Once in a Lifetime

By Vincent Pai <vincepai@msn.com>

Rating: PG-13

Submitted February 2007

Summary: When Clark (as Superman) declares his love for Lois at the end of the episode "Pheromone, My Lovely," the response he gets is not quite what he hoped for…


Clark felt an indescribable sense of relief as he descended to Earth with Miranda safely in tow. The last couple of days had wreaked havoc on his nerves, what with having to resist Lois Lane as she had done her utmost to try to seduce him. Even while under the influence of Miranda's pheromones, Lois had not lost the facet of her personality that would not let her give up on *anything*. It was one of the things that had made him fall so hopelessly in love with her — however, for the past two days, it had made maintaining his strict code of ethics sheer torture.

And then, almost as soon as the pheromones had worn off, he had heard that Miranda was going to spray the 100% solution over the entire city. That hadn't done anything for his blood pressure either. Nevertheless, he had succeeded in stopping Miranda, everybody at the Planet was back to normal, and all was well with the world again. Most importantly of all, Lois had stopped throwing herself at him, although Clark wasn't quite sure if that was actually a good thing.

When he landed, he told the police to take Miranda into custody. "Superman, I love you!" Miranda called out after him, before Lex Luthor distracted her. Clark ignored Miranda, only having eyes for Lois.

"Superman!" Lois called out. Suddenly, she was standing right in front of him. "It's a good thing that stuff doesn't have any effect on you…or does it?" she asked hesitantly.

Clark instinctively began to answer that they didn't, but he stopped himself. He realized that this was his once in a lifetime opportunity to openly declare his feelings of love for his partner, without having to worry about the repercussions it might have on their relationship. After all, later he could plead that he had been under the influence of the pheromones. Who knows? He might even get a kiss out of it. What could possibly go wrong?

His mind made up, Clark looked deep into Lois's eyes and stated, "Lois Lane, I love you."


Lois's heart skipped a beat when she heard Superman's words. For an instant she felt indescribable joy, before her mind returned her to reality. It was just the pheromones talking.

"Oh, Superman. You don't know how long I have waited to hear you say those words," she began breathlessly, before finishing despairingly, "but you're not yourself. So I couldn't take advantage of the situation."

Lois looked wistfully at Superman's disappointed expression. Here was everything that she had ever wanted being offered to her, except with the cruel twist that she couldn't accept it. But it was so tempting…and she knew deep down that Superman would never look at her so longingly again once he regained his faculties. This was a once in a lifetime opportunity — surely Superman could eventually bring himself to forgive her? Suddenly, in the greatest moment of weakness that she had ever experienced, Lois Lane *knew* that if she passed this up, she would forever wonder what might have been, and her mind was made up.


Clark nodded disappointedly as Lois said that she could not take advantage of the situation. It looked like he wasn't going to get a kiss after all.

But then, Lois lost her battle of conscience, and he heard her say, "Oh, what the heck." And suddenly her lips were on his.

The world seemed to swirl around Clark as he felt more pleasure than he could ever have imagined that a kiss, even such a passionate one at this, could ever produce. Lex seemed to say something, but it was inaudible in the background, as all of Clark's attention was focused on just kissing Lois.

Clark's surroundings remained a blur even after Lois disengaged for air. The dreamy look on her face surely mirrored his own as she melted against him and whispered breathlessly, "Oh, Superman…take me home…"

The world stopped spinning. Oh, crap.


Clark froze in place as he inwardly panicked. Lois wanted him to…surely she didn't intend to…but the way she was pressing her body against him, with her face snuggled up to his chest, said otherwise. Unwittingly, some of his lower muscles began to tighten as his body contemplated doing exactly what she wanted.

But there was no way that he could do that! Not when it was Superman she wanted! But there was no way out — if he suddenly decided that the pheromones didn't have any effect on him after all, he couldn't possibly explain his actions! Clark felt a growing sense of horror inside him as he immediately regretted his reckless, idiotic declaration of love.

Outwardly, he favored Lois with a lovesick smile. "Anything for you, Lois," he said in dulcet tones, as he scooped her into his arms and lifted them into the sky.

As they headed towards Lois's apartment, Clark sobbed inside. How could this be happening? How could Lois try to take advantage of him like this? However, he knew that that was unfair. After all, *he* had been about to take advantage of *her* when the pheromones had worn off. In a brutal twist of irony, he had tempted the temptress, and she had given in, albeit a lot faster than he had. No, he could only blame himself for getting into this mess.

He had to somehow find a way out of this while still playing along. As they soared through the air, Clark felt Lois shifting against him as she ran her hands over his chest exploringly. She was giggling softly. He cringed inwardly at the feelings of pleasure that coursed through his body.

If only he could hear a cry for help so that he could get away without Lois getting suspicious later, when she found out that there was no disaster. Then again, he'd just have to throw himself at her afterwards anyways if he was to maintain the pretense. Why couldn't he have thought of these things earlier?

This was just crazy — never in his life had Clark ever imagined that he would ever become such a tease. Because that's what exactly what he was, offering Lois something that he never intended to follow up on.


When they landed on her balcony, Lois turned around in Clark's embrace as she leaned up for another kiss. As he returned the kiss, Clark noticed that she was leading them inside the apartment. This was not good.

Breaking off the kiss, Lois said softly, "*Superman*, why don't we head over to the sofa? We'll be much more comfortable there…"

<No, no, no!> thought Clark. Why did all of his fantasies have to come true when he least wanted them to? Feeling totally helpless, he could only say, "Whatever my love desires," as he let her drag them to the sofa. How could he have ever given Lois Lane such total control over him?

As they settled down on the sofa, Lois flung herself onto Clark's lap, wrapped her arms around the back of his head, and began kissing him even more passionately than she had kissed him before.

Clark groaned as he held Lois against him, still pretending that he was helplessly in love and enjoying himself immensely. It wasn't a very difficult act to keep up. As he drowned himself in Lois's kisses, Clark felt a faint glimmer of hope in the back of his mind that maybe this was all that she expected to happen out of this. Making out on the sofa wasn't so bad — he could handle that.

Suddenly, Lois wriggled out of Clark's embrace. Blushing as she slightly lowered her eyes, she gave him a slow, sultry smile before looking back up at him again.

"Let me change into something more comfortable — *you* just wait *right there*. *Don't* move," she said, smiling seductively as she playfully brushed her finger down Clark's nose.

Lois started giggling slightly in anticipation as she scurried over to the bathroom. As he watched her disappear inside, Clark felt a sinking feeling in the pit of his stomach.

Oh, this was not good. Not good at all.


When he saw that the bathroom door was safely closed, Clark doubled over on the sofa, supporting himself with one hand as he clutched the other over his rapidly beating heart. What on Earth was he supposed to do now? Didn't Lois *ever* consider the consequences of her actions? What if she got pregnant? Wait…of course!

Clark sat back up on the sofa just as Lois was reemerging from the bathroom. He mentally breathed a sigh of relief when he saw what she was wearing. It was just an ordinary nightgown — his mind had conjured up horrors of having to face Lois when she was dressed only in skimpy lingerie or perhaps wrapped in a towel. Still, the nightgown left little to the imagination, and Clark felt himself begin to sweat.

As Lois gingerly walked up to him, Clark quickly ran through his plan one last time. However, much sooner than he would have liked, Lois had taken his hand in her own and was purring, "Superman…why don't we take this somewhere…more private?"

Clark's pulse rate doubled. Oh god, she was really going to go through with this. He went into action.

"Mmm, I would *love* to, honey. Just wait till our kids are born — I can't wait to see their little faces!" he said, giving Lois his most indulgent smile.

Lois's face briefly registered surprise before she recovered. She looked at Clark apologetically before saying, "Oh, Superman. I just took the pill — but you don't mind, do you?"

Oh, great. Count on consumer pharmaceuticals to ruin everything. Clark could only say weakly, "Oh, no. Of course not." He wasn't done yet, though. As Lois walked them ever closer to her bedroom, Clark implemented Plan B.

"Hmm, Lois, after tonight, you have *got* to take me to meet your parents! We'll have to tell them *all* about how we ended up together!" Clark said, praying that this would work.

Lois frowned. "Superman, I wish I could, but we can't! You'd understand if you met my parents — I couldn't share my private life with them!" she pleaded.


<Ending #1>

Oh, no. Well, so much for trying to use parental disapproval. As they passed through the doorway to stand next to each other beside Lois's bed, Clark spoke up again.

"Just wait until Clark hears about this! Won't he be so happy for us?" he asked, trying to sound excitedly optimistic.

When Lois was silent for the next few moments, Clark felt his heart tear itself to pieces. Nothing that he tried had worked — he would have to confess that he had never been affected by the pheromones. He would have to admit to toying with her feelings. Lois would be totally crushed at his deceit, as well as utterly humiliated. She would most likely never want to speak to Superman again, and he couldn't blame her. But still, he had to do the right thing.

Taking a deep breath, he said, "Lois, I —"


Lois's thoughts were in turmoil as Superman's words swam through her head. What was she doing, and to Superman of all people?

Earlier, she had been so sure that this was what she wanted, but now she wasn't so sure. No, that wasn't exactly true — of course it was what *she* wanted, but the problem was that it wasn't what *Superman* wanted. He was totally helpless, and here she was taking advantage of him!

What made it worse was that Superman prattled on about kids, and meeting her parents — things that a *normal* couple would want to do. Not rape victims and their rapists. Because that's what she was doing — she was *raping* Superman! Then he had mentioned Clark…and that was the worst thing of all.

Clark would laugh at her, would ridicule her for her weakness. She could picture him in her head right now, pointing a finger at her as he laughed in scorn while light glinted off of his glasses. "Lois, Lois…I manage to put you to bed without even a kiss, and you jump into bed with Superman at the first opportunity? Tsk, tsk, tsk," he would say.

No…Clark wouldn't do that. Instead, he would be disappointed. Oh, he wouldn't judge her — he'd continue to be polite to her, and treat her respectfully. But inside, he'd be disappointed at what a horrible person his best friend turned out to be. He'd feel disappointment that one of his friends had *used* another one of his friends in such a manner. And somehow, Lois knew that Clark's disappointment would be even harder to bear than his laughter and ridicule.

When Superman spoke again, the last of Lois's resolve crumbled.

"Lois, I -"


"No, Superman! Don't say it! Don't say that you love me!" Lois blurted out as tears started to well in her eyes.

Clark was taken aback at her sudden change in attitude. "What-" he began.

"Oh, Superman! Believe me, I know how much you want this right now — I want it too! But what you're feeling isn't real!" she wailed.

Clark's eyes widened. He had been about to say, "I have a confession to make", but he wasn't about to disabuse Lois of her erroneous assumption.

Catching himself, he put on as disappointed of a face as he could muster. It wouldn't do to look too relieved.

"Lois, I understand. I can't stop loving you — but I'm content to…adore you from afar…" he said sadly as he looked into her eyes. Well, as sadly as he could make himself sound, anyways.

Lois nodded ruefully, a wistful expression on her face. "Yes, I think that would be best," she said, as a single tear rolled down her cheek.

Not wanting to linger in case Lois suddenly changed her mind again, Clark smiled at her one last time before flying out to safety. Once again, Lois Lane had managed to surprise him. She was stronger than he had given her credit for; that was for sure.

Clark flew as fast as he could to the Arctic. He needed a cold — no, a very, very, cold dip in the ocean to get his now raging hormones under control.


<A couple of days later>

Lois had seemed somewhat subdued the last couple of days at work, Clark mused as he flew as Superman in the direction of her apartment. Maybe it was just his imagination — but he still wanted to check up on her, just in case she was still tearing herself up with guilt.

When he landed in the living room through the window, Lois's eyes widened and she started to flush. "Superman, I-" she began.

"Lois, Clark told me what happened to me when I was stopping Miranda. I don't remember a thing from the last couple of days — everything's just a blur!" Clark interrupted.

"What? Really?" Lois asked in bewilderment.

"Yes. Uh, I actually stopped by here right now to ask if…well…um, I know how the pheromones are supposed to affect people…and I was wondering if…er, I had done anything *untoward*…" Clark said as nervously as possible.

Lois's mouth opened in surprise, but she quickly recovered. "Oh, Superman, don't worry about that. Well, actually, you *were* kind of *forward*, but it's ok — I managed to hold you off," she said lightly.

Clark gaped in astonishment. The audacity! — but he remembered to look relieved before Lois could notice anything suspicious.

"Oh, good. I'm glad that you showed restraint," he said with a smile.

Lois smiled at him in a condescending yet friendly manner. "Well, Superman, you must know that I would *never* think of taking advantage of a friend like that! We…we are friends, right?"

"Of course," Clark said, before bidding her farewell and flying out into the sky. He felt cheated at having ever worried about her in the first place.

Yep, Lois was definitely back, all right.

<End of ending #1>


<Ending #2>

Lois frowned. "Superman, I wish I could, but we can't! You'd understand if you met my parents — I couldn't share my private life with them!" she pleaded.

Oh, no. Well, so much for trying to use parental disapproval. As they passed through the doorway to stand next to each other beside her bed, Clark started to speak up again, but Lois cut him off, apparently annoyed that he was talking so much. She playfully traced a finger over his mouth while her other hand unfastened his cape.

At that, Clark lost his resolve. Things had suddenly gone too far to turn back now — not if he wanted to remain friends with Lois in the future. Unless he was prepared to do one heck of a lot of explaining which he had no desire to do, he would just have to put out.

Better to live the pleasant dream, and later try to hide the fact that he remembered everything that he had done while he was supposedly under the influence of the pheromones, than to completely shatter Lois's spirit and self-esteem.


<It's happening! It's really happening!> Lois thought as she excitedly lifted Superman's spandex shirt over his head. Then, the sight that greeted her stopped her cold. Superman's chest…was *Clark's* chest. A chest like that was unmistakable. Oh, my god. Superman is Clark. Clark is Superman.

Blinking back tears of humiliation, Lois angrily steeled herself. Clark didn't find her attractive, which meant that "Superman" was in complete control of his actions right now. What kind of game was he playing? Was he just waiting for her to crumble with remorse? Well, he was certainly not going to get that satisfaction out of Lois Lane!

She forced herself to lie down on the bed and smile at Clark alluringly. Ha! What now, Clarkie-boy? Didn't think I'd call your bluff, did you? Now he would have to admit how cruel he had been to dangle his body in front of her like that, knowing how she reacted to it.

Lois was so smugly confident in her thoughts that she was completely unprepared for when Clark covered her body with his own. Uncertainty flooded her mind when she felt him poke her — maybe she had gotten it all wrong?

When Clark's hands started to roam, Lois let out a soft whimper out of equal parts of apprehension and pleasure. Somehow, she had lost the complete control over the situation that she had possessed. <Clark…uh, now might be a good time to stop…>


Some time later, Lois rested her head on the broad expanse of Clark's chest. Without lifting her gaze to his face, she asked tentatively, "*Clark*…why did we just do that?"

Clark froze as his eyes widened. She had known! He shifted uncomfortably but made no attempt to dislodge Lois from on top of him, unsure of how she would react to being touched by him now.

"Well, uh…you were kind of…*insistent*…" he began nervously.

Lois gasped indignantly. "Now don't you try to pin this all on me! You knew exactly what you were doing!"

Her eyes saddening, she said in a soft and somewhat accusing tone, "You could have stopped; I wouldn't have tried to force you. You gave yourself to me willingly."

Clark sighed. "I know. I've always wanted to do that — but I just didn't want it to happen when you were with Superman and not Clark. I just didn't want to take advantage of you that way."

Lois smiled at the irony. "Well, given the circumstances, why don't we just say that we took advantage of each other and call it even?"

"I think that I can live with that." Clark said, smiling at the ceiling. "So, what now?"

Lois finally lifted her eyes up to meet Clark's. "Why don't we just give each other a chance from now on, starting tomorrow — taking it slow?"

Clark smiled with relief. Things were going to be all right between them after all. "I'd like that," he said.

"But, for the rest of *today*, now that we're here anyways…let's do it again. No guilt, no recriminations this time — let's do it because we *want* to, and not just because we both lost a game of *chicken*."

For the rest of the day, they washed away the guilt from the situation that neither of them could have wanted, but had somehow forced each other into. And the more that they gave in to their desires, the more that they realized how utterly stupid they both had to have been to have ended up in such an absurdly ridiculous situation to begin with.

<End of ending #2>