by prufrock and jenn

Pru: I take no responsibility for this. I was ambushed and then it happened.
jenn: Pru SAID she wanted collegefic. She didn't say that she didn't want to help write it.

Archiving: SSA, Level_Three

Disclaimer: We don't own. This is, I think, tragic.

Clark has bunk beds and he still has no idea what to make of that.

It's not like he has a roommate. Clark's almost sure that Lex arranged that somehow, though he's not going to ask. Lex and his maneuvering in that eternal quest to give gifts that can't be returned is near legendary by now.

But that leaves the bunk beds, and Clark's just not sure what to do with the other one. So far, it's been a clothes depository of sorts--and right now, the level of laundry is getting close to hitting the ceiling, not a good thing. Floating up, Clark evens out the pile, coming back down to stare resentfully at the faux-wood finish of the post and think about the fact that he's obsessing over a bed.

Obsessing for no good reason except one, and that's the fact that Lex is an hour late.

Not that they had plans. They never have plans. Plans are subject to cancellation and random problems, but--it's kind of tradition. This weird sort of unspoken agreement that Sunday nights, Lex will stop by and Clark will complain about school. It's their thing damn it, and Clark likes having a thing.

Life just isn't predictable enough for Clark not to have a few things like that.

In retrospect, a roomate might have been a good thing. He's always felt--uncomfortable isn't the right word, but something close to that. Adrift, perhaps. Maybe it's the lack of familiar voices, but Clark sees all his things and his things alone scattered about with a mild discontentment.

Something's off, a badly shapen puzzle piece forced into a mostly-fitting spot or some other confusing parable but whatever it is, it make him uncomfortable.

Home was supposed to envelope. seduce, comfort, not put one ill at ease. Not make him feel--vaguely out of place, inches from where he should be, and it's--really time he stopped paying quite so much attention in philosophy class if this is how he starts thinking when he's alone.

Especially on a night he *shouldn't* be.

Pacing the room, Clark ignores schoolbooks and old candy wrappers, kicking shoes out of his way and glancing at his watch to pretend he's checking on the battery. It's an old watch, damn it. Maybe it--goes too fast.

He won't get hurt. He won't pace the room. He'll put on his shoes, go out, and see if anyone's around to play with--er, hang out with. He doesn't need a rematch on Grand Turismo III. He doesn't need to see Lex. And he sure as hell doesn't need to sit around his room, moping, for a guy who has a very, very busy schedule, not to mention an actual life.

In fact, Clark rationalizes, in the grand scheme of things, this day is better without Lex. Because Lex has a tendency to win every time they play Grand Theft Auto and then refuses to tell Clark about his misspent days of youth and how that bears a possible connection with his admirable abilities to a) steal cars and b) acquire prostitutes.

Really, Clark is glad that Lex isn't here yet because Lex is a stuffy adult businessman and Clark? So much cooler.

Really. He was even at a rave the other week.

Granted, he left early, but the point was that he was there and Lex hadn't fallen out of any S&M clubs smelling like strawberry foam in years.

He's eighteen, nearly nineteen. He is a healthy almost-adult male in need of company and he can find that. He's interesting, he's smart, he's fun to be around--and no, he doesn't count the stupid comments made by his obviously completely delusional next door neighbor that he has no life, because, damn it, he does.

With that in mind, Clark swings open the closet door with a sense of triumph. Clothes will be put on and the going out will commence. Totally new tradition. Going out on--a Sunday night. The most boring night of the week.

Also, he's seeing a real lack of clothes going on here.

Empty hangers are suspended in lonely clumps from the bar and litter the floor. Oh, this can't be good. He has no clothes and he wants to go clubbing.

Life. Sucks.

A knock on his door interrupts his train of thought, and Clark stomps over. Jeans are good enough for clubs. And right, his chess club shirt might not be the hottest thing out there, but still. He's cool. He doesn't need Lex or games or cool clothes or anything...

Opening the door, Clark stares at the slim, be-jeaned and be-sweatered man before him.


Somehow, the entire lack of clean laundry just doesn't seem that important all of a sudden.

Lex levels a long, considering stare at Clark before smiling, low and slick and lazy, like a Metropolis August: Clark feels it flush across him.

He doesn't bother to wave Lex in and Lex doesn't move but he does watch before saying, "So I was thinking."

Clark blinks. He's learned over the years to just go with it. "Thinking," he parrots.

Lex grins, cocks his head to one side in a way that might be called flirting, if you know, if it wasn't them, and says, "You want to go out tonight? Instead of sitting around here having me kick your ass at video games?"

Clark blushes. "You do not kick my ass," he says hotly, but he's already stepping out into the hallway in ratty jeans and a gray t-shirt, less concerned than ever about appearances.

Lex takes two steps back and falls into stride next to Clark. The students on the floor still cast them the occasional look but for the most part, they're used to it: Lex Luthor and Clark Kent, two opposite sides of the same agriculturally funded coin, best friends and maybe more. Clark's heard all the jokes and they aren't important right now.

Because, Clark thinks, we're stepping out.

It's a bar--a nice one, not one that Clark, in a thousand years, would have considered visiting. The name throws him--The Seraglio? A glance at Lex shows nothing but normal Lex-calm, but beneath, something's seriously going on there.

A man in a very nice suit greets them--very large, very imposing, and Clark, superpowered and all, feels the Instant Intimidation of someone staring down at him from six inches above his head. A single look takes them in, college-chic clothes and lingering on Clark's ratty cross-trainers, but a second glance at Lex is like a magical free pass. Stepping back from the door, the man nods. "Mr. Luthor. Welcome to the Seraglio."

"Nice to see you too, Joey." Joey? Clark wonders if he looks as nervous as he feels. This looks like the type of place that rich people go to do wild, crazy, immoral things. Bad things. Wrong things. Things Dad would disapprove of muchly. Things....

Oh yeah. He's so grown-up.

The man opens the door, letting them inside a dimly lit room, all polished wood and soft carpet, and Clark watches Lex charm the manager (or so Clark assumes) who appears almost instantly, gracing them with an oily smile and that type of greeting that Clark defines as 'sucking up'. Lex gets that a lot in Metropolis. "Mr. Luthor! What a pleasure to have you with us...."

Lex nods sharply, cutting him off with a smile. "Floor seating today. See that drinks are brought at once. This is Clark's first time."

Floor seating?

Lex's hand closes over his arm, leading him to a red curtained doorway. Something smooth and vaguely rhythmic is drifting through the curtain, and Clark blinks a little as the manager pulls it aside, letting them in.

His first view is of a very, very naked woman doing something that should be anatomically impossible with her legs.

"Lex...." The word escapes on a shocked hiss, and Martha Kent's very not-so-grown-up son finds himself staring around him in shock. Naked. Women. Everywhere.

Clark is going to work through this. Granted, his logical reasoning skills are less than impressive, but being around Lex and his astounding ability to make anything cryptic has to count for some practice. So Clark blinks three times and decides that he's not hallucinating and turns to look at Lex gape-mouthed and breathing a little too hard because - wow, he didn't know a person could bend that way.

Lex is smiling, a dark, rich sort of expression that makes Clark itch. "Like it?" he asks, like he just took Clark to a goddamn zoo or something.

Clark tries to form words in his mouth and when he utterly and completely fails, Lex laughs and places one slender hand on his arm again, pushing him toward a table and saying thing about flies and not looking common, Clark, close your mouth already unless you intend to do something useful with it.

Clark flops into a chair and Lex sits opposite to him. Instantly, three girls dance closer to them and Clark gulps and leans away instinctively because there's just something unnatural about breasts being that three dimensional. He's done his stint with porn and the university's T3 line and kazaa but that was always grainy and pixilated and good God, where they supposed to be that shape?

"You," Clark finally manages, "brought me to a strip joint."

Lex waves this off. "Gentleman's club, Clark. "Strip joint" is so plebian. Is your Literature professor useless?"

Clark thinks that this is what defines Lex: sitting at a prime table in what is probably the most expensive strip club in the world, after having taken his barely legal best friend there and knowing all the managers and bouncers by name, surrounded by miles of satin skin and more tits and ass than Hugh Hephner could shake a stick at - and he's chastising Clark about diction.

"Gentleman." Two very expensive looking crystal glasses are set between them. Fun. Okay. Fun. Hmm.

Turning, Clark takes in what appears to be quilt squares placed in strategic positions by a pretty brunette with very sleepy eyes. Eyes focused on Lex with all the interest of a starving cat contemplating a wounded mouse, and oh man. This is...this is....

"Thank you, Cybil." Reaching for the glass, Lex takes an elegant sip. "Perfect." Looking up at her -- face, God please let him be looking at her face -- Lex smiles as if she alone is the reason the alcohol is up to stuff. "Clark, try it."

Why did he call her Clark?

Clark blinks briefly, realizing that though the smile is Cybil's -- is he resentful? No! No reason to be! -- the words are for him. Gingerly, remembering far too many experiences with fragile things and uncertain control and wow, she has big breasts -- focus, Clark -- he picks it up, taking a sip of an almost thick, red liquid that his tongue instantly identifies as Some Kind of Red Wine.

Another new lesson. Red wine for meat and strippers. Always useful.

"Great," he says, and hopes he sounds sincere. Could she and her breasts please go somewhere else? "Thanks."

Clark takes a bigger drink as the waitress leaves, focusing on the heels currently only inches away at near-eye level. Farther up from that he cannot go. Doesn't want to go. Though those are nice legs in those hose. Thigh highs? That's interesting. And her skin, the color of honey, looks soft. And wow, how does she get that kind of close shave....

He's looking at a woman's -- place.

Clark takes another drink and wonders if the wine will be a good excuse for the fact his face is burning.

"It's all right to look, Clark," Lex says and Clark curses in his head.

It wouldn't kill him to miss something one day, Clark thinks bitterly. All Lex does is smirk and drum his fingers on the table.

"It's why we're here," Lex goes on. He gives Clark a Look. "Or more, if you like."

Clark's mouth go automatically dry and God, when did it get so hot? What the hell is being an alien good for if he's not even going to be impervious to this sort of shit? And really, he ought to know better because for God's sake, it's Lex, one big invitation for wheezing terror and generally inappropriate things smashing into one another with inexplicable grace.

"More," Clark deadpans.

"More," Lex concurs, smiling merrily.

"Are you trying to kill me?" Clark demands.

Lex's smile widens, changing into something vaguely challenging. It's a guy thing that Lex has perfected, that way of daring without saying a word, and it's irritating because it works. Taking a breath, Clark gulps down more wine, a little surprised to feel a slight rushing sensation as he sets the -- empty? -- glass down. Grown-up. He can look at live-action naked women. This is fantasy stuff, right? Settling in the leather seat, Clark starts at the silver heels again and starts working his way up.

Yes, legs still in hose, garter belt -- that's pretty, but isn't it uncomfortable? -- her -- place -- up to smooth hips, an tiny waist, and --

"Whoa." Instant erection. The kind that can break concrete or cause intense pain, whichever one, and Clark catches himself almost slipping a hand to his jeans, dear God, is he a kid still?

Breasts. Big, round, soft-looking, pink nipples, one pierced. Pierced! Reaching for his glass, he forgets it was empty, but amazingly, it's not anymore, and that's Totally Okay, because he needs a drink badly.

From the corner of his eye, he can see Lex do some sort of wave, and the breasts -- girl, it's a girl, Clark, not an anatomical part -- come closer, bouncing softly as she moves to the rhythm of the music. Sliding down, long legs slip outward, and right here in front of him, she's doing a split -- dear God, she can do a split? -- sleepy blue eyes looking into his, blonde hair sliding provocatively over her shoulder, casing one perfect breast in silk floss. A nipple pokes through wickedly, and Clark takes another drink, wondering if his eyes are as big as he's really scared they are.

She's naked and she's dancing for them. Him. Lex. Here. Close enough.

One more drink. He needs it.

Lex leans forward, slipping a bill into the tiny string around her hips, barely noticeable and the only reason that bit of cloth doesn't move. As he slips it in, Clark feels his mouth go dry, because he is looking at a woman's--vagina--right here and it's a real thing and...

He needs more to drink. Much more

"Wow," he hears himself whisper, and he's a dork, right, but you know, right now, he just can't care.

He hears Lex laugh softly from beside him and he can't even tear his gaze away long enough to glare.

The girl smiles, and the expression looks real now, eyes shifting from Clark to Lex and her lips purse just slightly and she says, "It's been ages, Alexander."

Clark doesn't fall out of his chair. He's really proud of this.

He also doesn't look at Lex, but that's mostly because he's still staring at the girl's place --vagina, he can say it.

"Too long," Lex almost purrs, and the girl's smile gets wider before she focuses again, does one more soft shimmy that has her breasts bouncing and Clark's brain screaming before she sashays off -- not before running one manicured hand down the length of Lex's arm.

Clark makes a sound that is not a squeak, 'cause, you know, adult -- above that.

But he does finally turn around to Lex and say, "So."

Lex just raises his eyebrows and sips out of a glass that seems to have appeared magically at their table. His lips linger on the edge of the cup and Clark doesn't know why that's so distracting but he's already got sex on the brain and his dick isn't getting the idea that he can't exactly do anything about it right now. "Like what you see?" Lex asks, friendly.

Clark scowls. "What kind of question is that?"

Lex just smirks. "A good one, I hope." Clark is quiet and Lex says, "You wouldn't take the Porsche. I had to improvise."

Lex is still the giver of flagrant presents, shiny, bright, large objects that are, by Clark's speculation, only half to please. There is a large part that makes Clark think that Lex is putting a mark on a person, like having a silver-blue Porsche as a student is a big giveaway that that is the Clark Kent that is friends with Lex Luthor. There's something possessive and not at all subtle about it, like Lex is laying claim.

What ought to bother Clark more is that he doesn't mind. It makes him smile.

He likes it when Lex tries things like this, doesn't care when he ends up on papers with Lex at one event or another: they're very photogenic when they're together, generally smiling, like they're more comfortable in one another's company than anywhere else.

"I suppose I'll get a pony next," Clark says.

Or maybe a sign: Lex Luthor's Friend.

Lex just smiles into his drink in a way that makes Clark think of...totally inappropriate things for a strip club full of women.

"Kinky, Clark," Lex says, teasing.

Clark thinks that he walked right into that one.

So he just rolls his eyes and turns back to the sparkling stage where everyone is waiting for the next girl to arrive. He's still thinking about this, Lex's need to show people certain things or people or accomplishments are his own. It gives him a really strange flush to think that he's Lex's, because those words mean more than they should, at least to him because Clark has always made it clear to everyone involved that Lex is his friend, emphasis on "his".

Because when he thinks of people belonging to one another, he thinks about wedding rings and domestic arguments about who should have taken out the garbage and what movie they're going to see on the weekend. But since it's Clark and Lex someone else would take out the garbage for them and the arguments are going to be over whether or not it's ethical to destroy small, struggling corporations for fun and profit. The point is that it leaves a lot of open space and Clark imagines that if it was him and Lex, it would probably be filled with unimaginable amounts of sex.

...Oh shit.

This is not, Clark realizes, a normal thought for a heterosexual man to be having.

Clark stumbles over his own tongue for a while before gathering himself. "Why," he starts, "exactly are we here?"

Lex actually sets the glass down and looks concerned. "Are you feeling okay?"

Clark stares at him. "I'm -- I'm fine -- what?"

The concern reveals mocking amusement. "A nineteen year old male in a strip joint generally does not question the reasons he finds himself there."

Clark opens his mouth to provide a long treatise on why he's not questioning, really, and more importantly why Lex sucks before his brain catches on something.

"You said 'strip joint,'" he crows.

Lex narrows his eyes.

Turning his attention back to the stage -- he takes his victories where he can get them these days -- Clark watches her bend backward over a chair. It's very athletic, and his wine glass is apparently bottomless, and that's all kinds of okay.

"We -- had drinks once."

Fucked like naked bunnies, Clark's translates mentally, and his eyes narrow. Her legs are maybe a little too short for high heels -- and look, what's this, she totally is not a natural blonde! Settling in his chair, Clark watches her lick her lips, and really, she's not that hot. Her mouth is all wrong....

But probably looked really interesting, say, wrapped around Lex's cock....

And, oh my God, Clark is now thinking about Lex's cock and all the liquor is making him susceptible.

He runs one hand through his hair and sets down the glass to stare at the stage intensely because, hey, naked girls!

With Lex.

Naked girls with Lex who is also naked and then Clark is right back to thinking about Lex's cock, which is all kinds of deliciously wrong.

Clark sneaks one look over at Lex which is a Big Mistake, because is doing that indecent thing with his mouth and the rim of the cup again and Clark has to turn back to look at the stage.

This is not helping. He's already been having these really...worrisome ideas about Lex.

You know, speculation, thought, tangents, maybe a couple of pairs of ruined boxers.

All, Clark thinks, par for the course when your best friend is Lex Luthor, who Clark has long since decided just breaks all sorts of boundaries. Including those, Clark thinks distractedly, various images of Lex and Lex's cock and that damn bleach blond floating through his head, that mark off Clark's sexuality.

He's going to be irritated and frightened after he stops being...preoccupied, really.

The music ends and the girl straightens with ruler-like precision, like a second ago she wasn't just doing that thing with her legs and back, grabbing a diaphanous looking bit of material to throw over her very bare breasts and disappearing. Lex, Clark can tell, is watching her with a curious expression of interest, like just maybe, there was a reason besides Scaring the Crap Out of Clark that this evening came to be.

Not good at all. Clark takes a drink of his wine, the edges of fuzz in his head suddenly becoming very pronounced.

"Are you going to ask her out tonight?"

Somehow, that had sounded different in his head. He's not sure what it was supposed to be, but he's almost sure he didn't mean to ask that question.

Very blue eyes fix on Clark. "Is that what you call it?"

Shrugging, Clark slumps into the seat. He's a man. He can handle this. Another strain of heavy music, and Clark watches a tall brunette slip out from behind the curtain. Corset covering somewhat smaller but not less impressive breasts. Little leather bit between her legs. Black hose. Straight dark hair and wide dark eyes.

Clark finds himself leaning forward to watch her as she saunters toward the center of the stage, one leather-gloved hand wrapped around a central pole.

Clark thinks there's a vague similarity: the hair, the eyes, they look like Lana.

But the slide of her body, the way it occupies space and flows through it like parting water, that's all Lex.

And then she begins to dance, circling, stroking the pole, eyes focused on their table the whole time, dark like two very naughty promises.

It's the corset that that goes first, string by string, she loosens and pulls and untucks in time to the music until it just slips off of her and lands with a soft thud on the ground that's in time to Clarks' jaw dropping again. She bends over next, and in some patently illegal slip, manages to pull off her gloves in way that makes Clark think about silk and sheets and drying stains the morning after.

And it's a bad time but for no reason the words "Lex's cock" float through his mind again, clinging to his temporal lobe and feeding him images: Lex, pale and thin and strong with those long, long legs wrapped around him, dark eyes staring up, the two of them moving like a symphony.

Clark is not turned on

Because being the biggest dork in Smallville, coupled with being an alien, is quite enough -- thank you -- to make Clark feel like a freak for the rest of his life.

He really doesn't want to have to add "gay" to that list and just complicate things more.

Besides, he thinks sullenly, stupid. Lex goes to places with naked girls, not naked boys.

"That's Brandi, with an 'I'," Lex murmurs, and right, of course it doesn't escape Lex's attention that Clark's two steps from drooling, even if he has no idea why. Nodding shortly, Clark watches the slow, sinuous movements of her body, somehow managing to make a pole look a lot more sexy than anything inanimate every should be. Long legs straddle it briefly as she leans back, a waterfall of long, dark hair spilling onto the floor.

"Acquaintance?" Clark asks, realizing as he takes another drink that his glass is full. How is that happening, anyway?

"Somewhat." And is Lex -- nervous? Tearing his eyes from the stage, Clark looks over at Lex, who's staring at the girl with the kind of concentration Lionel gets right around the time he seriously pisses Lex off. Hmm. Nothing like the redhead, that. Turning his attention back to the stage, Clark sips his wine, enjoying the heady feeling of just this barest loss of control. When the dark eyes slide up, they catch his, holding, and in her next slow bend she never looks away.

He's fumbling for his wallet before he even knows what he's doing, and she's crossing the polished surface of the floor, sliding down to lift one leg over her head, arm crooked around her thigh. That scrap of quilting fabric isn't even trying to do its job anymore.

But he's -- and this scares him, too -- not looking at her body or her breasts or her legs or even her place. He's looking at her eyes and wondering why she gets this look of intensity from Lex so he just pulls out whatever bill he grabs first and tucks it ungracefully into the string around her hips. His fingers feel like sandpaper against he hot silk of her skin and he almost groans from the contact.

She doesn't smile at him, not really, just lifts one corner of her mouth and lowers her lashes long enough to look at Lex before she moves back out of reach.

Okay, and this is really inappropriate, but Clark scowls, spell broken, and mutters, "Is there any ass in here you haven't had?"

"Yours," Lex says instantly, like he's not really thinking as he says it.

Oh. The fuzziness can't quite make sense of it, but the way Lex looks afterward is absolutely classic. Instantly, though, the slim body relaxes on command, and Lex picks up his wine glass, taking a casual drink. "Though I'm sure there are others here."

Uh-huh. Right. Clark keeps his eyes on the stage, but nothing she's doing is registering above the way Lex said that. He's barely aware of her leaving the stage, sipping while blindly staring at the curtain she disappeared behind.

Another girl comes out, but Clark can't quite concentrate on her, and alcohol is good, right, but also, not so great for all that higher thinking, and then he hears Lex's voice in his ear -- warm, moist air brushing impossibly sensitive skin, and Clarks' erection does this bobbing thing that's sure to embarrass him any minute now.

"Pull your chair back."

Automatically, Clark obeys, and the slim brunette is--almost completely naked and in his lap. How had that happened?

"Enjoy" Lex murmurs, sitting back, and Clark's hands close over the arms of the chair as the slim body slips down on his, groin settling briefly against his cock and oh wow, damn, God, they can DO this kind of thing here?

A spill of dark hair brushes his face as she leans forward. Clark makes a noise that he's sure makes him sound like a twelve year old but apparently, the brunette isn't having a problem with it. White arms are looped about his neck and she's "dancing" against him, stroking slowly, sensually, and he can feel it like pinpricks on his skin.

This is...good. Amazingly good.

And past where his vision is obscured by her hair, all he gets is a hazy vision of Lex looking at him intensely, gray blue eyes almost black in this lighting.

He feels himself jerk and tightens his fingers around the arms of the chair.

He's moaning at this point but the girl seems used to this and just strokes down harder, faster, moving double-time to the same thick music while Lex's eyelids droop just a fraction.

Clark doesn't' know why but the sensation of this is all good but it's the eye candy that's really getting him.

Lex and that look on his face that makes big promises and says more about silk and sweat and stained sheets than any of these girls ever could.

Lex who will watch him -- just like that while he is the one stroking down.

He can't quite make himself touch her -- he's not sure he wants to -- and his gaze is held in Lex's in a way that's inescapable, even if he'd considered looking away. Which he isn't, because Lex looks like that, and it's hot, so hot, and he's attracted to his best friend who is watching him get a lap dance from a beautiful girl who is only about one third responsible for the fact that Clark's about thirty seconds from coming.

As she steps back, Clark drains his glass, a strange feeling of giddy anticipation slipping over him like a cloak. This silly, odd, completely free feeling. He's at a strip club. He's in Metropolis. His parents aren't here. He's above the age of consent. He -- he can DO something.

He's also not a little drunk, and that's the very best part.

"Can we get out of here?" Clark asks, pushing himself upright and enjoying the rush of sensation, the loose feel of seemingly water-like muscles.

That Lex is surprised is clear, but he only nods, leaving a bill on the table before standing up. Clark reaches for the hand that's offered politely, and it's a shock to realize he needs it, balance uncertain and the world is turning in pretty circles, and man, this is so cool.

He likes this.

They're stopped three times -- waitresses and a manager, though Clark has no idea what's said or why he should care. All his focus is on the warm hand on his arm, fingers pressing in like Lex wants to leave fingerprints for others to find and recognize, and that's perfectly okay, because, wow. Yes. This is -- really cool.

"Clark," he hears, far away but very close to his ear because he can feel Lex's breath on his ear. And it is good.

"Clark are you drunk?" Lex asks, he sounds amused.

Clark frowns, and reaches out to wrap one arm around Lex's wrist and jerk him just a bit closer. He doesn't want Lex to sound like he's going to laugh. He wants him...bothered. "Not drunk," he protests.

"You're drunk," Lex breathes. It almost sounds like an apology.

But Clark doesn't care and Lex is still leading them through the pulsing crowd, people parting for them like Lex is the Moses of the glitterati.

A few more people wave or say goodbye and give Clark Knowing Looks, neither of which Clark cares about because he needs oxygen A few more steps and they tumble out into the cool Metropolis night, stars nowhere to be seen but large, burnt-orange disks of light hanging up, skyscrapers reflecting, a thousand cars screaming by --

But the feeling of Lex's skin on his own still: heavy like a blanket that is just as suffocating as the crowd.

"Would you -- " The words trickle off, caught in the cool air--reason tries to surface, but Clark tells it to take a long walk. It's late and no one's around, and that makes it okay to detour a little from their walk toward the establishment's private covered parking lot, pressing Lex up against the wall.

Imagining Lex doing to him what that girl did, slow and dark and dirty.

"Clark, are you okay?"

The wall's close and Lex against it is something to see. Clothes for slumming with the younger college kid that's new to Metropolis and the world, blending into the dark of the wall, the shadows made between two buildings, this insanely clean and neat alley that makes Clark feel like they're the only people in the world.

He can remember how her body moved -- slow, catlike, sensuality like something tangible, and tonight, his body can do that, too. Alcohol makes him loose and want makes him a little crazy -- he plants both elbows on either side of Lex's head and moves like she taught him.

And Lex, beneath those jeans, is just as hard as he is.

"Lex," he hears himself whisper when uncertain hands -- and Lex is never uncertain, never -- press to his chest like he wants to pull away. "That was you."

"What? Quickened breath and flushed cheeks, just enough light to see the color and Clark bends his head to taste red on silky-smooth skin. Hot and wild, with the scent of Lex's cologne like a drug this close.

He'll never smell it again and not get hard. "Her. When she danced with me. That was you."

"Jesus, Clark!" Lex moans. Clark can feel Lex tight like a spring, corded muscles are stretched taunt from not moving and the tension is radiating off of him. "I think we need to have the birds and bees talk," Lex tries, the quipping note in his voice failing totally.

Clark just pushes closer -- close enough to grind their hips together, and he's almost burned from the contact. Lex nearly jumps out of his skin and Clark thinks his brain is melting, but it's good melting, so it grabs Lex's wrists and pins him to the wall because this is not the bad touching that they talked about in fifth grade human health and development.

"Clark," Lex tries again, his voice hoarse, "I think I let you have too much to drink. It's getting late. You need to get back to -- "

Clark grinds against him again because Lex talks too much.

Lex's last words are lost in a choked gasp and finally, finally, Lex grinds back, primitive urge and beat running through his veins.

Clark is almost humming from it, feeling it in every pore: that dizzy, blurred, brightly lit sensation that is strengthened by alcohol and catalyzed by want. He's been wanting all night, all day, from when he was staring at the fucking bunk beds to when the woman came on stage and kept his gaze. It's all been one long intricate dance and --

"Clark, Clark - I really don't think -- "

So he does a few calculations and does the most natural thing in the world, bends his head and presses is mouth to Lex's.

It's an odd angle, so they shift until noses aren't bumping and no one ends up drooling on anyone else but it's hot and cramped and messy like all the best kisses are: mouth opening up to one another and tongue sliding and tasting, slow and lazy, like they've got forever to do this.

His hips are still moving but he's kissing Lex and he never knew silence could be this golden.

The slim wrists fight his grip, but he can't quite make himself let Lex go. Having him against the wall like this, writhing against him, teeth sharp and quick over his lips, sucking on his tongue in an unmistakable rhythm, and Clark might be new at this, but he knows what that is, what it's meant to tell him, what it will be like the first time Lex goes down on him with that incredible, addictive mouth. Utter surety that it's going to happen, they're going to happen, and it starts right here.

"Corrupt me," Clark whispers against swollen lips when Lex jerks back to take a breath, head knocking into the red brick of the wall. "Show me. Do -- do it to me. Touch me."

He lets go, needing to touch now, has to have Lex's skin imprinted into his fingers. Smooth and slick with sweat, tracing over high cheekbones and the strong line of his jaw before two fingers are pulled into Lex's mouth and he's sucking on him, oh God, he's watching and it's so hot and so good.

Even better when strong hands fix on his hips, guiding him faster, harder, almost brutal friction of denim between them and Clark drops a hand from the wall instinctively, reaching down between them. Lex's cock makes him pause, and he has to cup it, hard length fitted so perfectly it's like his hands were made just for this. They're both breathing like they've run across the entire damn galaxy, Lex with glazed eyes and so fast, like quicksilver moving all over him. Hands on his ass briefly before they're dropped between them, unbuttoning Clark's jeans and pulling them roughly loose before sliding beneath, a shudder when his hands touch bare skin.

"No underwear." Like the best gift ever, like a prayer of thanks as those hands track sensitive skin over his hips, digging in.

"Nothing clean." Thank God he's such a procrastinator. Lex's throat is right there, begging for attention, and Clark leans down, mouthing sensitive skin and solid muscle, sucking it into his mouth and wondering if he'll leave bruises and wanting to so badly.

Right there, above the collar of even the highest shirt, proof and possession all at once, and Lex twists his hips, hands on his ass, jerking him in so close Clark almost has to move his hand. Clumsy fingers unzip and unbutton, and right, it's a night for it, it's all bare skin as smooth as silk and then Lex lines them up-- "Oh God."

"I'm corrupting you -- right now," Lex breathes into his hair. "I want you dirty, Clark."

That makes him bite, he can't help it, and Lex makes an inhuman sound, thrusting against him. So close. A peak he can just see, coming right at him, and he gasps in a startled breath, biting again when Lex moans, low and ark and promising.

Clark remembers thinking that people in porn talk too much, but he's starting to get maybe that's part of the experience. Because Lex is chanting something low and rough like a dare in his ears, and the words are all run together in a litany of four letter praises and curses and the perfect hot of Lex's thrusts and Lex's mouth dipping down to kiss his neck, his face, bite at his collarbone.

They're probably making sparks and Clark wouldn't be surprised if they set the whole damn compound on fire because he's so hot he can barely stand it, the shivering, knee-weakening pleasure, and the suddenness of it rushing up and he doesn't have time for finesse but all he does catch is the last, rough slide of denim and cock against his own before he lets out a shout and slams up against Lex hard enough to guarantee sex bruises in the morning.

He's coming and he's gritting his teeth and fucking up against Lex wildly, enough to make them both shudder at the contact.

The bricks are rough beneath his fingers and Clark thinks that there is nothing better than this: the slick smell of the city and the steamy, dirty maddeningly good rubbing, contact, closer - he can't get enough and his body is holding Lex against the wall, he's never going to move. They're going to dry and get stuck and Clark doesn't care.

He comes back to himself enough to realize that Lex has bitten through his lip and they share the same sex-dazed look.

Shaky, but on their feet, and Clark's forehead rests on Lex's shoulder, vaguely aware of the soothing hand rubbing absently against the back of his neck. Lex, smooth and malleable around him, and alcohol is the best thing ever. Best thing, really.

A few long moments before Lex shifts, and it's work to step back, but his hands don't quite want to let go, clinging long after his body's moved. Falling to his sides, Clark draws in a deep breath, reminded of sweaty hair clinging to his face and damp stains on his jeans that he could care less about. Lex leans back into the wall again, taking a long, deep breath.

"Lex?" Something could go wrong now.

"I need to get--you back to campus." Straightening, Lex buttons his jeans efficiently, reaching for Clark to perform the same favor as impersonally as a friend and nothing like the semi-slut who was saying such filthy, wonderful things against his ear and moaning like he was dying. Mouth dry, Clark nods slowly as Lex turns, following him to their car--oh, look at that preferred member. Lex has been here a lot.

Slept with those girls. But hey, now he can say he has slept with everyone in that place.

It's quiet when Lex starts the car. The blackening bruise on his throat's bigger than Clark had thought, and he can see the teeth marks still imbedded in Lex's collarbone, coloring up as they speak. Clasping his hands in his lap, Clark tries to find something to say, but what the hell did you say in moments like this? "Good job," was just wrong.

The dorm's silent when they go back up, and Lex is almost twitchy, like whatever's under his skin is trying to get out and failing miserably. He knows the feeling. Silently, he unlocks his dorm door, letting Lex inside the darkened room, but of all bizarre things, Lex doesn't turn around to say anything particularly meaningful.

He heads, of all places, right for the bunk beds and overturns a pile of laundry to the floor.

Okay, what?


"Get your bag," Lex says calmly, picking through the pile. Two pairs of jeans, a few shirts, some socks.

Clark tries to think. It's very hard. He's post-orgasmic and mostly still drunk. "What?"

"Bag. Under your desk. Throw it here."

The desk is a short, strangely surreal walk, and Clark finally gets over there, grabbing the deflated canvas and taking it over. And--why is Lex packing his clothes? "Lex--what?"

Sharp look up--oh. Eyes that say sex, more than sex, words that Clark's never learned but he'd like to, before the pack is over Lex's shoulder and he crosses to the laptop, shutting it down and tucking it under one arm. Slim fingers close over his hand, lacing through his, and--Lex is leading him back to the door, shutting off the lights with a flick of his wrist, using Clark's key to lock the door. "Let's go."

Clark just nods. "Okay."

And it was in Lex's eyes, which makes it a promise.

A dirty, sweaty, naked, sticky promise in 900 count Egyptian cotton sheets that will have Clark missing class for days, weeks, months if Clark has anything to say about it.

They're already flying down Amsterdam toward shining towers in the distance when Clark's mouth does it, ruins it: "So what is this?"

He's never going to forgive himself because if this leads to less sex or - God forbid - no sex then he's going to have to sew his lips shut.

Lex doesn't even bother turning just says, "This is us."

Which could sound mean, Clark thinks, but there is a great softness in Lex's voice. Like he's only just figuring this out, too, like he's really surprised that this thing is happening, that it could at all. Clark wants to tell him that he didn't know either.

Instead, Clark says, "Oh." He pauses and wonders if he needs to go find thread. "This is us," he repeats, trying out the words.

Lex smiles now, a little goofy, a lot happy, which Clark thinks Lex should be more, because he's really beautiful when he's happy. "Yeah," Lex agrees, "us."

The liquor is starting to wear off, or maybe it's the wind, or maybe it's the prospect of us needing a capital U and wedding bells but Clark's brain is filling with all sorts of extra information that he doesn't need. But he wants to know how long this is, if he's just another conquest; if Clark really is just the last piece of ass before Lex gets full marks. Clark can't think that he is: he and Lex are friends, best friends. But maybe, in Metropolis, this is just something that good friends do.

But Clark's not brave enough to ask so thank God Lex is distracted enough to say, "We'll have to go back."

"Go back?" Clark asks. He's not letting himself think of the implications.

Lex nods, changing lanes. "To get your things. I only grabbed three shirts."

Clark leans back into the seat and breaths.

He thinks about bridges and twists of fate. He thinks about small towns and small dreams that change and grow and impossible, improbable things that flourish when people have faith or trip into one another. He thinks about accidents and smiles over nothing, secrets and history lessons and best friends who have only wanted the best for you, all this time.

Clark thinks about saying "I love you," and realizes that it's not about saying it at all.

But he's getting a headache and he needs to clear his head for all the sex.

So he says, "You can buy me new shirts."

Then Lex says, "Good idea," after a beat.

And they go home.

the end

If you enjoyed this story, please send feedback to prufrock and jenn

Also, why not join Level Three, the Smallville all-fic list?


Level Three Records Room