Monday, January 22, 2007
Spellbound, Chapter 5
Season 4, "Spell"
Rating: Adult. If you're under eighteen, please go elsewhere now.
Disclaimer: These characters belong to the CW and DC Comics, not to me.
Author's Note: This is darker than my usual stories. Elements of rape, bondage, and sadism.
Clark lifted his head and tried to focus as an alarmed voice said his name. Someone grabbed him by the shoulder and shook him, and he winced as a whimper of pain escaped him.
"Are you all right?"
Clark recognized the voice of his football coach, Jason Teague, who was dating Lana. He'd saved Jason from the three witches earlier. Jason started unchaining him.
"Jesus Christ," he said roughly, sounding horrified. "Are you all right? What did they do to you?"
The bonds came loose suddenly, and Clark slumped forward. Jason tried to catch him, but Clark was a big guy, and he fell to his knees, and from there sprawled forward onto the floor. The sudden impact of the wooden floor against his injured chest made him hiss in pain.
"Did Lana do this to you?" Jason demanded
Clark managed to struggle to a sitting position. His arms were numb, and he wished the rest of him was numb, too, because the furrows Madeline had left in his flesh were really starting to hurt. Thank God she'd pulled up his jeans and fastened them before she left, or he would have been seriously humiliated.
As it was, he was pretty sure Jason had a good idea what Madeline had done to him, and his cheeks burned furiously.
"No," he said hoarsely. "It was Chloe. But she's different. They're all different, Jason. I know it sounds crazy, but they've all been taken over by seventeenth-century witches."
"Yeah." Jason blew out a deep breath. "Lana's been researching a 17th century witch. She tracked down her spell book, and when she touched her hand to the page--"
So Lana had been taken over first, and then somehow cast a spell on Lois and Chloe. "They have some seriously scary powers, Jason."
"I noticed. So we've got to find Lana and destroy the book. Any idea where they went?"
"Uh..." Clark flexed his hands as blood flowed into them, and sensation began to return. It hurt like a thousand pins and needles being stabbed into him all at once. He wanted to curl up in a ball on the floor, but he realized he didn't have that luxury right now, because he had to stop Madeline from taking over the world.
He had a pretty damn good idea where she was, but he wanted to confront her himself. Because Jason didn't need to know about Kryptonian crystals. The fewer people that knew about them, the better.
"I'm not sure," he said at last. "Why don't you check the school? I'll go to the Talon."
Jason cast a dubious look at him. "I'm not sure you should be going anywhere but the hospital, Clark."
"I'm okay. It looks worse than it really is." Which was a blatant lie, but he was responsible for stopping Madeline. It was his damn stone, and she'd figured out where it was hidden thanks to his stupidity. He reached for his plaid shirt, which the witches had apparently tossed aside when they'd chained him.
"All right," Jason said at last. "But call my cell if you find them, okay? Don't try anything alone. Just be careful, all right? They're dangerous."
"Believe me," Clark answered, shrugging on the flannel shirt over the myriad cuts on his chest and shoulders and back. "I already figured that out."
Deprived of superspeed, Clark got in the old blue truck and broke every speed limit on the town books getting to the Kawatche caves. With every lurch of the truck over the bumpy roads, pain shot through him, and his heart pounded harder and harder the closer he got to the caves. He was already in a lot of pain, and he had no idea how he was going to stop Madeline. He'd thought about grabbing his dad's shotgun, but he knew he couldn't bring himself to shoot Chloe, no matter what. And he knew Madeline knew that, too.
His plan was a vague one. If only he could get to the crystal before Madeline, he thought it might make a pretty formidable weapon-- if he could figure out how to use it against her.
He screeched to a halt near the caves and started to run. Every step of his feet sent pain jolting through his body, but he ignored it and kept running. Without his superstrength, he was panting heavily by the time he got to the underground caves. He paused, hidden behind an outcropping of granite, and watched Madeline standing in front of the wall, looking over the Kryptonian symbols painted on its surface.
"All of my suffering, all of my pain and persecution," she said softly. "It ends tonight. And my future begins. A future of power. A future in which the world bows before me."
A future of hell, Clark thought grimly. He watched as she touched a symbol on the wall and spoke.
To his immense relief, nothing happened. Madeline lifted her chin and uttered the words again, more imperiously, but the wall remained as solid as ever.
"It will not open for you."
Clark blinked as Lana and Lois-- no, Isobelle and Brianna-- stepped out of the shadows of the cave. Isobelle's mouth was curved in a smile that was just as cruel as Madeline's. None of these women were anyone to mess around with, he realized. It wasn't just Madeline-- they were all evil to the core.
He had to get rid of them somehow and get his friends back. The girls were depending on him... and so was the world.
"You sought to betray us," Isobelle said in a low, dangerous voice. "You will pay for your foolishness." She raised her hand, holding the book, and cried, "Porta!"
Struggling, Madeline flew backward, crashed into a wall, and collapsed to the floor in a motionless heap.
It was all Clark could do not to run to her side and make sure she was still breathing. The fear that Chloe had been hurt, or killed, rose in him, but he fought it back. There was nothing he could do for her right now. He was powerless, and if he showed himself, he'd be tossed against a wall and knocked unconscious, just as easily as Madeline had been.
He watched as Isobelle and Brianna walked toward the wall. Isobelle touched a symbol on the wall and intoned, "Murus scinde!"
They were the same words Madeline had uttered. But the book seemed to make the spell work. The wall began to open, and a white light shone from the inner chamber of the cave. Isobelle and Brianna walked forward, chanting, "Volutus vita nostra est. Volutus vita nostra est..."
Clark rose to his feet, his heart thudding so hard he could hear the blood rushing in his ears, and silently slid after them, keeping to the shadows. As he passed Chloe's inert form, he glanced down and assured himself she was still breathing. Thank God.
"It begins tonight," Isobelle said, looking down at the clear, gleaming crystal on the stone table. It looked unremarkable, but Clark knew somehow that there was a great deal of power concealed beneath its surface. He had to stop Isobelle from getting her hands on it, whatever the cost.
"Take it, Isobelle," Brianna whispered. "Lead us to glory."
The cruel smile curved Isobelle's lips. "The first stone. How I've dreamed of this moment. And at last, it has arrived."
"No," Clark said. He stepped out of the shadows and glared at her. "Not quite."
Isobelle looked briefly surprised, then smiled at him. "Clark. Foolish boy. You shouldn't have come."
Clark steeled himself against the fear that threatened to crush him, and lunged forward, his hand outstretched to grasp the stone.
He heard Isobelle's voice utter a Latin word, and suddenly he was lifted off his feet and flung hard into the nearest wall. He grunted in pain, all the breath driven from his lungs, and collapsed heavily to the floor.
Isobelle's smile grew wider and colder. "Bear witness, Clark Kent, to the dawn of a new age."
She reached out for the stone, but suddenly something dashed out of the shadows and shoved her aside. Madeline, Clark realized weakly. Hell. If there was one thing worse than Isobelle with a Kryptonian crystal, it was Madeline with a Kryptonian crystal.
The stone flared with a brilliant white light as Madeline picked it up. Isobelle and Brianna screamed in pain, flinching away from the crystal, and Clark felt a sudden flare of power, deep in his body. He rose to his feet, strength flowing through him. Suddenly his aches and pains were gone, and he felt like himself again.
"His powers," Brianna said weakly, still cringing. "They are restored."
Clark looked at Madeline, who held the stone tightly in her hand, and wondered why the hell it didn't hurt her, when its brilliant light plainly burned Isobelle and Brianna. In the bright white light, the two of them looked weak and shaken and ill.
"How?" Isobelle demanded, almost doubled over, the book cradled protectively in her arms. "How could your powers return?"
"I'm not from around here," Clark said.
"It doesn't matter," she hissed. "We defeated you once before. We will defeat you again."
Clark remembered what Jason had said: We've got to find Lana and destroy the book. But he hadn't really needed Jason to tell him that-- he'd already pretty much figured it on his own. The book was bad, bad news. He looked at it and focused his heat vision, being careful not to aim at Lana, but before he could torch the book, Madeline spoke.
"I don't think so," she said.
She lifted the crystal and slammed it down onto the book.
White light shot upward from the book. A second later, the book exploded into nothingness, and the resulting blast knocked Clark off his feet.
When he opened his eyes, Madeline was kneeling beside him, leaning over him. He flinched in involuntary fear, but she dropped a hand to his shoulder and touched him gently, and the fear faded.
It wasn't Madeline, he realized, staring up into the hazel eyes he knew better than his own. It was Chloe. Chloe was leaning over him.
She held the crystal out to him with a wry smile.
"I think this belongs to you," she said.
Read Chapter 6 here.
Posted by Meg at 1:58 PM