By Erin Klingler <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Submitted January 17, 1998
Summary: Lois finds a mystery in the bushes outside the Daily Planet building — Clark Kent's clothes. Is her partner running naked through the streets of Metropolis? What's going on here? Lois speculates in this humorous alternate ending to the first-season episode "Fly Hard."
Author's Note: Okay, guys, don't kill me for writing this! <bg> I was in a very weird mood after watching the 1st season ep, "Fly Hard", and after I'd finished watching the end when Clark jumps off the top of the DP building to save a falling Lois, it suddenly dawned on me. Just *what* does Clark do with his clothes when he changes into Superman?? And I realized that this has actually been at the back of my mind for quite some time. <g> Oh and I just thought of something else. Where the heck did he have his costume in that ep?? He was wearing a short-sleeved T-shirt! Oh well. Maybe I'll deal with that in another fanfic. <vbg>
So, have a seat, and don't expect this fanfic to be earth-shattering. It was just something I whipped up in like half an hour. I was in front of my computer and had finished writing this story before I even knew what I was doing! Hmmm, maybe that's the sign of a very dedicated (or demented, as the case may be <vbg> ) LNC fan!
The opening scene was not written by me, but was taken directly from the 1st season ep, "Fly Hard." Anyway, sit back and enjoy. As always, I'd love to hear your comments and feedback on this, as well as *any* of my stories. Enjoy!
By Erin Klingler <email@example.com>
(ELK on IRC)
Lois stared at Superman in amazed adoration as he floated her gently to the ground. "I knew you'd come," she told him breathlessly just before he placed her on the sidewalk outside of the Daily Planet building.
They stared into each other's eyes for a few moments before they heard Fuentes screaming as he fell from the scaffolding against the Planet building. They watched as he came hurtling down toward them exactly as Lois had only moments before.
Superman positioned himself underneath the falling terrorist, and caught him just before he hit the ground. Lois saw the nuclear device falling toward her, and she quickly reached out and caught it, both startled and surprised. Then Superman set Fuentes down and handed him over to the waiting police.
When he turned back to Lois and saw her holding the device, she simply smiled. "Other women catch bouquets, I catch bombs."
"I guess that's what makes you so special, Lois," Superman told her. They smiled at each other for a moment, then he took the device from her. "Here. I'll take care of this." Then, with one final smile, he flew slowly up into the night sky.
Lois watched him go, smiling dreamily after him. He sure was something. She started to turn around when she heard Perry's voice as he came out of the Planet, but something suddenly caught her eye.
There was something dark in the bushes by the corner of the building. Being the naturally curious person that she was, she decided to go check it out. She looked around to make sure no one was watching her, then went to investigate.
What she saw in the bushes surprised her. It was a T-shirt exactly like the one Clark had been wearing! She was sure of it. She picked it up from where it lay, lifted it to her nose, and breathed deeply. Almost immediately she recognized the scent of Clark's cologne.
Yup. The shirt was definitely his. Then she noticed something else. There was a pair of faded jeans lying a little deeper in the bushes, as well. Lois assumed that they must be Clark's as well.
So, the big question was, what in the world were Clark's clothes doing in the bushes outside of the Planet? Somewhere there was a tall, dark, handsome *and naked* man running around Metropolis looking desperately for his clothes.
She laughed out loud, then quickly clamped a hand over her mouth, hoping nobody had heard her. Then she looked back at the shirt in her hands, and smiled wickedly. Well, thinking about him running around Metropolis naked is not an entirely unpleasant thought, she decided.
She remembered how incredible he had looked that morning when she went to pick him up at his place and he had answered the door in only a towel. Hmmm, she murmured appreciatively. No, it's not an unpleasant thought at all.
The sound of more police officers arriving at the scene brought her back to the present, and she realized how crazy her thoughts were. Clark was a very modest person. She was sure that he wouldn't have just taken his clothes off and gone streaking into the night. So what other explanation was there?
She looked up and noticed she was standing directly below the scaffolding that she had fallen from only minutes before. Superman had caught her, and flown her safely to the ground pretty darned close to this spot.
Suddenly a light went on in her head.
Wait a minute! Of course! How could she have been so blind! Clark had been on the roof of the Planet trying to get to her just before she and Fuentes had fallen over the edge of the roof. Then they'd landed on the scaffolding halfway down the side of the building, and Clark had watched from the roof as she had tried to wrestle the nuclear device out of Fuentes' hands. Then one of the ropes holding the scaffolding had broken, and she felt herself falling.
But why hadn't she noticed Clark jumping over the edge of the building head first and come zooming down towards her, now suddenly in his Superman costume?
Well, I guess it's understandable since I was a little preoccupied at the time by watching the ground rushing up at me, she thought wryly. But what about Fuentes? He had been on the scaffolding, too. Hadn't he noticed? Maybe he'd been too busy watching her fall, or trying not to fall himself.
Lois thought about how Clark would have had to change into his Superman costume. Maybe he just wore it under his clothes. That would certainly explain why he always tugged at his tie, as if unloosening it, just before he rushed off whenever a crisis arose.
So, obviously he had to do something with his clothes when he changed. She ruled out her first thought that he stashed them on his being. Where would he have kept them? She'd seen how snugly his costume fit, showing every tiny, incredible detail of his male form.
Lois, don't go there, she reprimanded herself quickly, but not before an appreciative smile crossed her face. She forced herself to think. Maybe he just had to ditch his clothes wherever he decided to change into the Superman costume. After all, his clothes had to go somewhere.
She chuckled quietly to herself. Judging by the amount of times he changed into Superman each day, he must have to buy new clothes every week! There were probably parts of his wardrobe scattered all over the city! No wonder he never seemed to wear the same clothes (or ties) twice.
Well, that certainly explained a lot about his odd behavior. All those times when he disappeared whenever there was a crisis, and then wouldn't show up again until after it was all over. And it definitely explained about what he had said in the Planet when Fuentes had threatened to blow them up with his nuclear device.
She thought back, remembering it clearly because it had seemed so funny at the time. But now it made perfect sense. He and Lex had been arguing just after they had been taken hostage about what they should do. Lex had wanted to try to negotiate instead of just standing around, but Clark had disagreed.
Lex, angry and frustrated, had confronted Clark. "So what do you suggest we do, Mr. Kent? Just sit here and let them do whatever they want and wait for them to kill us?"
Then Clark had started in about how he didn't have a choice, and if he went out there to try to get to the bomb, they could kill any of them, and then the bomb could go off before he could stop it, and, well, he couldn't take that risk.
Then she and Lex had exchanged an amused look from across the room. Then she had turned back to Clark, and, with her voice laced with sarcasm, retorted, "Clark, take it easy! You're not Superman!"
But he was! Now she really wanted to kick herself. Of course he was Superman! How could she have been so blind! He'd been right under her nose all this time and she had never even realized it.
Well, they were going to have to have a long talk. A very long talk. But first things first. She wanted to make sure Lex was okay.
Looking once again at the shirt in her hands, she suddenly was faced with the dilemma of what to do with his clothes. Well, I'll just leave them here, she thought. Maybe he'll be back for them soon. Then, with a quick look around to make sure her actions wouldn't be seen, she stuffed the clothes back into the bushes and then went back to join Lex and the others.
A few minutes later, as she was sitting on the back of the ambulance with Lex, she heard Clark come out of the Planet with Jack. He and Jack talked for a minute, then Jack turned to leave. Lois knew this was her chance. She stood and sauntered over to Clark.
*The resemblance is uncanny*, Lois thought to herself as she neared him, studying him carefully. *I don't know why I never noticed it before.*
When she finally reached him, she smiled smugly at him. "I told you Superman wouldn't let us down."
Clark grinned back at her. "I'm sure he always had his eye on us."
Lois laughed a little at that, trying not to give her hand away too soon. "Just another Saturday night in Metropolis."
Clark laughed, too. "Yeah."
Lois couldn't stand it any longer. "Well, I think I'm gonna head for home."
"Maybe I should go with you to make sure you get home all right," Clark suggested, his usual concern for her resurfacing.
"Oh, don't worry Clark. I'll be fine." She paused long enough to smile at him. "But it looks like you could use somebody to look after you."
Clark looked confused. "What do you mean?"
"Well, it appears your mom never taught you how to correctly dress yourself." It was all Lois could do to keep from laughing out loud as Clark quickly looked down at his clothing with a very confused expression on his face, then back up at her.
Oh, this is *too* much fun, she thought to herself as she studied the baffled look on his face. Finally she decided to let him off the hook. She gave his chest a couple of quick pats and grinned like the cat that has just caught the mouse.
"Your shirt's on backwards," she told him, pausing for emphasis. "Superman."
She watched in pleasure as his jaw dropped and his eyes grew wide with shock. He was totally at a loss for words as she winked conspiratorially at him and turned to walked back to her boss and co-workers, leaving Clark staring after her in stunned silence.
She turned back to him once more just before she reached the ambulance. Trying to be discreet, she whispered, knowing full well that he could hear her just fine. "Call me soon. We'll talk."
(for now <bg>)