Running on Empty

by Annie



Running On Empty

By Annie

Rated PG-13
Summary: Lex POV of the Running series; what's running through his head after he sees Clark at Arkham? Disclaimer: Not mine.
Spoilers: Shattered
Feedback: yearned for crehnert@ptd.net

I have nothing.

I have Clark. Well, I did. Then I didn't. Now I do again. I think.

I stand in the middle of the visitor's room, just where I've been standing since he walked out the door. My mind's jumbled, and very vulnerable of late, apparently. I'm having a hard time separating what I think is reality from what I think is hallucination.

At least I think I am.

Julian's real. No, Julian was real. He's not real anymore. Not real since I covered him up to keep him warm. The blanket didn't keep him warm anyway. Mother kept screaming about how cold he was. I did explain. I tried to help. I don't think she understood.

This is real. This here. I think.

But the big thing - the Other thing. Was it real? Did I see it? Or fabricate it in my undependable memory? If I imagined it, that means Clark deserted me - never tried to find me after I ran from the stables. Or maybe he just couldn't.

If it was real, that means Clark deserted me. Ran away and let them drag me away calling for him, desperate for him. Was I really at Edge's? If I was there - if he tried to run over me - then it was all real.

Either way; he deserted me.

He came back for me.

I'm confused, fogged inside. Prickly flashes of memory, true and false, race through my muddled mind.

I didn't imagine that Clark came and took me. Or am I imagining that I'm here? Seems real enough. Room looks nice, food's good. No one is kicking me around and hey, I get to keep the shirt this time.

Or else I'm having a pleasant dream, and I'm still bound by that strait jacket.

I raise my arms, expecting resistance and relieved to feel none; bring the newly-cuffed sleeves closer to my face and close my eyes. I can still smell him, the clean, Clark scent of him, the smell of Martha-fresh laundry still lingering in the soft blue fabric I'm wearing. I can still feel the heat of his hands near my flesh, and my pulse quickens just like it did when he was still in the room.

I wrap my arms around myself - shield myself with Clark's shirt sleeves, so comforting after the memory of the other, imprisoning garment. Keep my eyes closed and imagine him still in the room, still with me. Not deserting me.

He deserted me. No, He came back.

I open my eyes and reach for the Warrior Angel comic on the table. Flip the pages briefly to reassure myself it's real. I read the tagline that runs across the bottom of every Warrior Angel comic book cover; 'Strange visitor from another planet who protects the innocent.....'

Am I Devilicus? How apt.

It is real.

It's all real.

I have nothing.

No, I have Clark.

I'll be going home soon.

My bastard of a father better start running now.



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