Monday, April 17, 2006

Saving Me, Chapter 7

Season 5, after "Void"
Rating: PG-13
Disclaimer: These characters belong to the WB and DC comics, not to me

I knew Clark was planning on doing something, because his head was still in my lap. My hand rested on his shoulder, and I could feel the tension in his muscles. It’s not like him to allow himself to be captured without some sort of fight, anyhow. But I honestly didn’t expect him to try to get through the kryptonite field.

Kryptonite is the one thing he’s really afraid of, and I don’t blame him, because it obviously hurts him terribly. I gather it feels something like having a root canal while being burned at the stake. Not at all pleasant.

But he was on his feet and lunging toward the door before I even knew what had happened. I felt my mouth drop open. For him to even try to get through that field took an amazing amount of courage. I expected to see him collapse to the floor as he approached the doorway, but somehow he stayed on his feet and kept going.

Water Buffalo looked almost as surprised as I felt. As Clark passed him, he raised his big, beefy fist and clocked Clark across the side of the face, so hard that Clark’s head jerked sideways. Ordinarily that would hurt the other guy a lot more than Clark, but he loses his abilities when he’s around kryptonite and can be injured just like anyone else. And although Clark’s a tall, muscular guy, Water Buffalo must have outweighed him by close to a hundred pounds.

There was a sickening thud, and Clark stumbled and almost went to his knees. I guessed he was already suffering some pretty excruciating pain from passing through the radiation field, and being slammed in the head probably didn’t help matters any.

But Water Buffalo’s blow had actually helped Clark get through the field because it sent him reeling forward, out of the cell. He was now on the other side of the doorway, and if he could only get a little further away from the radiation, his abilities would kick back in… and his head injury would simply disappear. It sounds crazy, I know, but I’ve seen it happen.

Unfortunately, Clark was swaying on his feet and looked like he’d pass out at any moment. I bounced up and ran across the room. Water Buffalo grabbed for me, but I dodged him and tackled Clark from behind with all my might.

Clark’s a big guy, but he was already badly off balance, so my momentum sent him staggering forward. He stumbled several feet away from the cell, then went sprawling onto the concrete floor. I fell to my knees just behind him.

Water Buffalo lumbered toward me, his hands balled into fists the size of hams. I scrambled to my feet, spun around, and kicked him as hard as I could in the crotch.

I may not have had a lot of training in martial arts like my cousin Lois Lane, but I do know that if you kick a guy really hard there, he’ll double over, no matter how big and strong he is. Sure enough, Water Buffalo’s mouth dropped open in a soundless scream of agony, and he dropped right to his knees.

“Jerk,” I muttered, with some satisfaction. “Serves you right.”

I looked around and saw Clark still sprawled on the ground. Blood oozed from a nasty-looking cut on his cheekbone, and his cheek was already starting to turn purple. His injuries would spontaneously heal if he was far enough from the kryptonite, so obviously he was still too close to the field. I ran around him, grabbed him by the arms, and heaved.

Geez. The boy weighs a ton, every bit of it solid muscle and bone. I don’t know if he’s built so powerfully because he’s Kryptonian, or because he lives on a farm and does a lot of physical labor, but he weighs an awful lot, and it isn’t easy for someone my size to move him. I yanked on him as hard as I could, desperate because I expected reinforcements to show up at any minute, and managed to slide him a short distance across the floor. A few seconds later, I saw the cut begin to heal, and his eyes fluttered open.

He lifted his head and stared up at me, looking confused. “Chloe?”

We didn’t have a lot of time for conversation. “Get up,” I told him.

Obediently, he started to climb to his feet. Suddenly I saw a movement over his shoulder. “Behind you!” I shouted, seeing that Water Buffalo had gotten over his pain and was coming at Clark.

Big mistake. Huge mistake. Because Clark just straightened up, turned around, and looked at him. The guy punched him hard in the jaw, and Clark didn’t even flinch. The guy pulled back his fist, yelling in pain.

Clark reached out and gently tapped the guy on the head with a finger, and the guy fell over.

“Cool,” I said admiringly. “I wish I could do that. It’s a lot easier than kicking them in the crotch.”

Clark turned around, and I saw the bruise had faded and the cut had totally healed, although there was still a smear of blood on his cheek. “Come on,” he said, and picked me up in his arms. A second later we were near the entrance to the building, though I had no clear recollection of how we got there. I guess he did his Speedy Gonzales thing, but it was all just a blur to me.

“You need to get out of here,” he told me, putting me down. “And I mean now.”


“Don’t argue,” he said, his voice sharp enough to cut through glass. “Just go get some help. I can’t go through another field, Chloe. I just can’t do it again.” Vulnerability shadowed the green depths of his eyes. “Doing it once took all the guts I had.”

I didn’t want to leave him alone here, and besides, I figured the bad guys weren’t going to let me go that easily. If I left, they’d probably just nab me right outside the building, and we’d be right back where we started. “We need to stick together,” I answered. I went toward the door, while Clark stood back and watched me. “Maybe there’s a switch here too.”

Unfortunately, a brief search didn’t turn up a switch. I figured the field and its covering must be remote controlled from wherever The Voice was. I couldn’t figure out how to pull the lead covering down over it manually, either, and a minute later I growled in angry frustration. “Damn it. I can't make it work.”

Clark looked over his shoulder, his forehead wrinkling. “Where the hell is everyone?”

“Well, you knocked the one guy out.”

“Yeah, but there are two other heartbeats in this building. Why aren’t they coming to get us?”

“I guess they figure we’re not going anywhere.”

Clark looked like he wanted to put his fist through the wall. Unfortunately, considering they were covered with kryptonite paint, he’d only hurt himself if he tried it. He settled for balling his hands into fists and scowling darkly.

“I guess they’re right,” he answered with a sigh. “At least I’m not going anywhere. But you should at least try, Chlo. Run.”

I nodded. I still figured they’d just take me captive again as I left the building, but I didn’t see a lot of options here. Even if they grabbed me, maybe I could scream for help and get someone’s attention, although this was the part of town where screaming for help might not do much but bring out additional vultures. But I had to try, because it was obvious Clark wasn’t getting out of this without some outside assistance.

I turned back toward the door… and ran like hell.

Read Chapter 8 here.

1 comment:

blackheart_me said...

YES!!! IT WORKED!!! with bruises but it worked! aww Poor Clark. YES THE FAT GUY SUFFERED! But his confession on not being able to go thru another force field is heart breaking. that and the fact chloe was to go on without him :(. aww man. this ending was sad. and gut wrenching :(