Authors Note: Written for the Psalm Challenge set by Victoria P (LJ--musesfool). One hundred and fifty assignments set, one hundred and fifty fics written. Here's one hundred and forty-five. Inspired mostly by the song "Everything" by Lifehouse, which, scarily enough, lasts as long as it takes to read this fic (at a steady reading pace, anyway). Thanks to the fantabulous maveness for the last minute beta.


Psalm 145

I will extol You, my God, O King, And I will bless Your name forever and ever. Every day I will bless You, And I will praise Your name forever and ever. Great is the LORD, and highly to be praised, And His greatness is unsearchable. One generation shall praise Your works to another, And shall declare Your mighty acts. On the glorious splendor of Your majesty And on Your wonderful works, I will meditate. Men shall speak of the power of Your awesome acts, And I will tell of Your greatness. They shall eagerly utter the memory of Your abundant goodness And will shout joyfully of Your righteousness. The LORD is gracious and merciful; Slow to anger and great in loving kindness. The LORD is good to all, And His mercies are over all His works.

All Your works shall give thanks to You, O LORD, And Your godly ones shall bless You. They shall speak of the glory of Your kingdom And talk of Your power; To make known to the sons of men Your mighty acts And the glory of the majesty of Your kingdom.Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, And Your dominion {endures} throughout all generations. The LORD sustains all who fall And raises up all who are bowed down. The eyes of all look to You, And You give them their food in due time. You open Your hand And satisfy the desire of every living thing. The LORD is righteous in all His ways And kind in all His deeds. The LORD is near to all who call upon Him, To all who call upon Him in truth. He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him; He will also hear their cry and will save them. The LORD keeps all who love Him, But all the wicked He will destroy. My mouth will speak the praise of the LORD, And all flesh will bless His holy name forever and ever.


"The mind that knows not where to fly, flies to God." -- Hannah More

He was sitting silent and still on the rain-drenched grass when she came to him.

His skin was pale and marbled with rain drops and Chloe's eyes trailed the path they carved down his high cheekbones and strong nose as she settled herself down next to him, ignoring the wetness that soaked into her jeans. She echoed his position, arms curling around her knees as she pulled them up to her chin, and watched him with quiet, green eyes.

He looked like a child, which seemed wrong somehow, considering what she knew, and if it weren't for the broken eyes that refused to look at her, she'd think he was lying.

He was supposed to look Godlike, wasn't he? Or was this what God looked like? Gloriously beautiful and childlike, breaking silently in the pouring rain with the green, green grass beneath him. To Chloe he'd never looked more majestic, but she thought maybe that was a poor consolation considering the pain he was in, and for a fleeting second she wondered if Gods were supposed to cry.

Maybe it's the rain, she thought. But she knew differently, because rain didn't shatter in your eyes like that.

The night was thick with the smell of freshly cut grass, wet from the heavy showers that had been falling on and off all day. She hadn't seen the sun for days, but she wondered how long it had been for Clark. The dark, smoky clouds seemed to be paying homage to his agony.

"You're a legend now," she wanted to say, because maybe it would cheer him up and steal away the heartbreak on his face. But she knew it wouldn't, and she knew the words would fall empty, because he'd been a legend long before this. It was just that she knew now. He was a God among men, and she... she was Chloe Sullivan. Barely visible in the woven tapestry that was his life and his destiny and his legacy. She had no part in this, had never had a part in it, and just because she knew didn't mean she was blessed now. She was just aware.

And it didn't change anything, really. She'd been singing his praises -- secretly, silently -- long before she'd known who and what he was. But had she worshipped him because he was a legend, or because he was her best friend? Maybe all the good things she saw in him -- his compassion, his determination, his faith -- were everything that made him a God, or maybe they just made him an exceptional human being with Godlike powers. She didn't know, wasn't sure, and she couldn't claim to have loved him simply because he was Clark Kent, because there were too many flaws in such a claim.

Maybe deep down she'd always known about Clark. After all, it wasn't normal for a boy to be that obliviously beautiful, that generous and compassionate and gracious. People like that just didn't exist, yet this boy -- no, no, this God -- sitting beside her was every one of those things and more. His capacity to love was endless, his kindness eternal and his need to save everyone unwavering. Personal happiness was not a goal post for Clark, but the happiness of everyone else was an impossible, infinite dream that, despite his strength and fierce determination, he could not reach.

He continued to try, anyway, and she loved him for it.

She wanted to tell him that. She wanted to tell him she loved him because he was Clark, not a legend, but she wasn't sure she could. Maybe she'd seen the God in Clark long before she'd found the words to point it out. She'd known. She just hadn't known.

She still wanted to whisper differently in his ear, though. Wanted to say that she didn't care, that she'd always admired his strength and his courage and his compassion long before she'd known. She'd worshipped him every day, secretly, with the devotion of a young woman in love, and she would continue to do so until she was buried beneath grass as green as this. She would never stop loving him, as a God, as a boy, as her best friend and as Clark Kent, and her song would never die because it was a part of her now.

And maybe she wasn't a part of his legend, maybe she never would be, but he was a part of hers, as he was a part of her, and he would live on in her memories because he was her best friend and a God, too, and how could someone forget Clark Kent?

And how can I stand here and not be moved by you...

He was her religion, the one she followed, the one she trusted. Her faith lay in him and his faith lay in her. He'd remained by her side -- and would remain there always -- so she would not have to walk this world alone and that made him her God. Her savior.

But not hers alone. She could not keep him. Could not own him. He was not hers for the taking because others still needed him and would always need him. He was their savior, too, and he touched them all -- every one of them -- with his endless compassion and grace. He saved them, rescued them, ever the God, and that was his destiny and his life, and it made him who he was.

Clark Kent saved people. That's what he did. He caught those who fell and raised those with neither the courage nor the strength to stand alone, and he did so not out of obligation, but out of love.

And they would remember him for it. That was his legend, his legacy, his message to those less great than he, but still as equally beautiful in his eyes.

If kindness dies, his silence would say, then we die along with it. It's what makes us who we are. It's what makes us great.

Except he was greater. Far greater. Bigger than she and bigger than those he saved. But he didn't think so, and that was why he was Clark Kent, her best friend. Because he didn't think himself a God, though he was, and he didn't think himself blessed, though he was, and compassion was as natural as breathing to him, to this alien she loved.

And she felt blessed. Blessed, because she knew his face when others didn't. Blessed, because she'd found what others spent their lives searching for. Religion didn't have a face, God didn't have a name, yet here he was, beside her, this boy with a name, a Lord with the eyes of a child and a broken heart. He was a beautiful sight -- holy -- and it brought tears to her eyes, because he deserved her praise. Was worth her worship. How could anyone think differently?

But no matter how beautiful he was, he was still hurting. Naked agony was written clean across his features because he'd failed, he'd fallen. This God, who had sworn to watch over those that could not watch over themselves, had lost a soul to fate.

His legend was tarnished, or so he thought, but he didn't care about his destiny right now, not with their blood on his hands, and their death shadowing his faith. It was too much, even for a God.

Even heroes have the right to bleed.

Clark couldn't save everyone, but he liked to think he could. He played the immortal every day of his life for the sake of others, but when he fell, when his own faith was tested over and over, no one was there. No one was there to pick him up and brush him off. No one was there to tell him God was watching over him, ready to walk beside him so he wouldn't have to walk alone, because who was great enough to offer solace to a spirit like Clark?

No one. He was a God and Gods walked alone.

Except Chloe couldn't bear to see the desolation in his eyes. She didn't want there to be only one pair of footprints in the sand, because that wasn't right. She wanted to walk beside Clark, her hand in his, and she wanted to tell him that she was watching over him. She wanted to tell him he would never walk alone again.

But she didn't. She kissed him instead.

It was raining again when she twisted around on the wet, freshly cut grass, the smell assailing her as she cupped his face between her hands and pressed her cold lips to his. There was grass on her hands and now there was grass on his face, but she didn't care, just slid her mouth over his surprisingly warm one and held him to her. He wasn't responding, but she didn't move, and she thought she tasted ambrosia on his lips, or was that love?

And then there was no more time for thoughts because he was kissing her back suddenly, lips opening beneath her own, tongue sliding out to explore her mouth.

She felt him surrender and the song in her heart died when she felt the sobs wracking his strong form. His tears fell heavy on her cheeks and they slid like hot rivers against her cold skin. His lips trembled against her own, but he didn't stop. He lifted a hand, wet and thick with grass like her own, and slid it around the back of her neck, thumb resting against her jaw to tilt her head back.

She obeyed, surrendered to a different kind of worship, and let her tears fall with his own.

I'm sorry, she wanted to say, but it wasn't enough. Words weren't enough. Words would never be enough.

And she wondered as she kissed him, as he kissed her, why the most beautiful song was the most painful. Her heart was splintering, as was his, and the moment was so earth-shattering that she felt blessed and broken, empty and full, all at the same time. It was too much, all too much, and she understood now. She understood.

He may have had the powers of a God, the destiny of a God, but Clark was still a boy at heart, human. He hurt like she hurt, bled like she bled, and his soul was as fragile as her own, if not more. He didn't deserve this burden and the world did not deserve his compassion, but he gave it, anyway, without hesitation and without question, and he expected nothing in return.

Except she wanted to give him something. Wanted to give him something to believe in, something to strengthen his faith, but she had nothing.

Nothing but herself. Her friendship. Her compassion. Her love. None could rival his own, but she wanted him to have it, anyway, because it was hers to give as freely as she wished. She wanted him to have it, because he was her religion and her God and her savior.

You are the hope that keeps me trusting.

But more than that -- more than anything else -- he was her best friend and she loved him. She loved him without hesitation and without question, and she expected nothing in return. He had already given her enough.

She broke the kiss with an awe-filled gasp, but continued to cradle his face between her hands. She gazed into his broken, hazel eyes, bright with tears and surprise, and found easily the heartbreak lingering there. Loss and chaos battled a raging war and she longed to quiet the haunting whispers of his mind, to clear the shadows from his face.

"Let me save you," she said, gaze fixed on his. "Just this once, Clark. Please."

He stared back, as beautiful as he'd always been and always would be, and she knew he'd found peace in her eyes when he nodded, swallowing.

And then she kissed him again, kissed her best friend and her lover as he broke in her arms -- a child, a boy, a human in every way that mattered -- and she promised to him silently -- always silent, like her song -- that she would keep his secret. His legend would live on, even when she faded, when he faded, but they would never know the truth. They would never know the face behind the myth, the name, and they would never know that the God that had watched over them and protected them and walked with them so they would not be alone, had been as human and as frail as they had. They wouldn't know about the girl that had rescued him, saved him just this once before the burden became too much to bear, and they would never know about the footprints in the sand -- one set, one pair, because she'd carried him at one point, just as he had carried her through the years -- and the part where she'd kissed the beautiful God that was her best friend and her savior.

No, she wouldn't tell. But she would know, just as he would, and that was good enough for her. She would know things that no legend could tell, that no myth could speak of and no scripture could whisper. They would speak only of his strengths and never his weaknesses, but she would know that he was no God, not really.

And she would know that even heroes had the right to bleed.


Quote one and three taken from "Everything", by Lifehouse.

Quote two taken from "Superman", by Five by Fighting.