by Lint

Post "Rosetta" ficlet.

What Lex knew about Clark was that he's been keeping secrets. Speeding down the highway that night the last thing he ever expected to find was his friend gazing sleepily up at him in the middle of the road still in his pajamas. He offered a simple explanation of sleepwalking but there seemed more to it. There seemed to be more to Clark in nearly everything he did. The cave. What was he doing down there? And how could he possibly know as much, if not more, than the Professor he has to put up with and shell out money for. Clark is his friend. Closer than his newly found brother. Clark does nothing but keep things from him. Lex knows he knows more than he says. More than he's ever willing to share. Lex has seen his mother's charts. People don't die and miraculously heal within minutes.

Lex doesn't have enough faith to believe in something like that. But he did have enough faith to believe whatever was in that cave will lead him to everything he wanted to know about his friend. Everything he felt he needed to know. He'd found him there too. Asleep on the cold damp ground with little more than a thin excuse for being there. The professor wasn't happy about it. He hardly ever seemed happy about anything. Something happened in that cave. He felt it in his bones. There was a report of an explosion and he comes to find Clark dreamingly unaware. He denied that too. The explosion. Lex knew he was lying again. He could smell something in the air besides the smell of wet rock and earth. Something lying underneath it all. Something like ozone.

Clark's eyes went for the small octagonal impression on the cave wall. The one Lex knew his small silver disk would have fit in. Lex knew the look in Clark's eyes. He expected it to still be there. Lex doesn't know how Clark took it from him. He doesn't know where he hides it. He wrote the symbols from that disc on a piece of paper and then played it off by saying he was just doodling, but then he found the professor on the brink of death in that cave. And then the package. Junk mail indeed. No one sends junk mail with instructions to deliver it personally. No one runs away to immediately read it. Clark is lying. Clark is up to something. Lex needs to find out what. They are supposed to be best friends. Brothers. There was supposed to be trust.

Lex knew there was no trust.

And that eventually he would find out what Clark was up to. That much he was sure of.

What Pete knew about Clark was that he's scared. Oh he won't show it beyond a split second look of worry. Or maybe a hesitation here and there. Pete could see it in his eyes. One emotion he'd never associated with his friend before. Fear just didn't look right on Clark's face. The muscles don't seem to stretch that way properly. He looked that way when he came back from New York. He asked what was wrong and Clark said nothing. He asked again and Clark said "I'm all alone." He wasn't entirely sure what he meant by it. He was all alone, Pete knew that much. And he always thought Clark knew that much. He knew Clark was an alien. That there was no one else on the planet who could possibly understand him. What it was like to be him. Strange times have come and gone and it seemed like they were just going to keep coming. He wasn't quite sure if he could deal with it in the long run, but now, he knew he could.

The way Clark said he was all alone sounded like a realization. Pete thought that Clark must have known it all along, but something in New York must have made it seem final. He wondered what Dr. Swann had said to him. He thought that he could look on Clark's computer again and find the symbol for friend. If he wrote it down and gave it to him maybe he would feel better. Pete wanted to help. He was the only person that could help Clark. The only one besides his parents that is. He knew Clark has issues and needs to deal. But for now those seemed to have multiplied.

Pete knew that Clark has been an alien all his life.

Pete thought that maybe this was the first time he actually felt like one.

What Jonathan knew about Clark was that he was better than a god. Gods could be petty. Gods could be vengeful and vindictive and bring forth wrath. He'd raised him better than that. Clark was still his only son. His responsibility. His kin. Not necessarily his blood, but still his bond. He'd always known Clark was destined for bigger and better things. Bigger than a farmer's life. Bigger than anything he may have provided. Jonathan wanted to know that he had nothing to worry about regarding Clark`s future. That he'd done what was right.

Flawed race his ass. He wanted to know what made these people from Clark's planet so high and mighty. What gave them the right to judge? If they were a people of such greatness what catastrophe could have caused his birth parents to put him in a ship and send him across the galaxy? Jonathan felt the questions begin to fester in his mind. He wanted to ask Clark these things. He wanted to ask Clark a million things. But his son seemed so sad and so lost, and he thought that he could wait until another time.

He knew his son was not a conqueror or a ruler. That much he was sure of. He cannot for the life of him, fathom the idea of his boy taking over the world. To him that seemed more of a Luthor family value. Clark Kent was his son and no one was going to take that fact from him. He knew it. Deep into his being he knew it.

Kal-El was just a name written in a language he didn't understand.

What Martha knew about Clark was that she wasn't ready to watch him go. She was a little more giving than Jonathan was when it came to his need to find answers, and she wanted him to find them, she just didn't want to lose him because of it. He was still her baby boy, and though for the last few years she has had to tilt her head just to look him in the eye, that's all she'll ever see him as. When Jonathan told her about the message in the ship she didn't want to believe it, couldn't believe it. When she looked at Clark she saw the eight-year old boy climbing on the roof of the barn and Jonathan chasing after him. Saw the ten-year old boy running through the pasture so fast he turned into nothing but a blur. Saw the twelve-year old boy jump so high he nearly cleared the house. She agreed with Jonathan when he said that their son was no god, no denizen of oppression. She shared her husband's belief that Clark will live how he chose to live.

She looked at Clark as he paced back and forth in his loft and can see the worry on his face. The guilt for being brought here with a purpose he thought he had no control over. The mother in her just wanted to march right up there and put her arms around him and assure him that everything will be all right. That he must choose the man he will be. That she believed in him and the fact that he would make the right choice.

She could feel the child growing inside her. She doesn't understand how something that can heal, that can bring forth life, carry a being meant to rule over it. The ship gave her a baby. The ship saved her from death. The ship brought her a son. Now it seemed like it would take him away from her and that was just something she wasn't willing to accept. Clark was hers to keep as long as she could hold on. She didn't want a life for him that would keep her son from her.

She only wanted the life he brought with him.

What Lana knew about Clark was that he is in love with her. And she also knew that he may never say it, never do anything beyond something sweet to prove it, it was always there. She saw it behind his eyes when he looked at her, when he talked to her. Sometimes the knowledge of the fact caused her to flush and make an excuse to get away. Because she knew the feelings were true and genuine and that he would probably never do a thing about them. He was always too busy running off without explanation. Too busy canceling would be dates for no apparent reason. Too busy saving people and then acting like what he did was nothing.

Lana knew that Clark was mysterious. But what she didn't know was why she let herself get so mad over it one minute, and be willing to forgive the next. She also found herself wondering just how one person could seem to find themselves in the right place at just the right time nearly everytime something bad was happening.

Clark was good-natured. Clark was polite. Clark was everything she wanted in another person despite his thrift with truth and tendency to flee. Clark has been down lately. She hated to see him sad. She always joked that he had the weight of the world on his shoulders and now it seemed like it had just gotten heavier. He won't talk to her about it. She knew he never would no matter how much she may offer to listen.

But she still offered. Because one day she hoped he might take her up on it. And one day she hoped to know he could love her like she knew he did.

What Chloe knew about Clark was that he isn't in love with her. And no matter how much it pained her, how much she'd come to realize her affections would not be returned she continually let it come back to slap her in the face. She thought that if there hadn't been the dance, the almost kiss, the possibility of more to come, her feelings might have faded by now and she could step back and allow herself the best friend role she knew she could play. She wanted to remember what happened during the parasite incident. She wanted to know why Clark kissed her, but mainly, she just wanted to know what it felt like to have him kiss back.

He'd been getting distant again. Hearing things that no one else could. Waking up in the middle of caves and highways. He didn't tell her this himself, he rarely finds the time these days, but rather through the filter of Lana who overheard it from Lex, who was there to witness it both times. She could feel her instincts for finding out the truth begin to flare up inside her mind. Clark had also been snapping at her more frequently for that when she'd done it since he'd first known her. Asking the question and then finding the answers. She wanted to know what he was up to again. Freaking out and running off over a prank on his barn when some weirdo e-mails him with one word below it. And then stranger turns out to be some massively intelligent reclusive billionaire. So many questions about Clark. The boy wrapped in a puzzle, under an enigma, and in a flannel shirt. So many stones unturned. And so many possible arguments if she tried to overturn them.

She'd always known he was different. That much about him was obvious but gave way to little else. She wanted to know everything about him. But knew that it was a fleeting wish. All she had was the questions to remain unanswered and the knowledge that he doesn't love her.

What no one knew about Clark was that he is Kal-El. In every way, shape, and form. He was an alien. He was a Kryptonian. What no one seemed to realize is that Clark Kent was just a product of environment. An upbringing. A programming. He is Kal-El because that's who he was born to be. Jonathan liked to think a man could choose his own destiny, and under different circumstances he was probably right, but Kal knew nothing could be done about something so predetermined. Kal looked at himself in the mirror and found it difficult to see who exactly was facing back.

Alien? Human?

Kal-El? Clark Kent?

He walked through the days not knowing anything beyond the facts. He walked through with everyone he knew wondering what is wrong with him. They don't ask but he can see it on their faces. His mother, his father, his friends. They think they know him but they don't. No one ever really knew anyone, and they would never really know him.

Was he really a god among men? Were humans really a flawed race? His biological father thought so. Did that mean he had to think it as well? Strength was where his greatness lied, but was that all the greatness he had in him? He had so many abilities. So many talents. He still found it hard to believe they could only be for one purpose. He couldn't even win class president and he was to rule the world?

He thinks of begging and pleading and searching for the knowledge of who he was and who he will be. And he had gotten his answers.

He knew who he was now.

"This is Kal-El."

He knew where he was from.

"Of Krypton."

He knew why he was here.

"Rule them with strength my son, because that is where your greatness lies."

These were the answers he so desired. But the catch seemed to be that they only sprung up more questions. The kind he wasn't sure if he wanted to know the answers to.

He wondered if maybe ignorance was the better way to go.

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