There's always that one crack in the wall that isn't filled in. That one escape route that isn't considered as a possibility.
There's always that one option that people forget to think of; and Lex knows all about this option because he always makes a point of thinking of it first. He doesn't have to look for things in that proverbial last place because he doesn't lose things. Lex knows everything about everyone and nothing ever surprises him.
But sometimes. Sometimes he's not so sure about all that.
Sometimes things are unexpected. Like Clark.
Clark is the 'x' variable in an equation that doesn't have 'x' and 'y' variables. Clark is a random vector in a physics formula where there's not supposed to be a vector, or there's one vector too many. Clark's just not quite right or he's more than right.
He might be perfect, if Lex can figure him out. But right now Clark is the unknown, and he's turning into Lex's favorite nervous habit. His favorite obsession.
Clark is something, someone, Lex can't stop thinking about. Wanting to fidget with.
Lex wants to know everything about Clark, and so, he's always thought about how The Conversation will go. That defining conversation that will happen between them when everything comes out. When the truth is unraveled and the lies are unwrapped and the only thing left is raw, naked honesty.
Of course that naked part generally involves a naked Clark as well, but it's all a matter of semantics.
Lex knows what he will say, what Clark will say. The apologies and the tears from Clark, and maybe Lex will even work on a suitable 'injured' expression. He has it all figured out. The way that he will take the high road in the beginning before capitulating, before allowing Clark the relief of his forgiveness. Acceptance.
Just thinking about it is enough to give Lex a raging hard-on. It's just enough to know that it will happen, one day. That Clark will trust him enough someday. Of his own free will. Of course it's not the Luthor part of Lex that wants Clark to give himself freely. It's the Lex part. The part of Lex that's determined to forge his own destiny, to make his own way. To have someone be honest with him, someone he can be honest with.
If the Luthor part of Lex's brain had been in charge where Clark is concerned, Lex would have tied Clark up months ago and dragged every truth out of him with needle-nose pliers and a butter knife.
But no. That's not how it's supposed to be. How it's going to be.
Lex knows how it's going to be.
But he certainly didn't see it quite like this.
Of course, in Lex's dreamscape, Clark never caught him playing Solitaire on his computer either.
Cursory nod. A wave of the hand, and voila, Clark Kent sitting in front of his desk. Whomever said that Luthors don't have magic powers obviously never met Lex.
Except when Lex glances up, waiting for that 1000-Watt Clark Grin of Blindness, instead he finds wide eyes and a wobbling mouth, and wait. Isn't Lex supposed to be on the other side of the desk for that effect to happen? Isn't Clark's lower lip suppose to do that thing after the first time he kisses Lex? After Clark has confessed all his secrets and his burning passion for Lex that has conveniently wiped out all memories of Lana Limp?
Lex doesn't remember this part of the script. He hates last minute re-shoots.
"Clark, is something wrong?"
Possibly. Maybe. All that's missing is 'perhaps' and 'no comment.' Clark is making an art of vagueness, and Lex could hire him as his new spin-doctor. A mental slap as Lex realizes that this is Clark he's dealing with. Someone who has an impressive knack for being obtuse, elusive and rather slippery about certain things. Certain truths. But otherwise an upstanding, Smallville citizen who should probably not work for LuthorCorp.
"Okay, yes, definitely."
Finally, an answer. Something Lex can work with because he's a brilliant problem solver; and all solutions must start somewhere. So Lex reaches out to push Ben Schmidt's button on the speed dial, because in Lex's practice, lawyers should always be the first number on speed dial. Or if not the first number, at least in the first three.
But Lex never actually gets to push the button because Clark has his hand around Lex's wrist and it's just on this side of too hard.
"Lex, I -- I definitely have something I really need to tell you. Right now."
Okay, if Clark wants to tell him first that's fine because he's confiding in Lex. But all the same, Lex is rather attached to his wrist, and Clark really needs to move it along. Lex can't clean up the mess until he knows where it is, but he should at least have his people waiting at the starting line.
"Okay," gets Lex proper possession of his wrist, and, "talk to me," gets him a small smile. It's a start.
"Well, it's not that sort of thing that I can just say. It's a bit hard for me to. To just, you know."
"You... know?" He knows what? A lot of things, absolutely, what Clark is talking about, not even. And it's then that Lex suddenly realizes they're not on the same page. Not even reading the same book.
"Clark," swift jerk of a raven head, "you're not in legal trouble, are you?"
Oh, so much for that white charger then.
"Okay, so then what's this pressing news that you have to tell me?"
"Yeah, the news. Well, it's just that I've been thinking about it - you - it and I really need to tell you because it's wrong for you not to know, and I think that maybe you should know. And I know I haven't been really truthful, and I can't, we can't, until I do. And actually, no. I know you should know because you're you and I feel like I need to tell you..."
Clark is babbling and Lex is following it to the greatest of his capabilities, but wow, it's really convoluted; and perhaps Clark should be a lawyer because it kind of makes sense. The kind of sense that doesn't make sense at all. Ever.
A pause and a thought, and Lex is going to pick up where he faded out. "Everybody needs something, Clark."
"No, this is something I really need to tell you."
A pause again while Lex considers this statement and what part of that sentence Clark is emphasizing. Does he need to tell Lex, or does he just need to tell somebody?
"Is this 'need' like you 'need to use the bathroom' need? Or need like you're going to spontaneously combust if you don't tell me need?"
More silence wherein Clark is doing that thing that only he can do. That endearing, guileless full-body, shimmy-fidget that makes Lex want to handcuff Clark's hands behind his back and unbutton his jeans so he can blow Clark's fifteen year-old mind. In Lex's defense it would be a good stress release for both of them and something to quell Lex's nervous habit. Temporarily.
A win-win situation
"A bit of both?"
"Okay. What do you need from me, Clark?"
It's been a long time since Lex has fully loaded a sentence that way. Only Clark could make him so careless, so assured that the second, third and fifth meanings will be completely missed.
"I have this thing to tell you and..."
More about the need and less with the circumnavigating. At the rate they're going Clark will still be babbling this time tomorrow, and Lex will still be poking at the word 'need' like it's uncooked squid. He's stuck on it like a tape loop.
"You can always tell me anything, Clark."
"Yeah, I know that but this is different. I - I'm not sure how you're going to react."
"React? You're expecting a reaction?" A pause. "From me?"
"Well, kinda. Yeah."
So this has really got to be something big. Something that Clark has been keeping a secret for a long time. Something he's been hiding from Lex. Something that's going to change their relationship forever.
It can't be.
Lex didn't think The Conversation was going to happen for another six months. He's not - not ready just yet. But. He'll manage, and if this is what he thinks it is, then this is the sort of news he shouldn't hear from the business side of his desk.
Quick roll of the chair, and in something like a blink, Lex is out from behind the glass monstrosity and kneeling down next to Clark's chair.
No need to scare the children.
Okay, not the children but the young, underage minor who Lex has been lusting after for months. Thinking about children right now is not going to help the issue.
Deep breath and Lex can do this. "Well, is it good news?"
"I think that really depends on your point of view."
"My point of view is pretty adaptable."
"I know you - I mean, I know it is. It's just..."
A hand on the knee and eyes as trusting as Lex can make them when inside he's jumping up and down for glee. Or not. Luthors don't jump for glee, but Lex sure feels like he is. It's certainly taken Clark long enough.
"Clark," soft voice, probably a bit too husky, but hey. "Whatever it is, you can tell me."
"I know I can. It's just. Well, it's hard."
It certainly is and Lex isn't thinking that. Definitely not saying it. That's so high school humor.
"I've never told anyone this before..."
This is just getting better and better.
"Lex, I - I'm not human."
And then there's blinking. A lot of blinking and Lex needs to sit down. Or stand up. Or something. He needs to keep moving because, wow, not expecting that one. Kneeling was smart, it makes him closer to the carpet but there's a hand in the way. A big hand, with a mate.
"Lex? Lex? Are you... are you okay with that?"
More silence and Lex just, well. He wasn't expecting that. He can be okay with it, as soon as his synapses start firing up again. But until then he's a bit blank. It shows. Really warm hands now. On Lex's face.
"Lex?" Slight rise in Clark's voice, and not all Lex's senses have been shorted out because he smells a tinge of panic. Feels fingers stroking his cheek and, yeah.
"Lex, say something."
Something. Momentary realization and well, Lex said he was adaptable.
"I thought you were going to say you were gay."
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