Lana Lang could barely make it through the crowd in the flower shop run by her aunt Nell. At first she was puzzled, because as far as she knew, this wasn't a holiday. And then she remembered what she'd heard at school.

So it must be true, she thought sadly as she pulled out a pink tissue and dabbed at her eyes. Martha Kent had left her husband...and taken her son with her.

"Now, Nell, we know you know what happened. Tell us," one of the crowd called out.

Nell tried to look sad, but didn't quite pull it off. "It seems that the farm was having financial troubles, and when Jonathan refused to take the money Lex Luthor offered him..."

"Why would Luthor offer the Kents money?" someone asked.

Nell blinked. "You don't know?"

"Know what?" another demanded.

"Martha left with Lex. I hear they're in Paris."

Lana actually heard a pin drop from the counter as everyone absorbed the news. Martha Kent and Lex Luthor? How...odd. Lex was barely older than Clark. And sure, he was rich and sexy in a dangerous, bad boy sorta way, but... Oh! Martha and Lex! That was--that was... Lana's red face clashed with her pink sweater.

"And--and they took Clark with them?" a person finally came out of shock to ask.

Nell lowered her lashes. "You know Martha. She dotes on the boy. Why, I'm not even sure she would have stayed with Jonathan as long as she did if it hadn't been for her precious son. Still, if I had known what she was planning, I would have offered to take the boy in so he could continue to be with his friends."

"Luthor I can understand," one of the few men in the crowd said. "But Martha..." He shook his head.

"Martha was a--Metropolis girl."

"Oh," the crowd murmured.

"How is Jonathan taking it?"

Nell shook her head. "The poor man is still in shock. I'm hoping that he'll feel like talking when I take him dinner tonight. Lana! Good, you're home from school. Excuse me for a minute, please," she said to her guests and customers. Everyone had bought something, but none of them had left.

"I heard at school, Aunt Nell," Lana said as she was tugged into the work room. "It's just not going to be the same without Clark."

Nell patted her shoulder absently. "Yes, he was a pretty boy, wasn't he? But I called you in here, dear, to ask you where you put that lingerie set that you borrowed. The chlorine scent came out, didn't it?"

The last of Lana's dreams crumbled as she realized she and Clark were going to be step-family.

Paris, France

"Thank you, Josette," Martha Kent said, her eyes closed as she sank against the pillowed back of the large tub.

"Josette brings you champagne in the bath? What else don't I know, Martha?"

Martha opened her eyes to see Lex perched on the wide edge of the tub. She took a sip from the fluted glass in her hand. "You have much better taste than Josette."

Lex smiled, scooped up a handful of the bubbles that covered Martha, and blew them in her direction. "Gee, I feel so much better."


"In here, Clark."

Martha smiled as her son walked into the bathroom. He looked so much better without the plaids and flannel. Lex was the best personal dresser either of them could have. "Hi, baby."

"Hey, Mom. Am I interrupting something?" Clark asked as he sat beside Lex and wrapped his arms around him.

"I was just about to ask Martha about the plans for tonight."

"Oh." Clark kissed the bald head resting on his shoulder. "Did you change your mind, Mom?"

"No, sweetie. It's time you and Lex has some fun without an interfering mother-in-law around."

"You're not interfering," Lex said adamantly. Clark nodded in agreement.

"Still, you're two young men who deserve some time in the City of Love on your own. Lex, I'm sure you have places you'd like to show Clark." She laughed as the international playboy blushed. Clark was apparently rubbing off on him. In more ways than one, she added with a blush of her own. "I'll be fine here. Besides, Paul said he might drop by."

"Mmm, Paul," Clark teased.

Paul was the U.S. Ambassador to France. Who knew that he would remember the girl he'd had a crush on at Metropolis High? "Get out of here and let me enjoy my naughty thoughts alone," she chided with a wave of her glass.

"Fine," Clark said, standing and pulling Lex up with him. "I'm sure Lex and I can come up with some naughty thoughts of our own."

Lex grinned. "Congratulations, Martha. You've raised a genius." He leaned forward and brushed his lips across Clark's.

"And so now I'm the mother of two beautiful, intelligent boys. Not too shabby for a Met girl, huh?"

Lex leaned over and kissed her cheek. "For what it's worth, you'll always be my favorite Met girl."

"Sure, I give you my son and you tell me anything," she said, laughing. Then she sobered. Putting down the glass she reached out her hand and placed it in Lex's. "Thank you, Lex Luthor. Clark will always have the top spot, but you're the second-best person to ever walk into my life."

"I'm sorry about Smallville," Lex began.

She squeezed his hand to make him stop. "Another life, Lex. Now, I have this one. Two sons, a boyfriend, and more money than any Met girl could ever want. I'm truly happy. Now get out before Clark ravishes you before my eyes. You know how he gets when you get all sentimental."

"I love him, Mom," Clark said as he placed his hand atop the two that were already entangled.

"I know, baby. That's why I had to stop your father from hurting him any more. Couldn't have the love of your life turning into Big Bad Lex because of Jonathan's stupidity."

"Hey, I am Big Bad Lex."

She and Clark shared a grin. "Of course you are, Lex, sweetie. And there's this lovely tower down the street that I've heard is for sale."

Martha laughed as Lex shoved Clark out of the room, vowing to show him Big Bad Lex. "Oh, boys," she called as they reached for the door. "Tell Josette to bring me some bonbons."

Sipping the champagne, Martha thought about the fine chocolate her maid would soon be delivering, the penthouse she shared with her two wonderful boys, the handsome, successful man who would soon be her lover, and how totally happy she was.

Guess she just wasn't cut out to be a Smallville girl.

Guess she'd leave that to Nell.