By Paul-Gabriel Wiener <email@example.com>
Submitted September 2004
Summary: Clark's special treat for his dates is breathtaking. Literally. A Tank Ending, of sorts.
Martha Kent had just finished cleaning up after her latest artistic endeavour when she heard the familiar woosh-thump that heralded her son's arrival. When she looked up, she noticed that there was quite a bit more red on the world-famous Suit than usual. She looked closer. He was spattered all over with blood stains. "Oh, honey!" she exclaimed, rushing up to him. "What happened?"
"It happened again, Ma."
He took a deep breath. "You remember Lana?"
"Oh, the poor girl."
"Lana?" Jonathan asked, confused, as he came to join them.
"Yes, Clark's first girlfriend. He took her up above the clouds one night…"
His eyes widened as the memory came back. "… And forgot she needed to breathe!"
"Then there was that Lori girl…"
"He took her up, too…"
"It's just so beautiful up there," Clark put in. "I wanted to share it. I wish I could take you guys…"
"No, no, honey," Martha said hastily. "It's okay. We can imagine."
Clark sighed. "If you're sure. I guess, after Lori, I can understand… It's just… I thought it would be better to see it in the daytime."
"But you forgot that she couldn't absorb sunlight like you can," Jonathan said wearily. "You took her up above the protective layers of the Earth's atmosphere while the sun was overhead."
Martha shook her head. "The doctor at the ER said he'd never seen radiation burns so severe. There was nothing he could do for her."
"So what happened this time, Son?"
"I took Lois. I remembered to help her breathe —"
"I'll just bet you did," Martha commented to herself.
"— And I remembered to take her up at night."
"So what did you forget?" Jonathan asked.
"Air pressure. We stayed up too long, and my aura… It wasn't enough."
Martha gasped. "Oh no."
Clark hung his head. "By the time I realized, it was too late…"
Jonathan winced. "So, it was…"
"Yeah. Explosive decompression."
Martha went up to hug him, but stopped short because of all the blood. "Oh, honey. What are you going to do?"
"I'm not sure, Mom. But, you know, there's this new girl down in research. Her name is Sarah. She spends a lot of time with this guy, Ching. At least, I think that's his name. I've also heard him called 'Bill,' which is kind of weird. Anyway, she spends a lot of time with him, but she seems to have taken a real interest in me. I think, maybe… Hey, do you think NASA would let me borrow a space suit?"