By Laurelnola and Elly
These characters belong to the CW and DC Comics, not to us.
Read Chapter 4 here.
Her hands were all over him, exploring and caressing, feeling the hardness of his muscles, the warmth of his skin. He moaned and touched her just as hungrily, tasting the skin of her throat. And then his mouth was brushing against hers, and her lips parted in involuntary response. His tongue slid into her mouth and touched hers, almost shyly, and she heard a deep moan reverberate in his chest.
She could feel the tension in his big body, could feel how she was affecting him, and tears scorched her eyelids. All this time she’d never dreamed he wanted her this way. She’d never thought he saw her at all. She’d believed he had eyes for no one but Lana.
She’d always been the best friend, the sidekick, the buddy, but never the lover. She could hardly believe that he wanted her.
But the way he was shivering at every touch of her hands left no doubt in her mind that he really did.
She pulled his t-shirt up, then started pushing it up his chest. He mumbled a protest, but she tugged at it insistently, and he lifted his arms and let her yank it off. And then she was staring at his bare torso.
“Um,” he said, and shifted uncomfortably from foot to foot, his cheeks flaming like he’d never let anyone see his bare chest before. “I, uh…”
Wow didn’t begin to cover it, but they were in a hurry here, so that was just going to have to be the extent of her commentary for now. They really needed to eschew words in favor of action. Her hand reached out and stroked over his chest, and he quivered, looking like he might just fall over. She could feel the tension in his muscles, and knew he was a little nervous. She leaned into him again, kissing and stroking until he relaxed into it.
Her hands slid down the flat planes of his abdomen, toward his jeans, and suddenly he caught at her wrists. “Chlo. No.”
“Why not?” she whispered.
“We can’t.” He sounded like the words were being dragged from him, one by one. “We just can’t. You won’t remember this when time restarts. And this is something I definitely want you to remember.”
Her voice was soft, pleading, “Clark, we’ve waited such a long time for this. I don’t think I even care if I won’t remember it tomorrow.”
His jaw clenched because she had no idea how easy it would be to break his resolve. He wanted her so badly he could barely stand. Every particle of his being cried out for her, to know her body completely, to be inside her so that he could love her the way he was so desperate to do.
But he sure as hell didn’t want their first time to be something she forgot. Especially not literally. He let out a groan as his chin dropped gently against the top of her head, and he breathed in her scent, feminine and yet as full of hunger as he was. His fingers rose to her shoulders, and he found himself stroking along her neck, down the sloping curves of her shoulders and her arms. He realized he’d done it without thinking, and suddenly he was smiling.
“Chlo, you want to know something?”
“Something tells me I don’t,” she mumbled against his chest, and he laughed.
“Best friends don’t touch each other all the time.”
Her head pulled back to stare at him in confusion, “What do you mean?”
He was grinning now. He couldn’t help it. “I was remembering something I overhead my Dad say to my mom once. It was just after you saved me from Fine, and we were downstairs by the fire.”
“Oh, right. You tried to cure my hypothermia with coffee,” she quipped.
Clark rolled his eyes. Even when they were both about to combust with pent-up passion, trust Chloe to get snarky.
“Yeah, well,” he went on, “I sort of overheard my parents talking. About us.”
Curiosity sparkled in her hazel eyes. “Really? What did they say?”
Clark gave a half-smile, remembering, “My dad said that for people who were just friends, we sure snuggled a lot.”
He was rewarded with her laughter, “He did not,” she exclaimed, and Clark nodded, warm with the memory of that night.
“My parents knew, I think,” he mused, “They could see how I touched you all the time, always sat a little too close to you, that kind of thing. I think they knew we were fooling ourselves.”
Chloe tilted her head in wonder, “You think our bodies were saying what we were too afraid to say out loud?”
He took in a deep breath then sighed, amazed at how transparent they really had been.
“I think they still do,” he nodded, and inclined his head to the outside world, “Even when we’re out there pretending we don’t care.” Clark brought his hand up to caress the velvety skin of her cheek, as he gazed into her eyes, “We already make love all the time, Chlo. We just never realized it.”
Even outside of time, they didn't have enough time.
Chloe pressed her face into Clark's shoulder again, trying to steady her breathing. He'd stopped time only for an hour, and that hour was rapidly running out. She wanted to keep on kissing Clark, to make love to him, but she knew he was right. They couldn't make love if she wouldn't remember this hour in a few minutes. That would just be another pain for Clark to carry in his heart, the memory of making love to a woman who didn't remember his touches or the feel of his body against hers.
She sighed, taking some comfort in his words. We already make love all the time, Chlo. We just never realized it.
But no matter how they used the remaining minutes, there were so terribly few of them left. Sixty minutes could be so agonizingly long when you were waiting for something, anticipating something, but when you wanted to hold onto it, an hour ran through your fingers like water.
An hour of happiness. An hour to be aware that Clark loved her.
It made her heart lift to finally know that Clark loved her, but it also made her chest ache to know she wouldn't remember any of this when the hour was over and time restarted. It was hard for her to believe that this would all be gone, erased from her memory as if it had never happened, but if Clark said that was the case, she believed him. She supposed human minds just couldn't cope with being outside the flow of time.
At least Clark would remember. He could remember for both of them. And maybe someday... he'd tell her about it.
She turned and walked to the vast door, seeing the snowflakes hanging outside, utterly motionless. It looked like a three-dimensional photograph, as if reality had been transformed into nothing more than a snapshot. It was eerie to know that everything in the world, maybe everything in the whole universe, was still except them.
"Hey," she said suddenly. "Do we have to stay here? Is the Fortress the only place time isn't frozen for us?"
"No." She heard the thud of his workboots against ice, and then he was right beside her. "The crystal freezes time for whoever happens to be in the Fortress at the time it's activated. But we don't have to stay here the whole time."
"Handy tool if you ever have a major crisis come up and need to buy some time," she commented. "Can you reuse it?"
"Yeah, but not a whole lot, and not too frequently. I get the impression it puts some strain on the fabric of space-time to do it often. So we can't keep stopping time over and over again, if that's what you're thinking."
"No. I guess we wouldn't want to put a strain on the fabric of space-time." She shot a sidelong look at him. "How'd you learn how to use the crystals, anyway?"
He shrugged, looking a little embarrassed. "After that whole mess with Zod last year, I realized I better learn a little more about how the Fortress works. Once Jor-El came back online, I started coming up here and having him give me tutorials."
Her eyebrows shot up. "You mean you've started your training?"
"No. This is more like showing someone how to use a computer. Basic stuff. The training that Jor-El wants me to do is a lot more complicated." He looked out into the snowy landscape. "So did you want to go somewhere?"
"Well..." She smiled slightly. "I just thought maybe you could speed us somewhere a little more, you know, romantic."
He looked back at her, and a slight smile curved his mouth. "I can do better than that. Put the jacket back on."
She pulled on his big jacket and zipped it. He swept her up in her arms, then waded out into the deep snow.
"Hang on," he said, and jumped up toward the sky.
Her arms tightened around his neck involuntarily, and she looked downward as the ground receded. They went up... and up... and up... and eventually she began to realize this wasn't just a really big jump.
"Oh, my God," she said. "When did you learn to fly?"
But Clark only grinned at her, taking her up, up, and away...
Read Chapter 6 here.