Jor-El, Clark/Chloe futurefic
Disclaimer: These characters belong to the CW and DC Comics, not to me.
The one I adore
Love you forever
Will you be mine
My darling dear
Love you for all time
I'm just a fool
A fool in love with you
"Earth Angel," The Penguins
"It is time for you to mate, my son."
Clark Kent had been absently humming an old tune to himself, but at the words, he stopped humming and looked warily up at the high crystal ceiling of his Fortress of Solitude.
He'd never enjoyed talking about "mating" with his adoptive father. "The talk" had made him want to crawl under his bed when he was a teenager. And the last thing he wanted was to talk to his other father about the subject of women, because the AI's perspective on the matter tended to be, well, odd.
"Yeah," he answered shortly, looking up at the glowing crystal walls of the Fortress. "I've been thinking about proposing to Chloe, but I thought maybe I'd wait till Valentine's Day..."
"Proposing?" The AI sounded puzzled. "By this term, you mean asking a woman to be your life partner?"
"That's what it means, yes."
"Chloe Sullivan." The AI repeated the name thoughtfully. "But she is human."
"They're all human, Jor-El. It's a planet of humans."
"That is not entirely true. As you are aware, Kryptonians have visited this planet over the years, and some interbred with the native populace. There are several thousand women on this planet who do possess varying amounts of Kryptonian DNA. I have made a list..."
"Whoa." Clark held up a hand. "See, the thing is, I'm not interested in those women. I'm in love with Chloe."
"You owe it to Krypton and your heritage to mate with a woman who has the greatest percentage of Kryptonian DNA available, Kal-El."
Clark barely managed to stop himself from baring his teeth. Talking with the AI often had that effect on him. A few years ago, he'd finally figured out Jor-El had somehow gotten corrupted , and working with Chloe, he'd managed to reprogram the machine a bit, so it wasn't quite so, well, psychotic. But Jor-El was still amazingly stubborn, for a machine, and had his own ways of approaching problems.
"No," he said flatly. "I'm marrying Chloe."
"There are three hundred twenty-eight blondes on this planet with Kryptonian DNA..."
"I'm not marrying her because she's blonde." Clark sighed. "I wouldn't really expect you to understand, but what she looks like doesn't matter. I'm marrying her because... she's Chloe."
There was a long silence.
"I had a relationship with an Earth woman once," the AI said at last.
"I know," Clark said, nodding. "I relived your memory, actually. Her name was Louise."
"Yes. I thought I loved her. I was tempted to give up everything for her."
"The difference is, I don't have to give up everything. I don't have to decide between Chloe and going back to Krypton. I can't ever go back, Jor-El. Krypton's gone. And Earth is where I belong."
"Even so," Jor-El said earnestly, "you owe it to Krypton to produce children with the best possible genetics..."
"No. Stop. I am not a racehorse or a show dog, Jor-El. I'm going to marry the girl I want to marry, okay?"
Jor-El actually uttered a resigned sigh. "I suppose you must make your own decisions, Kal-El."
"But if you would just look at these holograms, I think perhaps you might realize that the best woman for you..."
"No, Jor-El. Stop. I'm marrying Chloe. And anyway, she has the best possible genetics. She's saved the world, or helped me saved the world, so many times I've lost count."
"True," Jor-El admitted. "As humans go, she does seem to be a suitable mate for a superman. I have no doubt she will support you in your endeavors."
"She always has."
"Yes," Jor-El agreed. "She has."
"Good. Glad we agree."
"Very well, Kal-El. When do you intend to propose a life contract to her and produce progeny?"
Clark squinted upward suspiciously. "I thought you weren't that big on the idea of me marrying Chloe," he said. "But all of a sudden you seem pretty interested in the idea."
There was an embarrassed silence.
"You never really wanted me to marry one of those semi-Kryptonian women," Clark accused. "You're just trying to push me into proposing to Chloe."
"I was attempting to... I believe the expression is light a fire under you, Kal-El. It seems to be taking you an unduly long time to produce offspring."
"Kids, Jor-El. They're called kids. Are you eager to become a grandparent or something?"
"I am incapable of eagerness," the AI said regally.
"But you want to see another generation of Els."
"Yes, Kal-El. I wish to see another generation of Els, and soon. To borrow the human phrase... you need to put a wiggle in it."
Clark burst out laughing.
"Fine," he said, still chuckling. "I'll see what I can do."
That evening, Chloe came wandering into the apartment she and Clark shared in Metropolis around seven, which was actually early for her. She was a workaholic, which had led to her recent promotion to full reporter for the Daily Planet, which in turn had led to her working longer hours than ever.
Clark whooshed to the door and kissed her. "Hey yourself," he said, taking her coat off. "Come have some dinner."
She blinked at the table, seeing the candles he'd lit. Her eyes narrowed suspiciously. "What are you up to, Clark?"
He tried to look innocent. "I'm not up to anything. I'm cooking dinner for the woman I love."
"No." She stared up at him, narrowing her eyes. "You're up to something. I can tell. Out with it."
He sighed, because Chloe had always been able to see right through him. Shrugging, he reached into his shirt pocket and pulled out a little velvet box.
"I was planning on asking you to marry me," he said, offering it to her. "But I gotta tell you, you're really messing up the ambience here, Chlo."
She blinked, then took the box from him and opened it. A really big diamond nestled against the black velvet.
"I was at the Fortress today, and Jor-El had this, uh, list," he said, awkwardly. "A list of women with a lot of Kryptonian DNA. He wanted me to pick one of them. But I told him there was no one for me but you."
Her eyes glistened suspiciously as she looked up at him. "You're willing to settle for an Earth girl, huh?"
He reached out and ran his fingers through her hair.
"It's not settling, believe me," he said, very softly but very fiercely. "You're not just an Earth girl. You're my Earth angel."
She smiled up at him, and his heart lifted, because he knew the answer was yes.
"It's about time you asked," she said, and flung her arms around his neck.
"Yeah," he said, laughing a little as he hugged her tightly. "That's pretty much what Jor-El said."
In an enormous crystalline structure, far to the North, a supercomputer hummed to itself. Not the monotonous, dull hum of machinery, but the happy, contented hum of a person singing under his breath while he worked.
Holograms flashed, one after the other, in a room of the dark, empty Fortress. The holograms depicted the various women on Earth with Kryptonian ancestry, along with a readout showing their percentage of Kryptonian DNA. Jor-El flipped through the images rapidly, but paused on one showing a small blonde with hazel eyes and a wide smile.
Chloe Anne Sullivan, the readout read. Twenty-two percent Kryptonian DNA.
Jor-El had looked at the hologram a thousand times since Chloe Sullivan had first come to the Fortress, but he never grew tired of looking at it. It amazed him that Kal-El had grown close to this particular woman, a woman who possessed one of the highest percentages of Kryptonian genetics on the planet. It amazed him even more that Kal-El had eventually fallen in love with her.
Jor-El didn't know if it was luck, or if it was only natural that two people with similar genetic codes would recognize their innate similarities and be drawn to one another.
All he knew was that it made him very happy to think that his future descendants would be as Kryptonian as, well, humanly possible.
He imagined his grandchildren running around the Fortress, looking at pictures of Kryptonian art, listening to him tell Kryptonian myths and stories, filling the empty rooms with laughter.
His grandchildren would be part human. They would belong on this planet, just as Kal-El and Chloe Sullivan did. But they would also be Kryptonian, carrying on the traditions of a once-great civilization.
The thought pleased him, and he hummed more loudly than before, singing a song he'd heard his son humming this afternoon at the Fortress. A song he himself had learned on his brief visit to this planet, many years before.
Earth angel, Earth angel, will you be mine...