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Revelations- Chapter Fourteen

November 2nd, 2009 (12:19 am)

A/N: I'm a little behind again this week, my dog with cancer was out down the day after the last chapter was posted but she was in pain and it was better to let her go quietly than keep her suffering. Thank you all for your kind words and reviews. However I haven't been entirely non-existent, to tide you over 'till this was up I published a oneshot for you to enjoy. If you like Evelyn and Jason haven't yet read Not Given Lightly you may want to do so. Now this chapter I've actually had planned since I first conceived this story so I'm kinda nervous about it. It's the final chapter in Act I, next chapter we're pretty much full on for the rest of the story. Hope you like it.

Chapter Fourteen: Tipping Point

--

"We're out of milk."

Ella looked up from the inside of the fridge to see if anyone else was as concerned about this as her. Lucy and Chris barely looked up from where they were glued to the TV. Briefly she recognized a reporter standing on the streets of Smallville before it switched back to the studio.

“We’re out of milk,” she repeated but Lucy held up her hand to quiet her.

“Ella, we’re watching the news.”

Ella rolled her eyes. “We are the news,” she informed her sister bitterly. Lucy didn’t reply and Ella returned to her search. She’d already lifted and moved everything in the fridge but just in case she re-focused her eyes and gave the whole thing a once-over with her x-ray vision.

“We’re out of milk,” she said for the third time, louder so the whole apartment could hear.

Ella, what’s the matter?” Sophie asked, sticking her head out of the study.

Ella frowned. “What are you doing here?” she asked in surprise, she hadn’t known her older sister was home. Jason had picked them up from school half an hour ago and deposited them back to the apartment before going to New York to see his girlfriend. Dean was upstairs, to Ella’s relief he had yet to come down or try and talk to her about this morning.

“I’m making a few calls,” Sophie replied, her tone surprisingly sharp.

“To Harvard?” Ella raised her eyebrows. “Massachusetts is kinda a long distance call isn’t it?” Although maybe a massive phone bill would be a nice, normal distraction for their parents.

“No,” Sophie almost snapped back, giving her younger sister a look that almost made her step back. “I’m not using the landline, it’s still clogged with press and I’m talking to some old friends in Metropolis.”

Friends? Ella didn’t want to know who her sister was really talking to if they had made her that pissed. “How did you get them to stop calling your cell then?” she asked curiously. Her own phone currently had a full text inbox and 78 unheard voicemails.

“I didn’t,” she replied, in the same, clipped tone as before, “Dani got a new SIM card a week ago and she’s letting me borrow the number. What are you looking for?”

“We’re out of milk,” she said for the fourth time. “I’ve already done that,” she continued as her sister’s eyes unfocused slightly.

Sophie shot her an interested look. “You did?” she asked, her tone sounding strangely surprised with a hint of something else behind it. “Huh, interesting,” she muttered under her breath as she closed the fridge door. “What’s the big deal anyway?”

“We’re out of milk,” Ella repeated, when Sophie just gave her another annoyed look she added, “that means someone has to go out and get some.”

“Oh.” Realization dawned across Sophie’s face as she finally got what her sister had been going on about. Then she shrugged. “Well it wasn’t like you could stay in here forever. Go out and get some.”

“But-“ Ella began before the phone in Sophie’s hand started buzzing.

“Sorry, gotta take this,” Sophie said, flipping open the phone and heading back to the study. “Hey… Kelly, yeah, it’s true… really? How much?”

Ella sighed and looked back at her unmade cup of hot chocolate. She had been looking forward to it all day, it was going to be her reward for getting through school but now she supposed she’d just have to wait.

“We could go out through the car park,” Dean suggested form right behind her, making her jump, “security’s been keeping that pretty clear and we do have to go out sometime,” he continued.

“It’s fine,” Ella muttered, not looking him in the eyes. “I’ll just wait.”

“C’mon, El, you love hot chocolate. Don’t tell me you weren’t looking forward to that the whole day,” he challenged her, the smile in his voice finally making her look up. She relaxed significantly when he met her gaze steadily with no hint of the confusion and shock of the morning. If he was going to corner her to bring up their talk it wasn’t going to be soon.

“Can I come?” Chris asked, finally getting bored with the news and coming to join them.

“Sure.” Dean grinned and ruffled his little brother’s hair. “You want to come too, Luce?” he called, grabbing the keys.

“Nah, I’m good,” Lucy replied, not even looking up. “Are you sure you shouldn’t wait for Mom and Dad though?”

“We’re just heading down to the convenience store on the corner,” Dean told her, “we’ll be fine.”

“Gotta go out sometime,” Ella sighed under her breath.

--

"James, are you alright?" his wife's voice asked as Jimmy staggered into the house after fighting his way through the cameras.

The media had finally got word of who Superman's best friend was and where he lived. He'd seen the pictures outside the Kent apartment though and knew they'd gotten off lightly with the three vans camped outside, although it seemed the reporters made up for their lack of numbers with their enthusiasm to attack him. "I'm fine," he assured Sarah as she snatched his briefcase and jacket away from her husband and looked him over.

"Are you sure?"

"I'm fine, sweetie, calm down," Jimmy assured her. "I've been through worse." It wasn't strictly true, he had fought his way through bigger crowds of reporters but most of those times he'd actually been part of it. "Really," he told Sarah, who was still hovering.

"Sorry," she finally relented with a sigh. "This is just getting slightly crazy right now. And I can't believe you didn't tell me your best friend was Superman!" she cried, for what had to be the thousandth time since yesterday morning.

"It wasn't mine to tell," he reminded her. "How was your day?" he asked, changing the subject.

"Alright until that lot showed up," she replied, jerking her head toward their front yard. "We missed you this morning."

Jimmy winced, he'd left the art gallery around midnight and returned straight to the Planet to work on his photos. He'd hoped to be out in time to see Alice off to school but Perry had kept him in far longer than he wanted. He was the closest to Lois and Clark at the Planet after all.

"Yeah," he said with a shrug, "sorry about that. I just couldn’t get away, Ralph wouldn't stop pestering me for statements about Clark and Superman so the photo thing took way longer. I also had to wait until Lois and Clark were done because I wanted to run my choices by them first."

Sarah raised her eyebrows. "You know, eventually they will have to get used to the fact that people are going to be printing things they don't want out there."

"I know," Jimmy told her, almost collapsing into his chair, "but I figured it didn't have to start with their best friend."

"Fair enough," his wife sighed, "are you hungry?" she asked, changing the subject again to a lighter matter.

"Starving," Jimmy said gratefully as he followed her into the kitchen. “Is Alice home yet?”

“No, it’s Tuesday, she’s got hockey,” Sarah reminded him, “and you need to talk to her about appropriate clothing, I saw her this morning trying to roll up her skirt. Which is already too short if you ask me.”

“Right, right,” Jimmy sighed, “I’ll talk to her tonight. How’s the exhibition going?”

“Oh, well enough,” she replied, a slight frown creasing her features.

“Something the matter?”

She shrugged. “Nothing I can change,” she sighed, “it’s just nerves, really,” she assured her husband, “I haven’t had a show in so long I’d almost forgotten how terrifying it is to have so many strangers looking at something you’ve poured your heart and soul into and then judging it.”

“I think that’s a perfectly normal feeling to have,” Jimmy assured her.

“Not now it isn’t,” Sarah sighed, sounding frustrated.

“It isn’t?” Jimmy asked in surprise. It seemed alright to him, he’d been a photographer for most of his life and he still got nervous when he presented his work to someone.

“Not now it isn’t,” she snapped at him, “watching all that-“ she waved a hand towards the TV “-happening to Lois and Clark and the kids, well my problems pale in comparison to that don’t they?”

“Oh,” Jimmy said softly, realizing what she was saying. “Sarah, you’re still allowed to be nervous about your show,” he assured her, “the world may be watching Clark right now but it’s hardly stopped just because of this.”

“I know, I know,” Sarah sighed, nodding in an irritated way that Jimmy knew from years of marriage meant she hadn’t really agreed with anything he’d said. “I mean, sure the café down the road opened the same as always today, even if the conversation was all one topic. I don’t mean that,” she sighed again, this time as if to sort out her thoughts. “I mean, this isn’t it, they’ve got problems now but it hasn’t really begun.”

Jimmy stopped mid-chew and put down his toast carefully. The certainty in his wife’s voice was surprising, but then again she had been married to . “You’re right,” he agreed, “this media storm is just heating up.”

"It's not really the media I'm worried about," Sarah replied, "what about all those criminals Superman… Clark," she corrected herself, "put away? Wasn't that the whole reason he kept it a secret in the first place?"

Jimmy felt a shiver go down his back. In all the chaos he'd almost forgotten about that. He could only hope Lois and Clark hadn't.

--

As soon as Clark stepped out of the conference room and into the bullpen the noise, which had previously been louder than even its usual chaotic level, ceased immediately. Even the ones who weren’t staring at the door realized quickly something had happened and they turned to stare at the man they were quickly finding out they’d hardly ever known at all.

Clark just stared right back. He honestly had no idea what to do. Should he give them a goofy wave like he would have yesterday? Or should he just give them an aloof sort of nod like Superman would do?

He remembered the conversation that morning, and Lois’ words came back to him. You can just be yourself, she'd promised him, she'd told him to act like he did where everyone already knows who you are. So he was, he gave them all a slight smile and a nod, like he would give Jimmy if he saw him in the elevator.

Then he all but fled to Perry's office. Lois was in there already and she looked at Clark in shock when he entered. "Did you know he's known for years?" she asked him, sounding almost angry as well as shocked.

Clark raised an eyebrow an looked at his Editor-in-Chief who was sitting in his chair looking rather amused and rather pleased with himself. "I suppose it's not that surprising," Clark said, "I guess there were some journalists who saw through me."

Perry chuckled. "You're lucky it was just me," he told him, "I never had the slightest urge to publish it. Although I guess it doesn’t really matter now," he said with a sigh, looking at the muted TV in the corner.

Clark felt his heart clench uncomfortably as he recognized the town he'd grown up in overrun with reporters. He hadn't even thought about what would happen in Smallville, he'd been too caught up in his own self-pitying.

"But how did I never notice you knew," Lois asked in exasperation, talking more to herself than anyone else.

In the background Lois and Perry continued to talk but Clark remained transfixed by the scenes on the television. There was the Kent Farm, the town still called it that even when Clark sold it after his mother's death. What must the Harrisons, the small but kind family now living there, be going through because of him? The wife was expecting her second child, he remembered from his last visit, he doubted this stress would be good for her.

And what about Pete and Lana and their children? The eldest was even named after him, an honor from his childhood friends he still felt he hardly deserved. What were they going to face because his secret was out?

His parents were gone now, as were Lois' but that didn’t mean the media had no one to stalk for information. What about Lois's sister and brother-in-law? Lucy, who they'd named their youngest daughter after and her husband Ron. Although they were currently doing volunteer work in Africa. Would they even know? Clark wondered. With all the chaos around him and every single news outlet playing the same story it seemed odd to think there might be places that didn't yet know. Or probably care.

"Clark?" Lois voice brought him back to the present and he found both her and Perry staring at him with worry.

"Sorry," he muttered, tearing his eyes from the screen. Smallville had disappeared from it anyway. They were just playing the video of his secret being blown up with a rocket launcher again and he'd had enough of that.

"How are the kids dealing with this?" Perry asked softly. "Jason and Sophie came to talk to me earlier but what about the others?"

Clark shrugged. "They seem fine, but I think it might just be too soon to tell."

--

"That was Nina," Evelyn told her fiancée as she hung up her cell and lay back down on the couch with him. "Dad still hasn't come home,"

Jason had visited her sister's house again around noon and both had decided to risk returning to their apartment. It was, as predicted, surrounded by the press but they'd gone in quickly through the window and so far the crowd outside seemed unaware they were there.

She felt Jason chest fall as he sighed. She regretted telling him immediately, now he'd worry about it when it wasn't his problem, and god knows he had enough on his mind right now. It was something that Evelyn both loved and hated about him. She loved the way he cared about everything and everyone, but she hated the way he would let it stress him out and stay awake worrying about every little thing he couldn't change.

"He will," she assured him when he remained silent, "he just needs time to get used to it. He wasn't thinking when he did… what he did."

"I know," Jason replied, pulling her closer. They'd been lying on the couch for almost half an hour, just enjoying each other's company. Evelyn felt so safe with Jason, like there was nothing the world could throw at them that they couldn't handle so long as they were together.

Unfortunately the world seemed to have taken up that challenge with a passion in the last two days. It seemed hard to believe that only yesterday morning the public had woken up still thinking Clark and Superman were two different people. Now things were happening faster than she could keep track.

Their landlord had left them a note under the door, politely telling them that if the media horde outside wasn't under control soon they would have to leave as it was disturbing the other residents.

"As if we want them here," Evelyn had snorted, ready to go and give the man a piece of her mind before Jason reminded her in his annoyingly rational way that it wouldn't do much good.

“Have you heard from Jared or Beth?” Jason asked quietly, referring to her siblings who lived abroad, one in Germany and the other in Ireland.

“Yeah,” Evelyn said with a sigh, “no one’s bothered them at all but they’re pissed about what Dad did. It hasn’t made the news there yet but Nina called them both and told them. Jared called me last night just to let me know they were on my side.”

“You don’t sound too happy about that though,” Jason noted, his voice not giving anything away. It annoyed her he was still trying not to influence how she handled the situation, she desperately wanted someone to give her advice.

Evelyn gave a half-shrug. “I really don’t know how I feel,” she admitted, keeping her voice even, “I mean, to be honest I’ve never really gotten on with my Dad but I never in a million years thought he’d do something like this.

"No," Jason agreed, pulling her closer as if he was afraid she might listen to him even thought she knew he knew he to be more sensible then that.

"How's your family doing?" she asked, changing the subject away from her.

"They were alright when I left," Jason answered, but Evelyn felt him tense and wondered what had happened. "We'll get through this though," he promised but Evelyn wasn't sure who he was trying to calm, her or himself.

--

They got all the way to the basement car park without seeing a single person. But Dean could hear the din outside caused by the press and the police trying to keep them in check.

“C’mon, then,” he said, leading the way out of the lift when Ella and Chris didn’t move.

Chris hurriedly caught up with his older brother and slipped his small hand into Dean's. "Do you think people will know who we are 'cause we were on TV?" he asked quietly, glancing around the car park nervously.

"Maybe," Dean answered with a shrug, trying to sound casual, "but I'll look after you."

Chris said nothing which worried Dean a bit though he didn't let it show. He'd expected his brother to roll his eyes and insist that he could take care of himself. Ella was also silent as the made their way towards the exit that came out on the side of the building. They could hopefully avoid the large crowds by going out into the alley and out the other side of the block.

"So how was school?" he asked, trying to sound normal but he wasn't sure if he succeeded. He was never the best at starting conversations normally and now was anything but normal.

"It was okay," Chris replied with a shrug, "the other kids kept asking me lots of questions but Principal Randall was really nice and said he would tell them not to if I didn't like it."

"Did he?" Ella asked, breaking her silence and Dean was glad they were having a normal conversation.

Chris shook his head. "Nah," he said casually as if it was no big deal at all, "It didn't bother me that much. It was kinda cool, Harry even gave me his chocolate bar if I said I'd say hi to Dad for him."

"How 'bout you, Ella?" Dean asked, watching her closely. He'd decided not to bring up what she'd told him that morning until he'd had proper time to talk again to Sophie and Jason. Sophie had seemed upset that Ella would feel that way but Jason had just seemed thoughtful and promised to think it over. Dean was glad about that, Jason was good with things like people and making people feel better. For the first time in a long time Dean felt in over his head with Ella's revelation.

"It was okay," Ella replied, using the same words as Chris but unlike her brother she refused to elaborate. She didn't seem too upset when she said it though, so maybe, Dean hoped, it actually had been okay.

They had reached the door and Dean quickly checked the ally before they opened it. There was a man walking down towards the front of the apartment, his hands were deep in his pockets and his heart was going unusually fast. But then again, Dean thought, anyone would be nervous heading into a crowd like the one that wait in front of the building. There was no one else and the man had his back to the door so Dean decided it was safe, one person was no real threat and they couldn't avoid human contact forever.

"C'mon, let's go get some milk, then." He pushed open the door and stepped out, holding it open behind him for Ella, who stepped out cautiously, looking around nervously.

"Can I get a chocolate bar?" Chris asked, pulling Dean in the direction of the store and he laughed.

"Didn't Harry already give you one today?" Dean asked with a grin, jogging and letting his brother pull him eagerly even though he could've easily resisted.

"Well, it was a really small one," Chris lied, turning back with innocent wide eyes that Dean knew he used frequently to keep their father tied around his little finger.

"Uh-huh," Dean said skeptically, "I'll bet it was."

He turned to see how far back Ella was and suddenly a whole lot happened all at once.

The man who Dean had noticed before was now standing in front of Ella and Dean frowned uncomprehendingly as he noticed the man's fist was held against Ella's stomach. Ella bent over and grabbed the man by the shoulders, holding him tightly. Her face was ashen and her mouth was open in a silent scream.

Dean started to move forward but his legs felt sluggish, the world didn't slow down as it usually did, letting him slice through it in his own time. Instead there was a strange ache in his bones and the world was moving with him. He had barely taken three steps before the man pulled his hand away from Ella and Dean watched in horror as a long blade emerged from his sister's side.

He was running straight for the man but now he could see what was slowing him down, through the red of Ella's blood the sickly green glow of kryptonite emanated from the knife.

The man saw him coming and swung the hilt of the knife into his temple. Dean stumbled but managed to throw the man away from his sister. Dean wasn't a violent person by nature, "quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to anger" his grandma Martha had always quoted to his parents when she talked about him.

But the sight of his baby sister lying bleeding on the ground broke something inside him and he drew back a fist and let it slam into the man's face. Unfortunately the kryptonite was working fast on him, the man threw a punch back, into Dean's gut and his vision blackened in pain.

His Dad had tried to describe how kryptonite had felt once but he'd never described the mental part of it. Dean could hardly see, he was deaf as well, the small shard of the large island his father had once lifted into space was enough to cripple him completely. Even with his weakened hearing he could still hear Ella's gasps of pain and he struggled to force his limbs to respond. To get Ella help and protect Chris but he darkness was pulling him under.

The last thing he heard was his brother scream.

End Act I

--

Reviews are love!

Comments

Posted by: catyuy (catyuy)
Posted at: November 1st, 2009 02:14 pm (UTC)

Oh noes.

Posted by: lilyoftheval5 (lilyoftheval5)
Posted at: November 1st, 2009 09:43 pm (UTC)

Love the story.You really caught the realism of the situation.
Thank you for sharing !

Posted by: januaried (januaried)
Posted at: November 1st, 2009 10:58 pm (UTC)

Hmm, I don't think Perry would have NO urge whatsoever to publish it, but I liked that conversation.

Noooo! And the problems begin... :(

3 Read Comments