Life was all about creating options.
Lex Luthor closed the door, engaged the lock with a soft `click'. He couldn't understand why more people didn't seem to get that. They were happy wandering through life, hoping things would just fall into place when they needed them to. It never occurred to them to think ahead, even when it came to the little, seemingly insignificant things.
The beams of moonlight, flowing through the blinds like liquid silver, weren't enough to truly see by. But Lex had become quite familiar with the layout of this room. He knew where every piece of furniture was, even in the dark. Still, he was careful, just in case there was some stray bit of something on the floor that he might trip over.
For Lex, creating options was second nature. He just did it, sometimes without even giving it conscious thought, without knowing why. Like finding Gabe Sullivan's keys. Lex returned them, of course...after having copies made. At the time, he couldn't imagine why he'd need the keys to Gabe's house. But having them gave him an option.
For months, those keys had languished in his safe, unused if not completely forgotten. Until now.
Gently, Lex lowered himself onto the edge of her bed. Not that he actually needed to. He'd discovered that she was a very heavy sleeper. Probably all the coffee she drank during the day. At night, once she came off that caffeine high, she just crashed.
Head tilted to one side, he studied her. There was moonlight falling across the top of the bed, so he could see her face, calm and serene in sleep. Her hair, usually golden blond, was silver blue. She was laying on her stomach tonight, hands fisted on either side of her head, blankets pushed down to her waist. Her nightshirt had ridden up so far, the strip of skin at her lower back was exposed, bare.
Reaching out, Lex tucked a stray strand behind her ear. He let his hand drop to her back. Then further down, following line of her spine. When Chloe smiled in her sleep, Lex could not help smiling a little in return. He wondered how many people knew how ticklish she was.
His hand settled on that strip of bare skin at her lower back. Her skin was always so warm. Sometimes it felt like, if he touched her long enough, it would burn. In addition, if that moment ever came, the pain and pleasure would melt together in a way that made it impossible to tell one from the other.
Suddenly, she stirred. Moaning softly in her sleep, she started to wriggle, as if searching for a more comfortable position. As she moved, her warm, silky skin caressed Lex's palm.
Patiently, Lex watched, waited. He knew that, no matter how much she stirred, she would not wake up.
As she turned over, his palm slid across her back, her waist, finally coming to rest on her stomach.
As usual, she did not settle back down right away. A tiny frown puckered her brow. Her head moved from side to side. She made this sound at the back of her throat, that almost sound like a whimper.
Sometimes, Lex wondered if it was because he was here. If a part of her was aware of his presence, and was trying to wake her up.
Slowly, he leaned over her, hands braced next to her shoulders. Lips close to her ear, he whispered. ""Shhh. It's okay. Just a dream."
Her head turned towards his voice, the sound seeming to calm her. As Chloe sank deeper into sleep, Lex wondered who she thought he was. Probably some anonymous voice in the dark. One her sleeping mind trusted, like a child trusts the adult who tells them there are no monsters under the bed.
As she exhaled with a soft moan, the warmth of her breath tickled the side of Lex's neck, sent a pleasant shiver down his back. He moved closer, until his lips were almost pressed to her throat, and breathed deep. He loved the way she smelled. She changed scents as often as she changed hairstyles, and they all seemed to suit her. Cinnamon. Vanilla. Rose. Jasmine.
Tonight, she smelled like peaches. Warm, and fresh, and ripe.
This close, he could feel the heat rising from her body. It called to him. Made him want to press his entire length against her.
Closing his eyes, Lex forced himself to lean back, used the hands braced near her shoulders to push away.
Life was about options. Every night, he chose to push away. But he wondered what would happen if he made a different choice. And the wondering, the images that filled his mind, kept him from sleeping at night, made it nearly impossible to work during the day.
Sighing, Lex stood. Glancing at his watch, he sat in a chair close to the bed. He still had plenty of time before the household woke up. Until then, he'd try to be content to watch her sleep.
Chloe lay in bed, trying to rub the sleep from her eyes. Yawning deeply, she pushed up onto her elbows...and frowned. She had that feeling again. It was a feeling she'd had almost every morning for the past few weeks. The sense that something in her room was out of place.
Eyes narrowed, she looked around, searching for anything that had been moved, or something that might be missing. But, as always, she didn't find anything that wasn't where it was supposed to be.
Finally, she shook her head. It was probably just her imagination. She definitely had plenty of that.
As Chloe staggered out of bed, she never stopped to wonder how the blankets, which had been pooled around her waist when she went to sleep, had ended up so snuggly tucked beneath her chin.
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