"A Friendly Little Visit"
Martha heard a knock at the front door and yelled out that she was coming. She quickly rinsed her hands in the kitchen sink and wiped her hands on her apron as she made a mad dash for the front door. There stood a striking young red-headed woman in a tailored cream-colored dress suit. The woman smiled brightly as Martha answered the door.
"Could I help you?" asked Martha.
The young woman answered, "Hello, my name is Cat Grant. I work at the Daily Planet with your son, Clark."
Martha opened the screen door in an invitation for the woman to enter. As the woman walked in and began looking about, Martha said, "Your name sounds familiar. Clark isn't here, you know?"
The woman answered, "Yes, I know, Mrs. Kent. Oh! Your home is so lovely -- just the way I had imagined it from all of Clark's glowing descriptions of the place. It's a wonder he ever left home. Of course, he had his calling. What's a boy to do when it's time to move on?"
Martha asked, "Is Clark meeting you here?"
The woman shot back, "Oh, no. I was just passing through town and couldn't help myself. I have heard so much about Smallville that I just had to see it for myself. And, frankly, I thought we have been long overdue for a get-together -- Clark and I being such special friends and all."
Martha said, "Well it is nice that you stopped by. I have something in the oven that I need to attend to, but if you, make yourself comfortable in the living room. I'll be right out."
Instead of taking a seat, the woman said, "If you don't mind Mrs. Kent -- or could I call you Martha? -- I'll just keep you company in the kitchen."
Martha motioned her forward and said, "Well come on back if you don't mind the mess. And, yes, dear, please do call me Martha."
As Martha led the woman the short distance to the kitchen, she missed a step when the woman said, "I almost feel like calling you "Mom." "
Martha said, "Really?" as she pulled out a chair from the kitchen table and indicated for her guest to take a seat.
The woman explained, "Well, Clark and I spend so much time together and he is constantly talking about you so I've started thinking of you as the mother I never had."
Martha looked kindly at the young woman and said, "I don't mean to pry, but how is it that you didn't have a mother? Please don't feel you have to answer if you don't want to."
"Oh, I don't mind," replied the woman, "Clark and I have absolutely no secrets between us and I certainly don't want to have any secrets between you and me. I don't have a mother because she threw me away. Fortunately, a man who knew a wealthy man who wanted a daughter like me rescued me. He sold me to the wealthy man who raised me and was my mentor. Actually, the wealthy man wanted more than just a daughter. He wanted a companion, a confidant, an accomplice ... an heir. I was everything to him -- but only in a sense. He was totally self-centered. His only real interest in me was that I could expand and continue his legacy and carry it forward when he passed on. After he died, I turned it all over to other people to run for me so I could write a fun little society column. But "Dad" had helped prepare me for my job. He made sure I had the social skills to go anywhere and fit in. To make me suitable for him, he had me schooled so that I could be the best companion to him in every way."
Martha was feeling that she was getting more information than she was comfortable with and she hoped she was just imagining the implications this woman was making. In an effort to redirect the conversation from where it was headed, she took it back to where it started, "What did you mean when you said your mother threw you away? Surely you mean that she put you up for adoption."
The woman answered with a little edge to her voice, "NO, Martha, she self-aborted me and threw me away. Based on what I was told, I was literally pulled out of the dumpster where my mother left me to die by a young intern. After he bought me, my mentor used his connections to create a paper trail to make his adoption of me look legitimate. I understand he had experience with the process."
Martha had now forgotten her meal preparations and was flushed and dazed hearing this story. Her response to the story was, "Oh, I've heard stories about women who do that kind of thing from depression or desperation, but I personally can not conceive of a mother doing such a thing."
The woman mumbled, "Oh you can't, huh."
Martha continued, "Your mother must have been in a pretty bad way to do what she did. Maybe she was an unmarried adolescent afraid to tell her parents or had an abusive husband who wouldn't allow her to have the child. I don't say this to condone it, just to try to understand. But I can't either understand or condone it. There are so many people who want babies. There must have been a way to get that baby -- to get you, to an orphanage."
The woman shook her head and said, "If you knew my "Dad" better, you would know that he wouldn't have bought me without a very clear idea of my lineage. He knew exactly who my parents are and so do I. She is married. She is very respected in her community. She is praised for her skills as a mother. Maybe it was her husband. I hear he has a temper. I think I inherited that from him. I guess I got my Mother's looks. Every time I want to see her face, I look in the mirror and remember what she thought of me. The way I understand it, they already had one special needs child already and they may not have felt able to take on a second child."
All Martha could manage to say was, "So you have a brother."
The woman interrupted, "He was adopted. Isn't it strange to adopt one who isn't your own and then throw away your own flesh and blood with yesterday's table scraps?
Martha answered her, "Oh, my dear! I'm so sorry. I can tell it's still hurting you. I can't imagine it. I can't. If I could have children I would never use birth control and have a baby a year as long as I could. I know it's not politically correct, but that's how I feel."
The woman asked, "If that's true, then how is it that you only have Clark?
Martha pulled back and answered, "I can't have babies."
The woman shot back, "Couldn't you have adopted more children?"
Martha answered, "Adoption is a difficult process."
The woman continued, "Not if you know the right people and apparently you did. OH! Of course! I understand now. It was because a second child woul increase the odds that word about Clark's powers would leak out."
Martha, stunned, stuttered, "Wh-what?"
The woman smiled and said, "Clark's super-powers. You know? "Up, up and away." OH! You didn't know that I know. I'm sorry. I feel like I've known you inside and out since before I was born. Forgive me."
Martha calmed herself and said matter of factly, "I don't know what you are talking about. If you came down here just to ...."
The visitor interrupted, "Oh, Martha, NO! No, I didn't. I'm not here for a story. I'm not here to verify a hunch. I get verification of that at least 3 times a night. It's hard to sleep with a super-human and not know it!
"What!" blurted Martha.
The woman replied, "Oh dear. I'm sorry. I don't know why Clark wants to keep me a secret from you and Jon. I guess keeping secrets becomes a habit after doing it for years. I apologize that you found out this abruptly. I thought when I told you that we spent a lot of time together that you would know from that ...."
Martha interrupted, "I thought you spent a lot of time doing stories together."
The woman continued, "Oh, we work for the same newspaper but I do a society column and he works writing news reports for the city desk. We spend most of our time together at his apartment on Clinton street. I swear I don't know why I keep my own apartment anymore. All I go there for is to pick up my mail. But, about his having powers -- let's not talk about that either to confirm or deny it. Let's just forget I said anything and wait until Clark chooses to tell you. OK. This was just supposed to be a friendly little visit." Martha say down and was silent. The visitor continued, I hope I'm not being forward, but whatever you are cooking smells very good and I haven't eatten anything today."
Martha hopped up, "Land's sake, where are my manners. Let me dish you up a plate! What would you like to drink?"
The woman answered, "Anything would be fine. Anything but milk, that is. I never developed a taste for it. I never breast fed and Lionel started me on cold capacino out of a bottle. At five feet 14 inches tall, I don't think it stunted my growth. If it did, I'm glad for it."
Martha almost dropped the plate, "Lionel?"
The woman answered, "Yes, my mentor slash father, Lionel Luthor."
Martha asked, "And Clark knows who raised you?"
The woman said, "Of course. We have no secrets. We laugh about it all the time. You have to laugh or you'll cry."
Martha commented, "I guess we have more in common than I thought."
The woman answered, "I think we have more in common than you could ever imagine, Mom." Martha smirks and hands the woman a plate of food and a cold, delicious Pepsi Cola. Smiling the woman says, "Thank you. That smells absolutely wonderful. I have had my meals made for me by the finest chefs all my life, but I'm always dreamed of home cooked meals in a homey kitchen." Martha takes off her apron, hangs it on the oven door handle and sits down with a glass of cold, delicious Pepsi Cola. After eating a few bites, the woman says, "This is wonderful! I must get copies of your recipes! I tell Clark that I want to learn to cook but he tells me that he's not with me for what I can do in the kitchen -- although we HAVE had a lot of fun in the kitchen. .... OOPS! Sorry! So I understand from Clark that you almost had another child." Martha nodded. "... but Clark needed your full attention so you had an abortion."
Martha's jaw dropped, "NO!! I would NEVER! NEVER!! ....
The visitor calmly said, "Oh, I'm sorry. That's what Clark told me."
Martha shot back, "Clark would never! How could he say that? Maybe .... Maybe .... Look. I can't talk about it to this day. But it's never out of my thought for long."
The visitor asked, "The guilt."
Martha answered, "NO. The LOSS! I think I am going to die every time I see a cute baby dress and, before I can stop myself, I wonder what she would look like in it. I don't leave the farm much." Impulsively, Martha reaches across the table and takes her guest's hand and gently squeezes it. "Cat, honey. I'm sorry you're hurting, but I can't talk anymore right now. I'm going to lie down for a while. Enjoy your meal. Make yourself comfy. Watch some TV. Introduce yourself to Jonathan when he comes in for dinner. Don't mention to him that you know about Clark. He gets upset easily." Martha then stared deeply into the young woman's eyes. She tried to gauge the age of the woman before her. She had a look of someone who was a child in a woman's body -- emotionally frail below the surface yet physically powerful. The woman began to shifting her eyes about as if she was scared or nervous. She wouldn't make eye contact with Martha for more than an instant at a time. Finally, Martha said to her, "I'm really sorry to say this because I don't like to judge people -- especially people I don't know, but your mother ... your mother ... she was a real -ASSHOLE! I will never understand it. NEVER. How could she. How could she do it?! I would give anything. ANYTHING!" A single tear rolled down Martha's cheek and then she gasped back a deep breath, got up, walked slowly to the front staircase and then ran upstairs. They were now a floor apart, the bedroom door was closed and Martha held a feather pillow tightly to her mouth. Despite this, Alexis's powerful hearing heard every gasping breath, every sob, every heartbeat. This was supposed to be a fun prank. Her father had told her that revenge was a dish best served cold. This had been exactly what she had hoped it would be. Yet somehow, she wasn't enjoying it like she thought she would. It took all her force of will to not go upstairs and hold and comfort her mother. Equally, it took all her will power to not go up there and strangle her slowly. She mumbled, "I wish she would have told me what my name would have been."
A half hour later, Jonathan came in for dinner. The aroma pulled him right into the kitchen. At the sink was a familiar looking woman wearing a familiar looking apron washing the pots and pans used to make the evening meal. He crept up to her and put his arms around her. He held her tight and nuzzled her neck. "Mmmmmm. New perfume. I like!" he moaned as his hands fondled her lovingly. He pulled her red hair back and nibbled an earlobe as his hands resumed an exploration of her body. Behind him, a voice called out, "Jonathan! What are you doing?!" The woman in Jon's arms spun around. He saw the smile he loved but the face was slightly different -- longer and younger. The young woman began to laugh uncontrollably. John turned to see his Martha, hands on hips, giving him a look that he had rarely seen -- a look that scared him more than anything else could or would. He turned back to the kitchen. The dishes were put away and the mysterious young woman was gone. Clark received a very confusing phone call a few minutes later.
[I have hopes for Alexis. She was starting to feel something
more than hatred for Martha -- but then, a couple minutes later, she let Jonathan
... for the trouble it would cause. At least she did the dishes. I had thought
a bit about her having made a trip upstairs to trash Clark's bedroom while
Martha was laying down.
The scary thing is that she has all of Clark's powers -- and Midol has no affect on her!
I've got this feeling that she has been lurking around the Kent farm whenever Lionel gave her a little freedom. Kind of looking in on the life and love she was denied. I'm kind of curious about how she feels about Lex, if they ever interact and if Lex has any idea about her powers. Maybe he has 2 reasons to wear that green Kryptonite ring. If Lionel left her all of his estate or a portion of it, he should be aware of her -- unless Lionel wrote her off at the end. She might have even killed Lionel.
I wonder if weakness to Kryptonite resulted from the bio-re-engineering of the baby or whether Alexis is immune?
I think she is about 13 years old even though she looks like she is in her early 20's. Kind of takes after her brother in that way. I always hoped Martha's baby would become Supergirl, but Supergirl couldn't have the kind of fractured personality this one has.
This all has given me an idea for Alexis to make a visit to her adopted brother Lex and a second visit to Martha. But I am busy, busy, busy.]