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FIC - Refining the Media (Smallville) - Jitka Jaylor — LiveJournal
Incorrigible Imp
FIC - Refining the Media (Smallville)
Title: Refining the Media
Fandom: Smallville future-fic
Pairing: Lex/Clark
Prompt: 139 – Bemused
Warnings: None
Rating: PG
Word Count: 1,225
These came first

Summary: Martha’s ability to bemuse amuses Lex.

Lex had been so thoughtful to call her last night. Of course, she’d been keeping close tabs on Lionel, and Lex was fully aware that she’d been one of the first to know of the man’s final grasp for immortality. Still, it was very nice of him to warn her that he and Clark would finally be making their announcement. She’d had to be firm with him that she would not need to be relocated during the media frenzy. Her boys needed some quiet time together, and she could not in good conscience stay with them while they were settling into their new public personas.

Besides, the paparazzi would trample her vegetable garden if she wasn’t firm with them.

“Good morning,” she chirped, easing her way out of the screen door. “I’d appreciate it if you all would step off of my porch,” she said, disapprovingly eyeing the pretty young gent trying to climb over the railings. There was a momentary ripple of stillness through the small crowd before the pushy few settled back into the ranks. “I’ve made lemonade.” She set the tray on the table and smiled down on the poor, bewildered souls, glad that two of the cameramen seemed able to work on autopilot. Lex was certainly going to enjoy watching the tapes.

“About your son, Mrs. Kent,” one brave woman started, her pen raised as though she was still in a classroom.

“Ah, have you seen Clark?” Martha asked. “Is he making sure Lex eats properly, poor boy always forgets to eat when those unsavory gossip mongers decide to hound him.” She frowned, a soft little moue that Jonathan would have laughed to see. Shuffling feet and slightly shocked eyes filled the area around her.

“I, uh, wouldn’t know, ma’am,” Miss Gutsy leaned forward, her confusion fading with a sharp glint, like a shark scenting blood in the water. Good instincts. Martha made a note to see if Lex could use an addition to his public relations office. “How long has your son Clark been looking after Mr. Luthor?”

Martha waved a thin hand with a tinkle of laughter. “Oh, Clark’s been looking after Lex for years.” She paused and sighed one of those theatrically romantic sighs while reporters scrambled to turn on recorders or pull out writing pads. “They had such a deep connection, ever since they first met.” She poured a glass and passed it down to a bemused Miss Gutsy. “Lex saved my little boy, you know.” Mouths that had been open to pour out questions froze. “And to loose all of his hair that very same day.” She shook her head and put a hand to her cheek. “There are reasons I never considered accepting Lionel’s proposal, and his treatment of children was certainly a large factor.” Paparazzi eyes darted around to see if any competitors had any idea what kind of scandal might be in the making. “Such a sweet little redhead, Alexander was.” Clark was going to like these reports, too.

“Redhead?” someone breathed.

“Oh yes, Lex took after his mother.” Martha picked up a plate of fresh cookies and passed it to a startled photographer trying to catch her in the eye. “You look a bit thin, honey. Make sure to share with your friends.” The boy nodded and stuffed a bite in his mouth. His eyes drooped a bit and a chocolaty grin spread across his face as the plate disappeared behind him. “You should have seen him sitting in that ruined cornfield, newly bald and obviously in shock, gently hugging this lost little toddler.” Martha could feel real tears misting her eyes and blinked them away with a gentle clearing of her throat. “Then, to think that Lionel scolded him.” She clucked her tongue and handed out another glass of lemonade.

“When was this?” Martha eyed the young man that had tried scaling her porch like a hooligan. He blushed.

“Young people,” she snapped, “never thinking about their own history until someone makes it sensational.” Not that she minded being the one to start the sensationalism. “Why, poor Lex lost his hair in that awful meteor shower – right here in Smallville.” And a few of those reporters were already mentally headed for old newspaper archives. “To think that he was so very outcast during his childhood, what with his social and financial standing alongside his physical baldness.” She made a soft, sympathetic sigh and told herself to keep those to a minimum from now on. “It’s a wonder Lex didn’t go all depressive and suicidal. Especially with how cruel children can be.” She paused, one hand shaking as she covered a soft gasp. “Going up against the undefeatable Superman isn’t suicidal, right?”

A long pause filled her yard as nervous reporters pondered that statement.

Martha laughed uneasily. “And that was just after his big falling out with Clark, too. Oh, Jonathan was so upset about that.” They predictably latched onto their original topic, hoping to avoid the implications for a while longer.

“Upset about what, Mrs. Kent?” A dark hand caught her attention in the back, half-eaten cookie clenched in his fingers.

“Well, Clark was upset.” Really, she should make them work a bit.

“Over the break up?” Miss Gutsy purred.

“Oh, yes,” Martha said softly. “Lex was his best friend, and Clark was still a bit too young to understand, I think.”

Frustrated looks darted between partners. “Understand?” Pretty PorchClimber asked. He seemed honestly confused.

“Well, Lionel was convinced that Clark was one of those Meteor Mutants.” Martha saw a few looks of recognition among the confusion. Miss Gutsy’s slowly widening eyes guaranteed at least one article with first-hand facts. “Lex never asked; he just tried to protect my boy.” Martha paused, bemused by the realization that Lex really hadn’t asked. “Love’s like that, you know.” The small crowd hung on her every word. “Doesn’t matter if Clark lied. There was a level of trust that let him know Lex was looking out for his best interest.” Martha tilted her head and looked across the field where Clark had never bothered to take out Jonathan’s last fence. “Doesn’t matter if Lex hurt Clark numerous times. Clark was the one person Lex could turn to.” Martha leaned against the railing. “They’d have been so much happier if they’d been having sex, you know.”

… … …

Clark turned off the TV and stared at the blank screen for a long moment. Lex trembled trying to hold back his laughter.

“My mom,” Clark choked. Lex turned away, one hand clapped over his mouth and eyes squeezed shut. “She,” pause, “she said,” cough. “Oh my god, I can never leave the penthouse.” Clark buried his face in his hands, and Lex snickered through his fingers.

“There’s another twenty minutes,” Lex managed to say without laughing, though his voice strained in ways it hadn’t done since puberty.

Clark groaned and collapsed sideways on the couch. “If I roll my eyes up into my head, do you think I could fry my brain?” he asked.

“Oh, is it my turn to save you?” Lex asked ingenuously. Clark peered up at him in confusion. How Clark managed the innocent befuddlement with a mother like Martha, Lex would never know. He just leaned in and kissed his good-old-fashioned, wholesome farm boy. They really were much happier, after all.

x-posted tamingthemuse

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