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Clearing a surface with alpha bit

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Is there anyway to use the ->Clear command to specify the alpha bit for the clear? Normally the clear would be like (0,0,0,255) (completely black and opaque), but I have an instance where I want to make the black 50% transparent... Like (0,0,0,128)... The reason is I want to use a Rendering Target. I want to specify a texture as a rendering target, draw to that texture some text. Then draw that texture to the main viewport... I can do this easily enough, but texture''s background is not coming through transparent. It''s coming in completely black. I can''t really add in alpha material because that makes the text on the texture transparent too, but I want that text completely opaque with just the black background transparent. Do you see what I''m shooting for? I''m thinking the clear command doesn''t support alpha-bits that somewhere in DX8, the clear command is hard-coded to have the alpha bit 255 with the clear command. Is there anyway to bypass this problem?

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