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.
Previous Chapters: Here
Oliver was not surprised when Clark didn’t return home that night. Still hurt and disappointed but not too surprised. It had been what he was expecting. What he hadn’t been expecting was Lois’s random phone call.
The two of them didn’t keep in touch and really, Clark was their only connection. He saw her when he was visiting Clark at their apartment. Of course, he saw her a few weeks ago at their graduation party but even then, they only spoke for a few minutes.
Considering the fact that she and Chloe were practically sisters, he was stunned that when looking for Clark, she didn’t ask Chloe first.
I guess it makes sense, because Clark lives here now so she might’ve thought that I would know about his whereabouts. Oliver snorted. Yeah, right. It was hard to admit that he had no clue where Clark was, his pride took a beating on that one.
Oliver, stop being so paranoid. Just because Clark is acting strangely doesn’t mean you should suspect everyone. But there had been something in Lois’s tone that raised his suspicions.
He didn’t know that he wouldn’t get his answers until the following morning. In a coffee shop of all places.
Oliver was just making a morning coffee run. He walked into a nearby café that both he and Clark always enjoyed. After he finished ordering, he turned around and was surprised to see none other than Lois behind him in line.
“Good morning Lois,” Oliver greeted her.
“Hi Oliver,” she replied. He stepped aside so she could order and waited for her to finish. She seemed to be a little uncomfortable around him, for some reason he couldn’t comprehend. After they got their orders, he smiled at her.
“Why don’t you join me?” he offered. “I was going to go back home but I figure I could hang out here for a bit.” He paused. “Unless you have to be leaving.”
“No, I have time,” Lois said quickly.
“Great,” Oliver said. They took a seat at one of the booths. The place was fairly empty. Lois wasn’t saying anything so Oliver took the initiative. Maybe he could get some answers from Lois about her strange phone call.
“So how have you been?” Oliver asked casually, taking a sip of his latte.
“I’m great,” Lois replied.
“How are things at the Inquisitor?” Oliver questioned, trying to get her to relax.
“Actually, I won’t be working there anymore,” Lois informed him. “I just got a job at the Daily Planet.” She beamed, obviously excited.
“Congratulations,” Oliver said, genuinely happy for her.
“Thanks,” Lois responded. “How about you? From what I read, Queen Industries has never been stronger.”
“Yeah, it’s doing really well,” Oliver said. Obviously, I work most of the time. What, with no boyfriend, what else do I do? “I’m really fortunate,” he added.
“Hey,” Oliver said suddenly, as if the thought just struck him. “Did you ever find Clark?”
Lois looked like a deer caught in headlights. “Clark? Oh . . . no. I didn’t. But it’s fine, it wasn’t important anyway.”
She’s lying. Lois was not a very good liar and right now, he could tell that she was hiding something.
“I wasn’t expecting your phone call last night,” Oliver commented. “I mean, I would’ve thought you would’ve gone to Chloe first.”
“Well, he does live with you,” Lois pointed out. “So I thought he might be with you and just not picking up his phone or something.”
“Wherever you were, there was a lot of background noise,” Oliver said, not responding to her statement.
“Yeah,” Lois said, “It was loud.” She took a sip or of her drink but he could see through her attempts to buy time.
“I haven’t seen Clark, but I’ll tell him to call you when I do,” Oliver promised.
“That would be great,” Lois said. She bit her lip. “How are you guys doing?”
“What do you mean?” Oliver asked.
“As a couple,” Lois clarified. “Are you guys . . . okay? You both are happy with one another, right?”
She knows something. “I guess,” Oliver said, cracking a smile. “Why do you ask?”
“Just making sure,” Lois told him.
He shot her a teasing grin. “You’re not planning on stealing my boyfriend, are you now, Lois?”
She choked. “Me? No, of course not. Interested in Smallville? You’re out of your mind. I just . . . you both are just so great together. I like to make sure you’re happy.”
Oliver took a deep breath. If he wanted to hear whatever information she had, he had to be honest with their situation.
“Lois, actually, we’re not so good right now,” Oliver confessed.
Lois’s eyes widened. “But you love each other.”
“I love Clark,” Oliver agreed. “But lately, he’s been pulling away from me. He’s hardly ever home and when he is, we barely interact.”
“Oh no,” Lois said sympathetically. “How did this happen?”
“I’m not sure,” Oliver said. In a way, he felt good getting this off his chest. He had been holding all these emotions inside of him and it was driving him crazy. Even if he was telling this to Lois in order to get information out of her, it was nice having someone listen to him for a change.
“One minute we’re on the moon and the next, it’s a mess,” Oliver said sadly. “I have no idea what I said or did. He won’t talk to me.”
“Maybe . . . maybe I can talk to him,” Lois said, worry written into her features. “Or Chloe . . . we might be able to get something out of him . . .”
“Lois,” Oliver said firmly. “Do you know something I don’t?”
“I should get going,” Lois said hastily. “I have to be at the Inquisitor soon . . .” She stood up and began to leave but Oliver grabbed her hand. She turned back.
“Lois, please,” Oliver begged, not caring anymore about his pride. “If you know something . . . tell me. I don’t care how bad it is.” He let go out of his arm. “I am tired of people hiding things from me.”
Lois sat down. “Oliver, what I’m going to tell you might hurt you.”
“Lois,” Oliver said. “Just say it.”
“Last night, when I called you,” Lois said slowly. “The loud noises . . . I was in a club called The Black Rose.”
“I’ve heard of it,” Oliver said. “It’s fairly new, isn’t it?”
“Yeah, it is,” Lois replied. “I just wanted a nice night out, to relax and let loose.”
“But what does this have to do with me?” Oliver interrupted.
“I’m getting there,” Lois said, rubbing her hands together. “When I was there . . . I saw Clark.”
“Clark,” Oliver echoed.
“Yeah, and . . . he wasn’t alone,” Lois finished.
Oliver could hardly breathe. “He wasn’t? Who was he there with?”
“This woman,” Lois answered. “Some brunette.”
Oh, God, no . . . why did he persist? “What did you do?”
“I tried to get closer,” Lois said, “Catch a name or something, see what was going on.”
“And what did you find out?” Oliver asked.
“Her name’s Julia,” Lois said. “From what I could tell, she doesn’t know about you. They left together.”
Oliver felt sick. “Julia . . . she called once, left a message. He said she was just a friend.”
“I’m so sorry, Ollie,” Lois said softly.
“Don’t be,” Oliver said. “I need to know more . . . who would know about this?”
“I am not sure,” Lois said. “If he told anybody, it would be Chloe. There’s no way she would’ve approved though. Then again, Clark’s not so good at lying so someone has to know.”
“Chloe,” he murmured. Why didn’t he think about her before? Maybe because he knew she was Clark’s confidante and the chances of her spilling anything to him was slim to none. But this time, he wouldn’t take no for an answer.
This was his heart on the line and now, he couldn’t avoid Clark’s cheating any longer. The evidence had been presented to him and it was time to stop being in denial.
“Oliver?” Lois said, bringing him back to reality, worried that he wasn’t saying anything. “Are you okay?”
“No,” he admitted. “I’m not. But I will be.” He met her gaze. “Thank you for telling me.”
“I didn’t want to get in between you two,” Lois said desperately. “I don’t like being the snitch.”
“You did nothing wrong,” Oliver assured her. “Clark was never going to tell me. I needed to know. Just do me a favor.”
“What’s that?” Lois asked.
“Don’t tell Clark about this conversation we had,” Oliver requested. “Or confront him on what you saw last night.”
Lois agreed immediately. “I won’t.” She hesitated a second. “Are you two going to be able to survive this?”
“I’m not sure Lois,” he said, draining the last of his coffee. “It all depends on Clark right now.” He pursed his lips together.
“For what it’s worth,” Lois told him. “I hope you two make it.”
“Thanks, I appreciate that,” Oliver said with a smile.
Lois moved to stand up. “Now I really do have to get going . . . but will you be fine?”
“Yeah, don’t worry,” Oliver said. “Have a good day, Lois.”
“You too Oliver,” she replied and left. Oliver sat there, even after she was gone, digesting the news he had just received.
It was official . . . Clark was cheating on him. He told Lois it was up to Clark but he knew he had some decisions to make.
If he only knew where to start.
Chloe was having a pretty normal day. She was trying to push the previous night’s events out of her mind. No matter how necessary it was to complete the plan, remembering it didn’t make her feel any less ashamed. It had been her idea but it was not one she was proud of. Using her cousin was not the highlight of her life.
Hopefully, though they were finally done. Clark and she had discussed what would happen next. They were both positive Lois would end up spilling everything to Oliver. Clark said he was expecting a confrontation any day now, which would lead to the breakup. She hoped it would be over soon because there was not much more of this she would be able to take.
Everyone was hurting in this situation. Clark cried himself to sleep every night. He didn’t know she knew but she did. Of course, her bedroom was closer to Clark than Lois’s was. And after he had finally fallen asleep, she would go in and check on him.
And every night, her heart would break. Because there he would be, tear streaks on his face, clutching the picture of Oliver close to his heart. It wasn’t fair, it wasn’t fair that they had to go through this.
Currently, she was taking a lunch break and was back in her apartment. She was in the middle of making a sandwich when she heard a knock at the door.
When she opened the door, she was shocked. Because standing on the other side was none other than Oliver.
“Hi Chloe,” Oliver said, smiling.
“Oliver,” Chloe managed to say, stepping aside. “Come on in.”
“Thanks,” he said. Once he was inside, she closed the door.
“This is unexpected,” Chloe said, racking her brain for reasons he could be visiting her. “Clark is not here, you know.” Which was the truth; her best friend had left sometime this morning and she hadn’t seen him since.
“That’s good to know,” Oliver said. “But I’m not here to speak with Clark. I came here for you.”
“For me?” Chloe said, trying to keep her voice from wavering. “Why me?”
“I think you know,” Oliver said coolly. “We need to talk.”
Clark was returning to the apartment and was about to enter when he heard voices from within. He zoned in his hearing and made out Chloe and Oliver’s voices. Oliver was there? And he was talking to Chloe?
Though he wanted to know what was going on in the conversation, he could not just stand there and listen in. Somebody would pass by eventually and it would look odd. So he exited the apartment building and making sure nobody saw him, entered through his window.
Very quietly, he huddled by the door and listened in to what they were saying.
Oliver hated being so harsh with Chloe, someone he adored, but she wasn’t giving him any answers. He brought up what he heard from Lois and she refused to acknowledge that Clark was cheating. She was playing innocent and he needed to know the truth.
“Chloe!” he said, frustrated. “Clark is not the devious type. If he’s cheating on me, and I know he is, he would tell someone.”
“Oliver,” Chloe said weakly. “He hasn’t told me anything.”
“Does the name Julia ring a bell?” Oliver snapped.
Chloe swallowed hard. “Oliver . . .”
“It does,” Oliver realized. “You know that name . . . Chloe, who is she?”
“I just . . .” Chloe looked on the verge of tears.
“Chloe, I’m sorry for yelling,” Oliver said quickly. “But you know Julia . . . Clark’s cheating on me with her. I need to know who she is . . . who is this woman who is taking away my boyfriend?”
“He’s mentioned her . . . a lot,” Chloe said finally. “I don’t really know how they met, he doesn’t give me very many details. Lately, he’s been talking about her more often. I suspected they were more than just friends but whenever I confront him about it, he closes up.”
Oliver clenched his jaw. He really hoped that Lois was wrong but hearing Chloe speak, he was convinced.
“But why?” Oliver whispered. “Why did he turn to her in the first place? I thought he loved me.”
“I thought so too,” Chloe said tearfully. “I don’t know what’s going on with him . . .”
“If you don’t know, nobody has a shot of finding out,” Oliver noted. He shook his head. “I have a lot to think about.”
“What are you going to do?” Chloe asked.
“Not sure,” he said. “I just need to be alone right now.” He gave her a sad smile. “Thank you Chloe, for all your help. I understand that your loyalties lay with Clark . . .”
“You’re my friend too though,” Chloe declared. “I care about you also, Oliver.”
He smiled. “I should go. Bye Chloe.”
“Bye Oliver,” Chloe said and showed him out. He tried to stay composed until he reached his penthouse again. Where he finally couldn’t stand it any longer and broke down.
He finally found confirmation Clark was cheating on him. Now what?
Finally, he’s gone. Chloe breathed a sigh of relief after closing the door. How she survived that interrogation was just a miracle.
“You know,” a voice came from behind her, “if you ever decide to give up journalism, I really think Hollywood would be perfect.” She spun around to see Clark emerging from his bedroom. “That was an Oscar worthy performance right there.”
“Trust me,” Chloe told him, “It wasn’t easy.”
“Well, you did a fantastic job of convincing him,” Clark said, impressed. “That conversation was the final nail in the coffin.”
“I think you’re right,” Chloe said, heading back to the kitchen. “I’m making sandwiches . . . do you want one?”
“No thanks,” Clark said. “But really, Chloe, thanks for all your help . . . I couldn’t have done this plan without you.”
“Do you think that it’s over?” Chloe asked him.
“Yes, I honestly do,” Clark said. “What you just told him . . . everything is confirmed now. He thinks I’m cheating. If I go home, an argument will ensue, which will lead to our breakup.”
“You’re awfully calm about all this,” Chloe observed.
Clark smiled wryly. “I’m trying not to think about any more than the logistics. Otherwise, I won’t be so collected. Chloe, we’ve come too far for me to crack now. I just have to handle it a little while longer.”
“If you say so,” Chloe said doubtfully. “Are you heading out soon?”
“In a couple of hours,” he replied. “Anyway, let’s change the topic. I heard Lois got a job at the Daily Planet.”
“She did,” Chloe said. And then they fell into their regular pattern, chatting about everything under the sun. Both pretending that in a few hours, Clark wasn’t going to go and break the heart of the man he loved.
However, it seemed that time didn’t just fly when you were having fun, but when you didn’t want it to as well. Clark stuck around the apartment long after Chloe left, just watching a bit of TV. Anything to distract him from his upcoming task. But as evening fell, he knew he had to go back and deal with Oliver. This was what he had been preparing for all these weeks and he could not chicken out now.
The penthouse, he found, was surprisingly quiet. Where was Oliver?
“Clark,” a voice boomed, startling him. He looked to see Oliver coming down the steps and he was . . . smiling? Yes, Oliver Queen seemed elated. Like he won the lottery. He certainly was not acting like he found out his boyfriend was cheating on him.
Scanning the penthouse, he checked if there were any empty alcohol bottles. There weren’t.
“Ollie,” he said cautiously. “What’s up?”
“Not much,” Oliver replied. “How are you doing?”
“I’m . . . fine,” Clark said slowly. “How was your day?”
“My day was good,” Oliver said.
His day was good? “Really?” Clark questioned. “Anything . . . unusual?”
Oliver paused, as if thinking about it. “No, no, nothing unusual. It was pretty normal.”
Normal? Finding out your boyfriend is cheating on you is normal? Clark tried his best to remain calm.
“Anyway,” Oliver continued, “I am making dinner . . . you’ll be here, yes?”
Clark could do nothing but nod.
“Great,” Oliver said cheerfully. “It should be done soon.” He headed back, presumably toward the kitchen, leaving Clark dumbfounded.
What the hell is going on?