Saturday, April 23, 2005

Chapter 29 Confessions

As he stepped inside and closed the door behind him, Lex was initially encouraged to see how vigorously Clark was changing and assumed that the night’s rest had done some good until Clark jumped violently in reaction to the soft “shunnk” of the door sliding quietly shut. Half-turning as he did, Clark afforded Lex with the briefest glimpse of the thick scar tissue that showed at the edge of his tee-shirt before he finished unrolling it and tucking it into the top of his jeans.

Steeling himself to Lex’s presence, Clark snapped, “I asked for a few minutes of privacy to get dressed. Can’t I even have that?”

Raising an eyebrow at Clark’s petulance, Lex knowingly baited him, “Don’t worry, the sight of bare feet doesn’t embarrass me.”

“That’s not the point!” Clark stammered angrily.

“No, It’s not.” Lex agreed quietly, “You wanted it to be your decision when and how much you told me and under what circumstances. But, however good their intentions were, your parents took that away from you last night without even asking? That’s the point isn’t it?”

Effectively deflating Clark’s anger, Lex’s response trapped Clark into the first of the many discussions that he had wanted to avoid.

“Yes,” he admitted peevishly “I know they only told you because they’re worried,” defending his parents, but his bitter-tone undermined his half-hearted defense.

“And that makes it ‘all better’?” Lex asked wryly.

“No, but neither does your ‘all-is-forgiven’ act… so drop it!”

“What?” Lex asked, honestly confused.

“I saw you, Lex! I saw you!” Clark jerked his chin toward the window, “Out there! Last night! Stalking around…deciding… I saw you… You were ticked off. So, don’t try to tell me that things are just great between us.”

Realizing how careless and inconsiderate it had been to come back last night only to pace and fume right outside the window, Lex just shrugged—answering, “I won’t… Things clearly haven’t been “just great” between us for several months at the very least.”

“Since the day you saved my life, Clark, I’ve considered you a close friend,” Lex continued ironically “perhaps the closest that I have… so to discover…” Lex paused trying to carefully frame his words to best diffuse Clark’s clearly hurt feelings.

Interrupting Lex, Clark blurted vehemently “that I’m a freak and a Jinx? That I’m a curse to everyone who comes close to me… That everyone who means something has been hurt because of me… you, Lana, Pete, Chloe… or worse killed like… Kyra… and… and… That I’ve lied to everyone… ‘who considers me a friend’… about everything… and pretended to be normal…“prayed I could be normal… when I’m… a freak… a fraud… a damn time bomb…”

Lex sat silently stunned as Clark’s angst and insecurities poured out in a blur of words that took Lex several seconds to decipher…

“All my life they’ve warned me” Clark continued breathlessly, “about what could happen if I told anyone, but they never said… they never… how it… and then they turn around and without asking me… without warning me… or letting me try to…” Clark broke off, shaking his head angrily as he changed course, “No… that doesn’t matter. Not now… it’s too late… and they’ve told you… So, now it’s your choice.” Clark’s raw voice dropped to the barely audible register…“But, you don’t have to say it… or try to let me down gently… you don’t have to do anything… I already know what you’ve decided! I could tell last night… when you walked away.”

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