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One Year Later

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This story is No. 2 in the series "Entwined Destinies". You may wish to read the series introduction and the preceeding stories first.

Summary: Sequel to The Last Son and the Slayer. It has been a year since Clark left for his training and the time has come for him to return but is he still the Clark Kent everyone remembers? And what about his relationship with Buffy?

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Smallville > Buffy-CenteredjohnsmithFR1512,760353,63511 Aug 0811 Aug 08Yes
Summary: Sequel to The Last Son and the Slayer. It has been a year since Clark left for his training and the time has come for him to return but is he still the Clark Kent everyone remembers? And what about his relationship with Buffy?

Disclaimer: I don't own the characters in this story.

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To some people a year may not seem like a long time but to Clark Kent it has been a lifetime. In the last year he has learned all the knowledge of Krypton. His memories of Smallville swamped by vast amounts of information. He clung on to the few most important memories, his parents, Chloe, even Lois but especially Buffy. She had said she would wait and he had vowed he would see her again. After a year his old clothes had long since deteriorated. He is having the Fortress make him a suit, something that honours his heritage. The red and blue colour he chose. Emblazoned on it is the symbol of his house in red and yellow. He decides on a cape, in honour of robes that Kryptonians wore but a cape would be more appropriate for someone who now flew.

His training wasn't over. While he now possessed the knowledge he had learned it was his role to lead humanity to a better way. His father had put it like this; They can be a great people, they wish to be, they only lack the light to show the way. That's why I have sent them you my only son. To lead them he had to understand them and to do that he intended to travel the world, living among its peoples. He had a few things to do first. One go home and get more appropriate clothing, two he would check up on his mother and maybe Chloe and three he would keep his promise and see Buffy again. He put on his new suit and then propels himself upwards into the sky followed by a sonic boom.

Flying was a thrill to Clark. He felt so free, able to defy gravity. Unfortunately he also flew fast and it was only minutes before he approached the house in Smallville. He tuned in his hearing to discover that both his mother and Chloe were there. Hey he could kill 2 birds with one stone. It's night time so it's easy enough to avoid being spotted as he glides down to the farm. Once he lands he isn't quite sure what to do, should he knock or just go in. Since they weren't expecting him he thought it better to knock. He walks up to the door and gently knocks.

Martha Kent and Chloe had decided to get together on the 1 year anniversary of Clark's departure. After all only the 2 of them knew the truth of where Clark went, they only had each other to talk too. Chloe reflects on the year without her friend. The world slowly seemed to be falling apart. Lex was scheming his way to own half of Metropolis, he had finally dealt with Lionel. Sure the official autopsy said it was a heart attack but Chloe knew better. A few months after Clark left, Lana returned after faking her death. What had happened to that girl who was once so sweet, Chloe didn't have any idea. She had practically threatened Chloe to try and find out where Clark was. Even if she been inclined to tell her, which she wasn't, Clark had taken the key with him. Chloe wasn't even sure exactly where the Fortress was located in the arctic. Chloe soon found out that Lana had become obsessed with trying to take Lex down and she knew for certain that that was going to end badly, probably for Lana. Her thoughts are interrupted by a knock on the door.

Martha Kent had spent most the last year terrified Clark would come back as the Kal-El personality from before when Jor-El brainwashed him. If that happened again she and Chloe would end up having to try and stop him. Chloe told her of Lana's return. That girl had changed and not for the better. She didn't know how Clark would take the news, that's assuming he is still Clark when he returns. Her thoughts are interrupted by a knock on the door. At this time? She gets up and opens it. Standing there is a man in a red and blue suit. There's a Kryptonian symbol on his chest. She looks at his face. He speaks "Hey Mom."

Martha's eyes widened "Clark!" She hugs him with all the strength she has. Clark's glad he's invulnerable, a normal person would be being squeezed to death. His mother breaks the hug and Clark walks in. "Hey Chloe." He's a little taken aback when she leaps forward and hugs him in a death grip similar to his mother.

Chloe eventually breaks the hug. She can't believe it, her friend is back and what is he wearing? She examines the suit and cape. Now the cape she likes but the material is like none she had ever seen. On closer examination it looks like it was made of tiny crystals. The surface is broken with tiny hexagons of material. "What are you wearing Clark and what is it made of?"

Clark smirks. Same old Chloe, always the investigator. "Well my old clothes didn't really stand up to a year of training. I based this on Kryptonian formal wear and as for the material, there is no translation of its name in English."

Martha stares at her son. He's still her son yet he's different, he's more comfortable with himself, like he has finally come to terms with the human and Kryptonian sides of his nature. She wonders if he has been eating properly, hey she's still his mother, she worries about him. He actually looks slightly bigger than he was before he left. "Clark, honey, we were about to have dinner, will you be staying?"

Clark had discovered he didn’t actually need to eat, the sun alone could sustain him but he could barely remember what his mothers cooking tasted like. He could remember that he liked it a lot. He needed to get some new clothes anyway if he was going to blend in. "Sure Mom. You can tell me what I've missed this last year."

After dinner Clark finds himself in the barn up in the loft. He has changed into a shirt and jeans. Dinner was great, like tasting food for the first time again. His mother and Chloe filled him in on all the events of the last year. Lex was clearly a lost cause and sadly it seems so was Lana. What logic dictated that by faking her death she was protecting him. Now she was obsessively stalking Lex for lack of a better term. He hears Chloe approach, heck he could hear her heartbeat from orbit if he wanted to.

"Hey Clark are you ok?"

"I'm fine Chloe."

"I was talking about Lana, I remember how you feel how about her."

"How I felt about her Chloe. I grieved for her and I moved on. From what you say, she's not the person I fell in love with. Besides I'm still in love with Buffy. A year in the Fortress hasn't changed that. You don't happen to know where she is do you?"

"Not exactly. We kept in touch, mostly when they need help with one of the slayers. They set up a base in Scotland somewhere."

Scotland? Well that narrows it down. It shouldn't take him long to search a single country Clark muses.

"You're going to find her aren't you?" Chloe asks and Clark nods in reply.

Chloe doesn't dwell on it and changes subjects. "So any cool new powers?"

Clark knows what one she wants to know about, the flying. "Not really, more a refining of my existing ones. I can detect specific wavelengths with my eyes, not just x-rays. I could examine your internal organs if I wanted to."

"Clark, you do know how creepy that is right? Anything else?"

"I can control the temperature of my super breath, cooling things down or warming them up."

Chloe is on to his game. "Still float in your sleep?"

"Only if I want to."

"Ok Clark cut to it, what about the flying?"

Clark then proceeds to levitate himself above the floor.

"That is awesome."

"I actually flew here. That's why I added the cape. I thought it would look cool when I'm flying."

There is a slight pause in the conversation. "I can't stay Chloe. I have a destiny to fulfil." Clark says with a tinge of sadness.

"Last time you said that it involved conquering the human race."

"I'm here to lead Chloe not conquer; to show there is a better way but to do that I need to understand the peoples of the world. I have to travel and live among them."

"And where does Buffy fit in this?"

"My life is never going to be easy. I need someone who is not afraid to tell me when I'm in the wrong but support me at the same time."

"When are you going?"

"A few days, I need some new clothes first."

"No, what you need is a whole new wardrobe. Luckily I'm here." Chloe has a look in her eye that Clark remembers all too well. He's in trouble.

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A few days later Buffy is getting ready for bed. Another day training slayers and battling the minions of hell. She goes to a drawer and gets out a picture she picked out a year ago. A picture of him. She has looked at this every day for a year now. She is interrupted by a voice behind her, it's Willow.

"I thought it was to do with him. That's why you been so rough on everyone lately."

Buffy cringes slightly. Willow's right, she's been rotten to everyone lately. Her temper is short and in training she had been giving no leeway at all. Even Faith at her worse has been easier on them. "I'm sorry Will. I miss him and with it being more or less a year since he left it just seems worse than usual. I promise I'll try to keep my temper in check."

Willow shakes her head. "Buffy the rest of us are pretty tough; it's you I'm worried about. I know you said you'd wait but perhaps you should move on."

Buffy puts the picture down. "No Will. He will come back. I can feel it, feel him. I can't explain it." Buffy is still wearing the bracelet Clark gave her a year ago. The gem glows in response to her words but neither her or Willow notice it.

Willow walks up to Buffy and puts her hands on Buffy's shoulders. "Love can never be explained. If you want to wait then I'll wait with you." Buffy's her friend and Willow will be here for her. They then hug and Willow leaves. Buffy then tries to get to sleep. Something she didn't get a lot of since Clark left. She lays down and whispers to the ceiling "Come back soon Clark."

Little does Buffy know that far above her, hovering above the clouds is Clark, tuning in his hearing. He eventually picks up Buffy's conversation with Willow, hears her quiet plea. He shoots down, sonic boom in his wake and soon comes across the castle that Buffy and the others had set up as a base.

Buffy is awoken by knocking on her window. She's annoyed, firstly she was just asleep and secondly her window is twenty feet up. Who the heck can this be? If this is a practical joke by one of those girls, she is going to triple their training regime. She opens the curtains to find a man in a red and blue suit and red cape hovering outside her window. Out of sheer curiosity she opens the window and looks at him. Wow is he built. She studies his face and looks at his eyes. Those eyes, his eyes. "Clark!" She then jumps out the window and wraps herself around him, kissing him for dear life. Oh god his kiss. It's better than she remembers.

It hadn't taken Clark long to find Buffy's room, x-ray vision was definitely useful. He flies up to her window and knocks. He hears her get up and mutter something about those girls. She approaches the window. God, is he sweating? She opens the curtains and then the window, she's examining him. Is she more beautiful than before? They lock eyes and then to his complete surprise she jumps out the window and wraps herself around him. She kisses him. Oh god her kiss. It's better than he remembers.

Eventually they break apart. Buffy then realises they're floating 20 feet above the ground. "As cool as this is, can we go inside?"

Clark smiles "Sure." as they gently float in the window and he places Buffy gently down.

Buffy stumbles back a bit, her legs like jelly. "Nice suit." she stutters out.

"You too, but isn't that shirt mine?" Clark has a knowing grin on his face.

Buffy looks down, she is wearing one of Clark's shirts that she borrowed. She quickly moves on. "So flying huh, that's new. Any other new powers?"

Clark chuckles "You sound like Chloe and as I told her it is mostly refinements on my existing powers. If you want I can tell you what colour underwear you're wearing."

Buffy goes beat red "I'm actually not wearing any."

Clark leans forward and whispers in a tone that sends shivers up her spine "I know."

"Are you staying for good, I mean?" Buffy asks hopefully.

"No. I don't have to go back to the Fortress but I need to travel the world so I can understand its people but I needed to see you first. I thought about you a lot. I need you Buffy. I need someone who's not afraid to tell me when I'm wrong."

"Well you know me, never slow to express an opinion." Buffy weakly jokes. How can he do this to me? appear and then leave again. "How long will you be here?"

"Long enough. Buffy our relationship is never going to be easy. I can't be here all the time but I can come back in literally minutes from anywhere in the world. Please tell me your at least willing to give it a try." Clark has tears in his eyes.

Buffy now has tears in her eyes. Is some of the time enough? They only spent a few days together but she's done nothing but think of him every day since. "Yes, I'll try."

Clark cups her face and gently kisses her. Buffy's response is anything but gentle and by the way her hands are exploring his body, Clark knows where this is headed. He has to stop, he has one question to ask her. He breaks away. "Buffy, believe me I want to do this but first I have a gift for you."

Buffy slightly annoyed and extremely frustrated, it has been a year for goodness sake, watches as he reaches behind and pulls out a small box. "Do you have a hidden pocket back there or something?"

"Yes, actually." is Clark's reply as he hands over the box.

Buffy takes the box and opens it. "Ok, I'm confused, a lump of coal. You know that diamonds are a girls best friend right?"

Clark in his most mocking tone "Really. Well I'll just have to correct this."

Buffy watches Clark take the coal and crush it in his hand. She can feel waves of heat emanating from his hand as well. She is speechless when he opens his hand to reveal a perfect diamond. She then sees him take a ring that was inside the box as well and proceed to set the diamond to it. Clark then gets on one knee and speaks "Buffy Summers I love you. Will you marry me?"

Buffy is speechless for the second time in like 2 minutes, a new record. She is conflicted. Sure she loves Clark but lets face it she loved the other men in her life as well. However, she never went running back to them, not even Spike after she found out he was alive. She waited for Clark for what but this moment. "Yes, I will."

Clark places the ring on her finger and picks her up, kissing her with as much strength as he dare use. The kisses intensify and before long they are floating towards the bed. Clark can't predict the future but he knows one thing for certain, that his and Buffy's destinies are entwined together, the Last Son and the Slayer.

The End

You have reached the end of "One Year Later". This story is complete.

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