Color Coding

by Isagel

Huge thanks go to Rhi for beta. Feedback will be taken in and given a good home. For Eva, as always.

The castle is a labyrinth, and it would be easy to get lost. So many rooms and emotions, tangled together in a maze where every turn could lead you astray. When you enter, there are no maps to pick up by the door, but over the months Helen has drawn one in her mind. It is coded by color.

Purple is for the study - Lex Luthor at work. Soft hum of the computer, whisper of pages in a book. Click of balls on the pool table as he unwinds. Her fiance the executive, and she likes this man, takes pride in his successes. He is strong through to the bone. When she touches him, he smiles.

Silver is for the garage - Lex Luthor at play. Smell of gasoline and leather, the harsh language of engines translated into speed under his hands. Her fiance the daredevil, and she admires this man. He has no fear of living. When she touches him, he moves closer.

Blue is for the locked room - Lex Luthor in thought. Sharp edges of ripped metal, polished glimmer of plasma screens along the walls. Glossy pictures of a teenage face blown up larger than life. Her fiance the collector, and this man intrigues her. He would do anything for control. When she touches him, he turns away.

Somewhere there should be green, she thinks, but so far she hasn't found it. Only a threatening glow of foreboding around the edges of the map, a thousand mutations of darkness and power that shift in and out of focus. Perhaps it is still in the future. She doesn't yet know what it represents.

She knows that red is for the bedroom - Lex Luthor without masks. Pale skin in colored moonlight filtered through tinted window panes, smooth features twisted in dreams she stays awake to watch. Words from sleeping lips that she never hears in daylight, horror and hunger and a naming of the forces which rule his life. The name of his better angel isn't hers, but when the demons grab him, she still does her best to drive them away, with mouth and fingers and her body pressed close, moving with him in the solitude of that red light. Her fiance the human being, and she loves this man. He is vulnerable like a child. When she touches him, he fallls apart.

Is there a monster in this labyrinth? She tries not to believe so, but at times she is certain of it. She can feel it grow in the shadowy corners she is incapable of adding to the map, in the recesses of Lex's mind that lie too deep for anyone to touch. It links the rooms together, gathers every aspect of the maze within itself. Perhaps one day, it will be the only thing remaining.

She thinks its color may be white.

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