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when she says she loves you (tell her you love her too)

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"She'll tell you secrets
You'll tell her secrets too
She'll tell you all her hopes and dreams
You'll tell them too

When she says she loves you
Tell her you love her too
Tell her you love her too"

- Echosmith, Tell Her You Love Her

 


 

“Fascinating,” Lena says for the second time that hour during their weekly lunch break together at the office, her eyes fixated on her phone, as Kara shoves mouthful of pasta into her mouth.

 

While it’s very uncharacteristic for Lena to disregard that disgusting kale salad of hers, Kara doesn’t think too much of it. She’s too busy picking off the leafy greens out of her ham carbonara and trying to gauge how many finger sandwiches she can eat without the CEO becoming too suspicious of her ravenous diet. But then Lena shifts, a hand reaching out to tuck an errant strand of hair behind her ear, and Kara nearly pokes her eye out with the fork.

 

Lena smiles down at her phone. “Fascinating, indeed,” she murmurs for the third time that hour.

 

“Okay.” Kara drops her fork before she can inflict bodily harm upon herself. “ What’s so fascinating?”

 

The other woman smirks at her, tilting her phone so that Kara can see the headline of a news article she’s certain one of her co-workers wrote: SUPERGIRL SAVES KITTEN FROM CERTAIN DEATH , followed by a distant picture of Kara as Supergirl snuggling the kitten while it desperately tried to claw its way out of her grip. The photo is blurred enough that her face can’t be seen. She half expects Lena to say something about Kryptonians and aliens in general, but what pops out of her mouth instead is: “I don’t think I’ve ever seen a clear picture of Supergirl in action.”

 

“Ah.” Kara nervously adjusts her glasses. Thank Rao the cameraman had shaky fingers. If Lena had a picture of Supergirl and suddenly decided to stick it next to Kara, she’s certain that even her well-thought disguise would shatter immediately. Maybe saving that kitten from that apartment balcony hadn’t been such a good idea. “Maybe she’s camera shy?” she offers uselessly.

 

“I highly doubt that, Kara.” Lena seems to have remembered that she’s a human being who needs sustenance because she finally dives into her kale salad. “Anyway, I haven’t seen her for a while. Have you met up with her?”

 

“No,” Kara quickly says and then winces, “I mean, she’s usually around when there’s something life-threatening at stake. Maybe we’ll have to wait for another alien invasion.”

 

The look of disappointment that passes through Lena’s face doesn’t go unnoticed by Kara, who perks up at the sight immediately.

 

“That’s a shame,” the CEO mumbles, letting out a sigh as she toys with her leaves, “Since you’re friends, I expected you to have spent time together.”

 

“I thought you hated her,” Kara points out, her stomach suddenly unsettled.

 

Hate is a strong word, dear.” The endearment slips out so casually that Kara barely has enough time to process it before Lena’s speaking again, “Supergirl and I have had our differences but nothing that can’t be overlooked.”

 

This seems like a good time to eat her pasta again, but Kara’s eyes find themselves drawn to the pink blush all over Lena’s pale cheeks, and suddenly she’s not so hungry anymore.

 

“Something on your mind?” Kara cheekily teases.

 

“Nothing,” Lena answers, a little bit breathlessly if Kara has to say so, “Just stock markets and mergers. Boring stuff.”

 

“Your disgusting leaves are going to bristle the more you keep playing with them,” Kara tells her and Lena snorts at that before finally putting some into her mouth. Kara watches the movement way too intensely, before treading into dangerous territory: “So… did you want to meet up with Supergirl or something? Is your family doing shady business again?”

 

Lena shrugs. “I’d rather speak to Supergirl with other matters than my homicidal and xenophobic family.”

 

“Huh.” If that’s the case then Kara can just disguise herself as Supergirl and get her own answers. She finishes her carbonara within a few seconds, a feat that would normally warrant some comments from Lena about her fast metabolism, but instead, the other woman is simply playing around with her food again, sighing every once in a while, like she’s just waiting for Kara to notice her.

 

Which of course, Kara does.

 

Okay. ” Kara reaches forward and takes the kale salad off Lena’s hands. “Since you’re being weirdly secretive right now, I’m going to have to devour your salad so that you’ll at least talk to me about something.”

 

Lena gives her a look. It’s the kind of look that says I don’t believe you but go ahead. Taking the silent challenge into stride, Kara takes a deep breath and forces some of the salad into her mouth, trying her best not to gag at the leafy taste it brings to her mouth. Since she’s not from this world, she’s never felt the need to eat healthy like some of her college friends used to do back then, and she’s certainly glad for it. Because kale salad, while blessed for it being Lena’s go-to lunch, is fucking tasteless.

 

“Well,” Lena says, eyes wide but smile even wider, “Congratulations on being healthy for the first time in your life.”

 

“Hardly.” Kara swallows, shuddering, before she dives into the rest of the God-awful lunch, slightly upset that she still has a little ways to go. “Anyway, are you going to talk about what’s bothering you or did I just eat this for nothing?”

 

The laugh that comes out of Lena’s lips is not entirely a happy one. “It’s really nothing, Kara,” she murmurs, throwing her a tight smile, “Perhaps I’m a little bit under the weather today. If you finish that salad, I’ll buy you ice cream.”

 

Kara finds herself unable to resist the offer. After a few agonizing moments of chewing tasteless leaves and trying her best not to puke it out, she finally finishes the kale salad, which grants her one of Lena Luthor’s rare smiles. The kind that makes her eyes sparkle. And Kara totally blames the disgusting salad, but for some reason, she wishes she had done more to make that smile bloom.

 

“Thank you,” Lena tells her after a moment, “for trying to cheer me up.”

 

“Do I get an explanation for your mood swing? I’ll take that over the ice cream any day.”

 

Lena slides out of her chair and towards her table, shaking her head and punching a button on her telephone. “Jess, bring in Kara’s favorite ice cream here. ASAP. This woman’s appetite cannot be tamed.”

 

Hey !” Indignant, Kara almost refuses the treat in exchange for her pride but Lena just shakes her head at her again, biting her lower lip in a way that totally doesn’t catch Kara’s short attention span.

 

“My apologies,” the CEO says sweetly, “but I’ve just seen you swallow ten finger sandwiches as if they were nothing. I always wonder what kind of diet you have to go through for your body to look like that .”

 

Warmth fills Kara’s cheeks. “A lot,” she blurts out, wishing that Lena’s mind is on other things so that she won’t notice the blush on the blonde’s cheeks. “Definitely a lot. Like I-have-to-take-off-an-entire-day-to-go-to-the-gym-a-lot. Right?” Totally not because of her alien appetite.

 

Lena looks like she doesn’t believe her but she just shrugs it off. “I’ll take your word for it.”

 

//

 

When Lena comes over for movie night, she does her Sigh thing again. This time, Kara comes prepared. Every time Lena makes an audible sigh that seems to grow louder in volume, she shoves five pieces of Cheetos into her mouth so that she won’t have to ask. Because she knows Lena will just go cryptic again and not answer her questions. Might as well have her beg for her attention. The movie 10 Things I Hate About You is doing a good job of keeping most of it anyway.

 

However, when Kara runs out of Cheetos to eat, and Lena lets out her twelfth sigh that evening, she reaches over and pauses the movie on Heath Ledger's handsome face so that she can give her best friend her full, undivided attention.

 

Lena meets her gaze evenly. “What?” she asks. Her dark, silky hair is tied in a messy bun on top, with tendrils of it curling at the nape of her neck. Kara totally hasn’t noticed it ever since she first arrived at her apartment, hasn’t been wondering to herself how it feels to wrap her fingers around that thin neck of hers and pull her in--

 

“What’s on your mind?” Kara asks in return, licking the cheese off her thumb and zeroing in on the taste, “You’ve been like sighing forlornly for the past hour.”

 

“I have not.”

 

“Twelve times to be exact.”

 

“How would you know?”

 

“I just ate sixty pieces of Cheetos, woman.”  

 

Lena’s nose does its adorable scrunch, the way it always does when Kara says something she can’t comprehend. Like 80s sitcom movies or Krypton language that slips out of Kara’s tongue every now and then. “You have a habit of thinking with your stomach,” Lena tells her, flicking popcorn at her face, which she catches like a well-trained puppy, “and besides, I am perfectly content sitting here and watching this movie with you.”

 

“Really?”

 

“Of course.”

 

Kara straightens her back. “What’s the main character’s name?”

 

“Which one?”

 

“The guy.”

 

Lena tilts her head to the side, narrowing her gaze as she stared into Heath Ledger’s gorgeous eyes. She purses her lips after a few seconds and Kara smirks, knowing that when she makes that face, it means that she’s accepted defeat but is not going to admit it out loud.

 

“I’m pretty sure his name is Tom,” Lena answers begrudgingly.

 

“Close enough,” Kara says.

 

“Really?” Lena whips around to face her, raising her eyebrows in question, and Kara laughs.

 

“No,” the blonde amends later, “His name is Patrick Verona.”

 

Lena sighs again like Kara is the one who’s just spent the past hour wasting her time on a movie she barely even watched. But Kara tries not to get it to her. Instead, she leans forward and perches her chin on top of her fist, trying to gauge Lena’s reaction at having been caught not paying attention. Lena Luthor may do a lot of things in her free time--sighing loudly, running a company, saving lives--but zoning out isn’t one of them.

 

“Come on,” Kara tells her, “You’ve been like this for a while now. Am I not your best friend? Am I not supposed to know everything that goes through that pretty head of yours?”

 

Lena scoffs, rolling her eyes. “ Please .”

 

“Tell me what’s on your mind.”

 

“Quantum physics.”

 

Kara pauses, thinking about it and then letting out a dramatic sigh. “Okay. What about quantum physics?”

 

The look (furrowed brows, shiny eyes and a hesitant smile) that Lena gives her is enough to make her want to soar into the air but she manages to keep her feet on the ground. Chill, Kara , she tells herself. The last thing she needs is Lena finding out about her Supergirl identity.

 

“It’s really nothing,” Lena presses on, crossing her arms defensively, “I just have a lot of things to do before Monday.”

 

“You always have a lot of things to do before a Monday.” Kara gets up to wash off the cheese from her fingertips. When she returns, she brings with her two glasses of wine for her and Lena to drown their sorrows in. Because while Lena might not be in the mood to tell her what’s on her mind, Kara still wants to be there for her. “Come on. If you’re not going to tell me about it, then at least have a drink with me.”

 

Lena gives her one of her rare smiles as she accepts the glass. “If you must insist.”

 

It takes quite a ways for Lena to finally loosen up and start spilling the beans. Since Kara’s Kryptonian genes keeps her from getting drunk and making huge mistakes here and there (she’s already a klutz without alcohol and she doesn’t think Lena would appreciate her being floaty )  she can only watch as Lena slowly starts pulling her walls down. Since they’re so high up in the first place, it takes nearly a bottle of wine and another hour before Lena finally lets out One Huge Sigh and says, “How does everybody else in the world do it?”

 

Kara immediately straightens. “Do what?”

 

“Get over somebody.”

 

Of all the problems Lena could possibly have, ones in the romantic department are what surprises Kara the most. There’s no denying that Lena Luthor is one attractive woman. She’s the type of woman Kara would probably have sex dreams about, if Kara didn’t have them in the first place. Okay, shut up now. She tries to push away all these thoughts, knowing herself well enough that she might possibly spill them sooner or later, with or without the help of wine.

 

“Oh,” she says, prolonging the word long enough that it starts to sound weird even to her own ears, “I had no idea you were seeing anybody.” The last person had been James. The sight of them made Kara want to vomit, probably because she kissed James once. Yeah. That’s probably the only reason.

 

“I’m not,” Lena mutters, almost shyly, “You might even call it a little crush.”

 

Kara nearly chokes on her wine. When she sputters and tries to catch her breath, Lena is giving her a strange look. “Sorry,” the blonde says, rubbing her throat, “I didn’t think you do crushes . It’s like the other way around. I’m pretty sure you’re the one people are crushing on.”

 

“You flatter me.” The smile on Lena’s face makes Kara want to punch a wall--it’s that adorable. “Besides,” the brunette adds, “half of National City is also in the same predicament as me.”

 

“Oh.” Who the hell is this person blessed to have Lena Luthor’s affections ?

 

“I think it’s a lost cause.”

 

“Is it, though?”

 

Lena laughs bitterly, staring into her wine. “We have a difficult relationship,” she admits, “and besides, I don’t think she likes me that way.”

 

There are many things to focus on that single sentence alone, but Kara’s train of thought immediately latches on the she . It’s a girl. Lena Luthor has a crush on a girl. Who the hell is this girl? Half of National City is in love with her? Kara thinks back to all the famous people she knows in the city, besides Supergirl, of course and can only come up with Cat Grant. Unless Lena is into older women, the possibility doesn’t seem so far-fetched.

 

“Do I know this special lady?” Kara asks carefully, just in case Lena suddenly clams up.

 

Again, that bitter laugh. Lena drinks and Kara stares at the way her throat bobs. “Yes,” the brunette answers a moment later, “You know her.”

 

“Then, maybe I can help you?” Kara fiddles with her glasses, hating the flow of this conversation. It was bad enough pretending to be happy for Lena and James, but actively helping her friend get on with another person is a whole new nightmare-induced situation.

 

Lena tilts her head to the side, considering the offer. Her lips are stained red. Kara wonders if there’s another plane of existence in this universe where she reaches forward and wipes it away for her. But then Kara blinks and they’re still a few feet apart, talking about a girl crush that makes her heart hurt. What are friends for ?

 

“I’ll remember that for next time,” Lena says earnestly, glancing at her phone and frowning at the time, “Anyway, I should go back. I have a few things left to do before heading to sleep. I really appreciate this.” There’s a hand on Kara’s arm, warm and soft, and Kara’s mind goes blank. “Thank you.”

 

Despite the fact that it’s only eight in the evening, Kara flies above the city and listens to Lena’s steady heartbeat as she heads back to her own apartment. She’d rather head back home with her, but with the new revelation of Lena Luthor having feelings for another woman, she doubts that it will happen any time soon.

 

//

 

Kara’s in the middle of a rather uninteresting dinner alone with a pile of sandwiches at her apartment when, from halfway across the city, Lena Luthor’s heartbeat suddenly speeds up. She puts down her third chicken sandwich and uses her super hearing to listen in: I’m afraid I’ll have to decline your offer , Lena says, her voice shaking. Come on now , a rough male voice responds, my apartment is only a few blocks away .

 

Barely half a second later, Kara ends up outside at one of National City’s high end bars. She’s still wearing her pajamas, a fact that she’d forgotten in her moment of rage and fear. Thank Rao her glasses were stuck on top of her head, so she pushes them against her nose and looks around. Finding Lena isn’t that hard when she uses her Super speed to get past the bouncer and pushes inside. The Luthor is actually in the middle of getting out as well, so they practically collide against each other at the entrance and Kara immediately reaches out to keep her from falling.

 

Kara !” Lena says, surprise evident in her tone, “What are you doing here?”

 

Kara looks over her best friend’s shoulder to find some seedy-looking guy checking out Lena’s ass. Realizing that she’s still holding her dinner, she thrusts it into Lena’s hands ( ‘hold my sandwich ’) and punches the guy in the face so hard he crumples into a disgraced heap onto the floor. The music is too loud and the occupants inside the bar are too busy dancing to notice what has happened and Kara’s not going to stick around long enough to be interrogated.

 

When she turns, Lena is still holding the sandwich, her eyes wide and her mouth open. It takes Kara a full second to realize what she’s wearing and her mouth drops as well.

 

Oh Rao.

 

“Come on,” she finally says, grabbing Lena’s hand and fleeing out of the bar.

 

They hail a cab the minute they’re on the street and due to some unspoken agreement, Kara takes Lena home to her humble apartment, where the sandwiches still sit, waiting to be eaten. They don’t talk much as they move around the space, practically ignoring each other’s presence. It's clear that the two women both have burning questions just waiting to be voiced out but Kara is tired and still slightly pissed off about the whole situation to pay them much mind. As long as Lena is safe.

 

Finally, when Lena emerges from the bathroom wearing Kara’s clothes and Kara’s finished most of her sandwiches, the first question that pops out of the brunette’s mouth is, “How’d you know I was there?”

 

Kara readjusts her glasses. “Er,” she mumbles, “I was hanging out with Supergirl. She heard that you were in trouble.”

 

An unreadable expression passes through Lena’s face. “But you saved me,” she says.

 

“Uh, yeah.” Kara doesn’t know what to do with her hands so she tucks them into her pockets. “She didn’t think you’d appreciate her saving you.”

 

They’re standing in the kitchen, Lena looking at Kara hard and Kara looking anywhere else. Her cheeks are burning. Maybe it has something to do with the way Lena looked tonight in that tight black dress of hers, showing off the silky pale skin of her shoulders and the curve of her hips--and okay , Kara needs to stop thinking before she gets a nosebleed. That’s the problem though--she can’t stop thinking about it.

 

“Well, Supergirl couldn’t be more wrong,” Lena says after a moment, leaning against the kitchen counter. The cryptic nature of her statement does not go unnoticed but before Kara can bring it up, she adds, “Thank you, by the way. He was very persistent.”

 

Kara’s skin crawls. “Did he hurt you?”

 

“No.” Lena bites her lower lip. “He grabbed me a couple of times, though.”

 

Kara’s thankful that she punched that guy in the face as hard she could. She wants him to wake up the next day, feeling sorry for what he’s done. If she could do it all over again, she might’ve added in a couple more kicks and jabs, just to get her point across. “I’m glad you’re safe,” she tells her best friend, her shoulders relaxing when Lena shoots her another one of her rare smiles.

 

“My hero,” the brunette whispers.

 

The blonde clears her throat, feeling a blush creep through her skin. “Not that I’m prying into your personal life or anything,” she starts, “but what were you doing at that bar? Were you hanging out with your friends?”

 

Lena looks away. “You’ll think of me as a fool,” she whispers quietly, and if it isn’t for Kara’s Super hearing, she wouldn’t have heard her.

 

Lena .” The blonde nearly trips on her way to grab the brunette’s hands. They’re warm to the touch. “You are one of the smartest people I’ve ever known, I don’t think there’s anything you can tell me that would make me think otherwise.”

 

“It might have something to do with that crush of mine…” The admission is said through gritted teeth, followed by the sigh that Kara is starting to dub as the Crush Sigh.

 

Something in Kara’s chest twists and turns at the sight of Lena looking at her with eyes full of unshed tears and a tight jaw. She’s rarely seen Lena cry--only when she’s completely and utterly consumed by grief or guilt--so having her teary-eyed over a silly crush (well, it probably might not be that silly ) makes Kara realize just how much of a big deal this really is.

 

“Come on,” she tells the brunette, “There’s nothing to be ashamed of. I hung out at bars all the time to get over James and Mike.” Technically a lie. She simply wallowed in her fifteen tubs of ice cream.

 

Lena lets out a humorless laugh. “Did it help?”

 

Wincing, Kara shakes her head. “Not really,” she confesses, moving away so that she won’t have to see the crestfallen look on Lena’s face and heading towards the fridge to grab some ice cream, “but do you know what really helps? Talking it out and dessert, of course.”

 

Whenever Lena always had something on her mind, she’d reach out for Kara’s guidance. It’s one of the many things Kara loves about their relationship--how trust always seems to trump any secrets they might hold against each other (excluding Supergirl)--but this is different, for some reason. Lena is hesitant, wary even, and Kara can’t fathom the reason why. It’s just a crush. Best friends talk about guys and girls all the time. Hell, when Lena was still dating James, their topic never delved away from Lena’s fear that he might dump her because of who her family was.

 

So, Lena’s hesitance about her new girl crush doesn’t really make any sense at all.

 

Unless--

 

“Are you crushing on my sister?” Kara blurts out, whipping around so fast she manages to catch sight of Lena’s shock expression morphing into disbelief.

 

Her conclusion isn’t necessarily far-fetched. Alex Danvers is very attractive, if Kara has anything to say about it. Plus, she’s single, though not necessarily available, as she’s still trying to get over Maggie. And she’s the only girl Kara knows who’s also attracted to women…

 

The thought of Lena and Alex together makes Kara very, very uneasy.

 

“What? No!” Lena quickly says, scoffing, “No offense, Kara, I adore your sister and everything but she’s not exactly my type.”

 

“I didn’t even know you had a type,” Kara mumbles, opening a tub of Cookie Dough flavored ice cream, “because you don’t seem to like talking about this special lady.”

 

“I just don’t know what to say.”

 

After grabbing two spoons and extending one to Lena, Kara makes her Lena-proof Puppy Eyes. “But I’m your best friend,” she says, “You don’t really have to think about anything. Tell me what’s on your mind and I’ll do my best to figure it out.”

 

Lena drums her fingertips against the counter, ignoring her puppy eyes and watching the ice cream Kara has laid out in front of her. After a second, she dives in. “I know that,” she says, “and there’s nobody else in the world that I would like to share this with, but I’m still trying to...understand it. It’s all very new to me.”

 

“Because it’s a girl?”

 

Lena shrugs. “Something like that.”

 

Kara thinks back to how Alex told her that she liked girls and understands the situation altogether. Not wanting to push her best friend into a corner, she drops it again. Lena’s trust in her means the world, so she’s not going to talk about the stupid crush until she’s ready. She picks up her phone from the counter and switches to some funny dog videos. She notices the way Lena’s shoulders immediately relax at the change of subject.

 

“I know what will cheer you up,” she says, grinning broadly, “and you better laugh at all of them.”

 

Lena stays the night after that, tired and full. She takes over Lena’s bed while Kara occupies the couch, dismissing the earlier protests. What are best friends for ? She tells Lena while tucking her into bed and completely missing the way the brunette’s tight smile doesn’t quite reach her eyes.

 

//

 

Supergirl!

 

A whip-like sound slices through the air as Kara practically bends space-time continuum to get to where Lena currently is, her heart hammering loudly inside her chest as every scenario passed through her brain. What happened now ? Is Lena safe ? Who’s after her ? Questions pulse through from behind her eyelids, making her brain hurt, as she travels past buildings and skyscrapers before finally landing on the balcony of L-Corp, her swift entrance creating a rather large crack on the floor. She immediately scans the area, finding Lena stuck in the conference room, with her hands clawing at her throat.

 

The Earth might’ve bent a little more to the left with the speed of Kara rushing over to her.

 

The conference room, when she barges in through the locked door, is filled with smoke. Not just any smoke. Already Kara can taste the acidity in it, throwing her off for a second before she blows a gust of wind into the direction of where Lena is crippled, gasping for oxygen. She’s huddled under the table, her face red, and it takes Kara literally half a second to sweep the CEO into her arms and dive out of there.

 

Lena is coughing against her chest, her arms wrapped tightly around Kara’s neck. The Super doesn’t say anything in fear that her voice might crack. As they travel away from L-Corp and into a secluded mountainside far from the city with plenty of fresh air, Kara hopes that Lena can’t feel the rapid beating of her heart in fear of what might’ve happened if she had been a second too late. The thought makes her hold the woman tighter.

 

When they reach the mountainside that’s filled with fresh red tulips, Kara lets Lena go.

 

“Are you okay?” she asks, softening her voice.

 

Lena looks shaken, but better. “Thank you,” she says roughly, “You were the first person who popped into my brain when the smoke started coming in.”

 

Kara tries her best not to glow at that. “Do you have any idea who might’ve done this to you?”

 

The bitter and humorless laugh returns. “I have a few people in mind,” Lena mumbles, wrapping her arms around herself as she looks towards the field of red tulips. “Oh wow. Flowers .” For some reason, her cheeks turn red.

 

“First place that popped up in my brain too,” the blonde reasons, shaking her head and unconsciously stepping close, “Should I take you to the DEO? Maybe the smoke is still in your system.”

 

“No, I--I feel fine.” Lena runs a hand to smooth her blouse down, her gaze still fixated on the field. Kara can’t help but realize just how stupidly fucking beautiful she looks among the sea of red. “It’s just,” the brunette starts, shooting Kara a grateful smile, “Flowers have hidden meanings, you know.”

 

Kara tries to remember what red tulips could possibly mean but comes up blank. So she shrugs, looking at Lena and wondering if she really is okay. She nearly died like half a minute ago and the only thing she can talk about are flowers. How… Lena.

 

“Just tell me when you’d like to return to L-Corp,” Kara tells her, already turning away so that she can send Alex a quick text, “I still have to speak to the DEO.”

 

“Wait, Supergirl.” Kara catches sight of Lena’s hand extended towards her and twists around, raising an eyebrow. They’ve always had a rocky relationship with each other, so this sudden burst of voluntary touch is confusing, at best.

 

“Yes, Ms. Luthor?”

 

A pink blush forms on Lena’s cheeks as she responds hastily, “Let’s stay here for a few more minutes. It’s… been a long time since I’ve last seen a field of flowers.”

 

“Oh.” Kara shrugs, not paying it much mind. Lena has a weird side to her. She turns her attention to the field, staring into the red tulips and wondering what their hidden meaning could be. She has to admit, though--the field is beautiful. Almost as beautiful as the woman standing next to her.

 

“Have you gotten used to it?” the brunette asks suddenly, glancing at her from the corner of her eye. When Kara doesn’t answer immediately, she clarifies, “Saving me. I believe this is the hundredth time?”

 

“Well,” the Super begins, shooting her a smirk, “I’d still like our meetings to not involve anything life-threatening. Perhaps under different circumstances, we might’ve even been friends.”

 

Lena pauses, shifts. “Really, now?”

 

“As long as your earlier views on me have changed.”

 

“I don’t think my views on you were that bad,” Lena says knowingly, now openly staring at her, “but forgive me if you thought so.”

 

Kara shrugs again. “It’s okay,” she mumbles, “I’m used to it.”

 

“The clashing views on your kind?” Lena must’ve realized how it sounded, because she tilts her head in an apologetic nod, green eyes looking away. “I’m sorry.”

 

Waving her off, Kara floats off the ground and descends into the field, reaching out to touch the red tulips. As if sensing her touch, they quiver. Feeling Lena’s stare on her back, she takes her time in coming up with an answer. Now she’s always been comfortable around Lena when she’s Kara but everytime she puts on the Super suit and faces her best friend, it feels like there’s an immovable wall that stands between them. Kara has always wanted nothing more than to be part of Lena’s life, good or bad, and if she wants that now, most especially as Supergirl, then she too must adjust.

 

“I’ve always tried to fit in,” she tells her earnestly, “When I was a kid, it was all that Al--my sister kept telling me to do. Be normal, be normal, be normal . Everytime I did something wrong, it didn’t really go away. It was always stuck at the back of my mind, reminding me that I’m nothing more than an alien sent from outer space for some of you.” She pauses, glancing at Lena to find that her gaze has moved away. “Some, not all.”

 

Lena wraps her arms around herself, despite the warm weather. Without even saying anything, Kara already knows what she’s thinking. “Oh,” the brunette says, her voice hollow, “I know.”

 

Kara smiles at her. “You’ve proven yourself more of an ally than an enemy, Lena,” she says softly, floating back to the shared space they had earlier and resting her hand on her friend’s arm, albeit hesitantly, “You are nothing like your mother or brother.”

 

It takes a long time for Lena to glance back at her and when she does, her green eyes are soft and warm. It’s the kind of look Lena gives to her best friend Kara Danvers after a particular emotional day, the same kind of look Lena had after Jack died, the same kind of look she tried to hide after her break-up with James.

 

And now she’s giving it to Supergirl.

 

“Supergirl, you are so--” the brunette begins, letting out a sigh as her shoulders relax, “God, I don’t even know how to describe you. I doubt there’s a word in the entire English dictionary that pertains to the kind of person you are.”

 

Friendly ?” Kara supplies helpfully, happy that their conversation didn’t sour, as she readies her arms to take the CEO back to L-Corp.

 

Lena smiles, rubs the back of her neck, as she steps forward into the blonde’s embrace. “No,” she murmurs, her eyes flickering back to Kara’s, “More than that. You are fascinating .”

 

//

 

Fascinating ,” Kara mutters to herself as she waits for Alex to finish preparing dinner. Ever since Lena uttered those words to her, she hasn’t been able to stop thinking about them. There’s been plenty of adjectives to describe her--super, heroic, brave, selfless--but fascinating is a new thing. She doesn’t know why but the word makes her feel all tingly inside. Fascinating indeed.

 

“Are you talking about dinner?” Alex asks, raising her eyebrows incredulously and sliding into the seat next to her, “because Chinese take-out is hardly fascinating.”

 

Kara waves her off. “Nah,” she mumbles, “it’s just Lena.”

 

Just ?” Her sister smirks at that. “I doubt that. Come on. What’s on your mind?”

 

The blonde sighs to herself. Actually, she hasn’t the same idea too. Lena has always complimented her--both as Kara and Supergirl--so this shouldn’t feel as new as it already does. But she thinks back to the way Lena looked at her, to the soft and warm gaze and that tight-lipped smile that conveyed hidden meanings. Just like a flower. Kara should probably search it up.

 

“Ever since you and Lena became besties, I have heard nothing but good things about her,” Alex says, splitting her chopsticks, “so it's not just Lena when it comes to you. Something happened. What’s wrong?”

 

“She has this--” Kara is not sure if Lena would appreciate her telling Alex, even if they are in the same boat, “-- thing that she’s not telling me about and then earlier, when I saved her from that acid smoke, she said a few things.”

 

“Did she tell you that she hated Supergirl?”

 

“What? No. She told me that I was er--uhm-- fascinating ,” Kara whispers the last word, like it's a secret worth telling, but Alex barely blinks.

 

“So?”

 

“So!” Actually, Kara doesn’t know the so. Empty handed and frustrated at these conflicting feelings stirring up inside her, she pulls her Chinese takeout in and starts devouring the insides. She’s hoping that her intake of food could help her come up with some answers, but even after she’s finished, she still doesn’t have a good one.

 

“Are you telling me that you seriously don’t know?” Alex asks her after a while, raising a dubious eyebrow.

 

“Don’t know what?”

 

There’s nothing else in the universe that sounds as pitying as Alex’s laugh. “Jesus, Kara,” she mutters, shakes her head. “It’s Lena.”

 

“If you tell me that she would hurt me, then I swear to Rao --”

 

Alex reaches over and smacks her head. “Idiot,” she tells her sternly, “I wasn’t going to say that.”

 

Her Kryptonian genes prevent her from actually feeling any pain that's lighter than the Eiffel Tower being dropped on her, and yet Kara feigns hurt and says, in mock offense, “You didn’t have to hit me so hard.”

 

“Shut up.” Alex rolls her eyes. “You deserve that for being a stupid idiot.”

 

“What on earth for?”

 

Alex lets out a heavy sigh that seems to take out her entire life force and raises her eyes to the sky, almost like she’s asking some Almighty Being to smite her. Then she fixes Kara with one of her Big Sister glares and points a chopstick at her. “You like Lena.”

 

“Well, duh. She’s my best friend.”

 

“No, you stupid dingus. Like-like.

 

Kara scoffs, waving her away. “No, I don’t.” Except for some reason, she feels her heart rate speed up.

 

Alex rolls her eyes once more. She could get brain damage with the countless times she’s done that to Kara. “And I’m the straightest person in this city,” she quips, putting away her chopsticks and heading over to the kitchen, “You can deny it all you want. We don’t have to talk about it now, but I’ll be waiting here when you finally realize what an idiot you’ve been.”

 

It’s Kara’s turn to roll her eyes. As she listens to Alex’s mumbling to herself in the kitchen, she grabs another one of the five Chinese take-out boxes they ordered and dives into it, thinking that if she ever had any feelings for Lena, then surely she’d be the first person to know.

 

//

 

When Kara wakes up the next day, she immediately zeroes in on Lena’s heartbeat at her kitchen. All heartbeats sound the same, of course, but there’s just something soothing about the steady thrum of Lena’s life pulsing in her ears that makes Kara feel a hundred times better.

 

Wait --was Lena in her kitchen?

 

Kara jumps to her feet when all the other mundane noises filter in. The sounds of the coffee machine working, eggs frying, Lena humming under her breath. She grabs her glasses and shoves it against her nose, pulling in some sweatpants and hurrying to open the door.

 

She finds Lena making her breakfast at the kitchen. The brunette is wearing casual clothes: a pink shirt that looks suspiciously similar to the one Kara has in her closet and blue jeans that show off the curves of her legs. Her long, silky hair is tied in a bun on top of her head, showing off her pale skin, and Kara stares at the long expanse of her neck before she finally manages to stutter, “Uh-- hi . Is it my birthday today?”

 

Lena glances at her over her shoulder. “Good morning,” she says happily, “I wanted to see you before I head to the bank, but then I realized that I wanted to have breakfast with you, so here it is.”

 

“How--how did you get in?” Kara nearly trips over a stool when she sees that Lena has also made her pancakes. Shit. What a perfect woman. “Oh wow, food,” she stutters, “Oh. Wow, I love you.” When she says it, she has to physically stop herself from nearly falling again. Crap . She does love Lena. So fucking much. Who else would actually wake up early in the morning just to make her breakfast, for the sake of them just eating together?

 

Lena Luthor, of course.

 

Her best friend grins as she nods at the door. “Alex let me in.”

 

“Where’s Alex now?” Kara mumbles, still a bit wide-eyed from her sudden realization. It’s a miracle that she hasn’t fallen on her butt yet.

 

The brunette shrugs, turning around to deposit the plate of eggs into the kitchen table. Kara’s eyebrows shoot up in surprise at the sight of her wearing a pink apron. “She said something about work,” Lena answers, “Oh, by the way, she asked me to tell you that you’re still being an idiot. I haven’t had a clue what for, though.”

 

Scoffing, Kara pads over to the kitchen counter, her stomach growling at the sight of blueberry flavored pancakes, hotdogs perfectly brown and crisp, and the eggs benedict with the oozing hollandaise sauce. Lena’s practically made enough to feed a small army and Kara wants nothing more than to wrap her best friend in a tight hug. Which she does, albeit in a surprise, because Lena makes a small yet pleased noise at the back of her throat when she swiftly turns around only to be engulfed in an embrace by Kara.

 

“What’s the occasion?” Kara asks into her neck, smelling the faint hint of lavender from her friend’s shampoo.

 

“Well, after being graciously saved by Supergirl once more, I decided to tell you something.” Lena pulls away, smiling broadly at her.

 

“Ah. The language of food.” Kara pats her empty stomach, sharing Lena’s smile. “You know me so well.”

 

After Lena finishes cooking everything, they sit down at the dining table to feast on their breakfast. Kara takes a large portion from each meal her best friend has prepared, which Lena finds amusing at best. They catch up on regular mundane things, such as a prototype that the Luthor is working on and Kara’s mindless article writing on things that don’t really impact the world in some way. At first, they can’t stop talking about what their lives have been up to, but slowly, Lena’s nervous nail-biting catch Kara’s attention and their topic of interest draws nearer.

 

“So,” Kara begins, adding whipped cream onto her pancakes, “What is it that you wanted to tell me?”

 

Lena looks partly relieved. “Okay,” she says, “We’ve talked about this before and when I wasn’t comfortable sharing it, you thankfully dropped it. But I think it’s time for me to tell you.”

 

Kara nods as she eats her pancake. “This sounds very important.” Meanwhile, her mind is going places. What is so important Lena literally had to cook me breakfast just to say it ? Maybe Lena’s moving away for a business trip, or her brother has escaped prison, or maybe she knows that Kara is Supergirl? All possible scenarios pass through her brain but she manages to keep a partially stoic expression on her face.

 

“Remember that girl crush I told you about?” Lena opens, rubbing the back of her neck.

 

Oh. Kara doesn’t know what to feel. She acknowledges her heart twisting for some otherworldly reason and then a wave of relief washing over her at the fact that it’s only a crush and nothing life-threatening.

 

“I remember,” Kara says, looking away from Lena’s anguished gaze, “You were all being secretive about it.”

 

“For a reason,” Lena amends, almost shyly, “I need to tell you because it directly affects you. You know more than anyone else about how much I value our friendship. Things might change between us and I--”

 

Kara’s brain is spinning as she puts down her fork. Ears ringing, she thinks (or hopes) that Lena might actually just tell her that she likes her with the way the conversation is going. Surprise--it’s actually YOU! It’d be such a cosmic joke--Lena Luthor walking into her life, putting flowers in her office and smiling at her with love in her eyes and trust in her heart and sweeping Kara Danvers off her feet. She doesn’t realize she wants it until Lena is right there, standing in front of her, confessions spilling out of her lips.

 

No , she scolds herself, you love her as a friend. A best friend.

 

She still wants Lena to tell her she likes her though, even though it’s obvious that the other woman only loves her a best friend.

 

The thought stings.

 

“--want you to understand that I will completely understand if you hate me after this, or if you want to sever our friendship, or if you want to walk out right now--”

 

“Lena.” Kara reaches forward and grabs her wringing hands. “ Breathe . You can tell me. I won’t be mad.”

 

Lena shakes her head. “You might,” she mutters, her green eyes taking in Kara’s supportive smile.

 

“Please. It’s just a crush. We’re not in high school.”

 

The Crush Sigh again. Lena shakes her head once more before reaching out and drawing her thumb over Kara’s bottom lip. Kara freezes, not wanting to move in case she breaks the moment and not entirely sure if her stomach churning is due to the hefty breakfast she just ate or because of the way Lena’s looking at her now, all soft and warm and beautiful--and oh shit --Kara wants Lena to kiss her. She wants to kiss Lena. It will only take a few steps and then she’d be there . Close enough to pull in and press her mouth over Lena’s plump lips. She could do it--damn the fucking girl crush--they’ve been best friends for years now, after all, nothing would change--except everything would.

 

Fuck, a rational part of Kara’s brain kicks in, I like-like Lena.

 

Lena draws her thumb back and licks the whipped cream off. The action itself is enough to make the Kara’s cheeks grow very warm. “It’s Supergirl,” Lena says briskly, looking away.

 

“Wait-- what ?” And just like that, Kara feels as if she’s fallen from the very top of L-Corp building.

 

Lena walks towards the direction of the living room, shaking her head like Kara’s reaction is an algorithm gone wrong. “This is why I didn’t tell you,” she presses, “I feared this exact reaction. You and Supergirl are very close--I didn’t want you think I would risk our friendship for--”

 

Kara runs her fingers through her hair, fucking bamboozled. “I’m not…” she tries to mutter, unsure of what to say and how to feel, “I’m just surprised. I just--I thought you didn’t like her because--”

 

The brunette laughs bitterly. “Romantic feelings were bound to happen when somebody keeps saving you from death and believes in you when you don’t even believe in yourself,” she remarks.

 

But, Kara wants to implore, I did those things.

 

She doesn’t know how to feel but envy grabs at her heartstrings the more the realization that Lena likes Supergirl settles in. There’s something awfully gut-wrenching at the thought of Lena falling for a different version of Kara Danvers, the version who’s strong and beautiful and indestructible. Of course, who would even spare awkward, blabbering and just a reporter Kara Danvers a glance when you’ve got Supergirl blasting away aliens and saving you in the blink of an eye? It’s a strange feeling, being of jealous of yourself , but Kara feels it strongly in her bones now, especially at the sight of Lena’s cheeks turning pink.

 

Wait, she tells herself again, getting a slight headache , am I seriously jealous of myself ?

 

“Does this mean you--?” Kara doesn’t know what to ask but she feels very stupid at hoping that Lena might’ve actually felt the same way.

 

“--have half of National City in competition for Supergirl’s affections?” Lena laughs once more before she plops back down on the couch, rubbing her eyes as she does The Crush Sigh. “Yes, Kara. I’m well aware that I’m possibly one of the least viable options for Supergirl to choose if she ever has the time to settle down and date a mere human being like me.”

 

“You are anything but ‘mere,’ Lena.” Kara jogs over to the couch and settles in next to her best friend. Even though she still can’t wrap her mind around Lena actually developing romantic feelings for her counterpart, she will still defend Lena to the core whenever her self-deprecating thoughts take over. “I’ve told you this before, but you are beautiful, smart and kind. You are nothing like your mother and brother. If Supergirl were ever to date anybody, I think she’d be proud to date you.” she says earnestly and then nearly slaps herself. Am I seriously trying to get her to date me ?

 

“Oh, Kara.” Lena cups Kara’s cheek, giving her a tight-lipped smile, “You flatter me but you are clearly biased since you’re my best friend.”

 

“Oh my gosh.” The blonde shakes her head, trying to bite back a laugh. “Just because you have a crush on an alien doesn’t mean you’re unlovable. I love you, remember?”

 

She feels the truth in her bones, even more so when Lena smiles again, this time wider. It’s always like a rare gift to get one of those smiles.

 

“Thank you, dear,” Lena whispers, letting herself be wrapped in a special Kara Danvers hug, “I don’t know what I’d do without you. And oh, please don’t tell Supergirl about this. I think I’d die of embarrassment.”

 

Kara laughs shakily. Right , she thinks to herself, as if she already doesn’t know.

 

//

 

The next day, Alex practically breaks the door down in her haste to enter Kara’s apartment, only to find her sister drowning herself in five gallons of Cookies and Cream flavored ice cream. It’s a strange sight to see, Kara has to admit, especially after she swarmed Alex with texts screaming: NEED YOUR HELP!!! and SOS!!! This is a life and death situation!!

 

“What’s the emergency?” Alex demands, looking wide-eyed, as she points her gun at any possible places an enemy might hiding.

 

“You were right!” Kara whines, putting down her ice-cream filled spoon and running her hands through her blonde curls. “Fuck, you were right! I am an idiot!”

 

Alex’s expression shifts from fear to annoyance as she puts her gun back in its holster. Giving her sister her best I-will-kill-you look, she crosses her arms and asks, “Did you seriously make me run all this way from the DEO just to tell me that I was right? About what, exactly?”

 

Kara has to admit: she might’ve been exaggerating in her texts. “About me and Lena,” she mumbles.

 

Her sister lets out a huge sigh, as if out of all the things that Kara has done, this is the worst thing that she has witnessed. She plops down on the couch next to Kara and takes a tub of ice cream for her own. The two sisters eat for a couple of minutes in silence, even though the blonde reporter is just basically dying to share what she has just uncovered over the past 24 hours, but Alex looks so stressed out that she doesn’t even want to try.

 

“Okay,” Alex finally mutters after a while, licking her spoon clean and looking visibly calmer, “So, you’ve finally admitted to it, huh? God, it didn’t even take a week.”

 

“She did show up here yesterday,” Kara points out.

 

“I told her to tell you that you were an idiot.”

 

“She passed on that message, thank you very much.”

 

Alex shakes her head, smirking. “Okay, tell me what happened.”

 

Now that she’s being given a chance to actually spill her guts out, Kara realizes that she doesn’t know where to start. Should she start from when Lena told her she had a girl crush or should she actually start from the very, very beginning? When Lena left after breakfast yesterday, Kara racked her brain for all the hidden signs that had actually been in plain sight. She’s an idiot for not seeing her sooner. All along, the love she held for Lena (the kind of love that made Kara zero in on her heartbeat every single morning) was never platonic . Without realizing, she’d fallen for the Luthor after years of friendship. She only realized it now after Alex practically spelled it out for her.

 

“I’m an idiot,” is the first thing Kara says, rubbing her eyes at her idiocy, “She made me breakfast , Alex! That’s my favorite meal of the day. And not just any normal breakfast with coffee and toast--I mean--like a real freaking breakfast --complete with pancakes, hotdogs, eggs and everything in between. Rao , who does that? Who ? I’m pretty sure if Mon-El tried, he would’ve burned down my kitchen.”

 

Alex gives her a look of barely-concealed worry. “Okay,” she says slowly, “If I ever had a friend who wanted to sweep you off your feet, I’ll tell them breakfast is a good way to start.”

 

“And it kind of hit like a stupid yellow bus, Alex,” Kara proceeds, not even bothering to comment on what her sister has just said, “Like I thought I liked it when Lena did these things for me because she’s my best friend and all but no, it’s not just that. When she filled with my office with flowers that one time, I thought it was nice of her--”

 

“She gave you flowers--?”

 

“--and when she kept asking me out for lunch, I thought it was amazing that somebody could actually like me so much that they don’t get tired of my presence. I’ve been so stupid not to realize it sooner. And then she goes and tells me that she actually has a crush on Supergirl , of all people, and I think I just freaking blew my chance, Alex--”

 

Wait .” Alex grips her arm, her eyes bulging out of their sockets. “ She has a crush on Supergirl ?”

 

Right. Of course that would be the one thing Alex would immediately focus on. “Yes,” Kara says, almost impatiently, “She has a crush on Supergirl ! I thought she hated me!”

 

“Oh, that explains shit,” Alex mutters, standing up and putting away her empty ice cream tub.

 

“Explain what?”

 

“Oh, you know, the weird glances every now and then. Last time the three of us were in a room together with you as Supergirl, she kept looking at you funny.” Kara hears Alex pouring herself a glass of wine from the kitchen and when she turns, she finds her sister staring at her with a smirk on her face. “I thought she was plotting ways to murder you or something,” the older Danvers says, “but turns out, she just actually wants to jumps your bones.”

 

The image of Lena jumping on her bones makes Kara flush heavily. “She does not ,” she grumbles, crossing her arms, “It’s just a crush.”

 

“When I had a crush on Maggie, all I wanted to do was kiss her,” Alex points out with a chuckle, “And I’m just betting you--Lena is somewhere out there imagining what it’s like to kiss the Girl of Steel. Doesn’t that like--I  don’t know--turn on you or something?”

 

Alex !”

 

Her older sister laughs. There are rare moments where Alex actually laughs with her entire body and this is one of them. After Maggie left, she hasn’t been able to do that as much. While her words are scandalous at best, Kara can’t help but preen at the fact that she made her sister laugh again.

 

“Sorry,” Alex mutters, not sounding sorry at all, “Anyway, what’s the problem here? She likes Supergirl, which means she likes you .”

 

No no no . Kara stands up and follows her sister into the kitchen while still shaking her head and wringing her hands together. “It’s not like that,” she expresses exasperatedly, “Come on, love isn’t as easy as that. She likes Supergirl, not me! Not weird and awkward Kara Danvers. She’d rather go on a date with somebody who’s saved her life countless of times than the best friend who’s been with her since Day 1.” She tries not to let her jealousy seep into her words, but Alex must’ve noticed because she gives her a dubious expression.

 

Seriously , Kara?” she says, “I can’t believe this.”

 

“You see my point, right?”

 

“What I see is you being an idiot again!” Alex rubs her eyes, sighing heavily. “You’re smarter than this. Why the hell are you separating Supergirl and Kara Danvers? They’re one and the same.”

 

“Not to Lena , they aren’t!” Kara pushes, adjusting her glasses, which Alex takes off barely a second later.

 

“The only difference between Lena’s best friend and her stupid girl crush is just a pair of glasses,” Alex spits, putting the offending object on the kitchen counter, “As one of the many people who know about your dual identities, Kara, I can safely say that there’s not much difference between the two. Supergirl is just as much of an idiot as you are.”

 

“I’m not being an idiot.” Kara groans, rubbing her forehead. “It’s different with Lena.”

 

“Tell me, then.” Alex crosses her arms, fixes Kara with a challenging glare. “Tell me what makes Lena different.”

 

A warm feeling bursts in Kara’s heart at the thought of Lena. Without meaning to, she uses her Super Hearing to listen in on the woman, using her steady heartbeat as a way to keep her grounded, tethered. They’re hundreds of miles away and yet, Kara is always on the lookout for her. “It’s Lena,” the blonde says, almost defeatingly, “She--she’s the first person that I’ve really had to separate Supergirl from. She likes me enough to consider me her best friend. And gosh, she likes me for me , Alex. She likes Kara Danvers, the awkward reporter who doesn’t have to be strong or a hero for everybody else. She knows what I like for breakfast and how I get all teary-eyed at dog videos and the fact that I hate going to the gym with her and my gosh, I’m an idiot, really, for not seeing it sooner. Don’t quote me on that. Look, I--the thing is, she knows me. Not as Supergirl. Not as somebody who has the weight of National City on her shoulders. Just me. Kara. And for her to know all of that about me and still look at Supergirl instead… well, it kind of stings.”

 

Alex listens patiently, just like a big supportive older sister would. When Kara doesn’t say anything more and finds herself twiddling her thumbs, Alex sighs and wraps her sister in a big hug. The gesture is comforting and Kara relaxes.

 

“Okay, I get your point,” Alex mumbles against her hair, “You do realize that you’re kinda being jealous of yourself, right? Anyway, I think you should just tell her. We’ve known her long enough. I’m far from trusting her fully, but you do. That’s enough for me.”

 

“Oh Rao .” Kara laughs. “That’s going to be an awkward conversation.”

 

Alex chuckles. “Love is messy and awkward, kiddo. Get used to it.”

 

//

 

The next time Kara sees Lena, she almost tells her. But then a bomb threat suddenly comes through Lena’s personnel security--within ten minutes, L-Corp is expected to blow up into smithereens and Kara loses sight of Lena in the crowd of panicked corporate suits. Half a minute later, Supergirl shows up, throws the bomb into the bottom of the Pacific Ocean and comes back to find Lena worried sick about Kara Danver’s safety.

 

She’ll tell her next time, she thinks to herself as she flies away.

 

//

 

Dodging Lena as Supergirl is a lot harder than Kara expects. For one, the CEO seems to have a bad habit of getting herself into precarious situations, like getting kidnapped or facing some sort of attack from her crazed half-brother or step-mother. Kara always comes to save the day and, after remembering Lena’s little confession about her crush on her, always manages to get away before Lena gets the chance to actually thank her.

 

She should’ve known that it’d bite her in the ass one day.

 

It’s been nearly a month since Lena told her about Supergirl. A month of pointedly not making any sort of interaction with the CEO as Supergirl. A month of Kara painfully easing Lena’s worries that Supergirl is avoiding her. A month of trying to juggle her double life. Kara doesn’t really understand the need to separate the two even more than she already has; she just doesn’t like the thought of Lena having more reason to like her counterpart better than she likes her best friend. Which is, what Alex would say, fucking stupid .

 

Kara gets her point. She just doesn’t really know how to act when she’s around Lena in her Super suit. Part of her wants to sweep Lena into her arms and kiss her senseless. Another part of her wants Lena to fall for Kara Danvers instead of Supergirl. Which is confusing and annoying, at best. Because she is both. God, why couldn’t she just tell this straight to her face? She already has Alex’s blessing to tell her about her secret identity, but something’s holding her back.

 

She finds the answer late one night, at 2:05 AM on a Wednesday, when she hears Lena calling out for her. “ Supergirl ?”

 

It’s late. She’s sleeping. Lena should be sleeping. But Kara changes into her Super suit with the kind of speed that rivals The Flash’s and finds herself hovering on top of Lena’s apartment building not even half a second later. She looks over the roof to find her best friend sipping a glass of wine while staring into the lights of National City from her place in the balcony. Lena’s still wearing her work clothes: a red and black power suit which accentuates all of her curves and makes Kara want to bash her head into the nearest solid thing she can find. She wonders what’s bothering the other woman so much that she hasn’t changed out of them.

 

“Yes, Ms. Luthor?” she says, dropping in gently next to her.

 

Lena has probably expected her arrival, because she doesn’t flinch as much as she used to do during Kara’s nightly visits. But Kara notes that her heartbeat does quicken.

 

“I’m glad you could come,” Lena says, her voice hitching.

 

“Anything for you.” Kara winces. She shouldn’t have said that. Great. More reason for Lena to like her. “I mean--I’d come for anybody else. Part of being, you know, Supergirl.”

 

“Ah, yes. Right.” Lena looks crestfallen. She takes another sip of her wine. When the glass comes away, her lips are stained red. She stares at Kara for a long time after that, not saying anything, even though Kara can probably guess the million of things that are just running through that brain of hers. “I asked you here because I wanted to tell you something.”

 

Kara glances into the city lights. They’re beautiful. Every light is a person living their lives, depending on her to save them when the time comes. Then she looks back at Lena, who is still looking at her with those warm green eyes of hers and that red mouth which holds a small, hesitant smile, and she thinks that nothing else could ever compare.

 

“What is it?” she asks, not daring to move closer.

 

“It’s foolish, really.” Lena sighs. It’s the Crush Sigh. With her thundering heartbeat and the nervous twitch of her fingers that indicates a nail-biting habit, Kara suddenly understands what’s about to go down. “I will understand if you wish to no longer speak to me after this but I just wanted to try.”

 

Kara doesn’t say anything, which Lena takes as a good sign to continue: “For the past few months, I admit that we didn’t have the easiest relationship. I am partly to blame for keeping things from you and I’m glad that we’ve moved past that.” She lets out her Crush Sigh again and Kara’s heart twitches.

 

Despite the awkward situation coming, she manages to throw Lena a smile. “I am too.”

 

The woman’s green eyes brighten considerably. “Then I’m sure,” she persists, “you also agree that our relationship has considerably improved?”  

 

Kara nods. “Yes.” She is still rooted in her spot, watching Lena with the backdrop of the city alight and alive behind her. Thinking back to the moment where Lena wiped the excess cream off her own lip, she wonders what it would be like to kiss her, to have those plump lips sliding against her own, to have her breathe into her mouth.

 

The mental image makes her cheeks warm.

 

“I still have this nagging feeling, however,” Lena says suddenly, moving closer towards Kara, “that you might be avoiding me.”

 

And there it is. The clincher. While she’s gotten very used to Lena’s many tells when it comes to her emotions, she can’t really detect what’s lying underneath the woman’s passive expression. She looks calm. Like the CEO she is when faced with angry, sexist white males. Kara would give anything to have J’onn’s ability to read minds. Because Lena is not really giving her anything here.

 

“What makes you say that?” Kara asks, raising an eyebrow when Lena scoffs.

 

“After you threw away that bomb, you didn’t even bother to come back and check up on--” The me goes unsaid but Kara hears it anyway. Lena lets out a harsh sigh, rubs the back of her neck. Her lips are still red from the wine.

 

“I already knew L-Corp was safe,” Kara says in return, her voice soft, “I’m sorry.”

 

“And then when I was kidnapped--” Lena lets out a small, bitter laugh. “--they drugged me. When I woke up, I was already back here. It was as if nothing happened. All I had was the DEO telling me that you had apprehended the criminals already.”

 

Kara shuts her eyes, pained. It had been a struggle. She wanted nothing more than to throw those kidnappers from the highest point in the city but had told herself that they were only acting on orders. Lena was safe, of course, but Kara wanted nothing more than to take her someplace far, far away and never let her go.

 

“I asked Kara to check up on you,” Kara flimsily responds.

 

“Kara.” Lena smiles tightly. “I suppose she must’ve told you something about me.”

 

The blonde flinches. This is strange. They rarely talk about her counterpart. It’s a topic that hits too close to home and Kara’s not entirely sure she can keep up with holding these two personalities at bay without being bound to slip up at some point. She must’ve reacted too slowly, because Lena lets out a small gasp of understanding and moves away, holding her chest.

 

“She told you, didn’t she? That’s why you’ve been avoiding me. You think I’m nothing more than one of your lovesick fans.”

 

“What? No, Lena. You’ve got it all wrong.” Oh Rao . How the hell is she going to fix this? She can’t have Lena mad at her for this .

 

“What have I gotten wrong, then?” Lena demands, a bite in her voice, as she glares into the city lights. “You’re avoiding me because Kara told you that I have feelings for you. Well, don’t flatter yourself, dear. I have plenty of other suitors just lining up my door.”

 

Typical Lena. Already rejecting somebody before they can even utter a single word. Kara raises her hand to adjust her glasses and nearly pokes herself in the eye. Nervous habit. Thank God Lena didn’t see it. She steps towards the other woman, wants nothing more than to tell her that it’s all very confusing being so close with her, both as her best friend and a heroine, but hesitates. She clenches her hands and tells herself to breathe. It’s only Lena. That’s the thing, though--it’s Lena.

 

“Lena,” Kara says, sighing. The sound is enough to make Lena turn back to her. “Kara didn’t tell me anything. I haven’t been avoiding you. There are just other things that I have to work on.”

 

“And you wouldn’t mind sharing that with a Luthor now, would you?” Lena pauses, waiting for Kara’s response. When there isn’t any, she nods. “Thought so.”

 

“I don’t care that you have feelings for me,” Kara tries to say and then nearly slaps herself. Shit. Wrong thing to say again, because Lena scoffs, looking absolutely miffed. “I mean-- wait --I do care, I just, I don’t know what to do about it. You’re very important to me, Lena, and I wouldn’t dare risk our friendship over anything --”

 

“You say that I’m important to you and then you go about ignoring me for the past month?” Lena laughs again. Much more bitterly than the last. She waves Kara away. “Spare me your excuses. I know rejection when I see one. I don’t mind being in the friendzone with you--I already have experience in that area.”

 

The cryptic words go over Kara’s head when she sees that Lena’s eyes are red around the edges. It makes her stumble when she realizes that Lena is holding back tears. Oh Rao . Kara’s definitely done it this time. The sight of her best friend turning away and just catching the barest of sniffles before it escapes her notice makes Kara want to die right there and then. She rushes forward then but stops just a breath away, her hand hovering cautiously over Lena’s shoulder.

 

“Lena,” she whispers softly, hearing the crack in her own voice.

 

“Go home, Supergirl. It’s late.” The words don’t have any bite to them.

 

“You might think that this is what you want,” Kara lowly says, putting her hand on Lena’s shoulder and sighing in relief when she doesn’t get pushed away. “But trust me, being in any kind of relationship with me will put you in more danger than ever. You already have your family to worry about. You don’t want this.”

 

Lena looks at her, her eyes brimming with unshed tears. And it hits Kara why she’s doing this, why she hasn’t told her of her secret identity, why she would bend over backwards to keep it that way. Because above anything else, Kara wants Lena safe and happy. And she can’t be safe and happy if she’s constantly worrying about Supergirl or herself. This is why Kara has held onto their friendship for as long as she has--because it means a normal and protected life for Lena. She’d give up anything for that to happen, even if it means putting it above her own happiness.

 

“You can’t tell me what I want or don’t want,” Lena whispers, bringing her hands to rest on Kara's shoulders, probably debating whether to push her away or to pull her in, “because you don’t know me that well.”

 

Kara realizes their close proximity now. She can see the flecks of gold in Lena’s eyes. She shouldn’t be doing this. This is a whole new level of messed up. Lena has no idea that this is Kara Danvers underneath the Super suit. If she knew that one major detail, would she still be glancing at her lips every now and then?

 

“Trust me,” Kara murmurs, her hands moving on their own accord as they rest on Lena’s waist, “I know you better than anyone else.”

 

“Do you, now?” Lena questions, her voice low, as she reaches out to touch Kara’s lips and traces the shape of it with her thumb, quite similar to that time they had a breakfast together. Only this time, there’s no cursed whipped cream to ruin the moment.

 

Yes .” Kara can’t look away. She’s mesmerized. “More than you know. I know that you’re good and smart and kind and that we shouldn’t be doing this. Lena, you mean--you mean a lot to me and I can’t--”

 

The kiss, when it comes, shouldn’t be a surprise but Kara still draws in a shuddering breath when Lena leans forward and presses her mouth against hers. Her mind has slowed to a standstill, silencing any thoughts of are we seriously kissing???? and focusing solely on Lena’s wine-stained lips and the soft noises she makes when Kara deepens the kiss. It’s as innocent as all first kisses should be, but Kara wants more. For as long as they’ve been friends, she’s never thought to actually want this, only until recently. Now she cannot fathom how she couldn’t have wanted this. Because Lena moaning into her mouth and pulling her in and running her fingers through her blonde hair is every woman’s wet dream. And she’s living it.

 

Lena’s hands move to wrap around her neck, pulling her closer. Kara grips her waist tightly, needing to ground herself. She’s so high on the moment she might actually fly them into the air. But like all good things, there must be an end. They pull away, both breathing heavily, and Kara places her forehead on Lena’s.

 

“I--” she starts to say, hating how words always ruin everything. She shakes her head, still dazed. “Lena, I--I don’t know. We shouldn’t do this.”

 

Lena lets out long sigh, dropping her head on Kara’s chest. Her heartbeat is still beating fast.

 

“It’s not because you’re repulsed by me, right?” the brunette mumbles.

 

“No,” Kara answers, “The opposite, really. I am very much attracted to you, Ms. Luthor.” She pauses, wondering how on earth she’s going to face Lena the next time they see each other again, especially as Kara Danvers. She decides that it will be a problem worth worrying about later.

 

Lena laughs. “So you’ve been ignoring me purely for my safety?” She leans backs and pecks Kara’s lips, much to the pleasure of the blonde. “You being a hero has those sort of conditions.”

 

It’s getting harder to say no, especially at the sight of Lena’s flushed cheeks and her sore mouth. But she has to. Not just for Lena’s sake but hers too. Kara drops her hands and steps back, steeling herself. Ironic, really. How the Girl of Steel has to harden because of Lena Luthor’s impossible to deny magnetism.

 

“I have to go,” she says again, “I’m sorry.”

 

“Don’t be.” Lena wraps her arms around herself, giving her a tight smile. “That kiss was particularly… satisfactory.”

 

Kara flushes. She turns away, already hating herself for letting it get this far. She shouldn’t have kissed her back. It was stupid and irresponsible and one of the best things that has ever happened in her life. She might regret it later on, but she doesn’t regret it now.

 

“Wait,” Lena calls and Kara turns around just in time for the brunette to grab her face and kiss her again. It ends too quickly for her liking and Kara’s pretty sure hearts are popping out of her eyes when they break apart. “Just in case I don’t get to do that again,” Lena tells her earnestly, running her thumb in circles over Kara’s cheeks. “See you around, Supergirl.”

 

//

 

When Kara tries to sleep that night and fails miserably come 7 AM, she slams her fist on the ringing alarm clock by the bedside table so hard that it shatters into a million pieces.

 

Shit, Lena .

 

//

 

“You look like shit,” Winn tells her when Kara shows up to work later that morning. He’s been helping out at CatCo for the past week regarding a bunch of pesky hackers and seeing him is definitely a sight for sore eyes.

 

“Didn’t sleep,” Kara mumbles, adjusting her glasses, “Had a lot to think about.”

 

Winn gives her a long look from his table. He’s always had the uncanny ability to guess when she’s had a bad day, so he often steers clear out of it. But today, he gets up from his chair and pours her a cup of coffee. When Kara relaxes and adds plenty of sugar into it, he says, “Wanna talk about it?”

 

Kara sighs. “Thank you for the coffee,” she mumbles, “but I’m not really in the mood for a conversation.”

 

Winn hums, crossing his arms. “The last time I saw you like this, it was after a crazed Supergirl fan asked you out on a date because he told you that you looked exactly like her.”

 

“Don’t remind me.” Her headache is actually getting worse with the coffee. She flips open her notebook, trying to remember the things that Snapper told her to do but only finds Lena’s name scrawled all over the pages. Right. She was writing her name instead of actually listening to his instructions. Oh Rao.

 

Winn laughs when he sees her lovesick doodles. “So, this is why you’ve been all secretive,” he remarks, reaching out and plucking the notebook straight out of her hands, “Jesus, Kara. You’re worse than me.”

 

“Shut up, Winn.” Kara doesn’t have the energy to argue with him. “It’s way more complicated than that.”

 

“How complicated? I can do complicated.”

 

Kara wonders how much to tell him and decides that she doesn’t really care. Winn’s been with her from the very beginning. Surely, he can keep a few secrets about her growing feelings for Lena Luthor. “Very,” she quips, taking a sip of her coffee while glancing at him. Then she takes a deep breath. “Lena has a crush on Supergirl and she told Kara about it and now I’m just freaking confused about what this actually means because I know that I like Lena but what if she only likes the Supergirl part of me? What if she only thinks of Kara as her friend? She’d probably freak out if she found out we were one and the same. Plus I’ve been lying to her for years . Surely, she’s going to get pissed at that, right? I just can’t lose her. Not now. Not ever . Like--what do I do in this situation, Winn?” She says the last part in a harsh whisper and practically crushes the mug in her right hand when she squeezes too hard.

 

Winn yelps, jumping back a few feet, as ceramic shards go all over the place. “ Okay ,” he says, raising his hands in surrender, “That was all too fast but I get your dilemma.”

 

Kara frowns at the coffee she spilled all over her desk and mentally makes a note to never mention it to Snapper. She can barely feel the sting of pain the liquid bites into her skin, too absorbed into the fact that Lena Luthor asked her to talk last night and ended up kissing her.

 

“I think,” Winn begins, shrugging, “you should just talk it out. Sure, it might be complicated and all, but nothing that can’t be cleared with a good old conversation.”

 

Kara looks at her friend, biting her lower lip. It’s an easily conceivable solution, one that she still finds particularly difficult to actually put into action. After a long moment, she nods.

 

“Fine,” she grumbles tersely, much to Winn’s surprise. “You’re the second person to tell me that so I’ve got to woman up.”

 

“Alex. Right.” Winn grabs some tissues from his desk and throws it at her. “You might want to clean yourself up in case she shows up. You still do your weird, best friend lunches together, right?”

 

Shit .” Kara whips her phone out, sending Lena a quick text about not being able to join her for lunch today. She doesn’t think she can bear to see her so soon after that mind-blowing kiss. Winn sighs audibly from his chair, probably thinking that she’s a lost cause, and Kara shoots him a glare to shut him up.

 

When Lena responds, it’s with a Broken Heart emoji.

 

//

 

An alien attacks CatCo Building around lunch time, while Kara’s in the middle of preparing to order her three Chinese take-outs. She hears its landing a second before she even receives Alex’s confirmation from the DEO. And while she’s very hungry and tired and still hungover from her kiss with Lena Luthor, she puts down the phone and suits up, shooting Winn a look that says ‘be safe’  before she propels herself into the air.

 

The alien--a sort of pink and purple octopus looking thing --looks terribly lost. It’s scaling the side of the building, its tentacles flying about in the air and hitting nearby skyscrapers. Kara flies to catch the falling debris from hitting any citizens, glad to see that National City’s finest police officers are already securing the perimeter. When there are no longer any buildings to destroy, Kara flies close to the Octopus Alien, hovering close to its gigantic, beady eye.

 

Before she can try to speak to it, a voice from the evacuating crowd catches her attention: “Where’s Kara ?”

 

It’s Lena. Frantic and scared. Against her better judgement, Kara swiftly turns around, using her Super Vision to scan the crowd. She finds her best friend struggling to enter CatCo, even though police officers are barricading her way. Her heartbeat is off the charts.

 

Have you seen Kara Danvers ?” Lena demands, hitting her fists against the police officer’s chest, “ I need to find her. She works here! I can’t--I have to see her--

 

Something in Kara’s chest twists. She wants to go down there, tell Lena that she’s safe, get her away from this messy situation with an Octopus Alien breathing down her neck. Oh wait --she probably shouldn’t have turned her back to it. But it’s too late. Just as she’s about to carry the alien using her bare fists back to the DEO, a rogue tentacle slams into her back, sending her flying straight into the concrete and creating a Supergirl-shaped hole onto the ground.

 

It stings, but doesn’t hurt. However, it’s enough to elicit a startled scream from one Lena Luthor, who's watching all of these events unfold right in front of her eyes. Kara raises her head and finds Lena at a standstill a few feet away, not paying attention to the people running all around her. God, she looks so freaking beautiful. Kara’s gaze drops to the lips that she kissed last night, now shaped in a horrified gasp. She’d give anything to taste them again.

 

Another scream pierces through the air. She winces. Oh , right, the city is in danger. There are lives at stake. Kara should probably stop drooling.

 

“I’m fine,” she tells Lena, propping herself on her knees and dusting away the debris off her shoulders. “Totally fine. Nearly invincible, remember?”

 

“Jesus, Supergirl,” Lena puts her hand on her chest, looking like she might faint any second.

 

“I’ll just--I’ll be back, okay?” Before she turns to fight the alien one more time, she gives Lena a meaningful look, adding, “Don’t worry, Kara’s fine. I made sure of it.”

 

The look that Lena gives her in return makes her pause in her tracks. It’s full of many unsaid things that Kara wants her to say out loud. It is in that split moment, with the two of them staring at each other down in the battlefield, that Kara wishes she had kissed her a third time last night. For good luck, maybe. Now with that stupid Octopus Alien still wrecking havoc right above them, she can only give Lena a small, gentle smile. “ Go ,” she tells her and her eyes flare up with her incoming Heat Vision, “Stay safe.”

 

When she flies into the air again, she doesn’t look back.

 

//

 

After the alien is apprehended at the DEO, Kara gets back into her clothes again and drops by Lena’s apartment later that evening. Her phone, during the whole alien attack, was bombarded with nearly a dozen messages from Lena, all ranging from alien attack at Catco are you still there? to KARA PLEASE ANSWER ME!!! Kara feels a surge of guilt at the sight of the messages, knowing how worried sick Lena gets for her safety, so she picks up some potstickers on the way.

 

When she gets to Lena’s place, she uses her X-Ray vision to peer through the walls of the apartment. The brunette is drinking wine at the kitchen counter, her back turned to the door. Kara’s gaze moves to the balcony, where they shared their first kiss together, and flushes despite herself.

 

She knocks. Lena flinches, nearly spilling her wine.

 

“Hi?” Kara says when Lena opens the door half a second later, thrusting the potstickers first as a peace offering. Lena’s green eyes are wide, her mouth open, and her shocked expression doesn’t waver, even after she drops the wine glass she holds in her left hand. She doesn’t pay it any mind.

 

It’s Kara’s turn to flinch as she lowers the take-out bag full of potstickers in her hand, already hating the conversation that they’re going to have. She can imagine Lena yelling at her for not replying to her texts or refusing to even entertain the sight of her right now. An alien attacked CatCo, Kara was in danger and Lena was worried sick, which gives her all the rights in the world to be upset. Just because they’re best friends doesn’t mean that they can’t get mad at each other. She only hopes that Lena would at least let her eat the potstickers first before they get into ugly territory.

 

“Kara.” Lena lets out a shuddering breath. “Jesus.”

 

“I’m sorry,” the blonde immediately blurts out, “I left my phone at my table--”

 

Her words are cut short when Lena, still in her high heels, steps over the glass shards and engulfs her in a tight embrace. Kara lets out a surprised squeak, nearly dropping the take-out bag, but she only lets two seconds pass before she returns the hug, inhaling Lena’s lavender scent and wishing that she could stay in these arms forever.

 

“Don’t you ever do that to me again.” Lena releases a shuddering breath against her ear and Kara’s skin breaks out in goosebumps. “When I heard about that alien attack, I--I thought I would never see you again. The only comfort I had was when Supergirl told me that you were okay.”

 

Tears prickle the back of Kara’s eyes. She doesn’t know why she feels the overwhelming urge to cry. The thought of Lena caring about her so much that she’d risk her own safety to make sure she was okay makes all of her heartstrings just twist in all the right places. When Lena moves to pull away, Kara shakes her head and pulls her back in again, trying to stifle the sob that threatens to spill out of her lips and wrapping her arms around Lena tighter.

 

“I’m sorry,” she says again, letting out a shaky breath, “I wasn’t thinking about how’d you feel.”

 

“Well, as long as you’re safe,” Lena mutters as she rubs her back comfortingly, “then I’m okay.”

 

They stay intertwined for a few more seconds with Kara listening intently to Lena’s strong but firm heartbeat. Finally, Kara pulls back. She adjusts her glasses, clears her throat and shoves the take-out bag of potstickers into Lena’s hands. She can’t bear to look into her best friend’s eyes, already feeling guilty as the events of the past 48 hours catches up to her.

 

Right. Last night, she kissed Lena as Supergirl under the moonlight in this very building. And then today, she worried her, both as Kara Danvers and Supergirl, when that stupid Octopus Alien attacked. Rao , this woman needs a break from her.

 

She follows Lena inside the apartment, barely glancing at the stark white walls she’s gotten used over the years and immediately dropping into a kitchen stool. Lena moves to prepare one of her favorite meals without being asked to and Kara loves her a little more just for that.

 

“You seem overwhelmed,” Lena comments, sliding a plate full of dumplings in front of her.

 

“I’m just really sorry,” Kara says as she takes out her chopsticks and starts digging in. “When I saw your messages, it kind of hit me that I was being a really bad friend.”

 

She’s been so focused on apologising to Lena (and frankly, eating her potstickers) that she doesn’t fully register what her best friend is actually wearing right now. Of course, she’s seen Lena in all kinds of outerwear--like pajamas, sweatpants, and everything casual even--but for some reason, Lena is wearing a black nightgown at eight in the evening. A very skimpy one at that. Almost like she was just about to head straight for bed.

 

Oh! ” Kara says, heat rushing to her cheeks so fast she fears her Heat Vision might accidentally activate. She nearly chokes on a dumpling when Lena raises a suggestive eyebrow. “Oh. Wow. Okay. Were you about to sleep?”

 

“Perhaps?” Lena answers, smirking, “You didn’t really mention dropping by.”

 

The memory of Lena kissing her last night resurfaces and Kara realizes that she needs to get out of here fast before she does something insanely stupid. Like kiss her best friend again without taking off her glasses or even showing off her Super suit. That would just ruin everything. Swiftly turning around and devouring the rest of her potstickers within seconds, Kara says, “You know what? I--I should really, definitely, probably go. I think--no, I know that I’m just--I’m bothering you.”

 

Kara .” Lena laughs as she circles the kitchen counter to stop her best friend in her tracks. Wrong move. Because it gives Kara all the more opportunity to gawk at the nightgown. “It’s fine. I wasn’t going to get a wink of sleep without hearing from you. Maybe you should stay over? There are some things that I’ve been dying to tell you.”

 

Kara should say no. She should leave. But instead, she finds herself nodding as Lena leads her back to the kitchen, where she pours them wine. That damned nightgown is at fault here. She can see the expanse of Lena’s pale, creamy legs just taunting her from underneath the flimsy material of the skimpy dress. Kara, pull yourself together , she tells herself fiercely.

 

“So,” she starts, clapping her hands together, “What is it that you wanted to tell me?”

 

Usually, Lena would take her time in telling her side of the stories, making sure not to leave any detail left unturned. This time, it’s different. “I kissed Supergirl,” the brunette shares, a hint of pride in her tone.

 

Is it possible to choke on air? Possibly, because Kara did just that. “ Oh! ” she says, feigning shock as Lena’s smile grows, “Wow. You did? When? How--how did this happen? You told me last time that you think she was ignoring you so yeah, this is very, very surprising.” Cough. Totally not surprising.

 

“Last night,” Lena answers and Kara readjusts her glasses, rubbing her legs together at the memory of that wonderful kiss.

 

“Oh wow,” she says again, feeling like a broken record, “That’s--oh, Lena, that’s amazing .”

 

“I know,” Lena agrees as she sighs the Crush Sigh. There’s a distant look in her green eyes. “I don’t think it’s going anywhere.”

 

The words almost make Kara drop her wine glass by accident. Or even break it into pieces in her hand. Thankfully, none of those things happen. Her heart twitches in relief and disappointment. Such conflicting emotions. She manages to close her mouth long enough to utter the words, “I thought you guys kissed? Did I miss a memo or something? Isn’t a kiss--I don’t know-- good ?”

 

Lena sighs again. “She thinks she’s protecting me by staying away,” she mutters, “which is stupid and annoying and so Supergirl .” The words are meant to have a bite to them, but the brunette only sounds resigned.

 

“She does have like a million things to protect the city from,” Kara quips, wincing at the not so obvious way she’s trying to keep Lena away from herself, “but she kissed you back, right? I’m sure that means something. Maybe she wants to be with you deep down inside.” And then, she’s back to trying to push herself and Lena together. Alex is probably getting a major headache right now at her stupidity.

 

Lena doesn’t say anything at first. She traces the rim of her glass with her thumb, the same way she did with Kara’s lips before she kissed her. It’s not hard to imagine what she’s thinking about. Kara knows, because she’s thinking the exact same thing. That kiss--the one that took her breath away and made her forget about everything else. She wonders if it has the same effect on Lena.

 

“Do you know what I find incredibly attractive in Supergirl?” Lena asks her. Kara flushes a deep red and fixes her glasses so that it won’t be so obvious. She shakes her head at the brunette’s question. “You see,” Lena continues on, “Asides from her inviolable moral compass and her compassion to do good in everything that she does, she also has this uncanny ability to see the best in people. Even the ones who don’t deserve it.”

 

“Lena, you--”

 

“Kara, darling.” Lena shoots her a pleading look. “Please let me finish?”

 

The blonde zips her mouth and throws away the key. Lena, thankful, gives her a small smile before she continues again, “Not only does she save multiple times, she also reminds me that I will never end up like what they expect of the Luthor name. At first, it was frankly annoying, but now it's refreshing. To have somebody believe in you for so long.”

 

Kara downs her wine in one go, barely tasting it. Oh Rao --if she’s going to have to sit here and listen to Lena fawn over her Super counterpart even though it was Kara Danvers who did all of those things first, then she’s going to need a drink. Funny thing, being insanely jealous of yourself.

 

“I think…” Lena gives Kara a long, meaningful look as she sips her wine. “I don’t know if this is what love is, but I have a very strong suspicion that it might be so.”

 

Oh Rao. Kara puts down her wine glass in case she destroys it in her hands again. She still has coffee stains all over her shirt. When she raises her eyes to look at Lena, she sees that the woman is now staring back at her strangely, her cheeks flushed and her lips, once again, stained with the red wine.

 

“But that would be very inconvenient,” Lena mumbles, almost to herself.

 

“She kissed you back,” Kara says, almost grumpily herself, “I don’t think that’s inconvenient. If she loves you, you’ll both make it work.”

 

Lena suddenly leans forward. “Is it possible to love two people at the same time, Kara?” she asks, looking very sober and drunk at the same time.

 

The words shock Kara to the very core, making her almost slip off her chair. Lena’s eyes are dilated, looking at her, and her heartbeat, loud and erratic, seem to fill Kara’s ears. They stare at each other for a long time, the previous sentence hanging in the air above them, and Kara thinks that she might be a little drunk herself as she stares longingly into Lena’s red mouth.

 

“She’s not the first person who’s believed in me for so long,” Lena tells her.

 

“I don’t understand.”

 

“It’s you, Kara.”

 

Kara can hear Lena’s heartbeat going crazy.

 

“Supergirl might’ve saved me,” Lena continues, echoing a conversation they had so long ago, “but it’s you that I love, Kara Danvers.”

 

Kara’s mouth drops at the sudden twist of events. “Wait, what?” she stammers, her mind whirring.

 

“I love you,” Lena says breathlessly, her voice hitching as she looks at Kara like she puts the stars on the night sky, “and I’m not saying this because I’m drunk or vulnerable, though I strongly suspect that the wine plays a large part here. I’m saying this because I’ve spent the past three years thinking that you’ll never feel the same way. And I might be going on a limb here, but I think that you do.”

 

“But,” Kara stutters, putting a hand on the counter to steady herself. Lena’s heartbeat is still in her ears and she uses the sound to calm her nerves down. “You just told me that you love Supergirl,” she says, hearing the envy in her own voice, “that you just kissed her last night.”

 

Lena gives her a gentle smile. “I do and I did,” she agrees, “I wasn’t lying when I told you I had feelings for the Super. After all, I don’t think it’s fair not to fall for the other half of you.”

 

“Then why are you-- oh .” Kara slaps a hand to her forehead, absolutely bamboozled. “You know .”

 

“Did you seriously think I would never find out?” Lena rounds the kitchen counter until she’s standing in front of Kara. They’re so close that Lena’s lavender scent fills her sense and Kara can see the flecks of gold in her bright, green eyes. The brunette smiles at her and Kara’s heartbeat speeds up.

 

She finally gets her mouth to move. “You knew all along,” she says, stunned.  

 

“Not all along,” Lena admits, laughing quietly to herself, “I noticed some things. Inconsistencies that I brushed away. I never really had any reason to doubt your word. It was only an inkling suspicion but I never had the confirmation I needed.”

 

“Then how--?”

 

Lena reaches out to trace Kara’s bottom lip with her right thumb, her eyes never leaving Kara’s. This is the third time she’s done this and for the third time once more, Kara is filled with the overwhelming urge to kiss her.

 

“Because of this,” Lena says softly, reaching out with her left hand to take Kara’s glasses off, “You had the same look when I did this the first time. I kept thinking about why it felt so familiar and came to the bright conclusion that either you and Supergirl are twins or that you’re one and the same. It really says a lot about me, huh? Falling for the same person twice.” She lets out a soft laugh, music to Kara’s ears. “Imagine my surprise when I finally figured it out. After all these years.”

 

Kara watches as Lena puts away the glasses without taking her eyes off her. There’s a heavy tension in the air and with Lena’s close proximity, Kara has difficulty breathing.

 

“I’m sorry,” she finds herself whispering, “I wanted to tell you. I was planning to tell you.”

 

“Why didn’t you?” Lena leans back, her eyebrows furrowing with worry and a little bit of hurt.

 

“Because I didn’t want to lose you,” Kara confesses, the truth clutching her heart in fear, “I couldn’t bear the idea of you falling for Supergirl and then finding out that it was actually your best friend all along. I thought you’d hate me for tricking you like that.”

 

“You have never tricked me, darling.” The endearment makes Kara blush and Lena hums in pleasure at the sight of it. “In fact, all you’ve done is consistently show me that I was worth loving, worth saving. Even if you did show it in two different ways. The fact remains: you didn’t trick me. Unless--” Lena rears back, as if burned. “--you don’t feel the same way. Which would explain why you’d feel so guilty--”

 

Kara quickly shakes her head, already missing their close proximity. “No,” she says fiercely, grabbing Lena’s and pulling her in, “I do , Lena. I feel the same way. Look, I--” She sighs, unsure if all the words in the English language could actually be enough to explain the love she has for Lena Luthor. “There’s nobody else, besides Alex, of course, since she’s my sister, who knows me better than you do. You see, Supergirl is what I can do but Kara Danvers is who I am. You’re the first person who looked at me and didn’t put any expectations on me, the first person who cared about me simply because I was your friend, the person who has always been there, ever since the beginning.”

 

She shuts her eyes, because it's all too much. She will always think of herself as an idiot for not seeing it sooner, but she’d be damned if she messed this up. Lena Luthor deserves the entire world. If Kara can’t give her that, at least a good speech is better than nothing.

 

“I’m an idiot, Lena,” she mutters, getting all choked up, “because I didn’t realize this sooner. I’m in love with you and I--I love you. You make me feel all sorts of things and not a day goes by where I don’t think about you or listen to your heartbeat. I thought I was going to go crazy when you told me you liked Supergirl, because I thought you wouldn’t want the other half of her--the weird, mundane, potsticker-loving reporter you have as a best friend. But if you want me, both as Supergirl and Kara Danvers, then I’m yours. Forever.”

 

Lena looks at her, really looks at her, and sighs. It’s the Crush Sigh, but Kara’s starting to rename it the Kara Sigh, since Lena only does that whenever she’s around.

 

“You’ve ruined me, Kara,” the Luthor says, her voice barely above a whisper, “I can’t stop thinking about you. I can’t stop loving you, and there have been times where I wanted to. I just… I really want to kiss you right now. God, put me out of my misery, please.”

 

Kara wraps her arm around Lena’s waist and pulls her close. Their noses brush and their breaths mingle. She sees Lena’s eyelids fluttering close and her tongue darting out to lick her wine-stained lips. She doesn’t need to use her Super Hearing to know how fast Lena’s heart is beating, because she can feel it against her own. When she feels Lena’s fingernails scratching the back of her neck in anticipation, she leans in and kisses her.

 

It’s the best kiss of her life, better than last night’s, because she finally kissed Lena Luthor as herself, no Supersuit needed, no secrets involved.

 

//

 

“So, let me get this straight, you totally had a crush on Supergirl without knowing that she was me, right?”

 

“Just shut your mouth and kiss me, Kara.”

 

“You fell for me twice. That’s got to be a new record.”

 

“You’re lucky that I love you.”

 

//

 

Fin.