the circumstances. Bonnie apparently gathered enough information from Lois' ramblings, however, to conclude the root of her friend's problem was the man in her life had been lying to her for two years about something important. She also realized while Lois understood his reasons and could even forgive his actions, she was still feeling considerably betrayed.
As well as humiliated, used, and, worst of all, absolutely embarrassed.
MEN! Who did they think they were? God's gift to women?
Clearly not in Bonnie's opinion and, by the time she and her girls got through trashing the male of species in general, Lois couldn't help but agree with them. Not that she tried very hard to disagree. Together they all, Lois included, decided the entire world collection of males needed to be taught a lesson, starting with Lois' FRIEND in particular.
Before Lois could blink twice, Bonnie placed all of her considerable resources at her friend's disposal, starting with the enormous working wardrobe of her employees. Enormous in quantity, that is. Individually, most of the single ensembles Bonnie's girls used professionally would fit quite easily into the pocket of Lois' overcoat.
With room to spare.
Lois spent an extremely enjoyable, even therapeutic, few hours perusing Bonnie's inventory of outfits, laughing and joking with her friend about the varied impressions each one would make on a certain male. Her personal favorite was a lacy red and black number. She could just imagine the look on Clark's face if she were to appear in front of him wearing it.
He might actually start sweating, an accomplishment in and of itself.
Then, she saw… IT, and realized she could make him do considerably more than simply sweat.
Up until her eyes landed on the frilly version of the S-shield Lois hadn't taken Bonnie's idea of 'revenge' all that seriously. She was bold, she was brass, she was even reckless, but she wasn't crazy. At least, she didn't think she was. One look at the Superman teddy, however, and Lois knew she was going to go through with Bonnie's plan.
If only to see the look on Clark's face. Then she could die happy. Probably of embarrassment, but, at least, she'd be happy.
Lois let Bonnie think she'd decided on the red and black outfit, but instead put the other one on when her friend left her to change. As she stared at herself in the mirror, Lois felt one short burst of hesitation about the idea, which she quickly squashed as she determinedly covered the outfit and its emblem up with her overcoat.
It wasn't all that hard to squash her doubts either. All she had to do to strengthen her resolve was keep thinking of all the times Superman had appeared at her window when she'd been half dressed and how he'd shown up later as Clark, as innocent as a lamb.
In her opinion, at that moment, anyway, he was going to get off easy. IF she decided to let him off the hook with just a look, that is.
Once Bonnie's limousine deposited her at Clark's apartment and Lois 'let' herself in, she started to have second thoughts again. After wandering rather aimlessly through his apartment, trying to make up her mind whether or not to go through with the whole thing, she spied a publicity picture of her and Clark taken in front of the Daily Planet. Sitting right next to it on the shelf was a similar picture of her and Superman, taken after one of his famous rescues.
The oh so virtuous grins on his face in each was exactly the same as in the pictures she'd used to make her devil portraits.
It was all she could do not to pick up the pictures and hurl them against the wall. Instead, Lois determinedly took off her overcoat and hung it in the closet, made herself a much needed snack of a sandwich and milk, then curled up on his bed to wait for him. Eventually, simple exhaustion took over and she fell into a deep, dreamless sleep.
She didn't wake up, either, until she sensed someone else in the room. For a moment, Lois couldn't move, because her first thought was she wasn't in her own bed. The second was an extremely strong impression of danger. Then her eyes focused on Clark's expression of… not exactly horror, but more blank disbelief with possibly a large measure of panic thrown in, and all her memories came rushing back.
It took all her concentration not to burst out laughing, then and there. Even harder to control was the urge to giggle when he initially stood like a statue under the onslaught of her caresses and whispers against the side of his neck.
The humor of the situation abruptly disappeared when Clark gave an agonized groan and crushed her against his chest, murmuring how worried he'd been the entire time she'd been missing. Lois suddenly had difficulty hanging on to her anger, much less remain amused, in the face of the pain she heard in his voice. Instead, she found herself comforting HIM, convincing him everything was okay, persuading him she was safe and sound, while continuing to hold him and be held by him.
Only after an absolutely soul-shattering kiss which left Lois even more breathless and shaken than she already was, did Clark seem convinced she was okay.
A lot he knew.
She watched bemused as he collected his wits and desperately tried not to stare at her outfit, all the while attempting to maneuver her out of his bedroom and into the living room.
Her amusement promptly returned, full force. The man was Superman, for goodness sakes. He could pick her up with his little finger and toss her out the door, IF he wanted to. Of course, to throw her, he'd have to touch her and Clark suddenly SEEMED to be avoiding that at all costs.
Slowly, and in blatant imitation of Superman's normal pose, Lois straightened, placed her hands on her hips and smiled at Clark, knowing full well the effect her movements would have on the teddy she was wearing.
She was rewarded by Clark's eyes almost bugging out of his head before he hastily controlled his reaction. He also stopped babbling nonsense about getting them something to eat. Knowing she had his full attention again, Lois drifted back over to stand in front of him.
But when she tried to place her arms around his neck one more time, Clark did react with a low, husky growl as he grabbed her hands and held them in front of his chest. "What the hell are you doing, Lois Lane?"
Good question and, since she had no idea what she WAS doing, not really, she didn't have a ready answer for him. She also couldn't seem to meet his eyes.
Her brief hesitation gave Clark the edge he needed. "Lois… we need to talk. I know you found out… SOMETHING. You must be extremely upset with me." His hand on her chin pulled her face around until their eyes met. "Is that why you're doing this?"
"God, Clark… of course not." His eyebrows tilted in disbelief and her eyes shifted away from his as she muttered. "Okay, maybe a little."
Clark sighed. "I suppose, I do deserve some of this… but only a little."
Hearing the faint mocking sound of laughter in his voice, Lois turned back to glare at his wry grin. "You deserve a hell of a lot more than this and you know it… SUPERMAN." When she poked him in the chest to emphasis her hiss, Clark picked up her hand and held it against his heart. Lois' eyes narrowed and she whispered. "By all that's fair in this world, Mr. Clark Kent, you should be lying on that bed, stark naked, begging for mercy right about now." His eyes widened and she felt compelled to add one more pertinent point, just for clarification. "I might even be moved to grant you mercy. Eventually. And it's an extremely faint MIGHT. Remember that."
With that pronouncement, Lois whirled around to leave, catching Clark completely by surprise. She made it all the way to the living room before he caught up with her. "Lois… wait! Where are you going?"
Clark's scowl turned fierce at her soft whisper. "Like that? The hell you are!"
Under other circumstances, Lois might have been exasperated, or even amused, by his protective behavior, but she'd reached her limit, even if most of her current mood was her own fault. She snapped back. "Of course like this. How do you think I got here in the first place?"
"Lois… if you think I'm going to let you…"
"LET ME! Oh, and just what are YOU gonna do to stop me…" Suddenly, it hit her exactly who she was speaking to and Lois turned to stare at him with new awareness in her eyes as her words trailed off. My god, she'd just attempted to seduce Superman! With difficulty, she swallowed the giggle forming in the back of her throat, fearing if she let it slip out, she'd become completely hysterical. Instead, she forced herself to frown and shrug carelessly. "Oh, relax, Clark. I wore my overcoat over it."
Clark watched in silence as she walked to his closet and pulled out her coat. As she put it on, he tried again. "Lois, please stay. We need to talk. There's so much I need to explain."
Only when she reached the front door did she turn to face him, but she couldn't seem to bring herself to meet his eyes. She addressed her comments to his shoes, instead. "Look, Clark. I understand what you did by putting on… a costume. I even understand why you did it. I know you had good reasons. Just give me time to get used to the idea and things will go back to normal between us. It was… a stupid idea coming here like this tonight, so just forget it happened. I know I'm going to."
And if he believed that one…
Then she closed the door of his apartment without waiting for a response and started walking, fully expecting to be scooped up right off the sidewalk with each step she took, but amazingly she'd reached her apartment without seeing a single hint of a red cape. She wasn't sure whether that was a good or bad sign.
With a huge tired sigh, Lois stood up and moved into her kitchen. Momentarily, she considered fixing herself some tea, but changed her mind. What she really wanted was a nice long soak in a hot bubble bath.
If she was lucky enough, she might even drown in the process.
Entering her bedroom, she flipped on the light and froze.
Clark was sitting in the middle of her bed, leaning against the headboard with his arms folded across his chest, gazing at her intently through narrowed eyes.
Lois closed her eyes, shook her head, then opened her eyes again.
He was still there.
Clark stood up, started towards her and Lois instinctively took a step backwards. Her eyes widened as she got a good peek at the rest of him and suddenly she had absolutely no problem looking at his face. "Clark, you don't have on…"
"…a costume?" Clark smiled tightly. "That's right, Lois. I'm not wearing ANY costume. No tights or cape. Not even a tie or glasses."
His eyes flashed. "Why not, Lois?"
Staring at him with wide eyes, she shivered and took another step backwards. Her back made contact with the door frame and she groaned. "This whole thing is getting ridiculous, Clark."
"I agree." He took another step towards her and his arm shot out to block her escape through the door when she edged slightly away. "First of all, Lois, it's ridiculous to expect anything to go back to 'normal' between us, whatever that was, IF I wanted to go back to the way it was in the first place, which I don't. I've waited too long to tell you the truth to turn back now."
"Well, of course things can't go back. That wasn't what I meant…"
"I'm not finished, Lois."
His sharp tone of voice jerked her gaze back to his eyes from where she'd been staring intently at his chin after deciding it was a safe compromise between his eyes and… anything else. "Now, Clark…"
"Lois," Clark glared her down and then continued, "it's also ridiculous for you to expect me to let you simply walk out of my apartment after you've been missing for two days. Particularly in that outfit." She opened her mouth again and he placed his finger on her lips to stop her from speaking. "One word about that flimsy overcoat and you'll find it shredded in the trash can, Lois Lane. I used up all my restraint keeping myself from picking you up off the sidewalk as I followed you over here, so don't tempt me."
Her only response to that was a glare.
Clark smiled back, his eyes glittering. "Another thing that's completely ridiculous is you didn't ask ME if I wanted mercy."
His words hung between them for a few seconds before their meaning registered in Lois' brain. She gasped and her mouth almost dropped open. Finally, she managed to meet his eyes and whisper. "Do you?"
"Not particularly, Lois, I am pretty indestructible." He watched her eyes narrow at his boastful sounding comment and smiled softly as he rubbed his thumb along her jaw. "However, I do insist on one thing, baby. We have to talk first. There are some very important things you HAVE to understand before we can do this."
Lois couldn't believe what she was hearing. He was standing in her bedroom buck naked and he expected her to want to talk? The man was incredible. He was also nuts. Possibly more nuts than she was and that was saying quite a lot. "Clark, I've already told you, I know all I need to know."
Clark gave a long-suffering sigh. "Do you know that once you do this you will belong to ME, Lois?"
Her mouth did drop open at that. And hung there as Lois stared at him in amazement. Blinking, she snapped her mouth shut and hissed. "Clark Kent, that sounded positively barbaric!"
He chuckled. "Didn't think I had it in me, did you?"
"Don't answer that…" Clark did some glaring of his own and then shook his head, grinning ruefully. "To be honest, Lois, I'm not sure I did either until you disappeared on me two days ago. The last two days have been hell and have made me realize a few simple truths."
"Just how much you mean to me, for one thing. I love you with all my heart." His gaze held hers for a long moment, then he sighed. "But mostly, Lois, I realized I don't want to go another day without being able to hold you in my arms for as long as I want. I'm tired of interruptions, interferences and anything and everything else that keeps coming between us. Since I can't do much to make them go away, I want to at least be able to come back to you and know I'm welcome. Anytime."
Lois stared at him. She swallowed as tears came to her eyes. "Oh, Clark… you know…"
"Yes, in my heart I know, Lois, but… I'm tired of not being able to express it, I guess."
For once, she was in complete agreement with him. "Still, Clark, don't you think, well, that what you said was a little strong?"
His head tilted as he studied her face intently. "Only if you think I meant you would be a possession, Lois. I meant belonging more in terms of responsibility. Once you link your life with mine, Lois, there's no going back. That's what I mean. You have to be sure."
Lois digested his words, then smiled. Talking was helping her get over her chagrin over his nudity and she was beginning to relax. "I think I understand, Clark, but I might remind you for some reason my life is already linked with yours. I don't seem to have any choice in the matter."
Clark yanked her overcoat open and tugged her up against his chest so quickly she didn't have time to protest. Then he rumbled. "That's one of the other things I realized. Since I can't seem to shake loose from this hold you have over me, I might as well surrender to it. Less stress that way."
Lois swallowed and murmured. "Ummm, surrender sounds good, as long as it's you doing it."
"I had a feeling you'd like that part."
Her eyes widened as he efficiently discarded the overcoat and deposited her in the middle of the bed after his husky growl. Once her heart settled down after the rapid fluttering his actions had caused, she was able to find her voice again. "I suppose I could be persuaded to make some concessions, though."
Clark stretched out beside her on the bed and leaned over on one elbow to stare down at her face, eyes sparkling. "All I want from you, Lois Lane, is a promise to show no mercy."