<< Previous Chapter
Saturday 0930 hrs
Martha climbed up to the loft with a breakfast tray in hand that was loaded with toast and eggs and muffins and all the goodies she could find in her kitchen. She wasn’t sure how much Whitney would be willing to eat, so she also brought up some chicken soup. And she brought with her solid intentions of finding out from Clark what really happened out there. She still didn’t know.
When she walked in, Clark was in the bathroom and Whitney was still asleep on his back with his head bent towards his left shoulder. He looked so peaceful. She set the tray down on the table as she went to sit beside Whitney on his right. She stroked his forehead with soft hands and adjusted the covers. She was about to get up when he shifted, turned towards Martha and promptly went to sleep on her hand.
But not without letting out a very quiet ..“Mom”
Martha couldn’t help but smile as she gently pulled out her hand from under him. She kissed him lightly on his cheek and straightened up with an expression on her face Clark wouldn't like.
Clark heard his mother in the shower and his hitherto closed eyes flew open.
It took the superboy not more than three odd seconds to finish up in the shower, get dressed in faded jeans and a flannel, pull on shoes, grab a comb and then a toast. He kissed his mother, glanced at Whitney still sleeping peacefully, and then flew down the loft. He barely heard his mother calling,
“Clark what if..?”
He knew what she was about to say anyways.
//What if Mrs. Fordman had called the police? And there was the other issue Martha wasn’t aware of… Nigel’s body. Had he been discovered by now.. ?//
//Fuck this could be one big .. big mess. //
He had to do something before things got out of hand.
After the initial excitement of getting to drive his dad’s wagon wore off, it occurred to Clark Kent he could be much faster on foot. So that’s how he usually commuted unless he was taking Chloe out someplace. Today, he was super-speeding like he never had before. He was running to save whatever semblance of normalcy he could for the man who’d had suffered enough, the man he had come to love so much and wouldn’t let him get hurt again.
He reached the Fordman’s where Betty Fordman was just settling in for the day. She looked worried and not really concentrating on the tasks at hand. Clark walked up to her.
“Good morning Mrs. Fordman”
She never failed to smile at him. She did like him a lot.. that’s good.
//Hope she likes me as much after she learns I lied to her.//
“uhh is Whitney around?” As casual as he could be.
Mrs. Fordman positively withered. “No Clark, actually.. he didn’t come home last night. And he didn’t call either. I didn’t know what to do.. and he’s still…”
“Oh Mrs. Fordman you need not worry…”
He grinned widely. “Ummm he’ll be back.. shortly I’m sure..”
Goofy grin still in place along with some rigorous nodding. Really rigorous.
“You know where he is don’t you?”
“Well Mrs. Fordman.. I… really don’t know if..”
“Come on tell me Clark! I’m really worried sick here! Is he okay? He’s not in trouble is he?”
“No of course not Mrs. Fordman! He’s…well…”
//Lana will understand wont she?..//
“Ma’m I think he and.. Lana…” leaving the sentence open-ended enough to make perfect sense.
Of course! Mrs. Fordman was visibly relieved, only to startle and realize what Clark meant.
“Oh.. okay. Uh.. he’ll be back in his own time then. Yes…”
Anne wanted to jump with relief and be angry all at once. She did neither. Of course she knew Whitney and Lana had been together for the longest time, and this couldn’t possibly be unexpected. But parent that she was, couldn’t help but worry about it.
How old was Lana again?
She lightly smiled at Clark and thanked him. He chatted a little longer about mundane stuff and moved on.
“Yeah its me”
“What the…? Its 9.40 in the goddamn Saturday morning!?!”
Clark rolled his eyes.
“Sorry to bother you princess but there’s a huge favor I need to ask of you…”
“It’d better be good Kent” Lana yawned into the phone.
“Listen Lana, don’t be angry okay, please promise me you wont be angry”
“Ok I wont. What gives?”
“Wait I need another promise from you first.”
“Jeez boy you’re trying my patience! You spill it All out in the next second or I’m hangin' up!”
“Not before you promise you wont breathe a word about this to anyone. Its too important to me ok?”
“Lana, Whitney.. he did not go home last night. I ran into his mom today and she was really worried about him and I mean Really worried sick so I… I told her he was with you last night….”
“Lana… Lana you there?”
Lana was now awake enough to hear the urgency, the deep concern in Clark’s voice.
“Why did you do that Clark? Where IS Whitney?”
“uhh I’ll explain everything later I promise. Just.. corroborate my story ok? Please? I know its lying and all and this might even affect your current relationship with Jason if it got out but… Lana…? Are you with me?”
“Yes… yes I am Clark. I wont worry about Jason, he’s history.”
No bitterness there. None of Lana’s relationships seemed to last ever since… well.
“Hey don’t worry. But Clark where is Whitney? Is he okay?”
“Y-yes he’s fine. Just..” Clark drew a deep deep breath. “You trust me Lana? Tell me you’re okay with this..”
“Yes I trust you Clark. And yes I’m okay.”
“Thanks Lana. Gotta go, I’ll explain everything later.” He hung up.
Clark Kent now sped to the scene of the crime.
Reiley’s field , Saturday 0955 hrs
The police were everywhere. Swarming around for clues and leads to the case at hand. So far, they had found tire tracks for 2 vehicles – one some kind of a mini-truck, while the other a sedan. Definitely a sedan.
And the most important breakthrough – using fingerprints and dental records, they had been able to ID the corpse.
The body was that of Nigel Mahaney, convicted felon, older brother to another suspected con artist Wade Mahaney who had died under equally weird circumstances.
Is it possible a hard core criminal like him would turn the gun onto himself ?
How did the arm separate from his body? From the physical condition of the severed limb, it looked like… it had… been… ripped out?
How the hell??
If the fingerprints and blood found on the cross was that of a booked person, they would be able to ID him/her in no time. If not, they would just have to wait for an injured person to turn up at nearby hospitals, or a body to turn up at the morgue. Perhaps then, they would be able to reach the killer. If not the killer, then at least the thing or person who.. did the ripping.
Again I say, what the hell??
“Jeez you hear that Pete?”
“Mahaney.. as in Wade Mahaney.. the guy who got Whitney mixed up in his con games..”
“Yes. And if I remember correct, this guy allegedly got crushed under a wreck. The same wreck he was allegedly holding Whitney under, allegedly intending to kill him!”
“Pete stop abusing legal jargon you’re giving me a headache.”
“Is this in the police files?”
“Yes it is. Remember Clark told us that Lex Luthor told the police that Clark and Whitney were playing schoolboy heroes trying to get the criminals captured. They even got reprimanded by the Sheriff for that remember? Whitney’s dad grounded him for being stupid and Mr. Kent… well.. he patted Clark on the back I think..”
“Where’s Clark? Call up Clark!”
Clark had been hearing the whole exchange through his enhanced hearing ability and saw everything keenly from a good distance. He found out about every case fact the police had cared to discuss, not aware of the eavesdropper eavesdropping from a mile away. They knew a lot, but probably not enough. The fingerprints could give them away if they were on record which Whitney and Clark weren't. And fortunately Smallville hadn't imported the fingerprinting at school program yet. How long before they figure out the Whitney-Mahaney connection? But then he heard his name being mentioned in sheer panic and super-sped to his friends.
Chloe and Pete swung around. “There you are!”
“Wait how did you know we were here? You never turned up at the Torch?”
“Ah.. I found out about this big story and when.. I didn’t see you guys there I …I just Knew you’d be here”
A goofy grin playing on his face. Clark Kent you are so cute, Chloe thought to herself. She couldn’t resist so she moved towards him and they kissed. Clark closed his eyes and lost himself in the lushness of her mouth. And then the colorful flashes behind his eyelids parted to reveal the face of his greatest temptation. His salvation.
Clark’s eyes flew open and he gently parted from Chloe’s hold over him. She was mildly surprised but he smiled reassuringly. No one could resist the Kent smile.
“So you were gonna call me why?”
That brought Chloe crashing back to solid ground.
“Oh yeah. Clark, you know what happened here? A guy’s body has been found with a bullet in his head and his arm was…”
“Yeah I know.. I heard the whole thing.”
“Clark do you know who this is?”
“Nigel Mahaney! Wade Mahaney’s older brother!”
Clark let out a low whistle.
“Does this mean nothing to you?” This was Pete.
“Do you know they found traces of blood and shreds of clothes all over the scarecrow? Someone was tied up there man. And most likely this Mahaney was who tied him or her up. Because he sure cant be a passer-by come over to rescue the victim.”
“And the whole thing, its so gory! Clark this was definitely a revenge gig.”
Chloe was sounding very bothered now.
“At first I thought maybe… maybe he was here to avenge his brother’s death you know. And since you and Whitney were involved in … you know.. oh God I was involved too…”
“Hey hey Chloey relax. I’m fine, you’re fine, ahem.. Whitney’s fine! It’s the Mahaney guy who’s dead!”
Gave her a condescending smile. //Its obviously nothing dear. Now let it go!//
“Yeah?” Chloe made a funny questioning expression as she thought about it.
“Well yeah..” Ok she kind-of agreed.
Clark knew he had to throw his friends as well as anyone else off this line of thinking.
//The police should not.. could not link this back to Whitney and me.//
“We should check up on Whitney!” Damn there she goes again.
“He’s fine! He.. he was with.. Lana ..all night.”
//God I hope I’m not dragging Lana into any trouble. The things I do for you Whit…//
The jaws on Chloe and Pete fell to the ground.
“No way” Pete found his voice first.
“How do you know?” They were frowning furiously.
“Well..I saw them. Together.”
Clark was sure he was a horrible liar despite all the practice he got. Obviously his friends didn’t think so. Chloe looked at him very very suspiciously.
“I saw him with Mark Webber and his troublesome gang last night at the Zinc.. we both did remember?”
“Y-Yeah but when I was driving back home, I saw him at Lana’s door and she.. she invited him in.”
//I’m gonna go to hell I’m gonna go to hell.//
“Clark! That doesn’t tell you he was there all night!”
“Wo.. well no it doesn’t. But this morning, I saw him coming out of her place too.”
//Lana Lang.. please do not sue me for slander. I swear whatever I did, I did it for love.//
//...of an unconscious boy stashed up at my loft. //
Chloe was incredulous.
“If that were true Lana would have told me right? But she..”
Clark rolled his eyes. Girls! Why the hell do they have to discuss every little thing with other girls?!?
“She obviously hasn't had time Chloe it was last night remember?”
Okay now she seemed convinced. “Hmm that's true.. so I guess then he must be okay”
She laughed a little. “God I am relieved, for a moment there I.. I thought it could have been Whitney here on .. on the cross last night! Whew!”
“Whew!” Pete had been thinking the same thing.
His friends sure caught on fast.
They looked at him. “I mean.. yeah.. I was worried too..”
He pursed his lips and looked away.
//Now for the detectives. But how? //
He had to know what they were thinking. So he strained to listen while his friends tried out other theories.
A Detective Connor was talking to Officer Haley. The officer had just come to him with news about a call they had just received at the station.
“Detective Connor, a couple called in at the station to report a truck they saw speeding at almost 120 towards Reiley field at around 11 last night.”
“Tell me more.”
“A Mr. and Mrs. Polovsky were returning late last night from a party in the next town when they say they were almost run over by this red truck. They couldn’t see the plates. They say there were 4 or 5 guys in the truck and the wife thinks she saw signs of struggle going on. But she didn’t get a very good look at the faces. And they say they were speeding towards Reiley field.”
Clark heard every word. //The truck! Damnit the truck!//
Good thing he had the sense to drive it away from the scene. It was parked in his farm. But they will surely be looking for one. Small town Smallville.. how many red damn trucks could you have?
“Where are we on the truck?”
“Sir there are only a handful of trucks of that make and color in Smallville. Officer Louis is working through them. We are also checking for any out-of-town vehicles.”
“What about the sedan?”
“Still working on that sir.”
“Ok. Let me know if you get anything.” The detective was moving on.
//Damn it! The truck could lead them right to Whitney! What do I do….take care of the truck? How? Cant dump it, that would seem even more suspicious that the Fordman’s truck suddenly went missing. Damn it is missing! It should be at the Fordman residence not the Kent residence! And it should be cleaned up.//
Clark knew what he had to do. He made a lame excuse to his friends and casually walked off the field. Once out of human sight, he sped like hell. Had to get back to the farm asap.
//Damn wish I could fly, not just hover over my bed in my fucking sleep. Up.. Up .. and Away…!! Someday Kent, someday… //
Next Chapter >>