Disclaimer: I don't own Batman, Superman, Justice League or its characters.
Chapter 1: The First Meeting.
Clark was passing through the small park across the Daily Planet on his way to his favorite deli when he caught sight of a man sitting on one of the benches, head cradled between his hands and altogether looking like he was having a terrible day. The reporter paused in his stride, watching him.
A few people walked past the man, all of them going their way without sparing him a glance. Clark would like to think they were just in a hurry, but the truth was they probably didn't care. He learned quickly people in the city were too busy with their own lives to care about anyone else.
His lunch break wasn't that long, but he could save time if he grabbed something from the coffee shop a couple of blocks away from the Planet rather than walking across the park and back. It should give him enough time to make sure the man was alright, or mostly alright. Decision made, Clark turned back and walked to where the lone man in the suit was sitting.
Sometimes all you needed to feel better was a willing ear or even just proof that someone gave a damn.
The man didn't look up as he approached, most likely assuming he was just someone else passing by, so he made sure to keep his voice low and gentle when he addressed him.
"Um, hi. Are you okay?"
Clark was met with a pair of deep cobalt blue eyes as the man took his hands away and lifted his head to face him- and wow. Even with the frown lines around his mouth and between his eyebrows the man was gorgeous.
The tense words were enough to pull Clark out of his thoughts with a grimace. There was some more of that city charm he was starting to get familiar with. "Right. I'm sorry for butting in like this. You just seemed preoccupied and I thought I should ask if you were alright."
"I'm fine," The man replied, eyeing him warily. "Thank you."
The last part was added as an afterthought and didn't sound particularly grateful. Just something added out of politeness. The man was obviously not in the mood for company, so Clark nodded and offered him a self-deprecating smile. "Sorry again. I guess you can take the man out of the small town, but you can't take the small-town upbringing out of him."
The man's tense posture relaxed slightly. "I- it's fine. I'm sorry for reacting like that."
"It's okay," Clark said with an easy shrug. "I guess you're just not used to strangers asking that."
"I'm not, and, as you can see I'm not having a very good day."
The reporter smiled. "There's no need to apologize. We all have those days."
"Do you also have four children driving you insane and making you question every minute whether or not you're qualified to take care of them?" He asked dryly.
Clark could do nothing but blink down at the handsome man. Kids. Four of them. Jesus.
"That was probably too much information, huh?"
"No! I mean- I know we're total strangers and it may sound weird, but if you feel talking about whatever it's bothering you may help I will be happy to listen."
"Of course," He assured without hesitation.
The man leaned back on the bench, an eyebrow arched. "Some more of those small-town manners, I take it?"
"Something like that. But I'm also a reporter, so I have it on good authority I'm a very good listener. And I promise to keep it all off the record," He joked.
The man's piercing eyes regarded him for a moment, long enough for him to start bouncing little on the balls of his feet and even reach to push his glasses up his nose like he did when he was nervous.
"You work at the Daily Planet, correct?"
"How do you know?"
"Well," The man said with a small curl of lips. "You can see the globe at the top of the Planet building over there and you came from that general direction, so I assumed that was the case."
"Oh. Right." Clark could feel his cheeks warming up a little. He held out his hand. "I'm Clark Kent."
"Bruce Wayne," He said, taking his hand in a firm grip.
Clark found himself studying the man more carefully. He was very handsome, there was no question about that. He had jet black hair, deep blue eyes, chiseled features, and his shoulders were broad under his nice tailored suit. And okay, he really should stop checking him out. The man had children for god's sake!
Though now that he thought about it, he seemed to be maybe in his mid-thirties, so he was definitely way too young to have so many kids.
The reporter cleared his throat. "So, four kids, huh? You must be pretty busy."
Bruce's expression softened a little, the corner of his mouth tugging upward just for a moment at the mention of his sons. "That's an understatement if I ever heard one, but at least I have help to handle them."
"That's nice. It must be a relief to have someone you can trust to help in raising your kids."
Bruce nodded. "It is. I don't know what I would do without him."
Him. It was a man and not a woman waiting for him at home. That was- a little surprising what with the four kids and all, even if Metropolis was a rather progressive liberal city.
"Your partner must be a very special man."
"He- What?! No! Alfred is not- I don't have a partner."
"Oh." Okay. Now Clark was curious about who this Alfred was but he didn't ask. It wasn't his place.
Bruce squinted a little as the sunlight hit his eyes after Clark shifted his position. "You may as well sit down if you're still willing to hear me out. Though I should warn you it probably wouldn't be a very exciting tale."
Clark laughed softly as he complied. "It's a good thing I wasn't looking for entertainment, then."
"It is," The man said with a wry twitch of his lips that distracted Clark for a second.
"Alright. I have to warn you I need to be back in the office in twenty minutes, but I'm all yours until then." Clark proceeded to blush furiously as soon as he realized what he said, and the traces of amusement on the man's face only made it worse.
Bruce tilted his head slightly as he watched him. "You're on your lunch break, aren't you?"
"Then we should go grab lunch. My treat." Clark opened his mouth to protest, but he waved him off. "You've agreed to listen to me whine about my children for twenty minutes, the least I can do is feed you."
Clark hesitated for a moment before agreeing. How could he say no to a handsome man offering to buy him lunch? Even if it was just to talk about his four kids and the mysterious Alfred.
Bruce nodded, getting to his feet. "Do you have any recommendations? I'm afraid I'm not very familiar with the area."
"I sure do."
"Good. You can lead the way then."
The two strangers walked out of the small park together, ready to share lunch and something more.
a/n: What am I doing, writing yet another story instead of finishing any of my several unfinished fics? I have no idea. I just know I love SuperBat and my brain just wouldn't shut up about new ideas, so here you have it. Let me know what you think!
English is not my native language, so any tips or corrections are welcome.