Title: One Hundred Years
Spoilers: Pilot, Hourglass, Lineage, Calling.
Category: Romance, angst.
Summary: Beginnings inevitably lead to endings, but there is joy in the journey.
Warning: Character death.
Disclaimer: The characters portrayed belong to Gough, Millar et al.
Betas: I'm deeply indebted to Kirsten Sea and A Campbell for their insightful comments and advice.
A/N: Written for Rhiannonhero's Cure Title challenge. The song lyrics used are in italics, and the song in full is quoted at the end. Format inspired by Timian and Hyperfocused's Tower of Drabbleon challenge. The last drabble was originally written for the Wednesday100 livejournal community.
Feedback: Makes me very happy.
He had no sense of self or time, knew only warmth and safety as he was taken from one womb, settled into another. A womb, a mothership that expelled him into a bright world where fiery rocks flew past, fascinating, new.
Everything was exciting. Then he saw pretty hair gleaming like the fire. Eager arms reached for him and he reached back instinctively, was clasped to a soft body. Nothing had felt better in his existence than the rough cloth hugged tightly around him, the soothing sounds sung against his head. They murmured of genuine comfort, and he was happy.
Clark hid under his mother's coat, only his eyes hidden because the coat was too short to cover more. His bottom lip was chewed, his elbows scrunched to his side.
"My mommy says you're a doptud. What's a doptud?"
Clark wished he understood the sounds the other boy made.
Pete grinned and prodded him firmly in the stomach. Clark peeked out, liked the look of bright white teeth and cheery eyes, and poked back. Much more fun than the shaking hands thing his parents did.
A sticky green dinosaur was held out to share, no words needed, friends for life.
A pretty but unknown blonde head was peering through his journalism class folder.
"Haven't you ever come across the concept of private?" he spluttered.
"Nah, private's just a challenge for me." She stuck out her hand while rattling on. "I'm Chloe Sullivan, by the way, just moved here from Metropolis."
"Clark Kent, resident geek," he managed to interject when she eventually paused for breath.
Chloe, with her critical, curious, yet fiercely loyal ways, always did drive their friendship, despite the occasional bumpy offroad trips forced by too obvious secrets and an awkward, unreciprocated crush. And Clark loved her for it.
He learned later that crashing off the bridge together wasn't their first meeting. Fitting that both times he'd stretched across to caress Lex's face, like it was the natural order, an urge that couldn't be ignored, an alien finding his human soulmate. They needed to be skin to skin, to let the bond of kinship flow between them.
He rarely reached out first. His parents, Pete, Chloe, Lana, had all reached out to him. Lex was the exception. Even seen dimly in the Porsche through murky water, an unconscious Lex had beckoned him, white in the dark, calling for deliverance.
Each year he'd blown out birthday candles and wished for Lana. The wish became a habit: it didn't die, just drifted away colorless on candle smoke. Over eighteen candles he made a different wish: please love me.
Later that night, Lex fulfilled the wish.
"I love you," he whispered, sinking inside Clark. Two years' waiting over, they writhed together, slick skin sliding over soft sheets. Finally, Clark could touch all he wanted, scratch nails wantonly into Lex's back, feeling the heat from Lex's cock and that created deep within his body, as he discovered the exquisite agony of shared orgasm.
Yet another night, the dream recurred. As ever, he looked down on himself, broken and sobbing amid a spiral of graves, under spearing rain and lightning. Alone. Normally he dreamt in color, but this was stubbornly grey. Charcoal and dust colored.
Cassandra's vision had insinuated itself into his brain, an inoperable tumor. Mouth dry, he awoke, fearful that his future was too harsh, beyond his strength.
Comforting arms surrounded him, soothing fingers stroked away the memory. Lex breathed reassurance into him. "Shh, you're not alone, we have a future. Together. Always."
With Lex beside him, destiny was a good word.
Clark was always proud to see Chloe on TV. She'd become a patron of lost causes, a regular Jude Thaddeus.
He saw the bullet miss its real target and take his friend. Even his unearthly speed was far too little, too late. He closed the eyes that didn't laugh anymore, and carried his sad, slight burden home, yellow curls still pertly flicked out in mockery of her stillness.
She would have been satisfied, he thought, to have fallen in her own private battle, fighting for freedom on the television. "Have we got everything," her last anxious words to the cameraman.
Ambition in the back of a black car, ended there as Vice-President Ross's heart failed. The $500 an hour call girl was discreet enough to vanish before the ambulance arrived.
The funeral was pompous, heads of state determined to be seen, the show more important than the man. People who didn't know him gave tedious speeches that slid over the boy Pete had been and the man he had become.
His old friends huddled together, laughing quietly at old memories, reminiscences blanketed by the din of the funeral band.
Clark looked at the plastic dinosaur in his hand and wept.
Caressing an old man, fingers soft against fine blue-veined skin. Rheumy blue-grey eyes, once so sharp, looked up at him, then crinkled into a loving smile.
"It doesn't matter if we all die. We're here." Lex lifted one weary hand to Clark's chest. "We can still be young together here."
"You're getting maudlin, Lex." Clark aimed for levity but the tremble betrayed him.
He held Lex through the long night, long after his eyes fell shut and his spirit slipped away.
He still held Lex, deep inside him, would do so forever.
One hundred years together. One hundred years ago.
The sun caressed smooth bronzed skin and shimmered on glossy black hair, but didn't reach his resolute eyes. Eyes that were still bright, green as a field in spring, but brimming with emotions, the pain of a myriad losses mingling with the joys of having loved and been loved.
It was time.
As he soared upwards his gaze encompassed Earth. Once home, now guardian to the dust of those he'd loved.
The heat drew him in; the sun's corona enveloped him, a welcoming womb. He seized oblivion, content.
Briefly, the sun glowed white, saluting a man conceived under another star.
One Hundred Years
it doesn't matter if we all die
ambition in the back of a black car
in a high building there is so much to do going home time
a story on the radio...
something small falls out of your mouth and we laugh
a prayer for something better
for something better
please love me
meet my mother...
but the fear takes hold
creeping up the stairs in the dark
waiting for the death blow
stroking your hair as the patriots are shot fighting for freedom on the television
sharing the world with slaughtered pigs have we got everything?
she struggles to get away...
and the creeping feeling
a little black haired girl
waiting for saturday
the death of her father pushing her
pushing her white face into the mirror
aching inside me
and turn me round
just like the old days
just like the old days
caressing an old man
and painting a lifeless face
just a piece of new meat in a clean room the soldiers close in under a yellow moon all shadows and deliverance
under a black flag
a hundred years of blood
the ribbon tightens round my throat
i open my mouth
and my head bursts open
a sound like a tiger thrashing in the water thrashing in the water
over and over
we die one after the other
over and over
we die one after the other after the other...
it feels like a hundred years
one hundred years...
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