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Mr Bad Example Part 2: Splendid Isolation

by FayJay

Subject: [glass_onion] FIC: Splendid Isolation. Smallville/AtS. NC17 Date: Wednesday, May 22, 2002 6:34 PM

TITLE: Mr Bad Example Part 2: Splendid Isolation. AUTHOR: FayJay
FEEDBACK: Pope. Shit. Woods.
ARCHIVE/DISTRIBUTION:, List Archives. Others just ask. SUMMARY: Lex Luthor and Lindsey McDonald have The Sex. (Smallville/Angel crossover. Set immediately post-"Jitters" and some months post-"Dead End".) Continues where 'Mr Bad Example' left off. CONTENT/WARNINGS: Slash. Fast cars. Leather. Seedy Motels. Pretty pretty boys.
DISCLAIMER: Messrs McDonald and Luthor belong to people who are not, alas, even slightly me. Just playing. Don't sue.
COMMENTS: With thanks to Mz Lizard and Ellen for Beta-work and to the PPO collective, without whom...

Lex Luthor drove like a maniac.

Clouds thickened the night sky, obscuring the distant moon and stars to leave the land in welcome darkness. Mae's Bar was already far behind them, the last lonely street light a distant memory as they hurtled recklessly down the quiet highway. Lindsey's eyes could pick out only the faintest shapes beyond the twin beams of the Jag's dazzling headlights. After a while he let the world go and instead fixed his attention on the pale profile of the kid behind the wheel.

Lex was smiling, a smug little curve of the lips that made Lindsey catch his breath and think untender thoughts. He remembered the smoothness of the bare scalp under his palm and found himself almost regretting the impulse that had made him drag things out like this. Sense memory of Luthor's body pinned against the cold metal of the car behind Mae's, living flesh hard and warm and lithe under him, biting his mouth, pulling his hair. Bristling with desperate energy and need that he was trying to disguise as want, as a whim. Lindsey didn't know what was going on with the kid, but he knew about nights like these and he could see that Lex Luthor needed - something. Anything. A fuck, a fix, a rush into oblivion. Lindsey had gauged the situation and enjoyed the sweet surge of power he felt when he stepped away, leaving Lex suddenly touching nothing but cold air and chilly metal.

"I thought we were driving?" he'd said coolly, and watched Lex slip instantly behind his shell again. "Your place or mine?" And he'd felt quite certain that Lex Luthor had no intention of taking any bit of rough trade back home to whatever designer bachelor pad he had driven away from tonight, but he also knew his own strength at this moment, because he had nothing at stake and Lex quite evidently did. Unleashed his most sinful smile and bent forward again to kiss Lex; slow and wet and lingering and filthy, sucking on the kid's tongue like it was his cock. Pulled away once more and heard Lex's ragged breathing betray him. Lindsey waited, still smiling.

"Yours," Lex had replied with a shrug, sounding almost perfectly casual; but Lindsey wasn't fooled. At this moment he owned Lex Luthor. The knowledge hung in the air between them and as a result Lex was driving like a lunatic in a transparent attempt to impress him or intimidate him. Like he thought he was in the Grand Prix. Like he thought he couldn't die.

After the first automatic clench of muscles when Lex had floored the pedals and sent them screaming away from Mae's, Lindsey had consciously relaxed. No way he was going to give the cocky little bastard the satisfaction of winning this particular war of nerves. The kid wanted to unsettle him. It was a pissing contest, simple as that; and Lindsey knew he shouldn't rise to it, but he never could resist this kind of daring. He sprawled bonelessly in the seat in an pose of exaggerated relaxation, gave terse directions to his motel and then watched the kid's face while he drove, enjoying the smoothness of the brow. Nothing Neanderthal about this profile. His own smile widened.

"Nice car," he said, theatrically stifling a yawn. Lindsey remembered the intoxication of first stepping into a car like this, years ago: the upholstery with its lovely new-car smell, its lovely dollars-in-the-bank, success-and-recognition smell. It was astonishing how quickly he'd become blas about Porsches and Jaguars and chauffeur-driven limousines; the sheer ubiquity of luxury had rendered it almost redundant.

"I suppose you have a big, manly truck?" said Lex in a mocking tone that betrayed the tiniest hint of pique. "A red one?" He pressed a little harder on the gas and the car surged faster into the darkness. Lindsey only smiled. Lex Luthor liked to live a little dangerously, or thought that he did.

"Yeah. Pretty much." He watched a patronising smirk curl the corner of Lex's mouth again and spared a thought for the classic Ford languishing outside Mae's. Now that was a vehicle worth cherishing. "So is this the best she can do?" A tiny lick of pity in his voice and Luthor's smile wavered, surprised into a laugh. He floored the gas and Lindsey felt gravity pressing him that little bit harder back into the seat.

Lex loved the way it responded to his touch; clichd as hell, but there was nothing like driving a brand new sports car down an empty road at breakneck speed. Lex Luthor liked being wealthy. He also found himself unwillingly half-liking Lindsey, whose nonchalance amused and provoked him in equal measure. He wasn't sure how he felt about that. Lex didn't need or want to like some cheap pick up whose chief appeal lay in his availability and he didn't want to know anything about the mind behind the pretty faade selected for its lack of innocence. Lindsey was not a tall fifteen year old with an incandescent smile and lying green eyes, and that was all that mattered right now. Lex didn't care how the man liked his eggs or how he'd voted in the last election. Didn't particularly want to know his name, come to that.

In Metropolis it would have been the easiest thing in the world to lose himself for a night; he could have found relief in any of a score of clubs or saunas, or just logged on to his computer and picked out a pretty buff young thing or two or three, all more than ready to come and go at the drop of a line. No-strings sex in the sticks was a little trickier, but he'd surprised himself with how simple it had been after all.

Still, in spite of appearances, Lindsey McDonald didn't quite fit in with Lex's idea of Kansas farmers. There was something slightly - off.

Christ, he was really seeing mysteries everywhere.

This was just the sort of shit that Lionel would expect of him - dear God, he was so predictable. Still, he could have made a call, easy as breathing, and had oblivion delivered to his door within the hour; he could have lost himself and his emptiness with a surge of something costly in his veins or in his lungs, something dissolving against a membrane or melting on his tongue. He could have swallowed his pride and his questions and borrowed the comfort of Lethe with something brown or white or candy-coloured to knit up the ravelled sleeve of care, at least for a little while. It would have been perilously easy; but he wanted to know he could go without, wanted to be sure that this indulgence remained a choice, not a necessity.

For months now he hadn't clouded his brain with anything stronger than Napoleon Brandy or single malt Scotch. Not for Clark. It wasn't for Clark. He was in love with the slow unfurling of his autonomy, was revelling in the sense of power that came with his new existence. Control. At long, long last he was governing his own life and he had a little blessed space to think and plan and practice for the future. This was its own intoxication.

But after this day he needed - Christ, he needed something. He kept seeing Earl Jenkins. Seeing his father. Seeing Clark. Lex could still taste the certainty of death in the back of his throat and remembered, fearfully, the strange relief he had felt at surrendering to it. He remembered the bloom of pure horror when he'd heard Clark's voice over the speaker and knew the boy was trapped in the building with him after all - knew that he had failed to protect the only thing that mattered in the end.

So here he was hours later, with a stranger in his car and the quick lick of alcohol fading from his veins, hurtling down quiet roads at something like escape velocity.

"Fast enough?" He flicked a glance at his passenger. Lindsey didn't seem at all disconcerted by their headlong rush into the darkness and Lex felt a twinge of irritation.

The car veered only a trifle when Lindsey's hand found his thigh and Lex bucked up off the seat, his legs one long, sweet line of tension arching from the small of his back to the feet jammed to the gas and to the floor. Lex inhaled sharply and took his eyes off the road long enough to see Lindsey's shadowy face inscribed with a smile of pure challenge.

"Are you trying to get us killed?" Lex asked, his level tone shot through with dryness as unfamiliar fingers traced a leisurely path over the taut fabric. He shivered at the delicate brush of a blunt nail trailing along the pants seam at his inner thigh.

Ah, shit, that was -

"Do you care?" The low voice, sweet and rough with some Southern accent, dared him to slow down or object. Lindsey slid his hand higher, cupping the eager bulge speculatively. Lex bit his bottom lip hard and stared out at the segment of the road visible in his headlights. "You'd better not go making my hand angry," added Lindsey with lazy merriment. "You won't like it when it's angry." Lex was still trying to come up with an appropriate response to this bizarre remark when he felt a tug at his sweater and warm skin brushed against his belly, tracing the curve of bones and musculature and wringing another ragged half-laugh from him. Lindsey's hands were softer than he'd expected and the pressure of the thumb circling his navel made him shiver. His gloved hands tightened on the wheel.

Lindsey McDonald leaned in closer, fingers possessively resting on belly and thigh. "Don't slow down," he said, before ducking his head under Lex's outstretched arm. In no time at all the button and zipper were dealt with, layers of fabric were peeled away and Lex could feel warm breath tickling his erection.

An almost unbearable pause while Lex waited for the wet pressure of lips or tongue and felt only the inadequate caress of a whisper of breath against the blood-heavy skin. He wondered for one instant of frustrated hilarity whether he had picked up the only man in the world who took the term 'blowjob' literally, and then a wet finger slid along the underside of his cock as a prelude to the necessary brush of Lindsey's hard tongue circling the little slit and licking the liquid that dewed the tip. His cock jumped under the practiced touch and Lex let out a helpless little groan of pure need as he bucked in the seat. As if he'd been waiting for this cue, Lindsey's mouth closed wetly over the swollen head and the jolt of suction as his tongue flickered in sticky exploration was absolutely fucking perfect.

Lex bit down on his lip until he tasted blood and his back arched automatically as Lindsey licked a rough and ready pattern on the underside of his cock. This wasn't - oh fuck, yes, like that - this wasn't who he was now, wasn't who he was trying to be; this was the kind of dumb hedonistic shit he used to pull in Metropolis. Not now, not since - ah, Christ - not since he'd taken charge of his life. Not since Clark gave him his life. Not since Clark. Lex clung to the steering wheel as if his sanity depended on it and stared blindly through the glass, his whole attention centred on the sweet wet friction against his cock. He wanted this, precisely this, but it felt like falling. Felt like taking off the flak jacket and stepping into the line of fire, felt like the shock of freefall when the metal walkway gave beneath his feet. Felt like -

And then there were fingers pinching the base of his erection and the slick pressure was suddenly gone.

"You. Bastard," said Lex, when he was capable of speech. "If I'd wanted to play games - "

"Just giving you a little - encouragement - to get to where we're going."

Lex considered the pros and cons of shoving someone out of a speeding car as he tried to adjust his clothing with one hand on the wheel. He felt empty.

"This might be a little easier if I knew where 'there' actually was," he pointed out. He found himself disliking Lindsey quite intensely at the moment, pretty mouth and talented tongue notwithstanding. But not nearly as much as he disliked himself.

"Not long now," said Lindsey, sounding far too pleased with himself. Fucker.

Lindsey had to admit that the motel was - well, not exactly The Hyperion. Hell, it made Bates' Motel look pretty good, but it answered his needs for the moment. When Luthor screeched to a predictably theatrical stop, Lindsey opened the door and swung his legs off the soft leather upholstery of the Jag in one smooth motion, then crossed the parking lot and dug around in his pocket for the room key without once looking back. He grinned at the sound of the kid's overpriced shoes hitting the gravel, followed a heartbeat later by the slam of the car door behind him and the electronic trill of the lock.

"Well, this is - homey," said Lex, pausing on the threshold and taking in the dingy glory of the room with his head tilted appraisingly.

"Isn't it?" Lindsey glanced around at the faded wallpaper and 70s furnishings and then smiled back at the kid, a slow-burning smile that wasn't especially friendly but was all kinds of intimate. "Don't tell me you need an invitation?"

From the look on the kid's face Lindsey reckoned he'd never met a vampire. Not that a vamp would need an invitation to enter a place like this. He remembered a time when he hadn't known things like this, and when the Gideon's Bible by the bed wouldn't have been on a mental checklist of potential weapons. Difficult to shrug off these patterns of thought, once they'd been instilled.

The door closed quietly and Lex Luthor stood quite still, taking in his surroundings. Lindsey saw him glance at the guitar case and the pile of CDs and lift an eyebrow at the dog-eared copy of The National Law Journal. He was breathing a little too quickly and his shoulders were tense, but he retained an expression of detached calm. Lindsey wondered, with sour amusement, whether Lionel's son was expecting to get mugged; he looked thoroughly ill at ease to Lindsey's practised eye, however hard he tried to mask it with nonchalance. He was out of his element. Lindsey knew that feeling and took a small, unkind pleasure in witnessing the kid's discomfort.

"I think that's enough small talk, don't you?" he asked pointedly, unbuttoning his shirt with one hand as he crossed towards the bed. Somewhere a door opened and a burst of hopelessly romantic music sang out into the air, carrying clearly through the thin walls into the room. Behind him Lex Luthor gave a broken laugh; a small, choked sound that had very little humour in it.

He crossed the room in a couple of strides, and when Lindsey turned towards him Lex dropped smoothly down to his knees and began unfastening the man's jeans with brisk efficiency. Fuck Clark anyway. Clark had lied to him about the Porsche, even though Lex knew that his own memories made no sense. And what had happened today made the same kind of no-sense, and Clark was lying to him still. Lindsey's cock was half-way hard when Lex freed it from an incongruously expensive pair of briefs and licked a wet pattern across the tip. He heard a welcome hiss of indrawn breath above him and Lindsey's hand came down to cup the smooth skin of his skull.

"Fuck, yes," said Lindsey with feeling, as Lex dragged the denim down to bunch between his thighs and devoted his entire attention to getting Lindsey hard. Slick slide of hard tongue over unsteady flesh, painting quick designs over the shaft and closing lips over the head in a wet and sucking kiss that pulled Lindsey inside inch by inch, while his fingers concentrated on the silken skin of Lindsey's balls and slipped behind them to find the prostate, provoking shudders and a wordless groan. Lex knew that he was very good at this; he never did things by halves. Above him Lindsey's breath grew ragged and his hips found a rhythm to match the liquid pressure of Lex's tongue. Lex loved this feeling of sullied power; loved the knowledge that another man's desperate goal was his to grant or to refuse.

When he judged the other man was on the brink of spending, Lex pulled back and rested on his haunches, ducking his head away from Lindsey's clutching hand. He looked up with his head angled slightly to one side and did nothing about the saliva smeared gracelessly over his chin. Lindsey shivered and his pretty eyes were glazed as he stared blankly down at Lex.

"Oh, fuck this - I - Christ, just *don't stop*."

Lex wrapped his fingers around the swollen flesh and smiled.

"Ask me nicely," he said, his voice low-pitched and smooth, savouring the control. His thumb circled the leaking slit and tugged the skin almost roughly. Lindsey's pupils dilated further and the words spilled out so willingly it sent a shiver down Lex's spine.

"Please. Oh, fuck - please."

Lex leaned in and took the hot flesh into his mouth once more and, prompted by a spark of malice, pulled his cushioning lips back far enough to let his teeth graze the tender skin of Lindsey's shaft. Lindsey's response was - unexpected. Enthusiastic, in fact. He closed both hands convulsively over Lex's naked head and let out a muffled yell that might have been a name as Lindsey slammed into Lex's mouth with bruising force and came down his open throat.

This wasn't going quite the way Lindsey had intended, but when Luthor's mouth found his cock all those higher brain functions went out the window. Sweet baby Jesus. In the unlikely event that he ever went bankrupt, Lex Luthor would be able to earn himself some pretty serious money as a rent boy. Lindsey had absolutely not expected the kid to go down on him so very, very well. He felt like his IQ had just dropped 50 points, and there was no getting away from the fact that Little Lord Fauntleroy here was running the show.

And - teeth. Dear God. Lindsey faintly remembered a time when he hadn't had so many kinks, but it was in a dim and distant past when he had also believed in truth and justice, and when he'd had no idea that there really were monsters under the bed. And monsters lurking in car parks and pacing around in boardrooms, for that matter. He didn't particularly want to think about how many of his current fetishes were directly related to the undead.

He sat down on the bed and watched Lex Luthor rise to his expensively shod feet with a fluid motion and a very smug expression. Notwithstanding all his original intentions, Lindsey was sorely tempted to just collapse on the bed and go to sleep. Leaving Lex Luthor unsatisfied would be a satisfaction in itself.

"Don't tell me that's all you can take?" asked Lex, studying him with amusement. "I realise that you're getting on in years, but you can't be more than, what, thirty? Thirty five?"

Lindsey snorted, perfectly balanced between laughter and outrage.

"Fuck you, you snot-nosed little - I'm twenty seven. And I have stamina coming out my goddamn ears." He damned well ought to have by this point; years of getting by on a couple hours of sleep per night and living on caffeine and adrenaline in the employ of Wolfram and Hart taught a person a thing or two about endurance. Although admittedly his actual sex life had taken quite a nose dive while he was with the firm, because there were only so many hours in the day.

"Really?" Lex lifted one eloquent eyebrow and glanced at Lindsey's limp cock. If sheer pride and willpower could have sufficed to reanimate his spent flesh, Lindsey's prick would have been springing to attention at this point; but unfortunately it would take a little while. He tucked it back into his pants and stared insolently back.

"What did you have in mind?" he asked. Lex smiled. Oh, you fucker, thought Lindsey, aware that he was getting his buttons pushed but entirely unable to quash his competitive impulses even now. He yanked off his flannel shirt like he was proving something. Lindsey knew that the tight white T shirt underneath it looked good on him; he'd always made time to work out in LA and he'd done enough physical labour since leaving the City of Angels to keep firm. He waited a beat and then pulled the T shirt over his head.

Thirty five. Bastard.

Lex still wore that damned annoying half-smile and Lindsey wasn't about to stand for any more of this whole aura-of-detachment bullshit. He rose to his feet, jeans hanging loose on his sharply defined hips, and closed one hand over Lex's shoulder and the other over the nape of his naked neck to pull the kid in for a devouring kiss. Lex kissed him right back, but there wasn't anything like the sense of surrender that Lindsey remembered from the bar. He promised himself that he'd make Lex Luthor lose the precious pretence of self-control again if it damned well killed him.

Lindsey considered matters as he explored the boy's mouth. He ran curious fingers over Lex's shoulders and down across the arms that hung carelessly at his sides while Lindsey bent into the kiss. Still wearing the driving gloves. Lindsey closed his fingers around the wrists, circling the skin the way Angel's scar circled his own borrowed flesh, and felt Lex tense just a fraction under his touch.


He squeezed harder, and Lex shifted in the tight grasp, pulling his arms away testingly; and when Lindsey's grip yielded not at all, Lex moaned against his tongue. It was the faintest of involuntary sounds and Lindsey felt it more than heard it, but it was enough to give him ideas.

He wrapped his arms around Lex's waist, carrying the trapped hands back and pinning them together above the curve of the kid's ass; and he was rewarded by a kiss of pure, burning urgency and the unmistakable rise of the erection against his belly as Lex Luthor suddenly cleaved to him like he was the only piece of driftwood in an icy sea.


Lindsey could work with this. The skewed sense of familiarity left him slightly off-balance; but this, after all, was what he'd wanted from the minute he'd set eyes on the kid. All that wealth and privilege and ease and arrogance had made Lindsey want to find the soft underbelly and bite down hard, because Lex Luthor was only human, and Lindsey didn't take this kind of shit from humans. He pulled Lex closer to him ungently, his hands locked like makeshift cuffs around the narrow wrists; and the pressure of ardent young muscles and eager young cock bucking into him through all that expensive fabric was irresistible.

When he pulled his head back, he saw Lex's face was dazed and open in a way that it hadn't been at any point since they reached the motel. Raw. Vulnerable. And that was more goddamned like it.

Lindsey let go of the kid's wrists in one sharp motion and stepped away from him, watching him sway slightly in his sudden and splendid isolation. The shift in power in the room was palpable. Intoxicating. He tried to remember when power games had become an end in themselves rather than simply being the means to get promotion, money, sex. Perhaps it had always been that way, but he thought it was one of the less visible scars he'd picked up at Wolfram and Hart.

"Get undressed," he said harshly, and Lex had the unstructured grey sweater over his head and on the floor in a heartbeat. Lindsey watched him unbutton the pants with unsteady fingers, then shrug down the fabric and step out of them altogether. It was difficult to look imposing in lilac socks and grey boxer briefs, especially with a very visible erection, but the kid wasn't at all embarrassed about his body. Which was understandable. It wasn't a body to be embarrassed about. "Everything," prompted Lindsey, unsmiling, and the cadence of his voice sent a visible shiver through the poor little rich boy standing half-naked before his bed. Lex peeled away the last remnants of clothing very quickly and Lindsey was interested to see that the baldness was pretty much an all-over thing. He tugged the belt from the frayed denim loops at his waist and watched Lex's body react to the soft slither of the leather sliding free. The naked expression of need that crossed his face when he saw the belt being laced into ad hoc cuffs said everything that needed to be said. "Turn around." And Lindsey thought he could grow drunk on nothing more than this. He stepped closer and trailed one formerly evil fingertip from the nape of the kid's neck down to the curve of his ass, then leaned closer and licked the skin behind his ear. "Put your hands behind your back for me." Wonderful how quick Lex Luthor was to comply, how he couldn't quite stifle a moan when Lindsey wrapped the warm leather around his wrists and pulled the buckle tight.

Face down on the scratchy covers in a cheap motel, naked, hands bound behind his back and a complete stranger standing behind him, who might by an axe murderer for all he knew - and this shouldn't feel so good. He was harder than he'd been in weeks. The shrinks Lionel had sent him to after his mother's death would have a dozen theories on this. If he felt like it Lex could probably come up with a few theories of his own, but right now he didn't want to think. Not about who he was, or where he was going, or the shifting boundaries of his relationship with Lionel, or about his relationship with Clark.

Clark. Jesus. The thought of having Clark like this sent a surge of pure wanting through him: that impossibly perfect body spread out on his sheets, clean dark hair falling across his unlined forehead, sun-licked muscles flexing helplessly under him. The things he wanted to do to Clark - things that made his gut clench when he spoke to Martha Kent. Christ. But he was playing nice.

What was keeping him? Lex entertained the perfectly real possibility that Lindsey McDonald was just fucking with his head, and was going to steal the Jag and leave him here trussed up and naked. That should probably worry him more than it did.

Hands closed around his ankles, pulling his legs further apart and pinning him to the covers. Lex gasped into the thin pillow and closed his eyes. The tongue licking his instep could have been anybody's. Could have been Clark's. He bit back a moan. Hands everywhere, and the wet slide of an open mouth over his skin was oddly pure and impersonal. Perfect. When teeth closed hard over his calf he heard himself make a desperate sound low in his throat. The covers rasped against the delicate skin of his nipples and his leaking cock. Anonymous fingertips traversed his flesh, testing responses with something like scientific curiosity and continuing, intolerably, to ignore his erection; until at last Lex began to thrash clumsily under the inadequate touch, unable to get a proper purchase with his wrists restrained. He was brought up short by an open-handed slap stinging his ass, and he lay still, unable to hear anything over the dull roar of his own pulse and his ragged breathing.

"Not until I tell you to," said Lindsey McDonald, who was suddenly, achingly, not touching any part of him at all. The sense of isolation was scorching - and painfully familiar. Lex froze and willed the other man to touch him. After an interminable moment he was rewarded by a sucking kiss on his shoulder, teeth almost breaking the skin, and then hands were everywhere once again. Lindsey's cheek rubbed against his upper arm, stubble scratching the skin, and he licked a trail down to the inside of Lex's elbow and then on towards his tethered wrists.

Lips closed over Lex's fingers, and the jolt of wet suction made him gasp, suddenly caught in the vivid sense memory of this same mouth wrapped around his cock. Lex realised that he might actually come from nothing more than this, without ever being touched. Like some fucking teenager. Like - ah, Christ. Like Clark. Like Clark probably would.


When Lindsey pulled away this time it was only for a moment, and as Lex gasped into the pillow he heard a tiny, familiar sound but couldn't begin to identify it until hands closed over his sharp hips and he felt the shock of leather. Lindsey was wearing his driving gloves. Lex's back arched involuntarily with the realisation, and then Lindsey was shoving him further up the bed and the covers were grazing the sensitised skin of his cock unbearably - and this was too much, too much and still not nearly enough. Lex could hear somebody sobbing and he thought it might be him. Gloved hands pushed his thighs further apart and parted lips traced the curve from the base of his spine down towards the tight pucker between his splayed cheeks; and when the wet tongue wormed its way inside him and a gloved hand simultaneously closed over his sticky cock and began to jack him off, Lex let go of all the eddying thoughts teeming in his skull and writhed and thrashed and yelled incoherently, until he finally forgot his own name and lost everything in the pure release of being nothing more than flesh.

Lex woke up with sunlight on his face and hot skin pressed up against his back. It took him a moment to place where and when he was, but as mornings after the night before went, this was certainly one of the more enjoyable ones. He hadn't intended to stay the night, but somehow leaving had seemed like too much effort. It was just convenience. It wasn't that he needed somebody to hold him.

Soon there would be the dubious delights of the motel's shower to brave, and then the seediness of donning yesterday's clothes. Then the long drive back to Smallville, alone, with the morning sun glaring through the glass and making him squint and wish he'd thought to bring sunglasses. And then, of course - once he'd been home and gotten changed into something less comfortable - there would be all the mess to deal with at work. More reporters to be charmed and distracted, damages to be assessed, medical bills to be looked at, and then the headache of trying to establish what other vast secrets Smallville was hiding from him, if it could deceive him about his own Plant.

Maybe after work he could swing by The Beanery. Not on the off chance of meeting Clark, of course. Not at all. Lex certainly wasn't hung up on a strapping great fifteen-year-old kid with a martyr complex and unguessable secrets held behind the sweetest and most corruptible smile he had ever seen. He just liked the coffee, and liked cultivating his man-of-the-people role.

Yeah. Right. Lex sighed.

He knew that the arm thrown over his hip and the fingers curled against his belly meant nothing more than an accident of place and time and interlocking need and inclination. Lindsey McDonald would wake soon, and this uncomplicated intimacy would become two strangers glancing at each other uncertainly from behind shuttered eyes; but there was no harm in enjoying this grace note in the space between.

Lex leaned back and relaxed into Lindsey's sleeping embrace for as long as it might last.


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