“Can we stay here tonight instead of with Mister Clark?”
At Jason’s innocently-asked question, Perry White’s mouth opened in shock. “What the h—Clark?”
Lois’ first impulse was to fly into excuse mode. “Oh, Clark babysat Jason last night… and I came over later to work on the Mitchener story… after what happened with…” She let her words trail off – they sounded hollow even to her own ears. And the uncomfortable assessing looks Richard and Clark were giving each other… Lois realized that there was no hiding it from Perry.
But Jason… Lois placed a gentle hand on Jason’s shoulder and knelt to face him. “Sure, Munchkin. We’ll stay here tonight.” Jason didn’t know anything about the break-up, and this was not the time or place to do it. She would not explain what was going on to Perry in Jason’s hearing. “Why don’t you go in and put your pajamas on and I’ll be in soon.” Thankfully, all of the adults seemed to understand her hesitation. “Hey, Jason, want me to help you find something?” Jimmy volunteered, and his natural enthusiasm thankfully broke the tension. “You can show me that new game you got.”
“Okay,” Jason answered after Lois gave him an affirming I’m-just-fine-kiddo kind of nod. Their voices quickly faded as the two went up the stairs onto the deck and into the house.
When Jason was out of earshot, Perry cleared his throat and lowered his voice. “Now, don’t give me any bull, you three. I didn’t become editor-in-chief of The Daily Planet because I couldn’t see what was in front of my face.” His eyebrows drew down as he pointedly looked between Lois and Richard. “Is what I’m seeing true? Did…” He shook his head disbelievingly before continuing, “…Kent come between the two of you?”
“Well, I wouldn’t say that I—” Clark began timidly, just as Lois was also arguing, “Chief, it’s not that easy to---”
Richard held up a hand. “Wait, Uncle Perry. Don’t jump to any conclusions… yet.” Both Lois and Clark halted mid-sentence. Richard continued, voice remarkably emotion-free, “It seems that Lois and Clark had a relationship back before he… left… on his trip. When Clark came back they both realized they still had… feelings for each other.”
Lois was completely surprised, Clark seemed just as astonished. Richard is explaining this… defending us? Why?