He was a kid.

Forget that he'd been out of college for a year already. Forget that he'd been working on his Masters degree. Forget that he'd been 'put on hiatus' by his father and shipped to Smallville, Kansas, to take the reigns of a flailing shit company. Forget that technically he lived alone in a drafty castle with his own staff to order around. Forget that he had to act responsible -- act as a Luthor -- and in control of himself and his surroundings at all times.

He was an adult.

Forget that two years ago, he'd still been a teenager. Forget that ten months ago, he'd still been below the legal drinking age. Forget that he was still highly entertained by the Cartoon Channel. Forget that he still picked the carrots out of his mixed vegetables. Forget that a pretty girl could give him an instant boner. Forget that a pretty boy could give him an instant boner, too. Forget that he still used the word "boner." Forget that he wanted to be anywhere but in his study reading boring report after report on such a beautiful summer day.

He was the boss.

Lex Luthor closed the window on his computer, pushed away from the desk, and walked purposely out of the room, into the garage, and over to the rack of keys.

He was rich.

And he had toys. Big, shiny, fast toys.

Slick machinery, smooth leather, zero to ninety in six-point-four seconds. Purring down Route 29, music thrumming in his veins, sun beaming on him through the open convertible top, destination: unknown.

Or not so unknown. Lex turned into the drive before he recognized the lemon yellow house and realized where he'd driven to without thinking. He didn't question it; he got out of the car, headed for the door, and knocked.

"Can Clark come out to play?"

Lex received an odd look, but also a nod, and the overgrown puppy bounded out of the house a moment later.

"Lex!" Clark grinned infectiously. "Hi! What are you doing here?"

Lex held up his car keys, allowing them to dangle in invitation. "Want to show this old man what you youngins do to get into trouble?"

The Smallville Elementary School had a playground. Swings. Jungle gym. Bars and rings. Merry-go-round. Two very big children: one bald, one with shaggy hair. Laughter.

"I see bunnies and dragons, and you see President Nixon. You tell me: which one of us needs therapy?"

He was a kid, lying in the dust on a playground merry-go-round.

He was an adult, kissing the pretty boy lying beside him.

And he forgot everything but Clark.


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