By cuidadora <email@example.com>
Submitted May 2015
Summary: This story takes place during the episode “Just Say Noah” in Season 3, in which Lois and Superman argue in front of a nun. This is the nun’s story and part of the Canterbury Tales of Metropolis Challenge.
Story Size: 1,359 words (8Kb as text)
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Disclaimer: The recognizable characters, situations, places, etc. are property of others including DC Comics, Warner Bros and December 3rd Productions. This is written purely for the enjoyment of fans of the show.
This story is part of the Canterbury Tales Challenge, which includes The Florist’s Tale, The Cabbie’s Tale, The Nun’s Tale, and The Showgirl’s Tale.
Mother Mary Frances sat and poured her peppermint tea, which soothed her nerves and the butterflies in her stomach. For a little while longer this evening, she would remain Sister Mary Frances.
Leaving the responsibilities of Mother Superior behind today was exactly what she needed. She loved being treated like a regular nun. People reacted differently when she was introduced these days. They expected her to be different. It was hard to describe. It seemed everyone put her on a high pedestal of perfection. They expected her to live above other people, to always be Mother Superior and have no sense of humor. Enduring their expectations was exhausting.
Mary Frances loved working with people, especially the orphans. So she tolerated being placed on that pedestal, but sometimes the mantle of being Mother Mary Frances was too heavy and on that pedestal she felt too exposed. Then she would throw off her mantle and step down off her pedestal to be just Sister Mary Frances for a while.
Sister Mary Frances could be anonymous in a crowd. Well, as anonymous as a nun could be. She could laugh and cry, make mistakes and be more normal. Like today, when she acted ditzy. Seeing Superman smile and relax his stance for a moment after her performance was her reward.
With a start she realized today she’d kept three of her promises. And that knowledge warmed her heart.
She took a long sip of her tea, leaning back in her upholstered wing chair. She might as well be comfortable as she unwound after today’s events.
The day had started out harmlessly enough. She and Sisters Barbara and Margaret were shopping. Unfortunately, there was a car pileup and their minivan somehow ended up under not one but two cars. Thanks to Superman, everyone got out alive. Why, he even went back to rescue their toys for the orphans!
Who wouldn’t love that man? Well, criminals… but they didn’t count.
After she made sure everyone was okay or being taken care of by paramedics, Mary Frances noticed that Superman appeared deep in a personal conversation with a petite brunette.
She heard the soft tone of deep anger and hurt in the woman’s voice, a tone she first heard 17 years ago in a 10-year old girl.
Sister Mary Frances was her teacher. The first time she heard it, Lois had just gotten a 98 on her paper, and demanded she deserved a 100.
Yes, the righteous indignation of Lois Lane was something you never forgot. Mary Frances wondered if she would see Lois again in another 17 years with the same tone in her voice.
Or would Lois live that long? After all, it seemed at least every few weeks Superman’s dramatic rescues of Lois Lane were front-page stories. And probably many more never made the news.
After that class all those years ago, Mary Frances promised to help Lois see how imperfection was not the same as failure. Sadly, she knew that lesson was not complete when class ended.
So here was Superman, in the midst of a rescue responding patiently to Lois Lane’s anger and hurt.
Was she his close friend? Close enough to really know the man? Maybe even his girlfriend?
Did it matter? No, it made no difference. Mary Frances knew it was none of her business. Still, she couldn’t resist seeing if she could make his day and maybe help Lois.
A little over two years ago he saved a group of people, and Mary Frances could have been one of them. Sisters Mary Frances and Barbara were just crossing the street as a bus ran a red light and barreled seemingly out of nowhere headed straight for the crowd of pedestrians.
When the sisters reached the curb, Mary Frances turned back because she heard the commotion. She was startled to see the bus careening out of control. Before she could process that, she saw a dark haired young man in a suit and glasses step in front of the bus. Seeing him stop the bus with his bare hand was something she never forgot.
Afterwards he quickly and silently melted into the crowd on the sidewalk. It was his expression of fear as he glanced around before leaving that pierced her heart. She never wanted to see that haunted look again, and would do what she could to prevent it. She knew if he had not stopped the bus it could have killed many people including both Sister Barbara and herself.
Then a few days later Superman saved the Prometheus, and she knew it was the same man.
And that’s when she promised herself two things: she’d never tell anyone what she saw, and if the opportunity arose she’d find a way to make his day brighter.
So today after the accident and Superman’s rescue she needed to thank him. She boldly walked right up to him and Lois. He looked like he could use a rescue from the wrath of Lois Lane, if only for a fleeting moment or two.
Oh yes, she remembered how Lois as a child was never wrong, and was never shy about letting others know it either… over and over again. Sometimes it took her weeks to forgive a wrong, whether perceived or real. It looked like she hadn’t totally outgrown those childhood traits.
So Mary Frances stepped right up to them interrupting their conversation, profusely thanking and gushing over him.
It worked! Today was the day Mary Frances not only made him smile but also blush.
Who knew he had such a gorgeous smile and could blush so easily?
Her ditzy nun routine was a little over the top. Okay, maybe more than a little. But it was fun to play the part, and to remind Lois that people still loved Superman even if he wasn’t always perfect. Mary Frances heard him say Lois wasn’t talking to him very much, so she assumed he was in Lois Lane’s doghouse. What he did or didn’t do was immaterial.
After all the man was a superhero!
Even if he didn’t regularly save Lois Lane’s life, he had saved the world from Nightfall for goodness sake! He regularly put criminals behind bars, performed rescues saving countless lives and so much more. That should be more than enough to give the poor man a break.
Maybe Lois needed glasses or to remove her blinders to see the amazing man in the Suit. Or maybe she just needed a gentle reminder of how others saw him.
She wanted to show Lois that being imperfect is part of life and doesn’t mean failure. Whether you’re from Earth or Krypton, mistakes are part of life. And that’s how she kept her three promises today.
Mary Frances wanted Lois to see what a wonderful man Superman was. And since Lois apparently didn’t put him on a high pedestal, she hoped Lois would allow him the luxury of being like the rest of us, making mistakes and forgiving him. Mary Frances held out hope that Lois had matured and forgave more easily.
She sighed and finished her cup of tea, then poured a second cup. Yes, this evening she’d be Sister Mary Frances, regular nun. It had been a long day and she needed to be her tonight to regroup. Tomorrow would be soon enough to again take up the mantle of Mother Mary Frances.
And she hoped and prayed that whenever he needed a break, Superman would be able to step down off his pedestal, leave his mantle… err cape… safely behind, melt into the crowd and be a regular guy.