By C. Leuch <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Submitted: May 2002
Summary: After Clark accepts her proposal at the end of the episode "Ultrawoman," Lois reflects on what being with Clark forever means.
A 30 Minute Episode Extension Challenge Story: UltraWoman
This is in response to the episode extension challenge, and it is pure, unadulterated WAFF with no plot whatsoever. This takes place at the end of Ultrawoman. Standard disclaimers apply. Hope you enjoy.
Lois held her breath as Clark slid the ring on her finger slowly, gently. The Centennial Park fountain gurgled softly behind her, the wind rustled the leaves in the trees, and the normal sounds of city traffic droned in the background, but all she could hear was the thunderous beating of her heart. It wasn't apprehension that drove her right now, but a feeling of joy unlike anything she had ever known. It almost felt as if her heart would literally explode, it was so filled with love and happiness. As if in slow motion, they rose, and Clark leaned in to kiss her. His lips were soft, and his touch was light, loving, but not insistent. It was a tender kiss, one that spoke of promises of the future, one that she wished would never end. As they pulled apart, he smiled at her, and she could see that he, too was feeling the same as her. She could see a confidence in his eyes that she had never seen before, and it gave her strength. She smiled back.
They stared at each other for a moment, their expressions drifting more toward those of love struck teenagers the longer the silence stretched on. Finally, Clark blinked, and his smile morphed into a look of surprise, and she could almost see the light bulb materialize above his head.
"Let's go celebrate!" he said as he grasped her other hand in his eagerly. Visions of champagne and chocolate truffles materialized in her mind, before fading away in favor of the image of a nice, soft bed, silk sheets, and candles. She blinked, wondering where exactly that came from. He didn't mean that kind of celebration, did he? But if he did, ooh. Maybe it was a little too soon for that, but on the other hand, it sure did sound nice.
She wasn't aware of the puzzled expression she wore until she heard Clark chuckle softly. That drew her out of her reverie, into a reality that was almost as pleasant.
"I want to give you the world, Lois," he said, holding their entwined hands out to the side, in almost a flying gesture. "Let's go listen to a string quartet on the streets of Vienna, or eat ice cream under the stars in Rome, or watch the sun set on the Hawaiian beaches. Fly with me."
The enthusiasm in his voice was so infectious. Until she met Clark, such things would've been nothing more than mere fantasies, things that she could see movie stars do on the big screen, but which were out of reach to a mere mortal like herself. If she was lucky, she could save up enough to visit one of those places, but with Clark, anything was possible. He wanted to give her the world, and he could.
Yes, she had seen her fair share of the world in the last couple days, but those had been things that were hardly meant for tourists. Mud slides in the Chilean mountains, floods in China, earthquakes in India. She had seen scenes of devastation and suffering, poverty stricken villages that had been miserable enough before being seized by disaster. She wouldn't give up the experience of seeing those things for all the world, if only because it made her a better person, and it brought her that much closer to her now fiancee. But solving the problems of the world left little time for romanticism.
"Okay," she relied with a smile, walking along with him as he veered off toward the long shadows of the trees, their own personal launch pad.
Before long they were airborne, shooting across the dark waters of the Atlantic. Clark, even in his Superman guise, couldn't wipe the smile off his face during the trip. Even though there was a great time difference between Europe and Metropolis, Lois was sure that the cafes, bistros and other romantic spots of Europe would still be open for business. The early setting of the November sun made the nights come deceptively soon, but nighttime was so much more romantic than the day. In the night, the same sense of isolation that would scare her as a child served to make the atmosphere more intimate when she was with the one she loved. Alone in Clark's arms over the ocean, the stars so bright that she felt she could almost reach up and touch them, she couldn't help but feel her heart swell yet again.
They did all the things that Clark had mentioned — they ate dessert at an outdoor restaurant on the ancient streets of Rome, they sampled the arts in Vienna, and they took a walk on the Seine in Paris then kissed in the shadow of the Eiffel Tower. Throughout the night they talked about everything and nothing at all, about childhood experiences that they had only hinted at before, about events that shaped their lives, about work and politics. She had thought that she knew everything about Clark, but somehow he managed to surprise her all over again. The things that she told him even surprised herself, things that had been painful or traumatic in her life had been laid upon the table now, but Clark took it all in stride, his gentle touch and easy smile making all those old experiences seem less scary, almost humorous in a way. They laughed a lot, and despite the history inherent in all the places they went, she managed to keep her attention only on him.
The last leg of their trip took them to a secluded beach in the Hawaiian Islands. The sun burned just above horizon as they sat down, Clark spreading his cape out on the sand to serve as a blanket. She leaned into him, resting her head on his shoulder and feeling his arm snake around her waist. Together, wordlessly, they watched the sun sink slowly over the Pacific. The gentle lapping of the sea against the shore served as the only soundtrack to the moment. Talking wouldn't have been able to convey the feelings she felt at that moment anyway, Lois thought. In the beauty of the sight that she saw, secure in the arms of Clark, she could only think of the future, of what that ring on her finger meant. The idea of spending forever with Clark used to scare her more than she could say, for a variety of reasons. Maybe she thought that committing to him would somehow diminish her own independence, or maybe the idea of living a life with Superman scared her, an ironic thought considering how long she had spent trying to win him over. The more she thought about it, though, the more she realized that it wasn't the super things that scared her, or the danger he put himself in because of that. If anything, he suffered more through the danger that she put herself in on a continual basis than she did on those late nights when she wondered where he was. What weighed so heavily on her mind was the fact that it was Clark doing all those feats, the gentle man beside her. In a way, being Superman made his personality that much more complex, but at the same time, it couldn't be any simpler. Superman could not be without all the kindness and generosity that flourished inside of Clark, and at the same time, the gentleness inside of him probably couldn't exist if not for Superman.
She had once told him that she just wanted a normal guy, but she knew now that they didn't come more normal than Clark Kent. He was a mild-mannered reporter, he was an overgrown boy scout, he was kind and considerate, and he loved her. Human traits, human thoughts, human desires, and all in a man who was the most all-around human person she had ever met. He was hers forever now, and she wouldn't have it any other way.
"I love you Clark," she said, her eyes locked on the vision in front of her. The sky burned red just above the horizon, fading to blue and then a deep violet before finally becoming black. Beside her Clark sighed and tightened his arm around her, then planted a light kiss on the top of her head.
"I love you too, Lois, more than you can know," he responded, his voice heavy with emotion. If this was what forever was like, then she couldn't wait to start.