By Artiste Sixty-Two (email@example.com)
Summary: After Clark leaves for New Krypton, Lois tries to be strong, but finds instead that she's living the words to the Tony Rich Project song "Nobody Knows."
Comments good or bad appreciated. If it's bad, hey, I wrote this in fifteen minutes, and if the song lyrics are wrong, I typed them out from memory.
Insert usual WB, DC comics, disclaimer.
Rights to 'Nobody Knows' belong to Joe Shade Music and Stiff Shirt Music Inc. and LaFace Records.
Tony Rich Project
I pretended I'm glad you went away
These four walls closin' more
And I'm dying inside
And nobody knows it but me
Like a clown I put on a show
The pain is real even if nobody knows
And I'm cryin' inside
And nobody knows but me
Why didn't I say
The things I needed to say
How could I let my angel get away
Now the world is just a tumblin' down
I can say it so clearly
But you're nowhere around
The nights are lonely, the days are so sad
And I just keep thinking about the love that we had
And I'm missin' you
And nobody knows it but me
I carry when I'm broken in two
And I'm nobody without someone like you
I'm tremblin' inside and nobody knows it but me
I lie awake, it's a quarter past three
I'm screamin' at night as if I thought
You'd hear me
Yeah me heart is callin' you
And nobody knows it but me
How blue can I get
You could ask my heart
But like a jigsaw puzzle it's been torn all apart
A million words couldn't say just how I feel
A million years from now
I'll be lovin' you still
Tomorrow mornin' I'm hittin' the dusty road
Gonna find you wherever, ever you might go
I'm gonna unload my heart and hope you come back to me
Said when the nights are lonely…
Lois Lane woke up. She couldn't believe that she even could get up. Only a few hours had passed since Clark left. Not even a goodbye and he might never be back again. She might die alone. She couldn't ever find anyone else. Not that she wanted to. Clark was her true love. She wouldn't settle for anything less. Besides, she had promised him she'd wait for him. And she would. But she mustn't dwell on that. She had to go on. Perry was counting on her and so were Martha and Jonathan. She couldn't even show pain around them. She had made that decision last night. After Clark had told her he loved her. She had put her hand over her heart and smiled in resignation, knowing how she'd have to go on without him for so long. But she would do it. She'd done it for years before he came. She'd be brave for him. She'd put on a brave face. She'd continue to be the strong one.
She picked out his favorite outfit, then decided against it. That would only remind her of him. She couldn't even think his name. She was going to have to shape up before she got to the office or Perry wouldn't believe her cover story about Clark. She had decided to tell Perry that Clark had snuck on Superman's spaceship to get the inside story. Actually, he had decided for her. He had told her that would give her a reason to be upset, but she didn't need to get upset. She'd show him she could be a professional. She had to turn in his story on the people's reaction to Superman's departure. It was wonderful, one of the best he'd ever written. If he would have been there, he'd win an award. But he wasn't, and he might not ever be there again. Lois drank a cup of coffee to clear the thoughts from her head, but it didn't help. She felt an aching pain, like a sickness, eating away at her. When she glanced in the mirror though, she looked normal. Her make up had covered up her puffy red eyes. Her hair looked perfect, no signs of her tossing and turning the night before. She practiced smiling. Yep, she could still do that and look sincere. Good, nobody would be able to tell her true feelings. Nobody would know but her. *And Clark.* she thought.
Lois drove to the office in her Jeep, listening to the radio on the way. 'Nobody Knows' came on and Lois immediately turned off the radio. She had heard that song before and she knew of the lyric's uncanny resemblance to her situation. She couldn't bear to listen to it one more time. Lois pulled into her favorite parking spot and took the short cut up to the newsroom. When she reached her desk, there was a cup of coffee on her desk. *Is it possible? Could Clark be back?*
"I hope you like the coffee, Lois. I thought you might need some. Especially today." Lois heard Jimmy say behind her.
"Why especially today? And thank you, Jimmy."
"Well, Superman said to be a friend to you…" *He is so sweet* Lois thought.
"Jimmy, can you keep a secret?"
"Clark snuck on Superman's spaceship yesterday. He went with Superman."
"But that means he might never come back."
"He'll be back." *If he can.*
"Why do you have so much faith in him? You heard what he said yesterday." *Faith is all I have. I think it's what's keeping me standing here.*
"Trust me, Jimmy, I know Clark." Lois smiled at Jimmy to prove she didn't mind her husband-to-be leaving her for possible death on some space rock.
"Well, if there is anything you need…"
"I'll call you." Jimmy nodded and walked away. Lois let out a sigh. She walked into Perry's office.
"Hey, Lois, honey, I hate to tell you this but Clark left me a letter to say that…Lois, he-"
"I know Perry, I was just coming to tell you."
"And you're not upset?"
"Well, we decided together that he should go. He's getting you an exclusive, and he _will_ be back."
"As long as you're okay with it."
"So, do you have anything for me? I already sent you Clark's story on the crowds' reaction."
"Yeah, I got it, great work, uh, it looks like today's gonna be a slow one. I guess people took Superman's speech to heart."
"Yeah. Well, thanks, Perry."
"Lois, if there were anything bothering you you'd tell me?"
"Chief, trust me I'm fine." *But I won't be if everyone keeps asking me that!* Lois thought as she headed back to her desk. She turned on her computer and checked her e-mail. She had a message from Clark! *He must've sent it before he left.*
It was so hard for me to leave you. Please remember that I will always love you, no matter how far apart we are. You're not alone. I'm going through this with you. And, you can always talk to my parents. If I can come back I will. I will move heaven and Earth if I have to, but nothing will keep me from marrying you. How are you? Please don't keep all your feelings inside. I know you did before I knew you, but you're different now. You can't take that anymore. And don't take too many risks. Please!?
Love always, Clark
Lois didn't let the tears that welled up in her eyes as she read the e-mail, spill out. He didn't understand that she had to put up those old walls. It was safer for her that way. And she couldn't dump everything on Martha. She _could_ do it alone. But like Clark had said, she wasn't alone. He was going through it too. There were so many things she wanted to tell Clark. She wanted to tell him that he was her everything. That she was nothing without him. *'And I'm nobody without someone like you.'* Lois was reminded of some lyrics from 'Nobody Knows'. She let out a deep breath and closed her eyes.
*'I pretended I'm glad you went away These four walls closin' more every day And I'm dying inside And nobody knows it but me'*
She could go on. She'd have to. For Clark. For Superman. For everything he stood for. She knew now. He was the strong one. But she'd have to borrow some of that strength. She couldn't pretend he didn't exist, couldn't go back to not caring, but she could be strong. She wouldn't cry in public, no more 'It's over's even though it was. Only she and Clark would know how she really felt.
Three months passed like this. Lois went home and cried every night, crying herself to sleep. If she could do that. Some nights she didn't get any sleep. She finally bought the song 'Nobody Knows', and she'd play it every night.
'I lie awake it's a quarter past three I'm screamin' at night as if I thought You'd hear me Yeah my heart is callin' you And nobody knows it but me…
The nights are lonely, the days are so sad And I just keep thinkin' about The love that we had And I'm missin' you And nobody knows it but me'
Lois always showed up at work looking all right the next morning. Not showing any signs of the overwhelming sadness she had given into the night before. She slept in an old pair of his pajamas he had given her. She ate his favorite food, she listened to his favorite music, she rented his favorite movies. Her thoughts were filled with him. Him, and nothing but him. She couldn't really concentrate on her stories. She didn't know how she had ever managed to shut down Intergang, throw Mindy Church in jail, and win an award for the story all on her own. Clark's story won an award too. Lois accepted it for him and whenever she went into the conference room, she gazed at it wonderingly. She knew how she had done it. He had been there beside her the whole way. She hadn't been alone. But was he beside her always because he had died and it was his spirit, or was it just that their love reached out across the galaxies? Lois hoped and prayed for the latter, but she had no way of knowing.
Shutting down Intergang had taken care of all the big- time crime left in Metropolis. Everyone _had_ taken Superman's speech to heart. The proof could be seen everywhere. People did their part to make the world a better place so that if Superman came back, he'd be proud of them. Or maybe, to prove that they would be okay without him. *Maybe the world will, but I won't.* Lois thought. *Oh, 'How could I let my angel get away'? 'A million years from now you know I'll be lovin' you still'. Oh, he's not coming back is he? 'Why didn't I say the things I needed to say'? I can't go on without him!* Lois walked swiftly into Perry's office and began to cry. Perry looked up surprised. After almost four months of the 'old' Lois, he wasn't used to this kind of emotion from her.
"Honey, what's wrong?"
"Perry, I can't take it anymore! He's not coming back! He's probably dead by now! I can't go on anymore without him! I've tried to be strong, but he's the strong one! I've never been really strong like him. I need him, Perry! What am I gonna do?" Lois was now sobbing uncontrollably, but Perry had a huge smile on his face. That just made Lois cry harder. She closed her eyes and thought of all the nights spent alone, knowing she couldn't face that empty bed another night. She thought about the song that told her story of the last three months. And then she imagined, for it couldn't really be him, Clark's arms around her, holding her, she imagined his voice shushing her, telling her it would be okay. She imagined his lips against hers, kissing away the pain. But that kiss had felt real! Lois opened her eyes and saw him. The man that would once again make her life complete. She hugged him, and sobbed his name, kissing him back, and crying even more but with joy this time. Everything would be okay again. He would make it so.
"Don't leave me again?" she whispered.
They held each other, not caring who saw. Lois could almost hear Diane Schuur singing Our Love is Here to Stay.
It's very clear Our love here to stay Not for a year But ever and a day The radio and the telephone and the movies that we know May just be passing fancies And in time they go But oh my dear Our love is here to stay Together we're going along the way In time the Rockies may crumble Gibraltar may tumble They're only made of clay But our love is here to stay The radio and the telephone and the movies that we know May just be passing fancies And in time they go But oh my dear Our love is here to stay Together we're going along the way In time the Rockies may crumble Gibraltar may tumble They're only made of clay But our love is here to stay