There's no such thing as forever.
Lex knows this because he's a scientist. He knows that as a word, 'forever' is meaningless and as a concept it's intrinsically flawed, all because it's based on a faulty premise.
A premise that something will never end.
Everything ends eventually. Everything dies. It may be recycled, reborn, but it always passes on in time.
'Forever' implies infinity when Lex knows that infinity doesn't exist either. The end just hasn't been found yet. No one has looked hard enough, wanted to look hard enough to find the end, because once at the end - then what? What comes next?
Lex is certain he could disprove the theory of forever. He thinks about it all the time. The endless theorems and equations that it would require make his palms sweat and his endorphins spike. The hypothesis and the eventual conclusion keep him awake for hours at night. Why lie awake and dream of farmboys with wings and fathers with tails, when he can endlessly rewrite quadratic equations and cure everything that plagues mankind?
Especially idealism. Optimism.
Lex could end it all. He could usher in a new wave of realism.
Lex could create Orwell's vision. He could be big brother. He could make the world the way it's supposed to be.
A world without forever.
Lex could be the man that finds the end of forever, and Clark could be the one that shows him the way.
The first time that Clark kisses Lex, Lex's brain fizzles out and he loses sight of anything that isn't directly in front of his nose. There isn't a gradual disintegration of his facilities as much as an all-out burnout. When Lex attempts to add two and two together he gets five. That's all he needs to know.
The second kiss just makes everything else irrelevant.
Lex's vocabulary doesn't contain words to describe Clark's mouth accurately, and as Lex's knees practically buckle under the strain of his expectations, he understands, for the first time, what forever might feel like.
A place where everything is perfect. Where Clark never stops kissing him, touching him, wanting to save him.
Forever is a place where Clark's hands never leave Lex's body, his shoulders, the nape of his neck. Forever is a place where their kiss will be the only kiss that Lex ever has for the rest of his life.
Forever is a place that doesn't exist.
Clark is forever, and forever is never going to happen for Lex.
When the kiss ends, and Lex rocks back onto his heels, he doubts he'll ever be able to move again. Something has collapsed in his spine and Lex can feel time shifting. He can feel himself dying. Lex can calculate the end of forever in the infinitesimal second before Clark opens his eyes.
Lex can't stop the end.
Richer that God and more powerless than a blind kitten, forever is never coming and all Lex can do is stare at Clark. Think about what could be. Tiny grains of sand are falling somewhere while Lex counts every last one of the glossy eyelashes resting against Clark's golden skin.
Lex has never seen eyelashes that long on anyone - at least not eyelashes that were real. He's seen plenty that were clumpy with cheap mascara. He's woken up to eyelashes so blonde that they were practically nonexistent, but Lex has never seen any eyelashes like Clark's. Lustrous and silky, feminine and still so fittingly masculine. In the millisecond before Clark opens his eyes, Lex counts a thousand heartbeats and lives one hundred lives.
None of them last forever.
None of them are as important as this one fraction of time in this shabby, broken-down barn. Lex could spend the rest of his life in a lab trying to replicate a moment that will never happen again.
There will never be another first time.
Before Clark opens his eyes, Lex sees his own death, and Clark's death; and he watches all their chances to be together go flying by. Lex sees the end of it all; but when Clark opens his eyes, Lex forgets what he knows about forever.
Lex changes his tune the first time he fucks Clark. Clark's whimpers and moans rattle Lex's atrophied heart at the core, and every thrust feels like Lex's last breath. From the moment they met, Clark has emitted a tangible vulnerability and innocence that has slit Lex open from navel to sternum and climbed inside Lex to hide. The tight heat inside Clark can't warm Lex, and all Clark's whispers and promises can't fix what's already stirring in the firmament.
Being in love with Clark won't make up for the eventual end.
For the first time, Lex understands what it's like to want time to stop.
To want to believe.
Lex wants to die in this theory called forever, and all because he knows Clark has to leave.
Sooner or later.
Lex could stave it off, try to prolong the end. He could keep Clark but that would just emasculate Clark, and by association Lex. And it just wouldn't work.
Whether Clark leaves him or he dies, or just outgrows what they have - there will come an end to 'Clark and Lex.' There is no happily ever after in this place. Lex doesn't believe in fairy tales; he's a realist. He's a scientist.
Human emotions don't rate in physics.
Lex believes in numbers and mathematical proofs and endings, and while knows he could make Clark stay - through coercion and manipulation and the sort of schemes that would do his father proud - he just can't bring himself to do it.
Lex wants Clark to be happy with him; but if he can't have him freely - forever - he doesn't want him at all.
Lex just wants one thing in his life to be honest and true and right because fucking Clark is the closest Lex has ever come to perfection. The closest he's sure he will ever be to real happiness. Lex has anticipated being with Clark so long that he was sure the reality would never live up to the fantasy.
He was wrong.
Everything has surpassed his expectations, but Lex is a chemist and he knows better.
Lex knows that he shouldn't have any expectations.
From the residual citrus of Clark's morning orange juice to the tickle of little hairs just below Clark's navel, fucking Clark is 100 percent surround-sound heaven. Every gasp Lex swallows and every moan that he extracts from Clark feeds every theory Lex has ever had. The smell of fresh sex that seeps through Clark's pores and the salty-sweet taste of sweat in the small of Clark's back is data that Lex collects as samples. As proof.
Proof of the end.
Clark is every wet dream and dirty fantasy come to Lex's Smallville fruition. Their time together is perfection sweating and intoning in midnight blue silk sheets, and that is Lex's sign that the time for his experiment is right.
Time for science to prove the unproven again, because Clark is perfect and the sex is perfect, but Lex knows that perfection doesn't exist.
Perfection is a myth, like forever.
It takes almost ninety minutes for Lex to come to his senses. Ninety minutes after Clark has kissed him goodbye and gone back to his conventional, nomadic life. After an hour and a half of basking in afterglow lassitude, Lex is no longer running on that undependable hormonal high.
A high that clouds his judgment.
Now that Clark has left for the night, Lex can be honest with himself. He can be the scientist that exists inside his barren heart.
Now Lex can set a timeline for his experiment and begin analyzing what he's learned. He knows it's only a matter of time before his results come to completion and before he has definitive proof.
It's only a matter of time before Clark leaves Lex because that's what people do. Despite the money and the power and the wealth of resources at Lex's fingertips even he can't prevent the inevitable. Abandonment. Death.
If Lex can't create forever, then no one can. Then it doesn't exist.
His mother proved that. Pamela proved that.
Forever is a theory that just needs one more case study to be disproved for good, and Clark is going to leave Lex because Clark is human too. Because humans are intrinsically flawed. They die and lie, and they don't last forever.
Lex knows this much. He also knows that his luck isn't good enough, he isn't good enough, to hold onto Clark forever.
Even now, Clark's secrets are corroding whatever they built together tonight. Every thrust and every kiss that fortified their bond is still exposed to every secret withheld. Sooner or later, Lex's need for the truth is going to finish off what the lies don't. And even if the lies don't ruin them, something else, someone else will come along and expedite the matter.
Lex is as sure of this as he is of the Periodic Table. As sure of this as he is of his desire to be wrong.
But he's not wrong.
There's no such thing as forever because everything dies.
Lex knows that Clark is going to leave him eventually because Lex would never accept anything less than forever with Clark, and that's not going to happen.
Not in this lifetime.
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