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Title: Sources
Author: [profile] magpieinthesky
Written for: [profile] 12days_of_clois Christmas Challenge
Prompt: Newspaper
Category: Lois & Clark:The New Adventures of Superman
Rating: G
Word Count: 757
Summary: Lois learns to give the gift of sharing this New Year's.
Spoilers: Up through 1.13, "Witness," though I use a character first introduced in 2.07, "That Old Gang of Mine."
Author's Notes: I played a bit with the order of episodes in the first season of TNAOS. In my world, "Witness" happened before the New Year (though it originally aired Jan. 9th).


Lois pulled the door to the diner open, the bell above clanging as it swung open and then shut. The thud of her heels hitting the floor was muffled by thick carpeting, and the rustling of her pea coat being shrugged off her shoulders was heard by no one as chatter filled the room, warmed by the crowd and the well-used ovens and stoves. She spotted her target, who was sitting at the counter and was conspicuously dressed in red with white fur trim and reading the morning’s edition of The Daily Planet. Lois hopped up on the neighboring stool, ordered her coffee, and sat still for a moment, head cocked to one side, observing the wait staff as they interacted with their patrons.

Her coffee was placed in front of her, and Lois turned to her neighbor. “A little late to be playing Santa, isn’t it?”

As Lois took a cautious sip of her coffee, the newspaper crinkled and was folded neatly, revealing three heaping plates of various breakfast foods, a mug of what Lois supposed was hot chocolate - though it was smothered with whipped cream so it was hard to tell - and the man sitting next to her, who took the opportunity of having a free hand to begin stuffing the foods into his mouth.

He flashed a quick grin, and around some eggs, Bobby replied, “And a happy New Year to you too, Lois. As a matter of fact,” he took a swig of the cocoa, “this outfit is keeps me real warm, and those with fewer lights on in the attic – if you know what I’m saying – they buy me dinner in thanks for bringing them such nice presents.” Bobby chewed thoughtfully on a sausage link. “Though maybe it was because they felt bad for me ‘cause I’m wearing this Santa suit.” He shrugged, grabbing a forkful of waffles. “Eh. It’s free food! Speaking of…”

Lois grumpily pulled out a small packet of chocolates. “I have no clue why you couldn’t get these at the corner mart, the way you inhale those things, but I suppose there’s no accounting for taste. All right, Bobby, spill.”

At that moment, the bell at the diner’s door rang out, and with a burst of cold air, in came Lois’s partner, looking a bit windswept. Lois whipped her head around to see him huffing as he walked over to the pair at the counter, and she turned back to Bobby, wide-eyed. “Never mind,” she hissed. “Just pretend you don’t have anything today.”

Bobby raised his eyebrow, nodding a greeting to the man. It seemed fishy to him that Lois wanted to keep this from her partner, but then again, that was Mad Dog Lane for you.

Out of the corner of her eye, Lois saw Clark watching Bobby bemusedly. She sat up straight. “Oh! Um, Clark, this Bobby Bigmouth, one of my sources. Bobby, Clark.” The two men shook hands, friendly smiles on their faces.

“Nice to meet you, Bobby. And I like your suit,” Clark said sincerely, turning to Lois. “I thought you were just going to the chocolatier before coming back to the office? I wanted to go over that article on the special election with you before submitting it.”

Lois frowned. “I just wanted to get some additional information, which unfortunately Bobby doesn’t have, to solidify one of my ongoing stories, is all. Nothing so important that it requires you searching me out.”

Bobby put his spoonful of bacon and spinach soufflé down as he squinted at the bespectacled gentleman. He picked up his newspaper and licked his thumb, flicking through the pages while the two reporters argued, flinging out words like “senior,” “partner,” “teamwork,” and “independence.” Bobby finally found the page he wanted and peered back at Lois and Clark.

“And another thing –”

Bobby burst out, “Wait, so you’re the guy who prevented all those attempts on Lane’s life? I mean, aside from when Superman had to intervene?”

Clark blushed, and Lois looked a little sheepish, though still annoyed. She sighed. “Yes, he’s the one, though I still maintain that the number of murder attempts was greatly exaggerated.” Lois snuck a look back at Clark and leaned against the counter, signaling the waitress for another cup of coffee. “Okay, Bobby. You’re off topic. What’s the scoop on the murder trial?”

Bobby raised his eyebrows, but obliged. Maybe, just maybe, this Kent guy would make it as Lane’s partner for longer than even he, with all his powers of observation, might have guessed.
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