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Grace [userpic]

Revelations- Chapter Four

June 22nd, 2009 (09:44 pm)
cheerful

I'm feeling: cheerful

A/N: As I was writing this I thought I should clear up something- in the history of this canon Clark went to the Arctic and built his fortress shortly after his father died as in STM but he only stayed there in seclusion for a few months before going to Metropolis. He still learnt all the stuff but not closed away for twelve years like it shows in the movie- it’s not a huge thing in the fic, in fact it hardly impacts at all but I just wanted to clear it up before someone does get confused.


--

Richard William White, Tokyo, Japan

The rush of Tokyo was very different to the rush of Metropolis but in the fifteen years he’d lived there, Richard White had only twice missed the Big Apricot. The first time had been the second day at his then-new workplace when he’d realized just how different the language and culture were and the second had been shortly after the birth of his son, Eric, when he’d remembered the first time he’d become a father, even if that time it wasn‘t in blood.

His musings were interrupted by the buzzing of his cell phone and he had to shuffle around slightly as he tried to get it out of his pocket while keeping his feet and not annoying the many other passengers who were crushed into the train in.

He hadn’t expected to have to fight for standing room at 3am in the morning but he supposed if he’d only just left work it was possible that the same applied to everyone else.

The caller ID read Tomoko and he frowned, wondering why his wife was calling at this hour. “Hello, you’re awake late,” he said by way of a greeting, the language that had baffled him a decade and a half ago rolling off his tongue as easy as breathing.

“Erik had a nightmare and wanted to know why you weren’t here, I thought hearing your voice might help him sleep.”

“Alright, hand him over,” Richard sighed, he hated it when his son had nightmares, sometimes they were so bad it made him upset for weeks. Erik never explained them to anyone but his therapist who assured the worried parent he would outgrow them eventually.

One thing Erik always had to do after them was talk to his father, Richard had an idea that maybe Erik had abandonment issues but he’d never asked, worried he could upset him. “Dad?” the small voice of the ten year old came over the phone.

“Hey, kid, heard you had a bad dream.” He spoke softly and a little slower than usual, switching back to English after a long day at work sometimes made his brain a bit sluggish.

“Yeah,” Erik replied in the same language, “Are you coming home soon?”

“I’ll be there in about half an hour, there were some problems at work and I had to stay and sort them out,” he explained briefly, not wanting to bore the boy with the inner workings of running a news station.

“Good,” Erik said, “I want to stay up until you get here.”

“You have school tomorrow,” Richard reminded him.

“I wanna see you,” Erik said stubbornly, sounding a lot like his mother and making Richard smile.

“Okay, but try and get some rest before I arrive so you don’t fall asleep at school tomorrow, okay?”

“Okay,” Erik agreed.

“Good, now hand me back to your mother.”

“When do you think you’ll get back?” Tomoko asked as soon as she was back.

“Oh, I’m only about ten minutes away,” Richard assured her, “the train’s rather crowded for this time but I’ll definitely be there within twenty minutes.”

“Okay, see you then.”

Richard flipped the phone closed and shoved it back in his pocket just as the train pulled into his stop. He muttered his apologies as he squeezed through the crowd, fighting to get off before the automated doors closed. He only just made it, yanking his briefcase out of danger in the nick of time.

The quietness of the station, although far more appropriate for the time than the crowded train, was rather sudden and disorienting, leaving him with a slight ringing in his ears as he hurried up the stairs, eager to get home.

He’d just exited through the barriers onto the street as his cell phone rang again. Caller Unknown flashed on the screen and he frowned as he flipped it open. “Hello?”

“Hello, Richard White?” a voice asked in English with a distinctly American accent.

“Yes,” Richard replied, switching to the same language, “may I ask who I’m talking-”

“Mr. White, it’s Joanne Green from CNN here, I was wondering if you had any comment to make about Clark Kent- on the record of course.”

“Um…” the questions, as well as the origin and identity of the caller shocked him so much he literally stopped mid-step. “Pardon?” he asked, trying to understand what was going on. “I’m afraid I’m not quite sure-”

“You were engaged to Lois Lane for two years.”

Richard wasn’t sure weather that was a question or not but he answered anyway. “Yes, but that was a long time ago. I’m sorry, has something happened to Clark?” he asked, his mind catching up and filling with worry about his friend. He couldn’t remember the last time they’d actually spoken but despite them being in love with the same woman he and Clark had managed to forge a tentative friendship before he’d left for Japan. And if something had happened to Clark, Richard knew Jason would be devastated and he still cared about his son-turned-nephew.

“And is it true that you were Jason Kent’s father for the first five years of his life? How do you feel about Mr. Kent taking that away from you?”

“What?“ He asked, anger starting to make itself known in his chest. “Look, is something going one here?” Richard asked, “I don’t’ know why you’re calling me in Japan where it is in fact three in the morning but Clark Kent is a good man and-”

“Were you also aware he was Superman?” Ms Green interrupted again.

“I’m sorry?” Richard said, laughing. He turned around on the spot, looking up and down the street, trying to see if he was actually having this conversation. “You think Clark Kent is Superman? Have you meet him?” he asked, recalling the clumsy geek who tripped over everything in his path.

“So you were not aware of this?”

“Where did you say you were from again? Is this some sort of prank?” Richard asked, looking around the empty street again and wondering if he should pinch himself.

“Mr. White, how do you feel about-”

Richard hung up and stared at the cell phone for a few moments wondering what had just happened. He didn’t have long however as it soon started to buzz again.

“Hello?” he asked, flipping it open as the screen displayed another Unknown Number.

Another American voice answered. “Hello Mr. White this is Greg Hollings from the Metro Times, I’m wondering if you could answer a few questions-”

“What the hell is going on here!?” Richard asked angrily. “You’re the second person to-”

“What was you relationship with Lois Lane and her husband Clark Kent?” the man interrupted him. “And were you aware that he was also Superman?”

Richard hung up immediately and turned off his phone. He turned suddenly and took of running down the street, desperate to get home and find out what was going on. It had to be some sort of prank, there was no way Clark Kent and Superman were the same person. He would have known, besides, Superman didn’t even wear a mask- how could the man have a secret identity?

“Mr. White?” The night receptionist looked surprised as he burst through the door, probably wondering why a grown man was running around like he was being chased by the dogs of hell themselves.

Richard ignored her and ran straight to the muted TV behind her, turning it up and switching it to CNN, recalling the claim of the first caller to be from there. The images that appeared on screen actually made him pinch himself to check he wasn’t dreaming.

“Mr. White?” the receptionist asked in concern, “Are you okay?”

“He’s Superman…” Richard could hardly believe his own words but the evidence was right there on the screen in front of him. “She left me for Superman,” he said, hoping the receptionist didn’t speak English.

“Oh, it’s Superman!” the receptionist exclaimed, “oh, look, he looks exactly like that other man,” she pointed out as pictures of Clark and Superman appeared side-by-side.

“She left me for Superman,” Richard repeated. “Jason is Superman’s son, and she never told me.”

His shock was slowly dissipating only be rapidly replaced by a new emotion. Anger.

--

Lana Rachel Lang Ross, Smallville High, Smallville

The bell to signal the end of lunch shrilled through the halls of the small school. Out her window, Lana could see the students slowly start to gather their things and move back inside. On the far side of the field she spied her eldest son, Clark, as he laughed and joked with his friends.

It seemed like just yesterday she, Pete and the other Clark were doing the same thing. Of course back then she had no idea she’d eventually marry Pete, her and Clark had seemed destined to be an item from the start until Clark’s father had died. Confused by their friend’s sudden disappearance shortly after Lana and Pete had grown closer and eventually it had been impossible to deny how they felt.

When Clark had returned only a year later, now living in Metropolis, to find his two childhood friends planning their wedding he’d been genuinely happy for them and even served as the best man. Although Clark’s reaction disappointed several of the Smallville residents who’s been hoping for some drama in the otherwise quiet town, Lana and Pete had been so touched by his blessing that when their first child, a dark-haired, blue-eyed boy had been born there’d hardly been any discussion on his name.

“Mrs. Ross?” a tall blonde girl rushed into the room, looking hurried and out of breath.

“Kelly?” Lana looked down at her timetable on the desk, “I don’t have you until next period, do I?”

“No, ma’am,” Kelly shook her head, “but I was just in the staff room delivering a message for Mr. Link when I saw the TV and-” she leaned against a desk, gasping for breath, “-and you have to come quick. I was talking to Clark Ross and he said you’d been good friend’s with the journalist guy Clark Kent so I think you should see this.”

“See what?” Lana asked, following Kelly out the door and towards the staff room over the other side of the school. “Has something happened to Clark? He‘s not hurt is he?”

“Hey, Mom, what’s going on?” Lana turned to see her son, the young Clark, running towards her, “Some of the kids were saying something weird was going on with Uncle Clark and it’s all over the news or something.”

“He’s not hurt is he?” Lana asked again.

“He’s not hurt,” Kelly assured them, “but you have to see this to believe it.”

When the reached the staff room, Lana was surprised to see that the TV had been dragged out and was now in the hall, surrounded by a curious crowd of teachers and students that was growing by the second.

Lana managed to make her way to the front and felt her jaw drop as she heard the reporter speaking over the video playing on the screen.

- shocking revelation that the mild-mannered reporter Clark Kent is actually Superman. Reports and videos have been pouring in form those on the scene. Verification is turning into a mere formality given the hundreds of eye witnesses.”

“Superman grew up here?” one of the students behind her asked. “That’s so cool!”

“He can’t have grown up here you idiot,” someone else replied, “he’s from Krypton.”

“He was adopted.” Lana heard the voice of her son speaking just behind her. “So he was probably born there or something.”

“Alright, everyone to class!” the principal yelled, finally turning off the TV, “this is no excuse for you to stop learning, off you go!”

No one looked much like they wanted to leave and most of the staff looked to shocked to be competent enough to teach a class right now. Lana herself wasn’t surprised that Clark was Superman- she’d grown up with him and known exactly who Metropolis’ red-caped hero was the moment he’d appeared.

The fact that the whole world now seemed to know the same thing worried her though. Clark never liked the spotlight, he used to complain to his friends that he’d give anything to be able to do the work he did and still remain in the background, unaccredited.

“Can you believe Superman used to go to school here?” one of the other teachers asked, Lana was surprised they didn’t look more shocked about the fact that Superman had a secret identity in the first place. But then again, she reasoned, they didn’t know Superman as well as Metropolis.

“I think that’s awesome,” one of the other staff members replied, “I used to know Mrs. Kent , you’d really believe she could raise a son like Superman, nicest lady you’d ever meet.”

“Hey, Lana, didn’t you used to go out with him?”

“No way you dated Superman?” One of the student that was still loitering in the hall asked. “Hey, Vikki, Mrs. Ross dated Superman,” he called, running off to apparently spread the word.

“Great,” Lana rolled her eyes. “Now I’m the woman who used to date Superman.”

“The novelty will wear off soon enough,” the principal assured her, “now don’t you all have classes to teach.”

What was left of the crowd slowly started to dissolve leaving Lana to wonder why she’d never noticed how naive the small town could be.

--

James Bartholomew Olsen, The Daily Planet, Metropolis

“Chief, I thought you’d retired!” The shout came from James Olsen, award winning photographer for the Daily Planet, and caused the whole bullpen to look up in amusement as the recently ‘retired’ Perry White limped out of the elevator.

“Of course I did, Olsen,” the man replied, tapping his cane on the back of his chair, “This is purely a social visit just to see how things are getting on without me.”

“You’re bored, aren’t you?” Jimmy asked, unable to keep the mirth out of his voice.

“It’s driving me crazy,” he admitted, sitting down on the chair next to Jimmy. The owner of the chair had just been returning from the kitchen but turned around and found something else to do once she saw who it was. “I know it’s been a while since I was on the beat, with this stupid thing stopping me.” He jabbed his cane at his leg, referring to a gunshot wound he’d acquired almost fifteen years ago. It had left him with a permanent limp although he hadn’t had the need for a cane until recently.

“Well, Lois probably would’ve done worse if you hadn’t been injured,” Jimmy reminded him.

“Hey, her kids were fine weren’t they? Great Cesar’s ghost! We’re going to have this conversation until I’m in my grave aren’t we?” he asked and Jimmy laughed.

Everyone knew Perry considered the Kent kids his own grandchildren and the fact that he’d taken a bullet protecting Sophie and Dean when they were younger was only more proof. But it still got bought up more than once a week in the bullpen, more often than not as a cautionary tale to the interns, especially the younger men once Lucy and Ella reached their teens. Only the older ones could get away with mentioning it within the Chief’s hearing though.

“Hey, Chief,” Gil greeted him as he walked past the desk, “back already? It’s only been a week or so since the last retirement, hasn’t it?”

“We haven’t even found a replacement yet,” Polly called out from her spot in lifestyle.

“Excellent.” Perry grinned, “I would have hated to have to fire someone.”

Jimmy rolled his eyes, “You know to do that you’d actually still have to work here and-“

“Excuse me, Mr. Olsen?”

Jimmy turned to see a nervous looking intern holding a pile of letters. “What’s up?” he asked, smiling and trying to put the boy at ease.

“Er, the Pulitzer people called again, they want to-“

“Tell them I’ll get back to them,” Jimmy interrupted. “Anything important in there?”

“Er, well, you agent wants to organize another book signing at the-“

“Another one?” Jimmy sighed. He was almost beginning to regret letting Clark talk him into the book thing. After his series on the ‘Real Heroes of Metropolis’ had won him his first Pulitzer Clark had pushed his friend into compiling them into a book. It contained photos of firemen, police and ambulances doing their jobs, notably missing the man in the bright red cape- although few knew that he was to one who’d inspired it after his complaints to his best friend that Superman was hardly a hero because he never really risked his life everyday like those brave men and women.

Of course, Jimmy disagreed, in his opinion marrying Lois Lane was probably the bravest thing Superman had ever done.

“Mr. Olsen?” the intern asked again, snapping Jimmy out of his thoughts.

“Yeah, sure, book signing- I’ll call her back too. Anything else?”

“Your wife also called-“

“See, that’s what I meant by important,” Jimmy told him, sitting up, “you should have opened with that. Is she still on?”

“Line one,” the intern said, “and your mail-”

“Leave it on the desk,” Jimmy said, “and thanks.” He smiled again and was pleased to see the intern relaxing a bit. He turned back, “Chief, I’m going to-” but Perry had already disappeared, probably back to his office to call the higher-ups and inform them he was back- Jimmy doubted they’d even formally ended his employment.

“Hey, James here,“ he said, picking up the phone.

“You need to have a talk with your daughter about what is appropriate clothing for school- you should have seen what she wanted to wear today,” his wife, Sarah, barely stopped for breath as she continued to inform him of the misdeeds of their twelve year old. “And her math teacher sent us another note, did you know she handed in her last assignment two days late, James you really need to talk to her!”

“Okay, okay, clam down.” Jimmy sighed and massaged his temples. Their daughter, Alice, was a month from turning thirteen yet she seemed to have started her teenage rebellion early. “We’ll talk to her this afternoon about her clothes and school-work, we’ll see if we can come to a compromise. I think she’s just pushing to see how far she can go and we need to set boundaries.”

There was a rush of static on the other end as Sarah sighed, “Do you think I should have put this exhibit off for a few more months, maybe she’s feeling neglected. You know I can still put it off, I’ll just call-”

“No, no, no,” Jimmy interrupted her. “You can’t put it off now, tonight’s opening night! And I know for a fact Alice is really looking forward to it,” he told her. He could hear sounds in the background of people talking, the echoes telling him they were in a large room. “Are you at the gallery now?”

“Yes, I just wanted to make sure everything’s perfect.”

Jimmy smiled. “It will be, don’t worry. Lois and Clark called this morning, they can both make it with the twins and Chris as well.”

“Oh, great, more people who’s opinion I actually care about,” Sarah moaned on the other end.

“Honey, you’ll be fine,” Jimmy told her, “just relax, you’re a fantastic artist- the gallery wouldn’t be showing your work if it weren’t true.”

“You’re right I am good.”

“And modest,” Jimmy laughed. “And don’t stress about Alice either, she’s a kid, are you telling me you never rebelled against your parents.”

“You’re right,” Sarah repeated, “okay, I gotta go now, just…” she trailed off nervously.

“You’ll be fine, nothing‘s going to happen,” Jimmy assured her, “I love you.”

“Love you, too,” Sarah replied before hanging up, no doubt to go triple-check everything.

It was only when he hung up that Jimmy noticed the bullpen had gone weirdly quiet. And the few people still making noise were shushed by those nearby as everyone stood staring at the TV.

Jimmy couldn’t make out the image on the screen between the people but he heard a few startled shouts and then the whispering started.

There’s no way, that’s gotta be fake-”

They don’t even look the same!”

I wonder if Lois knows, explains why she gets all the interviews-”

I wonder if the kids are his, he’s an alien and she’s human-”

The whispering and muttering was growing louder by the second. Jimmy still wasn’t sure what was going on until he stood on his chair and finally got a good look at one of the TV screens. “Holy shit!” he exclaimed, just a bit louder than he intended.

On the screen he saw his best friend’s secret identity blown to pieces by a crazed lunatic with a rocket launcher at least three times from three different viewpoints until the scene really truly sunk in.

“Holy shit,” he repeated, quieter this time. Before anyone else could rip their eyes away from the screen he jumped off his chair and pushed through the dazed crowd towards the Editor in Chief’s office.

“Chief,” he cried, bursting in without bothering to knock. “Have you seen-”

“Clark Kent blowing his long-kept secret to high hell in a few seconds, yes I saw,” Perry waved at the TV screen where a shell-shocked reporter was staring at the camera with her jaw hanging open in a very unprofessional way.

“Well, what are we going to do?” Jimmy asked, trying to remember to keep breathing. “Wait- you know?” The simple revelation stopped him dead in his tracks. Clark had informed him of his double life when he asked Jimmy to serve as his best man but he was almost certain Perry had never been let in on the secret.

“Yes, I know, but don’t tell them, they don’t know I know. Not that it matters now,” Perry muttered, waving at the screen.

“What are we going to do though?” Jimmy asked as he looked out into the bullpen where all hell appeared to have broken loose.

Some people looked angry, some looked confused and others looked like they expected Clark to jump out of the closet and yell ‘gotcha!’ any second now. Jimmy opened the glass door of Perry’s office just a crack and listened for a moment.

“There’s no way that’s real,” Polly was telling one of the other lifestyle girls, “I mean have you seen Clark Kent?”

“That son of a bitch was probably laughing his head off the whole time!” Gil Truman was shouting angrily. “A pair of glasses! Bet he thought it was a great laugh, having us on like that!”

Jimmy let the door swing shut as he turned back to the Chief. “What are we going to do?” he asked again.

Perry pulled out a pad and pen and shoved them across the table towards Jimmy. “We’re reporters, Olsen,” he snapped, “what do you think we’re going to do? We’re going to report on it.”

--

A/N: And that's the last of the reactions chapters! (The story about how Perry knows can be read in my fic, I Can Explain) Next week we're full throttle into the main story, and I, for one, can’t wait. I should also warn you that while the next chap should be on schedule but ch 6 may be a longer wait as I'm going to Korea for a week but after that I expect to be back on track with my Monday updates.

Comments

Posted by: Barbara (htbthomas)
Posted at: June 22nd, 2009 11:47 pm (UTC)
Awkward Jimmy

Those were three great reactions! I particularly liked the one with Jimmy and Perry. :)

Posted by: Grace (repmetsyrrah)
Posted at: June 28th, 2009 02:05 am (UTC)
SR; Jimmy; Text Jimmy

Thanks, yeah that one's probably my favourite too.

2 Read Comments