The Aftereffects of the Horizontal Lambada

By Rain Elizabeth Day <>

Summary: After two years of marriage, Lois is pregnant. While Clark is bursting to tell the news, Lois holds back, saying she's afraid Perry will give her only *safe* assignments. Her reticence to discuss the pregnancy goes even deeper, though, which troubles Clark.

(yes, I was *really* stuck for a title!)


"Good morning, Lois."

Lois sleepily raised her head from the pillow. "Hi Clark." She smiled. After two years of marriage, she still felt a thrill of pleasure every time she woke up and saw him lying next to her. Or, in this case, kneeling by the bed gently shaking her shoulders. "I'm awake." she added.

"I know" he smiled, smoothing her hair away from her face. He kissed her gently. "How are you feeling?" He watched her face as she carefully sat up, considered for a moment, then stood.

"Okay, I think. Not super," she grinned at him, "but better."

"Do you want breakfast?" He was moving towards the kitchen, stopping in the doorway to await her answer.

"Maybe just some toast," she replied, already beginning to get dressed. She heard Clark in the kitchen, moving around at super speeds preparing breakfast. "Who did I marry, the Tasmanian Devil?" she asked aloud as she left the bedroom, tucking in her blouse. Clark did an extra whirl for her, and, after she clapped sarcastically, went back to frying eggs with his eyes.

"Well, you save electricity, anyways." murmured Lois, leaning against the doorway, suddenly nauseated by the smell of the eggs. She turned her head away and took a deep breath, trying to control the churning of her stomach. "Clark, I'm sorry, could you get rid of the eggs?"

Almost before the words were out of her mouth Clark had scarfed down the eggs, washed the frying pan, and blown fresh air through the kitchen. He was at her side, concerned, a hand resting on her stomach. "I guess you don't want the toast either?"

She shook her head mutely, fists clenched, jaw set. All at once she dashed for the bathroom, Clark following. He held her forehead as she threw up, smoothed back her hair when she finished. She looked up at him weakly. "I guess I should have gone for the pickles and ice cream."

"But you didn't even EAT any of the toast," said Clark. "You're not going to work, are you?" Lois, having rinsed out her mouth, was putting her hair in its usual large rollers, and showed all signs of normal morning preparations.

"It's only morning sickness, Clark. Nobody's going to catch it. I've been away from work for too long already."

"I'm sure the Chief won't mind…"

"You didn't TELL him, did you?" demanded Lois, narrowing her eyes and watching him closely.

"No, I didn't," replied Clark, somewhat defensively. "I know you want to tell them yourself." He took her chin in his hand. "This is huge news. I'm not going to break it by casually saying 'Oh, by the way, Perry, Lois isn't at work this morning because she's having a bad bout of morning sickness…'" He stroked her cheek.

She smiled weakly at him. "Sorry. I don't know what's gotten into me. Well, I do, I guess…" she trailed off, as her gaze turned imploring. "Clark, could we not tell them for one more day?"

"You're not going to work?"

"No, I am, but…"

Clark was confused. "They'll have to know sooner or later." And as far as he was concerned, the sooner the better. True, he had only known for two days, but he was fairly bursting with the news. His parents didn't even know yet, since they were driving back from visiting relatives in California, and Lois had vetoed flying out to look for them, pointing out that they would be home in a matter of days. Tonight, in fact. Clark sighed. "Lois…"

"Perry's more overprotective than YOU are, if that's at ALL possible! The minute he finds out I'm pregnant…" she trailed off and made a "whoosh" gesture with her right hand. "I'm stuck covering the auto show, or reviewing movies, or something *safe* for the next eight months!" Her voice had an edge to it that suggested she was holding back tears. "God, Clark, I'm not going to feel like THIS for the next eight months, am I?"

"I don't think so, Lois" he said, trying to sound reassuring. "I'm sure I've read that most women are over their morning sickness by the third month at the latest."

She caught the false note in his voice. "But we don't KNOW, do we? Because this is no ordinary baby, this is some SUPER baby and heaven knows WHAT most Kryptonian women go through." She faced him in the narrow confines of the bathroom, her chin trembling. "We don't even know what the gestational period of a Kryptonian baby is. Clark, I could be pregnant for years!"

The tears came out then, and Clark encircled her in his arms, comforting her. He rested his chin on her hair. "I doubt it." This time he was sure of what he was saying, and Lois could hear it in his voice. "Lois, everything we know about Krypton suggests that Kryptonians are very much like humans, except for our superpowers. And we have to be genetically very similar, or you wouldn't BE pregnant in the first place. So it would stand to reason that the gestational periods would be very close. After all," he added, as an afterthought, "I seem to age at the same rate as everybody else."

Lois sniffed once, then moved her head back to look at Clark. She took a deep shuddering breath, then squared her shoulders. "I hope you're right." She gently squirmed out of his embrace and picked up her toothbrush.

"Lois, are you sure you want to go to work today? I'm sure the food poisoning excuse is still good." He half smiled. "I'm very good at making excuses, you know."

"Hah!" Lois stuck her tongue out at him, some of the usual sparkle returning to her eyes. "*I* never believed you! In fact, you're lucky I stuck around long enough to figure out what you were REALLY up to!" She stabbed her toothbrush into the air for emphasis. "But yes, I do want to go to work today. I don't think I can stand one more day of sitting around watching 'I Married An Alien And Now I'm Going To Tell The World About It On Some Completely Sensationalistic Talk Show'. I mean REALLY!" she laughed ruefully. "I DID marry an alien, and believe me, they *don't* know what they're talking about!"

Clark smiled, glad to see the old Lois emerging, taking it as a good sign. "All right, but try not to throw up on Dr. Jacobs at the press conference, OK?" He looked at his watch. "Speaking of which, we have just enough time to stop by the Planet and check in with Perry before the press conference starts."

"Mmmff" replied Lois, her mouth full of toothpaste. She spat. "Just give me 30 seconds and I'll be ready." Clark nodded and went to get his jacket. She seemed much more like herself than she had for the past few days. He half hoped that their conversation had reassured her, that the possibility of an extended pregnancy was all that had been bothering her. He sighed. Somehow he didn't think so, but so far she hadn't shared whatever it was with him, and he knew her better than to push. At least she seemed happier now, and that was the main thing, he supposed.

Except he hadn't been kidding about Dr. Jacobs.


"Lois! Welcome back!" Jimmy Olsen's round face broke into a wide smile as he hurried up to meet them. "You still look a little green. You sure she's all right, CK?"

"Frankly, no." Clark made a helpless gesture. "But you know Lois. Once she makes up her mind about something…"

"Well, for one thing," Lois broke in, "I've made up my mind never to try the seafood at Chez Louie's again." She made a face.

"Chez Louie's?" asked Jimmy, "I've never heard of it, but believe me, if I do, I won't be eating there. The Chief wants to see you. I've gotta run!" He dashed off towards the copy desk, as Lois and Clark walked down the ramp that led to the main level of the Daily Planet newsroom. As they approached Perry White's office Clark could feel Lois tense slightly, although outwardly she showed no sign.

They entered the office. "You wanted to see us, Perry?" asked Lois, sitting down in the nearest chair. Clark placed a hand on her shoulder, and she reached up and touched his fingers briefly with hers.

"Yes." replied Perry, looking up. "Lois! It's about time you decided to grace us with your presence." His tone softened. "How are you feeling?"


"That's good to hear. I need *both* my top reporters on this one. Now this press conference may seem fairly routine, but I'm convinced there's something fishy going on here, that is, if you don't mind me mentioning the word, Lois. Dr. Jacobs is calling the press conference to announce a new program he's developed for troubled kids. But some of my sources have hinted that there's a lot more going on below the surface. Rumours, allegations, nothing more. I'm counting on YOU two to bring me back some facts. Got it?"

"Got it, Chief" replied Clark. Lois nodded. She stood up and they left the office.

"And, Lois!" called Perry, after them. She turned. "No more seafood. It's bad for our readership." She smiled, saluted, and turned back to Clark. Perry watched as the two of them walked out. What a pair they made, he mused. Always arguing, but anyone could tell just by looking at them how much in love they were. And, he added to himself, they were the best damn reporting duo since the days of… well, *ever*. It was good to have Lois back. Clark somehow hadn't looked complete without her.

As Clark slid behind the wheel of the jeep he looked with concern at Lois beside him. He touched her cheek. "You OK?"

She scowled. "I'm fine, okay, Clark?" He looked at her. "Look, we have to get to this press conference on time. We'd better get going." Clark nodded and pulled out into traffic. Lois' face softened as she leaned back and closed her eyes. She sighed. "I'm sorry. I'll let you know if I'm about to pass out or anything. Other than that, *please* stop asking me if I'm all right every five minutes. It's really starting to get on my nerves."

Clark sighed. "I'm sorry."

Lois changed the subject. "They really believed I had food poisoning, didn't they?"

"I *told* you I was good at excuses!"

Lois smiled. "Yeah, the cheese-of-the-month club." It had become a private joke, as one of the most ludicrous excuses Clark had ever given to dash off as Superman. She straightened. "What do you think Perry meant about things going on below the surface? Intergang?"

"I don't know." replied Clark. "A program for troubled children hardly seems their style. But we'd better keep our eyes open." Lois nodded. She seemed distracted, though, Clark thought as he pulled into a parking spot at the Davis Centre where the press conference was being held.

"…Take Jamie, for instance." Dr. Jacobs was describing the plights of some of the children who would be part of the new program. It all seemed innocent enough, but Clark watched Dr. Jacobs closely for signs that he was hiding something. "She was apprehended from her mother at the age of 7 months, and has spent her life moving from foster home to foster home. She…" Clark suddenly became aware that Lois had her hand to her mouth, and was clenching her other fist. Without looking at him, she stood and quickly hurried out of the room, having chosen an aisle seat in case she had to leave abruptly. He almost followed her, but his sense of duty to work reluctantly won out. He settled for keeping an ear out for her, thankful that he had super hearing. He heard her hurry across the lobby and stumble through the ladies room door. But then he wrinkled his forehead in consternation. Lois wasn't sick. She was crying.


The moment the press conference was over, Clark barreled out of the auditorium and across the lobby. Then he stopped. He couldn't very well barge right into the ladies room. Well, he *could*, but not without causing considerable embarrassment on everybody's part. He was just settling in to wait for Lois to come out when she emerged, head held high, showing no signs of the tears that he knew had been there earlier. He rushed over to her.

"Lois. What's wrong?"

She looked at him. "What do you *think* is wrong? Apparently I'm not completely over my 'food poisoning'. Let's go."

He waited until they were in the car until he tried again. "Lois." He touched her hand. She stiffened, which Clark knew from long experience meant he should just drop the subject *now*. But he couldn't stand to see her upset like this. He knew he was treading on very dangerous ground. "Why were you crying?"

Lois glared at him. "You and your damn superpowers!" She turned away from him and stared resolutely out the window. Clark mentally hit himself over the head with a blunt object. Lois remained silent, and continued to ignore him the rest of the way back to the Planet.

"Look, Lois." Clark began as he pulled the jeep into a parking space. "I'm sorry." She was silent. "I was worried about you."

She looked at him. "Okay, we have to get working on the cover-up aspect of the story." Her tone was brisk and businesslike. "I hope you were at least paying enough attention to Dr. Jacobs to remember what he said." she added, with a touch of sarcasm.

Clark sighed as they got out of the car. "Well, he didn't say anything overtly suspicious, obviously," he began, "but there's a couple of things that we could check up on." He began to list things, Lois nodding, as they made their way back to the newsroom. At least she was speaking to him, he mused. But of course, Lois would never be unprofessional enough to ignore him at work, at least not for long. He just hoped she would be willing to tell him what was bothering her soon. She usually confided in him, but she could be *very* stubborn from time to time. Which, he thought with the beginnings of an inner smile, was just one of the many things he loved about her.

"…so I think we should call Bobby Bigmouth tomorrow." said Lois that night at dinner. Their investigation that day had showed that Perry's sources had been correct. There was definitely something odd about Dr. Jacobs' program.

"You sure your stomach's up to it?" he teased. "I guess at least you won't be stealing his food this time."

"Oh I don't know," she replied, a trace of a smile on her lips. "I think I'm starting to feel better. And after all, I *am* eating for two now." Her smile faded and he watched as she zoned out, obviously thinking about whatever had been bothering her. He put his hand on her arm.

"Lois?" She looked into his eyes. "What's wrong?" This time she didn't turn away, and her eyes filled with tears. She looked terrified, he realized. He pulled her forward into a hug, holding her tightly as he levitated them both to the couch. Lois relaxed against him, sobbing, as he patted her hair and murmured reassurances. Finally she sniffed and hiccuped once, drawing her head back to look at Clark. He continued to hold her, running one finger down her cheek to wipe away the tears.

"Clark," she began, "I-"

At that moment, Clark heard a sound that he had learned to detest at times, the sound of a cry for help. A cry for Superman. "Lois," he interrupted, "You don't know how much I don't want to go, but…"

"Superman?" she asked, in a small voice.

He nodded. "I'm sorry. I promise you, I'll be back as soon as humanly possible."

*Or Kryptonionly possible…* Lois' mind couldn't help but add. She nodded. "See you then." And, as he wasn't moving, she added "Go! I'll be fine." She pushed him away gently, and watched as he whirled into his Superman costume and disappeared out the window.


Lois curled up on the couch, hugging her knees. *I've cried more in the past few days than I have in the past few YEARS!* she thought ruefully. Today had been better, she mused. Going to work, working on a story with Clark, had made her feel much more like herself, and allowed her to shove her fears back into the deepest recesses of her mind where she didn't have to think about them. But they were there all the same, and she knew she'd have to deal with them eventually.

She hated being afraid. She hated admitting it to herself, and she dreaded admitting it to Clark. What was she going to say? How could he possibly understand that she, Lois Lane, who leapt into danger routinely in the pursuit of big stories, who didn't think twice about making enemies of the most powerful people in Metropolis, was afraid of something so small and helpless as a baby?

Or not exactly a baby, but the thought that she would have one, that she would be responsible for its well being. What did she know about children? It wasn't just something she could research, dig up facts on, and understand.

She idly played with a strand of her hair. Clark loved children. He was always stopping to play with them, as himself and as Superman. And he had learned how to be a parent from the two best role models in the world. Lois, on the other hand, had always been slightly uncomfortable around children. And all she knew about parenting was that the way her parents had gone about it was probably *not* the best way. *So I know what NOT to do, at least* she thought, her mouth quirking up in a grin despite herself.

She found herself wishing for Clark to come home. She'd needed time to think, but now she just wanted to confide in him, to get it over with. He probably wouldn't understand, but she knew he would do his best. She smiled. Poor Clark. She hadn't been very nice to him today. He hadn't been fazed by it, though. He'd just been his usual patient self, which had admittedly annoyed her at the time. She often thought that he was a little *too* patient for his own good. But then she *knew* she was far too *un*patient, so she guessed they balanced each other out. She felt herself smiling again, thinking of Clark.

Even when she was most annoyed with him, she loved him more than she'd loved anyone in her life. And she knew that he loved her just as much, had loved her, in fact, from the first moment he saw her. She grinned. Back then she'd been too dazzled by Superman to notice Clark, the irony of which still made her cringe at times. But back then she'd really resented Clark, hated having a partner foisted on her when she was used to working alone. But *not*, she recalled, smiling wickedly, too resentful to have been completely blown off her feet at the sight of Clark without a shirt on, the first time she had come to his apartment. He really had the perfect chest, she thought. As well as numerous *other* perfect parts.

Her mind dwelt pleasantly along that line of thought for a while, until the sudden humming of the refrigerator made her jump, and shook her out of her reverie. She looked at her watch. Where *was* he? She hoped he was OK. Even though he was Superman, he was not invulnerable. She comforted herself with the thought that he was *mostly* invulnerable, and was probably performing a perfectly ordinary rescue somewhere. She knew he'd come back as soon as he possibly could. She sighed. That was another wonderful thing about Clark. For the first time in her life, she *knew* she was loved. She knew that Clark would do anything for her, and that she would do the same for him. Growing up, she'd never felt that her father had even really noticed her or Lucy's existence. And after the divorce she hadn't really seen her mother much. But Clark cared deeply about her, and she knew it.

She gently patted her stomach. "You," she said, "are going to know how much we love you. We're going to tell you every day, we're -". Her voice caught, and she fought back tears again. "Oh, Clark, where are you?" She really needed to talk to him. Now that she had allowed herself to think about it, she was overwhelmed by a mixture of emotions. She really did want this baby. There was a part of her that was amazed and overjoyed at the thought of the tiny life growing within her. But she was also overwhelmed by the responsibility that came with it. "I can definitely imagine you turning out more screwed up than *I* did," she said aloud, sighing. "Your mother isn't exactly the maternal type." She picked up the phone cord and began playing with it, twisting the spirals between her fingers. When it rang suddenly, she nearly jumped out of her skin.

Recovering, she picked it up. "Hello?"

It was Clark's mother. "Hello, Lois? How are you, dear?"

"All right." she replied, unenthusiastically. "Clark's not here. He's out being Superman. How was your trip?" she added, almost as an afterthought.

"Tiring." sighed Martha. "But I don't phone just to talk to Clark, you know that, Lois. And you sound a little down. What's wrong, honey?"

"Nothing's wrong." Lois replied, suddenly tired of pretending. She paused, knowing Martha would be delighted. "I'm pregnant. I'm going to have a baby."

("No *duh*" her mind told her. "What do you THINK 'pregnant' means?")

"Oh, *Lois*, that's wonderful news! Jonathan!" Lois could hear Clark's father in the background. "Lois is pregnant!" As Lois listened to the happy exclamations in the background she bit her lip. She had been half intending to confide her inner turmoil to Clark's mother. But hearing how excited Martha was, she couldn't bring herself to say anything. Besides, she told herself, although Martha had to be the most understanding woman in the world, she still might not understand, really. After all, Jonathan and Martha Kent had desperately longed for a child before they had found Clark. Lois was sure that the thought that they might be unfit parents had been the last thing on their minds.

"So when's it due, Lois? How do you feel?" Martha was bubbling over with enthusiasm.

"October. And - Oh, Clark!" Lois interrupted herself as Clark flew in the window looking slightly dusty, but none the worse for wear. "Um," she continued, trying to remember what she had been saying. "Clark just got home. I haven't been feeling great, but I think I'm improving. She looked at Clark. "It's your mom. I just told her." She spoke into the receiver again. "Here, do you want to talk to Clark?" Without waiting for an answer, she handed the phone to him, her eyes begging him to be brief.

She watched him as he talked into the receiver. "Yeah, Mom, it's wonderful, isn't it? Yeah, she looks great. Uh huh, some morning sickness. No. Yeah. Yeah, well listen, Mom, I'll talk to you tomorrow, OK?" He laughed. "Mom! GoodBYE!" He gently replaced the receiver and turned to Lois. She stared at him for a moment, then wordlessly walked over and hugged him, so hard that had he not been Superman his ribs would have been in danger of cracking. He returned the embrace, stroking her hair. After a long moment, she looked up into his eyes. The worry she saw there made her catch her breath.

"Oh, Clark, I'm OK! Really." She stroked his hair, feeling a somewhat ironic need to comfort *him*. "It's just-" She broke off, pacing away from him, sitting down on the edge of the couch. "Clark, I don't know *how* to be a mother. I know it sounds stupid, but…" she trailed off, watching him closely. "You'll be the best father in the world! But I don't know how to act around children. I know they say it's instinct, but what if I just don't have it? God knows *my* parents didn't!" She bit her lip. "Clark, I - I'm scared."

Clark looked at his wife. After all this time, she still found it incredibly hard to admit to fear, even to him. He hugged her again, trying to transmit all his feelings of love and reassurance. Then he gently picked her up, unprotesting, and sat her down on the couch, where he knelt in front of her, looking into her eyes.

"Lois." he said, squeezing her hand and willing her to listen. "I'm scared too. I think every parent-to-be is, at least a little. It's a huge undertaking. But anything worth doing is challenging, and a bit frightening. And I truly believe that having children is one of the most rewarding experiences that anyone can have." He touched her cheek. "I know you don't have much experience with kids, but that doesn't mean you won't be a good mother." She looked at him, her eyes luminous with unshed tears. "Lois, you're kind, and generous, and incredibly loyal. You'd do anything for the people you love."

She started to cry again. "No I'm not! I'm selfish. And not particularly nice a lot of the time. Look at all the mean things I've done to you, even!" As he put out a hand to comfort her, she stood up, pushed off the couch, and ran into the bedroom, slamming the door behind her.

Clark felt close to tears himself, by this point. Did she really think of herself this way? A rational portion of his mind told him that it probably had a lot to do with the hormonally induced mood swings that they were both going to have to live with for the next while. This knowledge didn't change the fact, though, that Lois was miserable, and he didn't know what he could possibly say that would comfort her. He waited a moment, then followed her into the bedroom.

Lois, intent on demolishing a defenseless pillow, didn't look up at his arrival. He watched her in silence, for a moment, as she gave it one final pummel and hurled it across the room, where it hit the wall and slid down, coming to rest at the foot of the dresser. Wordlessly he handed her another. She considered it for a moment, then flopped down on the bed, deflated, her face buried in the covers. He rubbed her back, massaging the tenseness out of her stiff shoulders. After a while she looked up, with a somewhat shaky half-smile. "Thanks."

He smiled back and continued to rub. She relaxed as his strong fingers dug into her knotted muscles, draining away the tension. As the draining effects of the emotional catharsis faded slightly, she rolled over and sat up, still drawing strength from the man beside her. She rested her head on his shoulder for a moment. As he started to speak, she held up her hand, stopping him. "Wait. I need a glass of water."

They walked into the kitchen together, where Lois gulped down one glass of water and started on a second. As she finally put the glass down, Clark spoke. "Lois. You are not selfish. You have done selfless things for so many people. You've risked your career, taking gambles on helping people you believe in." He brought her chin up. "You willingly share your husband with the entire world. Not many people would be willing to put up with that. You have done so much for me -" His voice choked off, overcome with emotion. "Risked your life even, I don't know how many times. You…"

Lois, facing him, gently silenced him with a hand over his mouth. "Oh Clark," she whispered, "don't make me cry *again*!" She buried her face in his chest, and he held her there, one hand cupping her head, his thumb stroking her hair. After a long time they both stepped back, neither needing to say a word. He gently lifted up her shirt and placed his hand on her stomach. She placed a hand on top of his, and they stood there for another long moment, not speaking, just sharing in the wonder of this new life growing within Lois, a life which they had created together.

"So you really think I'll make an OK mom?" The words sounded casual, but Lois was dead serious, and Clark knew it. He looked into her eyes.

"Lois, I think you'll make a wonderful mom."

She held his gaze. "Do you really?"

"Lois, since you've known I'm Superman, I've never lied to you. I couldn't do it."

She smiled. "You were never very good at it."

He made a face. "See, you'd be able to tell."

She smiled again and relaxed. "I would, wouldn't I?" she asked, almost wonderingly. "You really do think I'll make a good mother."

"I really do."

She quirked an eyebrow at him. "Well, Clark Kent, let's hope you're not wrong on this one." Twining her fingers through his, she strolled into the living room, Clark following close behind.

Lois didn't know how she felt. A mixture of drained, and elated, and yes, still afraid. But somehow her fears seemed infinitely more manageable now that she knew that Clark shared them. And it meant more to her than she could ever say to know that Clark believed she would make a good mother. Because she knew that he wasn't just saying it, that he really meant it. He was right, he couldn't lie to her. Nor could she to him, not any more. When had that happened? She was lost in these thoughts as they entered the living room. Gradually she realized that she felt like herself again, for the first time since she'd realized she was pregnant. And just as a feeling of calm began to creep over her, it was replaced by a mental to-do list. There was a lot to be done, she realized. What had she been thinking, moping around, trying to deny the fact that she was even pregnant? Oh well, the situation could be remedied, starting with an announcement to the world at large. But it could wait until tomorrow.

Clark settled down in an easy chair and smiled up at her. "You know," she began, as she settled down on his lap, "We really ought to make some sort of announcement. I'd hate to have Jimmy and Perry find out when I suddenly show up in maternity clothes one day." She leaned back against her husband, snuggling in.

"So how should we tell them?" he asked, playing with her hair.

She giggled. "Oh, Clark, I know you've been dying to tell them ever since we found out." She twisted her head around, looking him in the eye. "Thank you for humoring me." Their lips met.

"Anytime." smiled Clark, a moment later. She grinned back at him. "So how do you want to tell them?" he asked again, as she turned back to lean against him again, tucking her head under his chin.

"Well," she said thoughtfully, "I really want to surprise them."

"You showing up in maternity clothes one day might come as somewhat of a shock," he pointed out.

Lois laughed. "It might, at that." They sat in comfortable silence for a moment. "I can just hear Perry now." she commented, putting on a fair imitation of their editor's southern accent. "'When Elvis and Priscilla had little Lisa Marie…'"

Clark chuckled. "You know, there really is an Elvis story for almost anything."

"Well, let's just hope he never has to tell us the one about little Lisa Marie marrying Michael Jackson."

Clark groaned. "That's silly."

She turned around. "And you like it!" She poked him on the nose. "Don't try to fool me, I can tell, remember?"

"I remember." They shared a playful kiss, and then several more. "So," he asked, "how *are* we going to tell them?"

"I don't know, Clark," she answered, between kisses. "We need a really good idea." She shifted a little, drawing closer to him. "So how about we … sleep on it?"

"Sounds good to me." He got up off the chair without relinquishing his hold on Lois. A few kisses later, she stepped out of his embrace and tugged on his hand, pulling him towards the bedroom. He caught up with her and lifted her up, slowly drifting through the door.

"I love you, Clark," she whispered as he gently set her down.

"I love you too," he murmured. For one long moment they gazed into one another's eyes. Then Lois broke the spell by hiccuping.

She giggled. "Excuse me."

"You're excused." he smiled, trailing one finger down her forehead to the tip of her nose. She wrinkled up her face and brought her arms up around his neck. As her mouth found his she closed her eyes, reaching around to help him out of the Superman costume he still wore. His arms tightened about her, and as their kiss deepened further she felt him softly levitate, floating them towards the bed.

And then, without warning, Lois' stomach *rumbled*. She pulled away slightly.



"Clark," she propped herself up on one elbow and looked at him beseechingly. "I know this isn't the best time, but for you it will *literally* only take a minute, and I hope this won't sound too weird, and it's *certainly* unusual for me, being a confirmed chocolate lover, but -"

She trailed off as Clark put a finger to her lips. "What?" he asked softly, regarding her with that look that still took her breath away.

"Could you go get me some pistachio ice cream?"

"Really?" he asked, looking amused.

"Really." she confirmed, giggling. "I'm sorry, I haven't eaten much all day, and all of a sudden I *really* *really* want some!" He raised an eyebrow and she shrugged her shoulders helplessly.

"Okay!" he laughed, kissing her on the nose. "At your service!"

She smiled at him seductively. "I'll be waiting when you come back."

"In that case," he grinned, "I'll be back in a flash!" And with a swish of the bedsheets and a swoosh of his costume, he was gone.