by Shropshire

Disclaimer: Not mine. No money. No way. No how.

Notes: Experimenting a bit.

Summary: Earthquakes in the life of a mind

The first time Lex Luthor went crazy it was necessary.

All he had ever really wanted was a family, loving and warm and together, to protect and to be protected. Not perfect, not large, but his own. He had known it briefly for his brother's short life, mother, father and son united in their love. A life snatched away, more cruelly than if it had never existed.

Julian was crying. Crying and crying and crying and then he wasn't; and that's really all that Lex can remember. His mind gives him pictures of his father and of himself, both gently rocking a corpse, singing it sweetly to eternal sleep.

It was an accident.

It wasn't his fault.

It wasn't his father's fault.

And whatever the truth of exactly whose fault it wasn't, it was too much to cope with for a strong 11 year old made vulnerable by hope.

His kind delusions blurred the memories and his grief.

The second time Lex Luthor went crazy it was exhilarating.

Pain and betrayal and insane heat that burned through his layers of space and skin and control. Freedom, completely alone and unmonitored for the first time he could remember. No social graces, no need to hide the emotional lava pool that seared within him, kept in check by years of Lionel's scorn and teaching and worse. By his own desire to be normal, to be guided by intellect, to be good.

He went crazy in pieces, day by day, maggot by maggot, until Louis showed up and had always been there.

Lex had always known that he could be a monster. He hadn't realised that he wanted to be one.

Then rescue came, though not the expected one, and Jeckyll bottled up his Hyde.

The third time Lex Luthor went crazy it was terrifying.

Delusion too close to reality, both equally unwanted, both telling him the same thing: Everybody lied to you. Doctor and servant, friend and father, mind and heart.

Nobody really loves you. Nobody, nothing and nowhere is safe.

His last shreds of trust and hope, plucked away one by one, washed down with drugged scotch and water.

Clawing back his own mind and thoughts, one last act of friendship, hope cruelly teasing again, until a burst of electricity floods him. To save or to destroy.

To obliterate.

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