The Power of Positive Affirmation.
by Basingstoke (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Thanks to jacquez for the beta and Livia for the title.
Pete was worried that he didn't have It.
All the other Ross men had It. His daddy still charmed the ladies that came into his office, even though he'd been married and faithful for thirty years and had a big gray beard for ten. His daddy had It. Pete's oldest brother, Bill Junior, had It so bad he'd gotten his girlfriend pregnant in his senior year and barely made it to graduation before they had Pete's little niece Sara. Pete's next oldest brother, Robert, had girls fighting over him in the halls--well, just two, but they got suspended for a day and finished the fight at a local pizza parlor. Pete's third brother was a freshman over at K-State and came back once a month for family dinner, talking about a different girlfriend every time.
They all had IT. That mysterious thing that made women want them.
Pete was seriously worried. He was sixteen and hadn't even gotten his hand inside a girl's bra. He'd had a bunch of dates, but they all ended with maybe a quick kiss at the door--well, except for Karen, who'd made out with him once in Lex Luthor's limo before moving on to someone taller.
Maybe hanging out with Clark was a mistake, mojowise.
Also Chess Club.
Football was good, though. He got to watch the cheerleaders, even if he hadn't gotten any of their phone numbers. Yet.
He had to think positive. "Women dig me." "I am a love machine in waiting." "Any minute now, I will score, big time."
At the moment, he was trudging home from football practice in the freakiest February that had ever hit Kansas. Last week? Snow up to his butt. This week? 65 degrees and sunny. His mom, however, was living in a time warp and made him wear long underwear under his jeans that morning--she'd pulled out his waistband and checked!--so he was sweating in the sun, big time. Figured his sister would take the car and leave him to hoof it all the way home.
Hell with it. He pulled off his shirt, juggling his backpack from hand to hand, and wedged it in the top of his bag. If anyone actually came along this road, they'd just have to deal with his manly football-playing bod.
Sure enough, someone came along the road--a Ferrari, license plate "LEX LTHR." Lex was just going to have to deal with his manly bod.
But--Lex was gay. All the guys said so. Pete reached for his shirt, because he wasn't into guys, and especially not *Lex Luthor,* but the car passed him before he could put it on. And maybe a girl would drive by and see him and pick him up--it could happen! He was into girls, and with a little positive thinking, girls would be into him.
Pete repeated his mantra silently. "Women dig me."
He heard a car come up behind him and slow down. He turned to see what was going on and saw that it was Lex's Ferrari again--Lex's incredibly cool machine bought with Daddy's incredibly dirty money--but Lex wasn't behind the wheel, not unless he'd suddenly grown a lot of hair and turned into a hot chick.
A really hot chick. She stopped the car beside him.
"Care for a ride?" she asked. She had an English accent. Her shirt was, like, barely a shirt.
"Hi," Pete said, feeling lame.
"Hi." She smiled.
"Pete Ross," he said, offering his hand.
She shook it and smiled at him. "Victoria Hardwick. Hop in."
She didn't have to ask him twice. Hot chick, hot car--even if it was *Lex Luthor's.* He tossed his backpack into the footwell and slid in. His naked back stuck to the leather, which felt kind of weird for a whole bunch of reasons, not the least being that he was half-naked in front of a hot chick.
And she was eyeing his manly, football-playing bod. Whoa.
"Uh, my house is just up that way a little," he said, pointing. Victoria just smiled and hit the gas.
Pete folded his arms, trying to figure out what to do next. She wasn't like the girls in his class--he couldn't help her with her math homework or anything. But--she was dating Lex Luthor, right? Pete was way better than some skinny, bald brat, even if the brat was a millionaire.
He watched Victoria under his eyelashes as she drove. Man, oh, man. Fine woman in a fine car--what wasn't to like. Apart from the Luthor connection, anyway.
He suddenly noticed the road signs. "That was my turn back there!"
"Really?" She went faster.
"Yeah--well, if you take the next one, you can sort of turn around....sorry, I, uh, I should have told you." Great, very smooth. Pete slumped in his seat.
"Which one is the turn-off to the lake?" Victoria asked.
"That's...a couple of miles down. What do you want to go there for?" Crater Lake was the reservoir. There wasn't even fish in there; no boating allowed, nothing.
"That's where Lover's Lane, is, isn't it?" And she put her hand on his leg--no wait, on his crotch--and she squeezed and Pete couldn't breathe for a few seconds.
Hand. Chick's hand. On. Little Pete. "Yes?" he squeaked.
"Then that's where we're going." She put her hand back on the shift stick, but still--oh, man. Oh, man.
Pete grabbed the seat and concentrated on not jizzing his pants. He was breathing heavy and she kept looking at him and smiling and--oh, man, ice. Gotta--think of ice and not of fine women with their hands on him--
The car bumped over increasingly bad road--probably knocking the crap out of *Lex Luthor's* fancy suspension and undercarriage, which made Pete grin--until they were in a little clearing by the lake, surrounded by pine trees. The light was nice and cool and green. The low sun turned the muddy lake silver.
"You're a very attractive boy, Pete Ross," Victoria said.
"I am?" He looked up. "I mean--yeah. Sure I am." He blinked at her.
She turned off the car, unfastened her seatbelt and climbed over into his seat.
Pete got home around seven and went straight to bed. He dreamed about her all night.
The next day was Saturday. Clark called him at eight in the morning, wondering if he wanted to go riding with him and Chloe and Lana, but Pete said no. Instead he went for a long walk.
Out to the lake, actually. There was one more set of tire tracks in the grass there, but no girl.
No woman. No fine, fine woman who smelled like the kind of flower that only showed up in your dreams. Pete kicked the grass and headed back to the road, telling himself he was being a dope.
But there was a Ferrari, coming out from town...Pete's heart beat faster. The car slowed and stopped.
"I just got out of an incredibly dull meeting," Victoria said. "Hop in and let's find something interesting to do."
"I've only ever been in here once, for Lana's party," Pete said, staring around the entrance hall of the castle. "Looks different without the balloons." His parents hadn't wanted him to go to that party, but all his friends were there.
"I imagine it would." Victoria pulled a cord by the door and a man appeared at the top of the stairs. She met him at the bottom, handed him something and whispered in his ear; then he disappeared through another door.
"Lex's butler. I got him to leave us alone." Victoria smiled and Pete's stomach did a loop-the-loop. "Come on."
She led him through a side door, into a room with a pool table and a bar. "Do you play?"
"Yeah! Yeah, I'm a master. Our table at home is all wobbly, so we all got good at angles and things." Pete grinned.
"Strip pool," Victoria said, and handed him a cue.
"Strip pool. For every shot you miss, you take off an article of clothing." She tossed her hair over her shoulder. Pete swallowed.
"You're sure there's nobody gonna walk in?"
Victoria laughed. "I just got rid of the only servant in the house, and Lex will be gone for hours at that bloody meeting. Nobody's going to see your cute little arse but me."
An offer like that was once in a lifetime.
So, Pete had missed five shots, and taken off both shoes and socks and his sweater. Victoria had missed two shots, and taken off her jacket and shirt. Now she was in her bra, lining up a bank shot on the seven ball.
Black lace. Pete barely noticed as she shot.
"Missed," she sighed--then she reached around to her back and unhooked the bra, peeling it forward. She tossed it onto the chair with the rest of her stuff. She had little red marks on her side where the straps were. Her breasts bounced when she moved.
Pete had to sit down.
"Your turn," Victoria said.
"...Give me a minute."
Pete now knew that Lex Luthor's bed was king-sized, draped in purple velvet, and scented with some kind of perfume that didn't come from Victoria. Pete bet it was lavender.
He'd slept with *Lex Luthor's girlfriend* in *Lex Luthor's bed.*
Pete was feeling pretty studly as he ran down the back stairs, trying to figure out how to get home. Probably if he walked along the main road...he could go by Clark's place and--
Uh oh. "Hi, Lex..." Pete stopped in the doorway, hoping he didn't look too guilty.
Lex was standing in front of a computer screen with a bottle of water in his hand. "I was just looking at the security tapes." He turned and smiled at Pete. "Strip pool?"
The hell--"You were watching us?"
"Nice abs. You work out?" Lex was still smiling, just standing there like a rock.
"What are you, some kind of pervert?" That gay pervert freak saw him naked? Had him on tape?
"I always review my security tapes, Pete." Lex grinned wider. "You're in my house, after all...you found that exciting enough between my sheets."
That gay freak pervert was watching him in bed? Pete rushed him, thinking to tackle him and--something! But Lex ducked down and tossed Pete over his shoulder; Pete rolled across the carpet into a table leg.
Lex knelt over him, planting a hand in his chest. "Go home," he said. "Don't come back."
Then he left the room.
Pete lay there for a second, trying to figure out if anything was busted. Just his pride, it felt like.
He thought about trying to find Lex again--but that would probably backfire. After what Lex's dad did to Pete's dad...there was not trusting a Luthor, not in any way.
So he for the door. He wound around a few corridors and mysterious rooms until he found a door that let him outside. Halfway around the house, but at least it was the half close to the road.
Five miles home. Man alive. Nothing to do but start walking.
Walking while thinking about Victoria and how happy he'd made her. Maybe next time he saw her, they could go back to Lover's Lane...
Because he had It. The Ross charm finally came through.
Pete grinned and set out.
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