Sunday, November 14, 2004

Chapter 8: Reunion

As if sensing Jonathon’s thoughts, Lex looked up and shifted nervously, then pushed away from the wall. Does he think I’m responsible for this? Just when I was getting him to accept me- to trust me? One step forward… forty-five back.
Oh well, never delay the inevitable! He steeled himself as he turned to face whatever ire, Clark’s father had in store… So, he was totally un-prepared when the Kents reached him and Jonathon grabbed Lex’s shoulder pulling him into a parental hug between he and Martha… pounding Lex lightly on the back as he did.
“We can’t thank you enough Lex… I should have known you would be able to find him and bring him home. Thank you.” Squeezing the startled Lex on his shoulder again, Jonathon broke from the hug and walked past him into Clark’s hospital room., Martha lingered for a moment to straighten Lex’s collar and jacket, tousled from Jonathon’s hug, and kiss him on the cheek before following Jonathon into the hospital room.

Lex almost staggered in surprise as the Kents entered Clark's hospital room. Even though his relationship with the Kents had improved over the last three years, Lex had not expected to be greeted with their warmth and gratitude once they discovered that he was taking Clark to the hospital. In the past, any mention of medical treatment had drawn suspiscious almost fearful looks from Clarks parents and protests from Clark... even though the whole family at one time or other had been treated for different reasons.
Usually Lex blew off the thought, attributing it to their financial hardships and the family's unwillingness to go further into debt unless absolutely necessary. But there were times, recently, that he wondered if there wasn't something more to it -- something else that might explain their strong reactions. But, then like tonight, they seemed glad I brought him here? Yet another enigma.
Well, I'll figure them out, he assured himself as he glanced into Clark's sick room, but it looks like won't be tonight. Lex was certain that if they hospital didn't hold Clark over for observation, the Kent's would take their son home. So, that's it then. there isn't really any point in staying. Is there? Lex asked himself. Any questions he might have asked wouldn't be answered now and the length of time he spent with Clark and Lana was sufficient to satisfy his duties to a sick friend.
Without intending to, he interrupted everyone as he stepped into the room, uncomfortably taking center stage as he walked over to Clark's hospital bed and leaned on the rail nonchalantly.
"Well, my friend, now that we have you installed here under the watchful care of your friends and loved ones; I suppose its time for me to take my leave." As he spoke, Lex reached over and shook Clark's hand before leaving, but stopped when he recognized that Clark wasn't releasing his hand.
Instead, Clark held it until Lex looked at him. When Lex glanced up, into his friends eyes, he saw the same pain and confusion that he had before. The impression of something vital being smothered was there, too. But, foremost before those was fear -- fear of Lex leaving. Clark couldn't say it without hurting those he cared about, but it was clear in his eyes that he was afraid of being left alone with them.

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