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12 February 2010 @ 01:41 pm
"Back from the Dead" (Chlex Drama/Romance)- PG-13/R: Chapter 1  

SUMMARY: Almost three years have gone by since Lionel´s murder trial but its effects are far from over for everyone involved. A mysterious meeting in Star City resurrects hidden skeletons and wakes up many ghosts.

AUTHOR: Lexie aka lillianschild 

RATING: PG-13/R



Thanks to lone_starling88  for creating this awesome banner for my fic.

 

CHAPTER I: Ghosts

STAR CITY- A HOUSE IN THE SUBURBS

Chloe. The name suited her, but so did Karen- the name that had been on her social security card when she had been rushed into the ER of Star City Memorial that fateful summer. For almost three years now she had been `his´ Karen, his wife and the mother of the two-year old who was the apple of his eyes.

She had entered his life unannounced and for the first time in years had made him feel really useful, enabled him to aid someone in a way that actually mattered. He had tended to her wounds and burns with his skilful surgeon hands and sometime along the way he had fallen in love with her; and his love and tender care had helped her survive the anguish of losing a life she had no memory of and cope with the physical pain caused by an explosion nobody could find a reason for.

The reason had come knocking at his door two days ago and he dreaded what it might entail for, even though he had never seen the man face-to-face before then, he knew the kind and was certain his threats weren´t to be taken lightly. His first instinct had been to pack up their things and take his family away where no one could find them, a place where he could still be a loving husband and father to the two most important women in his life, but he was aware it would have been futile to try to hide from such a man.

“Hi,” murmured the sleepy young blond flashing him a lazy smile.

“Hi,” he responded quietly, feeling a big lump in his throat.

“What´s wrong?” she asked in a raspy voice.

“Nothing you should worry about,” he smiled weakly, leaning down to press a soft kiss on her lips before standing up next to their king-sized bed.

“Are you sure? I know when you aren´t being completely honest with me, Phil,” she said, sitting up and grabbing his hand before he could turn away.

“I´ve got surgery this morning and it isn´t one of those nose jobs or breast enhancements I used to do before I met you. I always get jitters whenever I do reconstructive surgery. They go away once I´m in the OR but...”

“Your patient´ll be in the best of hands,” she cut him off.” I´m proud of you, Phil. You´ve managed to get from under your dad´s shadow and make a name for yourself on your own merits.”

He looked at his wife in her long-sleeved cotton sleepwear and thought of the other women who had been in his life before she entered that ER- well-endowed girls with whom to have a good time no strings attached and who used their bodies to get what they wanted. She was nothing like those women, and she had changed his empty life the moment she opened her deep green eyes when coming out of the anaesthesia. He hadn´t seen the blinding smile for which he woke up every morning until months later but, by then, his heart was already captive of the strong-willed blond. Now the life they had built together was being threatened by her past- a past of which she was oblivious and about which he had just learnt. And Phil swore to himself, once he had found out who the man was and what role he had played in her life, that the bastard would never come close to her again.

Chloe got up while Phil was in his study going over his patient´s medical records and plugged in the Italian coffee maker her husband had given her as a gift last Christmas. Breakfast was always a special meal for them since he rarely came home for lunch, preferring to grab something to eat at the hospital cafeteria or to have some homemade snack in his office. It was early in the morning when she could share with him the latest news about baby Laura or the book she was currently working on. Although she could remember almost nothing about her past, there was something she´d always known, she loved the thrill of researching and writing, and that passion had helped her rediscover who she was beyond the name she had never felt to be her own.

Baby Laura was sleeping soundly in her bed when Phil entered her room on his way to the kitchen. She looked so innocent and healthy, completely alien to the threat which was hovering over them. Sitting down on the bed Phil brushed a few strands of blonde hair off the girl´s face and, leaning down, pressed a soft kiss on her forehead.

“Phil, breakfast´s ready,” murmured Chloe from the doorway as he tucked Laura in. “Are you sure everything´s OK?” she asked him once again, when he left the door ajar.

“Everything´s fine, sweetheart. Let´s have an energising cup of that amazing coffee you´ve brewed, and we´ll discuss how the research for your new book´s going.”

“I didn´t know what you wanted to have this morning so I saved you a piece of chocolate cake and a couple of Danish pastries I brought from the coffee shop yesterday,” she told him, laying a plate with the bakery treats on the table and going back to the work top for the coffee.

“You´ve hit the jackpot with this new caterer. I´ve never had a chocolate cake that tasted this heavenly,” he moaned, savouring the spongy dessert.

“That´s because you´ve never tasted Martha´s baking,” she smiled, sipping her frothy mug of java.

“Martha?” he echoed, shooting her a questioning look.

“Did I say Martha?” she asked with a frown.

“Yes, that´s what you said. Is she someone you used to know before we met?” he said, adding a spoonful of sugar to his coffee.

“I don´t know where that came from,” she shook her head.” Maybe ... She must be, I suppose. I´m not friends with any Martha at present.”

“You know what Dr Spencer said, Karen. Memories might come back gradually. Your mind´ll know when the time´s right.”

“I´ve been having some strange dreams lately,” she told him, shuffling on her seat.

“What kind of dreams?” he asked her, wondering if she´d already started remembering what he wished she didn´t.

“Disconnected things, actually. I see myself in a small office... there are a couple of computers, a filing cabinet and... a huge bulletin board on one of the walls... it´s covered with newspaper clips. I feel happy there... as if it were the only place where I really belonged,” she explained with a far distant look.

“What else do you remember about this ... office?” he egged her on.

“There was a black bird in a poster... a crow, maybe? A couple of nights ago I dreamed I was standing in the middle of that office and everything was in pieces- as if there had been a break-in. I knelt down and picked up what I think was a... copy of a high school newspaper. I woke up before I could make out the name,” she responded with a hint of frustration in her voice.

“I´m sure that...” he began saying only to be interrupted by the front door bell.

“It´s half past seven. Who could it be so early in the morning?” she frowned, starting to get up from her chair.

“Stay,” he told her, resting a hand on hers to detain her. “I´ll see who it is. In the meantime, why don´t you pick me a tie to wear with this new shirt, OK?” he added, smiling and giving her a peck on her lips.

“Something to lift your spirits or to put you at ease?” she cocked her eyebrow, picking up her mug to rinse it in the sink.

“You know me better than anyone. You´ll know what I need,” he responded from the threshold as he made his way to the hall.

As soon as he reached the front door he drew one of the white voile curtains aside and took a peek outside. There was a long black limousine parked in front of the house, an incongruous presence in the middle-class neighbourhood they had chosen to live in when they got married and he decided to prioritise his work at the public hospital. Phil felt a sudden clench in his gut when he spotted the man standing in his porch- he hadn´t waited long.

“What are you doing here?” hissed Chloe´s husband on opening the door.

“Dr Fairchild, I thought we´d agreed you´d give me a call,” answered the man who´d been haunting Phil´s thoughts the last couple of days.

“There was no such agreement. I want you to leave my family alone,” he replied, coming out onto the veranda and closing the door firmly behind them.

“I´m afraid that won´t be possible. You´ve got something I want. Why make things more difficult than they already are? This isn´t the kind of life you´ve always been used to, Dr Fairchild. Just name your price,” he said tersely, slipping his hand into his overcoat to take out his chequebook.

“Keep your filthy money. I´ve got everything I want and need right here,” Phil spat at him. “My family´s not for sale.”

“Isn´t there some place quieter to discuss this? I´m afraid we´re attracting your neighbour´s attention,” said the man, shooting a glance around them.

Phil caught a glimpse of Chloe at one of the living-room windows and decided it´d be better to move this tête-à-tête elsewhere before she came out of the house and things got uglier.

“Come this way,” he murmured, leading the unwelcome visitor to the garage.

Chloe looked at the clock on the mantelpiece and saw it was five to eight- time for her to start getting ready for work. She climbed up the stairs to the master bedroom wondering who that limousine might belong to and what was so urgent that couldn´t be conducted at Phil´s surgery later in the afternoon- her husband had cut down his private practice, but he still kept an office in the city centre where he saw to the patients who required reconstructive surgery and could pay for his services.

“Mummy?” came Laura´s voice.

“What´s wrong, sweetie?” asked Chloe, stepping into her child´s room

“Thirsty,” replied the girl sitting up on her bed and rubbing her sleepy eyes.

“I´ll give you some water and you can go on sleeping, OK. Mummy´ll wake you up when breakfast´s ready,” said Chloe, grabbing the girl´s Winnie-the-Pooh sippy glass and filling it up.

She turned off the washbasin tap and looked at herself in the mirror-she needed a haircut. Maybe she would ask Jerry to cover her for two hours at the till so that she could stop by the hairdresser´s; after all she was the coffee house owner. Yes, she could even take her notepad along and continue the draft for her new book while sitting in the hairdresser´s chair. She smiled and, switching off the light in the bathroom, turned around to walk back into the room. It was at that moment, when the clock struck eight, that two shots were heard and the sippy glass ended on the floor- its content dampening the little girl´s carpet.

METROPOLIS- LUTHORCORP PLAZA

Lex was in the middle of a board meeting when his assistant informed him he had an urgent call. The young billionaire knew Jennifer well enough to conclude the interruption had to be warranted; the young woman would never dare enter a room where he was doing business unless she´d been summoned.

“Luthor,” he said, picking up the handset in the privacy of his own office.

“Sorry for interrupting you, sir. We´ve got bad news, I´m afraid,” replied LuthorCorp´s head of security.

“Was there another break-in?” he asked, massaging the tense muscles of his neck and wondering what made the leaguers in their fancy costumes think they were anything other than terrorists.

“Not today, sir. This call is about that other matter you´ve asked us to keep an eye on,” responded the veteran professional gravely.

“What about it?” he asked the employee, feeling the bile suddenly rise up to his throat.

“You´ve got to fly to Star City, Mr Luthor,” responded the security guy after a slight pause.

“I´m in the middle of an important negotiation, Harris. I´m paying you to handle things. What´s so urgent that requires my being there?”

“He´s dead, sir,” replied the employee in a serious tone.

“Dead?” echoed Lex, gripping the handset tightly. “What happened?”

“He was shot twice in the lower abdomen. He died almost instantly, sir.”

“What was he doing in Star City, Harris?”

“We followed him to a middle-class neighbourhood and stayed under cover.”

“A middle-class neighbourhood?” Lex repeated, thinking that wasn´t the place he´d have envisioned for such a demise- a dark alley in an uninhabited part of town or maybe an empty warehouse on the pier would have been more fitting.

“Do you have a name for me?” he added in a controlled voice.

“Fairchild. Dr Philip Fairchild- a plastic surgeon at Star City Memorial. We still don´t know what kind of business they had.”

“Where are you calling from?”

“We´re stationed a few yards away from the doc´s house... just across the street. The coroner´s ready to leave and CSI´s working on the scene.”

“Tell McCormack to wait for me at the helipad. I´ll be there within the hour,” said an impassive Lex, ending the conversation.

CHAPTER 2

 

 
 
Current Mood: disappointeddisappointed
 
 
 
fruitbat00: The Lookfruitbat00 on February 12th, 2010 05:29 pm (UTC)
Great start very intriguing. I look forward to reading more.
lillianschild: sexylillianschild on February 12th, 2010 05:32 pm (UTC)
Thanks for reading and reviewing. I'm glad a chapter was enough to capture your interest.

There's certainly more to come your way. :)
Jengreenlady2 on February 13th, 2010 12:07 am (UTC)
Oooh! Intriguing beginning. :-)))
lillianschild: kiss aproachlillianschild on February 13th, 2010 01:56 am (UTC)
It is, isn't it? Part of the mystery`ll be unveiled in the next post, but you'll have to wait quite some time to discover it all. :)
eternal_moonieeternal_moonie on March 7th, 2010 03:27 pm (UTC)
Totally AWESOME start honey!
I feel so bad for only just finding out about this story...
lillianschild: believelillianschild on March 7th, 2010 04:16 pm (UTC)
No need to feel bad; you've discovered it now. :D

I'm glad you're already excited after reading just the introduction. I hope you'll enjoy the other three chapters which are up on my LJ. There's still a lot to happen.

By the way, you can access all the works I've posted here so far (one-shots, long fics and videos) by clicking on the master list link, which appears at the beginning of my links list in the top right-hand corner.

Thanks for accepting the invitation to read this one.
shelianasheliana on July 11th, 2010 08:23 pm (UTC)
That's an interesting beginning. I like how Chloe still retained the most essential parts of her personality even after losing her memory (her passion for research and writing - Chloe has always been a born journalist, and the show's two latest seasons did nothing to convince me otherwise).
lillianschild: still waitinglillianschild on July 11th, 2010 08:47 pm (UTC)
her passion for research and writing - Chloe has always been a born journalist, and the show's two latest seasons did nothing to convince me otherwise

This is one of the things I resent the most about the way they've been writing Chloe- apart from her inexplicably venomous treatment of Lex soon after the beginning of Season 4.

I'm glad you liked the first chapter. You'll have to wait a couple of chapters for their first face-to-face encounter. I hope you'll enjoy the ride and the gradual unravelling of secrets as their relationship develops. :)