Supergirl (Kara of Rokyn):

    Kal & Lyla

    part 14

    by DarkMark

Nar-Es sat across from his charge, who was looking into the fireplace of her home.  “So, what are you going to do if Kal doesn’t like it?”

“I’m not prepared for him to like it,” said Kara, sitting on the floor in her pajamas, barefoot, and watching the flames flicker.  “I’m just hoping he’ll accept it.”

“And if he doesn’t?”

She looked at her old coach.  “Then it still goes on.  I won’t have put out this much effort, involved this many people, and put it in the tank.  That’s not an option, Nar.”

The short man nodded, slowly.  “But Kal might exercise an option, Kara.  He might cut you out of his life.”

“He won’t do that.”

“You sure?”

She looked at him.  “It’s a gift, Nar.  The best gift I think I can give to Kal.”

He spread his hands over his belly.  “You sure about that?”

“What do you mean?”

“What I mean is that it seems more like a gift to yourself,” he said.  “You show your acting chops, you put together a movie that’s bound to break the barriers at the box office, you make a lot of money and you’ve got a triumph.  All you have to do to get it is break Kal-El’s heart.”

Kara sighed and sat cross-legged.  “I can always count on you for the truth, Nar.  Or a truth I don’t want to face.”

“That’s one of the reasons why I’m here, Kara,” said Nar.

She smoothed her hair back with both hands and tied it in a bun at the back.  “I guess I’d better go see him tomorrow.  I’m getting good at confrontations with him.  Maybe too good.”

“He’s got a big heart, Kara,” Nar said.  “But that makes it so much easier to break.  You sure you want to do it?”

Kara paused.  “I don’t want to hurt him, Nar.  But I know now what they mean when they talk about making art that hurts.  Sometimes it does, but even so...when you’ve got the art, you have to make it.  That’s a lame excuse.”

“Shouldn’t you have thought about this before you started?”

“I did.  And if I thought about it too much, I never would have started.  Now I’ve got to finish it.  I’ve got to go to Earth.”


So it was that Kara Zor-El, in her Supergirl outfit, stepped out of the WarPort in the Fortress of Solitude a day later and looked around.  Everything was pretty much the way it was a few months ago, when she’d come to Earth to find a missing Kal.  She hoped that’d give her some leeway with him.

She also wore a version of her old Supergirl outfit, blue skirt and all.  The headband from her last outfit had been abandoned long ago.  It might have been intended as an equality statement, since men were traditionally only headband wearers, but after awhile she just thought it looked stupid.  The suit she wore was patterned after the one Allura had made for her, which Kal first saw her in.  If nostalgia could work for her, she wanted it to.

In one hand, she held a cube.  Rubbing her fingers across its facets, Kara walked through the entry hall of the Fortress, under the big ship suspended from the ceiling on chains, beside the dinosaur, within view of the big globe of Krypton held by the statues of Jor-El and Lara.  One of these days she had to build herself a secret hideout on Rokyn, and she’d make sure it was equipped with a replica of Argo City in the hands of Zor-El and Allura statues.

There were some cries from the animals in the alien zoo as she walked along.  Strange.  She loved Earth, but more and more it felt to her like a chapter in a book she had closed.  Then again, she thought, perhaps that wasn’t strange at all.

Well, to Sheol with that.

She leapt up, activated her flight power (holy Rao, that always felt great!), and soared over the tiled floor to the golden front doorway.  This she unlocked with a simple mechanism and pulled open with one hand, noting the great groaning noise and opining that Kal should oil the hinges more often.  Then she whisked out, into the blowing snow and arctic cold.  Showing off a bit, Kara blew the door back in place.   A second later, she plucked the great gold key from its mountain peak socket, locked the Fortress door anew, and flew the key back to the spot where, presumably, somebody thought of it as an aircraft marker.  That she doubted, but at least nobody but Luthor among their foes seemed to care to come that far north.

Then, squinting her eyes a bit against the snow, Supergirl streaked southeast towards Metropolis.  The falling snow against her costume and body would be vaporized by air friction.  The cube, as invulnerable as herself, was safely tucked in the pouch of her cape.

It was time to meet with the cousin and cousin-in-law.


Clark Kent was carrying his early-fortyish age well, looked as distinguished as a newscaster should, and all agreed that his marriage to Lois Lane was beneficial to them both.  Jimmy Olsen and Lucy Lane took the copycat plunge shortly thereafter, though Lucy had to endure a lot of Elastic Lad jokes from the bridesmaids.  

“And that’s it for this evening,” finished Clark.  “This is Clark Kent, WGBS, hoping your news is good news.  Good night.”  Josh Coyle pulled back the camera for a long shot of Clark fussing with his papers and rolled the credits.  In a few moments, he signalled “Cut”.  Clark exhaled loudly, pushed his glasses up a bit, and rubbed the bridge of his nose.  Lois was standing just off-camera, visibly pregnant and smiling.  Alongside her was a familiar brown-haired girl.

It took all his control for Clark not to call her “Kara.”

“Linda,” he said, getting up and being sure to wrap an arm about Lois’s waist before he went to her.  “What brings you back here?  And I’m glad to see you again.”

“Good to see you as well, Clark,” said Linda Danvers, pecking him on the cheek.  “I spoke a bit to Lois.  Good to know you’ve got another generation of Kents coming.”

“Two new ones, Linda,” said Lois.  “Just like I told you.  Any chance you can be in town for the delivery?”

Linda shook her head.  “Doubt it.  Clark, can we talk in private?”

He raised an eyebrow.  “My office,” he said.

Lana Lang, Clark’s co-anchor, waved at the three of them.  “Glad you’re all getting back together,” she said.  “For a long time there, we thought Clark was gone for good.”

A shadow of sorts crossed Linda’s face, and was echoed by Lois and Clark.  The absence had been caused by Lex Luthor, who had captured Superman for over a month.  She had helped save him, but the incident, in which Luthor had died, wasn’t something she cared to dwell on overmuch.

“Yeah, Lana,” said Linda.  “Good to see you, too.”

The three of them retired to Clark’s office, leaving a somewhat puzzled Lana behind.  Once the door was shut, Clark embraced his cousin and she returned it.  Lois smiled.

“Kara, Kara,” said Clark, his head on her shoulder.  “Missed you so much.”

“Likewise, Kalian,” she said.  “Blessings on your house.  Especially on the ones to come into it.”

“Well, if it hadn’t been for you, there wouldn’t be any new ones coming into it,” said Lois.  “Or a ‘house’, for that matter.”

Linda took a deep breath.  “I need a favor from you, Kal.  And Lois, as well.”

Clark caught himself before answering.  Kara’s pulse rate had gone up, and she wasn’t bothering to conceal it.  “Tell me,” he said.

She reached into her handbag and produced a cube.  “I want you and Lois to watch this with me.  We’ll have to do it at the Fortress.  Do you have any plans tonight?”

“None that I can’t break,” he said.  “Lois has to see this, as well?”

“She should, Kal.”

“What is it?”

“Can’t tell you,” said Linda.  “You have to see it first.”

Jaw set, Clark looked at Lois.  She was resolute, but seemed as clueless as he was, right now.

“Okay,” he said.  “We’ll go to the apartment and take it from there.”


One flight later, with Lois wrapped in her husband’s cape, the three of them sat in the Fortress’s screening room.  It was one of the few places on Earth that could play the holocube Kara had brought with her.  She and Kal were in costume.  Lois, in a brown suit, felt a bit of nostalgia looking at them both.  

Superman was showing some edginess.  “Why can’t you tell us what the movie’s about?”

“It would spoil the surprise,” said Kara, and knew how lame she sounded as she said it.  “Just do me a favor.  Once it starts, watch it to the end.  And please, hold your comments.”

He said nothing.  Kara went and put the cube in the player.  Within seconds, the logo of Ar-Rom studios materialized in the air before them, in an English format.  Lois, who had never seen a holofilm, was awed.

The logo was replaced by a simulation of Krypton.  Over it, a few credits ran, including Kara’s own name and that of Van-Zee.  “Van?” said Kal.

“Oh, I know him,” said Lois.  “He’s an actor now?”

Then the title came up: KAL & LYLA.

In a whisper, Kal said, “Holy Rao.”

Kara’s hand covered his, gently.  “Please, Kal.  Just watch.”

“Lyla?” said Lois.  

Superman turned towards his wife, looking as grim as an executioner.  “Lyla.  Lerrol.  From Krypton.”

“Clark, what is this?”

“Please,” Kara said.  “Just for me, both of you.  Watch the show.”

Kal fixed her with a look of absolute winter.  Then he turned towards the hologram.

Kara studied his face as he watched the show, and never once took her hand from his.


When the end credits rolled, Kara wondered what Kal’s reaction would be.  She didn’t have very long to wait.  He stood up and stared directly into her eyes.

“Why did you do this to me?”


“Why did you do this to me?”

Lois was up as well, laying a hand on her husband’s arm.  “Dear, don’t do anything rash.  Don’t do anything you might regret.”

“As if she hasn’t?”  Kal was pointing to Kara.  “You exposed one of the most private parts of my personal life.  You opened my heart and splattered it all over a holoscreen.  Am I supposed to approve of it?”

“I did it to honor you, Kal,” Kara said, steadily.  “I did it because it was one of the greatest love stories of old Krypton.  I did it because you’re a human being, and the people of Rokyn deserve to see you as human.”

“Oh.  Good,” said Kal.  “That way you can make pornography of my life.  That was you can exploit the memory of a woman I loved.”

“I wasn’t exploiting her, Kal!  If anything, I was honoring her more than I was honoring you.  I got to know her, got to love her, while I researched her and portrayed her.  How many men and women on Rokyn—“

“Stop it!”

“—how many of them will learn who Lyla Lerrol was, because of this holo?”


After a few more seconds, Kal said, “You showed the most intimate moments of my affair with Lyla.”

“Not the most intimate, Kal.  Just the ones of the heart.”

“As I said.”

Lois said, “I’d like to say something here, Clark.”

“Lois, please,” he said.

“Don’t ‘Lois, please’ me, Clark!  Even if you can pick up Mount Everest with your bare hands and put it in the Gobi Desert, I am your wife!”

Kara made a small prayer circle of her two hands behind her back and prayed to Rao, silently.  Kal stared at her, close-mouthed.

“Does my opinion count for anything here?  Or are you too hurt to listen to anyone but yourself, at this point?”  Lois looked at him tenderly, but steadily.

He sighed.  “She had no right to do that.  Not without my permission.”

“Maybe she didn’t,” agreed Lois.  “But it’s done now.  And you know what, Clark?  It seems like a very, very good show from what I saw.”

Kara stood open-mouthed.  After an instant, she figured that was the best thing she could do, for the moment.

“That was one of the most inspiring love stories I’ve seen as a movie, and I’ve gone to a ton and a half of them,” said Lois.  “You had to take me to more than a few.  Yes, Kara, it’s true: this old newshen had a soft spot for Wuthering Heights.”

“You don’t mean to tell me you’re taking her side on this?”  With the look Kal had, Kara was glad he was talking to his wife.

“It’s not about ‘taking sides’, Clark.  She’s done a marvelous job with this picture.  Look.  Your cousin saved your life, almost a year ago.  Didn’t she?”

“She did,” acknowledged Kal.  “For which I’ll always be grateful.”

“Thanks, Kal.”  Kara slipped her arm through his, and he didn’t object.  She sighed with relief.

“Do you think that someone who cared that much for you, who saved you from Luthor, who enabled us to get married and me to be carrying your child, would do something deliberately to hurt you, Clark?  Well?  Would she?”

“It’s...not about what she deliberately did, Lois.  It’s what she did without thinking.”

Kara said, “It’s not that I didn’t think about it, Kal.  I was afraid of what kind of impact it would have on you.  But it was more a case of, once I’d thought of it, how could I not do it?”

“Oh, I can give you a lot of reasons why not to,” said Kal.

“Clark, hear me out,” said Lois.  “I think Kara did this because she loves you.  Isn’t that true, Kara?”

Kara beamed.  “Beyond a shadow of a doubt, Lois.  Kal, listen to my heartbeat and pulse rate.  If I’ve just lied, you can tell.”

He looked into her eyes.  “I can tell without doing that.  You’ve never lied to me, Kara.”

“She made a story about the greatest love affair in your life, before you got married to me,” Lois continued.  “Back then, neither one of us was certain we were going to get hitched, even though I made a lot of plots to that effect.  You thought you were going to be stranded on Krypton till it blew up.  That is right, isn’t it?”

“Of course,” said Kal.

“Then how could I be offended by you opening your heart to a beautiful woman and planning to marry her?  If the real Lyla Lerrol was anything like Kara portrayed her, I think she was worth loving.  Was she, Kal?”

“She was...that, and more,” said Kal.  “More than even Kara could show.”

“Oh.”  Kara tried to put on her brave face.

“But you came closer than I could ever imagine anyone getting,” said Kal.

“Oh.”  The brave face became much easier to maintain.

Kal sat.  For a long time, he didn’t say anything.  Kara went to Lois’s side.  “What should I say?”, she whispered.

“Nothing,” advised Lois.

“You’re really okay with a love story about Kal and somebody else?”

“Kara, honey, he has to do the news five nights a week sitting next to the gal that was my biggest rival for years, and I’m not worried about that.  Lyla Lerrol is dead.  I’m just glad he had something before I landed him.”

“I’m glad he landed you.”

Lois smiled.  “I’m glad you saved him so I could.”

Kal stood.  “Kara.”

“Yes, Kal?”

“I still don’t like what you did.”

Pause.  “I’m sorry, Kal, for your hurt.”

“But you do have a lot of money invested in this show.”

She nodded.

“A lot of people who have to get paid.”

“Yes, Kal, they do.”

He turned away, then said, “I don’t want this movie playing on Earth.”

She hesitated.  Cutting out the Earth market would cut a significant part of the profits, but it would probably turn a profit on Rokyn, at least.  “Are you sure, Kal?”

“I’m sure,” he said.  “And, Kara?  If you ever do this sort of thing again without asking my permission beforehand...I’ll never speak to you again.”

“I understand, cousin.”

“I will not show up at any preview or give my endorsement to it, period.  Don’t have any newsies come to me for quotes or a reaction.  I won’t give them.”

“I’ll do what I can to keep them back.  But you might want to come to Rokyn soon, anyway.”

“And why is that?”

“Because I got Argo City back and had it de-Kryptonited.”

Kal turned back towards her.  “Holy Rao.”

She nodded, smiling.  “Think you might want to see that?”

“I would,” he said.  “I would, indeed.”


 Kal and Kara parted ways outside the Fortress, he carrying Lois back to Metropolis, she headed in another direction.  Within seconds, both had reached their respective destinations.  Hers was one she hadn’t been to since her last trip to Earth, and she was a bit nerved but excited as she landed in the backyard.

Midvale had expanded a bit, but not that much.  She changed clothes at hyperspeed and ran the comb through her hair that changed its color from blonde to brunette.  Finally, she opened the back gate, walked around to the front, and rang the doorbell.

Edna Danvers opened the door and stepped back, wide-eyed and open-mouthed.  “Linda!”

Smiling, Kara nodded.  “It’s me, Mom.  The first me, that is.”

Edna’s mouth opened even wider.  “You’re back again?”

“Yep. Can I come in?”

For answer, Edna opened the door wider and stepped back.  As soon as Linda crossed the threshold, her foster mother grabbed her in a big hug.  Kara gave it back.  “Oh, Linda, it’s so good to see you again,” she said.  “Your sister was here not long ago.  I only wish she could have been here today.”

“Me, too.  How are she and Dick getting along?”

“Oh, just marvelously.  They’re planning on getting married in a few months.  How do I send you an invitation?”

“Just send it courtesy of Kal...I mean, Clark.  He’ll make sure I get it.  Where is Dad?”

“Upstate at a power company meeting.  I’ll give him a call.  Linda.”  She looked seriously at her foster daughter.  “Is there something bad going on?  Again?”

Kara sighed and shook her head.  “No, Mom.  I just had to see Kal...that is, Clark...about something.  How’s about we sit down and I tell you about it?”

“I want to hear everything about it, and about you.  Let me put some water in the microwave for coffee.  Taster’s Choice?”


And, over instant coffee, Kara explained to Edna Danvers just what had been happening in her life for the past few months.  As soon as she got to a decent stopping place, Edna said, “When in heaven’s name do I get to see it?”

“Uh, not right now, Mom.  I didn’t bring more than one copy with me, and you don’t have the equipment to play it on here.”

“It’s more than a DVD?”

Kara smiled wryly.  “Just a bit.  I’ll try to have a copy converted for you, okay?  I think you’ll enjoy it.”

“I should be very surprised if I didn’t, honey.  Tell me some more about this man you’re involved with.”

“He’s the guy who wrote the holo with me.  He’s kind of short, but he’s very sweet.  Hasn’t been off-world yet, but I’ll try to bring him along next time I come.”

Edna, sitting on the sofa beside Kara, shook her head in wonderment.  “You’ve made a big film.  You got Argo City back.  Best of all, you’re safe and you’re not fighting anyone this time.  I’m so glad, Kara.”

“Thanks, Mom.  Got any prayers left?”

“Certainly.  Why?”

“Because now that I’ve got Kal’s permission, I’ve got to release the show.  And if it doesn’t do well...I think I’d rather be facing Darkseid.”

   (next chapter)