Season 6, based on spoilers for "Crimson"
Rating: Adult. If you're under eighteen, please go elsewhere now.
Disclaimer: These characters belong to the CW and DC Comics, not to me.
Three days later, Chloe sat on the couch in the apartment she shared with Lois, reading the Daily Planet by the light of the early morning sun. She wore a gray sweatsuit, and her slippered feet rested on the coffee table. Her first class wasn't until eleven, and Lois was out of town, so she could have slept in, but she wasn't much good at sleeping in. Relaxing had never been her strong point.
Someone knocked on the door. "Come in," she called.
The door open, and a dark head she knew all too well poked cautiously inside.
She glanced at Clark, then lifted the paper so she couldn't see him. "I take it back," she said from behind the paper. "Go away."
He didn't listen. She heard the door close, heard his booted feet slowly cross the wooden floor as he walked toward her. "I've been trying to call you," he said.
"Yeah, about thirty times a day. Voice mail exists for a reason, Clark."
"I didn't want to talk to your voice mail. I wanted to talk to you."
He drew nearer, and she became aware of a heavenly aroma-- the fragrance of warm blueberry muffins. She scowled at the newspaper. Clark knew her weaknesses all too well, but she wasn't going to succumb to bribery or peace offerings. The rift between them was far too wide to be bridged with blueberry muffins.
Although they did smell awfully good.
"I don't want to talk to you," she said, refusing to lower the paper even an inch. "Go away, or I'll sic Lois on you."
She heard the footsteps pause. "Is Lois here?"
"Didn't you x-ray the place before you knocked?"
"Of course not. I don't invade people's privacy that way."
"How nice that you're so very concerned about my privacy," she drawled. "Too bad you weren't so worried about it the other night."
"Chloe." He sounded pitiful, like she'd smacked him, and she relented just a bit.
"Fortunately for you, I was bluffing. Lois isn't here. She went with your mom to Topeka. She's training Martha's new chief of staff. Didn't Martha tell you?"
"Mom isn't talking to me either."
"There's a surprise," she retorted. "I imagine most of Smallville isn't talking to you right now."
He sighed. "Chlo..."
"You're lucky, actually. Lois doesn't remember a thing about what happened. I'm sure she's heard what happened at the party, but at least she doesn't remember being your love slave. I have to warn you, though, she's not at all happy about her boob being tattooed with a heart that says Clark Kent. She's going to have to get that lasered off."
"She's going to kill me next time she sees me, isn't she?"
"I figure she's going to have to stand in line."
He started walking toward her again. He hesitated next to the couch, then bent and placed a bag on the cushions next to her. "I thought you could use some breakfast."
The sweet scent of fresh blueberry muffins drifted to her nostrils. God, she loved blueberry muffins. Her stomach growled, but she steeled herself and picked up the bag.
She dropped it onto the floor and crushed it under her feet until the muffins felt like they'd been reduced to crumbs.
"I'm not hungry," she said.
"Chloe." His voice was very soft and very plaintive. "Don't shut me out this way. Please."
"Clark." She lowered the paper and glared up at him. He was wearing a red t-shirt and jeans, and the cotton fabric of the shirt clung to his pecs and abs in a way that was seriously sexy. Against her will, she found herself remembering the way he'd made love to her in the broom closet, the violent way he'd moved inside her like he just couldn't help himself, the way he'd whispered her name...
She shook her head to dispel the images. "What part of go away are you failing to understand?"
"I can't just let you go, Chlo. You're my best friend."
"Not any more."
She lifted the newspaper, but he grabbed it and tossed it aside. She heard the sound of ripping paper, and rage lit in her. No one ripped her morning paper, damn it. "Hey. What the hell is your problem?"
"My problem is that I want to talk," he said, glaring at her. "And you won't talk."
"You want to talk?" She crossed her arms over her chest and glared right back at him. "Fine. What do you want to talk about? The way you screwed me in a broom closet and called me just another pussy? The way you dumped me the second your attention was caught by a nicer pair of boobs? The way you humiliated me in public and destroyed the first decent relationship I've had with a guy in years?"
"It wasn't my fault." He sounded close to tears. "I was on red K, Chlo."
"I know it wasn't your fault. But these things keep happening, and I don't need this kind of upheaval in my life every time you get near the red rock. I hate to say it, but you're just more trouble than you're worth, Clark."
He stared down at her for a long moment. And then suddenly he dropped down on his knees in front of her and bowed his head, pressing his face into her lap.
"I'm sorry," he whispered, so softly she could barely hear him. "I'm so sorry, Chlo. I never meant to hurt you. I'd never hurt you on purpose. I swear."
She looked down at him, seeing the dark hair curling wildly along the nape of his neck, as if he'd been too upset to bother with niceties like combs. Almost against her will, her hand reached out and began smoothing his hair, very gently, in an instinctive effort to comfort him.
His hands lifted, and he slid his arms around her waist, but he didn't raise his head. She could feel him trembling under her hand. His breathing sounded unsteady, as if he was on the verge of tears. "Clark," she said, more gently. "I know you didn't mean to do it."
"That's not true." His voice was hoarse, and he didn't look up at her. "In a way, I did mean to do it, Chlo. I wanted to make love to you. I wanted to break you up with Jimmy. I really did."
At the soft confession, her heart began pounding, and she let her hand slide further into the depths of his thick hair. "But you didn't mean to hurt me."
"No." He reached up blindly and wrapped his fingers around hers. "I'd never hurt you that way, Chlo. Not on purpose. I'd die first."
"I believe you," she said softly.
"Please don't hate me." His voice was still very soft, muffled against her lap, but his hand squeezed hers so fiercely it almost hurt. "Don't go away, Chlo. Don't leave me alone. I need you."
She looked down at the way he was clutching her, his huddled posture expressing misery and grief and abject loneliness. If she was going to be honest with herself, she'd spent the last three days feeling just as miserable, and just as lonely. She thought about everything they'd been through together, the way they'd shared every aspect of their lives with each other since eighth grade.
There was no doubt that Clark was an awful lot of trouble.
But he was also a major part of her life.
"Clark," she whispered.
He raised his head and looked up at her, his eyes dull with grief. She put a hand against his cheek, and his eyes brightened.
"Kiss me," she said.
Read Chapter 8 here.