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Buttermilk Pancakes

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It’s easy until it isn’t.

It’s easy when the water brushes her toes, when Sana jokes about how one day she’s going to move into Momo’s apartment and never leave.

It’s easy when the cold water stings her ankles, when Sana tells her about her latest date with a blush and lowered eyes.

The water climbs to her knees, slows her steps when Sana wraps her arms around her waist and asks for chocolate chips in her pancakes.

Sana’s chin fits just so on Momo’s shoulder, and it’s easy.

She gets used to the way the waves tug around her chest.

One day, Sana presses wine soaked lips to hers on a whim and molds her hands along the curve of Momo’s back. Sana lets slip little murmurs about how happy she is that things will never change between them, and Momo agrees and laughs when Sana trips over one of Momo’s stuffed animals on her way to the bed.

Momo trades kisses (meaningless, she reminds herself) with Sana as easily as she’s ever done anything. She learns what Sana tastes like in the morning, teeth freshly brushed using the toothbrush she keeps at Momo’s place.

The water caresses her chin, but it’s easy.

It’s easy when Sana smiles at her and laughs at her jokes and the water surges. She just lifts her chin.

Easy.

But then one day, Momo wakes up, rolls onto her side, and opens her eyes to see that Sana has somehow ended up with her pillow on top of her face.

Barely able to smother the laughter trying to escape her throat, Momo reaches out with lightly shaking hands and lifts the pillow off of Sana’s face. The action causes Sana’s nose to twitch and a sigh to slip from her lips. Momo stiffens, trying her best to be as silent as possible.

Sana’s face smooths out after a moment, and Momo smiles and all she can hear is the sound of rushing water.

She moves as softly as she can, sliding her hand underneath Sana’s head to lift it. She’s only 60% confident that she can do this without waking her best friend up, but it’s a risk worth taking.

Momo cheers internally as she completes her mission, and it’s only a small whine coming from Sana that stops her from pulling her hand back. She watches as Sana’s brow furrows and her lips part, and Momo does her best to soothe Sana back to sleep before she wakes up. Her fingers flex, gently massaging Sana’s scalp.

Easy.

Sana murmurs something unintelligible and rolls over to face Momo, and now all Momo can focus on is the weight of Sana’s face in her palm, the way Sana’s eyelids flutter when she brushes a thumb over her cheek.

Momo freezes when one of Sana’s hands wraps around her wrist.

“Tickles,” Sana whines, more of a breath than anything, and Momo is stricken.

Sana lets out a pleased murmur when Momo stops caressing her cheek, but her fingers wrap tighter around Momo’s wrist when she tries to move her hand away.

So she doesn’t move. She lays there and listens to Sana’s breathing even out. She watches the way the sunlight plays in Sana’s hair.

Sana’s fingers rest on her wrist so lightly that Momo could almost forget they were there. She tries to force herself to go back to sleep, but the maelstrom in her chest makes it impossible. It whirls, pushes in time with the thrum of her heart against Sana’s fingertips.

And then Sana makes a small noise and nuzzles into her palm.

The waves surge and Momo has nowhere left to go. They crash into her, swell above her head, and pull her under.

It unfolds in front of her readily: the answer to a problem she didn’t even know she was trying to solve.

It’s easy until Momo realizes she’s in love with her soundly sleeping best friend.

The realization feels muted, distant, and it’s not until she stumbles into the kitchen an hour later that things start to crystallize.

Her body moves on autopilot, and she finds herself with a whisk in her hand before she realizes what she’s doing. She should probably start a load of laundry or nudge Sana awake and let her know it’s already past 10 or do one of countless other things that need doing.

But it’s pancakes she ends up focusing on. She looks down at the batter, swirls her whisk through it, and marvels at the fact that being in love with Sana feels like nothing new.

Momo doesn’t really think about dating all that often, but she had always imagined that it would play out in a pretty standard way. And she had always imagined that she would be aware of herself falling in love.

She scowls when some batter escapes the bowl and moves to grab a paper towel. She rips one free and is reminded of the time Sana somehow unwound the entire thing when trying to help clean up a spill.

The smile that blossoms on Momo’s face is an old friend, and she realizes that maybe, just maybe, she’s been in love with Sana for longer than the last hour and a half.

Momo sprinkles chocolate chips in, tries to get the spacing just so, and waits for the batter to bubble.

“Nothing would change.” This they had agreed on.

Momo doesn’t break her promises, especially not with Sana. Despite how much this doesn’t feel like a new idea, things are different now.

A familiar shuffling noise draws her attention, and the smile that comes to her face is automatic.

She waits, flips a pancake and carefully checks another.

Arms slip around her waist, and Sana presses her cheek into Momo’s shoulder. Momo tries, for just a moment, to resist sinking into Sana’s embrace, but the pull is too strong and Momo lets herself lean back. Sana still carries the warmth from Momo’s bed with her, and the feeling bleeds through her thin tank top.

She moves one of the pancakes off of the griddle and pours the batter to start another one. Sana sways with her as she moves, content to let Momo direct her in this moment. It’s when Momo adds chocolate chips to this new pancake that Sana finally speaks.

“More, please.” Her words brush over Momo’s ear, and it’s only by a thread that Momo resists a full body shiver.

“Who said this was for you,” Momo jokes, jostling Sana’s head with her shoulder.

“Me,” Sana mutters, poking Momo in the stomach. “And I want more chocolate chips.”

“You’re very whiny in the morning.”

“Yeah, well you’re whiny every other second of the day.”

Momo opens her mouth to respond, to shoot back some remark about how Sana’s always the one that ends up pouting, but then Sana sighs and leans against her shoulder once more, and all Momo can do is reach for more chocolate chips.

//

Hours later, Sana leaves, heading home to go get ready for a date with some lawyer or banker or singer or some other person that she’ll inevitably complain about while digging through Momo’s freezer for ice cream.

Momo watches her go and wonders how she never realized that she hated the thought of Sana calling someone else hers. She feels drained and empty, and her hand pulls her phone out of her pockets before she can give it much more thought.

She calls the first person she thinks of, not sure exactly what she’s going to say until Jeongyeon’s voice comes through the speakers. “What’s up?”

“Do you remember our freshman year of college when you told me that you thought I was in love with Sana?”

She hears a rustle of clothing and Jeongyeon clearing her throat. “Of course I do. You said I was an idiot.”

“She was right!” Momo laughs when she hears Jihyo’s voice. It makes the lump in her throat slightly more bearable.

“Sorry, please ignore her. Some people just like to be rude!” The last word doubles in volume, and Momo winces. Even after over a decade of friendship, the sheer volume of Jeongyeon’s voice can still surprise her.

“Give me a sec,” Jeongyeon mutters.

She hears footsteps, another shout from Jihyo that she can’t quite make out, and the sound of a door closing before Jeongyeon speaks again. “Okay, sorry. Start that again?”

“You told me I was in love with Sana. I think you were right.” The words roll off Momo’s tongue effortlessly, and she hates how the next sentence comes just as easily. “Sana doesn’t love me back in that way, though. So you weren’t completely right.”

“You”— Momo hears Jeongyeon’s voice catch in her throat as she stumbles through her next sentence— “had a busy morning, I guess.”

“You could say that,” Momo responds, fiddling with a thread on her shirt.

Jeongyeon inhales on the other end, and Momo interrupts her before she can say anything else. “I don’t want to talk about it I just want to,” Momo trails off and lets the last word falter. She’s struggling to shape the words in her head, lost amongst the reeds.

“You need a distraction,” Jeongyeon offers.

“Yes.”

“Want me to come over?” Jeongyeon’s voice is softer now.

“Please.”

//

An hour later, Momo opens the door, barely even surprised at the fact that Mina and Jihyo have also tagged along. Jeongyeon pulls her into a hug after she slips off her shoes, a muttered “I didn’t tell them anything. They just wanted to come.” letting Momo fully relax into the embrace.

She buries her head in Jeongyeon’s shoulder, fingers grasping at her t-shirt for just a moment. She’s fine, she really is, but there’s always been something extremely comforting about Jeongyeon’s hugs.

When the hug finally breaks, Momo lifts her gaze only to be met with a raised eyebrow from Jihyo and an amused smile from Mina.

“What,” Momo asks. “Is there something on my face?”

Mina laughs as Jihyo responds. “No, it’s just that you two shared a ridiculously long hug just now. Didn’t you see each other like two days ago?”

“Well excuse me for missing my best friend,” Jeongyeon says, moving past Momo to get into the kitchen.

Mina clears her throat and Momo watches as Jeongyeon freezes for just a moment, slowly turning around before answering with a cheeky grin. “My best friend that doesn’t live with me.”

Jihyo raises an eyebrow. “Excuse me?”

There’s a giggle trying to fight it’s way out of Momo’s mouth at the look on Jihyo’s face, but she manages to hold it back as Jeongyeon speaks again, exasperation clear.

“My best friend that doesn’t live with me and that also isn’t my girlfriend.”

“I’m calling Nayeon and telling her you said that.”

“Park Jihyo put your fucking phone down!”

And then they’re off, and Momo is unable to fight off her laughter as she watches Jeongyeon and Jihyo chase each other around her couch, laughter threaded through their shouts.

“So how’s life,” Mina asks, stepping closer to Momo with a grin. “Anything exciting happen lately?”

Anxiety spikes in Momo’s chest as she thinks of Sana, but then she watches Jeongyeon vault herself over the couch in an effort to get at a cackling Jihyo and it slips away.

“Just the same old, same old,” Momo answers, threading her arm through Mina’s to pull her closer. “How’s living with the loudest people in the world?”

Jihyo lets out a shriek. Mina doesn’t even blink. “Loud.”

Momo laughs. “If you ever need a place to stay, you know where I live.”

Mina rolls her eyes and Momo isn’t sure if it’s at her or the fact that Jeongyeon and Jihyo have somehow ended up tangled together on the couch, both shouting at the phone in Jihyo’s hand.

“—don’t know why any of you care! We all have the same best friends!”

“It’s the principal of the thing, Jeongyeon! Also, where was my invite to this gathering at Momo’s? I feel like—”

Mina shifts in place, drawing Momo’s attention back to her as she speaks. “If I need a place to stay I’ll give Dahyun a call. I know Sana basically stays here every night, anyway. Is she coming over tonight,” Mina asks, and Momo feels her stomach jump.

“What,” Momo exclaims. “Sana doesn’t stay here all the time! And why would she even come over? She has a date tonight.”

Mina cocks her head to the side and runs her eyes over Momo’s face before speaking. “Doesn’t she usually come over after her dates? She mentioned yesterday that she had one tonight.”

“I mean, yes,” Momo mutters. Her heart is pounding now, and she thinks it’s probably only the playful yelling on the other side of the room that prevents Mina from hearing it. “But it’s not like we plan it. She has a key and just comes over whenever.”

Mina hesitates before speaking, and, as her mouth opens, Momo finds herself inexplicably nervous. “Momo, do you think that,” Mina begins.

“Sorry about that,” Jeongyeon interrupts, appearing out of nowhere to wrap an arm around Momo’s shoulder and make her jump. “I had to take care of something.”

Momo laughs despite the nerves still flowing through her. “ Uh, huh. You handled it real smooth.”

Jeongyeon sticks her tongue out at her before speaking. “Sorry, Mina. Did I interrupt you? I’m just now realizing that it looked like you were about to say something.”

“Oh, no,” Mina answers, waving away Jeongyeon’s concern. “It was nothing important. I think I already know the answer.”

Jeongyeon nods. “Okay, cool. You two down for a movie? There’s this new romance movie that came out, and Jihyo’s been dying to see it, and it actually looks kinda good.”

They make their way to the couch to join Jihyo, Jeongyeon explaining the concept of the movie, and Momo does her best to ignore the glance she sees Mina shoot her out of the corner of her eye.

//

The night passes in a blur of soju and pizza and bright smiles on the faces of some of her closest friends. Momo feels lighter, almost like she’s floating, and she only falters slightly when she looks at the clock and realizes it’s long past the time Sana would usually come waltzing into her apartment, story about an unsatisfactory date at the ready.

Everyone decides to stay the night, Jeongyeon and Jihyo taking the couch and Momo sharing with Mina. For the first few minutes they lay in bed, Momo fears Mina continuing to ask her about Sana, but she doesn’t. Mina speaks only to wish her sweet dreams, and then it’s just Momo and her thoughts, kept company only by the sound of Mina’s gentle snores.

//

Momo slips into wakefulness, immediately aware of someone getting into bed behind her. She goes to say something, but then a kiss is pressed to the back of her head and a voice she would recognize anywhere murmurs “Sorry I’m late.”

And Momo hears herself make a noise of acknowledgment as she abandons her quest to try and open her eyes and squint into the darkness. Sana is here, safely wrapped around Momo, and that’s the only knowledge she needs before letting herself sink back into slumber.

//

Momo prides herself on her physical awareness. She can’t recite poetry from memory like Tzuyu, and she can’t draw well in the slightest, unlike Chaeyoung. But she knows her body, and she’s excellent at judging her capacity to control it at any given moment.

And it’s for that very reason that she stumbles out of her empty bed the next morning still half-asleep, eyes closed, and confidently makes her way into the kitchen. Sana wasn’t in bed when she woke up this morning, the sheets next to her already cool to the touch. As her feet meet the smooth tile of her kitchen, she’s vaguely aware of voices coming from the living room, and Momo fleetingly wonders what TV show Sana has put on this morning.

She smells tea and hears a familiar mixing sound. Momo smiles to herself. They don’t usually have pancakes two days in a row, but she won’t complain. She blindly makes her way to the stove and reaches out for where she knows Sana will be. The soft fabric beneath Momo’s fingers tell her that Sana has once again stolen her robe; she always thought Sana looked particularly adorable in it.

Sana hums in acknowledgment, and Momo lets the warm haze of sleep drive her next actions. She presses a lazy kiss to Sana’s shoulder, lets her head drift up until her lips are right by Sana’s ear as she speaks. “You know it’s rude to leave me alone in my bed.”

And then the body below her stiffens when she was expecting Sana to relax into her, and the voices in the living room have grown louder when there should be no one in there controlling the volume of the TV.

“Momo.” The voice that Momo knows to be Mina’s comes from the person Momo thought she knew to be Sana, and reality rushes in.

Mina had shared a bed with her last night, and Sana had slipped in sometime in the early morning. And it was most definitely Mina that Momo was currently draped around, which means that it was Mina who Momo had—

“Oh my god! They’re finally back together.”

“I really thought they were done after high school.”

The voices finally register as Jeongyeon and Jihyo, and Momo wants nothing more than to sink into her floor.

“Mina, I am so sorry! I thought you were,” Momo stops herself, taking a second to step back as she tries to distance herself from the embarrassment she’s feeling. She opens her eyes and is met with a lightly blushing and highly amused Mina looking at her, whisk in hand and eyebrow raised.

“It’s okay, Momo,” Mina says, clearing her throat. “Easy enough mistake to make when you’re used to something, right?”

Mina’s words take a far too knowing tone for Momo’s comfort, but all she wants is for this moment in her life to be over, so she just answers as quickly as she can. “Right.”

“So congrats on being in love again and all, but I still want my pancake first.” Momo whips around to glare at Jeongyeon, who is being far too snarky this early in the morning, but she falters when she takes in Sana standing next to the couch.

It’s stupid, the way Momo suddenly feels like she’s underwater. Jeongyeon’s smirk and whatever comment Jihyo or Mina make after that fade into the background. Because Sana is standing there wearing one of Momo’s sleep shirts (Sana’s favorite) and her hair is messy from sleep and her glasses slightly crooked and good god how the fuck did it take Momo so long to realize she’s in love with her best friend?

The awareness beats against her chest, plays a rhythm she immediately knows. Momo tries to push the feelings down and save them for later, but it’s a fight she loses quickly.

Sana smiles at her, but something about it looks off, and it’s then that Momo notices the stiff way she’s holding herself, notices the way her hand is fisted in her shirt.

Momo moves without thinking, stopping when she gets right in front of Sana. “Morning. How’d you sleep?”

Sana’s smile stretches into something more authentic as she answers. “Pretty well. Did I wake you?”

Waves churn in Momo’s chest as Sana somehow closes the distance between them even further. “Not fully. I think I sleep better with you there, anyway.” The waves crest, crash onto the shore and retreat, leaving Momo mentally cursing her loose lips and a wide-eyed Sana looking back at her.

That was absolutely not what she had wanted to say. Sure, it was the truth, but it was a truth meant to be left unspoken between them.

As Momo watches Sana’s eyes soften and lips begin to curl into a smile she knows will take her breath away, she becomes aware of the fact that it is completely silent in her apartment. She looks to her left, and is hit with a wave of self-consciousness. Mina, Jeongyeon, and Jihyo are watching them with wide and curious eyes, and Momo doesn’t miss the smirk dancing around Jeongyeon’s lips.

If there’s one thing she absolutely cannot do, it’s have her friends watch her be so pathetically in love with Sana. She has to at least get out of this day with some shred of her dignity left.

“Mina, you’re going to let the pancakes burn,” Momo exclaims, moving away from Sana as quickly as she can while not looking as flustered as she feels.

The scene that results is chaotic, with both Mina and Jeongyeon lunging towards the kitchen, but it works. And the fact that the pancakes were in fact on the verge of being burnt only serves to help Momo’s desperate ploy.

Thankfully, the rest of the morning passes with fewer mistaken identity incidents, and by the time noon rolls around, Momo is waving goodbye to Jeongyeon, Jihyo, and Mina. They all pull her into a hug this time, and Momo makes sure to whisper her thanks to each of them. Jeongyeon nods knowingly and sends Momo a small smile. Jihyo looks confused but pleased. And Mina?

Mina sends her a look similar to Jeongyeon’s and tells Momo to call her whenever she needs. With that, Momo knows that Mina knows, and well. She can’t find it in herself to be surprised, but she can find it in herself to squeeze Mina just a little bit tighter.

And then the door closes, and Momo is well aware of the fact that Sana is the only person left in her apartment. She gives herself a moment to prepare and then turns, question at the ready.

“So, how was your date last night? After 11 passed, I didn’t think I’d be seeing you.” Momo smiles, tries to act like her stomach doesn’t lurch uncomfortably at the thought of Sana spending the night with someone else.

“Oh, it was fine,” Sana says, waving away the question. “We left dinner at like 9, and I just ended up walking around town by myself.” Sana’s tone is light and airy, like she’s thinking about a completely different topic, and Momo isn’t sure how to feel about it.

“By yourself? Why?”

“I just needed to think.” Sana takes a few steps closer, and Momo doesn’t stop herself from leaning forward just a bit.

“Thinking can be done inside, you know?” Momo laughs when she’s done talking, tries to tamp down the nerves making their way up her spine. Sana is moving closer now, eyes intently locked to Momo’s, and she has no idea how to deal with it. Sure, Sana’s looked at her like this, focused and determined and just a little too intense, countless times, but she’s never done it while Momo’s been aware of being in love with her.

“Well I’ve been inside for a while now, and I’ve been doing some thinking.” Sana’s lips curl over the final words in her sentence, tone playful, and Momo suddenly knows exactly where this is headed. And she knows that she is absolutely not equipped to handle kissing Sana right now.

And she honestly doesn’t even know if she can kiss Sana right now without feeling guilty. Yeah, they makeout, but it’s not supposed to be anything with feelings behind it. When they were eating breakfast, Momo had found herself overwhelmingly endeared by the way Sana kept dropping her pancake into the syrup instead of dipping it. She doubts she’s capable of handling anything more than that right now.

“Hey, are you okay?” Sana’s concerned whisper jolts her back into the present, and Momo recoils when she sees how close their faces are.

“Yeah, I’m totally fine,” Momo exclaims, wincing at how panicked she sounds. “I think I’m just wiped.”

Sana pouts, and Momo praises herself for her quick thinking, right up until Sana’s hands come up to cup her face. “Did you not sleep well?”

“You already know how I slept,” Momo mumbles.

Sana smiles, dropping her hands and letting them linger on Momo’s shoulders. “Did you actually mean that?”

Momo rolls her lips together, trying and failing to hold back a smile at the happiness in Sana’s voice. “Yes.”

Sana drops her hands, wrapping them around one of Momo’s and tugging until she can lace their fingers together. “Then let’s go take a nap.”

And all Momo can do is nod and allow herself to be pulled along by the force that is Minatozaki Sana.

//

Things change after that, so slowly that Momo doesn’t realize anything is off until three weeks have passed without Sana so much as mentioning going out with anyone. It hits her halfway through the latest episode of the drama Nayeon had recommended to them, right as the main character once again decides to not confess to her love interest.

“Gone on any dates lately?” Momo asks the question before she can even consider whether or not she should.

Sana pauses the show before slowly turning to face Momo, look of disbelief on her face. “I’ve literally been over here every night. When would I have time to date?”

“You did it before!”

“No, what I would do before is leave and then come back after another unsatisfying date. I’ve just been coming here after work. Single Sana is in full effect.”

“Oh.” Momo leans back into the couch cushions. Sure, she had figured Sana had been cutting down on the dates, but she hadn’t fully realized that Sana had fully stopped dating. It also occurs to her then that she knows exactly how the rest of this night will go: Sana will stand up once the episode is over, leaning over to press a brief kiss (Meaningless, Momo reminds herself) to Momo’s lips before moving to carry her dishes into the kitchen. And then they’ll get ready for bed together. And then they’ll find themselves repeating the same cycle the next day.

It terrifies Momo with how domestic and natural it feels. Falling in love with Sana was one thing, but convincing herself that she stood a chance was a line Momo forbade herself from crossing. Still, there were moments where Sana would look at her and the light would catch in her eyes and Momo could let herself believe she was seeing her own feelings reflected in Sana’s eyes.

“Don’t tell me you’re sad about me not dating,” Sana says, laughing.

“No, no,” Momo insists. “It’s your life to live. I just hadn’t really realized.”

Sana raises an eyebrow. “You didn’t notice that I’ve basically taken over your apartment?”

Momo thinks back to the time she had, in a fit of desperation over a crush she had in middle school, asked a very inexperienced Tzuyu how best to win someone over. Tzuyu had looked at her, eyes blank for just a moment, before she had smiled, shrugged, and told Momo to just be honest. Momo hadn’t listened at the time, had instead gone with Dahyun’s plan of a giant poster, but she now finds herself wondering if it’s time to dust the piece of advice off.

“It felt so natural that I didn’t really notice, I guess.”

Sana blinks several times before her expression settles into something close to wonder, and Momo vows to listen to Tzuyu more in the future.

//

They don’t speak much the next morning. Sana has an early meeting at work, and Momo gets a last minute email from a the owner of the dance studio she works at, begging her to cover the early morning classes. It’s chaotic and a bit of a mess, but Sana still makes sure to kiss Momo before she darts out the door.

And if Momo is paralyzed by the simplicity of it all, well, she promises to take that secret with her to the grave.

//

When Momo gets home that evening, two hours later than planned, it’s to see Sana standing over the stove, wrapped in Momo’s robe and standing in her slippers. Momo knows that, even if Sana will never love her back in quite the same way, she’s still the luckiest person on the planet to come home to this even once.

“Did you just lose the key to your apartment?”

Sana turns, waving a spatula threateningly in Momo’s direction. “I make you dinner and the first thing you do is throw accusations at me?”

Momo laughs when she gets closer to the stove and sees what Sana is making. “Why the hell are you making pancakes for dinner?”

“I may or may not have been craving pancakes all day.”

“So you’re doing this more for you than for me.”

“Exactly. But you should still be grateful.”

“Yeah, sure. I— Hold on,” Momo grabs the small bowl next to the stove. “What are these small blue demons doing near my precious pancakes?”

Sana rolls her eyes. “Okay so I see you’re in a difficult mood today. You love blueberries.”

“Not in my pancakes,” Momo insists, scowling. “The texture is all weird.”

“So you don’t like blueberries when they’re in one context but love them in the other?” Sana is looking at her like she’s grown a second head, and Momo can feel herself growing defensive.

“Yes! Some things just aren’t meant to be enjoyed in certain ways. Blueberries are meant for eating from a bowl and in a smoothie. Not pancakes.” Momo raises her voice for the last two words, arms waving to punctuate her point.

She expects Sana to shoot back another comment about how Momo is being ridiculous, but instead the other woman just looks at her. And Momo swears she feels the air between them grow heavier. “

“If you love blueberries so much, shouldn’t you love them no matter what they’re in?” Sana’s eyes are wide and a little wet and Momo is so terribly terribly lost.

“Well, no, because—”

“What is love if it only applies in certain circumstances? Why does adding another level to the blueberries make you not love them in the same way?”

“Sana—” Momo finds herself unable to string words together at the look on Sana’s face. She looks defeated, suddenly, like a woman giving up on a long-fought war. And Momo has absolutely no idea why Sana is getting so emotional about blueberries. She reaches forward, placing a hand on Sana’s shoulder in what she hopes is a comforting gesture.

Sana seems to come back to herself, shaking her head and taking a step back. “God, I’m sorry, Momo. Dahyun and I were talking about crushes a week or two ago, and some of the things we talked about got stuck in my head and I’m taking that out on you.”

Momo grasps for what she can understand. “That’s why you’re not dating anymore?”

Sana looks up, catching Momo’s gaze with her own. “Mostly. Kind of. It’s complicated.”

If there’s one thing Momo has learned about Sana over the years, it’s that she can be both wonderfully and terribly confusing. There were countless times where Momo had thought Sana was upset, only to learn that she had been planning their get together later that day. Sana was impossible to analyze with rules and logic. There was no discernible pattern to Minatozaki Sana, and Momo had long since learned to just let herself understand Sana via instinct.

So she does.

She takes in the way Sana is meeting her gaze, can sense the slight hesitation there. Momo feels the way Sana is shifting under her hand, and she knows what she has to say.

“You’re not a blueberry, Sana.”

“Excuse me?”

Momo thinks of Tzuyu and pushes forward.

“You’re not a blueberry. I’m always going to love you, no matter the situation.” She lifts her hand, extends it towards Sana, palm up. “I’m in love with you, actually, which was not something I had planned on telling you anytime soon.”

The waves are back, tugging at her knees and biting into her ankles, but all Momo can focus on is the surprise flitting across Sana’s face. “You’re in love with me?”

Momo nods.

“Do you have any idea how long I’ve been waiting to hear that from you?” Sana smiles, laughs as she reaches forward to pull Momo closer. “I was this close to actually moving in.”

Momo feels like she’s just been slapped. “Excuse me? You’ve been waiting to hear that from me? Why didn’t you say anything? You were the one going out on dates!”

Sana skims her hand along Momo’s shoulder. “You’re kind of a terrifying person to fall in love with, Momo.”

Momo takes a deep breath and exhales into a reality in which she lets herself accept that Sana loves her back. She can process later; she wants her mind nowhere else but the present right now.

“I was mad at myself when I realized how I felt about you. You’re my best friend, the person I’ve opened myself up to the most. And I couldn’t risk that. But then I kissed you, and you kissed me back.”

“Impossible not to,” Momo mutters.

Sana scoffs. “Please, have you seen yourself?”

They laugh together, and the silence that settles between them compels Momo to do something. She leans in, knocks her forehead against Sana’s. “So basically we’ve both been hiding our feelings from each other for far too long.”

“Yes, yes. You’re the one for me and I’m the one for you. Now please shut up and kiss me.”

Momo leans in, and as her lips brush against Sana’s, she realizes one last, and very important, thing.

“The pancakes!”

“What? Wait, shit! Grab the fire extinguisher!”

//

“Wanna hear a joke?”

“Momo, it’s one in the morning.”

“So anyways, what kind of cows make buttermilk?”

“Goodnight.”

“Yellow ones! Get it?”

“I’m divorcing you.”

“We’ve only been dating for a month.”

“One day I’m going to marry you and then I’m going to divorce you.”

Momo giggles, snuggles deeper into Sana’s arms. “You say the sweetest things when you’re grumpy.” She lifts one of the hands intertwined with her own and presses a kiss to the back of it. “Night. I love you.”

“Love you too,” Sana murmurs. “Now, sleep.”

Momo finally lets her eyes slip shut and begins to give into the lull of sleep. With Sana next to her and the knowledge of a tomorrow with the same, Momo has no trouble falling asleep.

It’s easy.