By Rachel M. <LnCSwing@AOL.COM>
Submitted January 1999
Summary: What impact would World War II have had on Lois, Clark and the gang if they had lived during that time? A fun story with a new perspective.
Okay, this one is kinda different from the ones I've done before. Really different. It deals with World War II and the impact it could have had on Lois, Clark, and the whole gang if they had prospered during that time period. Some might call it a Soulmates Chronicle, but I wouldn't call it that, because you don't see Lois and Clark's souls deposited in other people's bodies. Some might call it a time-traveling story that has to do with Tempus, but I wouldn't call it that, either, because the last time I checked, H.G. Wells was not in this story. It's simply a slight change in setting, and with Superman around during World War II, who knows what could happen? :) (I always did think that Dean looked hot in that soldier's uniform <g>) Oh, and I changed a few things, if that hasn't occurred to you yet. Some of the fighting will actually be going on in U.S., particularly in Metropolis (figures, huh? Don't worry, I'm not trying to change history here… everything will end up the same way). Lois and Clark are not married, in fact, they aren't even dating yet. There will be a few slang words present, such as "Japs" and perhaps a few others, and I sincerely hope that I don't offend anyone with this. They are merely being used for the historical purpose, and nothing else. I don't know much about wars, especially the ones back then, or the way they recruited men, you know, that kind of stuff. I just kinda guessed, and hoped it was right. So forgive me on that note, too, please. I guess you could say that it's staged somewhere towards the end of the 1st season, if it had happened back then, when Lois and Clark are best friends, and getting to the point of dating. I kinda sped up to the part where they actually start considering themselves as a couple, as you will see in a minute. Be warned, there is a WHAM in here, but don't worry, there is a happy ending! (perhaps too happy) Comments are welcome, as always, if you feel the need to let out your pent-up anger accumulated from the WHAM. But as WHAMy as it gets, I'm still a WAFFer at heart, so if you read the end, maybe you will understand the need for a WHAM in there. :)
Boom!… Boom!… Crash!… The far-off sounds of fighting reverberated across the newsroom at the Daily Planet. As a crowd of reporters gathered together around the window to see if they could witness more of the explosion, Perry White stepped out of his office.
"Let's go, people! What's more important, that ruckus outside, or the newspaper we have to publish in half an hour?" The group stared at him blankly. Perry glanced out the window just in time to see a trickle of smoke start to drift upwards many miles away. "I see your point."
Perry turned around to view a young man of about 24. He had tears in his eyes. "What is it, Jimmy?"
The young man looked away at an invisible object, wondering if he was going to be able to reveal his bad news or not. "I… I just drafted, Chief."
The older man paused, waiting for the words to sink in. They didn't. "You what, Jimmy? Did I hear you correctly?"
The tears that brimmed Jimmy's eyes finally spilled out. Once was enough. He couldn't say it again. "You heard what I said."
Perry was suddenly aware that the whole newsroom had gone quiet. These people were having as tough a time as he was. They all loved Jimmy as much as he did.
Jimmy sat down in a chair close by, as he realized his knees were in danger of collapsing. The elevator ding made a few heads turn, except for those who were still caught up in the moment.
When Lois Lane and Clark Kent stepped out, many of the occupants noticed another layer of tragedy envelope the room. Perry didn't like leaving Jimmy to fend for himself against the torrent of questions bombarded upon him, seeing as there *were* reporters present, but he noticed Lois motion for him to follow her, so he had to go.
"I'll be right back, son." Perry stepped into his office as Lois closed the door behind them.
"What's the matter with Jimmy?" she asked.
"He got drafted. The poor boy doesn't deserve to be drafted at such a young age. His life will be so marked by this he won't be able to recognize it anymore after it's all over. If he lives, that is."
"Actually, that's what I came here to talk to you about."
"What, if Jimmy's gonna live?"
"No… Clark got drafted, too."
Perry drew in a sharp breath. Jimmy was bad enough, but now Clark? He didn't understand. "I don't understand it. They've already got all the help they need. Those military people couldn't possibly need anymore men."
"I don't understand it, either. It's not fair. Two fairly young men ripped away from their jobs, families, and basically their whole lives, so they can skip right into a "kill or be killed" scenario. Stupid war."
Perry tried to listen to Lois as she lengthened her explanation of how much she detested wars, but he couldn't. When he glanced out his window and saw Clark looking forlorn as he talked to Jimmy, he couldn't help but let out a tiny, strangled sob.
Lois, meanwhile, had noticed the two young men, too. She watched Clark, not hearing anything, but seeing his mouth move. He had the most devastated appearance.
"So you see, Jimmy, that's why we need to go fight for our country. You don't want to see the good ole U.S. lose against those Germans and Japanese, do you?" (Author's note: By this time, the USSR has already switched sides.) Jimmy slowly shook his head. "Good. When are you going down to the recruiting office?"
"Me, too! Now we can go down there together. See? It's not going to be so bad." 'If only… ' Clark thought.
"Yeah, I guess so. But I can't stand to think about me dying out there, thousands of miles from home…"
"Then don't think about it! And besides, perhaps they might station us somewhere closer to home than you think… maybe even here in Metropolis."
"How can you be so calm about this, CK? You were drafted, too, if you haven't noticed yet…"
"Well, I think the best thing to do is to stay calm. If I get all worked up about this, it'll just make it worse." Clark, in reality, was squirming like a stuck pig inside. He knew he couldn't possibly get hurt unless the Germans decided to use Kryptonite rays or something, but he couldn't tell that to Jimmy… or Lois, or Perry. He had to try and stop this war! But if that didn't work, he was at a dead end.
He could either fight as Clark Kent, or Superman. He would have to make a decision… if he couldn't stop the war, that is. And the Germans knew that Superman was there for everybody, not just the United States. They knew that he would try anything and everything to stop the war, and that was their advantage. If he was so busy trying to *stop* the war, there would be no time for him to *fight* in it, would there?
And there was also the morales issue. Superman is known as a nice guy, sticking to his ethics in most cases, and *never* resolving to killing. That was another advantage for the Germans. They knew it, and Clark knew it. But there had to be a way around all of it… he just had to find it.
Clark listened to the recruiter drone on in a tired voice. He could relate. He had been standing in line all morning with Jimmy. And standing in line with Jimmy for two hours is not the best position to be in. But Clark meant it in a nice way, of course.
Jimmy was next, then Clark. Clark heard Jimmy state his name and age, but he tuned out after that, watching the antics of the young men behind him. They were completely oblivious to what they were getting into. If they kept goofing around like that, they were going to get reprimanded by Mr. Morning Person over here. Only when the recruiter said "next" for the third time did Clark snap out of it.
"Hey, Mac, are gonna stand around all day, or are you gonna join this war?" Clark looked at him blankly. "I *said*, are you gonna stand around—"
"I heard you."
"Well, then, c'mon. I got a ton of other guys to talk to, here." Clark stepped up to the table, looking at Jimmy who was standing aside, waiting for him. "Name?"
"Twenty-eight." Clark answered the other questions that were continuously fired at him, waiting patiently during the few times the recruiter yelled at the boys behind him. When the attack finally let up, the recruiter said something civil for a change.
"Good luck, Mac. We're rootin' for ya."
Clark gave him another blank look. "Uh… thanks." But his words were lost in the din as the man called the next person up.
"Hey, CK, that was great! He must like you or something!"
"Yeah… or something." Jimmy, for some reason, thought this was hilarious. Clark grinned along with him. He was trying to stay cheerful for Jimmy's sake, but some little demon seemed to just keep eating away at him. He, as Superman, had tried talking to President Eisenhower about staying out of the war, but the United States' leader would not listen to his reasoning. He said that the U.S. was already too much involved to pull out now. After Pearl Harbor, all they could think of was getting revenge on the Japs. So Superman had tried Mussolini, and out of desperation, Hitler, but neither of them paid any attention. They virtually blew him off, especially Hitler. Superman decided not to mess with Mr. Morning-glory Authoritarian. Ah, well. What's done is done and what's been tried has been tried.
Clark looked down at the sheet of paper the recruiter had given him. He was enlisted in the Army. No flying planes this time, or steering submarines. But that was okay. He'd rather be on the ground where he could leave unnoticeably… or so he thought.
"Hey, CK, what do we do now?" Jimmy had to repeat his question twice before Clark heard him. "CK, is it just me, or are you day dreaming more than usual?"
Jimmy laughed gleefully at having caught his friend off-guard. "Never mind. What do we do next?"
"Well, we go over to Metropolis' training base and then they'll send us off to God knows where to fight. What are you in?"
"That's our second piece of luck this week. I'm in the Army, too."
"At least we'll know each other."
"Yeah, and I'm sure you'll make plenty of buddies while training. But be careful with your relationships, Jim. A lot of them are going to die."
"Yeah…" Jimmy whispered sadly. "And one of us could die, too. I don't exactly want to watch you die, CK."
"Well, Jimmy, I get the feeling that that's something you're not going to have to worry about."
Approximately six weeks later
"Great job, young man, you're ready to fight. You didn't need much training, anyway." The Drill Sergeant passed Jimmy by with everything he'd need for the trip out to wherever he was going. "Stop by the office on your way out, and we'll give you your papers as to where you're headed. Good luck."
"Thanks, Drill Sergeant!" The higher-ranked man gave Jimmy a stern look. "… Sir."
"That's better. Make sure you don't make a habit of that, or you're gonna get in heaps of trouble out there."
"Yes, sir." But Jimmy's words were not heard. Clark was next in line, and the Drill Sergeant was practically in tears.
"And *you,* my boy, give 'training' a whole new meaning! You've taken it to the next level… literally. My sincere thanks to you, and I'm sure you'll do whatever's possible to keep yourself from getting killed. When you get back, you're staying! You could become a General!"
"Thanks, anyway, Sir, but I already have a job…" Clark looked at Jimmy with a meaningful look. Even the Drill Sergeant noticed it.
"Right… well, good luck!"
"Thanks." The Sergeant completely forgot to tell Clark to check by the office on his way out.
"Bye, son… we're gonna miss ya." Perry's eyes brimmed with tears knowing this could very well be the last time he saw Jimmy or Clark, not to mention some of his other young male employees. He enveloped Jimmy in a huge bear hug, and shook Clark's hand. (Clark refused to let Perry hug him, fearing that he would crush his bones in his state of anxiety.) "Do us proud, Kent… we'll have a welcome home party and a front page headline waiting for you if… when you get back."
Clark gave Perry's hand a squeeze and then turned to Lois, who, at the time, was hugging Jimmy. When she released the slightly dazed young man, she turned to look at Clark.
Clark thought he knew what was coming next: 'Bye, partner, see you if you ever get back. Don't accidentally shoot yourself.' He braced himself for what was to come, but discovered that no piercing words were being thrown at him, but instead a pair of arms were… right around his neck. He was surprised. He hadn't expected this. But what really made him lift his eyebrows was what came next.
"I'm really gonna miss you, Clark. I thought I'd never admit it, but now I realize that if you don't come back, I'm not going to be able to handle it…"
Clark was speechless. How was he to reply? 'I love you, Lois, and I just wanted to make sure you knew that before I left… oh, yeah, and I'm Superman, so you don't have to worry'? No, that wouldn't work. But he didn't want to leave her thinking that he could die. It would break his heart to think of her worrying about him. He would have to write her lots of letters to ease her fears. Why couldn't he come up with enough courage to tell her the truth? He would certainly leave without her worrying about him, but it would also leave her extremely angry… at least, that's how he thought she'd react. He skipped back into reality for the moment, not wanting to think about that when he had Lois in his arms.
"God, Lois, I don't want to leave. I just wanna stay." Clark heard himself talk, and realized he sounded like a little boy with the end of summer vacation just around the corner. He knew he couldn't stay, but that's what he wanted to do. He wanted to stay with Lois.
"I know… I know."
Clark felt Lois' hands moving around on his back. He just wanted to stay like this forever, holding Lois. "Lois, please don't worry about Jimmy and me. We're going to be fine. I'm going to watch Jimmy like a vulture, and I'll make sure he doesn't die, even it means me instead of him…" 'This is true,' thought Clark, 'if they're using Kryptonite rays… '
"What about you? What will happen to you?"
"Don't worry about me… I'm a big boy, I can take care of myself…" Clark watched that statement draw a small grin out of Lois. "I'm coming back… I promise."
"How can you be so sure? How can I believe you when you're going to fight in a *war* for crying out loud?"
Clark wondered about his answer for a minute. Should he tell her now, in front of the eyes, ears, and *mouths* of Metropolis? Sure would be risky… no doubt there was a snitch around. "Lois… I promise. If that ever means anything to you, let it be now. When I say I'm coming back… I'm coming back. Okay?"
Lois looked skeptical, then forlorn, and then looked at Clark with such trust in her eyes that he was taken aback. "All right. Just come back, Clark… I don't want to lose you." Clark let Lois go, then changed his mind and leaned forward and kissed her on the cheek.
He stepped back and turned around, and started to walk away, with his hand still touching Lois' cheek. When his hand finally slipped away, Lois looked up at Clark one more time. She couldn't believe that feeling she was having. All at once, in one moment, she had started feeling something more for this man than just friendship. He was looking at the floor, so Lois knew he was crying. Men always do that when they're crying.
What happened next was an impulsive action. She grabbed Clark by the arm and pulled him back into her embrace. Clark looked surprised, so she took advantage of the moment. Not even thinking twice about it, she pulled him closer to kiss him… but his hat was in the way. She smiled and raised her hand up to take it off, but by this time Clark was aware of what was going on. He smiled, too, and took his hat from Lois. And then, in unison, they leaned forward and their lips met. No one seemed to notice that Clark had dropped his hat.
Both Lois and Clark savored the fireworks that seemed to surround them in bright colors. Clark's heart was leaping with joy and relief, and Lois' brain was turned off for once. All she could comprehend was that she was kissing Clark… and it felt so *right*! Then it was over as fast as it had begun. The fireworks slowly died away, but the feeling both of them had in common didn't.
Perry, Jimmy, and most of the newsroom watched this rare exchange with amusement. They'd probably have to pick Clark up and carry him out, or at least pry the two apart with a crowbar.
Lois watched the stars in Clark's eyes dance around, and both of them knew at that moment, that they had found their match. No doubts or regrets, only the feeling you get when you're certain something is right, and you're going to make sure it's right. The only problem was, neither of them would admit it to the other. Clark wanted to peer into Lois' soul for eternity, but he knew that if he didn't leave now, he'd never be able to.
"Good-bye, Lois." If he had said anything else, he would've really embarrassed himself. He lingered for just a second more, then strolled up the ramp to the elevator. Jimmy followed close behind with a huge grin on his face, despite the knowledge of what was to come.
Lois watched Clark push the call button for the elevator. He sure did look smart in that uniform. It wasn't fancy, for the manufacturers had had to make thousands of others just like it, but she didn't mind. It still looked good on him.
Just then the elevator doors opened, and Clark, Jimmy, and some other fellow employees dressed like them stepped in. Clark looked at Lois one last time as the doors closed.
Lois knew that would be the last she'd see of him for quite a long time.
As soon as the elevator doors closed and locked, Clark unbuttoned the top button of his shirt. The level of the tension in the newsroom had been excruciatingly stifling. The other smiling people in the elevator said nothing to prevent any further embarrassment, except, of course, for Jimmy.
"Hey, CK, that was *so* cool! Man, that was great! You're one lucky guy, because if I ever had a girl who looked like Lois, thought like Lois, jeez, it— OOMF!"
A sympathetic movie critic elbowed Jimmy in the stomach, and suddenly Jimmy didn't feel like talking anymore. He wasn't even sure if he still could.
"JIMMY! Don't leave me now, *please!* You can't just leave me here all by myself!"
"Gee-whiz, CK, I'm right here! Quit shouting!"
Clark was startled awake. He looked drowsily around and saw Jimmy's arm descend from the top bunk and start waving around near his face. Clark pushed it away and stood up to see Jimmy. He looked similarly bedraggled.
"Sorry, Jimmy, I must've been dreaming."
"Well, dream more quietly next time, okay?" Jimmy turned over and started snoring almost immediately.
They had been riding on the train since 1 A.M.; both headed to London to back up the Great Britain soldiers. The Germans were pressing hard, and they were having trouble holding them back. With France already conquered, things looked pretty dim for the few that were left to fight the hordes pouring into Great Britain.
Clark sighed and got back into his bunk. He stared at the bottom of Jimmy's bed for a while, wondering about the future. Would he ever see Lois, Perry, and the Planet again? Or his mom and dad? He remembered saying goodbye to all of them, and the sad feelings started to return. But he didn't have time to get depressed, because sleep overtook him before he could even blink.
Clark stared around him in amazement. If he looked to his left, he saw young men frolicking in the snow, and when he turned to his right, he saw men his age and older playing cards. They were making the best of the situation, and he was proud of them for it. He was especially happy for Jimmy. His young friend had brightened up once they had stopped early in the morning to refuel. He had already found some friends, and now they were having a snowball fight.
Clark picked up some snow and packed. He aimed carefully and threw it at Jimmy, but missed him by inches and instead hit the young man chasing Jimmy from behind.
"Hey, CK wants to play!" Jimmy bounded up beside him and stuffed a snowball in his face.
"You're asking for it, Jimmy…"
Jimmy just burst out laughing. "You look pretty intimidating there, CK, with snow all over your face!"
Clark growled and chased Jimmy all over the field, with a pack of men chasing both of them.
About half an hour later, Jimmy brushed the snow off his clothes and put his hands into his pockets to warm them up. He felt something in his right one, so he pulled it out to look at it. It was a picture of Lois. He wondered why he had a picture of Lois in his pocket. But then he remembered that he had borrowed a pair of pants from CK because the knees in his were torn. He jumped up from the ground and raced over to Clark, who was still pelting snowballs at their newfound friends.
"Yeah?" Clark stopped throwing to acknowledge Jimmy, but as soon as he did, he was beaned right in the head. "Time out!" He had to yell at them a few more times before they actually stopped.
"Okay, what is it?" Clark smiled at the flushed Jimmy.
"I found this in your pocket." Jimmy handed the picture over to Clark and grinned from ear to ear.
Clark looked down at the object Jimmy had given to him, and immediately smiled wider. "Thanks, Jimbo."
All of a sudden, there was a horde of boys looking over Clark's shoulder.
"Wow, she's a looker, pal!"
"Yeah, where'd you dig her up, heaven?"
"You could say that," Clark replied quietly. Cat-calls sounded, but two minutes later all of them were uninterested and they all jumped onto the train. Clark gave Lois' picture a tender look before depositing it in his own pocket.
Jimmy just grinned some more.
"Psst! Jim! Set yeself down dere, boy! Did ye not see t' Cap'n put his han' up?!"
"Sorry, Melv, I wasn't paying attention…"
Melvin Coruggurs shook his head in disappointment. "Ye got to pay attention to yon Cap'n, or he'll have your head on a silva platta!" Melvin looked up just in time to see Captain Murphy make a zipper-like motion across his lips.
The leader had another hunch. He duck-walked to the bend in the road and looked around it. Almost immediately, a torrent of bullets whizzed past his head. He jumped back and signaled the soldiers to their designated positions. He didn't want to take any chances with this one. He had already lost too many men. He waited a few more seconds, then put his hand up again. Jimmy, Melvin, and the others raised their guns.
Captain Murphy let his hand drop.
Melvin giggled. "Hehehe… I bet those Germans thought it was rainin' bullets today!"
Jimmy wasn't as enthusiastic as his fellow fighter. "Yeah… I'm sure." He wasn't very happy with the fact that he had killed someone. Someone who probably had a family and a job waiting for him back home. Perhaps even someone who hadn't even wanted to fight in the first place, but had to, just like himself. Jimmy realized that he had killed a human, someone exactly like him, with feelings, and maybe compassion towards fellow men.
He had learned an important lesson that day. Nothing was ever worth killing for.
"Hey, Jim, ye alright?"
Jimmy tried to rid his head the awful memories from earlier that day.
"Yeah, I'm all right, Melv."
Clark wasn't having a very good day, either. He had been put in a different platoon than Jimmy, and the only time he had gotten to see him was when they came back to camp from their daily patrols. They were making adequate progress, and they kept on pushing even when a cloud of despair seemed to loom over them all. He had had only one or two chances to get away as Superman, and even then he had only been able to help a little. All of this killing around him was bothering him. And it seemed that even getting away from it all had its downsides. Both times when he had gotten back, he had been reprimanded; first for being tardy, second for not hustling. The Captain was not too pleased. Oh, of course Clark had apologized repetitively, but it did no good. No excuse ever did much good in the Army. He was set to mess hall duty for a week. That meant cleaning up whatever slop the rest of the soldiers left behind in their stampede to eat and get out. But everyone liked Clark, so they tried not to leave a big mess.
Jimmy watched in horror as the young man sitting next to him had his arm blown off by an exploding shell. The victim cried out in agony as a bullet came within inches of Jimmy's face. He hated this. He wanted to go home. He wanted the war to end, so he wouldn't have to witness any more scenes like the one he just had. This was stupid. Be he didn't have time to criticize, because he was fighting for his life. All platoons had been deployed for this day. Some were calling it D-Day, and Jimmy was beginning to see why. Doom seemed to be hanging over the beach. But at least he had Clark fighting right beside him.
Jimmy sighted along the end of his gun and shot a German at the top of what appeared to be a plateau. It was so flat; there was basically nothing to block his vision. He looked over on his other side at Clark so he wouldn't have to watch the medics take care of the armless man on his other side. Clark was just as busy as he was.
"Hey, Jim… are you thinking what I'm thinking?"
"That this war is completely unnecessary?"
"Exactly." Clark couldn't stand killing other people. He didn't have to, for the phrase "kill or be killed" meant nothing to him. But he was fighting for his country, not to mention numerous others. That was the most important goal right now. He would worry about his actions later. Right now, the Allies had a war to win.
About 3 hours later, Clark sat back in relief. They had pushed the Axis Powers' troops back far enough to turn things around. Perhaps now he and Jimmy could go home. Clark looked around for Jimmy. Where could he be? He had been just beside him a few minutes ago.
'Uh-oh,' Clark thought, "what if Jimmy got hurt? They probably took him off somewhere.' Clark slipped behind a rocky outcrop and changed into the Suit. As he took off, he couldn't help but kick himself for not keeping track of his young friend. He would never be able to forgive himself if Jimmy died…
Clark found Jimmy in a serious state — half-drowned in the water off the coast of the beach where they'd been fighting. Clark quickly rushed him to a military hospital in Great Britain that had been lucky enough not to get destroyed.
As he set Jimmy down, he said to the nurse, "Please make sure he lives… he's a very dear friend of mine." Clark made sure there were no tears in his eyes to preserve the heroic image, but he couldn't stop the one that managed to squeeze out. These past few months had been very emotional for him.
The nurse noticed the tear and looked so sympathetic that Clark thought he was going to be sick. But for some reason, he was thankful that she had noticed his pain and anger at himself, for she said she would do whatever she could for him while a doctor tended for Jimmy.
Clark politely refused. "I have other rounds to make… I need to see if there are any more survivors."
So Clark flew back across the English Channel to look for any other remaining soldiers. There were very few, but Clark went as fast as he could to transport all of them back to the hospital. As he set the last one down, he x-rayed the wall to check on Jimmy one more time before leaving for the base right on the coast of Great Britain. He had to report the situation to someone… if there *was* someone…
"How did you get here, young man, if you were all the way over on the coast of France not half an hour ago?"
Clark pondered General Smith's question a second. "I had Superman give me a lift, sir."
"Ah, yes. He's been a lot of help around here lately…" Clark smiled slightly.
"Well, my boy, you're free to go, seeing as your whole platoon is either dead or injured. I'm sorry to hear about all your friends. I knew that James Olsen was of particular—"
"Oh, Jimmy's not dead… he's being taken care of at the moment."
"Oh, yes, that's right. Anyway, we'll have a boat come pick you up this evening."
"Oh, no thank you, Sir. With your permission, I would like to stay here with Jimmy until he gets better."
"Of course, Mr. Kent. Let me know when I can be of service."
"Thank you, Sir, for everything, but I don't think I'll need anything. Superman has already volunteered to fly me back when I'm ready." Clark shook the kind General's hand, and then left the tent. He needed to get back to Jimmy.
"Jimmy?" Clark looked at his friend's pale face with concern. The nurse said that he was better than he had been before, but Clark wasn't so sure. Jimmy didn't look at all far enough from danger to be completely safe.
Jimmy opened his eyes slowly to look at Clark. "Hey, CK…" he said meekly.
"How're you feeling, pal?"
"Okay… okay." Jimmy shifted positions in the hospital bed and immediately groaned with pain. Clark jumped up from his chair to help Jimmy get comfortable.
"God, Jimmy, I'm so sorry…"
"For letting you get hurt like this."
"Oh, gosh, CK… I'm not really all that hurt. The doctor said I just have a few cuts and bruises, and that I got hit by a bullet ricocheting off a rock."
"Really?" Clark's voice became more worried. "Where?"
"In my leg." Jimmy pushed the sheets down to show a bandage on his lower thigh. "Here." He pointed at it. Clark looked up at Jimmy, a guilty look on his face. "Gosh, CK, it wasn't your fault that I got *shot*! Jeez, it's okay!" Jimmy laughed and leaned back onto his pillows. "It was kind of funny, actually… it just kinda jumped up and *bit* me!" (Another Author's Note: Reference to "Forrest Gump" unintentional…"Forrest Gump" was not out in 1940s and 50s <g>) Clark laughed along with his friend, relaxed, now that he knew Jimmy was going to be okay.
"Anyway, the doctor says I can get outta here in a week or so." Jimmy watched a disappointed look come across Clark's face. "Why don't you go on home? I mean, it beats staying here for another week, and I'm sure you wanna see *Looois… *"
Clark's head snapped up at Jimmy's jeer. "You're asking for it, Jimbo."
Jimmy laughed. "What, you're going to attack a helpless, injured soldier in a hospital bed?"
"Yup." Clark growled and made as if he was going to grab Jimmy, but stopped just in time.
Jimmy laughed again. "Go on home, Clark. I'll be fine."
Clark looked at Jimmy, reluctant to leave. But he sure did want to see Lois! Clark headed for the door, but then turned around, suddenly feeling guilty again.
"I'll visit everyday…"
"Yeah, right… you're gonna fly across the Atlantic Ocean every day?" Jimmy teased.
Clark almost said yes. "I'll get Superman to fly me, and I'm sure he'll be glad to bring everyone over, as a matter of fact…"
"I'll take care of it personally." Clark saluted smartly.
Jimmy saluted back with vigor, and Clark ran out of the room, dashed out of the hospital, and jumped up into the sky joyfully, knowing that he was finally headed for home!
Perry watched Lois greet the messenger with a nod, and saw him hand her a telegram. Lois' eyes met Perry's, and she looked extremely worried. Perry calmly walked out of his office, hoping to God that it wasn't a death notice or anything like that.
Lois opened the telegram slowly, determined not to lose her nerve. She scanned the text, and then smiled with relief. She handed it to Perry, and then exclaimed, "This is great!"
After Perry had read the letter himself, he looked at Lois incredulously. "Lois, the telegram says that Jimmy is at a hospital in Great Britain with minor injuries… how could this be great?"
"Because it wasn't about Clark or him dying, and now it means that he can come home. He doesn't have to fight anymore! Remember about D-Day? That's basically victory for our side! That means *everyone* can come home!"
Clark watched Lois prance around her desk happily. No one had noticed him yet, and he was thankful for that. He had stopped momentarily by a particular small town in Kansas to let his parents know that he was back, and then he had flown non-stop to Metropolis. He smiled as he saw all the familiar faces… most of them women, with a few men too old to fight, including Perry. He breathed in the smell of the newsroom he had missed so much over the long months, and wondered when Lois would notice him. He was not a very patient man.
That was when Lois *did* see him.
Lois looked at the figure at the top of the ramp near the coffee machine, holding a hat in his hand and still wearing a uniform. He looked haggard and weary, and for a moment she wasn't even sure it was him.
Clark thought that she looked just as beautiful in reality as she did in the frequent dreams he had had while away. Perhaps a little bit more tired-looking than before, but he didn't mind. It was her just the same.
All heads in the newsroom swiveled to look at Clark Kent, one of the many men they had not seen in a long time, and then back to look at Lois Lane, who looked happier than they'd *ever* seen her.
Clark noticed Lois start walking towards the base of ramp, and as quickly as she did it, it still seemed like forever. His head started jumping around as if he were drunk, and a wonderful feeling enveloped his whole body. He wondered if he was going to be able to keep his feet from running down the ramp on their own accord. He was having a hard time keeping from fidgeting as it was.
"Hey there, partner." Lois grinned wryly, and then crossed her arms teasingly.
"Hey," Clark replied softly. Then he didn't have any comprehension of what happened next.
Lois' feet were starting to twitch. Suddenly, she didn't care if the whole world was watching her. She ran up that ramp as quickly as she could, and collapsed into the arms that belonged to the man she loved.
Clark had watched Lois run up the ramp, and he opened his arms wide to welcome her. He faintly heard clapping, but then he heard nothing except the beating of his heart and the beating of the one inside of the woman he loved. He squeezed her tightly and closed his eyes as he felt the feeling come back, the one he had looked forward to for so long.
Lois was in heaven. She had missed him so much! She had missed the feeling of his arms around her, and the way he made her think. She couldn't have cared less about *anything* going on around her… all she cared about was the man holding her lovingly against him. She had completely forgotten about the plan she had meant to carry out as soon as she saw him. Now she was making it all up as it went, and she thought to herself, 'This is what love really is. I've never felt *real* love before, but if I ever know what love feels like, I bet this is it.'
And Lois isn't a person to waste time, and miss perfectly good opportunities. So she leaned backward to look into Clark's eyes, and saw something she'd never really seen before: a look of love, joy, sadness, concern, and agony all at once. But the one thing she saw the most was love… love for her, she knew. In response to this, she put as much love as she could in her own eyes, similar to that of a "Precious Moments" doll, and leaned forward.
Clark opened his eyes as soon as he felt Lois pull away slightly. He looked into her eyes, and unleashed everything he'd encountered during the war. He thought he heard Lois acknowledge this, but maybe it had just been his imagination. Then he saw the most beautiful look that anyone had ever given him. He had seen a lot of looks before, received from other people: awe, anger, hatred, admiration, gratefulness, and many others. But he had never been lucky enough to receive such a look of true love from anyone, not even his parents. Oh, he knew they loved him, but they didn't count. Then, after looking into her eyes for a surprisingly short time (at least in his clock-spinning world), he saw her lean forward, inch by inch…
Then they leaned towards each other together, and their lips met in a soft, gentle kiss. Then Lois pulled back to look at Clark again, and, up close, she saw something she'd never seen before.
Perhaps it was the jar of feelings that had woken up her brain, or maybe it was just all the excitement from first, the telegram, and now, Clark showing up. But she looked past the glasses and saw a man whom she'd admired ever since he'd shown up, one who saved other people, and one who'd saved her in many ways. She realized she should be kicking and screaming right now, but she wasn't. She was looking into the eyes of a man whom she'd admired ever since he'd shown up, a man who saved other people, and one who'd saved her in many ways…
She now knew that the meaning of hesitation was nonexistent, at least for her. She practically lunged forward and met Clark's lips with passion, and she kissed him like she'd never kissed any other man before. He was the one and *only* man in her life now, and she was going to make sure he knew that.
At Lois and Clark's wedding eight months later, Jimmy was flirting with a bridesmaid when Clark appeared beside him.
"Hey, CK! How's the groom on this glorious day?"
"Nervous." Clark straightened his tie, smiling as he remembered that happy, happy day eight months ago. "How's the leg?"
"Starting to feel like normal again."
"That's good." Clark didn't hear Jimmy's reply, because now he had something else on his mind.
He walked up to the doors that led into the sanctuary of the church and paused for a second to consciously straighten his tie again, even though it was about as straight as it was going to get. He then opened the doors with one swift swing and confidently walked straight towards the alter where he and Lois would be standing together, he knew, not even minutes from now.
He looked out at all the smiling faces, and he recognized a lot of them. Co-workers, friends, close family, distant relatives… even a former girlfriend or two.
'Ouch,' Clark thought, worrying that Lois would notice them.
He looked at all these people who cared for Lois and him, and realized that *this* was what he had fought for. Love, peace, happiness, harmony… all of them shining out of all these people.
Then the doors at the back opened, and out stepped the most radiant one of them all… and Clark knew that this was what he had been dreaming about all these years… this was what he wanted. And he was one of the lucky ones that ever got the one thing they really wanted in life.
The war might've been hard to get through, but it was worth it to come home to these caring people. He had fought for a worthy cause… and would do it again in a second.