Chapter 1: part i.
i) Ignores Mallus beyond Rip's obsession and Sam is just Sam. The Thinker is here, though.
ii) A lot of different dynamics will pop up throughout this, but the most consistent ones are the ones I tagged.
iii) I haven't completely locked down how many parts it will be split up into, so that number may change.
iv) This is the first multi-chapter fic I've written in ages, so I can't make promises on the speed of my updates, but I'll try.
v) Thank you to my friend Ikea, for once again listening to me babble about this and supporting me through it.
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
For someone who has saved the future on multiple occasions as the captain of a time ship, Sara Lance doesn't give much thought to her own, beyond living long enough to have one.
She thinks more about her past; she doesn't let it define her the way she used to, but old habits die hard.
Sara and her friends have a habit of doing that, too - dying, that is - and so she's never much seen the point in thinking beyond what's right in front of her.
It isn't until she's actually in it that Sara starts thinking about her future and then, she finds, it's hard to stop.
It happens in 2022, when the Legends are in Central City on an assignment for the Time Bureau. It's part of a tentative new truce, made after they impressed the Time Pigs (trademark, Mick Rory) with how well they fixed the A.R.G.U.S. situation a few weeks prior.
The missions haven't been all that exciting so far, but Sara's just grateful for the chance. With Rip's betrayal, the Professor's death and Jax leaving, not having the suits up their asses is one less thing she has to worry about.
They're there chasing some asshole kid from 2031, who's traveled back to try to change the outcome of his father's murder trial by paying off jurors and taking out hits on key witnesses.
It's not a hard mission, as evidenced by the fact that they haven't fucked it up yet, but Sara has just gone and jinxed that now, so of course it's only a matter of time.
It's not really her fault, though. Sara does what she can to keep everyone as ignorant of their not so distant futures as possible, but she can only control her team; and even then, it's historically kind of a toss up.
It's actually Caitlin and Cisco that set everything in motion, when they run into Sara on the street corner.
She's waiting outside the apartment building of one of the potential hit men their asshole might have hired, keeping an eye out for said hit man or asshole while Ray is inside looking around for anything they can use.
"Sara?" She turns to look out of instinct and it's too late to hide when she realizes who it is and what's about to happen. "Hey, girl, we thought that was you!"
Caitlin's hair is a shade or two darker and Cisco's is a couple inches shorter, but otherwise they don't look all that different than the last time Sara saw them in 2018, and she hopes the same can be said for her.
"Hey, guys," she greets them with an awkward finger gun, hoping her smile doesn't look as forced as it feels.
Caitlin pulls her into a hug that feels a little too familiar for what their relationship is to Sara's knowledge, but she hugs her back, anyways. "Long time no see," she says warmly, and it's impossible to tell if she's being literal or facetious.
"You have no idea," Sara mutters under her breath as they pull apart, and she doesn't miss the way Caitlin settles comfortably back into Cisco's side.
"So, what are you doing here?" Caitlin asks when Sara doesn't offer an explanation first.
If there's a way for Sara to answer that without giving herself away, she's blanking on it, and maybe just telling them the truth is the safest play for her, but she'll never know because Cisco starts talking before she can and the beans can't be unspilled after that.
"Yeah, aren't you supposed to be on your honeymoon?" he wonders offhandedly as he slips his arm around Caitlin's shoulders. "Is Central City really the best you could do? They don't have a Hawaii or Bahamas on earth-38?"
They look at Sara like she's supposed to answer them; like Cisco didn't just drop a grenade on her; like she has anything other than a giant neon sign flashing honeymoon! honeymoon! honeymoon! over and over again in her mind.
Like her entire world didn't just shift and lock into place beneath her feet.
(Other things Sara learns from that conversation: Barry and Iris have twins, Wally's a Legend, Felicity is pregnant and Joe is chief of the CCPD - none of which has all that much impact after finding out she has a wife, but still. Worth noting.
She also gets confirmation that the earth-38 resident she marries is in fact Alex Danvers like she assumed, which is... good/potentially disastrous to know.
Never does figure out if Caitlin and Cisco are a thing, though.)
The rest of the mission goes off without a hitch, which really should be all the team needs to know that something must have gone wrong, but nobody seems to notice that Sara's off when they reboard the Waverider.
She doesn't blame them, most of them have their own shit to deal with and she doesn't even want to talk about it yet, but it just makes her realize how much the team has changed and fractured recently.
Jax would have noticed, she thinks. Martin and Rip probably would have too, and even Leo, but Jax would have had the tact not to push the subject and just let her know he was there if she wanted to talk.
Sara misses him - she misses all of them, but maybe Jax the most. He was her second in command and best friend; her little brother.
She tries to think only of him as she settles into bed that night, because the past is easier to her than the future and loss is more familiar, too.
Hours pass and it's not a surprise that Sara can't sleep, but as she lays awake in her room, she finds her thoughts drifting to Kendra.
She still doesn't totally understand how all that reincarnation and past life stuff works, but she knows how Kendra felt about it - at least at the beginning, and it doesn't feel like that.
Knowing what she does, Sara doesn't feel trapped or resentful like Kendra did; she doesn't know what she feels exactly, but it's not that.
That's all she knows for sure, but it's not nothing, and it helps her get to sleep.
Sara usually dreams of the past and all the darkness there, but tonight it's visions of the future.
She never did see herself as someone that could ever settle down and get married - well, maybe not never, but it's been a very long time - and the picture isn't any easier to make out in her dreams.
Come morning, Sara wakes up and goes back to trying not to think about it.
She showers and gets dressed and has breakfast and tries some more.
By the time Gideon tells her they have a new assignment from the Bureau - a level six anachronism in 1974 Italy - she doesn't have to try at all.
It's easy for Sara to throw herself into the work when there's so much of it to be done.
It feels like everything that went right on the last mission goes wrong this time, and what should've only taken a couple of days, even by Legends standards, takes almost five.
The A.T.O.M. Suit breaks, they accidentally blow up a building and Nate almost dies, but all's well that ends well. Nobody actually dies, and with their current luck, that's all they can hope for, really.
Sara enjoys the slight reprieve from not thinking about certain things for a work week until her new reality comes back to smack her in the face in the form of Agent Sharpe.
Ava comes through a portal not long after the Waverider leaves 1974, interrupting the team's dinner before they even get to the main course.
"Captain Lance, a word?" Her eyes shift around the table of people staring at her expectantly. "In private?"
Sara rolls her eyes at the predictably immature ohhhhhs she gets from her team and nods at Ava; getting up from the table to lead the other woman into the study and away from prying eyes and ears.
"Okay, if this is about the explosion, can I just say that was all Mick's-"
"It's not," Ava is quick to cut her off with a small smile. "It's actually not work related. Well, it kind of is, but it's not; it doesn't not relate to work."
For weeks now, they've been in this weird place between being passed their previous friction, but not quite open with their mutual attraction yet either, and while that's where Sara thrives, Ava seems a bit flustered. She finds the nervous rambling endearing, though, and it's cute to see the usually put together agent so out of her element; it reminds her of…
Sara coughs awkwardly to stop that train of thought in its tracks, but it's a little too late. She feels the air in the room shift immediately because of it, but maybe that's just her.
"What is it you need me for, Agent Sharpe?" It's clipped and a bit rude; an obvious about-face from her tone moments before, and even though Sara doesn't mean for it to come out that way, she doesn't follow it up with anything nicer, either.
Ava seems momentarily thrown by the sudden formality, but to her credit, if anything, it just helps her feel more at ease to finally say what she came to say.
She straightens her back and speaks like she's making Sara a business offer; "I was wondering if you would be interested in having dinner with me? Sometime, in the near future."
The question is hardly unexpected, and even something Sara had been hoping for, before, but with certain newly discovered information, she's not so sure anymore; not about her feelings for Ava, per say, but pretty much everything else. What she now knows of her future, even if she has no idea how she feels about it yet, seems like it should be factored in before she answers.
Her uncertainty must be easy to read, because the agent is quick to try to save face. "You don't have to answer right away," she says with a wave of her hand, sparing Sara a glance as she briskly moves past her. "Just… take some time to consider the offer and you can just… I'll be back for a debriefing in a couple days, so maybe then."
Sara nods and she wants to say something, but all she can do is watch as Ava leaves.
She should have talked to someone sooner, Sara knows that - it's not like there's any shortage of people on the ship that can relate to her current plight in one way or another - but she just couldn't.
Sara's never been great with opening up - at least not about certain things - and even though she's gotten better since joining the team, something about this felt too personal to share just yet. She wanted to have a better grip on her own opinion before getting anyone else's, but turns out that's easier said than done.
So, when she finds Amaya alone in the kitchen the next day, she figures maybe she's put this off long enough.
"Hey, you," Sara greets her, sneaking up from behind and poking her lightly in the ribs before coming around to the other side of the counter to face her. "Got a second to talk?"
Amaya gives her a friendly smile as she finishes buttering the second half of her muffin. "Of course."
Sara grimaces as she realizes she doesn't know what to say; or how much to say, rather. She probably should have decided that before coming in here, but she likes living on the edge.
"You and Nate," she starts, a little unsure, her tone making it sound like that's her whole question before she elaborates. "You were into him before you found out about your destiny dealio, right?"
"You want to talk about me and Nathaniel?" Amaya asks with a raised eyebrow.
Sara shrugs. "More like why you kept seeing him even though you knew you two had no future together."
Her question sounds more accusatory than she intends it to be and so she doesn't blame Amaya when she bristles and gets defensive as she asks; "And why do you suddenly want to know?"
This is why Sara doesn't like to open up to people; it always seems impossible to just share what she wants to without being asked to give more. She isn't exactly a closed book and certain topics get easier to share over time, but this one is just… hard. It's not that she doesn't trust Amaya or even that she doesn't want to tell her about it, it's just that it's hard for her to talk about something she hasn't even wanted to think about.
"You know what, just forget it," Sara decides after a moment, but Amaya grabs her arm before she can turn away.
"No, tell me," she insists, voice gentle but with a forceful edge. "I know something has been on your mind lately, so just tell me what's going on."
And that's all it takes, just that knowing, for Sara to finally let it out.
In the end, all Amaya can do is listen and offer platitudes; she can't tell her what to do, but it helps - a little.
She ends up helping herself later, when Ray comes to find her just as she's finishing a training session with Zari.
"You here to brush up on your hand-to-hand?" Sara wonders, downing some much needed water and giving Zari's hand a slap as she heads out to go take a shower. "'Cause I noticed your right hook looking a little sloppy out there."
Ray shakes his head, crossing his arms across his chest. "I heard you and Amaya talking this morning."
She rolls her eyes. "So you're here to give me a lecture then."
"I'm just here to give you some advice." He sounds a little pompous, but instead of irritating her, it just reminds her of Stein, so she lets him continue. "I may not understand what it's like to know who I'm going to end up with, but I do know what it's like to be the schmuck caught in the middle; thinking he can stand in the way of destiny. It's not fun."
"This isn't destiny, Ray, it's just the future," Sara scoffs, tossing her empty bottle aside as she starts to unwrap her wrists.
"Yeah, and sometimes the future is meant to be," Ray is quick to point out. "I don't believe in fate, but sometimes… Just look at Zari's brother. We stopped A.R.G.U.S. from getting out of control; we changed the future and he still ended up dead."
"And sometimes it's not," she argues right back. "Sometimes the future can change. Maybe we didn't save Behrad, but we did stop A.R.G.U.S.." Ray doesn't have anything to say to that. "Look, I'm not trying to change anything here, but if I never talked to Cisco and Caitlin that day, if I didn't know what I know, I would have accepted Ava's offer without a second thought. Isn't it better that I don't start making decision based on what I know about the future? That I just let things naturally run their course?"
Ray is silent for another moment before he eventually relents and raises his hands in surrender. Sara's grin is all cute and smug; a little bit because she beat Ray in a debate, but mostly because she's finally made some sense of the mess in her head.
As expected, the news travels around the ship in no time at all. Sara should probably be annoyed, but she never actually swore anyone to secrecy and it's probably better it's out in the open, anyways. Secrets have never done them any good in the past.
By the time Agent Sharpe comes back to meet with the team to go over their first few missions a couple days later, everyone knows everything; including the fact that Sara is planning to ask Ava out today.
"For what it's worth, I like the other one better," Mick grunts as he sidles up beside Sara when Gary isn't looking, a freshly opened beer in his hand. He's already been in to see Ava and they're not supposed to be talking to each other while she's waiting for her turn. "She isn't a pig."
Sara's eyes flick with slight amusement as she spares Mick a glance. "Alex is a government agent."
"Oh." Mick makes a face like something stinks and takes a long swig of beer. "Fuck both of them then."
"If I'm lucky," Sara mumbles as Mick wanders away in disgust. She shoots Gary an innocent smile when he finally looks her way.
Sara's the last to get called in, but of course the rest of the team is still waiting around and watching with rapt attention as she follows Ava into the library.
"Is everyone okay out there?" the agent asks, motioning for Sara to sit down while she does the same.
"Why wouldn't they be?"
"Well, I just asked you in here for a debriefing and I didn't hear a single giggle," Ava points out lightly and it does a great job of easing the tension between them.
Sara's lips twitch up at that. "Must be growing up." Ava returns her friendly smile, but silence settles over them for a moment too long after that, and Sara has to break it. "About last time, what we talked about-"
"It's okay," Ava interrupts her. It comes off dismissive, but not quite the way it did before; like maybe she expects a rejection and has already accepted it. "I shouldn't have done that in the first place, it was inappropriate. I mean, it's not against the rules - I know, I checked - but I shouldn't have put you on the spot the way I did. We work together and it's probably better that our relationship remain professional."
Sara purses her lips and tries to bite back her smirk. "Oh, 'cause I was gonna ask if the offer was still on the table."
Ava pauses, taking a moment to process. "Wait, really?"
"Well, I was gonna ask you out this time," she replies slyly. "But since we're playing it all cool…"
The grin Sara gets in response is matched only by her own.
The date itself is nice.
Sara wants to take the jump ship to Paris or Rome in whatever time period would be most romantic, but Ava just wants to go to dinner at her favorite restaurant in Star City, so that's what they do.
It's quiet and mellow, and gives them a chance to talk and get to know each other better; it's nice.
But that's all it is.
Still, they try again.
They go back to Ava's apartment on their second date.
The sex is nice, too.
They finally find their spark on the third date, when Ava joins the Legends on a mission.
Of course, it comes when they're yelling at each other, which probably isn't good.
The sex after is better that time, though.
Probably not a great sign, either.
It isn't until the fourth date that one of them finally says it.
"Is this what resolved sexual tension feels like?" Ava muses from her spot at the foot of Sara's bed, where she's slipping her pants back on.
Sara makes a noise of agreement. "I thought it'd be more satisfying." Ava hits her with a look. "Not that it wasn't satisfying, I just mean-"
"It's okay," she laughs gently, grabbing her shirt off the floor and slipping it back on before standing. "I know what you meant. And I feel it, too."
She doesn't look hurt, just disappointed, and Sara gets that; she kind of is too, but it's not like she didn't know it was coming, one way or another.
"At least we know now," she offers.
"At least we know," Ava agrees.
(There isn't a fifth date.)
Everyone asks if she's okay, and she is.
Sara doesn't know if they believe her, but she really and truly is.
Maybe it would be different if she didn't know.
Part of her wonders if she'd feel the failure more strongly if certain outside circumstances were different; if maybe this would hurt a little more.
And it's then, as she finally allows her thoughts to go there again, that she finds they don't overwhelm her like they used to. For the first time since Cisco dropped the bomb, Sara actually finds comfort in thinking about her future; there's not much point in feeling sad about finishing a filler chapter when she knows the best part of the book is still waiting to be read.
Ava is great and they have some kind of chemistry, just not the right kind; the kind that goes beyond the attraction and the momentary sizzle of a heated argument - the kind that lasts.
She'd say they just aren't meant to be, but then she'd sound like Ray.
Time moves on and so do they.
It's a bit awkward the first few times they interact professionally; lots of starting and stopping, stumbling over one another because they're being overly polite.
It's totally not them and it's painfully obvious.
But then Sara goes majorly off book during a mission and Agent Sharpe reprimands the hell out of her when the team gets back, and it's like nothing ever even happened.
The next time Sara goes to the future is a lot less eventful than the last, but it's not without its own discoveries.
They're far enough away from home and into the future that she doesn't have to worry about running into any of her friends and accidentally learning everything there is to know about her great grand kids or something, but she does get stuck on a stake out with Nate, so she hasn't escaped the threat of forced conversations entirely.
Nate prattles on about him and Amaya for what has to be a good/annoying thirty minutes and Sara doesn't really listen to any of it. It's not that she doesn't care, it's just that it's really fucking cold and they're locked in an abandoned car with no working heat so she kind of just zones him out.
"What's she like?" she registers Nate ask once he's done babbling and has sat in silence for as long as he can bear - which is about two minutes.
Against her better judgment, Sara indulges the question, if only to keep her mind from drifting again. "Who?"
"Your girl," he elaborates, then goes a step further. "The wifey." And because he can never just shut up; "Alex."
"Yeah, I know, I got that," Sara sighs, trying to keep her focus on the building they're supposed to be watching since Nate obviously isn't.
"I was just wondering 'cause I didn't really get to meet her." Nate had joined the party late, after all, since playing second string superhero substitute for the Flash for a few months didn't earn him a wedding invite. "Saw her, though; hot."
Sara rolls her eyes. "Yes, she's hot." She suddenly regrets everything she's ever said or done to make Nate feel so comfortable talking to her about this, but if they're going to have this conversion, she can't just leave it at Alex's looks. "She's brave, too. Smart. Really smart, like the Professor level smart. And strong; she can fight."
Nate knows that much, he had seen some of that in action. "Could she take you?"
"She's not that good," Sara smirks, though she certainly wouldn't mind giving Alex a shot. "She'd try, though, she really is brave; to the point of being stupid. Like, ready to take on an army of Nazis all by herself to get back to her sister, stupid."
"But you get that," Nate knows.
Sara nods and her smirk melts into more of a smile. "She's a nerd," she continues after a moment, finding she can't stop. "She didn't do anything that nerdy, but sometimes you can just tell, like with you." Nate takes the dig in stride; only looking mildly offended, and even then, mostly just for show. "She got all stuttery and awkward the morning after we hooked up, but it was kinda cute."
"It's cool that you're so into her," he says with a smile, risking his hand to pat her on the knee in a way that feels congratulatory. "It'd really suck if you found out you were gonna marry someone you didn't like, right?"
It occurs to Sara then, right before the strange men they've been waiting for arrive, that Nate's not wrong.
It's weird to think that with all the thinking and overthinking Sara has done, that she's never actually thought about how she feels about Alex. Or even more, how she feels about marrying Alex. She's thought about pretty much everything else but that.
But, when Sara really takes a moment to consider it, she does like Alex. Maybe a lot. As much as it's possible to like a woman she's only spent a very limited time with - but trauma and tragedy brings people together and all that.
Alex is everything Sara told Nate she is and more, she knows. She can only imagine how much more; and the more she thinks about it, the more she looks forward to the day she doesn't have to.
Admitting that feels like a step forward.
Towards what, Sara's not sure, because she doesn't know what the next step is, but it's better than standing still.
The more she thinks about it, the more unclear that next step becomes.
It feels like there's so many different paths going in so many different directions, that Sara doesn't know which one is hers.
Objectively, she knows there's gotta be more than one right way; that somewhere down the road, most of these metaphorical paths probably zig zag and overlap and all lead to the same place, but it's hard to see that far ahead when she's still so close to the start.
"So now that Sharpe is out of the way, when are you gonna make your move with Alex?" Zari asks her one night at dinner, though Sara suspects she's asking for everyone. Except maybe Mick, he probably doesn't care.
Sara doesn't look up from her food when she shrugs. "Not gonna make one."
It's a decision that changes by the day and today, that's where she's at.
She's not used to second guessing herself. As both a trained assassin and a captain, even when she doesn't know what's right, she makes the call and sees it through, so she tries to stick with what she knows.
"You're not?" It's Ray that reacts first and it makes her want to smack him a little bit.
Sara narrows her eyes at him, but refrains from actually hitting him. "Weren't you the rom-com character preaching to me about destiny and meant to bes a few weeks ago?" Ray at least has the decency to look sheepish. "You weren't wrong, but I wasn't either; I should try not to let my knowledge of the future inform my actions. The Ava thing was easier, I already knew how I felt before knowing everything else, but this isn't as cut and dry. I just don't want to force anything and mess something up."
If there's one thing that's actually become crystal clear to Sara recently, it's that she really doesn't want to mess any of this up.
"But how do you know you aren't supposed to make the first move?" Ray counters easily. "You were right, sometimes the future can be changed and sometimes we try so hard not to change it that we over-correct; that's how Marty ended up creating Lily. What if not doing anything and just waiting for something to happen is more detrimental to your future than doing something that's motivated by your knowledge of it?"
Ray has a point and it's not one she hasn't already considered, but it just makes her want to smack him harder.
Sara goes back and forth and back again.
There's so many different things to consider, and she thinks about all of them too many times to count until she just can't think about any of it anymore.
Of course, it's after she stops that the answer finally comes to her.
It happens on one of their off days, when Sara's trying to relax in the study while the rest of the team is off doing God only knows what.
"Sorry to interrupt, Captain," Gideon's voice suddenly fills the room, sounding hesitant if that's at all possible for an AI. "But I'm receiving a communication request from Central City, 2018."
She knows it's not Jax, because he would have used Stein's trans-temporal communicator instead of going through the Waverider, which means; "Team Flash?" Sara questions as she stands, tossing her book aside and immediately shifting into work mode.
"Mrs. West-Allen, to be precise," Gideon confirms. "Shall I patch her through?"
When Sara replies positively, it's not even a second later that Iris' face pops up on the screen. "Iris, hey," she greets her, keeping her tone neutral given the obvious sombre expression on her friend's face. "What do you need?"
"Help," is the short answer. The long answer is that Barry is currently in jail for a murder he didn't commit (and that apparently didn't even happen? Sara's a bit lost on that part of the story), and the rest of the team is struggling with how to defeat the people behind it. "This DeVoe guy, he's beyond smart; knowledge is his super power. We're out of ideas and hoping our time traveling and alien friends might know some things even he won't."
Sara feels a jolt of something that feels like excitement and hope shoot right through her. "Alien?"
"Cisco's about to head over to earth-38 now and hopefully get Kara and everyone," Iris confirms, motioning to somewhere offscreen. "So can you come?"
"Of course." Sara's grin is completely inappropriate for the moment, she knows, but she just can't stop it from forming. "Send Jax an invite to this little think tank and I'll even bring the rest of the team with me."
Iris promises to send Caitlin over to his house to get him and expresses her gratitude before she disconnects, leaving Sara alone to smile at the blank screen.
This is it.
This is the start; she can feel it in her bones.
All that worrying and overthinking, stressing about what to do or not to do, only for it start just like this.
Maybe it's like Rip always said; time wants to happen.
And maybe Sara just has to let it.
NATIONAL CITY, earth-38.
Alex Danvers has been single for the vast majority of her life, but she's not sure she's ever felt this kind of lonely.
She's not lonely in the sense that she's alone; she has Kara and J'onn; Winn and James; even Lena and Sam, if her little sister's friends that sometimes invite her to tag along can be counted.
It's the kind of lonely that comes from knowing what it's like to not be; the kind that just makes her feel alone, even when she's surrounded by people.
It's because of Maggie, of course, but she's not the only thing Alex has lost lately.
Missing Maggie is easy. Or, at least it's familiar.
Alex has lost people before - maybe not the way Kara has, or J'onn, but it's not a new concept for her.
Every loss leaves a different shape, though, one larger than just the person that's gone.
It takes Alex a while to fully grasp everything that left with Maggie.
There's the big things, the obvious ones - the wedding, the house, the dog - but there's a lot more little things, too; those lazy weekend mornings in bed, the dance parties to cheesy 90's bands, the silly bets they made over everything.
And even then, there's so much more; every day she finds something new to add to the list.
The most recent; Maggie was hers. She wasn't an extension of Kara or Supergirl or the D.E.O.. The life they had together - the life they were going to have together - it was hers.
It had been so long since Alex had had something that belonged just to her, it's a wonder this loneliness isn't familiar, too.
It's watching J'onn with his father that helps Alex really pinpoint why this is different.
She sees the way he talks and acts with him, the subtle shift in his demeanor anytime he's around, and she recognizes it somehow.
There's this ease to him now that she's never seen before, not even with M'gann.
It's not just that he missed him - that he thought he was dead and it turns out he's not - it's that he finally has another Green Martian around; someone that understands him in a way none of them ever could, no matter how hard they tried.
It's how Maggie made her feel, even before they were together - especially before they were together; when Alex was overwhelmed by her confusing feelings and needed the kind of understanding that only someone who had lived through the same thing could give her.
Alex needs that again and she doesn't have it anymore, but at least now those are things she knows.
"You're gay, not from another planet," is what Kara says when she first tries to explain it to her. "Heartbreak is heartbreak, and I know a thing or two about that."
She's not wrong, and Alex would agree if that was all it is.
"I know you do," she tells her sister gently as she leans back against the couch. "And you've helped me a lot with that part of it, but it's about more than just being sad about the break up."
Kara nods like she gets it and Alex knows she does; if there's anyone that knows what it's like to feel alone in the world, it's Kara.
"Yeah, I know," she pouts, and Alex gets her side just as much; she knows the frustration of not being able to help, too. "I might not get it, but I can listen. It always helps when you listen to me talk about Krypton."
Alex smiles a little at that, giving Kara's knee a light pat. "I'll keep that in mind."
It's not often that there's something Alex is hesitant to share with her sister, but she needs time to work things out for herself before she can talk about it with someone else.
It just feels like everytime Alex lets herself think about the state her life is currently in, she discovers something new to feel anxious about.
It seems like there's an endless pile to sift through, but part of her wonders if maybe identifying the problem really is half the battle.
If it is, then perhaps she's not doing too badly, after all.
Alex finds herself thinking about the beginning a lot.
The beginning of Maggie, anyways. She knows it started before that, before she even knew it had started, but she'll always think of Maggie as the real beginning.
She goes over everything in her head, retraces every move and every word, trying to find where she went wrong.
Maybe wrong isn't the right word, but there has to be something she did that's left her here.
It comes to her at three in the morning, of course, after hours of tossing and turning.
Alex came out because of Maggie.
Maybe it's not as simple as that - she knows it's not, actually - but that's the root of it, she thinks.
It was Maggie that sparked that thing inside her and opened her eyes; it was Maggie that got her to see what was there all along and put a name to it; it was Maggie she told Kara about; it was Maggie and the desire to be with her that motivated most of her thoughts and actions back then.
It's not news, really; Alex had told Maggie as much after their first kiss and the sting of her rejection, and so she marvels at how long it took her to put the pieces together now and how she didn't possibly see this all along.
Coming out then - to others, but especially to herself - it hadn't seemed so scary when she was doing it for something, for someone. It made it bigger than just a concept and that had been such a comfort, but now…
Now, Alex looks back on it and her coming out is so tied up with Maggie and her feelings for her, it feels impossible to separate the two; like somewhere along the way her little journey of self discovery became more about being with Maggie than it was about her being gay.
And that wasn't exactly wrong, but now she doesn't have Maggie, as her other half or as her tour guide, and she feels just as lost as she did at the start, so it's hard for Alex to imagine it was right, either.
Alex doesn't like getting too lost in her head, so when she feels it starting to happen, she tries turning her focus to work.
Her life was a lot less confusing back when it consisted almost entirely of work. It was a lot less fulfilling too, of course, but Alex would be lying if she said there aren't days when she misses it.
Helping people, researching aliens, shooting bad guys, backing up Supergirl; those are all the things Alex Danvers knows how to do best, and she's never seen much point in doing things she's not good at. Nobody likes to feel incompetent, least of all her.
She walks into the D.E.O. and the cold and sterile environment brings her a weird sense of comfort. Or, at least it did, before the lines between her work and her personal life were blurred - before she even had much of a personal life at all.
"Hey, Alex, psst!" Winn calls out to her as soon as he sees her, looking to make sure J'onn is busy before he waves her over.
That should be enough for her to know she should ignore him, but she heads towards him against her better judgment anyways. "What's going on?"
He checks on J'onn one more time before he pulls up his phone. "Okay, so there's this girl in my building that I'm thinking of asking out, but I can't tell if her roommate is just her roommate or if they're together," he starts babbling as he taps at his phone until he has Instagram open to what she assumes is this woman's page. "What do you think?" He scrolls through a few pictures of them together for her to see. "Gal pals or, y'know, gal pals?"
Alex glares at him for a moment before she roughly snatches the phone out of his hand and stalks away without a word. He calls after her in protest, but she ignores him like she should've done in the first place.
So, work isn't the escape it used to be.
If Winn's lack of boundaries didn't already break that illusion, finding out that even J'onn has more of a social life than she does sure does the trick.
"Can I get a raincheck?" is his answer when she invites him to come spar with her after their shift is over. "I'm taking my father to see the new Star Wars movie tonight. He hasn't stopped watching the other ones since Christmas."
Alex momentarily balks at the unexpected rejection, but recovers quickly enough to play it off. "Oh, yeah, sure, that's okay," she assures him with a wave of her hand as she starts to back away. "I'll just go see if Vasquez is still around."
She only gets a few feet away before he calls after her. "Oh, and Alex?" She turns back to him. "Don't tell Agent Schott about the movie. He'll just try to come with us."
That gets a little smile out of Alex; it's what he deserves.
No matter where she goes or what she does, Alex just can't seem to get away from her issues.
It's just like when her and Maggie were talking - or rather, very pointedly not talking - about kids, and it felt like everywhere she turned, there was some giant reminder of the very thing she was trying to avoid.
She doesn't know if it's the universe or if it's all in her head, but she's over it.
Whatever it is trying to push her to talk, it wins.
Alex settles into Kara's couch with her glass of wine a few days later and spills her guts.
It's long and rambley and she'd be surprised if Kara follows even half of it, but it feels good to finally say aloud.
"I just feel… lost," she tries to sum up. "I know what I want and where I want to be years down the line, but I have no idea how to get there from where I am now." It's probably not an uncommon problem for most people, she knows, but she's never been most people, so it is for her.
"Are you regretting breaking up with Maggie?" Kara sounds hesitant to ask, like she's worried about the mess that would surely come if that's the case.
Alex chews her lip as she shakes her head. She's been unsure of a lot of things lately, but that hasn't been one of them - not since her near death experience on earth-1, anyways. She regrets that she had to do it, but it was something she had to do.
"Do you remember what she said about me, after I kissed her that first time?"
Kara looks apologetic as she repeats the words Alex once told her through tears; "That you were too fresh off the boat to date."
Alex nods and takes a big gulp of her wine. "That's how I feel now," she explains. "Like I'm fresh off the boat again, but this time I don't have Maggie or anyone else to keep me afloat."
"Alex," Kara pouts and tries to hold back a light laugh, clearly thinking her sister is being a little bit silly. "You were with Maggie for how long? Come on, you have way more experience than that."
"Do I?" Alex questions with widening eyes and a rising voice; what's left of her wine sloshing in her glass as she prepares to dramatically count off a list with her fingers. "I've never been to a gay bar! Or gone to a Pride parade! Or, or played softball. I haven't even watched a single episode of The L Word."
"You watch Orange Is the New Black, though," Kara reminds her helpfully.
Alex can hear the mocking and she doesn't appreciate it. "Kara, I'm being serious!"
"I know," her sister replies, but the amused smile on her face says otherwise. "But don't you think you might be overreacting just a tiny bit? I really don't think there's a checklist of things you have to tick off to stay in the club."
Obviously Alex knows that, she does, but that's not really her point. It's not about things she feels like she has to do, but things she might want to do; things that might help her understand more of who she is - without Maggie.
"You don't get it," Alex sighs, and she knew Kara wouldn't; that's also what it's about.
Sensing the shift in tone, Kara's amused grin morphs more into a sympathetic smile. "Maybe I don't," she concedes, shifting closer to her sister so she can wrap her arm around her shoulders. "But I can still support you, if you'll let me."
Kara hits her with that puppy dog face and Alex never has been any good at resisting it.
Going to a gay bar with her little sister and her little sister's friends is probably not the best way to get the full experience of it, but it's a good first step.
It's not all that different from a regular bar, really, but Alex still feels this sense of belonging from the moment she walks in, kind of like how work used to be.
"See anyone you like?" Sam asks her with a glint in her eye.
They're sitting in a corner booth with Lena, while Kara is off getting them drinks at the bar.
"Oh, that's not really why I wanted to come tonight," Alex waves the question off, though she can feel her cheeks heating up just a bit at the attention. It's just a reminder that they're all here for her tonight, and while she appreciates the support, she can't pretend it doesn't feel a bit awkward to be there with three straight girls, too.
"And here I thought you needed us to be your wing women," Lena jokes. Or at least Alex thinks she's joking.
"No, uh, Kara didn't tell you?" Alex asks, though she doesn't know why she thought she would. They're her best friends, sure, but she'd never share Alex's insecurities like that. "I just wanted to check the place out because I've never been, and I didn't really have anyone else to go with. Not that I don't enjoy the company, of course."
If Sam or Lena take offense, they don't show it at all. "You don't have any gay friends?" Sam asks in surprise and Alex shakes her head. "Oh, you should definitely get some then."
"Speaking from experience, are we?" Lena teases.
Sam makes a funny face at her but nods when she turns back to Alex. "When I had Ruby, it was like I was dropped into this brand new world. I was so young and of course none of my friends had kids, so they didn't get it, why I was so different just because I had one. But meeting other moms, ones that understood everything I was going through, that helped so much; getting advice, sharing tips, even just to have people to vent to that had dealt with all of it before."
Of course that sounds like the solution to a lot of Alex's problems, but that's easier said than done. Making friends has never been something she's done naturally, and she can't imagine making gay friends would be any easier; she seriously doubts many women in here tonight came looking to make a new friend.
Still, she smiles at Sam and thanks her for the advice before Lena is bringing it back to a topic she can participate in. "So… you're really not even looking for a one night stand?"
Alex immediately flashes to blonde hair and blue eyes, then skilled hands and a hot mouth, and she quickly shakes her head before her thoughts can get too far.
"Not really my kinda thing," is how she answers, just as Kara rejoins them with a pitcher in one hand, glasses in the other and a shit-eating grin on her face. "What's with you?"
"Guess how many numbers I just got at the bar?" Kara challenges as she places everything on the table and slides into the booth beside Alex. "Four!"
"You weren't even over there for that many minutes!" Alex exclaims around a disbelieving laugh, even though she doesn't even know why she's surprised. Of course Kara would be a hit at a gay bar.
Kara shrugs, looking all knowingly smug. "Well, one of them might have been for you."
Alex's eyes widen and she looks to the other women at the table, as if they have any idea what Kara is talking about, before she looks back at the blonde. "Me?"
"I told her I was here for you, and after I explained that you were my sister and definitely not my girlfriend, she said she thought you were cute," Kara explains simply, sliding the napkin with the phone number in front of Alex. Nobody's surprised when she crumples it up after barely even looking at it. "Are you sure?"
"I'm not there yet," Alex admits to her sister, giving her a small smile when she bumps her shoulder lightly.
She's one step closer, though.
A week later, Alex wants to try taking another step and goes back to the bar by herself.
She enjoys it a little more the second time. Kara and her friends are great, but some things are just better done on her own.
She meets this really pretty woman and talks to her about all kinds of things for a while; even thinks maybe she's making an actual friend like Sam suggested, until she's being offered a phone number with a smile so unmistakably flirty that even she picks up on it.
Alex falters and debates, but eventually agrees on a whim.
She doesn't really plan on using it, but she's just getting into her stride and she doesn't want to stop now.
Cisco almost gets shot by over thirty armed agents when he suddenly appears through a breach in the middle of the D.E.O., but luckily for him, Supergirl has amazing reflexes and is able to assure them all that he's a friend before anyone actually fires.
"Rude," Cisco scoffs at them as he takes his glasses off, his attention moving from all the people surrounding him to the massive building they're in. "Damn, girl, this is how you live? S.T.A.R. Labs is shaking."
Kara laughs as she pulls him into a warm hug. "What are you doing here? Is Barry okay?"
"Depends on if you thought Tim Robbins was okay in Shawshank," is his vague answer, his eyes scanning the crowded room of people still watching him closely. "Can we…?" Kara nods and leads him over to command central, where Alex and the others have been watching. "Hey, people I know," he greets Alex, Mon-El and J'onn, then does a double take at the sight of Brainiac 5 and all his blueness.
Sensing he's about to say something that will just derail the conversation, Alex quickly cuts in. "What can we do for you, Cisco?"
His sigh is big and exaggerated as he launches into the full story of Barry vs Clifford DeVoe, ending it with a plea for their help. "We're desperate here, folks. You know we don't like to call on the Super Friends unless we have no other options, but we need some fresh brains on this and the Council of Wells just isn't gonna cut it this time. We need people who can think outside of time and in space."
Kara looks around at the others to gauge their reactions before she turns back to Cisco. "Of course we'll help," she promises him for all of them. "Anything for Barry."
"Does that mean the Legends are going to be there?" Alex attempts to sound casual, but judging by the smirk that's growing on Cisco's face, she doesn’t think she’s all that successful.
"Heard your girl R.S.V.P. before I left," he confirms knowingly.
That piques Winn's interest immediately, and he raises his hand from the sidelines to interject. "Uh, Alex has a girl?"
Alex shuts him up with a glare, while everyone else ignores him and goes about discussing who should go to earth-1 with Cisco and who should stay behind.
After some debate, it's decided that Kara, J'onn, and Brainiac 5 will probably be able to offer the most help with coming up with ideas to use against the Thinker.
"You sure you don't wanna come?" Kara asks Alex once more before they go.
She's pulled her aside and her voice is all low, so Alex knows she thinks there's more to her not wanting to go than just needing to hold down the fort in J'onn's absence. She's not wrong, of course, but Alex kind of hates being so transparent.
"It's probably better I stay here," Alex replies, and away from Sara. She's made progress, for sure, but she doesn't want to over do it. Things are still all messy in her head and she can't imagine being around Sara Lance is a good idea right now; she doesn't trust herself not to make an even bigger mess. "Tell her I said hi, though."
Kara doesn't look like she agrees with her choice, but she knows better than to push it and just gives her sister a hug before following Cisco into the blue light.
It doesn't take more than a couple of hours for Alex to start questioning her decision to stay, especially when Imra offers to give Winn the full tour of the Legion ship he's been asking for and she's left alone to watch over the main floor with Mon-El.
It's not that she doesn't like the guy, she just doesn't really know him. She was a lot more preoccupied with Maggie last year and Mon-El was more in Kara's orbit.
Her opinion then was pretty much just based on conversations with her sister, and those were a pretty solid split between complaining and swooning, so it was hard to pin down exactly how she really felt about him.
Then he left and Kara was broken, and all Alex had wanted was for him to come back.
But now he's back and he's different - a good different, from what Alex can see, but she doesn't know this version of him any better than she had known the last.
She manages to keep busy for a bit, talking to different agents and giving orders when needed, but eventually Mon-El stops hovering and approaches her when she's alone, sidling up beside her with his arms crossed over his chest.
"I never got to say that I was sorry to hear about you and Maggie," Mon-El tells her after a moment, because apparently reading the room isn't one of the things he's learned over the seven years he's been gone.
He sounds genuine, though, and like maybe he does know it's a touchy subject, but he's risking the tension anyways because it's something he really wants to say.
It's enough to keep Alex from walking away from him, at least, and she just flashes him a forced smile instead, before silence settles over them again.
"I haven't told you congratulations yet," she blurts out a few moments later, when she can't stand the quiet anymore and she doesn't know what else to say to him. He looks over at her, eyes a combination of surprise and confusion. "Imra seems great."
"She is," Mon-El is quick to agree with a nod. "It took me awhile to let myself see it, but she really is." Alex doesn't miss the small curve of his lips as he talks about her, but he clears his throat when he catches himself doing it, suddenly looking torn and guilty. "I know what you must think of me…"
"No, you don't," is all Alex says, because she's not even sure what she thinks of him herself; he didn't technically do anything wrong, but he's still the cause of her sister's pain, either way.
"I just want you to know that it wasn't easy," he insists, turning fully towards her as he opens himself up. "Letting go of Kara and that hope, it was the hardest thing I've ever done." Mon-El has already said all of this to Kara, Alex knows because she's heard it from her, but it's still good to hear it directly from him, too. "It took a long time to move on and to accept what my life was without her, but Imra was…" He shakes his head a little as he thinks of her, of everything he went through. "I never thought I'd find that again, but I did. And I just couldn't close myself off to it by holding onto the past, so I had to just… let it go. But I never forgot about Kara or all the things she taught me, I swear."
He tells her this because he feels like he needs to justify and explain himself to her, because she plays the overprotective big sister role extremely well, but it's impossible for Alex to listen to everything he says and not make it about herself - and not just because that's become a habit recently.
"Kara was right," she tells him, her tone kind but her face neutral. "Your advice has gotten better."
Mon-El looks confused, but smiles at her all the same.
Kara comes over to Alex's apartment when she returns, with new stories to tell and a gift to share.
The multi-dimensional time traveling think tank was a success - at least they think so. It's up to Team Flash to actually put one of the plans they came up with into motion now, but the development of them was certainly a group effort. It wasn't without its difficulties, though.
"You should've seen them," Kara recalls with an eye roll that seems more fond than anything else. "I thought Brainy was obnoxious with Winn, but that's nothing compared to how bad it got with him, Cisco and Harry all together and debating. We eventually had to keep them all in separate corners of the room to stop a fight from breaking out."
Alex laughs when Kara finally does and looks down at the glass in her hand a bit wistfully. "Sounds like I missed some excitement." It was to be expected, really; anytime they all get together is exciting, but Alex still has a case of lingering regret.
"You did," Kara confirms with a nod. She waits a moment before adding; "You were missed too, y'know. Sara asked about you. I think she was disappointed you didn't come this time."
Alex's first reaction is not to believe it, but she knows better than to underestimate Sara Lance like that; Sara cares about her friends and her team members, and she made it clear Alex is at least one of those.
"Did you tell her I said hi?" Alex wonders and that gesture somehow feels emptier than it already did.
Kara nods and squeezes Alex's knee before she reaches for her bag to get the present she had mentioned when she first arrived. "If you want to feel guiltier, she also sent you a gift. Well, her and Cisco, technically, but…"
She pulls out what looks like a fancy phone and hands it over to Alex. It's sleek and silver, and a bit bigger than the newest iPhone model; feels heavier in her hand, too.
"A phone?" Alex asks, flipping it around to give it a once over.
"It's the Communicative Inter-Dimensional... Super... Cool? Operating Phone," Kara struggles to recite. "Or, The C.I.S.C.O. Phone."
"The C.I.S.C.O. Phone," Alex repeats in amused disbelief. "Wow."
Kara's fond eye roll makes a reappearance. "It's something he's been working on for awhile," she says. "His girlfriend is from earth-19 and even though they can both vibe, he wanted to be able to communicate easier, like normal couples. Something about sexting without a cube? Whatever that means; I didn't wanna know."
Alex is only half listening while she fiddles with her new gadget. "What does it do?"
"It's basically just a phone that works between earths," Kara shrugs. "Better than the extrapolator he made does. You can text, call, video chat, all that stuff."
"And he wanted me to have one?"
Unless every single person that's ever taken part in a Super Friends meet up got one, Alex can't imagine why Cisco would want her of all people to have one; she barely even got to talk to the guy at the wedding.
"No," Kara answers slowly. "That's where the Sara part comes in." Now she's smiling all teasingly and it makes Alex want to sink into the couch. "She asked him to pimp one out especially for you."
Alex's gaze drifts back down to the phone and she traces the screen with her index finger. "What makes it different than the other ones?"
"It can communicate through time, too," Kara explains like it really should be obvious. "I'm pretty sure hers is the only number in there."
Alex can't deny the way her heart flips just a little bit at that.
Kara eventually leaves to go meet Lena and Sam for girls night, and Alex spends the rest of her evening staring at her phones.
She's still on her couch, glass of scotch in her hand, and two options laid out on the coffee table in front of her.
She needs to do something, she's decided; make a move.
Alex has taken tiny steps recently, and they've felt good, but after today, she's ready to make a bigger one.
She's just not sure which one to take.
On one phone, she has the number of that woman she met at the bar last week; the one she not only kept but actually took the time to put into her phone in case she ever finally reached this moment.
Calling her most likely leads to a date, maybe two, and probably sex.
A big step for Alex, no doubt, but one that's just scary enough to seem easy.
On the other phone, she has Sara's number.
Alex can't even begin to guess what could possibly come from opening the lines of communication with Sara. She could end up just getting a lot of really cool pictures and stories from all different places and times, or she could end up getting so much more.
There's just something about that woman that makes Alex feel like the possibilities with her are endless, and that scares the shit out of her.
But, as she stares down at the phones in front of her, she realizes it's not the choice that's hard, it's mustering up the courage to make it that's tripping her up; the choice is actually easy.
Downing the rest of her scotch in one big gulp, Alex reaches for a phone and taps on the only number in it.
The black cursor mocks her as it blinks, waiting for whatever big message she's spent all night working up to, before her fingers finally start moving.
Alex takes a breath, hits send, and that's how it all begins.
Thank you for reading, I hope you enjoyed it and will stick around for more.
Chapter 2: part ii.
i) Thank you so much to everyone that commented! Please never underestimate how motivating they can be.
ii) Sorry this took so long. I wanted to have it up earlier, but things got in the way. At least this is a decent size update.
iii) I can't promise when the next one will be up, but I can't imagine it'll be timely, so please be patient.
iv) For the sake of my sanity, pretend people text in full, well punctuated sentences.
v) Another big thank you to my friend Ikea for always helping me through these things.
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
The Legends are still in 2018 when Sara gets Alex’s text.
Ms. Jackson made sure Jax invited the team over for a nice home cooked meal before they took off again, and of course they were all more than happy to take her up on the invitation.
Sara’s lips twitch up when she feels her new phone vibrate against her thigh, and she doesn’t even have to look to know who it is; there’s only one person it can be.
Excusing herself from the table, Sara slips the phone out of her pocket as she moves through the unfamiliar house to find some privacy.
She ends up on the front porch and settles onto the wooden swing there before finally looking at her phone.
It’s as generic a message as Alex could possibly send, but it still makes Sara smile because she sent a message all the same.
Hey back, Danvers.
Didn’t expect to hear from you so soon.
Sara assumed she’d probably text or call eventually, because the lines of communication between them obviously have to open at some point, but Alex is Alex, and so Sara had been ready to wait for at least a good month before she worked up the (most likely drunk) courage to contact her.
Because it had to be Alex to make that move. With all Sara knows - with her sending the phone at all - it’s Alex’s turn.
Well, it would be rude not to thank you for my gift.
Sara smiles at the reply, and is a little surprised she can actually read it and hear Alex’s voice.
So, are you actually gonna thank me then or…?
She can picture Alex’s eye roll too, but that has more to do with the frequency her sarcasm receives them than anything to do with her knowledge of the other woman.
I wanted to use an eye rolling emoji there, but all the emojis are Cisco’s face and they’re terrifying.
Sara just barely bites back her laugh and she obviously checks those out immediately.
She’s not sure how long she sits out there, but she stays even after the texts have stopped, and she’s still there when Jax comes looking for her.
“Talking to your girl?” he asks as he steps out onto the porch, hands shoved in his pockets.
Sara shakes her head and fights back a smile, spinning the phone in her hand. “She’s not my girl.”
“Not yet,” Jax says at the same time Sara thinks it.
He flashes Sara that grin of his, the one that’s eased her annoyance as many times as it’s caused it, and sits down on the swing beside her.
“Who told you, anyways?” she asks as she bumps his shoulder with hers. “Wait, let me guess; Nate.”
Jax tsks and snaps his fingers, as if to say so close. “Zari,” he corrects her. “Nate was second to spill. Then Ray. Amaya, least she filled in some blanks.”
“Children,” Sara huffs, but she’s not really bothered; she was probably going to tell Jax herself, anyways.
He laughs and leans back in the swing, stretching his arm across the back of it. “You raised ‘em.”
“And now you’ve left me to deal with them all alone.”
She says it like she’s joking, but they both know she isn’t really. It’s not that Sara resents Jax for leaving or that she doesn’t understand why he had to, but it doesn’t make it suck any less.
Jax is silent, but reaches his hand out to give Sara’s shoulder a comforting squeeze. She turns her head and rests her chin on his fingers, looking back at him with a small smile of understanding.
They sit together and she tells him her version of the story, until it’s time for her to leave.
Alex wakes up early, but well rested, for a change.
It’s mostly thanks to the scotch, probably, but she likes to think her talk with Sara had something to do with it, too.
It wasn’t a long talk and there wasn’t much to it, but she took the step - more like a leap, really - and that feeling of accomplishment she took to bed with her is still there in the morning.
It helps Alex get out of bed and shower without much of a complaint, and it even puts a ghost of a smile on her face as she hums along to the radio while making her breakfast alone after that.
She leaves her apartment with enough time to stop for a cup of better coffee on her way to work, and even though Alex leaves her new phone at home, she feels like she’s carrying it with her all throughout the day.
“Soooooo?” Kara asks, all nosy and excited, pouncing on Alex the second she gets her alone.
She flew into the D.E.O. less than fifteen minutes ago, but it still takes longer than Alex expected.
“So what?” is what she says back, playing dumb even though she knows there’s little point, and starts walking in the opposite direction of her sister.
Kara does that scoff-laugh thing she does as she quickly trails behind Alex. “What do you mean ‘so what’?!” She manages to get in front of her even without super speed, and stops Alex in her tracks to continue her interrogation. “What happened after I left? Did you talk to Sara?”
Alex stares at Kara’s hopeful little face and a part of her wants to tell her, but a bigger part of her wants to keep this for herself, just for a little bit. She doesn’t even know what it is, but that’s kinda the point; Alex doesn’t really want to know yet.
The second she tells Kara, it becomes a Thing, something Alex has to think and talk and inevitably stress about, and she doesn’t want that yet. She just wants to keep it casual, see where it goes; avoid the pressure of over-analyzing it.
Alex can totally do that.
“I didn’t call Sara,” she eventually answers her sister, deciding that’s a good enough line to straddle between the truth and a lie.
Kara is bummed but understanding, and she doesn’t push it as she steps aside to let Alex continue on her way.
After dealing with an unexpected alien crisis or two, Alex gets home late.
Probably not too late to text Sara (is too late even a concept for a time traveler?), but she doesn’t.
She waits until she gets roughly three hours of sleep before she sends one the next morning, and it isn’t until she’s at work that Alex realizes she didn’t even think about it before doing it.
Alex didn’t stress about being the first to text twice in a row or texting too soon, and she didn’t even need any liquid courage, either.
She just did what she wanted and what felt natural, and that feels like almost as much of a victory as yesterday’s battle to protect National City had been.
Alex gets off of work early, but more importantly she even actually leaves work early too, and comes home to find a text from Sara waiting for her.
We’re in 1934, is Sara’s answer to the question Alex sent this morning, asking where the Legends were today.
It’s kinda depressing.
I really hope earth-38 history is the same as earth-1 history, otherwise that joke is gonna fall completely flat.
The joke is lame, but that’s not really what’s making Alex smile as she leans across her kitchen counter and types out her reassurance hours after the fact.
Don’t worry, I got it.
I’d give it three laughing Cisco faces.
Alex puts her phone down to start making dinner, not expecting a reply from Sara anytime soon, but she barely gets the fridge door open before she hears the whoosh of a new text coming from behind her.
Quickly grabbing the leftover Chinese food from a couple days ago, Alex shuts the door and reaches for her phone to read Sara’s response as the microwave prepares her dinner.
But are we talking out of five or out of ten here?
Alex can almost picture Sara’s indignation as she types.
Sara’s reply is immediate; Ouch, Danvers.
I’ll have to work on my historical comedy routine for next time.
It makes Alex smile, just to know there’s going to be a next time.
Which reminds me; it’s When.
Her brow furrows as the microwave beeps, but Alex is more concerned with her phone.
She pops the microwave door open and grabs her food, Sara’s reply appearing as she makes her way around the counter to sit down and eat.
We usually ask WHEN are we, not where - more of that time traveling humor.
Just for future reference.
Alex grins around her first bite of dinner and wonders if the pun is intended, but doesn’t bother asking.
Their lives are hectic and dangerous, so they don’t get to talk everyday, but when they do, they make it count.
It’s always Alex that texts first, sending Sara a text before work asking when she is, and more often than not, she comes home to a reply.
Some days, though - after Alex starts bringing both of her phones to work with her - they manage to catch each other when they both have down time, and they can actually have real conversations.
Those days are the best, and the ones that feel the most like progress.
They talk about their hook up when Sara’s in 1891 to get Michael Jordan and bring him back to the early 90’s.
You were my first one night stand!, Alex tries to defend herself, her cheeks getting warm at the reminder of what a stuttering mess she was the morning after. And only the second woman I’ve ever slept with.
That explains SO much.
Alex’s face goes from warm to hot, and she’s so glad the other woman can’t see her.
I don’t think I even want to know what that means.
Nothing bad, Sara promises, and Alex actually believes her.
I think nothing but good things about you, Danvers.
Sara’s in 1997, trying to intercept someone before they can save Princess Diana, when Alex brings up her former occupation.
So just how much of an assassin are you, exactly?
Sara purses her lips, half listening to Nate and Ray debate the pros and cons of the monarchy, as if it has anything to do with their mission.
Well, I trained with a group called The League of Assassins, so… A pretty legit one.
Used to be, anyways.
She wonders, briefly, if she should be worried about Alex’s reaction to that, even though she can obviously assume any problem she may have is bound to be resolved eventually, but she gets her reply before she can give it too much thought.
The name’s not exactly conspicuous.
Was Assassin School already taken?
Sara’s relief is stronger than her worry was, and even though that’s not necessarily the worst of her past, it still feels good to let Alex in on a piece of it.
When she’s not helping the team round up Bill Nye and Neil Degrasse Tyson, Sara spends her brief time in 2159 talking to Alex about work and swapping stories about their craziest missions.
Alex tells Sara about how she’s been in space twice, and Sara tells Alex all about that time she spent two years living in the late 50’s.
Our biggest bad guys have all been, well, guys, Sara shares after Alex has finished telling her how most of Supergirl’s biggest adversaries have been evil moms and aunts.
An Egyptian high priest and a legion of smarmy assholes.
Hey, we have a legion, too, Alex is quick to reply.
They’re not evil, but a couple of them CAN be asses sometimes.
Sara laughs, pretty sure she’s met one of them already, and launches into the story of her own time in space.
Their jobs are as different as they are the same, just like them, but Sara thinks maybe that’s why they’ll work.
Discussion of their sexuality naturally pops up when they get a chance to talk once Sara and the Legends leave 1996, after Gideon finds a loophole using Zari’s simulation program to allow them to prevent the Defense of Marriage Act from being signed.
It was a very personal mission for Sara for obvious reasons - and less obvious ones too, as far as Alex knows - and it gets her talking about when she first realized she liked women, and even opening up a bit about Nyssa, too.
I wish I had figured it out earlier, Alex admits as she settles on the D.E.O. steps with her phone. Work isn’t the ideal place to have meaningful conversations, but Sara’s non-existent schedule means talking about what they can, when they can.
I took so long and now I just feel like a rookie, and like I have so much to catch up on.
It feels like a big deal to share this with Sara, to tell her something she’s only ever told Kara, but it feels nice, too; to share it with someone that will actually get it.
I get where you’re coming from, but you shouldn’t think like that.
Doesn’t matter if you come out at 10 or 50, you’re as gay as you’re ever gonna be.
I could take you to Stonewall so you could throw a brick yourself, but it wouldn’t make you any gayer.
And I mean that literally, I really could take you to Stonewell if you want.
Sara’s stance and reassurance aren’t much different than Kara’s was, but her words still land heavier on her chest - in a good way; in a way that knocks a lot of the old weight right off.
Alex doesn’t even realize she’s smiling dumbly at her screen until Winn catches her.
“What’s got you so smiley?” she hears him ask before she sees him approaching. “Alex Danvers texting at work? Must be a pretty lady.”
Alex rolls her eyes, pushes herself to her feet, and actually manages to sound casual when she tells Winn, “She’s just a friend.”
It does nothing to deter Winn’s teasing, though. “So it is a lady.”
“Who’s a lady?” Kara asks as soon as she lands; neither Winn nor Alex even flinching at her sudden and speedy arrival through the balcony window.
“The person that’s got Alex smiling like she slept with a hanger in her mouth,” Winn tells Kara with a growing grin, nudging Alex in the shoulder teasingly because he’s short sighted and never learns.
Alex nudges him right back, but there’s nothing teasing about it. “You’re speaking like I can’t break every bone in your body with one hand.”
Winn falters, but only looks scared for a few seconds before Kara is drawing her sister’s attention away from him.
“Is that…?” Kara takes the phone out of Alex’s hand to get a better look at it and confirm her suspicions. “You’ve been talking to Sara?”
Alex snatches the phone right back while Winn, of course, has to ask; “Who’s Sara?”
“How long have you guys been talking?” Kara asks with her own grin, completely ignoring Winn as she follows her suddenly retreating sister.
“A while,” is Alex’s answer, but one look at the smiling blonde at her side tells her that isn’t enough. “Like a month,” she relents with an exaggerated eye-roll, acting all put out. “It’s not a big deal.”
Kara looks way too happy about this news and, unfortunately, she can’t be deterred by threats of physical violence like certain other people. “Then why didn’t you tell me?”
“Because it’s not a big deal,” Alex says once again. It feels like it’s something she’s telling herself more than Kara, who is just looking at her all knowingly, but at least it’s enough to get her to stop following after her.
“Is she the girl that Cisco guy mentioned?” Winn shouts after her, and maybe as Alex walks away, she finds herself grinning just a little bit, too.
It’s not like Alex hasn’t had moments where she’s wondered if maybe what her and Sara are doing is more than just texting with a friend - especially as their conversations have gotten more frequent and personal - but those moments are always very fleeting.
Anytime she finds those thoughts creeping in, Alex just reminds herself that Sara is a time traveler, who lives on another earth, and that there’s no future there, and the thoughts scatter as quickly as they come.
She’s already done the whole trying to ignore the writing on the wall to make a doomed relationship work thing and Alex isn’t interested in a second go-round.
Sara is her friend - something Alex could use more of - and she’s more than happy with that.
Still, she can’t deny that something about Winn and Kara’s reactions makes this bout of wondering linger a little bit longer.
Or, at lot longer, as it turns out.
Like, it never really goes away, actually.
It’s still not something Alex is stressing herself out over yet, but it’s always in the back of her head when they talk now; like this little whisper asking her what this means or how that makes her feel.
She just tries to ignore it, mostly, but some days it’s louder than others - especially when they graduate from texts to calls because, shocker, Sara is even more charming on the phone.
They keep things light the first couple times they talk, but the more personal communication allows for even more personal conversations, and harder ones, too.
Sara opens up first, telling Alex a little bit about growing up with Laurel and a lot about losing her, while the Legends are on a mission to reunite the Brontë sisters in 1832 after they’re misplaced in different centuries.
She’s not sure if that talk is easier or harder than the one about her resurrection and subsequent blood lust, she just knows she feels a lot better after telling Alex about it, and that’s all that really matters.
Sara feels herself growing closer to Alex with every conversation they have, and her desire to know more about her future wife keeps growing, too.
It’s not like Alex keeps things locked up in a vault or anything, it’s just that she always seems to be the one asking the questions instead of answering them, and it just takes Sara a while to remember that she can ask, too.
“So, I’ve been wondering,” she finally brings it up, settling into bed for the night while the ship hovers in the temporal zone until they get their next mission. “And feel free to tell me to fuck off if you want, but how come you and Maggie broke up?”
There’s silence on the other end of the phone, and for a moment Sara thinks Alex might actually tell her to fuck off, but then she hears a sigh. “We just realized that we wanted different things.”
Sara waits for her to elaborate because she already knows that much, but nudges her along when she doesn’t. “Like?”
“Like, I wanted kids and she didn’t,” Alex says, managing to make it sound very matter of fact and not like it was something she probably agonized over for who knows how long.
“Ah,” Sara replies, nodding her head a bit as the pieces fall into place and fill in the blanks of their early conversations. “Not something you can really compromise on, huh?”
“Not really, no.” Alex sounds more resigned than she does sad, and Sara figures it’s been long enough that she’s made peace with it by now; or at least stopped second guessing herself about it. “I tried, but it… It’s been too important to me for too long to give up. Not even for her.”
Sara is silent for a moment too long, not sure what she should say and even more unsure of what this means for her future; for their future.
“I’m sorry,” is what she eventually says, even if she can’t truly bring herself to be. Sara’s sorry for any pain Alex went though, of course, but she’s obviously not sorry that she and Maggie broke up.
“Yeah, me too,” Alex agrees kind of wistfully, like she’s taking a moment to be sad about something she hasn’t thought about in a while, before she picks herself right back up again. “But, there’s someone else out there for me, right?”
A big grin fights it’s way onto Sara’s face, and suddenly her thoughts of the future are only certain.
“Of this, I have no doubt.”
“Can you guys picture me as a mom?” Sara asks Ray and Zari the next morning over breakfast. She didn’t lose sleep obsessing over her conversation with Alex or anything, but it’s impossible for her not to wonder.
Sara never really saw kids in her future - in the little time she thought of it before that fateful day in 2022, anyways - but it wasn’t because she didn’t want them. Before the Queen’s Gambit, it just wasn’t a priority and after, it didn’t seem like a possibility.
Ray pauses mid-chew and looks at her dubiously. “Is this a trick question?”
“It’s an Alex question,” Zari informs him knowingly.
“Oh.” He shrugs and finishes his bite. “Then sure! You’re our captain, that’s kinda like being our mom.”
Zari snorts her agreement. “Especially with this team.”
Sara and Ray both make the same endeared can’t argue with that face.
Alex doesn’t have the same knowledge of their future that Sara has, but that doesn’t mean she doesn’t find herself thinking about it just as much.
For her, though, it’s more a question of if and how than it is of when and how.
Because try as she might, those whispers Winn and Kara triggered just get louder and harder to ignore with each passing day and soon, Alex starts to find herself over analyzing every flirty comment Sara makes and every micro-emotion they make her feel.
She’s doing exactly what she tried to avoid doing all those weeks ago, back when she kinda but not really lied to Kara about talking to Sara in the first place, but it’s too late to stop it now.
So, Alex does what she was probably always going to end up doing, and talks to her sister about it.
“Why didn’t you wanna tell me about it before?” Kara asks as she slides into the booth across from Alex, a drink that won’t even get her buzzed in hand.
“There was nothing to tell!” Alex insists, nursing her own glass of something that will hopefully do more than give her a buzz. “We were just texting and I didn’t want to put pressure on it by making it bigger than it was.”
Kara looks like she understands where she’s coming from, or maybe she’s just way more interested in what’s changed than whatever was holding her back. “And now?”
“Now… It’s a big deal,” Alex admits hesitantly, and with a good swig of scotch that might be from another planet. She swallows ungracefully around the strong taste and squints at her way too giddy sister. “I think,” she amends. “Maybe.”
“Well, tell me then!” Kara practically begs, grin almost overtaking her face as she adjusts her glasses. “But skip over any sexting.”
Alex levels Kara with an unamused look. “There have been no sexts.”
“Is that disappointment I detect in your voice?” Alex’s glare only widens Kara’s grin as the younger woman looks at her approvingly. “This is a big deal!”
Ignoring the former comment, Alex focuses her agreement on the latter. “We talk almost every night, about everything,” Alex shares, fingers tracing the ring of her glass as she thinks of Sara with a small smile. “She’s told me so much, even the stuff I know was hard for her to talk about. I feel like I know more about Sara after a couple of months than I ever knew about Maggie in over a year.”
Alex knows why Maggie held stuff in so much and she’s never blamed her for it, but still; she can’t pretend it hasn’t been nice to only have to ask once.
“That’s good,” Kara reassures her, her smile more genuine and less teasing.
“She’s just really amazing,” Alex starts after a minute, lips stretching a bit wider. “She’s been through so much, but she’s still just so... good, you know? Even though it doesn’t come easy, even though she wasn’t always, she fights so hard to be good.” Alex knows because Sara’s told her all about her past and her struggles, but she knows it from the way she tells it, too; that passion and that pain in her voice. “And she cares about her team so much, she’s gotta be such a great captain. It’s really cute the way she talks about them all, like she’s so proud of them - even Mick.”
Kara laughs. “That’s enough to make anyone a saint.”
Alex doesn’t argue, but after listening to the way Sara talks about him, she can’t help view him a little differently than she did before.
“She’s so nice and charming, and badass,” she continues, not even trying to reign it in. “There’s been nothing I’ve said that she hasn’t had a comeback for, or-or she wasn’t able to make me feel better about; it’s so easy to talk to her, about anything.” Alex is gushing, she knows, but it just feels so nice to finally be able to talk to someone about this amazing woman. “And she’s so beautiful. I mean, you know, you’ve seen her.”
Kara nods as she bites back another laugh. “I do know.”
“But have you seen her abs?” Alex asks, voice getting low like she’s sharing something scandalous. “I swear she looks like she could be in Magic Mike or something.” When Kara’s laugh breaks through, it’s warm and loud and pulls Alex in with it. “I’m serious! She even said she can dance.”
“I’m sure!” Kara says lightly, her giggles fading into a fond grin as she takes in her sister’s happiness. “It sounds like you really her,” she points out gently, approvingly. “I don’t think I’ve ever heard you gush like that about anyone other than Maggie.”
Alex’s shoulders slump and her smile turns wry as she bring her glass up to her lips. “Yeah.”
That’s kind of the problem.
While talking with Kara does help Alex to accept her growing feelings for Sara, it doesn’t do a whole lot else to help the situation.
Alex may know how she feels now, but Sara still lives on earth-1, she’s still in a different time almost every other day, and perhaps most importantly: Alex has no idea if she feels the same way.
There are times when she thinks maybe she does, more in the moments when Sara isn’t flirting than in the ones she is, but it’s just impossible to tell with her - especially over the phone - and Alex isn't about to make assumptions and put herself in the position to be rejected again.
It’s not like it would make that much of a difference if Sara did feel the same way, though - see the first two reasons listed - but at least then Alex would know she’s not alone.
It’s Ruby’s idea to try video chatting so she can read Sara’s facial expressions and body language, because obviously the expert on how to tell if someone likes you back or not is a preteen.
Still, Alex doesn’t really have any other bright ideas, short of just outright asking - which is definitely not a real option - so she takes her advice and calls Sara on VibeTime (insert eye rolling Cisco emoji here) so Ruby can see for herself.
“Hey, you,” Sara greets her with a winning smile, panting and all sweaty; obviously not noticing the child at her side. “You’re a sight for sore eyes.”
“Hey,” Alex says back, swallowing thickly when the screen shakes and she gets a glimpse of Sara in her work out clothes as she pats herself down with a towel. “Sorry, did I interrupt? ‘Cause you can just call back when you’re done.”
Sara steadies the phone so that it’s back on her face and shakes her head. “No worries,” she assures her. “I’ve always got time for you, Danvers. And… Danvers’ little friend,” Sara adds when she finally looks away from Alex long enough to spot her guest. “What’s up?”
“This is my friend Ruby,” Alex introduces her, tilting the phone so the girl can wave at Sara. “She, uh, she wanted to meet you.”
“You tell all your friends about me?” Sara grins, seemingly not minding the company as she sits her phone on something so she can put her training equipment away.
“No,” Alex insists, and even though it’s true, the blush she can feel starting would probably tell a different story if Sara were looking.
“I’m special,” Ruby cuts in, leaning over to get a better look at what Sara’s doing. Spotting all the weapons, she immediately asks, “Are you a superhero like Supergirl?”
Alex stiffens for just a moment, hoping the other woman will have enough sense not to give anything away.
Sara laughs lightly as she leans her staff against the wall and then bends down so that she’s level with the camera. “Kinda,” she answers, her breathing starting to sound more normal. “I fight bad guys, but I don’t have any powers.”
“So you’re like Alex?”
“Yeah, kid,” Sara concedes, sending a wink in Alex’s direction that makes her spine tingle. “Just like Alex. And she’s way cooler than Supergirl, right? Just don’t tell Supergirl I said that; that stays between us.”
“Okay,” Ruby giggles as she promises her secrecy, and the fact that she doesn’t jump to defend her hero against the slight has Alex marveling at Sara’s charm once again.
Before Sara can say any more, a voice Alex recognizes as Gideon’s is calling Sara to the bridge. “Sorry to cut this short, ladies, but I’m being summoned,” she tells them apologetically, grabbing her phone as she starts moving. “It was nice to meet you, Ruby. And Alex, I’ll call you tonight if I can?”
“Sure,” Alex agrees easily, used to Sara getting called away suddenly; hazard of the job and all. “Be safe!”
Sara promises she will and they haven’t even fully disconnected before Ruby is announcing her verdict. ”She totally likes you.”
“You talked to her for two minutes,” Alex immediately waves her off.
“It was way obvious,” Ruby insists, sounding so sure of herself in that way only kids can, that Alex almost believes her.
Just for a moment.
When Sara calls her back later that night, Alex doesn’t see it then, either.
It’s not that she necessarily thinks Sara doesn’t like her back or that there’s no possible way she can, it’s just that Alex can’t tell if she does.
Flirty and smirky and charismatic seems to be Sara Lance’s default setting, and while that makes it easy to fall for her, it makes it nearly impossible to figure out if she’s fallen, too.
It’s frustrating and annoying and just makes Alex fall harder.
Also annoying and frustrating, but not at all endearing like Sara, is the game night Kara forces Alex to attend a few days later.
She’s been able to get out of going to the last few by citing breakup blues, but apparently that excuse isn’t valid after six months - especially not now that she has feelings for someone else.
Alex knew telling Kara about that would bite her in the ass somehow.
But at least her competitive nerdy sister is a better partner than Maggie had been, and by half way through the night, they’ve beaten both Winn/Sam and James/Lena in three different games; if she’s being forced to play, at least she's kicking ass.
Not that their victories are of any thanks to Alex, though, because she’s been more than a little distracted all night.
“Who do you keep texting?” James asks after Alex almost misses her turn for the fourth time because she’s paying more attention to her phone than she is to the game.
“Is that S… Sara?” Winn guesses, looking to Kara for confirmation on the name before turning back to Alex. “Is it Sara?”
Predictably, that immediately piques Sam and Lena’s interests. “Who’s Sara?” they both ask at the same time.
“Friend?” Sam wonders, and it’s good to know Ruby can be trusted to keep a secret when she promises to.
“Or girlfriend?” Lena quickly follows up from beside her, sly teasing grin on her face as she nudges her thigh.
“A friend,” Alex insists firmly, or at least she hopes so. Judging by the way everyone is looking at her, she’s not all that convincing. “Really, she’s just a friend that lives…” Catching Kara’s warning look, Alex settles for, “Out of town.”
Winn, who knows better, doesn’t buy it for a second. “A friend,” he laughs. “I bet you don’t smile like that when I text you.”
“Nobody smiles when you text them,” she shoots back defensively.
“Ouch,” he whines, thanking Sam for the condescending comfort pat on the back she gives him.
“She’s really just a friend?” James cuts in before anyone else can tease Alex, and he sounds way more interested than she’d expect him to be.
It makes her eye him wearily. “Why?”
“Well, it’s just that there’s this woman at work that I think you’d really like,” he starts as he reaches into his pocket.
“Don’t worry, I already screened her myself,” Lena adds from his side, taking the business card from him and offering it to Alex with an encouraging smile. “And really, I think you’d like her. She’s great.”
Alex immediately looks to Kara, as if asking her to account for her friends, but her sister just laughs.
“I told them not to,” she says, and part of Alex believes her because she knows how she feels about Sara, but the other part of her also knows Kara can be a little shit sometimes. “But what could I do? They’re the bosses, I’m just a lowly journalist.”
Alex scoffs. “Oh, please.”
“You don’t have to call her,” James adds before a sister fight breaks out, and Alex takes another moment to glare at Kara before she turns back to the little matchmakers on the other side of her. “No pressure, I just thought you might get on.”
With all eyes on her, Alex reluctantly takes the card from Lena without a word and finds herself still staring at it once everyone else continues on with the game.
There are more reasons for Alex to go the date than not to.
After thinking about it for far more than she probably needs to, she comes to the conclusion that the only reason not to call this woman is Sara.
Well, her feelings for Sara, anyways.
She’s not dating Sara, or even pre-dating her, after all; they’re just… friends. As much as Alex wishes they were more, they’re not and maybe never will be.
So, really, is that even a real reason not to at least give this woman a chance?
The Legends are only on mission in 1956 for two days, but it’s enough for Sara to receive a tempting offer of her own.
Even though the one she gets is obviously for a lot more than a date, it’s surprisingly easy for her to turn it down with just a kiss to the cheek and a goodbye.
“Idiot,” Mick grunts as Sara rejoins the team, but she just gives him a light elbow as she walks past him and towards the Waverider.
“Dude, you just turned down Marilyn Monroe!” Nate exclaims as he falls into step with her, and Ray echos his disbelief. “How could you not hit that?!”
Sara doesn’t spare them a glance. “Why do you think?”
When neither man has a guess, it’s Zari that butts in to explain the obvious once again; “Because of Alex.”
“But nothing has really even happened between you two yet,” Nate argues, and Sara’s starting to think these guys are way too invested in living vicariously through her historical one night stands. “It’s not like you’d be cheating.”
“And that didn’t stop you from going out with the mean time lady,” Ray is quick to add, probably still a little salty about losing that debate.
The thing is, it’s not that she feels like she can’t hook up with someone else because of Alex, it’s just that she doesn’t want to.
Sara shrugs, trying to play it off. “I’m just not interested.”
“It’s because she has feelings for Alex,” Amaya has to spell out for them, rolling her eyes at the boys, but sending a warm and encouraging smile in Sara’s direction.
“Sappy idiot,” Mick corrects himself.
“You all need to mind your own business,” Sara tells them in her captain voice, even though she doesn’t really mind and she knows none of them will listen, anyways.
They do manage to drop the subject for a few hours, but Sara has nobody but herself to blame when the questions start up again, since she should know the only way to avoid them is to avoid these people all together.
She hasn’t even been in the library for longer than a couple minutes before Zari’s bringing it up. “So you really like her, huh?”
She could play dumb, but what would be the point? “Yeah,” Sara sighs, fighting a smile. “I really do.”
“Well, we’re happy for you,” Zari replies, matching her smile.
“Even Nathaniel,” Amaya adds. “Despite his disbelief earlier.”
Ray, of course, chooses that moment to jump in. “But can you really blame him? I mean, Marilyn Monroe!” Sara doesn’t even have to glare at him, Amaya and Zari do it for her. “Sorry.”
“Have you told her yet?” Zari wonders.
“I don’t even know if I’m going to,” Sara answers, and quickly continues when she sees Ray opening his mouth. “Don’t ask why when you already know,” she warns him sternly. “I’m not having this conversation with you again.”
But that’s not entirely true, really, because while the future might be a little bit of what’s holding Sara back from telling Alex how she feels, it’s not the only reason, and certainly not the biggest.
It’s actually been a while since Sara has stressed herself out too much about what’s to come and how to make sure it still does; somewhere along the way, she just decided to put her trust in time and enjoy the ride.
That’s the main reason why she doesn’t plan on making the first move by telling Alex she’s into her too soon; Sara kinda just wants to let Alex set the pace.
She has a bit of a head start, after all, so she’s content in waiting until she knows Alex has caught up.
Sometimes it’s hard, though, like when she calls Alex a little later and she answers on VibeTime, with her hair all done up and her face full of makeup.
“You look fancy,” Sara greets her, sitting herself down on the steps just outside the parlour; the ship dark as everyone else sleeps. “And very hot.”
Alex touches her hair sheepishly, as if just remembering its been styled. “Oh, thanks.”
“What’s the occasion?”
Alex seems to a hesitate for just a moment before she says, “I had a date.”
Sara’s stomach doesn’t drop to her feet or anything dramatic like that, but she does hear something like a record scratch in her head.
“Oh?” is all she can say.
“My friends set me up with this woman from work,” Alex starts, shifting on her couch to pull her legs up underneath her in a way that makes Sara assume she’s since changed her clothes from the date. “It didn’t go so great.”
That admission eases some of the tension Sara didn’t realize had formed in her shoulders. “Blind dates usually don’t.”
“She was great,” Alex explains, already rolling her eyes at herself. “It wasn’t love at first sight by any means, but she was pretty and seemed smart and I already knew she had a good job. I, on the other hand, was a complete disaster.”
Sara doesn’t mean to laugh, but Alex is great at being dramatic. “I’m sure it wasn’t that bad,” she tries to make her feel better, even though she knows from personal experience there’s a good chance it was indeed that bad. She found disaster mode Alex endearing, though.
“Oh, believe me, it was,” Alex sighs with a self-deprecating shake of her head. “It started out well enough, even though I had to lie a bit about my job, but then she asked about my last relationship and that’s where it fell apart. I just started interrogating her about kids; if she wanted any, how many, when she wanted to have them by…”
Sara cringes in sympathy. “You didn’t.”
“It was like I forgot how to be a functioning human person,” she whines and it finally draws a laugh out of Sara, one that Alex can’t seem to help but return despite herself. “But after how everything went down with Maggie, it just makes sense to ask anyone I’m interested in upfront, right?”
“Ask them, sure,” Sara agrees. “But don’t scare them off.”
Alex covers her eyes with her hand, leaving only her smile for Sara to see. “I know, I know.” She takes another moment to stew in her embarrassment before she drops her hand to look at Sara. “I’ll ask better next time.”
For some reason her words knock the wind out of Sara, and all she can do is whisper, “I hope so, Danvers.”
After a couple of relatively slow months on the bad guy front, it’s not really a surprise that when something big finally happens, it’s huge.
Figuring that maybe the seventh time is the charm, Morgan Edge tries to bring down Lena and knock Supergirl down a couple notches by allegedly hiring a group of known criminals with ties to Lex Luthor to terrorize National City and once again place the blame on Lena.
It’s not an original plan, but it’s an effective one, and it has Supergirl, Guardian, the Legion, Martian Manhunter, the NCPD, Alex and a bunch of other D.E.O. agents scrambling to contain multiple coordinated attacks all over the city.
Alex is just leaving the city’s main bank and leading a team towards the waterfront when she’s hit.
She doesn’t see the car coming until it clips her bike, and she doesn’t fully comprehend what’s just happened until she sees Kara’s frantic and terrified face through her increasingly blurry vision.
“K-ara-” she tries to choke out, but the pain is finally starting to register all at once.
Her sister shushes her and looks like she has tears in her eyes, but Alex blacks out before she can be sure.
Winn has a medical team ready by the time Supergirl gets back to the D.E.O. with Alex, but Kara isn’t confident it will matter.
She doesn’t need anyone to tell her how critically injured Alex is before she starts thinking of alternatives.
“Those tanks,” Kara says into her earpiece, trying to keep her voice as steady as possible despite the fear threatening to capsize her. “Brainy,” she starts again, making sure the right person is listening to her. “Those tanks on your ship, Imra mentioned they have healing powers.” It takes a few seconds for him to confirm this information, but Kara doesn’t have them to spare. “Alex is in really bad shape, would one of those be able to save her?”
“We’ve never put a human in one before,” Brainiac 5 answers, sounding understandably distracted, but still calm as he pilots the Legion ship behind his team members. “There’s no telling- Imra, your right!" A loud blast rings in Kara’s ear, but she can’t bring herself to worry about what’s going on out there right now. “There’s no way of knowing if the human body could handle the juice inside those things without running tests, and I’d venture to guess we don’t have time for that. There’s a good chance it would just do more harm than good.”
If he has more to say, Kara doesn’t care to hear it, and she clicks out of the conversation.
Brainiac 5 and the Legion ship already forgotten, Kara starts desperately trying to think of some other way to save her sister while the med team continues to try to at least keep her from crashing.
Kara can practically feel the fear and worry radiating off Winn as he hovers behind her, and it does nothing to calm her rapidly beating heart.
Her breathing starts to get heavy the louder the machines attached to Alex get, and it feels like invisible walls are closing in on her as her head pounds and pounds and pounds and...
And then the idea comes to her. “Gideon,” she whispers suddenly, the tightening in her chest momentarily stalling.
“What?” Winn dares to ask, stepping closer.
Not explaining further, Kara rushes towards the gurney Alex is laid out on and pushes her way through the medics to scoop her sister back into her arms. “Open a breach into S.T.A.R. Labs,” she orders her terrified looking friend. “Now, Winn!”
“Okay, I’m on it, I’m on it,” Winn promises as he springs into action and jogs back to his desk to start up the program he helped install a couple months ago using the tech from the extrapolator Cisco gave Kara after her first trip to earth-1. Once he’s got a breach opened in the middle of the D.E.O., Kara starts heading towards it. “But what about-?”
“I’ll be back,” she promises Winn without pausing or looking back at him. “Just keep everyone else alive until I am.”
Winn isn’t able to make any promises of his own before they disappear into the light.
Luckily for Kara, Iris is quickly able to locate the Waverider in 2001, and it’s close enough in both time and space for Cisco and his girlfriend Cynthia to combine their powers and open a breach through time to get them on board.
She arrives to what looks like an empty ship, until Mick rounds the corner with a beer in his hand and almost jumps out of his skin at the sight of her.
“Skirt!” he shouts in surprise, quickly looking around himself to make sure none of the other annoying do-gooders have come with her. “Where the hell did you come from?”
“I need help,” she begs him, not even caring that it’s Mick of all people that she’s relying on, as she steps closer and gestures to Alex’s limp and battered body in her arms. “Please, you-your ship can heal anything, right?”
Mick narrows his eyes suspiciously at her pleas, as if she’s some kind of trick, but then they widen when he notices who she’s carrying. “Is that the boss’ lady?” He looks closer for himself before Kara can say anything. “Ugh, Sara would kill me if I let her die. Come on.”
Grunting, Mick jolts his neck, motioning for Kara to follow him towards the med bay.
“Please, j-just save her,” Kara pleads again as she carefully places Alex on the reclined chair like Mick tells her to.
“Relax, Superskirt,” he says, nudging her out of the way so he can make sure everything is plugged in and turned on. “The robot’s got it handled, don’t ya, Gideon?”
“Absolutely, Mr. Rory.”
Kara stands back and watches as her sister is enveloped in blue light and pulled back from the brink of death.
Supergirl is gone by the time Sara and the rest of the Legends come back from their mission, waiting just long enough for Alex to open her eyes and promise she’s okay before she heads back to earth-38 to help her friends deal with the mess Edge has made.
“You didn’t steal the ship,” Nate points out with a grin as he makes his way across the bridge and towards where Mick is seated. “I’m proud of you, buddy. I told them everything would be fine if we let you sleep it off.”
Mick ignores Nate’s babbling to look at Sara. “Someone waiting for you in the med bay,” he tells her.
Sara doesn’t bother wasting time by asking Mick what the hell he’s talking about, and goes to investigate for herself, instead.
She stops in her tracks when she sees who’s laid out in the chair, her brain taking a moment to fully catch up with the beating of her heart.
“Alex?” When she obviously doesn’t get an answer, Sara takes quick strides over to her side, fingers immediately going for the pulse of Alex’s wrist first, just to make sure.
“She’s fine, Captain Lance,” Gideon’s voice manages to cut through her worry.
It doesn’t do much to calm her down. “What the hell happened?”
“According to Supergirl, Agent Danvers was riding her motorbike to a crime scene when she was struck by a car,” Gideon informs her, tone as neutral as usual. “Her injuries were severe and some even critical, but Supergirl was able to get her here in time to be saved.”
Sara tries very hard not to think about what might have happened if she hadn’t.
“Kara was here?” she asks absently as she reaches forward to gently brush the pad of her thumb her over Alex’s smooth cheek, imagining the cuts and scrapes that must have been there not long ago.
She’s so caught up in her worry and relief that she doesn’t even stop to marvel at the fact that she’s actually touching Alex again, after all this time.
“Sounded like some real fun shit was going down on her earth,” Mick answers for Gideon as he enters the med bay. “Couldn’t stay long.” Sara hears him approaching, but her eyes don’t leave Alex’s peacefully sleeping face. “Here,” he grunts, slamming a desk chair from the library down beside her. “Since I know you’re a sap who’ll camp out in here, sit.”
Sara finally tears her gaze away from Alex to look down at the chair and then up at her perpetually grumpy friend. “Thanks,” she tells with a small but genuine smile, knowing better than to show her gratitude in any other way.
“Whatever,” he mumbles, nudging the chair closer to her before leaving without another word.
Alone again, Sara blindly pulls the chair to the edge of the bed and sits down in it before taking Alex’s limp hand in both of her own. “How has she been?”
“She regained consciousness briefly,” Gideon dutifully informs her. “She’s just resting now.”
“Thank you, Gideon,” Sara says softly and meaningfully, obviously talking about far more than just the information.
“It was my honor, captain.”
Sara is still sitting at Alex’s bedside when she wakes up hours later - disoriented, confused and with no memory of what happened or how she got on the Waverider.
She’s happy to see Sara, though, despite the circumstances, if her continued grin and bright eyes are anything to go by; now that Sara knows she’s okay, the sentiment is readily returned.
“When are we?” Alex asks as she sits up in the chair, as if just realizing what being on the Waverider means.
“We were in 2001,” Sara answers, fingers still tangled in Alex’s. “We’re just chillin’ in the temporal zone right now. Sorry I couldn’t take you anywhere more exciting.”
“That’s okay,” Alex laughs, tucking loose hair behind her ear with her free hand. “I think I’ve had enough excitement for today.”
Sara scoffs. “I’d say more than enough.”
She’s had a lot of time to think over the last few hours, and she’s spent most of it stuck on the wondering; wondering if the future she knows means Alex was always going to survive today, or if Sara’s somehow already changed her fate far beyond a wedding date and they just got lucky.
It’s times like this Sara almost misses the Time Masters and their time crib notes; evil as they may have been, sometimes the wondering feels worse.
“You okay?” Alex asks, the sound of her voice drawing Sara out of her head. She nods and stands up, using both hands to help Alex out of the chair. “Wanna give me a tour of this place? Didn’t really get a chance to explore much last time, impending Nazi invasion and all.”
Sara loops her arm through Alex’s as she leads her to the door. “Sure,” she agrees easily, leaving her doubts in the med bay as they leave. “I can show you all kinds of nerdy things for you to geek out over.”
“Think I can borrow this when I go back?” Alex muses as they walk, arm outstretched to brush her fingers against the grooves of the wall. “I know a few people that could use a timeship.”
Alex is joking, but Sara immediately knows what she’s talking about and can’t help but consider it. “Gideon?”
“Assuming the breach or portal were big enough, there’s no reason the Waverider wouldn’t be able to cross earths,” Gideon answers, citing the evil Waverider from earth-X as precedent. “However, the ship’s ability to travel through time once there would be unpredictable at best.”
“Thanks for nothing, Gideon,” Alex replies lightly.
“You’re very welcome, Agent Danvers,” Gideon immediately says back in a matching tone, and Sara has to laugh at the look Alex is giving her.
“Is your AI being sarcastic with me?” Alex asks in disbelief.
Sara smiles wider and bumps their hips. “I think that just means she likes you.”
Sara sends Alex off with one of the Bureau’s portal makers so Cisco doesn’t have to exhaust himself next time, and a hug that lasts a little too long to be friendly.
She could swear Alex lingers just as long, though, and the kiss she gives her cheek before she leaves definitely lingers long after she’s gone, too.
The next time they talk feels different, like it isn’t enough.
It’s been less than a day, not much longer than she was even on the Waverider, but Alex misses it and Sara already - even as she’s talking to her.
Hearing her voice, even seeing her face, it just doesn’t feel like enough for Alex anymore.
“How many days do you get off?” Sara inquires, eyebrow raised like she’s ready to fight if she doesn’t like the answer.
Alex groans, looking around the apartment she’s already going stir crazy in. “Too many,” she sighs. “J’onn and Kara tag teamed me until I agreed to take a week off, but I don’t see the point; I feel better now than I did before. I think Gideon might have even fixed that crick in my neck that’s been bugging me for months.”
“Good,” Sara says forcefully, making her emphatic agreement with J’onn and Kara clear. “Doesn’t matter how you feel, after going through something like that, you need to rest and give your body a break.”
Alex rolls her eyes. “I got it, mom.”
It’s a joke, obviously, because she’s exasperated and a bit frustrated, but it triggers something in Alex’s head the second she says it, and she feels the atmosphere in the whole room shift.
That something must show on her face, because Sara questions it. “What?”
Maybe it’s the near death experience, or cabin fever already setting in, or maybe, it’s because Sara just looks so cute trying to be stern and bossy, but Alex finds herself asking the thing she’s wanted to for months.
“Do you want kids?” she wonders, putting her cards on the table and hoping Sara will pick up on what she’s not saying and understand.
Judging by the growing grin on Sara’s face, she does.
She takes a moment to answer, though, picking her words carefully. “I had never really thought about it much before,” Sara finally starts, head tilted and smile still warm and wide. “But, you know, something just got me thinking about it lately,” she continues, and Alex would know what she means even without the wink. “And while I don’t need them like you do, I could see myself with kids, one day.”
“Yeah?” Alex breathes, the word almost catching in her throat as another piece fits into place.
“With the right person, yeah,” Sara confirms, somehow sounding soft and cheeky at the same time.
And it’s a good thing Alex has the next week off from work, because with the way her heart is pounding, she’s definitely gonna need that long to recover.
Sara still has that familiarly unfamiliar feeling in her gut by the time they hang up.
She’s felt it once before, that day in the study when Iris called asking for help with DeVoe.
Back at the start.
Sara had made the first move then, and she’s pretty sure Alex just did the same now.
She had been waiting for this, and after what almost just happened to Alex, she doesn’t even know why she waited the extra day.
Maybe time is still on their side and maybe the future is still set to play out the same, but as it turns out, Sara isn’t a very patient person.
“Ray!” she shouts suddenly, pushing herself to her feet and heading towards his room with determined strides. Sara finds him in there playing cards with Nate and they both look over at her when she storms in. “You’re in charge until I get back.”
The boys look at each other for answers, and Ray scrambles off the bed to stop Sara before she can leave. “What, whoa, wait,” he rushes out, grabbing her arm and turning her back around. “Where are you going?”
“To go get a girl,” Sara declares with all the confidence in the world, like she’s in a movie and just delivered the cheesy tagline.
“Yay,” Nate whisper-cheers in the background, soundlessly clapping his hands.
Ray also looks pleased, which she wasn’t actually sure he would be, but of course he can’t just go with the flow. “What if something comes up and we need you?”
“If all goes according to plan, you should be able to contact me through Alex,” she tells him as she hands him her C.I.S.C.O. Phone since she won’t be needing it for awhile.
“How long will you be over there?” he asks hesitantly, like he’s worried the answer might be forever even if she’s acting like it’s not.
Sara shrugs, not sure herself, but also not too worried about it; she will be back, she’s sure, but maybe not ever for good - but she’ll deal with that when the time comes.
“For as long as I need to be,” Sara vows.
And she’s not gonna go alone.
Sara tries Jax’s house first, and his mother tells her where she can find him - after she makes her promise to talk some sense into him.
The garage looks empty when Sara first walks in, but it doesn’t take long for her to spot Jax crouched down by the back wheel of an old car doing something mechanic-y.
“Hey, little brother,” Sara greets him when he still hasn’t sensed her presence.
She hears something clatter to the ground before Jax pops up looking all surprised to see her.
“Sara?” he questions, like he can’t believe his eyes. But she gets it, it must feel like two of his worlds colliding, seeing her here. He shakes it off soon enough, though, and pulls her into a warm hug - one she allows despite how dirty his uniform is. “What are you doing here? Aren’t you sick of me turning you down yet?”
“Well, I rarely get rejected by anyone else,” Sara retorts smugly as she pulls away, joking but not really; she’s got game, they both know it, and he doesn’t have to know about her recent self imposed dry spell. “I think I can handle it.”
Jax scoffs at her, shaking his head. “Yeah, your ego seems like it could use a few hits.”
Sara lets that slide, because it’s not exactly untrue. “I’m actually not here to try to get you to rejoin the team," she assures him. “I have a different kind of mission in mind.”
“Unless that mission involves a beach and pretty ladies in bikinis, I’m probably not gonna be down for that either,” he warns her, but she pays him no mind.
“You ever been to another earth?” Sara questions innocently, and gets a look that says what do you think? in return. “‘Cause Alex-”
“Of course,” Jax mutters teasingly.
“Because Alex,” she continues pointedly. “Knows some people from the future that need to get back to there. Only problem is, they have no timeship and no idea how else to get there.”
Jax doesn’t look impressed, probably because he sees right through her admittedly transparent ‘mission'. “How’d they end up in the past then?”
“It’s a long story,” Sara dismisses because it’s also a story she doesn’t fully know. “The point is, they have a spaceship, but need a timeship; I know someone that knows a lot about timeships - that’s you, by the way.”
“And you’re also looking for an excuse to go see your future wifey,” Jax adds knowingly, still unimpressed by Sara’s offer. “And just ‘cause I know how to maintain the Waverider doesn’t mean I know how to make a timeship.”
Sara shrugs, having all the faith in the world in Jax. That, and well, it doesn’t really matter if he’s successful or not, she mostly just needs him to come and try.
“You’ve done it before.”
It takes Jax a moment to register what she’s talking about, but when he does, he visibly tenses up and grows a little more serious. “Gray did that.”
“With your help,” Sara reminds him gently.
“That’s the point,” Jax says through gritted teeth as he turns away from her to put his tools away, and Sara’s not blind; she can see he’s quickly losing his patience for serious conversation disguised as polite banter, but she can handle him. “We did it together. Everything I did with you guys, I did it with Gray. I just can’t handle all that right now.”
Sara tentatively steps closer, but still keeps her distance. “Which is why I’m not here to ask you to come back,” she reminds him. “Look, I’ve lost people, too. I get what you’re going through-”
“No, you don’t!” Jax suddenly explodes as he spins around, and it’s so out of character for him that Sara can’t help but flinch in surprise. “You don’t get it! You can’t! None of you can.” His eyes are wide and watery; his fists clenched at his sides as he tries to calm himself down enough to continue without yelling. “You lost your sister, yeah, and I know what that did to you - I saw it, but Sara…” Jax’s voice wavers and his body loosens as his anger suddenly turns into something more like sadness. “I lost a part of myself. Literally, it’s like a piece of me is missing. And you can’t understand that.” He shakes his head, soft sad eyes pleading with Sara to see where he’s coming from. “I ain’t saying your loss is any less than mine, it’s just… different.”
Sara lets his words and pain linger in the air for a few heavy moments; politely looking away while Jax roughly wipes at his cheeks and tries to compose himself.
She knows he’s been hurting and she also knows he’s probably wanted to let that out for months now. Jax is a sweet guy; happy and friendly, despite everything, and it’s just like him to process every other emotion, but keep the anger bottled up until it bursts out. She just hopes that was enough to help him start to move forward.
“Actually, I do know what that’s like,” Sara eventually says once Jax looks like he’s ready to hear it, her tone even and calm; a stark contrast to his emotional outburst. “After I died, when I came back, it felt like I was missing part of myself; my humanity.” She notices a flicker of recognition on his face, and she continues. “I thought I’d never get it back. But then this guy came along, in a really creepy trenchcoat, and he offered me and a bunch of other knuckleheads a mission.” There’s a small tugging at the corner of Jax’s lips and Sara sends him a small smile of her own to let him know it’s okay. “And that mission slowly started filling in that hole; it gave me a purpose.”
Jax is quiet for a moment, considering her words. His body is visibly more relaxed, hands no longer fists, and Sara thinks she might see an actual smile forming.
“So what, you think my purpose is making a timeship and being your wing man on some other earth?” he wonders sarcastically, but it’s already obvious from his tone that he’s considering it.
“I don’t know,” Sara admits with an honest shrug. “I just know it’s not here in this garage.”
Even if Jax doesn’t want to come with her now, she doesn’t want him wasting his brain and talent, or his good heart; he’s destined for so much more than this, she’s sure of it.
He offers her a nod of agreement, looking around the place like he doesn’t belong here anymore. “Yeah. You’re probably right about that.”
“And who knows,” she adds for good measure, grin playful and eyes hopeful. “Maybe your future wife is on earth-38, too.”
That gets an actual laugh out of Jax, and Sara knows she’s got him.
“Well, you should’ve just led with that,” he admonishes her and she rolls her eyes back at him. “When do we leave?”
“I was kinda hoping now,” Sara answers, because she can’t wait a minute longer.
Thank you again for reading. I hope this chapter was at least a little worth the wait. I would love to hear your thoughts. Until next time.
Chapter 3: part iii.
i) So sorry this chapter took so long to get up, but you can't say I didn't warn you.
ii) Next chapter is planned out, so hopefully won't take as long, but again, no promises.
iii) This is still on track to be done in four parts, but a short epilogue is still a possibility.
iv) Thanks again to anyone that left comments, I love hearing what you guys like. Please keep it up.
v) Ikea, you're the best, thank you for always listening to me babble and offering opinions.
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
Sara and Jax arrive to guns in their faces, just like Cisco warned them would happen if he breached them into the D.E.O., but just popping up in Alex’s apartment unannounced seemed kind of rude, so.
They’re as lucky as he was, though, because Supergirl isn’t out saving the city and is there to save them from any trigger happy agents, instead.
“It’s okay, just friends, again,” Kara assures everyone as she quickly steps between all the guns and the newest arrivals. “Sorry, they really should call first, I know.”
Sara watches the agents carefully, making sure they’ve all stood down before letting her own guard down, and letting Jax know he can do the same.
“Well, your security is way better than S.T.A.R. Labs,” he says with a laugh, dropping his hands back down to his sides as Kara hugs Sara first before pulling him into one, too. “You can just stroll up in there like nothing.”
“What are you guys doing here?” Kara asks as she pulls away, sounding surprised but excited to see them.
Jax crosses his arms and looks at Sara expectantly, waiting to see how much she’s going to share, but she just ignores him and tries to play it casual.
“Heard you were in need of a timeship,” she says with a shrug. “Thought we’d help you guys out for a change.” Kara’s got this tiny but very annoying smirk on her face, like she doesn’t buy it, so Sara pushes past that. “But I hope you guys know how to send us back, because Cisco said, and I quote; ‘I’m not an Uber, people!’, so I think we’re on our own.”
Kara tilts her head back and laughs; promising them they have a way home before pulling them over to meet everyone.
J’onn is as polite as she remembers, and Brainiac 5 as blue and obnoxious; Mon-El seems okay, and Imra is obviously an alien, being that beautiful. Jax falls in love with her at first sight, of course - the poor kid.
Winn is just as Alex described him, and nothing like General Fingerless Gloves from earth-X; he might be more excited to see her than Alex will be.
“It’s so nice to finally meet you,” he gushes as he completely bypasses the hand she holds out for him to shake and hugs her instead. “Alex talks about you all the time. Or, well, I try to get her to talk about you all the time and she threatens to punch me in the throat, but you’re a topic of conversation a lot.”
Kara has to physically pull him away from her when he won’t stop babbling, but Sara doesn’t mind too much.
Jax stays behind at the D.E.O. to check out the Legion ship and get a look at what he’s working with, while Kara doesn’t waste time taking Sara over to Alex’s place.
Sara had kind of been hoping she’d fly her over there, if she’s being honest, but walking is okay too, she guesses.
At least it gives them time to talk.
“So Alex really isn’t expecting you?” Kara asks, not for the first time, and even though she sounds more giddy than anything, the fact that she’s asked this multiple times now has Sara a bit worried.
“You don’t think she’ll mind, do you?”
Surprising her future wife by showing up on her earth unannounced and uninvited after she just finally confirmed her interest in her had seemed like such a romantic idea to Sara in the moment, but now she’s realizing she may have jumped the gun a little bit.
But Kara laughs like she’s got nothing to worry about. “Are you kidding? Alex is gonna be so excited to see you!” She gives Sara’s arm this reassuring little shake as they walk. “Especially since we grounded her for the week and she’s already going crazy. I’m sure you’ll be able to help her enjoy her time off.”
Her voice is knowing, just like her grin, and it makes Sara’s doubts disappear as suddenly as they came.
Alex is just on the verge of being bored to death - scrolling through Netflix and waiting for Sara to reply to her texts - when there’s a knock at her door.
She doesn’t even have time to get off the couch before a blonde head wearing glasses is poking inside and grinning at her.
“You’ve got some nerve showing your face here,” Alex scowls at the sight of her sister, meaning it only a little bit and even then, mostly playfully. She gets it, after all, it’s just annoying.
Kara’s smile turns sheepish for just a moment before it widens. “I know you’re still grumpy about taking time off-”
“Being forced to take time off,” Alex corrects her indignantly.
“Being forced to take time off,” Kara repeats and fights an eye roll. “You better be nice to me or I’m not gonna show you your surprise.”
Annoyance forgotten, Alex is immediately interested and almost sounds hopeful when she asks; “Is there an alien invasion?”
“No alien invasion,” Kara laughs, looking behind the door she’s still hiding behind, and it’s only then that Alex picks up on the fact that there’s someone else there.
“Just little ol’ me,” she hears Sara say before she sees her, and then she’s stepping past Kara into the apartment and Alex can’t tell if her heartbeat has sped up or stopped completely. “Sorry to disappoint.”
Alex is on her feet in no time at all. “Sara?”
“The one and only,” she confirms smoothly, opening her arms for Alex to settle into.
Kara watches them embrace with a pleased grin, but she can’t help but add; “Actually, considering how many earths there are, you’re probably not-” She shuts herself up before Alex even has to glare at her. “Nevermind, nevermind, that doesn’t matter right now. All that matters is that this Sara is here.”
“Yeah,” Alex sighs happily, holding on tight.
Sara is here.
Kara sticks around just long enough to make Sara promise not to let Alex punch or shoot anyone on her first day off before she has to leave to meet Sam and Lena for dinner.
She invites Sara and Alex to come along, but doesn’t seem surprised when they’d both rather stay in.
“I can’t believe you’re actually here,” Alex says for maybe the fifth time. She’s had to rely on a phone to keep her connected to Sara for so long, and now she’s seen her - touched her even - two days in a row. Alex wants to ask how long she’s staying, but she doesn’t want to know the answer yet. “Did you really come to help the Legion get home?”
Even though Alex is pretty sure it’s about more than that - she’s had her doubts about Sara’s feelings, but she feels like she knows, now - she can’t help but ask; even if just to see how much of her hand Sara is willing to show already.
“Among other things,” Sara answers, and her coy grin tells Alex everything she needs to know.
It isn’t until Jax calls hours later that Sara realizes how long she and Alex have spent talking.
All they’ve done for months is talk and she would wonder how they haven’t grown sick of it yet if she didn’t already know the answer.
“Winn said I could crash at his place as long as I need,” Jax shares, informing Sara of the reason he’s called. “I’m guessing you’re gonna live in sin with the wifey?”
Sara refrains from rolling her eyes as she considers his question. A quick glance around Alex’s apartment tells her that she has no spare room (or even a real bedroom, for that matter) and the couch doesn’t seem like it’d be the most comfortable to sleep on…
“What’s up?” Alex asks as she returns from the kitchen, two bottles of beer in her hands.
“Uh, Jax was just asking where I was spending the night,” Sara answers, asking without really having to.
Alex smiles like she should already know the answer and hands her a bottle. “You’re staying here.”
Sara grins. “I’m staying here,” she confirms into the phone.
“Okay, well, just remember that you’re not married yet,” Jax teases, because he thinks he’s funny. “Don’t do anything Ray wouldn’t do.”
“Goodbye, Jax,” Sara says pointedly, disconnecting the call without another word. Off Alex’s questioning look, she just sighs, “Little brothers” in way of explanation and leaves it at that.
“So do you guys not have bedrooms on earth-38 or what?” Sara wonders when it’s time for bed and Alex has insisted she doesn’t mind sharing - it won’t be their first time, she had reasoned, and she’s already borrowed some clothes to wear, too.
“Just get in,” Alex tells her, playfully bumping her towards the bed as she makes her way past her to the bathroom.
Sara smiles to herself, at the ease between them, and steps up. “You got a side preference?”
“Take whatever side you want,” Alex calls from the bathroom, and it sounds like she’s getting ready to brush her teeth. There’s a pause and then, “As long as it’s not the left side.”
Sara always did prefer the right.
It’s not often that Sara shares a bed with someone she hasn’t just had sex with; to share a bed just to share it, but she finds she doesn’t mind it - could even get used to it.
Alex is a good sleeper; doesn’t toss or turn much, doesn’t snore at all, and she stays on her side.
Not that Sara would mind much if that last one weren’t the case.
She might not seem like it, but Sara likes cuddling - naked preferably, but not necessarily. With the right person, anyways; when she’s feeling it.
And with Alex? Sara’s more than feeling it.
Enough for her to move closer and cross over to Alex’s side of the bed to wrap an arm around her waist.
For the first time in months, Alex wakes up with a warm body around hers.
Before, that had been something she had to get used to, but more recently, it’s been something she’s had to learn to live without.
Alex remembers waking up in Sara’s arms that morning on earth-1; remembers waking up and thinking it was Maggie still sleeping behind her - wishing it had been her and freaking out when she realized it wasn’t.
She knows exactly who’s beside her this morning, though; finds nothing but comfort in the knowledge and the embrace.
Alex just pulls Sara closer and decides she’s going to sleep in.
Considering how long and busy the previous day was for Sara, it’s no wonder that she sleeps in a lot later than is usual for her.
And so it’s also not surprising that she wakes up to an empty bed again.
“You’re gonna give me a complex,” Sara grumbles, voice sleepy but humor sharp.
She can hear Alex moving around, so she knows she’s still in the apartment, and when she finally pushes herself up to look, she finds her standing in the kitchen making breakfast.
“You’re finally up,” Alex notices without even looking up from whatever she’s making. “I would’ve thought an assassin would be a lighter sleeper.”
“Okay, I’m starting to get the appeal of not having bedroom walls,” Sara can’t help but comment first as she runs a hand through the mess on top of her head. “And in my defense, I traveled across thirty-eight earths yesterday; I was tired.”
That’s a slow day for her, really, but Alex doesn’t need to know that.
When Alex finally looks up, Sara can see her smile from all the way across the room and yeah, she definitely likes this no walls thing. “Well, I hope you’re also hungry too, then, because I made way too much.”
“I’m always hungry,” Sara promises, throwing the blankets off as she forces herself to get out of the bed that’s way too damn comfortable for its own good. “Are you making bacon?”
“Already done,” she answers, pointing towards the small collection of breakfast food that’s sitting on the opposite end of the counter. “Hope you like it crispy. There’s coffee ready, too.”
Sara’s stomach rumbles its approval. “You really are my dream girl.”
That must catch Alex off guard, because she doesn’t have a snappy reply ready for that one.
“Everything okay?” Alex checks once they’ve sat down to eat.
It’s nice and comfortable, and the domesticity of the moment isn’t lost on her. It reminds her of so many other morning, except maybe a little bit warmer, somehow.
Sara takes her time answering; finishing her forkful of pancakes with a smile. “It’s all great,” she assures Alex as she wipes syrup off the corner of her mouth. “Not quite as good as Gideon’s pancakes, but.”
“Sorry to disappoint,” Alex replies around her own bite, carefully reaching for the butter and nodding her thanks to Sara when she passes it to her.
“Don’t worry, Danvers,” Sara assures her. “I still think you’re dreamy.”
Alex can’t feel the heat on her cheeks yet, but Sara looks so damn proud of herself, she can’t imagine she’s not blushing.
They stop by the D.E.O. after they’re done eating, and Kara almost has an aneurysm when she sees her sister.
“You were supposed to keep her away from work!” she whines as she storms over to them, clearly too upset to notice that Alex is dressed casually and not in her uniform.
“Relax, kid,” Sara dismisses her worry before Alex can start whining right back at her sister, too. “We’re just here to check in on Jax quickly and then we’re leaving again.”
Alex slips a hand around Sara’s arm to tug her in the direction of where they’ll be able to find Jax. “I’m showing her around the city. We won’t even stop any crime if we see it.”
Kara actually looks pleased at that, because she’s ridiculous, and lets them continue on their way.
As it turns out, Jax spent most of his time messing around with Winn yesterday, so he doesn’t really have much of an update to give Sara on the timeship front.
She can’t help but smile when he tells her that, though; happy to know Jax is still a Legend at heart.
“If you need me, just get someone to call Alex’s cell again,” Sara tells him as she hands over Alex’s C.I.S.C.O. Phone. “Ray has mine, so if you need any help or a second nerdy opinion or whatever, you can get in touch with him with this. But he’s supposed to call if he needs me for anything, so if he does-”
“I’ll get Winn to call Alex,” Jax finishes for her, sounding slightly exasperated, but mostly endeared by her orders. “I got it, cap. Get outta here, I know you got better things to do.”
He’s right; Alex is waiting for her at the door.
He nods before he looks past her to yell at the woman across the room. “Make sure she has some fun!”
Alex returns his smile and promises she will.
After all the different times and places Sara has seen, there’s not much Alex can show her in National City that’s likely to impress her all that much, but she’s only there for Alex anyways, so that’s okay with her.
Sara’s more than happy to just watch and listen to Alex as she leads her around the city, pointing out all her favorite spots and all the things that have been rebuilt after Supergirl ruined them.
“Sounds like Supergirl would make a good Legend,” Sara jokes after Alex has finished telling the story of how the entire side of a building had to be redone after Kara threw a giant alien through it. “I should try to recruit her while I’m here.”
“Not unless you want her stealing your job,” Alex counters while steering them towards a corner coffee shop. “Kara’s more of a leader than a follower.”
“Mhmm, it’s just as well,” Sara hums, like she’s just talking to herself. “She’s not the Danvers sister I’m interested in, anyways.”
Alex laughs and rolls her eyes, holding the door of the shop open as she tugs Sara inside. “Do you have an off button?”
Alex spends all day wanting to kiss Sara - more in spite of her incessant annoyingly charming flirting than because of it - but she doesn’t.
Not when Sara’s hand keeps brushing hers as they walk through the park, or when she steals half her fries at dinner, or when she sits way closer than she needs to on the couch.
Alex doesn’t kiss her the next day, either.
Not when she wakes up to Sara’s sleepy blue eyes and lazy smile; not when she puts on some of Alex’s clothes after her shower and looks so damn good.
They end up watching Ruby after school unexpectedly and Alex doesn’t kiss Sara when she’s being unbelievably cute with her while they play laser tag.
She doesn’t even kiss her after Ruby pulls her aside to tell her how awesome Sara is and asks if she’s Alex’s girlfriend yet.
It’s hardest not to kiss her in the quiet moments, though, when it’s just them and it’s all she can think about.
There’s nothing holding her back, really; no reason why they haven’t kissed yet, Alex just hasn’t made the move.
And somehow she does know that it has to be her to make it - she’s not waiting for Sara to do it; she’s already made enough of them.
Alex wonders if maybe it’s because some part of her thinks it’s too soon - Sara has only been here a couple days, after all - but how can it possibly be too fast when it’s something she’s waited for, for months?
It’s not until they’re in bed on the third night that Alex finally does it.
She’s not sure what makes this moment any more perfect than all the others she let pass by, but one minute Sara is telling her about how Titanic ends on earth-1 and then the next Alex is leaning forward to smooch her.
It’s nothing like any other first kiss Alex has had, and it takes her a moment to realize that’s because it’s not actually their first one.
That other kiss - those other kisses - feel like ages ago; a drunken, sloppy makeout (and so much more) with a stranger, one that she only vaguely remembers bits and pieces of, in an actual other universe.
This one is different, though, in all the right ways.
This kiss is more warm than hot; slow and unhurried; comfortable and familiar, like she’s kissing her best friend.
And Alex is sure she’ll never forget this one.
Sara sighs into the kiss, like she’s been holding her breath for months, and pushes her whole body into it, too.
She keeps it slow, letting Alex set the pace as she gently cups her cheek; a warm and comforting calmness spreading through Sara’s veins as they kiss and kiss, and then kiss some more.
There’s a hand tangled in her hair one second, cradling the back of her head to pull her face closer, but then it’s moving down her neck; fingers curling and playing with wisps of thin hair before they make their way up front to tease across her collarbone and then back again.
Eager fingers burn a trail over Sara’s back, digging in to pull her closer and then moving on - moving down, to settle at the small of her back and then up again; this time under her thin and borrowed shirt.
Her fingers are even hotter against Sara’s bare skin, and Alex’s mouth swallows her whimpers hungrily, working more out of her as her touch grows bolder.
Sara kind of loses track after that, as her head just gets more and more hazy from feeling Alex all over her.
She can’t tell who’s touching who where, just knows the ember that sparked when they started has steadily grown and now it feels like every inch of her body is on fire in the best, most intoxicating way.
It starts warm and only grows hotter, just like their kisses, and eventually Sara lets herself be consumed.
Sara’s not surprised when she doesn’t wake up alone this time.
She knows Alex is still in bed before she even opens her eyes; can feel her against her and with her, in more ways than just to the touch.
“Hi,” she croaks out as her eyes flutter open to meet soft brown ones, and a smile tugs at her lips for no reason other than the sight of them.
Alex hums her greeting back, eyes soft as she loops a leg through Sara’s to tangle them together even further. “I can’t remember the last time I slept in this late.”
Sara’s grin turns smug, as it’s wont to do. “Well, when was the last time you had a night like that?”
“I don’t think I’ve ever had a night like that,” Alex admits with a grin of her own, bright eyes only getting brighter as she leans forward.
Their matching smiles make for tame kisses, but neither of them seem to care.
Sara and Alex don’t leave the apartment for the next few days - they have a lot of lost time to catch up on, after all.
All those times Sara had to settle for a wink, when what she really wanted to do was kiss Alex’s cheek; when she wanted to thread their fingers together, but hoped a soft smile would do; when they had to hold phones instead of each other.
They can do all of that now, and they do, without a second thought.
Sara wakes Alex up with kisses and keeps her in bed for hours doing everything else; they watch movies and television cuddled up on the couch, and touch each other whenever and wherever they want to.
It’s almost scary how easily they roll with the shift in their relationship, like it’s never been anything but this.
It makes sense, though, when Alex thinks about it; it’s been a long time coming and something they have both known the other wanted. The only thing standing in their way had been thirty-eight universes, so now that Sara had eliminated that issue - temporarily, at least, but that’s an issue Alex will ignore just for today - it was only a matter of time.
And Alex might not know as much about time as Sara does, but she knows enough, and she’s tired of wasting it.
When Alex finally leaves her apartment, it’s to go pick up dinner when Jax comes over for a visit.
“Chinese okay with you guys?” she asks as she makes sure she has enough room in the fridge for the inevitable leftovers.
“Sounds good,” Jax agrees easily from the couch.
Sara echoes his answer. “Just get whatever, we’ll eat anything.”
“Okay, I shouldn’t be long,” Alex promises as she heads to the door, not thinking twice when she stops to give Sara a quick kiss goodbye on her way past.
She’s out the door soon after, and Sara doesn’t have to wait for Jax to speak to know what he’s going to say. “Shut up.”
“So it’s like that, huh?” he says anyways, and she can’t be too annoyed; she’s kinda missed his teasing. “Not even here a week and you’ve already sealed the deal.”
“Nothing is sealed,” Sara insists, getting up and heading towards the kitchen to get everything ready for when Alex gets back with the food. “We just…”
“You’re just already together?” Jax finishes for her.
And he just sounds so happy for them that Sara can’t bring herself to play if off. “Maybe.”
Or, as it turns out, maybe not.
As Sara discovers after Jax teases Alex when she comes back with dinner and she stammers her way through a denial.
“Oh, uh, no, no, we’re not-” she stutters on the spot, looking at Sara for help or maybe some kind of guidance. Whichever it is, Sara doesn’t give it to her. “We just… We’re just making the most of our time together.” Alex sounds as unsure as Sara feels, and she looks back at her for reassurance again. “Right?”
But Sara is anything but when she answers, “Sure.”
They’ll talk about that later, though.
(Jax does manage to give Sara a little bit of an update on what’s going on with the Legion ship while he’s there, too.
After checking it all out, he’s sure that with a bit more work that the recently damaged ship will be up and running well enough to handle the trip through time should he be able to do it, but that’s a big if.
He says a lot of stuff about time drives and other time travel mechanical stuff that Sara has never really understood all that much, but the gist seems to be that it might take a while.
She assures him that’s more than okay with her.)
It’s not until a few hours after Jax has left that they finally talk about it
Sara’s not sad or hurt or anything - more like surprised and perhaps a little bit confused, but maybe it would be an easier topic to broach if she did feel some type of way about it.
As it is, she struggles to find a way to casually bring it up in a way that won’t make Alex feel like she’s trying to ask her for something, instead of just about it.
Because Sara doesn’t want to push Alex or ask her for more than she wants to give right now; she’s never been the most patient person, but she thinks she can find it in herself for the important things.
When she knows what she’s waiting for will be worth it.
So if Alex doesn’t want to commit to anything yet, that’s okay with her - she just wants to understand why, is all. And luckily for Sara, Alex is quick to give her the perfect opening to bring it up.
“Did Jax have an estimate for how long he thinks it might take?” she asks as she pours them both a drink.
“His best guess is ‘a while’,” Sara answers, deciding against trying to explain all the technical stuff she didn’t really even understand herself. “So we probably have a lot more time to make the most of.”
Sara tries to say it casually, but there’s nothing casual about the way she watches Alex’s reaction, and the way she stills just briefly at her words lets Sara know Alex picks up on it.
“Awesome,” she says after a moment, finishing up in the kitchen and moving towards the couch. Alex hands Sara a glass and settles against her, pulling a leg underneath herself as she tries to gauge Sara’s mood. “I’m sorry. Was what I told Jax not okay?”
“No, it’s fine,” Sara assures her with a smile and a kiss to her temple. “I just didn’t take you for a friends with benefits/no strings attached kinda girl.”
Alex pulls away from Sara like she’s been burned, her face looking comically close to scandalized at the suggestion. “I’m-I’m not! That’s not what I meant,” she insists, placing her glass on the table so she can take Sara’s hands in her own. “This, what we’re doing, it isn’t without feelings, not at all. There’s too many feelings, if anything; so many strings. I like you, Sara. A lot.”
“But...?” Sara continues for her, giving her an encouraging smile to make sure Alex know she’s not upset.
“But you literally live in another universe,” Alex fills in the blank for her like it should be obvious; like she expects Sara to have the same reservations. “I just want to enjoy you while you’re here, not think about what happens when you leave. And that’s easier, at least for me, if I don’t think too much about what we are; if I don’t think of you as my-” She stops short of actually saying the word, but Sara can fill that blank in easily enough. “Is that okay?”
Sara takes in Alex’s pleadingly hopeful face and of course it's okay. She can’t fault her for being cautious and hesitant given their situation; Sara figures she probably would be too, if she didn’t know what she knows.
Sometimes it’s easy for her to forget that Alex doesn’t have all the same information as her.
“Of course,” she finally answers her, lifting their joined hands up so she can kiss Alex’s knuckles to reassure her that everything really is fine.
It seems to do the trick and Alex visibly relaxes again. “Yeah?”
“Yeah,” Sara promises, and pulls Alex close to seal it with another kiss.
Whatever they call themselves, or don’t, doesn’t really change anything between them.
For the rest of the week, the affection and the banter, the kisses and the touching, it’s as natural as it’s always been, and they’re just them.
And Sara likes what they have and the pace they’re going, so she leaves the topic be; Alex has her reasons and knowing some of them is enough for her.
But, knowing is not understanding.
Sara understands to an extent; can objectively see where Alex is coming from, but she’s not quite as sure about the why.
She has some ideas, it’s impossible not to, but it’s hard to know for sure without talking to Alex about it, and that just seems like it would be counterproductive at this point.
So, for now, Sara lets it lie so she can enjoys their time together, too.
Sara doesn’t have to wait too long to get a little insight, though.
It’s Alex’s last day off work - something Alex actually seems sad about now, Sara notices and can’t help but credit herself for - and as much as they wanted to spend it locked up in her apartment again, Kara invites them for lunch, and won’t take no for an answer.
So, instead of still being in bed at noon, they’re are at CatCo, waiting for Kara to finish up whatever she’s doing so they can go eat. And then, if Sara has anything to say about it, go back to Alex’s place and spend the rest of the day in bed.
“Okay, so James is the one Kara was in love with before, right?” Sara asks to pass the time while they wait at Kara’s desk.
She’s in James’ office talking with him and Lena about some article or another, and Sara can’t help but watch them through the glass. She hasn’t officially met James or Lena yet, but Alex has talked about them enough for her to feel like she knows them.
“Yeah,” Alex confirms from her seat at Kara’s desk, where she’s far less interested in what’s going on in James’ office.
“And he’s besties with her cousin?” she continues. “Superman?”
“But now he’s dating Lena, sister of Superman’s arch nemesis? Who is also Kara’s bestie?” Sara turns back to look down at Alex questioningly. “Do I have that right?”
Alex spins one of Kara’s pens between her fingers and looks amused as she nods. “Don’t forget that he’s also a vigilante named Guardian, which Lena doesn’t know about. Just like how she somehow still doesn’t know that Kara is Supergirl,” she adds with a smile. “I can make a chart for you if you want, but I think you’ve got it down.”
It’s not the most complicated thing Sara has ever heard - she’s a time traveler for goodness sake, who has come back from the dead - but it’s still fun to hear about other people’s issues sometimes, and remember she’s not the only one with a complicated relationship.
“Well, they make a good looking couple, I’ll give them that,” Sara muses as she continues to watch them talk with Kara. “And what’s a little family feuding when you’re both that hot, right?”
Alex makes a noise of what Sara thinks is disagreement and moves her attention from the pen to finding something else more interesting to entertain her. “Yeah, well, being pretty isn’t gonna stop that ship from sinking.”
She says it in an offhand way, her attention more focused on snooping through Kara’s desk than it is on the couple they’re discussing, but something about her words feel important and catch Sara’s attention.
“What do you mean?” she can’t help but ask; more because she’s interested in what insight it might give her into Alex than anything it has to do with the actual couple she’s dismissing so easily.
“Did you already forget your recap?” Alex wonders with a raised eyebrow. “Brother and bestie being mortal enemies? Evil family of super villains? Secret identity?”
“Yeah, but they obviously knew all that going in,” Sara points out with a shrug; again, she’s heard a lot worse. “Other than the secret identity thing, anyways. Seems like they got past it.”
Alex stops her search to look up at Sara, maybe sensing that there’s more to the conversation. “But that stuff always comes back up eventually,” she replies seriously. “With her awful and persistent mother trying to get her claws in her and the trouble Lena always finds herself in, it’s probably always gonna be an issue.” Her mouth dips into a little bit of a frown as her brows knit together. “They both already know that, and they could save themselves a lot of time and heartache down the line if they didn’t try to ignore it.”
Her words fill in another blank Sara’s had since their conversation the other day, and it finally clicks into place for her.
She was fine with Alex’s need to avoid any labels, but she didn’t totally get it until now.
It makes Sara think back to their very first conversation at Barry and Iris’ rehearsal dinner, when Alex shared some vague details about her break up with Maggie.
I wish I’d known that sooner, so I could make a break before later came around, she had said.
That had made sense to Sara at the time; it seemed logical, then. And maybe it was, for them. But now, it seems anything but.
“Maybe,” she finally says slowly, trying to choose her words carefully. “But every relationship has its stuff. If you love the person, or even just really like them, you don’t just not try because it might be hard. You always gotta try.”
The words seem to have the impact Sara wants them to, but before Alex can formulate her reply, Kara’s chipper voice interrupts their moment.
“Hey, sorry for making you wait,” she greets them with an oblivious smile. She gives Sara a quick one-armed hug and shoos Alex out of her chair so she can put her notes away. “My bosses are real hardasses. Just give me a minute and I’ll be ready to go. Do you both know what you want?”
Sara watches Alex look everywhere but at her, and now she’s wondering the same thing, too.
Despite her growing list of questions, Sara decides to leave it be, after that.
She’s already spent too much time overthinking every aspect of their relationship, only for it to work out in the end; it just seems pointless to start again now.
She’ll let someone else do that for a change, and hope Alex finds the same answer she already has.
Alex is mostly quiet over lunch, and she doesn’t eat too much, either.
She vaguely listens to Kara and Sara talk about things she already knows; her attention drifting in and out as the volume of the conversation she’s having in her head overpowers them.
Sara had a point, Alex can see that, she’s just not sure she can agree with it.
She knows she’s probably being a little cynical - or, maybe, a lot cynical - but after everything that happened with Maggie, and how and when it happened, she feels like she’s earned that right.
They had gone too fast, and Alex had dove in head first, and so, while the fall took a long time to come, she eventually ended up face planting all the same.
She has no plans of doing that again; not if it can be avoided.
And that’s the thing - it can be, this time.
Alex already knows why she and Sara can’t work in the long term; it’s why she was so hesitant to admit her feelings for her in the first place, even to herself.
This isn’t like with Maggie, where everything felt like it fell right into place until suddenly, a year and an engagement later, it didn’t anymore.
With Sara, she knows everything up front, and she’s going to do what she needs to, to protect herself.
Alex has already fallen too far to avoid a painful landing all together, but she can at least try to make sure she’ll land on her feet this time.
She expects Sara to try to finish their conversation the second Kara leaves and they’re alone again, but she doesn’t.
Instead, Sara just offers her hand, wiggles her fingers, and asks what else Alex wants to do on her last day off.
They end up going to National City Museum, where Sara points out all the places and times that she’s been to, then they go to dinner, and then they just head home.
Sara doesn’t even bring it up then, when it’s just them and everything is quiet.
Alex knows they’ll have to talk about it eventually, but that’s just something else she’ll add to list of things she’ll worry about later.
Alex wakes up first the next morning, bright and early and before her alarm, and turns around in Sara’s arms to find she’s still asleep.
She won’t be for long, so Alex enjoys the time she gets; brushing loose strands of wild blonde hair out of Sara’s face so she can count her freckles.
A part of Alex loves the fact that she’s already used to this, but a bigger part of her hates it, too.
It feels like they’ve somehow gone so fast but so slow at the same time, and Alex feels so much for Sara already; it’s as scary as it is exciting, and-
“It’s too early to be thinkin’ that hard,” Sara’s sleep mumbled voice breaks through her thoughts, and Alex doesn’t even wonder how she knows she’s overthinking anything when her eyes are still closed.
She leans over and kisses her instead. “I was just thinking about you,” Alex whispers against her lips, kissing her smile again.
Alex’s bike is still totaled from her accident, so they walk to the D.E.O. that morning.
Her fingers are itching to thread through Sara’s the whole way, but she settles for linking their arms, instead.
They arrive earlier than Alex’s shift usually starts, but she has to get Sara set up with a temporary D.E.O. uniform and I.D., so they’re just ready for work by the time they need to be.
She spends most her first day getting a tour of the place and a run down of all the procedures and the dos/don’ts of it all.
Alex and Kara vouch for Sara, so she gets to skip a lot of things normal recruits have to go through, but it’s still a pretty involved process, becoming an agent of a big government organization - no matter how temporary.
“Nice threads,” Jax laughs when he sees her in her new uniform for the first time.
Sara picks at the tight black shirt as she joins the group. “Yeah, feels weird,” she admits, settling at Alex’s side with a bump to her hip. “I’ve gotten used to the white.”
“Well, I for one think you look great,” Winn adds, trying to be part of the conversation.
Jax laughs at his new friend and pats him on the back. “Don’t mind him,” he tells Sara. “I’ve been telling him some stories about you, and he’s just trying to suck up.”
“Can I just say, I’m a big fan,” Winn continues with a smile, hands clasped in front of him as he leans closer. He pokes a finger out and motions between her and Alex. “And of this, too. Loving this. Two badass ladies-”
Hooking her fingers into the collar of his shirt, Alex pulls Winn back so harshly he might have lost his balance if Jax wasn’t there to steady him. “Can you take him away?”
“I got it,” Jax promises with a laugh, bumping his fist with Sara’s before he leads Winn away.
Alex waits until they’ve turned the corner before she apologizes for him.
“Don’t worry about it,” Sara waves her off with a smile. She brushes Alex’s arm, but doesn’t do much else; not sure how she feels about PDA in the workplace. “I’ve dealt with far worse. I work with far worse.”
Alex’s lips twitch up and she catches Sara’s hand just to give it a brief squeeze before dropping it again. “You really do look great in that uniform.”
“I always did look good in black,” Sara agrees.
Sara’s first day of work is uneventful; her second and third, too.
A couple assholes rob a bank and hold a bunch of people hostage on her fourth day, but Supergirl takes care of that before even the cops can, so that day is also kind of a bust.
She fills her time well though, between bugging Jax while he nerds out and spits science mumbo jumbo at her, sparring with and beating pretty much every agent in the place (aliens notwithstanding), getting trained with all the awesome and other worldly guns the D.E.O. has to offer, and of course; Alex.
Sara’s kind of surprised she doesn’t mind the lack of action too much. She remembers going a bit stir crazy within a week of Rip firing them all those months ago, but this time is different.
She’s still got a lot to do, and people to do it with, and she thinks she could maybe get used to this.
It’s not until her second week, when some alien race or another with a name Sara can’t pronounce attacks National City, that she sees some real action.
It’s a hard fought battle that stretches over a few days, and even though Supergirl and even the Legion get most of the glory, Sara gets to kick plenty of ass, so she can’t complain.
Taking orders instead of giving them takes a little bit of getting used to, but Sara’s a good soldier; she falls in line and does what she’s told well.
The best part is getting to fight alongside Alex again, though.
They both agree, after, that punching aliens isn’t anywhere near as satisfying as punching Nazis, no matter how evil they are, but it’s fun and exhilarating and a little hot, all the same.
Sara finds her when the dust has settled, sitting on the curb and cradling a sore arm that got twisted a little too far during the battle.
“You okay?” Sara asks as she sits down beside her, running a hand through Alex’s messy hair as she looks out at the damage done to the city street. Alex nods and brings her attention back to her. “You looked good out there.”
Alex sighs with her whole body, slumping against Sara and resting her head on her shoulder. “So did you,” she mumbles as her eyes drift close. “I really like fighting bad guys with you.”
“Me, too,” Sara agrees, cheek against the top of Alex’s head. They sit quietly for a moment, just enjoying the lull of the aftermath of chaos, until; “You use any of the moves I taught you?”
Alex’s laugh is light, and Sara feels her nod more than she hears her words. “A couple,” she confirms softly through a small yawn. “Helped me take down one that was twice my size.”
“That’s my girl,” Sara swoons.
Everyone just wants to sleep after their big win, so they don’t go out for victory drinks until the next night.
Alex has told Sara a lot about the alien bar, but it’s the first time she’s taken her there.
And, as it turns out, there actually is something in National City that’s quite unlike anything Sara has ever seen in all her time travels.
“This place is wild,” she says in awe as she looks around the bar, taking in all the different types of aliens just casually hanging around and intermingling.
Alex watches her with an endeared smile, remembering the feeling well.
Her mind goes to that first night with Maggie, and even to those subsequent nights with her here, and for the first time, it doesn’t hurt; doesn’t even make her feel sad. Wistful, maybe, a little, but mostly she just remembers it all fondly, now.
She’s not sure when that happened - sometime when she wasn’t looking, obviously - but she knows it’s big, all the same.
“Hey,” Sara’s voice breaks her out of her thoughts, her fingers gently curling around her wrist as she steps closer to her. “You okay?”
Alex smiles and presses a soft kiss to Sara’s lips. “I’m more than okay.”
Sara expects Jax to have a similar reaction to the bar when he joins them with Winn and James a little bit later, but it turns out he’s already been here a few times.
“I come sometimes with the boys,” he shares as he slides into the booth across from her and Alex. “Have you met James yet?”
“Not formally,” Sara answers, smiling politely up at the man and shaking the hand he offers her. He had helped with the recent attack, in and out of his Guardian get up, but things were a little too hectic to really get a chance to introduce herself. “Sara.”
“Right, the friend from out of town,” he says, throwing a teasing smile in Alex’s direction. “I’m James. It’s nice to finally meet you.”
“Yeah, you too,” she replies with her own smile. “You had some nice moves out there.”
“Not as good as you,” James volleys the compliment back as he grabs a chair to pull up to the booth that’s already full. “You really know how to work a bo staff.”
Sara feigns modesty, leaning back and stretching her arm out across the booth behind Alex. “I’m alright.”
Jax scoffs and immediately launches into a story to prove her nonchalance wrong, but Sara’s much more interested in the woman beside her to listen.
Alex has a smile on her face all night, watching Sara with her friends.
She fits right in, just like Alex knew she would; like she’s been there from the start.
Sara just has this way about her - this slightly annoying, but mostly amazing way about her - that makes everyone like her immediately.
It’s a combination of charm and looks, and some kind of effortless cool that Alex has never had.
She might resent her for it if she were anyone else, but as is, it just makes Alex fall harder, if that’s even possible.
“I had fun tonight,” Sara says lightly as she leans against the door frame while Alex looks for her keys, her words barely even slurred despite all the strong alien alcohol she’s had.
Alex pauses her search to smile dumbly at the blonde, and kiss her lightly. “Me, too.”
Sara sighs into the second kiss, her heavy eyes slipping closed as she blindly reaches into the pocket of Alex’s jacket and easily finds the keys where she noticed Alex put them before they left the bar.
She holds them up for Alex to see when she pulls away, still tingling lips curved up smugly.
“Found ‘em for you.”
Alex snatches them from Sara, but she’s smiling, too.
See? She’s just so damn cool.
Sara charms Sam and Lena just as easily when she finally meets them the following weekend, when they all meet up at Kara’s place for game night.
“I’m so glad you guys could come,” Sam gushes when she catches her alone in the kitchen while they wait for Winn and Jax to get there. “I’ve been dying to meet you. Ruby has not stopped talking about how cool Alex’s new girlfriend is since you took her to play laser tag. You really made an impression.”
Sara smiles and even though she knows she should correct Sam’s assumption, she doesn’t. “So did Ruby,” is what she says instead, and she finds she’s not just saying it to be polite. “She’s a great kid.”
“Yeah, I’m thinking I’ll keep her,” Sam laughs and jokes in that mom way, and Sara decides she likes her. “So, Alex said you’re from out of town. Where are you from?”
As if sensing the need for it - or, more likely, literally hearing it - Kara suddenly swoops in before Sara has to find an answer.
“My sister wants you,” she casually sing-songs as she sneaks up behind Sara. “They’re trying to decide on the teams.”
Thankful for the save, Sara gives Sam another smile and hightails it out of the kitchen with two drinks and over to the livingroom to join Alex, where she’s sitting and talking to James and Lena on the couch.
Lena’s face lights up at the sight of her, barely waiting until she’s sitting down before she pounces. “Finally,” she grins, leaning over James to get closer to her. “I’ve been dying to meet you.”
She’s been hearing that a lot lately, and it earns Alex a smirk. “Just how much did you talk about me, Danvers?”
Even though it’s really less about Alex talking about her a lot and more like all her friends gossip and tease her way too much, Alex still stutters through her denial.
After four rounds of four different games, Kara and Alex come out as Game Night champions for a second time in a row.
(Sara got stuck on a team with Jax, because apparently Alex values winning over loyalty, but as a fellow competitive person, Sara can respect that.)
Everyone else is tired of losing after that, so Kara reluctantly agrees to put the games away, but only if she’s allowed to pull the karaoke machine out.
Winn and Sam are on their second duet when Alex plops herself down in Sara’s lap with her beer, offering her a sip as she gets comfortable.
“You’re a really bad winner, you know that?” Sara teases her as she takes the bottle from her hands. Alex just rolls her eyes, which lets Sara know that she’s probably not the first person to ever tell her that, so she doesn’t push that button any harder. “Do you also know that all your friends are hot? Like, even the aliens?”
That gets a smile out of Alex, who takes her beer back as she looks around at the people in the room. “Well, I hate to be the bearer of bad news,” she starts, turning her eyes back to the blonde underneath her. “But most of them are either taken, or pining after someone else, or they’re Winn.” Sara feigns disappointment, but laughs as she presses her forehead to Alex’s shoulder. “But I might know a woman who’s single and interested.”
She says it with a flirty tone, like it’s just part of the joke, but Sara can’t help but wonder if there’s more to it.
“Oh, so Sam is into chicks?” she jokes back, because now isn’t the time to try to figure out what Alex’s words might mean.
Her only answer is another eye roll and light slap on the arm.
It’s been a few weeks since they last talked about the status of their relationship - or lack thereof, rather - and things have been good.
They are what they are and Sara’s been fine to leave it at that until Alex said otherwise.
But the thing is, they’re basically a couple already.
Everything they do are things that couples do; they just aren’t one in name, is all.
It’s the way Alex wanted it and Sara gets it more now than she did at first, but it also seems like it’s just kind of pointless, the more time passes.
Before, she understood the mentality of keeping things casual, she just didn’t know why, exactly, Alex wanted that. Now, though, it’s the opposite; Sara knows where Alex’s reluctance and fear stems from - she just thinks it’s nonsensical at this point, considering everything.
They’re both really into each other, as far as Sara knows, so surely it’s still going to hurt just as much when - or if, she goes back to earth-1. So, really, how much difference is a simple label going to make then?
But, feelings don’t always make sense, Sara knows that from experience; all she can do is hope Alex’s eventually do and she lets her know when that time finally comes.
Eliza Danvers surprises her daughters by announcing she’s coming into town in a couple of days.
Somehow even she’s heard about Sara, and of course she wants to meet her, too.
Alex isn’t against it, per say, but she’s not exactly enthusiastic about it, either.
“Why not?” Kara asks as she finishes sending a text to James before giving her sister her full attention.
She gives her a look. “You know why.”
“You’re still on that?” Kara sounds entirely unimpressed, and Alex can’t really say she blames her. “You guys have lived together for over a month now; you sleep in the same bed, you have breakfast together every morning before going to work together every day. You kiss and hold hands and cuddle, and I’m sure a whole lot more. Why are you still holding back?”
Alex knows why, she thinks, but the fact that she has trouble trying to find the words to explain it should probably say something to her.
She thought that by not defining things and keeping them casual, that it would protect her in the end, from the inevitable.
But, as time goes on and she falls harder and harder, Alex is starting to realize there’s no defense against Sara Lance.
“Honestly, I don’t even know anymore,” Alex admits in a sigh, curling up into the couch to look at her sister helplessly. “After Maggie, I thought I’d never find something like that again; thought I could never feel like that about anyone else, but with Sara…” Alex sighs again, this time more wistfully than just defeated. “I could feel it starting, and it was scary. After how things turned out with Maggie, feeling anything close to that again was scary enough, but feeling it for someone that’s as unavailable as Sara is? For someone there’s no future with? What’s the point?”
“Love!” Kara exclaims like it’s obvious, and it reminds her of what Sara said that day in CatCo. “You do it for love! How do you even know there’s no future? None of us can know that.”
Sara can, actually, but Alex doesn’t bother pointing that out. “She lives on another earth, Kara, and travels through time. Long distance relationships are hard enough, that’s like ten levels past long distance.”
“It would be hard, yeah,” Kara agrees gently. “But hard isn’t impossible.” She reaches out to cover Alex’s hand with her own. “This isn’t like you and Maggie. It’s not impossible; it just isn’t easy.”
Alex can’t look at her sister as her eyes start to water, and the way she bows her head feels like admitting defeat.
“Do you regret being with Mon-El?” Alex asks sometime later, long after Kara had agreed to drop the subject. “If you knew going in how everything would turn out, would you have still done it?”
It’s something Alex has wanted to ask Kara for a while, ever since she started asking herself the same thing.
Her sister is quiet for a moment, thinking, but doesn’t seem surprised by the question; like maybe Alex isn’t the only one that’s wondered it.
“I did at first,” Kara eventually admits, adjusting her glasses. “When I thought he was dead. I just kept thinking that he wouldn’t have stayed on earth if it wasn’t for me, and that if he had gone with his parents, maybe Rhea and the Daxamites wouldn’t have attacked and-” She stops herself before she gets too lost in her what-ifs, and shakes her head. “But knowing he’s alive, seeing the man he is now, and knowing that a big part of that is because of our relationship… I don’t know, I just can’t regret that.”
Kara’s words hit right where she needs them to, and Alex feels the entire weight of them.
Being with Maggie - for as long as she was, and through everything she was - changed Alex in so many ways, in ways she’s still just realizing, and so how could she ever truly regret that?
Alex is who she is today in large part thanks to Maggie and what they had; what she has with Sara now is thanks to her, too, in some weird way.
She thought she regretted them, before - or rather, she at least wished she’d seen the writing on the wall sooner - but Alex can’t imagine who she’d be without that experience, now; if, even with all that pain that came at the end of it, she hadn’t tried.
Alex can’t regret it, not any of it.
And she wants to be able to look back years from now, and not regret anything about Sara, either.
Alex gets home late, but still finds Sara waiting up for her.
“How was sister hang time?” she asks through a yawn, grabbing the remote to turn the volume down on the television.
Instead of answering, Alex just walks towards her with purposeful steps and takes her face in her hands to kiss her; nice and long, and just hard enough for her to know it means something.
She pulls back with a confident smile. “How do you feel about meeting my mother?”
The smile she gets back is all the answer she needs.
Eliza phones Alex when she gets to National City, but they don’t see each other until dinner.
“Why am I more nervous than you?” Alex asks as she adjusts her shirt, careful not to drop the wine bottle she’s carrying while fidgeting with her buttons.
“Because I’m cooler than you,” Sara teases her, making Alex regret ever telling her that, and stops them just outside Kara’s loft. She bats Alex’s hands away and starts fixing her shirt for her. “Relax. It’ll be fine; moms love me.”
Her words do little to calm Alex’s nerves, but they do get her to smile, just a bit. “Sara. Please do not flirt with my mother.”
Sara smirks and gives her a peck on the lips, but doesn’t make any promises.
Eliza likes Sara, Alex can tell.
She’s not surprised, because everyone likes Sara, but that doesn’t mean she’s not relieved.
“So, tell me, how is it that you two met?” she asks innocently.
Kara chokes on her drink as she snorts at the question, but Sara plays it cool. “A mutual friend’s wedding, on my earth,” she answers with a winning smile.
“Oh, that sounds lovely,” Eliza replies with a matching smile, not paying her youngest daughter any mind as she coughs. “I love weddings.”
“It was a beautiful ceremony,” Sara continues as she reaches for the wine bottle to refill Alex’s glass after noticing it’s running low. “Or, it was, before the Nazi invasion, anyways.”
Now it’s Eliza’s turn to choke. “The what?”
Sara offers to help Kara clear the table and get the dessert ready once dinner is finished, while the other two women move to the living room to wait.
“She’s great, honey,” Eliza tells Alex what she already knows, her fingers in her hair. “I really like her.”
Alex has to smile. “Yeah,” she agrees, eyes moving over to the kitchen where Sara is playfully arguing with her sister over something or another. “Me, too.”
Sensing something deeper, like only a mother can, Eliza follows her gaze before turning back to her with a look of concern. “What is it?”
“It’s just…” It’s a lot of things, really, but Alex feels like she’s thought and talked them all to death and she doesn’t have the energy for it anymore. “Complicated.”
“Most relationships are,” her mother says gently, in that same way she told her so many hard life lessons when she was a kid. “But the good ones are worth it.”
Sara seems to sense Alex watching then; looks up and sends her a wink, and yeah.
Alex gets it now, she thinks, as she walks home hand-in-hand with Sara.
She doesn’t need anyone else to spell it out for her.
But, it seems like the multiverse wants to give her one last final push, just in case.
It’s been something like a year since Alex last saw Maggie, and considering they’ve both lived in the same city all that time, it’s kind of amazing it’s taken this long to run into each other.
It happens at the bar, of course; when she’s there with Sara (of course).
“What is it?” Sara asks, immediately sensing something off when she isn’t mocked for her bad shot. “What’s wrong?”
Alex tries not to stare, but it’s just been so long, it’s hard to believe her eyes. “Maggie.”
It’s weird to see her again, but it’s even weirder to see her and not feel those same things she used to.
She doesn’t feel nothing, Maggie will probably always make Alex feel something, she thinks, but it’s nothing compared to-
“That’s Maggie?” Sara asks, her husky voice breaking Alex from her trance. She’s moved closer now, leaning into her to get a look at the woman across the bar. “She’s hot. Nice job, Danvers.” She twirls her pool cue like it’s her staff and bumps her hip with Alex’s. “Not that I didn’t already know your taste in women is excellent.”
Her teasing makes Alex smile, and when she looks back at Sara’s grin, her stomach flips in that way that was missing when she looked at Maggie.
“Yeah, unlike your pool game,” she teases in return, though she has a sneaking suspicion Sara’s trying to hustle her; Alex finds it hard to believe there’s something she isn’t good at.
Sara scoffs in indignation and pushes Alex around the table to take her turn.
They get a table after Alex wins three games in a row (she still thinks Sara’s playing a long con, but she can’t prove it), and Maggie is still there.
She seems to be with some of her cop friends, as far as Alex can tell, but she’s trying not to be obvious.
“You can just go talk to her, you know?” Sara tells her suddenly, and apparently she’s failed. Alex’s eyes dart back to meet blue ones, and she’s met with sympathetic amusement. “You keep looking over there.”
“What? No, I-” Alex’s first instinct is to deny it, but this is Sara, and if there’s anyone that will understand her confusing feelings, it’s her. “Wouldn’t that be awkward? I wouldn't even know what to say.”
“Is there anything you want to say to her?”
Alex pauses, considering. “I-I don’t know.”
It almost sounds more like a question, and her eyes narrow as she looks at Sara, searching her face for an answer she’s unlikely to have.
Instead, all Sara does is down the rest of Alex’s drink and slide the empty glass back in front of her. “She’s at the bar now,” she tells her, and sure enough, when Alex looks, there she is. “Go get a refill.”
“Are you sure?” Alex asks before she can second guess herself.
“As long as you come back,” Sara assures her, sounding as cool and casual as ever, but there’s something else there now, too.
It makes Alex’s face soften, and she smiles as she cups Sara’s cheeks and kisses her.
“There’s nowhere else I wanna be,” she promises her.
Maggie doesn’t seem surprised to see Alex when she sidles up to the bar beside her and orders a drink, so Alex can only assume she wasn’t the only one painfully aware of their ex’s presence all night.
“Hey, Maggie,” she greets her softly, not even sure if her voice can be heard over the music in the bar.
“Hey, Danvers,” is the expected reply, but it still makes her smile. “Long time.”
Alex can tell Maggie is just as unsure of how to act around her as she is, and it actually helps ease some of the awkwardness she feels.
“Yeah, really long,” Alex agrees, pausing for a moment to flag down the bartender and order another drink before she turns her attention back to the other woman. “I hope this is okay, I wasn’t sure…”
“It’s fine,” Maggie reassures her, even though it takes her a few moments to actually be able to fully look over at her. When she does, she smiles, though it’s more polite than anything. “It’s good to see you.”
“You too,” Alex agrees, probably a little too quickly. It’s awkward, and even though that’s better than painful, it’s still obviously not great. It makes her kind of sad, that this is how things are between them now. “How have you been, how’s work?”
“I’ve been okay, nothing exciting that I’m sure you guys weren’t all over too,” Maggie shrugs, nodding to the bartender after he places her drink down in front of her. “I’ve had to talk to Supergirl a few times,” she admits, like she somehow just knows Kara hasn’t mentioned that to her. “What about you? Have you been okay?”
Alex tries to keep her eyes from seeking out Sara as she answers, “Yeah, I’ve been good.”
Really good, she adds in her head, but has enough sense to keep to herself.
“You uh, here with your girlfriend?” Maggie forces out, her eyes no longer on hers and her tone a weird combination of obligation and curiosity.
She almost says maybe or kinda, some variation of the lies she’s told herself and others over the past month, but something stops her.
Alex could say that; wait for Maggie to ask what that means; tell her the sordid details; get a pep talk.
She could do that, just like she’s done it with others before, but she doesn’t want to, and more importantly, she doesn’t need to.
Alex doesn’t need Maggie’s help to figure out how she feels, not anymore.
She already knows.
“Yeah,” Alex admits, finally. Then she says it again, just because she wants to say it more firmly. “Yes.”
Maggie is quiet for a moment, but she nods, more to herself than anything. She stares down at her drink for another moment before she finally looks at her again.
“I’m glad you’re happy, Alex,” she says softly, and Alex can tell she actually means it; even if it hurts. “That’s all I ever wanted for you.”
“Thank you,” Alex says back just as softly, and for so many things. It’s silent between them again, until the bartender comes back with Alex’s drink. She thanks him too, and waits until he’s walked away before she turns back to Maggie again. The air has shifted now, and it feels like their moment has passed. “So,” she starts, looking for something else to say to her ex other than goodbye. “I’ll see you around?”
Maggie seems to consider it before offering her, “Maybe.”
That’s about as much as Alex can hope for, so she lets Maggie walk away.
Sara greets Alex with a kiss when she returns to their table, and an arm around her waist.
“Everything go okay?” she checks, restrained concern clear in her voice. “Get what you needed?”
Alex nods and wraps her own arm around Sara’s shoulders, pulling her closer so she can kiss her cheek
“I already had it.”
They leave the bar earlier than they usually do, both of them tired from a long day and just wanting to be home.
Everything feels like it always has between them - Maggie hasn’t changed anything - and even though Sara is curious, she won’t ask.
If Alex wants to tell her, she will, just like everything else; in her own time.
It isn’t until they’re curled up in bed that she finally does; with arms around each other and legs tangled together.
“Maggie asked about you,” Alex whispers into the dark, her words sudden but somehow still expected. “Asked if you were my girlfriend.” She’s waiting for Sara to ask, but she still won’t; not when she already knows the answer. “I said you were.”
Everything Sara wants to say to her, she says with a kiss.
I know the other Legends weren't in this chapter, but they'll be back in the next, I promise! And just so you know, I really did try to write smut for the sex scene, but it's just not my thing, I'm sorry. I overreached with that M rating.
(Would also like to say I wrote the 'hard is not impossible' line before J'onn said something very similar in last night’s episode (3x16). Ugh, my mind.)
Chapter 4: part iv.
i) As it turns out, an epilogue will not be needed/posted, so this is the official final update for this fic.
ii) I swear I didn't set out to make it this long, it just kind of got away from me.
iii) It was fun to find ways to incorporate canon events into my plans for this chapter, or at least give little hints.
iv) There are lots of call backs and parallels to previous chapters in this final one because I love that kinda shit.
v) Once again, the hugest thank you to my friend Ikea for being the true MVP through this whole process.
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
Alex wakes up alone the next morning, for the first time in over a month.
She’s disappointed at first, but she figures turnabout is fair play.
That, and Sara’s left a note on her pillow to let her know she’s just out getting breakfast from their favorite spot around the corner.
Alex takes in Sara’s messy, scribbled writing, and smiles at the little hearts she’s drawn in the corner.
She would have never pegged Sara for the heart-drawing type, and it’s a nice reminder that she’s still got so much to learn about her - about her girlfriend.
And now that she’s gotten over herself, Alex has all the time in the world to do it in.
She’s still in bed when Sara comes back with coffee and breakfast, and she greets her with a kiss when the blonde crawls back in with her.
“There was a new girl working and she messed your order up on her first try,” she tells her as she carefully hands her a cup.
Alex offers her a lazy smile and cautiously takes a sip, humming her approval when it tastes just right. “It’s been a while since I’ve woken up to an empty bed,” she says, taking another sip and then placing her coffee on her bedside table.
“I was hoping I’d make it back before you woke up,” Sara admits, digging into the bag to get their food out. “This was the first time I actually woke up before you and I wanted to make you breakfast for a change, to celebrate.”
Alex raises a teasing eyebrow. “That you didn’t sleep in for once?”
“Last night,” Sara corrects her and playfully narrows her eyes. “To celebrate that we’re officially official now. But well…”
“Gideon’s spoiled you too much?” Alex guesses, sending her a grin when Sara hands her an everything bagel.
Her girlfriend rolls her eyes and huffs indignantly, but doesn’t deny it.
“Whatever,” Sara grumbles, biting into her own bagel around a small smile. “You still got breakfast in bed.”
They’re supposed to have the day off, but Alex gets called in around noon to step in for J’onn while he has to go deal with something concerning his father, and so of course Sara decides to tag along.
Not because she’s clingy or anything uncool like that, but mostly because she wants to see Jax and tell him the good news about her relationship status update.
(Which is definitely not uncool.)
They part ways without a kiss - Sara has since learned that Alex is okay with a certain level of PDA in the workplace, depending on their company, but has a strict no kissing rule in the D.E.O. - and Sara finds Jax hanging out on the Legion ship, as usual.
“Hey,” he greets her warmly from where he’s lounging and not looking all that busy. “Thought you weren’t in today.”
Sara, trained assassin, can barely contain her grin as she explains, “I’m not; just came in with my girlfriend.”
“Yeah, I heard J’onn had to-” Jax stops, taking a moment to fully process his friend’s words. “Wait.” Sara’s grin finally breaks through to match his. “Finally?”
“Last night,” she confirms with a proud nod, and laughs when Jax jumps up to pull her into a congratulatory hug.
“About time,” he teases as he’s pulling back. “I was starting to think your game wasn’t all that on this earth.”
Sara scoffs and playfully shoves him away, but her smile is wide and blinding; a lightness in her chest she hasn’t felt in years.
“Please,” she waves him off, grin now as smug as it is happy. “We both know there is no universe where I don’t got game.”
(It’s not long after that that Jax insists on VibeTiming Ray so Sara can share the good news with the rest of the Legends - who he’s apparently made sure to keep up to date on her dating status this whole time.
Ray’s reaction is similar to Jax’s, and when he calls the rest of the team over to pass the news onto them, they’re just as happy to hear it; even Mick musters up a congratulation grunt somewhere in the background.
They all crowd around the phone and talk over each other as they eagerly demand all the details, and it’s the first time since Sara’s gotten to this earth that she allows herself to truly miss them.)
Kara can somehow just tell that something’s changed when she sees her sister, and if Alex didn’t know any better, she’d wonder if Kryptonians can read minds, too.
“You just have this glow,” Kara explains when asked how she could’ve possibly known. “And I know you’re not pregnant, so…”
Alex rolls her eyes, but she’s clearly fighting a smile. “Sure, okay.”
“Plus, I can hear Sara talking to the Legends about it right now,” she adds casually and with a cheeky grin.
“You know I hate it when you do that,” Alex whines immediately, all of her glow disappearing as she transforms into a child and pointlessly tries to inflict some pain onto her little sister.
Kara is, of course, completely unbothered, and just laughs as she cautiously deflects Alex’s attempts to pinch her. “I would’ve thought getting a girlfriend would make you nicer.”
“What would make Alex nicer?” Winn asks as he joins them, amusement obvious as he watches the sisters bicker; probably glad to see Alex picking on someone other than him for a change. When her eyes cut to him, though, he quickly corrects himself; “Not that you need to be nicer; like you could get any nicer! God, Kara.”
Kara scoffs, “Suck up,” and gives Alex’s hands one last shove to get her to stop poking at her. “We were just talking about how Sara and Alex are finally dating.”
“Were you not… already dating?” Winn questions, eyes wary and darting back and forth between the sisters until he breaks under Alex’s glare. “I’m kidding! I’m kidding,” he assures her with a light and very hesitant punch to the arm. “I know the sitch, Jax spilled the tea - he taught me that too, that’s some earth-1 slang for ya. You know, we even had a bet going to see how long it would take,” he admits, clearly amused by his own antics. “Yeah, I lost that one big time, like by a month.”
“Ha!” Kara cackles and doesn’t make a move to protect Winn when Alex lunges at him.
“I talked to Maggie,” Alex tells her sister a little while later, when they’re alone and the jokes have stopped. “She was at the bar last night while we were there.”
Kara looks surprised, and Alex can’t tell if it’s because she saw Maggie or because she’s only just now hearing about it - something like that would’ve been the headline not that long ago, after all.
“And how was it?” she asks hesitantly, even though she can probably make an educated guess that things didn’t go too terribly, considering other recent developments.
“Awkward,” is the first word that comes to mind. “Which made it kind of sad. But it was good, too; to see her and get that over with.”
Kara nods like she knows what she means, and Alex already knows what she’s going to say before she says it. “Was that what made you finally make things official with Sara?”
Alex can’t pretend like seeing Maggie had nothing to do with it, but it was a long time coming, and it feels wrong to give her the credit for something Alex overcame herself.
If she’s honest, Maggie played a bigger part in holding her back than she did in pushing her forward - seeing her had only confirmed what she had already known - and Alex wants to claim this victory for herself.
She’s earned it.
“Not really,” Alex finally answers, and the truth of it feels freeing.
J’onn doesn’t come back to work until much later, after he’s sorted everything out with M’yrnn.
Alex knows she doesn’t actually have to tell him for him to know, but she does it anyways, because he’s too good of a man to say anything if she doesn’t first.
He’s happy for her, like she knew he would be, and he kisses the top of her head when he pulls her into a hug.
Her father is one person Alex can’t share her good news with, but if she could, she imagines it would feel something like this.
By the end of the day, everyone they want to know knows.
(Eliza has to settle for a text, because Alex knows she’ll get stuck on the phone with her for an hour otherwise, and after spending most of their first day as a couple apart, she really doesn’t have that time to spare.
Her mother sends her a ridiculously lengthy reply with almost a dozen emojis though, so it seems like she doesn’t mind the informality.)
“Finally,” Alex sighs once they’ve made it back to her apartment. “That day didn’t go as planned.”
Sara hums her understanding, slipping her jacket and shoes off before throwing herself down onto the couch.
“They rarely do in our line of business,” she points out in a mumble, tired eyes following her girlfriend as she locks the door and takes her own stuff off. Sara opens her arms in invitation and lets out an huff when Alex carefully lays her weight on top of her and snuggles in. “But it was still a good one.”
Alex just barely resists the urge to say something too cheesy by settling for a simple agreement as she gets more comfortable in Sara’s arms. “A really good one.”
And she couldn’t think of a better way to end it if she tried.
Sara wakes up before Alex for the second morning in a row, but this time she stays in bed.
It’s not long before sleepy brown eyes flutter open to meet hers, and then a sleepy smile follows soon after.
“No breakfast in bed this time?” Alex mumbles as she shifts closer.
Sara shivers as Alex’s ice cold feet brush her bare legs. “Afraid not.”
“Day two and already the romance is dead,” Alex teases, but her words are contradicted by the soft kisses she presses into her girlfriend’s collarbone.
Sara smiles as she presses her own kiss into messy red hair. “Gotta give me a chance, Danvers,” she replies lightly, fingers toying with the waistband of Alex’s shorts teasingly. “The day is still young.”
“You make a good point,” Alex agrees as she pulls back, eyes still fluttering as she fights through the last remnants of sleep. “You still have time to make it up to me.”
Her lips curve up into a lazy smile before she presses them against Sara’s once, twice, three times, and then she loses count after that.
They end up spending half the day in bed, but Alex certainly doesn’t complain.
Despite the fanfare, officially dating Sara isn’t all that different from unofficially dating her.
Everything they did then, they do now - only now, she’s doing it with her girlfriend.
Alex uses that word a lot more than she ever has, too - girlfriend; like she’s a fourteen year old in her very first relationship or something.
It seems silly and dramatic to her now, but for a while there - in the deepest depths of her break up blues - Alex really thought she’d never find this feeling again, so sue her for going a bit overboard.
Sara is just so amazing and Alex likes her so much, and she’s all hers.
(For now, anyways, a little voice echoes in the back of her head every so often.
It’s a lot less now, and a lot quieter too, but it’s still there, no matter how hard she tries to rid herself of it.
But maybe that’s just who Alex is - someone that will always have a little voice, saying one thing or another.
She’s getting better at ignoring it, though, and she likes to think that counts for something.
And it does - for awhile.)
Alex doesn’t even get two weeks to enjoy her new relationship before something pops up that gets her worrying and overthinking things again.
It’s not her fault, or anything Sara does, either, because Sara is amazing and things between them are great, but things can never seem to stay that way for long - not when they fight bad guys and aliens for a living.
Or, in this case, have visitors from the future.
As it turns out, The Legion didn’t accidentally get sucked into that wormhole and they didn’t accidentally end up in 2018.
They’re here to change the future; to save millions of people - Imra’s sister included - from dying hundreds of years from now.
(As the (former?) captain of a team of time travelers, a part of Sara feels like she should maybe scold them about messing with the timeline, but considering everything the Legends have done - from small things like Jax’s father to big things like A.R.G.U.S. - she figures she probably shouldn’t throw stones from her glass house, so she stays in her lane and lets the others handle it.)
“So, you risked stranding yourselves in our time to save yours?” J’onn asks them after they’ve revealed the true nature of their mission, and the inner circle has gathered to hash everything out in a conference room.
“Not exactly,” Mon-El admits before his wife cuts in.
“There was a risk,” Imra adds.
“But only a 13.69325% one,” Brainy finishes, looking like he wants to continue that percentage to the exact decimal point, but knowing not to. “According to the simulations I ran before we left, the odds of us finding the disruption that sent Mon-El to our time over a year ago are thoroughly in our favor.”
While everyone else seems to accept this answer, Jax looks less than pleased. “Wait, hold up,” he says with a shake of his head, sitting up straighter and narrowing his eyes at the three people sitting across the table from him. “So you’ve all just been letting me waste my time trying to make you a timeship that you don’t even need?” The silence that greets him is all the answer he needs. “That’s messed up.”
Sara agrees with him, but since she used the whole timeship thing as an (admittedly transparent) excuse to come here in the first place, she once again stays silent and in her lane while the conversation happens around her.
“It’s not as if you were putting forth your best efforts,” Brainy replies evenly and he quickly presents his evidence before Jax can get a word in. “With your knowledge and experience, I had estimated you would have already completed the task approximately twenty-three and a half days ago, give or take a thirty-one to thirty-five hour margin of error to account for possible D.E.O. or other, more superficial, distractions.” He gives Jax a moment to respond, but when he doesn’t, he adds; “Also, you never once asked for my assistance, despite the fact it would have obviously sped up the process exponentially - something even a level 1.12 intellect such as yourself would surely know.”
Out of everything Brainy just rattled off, of course the part that Jax latches onto is the last one. “Did this smurf just call me dumb?”
“Take it as a compliment,” Winn offers from his side. “He thinks you’re point-twelve levels smarter than I am.”
“Putting aside Mr. Jackson’s efforts with your ship,” J’onn cuts in sternly before things get derailed any further. He sends warning looks to Jax and Winn, then turns his attention back to Imra and Mon-El. “What else can you tell us about your mission?”
Sara is too busy eyeing Jax to really pay attention to whatever the Legionnaires are saying, and she’s so focused on him that she doesn’t notice Alex’s change in mood, either.
The meeting is eventually cut short by an explosion near the waterfront, and Supergirl rushes out to help while Alex gathers a team together to back her up.
“You’re not coming?” she asks Sara when she notices she’s not gearing up with the rest of the agents.
Sara shakes her head, looking across the large room. “I’m gonna stay here.”
Alex follows her gaze to where Jax is sitting dejectedly on the balcony and she gets it. “I’ll meet you at home?”
Sara nods, offering her a grateful smile, and Alex impulsively surges forward to kiss her.
It’s just a quick peck, but it’s enough to break her own rule, and Alex shifts into agent mode before anyone even thinks of saying something about it.
Sara waits until Alex and her team have left before she goes to join Jax on the balcony.
He looks up at her when she sits down on the step above him, but doesn’t say anything yet; she doesn’t push it, either.
It’s been a while since Sara has had to put her captain’s hat on, but she still remembers how to do this - remembers how best to talk to her team members - and she knows to wait for Jax to open up.
“I like it here,” he says after a few moments of heavy silence, but he doesn’t look at her yet. “I like that most of ‘em don’t have powers or totems or super powered suits.” He pauses and Sara knows what’s coming. “I like that nobody sees me as half of Firestorm.”
Sara puts a tentative hand on his shoulder and squeezes. “That’s not how we saw you either, Jax.”
“I know, but that’s how I saw me,” he admits, eyes still trained ahead of him instead of on Sara. “On the ship, that’s all I woulda been able to think about.” There’s another pause, and she feels Jax’s shoulder go slack as he sighs. “I like doin’ good, I like helping people, but I couldn’t do that with you guys anymore, not without Grey. But it don’t feel like that here, y’know? I can help here - not Firestorm, me; Jax.” He finally looks back at her, and Sara hopes he can see the understanding in her eyes. “I didn’t wanna leave yet.”
Silence lingers between them again, and Sara’s hand moves from one shoulder to the other, so she can pull Jax into her side for a hug.
“Who says you have to?” she wonders gently, telling him what she would’ve told him weeks ago if he had just come to her with this sooner, even if she understands why he didn’t. “Jax, if you wanna stay, stay; nobody is gonna force you to go back to earth-1.” Sara has to laugh a little at the way he’s looking at her, like he really hadn’t considered it could be that simple. “I told you before we came here that you just needed to find a new purpose, and if you think this is it, then you should hold onto it.”
Jax is smart and talented and so good; he’s all heart, and while the Legends are a lesser team without him, the D.E.O. will be lucky to have him here.
And Sara will be lucky, too.
“Thanks, cap,” Jax says with a smile, and leans into her like nothing is weighing him down anymore. “You also said my future wife might be here, too. Don’t think I forgot about that.”
Sara laughs lightly and palms his head, pulling it closer so she can press a kiss to the top of it.
“Gotta give that one time, little brother,” she advises him sagely, pictures of her life with Alex flashing through her head; what’s now and what she knows is coming. “It’ll be worth the wait.”
Alex is both exhausted and starving by the time she gets home, and she’s never adored Sara more than when she tells her there’s some pizza left in the fridge for her.
She grabs a couple slices without bothering to heat them up and joins Sara on the couch, pulling her legs up under her as she curls into her girlfriend’s side.
“Everything go okay?” Sara asks once Alex is settled, fingers automatically finding messy hair.
Alex makes a noise of affirmation as she takes a bite, but otherwise doesn’t go into any further detail; for an explosion, it really wasn’t all that exciting. “And Jax?”
“He doesn’t wanna go back,” Sara tells her as she steals a pepperoni off the slice Alex hasn’t started on yet. “He wants to stay here, live here. So he was stalling.”
Alex tenses at her words, and while there’s a million things she wants to say, all she can manage is, “Oh.”
“I might have told him he could work at the D.E.O.,” she continues, seemingly not picking up on the tension in Alex’s body - or maybe, more likely, she does, but knows now isn’t the time to press it. “So I really hope you guys need a great engineer that’s also mediocre to decent in hand-to-hand combat, because I might know a guy that’s interested in the position.”
Those million things are still there, crawling up her throat, but Alex is too tired and too scared to let any of them out just yet.
“Yeah, I’m sure that’ll be fine,” Alex promises instead, forcing the last of the cold crust in her mouth. “I’ll talk to J’onn about it tomorrow.”
“Thanks, babe,” Sara grins, pressing a loud kiss to Alex’s cheek and reaching for the second slice of pizza that she hasn’t made a move to start. “You gonna eat this?”
Alex shakes her head and hands her plate over, not particularly hungry anymore.
Despite her long day and the exhaustion in her bones, Alex doesn’t sleep well that night.
It’s not surprising at all - she never sleeps well when she has too much on her mind - but that doesn’t make it any less frustrating.
She tosses and turns, and so tries her best to stay on her side of the bed, but that just makes it worse; she’s already so used to sleeping wrapped up and around Sara that just sharing the bed with her isn’t enough anymore.
Which, of course, just makes her even more anxious because, really, how much longer is she even gonna have that?
Alex wakes up first, after getting less than two hours of fitful sleep, and goes for a run she doesn’t have the energy for.
She just needs to get out, though; clear her head and really figure out exactly what her issue is.
Or, well, Alex knows exactly what her issue is already - fear, just like it was before.
Because even though she stopped letting it hold her back, it doesn’t mean it’s not still there, slowly eating away at her.
It’s more that she can’t tell if it’s rational or not anymore.
She talks to Kara about it when they meet for lunch on their respective breaks, and her sister’s advice is as predictable as expected.
“You should ask Sara about it,” Kara tells her, like she’s an emotional idiot or something.
“Yes, Kara, I know that I should talk to my girlfriend about doubts I’m having about our relationship,” Alex shoots back, her tone a lovely mixture of sarcasm and exasperation. “But I’m clearly trying to avoid doing that, so can you please try to work with me here?”
Kara laughs, even though she’s obviously exasperated herself, and Alex gets it; she’s tired of herself, too.
She’ll be the first to admit that her overthinking has been annoying, but she listened to her sister complain about Mon-El over and over again last year, so Kara can just suck it up and at least pretend to indulge her.
“Well, has she said anything about leaving?” she tries again, and Alex appreciates this effort a little more.
“No,” she admits, and Kara should probably know that, because she’d be at least five times more stressed about this if she had. “But she hasn’t said anything about staying, either. Not even last night, which would have been the perfect time for her to bring it up if it’s something she’s thinking about. So clearly it isn’t.”
Kara’s laughing again, still sounding exasperated, but more amused than anything. “That’s not clear at all!”
“She came with Jax to help the Legion get home,” Alex reminds her, leaning forward in her seat as she lowers her voice a little. “They don’t need help anymore, so she doesn’t have a reason to stay.”
That’s not entirely true and Alex knows that, but she’s not exactly thinking logically right now. She also knows the Legion ship has always been just an excuse for Sara, but again; she’s having a bit of an internal crisis at the moment, and pessimism has always been her go-to.
“I know you don’t believe that,” Kara tells her gently and with a soft smile, and Alex suddenly appreciates her sister so much; the way she’s able to read her so well, and knows when to tease and when not to. “She has all the reason in the world to stay.”
Alex sounds so small when she asks, “Then how come she hasn’t said she wants to yet?”
Kara’s smile gets even softer, and a little sadder, but the only answer she has for her sister is a shrug.
Alex isn’t entirely surprised that talking to Kara doesn’t clear up much of anything, but at least it confirmed what she had already known - talking helps.
Hard conversations are, well, hard and they’re scary, but not having them is usually worse.
If there’s one thing Alex learned from that whole mess with Maggie, it’s that putting off that hard and inevitable conversation doesn’t make it any easier when the time finally comes to have it.
As much as the breakup had hurt, that pain had almost been preferable to the near crippling fear and anxiety that came before it, because at least after she had finally known.
And so, as scary as it might be to find out that Sara has plans to go back to her earth, Alex would prefer to know sooner rather than later, because she can’t handle being in the dark for much longer.
Sara spends her lunch break with Jax, waiting around with him while he goes through the process of becoming an official, full time employee of the D.E.O..
Turns out Alex didn’t even have to put in a word with J’onn like she said she would, because Jax had already spoken to him himself, and he was more than happy for him stick around.
“Don’t let them take a bad picture,” she advises him on their way to get his I.D. sorted out. “Alex still laughs at mine every single day when I use it.”
Jax nods like he’s receiving sage advice and eyes the picture on his temporary I.D. in his hands. “Hopefully your permanent one will be better then.”
He’s not quite as obvious as Alex, but Sara still almost trips over the hint as he drops it. “Subtle.”
“I’m just sayin’,” Jax shrugs, nudging her with his elbow and shooting her an expectant look. “You are planning on staying too, right?”
“It’s not that simple, Jax,” she replies, and while she says it with a sigh, Sara’s glad to finally talk about the elephant that’s been taking up room for too long. “At least not for me.”
“Why not?” he presses, brows furrowed. “I thought Cisco already dropped that spoiler?”
Sara tugs on Jax’s sleeve as they reach their destination, stopping him before they go inside so they can finish this conversation without an audience.
“I want to stay with Alex, obviously,” Sara starts with, because that’s what she knows for sure; what she thought was all that mattered until recently - before she really let herself think of all that she’d be leaving behind. “And I will, eventually.”
Jax doesn’t look unimpressed like Sara expects him to, and she figures it must be because he senses that now isn’t the time to go too far into it.
“But not yet?” is all he asks instead.
“I don’t know,” Sara admits, trying to find the words to properly articulate exactly what she’s thinking. “Staying here isn’t the problem, I love it here; it’s leaving there that I’m having trouble wrapping my head around.”
It’s not all that’s giving her pause, but that’s the gist of it, and she thinks if there’s anyone here that will understand all that that means, it’ll be Jax.
He nods his head, proving Sara right, and offers her a sympathetic smile that looks more like a grimace. “Have you talked to Alex about it yet?”
“No, but she wants to, I can tell,” she answers with a grimace of her own as she thinks about Alex’s obvious shift in mood the night before. “This is what was holding her back for so long, so I know she’s freaking out about it now. And I want to reassure her, but I also want to know exactly what I’m feeling when I do, because I don’t want her to get the wrong idea; I’m obviously going to move here eventually, I’m just not sure when.”
That’s the crux of Sara’s hesitance right now, as it’s always been; she knows what’s going to happen, just not when or how.
Because as much as she knows of their future, there's so much more she doesn't know know, too.
She hasn’t stressed herself out about those types of questions in a while, but she should have known it was only a matter of time before the come what may attitude she had decided to adopt would be tested.
“You ever thought about telling her about the future?” Jax wonders after a moment, head tilted to the side just a little to show that this is the answer he’s most interested in knowing. “Maybe it’d give her a little reassurance.”
Sara scoffs, raising a challenging eyebrow as if to say what do you think? and shakes her head as she pushes Jax along without answering him.
The thing is, of course Sara has thought about it, only every single day since they started talking, but that’s as far as she’s ever gotten.
Because Alex wouldn’t understand it and she wouldn’t be able to handle it - Sara is a time traveler and she could barely handle it at first.
Alex is a worrier and she overthinks things and it’s better she doesn’t know.
(Sometimes, when things like this come up, Sara still thinks it’d be better if she didn’t know, either.)
Maybe she’ll tell her someday, as a funny story, when the future has since become the past, but for now, it’s something for Sara to keep to herself. And, well, her entire team.
Time travel is confusing and the future even more so, and the few answers Alex would get wouldn’t be worth all the new questions she’d have.
Things are a bit weird between Sara and Alex when they meet back up later, tense in a way they haven’t been since their morning after awkwardness almost a year ago - but they ignore it, at least until they get home.
And even then, Alex isn’t planning on bringing it up at all that night - because even though she knows it’s what she needs to do, it’s still hard - it just kind of happens when she comes out of the bathroom and finds Sara perched on the end of her bed, texting with Amaya and Zari on her recently reacquired C.I.S.C.O. Phone.
“When are you leaving?” she blurts out before she can stop herself, or find any better words.
Sara looks caught off guard by the sudden question, but she covers it well with a quirk of her lips and a raised eyebrow. “You kicking me out, Danvers?”
“No, no, not at all!” Alex is quick to assure, her eyes wide as her head shakes; how does Sara still turn her into such a babbling idiot after all this time? “I just meant-”
“It’s okay, Alex, calm down,” Sara laughs softly, tossing the phone behind her and reaching for her girlfriend. She grabs Alex around the waist, fingers slipping through her belt loops, and tugs her forward until she’s standing between her legs and looking down at her. “I know what you meant.”
Alex feels herself relaxing under Sara’s touch, like always, but her fingers still find themselves nervously twisting up in blonde hair. “So?”
As much as she wants to look away, Alex watches Sara’s face carefully; sees the way her usual mask of confidence slips just a little bit as she takes the time Alex should have to find her words.
“I want to be with you,” she settles on a moment later, and her tone is solid and steady, like even if she doesn’t know everything yet, she knows that for sure. “And I want to make this work. More than you know.”
“But...?” Alex asks hesitantly, gut twisting up as she waits.
Sara’s eyes soften. “No but, not really.”
It makes Alex’s eyes roll. “However?” she continues to press, because she knows there’s more.
“However,” Sara reluctantly repeats, stretching the word out, but she’s got a bit of a smile on her lips, just barely - like she just can’t resist when she’s looking at Alex. “I’m not completely sure if I’m ready to stay permanently just yet.”
She winces as she says it, like she’s worried she’s upsetting her girlfriend, and it suddenly makes Alex feel so silly for thinking it had to be all or nothing; that Sara had to either stay or leave forever - like there’s no in between.
Like everything, Alex thinks it’s because of Maggie, because of how fast and suddenly the rug had been pulled out from underneath her.
Alex has been so focused on their future - on her need to know and control as much of it as possible so that she doesn’t end up with nothing like before - that she hasn’t let herself fully enjoy their present.
And that’s not how life should work, or relationships either; she doesn’t have to know their future, just knowing they both want it and are willing to put in the effort to make it work should be enough - is enough.
So, she nods and smiles encouragingly down at her girlfriend, sweeping a hand across Sara’s jaw before she carefully takes a seat on her lap and wraps her arms around her shoulders.
“Okay,” Alex says simply, because she finds that’s enough of an answer for her, and kisses Sara’s temple.
But still, Sara has more to say, and even though she doesn’t need to hear it, she’s more than happy to listen, anyways.
“Eventually, yeah, I’m gonna want to move here,” she promises, blue eyes bright and practically begging Alex to believe her; to trust her. “Because long distance wouldn’t be enough for me and I know you could never leave Kara. I just…”
Her words are uncharacteristically fast and a little jumbled, and Alex hates that she and all her baggage has put so much pressure on her; on this conversation and this decision.
“It’s okay,” she repeats, and drops another few kisses where the last one still lingers.
It seems like Sara hears it better this time, and Alex smiles when she feels her body relax underneath her.
Sara takes a breath and leans into her, tightening her hold around Alex’s waist. “The Legends, they’ve done so much for me,” she continues after a moment, her voice less tense, too. “And I guess I just need a bit more time to sort it all out, everything that I’ll be leaving behind.” Another silent moment stretches into two, before Sara looks up at Alex with questions in her eyes. “Is that okay?”
Alex smiles reassuringly and cradles Sara’s cheek, holding her face and her gaze so she knows she hears her; “Of course that’s okay.”
Then she leans down, this time pressing her kisses against Sara’s lips, and it feels like a promise.
The next few weeks are hectic, as Supergirl and the D.E.O. help Imra and the Legion complete their mission and save her sister and everyone else from the future threat they’ve come back to prevent.
It’s long day after long day, and many sleepless nights, too; blood and sweat and tears.
It’s the most action Sara has seen since she’s gotten here, and it’s both thrilling and exhausting at the same time - she’s missed it, she thinks.
She and Alex still manage make time for each other, though, during the chaos; a kiss, a hug, a touch, in the quiet moments, when they can.
It’s not much, but it’s enough to keep them going - to remind them what’s important.
It all ends in a big bloody battle; broken concrete and collapsed buildings, and a body count higher than it needs to be.
Imra ends up killing her sister’s killer, even as Supergirl pleads with her not to, and then it’s just over.
Kara cries, of course, and she can’t look at Imra after, but Sara gets it, even though she wishes she didn’t; she knows what it’s like to lose a sister, and maybe she made a different decision than Imra did when she had the option, but it’s not like that came without regrets.
She tells Imra as much when she catches her alone later, when Mon-El has finally left her side for a moment or two, and it’s painfully obvious to Sara how much she needed to hear it.
The Legion leaves not long after that, and Kara cries then, as well.
Just a little bit, though - less than Sara thought she would - and probably about the loss of something bigger than just him.
Sara gets that, too.
They take Kara to drown her sorrows at the bar later, and boy does she do just that.
Sara’s never seen her drunk before, didn’t even think she could be, but it turns out she’s even more obnoxiously cute than normal when she’s hammered and Sara didn’t think that was possible, either.
That’s how she starts out, anyways, before she gets sad and she starts crying again - which is better than pretending she’s fine or getting super cold and bitchy like she apparently did last time Mon-El left - and so Alex decides it’s time to take her home.
“You sure?” she asks, when Sara suggests she stay with her sister for the night.
Sara’s gaze drifts over to where Kara’s leaning against James by the door, practically sleeping on her feet, and she nods. “Go take care of your sister.”
“I’ll sneak out early,” Alex promises, leaning down to give her girlfriend a kiss, and then a second and a third, for good luck. “You’re the best.”
Sara shrugs and gives her a lopsided smile that says yeah well, and slaps Alex’s ass when she turns to walk away.
“You got it bad,” Jax comments from across the booth as he and Winn watch Sara watch Alex leave, a pair of knowing smirks on both their faces.
She turns back to them and grins sheepishly.
She has a couple more drinks with them before she goes back to Alex’s place on her own.
The bed feels too big without Alex, and the apartment feels empty, too.
It’s the first time Sara’s slept alone in months.
(And it won’t be the last.)
She wakes up to a phone ringing and vibrating on the bedside table, and it takes her a moment to realize which phone it is.
Sara blindly reaches over for it and rolls onto her back, blinking away the remnants of sleep until the too bright screen comes into proper focus.
Clicking on the VibeTime request, she’s greeted by Zari when she expects Ray.
“It’s six in the morning,” she groans flatly, eyes struggling to stay open.
Zari grimaces in sympathy. “Shit, sorry, didn’t think of the timezone issues,” she explains and glances behind herself, like she’s worried someone might hear. It makes Sara squint to try to figure out where exactly on the Waverider she’s calling from. “I just needed to call when I got the chance.”
“Wha-?” Sara starts to ask, and reluctantly pushes herself up into a sitting position. “What’s going on?”
She runs her fingers through her messy hair, pushing it out of her face as Zari seems to be second guessing herself before she finally spills.
“I think we need your help.”
Alex is more than a little surprised to find that Sara is not only awake when she gets home the next morning, but showered and dressed, too.
Considering it’s barely just past seven and they aren’t scheduled for work today, she had hoped to be able to slip into bed with her girlfriend and catch at least another hour or two of sleep before getting up again.
Obviously, her first instinct is to tease her for the anomaly, but the look on Sara’s face stops her. She doesn’t look sad or upset, or angry, either; just thoughtful, and maybe a little worried.
“What’s up?” she asks instead, tossing her keys on the table as she moves to sit beside the blonde on the couch.
Sara takes a moment to even look at her, her lips a straight line, but her eyes giving away nerves. She almost looks like she did that night a couple weeks ago, like she’s more nervous about Alex’s reaction than whatever it is she has to tell her.
“I think I have to go back,” Sara says softly, and it looks like it’s taking all of her considerable strength not to look away. “Zari called - she woke me up actually.” Alex knows this is serious and something she has been dreading for so long, but she can’t help but smile just a little at that admission. “She thinks they need my help.”
“Okay,” Alex nods, brows scrunching together; immediately sad at the prospect of being without Sara for any amount of time, but not jumping into meltdown mode like she would have not too long ago. “What’s going on? What happened? Is everyone okay?”
Ava’s been kidnapped by some time pirates on a job, apparently, according to Gary. He came to the Legends for help finding and rescuing her after the Time Bureau declared the mission and Ava’s life not worth the risk of countless other agents’. Ray is confident they can handle it on their own and adamant about not bothering Sara, but Zari and Amaya aren’t so sure; they think they could use all the help they can get.
“Thus, the sneaky phone call,” Sara concludes the story, eyes searching Alex’s face for any indication of what she’s thinking.
“Sounds like you need to go help them,” is the answer she gives her. Alex shakes her head when Sara looks like she’s about to protest, however half-heartedly. “You’re their captain, Sara; you can’t not. If they need your help, you gotta go.”
Alex will miss her, of course, but this is who Sara is; all that matters is that she comes back.
Sara nods, but still feels the need to justify herself; “I don’t want to leave you.”
But she wants to go, Alex can tell.
“I know,” she assures her, cupping her cheek and brushing the pad of her thumb across it. “But you have to go, and I know you want to.” She offers her a smile, full of understanding, and she means it completely. “Go help your team, Captain Lance. I’ll be here waiting for you when you come back.”
Alex means that completely, too.
For the second day in a row, there’s a big goodbye in the D.E.O., only this time with less theatrics and tears.
It’s not like Sara is leaving forever, after all, or even an extended period of time; it’s just for one mission.
And sure, the Legends are known to make even the simplest of missions a lot harder and more time consuming than they need to be, but still; it won’t be for long.
Plus, they’re going to call and text and VibeTime, so. It’s not a big deal.
“We’ll talk so much you won’t even notice I’m gone,” Sara promises Alex, but it sounds more like she’s trying to reassure herself.
Alex just nods, tears prickling the back of her eyes but not breaking through - she’s already going to break her kissing rule in a moment, again; she doesn’t need to cry in the D.E.O., too.
“I know,” she says resolutely, then steps forward to wrap Sara in a hug. It’s tight and warm and doesn’t last long enough, but her eyes still aren’t quite watery by the time she pulls away, so Alex considers that a win. She can feel it starting though, so she reaches forward to wipe under Sara’s eyes instead, to play it off. “I’ll see you soon, okay?”
Sara laughs and nods, reaching out herself to toy with the zipper of Alex’s black uniform top. “I’ll be back before you know it.”
Alex’s throat burns and she pulls Sara into a kiss, because she doesn’t know what else to say; because it won’t be long and they’ll talk the whole time, but still - it’ll be the longest they’ve been apart in months and it’s going to be hard.
The kiss ends too soon and Sara turns to walk through the breach Winn’s opened before either of them can say anything else, and Alex misses her already.
Just like the last time she traveled to a different earth through a breach, Sara arrives to guns aimed at her.
At least it’s just two this time, and Caitlin and Iris are quick to drop them once they realize it’s just her that’s showed up unannounced in the Breach Room.
“Oh, it’s just you,” Cisco voices the thought from beside them, his displeasure at the sight of her a stark contrast to the smiles Iris and Caitlin are sending her.
“Nice to see you, too,” Sara tells him as she steps forward, eyes roaming around the room as the lights of whatever alarm her arrival tripped continue to flash. “Sorry for crashing, I figured Winn would’ve warned you guys I was coming.”
“Don’t mind him,” Caitlin assures her. A comforting hand goes to Cisco’s back as she speaks and it doesn’t go unnoticed by Sara, especially considering what she follows up with; “He’s going through a rough break up and I think he was just hoping you were someone else.”
Sara cringes in sympathy, but nods her understanding, and reaches for the portal maker in her pocket. It’s one of the Bureau’s - the one she gave Alex when she left after Gideon saved her, that she didn’t end up needing - and she waves it around proudly for Cisco to see.
“If it makes you feel any better, I don’t need an Uber driver back to the Waverider this time,” she offers him, but he hardly looks impressed.
Cisco pulls a face and grabs it out of Sara’s hand, and honestly, if she didn’t feel for the guy, Sara might have punched him for that. “I’d feel better if you people didn’t keep using my Breach Room as a pit stop on your cross-earth booty calls.”
“Think the only booty she wants to call is on the earth she just left,” Iris points out before Sara can, and she doesn’t miss the way Iris’ hand instinctively comes to rests on her stomach.
Her words fall on deaf ears, though, as Cisco toys with the device; twisting and turning his body to keep it out of Sara’s reach when she tries to take it back from him, until he gets a portal to the Waverider open.
“I’m keeping this,” he informs Sara as he pushes her off his back. “I’ll trick it out while you’re gone, so it can make portals directly from earth-38 and y’all can leave us alone until the next time we call you begging for help.”
Sara pauses her protest when she considers how useful that might be in the future, but she doesn’t thank him for the offer because he’s being such a dick about it.
It’s too bad Winn didn’t think of it first - at least he would’ve just been obnoxious.
The Waverider is empty when Sara steps onto it, and she’s immediately hit with a giant wave of nostalgia.
It’s only been a couple months since she’s been gone, but it feels like it’s been longer, somehow.
She looks around the Waverider and can’t help but compare it to the other futuristic ship she’s spent time on lately, that’s sleeker and fancier, but far less welcoming, in her opinion.
“Gideon?” she asks, her voice sounding hesitant for some reason, like maybe something that big had changed while she was gone and nobody had thought to tell her.
“Hello, Captain Lance,” Gideon’s voice rings out, and another wave hits her right in the chest. “It’s been a while since we last spoke.”
“You’re telling me,” Sara mumbles as she steps onto the bridge, fingers trailing over the back of all the chairs as she makes her way to the captain’s seat and sits down in it. She looks out the front window to try to gauge what time she’s in, but all she can see is trees. “When are we?”
“1914, Russia,” Gideon informs her dutifully, and then recaps everything else she already knows.
The team is investigating all the most recent anachronisms in the hopes of finding where the time pirates that have Ava are hiding out; where, they assume, they’re waiting for the right moment to try to leverage her life for something from the Bureau. The only catch for them is that, according to Gary, the suits in charge are still saying Ava’s life is disposable and have no interest in negotiating with time terrorists.
“Where’s the team?” she asks the one thing she still doesn’t know once Gideon is finished filling her in.
“Approaching the cargo bay as we speak,” she’s informed, and Sara swears she can hear a smirk in Gideon’s voice. “I thought you’d appreciate the surprise.”
Sara stands as she hears the bay doors open and then close, and she doesn’t have time to snark at Gideon before the sounds of the team approaching the bridge get closer and closer, until-
“Sara?!” Nate shouts like an excited puppy, then runs over and tackles her just like one, too.
She lets him sweep her into a spinning hug, though, because she’s missed him and them and this, more than she’d previously realized.
Zari and Amaya join the hug soon enough, and even Mick hovers beside them, though only because Amaya had dragged him over with her.
Ray stays back and silent, looking like he’s happy to see her, but upset that she’s there at the same time; Sara doesn’t take it personally.
While Ray and Zari argue about the call Zari made behind his back, Sara takes the device that started it all and slips into her room to talk to her girlfriend.
Sara smiles the moment Alex’s face pops up on the screen, and it makes her heart ache.
It hasn’t even been an hour since she last saw her, but she feels so far away, and Sara’s never wished she could be in two places at once more.
Because as right as it feels to be back on the Waverider, it feels so incredibly wrong to be away from Alex.
“Hey, you,” she greets her softly, like they’re together in the same room.
Alex sighs at the sound of her voice, her relief obvious in the way her shoulders slump and her eyes soften. “Hey,” she echos back, just as gently. “You made it okay?”
“Yeah, everything was fine,” Sara promises. “Cisco was being more of an ass than usual, but nothing I’m not used to.” She can still hear Zari and Ray going at it outside, and it sounds like Amaya and Nate have joined in now, too. “What about over there? I miss anything exciting?”
“Just a Winn and Demos fight,” Alex says with a roll of her eyes.
Sara can see Winn swivel around in his chair behind Alex before he yells; “I won! Just, for the record.”
While Alex laughs and denies Winn’s claims, Sara’s grip on her phone tightens and the ache in her chest grows bigger.
Ray finds her not long after, when he’s been outvoted and has admitted that maybe he was wrong.
“I’m glad you’re back,” he tells her simply and opens his arms, apparently deciding to ignore the fact that he hadn’t wanted her here.
Sara scoffs, feigning offense, but hugs him nonetheless.
He’s so ridiculously tall and she feels even more ridiculously tiny when he easily lifts her off the ground and rocks her side to side. “Okay, okay, that’s enough,” she protests through a smile, pushing at his chest until he releases her.
Ray is giving her that dorky smile of his, and it’s so endearing that Sara can’t decide if she wants to punch him or hug him again.
“Being the captain is hard,” he whines suddenly, his grin falling into a pout, and the truth of it makes Sara laugh.
“You’re tellin’ me,” she agrees as her face grows fond. “But I’m sure you did alright.”
Ray hands the reigns back over to Sara easily enough, and she slips back into captain mode just as well.
She thought it would be weird, at first, or at least take some getting used to again, but it feels natural to her, in a way not many other things do.
“Ray, Zari and Mick, you three take the jump ship to check out the level 3 in 1865,” she instructs them as she makes her way across the bridge. “If it’s not them, leave it be for now and move onto the next one. If it is them, don’t do anything stupid - wait for us to get there.”
Mick takes one last chug of his beer before he moves to follow Ray and Zari. “Good to have you back, boss,” he grunts over his shoulder as he leaves. “Taking orders from a chick is better than taking them from a nerd.”
“Hey!” Ray can be heard distantly, and Sara shakes her head in amusement.
She’s the captain of this ship, of this team, and as she takes her seat and sets their course, Sara tries not to think about just how hard the day will be when she’s not.
The first day without Sara isn’t as hard as Alex thought it would be, but that’s only because some criminals are kind enough to keep her busy for most of it.
Once she’s done fighting the bad guys and she has to go home alone, back to her empty apartment, well, that’s not nearly as easy.
She considers calling Sara, because she really wants to hear her voice, but she thinks better of it and shoots her some texts, instead.
Got to punch some guys today - not Winn, I promise.
Wasn’t as fun without you, though.
How’s your first day back going?
Alex doesn’t get an immediate response, but that’s okay; she wasn’t expecting one.
It’s only the first day, but she knows Sara is likely already busy, jetting off to different times and probably fighting all kinds of different enemies - from Roman soldiers to futuristic Men in Black.
Sara will find the time for her, Alex is sure of that - just as sure as she is that Sara is back in her element and-
“Don’t go there,” she mutters to herself, catching her mind falling back into old habits and doubts.
Shaking her head, Alex reaches for her other phone and sends a different text to a different blonde, and hopes a nice long shower will help clear her head.
An hour later, and Alex comes back to two replies when she only expected one.
It makes her feel worse for going to that place so easily and so quickly, on the first damn day, but old habits die hard; all she can do is try to handle it better tomorrow.
Instead of dwelling on it, Alex pours herself a drink and, after texting Kara back to tell her not to bother coming over after all, she takes her C.I.S.C.O. Phone with her over to the couch and calls her girlfriend.
Everything else is forgotten when she sees Sara’s face, and she doesn’t dare move for the rest of the night.
Alex is lucky that things are relatively quiet on the crime front the next day, because she goes into work dead on her feet.
It has more to do with how badly she slept than it does how late she stayed up talking to Sara, but her girlfriend and her absence are to blame, either way.
“You’re hanging out with me tonight,” Kara decides when she sees how pathetic her sister looks, and her tone suggests she doesn’t intend on taking no for an answer.
Alex whines at the thought, despite being desperate for just that the night before. “I’m too tired,” she tries to reason with her, half sprawling herself out on the desk in front of her. “I just want to go home and sleep.”
“No, you just want to go home and sit around talking on the phone all night,” Kara guesses correctly - seeing right through her, even without her x-ray vision. “I’m not gonna let you sit around and mope, okay? Not on my watch, sister. You’re hanging out with me, Lena and Sam tonight.”
“Kara, no,” Alex protests, her voice the whiniest she can remember it being.
“You need this,” Kara tells her firmly, giving her shoulder the gentle squeeze it took her years to perfect. There’s a pause, and then her voice gets softer when she adds, “And so do I.”
Alex throws her head back, and her groan morphs into a sigh of defeat - the guilt trip always works.
“Fine,” she reluctantly agrees, and the way her sister beams at her might almost make her probable regret tomorrow worth it.
Alex heads to Kara’s place after work, assuming that hanging out means a night in, but when she arrives with a bottle of wine and is greeted with three very dressed up women, she realizes she really should have known better.
They force her to change and then drag her to a club, and even worse, Kara takes both of Alex’s phones and tells her she’s not giving them back until the end of the night.
“No talking to Sara!” her sister orders as she shoves the devices into her purse. “We’re here to have fun! And to not think about people that aren’t here.”
As much as Alex wants to protest and maybe attempt to wrestle at least one phone back, it’s becoming increasingly obvious to her that this night is much more about Mon-El than it is about Sara, so she plays along.
Lena and Sam, however, aren’t so inclined, and start up their interrogation as soon as they all sit down.
“How long is Sara gone for?” Lena asks.
“And where is she from again?” Sam immediately follows up.
Alex shoots Kara a what can I do? look before she sidesteps Sam’s question to focus on Lena’s. “We’re actually not sure how long she’ll be gone,” she answers, and even she’s surprised how casual it sounds. “It’s a… work thing, so however long the job takes to get done. Hopefully not too long, though.”
Kara eyes her, probably waiting for the sadness to kick in, or at the least the pessimism - Alex would be lying if she said she isn’t, too - but it doesn’t come.
She misses Sara, of course, and wishes she was with them now, but that’s all it is; Alex just misses her girlfriend.
There’s something so simple about that that makes it comforting - just being able to put a name to a feeling.
Because Alex knows how to handle missing someone; she’s had a lot of practice at it, after all.
She has more fun as the night goes on, despite Kara’s mood swings, and she even lets Lena and Sam drag her out onto the dance floor a couple of times.
Alex realizes she should be way too exhausted to be out this late, but it’s nice to be out of the apartment; Kara might be a brat, but she also might have been right to not let her sit and mope at home.
Being there - under these lights, with sweaty bodies and a thumping bass - it reminds Alex of who she used to be in a different life, when she didn’t have anything figured out.
And being there - sitting here, the four of them - it reminds her of another night, what feels like a lifetime ago; when she had some of it figured out, but not as much as she’d thought.
Maybe it’s the alcohol, but it makes Alex’s head spin, to think of how much can change; how a person can change; how she has.
Sitting there, half drunk and more tired than she can ever remember feeling, Alex tries to imagine what her life might look like a year from now, and it feels important that the one thing she can see with complete clarity, even as her vision is getting blurry, is Sara.
(Well, Alex can see Kara too, if she’s being honest, but that feels like a given and she’s being kind of annoying tonight, so. She doesn’t count.)
Kara gives Alex her phones back right before she gets out of the Uber, but she doesn’t check either of them until she’s upstairs.
She’s too tired to shower or do much else, so Alex just slips off the clothes she borrowed from her sister and crawls into bed with a huff.
It takes more effort than it ever should for Alex to hold her phone up and it’s a good beat before the words on her screen become clear enough for her to read - but when they do, they make her smile.
Missed your beautiful face today.
Hope it was because the criminals of National City were seeing it before you beat theirs in.
I better get to see it tomorrow, though.
See you in my dreams, Danvers.
Alex swoons and wants to reply, but her drunken mind and limbs disagree.
She settles for blowing a noisy kiss at her phone, hoping Sara can feel it thirty-seven earths away.
Sara sleeps a little better her second night than she did her first, but the bed in her quarters is nowhere near as comfortable as Alex’s is, and it’s lacking the company, too.
The first thing she does when she wakes up is check her phone, but she isn’t surprised by the lack of messages.
They only had the chance to talk briefly the day before, and only through text, but she knows Alex spent the night with Kara, and she can only assume if she didn’t reply, it’s because she had a lot of fun.
It puts a smile on Sara’s face as she throws her covers back, because as much as she misses her girlfriend, she’s happy knowing she’s not lonely.
Alex finally calls around midday, when Sara’s alone on the Waverider while Nate and Amaya are out checking on an anachronism in 1943.
(It’s their third stop of the day - fifteenth since she joined the search - and there’s still no sign of Ava or the time pirates that have her.
Sara’s starting to think they need a new plan, because this one is getting them nowhere, but she figures if anyone had one, they would have shared it already, so there’s no point voicing her pessimism just yet.)
“How long have they had her for now?” Alex asks once they get all the mushy stuff out of the way.
Sara sighs, pushing herself from her seat so she can move around; she hates when it’s her turn to babysit the ship. “Five days,” she answers, but not too gravely. The time pirates need Ava, so she’s not too worried about them killing her, but that hardly means she’s safe. “And we’re not really any closer to finding her. New anachronisms keep showing up, and they could be moving from time to time for all we know, so we keep trying to check all of them.”
“And you guys don’t know any other way to find them?” Alex wonders, face and voice showing her sympathy.
“Not yet,” Sara says dejectedly, leaning against the computer table as she holds her phone up. She’d forgotten about this part, the weight that comes with being in charge and making the calls; the guilt that comes with not knowing the right ones. “We might just have to wait until they finally contact the Bureau and try to track them down from there.”
Her frustration is obvious, she can tell by the look Alex is giving her. “I’m sorry,” she offers, mouth falling into a frown that Sara hates to see. “I wish there was something I could do to help.”
“It’s okay,” Sara promises her, and she finds her own lips tugging upwards despite the otherwise somber mood. “This is more than enough.”
Alex’s frown morphs into more of a smile, and Sara feels just a little bit lighter.
Another day passes without any sign of Ava, but with every time they visit, the tension between Nate and Amaya becomes more and more obvious to Sara.
It’s confusing, at first, when she realizes there’s some kind of issue there, because it’s like she’s walked into the middle of the movie and can’t follow the plot after she’s missed the entire first half of it.
The Waverider has never been short on drama - relationship or otherwise - and she’s so used to knowing all of it, whether she wanted to or not, that it feels wrong not to have any clue now.
It’s a harsh reminder of how long Sara’s been gone, and just how much she’s missed.
“Is everything okay with you and Nate?” she questions Amaya the first chance she gets, because she hates being out of the loop and it will give her something else to focus on that’s not Ava or Alex.
They’ve just left 1956 Japan, their last stop of the day, and Sara’s found Amaya eating alone in the gallery.
“Nothing I’m sure you can’t guess,” Amaya shares, and she’s right; with Nate and Amaya, it can really only be one thing.
“That pesky destiny of yours again?” she’s easily able to figure out.
Amaya nods and uses her foot to push out the chair across from her, waiting until Sara’s seated before she continues.
“We’ve crossed paths with Kuasa a few times since you’ve left,” she explains, idly pushing her half eaten dinner around her plate. “As you can imagine, it’s a lot easier to ignore something when it isn’t standing right in front of you.”
Sara lets out a breath and no, she doesn’t have to imagine it at all; she’s been living it for days.
“You been thinking about going back?” she asks when Amaya doesn’t elaborate further, and she can’t deny her interest in the subject hasn’t suddenly multiplied.
“I need to,” Amaya reminds her. “But even more, I want to. Zambesi is not only my destiny, it’s my home.”
Sara knows how she feels about Zambesi, has seen it first hand; the love she has for her homeland displays plainly on her face for all to see whenever she speaks of it.
“It’s not that simple, is it?” Sara muses, forming it as a question even though it really isn’t; she doesn’t need anyone to tell her that.
Amaya sighs wistfully, gaze drifting to the door, and Sara almost has to turn to look to make sure nobody is actually standing there.
“I love Nathaniel,” Amaya states after a moment, and Sara wonders if that’s another development she missed or if she’s actually the first to know. “I love being with all of you,” she adds, in a way that doesn’t make them sound like they’re an afterthought. “And that complicates matters.”
“It’s not that you don’t want to go back,” Sara guesses; speaks from experience. “You just wish you could stay, too.” Amaya’s eyes find hers and the fact that she looks surprised that she understands makes her chuckle, even though it’s not the least bit funny. “I feel that.”
Amaya is quiet, regarding Sara curiously, then her face softens in understanding. “Yes,” she says quietly, nodding her head just a bit, like she’s decided something. “I suppose you do.”
She nudges her plate closer to Sara, offering to share what she has left.
It’s been almost a week now, and still nothing.
Ray, Zari and Mick are back on the Waverider to give the jump ship a rest; it’s not really equipped for so much time travel in such a short amount of time and it can’t handle anymore for awhile.
The anachronisms just keep piling up, too many too fast for them to check them all, and they’re at a loss.
Gary has tried getting the Bureau’s help again, but he says they still don’t seem concerned at all; like Ava is just that easily replaceable to them.
He swears he’d quit in protest if he didn’t need to be there for when the time pirates call - if they call.
Sara’s starting to lose hope, and she can tell the rest of the team is, too.
They’re more invested in saving Ava than Sara thought they’d be, and even though they’re all for helping people - even Mick, sometimes, depending on the day - they know a lost cause when they see one.
Still, she’s got enough hope left to not give up just yet, though.
And it’s a good thing she doesn’t, because all it takes is one more day for Ava to save herself.
They’re all on the bridge when it happens; Zari, Nate and Ray leaning over Sara’s shoulder as she VibeTimes with Alex and Jax; Amaya listening in from a little bit away while Mick tries to ignore them all.
“Guess who has a date tonight?” Alex challenges, her bright smile doing a good job of lifting Sara’s spirits.
“Better not be you,” she warns teasingly.
Her girlfriend doesn’t even get the chance to play along before Jax has to blurt out his good news himself. “Me! It’s me,” he beams, pointing to his lit up face. “I have a date.”
Everyone’s happy for him, but Sara most of all; whether she’s the future wife she promised him or not, it fills her with a special kind of joy to see him building a life there, being happy.
“James is playing matchmaker again,” Alex elaborates once Jax has received all his congratulations from his former team members. “Hopefully this one goes better than his last attempt.” Her embarrassed laugh is echoed by an endeared one from Sara, both of them remembering that night well. “But Eve is really sweet, and apparently is into nuclear physics according to Lena. Who knew? So-” she starts, and wraps an arm around Jax’s shoulders to give him a teasing shake, “Sounds like she’s a perfect match to me.”
It kind of makes Sara’s heart flip, to see Alex and Jax together like that, smiling and friendly, and before she can add her voice to the choir of congratulations, Gideon’s voice suddenly sounds overhead.
“My apologies for interrupting Mr. Jackson’s celebration,” she cuts in, and waits a moment until the noise quiets down and she’s sure everyone is listening. “But I’ve detected a time beacon signaling the Waverider.”
It’s Nate that connects the dots first. “Ava.”
“Hey, I taught her that!” Ray adds with a pleased grinned, focusing entirely on the wrong thing. “Or, well, I told her about that time I made one, when we were stuck in 1958 and it took two years to find us.”
The uncharacteristic tinge of bitterness in his tone that finishes the sentence makes it obvious that’s still a sore subject for him - not that Sara blames him; she’s still a little salty, too.
“Two years?” Zari repeats incredulously, apparently not having heard that story yet.
“I’ve told you, man, it wasn’t even a day for us,” Jax pipes up from the phone that’s been all but forgotten in Sara’s hand, the only remaining member of that rescue team present to defend themselves. “Give us a break.”
“Enough, people!” Sara decides before anyone goes on a tangent reopening old wounds. She stands and makes her way towards the computer table where Gideon has all the navigational information displayed. “This is where she is?”
They spent all that time in the past, when the answer was in the future.
“Plot a course, then,” Sara sighs, even though she’s honestly more relieved than she is frustrated. “Everyone, buckle up,” she orders the team as she makes her way back to her captain’s chair, then turns her attention to the phone that’s still in her hand. “Call you guys later?”
They both nod their understanding, Alex telling her, “Be safe!” at the same time as Jax says, “Kick their asses!”
The Waverider is off within the minute.
Saving Ava proves to be easier than finding her was.
Having secretly fixed and modified a broken time beacon that the pirates had stolen from someone and then apparently promptly disregarded, Ava bided her time and turned it on at the perfect moment for the Legends to come and find her.
There’s only three of them with her when they land - two men and a woman - and Ray is easily able to shrink down and get to where they’ve been stashing Ava undetected, while Sara and the rest of them take care of her guards.
“I can’t believe you guys actually came for me,” Ava says when she sees the whole team has come, and she looks pretty good, all things considered.
Sara and everyone else but Mick send her looks that say of course we did, while Ray claps her on the back using a little more force than he should while wearing his A.T.O.M. suit.
“Leave no man behind,” he tells her with an honest grin. “Or woman, in this case.”
And just like that, after a week of searching and something like a dozen different centuries visited, it’s all over in less than half an hour.
They wait until Ava is safely back on the Waverider before they call Gary, and he’s stepping through a portal before Ray can even finish his sentence.
He practically cries at the sight of her, and it really wouldn’t surprise Sara if he actually broke a rib or two with the force he uses to her hug with.
“Disgusting,” Mick snarls at the overly emotional display, completely unmoved. “I need a drink.”
Ray and Nate, however, are clearly touched and it of course inspires them to initiate a manly hug of their own, while Zari and Amaya stand by watching the two men, one more fondly than the other.
Sara can only stand to watch their reunion for a minute or two longer before she steps aside so she can tell her girlfriend the good news.
It’s over, we found her.
Alex’s response time almost rivals Gary’s.
Is everyone okay?
Sara’s eyes drift over to where Ava’s standing with most of the team, talking animatedly now about what she went through, and the ease between them all is so obvious to her.
Another development she completely missed.
Alex’s next reply doesn’t arrive quite as quickly as the last did, but it doesn’t take long enough to indicate there’s any hesitation from her end, either.
Does this mean you’re coming back?
No, the only one hesitating here is Sara.
Ava seeks her out and finds her alone a little while later, evidently wanting a chance to speak to her privately before she heads back to Star City and the Bureau with Gary.
“Thank you,” Ava tells her simply, even though she already thanked the team earlier. She hovers in the doorway to Sara’s room, clearly not sure whether she wants to come in, or if she’d even be welcome to; the post hooking up weirdness between them had dissipated before Sara left, but it’s been so long since then, and so much has changed, the awkwardness is to be expected. “For coming back to help save me.”
Sara wonders if she knows who didn’t care to save her; if she’s even upset if she does. Ava has always been an agent first - sometimes it seems like she forgets that’s not all she is - but she’s a person, too; one who’s worth more than her bosses give her credit for.
Maybe she should tell Ava all of this, tell her to go back to the Bureau and demand answers for how they could just throw her away that easily, but she doesn’t - it’s not her place anymore, maybe never was.
Instead, Sara just shrugs like it’s nothing, because it’s not like Ava was truly who she came back for, anyways.
“I don’t know how much help I was,” she admits with a self-deprecating laugh. “Pretty sure they could’ve done all that without me.”
She’s sure they could of, actually, but Sara’s glad they didn’t.
“Maybe,” Ava concedes with a kind smile, and she seems glad they didn’t too, if only because it’s just nice to see her again. “But it still means a lot that you came anyways, and stayed.” Sara wonders if Ava knows where she’s been, and why, but not enough to ask; some things are better left alone. “You’re a good captain.”
There’s nothing between them now, and what she thought was between them before was barely anything, either, but it still means something to Sara to hear that - from Ava of all people, after everything.
“Thank you,” is all she says, though, because there isn’t really anything else for her to say. Except maybe, “I’m glad you’re okay.”
Ava nods, smile small but still in place, and says, “I’m glad you’re okay, too.”
And as Sara watches as Ava leaves, she feels an odd sense of closure for a chapter she had already finished some time ago.
Sara should sleep well that night, or at least better than the last seven, but she doesn’t.
As much as some things are done and solved, not everything is; not the biggest thing.
And now that Ava is safe and the mission is over, Sara swears she can hear a clock ticking somewhere inside her head, or maybe her heart, counting down to something she’s been trying her best to avoid.
She’s making it more complicated than it needs to be, she thinks, as she lies awakes and stares at the message she still hasn’t replied to yet.
She wonders if this is what it was like for Alex - overthinking and stressing about something that’s going to happen either way.
Sara already knows what decision is right though, deep down, just like she’s sure Alex did.
It’s just the making it that’s hard.
Amaya finds her this time, early the next morning.
They meet in the kitchen, and considering the hour, Sara can only assume she didn’t sleep well, either.
Not that she’s surprised; Amaya has just as much on her mind as she does, if not more. Which is a little bit comforting, Sara has to admit.
“I think it’s time for me to go back,” she confesses, sounding resolute, and it’s the first thing she's said since she’s entered the room. She sighs deeply, her sadness obvious, and leans against the counter. “I haven’t told anyone else yet, but my mind is made up.”
Sara doesn’t ask if she’s sure - she doesn’t think Amaya would be telling her this if she wasn’t - but her other questions aren’t as easily held back.
“Why now?” she wonders, leaning against the island herself to get closer to the other woman. “If you don’t mind me asking.”
Amaya sighs again, but it doesn’t sound annoyed; more like resigned, maybe. “It’s been a long time coming, as you know, and something that’s been harder and harder to ignore the more I encountered Kuasa, but it was listening to Jax yesterday that confirmed it.”
Of all the answers Sara expected - Kuasa, Nate, hell even Rip, retroactively, Jax wasn’t anywhere on the list.
“On VibeTime?” she has to clarify, because Amaya hadn’t even seemed that interested; she didn’t even come around to see him onscreen with the others.
“He sounded so happy,” Amaya explains with a growing smile, though it looks bittersweet. “Hearing how happy he is now, how he’s flourished and found a new path after everything, it was inspiring to me. It was hard for him to leave, but harder for him to stay, and now he’s found a new life for himself, maybe a better one.”
Sara nods, her own smile growing because she knows better than anyone how true that is. “Yeah,” she confirms. “He’s really happy over there.”
“The Legends were just a part of his journey, just as they are for me.” And for you, Sara can practically hear Amaya say, or maybe that’s her own voice. “You have all taught me so much, lessons I will carry with me forever and pass on to my daughter and granddaughters, but it’s time for the next part of my journey to begin now.”
“It’s time for you to go home,” she finishes the thought for her, and the way Amaya looks at her makes Sara reach across the counter to squeeze her hand.
Amaya covers Sara’s hand with another one and squeezes back, knowing Sara needs it, too.
“I know you’re struggling with a lot of the same questions,” she voices the thought carefully, keeping Sara’s hand between her own. “So if I can share some advice?”
Sara hesitates, pretty sure she knows what she’s going to say, and then agrees for the same reason, “Sure.”
“Don’t take too long,” Amaya tells her simply, and yeah, Sara was right. “Listening to Jax also reminded me of Martin. It’s easy to keep putting it off, saying to yourself; one more mission, just one more mission and then….” She shakes her head as she repeats those words Sara told her so long ago, and Sara’s sure she knows what she’s thinking this time, too. “But there’s not always going to be another mission, no matter what we think we’re sure of. I have been reckless, but I have been lucky. Martin was not. I want you to be lucky, Sara, and to be happy. The happiest you can be.”
Amaya squeezes her hand and then lets it go, offering her another smile before she goes about her business; leaving Sara to figure out the rest of it on her own.
Gideon has a new mission for them by noon.
It’s not from the Bureau - that relationship is going to take time to rebuild after recent events - and Gideon estimates it shouldn’t take more than a day to complete, even by Legends standards.
Sara’s already decided it’s going to be her last.
She’s not going to go back to Alex just to come back here in a few weeks or months; she’s not going to split her time between two earths, strain her relationship until it’s stretched too far and they end up like Cisco and his girlfriend.
She’s not going to keep putting off her future, not for one more mission, or even one more day - not when she’s ready for it now.
What would be the point? Just so she can play captain for a little longer, to a group of people that don’t even really seem to need her anymore?
Amaya is right.
The team is important to her, and this mission has given her a purpose; it’s all helped shape Sara in a way nothing else in her life has.
But it’s not her future.
Sara knows what her future is, has for a year; would know it now even if she’d never run into Cisco and Caitlin that day.
The decision isn’t actually that hard to make at all, it was only ever as complicated as she made it out to be.
The Legends make her happy, fighting with them and leading them, but Alex makes her happier.
It’s really as simple as that.
Sara doesn’t tell the others she’s leaving again until the mission is done and dusted.
They’re sad, but hardly surprised, and wholly supportive.
She packs her things this time, all her clothes and pictures, because this time she knows she’s leaving for good, and she hugs every one of them goodbye - even Mick.
“Take care of them for me,” she makes Ray promise when she gets to him. “And listen to them,” she makes sure to add sternly. He nods sheepishly when Zari echos that order, and of course the big lug starts getting teary. She tries to refrain from hugging him again, sure that would just tip him over the edge, and instead hands him her C.I.S.C.O. Phone. “Call me if you need me, or even if you don’t.”
“You got it, captain,” Ray promises with a salute, and it’s so dorky that it makes it impossible for Sara to keep resisting pulling him into that second hug, waterworks be damned.
She gets to Amaya last, and it’s only then that Sara worries that she might start to cry herself, because they both know this goodbye is likely for good.
Nobody else but her knows yet, but Amaya is planning her own farewell for tomorrow, going back to the past while Sara heads towards her future, and this will probably be the last time they ever see each other.
So, they hug tightly, but say nothing, because they’ve already told each other everything they needed to.
Sara steps back when she’s done, and looks at her team one last time.
It’s almost an entirely different one than when she joined, but all of them are Legends to her either way, through and through.
The team is looking a little small though, she notices, when she nods to Nate to open a portal into S.T.A.R. Labs when she’s ready to go.
“You know, if you’re ever looking for new members, you should give Kid Flash a call,” she suggests as she takes a step forward, only turning around to give them one last wink and a grin. “Something tells me he’d fit right in.”
And then she’s gone.
Sara had warned Team Flash of her impending arrival this time, so she’s able to avoid staring down the barrel of any guns when she shows up.
It’s actually just Cisco there to greet her today, and he seems to be in better spirits than the last time she saw him a week ago; he even agrees to take her to Star City so she can say goodbye to her father and visit her sister one last time, too.
Quentin is nothing but supportive when Sara tells him she’s leaving; sad to lose another daughter, but happy for the reason why. He comes with her to see Laurel too, but lets her say her goodbyes on her own.
Sara tells her sister all about Alex and the new family she’s made because of her, about the one she’s leaving behind, too.
She doesn’t get to come here often - not as much as she should, and now it’ll be even less - but Laurel is never far from her mind, and especially not her heart, and that won’t change no matter what earth she’s on.
When they get back to Central City, Cisco hands Sara her new pimped out portal maker, but not without a warning first.
“A word of advice,” he says seriously, grip still tight on one end of the device so Sara can’t take it just yet. “Don’t fuck this up. One of these cross-earth romances needs to work out and I’m rooting for you two crazy kids.”
“I’m not planning on it,” Sara assures him, because all she can really do is promise to try.
That seems to be good enough for Cisco, though, and he relinquishes his hold with an exaggerated flourish. “All right,” he nods, small smile tugging at his lips as he pushes the hair out of his face and goes to turn the temporal gateway on to send her on her way. “Get outta here, then! Go be with your girl.”
“Thank you,” Sara makes sure to tell him as she steps forward and towards the giant machine that’s going to bring her back to Alex, and she means it more than he’ll ever know. “For everything.”
(It all would have still happened without him, she knows, but credit where credit is due.)
And with that, Sara steps into the light and back to where she belongs.
Sara pops up directly into Alex’s apartment this time, instead of arriving at the D.E.O..
She figures it’s not nearly as rude to show up unannounced now that she lives there, too.
And also, there’s a significantly less chance of getting shot, so.
It’s empty, but Sara’s not sure if Alex is at work or somewhere else, so she just drops her bags, gets comfortable on the couch, and takes her turn waiting for her girlfriend to return to her.
Alex gets in a little while later, but judging by the time and her outfit, she isn’t coming back from work.
It takes her longer than it should for a trained agent to realize there’s someone else there, but when she finally spots Sara where she’s sitting, her reaction is more than worth the wait.
“Long time no see, Danvers,” she greets her girlfriend when Alex can’t seem to find the words herself.
Sara is barely able to get to her feet before Alex is rushing over and wrapping herself around her, strong arms circling her shoulders as she hugs her unbelievably tightly.
“You’re back,” Alex whispers into her neck, hot breath tickling Sara’s skin before she presses her lips there; kissing up to her jaw until she gets to her lips.
“I missed you,” Sara mumbles against Alex’s mouth, kissing her hot and fast until her hands are cupping her cheeks and she’s pulling back to get a proper look at her. “I missed you so much,” she says again, just incase she didn’t hear it the first time.
Alex looks at her, eyes wide and bright, and shining with love, and Sara feels like she’s never belonged anywhere else than right here; on this earth, in this apartment, with this woman.
Being on the Waverider, being captain again, it felt comfortable; familiar.
But seeing Alex again, being in her arms, kissing her; this feels more like coming home.
Alex doesn’t ask Sara about it until hours later; her heart has had its time to process this surprise and now it’s her head’s turn.
“How long do you think it’ll be until you have to go back?” she wonders, body half in Sara’s lap as they lay stretched out on the couch.
It had been a long seven days, but Alex can do it again, if it’s what Sara wants.
“I’m not going back,” is the answer she gets instead.
Alex freezes, then pulls herself up and turns around so she’s facing her grinning girlfriend; tries to control the hope bubbling up inside of her.
“Define not going back,” she orders her, voice stern and restrained.
Sara shrugs and plays it cool, because of course she does. “I’m staying here, for good,” Sara promises her, and while her face might be playful, her words are anything but. “I mean, I told them I’d come if it’s an actual emergency, and let’s be real, it’s only a matter of time before Barry Allen calls on all the Super Friends to save his ass again. But barring those inevitable circumstances… This is my home now.”
Alex feels breathless as all that hope bursts out, her heart hammering in her chest even as her mind doesn’t quite believe it yet.
Is it really possible this is happening? Is it possible Alex is really getting everything she’s ever wanted, without a single string in sight? Could she possibly be that lucky?
“But why?” she has to ask to believe it.
Sara shrugs again, her face soft and her eyes full of something.
Love, Alex realizes almost immediately; recognizes it, after all this time.
“Because you’re here,” Sara answers like it’s obvious, lifting her hand up to brush her knuckles over Alex’s cheek sweetly. “And I love you.”
She says it so easily, almost casually, as if it’s not the first time she’s said it to her; as if she should already know.
“I love you, too,” Alex says back just as easily, because she does.
Alex helps Sara get officially moved in after they have dinner.
She’s lived there for months now, and anything of Alex’s has been hers for just as long - literally, in a lot of cases, actually - so it doesn’t feels like that big of a deal when Alex clears out a drawer and half the closet for her to use.
But then Alex puts a framed picture of Sara and Laurel up beside a picture of her and Kara, and well, okay; maybe it’s pretty huge, after all.
Sara gets to surprise Jax with her return the next day, too, and while his reaction isn’t quite on the level of Alex’s, it still fills her with a similar kind of joy.
“You wanna come with me to get my permanent I.D. card?” she asks him when he places her back down on the floor.
Jax’s grin widens when as he realizes what she’s saying, what that means, and of course he does.
“I hope your new picture is even worse than your old one,” he teases as he snatches said card from her hand so he can get one last laugh in at it.
Sara scoffs indignantly and punches Jax in the arm, but the matching grin on her own face gives her away.
She sighs in faux exasperation and throws her arm around his shoulders to lead him away. “How’d your date go, anyways?” she remembers to ask as they start their walk, like any good big sister would. “Do I get to be the best man at your wedding?”
Winn and Kara are almost as excited to see Sara as Jax was, especially when she tells them it’s for good, and it's in a way that tells her it’s not just because they’re happy for Alex.
It’s even Winn’s idea to do something to celebrate Sara’s move and her new official job at the D.E.O., but those plans are promptly put on ice when a group of unidentified aliens attack the city and it’s all hands on deck.
Sara doesn’t mind, though, she’ll take kicking ass over karaoke any day of the week; she can’t imagine a better welcome than that.
They settle for getting a couple drinks at the bar by the time everything's said and done, and that’s okay with Sara, too.
She challenges Winn to a game of pool - the loser buys the next round for everyone - and she beats him easily.
“I knew you were hustling me,” Alex whispers in her ear after Sara sinks her last shot, and it sends a shiver down her spine.
“You can’t prove anything, Danvers,” she replies coolly, fingers slipping into the back pocket of Alex’s jeans as she leans into her. “Sometimes people just get lucky.”
Alex’s eyebrow quirks up in perfect sync with the way her mouth does, and it’s so hot it almost makes Sara groan.
“Oh, you’re definitely getting lucky tonight,” she promises against Sara’s lips, and it’s gotta be the smoothest line Alex has ever pulled off.
Sara’s never been more proud.
They’re only a little shy of sober by the time they’re ready to leave, and Kara manages to catch Alex alone while Sara’s saying her goodbyes to the boys.
She sighs wistfully as she loops their arms together and leans her head on Alex’s shoulder, just standing with her sister and watching Sara from across the bar.
“I’m really glad you’re happy,” Kara says after a moment, not even having to ask if she is. “You deserve it.”
Alex smiles, more sweet than bitter, and leans her head against Kara’s.
“You do, too,” she reminds her sister, because sometimes Kara forgets. “And you will be.”
They’re quiet for a beat, letting the moment settle, and then, “Sara doesn’t happen to have a brother she's never mention by any chance, does she?”
“Well, there’s Jax,” Alex points out with a laugh. “But I think you might have missed the boat on that one.”
Sara and Alex barely keep their hands off each other the whole way home, and when they stumble into their apartment, it’s not because they’re tipsy.
“The neighbors are gonna hate us now,” Alex mumbles between rushed kisses, trying to lock the door with one hand and without looking.
“As if that’s the most action that elevator has ever seen,” Sara pants out as she reaches over to lock the door for Alex before pulling her mouth back to hers.
They kiss and kiss - wet and hot and hungry - and continue to stumble their way backwards until they’re tripping up the steps and tumbling into bed.
“What does our future look like to you?” Sara asks Alex a good two hours later, when the buzz of alcohol has worn off but not the sex; their bodies still sweaty and tired, and tangled together. “When you think of it, what do you see?”
Alex’s eyes are drooping already, and the calm feeling of Sara’s fingers softly raking through her hair isn’t helping them to stay open, but she tries.
“I see us married, with kids,” she answers, her words slow and soft, but clear. “At least two,” she adds, because she knows how important siblings are, and she knows Sara does, too. “And a dog. Or a cat, I’m not picky, but preferably a dog.”
Sara hums her agreement. “Mmm, definitely a dog.”
“We still live in National City, but maybe we spend the summers in Midvale,” Alex continues, trying to describe the mini movie that’s playing out in her head. “We live in a big house, in a nice neighborhood.”
“This house has actual bedroom walls, right?” Sara teases.
“Zip it,” Alex warns her through a smile and lightly pinches her side. The distraction makes her lose the movie, but that’s okay; she’s pretty sure it has a happy ending. “I don’t know what else, really. I think about our future now and I just think it will be happy, and long, and that’s good enough for me.”
Sara is quiet for a moment or two too long, and when she finally speaks, she just repeats what Alex said. “That’s good enough for you?”
“Yeah,” she breathes out softly, pulling back enough so that she can look into Sara’s eyes. “I kind of like not thinking about it too much now. It’s full of more possibilities that way.”
Alex didn’t always think like that, but Sara knows that; knows why that’s changed.
“So, if you could know something about your future, about our future, you wouldn’t want to know it?”
The question feels heavy, but Alex finds she doesn’t feel weighed down by it.
She would have wanted to know, before, at least if it was something bad, but she finds that thought a lot scarier than not knowing now.
For the longest time, Alex wished she could have known how things would play out with Maggie before they got involved, and it took her even longer to be glad she didn’t.
It’s not a lesson Alex needs to learn twice.
“No,” she finally answers, shaking her head before she presses her lips to the underside of Sara’s jaw. “I’d rather just see what happens. Enjoy the ride.”
Sara doesn’t say anything to that, but if the kiss she pulls Alex into is anything to go by, her answer was the one she was looking for.
Alex falls asleep first not long after that, but Sara can’t resist staying up a little longer just to watch her.
Her fingers dance along her bare back, tracing her spine and lifting with it as she breathes in and out and-
Sara loves her.
It’s not a revelation by any means, but it strikes her suddenly, in that moment, just how much.
And just what that means.
She loves Alex, and she moved here for her, to this earth that’s so much like her own but isn’t; she wakes up with her and goes to work with her; she adores her sister and all her friends, like they’re hers, and she feels like they are, now.
Sara loves Alex, and something like a year from now, or maybe longer, she’s going to propose to her and she’s going to say yes, and a little bit later than that, she’s going to marry her, and then one day, she’s going to have kids with her; a complete, happy, wonderful life, with her.
Sara knows all this, not because someone once told her, but because she feels it in her bones.
Ray called it destiny, but Sara thinks that doesn’t give them enough credit - they wouldn’t have gotten anywhere if neither of them had never moved.
Because maybe time wanted it to happen, but Sara wanted it to happen more.
Alex is her future, all of it, and she wants it, the whole damn thing.
It’s almost unbelievable to Sara, to think there was ever a version of herself that never thought of her future, never wanted to - not when it feels like that’s all she ever thinks about now.
Now, she can’t imagine wanting anything else.
“Why aren’t you sleeping?” Alex mumbles, and her voice is muffled by the pillow but still enough to break Sara from her thoughts.
“I’m just thinking,” she replies in a whisper, fingers still trailing a pale back and thoughts still swirling in her head.
Alex hums at the touch, and Sara almost thinks she’s gone back to sleep before she asks, “About what?”
A lot of things, Sara could say, everything.
“The future,” is what she goes with.
“Well, think about it tomorrow,” Alex grumbles as she shifts onto her side and tugs Sara along with her. “Sleep now.”
“Okay, babe,” Sara promises through a smile. She presses a kiss to Alex’s shoulder, pulls her arm tighter around her waist, and settles comfortably against her back. “Tomorrow.”
And Sara will think about it every other day after that, too.
And that's all she wrote. Endings can make or break a fic or movie for me, so I hope this ending was satisfying for anyone that has been reading along and waiting for it.
Thank you for sticking with me through this. There were times I regretted starting this and making it so damn long/such a slow burn, but I'm really happy with how it all turned out and I hope you are, too. I've really appreciated all the feedback and kudos up until now, it's what kept me motivated to keep chugging through these long ass updates. I'd love to hear any thoughts or feelings you have about the final chapter or the fic in general. Thank you again for reading.