There were others, of course. Dozens of others.
He knew their names. He knew everything about them.
At this point, their names weren't really important. Just their classification.
Each of them had been affected by Kryptonite.
Each of them had possessed an enhanced power.
Like Clark, but not like Clark.
For where Clark's powers were natural, theirs had been nothing more than an augmentation of something they were doing or thinking at the moment they had been exposed.
Yet their...enhancements...almost always lead to psychosis.
Except for Kyle Tippet.
Somehow he had remained sane.
He had, however, spent nearly fifteen years living as a hermit in order to maintain his sanity.
How had Kyle escaped his fate?
It was the one question that had obsessed him for nearly ten years and an answer that always eluded him.
He had spent millions in research.
All to no avail.
He could feel the onset of his madness teasing the edges of his brain and wondered if this was what the beginning stages of Alzheimer's felt like; knowing that you were falling into oblivion, but not being able to do anything to stop it.
And God, he wanted to stop it.
He had a destiny.
A destiny with Clark.
They were going to be the stuff of legends.
And yet, no matter what he did or how hard he tried, he could feel himself losing the battle to maintain his sanity.
He wondered briefly if Lionel had sped up the process by committing him to Bella Reve. Would he have been able to hold on a bit longer if his mental barriers hadn't been breached?
Living with could of beens, should of beens was pointless.
He looked around his office. He supposed he should find some comfort in the fact that he wouldn't be losing the things around him.
He closed his eyes to ease their ache.
How ironic that Jonathan Kent was right about him after all?
His hysterical laugh frightened him and he struggled to control it.
He had thought about suicide.
But he knew he couldn't go through with it.
Hell, at this point, he wasn't even sure he could die.
How many times had he already cheated death?
No, he was too much of a Luthor to take his own life. Damn his heritage anyway.
He looked out at the sun setting on the horizon, losing himself momentarily in the golden oranges and light purples. Would he still be able to appreciate sunsets, without the knowledge that Clark would be coming home soon?
He took some comfort in the fact that Clark seemed to have finally reached physical maturity for his species. He hadn't had a new ability appear since he'd mastered his flying two years ago.
He thought, perhaps, he would miss that the most.
His body entwined with Clark's as they played in the clouds.
Clark's lips exploring his neck while he--
Reminiscing wasn't helping anything.
With shaky hands he brought the snifter to his lips and sipped the scotch as slowly as he could, reveling in the pain as it burned a path to his stomach.
He took some consolation in the fact that all the preparations had already been made.
A small account had been set up so that Clark's family would never lose the farm.
So that he couldn't take the farm from them.
He had made anonymous arrangements with attorneys outside of the firm he normally used to leave a cd for Clark, detailing all his holdings, properties, research and theories. It wasn't much, but hopefully it would give Clark a foot up, at least in the beginning.
They also had a video for him.
Luthors were always known for their loquaciousness.
He didn't want Clark to blame himself.
He wanted Clark to know everything he knew with regard to his research. Maybe, just maybe, Clark could find a cure. If not for him, then for the other meteor mutants who still had a habit of popping up from time to time. Maybe he could save Lana, if and when her time ever came.
He wanted Clark to know he loved him.
Funny, how on the eve of his demise, he could finally say the words that Clark had waited so long to hear.
Clark had always been so patient, saying that his actions had always told Clark how he felt.
God, he hoped that was true.
Maybe, if Clark hurried home, he could tell him before...
Before the madness took hold.
Before the beginning of the end.
Or the end of the beginning.
A whimper escaped his throat but he savagely squelched it.
He would not indulge in pity.
He breathed out slowly and willed Clark home.
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