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Airdate: October 29, 2002
Written by: Russel Friend & Garrett Lerner
Directed by: Chris Long
Transcript by: Kerrplop


We see a shot of the Smallville High swimming pool from under the water. Day. Clark, in a pair of swimming trunks, dives in and comes back to the surface as he and Pete swim across the pool side by side. The pool is roped off into lanes. Clark beats Pete to the end of the pool and the coach blows a whistle.

Coach: Okay, take five. Kent, Turner, youíre in the final.

Pete: (To Clark, out of breath) Dude, Iíd definitely take you in a rematch. My foot slipped on the dive, ruined my rhythm.

Clark: Itís funny, I thought you were just slow.

They both smile and get out of the pool.

Lana and one of the cheerleaders, CHRISSY PARKER, are sitting on the bleachers making signs for Spirit Week.

Chrissy: Heís a hottie, isnít he? Look at him.

Lana: Who, Clark?

Chrissy: (Laughs) Oh, come on, Lana.

Lana: Chrissy, Clark and I are just friends.

Chrissy: Right.

Lana: (Finishing her sign, which reads ďSpirit Week 2002, GO CROWSĒ) So, what do you think?

Chrissy: Awesome. Iím gonna ask the new principal if we can hang it in the middle of the cafeteria.

Lana: You have really thrown yourself into Spirit Week, Chrissy. I am impressed.

Chrissy: Well, these are the best times of our lives. Isnít that what they say?

Lana: To be honest, I had forgotten how much fun this can be. Iím really looking forward to it.

Troy, another swimmer, walks up.

Troy: Chrissy! Hey, baby.

He leans toward her and she pushes him back.

Chrissy: Hey, Troy! Youíre dripping on my sign. Donít you have another race?

Troy: Finals. I need a good-luck kiss.

Chrissy looks at Lana.

Lana: Go. I can finish up here.

Chrissy: Thanks. (To Troy) Follow me.

She gets up and leads him away.

Troy: Not a problem.

Lana underlines the word Crows. Clark steps up onto the diving platform and the coach blows the whistle.

Coach: All right, boys. This oneís for bragging rights. The fastest in the school. (Chrissy kisses Troy and he walks to the pool) Come on, Turner, hurry up. (Troy shakes his head, looking a little disoriented, and steps onto the platform next to Clark) Swimmers, take your marks. Three, two, one.

The coach blows the whistle and they dive into the water as everyone starts to cheer. Troy starts to choke and goes under the water. Clark doesnít notice and keeps swimming.

Chrissy: Troy? Hey! Hey! Troy!

Clark hears Chrissy and stops swimming. Troyís head comes above the water and he looks around before going under again. Chrissy stands up.

Chrissy: Somebody help him! Troy!

Clark goes underwater and uses his super speed to swim to the bottom of the pool and get Troy. He takes Troy back to the surface and the coach and another swimmer pull him out of the water. Troy is unconscious on his stomach, and when they turn him over, everyone gasps. He is an old man.

[Opening credits]

Act 1 Scene 1

Jonathan is working on his bills in the kitchen as Martha bakes muffins. Day. She walks over to him with a muffin on a plate and a piece of it in her hand.

Martha: Open your mouth.

She puts the piece in his mouth.

Jonathan: Honey, thatís perfect. All we have to do is come up with a snappy name like Famous Amos and weíll make a fortune.

Martha: Ooh. (Clark enters)

Clark: Forget Mrs. Fieldís, you can be Mrs. Kentís.

Martha: I like the sound of that.

She pulls another pan out of the oven.

Clark: This is turning into a big time operation.

Martha: Yeah. (Clark takes the pan from her) Thanks. Iíve, uh, added two convenience stores and the cafeteria at the retirement center to my client list.

Clark: Thatís great.

Jonathan puts down a check, frustrated.

Martha: What?

Jonathan: I donít see how weíre gonna pay the feed bill this month.

Martha: I could go by Langhamís Store and maybe we can get an extension on our credit.

Jonathan: Weíre already three months behind, sweetheart.

Martha: Well, Andyís a friend. Iím sure heíll understand.

Jonathan: Iíve already asked him. Heís already said no.

Martha: Well, my salary from Lionel isnít enough. So what are we gonna do?

Jonathan: I donít know. We donít have a whole lot of options here.

Martha: There is one call we can make. (Jonathan and Clark both look at Martha) Maybe we should talk to my father.

Jonathan gets up from the counter, annoyed.

Clark: Why is it whenever anyone mentions Granddad, suddenly everyone becomes quiet and uncomfortable? Donít you think itís weird Iíve never even met the guy?

Jonathan: Look, Clark, Iím-- Iím sorry that you havenít been able to have a relationship with your grandpa. I really am. Thereís just too much bad blood. Iím sorry, but I-- I got work to do.

Jonathan leaves the room.

Act 1 Scene 2

Students are working on more Spirit Week signs in the Talon. Day. Clark enters with a tray of muffins and finds Lana by the counter. She puts down a box.

Clark: Lana, where would you like these?

Lana: You can just put them on the counter.

Clark: Getting ready for the big Spirit Week bash?

Lana: Trying to. I think Nellís used the projection booth as her personal mini-storage since the late Ď70s.

Clark pours himself a cup of coffee as Lana pulls an envelope out of the box. In the envelope she finds pictures of a man and a woman on a picnic blanket.

Clark: What are those?

Lana: Clark, these are photos are of my mom and some guy.

Clark: Maybe heís an old boyfriend.

Lana turns a picture around and sees the date 7/85.

Lana: They were taken when my parents were already married.

Clark: Maybe he was just a friend.

She flips to another picture and there are two glasses of champagne next to her mom and the man. They are lying on their stomachs very close to each other. Lex enters.

Lana: Iím sure youíre right.

Lex: Right about what?

Clark: The mystery man with Lanaís mother.

Lex: Hey, they make an attractive couple. (Lana looks at Lex and then at Clark) And there could be a million explanations. Who do you think it is?

Lana: I donít know. But Iíll bet Nell does.

Lex: Then mystery solved. (He looks at Clark) I wish they were all this easy.

Clark: (Changing the subject) Well, itís, uh, itís late. We should-- we should get to school.

Lex: You know, Iím heading that way if you need a lift...

Lana: Oh, Iím okay. Iíve got the first two periods off.

Lex: Clark?

Clark: No, I was just gonna... run.

Lex: Well, I donít think you can outrun my Porsche, Clark.

Lana laughs and Clark shrugs.

CUT TO Lexís Porsche swerving recklessly up the road the Smallville High as a man, PRINCIPAL REYNOLDS closes the gate to the grounds. Clark gets out of the car.

Clark: Excuse me. Whatís going on? I need to get in there.

Mr. Reynolds: Then you should have been here four minutes ago Mr.--

Clark: Kent. Clark Kent.

Mr. Reynolds: Ah, of course. I noticed in your records you have a pension for tardiness.

Clark: Who exactly are you?

Mr. Reynolds: Iím Mr. Reynolds, your new principal.

Clark: Oh, um, nice to meet you.

Mr. Reynolds: Yes. Just so youíre aware, from now on, this gate locks when the first bell rings and doesnít open again until school is out.

Lex: (Getting out of his car) Iíd, uh, Iíd appreciate it if you give Clark a pass this time. He was late because of me.

Mr. Reynolds: Lex Luthor. The Porsche, the attitude... somehow Iím not surprised youíre involved.

Clark: You two know each other.

Lex: Uh, Mr. Reynolds was headmaster at Excelsior Prep during my infamous stay there.

Mr. Reynolds: You might find this hard to believe, Lex, but I think people should take responsibility for their own actions.

Clark: It wonít happen again.

Mr. Reynolds: Iím keeping my eye on you, Mr. Kent. Next time it happens, automatic detention. (He opens the gate)

Lex: Catch you later, Clark. (Clark smiles at him and goes through the gate) Spare the rod, spoil the child. You havenít changed a bit. Whatís next, school uniforms?

Mr. Reynolds: Iíd appreciate it if youíd stay away from my school and my students, Luthor.

Lex: Listen, Mr. Reynolds, I know we had our share of run-ins at Excelsior, but I was 14. Donít you think itís a bit petty to be holding a grudge after all these years?

Mr. Reynolds: Well, thatís awfully noble coming from a Luthor.

Lex: Iím a little confused. Exactly what did I do to earn such enmity?

Mr. Reynolds: Goodbye, Lex.

He walks back to the school and Lex goes to his car.

Act 1 Scene 3

Chrissy is looking at herself in the mirror at her locker. Day. She touches the small wrinkles around her eyes as Mr. Reynolds walks up.

Mr. Reynolds: Christine Parker? (She closes her locker) Iím Principal Reynolds.

Chrissy: Hi. Nice to finally meet you. Did you get my memo about the new cheerleading uniforms?

Mr. Reynolds: I did and thank you and Iím looking into it. (They start to walk) I understand youíre the visionary behind our Spirit Week activities.

Chrissy: Well, I just want everyone to have the best time ever.

Mr. Reynolds: Well, I admire your enthusiasm. By the way, I was going through the student files trying to get to know everyone better, and I noticed we donít have the transcripts from your last school.

Chrissy: Huh. Thatís weird. But it figures. My guidance counselor was a total ditz.

Mr. Reynolds: Well, we need to have a copy on file. If you could have your parents forward it, Iíd appreciate it.

Chrissy: No problem. Iíll tell them tonight.

Act 1 Scene 3

Chloe pins the front page of the Smallville Ledger to the Wall of Weird in the Torch. Day. There is a picture of Troy and the headline ďSmallville High Swim Champ Dies of Mysterious Causes.Ē Pete is in the room with her.

Pete: I see Troyís death has officially joined the ranks of the unexplained and bizarre.

Chloe: Big time. The official report said he died of an acute onset of the rapid aging disease progeria. (Clark enters) Hi.

Clark: I thought that made you age over the course of ten years, not ten seconds.

Chloe: Exactly. The coronerís running a genetic test to tell whether Troy had progeria, or if it was just...

Pete: Something unexplained and bizarre.

Clark: (Irritated) Well, good luck investigating. Youíll probably need a hall pass from our new principal.

Chloe: Clark, a lot of schools have a closed campus policy.

Pete: Yeah. Why are you so worked up?

Clark: I had a run in with him this morning. He busted me for being late, threatened to keep his eye on me.

Pete: Wow. Clark Kentís on the principalís bad boy list. Thereís a first time for everything.

Clark: The guyís a real hard case.

Chloe: Right. First with the lockdown, the next thing you know, heíll be burning books in the student parking lot.

Clark: Well, laugh now. Wait till he comes after the Torch.

Chloe: Unh-unh, see I did some digging on our Principal Reynolds to find out what his views were on the fourth estate. (She hands Clark a file)

Clark: Harvard B.A., PhD at Columbia in education, taught at exclusive prep schools all over Europe and the East Coast. Thatís a pretty impressive rťsumť.

Chloe: Yeah, it is, and his name was even being mentioned as the new head of the Metropolis Board of Education until one day he was summarily dismissed from his position at Excelsior Prep, and he doesnít work again until he resurfaces here.

Clark: So how does a guy on the fast track suddenly end up in Smallville?

Pete: I donít know. But I donít think heís Wall of Weird material.

Chloe: Yeah, Clark, just because the guy doesnít immediately love you like every other teacher in this school doesnít mean that heís hiding some dark past. (Clark looks thoughtful)

Act 1 Scene 4

Lana is going through more boxes at the Talon. Day. Clark enters.

Clark: Hey. I came by to see if you needed a hand.

Lana: Just in time. I thought you were helping your mom this afternoon.

Clark: She said sheís got it covered.

He picks up a box and they head for the theater.

Lana: Is something wrong?

Clark: My momís been kind of secretive the last couple days.

Lana: A Kent secretive. Thatís shocking.

Clark: I think it has something to do with my grandfather.

Lana: Iíve never heard you mention him before.

Clark: Iíve never actually met him before. Iíve only seen pictures and those are like 20 years old.

Lana: Do you know anything about him? (They enter the theater)

Clark: Just that he was a big corporate lawyer in Metropolis. He and my grandmother retired to Coast City. When I was in sixth grade, I made up my mind to call him. I left a bunch of messages but he never called back. I guess he just wasnít interested.

Lana: All these years, Iíve had this image of the Kents as the perfect family.

Clark: I guess weíre just as dysfunctional as everyone else. (He puts the box down on the stage) I never did pressure my parents for the whole story.

Lana: Maybe you didnít want to know.

Clark: Maybe itís easier to live with the image than the truth.

Lana: Looks like weíre both dealing with secrets out of the past.

Clark: Iím not sure what Iím gonna do, but this is your chance to get some answers. (Lana turns around and sees Nell has entered. Lana nods at Clark) Iíll catch up with you later? (Clark leaves)

Nell: Lana, the place looks fantastic. Youíve done a really good job here.

Lana: Thanks. Um, I wanted to talk to you about something.

Nell: Yeah, what is it?

Lana: (Pulls the pictures out of her back pocket) These pictures. Do you know who he is?

Nell: It mustíve been one of your momís old boyfriends.

Lana: They were taken after mom and dad were already married, just a year before I was born.

Nell: Lana, whatís this about?

Lana: Iím not sure.

Nell: Listen to me. Your mother-- she loved you and your father more than anything else in this world. She never would have done anything to hurt either one of you. You know that, donít you?

Lana looks at the pictures and then at Nell.

Fade to black.

Act 2 Scene 1

Martha comes out of the house as a car drives up. Day. Her father, Clarkís grandfather, gets out of the car. He is dressed in a suit and tie and has white hair.

Martha: Hi, Dad. I appreciate you making the trip. (They hug awkwardly)

Grandfather: I was surprised to get your message. It mustíve taken a lot for Jonathan to ask for my help.

Martha: Jonathan is at the co-op in Grandville. He doesnít know I called.

Grandfather: Oh, I shouldíve known. Well, I imagined this place differently. But itís not the life I wanted for you, Martha.

Martha: (They start back to the house) Iím happy, Dad, itís a good life.

Grandfather: For some people, maybe. But you had so much potential. Top ten in your class, you could have gone to any law school you wanted. I had hoped that one day youíd take over my practice.

Martha: I never wanted to be a lawyer. This is the life I chose.

Grandfather: This is a life Jonathan chose for you. You just went along for the ride.

Martha: This isnít about Jonathan. Your raised an independent daughter and youíre angry because thatís what you got.

Grandfather: And here you are 20 years later going behind your husbandís back asking me for money. (Clark comes home)

Clark: Mom?

Martha: Clark. I thought you were at the Talon.

Clark: I finished early. Whatís up?

Martha: Clark, this is your grandfather. (Clark shakes his hand)

Clark: Pleased to meet you, sir.

Grandfather: Hello, Clark. Iíll, uh, Iíll be at the motel. Iíll have a cashier's check drawn tomorrow morning.

Clark: Why donít you stay with us? We have plenty of room.

Grandfather: I donít think that would be a very good idea, Clark.

Clark: How about dinner? One meal as a family.

Grandfather: Iím sorry.

He leaves and Martha goes inside. Clark watches his grandfather walk to his car.

Act 2 Scene 2

Martha is talking to Jonathan as he and Clark work on the tractor. Day.

Jonathan: If you want to talk your father, thatís fine. I just donít want him having anything to do with our finances.

Martha: Jonathan, what was I supposed to do, wait until the bank foreclosed on the farm?

Jonathan: I just wish you had said something to me about it first.

Clark: Dad, whatís the harm in just hearing him out?

Jonathan: Son, you donít have to be the mediator here. Believe me, I wish things could be different.

Clark: Well, why canít they be? You always told me to look for the best in people. Maybe heís put this behind him.

Jonathan: I seriously doubt that, Clark.

Clark: What happened that was so bad? I mean, it canít be any worse than whatís in the storm cellar. (Jonathan and Martha donít answer) Or can it?

Jonathan: When your mother and I decided to get married, I went down to his office to ask him for her hand.

Clark: Whatíd he say?

Jonathan: I remember his exact words. ďI will not let my daughter throw her life away by marrying some hick farmer that couldnít possibly support her.Ē

Clark: Thatís harsh.

Martha: He was a corporate lawyer. Thatís the way he dealt with people.

Jonathan: When he realized that we were serious about getting married, he lost it. He tried to shove me out of his office.

Clark: What happened?

Jonathan: (Pause) I hit him. Iím not proud of that. I tried to apologize to him, but he wouldnít have anything to do with it. Your grandfather and I havenít said a word to each other since.

Clark: But that was 20 years ago. He was willing to drive all the way out here. Maybe he wants to try again.

Jonathan: Believe me, Clark, heís not here to help. Heís here to gloat.

Act 2 Scene 3

Lana is watching the cheerleaders practice in the theater at the Talon. Day.

Cheerleaders: Go Crows!

Lex enters.

Lex: Hey. I got a message you wanted to see me. Everything all right?

Lana: I was wondering if you could do me a favor.

Lex: I take it Nell couldnít identify the mystery man?

Lana: If she could, she wouldnít tell me anything. I just-- I want to know who it is.

Hands Lex the pictures.

Lex: Well, that shouldnít be hard to find, but coming to terms with it could prove to be more complicated.

Lana: What do you mean?

Lex: Come on, you know the story of Pandora. She was given a box by Zeus and warned never to open it. She couldnít resist the temptation.

Lana: Iím not afraid of the truth, Lex.

Lex: Neither was Pandora. But once the box was opened, it could never be closed, and all the misery she released could never be put back.

Lana: I appreciate the warning, and anything you can tell me.

Act 2 Scene 4

Chloe is in the Torch typing. Day. Clark enters.

Clark: Hey, Chloe.

Chloe: Hey, Clark. Oh, Clark, you might want to disappear for the next hour or so.

Clark: Whyís that?

Chloe: Because Iím about to interview your new best friend Principal Reynolds.

Clark: Ooh, thanks for the heads-up. Hey, what do you got there?

Chloe: Do you remember my buddy Chad that works at the M.E.ís office?

Clark: Yeah, the guy with the black fingernail polish and lipstick.

Chloe: Oh, itís hard being Smallvilleís only goth. Anyway, he sent me the autopsy report of Troy. Itís amazing what lending someone your eyeliner can get you these days.

Clark: (Reading the report) So Troy didnít have progeria.

Chloe: No, but his pituitary gland, which by the way produces the hormone that controls the aging process, was completely drained. Itís like someone just sucked the youth right out of him.

Mr. Reynolds enters.

Mr. Reynolds: Well, thatís quite an assumption, Miss. Sullivan.

Chloe: Uh, Principal Reynolds, I was just, um, running through various scenarios, you know, wild theories and stuff. Iím shutting up now.

Mr. Reynolds: Well, donít. I like my students thinking outside the box. Iíve been reading some back issues of the Torch. I see a lot of creativity and insight there.

Chloe: Youíre kidding.

Mr. Reynolds: Well, unverified insight. But many a Pulitzer has sprung from the seeds of wild theories. Just make sure you can back them up, and thatíll be the difference between writing trash for Inquisitor, and reporting for the Daily Planet.

Chloe: Wow. Uh, are you still up for that interview?

Mr. Reynolds: Well, give me half an hour. (Clark starts to leave) Mr. Kent, I was actually looking for you. Iíd like to see you in my office.

[CUT TO Clark and Mr. Reynolds entering the office]

Mr. Reynolds: You look like you feel a little out of place, Mr. Kent.

He motions for Clark to sit.

Clark: Iíve never really been in the principalís office before. I donít know where to start.

Mr. Reynolds: Well, you can start by sitting and Iíll cut right to the chase. (Clark sits and Mr. Reynolds closes the door) I think youíre a slacker. Quit the football team before you played the first game, chronic tardiness, zero extracurriculars.

Clark: Well, I get very good grades and I write for the Torch... occasionally.

Mr. Reynolds: Retyping the cafeteria menu isnít exactly writing. I see a lot of untapped potential in you, Mr. Kent.

Clark: Mr. Reynolds, I donít understand. We just met. How could you judge me so quickly?

Mr. Reynolds: How do you know Lex Luthor?

Clark: Well, heís a friend of mine. Why?

Mr. Reynolds: A person is judged by the company they keep. In my experience, Lex Luthor doesnít have friends. He sees people as a means towards an end.

Clark: I donít think thatís true.

Mr. Reynolds: Time will tell. But frankly, Iím more interested in your world. What are your goals?

Clark: Well, uh, Iíd like to help people. Something like that.

Mr. Reynolds: Helping people is a noble aspiration. Itís also rather vague. Where are you going to be five years from now?

Clark: To tell you the truth, Iím not really sure.

Mr. Reynolds: Well, Iím going to help you focus. I want you to write a five-page essay on where youíre going to be five years from now, and I want it on my desk by the end of the school day on Friday.

Clark: Sir, why are you doing this to me?

Mr. Reynolds: This isnít punishment, Mr. Kent. Consider it a challenge.

He opens the door and Clark leaves.

Act 2 Scene 5

Clark is working on his essay in the Talon. Day. Chrissy comes down the stairs.

Chrissy: Clark, hey. Just in time to volunteer for the decorations committee.

Clark: Oh, actually, I got to finish my essay for Mr. Reynolds.

Chrissy: Oh, thatís a bummer. Whatís it about?

Clark: What the future theoretically holds for me.

Chrissy: Who cares about the future?

Clark: Well, Iíd like to think that thereís life after high school.

Chrissy: Sure. Yeah, as in a job, responsibilities, getting old.

Clark nods, confused, and goes back to working on his essay. Chrissy gasps and holds up her hand. It wrinkles and turns into the hand of an old woman. She hides it behind her back.

Clark: Is everything all right?

Chrissy: Of course.

A guy, RUSSELL walks up.

Russell: Hey, Chrissy, I think we got the lighting the way you want it.

Chrissy: Great. Letís see what you got.

They walk away. Lex enters and looks over Clarkís shoulder at the paper.

Lex: Let me guess. Reynolds wants to know where you see yourself five years from now? He made me do the same assignment when I was at Excelsior. Heís nothing if not consistent.

Lex sits.

Clark: Yeah, well, I hate to break it to you, Lex, but he doesnít exactly have a high opinion of you.

Lex: Well, I wasnít a model student, but imagine being a bald 14-year-old in an elite prep school.

Clark: Mustíve been tough.

Lex: I had a major chip on my shoulder. But Reynolds saw through it. He challenged me to own up to my own actions, not just to assume the mantle of the spoiled rich kid. He was tough but fair, and I liked him for that.

Clark: Well, I wish the feeling was mutual. Whatever he has against you, I think heís taking it out on me.

Lex: Iím sorry being friends with me comes with such a high price. (Clark smiles) So exactly, uh, how long were you planning to work on this essay?

Clark: Iím just not ready to go home yet.

Clark takes his coffee cup to the bar for a refill. Lex follows him.

Lex: Something wrong?

Clark: No, just family stuff.

Lex: Come on, Clark. Iím the king of family dysfunction.

Clark: My father and my grandfather hate each other and I feel like Iím caught in the middle.

Lex: And youíd like to play peacemaker. The best way to do that is to put them in a room and let them fight it out.

Clark: So youíre saying I should play hardball.

Lex: Well, thatís up to you, but it sounds like it will take that sort of determination to bring your father and grandfather together.

Act 2 Scene 6

Chrissy and Russell are on the stage in the theater at the Talon. Day. He puts a gel onto a light.

Russell: What do you think?

Chrissy: Perfect. Thank you for doing this, Russell.

Russell: Itís been a weird week. It feels good to be doing something.

Chrissy: I know you and Troy were friends.

Russell: I really miss him.

Chrissy: (She circles Russell slowly) Well, thatís why I came to see you, Russell. For Troy. For the others.

Russell: The others... what are you talking about?

Chrissy: (Laughs softly and touches Russellís face) The ones who will live inside me forever.

Russell gives her a confused look and she kisses him. He goes along with the kiss at first, then opens his eyes, suddenly looking shocked as he begins aging rapidly. His skin starts to sag and his hair turns gray.

Fade to black.

Act 3 Scene 1

Jonathan drives up to the barn in his truck. Day. Clark comes out as Jonathan gets out of the truck.

Clark: Hey, Dad. Got a minute?

Jonathan: Yeah, son, you got to talk to me while weíre working. We got a lot to do before it gets dark.

Jonathan opens the trunk, and pulls out a bag of feed, throwing it over his shoulder.

Clark: Thereís someone I want you to see.

Jonathan puts the feed down outside the barn as Marthaís father steps out.

Jonathan: (To Clark) Your mother put you up to this?

Clark: No, this was all my idea.

Grandfather: Donít blame the boy. Whatever problems we have, theyíre between us. Martha says you need help. Iím here to give it.

Jonathan: So I havenít seen you for 20 years, and all of a sudden you want to be part of this family.

Grandfather: I donít want anything from you. I brought a check because I wonít stand by and watch my daughter suffer.

Jonathan: You just couldnít resist turning that old knife, could you?

Clark: Dad, give him a chance. You two can work this out.

Jonathan: I donít think so, son. See, itís just like 20 years ago, same argument, same attitude.

Grandfather: Not quite, Jonathan. It has been 20 years, but everything Iíve predicted has come true. I knew Martha was making the biggest mistake of her life when she married you.

Clark: Thatís not true, Granddad.

Grandfather: Youíre going to have to swallow your pride if youíre going to save this farm, Jonathan.

Jonathan: I donít need a lecture from you on how to take care of my family, thank you.

Grandfather: Youíre just as stubborn and pigheaded as you were the day I met you.

Jonathan: You get off my land.

Grandfather: Gladly.

Clark: Granddad, wait. It wasnít supposed to be like this.

Jonathan: Just let him go, son. I know you had good intentions, but some things just canít change. Letís unload the truck.

Act 3 Scene 2

Clark is walking in the hall at school. Day. Pete catches up with him.

Pete: Clark, wait up.

Clark: Hey.

Pete: You all right? It looks like somebody knocked the wind out of you.

Clark: Iím just dealing with some family issues.

Pete: You want to talk about it?

Clark: Actually, the more I talk about it, the worse they get.

Chloe joins them.

Chloe: Hey, did you guys hear about Russell? They found his body behind the Talon.

Clark: I just saw him yesterday. What happened?

Chloe: He aged like 100 years. The police thought it was some old homeless guy until they found Russellís license in his wallet.

Clark: Two progeria deaths in two days. What are the odds of that?

Chloe: I donít know. Lana wanted to cancel the Spirit Week party, but Principal Reynolds asked her not to. He said he wanted to keep things as normal as possible.

Pete: He obviously hasnít had his normal-meter reset for Smallville.

Chloe: Yeah. (Clark sees Chrissy doing her hair at her locker) What is it, Clark?

Clark: I saw Russell with Chrissy at the Talon. And Troy was with her just before he went geriatric.

Chloe: Itís not exactly a smoking gun.

Clark: Itís worth a look. Maybe we could check out her old school records, see if thereís anything strange in her background.

The bell rings.

Chloe: Okay, Iíll get started and I'll tell you what I find.

Act 3 Scene 3

Lex enters Principal Reynoldsí office. Day. Mr. Reynolds is sitting at his desk working.

Lex: (Pointing to a book) interesting choice. ďThe Count of Monte Cristo.Ē The classic tale of a man whose past comes back to haunt him.

Mr. Reynolds: (Putting his papers aside) Why are you here, Lex?

Lex: Weíre upgrading our computer system at the plant. I thought we might donate our old computers to Smallville High.

Mr. Reynolds: You are not an alumnus.

Lex: Call it a thank you. You pushed me, and in hindsight, I appreciate that. In some ways, youíre responsible for the man I am today.

Mr. Reynolds: Iím not sure thatís a burden I care to take on. Besides the tax deduction, whatís the quid pro quo?

Lex: Now, why do you think I want anything in return?

Mr. Reynolds: Because Iíve learned thereís always a price when dealing with the Luthors.

Lex: I want you to stop turning your antagonism towards me against Clark Kent.

Mr. Reynolds: Lionel has taught you well.

Lex: My father?

Mr. Reynolds: Yes. This meeting, it reminds me of the incident that almost got you expelled.

Lex: He had nothing to do with that.

Mr. Reynolds: No. Only later. After receiving notice of your expulsion hearing, he generously offered the schoolís trustees a new library with two conditions. That you were allowed to stay and I was allowed to go. History has an interesting way of repeating itself, doesnít it?

Act 3 Scene 4

Clark sits over his desk in the loft, with only one line written on his paper. Day. Lana enters.

Lana: Clark. I hope Iím not interrupting.

Clark: No, uh, I could use the inspiration. I thought youíd be swamped with party prep by now.

Lana: I was heading over to the Talon, but this arrived at my house. (She is holding a large enveloped) I asked Lex to look into those photos of my mother.

Clark: Do you think thereís more to it than meets the eye?

Lana: I donít know. He sent me this, I havenít opened it yet. As badly as I want the truth, Iím afraid I wonít like what I find.

Clark: Why the change of heart?

Lana: I guess the image of my parents the way I thought they were is all I have.

Clark: You donít want to lose that.

Lana: Maybe just by doubting I already have. How are things with your grandfather?

Clark: Disaster is an understatement. I took him to see my father, and it was like watching history repeat itself.

Lana: So whatís next?

Clark: I hate to see it end like this. I canít control the way they act around each other.

Lana: Are you gonna try again?

Clark: I canít do anything about the past, but maybe there is something I can do about the future.

Act 3 Scene 5

Clark knocks on his grandfatherís motel room. Day. The grandfather answers.

Grandfather: Clark.

Clark: I donít want our relationship to end before it ever had a chance to begin.

Grandfather: Well, you can come in if you want. But youíll have to excuse me. Iím running a little late.

He is packing his suitcase. Clark comes in and closes the door.

Clark: Thereís something I wanted to show you. (He has a small book) Itís our photo album. School plays, camping trips, backyard activities. Stuff that families do together. (Grandfather takes his glasses out of his shirt pocket) I wanted you to see our family the way I do. Weíre more than old arguments and overdue bills.

Grandfather: (He takes an envelope out of his briefcase) Iíd like you to give this to your mother. Itís cashierís check. She can use it now or a year from now. Whenever she needs it.

Clark: (Angry) Why don't you give it to her yourself?

Grandfather: Iím sorry, Clark.

Clark: Well, I donít understand how a man who hasnít seen his family in 20 years can just walk away!

Clark leaves.

Act 3 Scene 6

Principal Reynolds catches up with Chrissy in the hall at school. Day.

Mr. Reynolds: Chrissy. I need to talk to you.

Chrissy: Is there a problem, Mr. Reynolds?

Mr. Reynolds: I left three messages for your parents. Still no answer.

Chrissy: Theyíve been really busy. Is this, uh, is this still about my transcripts?

Mr. Reynolds: And you. Iíve been making an effort to get to know the students and their parents. Maybe I can come by your house this weekend when theyíre at home.

Chrissy: Well, theyíll be joining me at the Talon for the Spirit Week party. You can meet us there before the party.

Mr. Reynolds: Thatíll be fine. See you there.

He continues to walk and she waves to him. Then she looks at her hand and sees that it has turned old again. She looks around, then goes up the stairs.

Act 3 Scene 7

Chloe is at the computer in the Torch. Day. Clark enters.

Chloe: Clark, where have you been? I just left you like six messages.

Clark: Sorry, itís been a very weird day.

Chloe: Well, itís about to get weirder. Take a look at this. (She has a newspaper article on the computer screen with the headline ďThree Students Die MysteriouslyĒ) Florida, 12 years ago, Piper High School. Three students died of the same mysterious uber-progeria.

Clark: All within a 48-hour period. Let me guess, Chrissy was involved.

Chloe: Try Missy.

Chloe pulls up a yearbook picture of Chrissy.

Clark: (Reading) Class of í90, Missy Parker. Different name, same face.

Chloe: Yeah, it gets better.

Chloe pulls up another picture of Chrissy with the name Robin Stroud.

Clark: Lakewood High, Class of Ď81. There she is again.

Chloe: Youíre not gonna believe this, Clark, but I matched Chrissy to triple progeria cases going all the way back to Hammonds School for Girls, Class of 1921.

Clark: Itís like sheís feeding off their youth to stay eternally young.

Chloe: It takes the Peter Pan complex to a whole new level.

Clark: Troy was killed almost two days ago, and Russell was killed yesterday. Chrissyís gonna need another victim.

Chloe: Iíll call the police. (Chloe reaches for the phone and Clark super speeds out of the room. She looks up and sees that he is gone) Clark?

Act 4 Scene 1

There is dance music playing and flashing lights in the empty theater at the Talon. Day. Chrissy walks onto the stage. Principal Reynolds enters the side of the stage. He blocks his eyes from the light.

Mr. Reynolds: Chrissy? (She walks to the other side of the stage and he follows her) Chrissy?

Chrissy: (She picks up a stage light on the side of the stage, where her face is in shadow) Mr. Reynolds. So, what do you think?

Mr. Reynolds: I think youíve taken Spirit Week to a whole new level. Are your parents here yet?

Chrissy: Actually, Mr. Reynolds, they died. Over a century ago.

Mr. Reynolds: What are you talking about?

Chrissy: See, Iíve seen the future, Mr. Reynolds, again and again, and Iíve learned one thing. (She walks into the light and we see that her face is starting to sag) These are the best years of anyoneís life.

Mr. Reynolds looks at the stage light in her hand, and she hits him in the face with it.

CUT TO Clark super speeding into the theater. Pete enters behind him with a box.

Pete: Clark. I thought you were the band. If they donít show, weíre stuck with a half-dozen MP3s and my boom box.

Clark: (He sees that the stage is empty) Have you seen Chrissy?

Pete: Yeah, she was... just here. (Clark looks through the backdrop on the stage with his x-ray vision and sees Chrissy kneeling over Mr. Reynolds unconscious body) Whatís going on?

Clark: Just go lock the door Donít let anyone in. (Pete goes to lock the door and Clark super speeds backstage) Chrissy, stop! I know whatís going on. You need help.

Chrissy: (Turns around revealing an even more wrinkled face and gray hair) I need him.

She stands up.

Clark: Iím not gonna let you hurt anyone else.

Chrissy: I am saving them, Clark, from lives that will never be as happy as they are right now.

Clark: Thereís more to life than Spirit Week and cheerleading.

Chrissy: Youíre wrong. You will never be this young, this beautiful, or this perfect again. But I will.

She reaches out her hands to attack him, and he grabs her arms, pushing her back, sending her through the backdrop and onto the stage. There is a rotating mirror cube on the stage and she sits up next to it. With every rotation of the cube, we see her face getting older and older, her wrinkles getting deeper until her skin finally starts to turn black and decay. Clark runs onto the stage.

Clark: Chrissy!

She falls down and beams of gold light come out of her as what is left of her body disintegrate into ash and blow away.

Act 4 Scene 2

Clark comes down the stairs at his house and sees Jonathan with a handful of envelopes. Day.

Clark: More bills, huh, Dad?

Jonathan: Yeah. It seems like these darn things keep right on coming.

They join Martha in the kitchen.

Martha: Clark. Youíve had quite a week. Any more fall-outs from school?

Clark: Spirit Week is officially kaput.

Martha: Oh, Iím sorry to hear that.

Clark: The principalís gonna be okay. He actually warned me about being late when they were loading him into the ambulance.

Jonathan: Clark, listen, I know that the situation with your grandfatherís bugging you, and it should, but--

Clark: I went to go see him. (To Martha) He asked me to give this to you. (He hands her the envelope) He said he tried to get involved in my life after the adoption. Why wouldnít you let him see me?

Jonathan: Well, itís complicated.

Clark: It canít be that complicated, heís my grandfather.

Jonathan: Clark, when you were a little boy, you couldnít control your abilities like you can now. And if he had spent any time with us, I think he might have found out your secret.

Clark: But heís family.

Martha: We had such a history of disagreeing on things. We just didnít know how heíd react. We couldnít be sure we could trust him.

Clark: So heís not a part of our lives because of me?

Jonathan: Son, every young man wants to have a relationship with his grandpa. But in your case, it just may not be possible.

Clark looks at them both sadly.

Act 4 Scene 3

Clark is working on his essay in the loft. Night. Lana enters.

Clark: Lana.

Lana: Working on something important?

Clark: I just finished my essay.

Lana: So where are you gonna be in five years?

Clark: In college, probably studying journalism.

Lana: Youíre kidding.

Clark: Donít tell Chloe, but I think itís growing on me. I like to find the truth behind things. Iím tired of having secrets in my life.

Lana: And personally?

Clark: (He stands up) Iíve decided Iím gonna find a way to have a relationship with my grandfather. (Lana nods distractedly) How about you? Is everything okay?

Lana: Clark, I read Lexís file. According to court papers, my parents filed for divorce in 1985. Irreconcilable differences.

Clark: But they worked it out, right?

Lana: Eventually. But they were legally separated for over a year.

Clark: So the guy in the picture with your mother...

Lana: Could be more than a friend. I was born right after my parents got back together. (Pause) My father could still be alive.

They both stand there as the shot backs up out of the loft window and up to the full moon.

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