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Sarah Cortez[1], born Sarah Cushing, is a teenager from Smallville and daughter of Superman's old friend Lana Lang. She is Jordan Kent's girlfriend.

Early Life

Sarah’s childhood was fairly happy, but as she got older she became increasingly aware of the serious problems affecting both Smallville and her family. Feeling trapped by her life and seeing no way to escape, she impulsively attempted suicide by swallowing a handful of her mother’s sleeping pills. Her life was saved and her mother insisted on her attending regular therapy which Sarah felt she did not need, and was annoyed by Lana’s attempts to portray the family as happy and functional when they were not.

Season One

The Cushings attended the funeral of Martha Kent, where she saw Martha’s grandson Jordan taking his anti-anxiety medication. Recognising Jordan as a kindred spirit she approached him to talk and gave him her phone number so they could text, which Jordan misinterpreted as romantic interest. When she and the Kent twins went into the barn a stack of heavy poles fell on the boys, seemingly crushing them, but they walked away unscathed.

Sarah invited Jordan to a keg party at the disused mines just outside of town. She told Jordan about her own mental health struggles and he impulsively kissed her. Sarah’s boyfriend Sean attacked Jordan and then his brother Jonathan when he tried to intervene. Sean and his friends beat up the twins until the bonfire at the party mysteriously exploded, supposedly due to a methane pocket.[2]

Sarah was upset by Sean’s ongoing harassment of the Kent brothers and found it difficult to defend him when Jonathan asked her why she was attracted to him.[3] She continued to be friends with Jordan despite Sean’s disapproval and eventually broke up with him.[4]

Sarah quit the school’s cheerleading squad, which Lana coached, and walked out in the middle of practice. After school she and her mother had a public fight where Sarah chastised her mother for denying and hiding their family’s problems rather than confronting them. That night the two tentatively reconciled and Sarah assured Lana that if she ever felt suicidal she would talk to her.[4]

Sarah asked Jordan to go on a date to Smallville’s Harvest Festival with her, which he agreed to at Jonathan’s prompting. The night of the Festival, her father came home drunk after one of his firefighters was injured in the line of duty. Sarah agreed to stay behind to look after him but rebuffed Kyle’s attempts to bond with her and left.

At the Festival Sarah and Jordan talked and got closer, however the moment was ruined when Jonathan arrived with two older boys and drunkenly made fun of them both. Disgusted with his behavior due to her father’s alcoholism, she stormed off. The next day she told Jordan she was not ready to date anyone at the moment, but asked that they stay friends, which he agreed to.[5]

The next day at school Sarah saw bruises on Jordan's face, which the twins unconvincingly claimed was the result of an accident. Sarah planned to go to the Crows’ big game against Metropolis but stayed behind to babysit her sister to allow her parents to go out to celebrate Lana’s promotion. Tag Harris, a friend of Sarah’s who had suddenly left town weeks ago, came to her house. Tag wanted to talk to her but he lost control of his powers for a moment and scared her, then accidentally knocked her unconscious when she tried to run away from him.

Tag kidnapped Sarah and took her to his hideout in Metropolis. He told her about how he had gained superpowers and showed her a clip of the night the bonfire exploded, including a flare travelling from Jordan to the bonfire right before the explosion, and explained his theory that Jordan was responsible for his powers.

Superman arrived to rescue her, followed shortly by a squad of soldiers sent by the Department of Defence. The soldiers attempted to shoot Tag but Superman stopped the bullets. Tag was taken into custody and Sarah was returned home. The next day Sarah told Jordan Tag’s theory and assured him that if something was going on he could tell her. Jordan told her he had no idea what Tag was talking about but she was unconvinced.[6]

Because she could tell Jordan was hiding something from her, Sarah was standoffish with Jonathan the next day, asking why Jordan had not come to school. Jonathan told her that Jordan had been attacked by Tag and was suffering severe headaches, explaining the bruises and Jordan's absence, claiming that Jordan didn't tell her so she wouldn't worry about him. Sarah felt guilty about assuming the worst and for not asking Jonathan about his broken wrist. Later she apologised to Jonathan and teased him over his attraction to Tegan Wickhem, one of the most popular girls in school, warning him to stay away from her. The two had a friendly conversation, which Jordan overheard with his super-hearing and mistook for Jonathan making moves on her, leading to an argument between them when Jonathan went home.[7]

A grade school friend she hadn't spoken to in years invited Sarah to audition for a musical revue at school. She was initially reluctant as she suffered from severe stage fright, but Kyle promised to come to the audition to accompany her on his guitar; and Jordan also encouraged her to try out as he had been forced to quit piano as a child when his anxiety got too bad. At the audition Kyle failed to show up and Sarah was too scared to perform alone, so Jordan accompanied her on the piano as she sang and the two gave an excellent performance. That night, Kyle tried to explain his absence but Sarah refused to listen, and told him never to promise her anything again.[8]

The day of the revue, Jordan suddenly ran out of school and did not return. Sarah was too scared to perform alone but Kyle accompanied her on his guitar as promised. Kyle walked out shortly after Sarah’s performance and disappeared for hours, eventually coming home late at night claiming to have woken up in a field with bruised ribs and no idea how he got there.[9] Assuming he was drunk again, Sarah told Lana she should kick him out and stormed out when Lana defended him.

The next day, Jordan and Jonathan told her that her father had been possessed by an alien consciousness and was being held prisoner by the military. Jon was able to convince their grandfather General Lane to let her visit Kyle. The Kryptonian possessing him mocked Sarah, telling her that her father was dead, and Sarah felt terrible that the last thing her father heard her say was her calling him a drunk. Jordan tried to comfort her and encouraged her to hold onto hope. When the Subjekts were all activated and attacked Superman Sarah did not seek shelter like the rest of the town, but went to Kyle’s cell to try to reach out to him. Kyle and the rest of the Subjekts were depowered by Superman and Sarah reunited with her parents.[10]

Lois and the twins took the Cushings home. Sarah thanked the twins for being honest with her and told them she hated how families kept secrets from each other, unaware they were still not telling her the full story. She asked Jon to give her and Jordan a moment alone, and when he did she kissed Jordan and told him she wanted to be more than friends.[11]

The Cushings were ostracised by the town, who blamed Kyle and Lana for what had happened, but this shared adversity brought the family closer together.[12] Sick of the treatment from the other students, Sarah walked out of school and Jordan followed her. She took him to a lake she used to visit with her grandmother and they kissed, but they were caught by a sheriff’s deputy and arrested for trespassing as they were technically on private property. They were let off with a warning and handed over to their parents.[13]

Over the next three weeks, Sarah and Jordan's relationship blossomed. Her parents planned to leave Smallville but she assured Jordan that would not happen as they had only a received a single very low offer for their house. Sean invited Jon and Jordan to a party and noticeably snubbed Sarah. Jordan did not want to go without her but she encouraged him to, as she already had plans with her sister. Later that day, Kyle and Lana announced to the girls that Kyle had accepted a job in Bristol County and the family would be moving. Sarah did not want to leave and called out her parents for giving up on Smallville so easily, and blamed them for the damage Edge had done. She stormed off to the party and told Jordan what had happened. Jordan wanted to try to keep their relationship going long-distance but Sarah was unsure if they could make it work.

That evening, Sam tracked Jon and Jordan to the party and took them home, bringing Sarah along. Morgan Edge appeared in front of their car and they hit him, but they were thrown off the road while Edge was unharmed, much to her shock. Jon tried to shoot Edge with Sam's Kryptonite gun, however Edge was too fast and easily dodged the bullet and kidnapped Jordan. Just before he was taken, Jordan told Sarah he loved her. Jonathan told her to go for help.[14]

Sarah ran home and told her parents what had happened. They drove back to the wreck, helped Jon and Sam out of the car and patched up their injuries. They took Jon and Sam back to town and found the townspeople protesting the DoD. Faced with the choice to either leave or stay and help with the evacuation, the Cushings decided to stay. During the evacuation, Kyle rescued a woman from a burning building, winning back the respect of the town. He was offered his job back and the family decided to stay in Smallville.

At a victory party at the Cushing’s house after Edge was defeated, Jordan reaffirmed to Sarah that he loved her, and she replied that she loved him too.[15]

Season Two

However, over the summer Sarah and Jordan drifted apart and Sarah felt overwhelmed by Jordan's attempts to keep their relationship going.[16] While working as a summer camp counsellor, she kissed a girl named Aubrey. Natalie Irons, a new girl staying with the Kents whose father was apparently an old friend of Clark's from Metropolis, advised Sarah to be honest with Jordan and she told him what had happened.[17]

Jordan was upset by this and at school the next day said he did not know how their relationship could continue even though Sarah insisted she loved him and the kiss meant nothing. That night Jordan came to her house and told Sarah that he loved her and wanted to be with her, and gave her a pendant which his grandfather had given his grandmother when they were teenagers, and they reconciled.[18]

Emily Phan warned Lana that Mayor Dean was digging into her family's past and had been asking questions about Sarah. Lana and Kyle were worried that Dean would reveal Sarah's suicide attempt and cause her to backslide into depression. However, Sarah assured them she had overcome the problems that led her to try to kill herself and she was not afraid.[19]

The Cushings held a quinceanera party for Sarah's fifteenth birthday, where Sarah was planning to announce that she would return to her family's original Spanish surname "Cortez". She and Jordan left the building for a while to get some air and they overheard her father talking to a woman named Tanya, learning that the two had had an affair. Sarah had a panic attack during the father-daughter dance and ran out. Kyle and Lana followed her and Sarah told Lana about the affair. Lana told Sarah not to let what had happened ruin her night and they went back inside, where Lana gave a speech telling Sarah how much she loved her, and how her daughter's strength inspired her.[20]

Lana kicked Kyle out of the house, and he repeatedly tried to call Sarah but she was unsure if she should talk to him. She wanted to discuss the situation with somebody but believed Jordan would not be able to help as he had a very positive relationship with his father. She decided to reach out to Aubrey, whose parents were divorced. Aubrey told Sarah that when her parents split, she had refused to speak to her father for a full year, but eventually realised that she was only hurting herself and him. That night, Sarah went to see Kyle.[21] Kyle and Lana agreed to a co-parenting arrangement, allowing Sarah and Sophie to spend time with Kyle.

A week later, Sarah told Jordan that she had been talking to Aubrey and told him that she wanted the three of them to be friends. She invited Jordan to hang out with them after school and he agreed, but Sarah sensed he did not want to and he ultimately did not show up.[22]

Over the next month, Jordan distanced himself from Sarah, not answering her calls or spending much time with her. On the day of the mayoral election, Lana got a call that Kyle had been injured in a fire and was at the hospital. Lana, Sarah and Sophie went to see him but Kyle insisted he was fine and was discharged. Sarah went to his apartment to keep him company, and saw its bleak, barely furnished state as he had still not moved in his possessions. She was worried about him and asked Lana to let Kyle move back in, but Lana refused, saying Kyle had made his own choices. Sarah collected Kyle's things from the Cushing's house and took them to his apartment, hoping to make his new home more comfortable. Kyle initially resisted, since moving in fully would mean accepting that the separation was not merely temporary, but he eventually agreed. While they were unpacking, Sarah told Kyle how Jordan had been distancing himself from her, and Kyle told her that his and Lana's marriage had failed because he had never put Lana first, and advised her that she deserved better.

Sarah returned to Lana's campaign headquarters and found that Jordan had disappeared, only showing up after Lana was declared the victor. Jordan told her that he could not tell her what he had been doing and she broke up with him, returning Martha Kent's necklace. Instead of going home she went to Kyle's apartment and tearfully asked to stay the night.[1] Jordan tried to text her all night but she ignored him.

The next morning she went home and decided to text Jordan back, but he did not reply. When she talked to Lana about it, Lana told her that she had bumped into Clark and he was also acting strangely. She said that there had always been a part of him that kept people at a distance and Sarah replied that Jordan was like that too. Lana revealed that she and Kyle had bought Sarah her own car and Sarah excitedly left to drive some boxes of papers to Lana's new office. As she was pulling out she saw what she believed was Jon Kent, dressed strangely and acting weird and rude.

While Sarah was setting up Lana's new office, Lois Lane came to city hall looking for Lana. She and Sarah talked about the breakup and the issues their families were going through. When Sarah mentioned she had seen Jon earlier that day Lois hurriedly left the office. An hour later, Lana had still not shown up so Sarah went home to look for her but found Lana missing and her house ransacked. She went to the Kent Farm to ask Jon if he had seen anything, but Lois told her Jon had gone straight to his girlfriend's house and hadn't seen anything. Lois told Sarah to go back to Lana's office and said that she would call her as soon as she heard anything. As she was leaving Jordan tried to give her a letter detailing his feelings but she refused to take it.[23]

Sarah channeled her feelings into songwriting, planning to produce a full album. Kyle was impressed by her work and took her to an open mic night at Tanya's bar to try out her material. Despite initial nervousness, she was able to perform her songs in public.[24] The next morning, Sarah told Lana what had happened and, although Lana was proud of her, she was angered when she learned where Sarah had performed even though Tanya had not been there. Sarah told Kyle what had happened and he promised to smooth things over with Lana. Lana admitted she had reacted poorly because she was under stress from other problems she was having and that night the family had dinner together for the first time in months.[25]

A few days later, a mysterious broadcast appeared on the family's TV, showing a strange woman lit in red light declaring that "the worlds" were about to merge. When they went outside, they saw a second, red, cube-shaped sun in the sky. That day Lana called a town hall meeting and told the townspeople that their world was being forcibly merged with another and Superman would not be able to help them. The townspeople did not believe her, but Superman showed up personally and told them that everything Lana said was true, much to Sarah's amazement. Jordan also came to the meeting and admitted he had known about the other world for months as his mother had been investigating it.

They went to talk privately and Sarah asked Jordan if the inverse world was the reason he had been distant for months. He said it was and she asked him to tell her everything he knew, assuring him she could handle it. Before he could Lana found them and told Sarah to come home. Suddenly Lana's doppleganger from the other world appeared and Jordan yelled at them to run, his eyes glowing red and revealing that he had powers. Sarah and Lana fled home.

When they got home, Sarah realised that Lana had not been surprised by Jordan's powers. She figured out that Clark Kent was Superman, and that Lana already knew and had found out when she disappeared on her first day in office. Sarah confronted Lana about keeping what she knew about Jordan from her and Lana told her that she could not tell anyone what she had learned. Just as they started to argue about it their house began to change around them and Kyle disappeared.[26] Lana took Sarah and Sophie out to look for Kyle, braving the chaos as people and objects randomly switched between the two worlds. Kyle had been transported to the other world but returned and reunited with them. Superman was able to regain his powers and save the world.

At a celebration afterwards, Sarah apologised to Jordan for kissing Aubrey and initially keeping it a secret, and he told her the truth about everything that had happened to him since the poles fell on him in the barn.[27]


Abilities

Weaknesses

Related

Footnotes


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