By Anonpip <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Submitted August 2008
Summary: A response to the first-line challenge using the first line "Jimmy was not who they all thought he was."
Author's Note: All characters are the property of Warner Bros, December 3rd Productions, ABC, and anyone else who may have a legal claim on them. The story, however, is mine.
Thanks to Desiree for the inspiring first line. Thanks also to Janet for GEing this for me.
Archive EIC's Note: The First Line Challenge can be found here on the Lois and Clark Fanfic Messageboards
Jimmy was not who they all thought he was, and he was considering letting at least one of his best buds in on that secret. On the other hand, maybe not...
Two Days Earlier
"I'll meet you there, Lois," Clark called as he ran towards the elevators.
"Clark," Lois called back, the impatience in her voice clear, "Where are you going? We need to get to the press conference in fifteen minutes. We're already running late."
Clark had paused when he heard the tone in Lois' voice, but even from where he stood, Jimmy could see the panic in Clark's eyes. He said nothing, though. He knew CK would work it out.
"I'll be there before it starts, Lois. I promise," Clark said. "I just have this one thing I need to take care of first."
Lois rolled her eyes in response, but Jimmy doubted Clark had seen since he had turned right around and resumed his jog towards the exit.
"I don't want to hear it," Lois was saying. Jimmy could hear her even before she entered the newsroom, and knowing how these arguments went, he kept his head down. If he just happened to make eye contact with Lois while she was reaming Clark out, she would turn her ire on him.
"I'm sorry, Lois. I really thought I'd get there in time." This time it was Clark who sounded slightly impatient. "I..."
"Save it," Lois said as they walked past Jimmy. "I said I don't want to hear it. I'm tired of the excuses, Clark."
Jimmy wondered if Clark, too, could hear the tears in her voice. Apparently he did, as when he spoke next, his voice was softer and more repentant. "I really am sorry, Lois. I just got caught up..."
"In what?" she demanded. "What was so important that you had to miss the press conference?"
"I told you," Clark replied, sounding slightly impatient again. "I bumped into Superman and he told me about..."
"What? Do you guys have some sort of code? You always end up with a Superman exclusive right after you leave me stranded. I have news for you, Clark. You and I are partners. Not you and Superman!" With that said, she spun on her heel and walked back to her desk.
The rigidness of her back while she walked made it clear to the entire newsroom that she was not to be disturbed for the next few moments.
In contrast, Clark's shoulders were slumped as he sat down.
"Tune in this morning for Clive Davis' special live forecast at the opening of the new observation deck at the Wollace Building," came the voice from the television screens in the newsroom.
Lois mumbled something, and when no one responded, she did it again.
"What's up, Lois?" Jimmy asked on his way to Perry's office.
"It is the slowest news day in the history of the news. The biggest thing happening today is the opening of the observation deck," she said, sounding bored stiff.
"Maybe we should cover it," Clark suggested from his desk.
"The observation deck opening?" Lois asked, incredulous. "Are you insane, Clark? That's not real news."
"So, you have something better to report on?" he asked with a grin.
Lois smiled in spite of herself. "Fine. If we leave in a half hour, we'll have plenty of time to get there, right?"
Clark nodded and went back to work.
A minute later, though, as Jimmy was now leaving Perry's office, out of the corner of his eye, he saw Clark's head pop up. Like him, Clark was staring at the television where Clive Davis' special was about to start.
Clive looked flustered. "Good morning, Metropolis. I'm Clive Davis reporting live from the top of the new Wollace Building. And what I'm seeing is amazing. A minute ago, a fire broke out on the top of the Citywide Tower, but no one was on the roof to start it. Even from here, though, I can see the people in the floors below scrambling to get out of the building."
Clark stood up and put his jacket on.
"Where are you going?" Lois asked him, confused. "That fire is barely news and we need to leave soon."
"I just realized..." Clark fumbled for words. "I forgot to feed my goldfish this morning," he finished lamely.
He ran towards the exit, apparently not hearing Lois reply, "You don't have a goldfish!"
Jimmy cringed. Clark was in for it later.
A moment later, though, he thought -- maybe it was time to tell Clark who he really was. He shook his head, though. No, not yet. He was not ready yet.
Three Days Later
"It wouldn't have happened if you had been there," Lois was saying as she and Clark entered the newsroom.
"I just wish you would be more careful," Clark said softly. "You could..."
"Well, if I had a partner I could count on to be there for me, I wouldn't have to go off and do things on my own," Lois cut in acerbically.
"Lois," Clark's voice was soft and terribly sad as they passed by Jimmy's desk. "I'm sorry."
One Week Later
"Now see here, Lois," Perry said as he followed her out of his office.
"No, Perry. I'm not even talking to Clark right now. Don't you think that makes it difficult to work together?" Lois asked.
Perry sighed. "You and Clark work out your problems on your own time. This is a newspaper -- and here you work with Clark when I tell you to. Where is that boy, anyway?"
Jimmy glanced at the television screen which was covering the plane crash site where Superman was helping out, but he said nothing.
"I don't know," Lois said. "That's just the point. I can never count on Clark to be where he says he's going to be."
Perry sighed. "Well, when he gets in, let him know I want you both on this story."
"No!" Perry nearly shouted. "Let Clark know when he gets in."
Clark entered the newsroom just as Perry closed the door to his office.
"Kent," Lois called. "We're on the Tralvidge story."
Clark smiled. "Great."
"No," Lois replied as he approached her. "Not great. This is it, Clark. We need to go talk to Mrs. Wilkins now and if you don't come with me and don't stay with me, I'm through."
"Through?" Clark asked.
"Through working with you. Through with moving forward in our relationship. Just through."
Clark nodded in understanding, but mid-nod, Jimmy could see his head tilt. "Can I have just five minutes to get something first?"
"What?" Lois asked, incredulous, even as Clark was making his way towards the elevators. "No! Clark Kent, you get back here!"
"I'm sorry, Lois, but I'll be back in a few minutes," Clark said as he turned around.
"I am never speaking to him again," Lois said, her voice quiet as she collapsed into her chair.
Jimmy looked at her and wondered... It was time to tell. If there was ever a time to tell, this was it. He got up and followed the path Clark had taken a few minutes ago.
"Hey, CK," he called less than a minute later.
"Jimmy?" Clark replied in shock.
"I can take this," Jimmy replied. "Go on back to Lois."
"But... but Jimmy... You're flying!"