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06 September 2009 @ 06:30 pm
Secrets & Lies (Chlex Drama/Romance- PG13/15): Chapters 1 and 2  
Summary: Secrets and lies have always been part of his life, and she has made a living out of exposing them. What happens when she discovers more than she´s bargained for and when he learns everything he thought he knew was a lie? Sometimes a life-death decision can rise up questions and provide you with answers you aren´t prepared for.

Author: Lexie aka
lillianschild

Rating: PG-13/15

Spoilers: Everything up to Fracture is up for grabs.

A/N:The sequence of events in this story may not necessarily follow the timeline of the show. I´ve manipulated certain events from the show- including their time frame– to suit my own creative purposes.

Disclaimer: all Superman and Smallville characters belong to DC Comics and Gough & Millar. No infringement's intended.


SECRETS AND LIES

CHAPTER 1:
REBIRTH

It was drizzling steadily in the streets of Smallville- nothing like the heavy rain that had soaked him wet in Detroit when he went looking for Clark´s amnesiac cousin, but annoying just the same. On the distant horizon lightning illuminated the skies and the storm that looked benign in the misleadingly quiet rural town turned suddenly ominous- a raging thunderstorm hidden behind a calm exterior, a reflection of the young man´s soul.

A couple of hours ago he had come out of a deep coma, surprising the medical staff on duty at Smallville Medical Center. He had come round amidst a blinding light and, for a few confusing moments, he had thought he was there, where his tainted soul should have been denied instant access. It had looked and felt like Heaven, only he knew it couldn´t be true.  If he had finally crossed to the other side, it wouldn´t have been Heaven, not after the path he had taken. Still... something had happened, something which had shaken his very core and brought out feelings and cravings his darker half wanted dead and buried.

Divested now of the hospital garb, which he had come to hate after spending three-quarters of his life in health care centres- either as a patient  or as an unwilling visitor- Lex Luthor stood looking out of a window in a pair of perfectly-pressed black trousers and a half-buttoned blue dress shirt.

Almost two years before he had come out of a similar comatose state a new man- wiser, crueller and more determined than ever to secure the one thing he had craved all his life and been denied. He had taken the path his mother had warned him against, convinced there was no other choice to find happiness; if there´d ever be something akin to happiness in a Luthor´s life.

He had cheated. He had lied. He had manipulated and plotted to get what had been so cruelly taken away from him when Lillian had died, leaving him to the tender mercies of a father in whose eyes Lex´d never be enough. The poor rich boy wanted, needed, to be loved with such despair that it made his darker half sneer at Alexander. The innocent boy still survived in the deep recesses of the billionaire´s soul, despite his father´s and the world´s attempts to smother him once and for all. It seemed Lex himself had joined the enemy´s ranks of late, fighting tooth and nail to crush every vestige of the weak wide-eyed boy who had made it impossible for him to earn Lionel´s approval. Little Alexander had only brought pain and disillusion to Lex, and holding onto him had been an act of rebelliousness, a last attempt to save what had been doomed from its seed.

For months Lex had been able to silence the voice that kept intruding into his thoughts, telling himself he had listened to it long enough, only to be betrayed by those closest to him and to be doubted every step of the way because he had had the misfortune to have been born a Luthor and not a salt-of-the-earth mild-mannered boy like Clark Kent. It didn´t matter that the young farm boy made mistakes or hurt those around him with his secrecy, the world was ready to forgive Jonathan Kent´s adoptive son; Lex was certain everyone would embrace the boy if he were to reveal the secret he´d been hiding for years. However, Lionel Luthor´s son would never be given that chance. He had been branded at birth. He´d be forever evil in everyone´s eyes and, because of that, never entitled to have a secret or make a wrong decision. Unlike Clark, Lex had been born with a silver spoon in his mouth but had had to fight all his life to beg for everything that the farm boy took for granted.

Being in a coma had been an illuminating experience and coming out of it had brought to the surface old insecurities and stripped Lex´s soul bare. The mask he´d been wearing those past months, the armour he´d decided to put on  ever since the Christmas he had refused to renounce his dream of a seat at the Senate was no longer in place. Something had happened while he was dormant and fighting for his life in that hospital bed, something that had made him see the light  at the end of the tunnel- only it wasn´t the door to the afterlife but to another chance here on earth.

Lex had already lost count of how many times his life had been spared and of how many second chances he had been given by either God or Providence. Two of these chances were deeply imprinted on his mind for on both occasions he´d been saved from drowning by a Kent- Clark and Kara, two cousins who had come to plague the billionaire´s waking hours. The enigma behind his former friend had obsessed Lex for years on end and the arrival of the angelic blonde-haired cousin, who had rescued him from certain death, had revived and stoke that sickly fixation to unravel the mystery behind Clark Kent. It was because of Kara Kent and his obsession with the farm boy that Lex had got a bullet in his head. That his life had been spared for the umpteenth  time was a miracle he couldn´t fathom; it made him wonder why God had decided once again that his life was worth-saving.

Looking out of the window of his hospital room Lex saw, reflected on the pane, the face of the one woman who had ever loved him in spite of whom he was. “Mum?” he asked with glassy eyes. “What...? Why are you.. .? I thought I´d never see you... again,” he mumbled, his voice charged with emotion.

“Hush, Alex, “ the ethereal figure cut him off. “ You should have listened to me last time, but I´m not the one to cast the first stone, Alex. Everyone makes mistakes; it doesn´t mean you aren´t deserving. I wanted so much for you to have what I had in my grasp and let slip away. It´s said that parents always know better, but it isn´t always so. I should have been stronger... I should have never... I should have protected you and told him the truth before it was too late. Things would have been so different if I had... if he had, at least, known. But I was scared... “

“What are you talking about? What is it that dad should have known?” he frowned.

“You mustn´t let Lionel win, Alex. If you do, all this suffering and pain will have been for nothing. You can do it. You can beat him because my baby´s still here, “ she murmured with a soft smile, touching his chest where his heart was. “My little, beloved Alexander´s still here. And he´s fighting to survive, and I just had to give him the chance before it was too late. “

“Was it you, then? “ he asked with a puzzled frown.

“It was you, Lex, “ she responded warmly. “You knew you´d made a mistake not listening to me that Christmas. I thought I´d lost you, too, “ she told him, cupping his face with a delicate hand. “You called for help. “

“The light? Was it you, then? “ he frowned.

“Stop trying to intellectualise everything, Lex. Just feel. “

“Feeling´s what brought me here, mum, “ he said in anguish. “ Feelings have brought me nothing but pain.”

“Alex, “ she turned his face towards her, “don´t do that. Don´t close yourself up again. If this is to work, you can´t fight it or, else, it´s the final goodbye for both of us. “

“But the light... I felt something... someone... if it wasn´t you, then ... who?” he said agitated.

“Don´t try to look for all the answers, Alex; don´t try to go down that dangerous path again. The answers´ll come to you when the time is right. You´ve shown her, Alex; she knows the reason now.”

“What are you saying, mum? Who is she? Why are you talking in riddles?” asked Lex frustrated.

“Listen to your heart, “ she soothed him, taking his hand in hers and placing them on his beating chest. “I wish I could tell you everything now, but ... it isn´t safe yet. “

“Safe for whom?”

“Things are already in motion. You´ve just got to trust me, Alex. I promise you this time it´ll be different. “

“How can you be so sure?”

“Because you´re not alone this time. You need to have faith, Alex. I know Lionel´s done his best to try to kill that in you, but you have to make a leap of faith. There´s a reason for your survival, and all the answers you´ve been waiting for so long will be given. I just hope you´ll find it in your heart to forgive me. I love you, Alex; you´ve always been loved, “ she leant forward and pressed a kiss on his cheek.

“Mum?” choked Lex when he saw Lillian´s ghost vanish.

“ Lex, son, “ Lionel´s voice intruded on the scene, putting a hand on the young man´s shoulder. “Shouldn´t you be in bed? You´ve just come out of a coma. “

“And you wouldn´t happen to know anything about my recovery, would you? “said the patrician heir, turning around to meet Lionel´s eyes.

“I´m a Luthor, but even I am not that powerful, “ came Lionel´s answer.

“Did you know that people in a coma can hear everything that´s said around them?” asked Lex tersely. “You wanted to play God with my life, dad, use one of LuthorCorp´s experimental projects I cancelled in view of its tragic results. Well, did you?”

“You´ve been through a traumatic experience, Lex. Whatever you think you heard was just your mind playing tricks, “responded the older man gravely.

“ Oh, I know what I heard and, believe me, I´m not insane, “ said the young billionaire, shaking his head. “But, you know what? It´s irrelevant now. I´ve been given another chance. This is my last opportunity to get away from under your shadow; and I´m not going to waste it trying to understand what´s going through your sick mind. I´m done playing your twisted games. I just want you to get out of my life. Besides, wasn´t you who said you no longer had a son?” responded Lex, his body coiled up in tension.

“Lex, “ said reproachfully. “You´ll always be my son, no matter our differences. I know I should have told you this before... “ he continued, grabbing Lex´s forearms and holding his gaze. “ I lo... “

“Oh, spare me, dad! “ exclaimed the young tycoon, shaking his father´s hands off. “You don´t know what love is. “

“I know I´ve failed you, son. I´ve misjudged you for many years. If I had known... “

“Don´t try to play that card on me. You could never stand to see me happy... “

“You know, Lex, if you weren´t so obsessed with the past and trying to find out answers for everything, you would appreciate what you have. Lex, Lex, why can´t you see everything I´ve ever done...”

“...was to show me how much you hate that I am alive while he is dead? “  finished Lex, stretching an arm to grab his long winter overcoat.

“Are you trying to blame me for every morally-questionable decision you´ve taken in recent times?”

“Morally-questionable decisions? The pot calling the kettle black, “ smiled Lex ironically.

“Are you blaming me for your current predicament, son? It wasn´t me who sent you to Detroit to chase that new obsession of yours.  What´s her name? Kaila? Kiera? “ frowned Lionel.

“Come on, dad, don´t play dumb. You know who she is. You´ve been spending more time on that farm than in your office at LuthorCorp, “ chuckled Lex as he did up his Armani overcoat.

“And tell me, Lex, what is that you want with that farm girl?”

“I could ask you the very same question. A leopard never changes its spots. You´ve got something up your sleeve; I can tell. I still don´t understand how a boy raised by Jonathan Kent can so readily open you the doors of his house. I honestly hope he knows what he´s doing, “ he responded putting on his designer tainted glasses.

“Clark Kent´s an extraordinary young man, “  said Lionel, cocking an eyebrow.

“He certainly is, but he´s extremely naïve- something you and I have never been.”

“Naïveté is a very refreshing character trait. Your mother had it in spades,” Luthor Sr. replied with an ironical tone in his voice. “Have you talked with her lately, Lex? “ he added, looking at his son´s back as Lex started to leave the room.

Lex clenched his fists deep in the pockets, wondering how long Lionel had been standing at the doorway before making his presence known. Lillian´s apparition had been too transcendental a moment to be soiled or dissected by the man who had made her life a living hell and who had done his worst to crush whatever redeeming quality Lillian had seen in her son.

“Goodbye, dad. Seek someone else´s life to destroy, “ finished the young tycoon as he left the room without dignifying the elder man with an answer.

As he marched down the corridor Lex felt the pricking of tears behind his eyelids and fought against the impotence that overtook him. He hated the man, hated him but, at the same time, hopelessly wished to gain his approval and, in doing so, he had chosen the path which was leading him straight to the destiny he had sworn to avoid- becoming his father.

Lex clenched his fists and took a deep breath as he approached the exit of the small town´s hospital. `Don´t give up, Alexander. I´ll be there, remember?´ said a voice in his head. “Mum?” he whispered.

He´d thought he´d never see her again after he refused to accept what she had shown him two Christmases ago. This time, he told himself, he´d pay heed because, if she was right, the blinding light that had surrounded him and the warmth that had enveloped his heart when he was brought back to life were waiting to find him. Lex knew it´d be a hard struggle to curve his own inquisitive nature- his thirst to have all the answers. However, if being blind for a while was the price to pay to have, at least, a small taste of what he´d foolishly thought he could have with Lana, it´d be more than worth it.

CHAPTER 2
: AWAKENING

THE APARTMENT ABOVE THE TALON

Eighteen hours had gone by since Clark intruded into Lex´s private room at Smallville Medical Center to find his former friend coming round amidst a blinding light. A hunch had driven the farm boy back to the hospital and his intuition had once again proven right. He loathed to think what would have happened if he hadn´t arrived in time. Lex would just have had to put two and two together to arrive at the correct conclusion. Had Clark hesitated to enter that room for a millisecond, the second best-kept secret in Smallville would have come to light.

Keeping Lois away from the apartment above The Talon, once he had located both her and his cousin Kara in that scrap yard back in Detroit, had been an extraordinary feat. And lying to Lana in the face about his current whereabouts had put another nail to the coffin of their already dying relationship. Who could understand the feminine mind? He was surrounded by them and still he´d never be able to figure them out- a Jezabel who had ensnared him in a quasi-adulterous relationship, an amnesiac cousin who eyed him as if he were the enemy, an obnoxious devil-may-care army brat and now... a sleeping beauty ready to sacrifice her life for... whom? For Kara and Lois? For him? Or... ? He daren´t think of the third alternative, not after everything that had passed between Chloe and his former best friend in the last four years.

It was close to two in the afternoon when Clark crossed the deserted cafeteria and climbed up the stairs with a glass of milk and a piece of blueberry pie. He had resisted the urge to super-speed downstairs all morning afraid of leaving Chloe alone even for a fraction of a second, but his stomach had started grumbling, demanding sustenance, and he was forced to relinquish his post by her bed.

At exactly two-oh-five the blonde reporter´s dormant body stirred suddenly back to life, and Clark walked into the apartment to find her sitting on the bed with a hammering heart and a disoriented look in her eyes.

“Chlo´? “ asked a relieved farm boy, setting down  his snack on the night-table.

“Clark?” responded Chloe with a raspy voice as she focused her blurry eyes on the blue and red-clad figure sitting on the bed.

“God, Chloe!” he exclaimed, tucking a few loose strands of blonde hair behind her ears. “What in heaven´s name did you do?” he added, wrapping his arms around her in a big hug.

“Easy, Clark. You´re going to crush my bones, “ she laughed, swallowing the lump in her throat as reality came crashing down on her.

“ I´m sorry, “ he smiled sheepishly as he loosened the grip on her petite frame. “You scared me to death, Chlo´. Why... ?”

“Lois and Kara, are they...? “ she cut him off, slipping away from his grasp and trying to get a grip now that she was back on solid ground.

“They´re out of harm´s way,” he responded, eying her back with a concerned look on his face. “I found them in Detroit. You told me before slipping into a coma. “

“Right, “ she whispered, making an effort to keep the tears in check as she started to process everything she´d seen and felt when her essence had left her body in that hospital room.

“Chloe, why did you do it?” he asked tensely, walking towards her as she busied herself with some dirty dishes Lois had no doubt left in the sink before rushing away to Motor City.

“Clark... it was the only way,” she responded after taking a deep breath.

“You know that isn´t true. Lionel said... “ he began only to be cut off by her.

“Come on, Clark! You know what would have happened if we had let him do what he suggested. Or didn´t you hear what Lana told us about that experimental procedure?” she answered, trying to control the emotions and images of an infant Alexander which kept popping into her mind.

“Chloe, you could have died, “ he reproached her.

“You don´t know that. Last time I did OK, didn´t I? “ she asked with the ghost of a smile.

“Last time you weren´t dead for eighteen hours.”

“Well, it was worth it, wasn´t it? I got Kara and Lois´ location. “

“Yes, but... I don´t understand... after everything he´s done to you and... “

“Clark... I still don´t know why I´ve been chosen to have such an extraordinary gift; but it was my decision to make. He might be a jerk sometimes... OK... most of the times lately... but I simply couldn´t have someone´s death on my conscience knowing I could have done something about it. I wish I hadn´t been saddled with this ´power´. It´s amazing, but too big a responsibility to handle. We aren´t God, Clark.”

“I know... It´s just that... when I saw him lying on that bed in hospital , I... “ he stuttered, lowering his head in shame,” I... shouldn´t  have felt this, but... for a minute there, I thought he had got what he deserved. After everything he´s put Lana through... “ he continued, shaking his head.

Chloe´s breathing hitched as the Princess´ name slipped through Clark´s lips. He had always been blinded by his love for the brunette, a fact which had been a constant source of sorrow and pain for Chloe during her high school years. She had envied and hated the prom queen in equal measure half of her life until that fateful summer when Chloe decided to bury the hatch after she realised her feelings for Clark had been nothing but a deep crush. In recent years, Chloe had seen things in Clark´s eternal flame which made her feel uncomfortable; however, she had decided to cut Lana some slack based on her own animosity towards Lex. Funny how things could change drastically over the course of a few hours.

“We only know half of the story, Clark,” she responded, drying the dishes and stacking them on a shelf.” What?” she frowned, noticing Clark´s puzzled look.

“What happened in that hospital room?” he asked gravely, making her turn to face him.

“I sneaked into the room, checked out nobody was watching, approached his bed, touched him and... you know the rest,” she shrugged her shoulders, forcing her eyes to hold his questioning gaze without wavering.

“In order to get Lois and Kara´s location you had to do something other than just touch him.”

“Look, Clark. I´m new to this. My educated guess is it must have taken you a while to master your powers... to be able to control them. I simply touched him, OK? I can´t tell you anything about the dynamics of it all. Gee! We saved my cousin and yours, isn´t that enough?” she snapped, feeling the pricking of tears behind her eyelids.

“Chloe, you can´t blame me for getting worried. After all, it´s Lex we´re talking about, and I´ve never seen you this agitated.”

“That´s what eighteen hours dead does to you, Clark,” she retorted ironically. “Don´t worry. Touching Lex hasn´t contaminated me. I´ll be as fit as a fiddle in no time.”

“Chloe, I know you´re hiding something from me. Why did you just say we know half of the story?”

“There´s nothing unusual about my assertion. All of us know that there are two sides to any story. Don´t try to look for any hidden meaning in my words, Clark. Now, if you´ll excuse me, I´d like to have a shower and grab something to eat.”

“OK, “ said Clark resigned.”We´ll let it rest for a while.”

“No, Clark. We´ll let it rest for good,” she told him tilting up her chin.

“Have you ever thought what would have happened if I hadn´t super-sped you out of that room when I did?”

“What matter´s that you did take me away, Clark. Why worry about the what-ifs?”

“And what´ll happen next time, Chloe? Have you ever stopped to think about that? Are you planning to use your power again?”

“I honestly don´t know, Clark. I´m just glad you were there when I needed you. Now, go,” she shooed him away.

“I´ll tell Lois you´re opening this afternoon, if it´s all right with you. I don´t think I´ll be able to retain her for too long with the story I concocted,” he smiled, looking at her cocked eyebrow."Ant invasion?” he added with a twist of his lips.

“Right,” she smiled back.”Don´t worry about me, Clark; I don´t. I just want to get back to my life and forget the last couple of weeks... or months, whatever.”

“You know you can talk to me, right?” he said warmly, grabbing her gently by the arms.

Chloe looked at her oldest friend with fondness and simply hugged him back. For years he had kept his secret locked away and, now, he was keeping hers too. However, she just didn´t feel ready to share everything with him when it came to her latest `supernatural` experience, particularly when the third party involved was Lex. There was no love lost between the two young men and Lana was a big portion of the trouble. Moreover, while fifteen-year-old Clark might have been ready to give Lex the benefit of the doubt, there was too much history between them, and the young adult he now was had been too much influenced by Jonathan Kent´s ways to change his opinion about Lionel Luthor´s first-born. Hell, if she hadn´t put aside all the resentment she felt for the way Lex had treated her in the last four years, she wouldn´t have tried her powers on him and she would still think very much like Clark.

`Well, Sullivan, get your butt in gear. Life goes on and feeling pity- or whatever it is you´re feeling for the bald billionaire right now- or even worse, doing something about it... will just make your life more complex than it already is,´ Chloe told herself as she opened her wardrobe and picked a change of clothes. `You have to put this behind you and go on as if nothing had happened,` she tried to convince herself. `Yeah, who are you kidding? Nothing´ll be the same.´

TBC

CHAPTERS 3 & 4



 
 
Current Mood: contemplativecontemplative
 
 
 
Jengreenlady2 on September 7th, 2009 05:58 am (UTC)
Great start to the story. I love AUs that explore what might have happened if only....
lillianschild: tuxlillianschild on September 7th, 2009 11:29 pm (UTC)
So do I. Pleased you´re already hooked. There´ll be lots of twists, turns and surprises in this one.;)
vodooman: chlexvodooman on September 13th, 2009 08:33 am (UTC)
Oh lovely!
I really liked the first chapter... the insight to lex' character... his decision made up for life...

and chapter 2? hm... it leaves me with a lot of questions... like what exactly happened... why clark was so insistant about her doing more than touching lex... questions, questions, questions...

anyway... great chapters! loved them, and they totally have me hoocked!
lillianschild: too hotlillianschild on September 13th, 2009 06:45 pm (UTC)
I´m happy you´ve found this story because I finished posting it on NS several months ago and you missed it. :)It was well liked apparently because it made it to the NS Fanfic Awards nominations this year.;)

Glad you appreciated the exploration of Lex´s psychological state nd that you alreday have so many questions. You´ll get the answers gradually but there´ll be lots of new questions as the story develops.
vodoomanvodooman on September 13th, 2009 09:12 pm (UTC)
oh well... no hurry! I like having a little time in between... so, I'm not going to hurry you on posting quickly!
green_tea37 on September 20th, 2009 10:21 pm (UTC)
Loved the way you had Chloe telling Clark to back off. I wished that the show had had more on what Chloe's part in that scene was. We saw all this stuff of Clark wondering around in Lex's head, but nothing of Chloe being there or how much she might have picked up from either of them or any of the people that she heals.
lillianschild: toastlillianschild on September 20th, 2009 10:33 pm (UTC)
Glad you liked it. And well, considering the way they handled Chlex since the beginning of Season 4, suddenly breaking them up without an explanation, it´s no surprise they decided to brush it off here.

As much as I didn´t like Steven DeKnight´s tendency to insist on the Clana, I wished he´d stayed on board- if only to give us what he´d planned for Chlex. An amnesiac Chloe leaving in the mansion in Season 7 would have been a hell of a lot more interesting than the storylines they wrote for her in the last couple of seasons.

I sure as hell wished Chloe/AM had left with a bang when Lex/MR "left".

Thanks for reading and reviewing.

If you haven´t got so much time available, maybe you can check out my latest short one-shots with which I´ve tried to reintroduce Lex to Season 8 in a worthy fashion and fix what they did with Chloe.(From Afar, Mirror, Lean on Me, The Top of the World- and even, On a Day Just like Today.)
lillianschild: naughtylillianschild on September 20th, 2009 10:36 pm (UTC)
I meant "living" and not "leaving", by the way. I think faster than I can write. lol