DISCLAIMER - Not mine, I couldn't afford the motor and household insurance bills. I promise I'll scrub them down and give them back to DC comics, the WB and anyone else who does own a slice of them when I'm done with them. Story, such as it is, copyright Karen Colohan, June 2002.

Author's notes - 1) The title is from Shakespeare's The Tempest, Act II Scene II  2) Spoilers for Tempest  3) Just to reiterate, this story contains scenes of incest and rape


ALAS, THE STORM IS COME AGAIN

by Karen Colohan

The sound of the library doors being swept open was loud in Lex's self-imposed isolation. He'd sent his staff home earlier. Most of them were related in some way to someone who had been put out of a job by the plant's closure and they were no more comfortable being around Lex than he was having them in the house. Their reproachful looks were just another reminder of his failures - he already had enough of those.

Lex didn't need to look up as the doors were shut again with a theatrically loud bang. He knew who it was before a single word was spoken. Though two visits in the space of just a few hours really was unprecedented. But quite apart from the deliberately grand entrance, this was an intrusion he'd been half expecting. The earlier meeting really hadn't resolved anything. All it had done was underline for Lex just how low his father was prepared to stoop just to score points in the ongoing battle being waged between them. And, in turn, that had only made him more determined to succeed.

From the outset, when he'd called his most senior managers from the plant together to discuss what happened next, Lex had known his father wouldn't let such a direct challenge to his authority go unanswered. And the plans for the buyout were nothing if not a very conspicuous gauntlet being thrown down.

A faint smile curved Lex's lips as he wondered if his father had considered for even a second the possibility that he would simply refuse to do as he was told. And more, that he would actually strike out on his own, disdaining everything the Luthor name had to offer, in a last ditch bid to be his own man. Surely there was precedent for his actions, even if his previous attempts at rebellion had been far more petty in nature, and yet his father had seemed at least a little surprised. Though his response had been swift and uncompromising. Maybe it was just Lex's commitment that had been in doubt, but not any more.

He still hadn't deigned to look up from his computer screen, but that was part of the game, merely the opening gambit. Force your opponent's hand, make him reveal his strategy. Even with his eyes focused elsewhere, Lex could hear the sounds of his father moving around the library. His long wool coat swished against the furniture as he moved and then there was the faint chink of glass on crystal as he helped himself to a drink. But Lex could wait. He was in no particular hurry to talk to his father again, after all.

Lex's mouth twisted wryly when the pacing footsteps at last came to a halt on the other side of his desk. He calmly reached out and closed down the computer program he'd been working on as he continued to wait.

The heavy sigh of exasperation that broke the silence finally made him flick his gaze upward. His father seemed to loom over the desk, tall and imposing with his flowing hair and the long, dark coat that swirled around his body like furled wings as he moved. Lex wasn't in the mood to be intimidated, though. He pushed his chair back from the desk, lounging with every appearance of calm collectedness. Never show weakness or fear - that was a lesson Lex had learned a very long time ago. He met his father's gaze with cool detachment, one pale brow rising in question.

"Lex, why are you persisting with this wilful behaviour?"

The rich voice held a faint note of amused tolerance. Just like a loving parent cajoling a wayward and disobedient child, but Lex wasn't fooled. He could hear the steel underneath the warmth, knew the indulgence couldn't be trusted... any more than the shark's smile curving his father's lips could be.

"It really isn't impressing anyone, you know." And this time the note of warning was less implicit, more obvious. It was reflected in the tightening of the skin around Lionel Luthor's eyes as he shot a glare at his son.

"But it does seem to be worrying you." Lex maintained his lazy calm, all the while watching his father's face minutely for more clues as to how this meeting might go. He'd thought they had said everything that needed to be said earlier. What new bombshells had his father come to drop? The one about the Smallville Savings and Loan was still worrying at Lex's mind as it was.

Low laughter, cold and harsh, brought Lex's attention back to the present.

"We've already established that you have my full attention, Lex. So tell me, what is it that you really want?"

Lex's expression tightened. The casual air fell away from him as he gathered himself, sitting forward with his arms resting on the desk. His voice was just as tightly controlled. "Nothing that you can give me, Dad."

Like love, or even respect, but Lex didn't say things like that aloud... not any longer. Now there was far more than just his own personal feelings at stake.

Lionel leaned down, setting aside his drink as he braced himself with his hands flat on the desk. He met Lex stare for stare, his eyes dark and dangerous.

"I offered you a place in Metropolis, at my side. It's what you've been groomed for, what you always said that you wanted. And yet you turned me down..."

"How very observant of you, Dad." The faintest trace of an insolent smile tugged at Lex's mouth. It pulled the smooth skin taut for just a second, making the scar that marred the line of his upper lip stand out.

The aura of danger surrounding Lionel became more palpable as he leaned in closer still, bare inches separating his face from Lex's. The anger in his voice was apparent, but still tightly leashed. "Don't get smart with me, Lex!"

Lex blinked lazily, refusing to let his father's looming presence intimidate him. All the same, the incursion on his personal space was unsettling. Coolly he leaned back in his chair, putting the comfort of distance between them once again.

He clasped his hands lightly together in his lap before replying, "I turned you down because I'm not ready to come to heel. I admit when you exiled me here I was angry, all I wanted was a chance to return to Metropolis, but things change... people change. Smallville is my home now. I'm doing well here, the plant - negative propaganda aside - is doing well and I'm willing to put my money where my mouth is to prove that. I'm just not ready to leave, Dad. There's a lot more I can do in Smallville, more I will do."

"Even with all your resources drained and your employees mortgaged to the hilt? With a bank I now own, may I remind you." Lionel straightened, picking up his glass and draining it before slamming it back down on Lex's desk for emphasis. "You're in no position to play saviour, Lex!"

"Is that what you think this is about?" Lex shook his head. "It's not. I'm not trying to change anyone's opinion of me. Keeping the plant open makes sound business sense..."

"And would cast you in the role of saviour of Smallville, with myself as devil's advocate, of course." Lionel gave his son a measuring stare. "Are you honestly telling me that never entered into your thoughts? Instead of being reviled your efforts would be lauded, everyone would want to be your friend... until the bank begins to foreclose on their mortgages and your fervent supporters start to find themselves out on the street." Lionel's expression hardened and his voice was pure ice. "Who do you think they would blame for that, Lex?"

Lex visibly collected himself before replying. He itched to let fly, but he knew his father was hoping to goad him into anger - just another demonstration of his over-emotional nature. He wouldn't give the smug bastard the satisfaction.

"Your threats don't scare me, Dad. You remember why you exiled me to Smallville? As a test, you said. You wanted me to grow up, to learn to take responsibility for my actions." Lex tilted his head, giving a cool smile. "Well, congratulations, your plan succeeded. I'm not your screw up son any more. I'm a competent businessman who's turned around a loss-making plant and I'm not prepared to watch you destroy all that hard work on a whim. I'm willing to stand by my record and lead this buyout. I'm perfectly confident of what we can achieve..."

Harsh laughter interrupted him.

"Such passion, Lex, such fire... such over-emotional foolishness! It's what I've come to expect from you, son, and it's all for nothing."

"How can you say that?" Lex refused to back down.

"You won't succeed." Lionel was equally adamant. "I won't let you."

Lex held his gaze. "Unless it's on your terms."

"Exactly." Lionel smiled at him expansively. "Give up this nonsense now and come back to Metropolis with me tomorrow. We'll speak no more about this bout of juvenile rebellion."

Before Lionel had even finished speaking Lex was shaking his head. "Not going to happen, Dad."

"You're so sure of that, aren't you?" The note of menace was unmistakable and before Lex had the chance to reply or react Lionel strode around the desk, coat flying behind him.

His hand snaked out, fast and deadly, and he grabbed Lex by the shoulder, his grip like iron. The momentum dragged Lex half out of his chair and he struggled to keep his feet under him. Another sharp tug hauled him the rest of the way up and Lex was standing, face to face with his father. As the confrontation turned abruptly physical the level of tension in the room rocketed at once, crackling between them like a static charge.

Lionel shifted his grip, twisting Lex's arm until he grimaced with pain. "Accept it, you're too soft to succeed, Lex. This isn't a game you can win. You simply don't have the guts or the strength to take me on... certainly not now, maybe never."

Breathing against the pain lancing through his shoulder, Lex glared at his father. "You must be more worried than I thought if you have to resort to these kind of bullying tactics. Are you afraid that I really do have enough influence with the board to get them to agree to my plan?" His tone bordered on the insolent.

"Do not push me too far, Lex, you may not care for the results." Lionel dug his fingers in harder, wringing a sharp gasp from his son.

"You don't scare me..."

Which wasn't entirely true. Lex knew exactly what his father was capable of in a mood like this. He'd been on the receiving end of too many demonstrations of alpha superiority over the years to remain completely unafraid. But he wasn't a frightened child any more, cringing from an over-zealous punishment. He couldn't back down from this or he would be throwing away his one real chance to break free and show his father that he was capable of succeeding on his own merits.

Keeping his breathing as steady as he could manage, Lex tried to ease the pressure on his shoulder while he waited for Lionel's next move. The harsh grip only served to remind Lex why he tended to shy away from casual, uninvited touches and why someone walking up behind him unexpectedly could still make him flinch. He could recall too many times when such an innocuous approach would turn to bruising roughness. It might have been for some minor infraction of his father's rules or simply in the name of toughening him up, either way it had generally ended with Lex cowering in his room in tears.

And the feel of a heavy hand landing unexpectedly on his shoulder, accompanied by the looming presence of his father close behind him had led often enough to things much worse than that. The memory caused a shudder of revulsion to run through him and Lex knew by the faintly smug smile on Lionel's face that he had guessed where his son's thoughts had taken him. It was a weakness Lex would have preferred not to reveal, but there was nothing to be done about it now.

"Lex, be reasonable." The hand loosened, smoothing Lex's rumpled shirt carefully over his bruised shoulder as it dropped away. "You're my son, not my enemy... All I'm asking for is a little loyalty."

The false sincerity in Lionel's voice made Lex feel vaguely nauseous.

"You wouldn't know the meaning of the word." Lex eyed his father coldly as he eased the overstressed muscles in his shoulder.

"You've always been too stubborn for your own good." The edge of anger was back again. "Perhaps I'm not making myself clear, Lex. There will be no buyout. This plant is closed and you will come back to Metropolis with me. It's not negotiable."

"Everything is negotiable." Lex's voice was like ice. "What will it take to convince you that I mean to go through with my plans?" Lex allowed a hint of sarcasm to creep into his tone. "Do you want to fence for it again? I think I ought to warn you that I've been practising."

"I must admit I do admire this display of spirit." Lionel's grin showed his teeth, sharp and white, dangerous. "Really, it's a shame it's so misplaced and that I shall have to break you of it. But I will not allow you to continually defy me, Lex!"

Lionel's hand returned to its resting place on Lex's shoulder, deceptively gentle. From there it slid slowly upward to his throat, curving lightly around the pale column of flesh. All at once, the fingers dug in sharply, red marks quickly rising where they gripped the white skin. It was a warning, the pressure making breathing awkward, but not pushing harder than that... yet.

Despite the sudden fear that hit him like cold water in the face, Lex tried to remain utterly still. This was just another test, albeit a far more deadly one than his exile to Smallville had been. He knew if he struggled the hand would only close tighter around his throat, deliberately stopping him from breathing. If he stayed calm, if he trusted, his father would tire of the game and let him go... at least, Lex hoped to God he would. Or had he really pushed Lionel too far this time?

The tableau held for far longer than Lex cared to think about, neither of them giving ground. He could feel the sweat rising on his skin and trickling slowly down under the collar of his shirt. It was just one more uncomfortable sensation among many.

Eventually, though, the fingers eased their unforgiving grip and Lex drew in several deep breaths, feeling his head clear a little as he did so. He resolutely did not raise his own hand to touch the weals he knew had formed on his throat, that would soon leave bruises in their wake. But other fingers had no such reservations. They stroked over the marks, the touch both intimate and disturbing. It made Lex's skin crawl.

"You're stronger than you used to be." There was grudging respect in Lionel's voice. "You always struggled before."

"I'm not a child any more." It hurt a little to talk and on top of that there was still the blatant caress of his father's hand against the side of his neck. Lex tried to tune it out, to ignore the way it made him feel. To pull away would only invite further retaliation. Lex was intimately familiar with the patterns of this dance.

"Then why are you behaving like one?" Lionel chided with a long- suffering sigh. "You know I don't want to punish you, Lex. Neither of us likes that, do we?" A gentle pinch to his cheek rebuked Lex for his failures.

"I'm only doing what you taught me to do, being the person you trained me to be," Lex insisted as reasonably as he could manage with his stomach tying itself in knots.

The soft touches were unnerving him more than Lex cared to admit, to himself or his father. They brought back memories he'd buried a long time ago and reminded him of a place he had no desire to revisit. A secret place, built of dark nights, warm hands, rough whispers and rougher touches and bright, blazing sensations that were just too wrong to speak of anywhere but in that breathless space...

Lex faltered, found that he didn't dare meet his father's eyes now, afraid of what he might see there. He forced his mind back to what he had been saying, the thought he'd been trying to complete.

"Why would you punish me for that?" And Lex hated himself for the faint thread of desperation he couldn't quite keep out of his voice.

"I'm your father, Lex. I know what's best for you, just as I always have." Lionel leaned in closer, his breath hot on Lex's cheek. He smiled indulgently when Lex cringed from the blatant invasion of his personal space. "Surely you understand that."

"Dad, please..." Lex could no longer keep the rising panic from showing on his face, no matter how hard he tried.

"I own your ass, and the sooner you accept that the better it will be for everyone." The dark, silky voice was laced with steel.

Well aware of the effect it was having on Lex, Lionel's errant hand became bolder. It dipped into the open neck of Lex's shirt, the fingers just brushing a nipple, before it returned to his throat. Then it slid along the softly defined line of Lex's jaw, until finally Lionel cupped the palm around the smooth curve of his son's cheek.

"Dad, stop this now." Lex tried to inject as much authority into his tone as possible, but knew that the fear he was barely suppressing made it sound more like pleading.

"When it comes down to it, you will do what I want." Lionel didn't seem to be listening anyway. "Just the same as you always have. Anything, Lex..."

"No!" Resentful anger sparked in Lex.

Why the hell was he just standing here passively and taking this crap? He'd said he wasn't a child any more, now he needed to prove it, to himself and to Lionel. He didn't have to be afraid of telling tales on his father that would never be believed. There was no reason at all why he couldn't fight back instead of simply letting his father feel him up, or whatever else he had in mind.

"I'm not some kid you can intimidate into keeping his mouth shut. Not now, Dad, not any more." Lex pulled back, pale eyes blazing as he confronted the smug expression on his father's face. With a grimace of distaste Lex dropped back into his chair, grateful for the breathing space it gave him.

"You expect me to believe that you'd rush off to our esteemed police department and accuse me of... well, what exactly? Can't a father show affection towards his son when he wants to?" Lionel looked perfectly confident of the answer.

"Are you willing to stake your reputation on the assumption that I wouldn't?" Lex shot back, still defiant.

Lionel laughed, apparently pleased, or at least amused, by Lex's outburst. "You know, son, if you're going to threaten me you really ought to be more sure of your ground first. Many a conflict down through the centuries has been lost due to the poor choice of the field of battle."

"I'm not looking for yet another lecture on history, Dad." Lex hissed.

"No?" Lionel's tone managed to convey surprise, overlaid with that same smug confidence. "Not even modern history, specifically as it applies to one Alexander Luthor? Hm? I understand the Metropolis police department has been having something of a spring clean of its filing system just recently. You know how it is when new staff move in... I was so sorry to hear about Sam Phelan, by the way, weren't you? Anyway, it wouldn't surprise me if any number of old, mislaid files were to turn up again as a result..."

"Not very subtle, Dad." Lex's eyes narrowed at the implicit threat.

"But effective, I think," replied Lionel with an offhanded shrug.

"Christ, you'd have everything that Phelan buried dragged up again just to shut me up? Fuck, Dad, you really are an unconscionable bastard!" Lex snorted in disbelief.

"Oh, how kind of you to say so, Lex." Lionel smiled his predator's smile again. "Come here, I think you deserve something in return for that."

Reaching out, Lionel grabbed the back of Lex's chair, swinging it round to face him head on. Then, without warning, he backhanded Lex across the cheek.

Catching him off guard, the force of the blow jolted Lex's head back painfully, wrenching his neck and slamming him into the seat. He barely had time to gasp a protest before a second stinging slap caught him across the mouth. It split the tender skin, a bright trickle of blood running down Lex's chin from his lip.

"You're an ungrateful wretch!" Lionel raged as he loomed over Lex. "You're weak, pathetic..."

"And your sole son and heir... how lucky for you, Dad," Lex taunted him.

He dabbed at the blood on his lip with a wince, tasting its coppery tang in his mouth. The murderous look in his father's eyes scared the hell out of Lex, but he did his best not to show it. He had to stay in control. Maybe he could still talk his way out of this. Or perhaps the violent demonstration of his strength would appease Lionel's temper.

"If you continue to be such a disappointment to me, Lex, it's not too late for me to get myself another." Lionel perched casually on the edge of the desk and regarded his son almost pityingly.

"Really?" Lex replied, his tone caustic. "What bitch did you have in mind to breed it for you? Victoria? No, maybe not, she might be desperate enough, but you'd never be certain it was actually yours, would you."

Lionel favoured his son with a withering look. "You know, she told me that you fucked like a girl. Somehow that doesn't surprise me. Though I thought maybe all those whores you went through would have taught you a few things. Or did the meteors rob you of more than just your hair, Lex? I hear you never managed to grow any of that anywhere..."

The taunting words stung. Lex knew they were meant to wound and that he shouldn't sink to his father's level, but he couldn't stop himself from spitting out, "Fuck you, Dad!"

Cruel laughter greeted his outburst. "Oh, I don't think so, son. I'm really not sure that you're up to the task." Lionel leaned forward, right in Lex's face again. "Besides, I don't think I'm your type. I know what you prefer... How is that dear, sweet, underage farm boy of yours keeping? He shows such a lovely concern for your well-being, doesn't he. I'm not surprised you were tempted. Why, if I were just a few years younger..." Lionel let the implication trail off into silence along with his words.

The sudden reference to Clark, and in the terms his father had used, caught Lex seriously off balance. He couldn't hide the sudden flash of fear he felt, all the colour draining from his face. Surely they'd been too careful, had hidden the change in their relationship. Even Clark's parents hadn't guessed. Then again, Jonathan and Martha Kent didn't have the resources at their disposal that his father did, nor did they have the same desire to control every last little piece of their son's life.

Lionel was watching Lex's reaction with undisguised interest. "Come now, surely you didn't really believe that I wouldn't find out."

"Dad..." This time Lex was pleading, though for what he wasn't entirely sure.

"How do you suppose your erstwhile employees... your proposed fellow participants in this ludicrous buyout scheme, that is, would react if they knew?" Lionel was implacable. "I'm sure many of them have sons and daughters who go to school with the delightful Clark Kent. How do you think they would feel about throwing in their lot with a man who fucks underage boys?"

"It isn't like that!" Lex felt every bit as desperate as he knew he sounded. He had always wanted to keep his father's attention away from Clark at all costs. Foolishly he'd thought he'd succeeded.

"Oh, I'm sure it's exactly like that, Lex." Lionel smiled, the lascivious expression making Lex feel dirty. "I know you too well, son. But even if your friendship with him were entirely beyond reproach, just a few words in the right ears... It would do nothing to enhance your reputation in this charming backwater."

"You wouldn't do that..." Lex swallowed hard, trying to rein in the panic he could feel threatening to spiral out of control. "It's not just my reputation you'd be destroying."

"Wouldn't I?" Lionel pursed his lips, watching Lex squirm. "And if you were that worried about young Mr Kent's reputation maybe you should have refrained from fucking him. You always were too easily distracted by a pretty... face."

"Dad, your argument is with me, leave Clark out of this." Lex knew he was probably revealing more than he should by his insistence, but he couldn't take the risk of Clark being caught in the crossfire as he and his father sniped at one another.

Lionel gestured expansively. "If you'd just accept the inevitable, Lex... You know you can't defeat me so your continued defiance serves no purpose. Be reasonable and we can put all this unpleasantness behind us. What do you say?"

The false bonhomie made Lex feel sick and his instincts told him he couldn't trust his father to keep his word. If it suited him, Lionel would destroy Clark and his family without a second thought. Before he could think better of it, Lex kicked out, propelling himself backwards in the chair. He needed to warn Clark that Lionel knew about them, to start making contingency plans to protect him and, frankly, Lex just wanted to be as far away from his father as he could get.

"Go fuck yourself!" he spat out in disgust.

As soon as he saw the mask of fury that settled on his father's face, Lex knew the ill-considered words had been a mistake. Gracelessly, he tried to scramble out of his seat, but Lionel moved faster, intercepting him.

Enraged, Lionel grabbed Lex, hauling him bodily out of the chair. Viciously he jammed one of his arms up behind his back, twisting it to the point of dislocation as Lex tried to resist. When Lex finally stilled, Lionel eased up a little, letting go with one hand. Instead he reached out and caught hold of Lex's face in a rough grip, forcing his son to look him in the eye.

"Why do you always do this, Lex?" he demanded harshly. "You know you leave me no choice."

Lex managed a shaky laugh. "There's always a choice, Dad," he panted. Then he cried out as the pressure on his shoulder increased again. He felt certain it was being pulled out of its socket as the pain burned through him like fire. He closed his eyes against it, welcoming the blackness behind his lids. "I won't play your sick games any more!" he forced out between clenched teeth.

"You'll do whatever I tell you, Lex."

The words were hissed directly into his face. The tone was all cold fury, a stark contrast to the hot breath that fanned over his skin. Lex tried to flinch away from it, but his father's hold on him was much too tight.

Then the wash of heat was gone as Lionel swung Lex around, using the momentum to shove him against the desk. Lex stumbled as he found he'd been released and he tried to steady himself. Off balance, he failed, clutching protectively at his injured arm as he fell forward. Then his father's hand was pressing heavily against his back, forcing him face down across the top of the desk, heedless of the papers that went flying. Lex gave a sharp cry of pain as the air was knocked out of his lungs and then he froze.

Lionel casually kicked his legs apart and Lex clenched his fists ineffectually as memory supplied the knowledge of what would come next. He felt the heat of his father's body as Lionel stepped in closer, leaning down so that his weight pressed Lex against the cold surface of the desk. The long coat Lionel wore seemed to envelope Lex claustrophobically as he lay as still as possible and tried to control his laboured breathing.

His father stretched over him a little more, his lips moving directly against Lex's ear as he spoke, his voice low and compelling. "Sometimes I think you provoke me deliberately, Lex, that you want this. Do you?"

Lionel's hair brushed over the naked skin of Lex's scalp, making him feel doubly vulnerable.

A short, bitter laugh escaped Lex. "Believe me, Dad, when I lay awake at night as a kid and wished that you would love me, this really wasn't what I had in mind. I may have been fucked up, but I never wanted this."

Lex felt as much as heard his father's amused chuckle. He could feel it vibrate through the heavy, muscular body that still crushed him against his desk. He was also only too aware of the unmistakable hardness pressing into his ass as Lionel shifted slightly. Lex closed his eyes, resting his bruised cheek on the coolness of the desk and wishing to any God who might be out there listening that Clark was here, now, to save him from this as he'd saved him from so many other impossible situations.

It wasn't going to happen, though, Lex knew. Since their relationship had progressed from platonic to physical Clark had been scrupulous about keeping to his curfew. He'd been determined that he would do nothing to cause his parents to forbid him to see Lex. Though if the Kents knew exactly what he and Clark usually did when they were together...

Sudden movement snapped Lex out of his pleasant recollections and back to the far less savoury circumstances of his current reality. Lex began to struggle when he realised his father was trying to turn him onto his back. Hard pressure on his damaged shoulder doubled him up, bile burning in his throat. He stopped fighting when the pain greyed the edges of his vision and let his father have his way. Almost at once Lionel began to tear roughly at the buttons of Lex's shirt, baring his chest to his touch.

The new position had left them aligned groin to groin and Lex felt a sudden twist of nausea in his gut as his own cock instinctively began to react to the heated pressure of Lionel's erection. Christ, he was so fucking easy... This was his father trying to strip him, rubbing against him as if this was something normal. Was he really that fucking undiscriminating?

Unwilling to accept the obvious answer, Lex fought back again, gritting his teeth and ignoring the pain of his shoulder. Lionel responded to his struggles by simply hitting him hard across the face once more. The blow reopened the cut on his mouth from earlier and left Lex seeing stars. He slumped back, the room spinning around him dizzily. As the fight went out of him, Lionel wasted no time in tearing off Lex's shirt.

"Dad, no!" Lex begged as Lionel dragged his neatly manicured nails cruelly across the smooth skin of Lex's chest.

There was no response to his breathless plea. Lionel seemed wholly absorbed by the neat red lines his nails had painted on the pale canvas under his hands. His touch slid lower, nails still digging in to the vulnerable skin as he tracked across the well-defined muscles of Lex's stomach. When he reached the barrier of Lex's waistband, Lionel reversed course, adding to the tracery of marks on his son's naked chest. Almost casually he scraped over Lex's nipples with his thumbnails, watching as the darker circles of flesh pebbled and drew up into taut peaks.

As his father's touches became more invasive and more intimate, Lex tried to arch away from his hands. Lionel was too close, though, and there was nowhere for Lex to escape to. He only succeeded in thrusting his hips up against Lionel's as he struggled and he really didn't need the reminder of the sick pleasure his father was getting out of this. Nor did he want to feel the jolt of reaction in his own belly at the renewed contact with Lionel's cock.

It sickened Lex enough to make him keep fighting. Frantically he kicked out, attempting to scramble backwards across the desk. As he wriggled free, Lionel grabbed hold of his hips in a bruising grip, hauling him back.

"Lex, give it up, you're just not strong enough to defeat me." Lionel grinned, the expression chilling. "Not in business, and certainly not when it comes to sex."

One hand released Lex's hip, sliding around to cup his now quite obvious erection through the creased fabric of his slacks. Lex gritted his teeth as his father stroked him roughly, willing the instinctive reaction to subside. "Get your hands off me!" he demanded, his voice hoarse.

"Oh, I don't think so." Lionel sounded insufferably smug. "You're such an eager little whore, Lex. You always were, and it seems you've only gotten to be more so. See, at least there's one part of you that knows who it belongs to. Isn't that right?"

The grip on his cock tightened, edging towards pain. Lex turned his head away, unable to bear looking at the triumphant expression on his father's face any longer. "Go to hell!" he hissed with all the venom he could muster.

Lionel laughed. "Not very original, I expected better from you... but then I always did." His tone hardened, "And I was disappointed every time."

At the harsh words Lex felt something inside himself break. It always came back to this where his father was concerned - nothing he ever did was good enough, never had been and never would be. He was just a disappointment who could never make his father proud of him, no matter how hard he tried. After all, if he'd been worthy of his respect Lionel wouldn't need to remind him what a screw up he really was. He deserved this, just the way he had when he was a kid. He must do, or it wouldn't be happening again...

When the groping fingers moved to unfasten his pants Lex didn't try to prevent it. What was the point? His father was right, he was too weak to put a stop to this, just as he'd always been. A small part of Lex's brain screamed at him that he wasn't the same helpless child now, that he was strong enough to fight, but he refused to listen to it. Fighting back only ever meant more pain.

Instead Lex withdrew further into himself, refusing to acknowledge what his father was doing to his body. He could still feel it, the rough hands moving over his skin in a twisted parody of love, but he didn't have to let it touch him inside. If he did, that would make it real... and Lex wasn't sure he could deal with it if it was.

###

Lionel felt the last of the resistance drain out of Lex and he snorted in disgust. He had no intention of putting a stop to this, regardless. He had meant to give Lex a salutary reminder of exactly who was in charge here and he fully intended to complete the demonstration, even if his son's sudden passivity was another in a long line of disappointments. And he'd thought Lex had finally found a bit of spirit.

He shook his head as he regarded the pitiful figure huddled on the desk. Lillian had a lot to answer for, Lionel decided. She'd made the boy soft and he'd never entirely recovered from her influence. And Lex had clearly taken after his mother in looks too. Despite being tall he wasn't much of a man, not enough muscle on that slender frame. Then there was the girlishly smooth skin and his features - which were decidedly on the pretty side even with the bruises his face currently sported - the line of his jaw too soft, to say nothing of his mouth.

Lionel snorted derisively. Whatever his son's other physical shortcomings, he could vouch for the tightness of Lex's ass. That was something that never seemed to change over the years. Apparently he didn't care to let many people fuck him. Lionel wondered whether he'd let his underage farm boy have the pleasure. The thought brought a lascivious smile to Lionel's face. Either way, he'd enjoy reminding Lex who really owned that tight ass of his.

Now that Lex had stopped struggling it wasn't difficult to strip the rest of his clothes from him. Once he had Lex naked, Lionel took a moment to catalogue the changes in his son's body since the last time he'd taught him a lesson in this fashion.

Lex had been in his teens then, at the height of his rebellious phase. He'd fought back defiantly on that occasion, despite being strung out on God knows what illegal substances. But he'd had no more than a boy's strength to fight with and it hadn't taken very long to subdue him to Lionel's will. Though even when he'd been mastered he'd kept on cursing and striking out at his father, unlike this time.

Closer inspection revealed that Lionel had underestimated his son at least a little. Under the sleek, expensive clothing his body had built muscle, though Lex was always going to be slim... definitely his mother's son. But apparently the workout equipment set up in one of the mansion's many rooms wasn't just for display. Lex had most certainly been training on it.

He was, however, still completely lacking in body hair, just as Lionel remembered. And Victoria had made plenty of cruel taunts about his son's deficiencies too while Lionel fucked her. Whatever changes the meteors had wrought on Lex that day twelve years ago, it seemed they were both permanent and deep-rooted.

As Lionel let both his gaze and his hands roam slowly over the passive form pinned underneath him, an amused smile twisted his lips. It was readily apparent that Lex's cock still responded as easily to his touch as it always had. No wonder Lex was keeping his eyes stubbornly closed - he evidently didn't want to share his shame.

Lionel reached down and touched himself through his pants, feeling the pleasurable ache in his cock. Carefully he unfastened his fly, pushing his clothing aside just enough for his purposes. It suited him to strip Lex's dignity away along with his clothes and remaining fully dressed himself only helped to underline his superiority. Lionel continued stroking his cock to full hardness with one hand, with the other he reached out and slapped Lex lightly on the cheek. He saw Lex flinch at the touch, but otherwise remain determinedly unresponsive.

"Lex, open your eyes and look at me." Lionel kept his voice low, but the command in it was unmistakable.

Regardless, Lex simply set his mouth in a tight line and turned his head away to the side.

"Still you defy me?" Lionel sighed. "Have you learned nothing? You're in no position to refuse me."

###

After a long moment Lex abandoned the dubious shelter of his own thoughts, considering his father's words. When he finally spoke his voice was tightly controlled against the emotional responses fighting inside him. Maybe just ignoring what Lionel was doing wasn't the answer, but he wouldn't give the bastard the satisfaction of seeing him break.

"It wouldn't matter what I said at this point, would it? You're going to do this to me, just like you always did," said Lex steadily.

"True," Lionel conceded.

"That doesn't mean I have to think it's right." Unwillingly, Lex turned back to face his father, his eyes opening slowly. "Don't you care how fucked up this is?" he asked in a small voice. "Jesus, Dad, I'm your son. Doesn't that mean anything to you? How can you do this to me."

"I only do it for your own good." Lionel actually sounded as if he believed that. He might have been in the middle of delivering some motivational pep talk, rather than preparing to fuck his own flesh and blood.

"This is supposed to be good for me?" Lex gave a hollow laugh. "What, is it meant to build character? Dad, listen to me. Don't, please..."

"You're telling me you don't want this, Lex?" Lionel regarded the sprawled form of his son indulgently. "I think your body just made a liar of you." Lionel slid his hand down to Lex's crotch, curling it around the stiff cock and squeezing hard.

Lex winced at the rough handling and hated himself for the way his hips instinctively thrust into the too tight grip.

"So my sexual responses are a little fucked up," he hissed. "I wonder why." His split lip had swollen and talking was just one more discomfort to deal with. Carefully he tried to moisten the roughened skin with his tongue before adding, "Oh yeah, I had a father who liked to fuck his son. What's your excuse?"

Whether he'd meant to provoke Lionel again or not, the response to Lex's words was swift and unpleasantly brutal. He had, it seemed, finally pushed too far and Lionel's hold on his temper broke.

Lex curled in on himself, trying to protect the most vulnerable places from the calculated viciousness of Lionel's attack. Even as angry as he was, his father knew where to find his weak spots. Raising his hands defensively, Lex did his best to shield his face from the worst of the blows directed at it. He was only partly successful and he knew that, even as quickly as his meteor affected metabolism tended to heal him, he'd be wearing quite an array of brusies for the next few days. Which would, doubtless, lead to some interesting speculation amongst the good folk of Smallville.

He hated to think what Clark's reaction would be, if he had to face him... And that was something Lex couldn't allow himself to worry about, not with his father still intent on laying into him with undiminshed fury.

Eventually, Lionel seemed to decide that he'd sufficiently exercised his temper on Lex and the blows ceased. He drew back, and Lex took the opportunity to cautiously straighten from his defensive huddle.

His father's face was a grim mask, cold, as if he hadn't just spent the better part of five minutes beating the shit out of his son. Not that he was entirely unmoved by it. A quick glance down was enough to let Lex know that Lionel had taken his usual sick pleasure in besting him. His father's fly was still open, the swollen length of his cock clearly visible, framed by the dark fabric.

Slowly, Lex started to edge away from him, his hands gripping the desk at his back for support. For a moment he thought Lionel was going to let it go at that when he simply stood and watched him move away. He really ought to have known better.

Again there was no warning before Lionel reached out and grabbed him by the shoulders. Lex was spun around, swaying giddily for a second, and then Lionel pulled him tightly back against his body. The long, dark coat fluttered heavily around him and it felt like a cage as Lex was enclosed within its folds. As he stilled, one sinewy forearm was laid across Lex's unprotected throat, holding him in place with its explicit threat.

"Don't provoke me further, Lex," Lionel instructed sharply, his mouth moving against Lex's ear. "If you do, you really won't care for the consequences."

What could be worse than this? Lex's thoughts were bleak as he allowed himself to be roughly pushed face down across his desk once more. His lack of resistance did, at least, mean the withdrawal of the restrictive hold on his throat.

Then his father's hands were grabbing at his ass without finesse, spreading his cheeks. One thick digit pressed hard against his hole, rough and dry as it sought entrance.

Lex managed to shift enough to draw his arms back under his head. The position pulled awkwardly at his wrenched shoulder, but it meant he could pillow his injured face against them. It saved it from being ground into the surface of the desk as his father continued prodding ungently at his ass, trying to get past the tight ring of muscle.

As Lionel eventually managed to force a finger inside him, Lex groaned in pain. Dry, it burned like hell and Lex wanted nothing more than to let himself fall apart - to scream or cry out or do anything other than just lie there and take it. But he didn't. He could feel the vague sting of tears in his eyes, but he ignored it, hiding the evidence as he pressed his face harder against the pale, unmarked skin of his arm.

Lex heard Lionel curse as the tightness of his ass resisted the unlubricated thrust of his father's finger. After a moment it was roughly withdrawn and Lex moaned again at the careless treatment. Then Lionel was stretching over him and a second later three broad fingers were jabbing against his wounded mouth, demanding entry.

Part of Lex rebelled against allowing it, but good sense dictated otherwise. If his father was bent on fucking him, he'd do it whatever and spit was better than no lube at all, if not by much. Lex parted his lips and sucked Lionel's fingers into his mouth, concentrating on getting them as wet as he could.

The roughened skin tasted of sweat and sex, and if it had been Clark holding him down like this and pushing his strong fingers between his lips, Lex knew he'd have found the situation unbearably erotic. As it was, knowing it was Lionel's fingers he was suckling, it made Lex's stomach turn.

Unexpectedly, Lionel reached out with his free hand and roughly petted Lex's bare scalp. "That's better, Lex. I'm glad you've finally come to your senses. It makes things so much easier."

The action only made Lex seethe inwardly - the condescending bastard!

A moment later the saliva-slick fingers were jerked out of his mouth. Lex felt Lionel withdraw a little and then the damp touch was back at his cleft, probing deeply. He tried to breathe evenly, to relax, anything to make it more bearable. It was easier when the first finger slipped inside him this time, the rough penetration burned less. It still didn't help much when the second and third fingers pushed their way into him, twisting and stretching Lex perfunctorily.

For all the discomfort, the hand deserted Lex more quickly than he would have liked, reminding him that things could indeed get worse. The emptiness lasted even less time. His father's weight was back, the muscular body hot and hard as it pressed him down.

The material of Lionel's clothes felt rough on Lex's sensitive skin, buttons and the metal teeth of his zipper providing a chill counterpoint. But the sensation of his father's thick cock stabbing against his ass was much worse.

Despite his earlier promise to himself to just accept whatever happened to him and not try to fight it, Lex began to struggle again. He heard Lionel laugh and knew the fear pouring off his skin in waves was only turning his father on more. But he couldn't find the same detachment he'd hidden behind before. This was undeniably real, and if he was going to come out of it with any kind of self respect he had to keep fighting.

Lionel's hands settled on Lex's shoulders, gripping firmly to hold him down. Then he shifted his hips until the blunt head of his cock found the stretched hole and pressed in, hard. When Lex pushed himself up from the desk, trying to unseat his father's grip on him, all he succeeded in doing was aiding Lionel's jabbing thrust into him. Lex cried out as his father's cock rammed into him in a single rough slide.

Everything seemed to go downhill from there as Lionel set a punishing pace, using Lex without regard for his comfort. His ass burned as his father thrust into him viciously, reminding him of his inferiority with each sharp press of his hips. And Lex's treacherous cock seemed to welcome the lesson, reacting to being trapped between his stomach and the smooth surface of the desk by getting hard again.

Lex whimpered, wanting to deny the sensations coiling low in his belly. As he felt the familiar tightening in his balls, Lex's lips shaped the single word "No", over and over again. Tensed on the edge of orgasm, he bit down hard on his split lip, seeking a distraction in the blossoming ache. He welcomed the hot spill of fresh blood, tasting its coppery tang in his mouth as the renewed pain of the injury assaulted him.

It wasn't enough, though, failing to blot out the other sensations that shivered through him. Lex's slender frame shuddered as he came, spilling onto the cool glass underneath him. The wetness spread against his skin as Lionel's repeated thrusts drove him against the desk's surface. As the spasms shook him, Lex could feel his ass clenching involuntarily around his father's invading cock. It made Lionel groan with a pleasure Lex hated himself for giving him.

Pushed over the edge in more ways than one, hot tears of shame and frustration finally escaped Lex's control. They spilled unseen and unchecked down his cheeks as he rode out the last aching tremors of his climax.

Lex cursed himself inwardly for his weakness, but when had one of these confrontations ever ended differently? Whether he fought the inevitable or simply submitted like the frightened child he had once been, he never managed to win. By way of this most primal of contests his father had proved time and again that he was still the alpha male in the Luthor family... and, as ever, Lex's ass would bear the reminder of this most recent lesson in the days that followed.

It was, Lex reflected, a lot less painful when his father would simply decide to fuck one of his lovers and then make sure the evidence reached his eyes. At least then the bruises were inflicted in places that no one could ever see. It proved much the same point, though, albeit indirectly - that Lionel Luthor was capable of fucking with his son whenever he pleased...

While Lex's body was limp with post-coital lethargy, Lionel was still vigorously enjoying his victory over his son. Lex felt his father thrust hard and deep into him and then, a moment later, heat burned inside him as Lionel finally came. The heavy weight of the body on top of him blanketed Lex until he thought he might suffocate under the dark folds of the coat his father had never bothered to shed.

Dimly, Lex heard sounds and belatedly realised that his father was speaking to him. The voice was rough as Lionel spent himself in long, shuddering spurts. It was the only time Lex ever heard his father's tones lose their habitual rich smoothness... just another fact dredged up by his memory to remind him that this was merely the latest in a long line of demonstrations of paternal love, Luthor style.

"Lex, you're a good boy at heart. My son... Now you understand, don't you?"

Once again Lionel's hand moved over Lex's vulnerable scalp and Lex had to force down the revulsion the faintly awkward caresses stirred in him. For a second he wondered how he ever managed to let anyone touch him with any kind of intimacy when his mind flashed on moments like these with disturbing ease. At any rate, it wasn't really a surprise to him that most of his early sexual experiences were lost in an alcohol and drugs induced haze.

The voice was clearer now as Lionel tightened his grip on Lex's head and turned him so that he spoke directly into his ear. "You're my son, Lex. My son... mine. You belong to me, to no one else. It's the way it should be, the way it will be. Accept it, Lex... you know I'm right."

It was, perhaps, the closest approximation of affection that Lionel was capable of, but it wasn't anything that Lex wanted to hear... because it changed nothing. He squeezed his eyes shut and tried to close his ears to the voice that was still a shade less than perfectly modulated, just a little breathless in the aftermath of completion.

The words were no definition of love that Lex could understand, not that he considered himself any great expert on the subject. But at least he was learning, Clark was seeing to that. For now, though, if Lionel needed to believe the rightness of what he'd said, so be it. Lex was prepared to agree to almost anything if it would get his father out of the mansion and as far away from him as possible.

A few moments later there was another sharp burn of pain as Lionel pulled out of Lex. It seemed more than simply a physical separation as Lionel moved away at once, the cocoon of his coat withdrawn at the same time. It left Lex feeling even more exposed than before, especially when he heard the sound of a zipper being closed as his father set his clothes to rights. For some reason it made Lex feel absurdly resentful, that Lionel wouldn't even permit the perceived vulnerability of being undressed when he fucked his son.

As much as he wanted his father gone from the house, Lex still regretted the loss of Lionel's body heat. Naked in the cool air of the library, he shivered, feeling the sweat dry on his skin. He couldn't seem to summon the energy to move yet, though. Besides, he had no wish to let Lionel see any more evidence of his weakness, and Lex was acutely aware of the trails of moisture on his face.

Feeling exhausted and a little dizzy, Lex clung to his desk like a lifeline. He hoped his father would just leave so that he could let his knees buckle the way they wanted to. Then he could simply sink down onto the floor - maybe crawl away into a dark corner - and try to hide from the unpalatable truth of what had happened.

When a hand unexpectedly stroked down his hip, Lex flinched away violently. As he stilled the gesture was repeated, a careful brush that didn't attempt to be anything more intimate. Nevertheless, Lex had to bite his ravaged lip again to keep from begging his father not to touch him. But he didn't need to beg; there was no further repetition.

"So, Lex -" Lionel's voice was cool and distant now. "We'll hear no more of this buyout nonsense then?"

A strangled laugh escaped Lex and he could hear the edge of hysteria in it. "You think that's all it takes, Dad? You fuck me and I cave." He shook his head slightly in denial.

"I know you, Lex..." Lionel insisted.

Lex shook his head more emphatically, glancing back over his shoulder for a second. His father stood poised near the door, a dark and threatening presence even with the distance now between them.

"Dad, you don't know me at all," he said, his voice heavy with exhaustion. "Just go..."

"Lex, you never could say no to me."

The smug certainty of his father's words grated on Lex's shredded nerves. "I always said no, Dad, you just never listened!"

Where did it end, Lex wondered. God, he was so tired.

Lionel glared at him, taking half a step back across the room, but something in Lex's expression seemed to stop him.

"This isn't over, Lex," he threatened, one finger pointing accusingly at him. "You may think you can win this game; let me assure you that you won't. When it really counts you simply don't have the balls to fight me." With that, Lionel turned on his heel and strode out, slamming the library doors closed behind him.

Finally Lex let go of his grip on the desk and let himself slide gracelessly to the floor, ending up on hands and knees. Moving carefully he turned until he was lying on his side. He huddled in on himself miserably, knees drawn up to his chest as he tried to block out the ache of bruises and the lingering soreness of his ass.

He was less successful blotting out the recurring memory of his father pushing him down and looming over him, his naked cock the worst threat Lex could imagine. In the end Lex found it was easier to concentrate on the purely physical pain. It seemed to put up a barrier between his mind and the endless parade of images of Lionel.

It was a long time before Lex mustered enough energy to move, pushing himself painfully back onto his knees. Grabbing onto the edge of the desk he hauled himself to his feet. Once upright he looked around him as if he were somewhere unfamiliar, rather than in the heart of the place he'd slowly learned to call home.

Naked and shivering, Lex stared at his desk in disgust. The smear of come painted across its usually spotless surface taunted him with his own weakness and, for a moment, Lex thought he might throw up, just to add to the mess.

As he fought down the wave of nausea Lex wondered bleakly why he should have been surprised by his body's reaction. After all, he'd taught it to take pleasure in even the most depraved sexual acts during his wildest years on the darker side of the Metropolis club scene. And today it had proved just how thoroughly it had absorbed his lessons. It still felt like a betrayal and the sight of the damning evidence - his father had made him come, for fuck's sake - made Lex gag, bile stinging the back of his throat.

Shuddering, Lex closed his eyes. How often had he promised himself that he'd never let Lionel lay a finger on him again, that he'd rather die than submit to the indignity of being fucked by his father now that he was an adult, not a terrified child. Lex gave a strained laugh, heard the bitterness in it and turned away from the desk before he really was sick all over it.

So much for finally breaking free of Lionel's influence, so much for his fucking pride... It was just like that saying his mother was fond of using. The more things change the more they stay the same. Oh yes, thought Lex bitterly, his father had just admirably proved the truth of that.

Choking down the laughter along with a fresh surge of bile in his throat, Lex moved slowly around the library. He gathered up the scattered tatters of his clothing then, shuffling like an old man, he headed up the stairs to the sanctuary of his bedroom. If he locked the door and pulled the heavy draperies tightly closed around his bed maybe he'd feel safe enough that he'd be able to sleep.

A little voice in the back of his head reminded Lex that if he wanted safety he should call Clark, that Clark always saved him. He dismissed the idea with scarcely a moment's thought. Clark shouldn't have to see this. He shouldn't have to know that the second chance he'd given Lex that day on the bridge had ended up just as much of a failure as the life that had ended in the drowned wreckage of the Porsche.

Lex allowed himself the luxury of a few scalding tears before he dragged his hand across his face, carefully composing himself. He winced as the gesture pulled at his split and swollen lips, reminding him of the visibility of his injuries. He would have to keep his distance from Clark until the outward signs of his ordeal had faded. If he healed as quickly as normal it should only require a few days. He couldn't avoid everyone, though, not with the plans for the buyout to be finalised. Lex sighed as he realised he'd have to come up with a plausible explanation for the state of his face.

Not just yet, first Lex wanted a shower badly, as long and as hot as his skin would stand without burning. Perhaps he would be able to wash the memory of his father's invasive touch off his stiff and aching body if he just scrubbed hard enough.

******

tbc


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