Title: Cruiser
Author: Mlle Elizabeth
Feedback address:
Pairing: Clark/OMC; CLex
Rating: NC-17
Disclaimer: Smallville is property of Millar & Gough, TRP, Ink and the WB. The original Superman concept is property of DC Comics and Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster . I'm just temporarily borrowing their characters for fun, rather than profit.
Summary and/or challenge: AU-scenario. Clark's a rent boy and Lex is on the prowl. (MIdKnight). I know nothing of Kansas's foreclosure and criminal laws, so this is also an AU in that respect. Also, since it's an AU, this Clark and this Lex know they are bisexual.
Betareaders: Emily and Peach
NOTE: Part of the ClexFest at:

Clark started into his new nightly routine. He sat down on a bed in shabby hotel room and looked around at the dingy paint and hideous floral curtains that didn't quite match the bedspread. Clark opened a paper bag and unwrapped and ate his Big Mac. Took out his wallet to count money, then counted it a second time. In his head, did the math on projected earnings and expenses. Sat back, his head hanging and a hand on his forehead.

"There is no way I can come up with $5,000.00 by the end of the month," he thought, despondently. Sure, construction work was easy but boring, and it paid well, but not well enough, as he's making $200 per day and that would only earn him $1,600 minus expenses in 8 days. At that rate, he wouldn't have the money for his parents by next Monday. Maybe he could save some on expenses. Rented by the week, the motel room was $40 a day and he had been spending $30.00 a day on food, but then, he did have to eat. So he was left with around $130 per day. He was tired of deliberately not using his super-strength on the job so he wouldn't be found out. It was even harder than it was back in Smallville, where at least he could use his gifts around the farm. Shit. Dammit. He knew he was lucky to find this construction job so quickly, but it was just not enough. He had to find some way to make this work.

Clark knew there were ways to make a lot of money fast. He'd seen some shady drug dealers working out of this hotel and suspected he could make it that way, but "no!" That was the one thing he knew he would not, no, could not do. He dismissed that line of thought with a shudder.

He looked again through the various newspapers he had collected, including some trashy tabloid papers he picked up on the street outside the motel. There were plenty of jobs and some of them promised impossible amounts of money. The majority of these were ads for "escorts" and such. There were lots of ads under the "Bars and Restaurants" heading as well, but Clark figured that waiting tables wouldn't bring in that much money, even in Metropolis. He knew that construction job pays as well as waiting tables, sometimes even better. Looking on the next page, he spotted a few ads under "entertainers." His eyes traveled quickly down the columns while he muttered to himself, "Female impersonator . . ". grinned and shook his head, trying to imagine himself in a dress. And "what the hell was a pro domme?" There were lots of ads for dancers, mostly for women in "gentlemen's clubs" but also a few advertising for male dancers. Hmmmm ... dancing? That was a possibility. He liked to dance, but would anyone hire him to do it? Clark thought it might be worth a try. And at least dancing wouldn't tempt him to use his powers so much. He didn't think there would be any temptation to super-shimmy. If these ads were correct, he could really bring in the bucks. He gaped at some of the offers on the paper before him. Did dancers really make that much? Oh well, even if they didn't it had to be better than what he was doing now. He thought it would at least be worth the trouble of dropping by one or two of the clubs after work tomorrow.

Clark knew His parents must be frantic with worry by now. He felt very bad about it, and he hoped they were managing okay without him to help with chores. Clark really didn't want to hurt them by leaving, but after hearing his mother's voice, raw from crying and his father so very hopeless sounding, he knew there was no way he could go back to Smallville without the money they needed. Then everything would be all right and his mom would stop crying and his dad would be so proud of him. He wasn't going to let them down.


Lex finished his last report for the evening. He dropped it on top of a huge pile of paperwork, got up and went to the window of his office and, gazing down on the street below, recalled the conversation with his father of earlier that day. Smallville! Sure, he'd been even more of a terror since finishing grad school, but sending him to that godforsaken backwater, a place he associated with one of the worst experiences of his life and the source of his premature baldness? Lionel could be a real shit sometimes and this was no exception. He'd have to find some way to make the most of his exile and until that exile, make the most of Metropolis and its more prurient pleasures.

He checked his PDA, looking for a suitable companion for a few last nights of debauchery. Heather, Carol, Mia, all were hot, willing and do their best to make him feel like the king he should be. They were all beautiful: full lips, thick, dark hair and lithe bodies. He smiled, wickedly to himself. He should invite them to visit Smallville from time to time. They all knew how to look sufficiently upstanding to impress the local community. And that meant they really wouldn't do for a last Metropolitan fling. Besides, as much as he knew he would enjoy their company, he didn't feel the spark of excitement with he {them?]that he wanted to fuel his planned fantasy fulfillment. He was definitely in the mood for something different, lately. He needed something less upstanding, someone more in line with pleasure that would be forbidden in a small farming town, someone more ... masculine. Maybe he can come up with someone masculine with full lips, thick, dark hair, big expressive eyes and a hard body.

He ran through his options on his PDA again, this time considering some of the men he's dallied with from time to time. He took out his cell phone and started to dial the number of one of his favorite boytoys, but a thought stopped him halfway through. All of them were good for a fast fuck, but he wanted something more than that this time, maybe even something new. Perhaps this would be a good excuse to go out on the prowl. Of course, there was always the risk he wouldn't find anyone worth his while, but that was a chance he felt like taking.

Resolved to hit the cushier gay bars, Lex went home to prepare for the evening.


Tuesday afternoon, after finishing his work at the construction site, Clark took out the page of ads he'd torn from the paper and headed to one of the clubs that was advertising. He was surprised to see so many cars in the parking lot at that early our. The place must be popular. "That's a good thing," he thought. "More people, more money." The bouncer looked askance at him, and asked him for ID, but when he explained he was there about a job and showed him the ad, the man let him in. Once inside, he stopped for a moment to let his eyes adjust to the dark and get his bearings. Loud pop disco music blared from speakers throughout the club. The air smelled just slightly of stale beer. There was a big stage towards the back of the club and a DJ booth. Two fairly large stages off to the side and a couple of smaller stages near the front of the club, making a total of five. There is a dancer on each of the stages, moving and thrusting under flashing lights to the beat of a disco song.

Once certain his eyes adjusted and having decided the place isn't so bad, he asked a nearby waiter for the manager and was directed to a table on the opposite side of the room.

Clark approached the table. There was a nicely dressed man seated there, talking to another man. Clark apologized for interrupting and, confronted with the man's impatient stare, said he saw their ad for dancers in the adult entertainment newspaper.

The man nodded and said, "Ah, I see. Well, I am the right person to talk to. I'm the manager, Chester Phillips. Joe, will you excuse us?" He walked Clark back a little further to an area near the DJ and gave Clark a once over. Made him turn around. "So, you want to be a dancer, huh? How old are you, kid?"

"I'm eighteen, sir" said Clark.

Chester said, "Well, you look it, but I need ID anyway.

Clark pulled out his driver's license and let the man scrutinize his ID.

"Okay, that will work," Chester said. "Tell me about yourself. Have you ever done this before?"

"No, not ... not for money. I've danced before, though," Clark said. He caught himself defiantly sticking out his lower lip. He didn't want to pout and look like a little kid to this guy. But he wasn't really lying ... he had danced with his friends, at school dances and at a couple of parties. Chloe had even told him he looked good dancing.

Thinking he had better give evidence of some kind of prior work experience, no matter how irrelevant, Clark then added, "I've been working for Wilson Construction on the new Orchard Glen Development."

"Well you look like you're probably built like a construction worker," Chester said. Talking Clark by the arm, Chester led him to a tiny dressing room, just a couple of counters, 2 urinals, a stall, an overflowing trashcan and a set of steel lockers with flaking yellow paint. Chester handed him a costume he'd taken off a rack. "Let's see how you look in this."

Clark took the outfit, but hesitated looking it over questioningly.

Chester noticed and said, "Are you embarrassed to change in front of me? You'll be dressing in front of the other dancers. You might as well get used to it."

Clark nodded and, though embarrassed, removed his jeans and shirt and put the costume on. He felt very silly in the tight, and very, very short, satin shorts and snug red t-shirt.

"Okay, now shirt and shorts off and let's see what else you have to offer."

"I didn't think this was a nude-dancing job!" Clark said.

"It's not, but you will be dancing in just a thong most of the time and the customers will see most of your body then, so I need to see most of your body now."

Clark gulped and stared, wide-eyed. "Oh no ... he felt a blush creeping up his skin!"

Apparently impatient, Chester barked, "Look, I haven't got all day. Either show me what you've got or head on home to mommy."

At this, Clark finally took the t-shirt and shorts off, holding his arms out and turning around, as if modeling. He hoped his blush had faded enough by now to not embarrass him.

"All of it," said Chester.

And Clark hesitated again, but finally complied, removing his boxers, exposing himself entirely.

Chester mumbled something that sounded approving. "That will definitely do. You should make some good tips, boy. You have a great body. Need to see how well you can dance, though."

Clark blushed and shivered a little. "So, you say you can dance, huh?"

Clark nodded and continued standing there, staring at the floor.

"Were you going to show me how good you are or is that what you consider dancing? I gotta say, you almost look good enough to get away with that, kid, but really, I think you can do better."

At that, Clark gathered his courage and, listening intently to the music that carried in to the dressing room from the main, room of the club, Clark began to move to its beat. From the look on Chester's face, it was apparently not that great. Clark stopped, waiting for some indication of acceptance or rejection from the other man. Unfortunately, Chester just stared at him, his face giving away nothing. The pause became increasingly uncomfortable, and Clark was just about to begin dancing again, when Chester finally said "okay, okay, that's fine then. When can you start?"

Shoulders sagging with relief, Clark replied, "As soon as possible, sir."

Then, while directing Clark's attention to a schedule posted on a bulletin board, Chester said, "I can work you in starting tomorrow night. You'll start at 5:00. Be back here at 4:00 to get dressed before your shift and I'll show you the ropes then. The costume is clean, but most people take them to the cleaners anyway. There's a 24-hour dry-cleaner around the corner. Grab a large thong, also. You can wear other costumes, if you'd like, but you'll have to provide them yourself and show them to me for approval before you get onstage in them. The law is pretty strict about what your thong has to cover in a club that sells alcohol and the owner is pretty strict about what your costume can't cover."

Clark thanked the man, took the costume items and left.


Lex started his evening late, in a very nice gay dance club, one he'd never been to before. He was wearing his favorite prowling gear of tight black pants and a his favorite plum silk shirt. He went to the bar and looked around, getting the lay of the land. As he sipped a martini, he formed a strategy for the evening. Casing the room methodically to see what the club had to offer, he determined that there wasn't anyone there who looked exactly right. He continued at the bar, enjoying his martini and chatting with the bartender and a couple of the more interesting patrons. Still not finding exactly what he wanted, he moved on to next part of the night's strategy and went to check out the dance floor. The dancing was actually better than he had expected it to be. It was a good crowd, with a lot of energy, a sea of people writhing under flashing lights to the DJ's generic dance mix. He danced several dances with one of the men he had met at the bar, a rather cute blonde and it was nice. But there was no one on the dance floor who really sparked his interest -- no one no one who fit his "ideal." One in particular groped him, and suggested that they go somewhere and get to know each other. He was tempted, but it just didn't feel right. He was feeling particularly selective tonight and it just wasn't what he wanted, not what he had in mind ... and Lex Luthor never settled for less than exactly what he wanted....

Oh well, He had a few more days left before he had to leave, so he decided to be patient and went home alone. He could go looking for something a little more risque tomorrow. Maybe go to one of the strip clubs and see what they have to offer. He didn't really like to pay for sex, but some of the nicer clubs had some damned hot guys dancing in them and he was, after all, looking for something illicit for his last big fling.


The next afternoon, after sleeping in a little and treating himself to lunch at a nearby Chinese restaurant with an all you can eat buffet, Clark got ready to start his new job.

"Time to go to work," he'd had the costume dry cleaned, so now it at least didn't smell like an ashtray. Clark started to put it on under his street clothes, then decided he would feel silly walking to work that way and that he'd just bite the bullet (while wondering absently about that little cliche' and if he did bit the bullet, would the bullet break?) and change in front of the other dancers. It wasn't like he hadn't done something similar, changing in the locker room before gym class. That had never bothered him, but then, that was just different. He could think of this that way, though. He was sure he could.

It was a long 25-block walk if he didn't use his super speed, but it gave him time to either psych himself up or get nervous. When he arrived, he found he'd managed to do a little bit of both. The Funky Flamingo. "Shit, he could never tell anyone about this. Never!" he thought.

Clark entered the Flamingo and noticed things look exactly the same as yesterday. "They must have a pretty steady clientele," he thought.

Still nervous, Clark walked back to the dressing room. There were a couple of other guys hanging out and talking before they started their shift. They were friendly enough, and it helped put him at ease a little. Still, he was reluctant to change in front of them, but once he realized they were more interested in their conversation and their own preparations, Clark went ahead and dressed in his costume. He supposed the blue shorts and tight red t-shirt was meant to be cute, but he really thought he looked a ridiculous in it. He had to admit, though, that it did show off his muscles. Besides, it really didn't matter anyway, because it wouldn't be on him for long as he had to strip down to the thong when he was on stage.

Finally dressed, Clark walked to the door, thinking, "Okay, I don't know what the hell I am supposed to do now, but whatever it is, I'll get through this. I have to. Come on, you can do it, Kent!" With that, Clark took a deep breath and opened the door, ready to start his new job. To his relief, he saw Chester was there waiting for him, outside the dressing room.

Clark looked around the room, trying to figure out what to do then joined Chester outside the door. Taking Clark's arm and leading him to the other side of the room, Chester began to explain how things worked at the Flamingo There's a chart with the rotation in the dressing room. The dancers rotate from stage to stage so that everyone gets a chance at every part of the room and a short "break" after an hour or so.

"You'll start on one of the side stages and towards the end of this shift your you get a turn on the main stage. That's where the most customers and biggest tips are." Chester patted him on the back and shoved him towards a stage and says "do well out there."

Clark didn't go right to the stage, but instead watched for a few minutes, and god, there are all these men and they are all drunk! A couple of them walked by, whispering something unintelligible in Clark's ear. He backed away from them and, glancing towards the door, noticed the bouncer was watching the men, a glare on his face. The DJ started a new song and Clark shrugged to himself and hopped up on his appointed stage and again hesitated a bit. Chester looked over at him with a "go on and do it" look, so he began moving to the beat of the song that was pouring through the club's sound system. "It's not so awful," he thought, though he did feel pretty self-conscious at first. He knew he was much taller and just, *bigger* than the other dancers. And then one of the men approached the stage with a bill in his hand and Clark smiled at him and the guy was touching him and oh, wow ... just slipped the bill in his thong and then stepped back to continue watching appreciatively and then the next song started and Clark took off his t-shirt and tossed it behind him on the stage and a few more men have came over to watch him and he did like the attention and they kept slipping money into his thong and that part is really okay because even though he couldn't see how much money it was, he knew it had to be adding up. So Clark tried to really put his heart into his dancing and it finally began to feel good.

The music was mostly peppy pop tunes, but still pretty danceable, mixed in with some old disco tunes. Finally, after an hour or so, he finished that shift and it was time to take his break. Clark walked back to the dressing room, not really glad for the break, as he had just managed to get his head really into his dancing. On his way to the back Clark was intercepted by Chester, who asked him "how's it going?" and, with a pat on his back gently steered Clark away from the dressing room.

"It's okay, I guess," Clark told him.

"You look good out there, kid."

"It's not as bad as I thought it would be," Clark said. He then smiled and added "I told you I could dance."

"You did and you can," said Chester And you really do look good up there. It could be even better, though. You could be making even more. How much did you make in tips that shift?"

"How? asked Clark while he looked through the tips that had been stuffed in his thong and found he'd earned forty dollars.

"Spend a little time with some of these guys ... make them feel good."

Clark stared back, wide-eyed, not understanding. "You mean talk to them? While I'm dancing?"

"No, no, between shifts ... and it's not so much talking they're after. I'm sure you can find a more profitable use for your mouth ... you can, you know, pick up some extra money for yourself on the side, just make sure the club gets it's cut. I'll even help you meet some nice guys."

Suddenly Chester's meaning became clear to Clark and he started to panic. "I don't want to do that," said Clark. "I just want to dance."

"You'll never make real money unless he do a little work on the side," said Chester. "You've seen how much money some of the other guys in here are making, right? You think Phil over there bought a Lexus off tips from dancing? Even if you do just a little, some lap dances or maybe a hand job, you can really rake in some cash. And if you want some real money a blowjob or two. Really, it's no big deal."

Clark considered what Chester was saying very carefully. He was still very reluctant, but the money was very tempting and he knew he needed to make more than he was earning at the present.

Chester pressed on, " Look, I already lined up your first job, so just come back here and hey, Joe, here you go ... You guys have a nice time," and without giving Clark a chance to think much, or even say no, Chester walked Clark and the customer Joe guy back to another room by the dressing room that Clark hadn't noticed before, closed the door and left Clark alone with the man.

And suddenly it was dark and there was not much furniture, just a table with a small lamp and a bowl with some little packets in it and some sort of dark brown carpet and a small stereo system that wasn't turned on but had a little box with some tapes by it and a chair, but Clark could still see the room and who was in the room with him and the man he was with was older, older than Clark's father, even and nicely dressed, sorta, but ewwww and Clark was horribly nervous and didn't even want to touch the guy, who didn't bother to introduce himself or anything and maybe that was for the better, but now the guy was talking and said something like "What's the matter, boy? I paid for you to suck my cock not stand around staring at the floor so get to it" and he didn't even bother to sit down, either, just unzipped his pants and pulled down his boxers and looked at Clark ... reached over to a small table with a bowl of condoms, picked one up and tore the packet open. Clark was staring as the man rolled the condom on himself and the then looked down at him again and just shook his head and so Clark swallowed his pride and what felt like a ton of air and spit and reached out and with a shaking hand touched the guy and it felt ... like nothing and everything awful all at once. "Well, here goes," Clark thought. "At least the guy's wearing a condom so I'm not really touching him." And then the guy said, "Hey, I didn't hire you for some lame hand job, either," and Clark blinked up at him and realizes what the guy meant and oh god, he doesn't want to do this.

So he again remembered his mom, crying, the day before he left and the way his dad sounded so tired and he can't let them down so he closed his eyes and just ... licked. And if he didn't think about what he was doing at all, it wasn't so horrible and it tasted funny, but maybe that's just the latex and maybe he can get through this and get the money. And he took as much as he could of the guy's dick in his mouth and it stretched his jaw a little, and made him even more uncomfortable, but the guy seemed to like it and was moaning and god, now he was thrusting himself into Clark's mouth and then moaning more loudly and pulling Clark's hair and then he suddenly stopped and ... that was it. All over with. His first time and that was it. And god, is that what sex is? And Clark was disappointed in himself and in the experience and just ... everything and the guy took off the condom and pulled up his pants and zipped them and without another word to Clark, placed his money on the little table and left.

Clark couldn't move at first. Just sat there, on the floor, his head in his hands, trying to process what just happened. Well, it wasn't the end of the world, but it certainly wasn't what he'd hoped his first time would be like. He'd imagined ... well, he'd imagined all sorts of things, but mostly that he would be with someone special, someone he at least cared about, or thought was hot or something. His eyes started burning a little and he tried to focus on the floor without x-raying through it, and his fingers were grasping and tearing at the carpet and heard himself rip it up but his mind was too far away to stop himself and he felt completely numb and oh god, what had he done and nothing, nothing, nothing .. it wasn't really his first time, it was just a job and look at the money, Clark, think about that and he threw back his shoulders and tried to calm himself and picked up the money off the table, stood up, pulled on his shorts and t-shirt and walked out. Back in the main room the music was thrumming and Chester spotted him and came over and said, " Well done, Clark," and while they're still back in the back out of view Chester took his cut of the money and patted Clark on the back and said something about, "You may just have a very lucrative night."

"I shouldn't have done this," Clark thought, his mind reeling. "It was just wrong!" He would stop now. Leave and go back and ... and what? Go home with only half the money he needed? Clark sighed to himself. Damned if he did and damned if he didn't. He decided he'd rather be damned if he did and at least secure his family's future.

Clark suddenly felt nauseous and walked back into in the little dressing room, splashed some cold water on his face and then he felt a little less dazed but his mind was still completely numb and, not thinking about what he was doing or why, went back out to the main room, jumped up on one of the little stages and started dancing to whatever song was playing , because if he kept his mind blank he could do this but if he started to think at all, he knew he would totally loose it. He mechanically took the shorts off and was down to his thong and he didn't even notice when guys came up and slipped bills in it. A few of them offered to buy him a drink. He was tempted; it would have been nice to numb his mind even more, but not knowing the effect of alcohol on his alien body, Clark turned them down.

Clark made it through the rest of the night, somehow. He did a few more little "jobs" in the back room and Chester seemed proud of him and when the club was finally closing for the night he gave Chester the club's share of his money and put his jeans and jacket back on and left. A couple of the other dancers, not the ones he'd met at the beginning of the night, said goodnight to him but he said nothing back, just went out into the night and slowly walked back to his dingy hotel.

Halfway home, his eye caught a glimpse of a sleek silver Porsche gliding through the intersection and slowing a bit as it went by him, a gleaming motorized moon in stark contrast against the black night. He shivered, crossed his arms against his chest and pulled in tight, suddenly feeling like some sort of otherworldly prey.

Back in his room he pulled his clothes off quickly but was careful not to rip them. He didn't have many clothes there. Then he headed straight for the shower and got the water as hot as he could stand and just stood under the spray for long minutes and then picked up the little hotel soap and scrubbed until it was gone and then stood under the spray some more until it was getting cold and then got out and began brushing his teeth and alternated brushing and rinsing with the little motel bottle of mouthwash until his gums were sore and then put on a t-shirt and boxers and went to lie down on his bed. He noticed he was hungry. His stomach was rumbling. He should have stopped at an all night diner or a fast food place to get some food, but he wasn't even thinking, and he didn't want to put clothes on, or go back out now, and besides, he thought it would probably make him throw up if he ate, so he just lay there, hungry and numb and wanting this night to never have happened and then his eyes start burning again and he could see his mother's face and he feels like he's lost every possibility and god, what is he doing here and it wasn't supposed to be like this but hell, he's a man now and he can handle this and he turns over and dozes until late morning.

Clark woke up starving, so he hurriedly dressed and went for breakfast and then back to the little room with 2 of everything on the McDonald's breakfast menu. After eating, he finally got around to adding his earnings from the previous night to his savings. It was hard at first. He really didn't want to touch the bills, much less add them to his pile and count them, but it was a necessary evil if he was going to figure out how he was doing, so he rifled through the money, twice, did the projected earnings thing again and determined that he was not doing quite as well as he'd hoped.. It was definitely better than the construction job, at least in terms of earnings. He'd brought in $500 in tips. So now he had $500.00 - $70 or so plus the $420.00 he has left from construction job. It was still not going to be enough, but maybe last night was a slow night and the tips would be better tonight.

Clark wished he had his telescope. He missed looking at the stars. The most he's had there was an old astronomy book and even though it offered some comfort, it's just not the same. He missed watching Nell and Lana across the way. Their homey routine always brought him comfort. With a sigh he counted the money he had earned from the previous night again and added it to his growing collection. He ate the fast food without tasting it. Clark wished he had some of mom's pancakes. He wished he could talk to Pete or Chloe, but they'd never understand and they'd tell his parents. Maybe he could just call and tell them he was okay and ask them to tell his folks that. He picked up the phone to call but then he couldn't remember if either Pete or Chloe had Caller ID and didn't want to risk it, so he hung up the phone without dialing. Damn! He missed his parents and his friends and the farm.

But it was time to go back to work, so Clark grabbed his costume and went back to the club. He muttered hellos at his fellow dancers, and resignedly started his night. He must have been letting his bad mood show through, because Chester said some nonsense to him about a perky smile bringing better tips. Well, he needed those tips, so Clark plastered a smile on his face and began to dance.


Later that evening, Lex rolled up in front of the Funky Flamingo in his limo. He didn't want to take one of his own cars in case someone noticed his rather conspicuous license plates. This was not the appropriate time and place for showing off the Luthor name.

After telling his driver he would call when he was ready to leave, Lex went to door and told the bouncer he would like to visit this club, but that they had better be discrete. Slips him some extra money.

The bouncer assured him that in this club, everybody pretended that everyone else was a stranger and every customer was treated well. They took pride in catering to a high class of customer.

Sufficiently confident in the bouncer's guarantee, Lex entered the club and stood by the door, taking in the scenery. A host seated him at a table and he sat back to watch the dancers on the stages. He was pleasantly surprised; there were some nice looking dancers here. The place was one of the better strip clubs in Metropolis. He looked to one of the side stages and caught sight of a beautiful dancer on one of the side stages. The young man was just incredibly; perfectly muscled, and with huge hazel eyes and the prettiest, poutiest lips he had ever seen on a guy. He was exactly what Lex had imagined in his fantasies for this weekend. And wham! Lex had an instant erection, and this guy was just exactly what Lex was looking for, just what he needed for a night of debauchery: a boy who looks innocent while sucking cock. This boy has the exact full dark hair and lush lips he'd dreamed of. Lex bided his time, watching the young man dance ... moved closer in every so often and never took his eyes off Clark.

He noticed the dancer looking back at him from time to time. When he looked, there was an occasional little spark in his eyes, but Lex wasn't sure if it was a spark of interest in the music, or if he had noticed Lex watching him. Otherwise the guy seemed to go through the motions just fine but seems somehow mechanical.

"Oh well," Lex thought. Lots of the dancers seemed that way. After all Lex knew that Metropolitan life could easily lead to being jaded. Hell, he was the poster boy for jaded Metropolitan cynicism himself. But on this guy, it was really a shame. The beautiful dancer had something special and it really shouldn't be wasted in a gay strip bar, even if this was one of the better ones. This guy could at least model, if not star in good quality porn flicks. Well, Lex had some acquaintances with connections, so maybe he could help the guy out with that. But first, he would like a little taste himself. He decided to talk to the dancer and ask him to meet him later somewhere, after work.

At the end of the next set of music, Lex followed the man with his eyes to the next stage. Then two more times and the young man was done with his shift and Lex noticed he went back towards the back of the club, where an officious looking man in a suit stopped him and talked to him and nodded towards the door to a back room. "Uh oh," thought Lex. "He has a deal worked out with the club. So this is the guy I need to talk to if I want to make some time with this entrancing dancer." It was not Lex's preferred way to handle the arrangements. He would much rather do without a middle man, or at least use his own, but he knew how this business worked and he didn't want to make any enemies here, or cost the dancer his job.

Lex waited until the young man entered the back room, then approached the gentleman he had been speaking with for an introduction. It turned out to be the manager of the Flamingo, and fortunately, rather than being difficult, he was actually quiet nice, almost to the point of obsequiousness. The man said his name was Chester, and, apparently recognizing Lex, called him "Mr. Luthor," without being told. He gave the same assurances as to the club's insistence on privacy for its patrons and asked him if he would like something to drink such as a nice bottle of champagne? Lex accepted the offer and let Chester lead him to what appeared to be the best table in the house and sat back to watch more of the show while he waited both for the champagne the young man in whom he had expressed an interest.

Minutes later, Chester returned with the now somewhat flustered dancer -- Chester was whispering to him and Lex reflected that he was probably explaining exactly what a Luthor was and he should be sure and get some real money from him. It was the sort of thing he expected, but it still grated on him.

Once at the table, Chester introduced the young man to Lex as "Clark." "Won't you please join me?" Lex asked, as Chester motioned for Clark to sit down at the table and for the waiter to bring another glass.

They made small talk for a minute. Lex could tell that Clark was nervous, but covering it well. That shy innocence wouldn't work for most, but Clark was definitely getting away with it. In fact, Lex thought that on him, it was very hot and even a little sweet. It was a refreshing change from the usual Metropolitan jadedness that most dancers he had met exhibited.

Lex took Clark's hand across the table and squeezed it gently, smirked a bit and said, "Let's go talk someplace a little more private."

Clark nodded and stood up, then walked away from the table. Lex followed him to the back room, a waiter following with the bottle of champagne and glasses. Clark put on some music. Lex found himself in a small, dark room with spartan, but comfortable furnishings and Lex didn't think much of it, but the company could be more than worth it. Clark still seemed nervous to him, but oh god, he was so pretty and so perfectly what he was looking for.

Lex asked Clark if he would like some of the champagne before he started. Clark yes, and they sit quietly drinking for a few minutes. After a few minutes, Clark got up and put some music on the little stereo, a soft, sensuous song that he could do a slow, sexy dance to.

Lex sat back in the chair with a glass of wine and watched Clark dance for a while. The young man really was a good dancer. He swayed and writhed to the music, showing off his hard torso and long legs. Halfway through the song, knelt in front of Lex, ran his hands along Lex's legs, still in time to the music. He then progressed up Lex's chest and, when he reached the top, unbuttoned a few buttons of Lex's shirt, then a few more, then slowly pulled the sides of his shirt open and stroked Lex's smooth chest, still in time to the music. Clark closed his eyes and shivered, licked his lips? moaned] then sat up a little and ran his hands up Lex's thighs until Lex's hard cock was pressing against his hand, rubbed his hand against Lex while he thrust to the music. Lex smiled down at him and moaned softly.

At the end of that song, Clark climbed back out of Lex's lap and got back on his knees. Lex ran his hands through Clark's hair and fingers over his lips. Clark unzipped Lex's pants and placed his hands under Lex, encouraging him to sit up out of the chair while Clark pulled his pants and silk boxers down. He watched as Clark stopped to take a long look at his body. Lex looked at him blankly for a second, worried that Clark is going to freak and refuse to do anything else, but not wanting his concern to be evident. "God, please no, not this time," Lex thought. But Clark just smiled shyly at him and then ran both his hands over Lex's entire crotch, apparently enjoying himself. Lex relaxed, then and Clark again ran one hand over Lex's hard cock. Clark fingered his balls, then bent his head down to lick, keeping one hand at the base and gradually taking Lex into his mouth. Lex completely abandoned himself to the sensation as it built to a climax.

Lex wasn't particularly used to cuddling after sex, especially with a stranger, but he couldn't resist his desire to hold Clark after he came. He held as long as he thought Clark would allow, not wanting to face the commercial aspect of the situation. Damn it, he really liked this guy. He didn't want it to be just a faceless, nameless business transaction. But that's all it was, he reminded himself, and finally pulled away from Clark and, trying to take the sting out of what he was doing, at least for himself, pulled bills out of his wallet without even looking at them, and pressed them into Clark's hand. He wanted to get away now, go home and pretend this happened a different way, and that this young man could come home with him and stay a little while. He still had a some time left before he had to leave for exile, so, he told Clark he hoped they could do this again sometime and left.


"Another day, another few hundred dollars," Clark thought, as he walked to the Flamingo the next afternoon. As was becoming routine, Clark went straight to the dressing room to change his clothes and mentally prepare for his evening's work. Tonight there was a small group of his fellow dancers lounging around in the little room, smoking and talking. Clark said hello

to them and went about dressing. He tried not to stare, but he couldn't help but notice that several of them looked even more muscled than he was. He guessed that they must work out a lot. Then his eye caught that of one of them, who was clearly checking him out. "So what do you take?" the other man asked.

"Huh?" replied Clark, confused.

And thus began one of the most uncomfortable conversations of Clark Kent's life. He knew about drug use, of course. He had to learned about it in school. It was some requirement of the state school system, but he'd always shoved the particulars into the back of his mind, figuring that with his odd metabolism none of them would work on him anyway. The other men tossed around names of different drugs, some of which Clark thought might be steroids. He told them he didn't use those and that he grew up on a farm and worked out. A couple of them scoffed at him. Clark really didn't care; he just wanted to finish dressing and start his shift.

He tried to ignore the men as they joked around with each other about speed and coke and X. One of them tried to offer something to Clark. He was freaked out by it all, but didn't want them to think he is weird, or backward or a kid. Finally he was finished dressing and, with a quick "bye" hurried out of the dressing room to start work.

The whole conversation was really disconcerting. Clark was well aware that there was plenty of drug use in the world, and he knew he shouldn't have been shocked to find it here at the Flamingo. It was just that he had created a mental image of the place and his current job and that had not been part of it. Clark firmly pushed the conversation to the back of his mind and lost himself in his dance.


Lex was actually surprised to find himself standing inside the Flamingo again the next night. He'd been thinking about Clark on and off all day, and yes, he would admit that he had wanted to see the young man again even as soon as he left last night, but hadn't realized that he was so intrigued by him that he couldn't resist coming back for more so quickly. He caught himself slinking around the room, furtively sneaking glances at Clark as he danced. He was vaguely distressed when he saw Clark take a man back to the back room at Chester's direction. "What the fuck has gotten into me," Lex asked himself. He didn't usually get attached to his sex partners and he certainly didn't get jealous over them. There was just something about this particular guy that threw all of his usual patterns out of whack. It was disarming in a strangely thrilling way.

Lex sipped at a drink and tried to decide just what it was that was affecting him so while he waited for Clark to finish with his customer. The kid was definitely good at what he did, both dancing and sucking cock. On the other hand, there was the undertone of innocence and goodness about him. Something about Clark just didn't seem quite "right," but it oddly wasn't a negative thing. Lex wondered if maybe he has some sort of secret life. He grinned to himself, imaging Clark as some sort of Warrior Angel-type superhero by day and male prostitute by night. The concept was just too silly.

Finally, Clark returned to the Flamingo's main room and Lex would have an opportunity to speak with him. He walked to the back, hoping to catch him before he either disappeared into the dressing room or hopped up onto one of the stages. With each step, he found himself just a little more tense, until finally he wasn't even sure he could say "hello." "Shit," Lex thought. He was nervous and tongue-tied! Lex Luthor was actually tongue-tied. This was so incredibly unlike himself! Lex was furious with himself for reacting this way and determined that he wasn't going to let anyone see him out of control. Hoping Clark had not seen him, he turned and tried to loose himself in what crowd there was and made his way out the door.


Clark sat quietly on his bed in the motel room the next morning. He had counted his money fifteen times already today. He was afraid he was becoming obsessive-compulsive or something. Unfortunately, he wasn't close enough to having as much as he needed to be able to relax. If he were honest with himself, he would admit that he was actually scared. He simply couldn't reconcile his current state of affairs with the beliefs with which he had been brought up. The sheer wrongness of what he was doing, coupled with the drugs and endless drudgery of this life, made Clark desperately hope he could come up with the money and get out of this city and the life he was living in it within the next two days. If he couldn't he really didn't know what he was going to do. He couldn't stand the thought of continuing what he was doing much longer. The dancing part was okay, really, but there didn't seem to be very many, if any, dancers who didn't turn tricks on the side. And almost all of them were using some kind of drug or another.

There were some little bits of good here and there, Clark reflected. The people at the Flamingo were all pretty nice to him, even though he mostly kept to himself. Most of the customers didn't try to do anything to awful to him and he had learned to just ignore what he was doing while he was doing it. On the plus side, a few of the customers had actually been fairly nice. Two of them had even offered to keep him full time for themselves, but of course, he couldn't commit to anything like that, since he had to leave in a couple of days. And he did have to leave, he reminded himself, for what felt like the millionth time.


The next morning found Lex at the Luthor castle in Smallville, standing around morosely and distractedly watching the movers. He was still deeply disappointed in the events of the previous night and in himself for reacting the way he had. His staff was diligently trying to clean up and air the place out for him. He knew he was just in the way. He tried doing some work in the room he had chosen as an office, to no avail. Next, he went to his red pool table and attempted to shoot some pool. He thought that it was really 's too bad he had moved to Smallville so soon. If only he had had another day or two, he could have tried again and done it right the second time. Now he was stuck in a tiny town full of people who, from what he has heard, hated his father and were suspicious of him. He was also stuck running a crap factory. He would definitely have to import some kind of entertainment. Unfortunately, the kind of entertainment he was now fixated on could only be imported very, very discretely, if at all. Perhaps, if he ran the plant carefully and did nothing to make either his father or the locals suspicious, he could eventually go back to Metropolis on a weekend and hook up with Clark again. He stood back, absently rubbing the pool cue. These thoughts were going to drive him crazy. Lex decided he had to escape the monstrosity he was currently calling home.

Lex drove into town the long way, music pounding loud enough to destroy any semblance of thought. He eventually made it to what passed for "downtown" and dropped into what appeared to be the main local hangout, the Beanery, for a cup of coffee and maybe to overhear the local gossip. Just as it is in Metropolis, Sunday at the coffee shop seemed to be a local tradition. He sat back in a corner, carefully trying not to notice all the people milling around, or be noticed by them, but still catching bits of the noise of people around him talking. He had some papers with him, and used them in an attempt to appear to be totally absorbed some the agricultural reports.

Try as he might, he couldn't help thinking about the boy he met at the Flamingo. Shit, he got hard just thinking about him. It was really too bad he couldn't bring him to Smallville to play. It was already so boring and empty here, and he had only been here part of one day.

Lex picked up local paper, The Ledger, to distract himself and cover his hard on. The gossip isn't helping much. Maybe the paper would be better help for figuring out what makes the people of Smallville tick. He decided to vary his usual routine and read paper from back to front. He lost himself in high school sports and garden club meetings, until, on bottom of front page, sees a headline, "Local Teenage Boy Missing." His attention now completely focused, Lex read that the Martha and Jonathan Kent were looking for their missing son and that the Lowell County Sheriff was asking for any and all leads. There was a full-color picture of Clark to the side of the article. Lex instantly recognized the bright smile, those pretty lips and huge hazel eyes. "Shit," he thought, "that was the gorgeous boy who sucked my cock last weekend, the one I was too nervous to talk to the next night."

Well, this was an interesting development! Lex mulled over his options, trying to decide what to do. Should he go talk to the Kents? Tell them that he knew where Clark was? He wasn't sure it was really any of his business ... perhaps the boy had good reason to run away from home. On the other hand, this could also be a useful opportunity, in several ways. He realized Clark was a bit younger than he thought he was, and that telling the Kents that he met their son dancing and tricking in a gay strip club might be helpful to them, but probably won't be the best way to handle it for himself. Shit, now he definitely couldn't try another weekend visit to the guy and he certainly couldn't bring Clark back as a boytoy! But, hmmmm maybe he *could* bring him back. Lex thought this could be a way to make himself a hero in the eyes of Smallvillians and it certainly wouldn't hurt his long-term plans to have one of the local families in his debt. Lex chuckled a little to himself. Yes, there could be many positive results from this plan, not the least of which was that, having saved Clark Kent from The Sins of the Big City and returned him safely to hearth and home, he would thenceforth have a certain right to see the boy from time to time, to check up on him, as it were.

Decided on a general scheme, Lex began to form a more specific plan. He could have Sam Phelan, the Metropolis policeman the Luthors kept on retainer, keep an eye on the Kent boy tonight, check out the crap factory his father has sent him to run first thing tomorrow morning, and then drive up to Metropolis in the late afternoon and retrieve the young man from the Flamingo. Reluctantly offering silent thanks to his dad for keeping a cop on the take on the Luthor payroll, Lex put the reports and papers away, calls Sam Phelan, asks if he is still on the payroll. Tells him where Clark is working and to be very, very discrete, but to keep an eye on him. Tells Phelan he will give him the usual payment if he agrees to watch Clark for Lex and let him know if Clark shows up for work that evening.

He thought he had better go to the Kent's farm to get more information from Clark's parents and to offer to help them find their son. Once there, he was greeted by Martha Kent, who in spite of the fact that she looked like she had not slept in days, still managed to look pretty and warm. Mrs. Kent invited him inside and offered coffee. Mr. Kent, on the other hand, was quite a different story when he eventually appeared.

"Hello. I'm your new neighbor across town, Lex Luthor."

Jonathan's answer was a terse, "to what do we owe the pleasure, Mr. Luthor?" The look on Jonathan Kent's face served as a cold reminder that Lex Luthor was not all that welcome in Smallville. But, Lex thought, at least this new development and his plan should help in that respect.

"Actually, I'm hoping that I can be of some help to you," Lex replied. "I think I may know where your son is."

Lex proceeded to tell the Kents that he saw the article in the Ledger and that he thought he saw Clark working in Metropolis, without telling them exactly where he saw Clark working. "I can't make any guarantees," Lex said, "but I will promise you that I will use all of my resources to track your son down and bring him back to you."

"That would be wonderful," said Martha, a look of relief and hope on her tired face.

But Jonathan stunned him by saying, "We appreciate the offer, Mr. Luthor, but we don't need your help."

He watched in amazement as Martha Kent pulled her husband away for a minute and they talk out of his earshot. When they returned, Jonathan just scowled at him and didn't say anything, but Martha smiled at him calmly and said, "We need all the help we can get, Mr. Luthor. We would appreciate anything you can do."

"Don't worry, Mr. and Mrs. Kent. We'll find your son and bring him home to you safe and sound."

Lex took his leave, seriously wondering why Clark would have left his home. The Kents certainly seemed to care for their son very much. It doesn't appear to be a money issue, either, but then, some families are good at hiding money problems. Some families are good at hiding other problems, as well. Clark was too big and strong for Lex to worry about these people beating him. Had they emotionally abused him in some way? He decided that, if Clark completely refused to go with him, he would let things lie, see if there was anything he could do to help the young man and come back and find something to tell Mr. and Mrs. Kent about the reason Clark was staying in Metropolis. He really hoped it didn't come to that. He liked the Kents, even though Mr. Kent was obviously suspicious of him. These people were nothing like his own father. "But you never know, do you?" Lex thought to himself.


Clark had just gotten back from his night's work and couldn't sleep. He had only one more day to come up with the money and now he was starting to get really scared. He supposed it was time for his second daily money counting. This was usually his favorite part of the day -- when he was counting the money, he could focus on how close he was getting to his goal of keeping his parent's farm from being taken away from them. He was still making progress, but tonight, or this morning, or whatever it was to him, he was really scared it wouldn't be enough. He was going to have to get some serious tips tonight if he was going to be able to make it back with the money tomorrow morning. He needed more tips like that bald guy, Lex, gave him. He could use about four or five of them, in fact. He actually wished all the tricks could be exactly like that bald guy in every way. He was really cool and even kinda hot. And at least he was pretty nice to him. Lex wasn't the only nice guy he'd been with, but, well, he was just completely different. It wasn't just the lack of hair, either. He had been so incredibly focused on Clark, so intense. Clark shuddered a little, at that thought. He'd felt a little like he was under a microscope when Lex was looking at him, and it was a bizarrely good feeling.

Maybe Lex *would* come back tonight. After all, he did say he wanted to see Clark again. And If it wasn't tonight, Clark didn't know when it would be. He was either going back tomorrow morning with the money or ... or, or, well, something. He still hadn't figured it out. He had decided that he wasn't going to burden his parents with feeding and clothing him if they lost the farm. He was an adult now and he could take care of himself; maybe go back to working construction or something. Clark tried to shake off those thoughts as too depressing and turned his thoughts back to daydreams of having sex with Lex. He thought about the way Lex looked when Clark was dancing for him and then when he was touching Lex. There was almost a look of ecstasy on Lex's face. Clark found he enjoyed being the source of pleasure for him. He also would like to have Lex do some of the things he's heard about and fantasized about, like taking him in his mouth. Clark thought about the little scar on Lex's lip and how it might feel to kiss him, about Lex's smooth, hairless body and how good it felt to rub against. For the first time since he'd come to Metropolis, Clark felt his cock become hard as he remembered the way Lex looked, that thinly-veiled hungry look like he was ready to spring out of the chair and pounce on Clark. It was sensual in a way Clark had never experienced before. Lex hadn't just wanted to get off, Lex had wanted him. Somehow that made all the difference.

Closing his eyes, Clark lay back on the bed and stroked his already hard cock through his jeans. His heart and his body, both aching for comfort, Clark toed off his shoes, unzipped and pulled down his jeans and boxers and lay back on the bed. In his head, he could hear the steady beat of the music he had danced to, moving closer and closer to Lex. Clark began to stroke his cock, slowly, wanting this memory to last and last, thinking about the look on the Lex's face when he knelt in front of him, licking his own lips while thinking of Lex's. He began to stroke his cock with a little more firmness, a little more speed. He imagined Lex sliding over him, pushing his body into the bed and his head nuzzled into Lex's neck where he could smell the clean, crisp smell of Lex's cologne ... the feel of Lex's soft, hairless skin under his hands ... pale white and exotic ... thinking "he's strange, too." ... He fantasized Lex's fingers brushing over his lips, so gently ... and Clark would so like to feel those soft, uncalloused fingers on his cock, replacing his own hand. At that thought he had to squeeze, to keep from coming ... the taste of Lex's cock on his tongue ... Lex's moans, ... fingering his own balls ... Lex running his fingers gently through Clark's hair in encouragement, then ... letting Clark take control ... Clark couldn't stand it any more and began pumping himself rapidly, the tension building until he could stand it no more and, in a heady rush, shot come over his hand and stomach. Barely awake enough to know what he was doing, used the ratty bedspread to wipe himself clean and relaxed into a boneless sleep. He was too far gone into a sleep and a dream of a pale, bald lover to know that he had drifted up several feet from the bed.


As he'd planned, on Monday afternoon, Lex met Phelan in a coffee shop near the Luthor Corp building. Together they went to the Flamingo, where they found Clark near the back of the club. The young man had apparently just finished a dancing shift and was about to accommodate one of the club's customers in the back. He was very worried about how Clark would react. He sincerely hoped it would not be a repeat of the situation two nights ago. This time, however, he had a different mission, and that should be enough to keep him centered.

Lex watched Clark walk to the little back room with another trick. Little stab of jealousy. He knew he couldn't let his feelings interfere with what he had to do here, so he quickly suppressed the emotion and got his mind back to business.

The two men got a table and chatted a bit about nothing while they waited for Clark to come back out. After about 20 minutes, Lex saw Clark emerge from the back room and got up to talk to him. Fortunately they had good timing, as the club's manager was across the room and intently involved in helping the bouncer remove a drunk and somewhat disorderly patron. They were able to stop Clark on the way to the dressing room. "Hi there. Remember me?" asked Lex. He was glad to find that Clark looked happy to see him. The young man flashed him a big bright smile and his eyes were full of sunshine. Lex nervously wondered whether what he had to say next would make those eyes brighter or take all the light out of them. He watched as Clark looked over at Phelan, questioningly and realized he had better begin.

"I'm here to take you home to Smallville, Clark," said Lex.

"Huh? What do you mean and how did you know I'm from Smallville?

"I know because I saw your picture in the Smallville Ledger, Clark, along with a rather heart-rending story about the nice local teenage boy who was missing," said Lex. "I recently moved to Smallville. It's my new home now and I have a lot of interest in what goes on there. I also talked to your parents. Can you imagine how your mother must feel? Well, I can assure you it's about ten times worse. I promised them that I would bring you home today, and I'm going to do just that."

Clark hung his head at that, then muttered, "Yeah, I feel pretty bad for my parents. And I wish I could go home with you, Lex, but I just can't. I can't go today." Lex, becoming irritated at Clark's stubbornness and increasingly curious as to why Clark left in the first place, asked, "Why not? What is wrong with you? I'm trying to make this easy for you."

"No, I can't ... I can't tell you," said Clark. "You don't need to worry about me anyway. I'm going home tomorrow." "No, Clark, I don't want to have to do this the hard way. You are coming with me now. If you had told me that you wouldn't go home at all, I'd think that maybe something was wrong and home and let things lie. But if you're willing to go back tomorrow, but not today, I know that's not the case." Lex paused a moment, indicating the man standing with him. "This is Officer Sam Phelan of the Metropolis Police Department. I've brought him with me to ensure that you return to Smallville with me this evening."

"And what if I don't?" Clark asked.

"Well, then Officer Phelan here will arrest you for prostitution and take you to the Metropolis Jail."

"That is exactly what will happen," said Phelan, showing Clark his badge. "How would you like your parents to find out where you were working and what you were doing from a cop?"

"Why would they believe you?" asked Clark. "Why would you even have been looking for me. Don't tell me I've actually made the _Daily Planet_. Besides you can't prove I was doing anything other than dancing."

"They can if I testify," said Lex.

Clark looked stunned. "You wouldn't do that!" he exclaimed.

Phelan says "You don't know whether he will or not, do you? Do you want to take that chance? And even if he won't testify, I can take you in overnight and tell the Lowell County Sheriff where you are and why and I imagine they'll tell your parents. I promise you, son, you can be absolutely certain that will happen if you don't agree to leave with Mr. Luthor now. Besides, do you really think that man will let you work here tomorrow night if I arrest you today?"

Lex felt badly for Clark. Those pretty hazel eyes looked frightened and sad. Obviously Phelan was freaking him out and he knew that Phelan can be are real shit when he's strong-arming people He's seen it happen Taking on the "good cop role", Lex said, "See Clark, you can either leave with me now ride back to Smallville in my Ferrari or spend a night in the Metropolis jail or ride back in the Lowell County Sheriff's ... Taurus."

Clark's face showed clearly that he realized he would not be working at the Flamingo tonight, or ever again, for that matter. Lex knew he had won this battle and he relaxed just a bit as Clark acquiesced. He had wanted to win this one. Lex liked winning, hell, he loved it, but not when the battle was this hard won. The poor kid looked like someone had stolen his kitten.


After a stop at the motel to pick up Clark's meager belongings and the remainder of his earnings that he had stashed there, Clark settled in to Lex's Ferrari for the long trip home. He thought it really was a nicer way to get home than riding back with the Sheriff or even running home as he had planned.

On the drive back, Lex kept trying to make small talk, asking Clark what he thought of Metropolis and what he liked to do in Smallville. Clark thought he answered with some vague something. He knew Lex was trying to be nice, but he was upset and didn't want to talk at all. If he closed his eyes and tried hard enough, he was able to enjoy just being around Lex and having a brief bit of calm before he got home. But Lex seemed to want to chat. Damn, he was really tenacious about it, just wouldn't let things go. Clark thought with a slight smile that Lex probably must be used to getting whatever he wanted. When Lex wanted to talk, his underlings probably dropped everything to listen. And actually, it would be nice if no answer were required and Lex just wanted to talk at him. He liked the sound of Lex's voice.

"So, did you like working at the Flamingo?

"Yeah, it was okay," Clark managed to reply.

"How long did you work there?"


"I asked how long you worked there."

"Oh, um, not very long, really. A little over a week."

"You don't seem too enthusiastic."

"Yeah, well, it wasn't my first choice of employment and ..."

"So, wow, you must have just started working there when I met you."

"Yeah, it was my second night."

"Only your second night? I thought ... Well,"

"You thought what?"

"I don't know," Lex said with a shrug.

"Go on. Ask me whatever," Clark said.

"It's just that, underneath it all you seemed pretty innocent, but I saw you go in the back room with another guy so, I mean, you could have just been dancing for him. I guess I'm just wondering if I was your first."

"No, no," said Clark.

Lex looked over at him, one eyebrow raised. "It was just the night before."

"Are you okay with that?"

"It was nothing like I expected, really."

"You know, you don't have to think of it as your first time," said Lex. "You were just providing a service, not having sex yourself."

Clark perked up at that and said he would like to look at it that way, and that he really had wanted his first time to be special, thinking to himself maybe he can have another first time with Lex.

"I'm sure it will be wonderful," Lex replied with a wink. Clark looked back at him with a shy smile and a blush.

Then Lex suddenly became very serious. "Have you thought about what you're going to tell your parents?"

Clark thought to himself that yeah, he's thought about it a million times and he still didn't have a good answer, but he was glad for the opportunity to try out the best he could come up with on Lex. "I was going to tell them that I ran away because I was tired of not being able to do anything. My parents are pretty strict. They don't let me play sports and stuff and well, I think they'd probably buy that. I was gonna tell them I got a job working construction and was waiting for tryouts for the Sharks."

"Why even bother telling them that you had a job. You weren't really gone long enough to have to have one."

"Well, I have to explain the money," Clark said, but as it comes out of his mouth, he realized he shouldn't have admitted that to Lex.

"Why not just put the money away somewhere? Keep it for the future and never tell them about it?"

"Yeah," said Clark, "I guess I could do that. Just one more thing to keep from them."

As they approached the farm, Clark became tense again and his mind is focused on how mad his parents were probably going to be. Behind the buzz of thoughts in his mind, he heard Lex say "Don't worry, I promise I will keep your secret." Startled, he gaped at Lex, who continued with "You know, the dancing and turning tricks thing."

Oh, yeah," Clark said, relaxing a tiny bit. Shit, secrets from his parents, secrets from his friends, secrets from his rescuer; it would never end now, would it?

As if reading his mind, Lex said, "You know, the bad thing about secrets is that it's hard to keep straight what you've told to who."

Clark nodded and looked away.

"I would know. I'm keeping my whole rebellious youth secret from most of the world," Lex said with a laugh. "It's no way to live your life, Clark, so don't make a habit of it. I suggest that you let this be your one and only big secret in your life. Unless of course, my silly fantasy was right and you are a superhero by day and male prostitute by night."

"What the hell?" thought Clark, and then suddenly Lex was laughing and they were turning into the drive up to the Clark's house. Clark was nervous and sick to his stomach as they approach the farm. He felt almost the as bad as he did when around those stupid, green meteor rocks.

Lex brought the car to a stop. Turned to Clark and asked, "Hey, are you all right?"

"Yeah, I'm okay," Clark said, desperately trying to convince himself that in their happiness at having him returned home, his parents would forget to ask what he was doing while he was in Metropolis.

"Maybe I better go to the door first and sort of smooth things over Really, don't worry too much, they are going to be so glad to see you that they won't be mad, at first. Stay here in the car until I've told them."

Clark nodded and watched as Lex went to the door. Noticed how gracefully and self-confidently Lex moved. Surprised at himself for not noticing that at the club, but then he has a lot on his mind then. Not that he didn't have a few things on his mind right now. Among them, he wished he didn't feel like such a dork in front of Lex. Now the older man was waiting patiently on the doorstep. Oh, maybe his mom and dad weren't home. But no, a glance to the yard showed the familiar blue truck there and then the door was opening and there was his mom and scared as he was, he thought she was the most beautiful sight he'd ever seen.

Lex was talking to her, appeared to be trying to calm her down. Clark got out of the car without even realizing he was doing it and ran to his mother. Suddenly, she was hugging him and he could hear his dad's voice saying "Clark, my god, your mother was terrified" and then mom pulled away and just looked at him and she was crying again and this time he was the cause of her tears.

Clark hesitated, flustered and not sure what to say to mom. He was temporarily saved from having to come up with an explanation when Lex, apparently picking up on the tension between the Kents, began to explain that he was right about recognizing Clark from a Luthor Corp. construction site.

Martha pulled away from Clark, nodded at Lex, then with a sad expression on her face, started to speak, "How dare you do that! But thank god you're safe, get in here now." Martha ushered them all into the living room. "Please have a seat Mr. Luthor. I'll go make some coffee. Here, have some pie." She then turned and said to Clark, "Young man, you had us terrified. You are grounded for life! You will never see the world outside your room again! Clark Kent, you had everyone in this town worried about you! Chloe and Pete were worried sick, too. We've had the Sheriff looking for you!"

He knew he was really going to be in some big trouble. He glanced over at Lex and saw him sitting on the couch, taking in the Kent Family Scene. His rescuer looked terribly uncomfortable. He needed to get Lex out of here before things got even worse. His mother was still talking. She hadn't even paused for a breath ... "What were you doing all that time? You were gone for days! How could you do that to your father? What on earth do you think you were doing?"

"Martha, calm down! " his father exclaimed, apparently afraid his mom was going to have a stroke or something.

Thankful for the interruption, Clark glanced over at Lex, who caught Clark's eye and, as if reading his mind, quickly stood up from the couch and began to make excuses to leave. Clark stood was well, intending to walk Lex to the door.

"Thank you for your help, Mr. Luthor," said Jonathan.

"Yes, we don't know how to thank you enough for bringing our son home to us," Martha added.

"I'm just glad I was able to find him and bring him home safely," said Lex and took his leave. Clark walked Lex to the door, and said, "I owe you some thanks, as well, for ... well, you know."

Lex nodded and said, "I'll check in to see how you're all doing tomorrow."

"Okay. I guess I'll see you later," Clark said, then stood at the door watching Lex get in his car and drive away with a sense of dread at what was to come and regret that his new friend was leaving. Company gone, Clark knew he was now in for a serious tongue lashing, at the very least.

Clark returned to the living room, where his parents were waiting for him. As he came in the room, their hushed voices suddenly stopped.

"I don't know what to say, except that I'm very, very sorry and that I didn't mean to hurt you."

"What the hell were you thinking, Clark?" Jonathan asked.

"I ... I guess I wasn't thinking. I just got tired of being so restricted all the time. You won't let me play any sports or do anything and I thought that maybe if I went to Metropolis, well, I ... I don't know." Clark sat down on the couch, his head in his hands. The words just weren't coming out like he wanted them to.

"Clark, you know you can talk to us. We would have worked something out," Martha said, obviously exasperated.

Clark just nodded.

Jonathan shifted around a little uncomfortably and said, "Clark, did you really think you would be less restricted in Metropolis on your own? What if somebody saw you? What if you did something in Metropolis to make people suspicious about you? Did you think about that? Were you thinking at all?"

Martha silently pursed her lips.

Clark said, "I'm sure nobody saw anything, dad."

Jonathan: "What were you doing all that time in Metropolis?"

Clark stuttered out something unintelligible.

Fortunately, his mother broke the next uncomfortable pause by saying, "I think we're all too tired and upset to deal with this tonight. Let's just get some rest."

Looking at his mother thankfully, Clark asked if he could go to the barn for a little while.

"You can," said Jonathan, "but don't forget, we are going to have a long talk in the morning."

Then his mother added, "Clark, I think you should call Chloe and Pete first thing in the morning, also. They have been worried, too. And so has Lana. You'll need to go visit her tomorrow."

Clark nodded in agreement and, after yet another uncomfortable pause, his father finally said, "well, then, don't stay up too late, Clark," and walked towards the stairs.


Clark then turned and left the living room, but as he walked through the kitchen, his mother was whispering to his father and if he listened closely, he could just barely hear her say "we have other things to worry about right now, Jonathan. Let's just be glad he's home. We'll deal with Clark after we figure out what to do about losing the farm."

Head down and blinking back tears, Clark walked slowly to the barn and the comfort of his loft. Once there, he made straight for his telescope, runs his hands along telescope. Without it and with the night time city lights, Clark had missed the stars terribly. Looked around the loft, trying to decide where to hide the money, but no place looks secure enough to him. Still clutching the envelope full of bills in his hand, he went back to telescope and stares out at Nell and Lana's house. Thinks to himself ... All that doing that awful stuff for money and making my parents worried about me on top of their worries about losing the farm and then lying to them and I still didn't earn enough money to keep the farm from being foreclosed on in two days" At least he got to meet Lex, who seemed like a pretty nice guy, but hell, why did he listen to Lex and come back? Now his parents will lose their farm, anyway.

Clark looked around for a place to hide the money, finally decided to hide it in the couch cushions and carefully tucked his envelope full of bills under the middle cushion. Startled by every little noise. Started to go back in the house and to bed and then decided he would feel better sleeping on the couch. He lay down and it wasn't very comfortable, but at least he was home. Except that it wasn't going to be his home for very much longer because he didn't get enough money to save the farm. He wished his parents might have come up with a plan while he was gone, but from what he heard on his way out of the kitchen to the barn, it sure doesn't sound like it.

Lying quietly, Clark thought about the barn and his home, about the smells of hay and oil and animals blended, the feel of the old familiar couch with its familiar sag, how his dad built the loft. He pulled the quilt his mom made over him, old as it was, it felt like heaven compared to the nasty bedspread in his hotel room. Clark drifted off to sleep thinking it was good to be home, even if might not be home for much longer.


Lex sat at his desk, morning light filtering in through the stained glass windows behind him. He had a neat pile of newspapers on his right, a cup of coffee on his left and various reference books off to the side. He began with the _Wall Street Journal_, quickly taking in the stock quotes, perusing the headlines for anything that might spell either trouble or an opportunity and then put it aside to read more closely, later. Next he skimmed the Daily Planet for Luthor Corp. mentions and too see what PR bullshit Lionel had planted in the paper today.

Finally, after ringing for a second cup of coffee, he opened the Smallville Ledger. He knew it was too early for any mention of Clark's return to have made it into the paper, so he completely skipped the news items and moved on to the one thing in the Ledger that could be of interest to him.

At the very end of the small classified section was a section entitled "Bids, Plans, and Announcements." Lex read it closely, looking for land to buy cheap to add to Luthor Corp.'s extensive holdings in the area, as well as a few acres to put away for himself. The foreclosure list is short, compared to the Daily Planet's usual listing, but there were a few small buildings downtown and a farm or two. He reached behind his desk to retrieve a roll of papers, then unfurled his Lowell County map. Carefully checking the property descriptions against the map Lex compared the two decently-sized farms listed, and, after checking, he realized with surprise that the Kent farm was one of the properties listed. "So that's why Clark wouldn't tell me why he ran away from home. I knew he was keeping something secret from me. Don't blame him for wanting that particular thing kept secret."

Lex carefully considered offering Clark the money to buy the Kent farm. He could use some help around the castle, and he really would like to have the boy around, to perhaps continue what they had started in Metropolis, all though not on a commercial basis.

The car ride back from Metropolis had been very pleasant, as much so as the little taste of sex with Clark, and If he were discrete, and he and Clark behaved as thought they were just friends, they might be able to get away with some sort of relationship. He still wanted Clark. In fact, he wanted him very much, and he knew Clark couldn't be completely opposed to the concept of sex for money, but Lex wanted something else and he thought it would be good to head Clark in a direction away from prostitution, especially if he was going to keep the beautiful farm boy for himself. He would have to present this to the young man very carefully. After all, he wasn't sure if Clark would accept the money, or such a relationship with him, anyway. Clark Kent seemed to have inherited some of his father's pride. Besides, he was starting to change the local populace's perception of Luthors and he didn't want to derail that effort.

So, how to ensure that Clark didn't think that he was still using him as a prostitute. Maybe if he made it a loan, drew up papers and let Clark pay it back out of his wages? He would have to be careful and make sure that Clark understood that anything between them, whether friendship or sexual favors, had nothing to do with their financial arrangements.


Clark sat on his couch in the loft, moping in silence. He heard Lex come in and yell up the stairs, "Clark, are you in here?" At that, he stood up from the couch and went to top of stairs to greet Lex, who had started up the stairs, saying, "So, I see your parents decided to let you live."

"Yeah, but I'll never be able to leave the farm again," Clark retorted, sullenly.

"Your mother seems pretty calm this morning, said Lex. "They'll get over it. They know you are really an adult and that they can't keep you here forever."

Lex hesitated, then took his copy of _Ledger_ from his jacket and handed it to Clark. "Is this why you were really tricking?"

"Oh, ..., said Clark. "You weren't supposed to know about that." "I understand," Lex said. "You're just full of secrets, aren't you, Clark? So this is why you had to explain the money to your folks, you planned on returning home the conquering hero and saving the farm for them."

"Yeah, well, I blew that. I didn't make enough money."

"How much are you short?"

"Well, I have most of it. I've got almost $3,000.00."

"Wow, I'm impressed, Clark. All that in what, 7 or 8 days? But then, you are a looker and very good dancer."

"I didn't earn it all at the Flamingo, you know. I did work a construction job for 3 days."

"Ah, that's why that lie wasn't so hard to tell, it wasn't really a lie."

Clark blushed, but said nothing for a minute, then finally said, "Well, thanks for coming by. I guess I better go give what I did earn to my parents. Maybe they can use it as a start on a new place to live." He felt completely despondent. There was really no reason to burden Lex with his problem. Clark started to walk off, and was halfway to the stairs of the loft when Lex said, "Maybe there's something we can do about this."

Clark stopped and turned. Looked at Lex, sucking his lower lip into his mouth. Hoping, hoping ... finally, Clark asked "What do you mean?"

"Clark, how would you like another job?"

"What do you mean?

"I could give you a no-interest loan that you could work off."

"Really? Would you? I get why you helped out my parents by bringing me back from Metropolis, but why this? Why help me with the money?"

"I'm a nice guy," Lex said, smiling broadly. "And I'm the new guy in town with a bad reputation preceding me and ... following me. I need all the friends I can get, Clark." Clark wanted to believe Lex, but he was terrified of letting his parents down again. "Are you really absolutely sure about loaning me the money?" he asked.

"Well, I really could use some help over at the monstrosity I'm currently calling home, especially in the yard," Lex said. "Seriously, Clark, would you at least consider it? The pay's not nearly what you were making back at the Flamingo, but I hear the boss is a nice guy."

"So, you pay off our mortgage and I pay you back by trimming your hedges? That's the deal?"

"That's right, Clark. Your parents get their mortgage paid off and I get to watch you trim my hedges with your shirt off. I think that's a pretty damn good deal." Clark let out a small chuckle. "Oh, so it strip-yardwork now, is it?" Then Clark's eyes grew wide. "Lex, even if it's only $2,000.00, it will take me forever to pay you back at the going rate for yardwork and odd jobs!"

"Well, it's not like I need you to repay me quickly. As far as I'm concerned you can take as long as you'd like." Lex pauses, then said, "Clark, that's not really part of the deal. I would love to be with you every way I can, but I don't want you ever to feel obligated ..." his voice trailed off.

Clark smiled back at him. "I understand, Lex. I'm demanding those hot sex and good conversation breaks as an employee benefit." Clark's smile turned into a smirk. "So now how long do you think it'll take me to pay you back?"

Lex didn't answer, just pulled Clark into his arms and kissed him.


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