Thursday, September 14, 2006

Clarkmas, Chapter 1

Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Chapter 9
Chapter 10

Season 6 (based on spoilers and my imagination) - based on "Lexmas"
Rating: PG-13
18,000 words
Disclaimer: These characters belong to the CW and DC Comics, not to me

Once again as in olden days
Happy golden days of yore
Faithful friends who were dear to us
Will be near to us once more
Someday soon, we all will be together
If the Fates allow
Until then, we'll have to muddle through somehow
So have yourself a merry little Christmas now.
-"Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas," Judy Garland

Smallville looked like a Christmas card.

Clark Kent walked slowly down Smallville's Main Street. Dusk had fallen, and Christmas lights glittered in every window. Tinsel was draped along storefronts and wrapped around streetlights. Church bells rang, calling worshippers to Christmas Eve services, and carols blared out from every store. On the corner, a Santa Claus hopefully rang his bell as last-minute shoppers walked by. Snow drifted lightly through the air, adding to the inch or so of white fluff that had fallen earlier. Clark thought his hometown bore an uncanny resemblance to a Norman Rockwell print.

Ordinarily Clark loved Christmas every bit as much as he had when he was a little kid. But things were very different this year, so different he couldn't work up a lot of enthusiasm for the holiday. Last year at this time, he'd been at the old Kent farmhouse, helping his parents bake cookies for their annual Christmas Eve party, and decorating the tree with his girlfriend Lana Lang. This year, his dad was dead, his mom, a state senator, was in Topeka for the holidays, and Lana Lang was in love with someone else.

Of course, his friend Chloe Sullivan, and her cousin Lois Lane, had invited him to a party at Chloe's house, so it wasn't like he had to be totally alone. But even at a party, he was pretty sure he was going to feel totally alone. This year, it seemed like everyone had hooked up with someone special except him. Lois was dating a guy named Ollie Queen. That in and of itself was nothing new, since Lois went through guys the way someone with a stuffy nose went through Kleenex. But Lois had assured him that this time it was different, because Ollie was "special."

That amused Clark, because she had no idea just how special Ollie was. Clark had figured it out a while ago, and he was glad Lois had found someone so, well, exceptional. He and Lois didn't always get along too well, but beneath it all, he liked Lois and wanted her to be happy. Ollie was making her happy, so he approved.

Meanwhile, Chloe was dating a geeky photographer, Jimmy Olsen. Clark still wasn't sure how he felt about that. He and Chloe had always been close. She'd been his best friend for years. And then a while back, when he'd been going off to save the world from an alien menace, she'd grabbed him and given him the kiss of his life.

He'd realized in that moment that Chloe really meant something to him. Okay, more than just something. She meant a whole hell of a lot to him.

But when he'd come back from saving the world, she'd introduced him to Jimmy Olsen, a new intern at the Daily Planet, the Metropolis newspaper where she worked. He knew she and Jimmy had some history together. He'd thought about kissing her again, but faced with Jimmy, he'd backed off, feeling a little insecure, a little awkward, about the whole situation.

And she'd promptly started dating Jimmy.

Which was fine. Really. It wasn't like he really wanted Chloe that way. Sure, he loved her, but he wasn't in love with her. And sure, he'd like to kiss her again, but that didn't really mean much. What was really bothering him was simply that he didn't like the fact that she wasn't around as much as she'd always been. He didn't like having to make appointments to have lunch with her, and he didn't like not seeing her on Saturday nights because she and Jimmy always had plans.

But that didn't mean he was jealous or anything.

He sighed. On his way over to the Sullivan home, he'd decided on a whim to walk through downtown Smallville, the way he and his parents had walked through it every Christmas Eve when he was a kid, in the hopes that it might revive his flagging Christmas spirits. But it hadn't done much good. If anything, he was mopier now than he'd been when he started.

He decided he might as well head for the party. Maybe that'd cheer him up.

He thought about seeing Chloe holding Jimmy's hand, or maybe seeing her kiss Jimmy under the mistletoe. Yeah, that was going to cheer him up a whole hell of a lot. No doubt.

He glanced around, made sure no one was looking at him, and jumped into superspeed.

Although he'd grown up in the apparently prosaic town of Smallville, Kansas, Clark Kent was an alien from a distant planet, and he could run faster than the speed of sound. He ran through the darkness, moving so quickly that the snowflakes seemed suspended in time, hanging motionless in the air around him. He headed for the suburb where Chloe's dad lived. But as he entered the suburbs, he came to a halt, looking curiously at a particular house.

There was nothing exceptional about the house. Just like every other house on the street, it had been adorned for Christmas with a cheerful lack of taste and restraint. A glowing Santa adorned the roof, icicle lights dripped from the eaves of the front porch, and in the yard a few lit-up reindeer bobbed their heads mechanically.

But in the deep shadows at the side of the house, Clark saw a furtive motion that didn't seem to belong there. He tilted his head, listening intently with his superhearing, and heard someone breathing heavily, like they were exerting themselves.

Silently, he moved closer, and saw someone on a stepladder, trying to pry the side window open.

Geez. The smalltown boy in him thought Smallville ought to be exempt from criminals, but of course he'd seen enough to know that there was plenty of crime here, too. Not as bad as Metropolis, but he knew there were burglars everywhere. Even so, you'd think the frigging criminals might at least take the holidays off. He moved silently across the snow dusting the yard and stood just behind the ladder.

"Maybe you ought to try the chimney," he suggested.

The guy jumped, so violently he almost fell off the stepladder, and turned to look at Clark. "H-hey," he stammered, glancing Clark over and looking alarmed. Clark was a pretty big guy. "This isn't what it looks like, man."

"Sure it's not. You were just going to take their tree up to your workshop at the North Pole because there's a light that won't light on one side, right?"

The guy apparently wasn't conversant with Dr. Seuss, because he blinked, looking confused. "No, man. I was just... uh..."

"Not real good at coming up with cover stories, are you?" Clark reached into his pocket and pulled out his cell phone. "Maybe you'll have come up with something by the time the cops get here."

"Don't call the cops, dude." The guy looked imploring. "Give me a break. It's Christmas Eve."

"So I should cut you some slack? Like you were cutting these people some slack?" Clark looked around, seeing a swingset in the backyard and a basketball net in the driveway. "For crying out loud, they've got kids. You were planning on stealing stuff from kids on Christmas Eve. I bet you take candy from babies, too."

The guy came down the two steps of the ladder and started sidling away. Clark slowly stalked him, not particularly worried that the guy would get away-- unless he could run at the speed of sound, which was pretty damn unlikely. He could see where the guy was headed. Evidently someone had been putting in some landscaping before winter started, and there was still a nice pile of rocks sitting there. The guy probably intended to grab a rock and beat him over the head with it.

Unfortunately, all that would accomplish would be to smash the rock to smithereens. But the guy had no way of knowing that.

Sure enough, the guy reached down and grabbed a good-sized rock, holding it aloft threateningly. "Don't mess with me, man."

"Why? You going to pound my head in?" Clark grinned, letting the guy see he wasn't scared. Ordinarily he didn't go around showing off his powers, but this guy was really starting to tick him off. Stealing from kids on Christmas Eve-- geez. Even criminals ought to have a code of ethics that covered that sort of thing. "Go ahead and try."

The guy didn't hesitate. He threw the rock hard, right at Clark's face.

The guy must have been a Little League pitcher or something back in the day, because he had a damn good arm. Clark could have dodged out of the way, but he chose to stand and let the rock hit him. The rock slammed into him with a good deal of force, enough that it would have smashed anyone else's nose in, and probably knocked out a few teeth, too.

The rock broke to pieces against Clark's face, falling to the ground in a shower of dust and pebbles. Clark grinned again, showing the guy his perfectly intact teeth, and took a step forward.

The guy's eyes went huge, and his mouth dropped open. "Jesus Christ. Are you some kind of... robot, or something?"

"Or something, yeah."

The guy reached down and grabbed another rock. "Don't come any closer, you... you freak."

"Freak?" Clark grinned more widely. "Now you've hurt my feelings."

He took another step toward the guy, and all of a sudden a terrible feeling came over him. It was a sensation he knew all too well, a feeling of mingled pain and nausea that could drive him straight to his knees.

Shit. That's kryptonite.

Smallville had been struck by two meteor showers. The first, seventeen years ago, had hit when Clark arrived on Earth. The second had hit a year and a half ago, along with an alien spacecraft. Both meteor showers had left a substantial quantity of green meteor rocks lying around the area. Unfortunately, the meteor rocks, which he'd dubbed kryptonite, were the one substance that made Clark weak and vulnerable and sick. They could even kill him.

His cell phone slipped from his nerveless fingers, into the snow, and he staggered backward, trying to get away from the guy. Proximity to kryptonite made him sick and dizzy. If he could just get far enough away, it wouldn't bother him.

But kryptonite exposure prevented him from using his superspeed, so the burglar stalked him, the same way he'd stalked the guy earlier.

"I knew that had to hurt," the guy said. "Let's see if you can take another blow to the head, jerk."

Clark stumbled backward, but not fast enough to get out of the way. The guy threw the rock right at him. It caught him hard just over his ear, and with his invulnerability gone, it hurt like crazy. Stars exploded in his head, and he fell heavily to his knees.

The guy picked up another rock, this one with a sharp point. He reached down, grabbed Clark by his jacket, and hauled him upright, then slammed the pointed edge of the rock right into his chest.

It felt like someone had spiked him through the chest with a burning arrow. Kryptonite again, he realized dully. Just his luck. Nothing like a sharp piece of kryptonite in the chest to brighten his Christmas.

Pain exploded inside him, just like the time someone had shot him with a kryptonite bullet, and he knew he was dying. He couldn't even lift his arms to try to yank the shard of rock out of his chest.

It hurt like hell. It hurt worse than hell. It hurt so badly he couldn't even open his mouth to scream.

The guy let go of his jacket, and he collapsed to the ground, his blood spurting out onto the pristine white snow, as the pain faded and merciful darkness came to claim him.

Read Chapter 2 here.


Opal said...

Poor Clark! That has to be the worst Christmas present ever, a nice piece of kryptonite in the chest.

Can't wait for more!

Anonymous said...

ouch, poor Clark indeed, but when will he learn to be wary of rocks? ;)

great start! looking forward to reading more on my next coffee break


MonicaOP said...

Oh my... Poor Clark :(, but he should have gone to visit Chloe and try to make out with her!!! Mistletoe is always a good idea ;). I can't wait to see what are you going to do here, I think this is the first Clarkmas fic I have ever seen!!! Hugs!! :) be well and take care, MonicaOP

unique_kiwi said...

Ahh Ellen you had me hooked before i even started reading cause Xmas is my fave time of year!! Lexmas was one of my fave S5 eps!!

And you didn't dissapoint...i loved Clarks sarcasm when he confronted the thief...but kryptonite, so not good!!

Can't wait for more! :)

Anonymous said...

i know christmas is over but i was curious about your take on this "episode."

so far so good.....i can't seem to stop so i'm going to finish reading this story.

pretty cool,
joanna / kidkarmina

blackheart_me said...

OH NO! aww mopy Clark. Classic isn't it? on christmas thou...he doesnt have the best luck :P can't wait to see wat u bring Elly! I'm re-reading this one and commenting where i didnt :P