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“SUPERGIRL! SUPERGIRL PLEASE I NEED HELP! SUPERGIRL!”

Kara wasn’t sure who had figured it out, but apparently word had spread that the best way to contact Supergirl was to stand on the tallest available rooftop and scream for her. It was an effective, if anxiety-inducing method, and with an exasperated sigh Kara slipped out of the bullpen and changed into her suit, making a mental note to ask Alex, yet again, if she could please just get an official social media account or phone number for people to contact her.

To be fair, the person yelling for help did usually need it. Whether it was the woman who was being stalked, the man who was being blackmailed, or the enby who, for some reason, had decided Supergirl was the perfect candidate to help them with their Calc 2 homework (it was a slow night so she had actually helped, and then ended up having to write a fluff piece about it the next day… and there was no way she was telling Alex she was pretty sure the random college kid had realized who she was when she came back to interview them).

So yeah, the person usually needed help. But that didn’t mean Kara appreciated having someone half a city away screaming for her at the top of their lungs, because her hearing was good enough that she would have picked it up if they had just, say, yelled it quietly or something. Luckily for Kara’s poor ears, the woman standing on a rooftop and screaming for her stopped when she came into view, waving her arms frantically instead.

Kara landed on the roof and adopted her classic Supergirl pose, a twinge of annoyance running through her when it made her remember Brainy’s comment about her mimicking Alex, and did the best to give the woman, who did seem quite distressed judging by her expression and rapidly pounding heart, a reassuring smile. “Hello, what can I do for you?” Kara’s eye only twitched slightly when she remembered Nia’s comment about her being half-hero, half-customer service agent. Brainia liked teasing her way too much.

“You help vampires, right?” The woman asked bluntly, her dark eyes intense as she waited for Kara’s answer.

“Huh? Uh, yeah, of course. You’re… not a vampire though.” Kara’s brow crinkled and she started listening to see if there were any vamps nearby. The cacophony of heartbeats made it impossible to tell if any were beating slower than usual without taking the time to zero in on each one individually. Drat.

“You can tell?” The woman blurted, eyes wide and expression uneasy. Then she shook her head quickly. “Nevermind, we don’t have time. Listen, I’ve heard that you can get blood bags, right? And you won’t alert the authorities or any hunters?” When Kara nodded her assent, the woman let out a small sigh of relief. “Okay, okay, that’s good. I just need you to bring me some bags of O negative blood and I can take it from there. Please.”

“If a vampire can’t get their own blood they’re either hurt or they’ve gone into survival mode,” Kara said slowly. “Either way it would be dangerous for you to be near them since you’re human.”

The woman raised her chin and pinned Kara with a hard look. “I’ll be fine. She’s in survival mode but she’s still able to hold herself back. Just get me the blood and I can take care of it.”

Kara crossed her arms and narrowed her eyes. “No. I’ll get the O neg and you’ll take me to her so that I can make sure she’s unharmed, well-fed, and well-stocked before I go.” When the woman squared her jaw Kara forced herself to soften, letting her shoulders slump from their rigid pose and going for a more friendly, open expression. There was no need to whip out The Super Puppy Pout, as Alex had dubbed it. At least not yet. “If you’re calling me in to help she obviously means a lot to you, right? If she’s important to you then you’re important to her. How do you think she would feel if she accidentally hurt you when she wasn’t in control?” Kara raised one of her hands and tapped her crest with her index finger. “She can’t hurt me, and I promise not to hurt her. I want to help, you just have to let me.”

The woman stood still for several moments, the only movement her eyes as she looked from Kara’s face to the crest and back, clearly indecisive. A shrill ringtone pierced the air and both she and Kara jumped. After pulling the phone out of her pocket enough to glance at it she grimaced and silenced it, then ran a hand through her hair in frustration. “Okay, fine. I unfortunately can’t sneak you in, and with the state she’s in there’s no way she’ll take kindly to you landing on her balcony, so just put the blood in a discreet bag or something and check in at the lobby downstairs. I’ll tell them to let you up unencumbered.”

“The lobby…” Kara frowned and looked around at the rooftop she was standing on for the first time. “Your vampire works at L-Corp?!” Kara yelped, startled. Her cousin had been hounding her about gathering info on the company’s infamous CEO since she’d moved the company’s headquarters to National City and Kara had been ignoring him to the best of her abilities (which, considering he could just fly over to see her when she didn’t answer his calls didn’t really mean much unless she wanted to play a super speedy game of tag). “I can’t just- Rao there’s no way that would stay out of the papers and my cousin will kill me,” Kara muttered to herself.

The woman blew out an exasperated breath. “Look, I don’t care if you bring her the blood or I do, I just need you to go get it!”

Kara looked back at the woman then, saw the familiar look of fear in her eyes, a sort of hopeless downturn to her lips like she thought Supergirl would just up and leave her now that L-Corp was involved. Kara made a decision. A decision that, if found out, would probably mean both her cousin and  her sister would want to kill her. “I’ll be back in five minutes. Tell the lobby to expect Kara Danvers.” She didn’t wait for a reply, just launched back into the sky and made her way to the blood bank she’d secretly teamed up with shortly after she’d become Supergirl.

She landed on the small building’s roof and pressed a series of buttons on the keypad at the rooftop entrance, and three minutes later the door opened just enough for a brown paper bag to be slipped through the gap and into Kara’s waiting arms. With a murmured thanks she clutched the bag carefully to her chest and shot back into the air, checking that it was the right kind of blood on the way and landing in an alley near L-Corp in less than a minute. She slipped her glasses on, already grimacing at the thought of what she was about to do, had already done.

Dressed in her civvies, which were thankfully a respectable business casual since she’d been at work, and with the blood bags safely tucked into her satchel, Kara made her way into L-Corp and headed straight for the front desk. “Um, hi,” Kara started, reaching up and fiddling with her glasses when the young man behind the desk gave her his full attention, smiling at her kindly and offering a polite greeting followed by a query of how he could help (oh Rao she really was part customer service agent, wasn’t she?). “I’m Kara Danvers, I was told to check in here?” The man’s eyes widened and when he asked to see her ID he stuttered. Once he’d verified her name he pointed her toward the elevators, eyes still disturbingly wide, and told her the elevator attendant would know where she was going.

They must have had some sort of messaging system in place because the elevator attendant was already fidgeting when Kara got on, cap pulled low and dark glasses obscuring their eyes. They barely skimmed over the braille inscription beneath the button for the very top floor before they pressed it, and Kara could see their hands twitching every so often toward their waist, where she could now make out the bulk of some sort of weapon. Maybe a short staff? A gun probably wasn’t a good idea in an elevator, regardless of whether or not the shooter could see, but a short staff would work well if anyone who wasn’t authorized made it past the lobby. Interesting.

Also she was headed to the top floor. Who the heck was this vampire? Didn’t vamps usually try to avoid  sunlight, not be closer to it?

When the elevator stopped and the doors slid open Kara thanked the attendant, whose only response was a soft grunt, and slipped out, heading straight for the woman from the roof, who was sitting stiffly behind a desk outside what seemed to be the entrance to whoever’s office was on this floor. The name plate on her desk read Jess Huang .

“Miss Danvers,” Jess greeted, voice managing to sound both relieved and even more stressed. Kara was honestly surprised she was managing to keep her expression so neutral.

“Danvers?” A voice grunted, and Kara noticed the old white man sitting, or sulking really, in one of the uncomfy-looking chairs in what seemed to be a small waiting room. “I’ve never even heard of her. Why does she get to see Miss Luthor before I do? I’m the one with the damn appointment.”

It was a really good thing Kara was the only one in the room who could hear heartbeats cuz hers had just skyrocketed. Miss Luthor ? As in Lena Luthor? As in Kara was about to reveal her civilian identity to the Lena Luthor, who was also apparently a vampire ? No. No freaking way.

“You weaseled your way into this appointment and you know it, Mr. Smith,” Jess snapped. “Now, Miss Danvers, this way.” And with that Jess ushered her into the office and closed the doors with a solid thump, leaving Kara alone with Lena freaking Luthor.

The office was completely dark, steel shutters covering the floor to ceiling windows and even the balcony entrance, not a single light turned on. The only light in the room was what came seeping in from under the door, which was thankfully enough for Kara’s enhanced vision to make everything out fairly clearly. A small sitting area was off to one side, bookcases lining the wall opposite. The main feature of the room was the large desk situated in the middle towards the back, and a still figure was hunched over in the chair behind it.

Kara took a slow, deep breath before stepping forward, and was a bit ashamed when she let out a surprised squeak at the intense, glowing red eyes that suddenly met her own.

Aside from lifting her head to look at her the vampire hadn’t moved, and was very still as Kara slowly came closer. When she turned slightly to make her way around the desk the vampire began growling, red eyes narrowing to slits and growls growing louder when Kara barely faltered and continued around the desk, only stopping when she was less than a foot from the vampire, who had turned in her spinny chair as Kara walked so that they were now facing each other.

“Lena,” Kara said softly, but the woman didn’t show any recognition of her own name, the growls the only sounds she seemed capable of making at the moment. “I brought you some blood,” Kara said slowly, biting her lip nervously when Lena still didn’t seem cognizant of what was going on. She was deep in survival mode then, and this close Kara could make out the sharpness of her cheekbones, the dark circles under her eyes and way her skin seemed almost stretched taut around her face.

When Kara reached into her bag the vampire lunged for her.

“Oh Rao!” Cold hands latched onto her shoulders and Kara narrowly avoided being headbutted as Lena went for her neck. “No no no don’t do that!” She barely managed to pull Lena off of her before the thirsty woman shattered her teeth on Kara’s impenetrable skin. “Bad vampire!” Kara hissed, holding Lena up and away from her, one hand gripping the back of the snarling woman’s neck as she dangled her above the ground like one would an angry feline. Surprisingly Lena had gone limp, still aside from the snarling, bright red eyes trained on Kara’s face as she marched her over to the sitting area and plopped her down on the couch. “Stay.”

A quiet hiss, but Lena stayed seated, eyes still watching Kara warily. Huh. Maybe she could tell Kara was stronger than her now?

Not taking her eyes off the recalcitrant vampire for a second, Kara reached into her bag again, pulling out one of the blood bags and holding it out to the woman. Lena didn’t take her eyes off of Kara, didn’t move to take the bag or even seem to realize what it was. She was like a statue, just sitting there staring at her. Kara sighed and pulled out a small yellow straw. Still not taking her eyes off the woman she set the bag on the low coffee table and popped the straw out of the plastic before picking up the bag again and stabbing the straw into it. Almost immediately the red eyes staring at her shifted down to the bag, and Kara saw Lena’s nostrils flare.

This time when Kara offered her the bag Lena glanced at her for a heartbeat before snatching it from her and beginning to suck on the straw, draining the bag in less than a minute and making Kara wonder just how long it had been since she’d fed. With the drained bag still clutched in her hands and the straw still siphoned between her lips Lena looked at Kara with what the Kryptonian could only call the cutest demonic pout ever (the red glowing eyes were cool but freaky okay).

So Kara pulled out another bag, which Lena’s eyes immediately zeroed in on, and held it out to her. Once again, though, she didn’t move.

“Why… Oh you need to be able to smell it, I guess? Huh. Okay then.” Kara took a moment to prepare herself, then reached out with her free hand and slipped the empty blood bag out of Lena’s loose grasp, dropping it to the coffee table in annoyance when she realized the straw hadn’t come with it. “Darn it, you…” Thankfully Lena didn’t react when Kara gently pulled the straw out of her mouth. Resisting the urge to grumble about having to do everything herself, Kara poked the straw into the blood bag and held it out to Lena, who grabbed it from her once again after another quick glance up at her for permission.

As Kara continued the repetitive task of feeding the vampire, she felt a small ember of anger kindle in her chest. Not at Lena, no, but at whoever had starved her. Because there was no way she’d gotten this bad on her own. Someone had captured her and done this intentionally. And of course Kara didn’t really know much about Lena, aside from what the news had said, but if she ignored all the overly biased opinion pieces and focused on the facts, the only things the woman had done since taking over and renaming LuthorCorp were good, from creating an image inducer that had helped countless aliens and others to ferreting out all of Lex’s old lairs and helping the government clear them out. And yet someone had done this to her.

Kara didn’t realize the soft growl in the room had come from her until Lena froze, fourth blood bag half drained, and red, fearful eyes darted in her direction as the vampire seemed to sink in on herself, trembling.

Lena was scared of her.

Kara’s eyes widened in horror and she immediately fell to her knees in front of the woman. “No, no, no, I’m not mad at you, it’s okay, it’s okay, I promise, you’re safe now, you’re safe, Lena, please don’t be scared.” Yet still Lena trembled, and Kara realized she probably didn’t understand her words when she was still this deep in survival mode. So Kara slowly, slowly, slowly reached up and cupped Lena’s cheeks, stroking softly with her thumbs as she continued to murmur assurances of safety in as soft and soothing a voice as she could manage. Eventually the other woman’s trembles subsided and Kara found herself moving, still glacier-slow, to sit on the couch beside her, gently pulling Lena into her lap and wrapping one arm securely around her too-thin waist before using her free hand to raise the bag back to Lena’s lips. “Drink, it’s okay, Lena, you’re safe, I’ll keep you safe, I promise.”

It took several heartbeats before Lena finally began to drink again, and by the time Kara needed to replenish the bag Lena was curled against her, forehead tucked into the crook of her neck and one hand fisted in her soft cardigan.

Two drained bags later, just as Kara was beginning to wonder if she’d need to go get more blood soon, there was a quiet knock on the door and Jess poked her head in, squinting into the darkness that was likely impenetrable to her human eyes.

“Miss Danvers? Miss Luthor?” Jess called quietly. “Smith finally got tired of waiting and left, so I thought I’d check in.”

“Don’t turn the lights on,” Kara warned her, speaking only loudly enough to be audible. “She’s calmer now but still not really, uh, normal yet.”

“Got it. Can I open the door to let in some light and come in?” Jess’s mouth was set in a tense line but her voice didn’t waver. Apparently being an infamous vampire CEO’s secretary required nerves of steel that rivalled those of being Cat Grant’s secretary-turned-superhero.

Smiling a bit ruefully at the thought, Kara almost nodded before realizing that 1) Jess could not see her, and 2) nodding would jostle Lena, which Kara very much did not want to do. “Sure. Just do it all very, very slowly.”

Jess’s head disappeared and the door began to ease open. Lena stopped feeding and tensed against Kara before burrowing closer, the hand still clenched in her cardigan beginning to tear the fabric. “Shhh, it’s okay. You’re safe now,” Kara whispered, encircling Lena with her other arm as she began to gently pet her hair. “Everything’s okay.”

By the time Jess had finally inched her way into the room, standing at the edge of the rectangle of light made by the open door, Lena had calmed again and was back to sipping the blood at a much more sedate pace than her first few bags. Kara saw the moment Jess met Lena’s glowing red eyes, the human shivering a bit before forcing her gaze up to Kara’s and raising her eyebrows. “So this is how you deal with vampires in survival mode, then? Cuddles?”

“I, uh, it just, uhm, no?” Kara stammered, feeling heat rush to her face as she considered the situation. “Oh Rao.”

A soft snort drew Kara and Jess’s attention to Lena, who was apparently coming back to herself enough to laugh at Kara.

“Really?” Kara whined softly. “You refused to poke the straw into the bag like a minute ago and now you’re cognizant enough to laugh at me? That’s just mean.”

Lena made a quiet humming sound that somehow managed to convey more amusement than an actual laugh would have and leaned her head against Kara’s shoulder. When Kara, full on pouting now, stopped petting her hair and made to lower her hand Lena released her grip on her cardigan in half a second and grabbed the hand, pushing it back into her hair and growling softly.

Jess actually giggled and Kara turned her sulky glare to her as she did the vampire’s bidding and continued petting her hair. “You’re both really mean.”

Lena just hummed again and latched back onto the cardigan as Kara grumbled about demanding vampires and rude secretaries.

Jess eventually stopped giggling at Kara and hurried back to her desk after she realized she should probably cancel or reschedule the rest of her boss’s appointments that day, though she did leave the door open, “To get Miss Luthor reacquainted with the world of the living and to make sure Miss Danvers doesn’t try anything past cuddling,” which of course led to Kara sputtering some indignant half phrases even she didn’t understand.

Not really sure how to extricate herself from the embrace at this point (and honestly not really wanting to- Lena was so very soft and no longer as freezing cold as she’d been pre-feeding), Kara stayed sitting on the couch, Lena still curled contentedly in her lap as she finished off the last bag of blood.

A soft plap signalled the now-empty blood bag being tossed onto the coffee table, and when Kara shifted slightly to look down she saw Lena fiddling with the yellow straw, finally having abandoned her death grip on Kara’s cardigan.

“Did I really just feed using a Capri-Sun straw?” A quiet, highly amused voice asked, and Kara gulped because why why why in the name of Rao is her voice so husky right now what the heck?!

“Uh, yeah. I steal them from a friend of mine every once in awhile for, well, situations like this. He pretends to complain but I know he enjoys using the 3D printer to make more, so.” Kara bit her lip to stop herself from continuing to ramble and explaining that at this point J’onn and Alex had given up reigning in Winn’s love of 3D printing small, one-time-use-and-not-for-work objects and that he’d even managed to get Brainy in on it, much to the delight of Nia and her collection of 83-and-counting elaborately designed pieces of jewelry.

“Ah ha,” Lena said quietly. “So you often make hungry vampires feed through a straw with a ridiculously small diameter.”

“Okay, when you put it like that it sounds bad. But before I started swiping Winn’s straws y’all just ripped into the bag and wasted over half the blood, or even worse one guy guzzled it down too quickly and barfed all over me.” Kara’s nose scrunched up at the memory of having to get regurgitated blood stains out of her suit. “So unless you have a better option, Miss Luthor, the Capri-Sun straws are staying my go-to.”

Lena tilted her head back and looked up at Kara, eyes more green than red now and a wicked smirk on her dark lips. “I’m quite literally sitting in your lap, darling, I think you can skip to calling me Lena.”

Kara gaped. Lena’s smirk widened.

“I, um, I.” Kara squeezed her eyes shut and groaned, thumping her head gently against the back of the couch. “I don’t usually handle this situation like, well, like this, okay?” Kara asked, raising her head and giving Lena a beseeching look. “It’s just that none of the vampires I’d helped before were nearly as starved as you were and I know there’s no way you got that bad on your own and I started getting really mad at whoever did it to you but then you thought I was growling at you and you were scared and you’d already been through who knows what and I didn’t want to make you suffer more and I’m very tactile so this was all I could think of to make you feel safe.” It was probably a good thing Lena already knew she wasn’t human, even if she didn’t know the specifics yet, because there was no way a human could have said all of that in one breath like Kara just had.

As it was Lena stared at her silently for several long moments before leaning up and pressing a soft kiss to her cheek. “You have my thanks, darling. I would like to know who exactly you are, though?”

Kara’s eyes widened. “Oh! Um, I’m… Dara Kanvers. I mean, Kara Danvers, yeah. Um. You kissed me.” Real eloquent, Kara , Kara thought to herself. If Alex ever found out about what was happening right now Kara would have to stop teasing her about her alarming lack of a gaydar or risk having Dara Kanvers thrown back in her face.

Kara ,” Lena said, savoring the name. Rao, Kara was done for. “A beautiful name,” Lena bit her lip, an impish look in her eyes, “for a beautiful woman,” she finished, purring the words.

“Uh, thanks,” Kara squeaked, suddenly acutely aware of all the places Lena’s body was pressed against hers.

Then Jess stormed into the room, cell phone in hand and fury rolling off her in waves. “Miss Danvers, would you mind telling me why Cat Grant called my personal cell asking for you?”

Kara’s brow furrowed even as Lena stiffened against her. “How did Miss Grant know…” Kara gasped. “She put a tracker on me to find stories again, didn’t she?” Kara reached out and snatched the phone from Jess, putting it to her ear. “Darn it, Cat, we talked about this!”

I’m sure I don’t know what you mean, Kiera ,” Cat’s voice said smugly from the other end of the line. “ Now then, what is my newest cub reporter doing at L-Corp, hmmm? Should I be expecting a big story soon?

“No!” Kara yelped. “You can’t put a bug on me, Cat! Didn’t Alex already make you sign like five extra NDA’s and contracts forbidding you from doing this again?”

Cat sniffed. “ Mm, I do remember something about that. Really though, Kiera, I assure you I did no such thing.

“Cat.”

A sigh. “ Your laptop is CatCo property, so I may check in on its GPS every now and then .”

Kara’s jaw dropped. “I’m telling Alex.”

Go ahead. I don’t fear your sister or her mysteriously acronymed branch of the government. If you want to send that delicious cousin of yours over to lecture me, however- ” Kara hung up. She knew she’d regret it later, but ew. He was her baby cousin, c’mon.

Lena was shaking against her and when Kara looked down at her, concerned, she saw that she was laughing. Kara’s still-angry expression immediately melted into a pout.

“I’m sorry, darling,” Lena gasped, “but Cat got you on that one.”

Jess, who did not have advanced hearing and therefore had not gotten to hear both sides of the conversation, had nonetheless heard enough to start giggling at Kara’s expense yet again.

“I think I finally understand that saying about no good deed going unpunished,” Kara grumbled.

“Oh? Was kissing you not enough of a reward?” Lena asked sweetly, batting her eyes at Kara as she blushed and stuttered.

“You what?” Jess demanded. “Miss Danvers! I expected better of Supergirl than to take advantage of someone-”

“On the cheek!” Kara yelped. “ Lena kissed me on the cheek okay! I’m all about consent, gosh.” Kara reached up to fiddle with her glasses but her hand awkwardly smacked into her face instead because Lena had swiped her glasses at some point and was examining them curiously.

“Are these made of lead?”

“Uh, yeah. They help dampen my powers a little. They were a big help when I first landed but at this point they’re more for sentimentality than anything else.” Talking about her glasses made Kara want to fiddle with them which she sadly couldn’t do when Lena was still holding them. Luckily Lena slid them back onto her face a few moments later and Kara adjusted them self-consciously, full of nerves at the whole situation.

“I won’t tell anyone your secret,” Lena said softly. “And Jess won’t either. It’s already covered by one of the NDA’s I had her sign when she first started.”

“I wouldn’t tell regardless,” Jess said seriously. “Mutually assured destruction of yours and Miss Luthor’s secrets aside.”

Kara gave them both a lopsided smile. “I know. I-” She cut off when her phone rang. And with that ringtone… “Oh Rao why is he calling right now?” Kara groaned and finagled her phone out of her pocket, arm instinctively tightening around Lena’s waist when the woman moved as if to get up so Kara could get to it easier. “Hey, Cal. What’s up?” She winced at the sheer amount of false pep she put into her voice, and Lena’s eyebrow arched at the tone.

My interview with Lena Luthor just got cancelled ,” Cal groused. “ I’m headed to National City to see what she’s up to. You’re coming with me .”

Kara glanced at Lena, who was staring at her with wide eyes and a slightly agape mouth. So she recognized Cal’s voice then. Oops.

“Um. I don’t think that’s necessary,” Kara tried. “I think-”

I don’t care what you think Kara, I know. She’s a Luthor, of course she’s up to something .”

Ohhh Cal should not have said that. Lena’s eyes were going red in her fury and she had a fierce expression on her face that made Kara glad Lena was fine with the whole cuddling thing (which she abruptly realized they were still doing, oh Rao) and wasn’t lecturing her on being inappropriate (she still wasn’t sure why exactly she started doing it in the first place, but physical contact had helped her when she’d first landed and had been scared and it had kind of just happened).

Kara took a deep breath and blew it out. She usually let her baby cousin have his way, not wanting to upset her only living blood relative and all, but if she didn’t stand up to him now Lena definitely would, and then they’d both be in trouble. Plus his attitude about the youngest Luthor had already been getting on her nerves before she’d had the pleasure of meeting her, and now, well, it was probably a good thing she’d learned to control her heat vision even when she was furious.

“Okay Cal, that’s enough,” Kara said sternly, frowning at the phone even though she knew he couldn’t see her. “When I offered to help you patrol Metropolis you told me it was your city and that you could handle it, that I had my own to worry about. So how about you stop being a freaking hypocrite and stick to your city and let me handle mine?” Kara paused and she could tell Cal was about to speak so she plowed on. “And for your information, Miss Luthor has been nothing less than a model citizen since moving here, despite the tabloids vilifying her. You need to learn that people are not their families. Lena is not Lex, and you should not treat her as such. She is her own person and has never done anything to even suggest any animosity toward aliens. Heck, her image inducer helped hundreds of aliens in National City alone! So you can keep yourself and your biased opinions in your own dang city, got it?”

There was a long silence on the other end of the call, punctuated only by what Kara knew to be the snap of Cal’s cape in the wind. After a moment the sound was gone. Cal had landed. “ Fine. Just know that when she turns on you I’ll be the first to say ‘I told you so’ .” And with that he hung up.

Kara stared at her phone silently, part of her relieved that she’d finally stood up to him and part of her screaming that she needed to fix this, to get Cal back on her side because he was part of what little she had left of Krypton, of home.

Lena gently pulling her phone out of her hand when the case started creaking a warning was the only reason she didn’t crack it.

“Thank you,” Lena said quietly. The hand not holding the phone reached up and around, and nimble fingers began to play with the baby hairs at the nape of Kara’s neck. “I probably would have grabbed the phone and started yelling at him, and I don’t think that would have gone well for either of us.”

All Kara could muster up was a small noise of agreement, and a moment later she let her head fall so that her forehead thumped down gently on Lena’s shoulder. “-m.”

“Even I couldn’t hear that, darling,” Lena murmured.

“I don’t like him,” Kara said, more loudly this time. She ignored Lena and Jess’s sharp inhales at the admission, stewing in her own thoughts. “I’m not sure if he’d be different if he actually remembered Krypton, but he doesn’t. He’s basically just a superpowered human, and I don’t like him. I like plenty of non-superpowered humans, but Cal, no, Clark ,” she sneered the name, “is, he’s just, he doesn’t know the meaning of el mayarah and yet he still lectures me about it, as if I, as if I didn’t lose everything when to him it’s all just an origin story .” She clung tighter to Lena for a moment, much tighter than she’d normally let herself cling to anyone for fear of breaking them, but aside from a small oof of surprise Lena didn’t complain, just cupped her hand around the base of Kara’s head and held her closer while the Kryptonian raggedly breathed in and out for several moments. Eventually her grasp loosened and she raised her head, Lena’s fingers now scratching gently at the base of her scalp. Her blue eyes were dark and shining with teary anguish and shame. “Sorry.”

“You have nothing to apologize for, Kara,” Lena murmured softly, using the hand anchored in Kara’s hair to turn her head so she could touch her forehead to the blonde’s as best as their position allowed. “Trust me, I of all people can understand not liking your family.”

Kara managed a small huff of amusement at that, the warm air caressing Lena’s face before both pulled back at Jess’s low whistle.

“I ship it,” Jess declared.

Two confused faces turned to her, eyebrows arched and eyes wide.

“What? You two are cute together. How am I not supposed to ship this when you’re sitting on her lap? Plus you’ve got the whole Romeo and Juliet thing going on, but queer so it’s automatically better.” Jess shrugged at them unapologetically and her audience burst into giggles. Jess Huang, the human with the power to make a vampire and a Kryptonian laugh. Too bad she couldn’t put that on her resume. Not that she ever really planned on changing jobs (well except for any promotions Lena decided to throw her way, though for the time being at least there was no way Jess would trust anyone else with her boss’s safety).

Kara’s phone, which Lena was still holding loosely in her own lap, began to buzz, interrupting their much-needed laughter, and a familiar name flashed on screen. “Oh Rao, he called Alex?”

Lena held the phone out to her and Kara took it like she was afraid it would bite her and actually be able to pierce her Kryptonian flesh. “Alex?” Lena queried when it seemed Kara didn’t want to answer.

“My sister,” Kara muttered, reluctantly accepting the call and holding her phone to her ear. “Hey sis, what’s up?”

Mind  telling me why I just got a call from Clark telling me to keep an eye on your girlfriend?

Kara’s brow furrowed. “What girlfriend?”

Lena Luthor, apparently .”

“He- I- we- what?” Kara gave an affronted gasp. “He said he wasn’t coming here, I can’t believe he lied to me and spied on me!”

Wait, what? He said he only called her that because you defended her so vehemently- his word, not mine- no wait why do you think he was spying on you? Kara? What the hell is going on with you and Lena Lu-

“Oh no I hear someone in trouble I gotta go bye,” Kara rushed out, just a tad slower than super babble, and hung up. When the phone vibrated with an incoming call a moment later she turned it off and stared at it, eyes wide. “Alex is gonna kill me.”

“Well,” Lena mused, “if she does manage to kill you, I can always attempt to turn you. After all, we can’t be proper girlfriends if we haven’t even had a chance to go on a date.”

“Are you asking me out?” Kara asked, her voice lilting and her smile so wide her nose scrunched up.

“It is my turn, seeing as how you made the first move.” Lena grinned when Kara blushed and her smile only grew.

“I would love to go on a date with you.” Kara’s grin abruptly vanished. “Though first, would you mind telling me what happened? Or at least if you’re still in danger?” Her arms tightened and hugged Lena closer.

Lena sighed and melted into the embrace. “Alright, though I don’t think there’s anything either of us can really do.” She laid her head on Kara’s chest and blew out a quiet breath. “I am something of a workaholic, though I do take a month-long vacation every year to go to Ireland. It’s where I’m from...” Lena’s hand found its way to Kara’s cardigan again. “I left my apartment a month ago and got in the town car that was supposed to take me to the airport, and… I assume they used some kind of gas, because that’s the last thing I can remember before waking up in an underground room with- with a thick silver grate covering the only exit. I never saw anyone the entire time… someone opened the grate remotely when a month had passed, and I can’t really remember how but I made my way back here. Luckily Jess was the first to find me— and she was wearing the silver jewelry I gave her when she first started.”

When Kara started growling again Lena tilted her head up and kissed the underside of her jaw.

“Thanks to you and Jess I am fine now, darling. Though I do think I’ll go back to either taking my motorcycle or just running wherever I go. Honestly the latter would save me a lot of time.”

Kara had to stop growling in order to say a very, very important thing: “You have a motorcycle.”

Lena gave an amused hum. “That is what I said, yes.”

Kara let out a low whistle. “Okay, I definitely want to know more about that later. But for now, I think I do know someone who can help, if you wouldn’t mind me calling them? They’re a detective with the NCPD, and while they can’t legally do anything to help vampires they are quite good at investigating and bringing the bad guys up on other charges.”

“So long as you do not tell them my name.” Lena pulled away and arched her eyebrow at Kara’s frown, but when she nodded, albeit reluctantly, Lena curled up against her again. “I know it will make things a bit harder, but I cannot risk this getting out. Please.”

“It’s okay, Lena, I get it.” Kara pressed a kiss to the crown of Lena’s head. “Besides, I can bribe her pretty easily so if I convince her to let me help we can figure it out.” She pulled her phone out and selected a very familiar contact, and a few rings later—

Hey Little Danvers, what’s up?

“Maggie, I need help with a case.”

I’m listening.”

Kara told her the details, only leaving out Lena’s name. “I know it’s not much to go on, but I’m not even sure where to start, and that’s kind of your specialty, so, any ideas?”

Is there a reason you’re leaving out their name?

Kara bit her lip. “They asked me not to say.”

Normally I would have to insist since it’s usually best to start with victimology when it comes to vamp cases that no hunters have claimed credit for, but it sounds like your vamp was the latest victim in an ongoing case, so I already know who did it, not that I can fucking do anything about it. Several more curses followed. How the fuck am I supposed to stop an asshole billionaire who’s already in jail?

“You’re saying it’s—”

The ass of all asses, the most phenomenal fuckwit of all time, Lex Luthor. He’s behind this shitstorm. He has his guys kidnap vamps, starve them for a few weeks to get them into survival mode, then release them so they’ll attack humans. With everyone I talked to, he either starved them so long they were too weak to hurt anyone or didn’t starve them for long enough and they were able to hold back. If he had your vamp for a month I dunno how the hell they didn’t attack anyone, though I have heard rumors of a vampire who tracks down the missing vamps and rescues them.

Kara looked at Lena at that and rolled her eyes when the vampire began studying the wall. “Maggie, one sec.” She muted the phone. “Well?”

Lena remained staring at the wall. “I may have… suspected… Lex was up to something, even from prison, and followed the money. If I happened to find some vampires, well, I made sure to have blood on me so I could feed them before I freed them.” She began to fidget with the hem of Kara’s cardigan. “And… I may have… had my suspicions about who was behind what happened to me, but… it’s Lex. I can’t send you after one of the few people on this planet with access to kryptonite, Kara. I can’t .” Lena burrowed closer. “Please don’t go after him. Don’t put yourself in danger for- for me. I know your cousin put him in prison, but he can get out any time he likes. He’s too dangerous.”

“He wasn’t too dangerous for you to interfere with his plans,” Kara pointed out, frowning.

“I couldn’t let people suffer when I could help.”

Kara hummed thoughtfully and then unmuted the phone. “Hey Maggie, don’t worry about Lex anymore, alright?” She hung up on the detective’s incredulous exclamation and selected a different contact. They picked up after one ring. “I need a favor.”

Oh? What kind of favor, kir chahv?

Kara clutched Lena closer to her and closed her eyes, remembering all the suffering Lex had subjected Lena to, put her family (as much as she didn’t like him) through, had put countless vampires and aliens and humans through. Her heat vision very nearly flared to life. “I need you to make Lex Luthor disappear. For good.”

And what do I get in exchange?

“You can take my turn picking the movie tomorrow night, and I won’t use my superspeed when we play Uno.” Kara smirked when Lena wriggled away enough to face her and arched an eyebrow at her.

Will your girlfriend be there? When Kara sputtered the person on the other end laughed. Alex texted me. A pause. Many times.

Kara looked to Lena. Lena nodded and shrugged, somehow managing to give Kara the impression of her saying ‘why the hell not, might as well meet my girlfriend’s on-call assassin’.

“Yep, that’ll work.”

I shall see you both tomorrow night then, and do not worry— he will be gone by then. Ehrosh :bem.

“Nahkluv, ehrosh :bem.” Kara ended the call and slipped her phone into her pocket. “Good news— he won’t be bothering anyone anymore.”

“And the bad news?”

“We met today and agreed to go on a date, which we still have yet to do, and tomorrow I’ll be introducing you to pretty much my entire family, minus Ca- Clark, all of whom have labelled you as my girlfriend.”

“I’m fine with the last bit but,” Lena paused, her eyes wide, “I think I need more context.”

“My family gets together at least once a month for food and movies and games. So that’s me, my sister Alex, our mom Eliza, any of the Superfriends who are available, and, more recently, my aunt Astra. Clark used to come once in awhile but Astra scares him.”

“And Astra is the one who…?”

“Yup. She has my powers and Krypton’s military training, not to mention experience in battle. Lex won’t be a problem anymore. Though I don’t typically call her in since her methods aren’t really, uh, legal.” Kara blushed. “Plus we’re kind of trying to get her firmly on the ‘good’ side after the whole global mind control fiasco.”

Lena seemed to be choking on air. “That was her ?!”

Kara pressed her lips together and nodded. “But we got rid of her husband, or rather, she killed him when he was about to kill me, and now we’re working on it. Minus the occasional favor I have to call in.”

“This is all very complicated. Though I suppose I’m not one to comment on complicated family matters considering my girlfriend’s aunt is about assassinate my sister’s great-great-great- et cetera grandson.”

“What.”

“Vampire family trees are quite complicated. Last I checked she was disappointed in that branch of her descendants anyway, so I doubt she’ll mind.” Lena shrugged and suddenly grinned. “I developed a mind control device a few centuries ago, though I did destroy it when I realized how powerful it actually was. Still, I have a feeling Astra and I will get along.”

“Oh boy.”