Well, it's been a little while since I really updated. I've been very busy brooding and not being productive; that takes a lot out of a tentacle.
I have a fic to post. My friends have been very patient with me about it. Mostly. I've been threatened with death or strategic de-tentacling enough times now that it's starting to sink in. So, four and a half months late, here is my Merry Sue. Or, rather, laceymcbain's Merry Sue.
If you don't know what I'm talking about, the story is this: The SVG decided to do a secret Santa thing where we'd draw names and write a Mary (Merry) Sue for the person we picked for Christmas. We each wrote our names and two of our (mild) kinks down on a piece of paper and away we went. I got Lacey. I angsted and just angsted over mine and it ended up being eighty-four bloody pages long. But I had a blast writing it and finding little in-jokes and personal references to put in. Oh, and I managed to stuff Lacey's kinks in at the very end. Look for Clark learning to fly and Lex with freckles. Also look for about a million italicized words; holy Mary, mother of God, I use a lot of italics.
I actually tried to post it before, but LJ didn't like the length, or half the length, or a third of the length ... so I'm just going to post it in bits. It's not a WIP though, this sucker's done. Read without fear : )
I was going to name it "Masquerade," but on reflection, I think that name sucks. So if anyone has a suggestion let me know.
Title: *Merry Sue for Lacey*
Rating: R (for possibly disturbing content)
Notes: Umm. Let's see. It's un-betaed, and will remain so, so if you see any mistakes or hideous inconsistencies feel free to ignore them. Lacey never actually played ringette, I just needed a sport and - bizarrely - that was the first one that came to mind. Kudos to the brave Craig, who allowed me to use his *gasp* RL name, and to my roommate, B, who, on December 27th and at the end of her patience, put a bottle of wine in front of me and said, "drink it, write it, send it."
The light bothered him. He hadn’t realized until he had come to Point, with its clean lines and chrome tables, how much a creature of the shadows he was. This place was cold and sterile. He preferred the generative heat of the dark, stripes of shadow under stadium bleachers, dark corners at the racing downs, greed and chance copulating in grimy corners birthing profit.
And now – now he was stuck in this white and brushed-steel nightmare; the crippling boredom interrupted only by daily sessions of equally crippling sonic bombardment that left him temporarily deaf and permanently nauseated. And it was all for nothing. Almost nothing. That little bitch had taken his gift and ruined it and now he was at Luthor’s mercy, just like everybody else in this high tech dump.
Across the common room Mikhail could see Molly talking to one of the techs. She was swinging her glasses in one hand, the other hand twitching her short skirt up and down against her thighs. The tech was in geek heaven, for once actually being able to have a conversation with a hot chick. Molly laughed and pretended to steal his clipboard, hiding it behind her back, giving him a chance to lean into her as he reached for it, admonishing her in a shaky voice, cheeks flushed red. ‘Careless,’ Mikhail thought, watching Molly’s hand slide into the tech’s coat pocket, then out again, fingers curled protectively.
He concentrated as the tech reclaimed his clipboard and started reluctantly towards the elevator doors at the side of the common room, waving to the armed “attendant” in the glass booth.
The tech, turning at Molly’s ‘goodbye,’ to call back some stupid, lovesick nonsense, suddenly stumbled. Instantly the attendant was on his feet, eyes on Mikhail’s table. It always took him by surprise when he saw this evidence of how closely they were watched, a useful reminder that not all of Luthor’s employees were incompetent.
He tried to lounge in his steel chair, the hard edges digging into his thighs. He plastered an arrogant smile across his face as he let his eyes linger on the tech, who was flushed and scowling.
“Not me,” he called out across the room. “Check with the DJs,” he added, accent clipping some syllables short, lengthening others into a foreign drawl. The tech nodded, and the attendant gave him a look before settling back into his chair. Mikhail watched as the tech got on the elevator, rolling his eyes as the loser waved to Molly one last time.
“Careless,” Molly said as she approached his table, hand held casually at her side.
“It wasn’t me,” he said, playing for the directional microphones he knew were picking up their conversation. “Luthor’s DJs are useless. Play all those noises at me and I can’t even get a coin to flip the right way.” He affected a pout.
“Mmm.” Molly suppressed a scowl at the mention of Luthor’s name.
“Hey, Mik,” a new voice sounded over his shoulder, and he swiveled around to see a short teen approaching.
“Ian,” Molly said, coolly. She was, like him, uncomfortable with the idea of working with these – freaks. But strange circumstances made for strange bedfellows. They were all trapped here in some way. The threat of deportation for him, the threat of prosecution for Molly. For Ian, after the escape attempt at Belle Reve, the threat of being tried as an adult. Adults.
“Ice Queen,” Ian replied, his tone polite.
They glared, and Mikhail took in Molly’s subtle shift in posture. Playing to the camera. All well and good, but if he could see it, so could the attendant. He frowned at her and nudged her foot under the table. She frowned back as she continued to pass calm insults back and forth with the freak.
“You’re such a child, Ian,” she said as he leaned over her, putting a hand on his chest to push him away. “You know, if you’re attracted to me you should just say so, so I can tell you straight out that it’s never going to happen.”
“Don’t flatter yourself, sweetheart,” Ian sneered, his hand catching hers before he straightened and moved away. Mikhail watched the exchange out of the corner of his eye.
“I don’t know what he sees in you,” Ian threw over his shoulder as he turned away, slipping his hand into his waistband.
“Who?” Molly called out, her curiosity overcoming her disdain.
Mikhail watched Molly frown until she got it and enjoyed the disgusted expression that flitted over her face before she picked up on Ian’s strategy and forced herself to look thoughtful and interested. It was tough on her, this consorting with the freaks, but she’d put up with it, as he did. Because this freak, and Molly’s skill, and his slowly recovering gift were going to get them out of this place. Soon.
“Maybe they let you choose your assignments at the Inquisitor, Clark,” Terry said, infusing the name of the newspaper with a world of scorn. “But they sure as hell don’t at The Planet, and we sure as hell don’t at the Met U Chronicle. So suck it up and dust off your damn tux.”
Clark shook his head, leaning forward to press his hands against the cheap wood of Terry’s desk, reminding himself to keep his power under control.
“What’s your problem anyway, Kent? This is a plum assignment, you’re lucky to get it.”
“Look, Terry,” Clark closed his eyes and shook his head again. “I just – I just really, really can’t take this one. I –”
“Tough shit, Kent,” Terry snapped. “This is the first year that a major sponsor has shown an interest in the Chronicle and we have to foster that. We’re the only college newspaper to get a press pass to LexCorp’s first premier party and we’re not going to bow out because you don’t feel like going!”
Clark thought he could say a few things about why this year was the first year the Chronicle had gained the interest of a sponsor; things about how he suspected it wasn’t the Chronicle the sponsor was interested in, but he didn’t want to go there. “But Terry …”
Terry’s eyebrows were raised as high as they could go and he was looking at Clark as though he were insane. Clark partially agreed. He’d seen Terry angrier, last week when Beth had been hung over and had phoned in her proof and the article with all the lewd jokes Jeff had stuck in there for her to find had actually gone to print came to mind, but it was looking like Clark’s continued protests in the face of a patented Terry-rant were going to drive his editor to new heights of rage.
“You. Are. Going.”
“It’s a social piece! That’s Jen’s beat.”
Terry went absolutely silent, sitting back in his chair and drumming his fingers against his battered desk. Oh bad, bad.
“And I don’t have a tuxedo.” Oh God. Terry was so going to make him go.
“You can submit an expense claim.” The words were ground out through clenched teeth. “Get the cheapest one that isn’t blue.”
“Jen’s got a broken hip, Jeff’s fired, I have the Young Journalist’s conference in Florida, and both Pauls are idiots. You’re going.”
“Not one more fucking word, Kent.”
Once Terry started swearing the conversation was over. Clark dropped his head and leaned back in his chair. He could tell Terry that he had a personal conflict with the story, but Terry would want specifics and Clark had no intention of telling anyone that he and the CEO of LexCorp had been best friends until two years ago, when he’d discovered said CEO’s freakish obsession with him, least of all his driven, scary editor.
“Fine,” Clark said wearily. He wouldn’t even have to rent a tux. He’d lied: he still had the Armani from Lex’s second wedding.
As Clark grabbed up his old red backpack and turned to head for the door he tried to convince himself that it wouldn’t be so bad. He probably wouldn’t be able to get close enough to talk to Lex even if he wanted to. Clark relaxed a little; he was a skilled wallflower, and if he played it just right Lex wouldn’t even know that he was …
“Luthor wanted to know who we were sending. Take this number and call Luthor’s personal secretary to have your name added to the guest list.” Clark stared at Terry like he was trying to see the horns, then snatched the slip of paper he was holding out of his hands and hoofed it for the door before he could come up with any more inventive ways of making Clark’s life a living hell.
Lex Luthor was having a bad day. The sheer amount of administrative crap that he’d had to wade through was overwhelming and he saw a serious shake-up in middle management in LexCorp’s future. He hadn’t had to deal with this garbage when he was in Smallville, he reflected wistfully, before realizing that he was being wistful for Christ’s sake, and banishing the thought from his overworked mind. Still, he thought, gazing out of the floor to ceiling window that made up one wall of his corner office, maybe it was time to move Sullivan to Metropolis, someone honest and hardworking to replace – maybe Fenwick? – and put the fear of God into the lazy peons he currently had pulling down six figure salaries …
Enough. Lex made a small notation in his PDA – GS upper management? – then firmly put all thoughts of Smallville aside. He turned back to the sheaf of papers awaiting his signature. The first one was an expense form for – helium tanks? – for the LexCorp premier party. Lex felt a surge of entirely rational fury. He was a billionaire for God’s sake! He could guarantee that Lionel wasn’t signing helium tank expense forms in his office upstairs. Lex glared up at the ceiling for a moment.
Lex shuffled through the stack of papers. More of the same. He was going to kill Laura. Well, fire her. More expense forms for the party, helium, bunting, catering …
Lex stilled just as he was slipping the last sheet under the stack. He pulled it out again.
Lex depressed the intercom button on his phone. “LAURA!”
There was a sharp intake of breath and the sound of paperclips scattering. “Yes Mr. …”
“Get in here. Now.”
A moment later his personal secretary was standing in the doorway looking perfectly coiffed, competent, and nervous as hell.
Lex strode towards her and awarded her points for nerve when she didn’t shrink away.
“What the hell is this?”
Those are the sheets that Mr. Fenwick sent up from finance …”
“Is he insane?” Lex snapped. “First of all, I never should have been bothered with this inconsequential drivel – that’s what I pay him for – and second, even if he’s incompetent enough to bother me with this you shouldn’t be, and third – ” Lex waved the sheaf of papers a little wildly.
Laura reached for the papers and he pulled out the top one and thrust it into her hand.
“What?” Laura studied the requisition, a frown spreading across her face.
“Helium!” Lex shuffled the papers and pulled out the first form he’d noticed. He shuffled again and then stopped, staring down at his hands. Laura looked up.
“Wal …” Lex cleared his throat and tried again. “Waldo’s House of Clowns. Dear God.”
Laura was ashen as she pulled the paper from Lex’s unresisting fingers.
“Tell me,” Lex said. “Tell me that, four days from now, my young, hip company isn’t going to make its debut appearance on the Metropolis social scene by having clowns serve mini-wieners to the cream of Metropolitan society!”
“I can’t,” Laura said, and Lex couldn’t find it in him to detract points for lack of nerve when she retreated from his glare.
“Fire Fenwick,” Lex said, shoving the rest of the papers into her hands, “get these out of my sight, and I don’t care how busy she is, I don’t care who you have to kill to do it, you hire Lacey McBain to plan this damn thing.”