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Revelations- Chapter Five

June 29th, 2009 (09:55 am)
awake

I'm feeling: awake

A/N: And we’re back to the family again! Hope you like it!


--

The Kent family was closer than most families with adult children living away from home. Clark saw to that, having been raised an only child and losing his father early he’d always tried to keep his family from becoming strangers to each other.

From before even Jason could properly remember, every Sunday night was family dinner night. Even after Jason, and then Sophie and Dean moved out they’d always made a special effort to get the whole family together at least once a week, and it did help that travel time and plane tickets weren’t really an issue.

However, while the mood at the family dinners was often light and joking, filled with constant chatter as the kids caught up with each other and talked about their week, Clark couldn’t remember the house ever having been so quiet when more than three of the kids were home.

“Oh, wow,” Sophie said from where she lay on the couch. She’d repeated the statement every minute or so since she’d arrived and for the last five, since Lois had almost demolished the TV again, they had been the only words spoken in the apartment.

Lois was in the bedroom, speaking urgently on her cell phone to Perry but Clark wasn’t listening to the conversation. He’d told himself it was to protect her privacy but really he just didn’t want to know what was being said.

Jason was pacing back and forth in the kitchen, tossing his cell phone from hand to hand, it was turned off of course, all their phones were. They'd had to disconnect their landline as well because it wouldn't stop ringing. Lucy and Chris were sitting eerily still at the table and Ella was getting up and changing seats every three seconds without speaking a word to anyone.

Clark was trying not to listen to the sounds of the city but he was too distracted to properly cut out the sounds of the apartments around them. Several neighbors thought the whole thing was a hoax, at least two were on the phone talking to news stations and trying to get money and the Taylor family, who lived right across the hall and knew the Kents quite well were having a heated debate about whether or not they should come visit.

The heavy silence in the apartment was almost becoming unbearable when Lucy finally broke the silence. “CNN just said they’d give Mrs. Jones five grand if she went on their channel and told them about the time she baby sat me and Ella.”

“Mr. Taylor’s disconnected his phone because they got too many calls,” Sophie replied, sitting up.

“Those people two floor below want to call the police because the roads are blocked with too many reporters,” Jason told them, emerging from the kitchen and sitting down next to his sister on the couch.

“So that’s why no one was talking,” Lucy asked with a laugh, “We were all eavesdropping on the building?”

“I’ve been watching the TV in the Taylor’s house as well,” Sophie said, “Do you think Mom will mind if we turn ours back on?”

“She’s still talking to Uncle Perry,” Lucy told her with a familiar frown on her face as she stared through the walls to the master bedroom. “Turn it back on, I wanna see what they’re saying.”

“I doubt it’ll be anything new,” Jason said, idly flipping his cell phone open and closed.

Sophie picked up the remote and was about to switch on the TV when Ella interrupted. “I don’t want to see it,” she said, getting up from the chair in front on the TV and almost running down the hall into her room.

“Can we watch it now Ella’s gone?” Chris asked, looking at Clark.

The other three turned to look at him as well and it took Clark a moment to realize they wanted a reply. “Oh.” He shrugged, “sure, go ahead.”

“Awesome.” Lucy grinned as she bounded over and snatched the remote from Sophie and switched on the TV. Chris joined them on the sofa but Jason didn’t seem interested.

“Are you okay?” he asked quietly, crossing the room to stand with Clark.

“I’m fine,” he lied, turning away from the screen which was once again showing pictures of his six children for the entire world to see.

“Dad, you’re not fine,” Jason told him bluntly, pulling him away from the others into the small room just off the living room.

The room had been used for many things over the years, currently it was Lucy and Ella’s study, Chris’s play room and at the very moment, Jason‘s counseling room. “Jase, I’m fine,” Clark tried again but Jason wasn’t buying it.

“Dad, the one thing you always told me when I figured it out was that this secret is dangerous. You’ve made enemies over the years and now that they know you have a family they have far more ways to hurt you than kryptonite. Keeping this secret has always been a top priority for our whole family and especially you.”

Clark was silent for a moment before he closed his eyes and sighed. “You’re right,” he admitted, “and that’s exactly why I have to fine right now, because you lot just became target number one for anyone with a score to settle with Superman-”

“Dad, that’s not what I meant.”

Clark frowned. “What did you mean?”

“I mean, I saw that tape and you did what you had to do. Look, if people do come after us we can handle it as well as you can. What I’m saying is: don’t go beating yourself up about it, it‘s not your fault.”

“But-”

“Dad, listen,” Jason insisted, “Me, Soph and Dean have all your abilities and half your weaknesses, the twins are almost there, they can pretty much do everything except fly and Chris will get all that in a few years but for now, if anyone tries anything, he has five siblings to look after us and a parent no one in their right mind would dare cross. And you of course,” he added with a grin, trying to lighten Clark mood.

It worked slightly, Clark felt the corners of his mouth lift. It was true though, he could only imagine what Lois would do if someone tried to hurt one of her children. Although the ‘if’ was half the problem because- “Unless we figure this out, it’s not if it’s when,” Clark told him.

“That’s why I’m saying we can take care of ourselves,” Jason sighed in frustration, “I know there’s absolutely nothing I can say that will make you stop worrying about us, but you’re our father and that’s normal. But now I’m worried that you’re going to be too hard on yourself about this.”

“And why shouldn’t I be?!” Clark yelled, finally snapping. “Why shouldn’t I be blaming myself for tearing apart your lives and putting you all in danger? The reason I kept this secret was so that I could have some semblance of a normal life and to give you kids the same!” His voice was rising in volume and the voices from the living room had gone quite but Jason made no attempt to stop him as he continued.

“You have no idea what this is going to mean for you kids, do you? First people might think it’s great, they’ll come up to you in the streets and you won’t get a moments peace. The press will follow you everywhere and they’ll think you’re great for a while. But just wait a few days, maybe even weeks, but it’ll happen, people will get afraid, they won’t trust you because of this, because of me. Superman was an alien and he acted like that so people accepted him but what about now? They’ll call you half-breeds, aliens and monsters, how do you think you’re going to feel about me then? This is my fault, Jason. And I will be taking responsibility whether you want me to or not!”

Jason was silent for a while, he didn’t look surprised or hurt be Clark’s outburst, if anything he looked almost relieved that Clark had finally expressed his feelings over what had happened.

Which had probably been his intention the whole time, Clark realized with a sigh. “Are you happy now?” he asked, sitting down and resting his head in his hands, not wanting to look at his oldest son after he’d shouted at him. Clark could count on one hand the number of times he’d raised his voice at his children, he hardly ever needed too- they were good kids and if they did do something wrong it was usually Lois that would do the shouting.

His anger was fast disappearing only to be replaced with shame for yelling at his son when he was only trying to help. “I’m-“

“Don’t apologize,” Jason said before he could get the word out. “But don’t shut us out either. You’ve barely spoken since you got the twins and Chris from school. I think Chris thought he’d done something wrong when you would tell him where Dean was.”

Clark looked up in surprise. “I didn’t hear him asking,” he said, feeling even worse.

Before Jason could reply, Sophie opened the door and walked in. “Ever heard of knocking?” Jason asked her.

She ignored his question, instead asking a far more pressing one of her own, “Seriously, we’re getting worried out here- has anyone heard from Dean?”

Clark stood up, his heart rate quickening as his mind went through all the things that could’ve prevented Dean from joining them, especially now that the world was aware of just exactly who his father was.

“Calm down, Dad, Dean’s in Australia- they love you down there after your help with those wildfires two years ago,” Sophie told him as they went back into the living room, making Clark wonder how much his kids really could see of his true feelings.

“I can’t get through to him.” Lois had evidently finished with Perry and was now standing in the living room glaring at her cell phone. “The press won’t stop calling and I can’t even turn it off.”

“Take the battery out,” Lucy suggested, “that’s what I had to do.”

In the background Clark could see the muted TV showing a picture from their family vacation in Florida last year. He had no clue how they’d gotten it but he couldn’t help the stab of fear he felt as pictures his children were displayed in front of the entire world, painting targets on their backs for all his enemies to see.

The picture changed again to a clip of Jason on BreakOut as he said something to his co-host, Kate, and the two laughed before being doused in some sort of green slime for seemingly no reason other than the amusement of the audience.

Clark recognized it from last one he’d seen, on Friday, the world had been quiet that afternoon and seen as Chris was a huge fan of the show he’d settled down to spend some quality time with his youngest son. It was hard to believe that just three hours ago he was thinking of doing the same thing today.

“So how are we going to get a hold of him?” Ella had emerged from her room and joined the discussion of Dean’s absence. “Does someone need to go-”

“G’Day, was someone looking for me?” Dean landed on the balcony with a small thump and walked in, closing the door which had been waiting open for him.

“Oh thank God,” Lois sighed in relief, popping the battery out of her phone at the same time.

“DEAN!” Lucy and Ella yelled at the same time, rushing to hug their big brother.

When they let him go, Chris finally said what everyone wanted to ask, “G’Day?”

“Eh-” Dean shrugged “-it’s an Australian thing.”

“Probably a good thing you didn’t stay longer then,” Sophie muttered under her breath. “Oh, look,” she said louder, pointing to the TV.

A video taken from the street below, looking up at their balcony clearly showed Dean landing on the balcony and entering, although from the angle and quality it could have been anyone of the flight-capable in the family.

“Wow,” Dean muttered, shaking his head, “This is crazy, the streets are swarming with reporters- it’s the top story everywhere. Even in Oz. What happened?”

“You don’t know?” Lois asked, looking surprised. Clark was too, the video must have played at least two hundred times already on CNN alone.

But Dean just shook his head, “I heard on the radio at, like six in the morning over there. The whole camp was calling me ‘Superboy’ when Will told them you were my Dad. But I haven't seen the vid yet.”

“Why didn’t you come sooner then?” Clark asked, mentally calculating the time zones, “the trip can’t have taken more than a few minutes yet you stayed for an hour after you heard?”

Dean shrugged again. “A tree fell on the road nearby and took out a few power lines as well, the bushes were on fire when I arrived so I thought I’d give them a hand,” he said matter-of-factly, ignoring his family’s shocked looks, “they already knew who I was. Some news channel over there found out I was in the country and they’d been showing my yearbook photo every five minutes.”

“So you just used your powers in front of everyone,” Ella asked, her face a strange mix of horror and surprise.

“So?” Dean looked as confused as Clark felt about her reaction, “they already knew and Dad does it all the time, just ‘cause I didn’t pack a cape didn’t mean I couldn’t lend a hand. In fact, this is pretty cool that we don‘t have to do it in secret anymore.”

“Am I the only one not happy about this?” Ella yelled suddenly, making everyone jump before storming back to her room.

There was another of the many uncomfortable silences before Chris said in a small voice,” I don’t like being on TV either. It‘s scary when the bad people know what we look like.”

“Do you want to go to your room as well?” Lois asked quietly, tearing her eyes from the family pictures on the TV. “We’ll come get you when it’s time to eat.”

“Okay,” Chris seemed unusually subdued as he picked up his school bag and made his way down the hall. Clark couldn’t blame him, he was too young to understand just how much this was going to change his life but he knew something really bad was happening.

“So,” Jason sighed once they heard Chris’s door shut, “what are we going to do?”

“Clark and I were discussing it before you arrived,” Lois started, pulling Clark to sit on the sofa and indicating for Jason, Dean and Lucy to do the same so they were all facing each other.

The last thing Clark felt like doing at a time like this was sitting down, the kids seemed to feel the same, Jason was bouncing his leg up and down and Lucy was shifting in her seat, earning some annoyed looks from Sophie next to her.

“Here’s the deal,” Lois continued, “that video is out, and our secret went with it. There’s nothing we can do about that, there are so many versions and even if by some miracle someone finds fault with one of them then we‘ll still have to find a way to convince the hundreds of eyewitnesses they didn’t see anything.

“So we need to stop trying to think up ways to convince people they’re wrong and just find the best way to live with the world knowing who your father and us are-”

“But you always told us it was really important that the world didn’t know Superman has kids and that’s why Jason and Dean weren’t allowed to, like, superhero and stuff,” Lucy broke in, frowning at her parents.

“It was,” Clark agreed, feeling much more certain with Lois by his side, “but things change.”

“And this is one of them,” Lois continued for him, “we’ve talked to your uncle Perry and we’re going to go in tomorrow for an interview, we’ve decided that if this information is going public it may as well be correct.”

“Like the fact that we don’t know an Ellen Kent?” Lucy asked, rolling her eyes.

“Or a Sophia,” Dean agreed.

“Say what?” Sophie raised her eyebrows. “They got my name wrong?”

“Yeah, you’d think all they’d need to do is Google ‘self-important genius girl’,” Jason joked, earning a glare from his sister.

“Kids, this is serious,” Lois warned, drawing their attention back to her, “and, yes, things like that but also the big things like that fact that you are all our children.” Her face darkened at the words and Clark pitied whatever reporter who‘s had the guts to imply she‘d been unfaithful. “And, of course, how your father can be from another planet and still have a life here.

“Jason, Sophie and Dean, you three are welcome to join us if you want your say-”

“What about me?” Lucy asked angrily, “I want my say.”

“You have school tomorrow,” Clark reminded her.

“We have to go to school tomorrow?” Lucy stared at Lois and Clark as if they were insane. “Did you not see the media outside Vander’s? How are-”

“Lucy,” Lois cut her off and fixed her with a sharp look, “of course you will still be going to school tomorrow. We are going to continue as normally as possible, you will have to go back sometime and the sooner the better.”

Lucy was about to protest more but she was interrupted when Sophie gave an ear-splitting shriek and leapt up off the couch to turn up the TV.

“What on Earth?” Jason asked as they stared at the TV.

Another video of the family was playing but this one was far older. Clark recognized a younger version of himself on the tape, holding a baby Dean as he watched a six-year-old Jason and an eighteen month old Sophie playing on the floor.

“How in the hell did they get that?” Lois snarled, glaring as the camera zoomed in on her two oldest children.

Look, Mommy,” the Sophie on the screen was saying as she held up a piece of paper with scribbles on it.

It’s beautiful, sweetheart,” Lois’ voice came from behind the camera.

The video disappeared to reveal a reporter sitting across from a girl about Sophie’s age. Sophie apparently knew who she was, Clark couldn’t hear the reporter introducing her over his daughter’s yell of: “That little bitch! So that’s where she went, stupid backstabbing-”

“Soph, calm down.” Jason placed a hand on her shoulder, frowning at the screen. “That’s your new roommate isn’t it?”

“Not anymore,” Sophie spat, glaring at the girl on the TV who was smiling back at them with an arrogant smirk. “If she doesn’t move out after this, then I will. That’s Natalie,” she explained the others, “I thought she was just out or something but my room was all messy and she must have taken that when she saw,” she was so angry she could hardly get her words out.

“She went through your stuff so she had something to sell to the press,” Lois sighed, “I was afraid something like this would happen, I just didn’t think it would be this soon.”

Onscreen Natalie and the reporter were having a conversation and Clark realized where he’d last seen the video. It had been on the DVD he and Lois had made for Sophie’s twenty-first, Lois had found it amusing to embarrass her daughter in front of her friends and Clark had been dragged along.

“I can’t believe the whole country is going to see me in diapers,” Sophie groaned, burying her face in her hands.

“Whole country?” Jason asked, sounding amused, “I’d hate to break it to you baby sis but this news is going global, the whole world is going to see you in nappies.”

“Oh shut up,” Sophie glared at him, “I have some pictures of you I think Evelyn would kill to show at your wedding, don’t make me release them.”

“Wedding?” Clark asked, momentarily forgetting everything else as he stared at Jason, “You and Evelyn are getting married?”

“Oh my God!” Lucy jumped up and hugged him, “That’s so great!”

“Um, thanks.” Jason grinned, looking a bit embarrassed.

“Why didn’t you say anything?” Clark asked, stepping forward to pull him into a hug. “Didn’t you think we could use a bit of good news?” Jason stiffed slightly and a horrible thought occurred to him. He pulled back and looked closely at Jason. “She didn’t change her mind did she?” he asked, “because of this?”

“Oh my God,” Sophie gasped, “Jason, I’m so sorry I wouldn’t have said anything if-”

“No, no, it’s not that,” Jason assured them. “It’s just-” he rubbed the back of his neck nervously as he looked at Lois and Clark, “-she sort of already knew. I told her about a year ago.”

“Jason!” Lois exclaimed, “How could you? We told you not to tell anyone and that includes-”

“I’m in love with her Mom,” Jason yelled back, “I didn’t want us to go through the same things you and Dad went through when he told you. Besides,” he said, quieter, “I never told her who Dad was. I only told her what I could do, she figured the rest out herself. So technically I only ever told her something that was my secret to tell.”

“Jason you know very well-”

“I love her, Mom, I’m going to spend the rest of my life with her,” Jason said the words with absolute certainty in his voice, “she deserves to know who she’s marrying.”

“It’s not like she wouldn’t know now anyway, Lois,” Clark stepped between her and Jason, trying to diffuse the fight.

“Um, guys?” Dean drew their attention back to the TV. “I don’t think that’s the worst of our worries right now.”

Natalie had disappeared to be replaced with a picture Clark recognized well. The picture from the Daily Planet picnic, taken only a year before he had returned, it had sat on Lois‘ desk until he‘d accidentally broken it on the day he‘d returned. But someone must have had a copy because the smiling faces of Lois, Richard and Jason were staring back at them from the screen as the reporter explained the significance.

Jason Kent lived the first four and a half years of his life without knowing his real father.Mr. White declined comment on camera but has stated he was unaware that the boy he was raising was the son of Superman.

“Oh, that can’t be good,” Lois groaned.

“Do you think Uncle Richard’s going to be mad?” Lucy asked but she was shushed by Sophie.

“I don’t think this is the worst of it,” she told them, “you heard what she said, a lot of people are going to be under the impression their hero is a deadbeat dad.”

Of course, this does raise many questions. Did Mrs. Kent not believe her ex had a right to know who the real father of the boy he was raising was? And speaking of fatherhood, how good a father can a man like Superman, who has so many responsibilities, really be?

Exactly,the man agreed, And to find out that hes been leading a double life for the last three decades or so- those kids probably never see him at all. Not good parenting if you ask me.

“No one did,” Lucy practically snarled at the TV. The other children looked equally furious.

“He’s got no idea what he’s talking about, stupid son of a-”

“Sophie,” Lois warned her, mindful of Chris’ impressionable ears no matter where he was in the house. Although, Clark was certain she’d said worse within his hearing.

“Well he is, bloody idiot,” Dean agreed, surprising everyone. Dean was the very personification of a gentle giant, his 6’4” frame belied his slow-to-anger nature but right now he was staring at the television with a look that would make the reporter thank which ever gods he worshiped he wasn’t within Dean’s reach. “I’m coming with you tomorrow,” he told Clark, “someone needs to tell them how wrong they are.”

“Me too,” Jason agreed, “I think half of this is going to be about you leaving me to go to Krypton, no matter how much you tell them you didn‘t know. But, don’t listen to them Dad, we know you’re a great father.”

“Yeah, we wouldn’t trade you for anything,” Sophie agreed, “I’ll come too, we’ll show those idiots we’re a closer family than most, superhero Dad and all.”

“Thanks, kids.” Clark felt slightly better seeing his children so eager to jump to his defense. But the old feelings of guilt and disappointment for missing a good part of Jason’s life were still there and he was afraid of how much they’d come back to haunt him after his failures as a father we revealed for the whole world to see.

Dinner was incredibly tense. The older kids attempted to keep the mood light by discussing Jason’s engagement but the conversation just seemed awkward and forced and they eventually lapsed into silence again.

The world itself seemed almost to have ground to a halt at the news. Clark only realized it as he was getting ready for bed, not that he thought he’d get any sleep, but it was probably the first time in a while he’d gone such a long time without having to respond to an emergency. He was immensely glad it hadn’t happened, he still had no real idea how he was going to act when it happened, Clark was always so different from Superman but now that from today on everyone knew they were the same person-

“Who am I going to be tomorrow?” Clark asked out loud. “I’ve always played two different roles and now that the secrets out I’m not sure how to act.”

“Is that what you’re worried about?” Lois heard him as she came out of the bathroom, she walked across the room to stand in front of him but Clark couldn‘t bring himself to look at her. “Clark, Clark look at me,” she commanded him, reaching up and pulling his chin up so she could see his eyes. “Clark tomorrow you are going to wake up the same person you are now, the same person you have always been. You’re going to be Martha and Jonathan Kent’s son, you’re still going to be a father and you are still going to be my husband. You were Clark Kent yesterday, you‘re Clark Kent today, and you‘ll still be Clark Kent tomorrow,” she assured him.

Clark just sighed, “I wish I could be that certain.”

--

A/N: I said it last chapter but I’ll remind you all again. Next chapter will be in two weeks rather than one as I’m going to Korea tomorrow for eleven days- my granddad was a Korean War vet. and I was nominated by him to attend the UN Peace Camp in Seoul so it should be fun. Anyway, see you with a new chapter when I get back!

Comments

Posted by: Barbara (htbthomas)
Posted at: August 3rd, 2009 05:22 pm (UTC)
All-Star Superman

Just catching up on reviewing everything I've bookmarked!

I really adore the time and care you are taking with the story, really showing just how the family is adapting. ♥

Posted by: Grace (repmetsyrrah)
Posted at: August 5th, 2009 09:43 am (UTC)

Thanks! I was originally intending this to be a mid-length fic (like my last one, Poison) but about a day after I started planning I realized that wouldn't work, it needed to be an epic and that's how I'm doing it!

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