Season 6, "Freak"
Rating: Adult. If you're under eighteen, please go elsewhere now.
Disclaimer: These characters belong to the CW and DC Comics, not to me.
Based on a plot bunny by sullivanlane, used with permission.
Chloe held onto him. Her fingers wrapped around his arms, clutching him tightly as if she were drowning, and he was a life preserver. He held her shoulders as tightly as he dared and looked at her seriously.
“You can’t move,” he said, staring into her eyes, trying to convey how important this was. If she moved, even a little, he might seriously hurt her. Maybe even kill her. Just the idea was enough to make him break out in a cold sweat—and he never perspired.
“Okay,” she answered. Her voice quavered and her eyes welled with tears, and he knew she was as scared as he was, but she stood staunchly, without cringing, as he narrowed his eyes.
His heat vision activated, and the beam cut into her shoulder. He heard her shriek, saw her jerk her head back, her teeth clenched. He knew he was hurting her, and he felt almost as much pain as she did, only it was emotional rather than physical. He didn’t want to hurt her.
But he didn’t want her to die, either.
He sliced into her skin, making an incision a little less than two inches long. Except for the involuntary reaction of jerking her head back, she didn’t move. He cut off the heat vision, activated his x-ray vision again, and stuck his forefinger into the incision. Probing into her muscles was an icky sensation that made his stomach turn, and he doubted she liked it any better than he did. It had to hurt like hell. More tears ran down her cheeks, but she clenched her teeth and stood her ground.
Damn it, he thought, I should have washed my hands. Germs didn’t affect him, but that didn’t mean he couldn’t be carrying them around on his skin. But he hadn’t been sure there was time to waste.
He could see the little object with his x-ray vision, but he had big fingers, and it wasn’t easy to grab. She cried out again, her teeth bared in pain, as his finger probed the opening.
He cringed in sympathy at the agonized sound of her cry. “I’m sorry!”
She spoke between her teeth, her voice high and shrill. “Just get it out!”
To his immense relief, he managed to yank the object out of the incision he’d made. Tears streaked her cheeks, and he felt horrible that he’d been the one to hurt her that way, even though intellectually he knew he hadn’t had a choice. He held the small, round object up and looked at it carefully.
“It’s a GPS device,” he said, showing her. “That’s all it is.”
He crushed it between his thumb and forefinger, and they both looked back at the laptop, seeing the dot at the Talon go red. Clark wondered if they’d assume she was dead. If so, they’d eventually figure out their error, and then they’d come after her again.
He had to make certain nothing happened to her. He had to make certain they didn’t get her.
He had to protect her.
He stood there, his hand still on her shoulder, his body shaking from the aftereffects of too much adrenaline. He’d hurt Chloe, and if he’d screwed up he could have hurt her a lot worse. He imagined burning her badly, maybe killing her, and a delayed reaction hit him, a wave of panic that almost sent him to his knees.
His expression must have given away his swirling emotions, because her eyes went wide. “Are you all right?”
“I…” He couldn’t quite bring himself to tell her how terrified he’d been. He looked down at her shoulder and noticed the cut wasn’t bleeding much, because his heat vision had cauterized the blood vessels under the skin. Even so, it was an open wound, and he needed to get it bandaged before more germs got in. He didn’t want her to get an infection.
“We need a bandage,” he said, focusing on taking care of her, rather than on all the bad things that could have happened. The bad things hadn’t happened. He hadn’t screwed up. She was all right. Thank God.
“First aid stuff is in the bathroom.”
He headed off for the bathroom at superspeed. Half a second later he was standing in front of her again, cleaning and bandaging the wound almost before she’d noticed he’d moved. She yelped in surprised pain as he put antiseptic on the cut.
“You don’t want an infection.” He taped on the bandage, then looked into her eyes. He was surprised to realize how close he was standing to her, his head bent protectively over hers as if he was trying to shield her from the world.
“I’m so sorry,” he said softly, lifting his hand to her cheek. “I didn’t want to hurt you, Chlo. I never want to hurt you.”
“It’s all right.” Her voice was gentle, and he was pretty sure she understood how badly the situation had freaked him out, even if he couldn’t quite bring himself to talk about it. “You did what you had to do, Clark. If it had turned out to be something besides a GPS device, you might have saved my life.”
“Still.” He swallowed. “I’ve never used my heat vision like that before. On someone, I mean. Especially not on someone I—“ He cut the sentence off, because it wasn’t going quite where he’d intended it to, and hastily rephrased. “Not on a friend.”
She smiled, and he saw a shadow of the familiar snark in her eyes. “I think maybe you have a brilliant career as a surgeon ahead of you.”
“I don’t think so.” The idea of doing that again made his head swim. “The sight of blood makes me woozy.”
She laughed outright. It was a bright sound, relieved, almost happy. He found himself incredibly glad to hear the sound of her laughter. “So you can get run over by a train, and that doesn’t bother you—but a couple of drops of blood make you pass out?”
He couldn’t help smiling a little. “When you put it that way, I guess it does sound a little silly.”
“No. I understand, actually.” She lifted her hand and cupped his cheek, looking straight into his eyes. “Thank you,” she said softly. “I know it wasn’t easy for you.”
Filled with relief, he put his arms around her and wrapped his arms around her as if he could keep her safe by holding her. She hugged him back, her arms tight around his waist, and something primitive and possessive and utterly masculine swelled inside him. His head was bent so that his face was almost pressed against her shoulder, and he suddenly noticed that the blouse she was wearing left her shoulders bare.
He couldn’t help himself. He bent, just a little further, and pressed a kiss to her injured shoulder.
He heard her startled intake of breath. “Clark.”
He liked the way she said his name, in a soft, breathless voice that sounded like they were in bed together. Which was stupid, because she had a boyfriend, who’d just gone down the street to check on what had happened to Daniel Kim. Jimmy would walk right back into the apartment in a few moments, and things would revert to normal. Chloe Sullivan and Jimmy Olsen, couple. Clark Kent, third wheel.
And yet somehow he couldn’t stop doing what he was doing. He was seriously freaked out, and no wonder. Someone had abducted her, had done God-knew-what to her body, then wiped her memory of it, and that made him angry. And he was even more angry that they’d put something into her body that could have led to her getting killed.
He was angry at whoever was doing the experimenting, and he was angry with himself. Because he should have protected her somehow.
From now on, he’d damn well make certain he protected her.
He brushed more kisses over the smooth skin of her shoulder, kisses that reflected affection, gratitude that she was okay, and the stark, desperate need that burned somewhere deep inside him.
He was kissing her just above the collarbone, just over her bandage, but his mouth began to trail toward the more sensitive skin of her throat, and she uttered a soft noise. He wasn’t sure if it was a sound of protest or approval, but she leaned her head back, and her arms tightened around his shoulders. “Clark…”
He still wasn’t sure if she was going to tell him to stop or not, but he remembered the tears streaking her cheeks, her cries of pain, and the feeling of possessiveness grew stronger. He couldn’t let her go. Not now.
He took a few steps to the side, pulling her with him, then sank down on the couch, tugging her down into his lap. She straddled him, her thighs spread on either side of his, and he moaned softly and pulled her against him more tightly, kissing her throat and her shoulders frantically.
He could feel her pulling away, could feel her arms move from around her shoulders, and he tightened his fingers, holding onto her with desperate need. “Chloe,” he whispered against her throat, the words rough and disjointed. “Don’t. Don’t let go. Hold onto me.”
She hesitated for a long moment, and then her arms went tightly around his shoulders… and she held onto him.
Read Chapter 3 here.