Story: Forever May Not Be Long Enough
Pairing/Characters: Collie, Chloe/Jimmy, mentions of past Clana, Lexana & Lollie
Disclaimer: don’t own anything
Warning: slash, mentions of m/m sex
Spoilers: season 7 (parts of it is true, others I made up)
Summary: After graduation, Clark knows he needs to go for his training and it causes him to make some tough choices.
Unknown to both Chloe and Clark, someone had noticed their disappearing act. That someone being none other than the subject of their private conversation. Oliver was making nice with one of Clark’s neighbors when he saw Clark leave with Chloe.
He had been having a good time at the party, despite the short amount of time he had gotten to spend with Clark. People were friendly and the food was good. Then he saw Chloe drag Clark away and his curiosity was piped. Knowing fully that he shouldn’t, he followed them.
But Chloe had been staring at Clark throughout the evening, shooting him concerned glances when she thought nobody was watching. Oliver was an observer by nature and he noticed Clark’s odd behavior, had seen Chloe’s expressions.
It had hurt when Clark lied about his whereabouts that morning but he knew forcing the truth out of Clark was not an option. It would only cause him to retreat further into his shell. However, he knew, as he saw Chloe pull Clark away from the crowd, that Chloe would get the truth out of him. And that make him insanely jealous.
Though Oliver really adored Chloe, thought she was a wonderful woman, he also saw that she had a connection with Clark that even he couldn’t have. She was his confidante, and the first person Clark went to with his problems. Of course, he would never express these feelings to Clark but it did hurt.
So he went after them and found them easily enough, hiding in a hidden corner of the room. Making sure he wasn’t spotted by the other guests and Clark and Chloe, he tuned into their conversation.
“Clark,” Chloe was saying, “I think Oliver deserves to know.”
I deserve to know what? It seems that Chloe had gotten answers and succeeded where Oliver had failed. Oliver tried to hold in the disappointment he was feeling and waited on Clark’s response.
“Chloe,” Clark said, “I’m not sure . . . I mean, I’m so confused . . .”
“Confused?” Chloe repeated, “Or scared?”
“A little bit of both I guess,” Clark confessed.
What did Clark have to be scared of? Oliver was truly worried. Oh, Clark, please, confide in me . . . I love you.
“I think you have nothing to be afraid of,” Chloe said gently. “Clark, do you have any idea how much Oliver loves you? Don’t you think he’d understand? You two have been together long enough . . . you should talk to him.”
This is so wrong. Chloe was defending him to Clark . . . why would she even have to? When did Clark begin having doubts about their relationship? Why wasn’t Clark answering her?
“Clark,” Chloe continued, when she too realized Clark was not saying anything, “There is something you’re not telling me . . .”
“Chloe . . .,” Clark said, his tone despondent. “I just . . .”
“You just what, Clark?” Chloe interrupted. “Just tell me, you know I won’t judge you.”
“I want to marry Oliver,” Clark blurted out.
That’s when time froze. Oliver was certain his heart stopped beating for a moment. Did he just say . . .
“Did you just say what I think you said?” Chloe demanded.
“I did,” Clark replied miserably. “I want to marry Ollie . . . and it’s driving me crazy.”
Oliver backed away from the conversation; this was not meant for his ears. But he had gotten the answers he wanted. This is why my Clark has been acting strangely.
He had to stop the goofy grin from spreading across his face as he walked away, rejoining the party. Trust Clark to be freaked out about something like this. They talked about marriage before but that had been a while ago and Clark had told him his doubts.
“Really mom?” Clark was saying into the phone. Oliver was lying on his bed, which he thought of as ‘their’ bed, because lately, whenever he was in it, he was in it with Clark.
It was Spring Break for Met U students and Oliver took time off to spend with Clark. He had offered to whisk Clark off to any place in the world his heart desired but Clark had chosen to stay in Metropolis, claiming that he just wanted to spend time with Oliver. And Oliver was only too happy to oblige.
Right now, he was content watching his boyfriend talk to his mother. ‘He’s so cute.’ Whatever Martha was saying was clearly making Clark very happy. Hopefully, Clark would share the good news once he was off the phone.
‘How did I get so lucky’? Clark and he were approaching their two-year anniversary and he honestly couldn’t be happier. Every day, he was certain he fell in love a little more. He had taken a huge risk when he kissed Clark at his 21st birthday, but it had all turned out for the best.
Chloe had been the one to invite him for the party and when he had talked a little too enthusiastically about Clark, she figured out his feelings. Her reaction was completely opposite to the one he expected, as was Lois’s. No discouragement, no disgust, but enthusiasm and acceptance. She pushed him to tell Clark about his feelings. Both of them had.
So he had and that had been the best day of his life.
“Ollie . . .” Clark’s voice brought him back to reality and he looked up to see Clark right next to him. Apparently, he had been so lost in his thoughts, he hadn’t even noticed Clark finish his phone call and climb onto the bed. Oliver scooted over so there would be more room for Clark. But Clark chose to make himself comfortable by lying on Oliver’s chest. Oliver welcomed him and wrapped his arms around him.
“What were you thinking about so deeply?” Clark asked.
“Just about you,” Oliver answered, kissing his forehead. “About us . . . how much I love you.”
“I love you too,” Clark replied, glowing at his words. He loved that he put that look there.
“How’s your mom?” Oliver questioned.
“Ooh,” Clark said suddenly getting up. “Mom was saying that she just finished a session and she heard some news.”
“Well, spill . . . it’s obviously good, from the way you’re behaving,” Oliver said. Clark grinned.
“Okay,” Clark said, taking a deep breath. His eyes were sparkling. “Gay marriage is now legal in Kansas.”
Oliver’s mouth dropped. “You’re kidding?” Kansas, the center of the bible belt, had always been overall homophobic and as other states allowed for gay and lesbians to marry, they were adamant in their ways. Major cities like Metropolis were more accepting but Oliver had lost out any hope for the majority of the state. This was a huge development.
Clark beamed, eyes sparkling and nodded. “I’m not! Mom said they just passed it and she had to tell me.”
“This is great news,” Oliver exclaimed.
“I know,” Clark gushed. “I mean, we can finally . . .” Clark trailed off, eyes wide. “Not that we would . . . I mean, it’s not like I was thinking about . . .” He blushed bright red. Oliver found it adorable.
He pulled his now reluctant and embarrassed lover into his arms again. “Clark Kent, I would be happy to marry you.”
Clark looked at him hopefully. “Yeah?”
“Definitely,” Oliver assured him.
“Well not yet of course,” Clark added quickly. “I mean, I have to finish school . . . but after I graduate, I like that we have it as an option now.”
“Me too, Clark, me too,” Oliver responded, giving his lover a reassuring smile. “And whenever you’re ready, I’ll be waiting.”
“It’s just that you’re the first person I’ve considered marrying since . . .” Clark stopped but Oliver knew where he was going.
“Since Lana?” Oliver finished.
“Sorry I did not mean to bring her up,” Clark said.
“Clark,” Oliver told him. “I’m not insecure; I know you love me. We can talk about Lana. Both of us have had previous relationships and don’t think for a second that I don’t understand how much she meant to you.”
“Have I ever told you how my father died?” Clark said suddenly. Oliver frowned; how did they go from Lana to Clark’s dad? But he assumed his lover was going somewhere with this and Oliver was always willing to lend an ear when Clark wanted to talk.
“I know that he had a heart attack,” Oliver said cautiously.
“That’s what everyone thinks,” Clark said sadly. “I mean, he had a heart attack and that is what killed him. But . . . there’s more.”
“Whatever it is, you can tell me,” Oliver said, stroking Clark’s hair.
Clark took a deep breath and Oliver listened patiently as Clark described the day he died and Jor-El’s warning when he brought him back to life. Held him close as he explained how he finally told Lana the truth and proposed to her only to witness her death. Reassured him as Clark confessed going to Jor-El and begging for a chance to repeat the day. His heart ached for Clark, hearing the pain in his voice as he told him about the horrible consequences his decisions had cost him.
“Do you hate me?” Clark asked in a small voice, when he was finished.
“Oh, love, I could never hate you,” Oliver exclaimed, shocked that he even asked such a question. “Why would you think that?”
“It was selfish,” Clark mumbled, “I mean, to save Lana, my dad died . . . and if it wasn’t for me, nobody would’ve died . . .”
“Don’t say that,” Oliver interjected fiercely. He lifted Clark’s face to meet his and pressed his lips on Clark’s, engaging him in a passionate kiss. Pulling away, he said, “I am glad Jor-El revived you, because honestly, my life wouldn’t be the same if I hadn’t met you. The world wouldn’t be the same without you in it. Trust me, nobody blames you for your father’s death. I know that if you knew going back would kill your father, you wouldn’t have done it, no matter how much you loved Lana.”
Clark’s eyes were shimmering with tears. “God, how did I get so lucky to end up with you?”
“Love, we’re both lucky,” Oliver said softly. “Now, rest, you need to sleep . . .”
“It was supposed to be a happy day,” Clark sighed, “I mean, with the news and all . . . I just wanted to let you know how intense I feel about you and if I get nervous about proposing marriage, you’ll know.”
“Who said you’ll be doing the proposing?” Oliver teased, “I am perfectly capable of going down on one knee.”
Clark’s eyes were twinkling. “Oh, I know you’re good on your knees . . .”
“Clark Kent,” Oliver laughed, “That’s not what I said and you know it.”
“I can’t help it if I have selective hearing,” Clark said, shrugging.
“And,” Clark added with a growl, “I think I like my interpretation better.”
As Clark’s lips met his, Oliver quickly found out he did too.
Good times, Oliver thought with a smile. But now he knew . . . of course that was why Clark was afraid of wanting to get married. They hadn’t brought up the subject since that night. Oliver had meant what he said . . . if Clark was even thinking of getting married, he would run and buy a ring this instant.
Because he could . . . no, he needed to spend the rest of his life with Clark. He made a decision: tonight, he would subtly bring up the idea of marriage. Show Clark that he still wanted to marry him.
Everything would be fine. Oliver would make sure of it.
“Everything will not be fine,” Clark snapped, trying to keep his voice low, as so not to attract attention.
“Clark, I do not see the bad in you wanting to marry Oliver,” Chloe pointed out. “I honestly think it’s adorable . . . I can see it now! You two in your matching tuxes . . . oh, that would be so cute.”
Clark stared at his best friend in disbelief. Was she nuts?
“Chloe,” Clark hissed, “Don’t you see? I have to go on my training . . . I’m leaving in a month. And I don’t know when I will be back.”
“Well, then you’ll have to wait for the wedding, won’t you?” Chloe asked. She looked thoughtful. “Unless, you two want to elope. Personally, I wouldn’t suggest it, because I think your mom would have her heart set on a big wedding . . .”
“Chloe!” Clark interrupted her. “Don’t you see? My wanting to get married is a major problem.”
“You keep saying that,” Chloe argued, “And you’re not telling me what exactly the issue is. And besides, I thought were discussing your having to leave for your training and your inability to tell Oliver that you have to leave. How did we get to marriage?”
“Chloe,” Clark explained, “After the gay marriage bill passed a few months ago, Oliver and I talked about getting married. In fact, I mentioned I was very interested after I graduated. If I remember, he definitely remembers.” He ran his hands through his hair. “My graduating was supposed to be a step forward for us. How am I supposed to break it to him that we won’t see each for God knows how long?”
“Maybe your training won’t take that long,” Chloe offered.
“Jor-El said that it would take a while, no doubt about it,” Clark informed her. He paused. “Look, can we talk about this later? People are going to notice us missing and Ollie will be the first. I don’t want to have to explain anything.”
“All right Kent,” Chloe said, “But tomorrow, we’re going to talk about this . . . you refuse to talk about it with Oliver so I’m going to be the one to get you through this.”
“Tomorrow sounds good to me,” Clark agreed. “Want to meet for lunch? I can cook us something. Mom will be gone tomorrow morning anyway so the farm will be empty.”
“I’ll be there around noon,” Chloe promised. “Now come on, let’s go socialize.” She started to move, but he grabbed her arm.
She stopped. “Clark?”
“I just wanted to say . . . thank you,” Clark said. “For everything . . . sometimes I wonder if you have any idea how much you mean to me. If I don’t say it later or if something should happen during my training . . .”
“Clark hush,” Chloe said quickly. “Nothing will happen. You will go to your training, learn lots of stuff and come back here to be the superhero I know you will be.”
“But if something should happen,” Clark persisted. “I want to say thanks. I don’t say it enough and I definitely don’t appreciate you as much as I should. You’re my rock and if you weren’t here, I’d probably be dead.”
“Clark . . .” Chloe started.
“No, Chlo, I have to say this,” Clark insisted. “I just want you to know . . . you’re my best friend and . . . I love you.”
Two arms were around his waist and Chloe pressed her face against his chest. “If my mascara runs Clark Kent, you’re history,” she said, sniffling slightly. Hazel eyes met green. “But you don’t need to thank me. I’m glad to be here for you. And I love you too, you big oaf.”
Clark laughed and held her close for a moment. He pulled away and smiled at Chloe. She beamed back.
“Now come along,” Chloe said. “People will get suspicious and if they notice us coming out together, they’ll think we’re having a torrid affair or something.”
“You mean we’re not?” Clark asked, a look of mock disbelief on his face.
“Kent, you can’t handle me,” Chloe said smugly, as they walked back into the crowd, “That’s why I graciously gave you to Oliver.”
“Gave me to Oliver?” Clark repeated, amused, “You think highly of yourself, don’t you?”
“Can you blame me?” Chloe retorted, “I practically set the two of you up!”
“And for that, I am very grateful,” a voice came from behind them. They turned at the same time to see Oliver smiling at them. Chloe recovered first.
“Hi Oliver,” she greeted him. “Enjoying the party?”
“Definitely,” Oliver said. “I’ve met some interesting people . . . why didn’t anyone warn me Lois’s father was so scary?”
“Oh hi there General Lane,” Clark said calmly, causing Oliver to spin around frantically. When he saw there was no one there, he scowled, which caused Clark and Chloe to burst into laughter.
“That was just pure evil,” Oliver said, shaking his head.
“Makes us even for the sneak attack,” Clark countered. “Yeah, but seriously, Ollie, we all don’t call him the General for nothing.”
“Good point,” Oliver conceded.
“I’m impressed you managed to survive with all the crazy relatives and family friends, Oliver,” Chloe added.
“They’re not so bad,” Oliver said. “Once they realized that I’m not trying to corrupt the town angel over here, I’m perfectly suitable.”
“Town angel?” Clark asked, bemused. Chloe just giggled.
“You two are adorable,” Chloe announced. “Now if you excuse me, I see my boyfriend looking rather lonely. I’ll see you two around.”
They watched her leave and then Clark turned back to Oliver.
“You think I’m an angel?” Clark asked coyly.
“Closest to heaven that I’ll ever be,” Oliver said softly.
“Quoting song lyrics now, Ollie?” Clark teased.
“Can’t help it if it applies,” Oliver pointed out. “All right you . . . let’s go talk to people. If you give me any more time alone with you, I might kiss you and I don’t think your neighbors would appreciate a PDA.”
“I don’t know about them,” Clark said, “But I certainly wouldn’t mind.”
“Later,” Oliver said with a wink.
“I’ll be looking forward to it,” Clark said with a slight leer.
“You’re awful,” Oliver said, shaking his head.
“That’s not what you were saying this morning,” Clark said, with a smirk.
“Now I’m certain you’ve been around me too much,” Oliver laughed.
He was going to retort but before he was given a chance, someone approached them, offering their congratulations. Clark quickly introduced Oliver and the three of them had a pleasant conversation.
The rest of the evening was busy and Clark managed to get his mind off his problems. He was eternally thankful for Oliver, who charmed and won over even the most stoic of his family friends. Clark could’ve sworn even the General smiled once.
The party ended at a reasonable hour and the minute Clark and Ollie got back to the penthouse, Clark made sure to show Oliver exactly how much he appreciated him.
Maybe Chloe was right, he thought, later, maybe everything will be okay, after all.
“Clark?” Oliver murmured sleepily, “You still awake?”
“I’m just thinking,” Clark said, “You sleep . . .”
“No, no,” Oliver said, “I’m up.”
“You’re tired, Ollie,” Clark replied. “I am going to sleep soon too. It’s been a long day for the both of us.”
“Clark,” Oliver said, hesitatingly, “I actually wanted to talk to you about something.”
I don’t like that tone. “About what?” Clark asked.
“Remember a few months ago, we had the marriage talk?” Oliver questioned.
Oh no. “Yes, I do,” Clark responded. “What of it?”
“Well you said you wanted to consider marriage after you graduated,” Oliver reminded him. “And now that you have . . . well, I don’t want to pressure you but I want you to know that I’m still interested in that option.”
“You want to get married now?” Clark repeated, trying to refrain from stuttering.
“Not now,” Oliver said, biting his lip, “I know you want to look for a job but . . . I think we should move our relationship forward. Living together first and maybe we can consider marriage within the next year. I think it’s time, don’t you? We have been dating for two years . . .”
“Yeah, we have,” Clark agreed.
“It’s important for a relationship to go forward, not back,” Oliver continued confidently.
Clark’s stomach tightened. “It is.”
“Well we can talk more about this in the morning,” Oliver said. He gave him a quick kiss and then snuggled into the covers.
“In the morning,” Clark echoed, “Right. I’m having lunch with Chloe tomorrow afternoon though. Just wanted you to know.”
“Tomorrow, day after, whenever,” Oliver said. Clark could tell he was drifting off. “We have all the time in the world.” He yawned. “Good night Clark.”
“Good night Ollie,” Clark responded. Oliver fell asleep a few minutes later but Clark was now wide-awake.
He wants to get married, he wants to move forward. How could he tell him that their relationship would have to be put on hold while he completed his obligations?
Oliver would not be happy . . . and now he wasn’t even sure that he would wait. The man had plainly stated he didn’t want their relationship to go backwards! And him leaving for his training was essentially doing just that!
Then again, Oliver loved him and he doubted that Ollie would be the one to end it. He might wait patiently but did Clark really want to force him to wait? I can't do that to him. He wants marriage and wants it now. It wouldn’t be fair.
Clark didn’t want it to end this way but it seemed that he had no other choice. No matter how much it was going to destroy him in the process.
He was going to have to break up with Oliver.