Drew is at the piano like always. At least, the boy plays well. I walk over to the piano and smile at Drew, not that he notices me. All he sees is the piano and all he hears is the music. If he was designed to be me, why does he play piano? I hated piano lessons. I wait until he takes a sip of water to ask him. "You couldn't learn to play like that from a download. When did you learn to play?"
"Dad had been teaching me piano for as long as I can remember. During the time he was blind, he yelled notes and chords at me. When I hit a wrong note, he grabbed my hands. Dr. Dinsmore taught me how to read music."
"You learned to read music before learned to read words." As I listen to Drew play piano, I'm amazed that anyone three years old can play like that. Then how many candles on his cake meant nothing. That party could have been last year or the year before. I need to find Dinsmore and question him.
The next day, I hire a private investigator to locate Dr. Dinsmore. I also have Bruce look for Peter Dinsmore. A few hours later, Bruce calls me with an address of a hotel with efficiency apartments. I call Clark. "We found Dinsmore. We need you to come along."
Drew, who was listening to my end of the conversation, says, "If he comes along, Chloe brings her camera."
"Fine," I say. "Bring your girlfriend. Let her learn the truth about you."
The four of us take the Porsche to a third rate motel in Iowa, outside Des Moines. I drove the first leg of the trip then Clark took over. I must have fallen asleep while Clark was driving because we are parking behind the motel with a row of identical cottages with peeling paint and rusty awnings, not a wholesome place to raise a child. According to Bruce's message, Dinsmore had adolescent girl with him. This is the place where the trail ends. A place that accepts cash for rooms, no credit history, no forms to fill out, just cash up front. With Dad dead and Helen in jail, Peter Dinsmore is implicated up to his ears.
"I drive part of the way home," says Drew.
"Does he drive as bad as the original?" asks Clark.
I frown at Clark. "Drew is slow and cautious. Another place we differ." It drives me crazy watching him drive. I just want to push on the accelerator. "Drew, we need to knock on the door. Dr. Dinsmore will recognize his handiwork."
Drew steps out of the car and kicks up the dust. The motel parking lot isn't even paved. We have traveled hundred of miles and all Drew does is stare at his feet. Chloe puts a hand on Drew's arm.
"I know new situations frighten you," says Chloe. "We're all here. It will be okay."
With Chloe's arm around his shoulders, Drew knocks on the door. I can see so much of me in him. Thinking of Helen gave me strength of character, what a fool I was. She is now in jail for her part in my father's schemes. Chloe isn't only here to support Drew. She is here for a story, always the reporter. At least, her motives are in plain view. She may be a journalist, but she is younger and easier to persuade than Karen Castle.
Peter Dinsmore opened the door. "I have nothing to say to you."
Before Dinsmore can close it, I walk over to the door and put my foot in the way. "Our father is dead, making you our only source of answers. I found you once I can find you, again. I'm sure the FBI will be very interested in your whereabouts."
Chloe has her foot in the door, too. "Dr. Dinsmore, we'll only take a few minutes of your time."
'Come in," says Dinsmore.
We sit on the two full-sized beds. The spreads are faded with pulls and puckers. The kitchen set looks like it dates back to the 60's. Emily is sitting on one of the two kitchen chairs. She looks about twelve, is close to adult height and has a figure Lana would envy.
Dr. Dinsmore is standing near his daughter and begins to pace. "What do you want?" he stammers.
"We need to know how old Drew is?" I explain. "We also need information on what was done to him, but his age is a start."
"Drew." Dinsmore swallows the saliva forming in his mouth. "Is that what you are call him?"
"What he calls himself," Clark says, holding my hand. We are seated very close on the edge of the bed. This cottage feels claustrophobic with six people in it. I balance my arm on Clark to keep from falling off the bed.
Sitting on the other bed with Chloe, Drew asks, "How old am I?"
"About four." Dinsmore continues to pace around the small kitchen and dining area. "You were the size of a seven or eight year old when we took you from the incubator. Your father wanted to grow you to adulthood quickly."
"Growing a child to adulthood in a few short years has given him emotional problems. I'm no expert, but Drew shows symptoms of autism," I explain. "It's unethical to experiment on humans."
"Drew doesn't have the chromosomal abnormalities Emily has. He's a perfect copy," says Dinsmore, like he is proud of his work.
"He is physically the person I would have been if I wasn't exposed to the meteorites. I will grant you that much," I say. "However, people aren't cats or polar bears. We need twelve to sixteen years to grow and mature."
"Mr. Wayne put us out of business. I suffer everyday with the knowledge of the harm I've done Emily and Drew. I don't need your lectures," said Dinsmore.
"How about a prison cell?" asks Chloe.
"We just want answers," I say.
"He did the cloning. Helen just stole tissue samples from the hospital and worked with the clones after the fact, and she's in the prison. He shouldn't be allowed to walk free." Chloe says.
"And will you raise Emily?" I ask.
Emily stares me down. "I can care for myself."
"We aren't here to arrest Dinsmore. That is the local police and FBI's problem," I explain.
Drew moved away from Chloe then sat on the free kitchen chair. "Chloe, you don't mind that I'm four."
"I would prefer you being sixteen, but I won't put you on the Wall of Weird," Chloe says. "None of this is your fault."
Peter Dinsmore finally sits down on the same bed as Chloe. "I don't think your father meant to harm you. He wanted to see if it could be done."
"Why?" Drew asks.
"Why do you climb a mountain? Because it is there." Dinsmore stands up, again. "With your success with the accelerated learning, Lionel was cloning Lillian when the laboratory was raided."
"Our mother was in the incubator," cries Drew.
"She wasn't our mother anymore than you are me," I say. "Why did Dad clone me? Not himself?"
"Because as much as an egoist your father was he knew the world couldn't survive two Lionel Luthors. Six years ago, you were seventeen," Dinsmore says. "Emily first. Then you."
"Dad always loved me," said Drew.
"It's easier to love a child for three years than the normal eighteen," I say. "A normal father would ask his son to forgive him, not make another copy."
"Arguing about the past won't change it," says Clark. "Why don't one of us grab some pizza and soda?"
"I'll go," says Emily. "Be back to a flash."
"No," says Clark.
"I was teasing," says Emily. "I have to wait for the pizzas to cook."
"Why didn't he clone Julian like you cloned Emily," I ask.
"We didn't have any genetic material," Dinsmore says. "Your father saved some hair from the meteor crash site. We needed to dig up your mother's grave for her material. We had stolen genetic material off of the first Emily's corpse. He said Julian was put in such a small box. He couldn't bare to disturb him."
I say, "He'll rob his wife's grave, but not his infant son's. It's nice to know my father drew the line somewhere."
"Drew and I will get pizza," says Chloe. "Show me you drive nothing like your brother."
I tossed Drew the keys. "Don't scratch my baby." I then watch my Porsche drive off before going back inside. "Drew needs sameness. We wake the same time every morning even on weekends. I need to help him dress most mornings. When we found him, he was in his pajamas and didn't know how many days had passed."
"He never ran away unlike my Emily," says Dinsmore.
"He has autism," I explain. "He'll sit somewhere for hours, besides the outside world frightens him."
"What is he like?" Emily asks.
"He plays piano for hours. He plays lots of classical music. He also composes original music, but he writes nothing down. He'll never be able to live alone."
"He's a Luthor. He'll have servants to remind him to get dressed," Dinsmore says.
"That isn't the point," I say. "I love him and am willing to care for him." I had showed him Sister, Sister on the Disney channel to show him that twins can be different. Information may have been downloaded in his head but that wasn't the same as real life experience.
"Is he happy?" Emily asks.
"He has fits of frustration," I say.
Clark looks at me. "That's a genetic trait."
"When you don't mess up his routine, he is happy," I say. "Clark, how is he getting along in school?"
"He keeps to himself," says Clark.
"The other kids don't bother him?" asks Emily.
"No," Clark says. "He's a quiet nerdy kid. He hangs out with Pete and me. We aren't exactly the in-crowd."
I move to the empty bed. Now that Drew and Chloe have left, it doesn't look proper for Clark and I to sit so close. The car drive took almost a day and all my muscles ache. Stretching out on the bed, I say, "There are times you can see he is only four years old."
"Like when he smiles when he sinks a basket." Clark smiles as if recalling Drew's smile.
Dinsmore says, "It's good that he has friends like you and Pete."
"Pete and I have known all along that Drew was somewhere between three and six," Clark explains. "Other people will expect him to act more mature."
In the car home, Chloe says, "I won't tell anyone that you aren't sixteen."
"The judge talked to our lawyer. The lawyer contacted a doctor willing to sign the birth certificate," I explain. "I was outside the office thinking my lawyer was burying me on charges of illegal cloning, fraud and experimenting on humans."
"The doctor sent the birth certificate to vital statistics while the judge wrote the bill for a name change," Drew continues. "Does stuff like this happen regularly?"
"Smallville comes second to Summerdale on the weirdness scale," Chloe says as if that explains it all.
"The short version of the story is, according to Kansas vital stats, Andrew Jared Luthor was born to Lionel and Lillian Luthor sixteen years ago," I explain.
"I have a real driver's license," Drew says. "Lex's came in a cereal box."
"Don't insult the driver," I warn.
"You have all this money," Chloe says. "And since Drew is only four years old, he's never been to an amusement park. The only proper thing to do is: Let's take Drew to Disney World."
"What about school?" I ask.
"If we wait until school vacation, it will be a mob scene," Chloe explains.
"You can tell your father that it is an educational trip. We'll see all the pavilions in Epcot and you can talk to people from all over the world," I suggest.
"I doubt my dad will see you as a proper chaperon," Chloe says.
"I've been protecting young ladies' virtues for over five years," I say.
"And you've done a poor job of it," Chloe teased.
"It wasn't my fault that Amanda shot her boyfriend. I took the blame for it so the police would cover it up," I say. "Not many friends would do that. I think your father will trust me to guard you for a week."
"I'll ask him," Chloe said. "If I can't go, you should still take Drew."
"Clark, do you want to go?" Drew asks.
"Epcot sounds fun," Clark says. "I'll get to meet people from many different countries."
I stop at the Disney store during my next trip to Metropolis and purchase twenty Disney DVDs. Drew couldn't go to Disney without knowing the proper trivia. People would really think my brother was deprived if he didn't know who Mickey Mouse is. I hand Drew the bag. "Your first lesson in useless trivia. We're going to Disney in February so you have plenty of time to see all of them."
"I'll pop us some popcorn and we'll watch Fantasia"
Drew looked through the titles. "Hunchback of Notre Dame. "
"Don't tell me that you read it in the original French?"
"For Disney, it is close, but it has a happy ending."
"At least, the music is pleasant," Drew says.
Somehow, I didn't think Drew would be impressed with the Spirit of Mickey, but I could be wrong. I bring out two bottles of water and a bowl of popcorn.
"They cut the piece short," Drew complains.
"Enjoy the animation," I say as I lightly punch him in the arm.
"Thanks, Lex, for everything that you do for me."
"What is a big brother for?"
"Dad would never take me to an amusement park or buy me cartoons."
"Then, we're lucky that he never cloned himself." I pretend to wipe sweat off my brow. "I'll call Clark to join us for Fantasia 2000."
"You'll have to pop more popcorn."
"Cook keeps the pantry stocked with junk food for him. I even have root beer in the refrigerator," I tell Drew. I dial the Kent farm in the hallway. I brought Clark a cell phone but he doesn't keep it on him. He may have superspeed, but apparently he doesn't have superhearing. "Clark, would you like to join Drew and I for movie night? I stocked up on Disney movies."
"I'll be there in ten," Clark says before hanging up.
I lie. "He's on his way."
"Dad told me all about him," Drew says. "Dad wanted me to know when he thought you were dead. I still don't forgive him for starving me. What do you weigh 130?"
"More than that." It was sad that Dad died thinking I was dead; then again, maybe it wasn't.
Clark arrives while Drew is glued to Beethoven's "Pastoral Symphony." Clark taps my shoulder. "He usually enjoys the popcorn more than the movie," whispers Clark.
"He loves music." I shrug my shoulders.
After Fantasia 2000 is over, Drew eats half a bowl of popcorn then goes to the parlor to play the piano. When Clark walks over to the parlor, I follow.
"He doesn't use music," Clark says.
"Once when he is learning a piece," I explain. "Once he has committed a piece to memory it is his."
Clark walks me back to the other room. "He's an Idiot Savant. You were right about the autistic behavior."
"Drew is lucky in a way. He lives in his own world. I expect to marry and raise children, but it looks like I'll be spending the rest of my life taking care of him unless I'm wrong about the accelerant and he dies of old age in a few years."
"We'll know soon enough."
"If that is the case, I need to make his short life as happy as possible. Could he be learning music fast because of the download?" That just crossed my mind. Did the download not only teach him material instantly but made it easy for him to learn new materials? I'm glad that my father was smart enough not to keep the instructions of the learning machine beside it. I hope the government never learns what they found in their seize. The only hands that are more dangerous that my late father's are the United States military's. The government would never figure out half of what the machines that they seized did. Perhaps, Bruce Wayne's friend destroyed the equipment in my father's lab during the arrest, but that was hoping for too much.
"Perhaps, it is the learning device. I learn languages fast. I've learned two dialects of Chinese by overhearing the family talk in the backroom of a restaurant."
"Both dialects at the same restaurant." I'm intrigued.
"Two different restaurants. I can learn romance languages faster. I look at enough words to get the syntax and the patterns just come to me," Clark said.
"And you didn't have this gift before the download?"
"I was good in school, but nothing like that."
"We don't' want the government to have a device that can do all that" I said. The concept of giving soldiers instant knowledge on any subject was too frightening to speculate.
"We should have your friend Mr. Wayne locate it so I can destroy it," Clark says as we walk to the bedroom.
"I'll speak to him about it." We're silent the rest of the walk to my bedroom. I undress slowly. Clark says that I'm beautiful and he sits on my bed watching me undress like I'm performing for an audience of one. I don't know if it is a compliment or if he finds all us fragile human beings beautiful. He tells me how he loves my slender bones and pale freckled skin. He smiles at me as I put my dirty clothes in the hamper.
"Drew was in his pajamas when we got there and didn't know how many days had passed." Clark undresses in a second. His clothes are folded on the only chair in the room and he is completed naked. His body is like a buffet table. I never know where to start when he is lying there in front of me.
"He can sit for hours," I say. "He has a distorted sense of time." That wasn't surprising since he didn't have a childhood and had the learning we got from books and teachers implanted into his head. I didn't want to think about what my father did to his son in the name of research. I wanted to enjoy the gorgeous alien lain out before me like a five-course dinner. Clark's hard, richly tanned body was waiting for me to touch it. I put my hand on his face before climbing into the bed beside him.
We end up going to Disney World without Clark or Chloe; Gabe wouldn't let Chloe go and Clark was afraid that Drew would want to go on the carousel a dozen times and sitting in Fantasyland or going on rides alone wasn't Clark's idea of fun.
We go to guest services to get a special pass of Drew. The woman, Susan from Toms River, NJ, says, "You're Lex Luthor. Your father died in prison last summer."
"I'm like to be famous for more than my father's wrongdoings," I say.
"How may I help you?"
"I found out I had an autistic brother after my dad died."
"You don't look like Tom Cruise." Susan smiles.
"I'm taller and better looking." I smile back at her. "If you read the article, you know my dad was cloning human beings. Drew is the result of one of his earlier experiments."
"That's worse than the Rainman story," says Susan.
"Can your computer access the Internet and bring up the story?"
"I suggest you use the Fast Pass to avoid lines." Susan sounded a bit too cheery like she was trying not to offend the crazy person. "Have a great day at Magic Kingdom."
I tap Drew's shoulder. "If we get separated from each other, we'll meet at City Hall after the electric parade," I explain. "Is there anywhere you want to go first?"
Susan let her counter. "According to the article, you have an eighteen year old brother Lucas, no mention of a twin."
I take Drew's hand. "Susan, thanks for the help. Fast Passes. Drew, you've been looking at that map for awhile where do you want to go first?"
"Buzz Lightyear," Drew says.
Clark was wrong about the carousel. Drew decided to go on "It's a Small World" a half dozen times. After a full day at the park, I'm happy to get back to the hotel. I choose Music All-Star Resort because they have a piano in the lobby. Drew needs to play several hours each night before going to bed.
I sit down on cushion to listen to my brother play. As he is playing Canon in D, a crowd starts to form around the piano. My brother's playing is mechanical and lacks emotionally depth. Every time he plays Canon in D it sounds the same like each time he signed my name it looked the same.
When he finishes, over twenty people clap.
"Can you play, 'It's a Small World'?" I ask. We went on the ride six times today and I never heard him play a song without reading the music once.
"Sure, Lex," Drew says. "I'll try." Drew plays slowly at first like he is thinking about each note. By the second time around, he is playing faster.
I clap. "You're amazing."
A girl asks, "Be Our Guest."
Drew closes his eyes a second then starts playing. He does it slowly at first like he is listening to a soundtrack in his head. However, he never hits a wrong note.
After "Be Our Guest" from Beauty and the Beast is completed, Drew starts playing "The Dance of the Hours." For some reason, I don't think Drew is imagining the float with dancing ostriches and elephants in the parade, but he could be. "Be Our Guest" was also played during the parade.
Tomorrow we'll go to Epcot and see topiary of elephants and hippopotamuses in tutus. What I do for my brother! "You know our room number. You can come up when you're tired." I yawn. "I need my sleep."
"You don't read music," said a woman.
"Only when learning a piece," said Drew. "I never tried to play a piece by remembering the notes, but 'It's a Small World' is an easy song."
"You can play any song you've heard?" she asks. I don't want Drew to answer because I don't want him labeled a freak, but I can't stop him.
"I suppose," he says.
"Chim-Chimmey," says the lady.
"My brother plays classical music," I interrupt. "He shouldn't waste his time on show tunes."
"Lex." Drew turns around to look at me. "You said you would help me learn useless trivia. It'll help me become a more rounded person.'
I walk over to the piano stool and pat his belly. "You're well-rounded enough."
Drew started playing "Chim-Chimmey."
I walk off. "Play your show tunes. I'm going to bed." Oh my God, I'm becoming our father.
In the morning, as I'm lying out clothes for Drew to wear (Drew can dress himself, but sometimes he gets confused about what to wear), I say, "I'm sorry about last night."
"You got us a room in this hotel because they have an open piano," he states, throwing my own words back at me.
"Most people that play by ear use a single finger or, at most, a single finger and some bass. I didn't want someone to know how special you are," I explain to my naive brother.
"You told Susan Smith I was your close."
"I did not." What I had said was Drew was one of Dad's experiments.
"You implied it." Drew gets out his pajamas and put on his tee shirt, shorts, white socks and Nikes.
After I dress, I put on the Mickey Mouse ears. "I can be silly, too." I put my room key and park ticket in my pocket on my Bermuda shorts. Drew says that I look older than my years.
Drew put his park ticket and wallet in his fanny pack. "Don't forget your wallet unless you want me to pay for food."
"You eat all of it," I tease, getting my wallet. "We don't want to be late for breakfast at the Crystal Palace with Winnie-the-Pooh."
I take lots of pictures of Drew with the characters. A hostess takes a picture of Drew and me hugging Pooh. I hope Dominic doesn't get a hold of that picture to blackmail me. If he does, I'll tell him I have more than one clone. Drew's smile makes even going on "It's a Small World" one last time worth it.
We go to Toontown to get our picture in Mickey Mouse. "I love the Sorcerer's Apprentice," Drew tells the photographer.
"Then you are lucky that he's in his sorcerer's costume."
I let Drew take a picture of Mickey without me. I'm not giving enemies more ammunition.
On the monorail to Epcot, we happen to be the only people in the car, Drew says, "Dad had no right to deprive me of a childhood."
"No, he didn't," I say. "Unfortunately, I can't change that."
"How do I get those experiences?" Drew asks.
"We'll have to create a history for you. Are you having fun?" I ask as the door open and we leave the monorail.
"I like the rides, but Florida is hot," Drew says.
"I'll get you a Popsicle."
"There is a lot to see."
"We have a week, but we can come back another time," I explain. I only schedule a week because I feared that he would bore of the rides and displays.
After we went on Spaceship Earth, we go to the Fountainview for coffee. The iced cappuccino is horrible, overpriced and makes me long for the Talon, but Drew likes his water ice. Drew doesn't realize that I haven't been to Walt Disney World before either, but it must be hard on him seeing thousands of children when he never had a childhood.
"I like that I can act four here," Drew says. "I don't have to be grown up."
"You don't have to go to school," I say, watching him drink the rest of my cappuccino.
"I like school. I hang out at the Torch with Chloe and Pete. The teachers let me be."
"What about Reynolds?"
"I ignore him."
"Good. Keep doing that."
"What happened between you and Reynolds?" Drew is more perceptive than I expected. Then Drew doesn't have true autism; he only has symptoms because of his deprived upbringing -- I can't say childhood because he didn't have one.
"He tried to get me kicked out of school because I was acting up after the death of our mother. My father had him dismissed from his position because he's an uncaring bastard."
"The pot calling the kettle black."
"What do you mean?" I lift an eyebrow. Drew has me intrigued.
"How could he deny his own blood a childhood to prove a point?" A comment like that reminds me of how so much more my father abused him than he abused either Lucas or I. Drew's straw makes sipping noises as he gets the last drops.
"What do you think about when you sit unmoving for hours?"
"I'm listening: The wind, the cars, people walking all make music. Sometimes, I listen to the music in my head. Dad used to leave me alone a lot."
"It is never too late for a happy childhood." I quote not knowing who said it first although I believe it is Gloria Steiman. I misunderstood many of Drew's behaviors. He isn't autistic since he can take another person's perceptive.
"You're enjoying this place, too."
"Yes, I am." I give in. "You can take requests as long as you pretend not to know a few songs."
"What is chemo?" Drew blushed.
"Why do you ask?"
"An older woman grabbed me by the arm and asked me if you were on it," Drew explains.
"What did you tell her?"
"None of her business. I knew it was a rude question."
"Chemo therapy is given to someone who is sick with cancer. In lots of cases, it causes the hair to fall out. When I was younger, I was asked that a lot," I explain. "Not many children are bald."
"The girl on the Small World ride," Drew says. I can almost see the wheels in head turning. She had smiled at me and removed her scarf. The little girl had wanted to show me that she was also bald. Her mother had put her scarf back on. "You don't usually wear goofy hats."
I put the ears on Drew's head. I forgot that I had put them on in the morning. "This is a Mickey hat. I can buy you a Goofy hat."
As we see the rest of Future World, I think about how happy I am that we're spending this time together. I'm really getting to know Drew. I was wrong about a lot of things regarding him. I didn't realize someone so young and so neglected could have so much introspection. He really is a great kid, and I'm not just saying that because he is my little brother.
While we are ordering dinner at the Garden Grill, the girl from the boat ride runs up to me. The mother grabs her arm.
"It's okay," I say.
"I'm sorry," the mother says.
"I lost my hair due to radiation when I was nine. I know what it is like to be a sick child. I spent most of my childhood in hospitals," I explain. It only felt like that. My asthma had me in and out of hospitals and then mom was always sick. "Join us for dinner. It's only my brother and I."
"I'm Rachel and this is Tamara," said the woman.
"I'm Lex." I would shake her hand but I need to hold my tray as the server puts the food I ordered on it.
"Drew." He smiled at Rachel. He didn't make eye contact with anyone a few months ago.
I pay for her food and ours. We then get a table together. Tamara sat next to me. "I have radiation, too."
"Your hair should grow back," I say. I didn't mean to frighten the girl.
"It's my treat." If I told her my last name she would know the overpriced resort food is nothing to me. This is a cheap vacation compared to a beach on a private island, a shark adventure or a holiday at your own ranch. Rachel didn't need to know that the two boys in tee shirts and ugly shorts were worth several billion.
"I hate being in the hospital," says the pre-teen girl.
"I didn't like it either," I confess. "The doctors are there to help you."
"Did the doctors help you?" she asks.
"Most of the time. Sometimes, they don't know what to do, but they still did their best to help me," I explain.
"That's a terrible thing to say to a sick child," says Rachel.
"I'm suppose to lie to her," I say. "Doctors are only human. The ugly truth is that sometimes a person's best isn't enough."
"How did you lose your hair?" Rachel asks again.
"Radiation due to a meteorite strike," I explain. "The doctors weren't really sure what happened. They ran a bunch of tests on me and then they sent me home."
"I have cancer," said Tamara.
"I had asthma," I say.
"I took Tamara here to get away from doctors," Rachel said.
"We can talk about something else," I suggest. "What's your favorite ride?"
"Small World," says Tamara.
"That's Drew's favorite, too," I say.
"Is not." Drew sticks his tongue out.
"What did you tell Chloe about using it?" I tease.
"I'll use it on Chloe when we get home," Drew suggests.
"You better not," I tease back. "Her father works for me."
"He doesn't work for me, so your point is?" Then Draw says to Rachel, "Almost everyone in town works for my brother."
"Lex, how old are you? Twenty-five?"
"Twenty-three," I say.
"And everyone in town works for you and I'm worrying about a twenty dollar meal," Rachel says.
"I told you not to worry about it," I reply.
"You're a good big brother taking Drew to Disney World," Rachel says.
"Our father died a few months ago and I'm all he has. We care for each other," I say. "Our mother died when Drew was only six. I started boarding school around that time and after boarding school I was off to college."
"We didn't get to see each other very much," Drew says. "Our father traveled and kept me with him. I spent my life in hotel rooms with private tutors." Drew is getting the idea of creating a history. Emily probably has spent most of her life that way and that all he knows. Dad probably never even bothered to get him tutors since he had that found the machine in the cave to teach Drew instantly.
"Not many brothers would stop everything for little brother," Rachel says.
"Our father died and my wife, soon to be ex-wife, is in prison. Drew is all I have." I did have the shit factory and shares in LuthorCorp but that isn't a life. Our dad lived for his business. I didn't want to end up like him. "With our father's businesses to handle, who has time for a life?"
"You are still a good brother," says Rachel.
"So, Drew, what is your favorite ride?" I ask.
"Mad Hatter's Tea Party," Drew says.
"You like 'It's a Small World' best but you just don't want Rachel to think you're a sissy," I tease.
"So what is your favorite ride?" Drew askes.
"I like Body Wars and Spaceship Earth. I hit more bad guys that you on Buzz Lightyear and 3-D effects on 'Honey, I've Shrunk the Audience' were pretty good," I say. I've should have gone to Disney World years before.
"Dad never took us to an amusement park. He didn't believe in trivial entertainment," Drew says.
"I'm going to take Drew snorkeling next," I say. I liked going on vacation with Drew and looked forward to doing it again. Perhaps, Clark would join us for snorkeling.
"I want to go back to school," Drew says.
"During spring break," I suggest. I need to keep an eye on Dominic and Lucas. With a combined effort, they could outvote me.
Rachel asks, "So what does your company do?"
"Make agricultural products mostly. The factory of my corporation owns makes organic fertilizer. I also have a partnership with the local coffee shop that isn't incorporated."
"And your father's company?" Rachel adds.
"I have shares but I'm not majority shareholder so I have to butt heads to get anything done," I say.
"Dad was majority shareholder but he split things three ways," Drew says.
"Tamara, would you like to join us for the fireworks," I ask.
"Lex." Rachel makes eye contact with me. "I really don't have time in my life for a long distance relationship."
I nearly choke on my food before washing it down with my coffee. "I'm flattered, but I'm romantically involved."
"Clark couldn't come because he has school," Drew says.
I muff Drew's auburn hair. The Florida sun has given him beautiful strawberry blond highlights. "He didn't want to get stuck babysitting you."
"Is he in college?" Tamara asks.
"High school," Drew says, like he enjoys embarrassing me.
"He'll be eighteen in two months," I say, like I was really concerned that this woman thought. "Drew, I thought you like Clark."
"He's cool," Drew says.
"He taught you to play basketball," I say. "Drew is a professional caliber pianist. Before Dad died, he never had a life outside piano lessons."
"You dad doesn't sound like much fun," Tamara says.
I toss the trash out. "He was evil."
Rachel puts a hand on my shoulder. "You shouldn't say that about your late father."
I dump the rest of the trash. "People turned to the business section of the paper just to draw horns on his head."
"Draw in the horns?" Drew questioned. "The photographer had them digitally removed."
"He's dead," says Rachel. "He raised two special needs children on his own."
"Lady, you didn't know the man," I explain. "When you go through a dead relative's effects, you learn things that you wish you didn't. He was arrested for illegal experiments on humans and tried to implicate me."
"What kind of experiments?" Rachel looked disgusted.
"Kids that involve his own children," I say in a polite voice. I walk away. He gave me everything and Lucas nothing to see what would happen when we got together and what he did to Drew was beyond evil.
Drew puts hand on my shoulder. "Let's go back to Innovations."
"We didn't see the International Showcase," I say.
"We didn't get to the Epcot center until after two o'clock."
"I thought you couldn't tell time unless it was 3/4, 4/4, or 6/8."
"You're so funny that I forgot to laugh." Drew gives me a dirty look. "We have reservations for the Mexican restaurant tomorrow."
"You have everything planned."
We got outside. The setting sun has made the park cooler. Rachel has lost interest in me because I have a boyfriend. We probably wouldn't see them during the fireworks. The accelerant left Drew's body. If it didn't, he would look older than I, and he still looks about seventeen. I'm not as sure as I once was that Drew will need to be cared for all his life. He could recover from the damage our father did to him. I believe in destiny less than I once did.
Also, why not join
Level Three, the Smallville all-fic list?