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08 April 2008 @ 01:15 am
Payback Time (PG-13) Chlex- Drama/Romance: Chapters 1 & 2 Part A  
Here´s the first instalment of my second Chlex fic. Oh, I´ve written a lot since then!

SUMMARY:Chloe is living under a new identity and working for a prestigious magazine. A guilty Lex believes her dead and, when someone attempts on his life again, the reporter comes out of hiding to help him undercover.Will they have a chance together this time ?


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

A/N: this story takes place thirteen years after ' Covenant '- episode 22 of Season 3- and presupposes the events on “ Crusade “ never happened. Therefore, there was no rescue operation carried out by Lex and General Lane.

Since Chapter 1 's rather short, I've decided to post the first part of Chapter 2 as well.


CHAPTER1: Darkness

Thirteen years had gone by since the day the FBI called Lex to inform him both Chloe and Gabe Sullivan were dead. Thirteen years since the explosion of their safe house blew them to pieces, and 4745 days since Lex realised he had failed to keep the one promise he'd made when Chloe stubbornly agreed to testify against his father- to protect her.

In all those years there hadn't been a night in which he hadn't woken up in the middle of a nightmare covered in sweat, screaming Chloe's name. Even though he hadn't seen the blowup with his own eyes, he could picture it in his mind, and his subconscious ran it over and over again, torturing him in his sleep.

However, this night when he opened his eyes after the recurring bad dream, something was different. He tried to adjust his eyes to the darkness that surrounded him in an attempt to make out the familiar furniture and wallpaper of his room, still, there was nothing but blackness around him. He brought his hands up to his eyes and felt the gauze around his head. He was blind. Blind as a bat.

“ It's all right, Mr Luthor. You've had a nightmare, “ sad a voice Lex didn't recognise.

“ Who are you ? Where am I ? “ asked Lex agitated.

“ Lie back, Mr Luthor, “ said the woman, helping him to ease his head on the pillow. “ There, much better. You're in hospital and my name's Nurse Williams. “

“ What's happened ? My eyes... I can't..., “said Lex, touching the bandage.

“ I know. It must be overwhelming to wake up all of a sudden and find yourself in this condition. Dr Nichols'll come right away to talk to you. Calm down. “

“ Calm down ? Calm down !” exclaimed Lex breathlessly. “ Tell me what's happened, “ asked Lex with a no-nonsense attitude.

“ All I can tell you is that there was some kind of accident in a lab and that your eyes were damaged in the process. “

“ How extensive's the damage ? “

“Dr Nichols'll inform you, Mr Luthor. I'm sorry. I can't say any more. Oh ! Here's the doctor. I'll leave you two alone. “

“ Good morning, Mr Luthor. I'm Dr Nichols, your ophthalmologist. Do you remember what happened back at Luthorcorp ? “

“The nurse's told me there was an accident in a lab. Everything's hazy. I can't remember what actually happened there but... why... “

“ According to my exam, your eyes were exposed to some kind of acid. “

“ How damaged are they ? “

“ We have to do more tests to be sure. They were badly burnt but at this point I can't give you any certainties. “

Blind. Just when he was on the trail of something big, something that could put his father back where he belonged. Lex had almost tasted the sweet flavour of revenge in his mouth and, once again, God or the Devil- he didn't know which- had made use of his twisted sense of humour. Chloe didn't deserve what had happened to her, to have died to help him put Lionel behind bars, and to be let down by the one person she had decided to put her trust in.

Lex was worn out. He could feel he was drifting back to sleep- sleep and the realm of dreams. At least there was something better than this darkness, a place in which he could see the face of an idealistic girl who did things without expecting anything in return, a land where he could believe there was still innocence and loyal friendship.

CHAPTER 2: Time to Collect- Part A

It was ten in the evening, and the sophisticated petite chestnut-haired reporter everybody in the magazine affectionately called ' L ' was putting in some extra hours to meet a deadline before printing time. She had been at it for six hours and didn't have anything decent to publish yet. In fact, she couldn't remember having writer's block since her high school days at ' The Torch '. The girl that Pete, Lana and Clark used to call ' Chlo ' was incapable of getting focused to write a stupid article on a new restaurant just opened in Soho. It wasn't an investigative report that would put the biggest crime lords of New York behind bars for crying out loud !

Nobody. not even her best friend, fashion reporter Janice Sutherland, had noticed anything wrong with her. Her colleagues were used to seeing her make frequent walks to the coffee machine for her refills and blamed the high caffeine intake for her high-strung mood. That morning, ' L ' took really good care to find refuge in the toilet when a seemingly stupid comment led her to tears. and she realised she'd have to use all the acting tools she'd learnt to master in the last thirteen years to pull her through the day.

“ Miss Lawrence, you're still working ! What's a good-looking girl like you doing here at this time of night ? You should be out having fun with some young man ! “ said Cynthia, the cleaning lady.

“ One'd think that in a city like New York finding an intelligent straight guy who's still available should be a piece of cake, Cynthia, but it's not. Unfortunately, the feat's like looking for a needle in a haystack. However, I'm used to being alone. I've never had too much luck with the opposite sex anyway. They've always seen me as either intimidating or as one of the gang. “

“ I can't believe that, Miss Lawrence. What man could consider you as one of the gang ! You're too femenine to be mistaken for a guy... I wouldn't like to be nosy but... when was the last time you went out on a date ? “

“ You are being nosy, Cynthia. And I have to finish this article before midnight or I'll be in real trouble. “

“ Is everything OK, miss ? You look peaked, if I may say so. “

“ Nothing that a good night's sleep won't mend, Cynthia, “ she stated, struggling to keep the tears from falling.

Lindsey Lawrence, as Chloe had been known ever since she entered the Witness Protection Program, couldn't remember the last time someone had asked her out. In fact, being left alone in this world when she was just seventeen had kept her mind too busy to dwell on any romantic dreams.

The Luthors- or rather Lionel Luthor- had been her undoing. She couldn't blame Lex for what had happened to Gabe and her; she had walked into Lionel's trap alone. If there was an unwitting culprit that was Clark because her jealousy of him and Lana had made her an easy prey. The older Luthor had played on her feelings and when she wanted to get out of the deal they'd struck it was too late. She'd been naïve, too naïve to consider she could blackmail Lionel with a crime from the past and get away with it. Lex had been the only one she could turn to and, despite he had everything to gain from her testimony against his father, he had tried to talk her out of it. She should have listened to him. He knew better. He had always known better.

By midnight, she had finished the article- it wouldn't be the best in history but it'd do- and was ready to leave the building. She switched off the desk light and the computer, and summoned the lift. Once the doors closed behind her, she had a good look at herself in the mirror, appraising again the fantastic job the government-paid plastic surgeons had done with her face, and broke into tears. She cried for the life she'd lost, the friends she missed and the one person she wanted to hate but couldn't bring herself to.





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