Tacit Implications

By Bev <Bevbissm@aol.com>

Rated PG-13

Submitted January 2000

Summary: Lois and Clark's relationship could have easily taken a different turn during the first season — especially while undercover at the honeymoon suite.

This story takes place in season 1. It always bothered me that Clark was later revealed to be a virgin, because in this episode it seemed to my mind that there was a tacit implication that both LL & CK had slept with partners but not committed to living together. When they discuss living with someone the use of the words 'full time' implied to me the occasional stopover, but no names on rent book situations. Various things are out of sync, partly due to memory failure but mainly due to my storyline requirements. Anyway, this is my first attempt at fanfic, I went completely off tangent from my original intentions ie the tacit implication, realized writing is no way as easy as I first thought and ended up with this. It's not meant to offend anyone, the characters belong to Warner Bros, ABC etc, standard disclaimers apply etc. Bear in mind I haven't written any fiction - though some of the staff appraisal reports the paid employment forces me to do have come close to fiction at times - since my 'O' levels back in 1975 which with the dawning of the new millennium has left me feeling shocked that I left school a quarter of a century ago. Feedback would be appreciated to me personally at Bevbissm@aol.com. Special thanks go to Sarah Murray for editing this, without whose help I wouldn't have dared submit this.


"Where am I?" Lois wondered as she woke up, unaccustomed to satin sheets and a king-size bed. She soon realised exactly where she was - the honeymoon suite at the Lexor Hotel. "Typical. I finally make it to the honeymoon suite and I'm on surveillance with my work partner as opposed to a passion-filled honeymoon with my life partner!" She began to think about her 'life' partner. Looks weren't overly important, though obviously that would have been part of the initial attraction. Physical and mental compatibility was what counted. An image of Clark kept filtering through her mind; it left her feeling confused one moment, amenable the next.

Lois slipped out of her nightgown and put on an old sweatshirt. She stepped into Clark's room and was greeted by the sight of his pants-clad butt rising and falling. For a fleeting moment she imagined being underneath him <stop this, Lane!>. The realisation that Clark probably commenced his day with press-ups soon hit home. She'd seen him half-naked before, when he first came to Metropolis and they were forced (her interpretation of events) to work together on the Prometheus investigation. Presumably a body like that had to be worked at; it wasn't a God-given, effortless gift.

"Hi," Clark greeted Lois as he realised he had an audience. "What?"

"You look pretty good for first thing in the morning," she told him.

"You don't look so bad yourself." He grinned at her. There was some initial embarrassment, which Clark overcame by suggesting they order room service breakfast. They took it in turn to use the bathroom and were both fully dressed as if genuine honeymooners ie relaxed clothing as opposed to office/formal attire when breakfast was delivered.

For some strange reason Clark felt frivolous. Breakfast arrived, he tipped the waiter.

"So Lois, how do you want your first 'married breakfast' served? In bed?" Clark asked with just a hint of suggestiveness.

"Clark, you know perfectly well this is just an investigation!"

"Oh Lois, cut loose! Relax! There won't be anything going on until tonight. Let's just enjoy ourselves, attempt to have fun!" he said in a slightly exasperated tone of voice.

Lois felt herself relenting and decided to play along. "OK, I'll feed you." <It'll give me some practice for when - ohmigod what do I mean, 'when'? Substitute 'if' for 'when' she told herself" I have a proper baby> she thought to herself. "You know Clark, have you ever heard the question 'why are little boys so awkward?"

"No…" Clark responded rather cautiously.

"It's because they're practising to be men," Lois replied triumphantly.

"Touché Lois, touché" was the response. Somehow whatever moment there had been was lost. Each ate their breakfast in a slightly subdued manner. Clark's feeling of frivolity vanished; Lois felt she had somehow changed the ambience without even trying.

Much to Clark's relief his pager went off. It was a message to contact his father ASAP. "Lois, I have to phone my dad, something must be up, he doesn't contact me at work or by pager unless it's an emergency." <In fact, he's never contacted me at work> Clark thought worriedly. He dialed his parents' number. Clark was surprised to hear his father's voice answer; he expected him to be busy working on the farm at this time of day. "Dad, is anything wrong? Are you and Mom OK?"

"Hi, son." Jonathan sounded weary. "I'm OK <physically, he told himself>. Your mom, well, she's sort of fine. Look, Clark, there's no need to panic, no one is ill or dying but I really need to see you to explain some things. It'd be better if you could come over here and let me tell you face to face. I don't want to interrupt your work or anything, though. Come by this evening if it's convenient."

Clark instinctively knew something was wrong, "I'll get to back to you as soon as I can, Dad. Talk soon, love to Mom."

"Everything OK?" Lois asked.

"Yea, look, I have to pop back to my apartment for something, will you be OK here while I go? I'll be as quick as I can."

"Of course I will, Clark. Let's face it, nothing will probably happen again until tonight. We just need some more evidence than the suspicious behavior we saw last night. If anyone asks, I'll just tell them my new husband has had to visit the nearest pharmacy!" Lois grinned at him. Clark had the grace to laugh and blew a kiss to Lois as he left the room.

Clark found a convenient alley and changed into his Superman suit. He flew as fast as he could to Smallville and entered his parents' farmhouse in his Clark clothing. He was relieved to hear the heartbeats of both his parents; whatever was going on was really worrying him. "Hi, son. See, Jonathan, I told you he wouldn't be able to wait," Martha said to both her husband and her son, though her tone of voice changed slightly when addressing her husband.

Clark sensed an atmosphere. "What's going on? Is someone ill?"

"Nothing is 'going on,' Clark, your father is over-reacting and making a mountain out of a molehill."

"Will someone please explain to me then, because I've never seen or heard you guys argue, but even without that experience I can tell something isn't right here," Clark asked both his parents, anxious that one of them provide an explanation as to what was happening, and feeling more worried as time went by.

"Your mother wants us to sell the farm, get divorced and start a new life without me," Jonathan stated. Clark looked horror-struck.

"Jonathan, you know that's not true. What I would like to do, Clark, is to lease some land out to Wayne Irig to pay for a women's writing summer camp at Kansas State University. I DO NOT want to divorce you, Jonathan, though heaven knows your stubbornness over this is almost making that an appealing idea. Clark, you and your father mean the world to me, the farm does. But I need something else. I want to write, like you do. Not for a newspaper, just submit articles to magazines now and then to see if I'm capable of being on a par with those writers who do it professionally. I don't want to give up on my family, just expand my mind. That does not mean divorce, abandonment whatever you want to call it. If you could look at this positively, Jonathan, you could even see some benefits!" Martha was now shouting. "Look at Clark, he needed to travel, Kansas isn't big enough for him. It is big enough for me. I don't want a big-city life. I want my husband, my son to visit occasionally but I need to express myself!"

Clark didn't know what to say. He could see things from both points of view, but his sympathies were more with his mother, truth be told. Then he felt guilty. He didn't want to be a farmer. His dad wouldn't have the pleasure of handing the family business over to him one day. "I think you guys need to sit down and talk to one another," Clark finally pronounced, eager to move things on. "Maybe you could stay at my apartment for a few days, Lois and I are working under cover at the moment and we're staying at the Lexor for a few days. I'm not saying it would be the answer to all this, but it would give you both a break and the chance to talk. How about it?"

Martha and Jonathan looked at one another. "I'm willing if you are," Martha spoke to Jonathan.

"OK" was Jonathan's reply.

Clark was unsure of his parents' moods; he wasn't used to seeing them argue. "Just promise me one thing," Clark asked of his parents, "no quickie divorce!"

"Oh, Clark!" Martha hugged her son. She'd have to get through to her husband that she had no desire to upset the family status quo, she loved him and their son.

Clark dropped his parents off at his apartment then returned to the Lexor. "Hi, honey," he said brightly as he entered the hotel suite. He hadn't noticed anyone about but it was best to keep up the illusion of newlyweds.

"Hi, handsome," was Lois' response. <Actually, he really is handsome, she admitted to herself>. "Did you get what you needed from your apartment?" she enquired, acutely aware that Clark's mind seemed to be elsewhere.

"Yea. Lois?" Clark's voice was pleading almost, "can we talk? Well, me talk, you listen, lend a friendly ear, tell me when I'm rambling etc etc. I need someone to talk to and as we've got to do something until the intruders show up opposite….."

"No problem, Clark, come and sit here beside me on the bed. I promise I won't try anything." Lois had never seen Clark like this before. She sensed that this could be something new in their - their what? Friendship, relationship? All of a sudden Clark pinned her to the bed and was kissing her passionately. <What the hell's going on> was her initial reaction. She instinctively fought against Clark, but then something strange happened. She started to respond to his passionate embrace. <Wow, he's some kisser; I had him marked down as on the inexperienced side.>

The door opened and in came the maid with clean towels. She was singing away to herself then noticed the couple on the bed. "Oh, sorry!" she apologized, deposited the towels and made a quick exit. Clark pulled away from Lois. "Wow!" was all Lois could say.

"I, I heard her singing and well, well I thought we'd better look like a honeymoon couple," explained Clark.

"Good thinking, partner," smiled Lois, "now weren't you going to talk and me listen for a change?"

Clark half smiled at Lois. She really wasn't the hard-nosed reporter she liked to portray. She could be so understanding (he hoped). He was trying to compose his words carefully, he'd have to tell her more about himself than he wanted to, but he didn't want to tell her everything. She'd have realized something was going on with his family, there was no way he could get that past her. It would probably be easier (and on his conscience) if he just omitted certain facts and implied others. "Lois, I don't want your sympathy, or anything actually, just someone to listen to me, sort of like confession Catholics go to. I don't know why, but I feel an urge to talk about things instead of bottling them up."

Lois looked at Clark with a puzzled expression. "What's wrong, Clark? You can talk to me, it's just I'm not used to seeing you like well - like this. You normally seem, well, in control of everything."

"I know, but, well, today, actually not just today, I need to talk. I don't know why, but I do. It's not very good, but it's the best I can come up with I'm afraid."

Lois looked at Clark, really looked at Clark. He looked in some kind of inner turmoil; she genuinely wanted to hear what he had to say, not out of curiosity but out of what, friendship? He looked for reassurance in her face and saw it there. <Where do I start? How about at the beginning, his conscience answered him.> "I've never told anyone what I'm about to tell you before, though obviously some people know parts of this. Lois, I want you to understand, I love my mom and dad dearly, and they're the best parents in the world. But right now they're not in Kansas, they're staying at my apartment in Metropolis. They're having one or two problems, nothing that can't <I hope> be sorted out but I feel kind of, well, not responsible exactly, but like I've contributed maybe."

Lois was tempted to interrupt, as Clark was babbling, but she sensed that this was not the right time to do so.

"My mom and dad, they're my parents, and I love them to bits, but they're not my biological parents…. I'm adopted." Lois nodded, understanding coming over her. She wasn't overly surprised. She'd always liked Martha and Jonathan, envied their relationship with their son, but she had noticed there was no physical resemblance between Clark and his parents. A myriad of thoughts went going round her head; Clark was illegitimate being the overriding one. She felt it was time to offer a comment, hopefully not one that would knock Clark back.

"Things were different in the sixties, I'm sure your biological parents had good reasons for… <she paused, what, for giving you up? > Not being able to bring you up. And let's face it, you couldn't wish for better parents than Martha and Jonathan. I only wish mine had been half as good as yours."

"I know that, Lois. I know that. It's just more complicated than that <here comes the economical with the truth part, he told himself>. It wasn't exactly a straightforward adoption, though it was all legal <eventually, he reminded himself>. For certain reasons, I was well I suppose the modern terminology is 'abandoned'. Martha and Jonathan found me in Shuster's Field. They took me in, contacted the Department of Social Services, fostered me and, well, to cut a long story short, eventually adopted me. But I know my biological parents loved me and wanted the best for me, I just do."

Lois thought about saying something like, "right, Clark, sure," but decided it was probably better for him to cling to that thought than have her interrupt with her true thoughts. They probably did love him, or at least his mother did, what if his natural father didn't even know of his existence?

Clark continued: "Martha and Jonathon love me to bits, and I them. I know Dad would have liked me to go into farming but there was never any pressure. They allowed me to go my own way, encouraged me to be myself. And that's it, really." <Or all I'm prepared to say at the moment.,> Lois was holding back the tears. Clark had been so matter of fact about his upbringing, but the reporter in her sensed he was holding something back. "Lois? This revelation of mine isn't going to change the way we work is it?" Actually, that wasn't Clark's real question. What he really wanted to ask was would it change their relationship as such that it was, although he clung to the hope that they would one day be together, he was desperate enough to settle for the relationship that they currently had, however undefined it was.

"No, Clark, I'll still treat you as the junior in this partnership! Actually, it makes me understand you a little better, certain things about you fit into place now." <He needs a confidence boost after such a big revelation> that's what Lois told herself she was doing anyway, as she leaned over and kissed him. Clark was startled to say the least, the woman of his dreams was kissing him, one of his many fantasies regarding Lois was coming true.

Very quickly, without either one realizing at what point, what started out as a brief meeting of lips turned into something more. Their bodies began to respond to one another, cautiously at first, but soon they were lying on the bed, hands beginning to explore. "Lois, oh Lois, I, I, you have no…"

"Shut up, Clark, don't waste valuable necking time," Lois admonished her partner. She hadn't had a physical relationship since Claude, and despite that federal disaster she hadn't stopped having physical desires. Sure she'd suppressed them, kept them well hidden, but now somehow without even trying Clark had unlocked all her suppressed desires. She needed him, she was going to have him. His shirt had been discarded, abandoned like a true honeymooner's attire should be. Clark was fumbling with her blouse, and Lois helped him dispose of it. She was becoming impatient for him <if he is half as good as his kissing what am I going to do? I'll have to wait and see, not wait too long I hope.>

Clark was in a quandary, a very difficult quandary. He wanted Lois, oh Lord he wanted her, but was it fair to make love to her without telling her the whole truth? <What truth, that I'm Superman or that I've never gone the whole way before - Metropolis's only 28-year-old male virgin. That I'm madly in love with her?> Clark attempted to bring a halt to their mutual physical attraction. "Lois, I'm very, very attracted to you both physically and emotionally."

"So let's get on with it," she interjected.

"There's something you <actually that should be some 'things' his conscience told him> need to know. I want to make love to you, more than anything I've ever desired in my whole life. But, well, this isn't easy for me to confess." Lois began to feel like she'd been kicked in the stomach, what was Clark about to say? Admit he was gay or something? "I've never made love before."

"Oh" was the best response Lois could immediately think of. She was in turmoil. After all of 5 seconds reflection her baser needs won out over the shock of being Clark's prospective first lover. "Well then, let's rectify that situation ASAP, farmboy!" ……

They lay in one another's arms; Lois was more content physically than she had ever been in her life. For someone who had never made love before, Clark had been absolutely fantastic. In fact she felt like the virgin partner. He had been so concerned about her needs, her enjoyment; his pleasure had almost been secondary.

"Lois," Clark began.

"Don't say anything, Clark. This has been perfect, please don't spoil it with declarations of undying love, thanks for deflowering you etc etc. Let's just enjoy savoring the feel of one another's bodies a little while longer. In fact you can explain one thing to me. How come someone so inexperienced managed to take me to heights of passion no other lover has ever before?"

"I don't have any hang-ups about what has happened in your past, Lois. What we've experienced makes us what we are today. Life's a constant learning curve, as far as I view it, there is no such thing as failure in our past, just the wrong result if things don't work out how we would like them to. I don't regret being a virgin until now. I don't feel I've missed out by not making love with other women. I've had my chances to, but somehow it never felt right. But tonight, well, everything about it felt right. And I know you don't necessarily want to hear this, but the reason it felt right is, well, I love you. Like I've never loved anyone in my life ever before. I mean, I love my mom and dad, but that's parental love, not passionate, all-encompassing love like I feel for you." Clark felt Lois begin to stir. "Please hear me out, Lois. I don't want to put any pressure on you, I'm ready to play this how you like it, but there is one other thing you need to know. I do actually feel like a complete and utter bastard for not telling you this before either. But if you never do anything or feel anything for me again, if only for my parents' sake promise me you'll do your best to keep it a secret. If you can't then I'll understand, just give me time to relocate my mom and dad?"

Lois was getting more and more worried by the seconds. She quickly recalled that the worst word she had ever heard Clark utter before was damn, it was alien to hear him utter words that she quite often (though not in public) uttered when driving through the mean streets of Metropolis. "What is it, Clark, what's going on?

"Lois, I am so, so sorry for not being totally honest with you earlier. Everything I told you is true, but I missed out one vital fact. Well, a few actually, but they all combine to reach the same conclusion."

Lois looked at Clark with a puzzled expression <as well she, might Clark's conscience pricked him>. "Go on, Clark, I'm listening" <and doing my best to quell my impatience>.

"This isn't easy for me, Lois, please forgive me. You know how you've wondered about my frequent disappearing acts, well, the truth is I do know who my biological parents are."

"Clark, you're making as much sense to me as - as, oh I dunno, that English game, what's it called, cricket, yea that's it, that I've had the misfortune to catch on LNN European sports broadcasts by mistake!" Lois admonished him.

He realized that he was babbling, trying to ward off the inevitable. "Lois, <oh God this isn't easy, admitting to being a virgin was a lot easier!> I'm… I'm -"

"I'm waiting, Clark," said Lois with the minimum amount of patience.

"I'm Superman. My biological parents sent me to Earth in a capsule, Martha and Jonathan have brought me up, if you hate me fair enough, but please let me protect them before you publish…" Clark was aware of babbling.

"Ohmigod" was the best reaction she could come up with. Followed by "You're right, you are a bastard, not the illegitimate variety, but the fraudulent variety." She pulled away from him, promptly got out of bed and pulled on her clothes. "Clark, I don't know what's going to happen, but right now if I never see you again it'll be too soon." And with that parting shot she left the honeymoon suite.

Lois returned to her apartment in total, utter, complete turmoil. Was that a sick joke Clark had just played on her? After all, great investigative journalist that she was, she hadn't demanded any proof. Was she overcome with the afterglow of her one and only orgasm in her entire sexual experiences that she forgot to ask for proof? There was also a feeling of professional shame; this was the first time in her entire working life that she had walked out on a job <though I had a damned good excuse>.

Back at the honeymoon suite, Clark to say the least was in a quandary. He couldn't return to Clinton Avenue, his parents needed his apartment. It was heartbreaking to continue lying in the bed that had previously fulfilled his life's desires. He slowly became aware of activity at the building opposite and recalled the main purpose of their stakeout. The bad guys were meeting; they were doing what they were suspected of. Clark set the video to record, anxious to salvage something from this fiasco. It provided all the proof required. Congressman Harrington was certainly guilty of corruption <but then how many of us are totally honest, beyond corruption, Clark's conscience asked? After all, I've managed to mislead Lois ever since I've known her up until now, and she is the most important woman in my life>.

The phone rang and Clark experienced the truly amazing experience of numerous thoughts flashing through his mind in seconds. Would it be Lois, Perry, his parents, Jimmy, a wrong number even? He had to disguise his disappointment when he realized it was his mother. "Hi, Mom, how are you?"

"Actually, Clark, I'm fine, in fact your father and I are fine. Not perfect, but a lot better than we were. We've talked things through; we need to return to Smallville to sort out some details. I know you're probably busy on your investigation but when could you come over here to see us?"

"Right now, Mom, the investigation is virtually wrapped up. See you in five."

Clark made it back to Clinton Avenue in 4 1/2 minutes. He had briefly considered checking out of the honeymoon suite, but considering the Daily Planet had paid for it for a week, and the memories it held of what he assumed would be his one and only experience of love making (and that was the overriding reason as opposed to any thoughts of the Planet's fiscal status) decided not to. He found his parents in a much happier state than previously. It quickly transpired that whilst all was not perfect in the senior Kents' relationship, a compromise had been achieved. Through actually listening to Martha, Jonathan had realized that divorce was not the desired result, just an expansion of her mind. He had agreed to her plans, in fact his initial reluctance had been replaced by eagerness to help her achieve them.

"OK, Dad, what gives in this change of tack?" Clark asked curiously, anxious to gain some possible insight into the female brain.

"What gives, son, is that I realize what your mom has given me over the years. I was selfish before, thinking her whole universe revolved around the farm and me. She deserves to achieve her dreams and I'm going to support her in whatever way I can." Jonathan positively beamed at the woman by his side. Despite having 'dreams' as Jonathan called them, Martha could not forget her overriding maternal cares and was acutely aware that all was not well with her son. Although to all appearances content that all was well with his parents, she knew something was not right in his personal life.

"Clark, are you OK?" she asked tentatively, for some reason almost afraid of what he might say if he were totally truthful. She knew he didn't like to worry his parents, aware as he was of their worries over him. He hesitated before replying, which gave Martha all the proof she required.

"Yes, no. I dunno. Lois and I, we've, well I thought we'd reached a new level in our relationship, but things have not worked out how I anticipated they would." <that's an understatement if ever I heard one, the old conscience pricked.>

"Do you want to talk about it, honey? You know, a trouble shared is a trouble halved?" Clark didn't want to do anything to dampen his parents' newfound state of accord.

"Mom, I'm nearly 30, I'm the strongest man in the world and as long as you two are happy I think I can manage to sort out my life. Thanks for the offer, but I assume you guys have things to sort out in Smallville, want a lift?" Martha knew better than to pry, but didn't believe Clark's show of bravado. A quick glance at Jonathan told her he agreed, and the offer of a lift home was accepted.

Clark returned his parents to Smallville by Superman express, and after refusing due to supposed work commitments the offer to spend the night in his childhood bed, returned to Metropolis, laden with memory-evoking childhood food treats. He hovered over his apartment, reluctant to go there. The lure of the honeymoon suite was too strong, and after landing in a secluded alley he changed into his civilian attire and returned to the scene of his life-altering hotel suite. To say he was surprised to find the room occupied by Lois was an understatement. She was wearing a tracksuit and inspecting the surveillance equipment. "I see you obtained the proof required. By normal surveillance means or special-powered means?" As soon as she uttered that statement she regretted it.

"By boring old normal surveillance means, actually," was the terse response. Neither was sure who said the words "We need to talk," for they both spoke similar sentiments at exactly the same time. "You first," offered Clark.

"Why, Clark, why didn't you tell me? Do you honestly think I would have betrayed you? Do you think so little of me despite your declaration of love? Do I come across as that shallow a person? Do you have a halfway decent explanation for any of this? Do you want me to continue?"

"Lois, I am SO sorry, more sorry than you will ever know. I should have told your before things got out of hand…"

"Got out of hand? Is that all it meant to you? OK, I may have appeared to have been overcome with lust, I was overcome with lust truth be told - and we are being truthful here, I assume? But God, Clark, I don't jump into bed with just anybody!" Lois virtually screamed at Clark.

"I didn't mean it like that. Not at all. I fell in love with you the very first time I saw you. You didn't notice me. Not at first. I'm not trying to make excuses, but it hasn't been easy for me, 'oh hi, I'm an alien. Wanna have a relationship?' I might be from Krypton, but I've been brought up on Earth, with good old-fashioned Kansas values. We might be laughable hicks to some sophisticated city folks but the values I grew up with were comfortable ones. I've never felt ashamed of not having made love before, embarrassed I suppose because of society's preoccupation with sex, but not ashamed. There is a difference. I didn't have to make love to you earlier or even intend to, but I wanted to as much as you did. Don't tell me you didn't enjoy it. I may not have done it before, but even naïve hick me can tell when a woman's enjoying herself. And that's what I want, Lois, more than anything. I want you to be happy, content, I want to make you happy. I didn't want my first time to be with just anybody, it had to be with someone I love. OK, you might not love me <yet, he told himself, he felt he was on the cusp of possibly redeeming this situation, but he was also on the verge of completely blowing it>. But I know you're not the casual type, not that there's anything wrong with that. I'm not on this Earth to judge how people elect to live their lives. I wouldn't presume to be so arrogant. But unless you want to convince me otherwise, can you honestly deny you have some kind of feelings for me? You don't have to answer me right now, just think about what I've said. Consider us, Lois, we could have a future. We can try dating, like a normal, as normal can be for me, for us. See if we have a future. Please don't give up on us straightaway. And if all else fails, you can have me just for my body!" Clark decided to try and end his plea with a hint of humor.

"Oh, Clark. What am I gonna do? I'm unsure how I feel. You're so complex, you're two people, for God's sake."

"No I'm not, Lois, I'm Clark. Superman is who I can be to help people. I won't say it's gonna be easy having a relationship with me, there's lots of baggage courtesy of the man of steel. But it's only someone special who could cope with it. Someone like you? I can't promise I'll always be there, but I do do my best to be there for people I care about. I can't turn my back on people who need my help, though I could turn a deaf ear to some of the more ridiculous requests, especially if I have something or someone more important to concern myself with. Oh God, Lois, look, I am desperate to have you in my life. However you want to play it. If you can't have a relationship with me can we attempt the impossible and forget all this and just be work partners again?"

"I dunno, Clark, it's not that easy."

"Look, go home for the weekend or stay here, I'll clear up and get out of your sight. Just let me know on Monday morning. If you can't work with me, fine. I will understand. I swear to you I will. If need be I'll move on. I've done it before, I can do it again."

"When? When have you moved on before?"

"On my travels, my worldwide travels. When people began to get suspicious about my activities, and this was before my disguise, which you inspired by the way, I'd move on to protect myself and my parents."

"What do you mean, 'I' inspired?"

"Do you remember that construction worker who was trapped outside the Planet one morning? Well, I rescued him and got my clothes into quite a state. You made some comment about a change of clothing at work, and, well, that was the catalyst for me adopting the Superman disguise. You were involved with my future without even realizing it." There was a silence between them, it wasn't uncomfortable, speculative maybe but not uncomfortable. Lois considered much of what Clark had said. She hadn't thought of it from his point of view. She came to a momentous decision. Life-changing, even.

"Clark, I am so confused. I do understand why you didn't tell me earlier, but I just wish you'd mentioned it before we made love. I do have feelings for you, they're just so muddled at the moment. Don't take this as a lifetime's commitment, but we could try and have a relationship. It's not going to be easy, there are lots of ground rules to sort out, and I need plenty of time. Don't push me in any way, Clark, or you'll discover even more the true meaning of Mad Dog Lane. We play it by my ground rules. Comprendez?"

Clark breathed a huge sigh of relief. All right, it wasn't perfect, but it gave him hope for the future. "OK, we'll play it be your rules, but be warned, I'm not gonna pounce on you but you have let the genie out of the lantern!"

Those words gave Clark an idea. OK, a mad idea, there were some advantages of being Superman, and it was about time Lois got to see some of them. He opened the balcony door, did a quick check, swept Lois into his arms and flew up and away. Lois uttered several expletives at being caught unawares, which Clark decided to silence with a kiss. "I've never necked while flying before Lois, but this has been a night for firsts. We haven't had any sleep; we're both too tense to sleep right now, so we're going out for breakfast. Though I'll have to get a move on, breakfast probably won't be served much longer where I intend taking us."

"And just where might that be?" Lois asked with little attempt to disguise her anger.


Clark soon landed in Paris and found a small discreet bistro where, after obtaining some French francs at a local cash machine <it was a risk for his debit card, but what the heck, he was in a risk-taking mood> they breakfasted on croissants and coffee. "This is exquisite," Lois murmured softly.

"What exactly is exquisite, Lois? The food, the company, both?" Clark dared to ask.

"Well now, that would be telling. But talking of telling, Clark, do you treat all your dates like this? You know, whisk them across the Atlantic, across time zones?"

"Only the ones deserving of such treatment," he grinned back at her.

"Actually, Clark, exquisite as this is, I am beginning to feel tired. I had more physical exercise earlier than I've had for a long time." Clark realized the hint, and they made it back to the Lexor Hotel just before daybreak Metropolis time.

There was an awkward silence between them and Clark thought he'd best break it. "You stay here and get some sleep, I'll take the surveillance equipment and proof back to the Planet, then go back to my apartment. I'll see you at work on Monday, OK?" he asked tentatively, hoping he was saying the right thing.

"OK. See ya Monday, Flyboy." Lois yawned and winked at him at the same time. Wow, thought Clark, she really is the most fascinating woman in the world and I love her! I've just got to make her love me. But how?> One day soon, Lois, one day soon I'll convince you of my good intentions!


Epilogue. My one cultural inclusion that I'm aware of, though there may be others, is cricket. Despite the best intentions of my brothers it letely baffles me, as much as American football does. When I found out Dean had been an American football player, I was just grateful that he went into acting, as American football from the clips I've seen is as incomprehensible to me as cricket. I admit my first attraction to L&C was one of lust, espying a certain drop dead gorgeous Dean Cain one Saturday evening here in the UK before Noel's House Party. My children were a lot younger back then, weren't we all!. I am eternally grateful that for whatever reasons Dean branched out into acting as otherwise I wouldn't have discovered the wonderful world and fans of L&C.