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Thread: Once Again

  1. #1
    Clana Fic Writer Cardinal's Avatar
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    Once Again

    This is just going to be a two-part fic, very short for me. It's something I felt I needed to post before Season 6 started.

    Once Again

    Chapter 1


    Lana found the locked Windows folder completely by accident. Lex was out of town for the weekend on a emergency business trip, so she was using the solitude of his library, and the high-speed internet connection of his computer, to do some research for a term paper in English when she stumbled upon a folder labeled ‘Research.’

    Having been given the run of the house by Lex and knowing that he trusted her with everything, something that gave her a warm feeling every time she thought about it, Lana decided to see what was in this blandly titled folder. A quick double click of the touch pad on the folder icon should have opened it for her, but instead, she received a message: “Access Denied. Please enter the password to view the contents of this folder.”

    Lana later supposed that rooming with Chloe two different times in her life must have rubbed off on her, because seeing ‘Access Denied’ was like waving a red cape in front of a bull. She tried several different variations of her name, Lex’s mother’s name, even the name of Lex’s long-dead baby brother, Julian, but nothing worked until, on a whim, she tried ‘Clark Kent.’

    Bingo! she thought as the folder opened. The list of files went way down past the bottom edge of the screen. She clicked the first file and was rewarded with a computer-generated wire diagram of what appeared to be a car accident. The next file contained several pictures of a demolished Porsche, and the file after that contained a summary of an investigation into the accident. Lana quickly skimmed the summary and noticed Clark’s name several times, finally realizing that this must be the famous wreck where Clark saved Lex’s life and they first met.

    A second and more careful read, along with another look at the computer diagram, seemed to indicate that Lex had actually hit Clark at more than 60 miles per hour before hurtling off the bridge and into the creek below. That can’t be right, Lana thought, Clark always said Lex missed him and he jumped in after him. Of course, Clark always has had some trouble with the truth. Except, if he did get hit by the Porsche at that speed, he should be dead. Shouldn’t he?

    After that, Lana checked more files and found that every single one was about Clark. There was the text of an incomplete investigation by an off-duty F.B.I. agent named Loder that had apparently been originally made for Lionel. Another file contained a security camera recording from what looked like a science lab. Chloe and Clark were recognizable in the low-res picture, when suddenly, an overhead walkway collapsed, sending a rain of concrete and steel plunging toward them. She could see Clark dive to cover Chloe, and Lana felt herself holding her breath even though she knew from the file date that this had been recorded more than a year ago. When Clark and Chloe were buried by the rubble, Lana couldn’t imagine how they had managed to survive…and then, Clark stood up, apparently unmarked, handling the concrete chunks as if they were Styrofoam.

    After inhaling a deep breath, Lana’s jaw was hanging as low as possible. Here in front of her were some of the answers about Clark she had longed for. She had always suspected his abilities, but to have the proof placed in front of her was mind-blowing. The rest of her time was spent just clicking and scrolling through the many files. With each file about Clark, the depth of Lex’s obsession with him became more and more apparent. Her next shock was finding, in a file labeled ‘Test,’ evidence that Lex was responsible for arranging the release of the meteor freaks that had terrorized her, Clark, and the Kents the summer before last.

    Though it had happened more than a year ago, Lana remembered that day clearly. It had started innocently enough, with everyone in the area helping out at a barn raising. When they had run out of nails, Clark had gone back to the Kent farm to get some and she had joined him, at least partly so she could stay away from Lex. Strange, she thought, that day I trusted Clark with all my heart and Lex was the one I couldn’t trust. Humph, after seeing all of this, maybe I still can’t trust him.

    Playful flirting along the way had led to something more on the old couch in the loft of the Kent barn…only, Larry, Moe, and Curly came along and interrupted them. Then came a long day, fraught with tension and fear. But she remembered holding onto the hope…no, the certainty, that Clark would save them like he always did. And save them he did. He’s not always there when you want him, Lana thought, but he’s always there when you need him.

    Finally reaching the bottom of the folder, Lana sat back in the leather desk chair, feeling like her world had come to an abrupt end, for the third time in her life. There, staring back at her on Lex’s 15.4-inch widescreen LCD laptop computer monitor, was the indisputable proof. So much for him not being interested in a farm boy like Clark anymore, Lana thought. She was incredulous…volcanically angry…and hugely embarrassed.

    That obsessive collection of information about Clark made it apparent that Lex was selective in what he trusted her with. More importantly, that folder also made it obvious that she didn’t know him nearly as well as she thought she did. Lex has piles of information on Clark, she thought. Oh God! I feel like such a moron. Clark was right. Lex played me for a fool. I wonder what else Clark was right about? Lana‘s last task with that folder was to send a copy of its contents to Chloe at the Daily Planet for safekeeping.

    When Lex came back to the mansion early on Sunday morning, hoping to spend some quiet time with Lana, she was already packed and ready to go back to the Metropolis apartment she shared with Chloe. Mansion security had informed her he was on his way, so Lana had waited in the library for him. She wanted to give him one last chance to come clean, but when she brought up Clark in their conversation, Lex continued to play as if Clark was of no interest to him. As far as Lana was concerned, that was the last straw. She turned on Lex and let him have it.

    She led him to the computer and called up the supposedly secure folder, scrolling down the list of file after file. Stabbing at the screen with a finger, once she came to the end, Lana turned to him and asked, “How do you explain this if you‘re not interested in Clark?”

    Lex had actually gotten visibly angry when he first saw that Lana had accessed his secret folder, but by the time she finished scrolling to the bottom and turned to face him, a calm, cool, and collected veneer once again covered his face.

    Damage control will be tough now, Lex thought, but not impossible. Between Clark and me, Lana seems to have a thing for liars, no matter how much she says otherwise.

    But damage control was well beyond possible for Lex. Lana wouldn’t let him explain away his systematic collection of information, especially since his malicious attack on Clark almost got the Kents and herself killed during his ‘test.’

    Their fight became louder the longer it went on, until even Lex’s cool façade had disappeared. Lex tried to hold on to Lana, unwilling to let her literally walk out of his life, but the self-defense training he had provided for her almost four years ago came back to bite in him in the balls…literally. Lana’s knee connected flush with Lex’s crotch and he collapsed like a marionette whose strings had been cut.

    Once Lana made it off of the mansion grounds, she started crying. Crying and driving at highway speeds weren’t compatible in her mind, so she stopped at the Talon for a cup of coffee while she brought her emotions under control for the long drive home.

    By the time Lex felt capable of running after Lana, she was already gone, headed for Smallville, and eventually, Metropolis. Sensing it would do no good to try and follow her right now, Lex let her go, figuring he’d be able to spin this in such a way that she would come back to him soon. After all, he thought, Lana has this deep-seated need to be with somebody. Being all alone isn’t possible for her.

    At the Talon, Lana hid herself at a back table, hoping no one she knew would come in while she there. Not likely for a town of this size where she knew a lot of people, but she had hopes…hopes which were shattered when the next to last person she wanted to see walked in and placed an order, Clark Kent.

    Lana looked around for something to hide behind before Clark saw her but there were no plastic plants nearby and the restroom was too far away for her to make it unseen. Given their recent history, Clark started to turn away from Lana once he saw her, something that would have been unthinkable as little as six months earlier. He stopped when he noticed she had been crying. Even though they were no longer dating, and their friendship was virtually non-existent, there was something inside him that could not stand to see Lana in pain. So when he collected his drink, he made his way over to her table to try to help.

    “Hi, Lana,” Clark said tentatively. “What’s wrong?”

    Not willing to look up at him right now, Lana grudgingly said, “Hi, Clark.”

    “May I sit down?”

    “If you must.”

    “I must.” Once he had seated himself, he said, “Now tell me what’s wrong. I know our friendship is a little…strained… right now, but we are still friends and seeing one of my few true friends cry eats me up inside.”

    Knowing Clark well enough to know he was not going away until she talked to him, Lana said, “Everything’s so messed up, that I don’t even know where to start.”

    Trying for a small laugh to help loosen her mood, Clark said, “I find that the beginning is almost always a good place to start.” Lana was wadding her already soaked hanky in her hands, so Clark reached across and handed her a clean one from his back pocket. “Should I call Lex to come get you?”

    “No!” Lana blurted out. “He’s the problem!”

    That simple statement caused a surge of conflicting thoughts and emotions inside Clark‘s head. He was happy that Lana appeared to be seeing the light where Lex was concerned, sad that she had been hurt once again, angry that Lex had done something to her, and even a little bit vindicated for his warning about Lex.

    “But it’s not just about Lex…it’s also about you, Clark.”

    Suddenly afraid of where this conversation might lead, Clark said, “I think we ought to talk about this privately. Don’t you?” When Lana nodded yes, Clark smiled and said, “Meet me at my house, and we’ll talk in the kitchen. Mom’s still in Topeka, so we’ll have the place to ourselves.”

    “O-Okay,” Lana said shakily.

    Seeing the way she acted, Clark wondered if she was really ready to be behind the wheel of a car, so he stopped and said, “On second thought, climb in my truck and I’ll drive.”

    A small smile escaped her lips for the first time since she left Lex’s, and as she waited for Clark to open her door, she said, “Thank you, Clark.”

    Minutes later, they were sitting on opposite sides of the Kent dinner table. Clark had poured two glasses of lemonade and Lana’s hands closed tightly around her glass. Knowing that the first words had to be from her, Clark waited patiently for her to begin.

    Lana still was having a hard time meeting Clark’s eyes, so she stared at the age-scarred surface of the table as she tried to think of what to say.

    “I guess…I guess the first thing to say is, I’m sorry.” Clark rocked back in his seat. Of all the things he had expected to hear, an apology wasn’t one of them. Unaware of Clark’s reaction, Lana pushed ahead. “I disregarded your warnings about Lex and, in the process, said some things in anger I’ve come to regret. You were right about Lex.”

    “Oh, Lana, I’m so sorry this had to happen to you. I could have been happy for you if you had chosen any man other than Lex.”

    Lana finally looked up, and Clark could see the pain in her eyes. “I’m not done yet, Clark. I found Lex’s secret files on you. It had everything from the car accident where you saved his life, to a lab accident where you and Chloe should have been crushed by concrete and steel, to the fact that Lex arranged for those three meteor freaks to attack you here at the farm. There’s lots of other stuff, but I didn’t have time to do a detailed read of every file, so I sent copies of everything to Chloe yesterday. She should have finished reading it all by now.”

    “Damn,” Clark said as he pounded his right fist into his left palm, “I didn’t know he had that much on me.” And then one more thought struck him, one that Lana had been waiting for him to have. “Oh! So, umm, so you saw a tape of me and Chloe…?”

    “Yeah. I did. I know now. You handled that concrete like it was made of Styrofoam.” Lana quickly shook her head as if in disbelief. “I’ve always suspected you had abilities, ever since the tornado, but you would never confide in me. Why?”

    Clark was surprised how quickly the focus of the conversation had turned from her to him. Now it was his turn to look away as he said, “Originally, I was a fifteen-year-old high school freshman who was deathly scared that the girl he loved would run screaming if she ever learned the truth. Once Pete got run out of town by people trying to learn my secrets, my reasons changed. After that, I knew telling you would put you in danger.”

    “You told Pete?”

    Clark waved that off as being inconsequential to his story and continued, “Finally, when I found you in Lex’s library, shortly after the second meteor shower, I lost all of my abilities. It was great. I could finally risk a real relationship with you. There were no more secrets to hide.” Looking wistfully at Lana’s face, Clark said, “Those months were the happiest months of my life.”

    Lana smiled warmly and said, “For me too.”

    Clark smiled in response. “Then, I died. I remember you being at my bedside and me taking one last look at you before the end.”

    “That was one of the worst days of my life, Clark…and then, you came back, as if nothing had happened. And everything was right again.”

    “But as you later noted, things weren’t quite the same between us anymore. Among other things, we never again made love. I know you didn’t like that, but that was a conscious decision on my part. I couldn’t risk injuring you if I lost control of my abilities in the throes of passion. More importantly, I couldn’t do that with you anymore until you finally knew my secrets. You see, the day I died, I regained all of my abilities.”

    “How?”

    “My father, my biological father, restored them to me when he restored my life.”

    Lana was dumbfounded. She had always known when Clark was lying to her and this time, as incredible as it seemed, he was telling the truth.

    “I guess you don’t have to tell me about your secrets anymore. I seem to know them. But one thing I would like to know is, when you broke up with me, why did you lie about not being in love with me anymore? That was more painful than watching you die, because you hurt me on purpose.”

    No longer bothering to deny the truth, Clark said, “I lied to protect you from my secrets and those who would do anything to learn them."

    "You mean, you wanted to save me from Lex."

    “Yeah. I would have done anything to save you, even if that meant giving you up.” Clark paused then said, “The one thing I didn’t count on was you falling for the very guy I saved you from.”

    “And look how that turned out. One of the most recent files on Lex’s computer seemed to indicate that he was investigating us while we were dating.”

    “Since Lex knows some things about me and you know the same things, and Lex knows you know what he knows…”

    “Is there a point to all this double talk, Clark?”

    “Yes, before we go back to repairing our friendship, there’s one more subject I need to cover with you. It’s where I came from, how I got my abilities, and who my biological father is. I figure, since we aren’t dating anymore, I can finally tell this to you safely. Chloe learned it on accident last year and Lex has never come after her, so you ought to be safe, too.”

    Mentally bracing herself, Lana asked, “Okay, what is it?”

    Smiling to remember saying something similar to Lana earlier this year, Clark said, “Not here. Where were going, you’ll need to dress warmly. Oh, and don’t forget to bring a scarf and gloves.”
    Last edited by Cardinal; 09-04-2006 at 01:38 PM.

  2. #2
    Hopeless Forum Addict SVsleuth's Avatar
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    1st! That was great, Card. Lana discovers part of Clark's secret & confronts Lex. I loved how Lana handled Lex, using her Lana-Fu on him right where it counts - just the way he taught her! Ha! And then, it got even better with the great conversation between Clark & Lana, her apology, and him coming clean with her. Can't wait for Clark to take her to the FOS again & tell all. PPMS!
    Last edited by SVsleuth; 09-02-2006 at 11:44 PM.

  3. #3
    Posting Pro happycamper's Avatar
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    2nd

    Some people are just too greedy (ambitious?) in the number of stories they have going at once. Makes updates to current stories less frequent.

    I enjoyed the Lana-Fu. Very appropriate.

    Just think, a simple book report accidently leads to Lana finding out how Lex had played her, as well as the complete truth (I hope!!!) about Clark.

    Dressing warmly with a scarf and gloves? Hmm, I seem to remember this from another time.

    Is Clark going to let her know that this is Lana's second visit to the FOS? Because she is going to remember dressing warmly and the disappointment associated with the first time...

    Looking forward to the finale!


    Last edited by happycamper; 09-02-2006 at 11:50 PM.

  4. #4
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    If only this would happen. It would be a terrific scene in the show. It might be the highest rated episode of all time.

    Cardinal, you have a better memory than the writers of SV.

    I'm really looking forward to the 2nd part.
    Last edited by oldmankent; 09-02-2006 at 11:38 PM.

  5. #5
    Posting Pro ajfinn's Avatar
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    I can't read this tonight, but I'm saving myself a place

  6. #6
    Forum Whiz LetMeGo's Avatar
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    Ooo… you’ve been very busy Card! Great premise… Lana thinks she knows Lex so well and suddenly everything changes. Hopefully knowing everything about Clark will change her perspective on him as well. I’ll be eagerly awaiting the 2nd half! PPMS!

  7. #7
    Forum Regular Clanafan24/7's Avatar
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    hey UPDATE PLZ!

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    Board Master *#~ ClAnAfAn99210~#*'s Avatar
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    woot woot

  9. #9
    Posting Pro emsfan's Avatar
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    Wow excellent work!!!! I love it...

  10. #10
    Board Master maitriniazngurl's Avatar
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    Wow!! I was surprised to find another fic by you Card!! But hey the more the marrier!! Awesome job!!

    Lana giving it to Lex was so funny!! Clark's response to her was soo kind!! I love it!! I can't wait for the second part!

    I hope Clana can be restored.. hey maybe he'll ask her to marry him... again!!


  11. #11
    Hopeless Forum Addict SmallvilleMan's Avatar
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    It's something I felt I needed to post before Season 6 started.
    What? There's a season six? I hadn't noticed Nice story, but even if that did happen in the real smallville, i stil wouldnt be able to watch it. They killed it! Along with their ratings

  12. #12
    Posting Pro deanyouk's Avatar
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    Woah, that was amazing...

  13. #13
    Board Master Iowanmom's Avatar
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    Cardinal??? Where's the rest??? I was all ready to soak this up. Come on!!!

    No, really. This was great. I like a little snooping Lana. Makes her more real, more human. Not so.... perfect. Know what I mean? That nod at being around Chloe causing her nosiness was a hoot!!

    I'm glad Lana confronted Lex. She should have. She has an uncanny ability to read peoples eyes and know when she's being lied to... this was great. I also like that Lex lost his demeanor. He wasn't able to stay 'cold' and aloof to Lana. She is a weakness of sorts for him.

    And in walks Clark. I was excited. So often these two dance around each other, it was nice to see them seize the opportunity and nothing came in the way of Lana finally learning the truth.

    Anyway, I hope he tells Lana about their other time in the FOS as well. It's time to tell her everything. They've hurt each other enough.

    Post more soon, Cardinal... PLEASE!!
    Last edited by Iowanmom; 09-03-2006 at 06:45 PM.

  14. #14
    Forum Regular Clana227's Avatar
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    please update soon!!!

  15. #15
    Forum Regular Venezuelan Lana's Avatar
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    this is awesome!!! I'd love Smallville going down this way, but with al/miles it's not even possible to think of that...

    Anyways... I hope you can post the next update soon! I'm really enjoying all of your fics, Card!

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