Pairing/Characters: Clark/Oliver, Oliver/Dinah, Chloe/Bruce
Disclaimer: don’t own anything
Warning: slash, mentions of m/m sex
Summary: sequel to “Forever May Not Be Long Enough”. Three years after the story ended, Oliver and Clark meet up again. One of them is engaged and the other is trying to make his mark in the world. Now working together in the Justice League, what will happen?
Previous Chapters: Here
Bruce returned to Gotham the day after the meeting and started planning on how to find Superman. The man was constantly going around the world but he knew that the man did have some sort of routine. He just had to figure it out. It shouldn’t be too difficult. After all, he did manage to uncover his identity . . . his patrol patterns would be a piece of cake.
His company kept him busy and he did have his own patrol to do but he tried to squeeze in time to decipher Superman’s routine. There were areas that he was certain to be on different days. Unfortunately for him, that week ended up being extremely busy and he even had to make a business trip out of state. Superman had to wait.
It would be more than week before Bruce would finally get the chance to meet the new hero. He tracked him to a roof top in Metropolis one night.
Approaching him quietly, he didn’t know quite how to start the conversation. Lucky for him, he didn’t have to.
“Batman,” Superman said seriously. “I’m surprised to see you out of Gotham City.”
“Metropolis has something that required my attention,” Bruce said, his voice masked, as he made his way toward the red and blue clad man.
“It must be important if it caused you to leave your city,” Superman commented. “What business do you have here?”
“I wished to speak with you,” Bruce told him.
Superman turned toward him and solid blue eyes met his own. He knew the man standing in front of him was Clark but in his mind, he could only refer to him as Superman. The two seemed so different.
“Go ahead,” Superman said.
“Have you heard of The Justice League?” Bruce questioned.
“I have,” Superman replied. “What of it?”
“The League has made a decision to have you become one of us,” Bruce stated, “And I’m here to extend an invitation.”
Superman raised an eyebrow. “And why should I join your league?”
He didn’t see that response coming. “Well,” Bruce said, “We all have a common goal and I would assume that you would want to work with people that also have a want to end crime.”
Superman was silent and Bruce added, “From what I’ve observed, you have been saving people. Preventing crime is what you want to do, isn’t it?”
“You don’t trust me,” Superman said flatly.
“I have no reason to,” Bruce said.
“Then why are you asking me to join your League?” Superman questioned, “If you do not trust me, why would you feel the need to have me apart of your group?”
“I do not trust you yet,” Bruce responded, “But we think you would be a good addition to the group. You have extraordinary powers and we feel it would benefit you and us to have you as a member of the team.”
“You don’t trust me,” Superman repeated, “And I don’t think your team does either. How do I know that my joining the League isn’t just a plot for the people on your team to keep an eye on me? To make sure that I’m not dangerous?”
“I don’t see why you should be wary of us finding out about you unless you have something to hide,” Bruce countered.
“I don’t have anything to hide,” Superman told him. “And I don’t think I could hide it from you even if I did. You already know so much about me, Batman . . . or should I say . . . Bruce?”
That threw him off. For the first time in a while, he was truly taken aback.
“Excuse me?” Bruce managed.
“I know you know who I am,” Superman said with a smile. “And that was the real purpose for the dinner that night.”
“When did you figure it out?” Bruce wanted to know.
“Not immediately,” Superman, who was sounding more like Clark, confessed. “But I put together all the subtle questions about my past and then I realized you may know who I was. Then I wondered why you would care. You being Batman was the only thing that made sense.”
“She didn’t tell me about you,” Bruce felt the need to say.
“I have no doubts,” Superman said immediately. There was no question as to the ‘she’ in this context. “She wouldn’t do that . . . she’s been protecting me for a long time. You’re an intelligent man. Fooling you just was not a possibility.”
“You answered all my questions though,” Bruce said slowly.
“I told you, I have nothing to hide,” Superman said.
“Then join our League,” Bruce insisted, “You will have to share your identity but you will know ours as well. It is a mutual trust that exists within our group.”
“I’m wary of your League,” Superman confessed.
“You will meet us all in an upcoming meeting,” Bruce said. “If we can trust you, I think you can trust us.”
Superman nodded to the idea. “I do have my doubts but I trust you . . . so I accept your invitation, Batman.”
Bruce offered his hand and Superman clasped it, and they shook, sealing the deal.
“I bid you goodnight Superman,” Batman said, turning to leave.
“Kal-El,” Superman said suddenly. Batman stopped in his tracks and turned around.
“Pardon?” Batman said.
“I am a Kryptonian, the last of my race,” Superman informed him. “When my planet was destroyed, my biological parents sent me to Earth. I caused the meteor shower in the eighties. Kal-El is my real name, the one my birth parents gave to me. Lois Lane gave me the name Superman, due to the fact my family crest looks like a ‘S’. However, I prefer you call me Kal-El, or just Kal.”
A ghost of a smile spread across Bruce’s face. He felt privileged with the information he was receiving and a little proud that the man before him felt him so trustworthy to share it. All the facts he learned about Clark Kent’s history were making more sense now.
“That works for me,” Bruce said. “I will inform you when the next meeting of the League will be shortly. Good night, Kal.”
“Good night Batman,” Superman, now known as Kal to him, replied. And the two parted ways for the night.
Batman left him on the rooftop, heading back to Gotham City, pleased with the night’s results.
Clark, however, stayed, watching out for the city. He knew he had surprised Bruce with his revelation and couldn’t help but be smug that he was able to catch the stoic Batman off guard. But he had figured it out.
That night, he wondered why Bruce wanted to know so much about him. It was more than friendly curiosity and he could feel it. Then he pieced everything together. He already had experiences with billionaires who had secret identities so Bruce as Batman didn’t come as too much of a shock. Besides, Batman had some pretty expensive gadgets so he knew that the man behind the mask had to have some money.
Apparently, he had a lot of money. Clark was amused at his own deductions but continued to answer Bruce’s questions because he wanted the other man to see that he was not a threat, that he didn’t have anything to hide.
However, he never expected Batman to seek him out, much less invite him to join the League. He hoped he hadn’t been rash in accepting but it would be nice to work with others who also wanted to save the world.
But he trusted Bruce, trusted Batman. If for nothing else, it was for the fact that Chloe trusted him. And he knew Chloe’s judgment was good.
Besides, Batman looked like a paranoid individual, and whoever else was in the League had probably had thorough background checks done on them. He had a feeling he didn’t have to worry about them.
Clark couldn’t deny that he was a bit nervous about meeting the other members but at the same time, excited too. Batman would contact him with the information though. For now, he had a city to protect.
Hearing a scream in the distance, he headed toward the sound, preparing for another night of nonstop crime.
Bruce was glad he made it back to Gotham at a decent hour and even got to do a round of patrol before going home.
Checking in on his girlfriend, he wasn’t surprised to see Chloe was already asleep when he returned home. Checking the time, he made his way to the study, figuring he could make a call to Star City, knowing that Oliver would still be up and probably returning from his patrol soon.
Dialing the number, he smiled when a familiar voice came through on the other end.
“Queen,” Oliver answered.
“Oliver, it’s Bruce,” Bruce said.
“Bruce,” Oliver greeted him, sounding amused. “It’s a little late in Gotham, isn’t it?”
“Yes, but I had news that couldn’t wait,” Bruce told him. “I didn’t wake you, did I?”
“No, not at all,” Oliver assured him. “So what is this big news?”
“I spoke with Superman,” Bruce explained. “And he’s agreed to join the league.”
“Excellent,” Oliver said. “What is he like?”
Bruce paused and tried to find the right words, without giving away too much. “He is trustworthy . . . I think he will make a good addition to the League.”
“Vague as always, huh Bruce?” Oliver joked. “I suppose I will just have to wait until the League meeting and find out for myself.”
“Speaking of which, I want to have it this weekend,” Bruce replied seriously. “The sooner he is inducted into the League, the better.”
“That’s fine with me,” Oliver said. “I guess we can tell everyone in the morning . . . or later today, I suppose.”
“Works for me,” Bruce said. “Good day, Oliver.”
“You too, Bruce,” Oliver responded and they hung up.
The rest of the League members could be contacted later. First, he was going to get some sleep. He had a feeling it was going to be a long week.
That’s what Clark was finding out too. The next couple of days went by so quickly, days passing like hours and Clark just didn’t know where the time went.
He got a cryptic message from Bruce, giving him a location where they would meet up, from which Bruce would take him to the League meeting.
As the big day approached, Clark was getting more and more anxious. And when the day came, he regretted not doing research on who was exactly on the team. I’m a reporter and I didn’t even ask. God, Kent, what is wrong with you?
It looked like he was going in blind. Hopefully, he wouldn’t act too much like a dork and still be able to make a good impression.
That’s why he was at the meeting spot early, beating Batman there. When Bruce showed up, also early, he seemed shocked to see Clark already there.
But he refrained from making any comments. “Come along,” Bruce instructed.
Obediently, Clark followed and they both entered a large building. They kept walking, Bruce not giving any details to where they were heading. After taking plenty of turns and entering through what felt like tons of doors, each one having a different code, which really caused Clark to believe Bruce must have an amazing memory to remember all of this, he finally stopped.
There was a large metal machine with a door. Bruce opened the door and looked at him expectantly.
“This building is called the Hall,” Bruce said, seeing Clark’s perplexed expression. “This will take us to the real headquarters. It’s a transporter.”
Clark nodded and they both stepped in. A few minutes later and the doors opened again. Clark looked around the spacious area and by chance, glanced out of the window, only to see black sky and a view of the Earth.
“Where are we?” Clark questioned.
“23,000 miles above the Earth’s surface,” Bruce answered without blinking. “It’s safer up here.”
“If you say so,” Clark said, still bewildered.
Bruce quirked an eyebrow seeing his face. “It is. The transporter scans us and has means of identification . . . nobody who is not already approve will be taken anywhere.”
“Very cool,” Clark said, impressed.
“You can take a tour later,” Bruce said, “Right now, the rest of the team is waiting to meet you.”
Clark swallowed hard but walked with Bruce until they reached a room. Stepping in behind Bruce, he saw it was a very large conference room. A large oval table was in the middle and there were people seated, chatting. Their entrance drew everyone’s attention to them.
He took the moment to look around the group that he would be working with. His eyes went from member to member and then stopped Oh, God, no. The Green Arrow sat there. Quickly, he kept going, to evade suspicion but he really wanted nothing more than to retract his decision and run out.
What was wrong with him? Of course, Green Arrow would be in this team. As would Bart, Victor and AC.
He recognized the blonde Oliver was sitting next to. She wore a wig but her face was recognizable. Dinah Lance was the Black Canary. What had he done?
But there was no need for an answer to that question. Clark knew what he had done. Signed up for a team that included his ex-boyfriend and his new fiancée.
“I’d like to call this meeting to order,” Bruce said loudly, hushing the group. Once all eyes were on him, Bruce began again. “I’d like to introduce the League’s newest member. Everyone welcome Superman.”
He got a bunch of smiles and everyone was saying hi at the same time. Clark was amused at their enthusiasm.
Bruce sighed. “That was just an expression. I didn’t mean for all of you to start talking. There will be time for that later.”
The room was quiet again.
“Okay, now I will introduce you to everyone,” Bruce said. Clark glanced at the costumed heroes. “You know me.” Then he gave off names, in order of where they were sitting. “Meet Wonder Woman, Cyborg, Flash, Aquaman, Green Lantern, Green Arrow, Black Canary, Martian Manhunter, Atom and Hawkman.”
Clark gave each of them a smile and a nod. He knew about half of them already, they just didn’t know it was him. It would be an interesting revelation, that was for sure.
“It’s a pleasure to meet you all,” he said smoothly, his voice not betraying any of his underlying nervousness.
“Now, this meeting is for you,” Bruce said slowly. “It’s your introduction into the League.”
Clark nodded to the idea. “If anyone has any questions for me, I’ll be fine answering them.”
“Well,” Bruce said, “You heard him . . . anyone have any questions?”
The Flash, or as Clark recognized him as, Bart was the first one to pop up. “So, what abilities do you have?”
“I’d like to know that too,” Bruce said.
“I am invulnerable,” Clark stated, “As you must’ve seen, I can fly. I am extremely strong, have ice breath, heat vision, x-ray vision, except when it comes to lead, super speed, enhanced hearing and I’ve found I can throw my voice for great distances.” The last one was useful, in case he ever needed to fool people that he, as Clark Kent, was elsewhere while Superman was saving lives.
There were murmurs within the group. “Are you human?” The Green Lantern asked carefully.
“No,” Clark replied immediately. “I was, however, raised as one and I have grown up on Earth. My home planet has long been destroyed.”
“What did you hope to accomplish when you put on the suit?” Wonder Woman asked. She smiled warmly. “I hope you don’t mind all these questions.”
“Not at all,” Clark said. “I would rather you ask the questions than make your own presumptions.”
“Okay, then,” Wonder Woman replied, pleased with his answer. “Why then?”
“I know I was given these abilities for a reason,” Clark told her, making sure he addressed the entire group. “The reason I was sent to Earth was not only because my planet was about heading for destruction but to prevent Earth from suffering the same fate. What I’ve learned is that no society, no matter how civilized or advanced, is without evils and corruption. If left alone, there will be chaos and the planet will soon destroy itself. Earth is my home, the only one that I’ve ever known and I do not wish to see that happen.”
“Eloquently spoken,” Wonder Woman complimented.
Out of the corner of his eye, he could see Bruce smirking. “I suppose,” Bruce stated, “That is why you are the reporter.”
“A reporter?” Wonder Woman questioned.
“I too have a secret identity,” Clark confessed with a smile. “I don’t go around saving people as a full time job.”
“And you’re a reporter?” Diana asked. Everyone’s eyes were firmly on him.
He nodded. Glancing at Bruce, he knew it was time to reveal himself. Bruce gave him a small nod, as if giving him permission.
Turning to the group, he gave them a big smile. Blue eyes melded into emerald green and some of his features automatically softened. He didn’t feel the changes but he knew they were happening.
Hearing small gasps of recognition, he turned back to Diana and stuck out his hand.
“Clark Kent, nice to meet you.”