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She's my (Girl)friend

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Lena followed Kara into the bar, slowly trailing behind her. The taller woman had her by the hand and was standing slightly in front of her as they walked through the crowd of people. Ever since Crisis ended and Earth-38 had been restored, Kara had been practically glued to Lena’s side. Not that Lena minded; in fact she quite enjoyed being the center of Kara’s attention. It had only been three weeks since the two of them had made up and Lena was certain all of the attention and affection she was receiving from Kara was bound to stop any day now so she was sure to make the most of it while she could.

A squeeze to Lena’s hand brought her mind back down to Earth and she looked up at the woman smiling at her. Lena’s breath caught in her throat for a split second and something in her chest tightened as she found herself smiling back up at Kara before she even realized what she was doing. Kara gave her a small nod of reassurance, still smiling brightly as she turned to face the table full of people who helped her save the world. She ever so slightly tugged Lena forward, dropping her hand in the process and gently placing it on the small of Lena’s back. Lena desperately hoped she wasn’t blushing.

Seated at the table were several people that Lena knew, and several that she didn’t. Alex and Kelly were there along with Clark and Lois, but the rest were unfamiliar faces.
“Hi everyone!” Kara said warmly. Her arm made the rest of its way across Lena’s back to rest on her hip.

One of Alex’s eyebrows shot up.

“Lena, this is Sara Lance, Ray Palmer, and Kate Kane. They’re all from Earth-1.” Kara said proudly. As she spoke, she pulled out a seat for Lena to sit down in, making sure she was situated before taking a seat next to her for herself.

Alex’s other eyebrow shot up.

Ray, the friendliest looking man Lena had quite possibly ever seen, leaned forward and held out his hand to her. “Nice to meet you!” The enthusiasm in his smile rivaled that of Kara’s. “And you are?”

Lena reached out and had no more than begun to shake Ray’s hand when Kara spoke up again.

“Oh, right, duh!” Kara laughed. “Everyone, this is my girlfriend, Lena.”

Alex choked on her drink. Lois leaned over to whisper something in Clark’s ear, looking triumphant. The woman Kara had introduced as Sara sighed heavily and reached into her jacket pocket, pulling out a twenty and sliding it over to Kate who sat next to her wearing a huge smirk on her face. Kara seemed oblivious to it all.
Lena was frozen in her seat. Girlfriend? When the hell had that happened? How long had they been together and she had been none the wiser? Feeling like a fool, she cursed herself and tried to think back to when it may have happened, although she had no clue how she could have possibly missed it.

It had to have happened just after Crisis, Lena thought. Right when Kara came to her in tears, apologizing and begging for her forgiveness. It had to have been sometime that night while they were making up, the both of them in tears. It couldn’t have possibly been before Crisis, not when Lena was using and manipulating Kara, not when Lena wanted to hurt Kara as badly as she had been hurt, not when Lena had betrayed Kara and poisoned her with Kryptonite, leaving her a prisoner in her own fortress...right?
Lena closed her eyes suddenly feeling very ill.

A warm hand was placed on Lena’s shoulder, Kara’s soft voice in her ear. “Lena? Are you okay?”

Lena swallowed hard and opened her eyes, forcing herself to regain her composure. She turned to face Kara, seeing concern etched all over her face. “Yes.” She forced herself to smile. “I’m fine.” As she spoke, Lena reached out and placed her hand on Kara’s thigh, giving it a small squeeze. “Don’t worry about me.”

Kara’s hand moved from her shoulder to rest on top of Lena’s hand. “I’ll always worry about you.” She smiled at Lena like it was the most obvious thing in the world, before removing her hand from atop Lena’s and turning back to face the table.

Lena hesitated for only a moment before catching Kara’s hand in hers again and tangling their fingers together under the table. Kara glanced sideways at Lena, a light flush lining her cheeks as she smiled and looked down at the table.

“So, uh.” Clark’s voice grabbed the attention of both Lena and Kara. “How long have the two of you…”

Before Lena even had time to worry about coming up with an answer for Clark’s question, Kara was speaking again. “Oh, it was pretty much immediately after Crisis.” She laughed awkwardly. “After everything that happened,” Kara looked over at Lena and smiled before turning back to Clark. “I just had to...well, I just had to have her back in my life.”

Next to Kara, Lena blushed, looking down at the table. She gave Kara’s hand a squeeze hoping to let the other woman know that she felt the same way, even if she wasn’t capable of saying so in front of everyone else present at the table.

“Well,” Alex smirked. “At least now I know you have a good reason for going to visit her first.”

Lena’s head snapped up, turning to face Alex. “She what?” Her voice was sharper than she had intended it to be.

“Oh, you didn’t know?” Kelly asked. She seemed somewhat surprised when Lena shook her head. “You were the first person she went to see after Crisis ended.”

Lena frowned. “You mean after Alex, surely?”

“No,” Alex shook her own head as she tilted her beer bottle in Lena’s direction. “She went to see you first.”

Across the table Sara and Kate exchanged glances, Sara mouthing a “wow” to Kate who nodded in agreement.

Lena was stunned. Kara went to see her first? Over her own sister? Her family? She wasn’t quite sure how to process the information, but she was thankfully interrupted by Kate standing up and declaring that she was going to buy everyone another round. The table began to buzz with chatter again, Lena’s hand still in Kara’s warm grip as Sara and Ray began to tell tales of their adventures aboard the Waverider. Kara didn’t let go of her hand the whole night.

 

**

It was late by the time everyone left the bar. Lena was more than a little tipsy as she watched Kara say goodbye to Alex and Kelly before she made her way back over to Lena, who was leaning against the wall, arms crossed in the cold.

“What are you smiling at?” Kara asked as she approached her.

Lena hadn’t even realized she was. “I don’t know.” She said truthfully. “I guess I’m just happy.” When she saw Kara grin in response, she knew she had said the right thing. “Being here tonight...with you. It’s made me happy.”

“Yeah,” Kara bit her lip and glanced at the ground. “It’s made me really happy too.” She looked up at Lena like she was debating something and then eventually held out her arm to Lena. “Ready to go home?”

Lena reached out and took Kara’s arm. “I thought you would never ask.”

They walked along in silence for a while, Lena leaning heavily against Kara’s side, Kara’s strong arm around Lena’s waist, holding her upright and keeping her warm. Eventually Lena’s burning curiosity got the better of her, and she frowned to herself trying to figure out how to pose the question without seeming accusatory.

“What are you thinking about?” Kara asked softly.

Lena looked up to find Kara watching her. “You came to see me first. After Crisis. Not Alex. Not J’onn. Not your mother. Me.”

“Yeah.” Kara nodded slowly. “I did.”

“Why?” Lena couldn’t fathom Kara’s reasoning. “For all you knew, I hated your guts and you still-”

“Did you?” Kara interrupted. “Hate me?”

“No!” Lena stopped walking, Kara quickly pausing in her own tracks to turn and face her. “No.” She repeated, her voice softer this time. “No, Kara, I never hated you. I could never hate you.” Lena let out a frustrated sigh as she dropped her hands to her sides. “I was just...heartbroken.” She looked up at Kara and was only half surprised to see her eyes glistening with unshed tears. “Please don’t start crying.” Lena half laughed, tears threatening to fall down her own cheeks. “I’m very drunk right now and if you start crying, I’m going to sob uncontrollably.”

“Sorry.” Kara let out a little laugh as well as she moved to wipe at her own eyes, sniffling loudly. “But the reason I went to see you first...after Crisis ended, I knew we had fixed everything. I knew everyone was okay. I knew Alex and the rest of my family were safe. And I knew you were safe. But the things between us, they were not okay.” Kara reached out and grabbed both of Lena’s gloved hands in her own. “And after what I had just gone through…” She shook her head, blue eyes full of some emotion that Lena couldn’t quite place. “I knew I didn’t want to spend another moment without you in my life. Lena, I…” Kara trailed off, blinking rapidly as she let out a choked laugh. “Sorry, I’m doing my best not to cry right now.”

Wordlessly, Lena reached out to wipe away a stray tear that found its way down Kara’s cheek. Kara blinked again, her eyes finding Lena’s as her mouth dropped slightly open. The two of them stared at each other, hand in hand, with Lena still cradling Kara’s cheek. “Lena…” Kara whispered again.

Lena’s heart was pounding in her chest and she knew for a fact that Kara could hear it. Her gaze fell to Kara’s lips and she slowly leaned in, her breath catching in her throat. Kara suddenly coughed awkwardly, dropping Lena’s hand and stepping back. “Um, we should probably get you home.”

Lena did her best to not look disappointed, like she hadn’t just felt a sudden pang of sadness when Kara had abruptly pulled away. She plastered on a smile and held out her hand to Kara. “Lead the way.”

They walked in silence for the rest of the short trip, Lena’s arm still looped through Kara’s own. When they finally reached Lena’s apartment building, Kara stopped and smiled brightly at her. “Well, here you are.”

Lena’s heart ached, afraid to try to kiss her again, but also unwilling to just let Kara go without doing something. She abruptly stepped forward into Kara’s personal space and wrapped her arms around her middle, squeezing as tight as she possibly could, knowing she wasn’t at any risk of hurting Kara. She had taken Kara by surprise but it only took a split second for her to respond. Strong arms wound themselves around Lena, one of them around her waist, the other up by her shoulders, holding her close. Lena buried her face into Kara’s neck. She still wasn’t quite sure on how she had gotten so lucky as to be dating her best friend, or how she had been naive enough to miss out on the beginning of the relationship, but as she stood out on the street being shielded from the cold by Kara’s warm embrace, she knew one thing for certain; she wasn’t going to take one more moment of this relationship for granted.

 

**

Lena knocked gently on the door to Kara’s loft before opening it and stepping inside, the door swinging shut behind her. A cursory glance around the apartment showed it to be empty, but she knew Kara had to be somewhere just out of sight.

Sure enough, not a moment later, Lena heard the bathroom door open and close, and Kara stepped out from around the corner, a radiant smile on her face. “Lena! Hi!”

Lena stilled in the act of toeing off her shoes. Kara was barefooted, her feet sticking out from under long gray sweats. Her hair was still damp from showering, causing the blue and white baseball tee she was wearing to have wet splotches all over it where her hair lay around her shoulders. Her glasses were off, and she was holding a hairbrush in her hand. Lena’s breath hitched in her throat.

Kara’s smile faltered when she noticed Lena staring at her in silence. “Are you okay? Do I have something on my face?” She brought one hand up to touch her cheek.

“You…” Lena swallowed hard, slowly stepping out of her shoes. “I’ve never seen you like this before.”

Kara frowned, tilting her head in confusion. “What are you talking about?”

Lena’s mouth was dry. “Your hair is down. And you aren’t wearing your glasses.”

Kara brought her hand up to her face again to feel for her glasses as if she wasn’t aware she hadn’t been wearing them. Her face suddenly got a pink tinge to it and she avoided eye contact with Lena. “Oh, I’m sorry.” She laughed awkwardly. “I didn’t even...I’ll go put them on.” She turned to go back to the bathroom but Lena’s voice stopped her.

“No, Kara, wait.” Lena stepped forward as she spoke. “You don’t have to do that.”

Kara paused, turning to look back at her. “Lena, it’s okay. It’s no problem, I’ll just go put them on.”

“Kara.” Lena said firmly, walking across Kara’s living room towards the other woman. “Don’t put them on.”

“But isn’t it weird for you to-”

Lena finally reached Kara and she shook her head, signaling for the other woman to stop talking. “Kara,” She whispered, reaching out to run her fingers through a strand of Kara’s still damp hair. “You look so beautiful.”

A deep red blush blossomed on Kara’s cheeks as she ducked her head, grinning at the floor.

“I mean you always look beautiful.” Lena was still staring at Kara in awe. “As Kara Danvers and as Supergirl, but now, Kara Zor-El…”

Kara’s head snapped up to look at Lena at the mention of her Kryptonian name.

“I don’t think I’ve ever seen you look more beautiful.”

Kara’s heart lurched at Lena’s words, feeling the threat of tears prick at her eyes. She wanted to kiss Lena so badly, so badly that it ached, but she had just gotten her best friend back and she wasn’t about to risk losing her again, not when things were so good. So instead, she just kept looking at Lena and let out a little laugh, shaking her head. “Well I think,” She stepped back out of Lena’s personal space, not being able to handle the way Lena was looking at her. “That you are being far too kind to me.”

Lena smiled gently at her and leaned in, reaching out to cup Kara’s elbow. Kara’s breathing slowed to a crawl as Lena leaned forward and pressed her lips to Kara’s cheek, letting them lightly brush over her skin and then down to the corner of her mouth. Kara tried not to shudder as the feeling of Lena’s lips on her skin set her nerves alight. Lena’s hand trailed down Kara’s arm leaving a trail of goosebumps in its wake. Her hand eventually found Kara’s, taking it in her own and tangling their fingers together. “No,” She shook her head, her gentle smile still causing Kara’s heart to ache. “Never quite kind enough, I think.”

 

**

Lena had fallen asleep about halfway through the movie. Kara didn’t even need to look at her to know that she was asleep; the gentle snoring and steady heartbeat were more than enough to clue her into that fact, but that didn’t mean she was capable of stopping herself from doing so. Despite the fact that they were best friends, Kara rarely ever got to see this side of Lena; her long hair was slightly mussed, her face lacking any trace of make-up, and instead of her usual dress clothing she was wearing a gray, oversized MIT sweatshirt as she lay against the arm of the couch opposite of Kara. Kara thought she was the most beautiful thing she had ever seen.

She longed to reach out to stroke Lena’s hair, to press a kiss to her forehead, but she held herself back for fear of disturbing her sleep. The conversation she had with Lena earlier kept replaying in her head. The way Lena had looked at her when she saw her without her glasses in Kara’s clothing. The gentle way Lena had said her name, her real name, like it was something to be treasured. The way Lena had kissed her cheek, letting it linger at the side of her mouth just a little bit too long…

Kara shook those thoughts from her head and focused her attention back onto the movie. She really needed to get a grip on herself. Lena was her best friend, and nothing more. To put a different name to it would be ridiculous, especially since their friendship had just started up again. There was no need to risk it all.
Eventually the credits to the movie started rolling and Kara once again turned her attention to Lena, who was still fast asleep. After several moments of silent deliberation, Kara stood up and carefully removed the blanket from atop Lena. As gently as she could, she leaned down and hooked one of her arms under Lena’s legs, the other going around her back as she scooped up Lena’s sleeping form.

Lena didn’t stir from her sleep until she was being lowered into Kara’s bed. Her green eyes slowly blinked open, trying to see in the dim light of Kara’s loft. “What’s going on?” She started to sit up, confused.

“Shh, hey, it’s okay.” Kara sat on the edge of her bed, placing a hand on Lena’s shoulder and gently pushing her back down onto the bed. “You’re still with me. You just fell asleep, that’s all.”

At the sound of Kara’s voice, Lena immediately relaxed, allowing herself to be pushed back down. “What time is it?” Her voice was husky, laced with sleep.

Kara glanced at the clock beside her bed, the LED numbers reading 12:14. “Just a little after midnight. You can stay here tonight unless you want me to take you home.”

Lena shook her head, eyes drifting shut. “No, I’ll stay.”

“Okay.” This time Kara didn’t stop herself from reaching out to brush some of Lena’s hair out of her face. “Have a good night. Just let me know if you need anything, okay?” She pushed herself off her bed and started back out towards the living room when Lena’s voice stopped her.

“Where are you going?”

Kara turned back around to see Lena propped up on an elbow, looking at her with a confused expression on her face. Kara awkwardly pointed to the couch behind her. “I’m just gonna go sleep on the couch.”

A confused smile broke out onto Lena’s face. “Kara, don’t be ridiculous. Your bed is big enough for the both of us.” She shifted to one side of the bed, making room for Kara as if to prove her point.

“Uh,” Kara was at a loss for words. “I can just…”

“Darling.” Lena said softly, her voice causing Kara to go weak in the knees. Lena tilted her head, holding out her hand to Kara. “Darling, come to bed.”

The ache in Kara’s chest came back and she found herself walking towards the bed and Lena’s outstretched hand before she even realized what she was doing. Lena smiled at her as she crawled into the open side of the bed and laid down on her side, pulling the covers over them both. Lena then turned so her back was facing Kara and wriggled backwards, closer to Kara. Without even thinking, Kara slid an arm around Lena’s stomach and pulled their bodies together, Lena’s back now pressed directly against Kara’s front. She braced herself, waiting for Lena to pull away, but she was instead greeted with a quiet hum of pleasure and a whispered good night.

Kara ducked her head, pressing her forehead against Lena’s shoulder, closing her eyes as she felt a grin erupt on to her face. She waited until Lena’s heart rate steadied once more, a sure sign that she had fallen back asleep, before lifting her head and pressing a kiss to the same shoulder. She sighed happily to herself as she closed her eyes and rested her head against the pillow, the sound of Lena’s heartbeat lulling her to sleep.

Chapter Text

Lena’s eyes fluttered open in the dark, unsure of why she was awake. It was still dark outside, the sky an inky black with the sunrise nowhere in sight. She could hear the nightlife outside of Kara’s apartment, people shouting and horns honking, but above all of that, she heard a different noise; the sound of someone softly crying.

Lena rolled over in bed, eyes straining to see better in the dark. Kara was sitting up in bed, knees drawn up to her chest as she sobbed quietly into her hand. Lena froze for only a second before she slowly sat up, hesitantly reaching out to Kara as if she were afraid of spooking her. “Kara,” she said gently, her hand hovering uncertainly over Kara’s shoulder. “Kara, what’s wrong?”

Kara jumped slightly, as if she had been unaware that Lena was awake. She quickly wiped at her eyes with her sleeve, and sniffled loudly. “Nothing.” Her voice was thick as if she were trying to hold back more tears. “It’s nothing, I’m fine.”

Lena frowned, finally resting her hand on Kara’s shoulder. “Sweetie,” she whispered softly. “What is it?”

Kara choked back another sob and she shut her eyes, shaking her head wildly. “It’s nothing.” She repeated. “I just had a bad dream, that’s all.” But even as she said this, tears started to roll down her cheeks once again.

“A nightmare?” Lena asked. Once Kara nodded in confirmation, Lena moved her hand from Kara’s shoulder to her back and began to slowly rub circles. “Do you want to talk about it?”

Kara remained silent for a long time, Lena allowing her time to recompose herself as she continued to comfortingly stroke the other woman’s back. Finally after several minutes, Kara took a long, shaky breath, and sat up straight, crossing her legs on the bed beneath her. “It was about Crisis.”

Lena’s hand stilled on Kara’s back for a split second before resuming its movement. “Oh…” She wasn’t sure what to say. She knew very little about what had happened during Crisis and even less about what Kara had been through, but she still cursed herself for not realizing that Kara would still be affected by it in some way.

“I...I never told Alex this part, but,” Kara took another shaky breath before continuing. “After the anti-matter wave destroyed the multiverse, myself and the other paragons were teleported to this place called the Vanishing Point. It’s apparently outside of time and space or something like that, I don’t really understand it entirely. It was supposed to be a safe place for us, somewhere the anti-matter wave couldn’t get to us, somewhere the Anti-Monitor couldn’t find us. But we were there for so long,” Kara’s voice cracked. “With no way out, no way to escape and help anyone. We were trapped and powerless and even though it was supposed to be a safe place, it eventually started to feel more like a prison.”

Lena’s heart ached at Kara’s words and she could feel herself tearing up alongside Kara but she blinked them away, determined to stay strong for her. “Did you dream you were back there?” She asked, making sure to keep her voice soft.

Kara nodded, sniffling loudly once again. “Except I was alone this time. No one else was there and no matter how loud I screamed or how fast I flew or how hard I punched, no one could hear me and I couldn’t get out. I was trapped there forever, alone.” She brought both her hands up to her face and began to cry into them once again.

“Hey, come here.” Lena whispered as she shifted herself closer to Kara, wrapping her arms around her and pulling her close to her. “It’s okay. You’re not out there, you’re safe here in your bedroom. And you’re not alone, I’m right here, okay? I’m right here and I promise I’m not going anywhere.” She reached up and cupped Kara’s cheek, wiping away the tears and gently forcing her to look at her. “You’re not alone. I’ve got you.” She nodded as she spoke, hoping to reinforce the words in Kara’s head. “Okay?”

Kara gave Lena a small smile through her tears and nodded back. “Okay.” She whispered.

Lena wanted so badly to take away Kara’s pain and fear, knowing that she would bear it herself in an instant if she knew that Kara wouldn’t ever have to feel this way again. But since that was impossible, she simply kissed Kara’s temple and asked, “Do you need anything? I can get you some water, we could turn on a light and stay awake for a little bit? Whatever you want.”

“Can you just hold me?” The words left Kara’s mouth almost instantly, surprising both Lena and herself. A look of embarrassment instantly took over her face, and she looked away from Lena. “I mean that’s...you don’t have to do that. Just you offering support is enough.”

“Kara, don’t be ridiculous.” Lena said for the second time that night. “Of course I’ll hold you.” She shifted backwards slightly in the bed, resting her back against the headboard and held her arms open for Kara to come to.

For a split second Lena thought Kara was going to protest again, but instead she simply crawled over to Lena and hesitantly went between her arms. Kara started to awkwardly lay down against Lena’s side, but she felt Lena’s hands at her waist urging her closer and she allowed herself to be maneuvered until she was sitting directly in Lena’s lap. Kara’s breathing slowed to a crawl as she cautiously rested herself against Lena’s body, putting her head on her shoulder and pressing her face into the other woman’s neck. The scent of Lena’s skin and the sound of her heartbeat eventually began to ease Kara’s anxiety from her nightmare.

“You know, the world out there, they only see you as Supergirl.” Lena’s voice cut through the quiet of the night. “That’s all they know you as. They see you as this pillar of unending strength, someone who is going to protect them when they need it the most. And that’s what is so amazing about you, because that's exactly what you do. You protect all those innocent people out there who don’t even know you, just the Super side of you.” She paused for a moment, but Kara kept silent because she knew Lena wasn’t quite finished.

“And I may know you as Supergirl now too, but before that I only knew you as Kara Danvers. And Kara Danvers is brave and strong, and beautiful, just like Supergirl is. But Kara, you don’t need to be Supergirl all the time with me. You don’t need to be strong all the time with me, it’s okay to be sad and scared sometimes.” She tightened her embrace, pulling Kara slightly closer to her. “It’s okay to sometimes be the one who needs protecting.”

Kara didn’t respond right away and for a few moments Lena was afraid she had fallen asleep, but then eventually she felt the soft rumble of words against her neck as Kara repeated back to her what she had said so long ago. “I may be Supergirl, but Lena Luthor, you are my hero.”

**

Alex slid the key into the lock of Kara’s apartment, taking great care to not drop the giant box of donuts she was currently holding. As the door swung open with a loud creak, two things caught her attention; 1) two empty wine glasses were sitting on Kara’s coffee table along with several empty chinese takeout boxes, and 2) Lena’s coat was hanging up on the coat rack with her shoes still inside the front door.

Alex felt a smile unravel on her face. Had Lena spent the night? She almost slunk right back out the door to leave Kara and her girlfriend in peace, but curiosity got the better of her. She tiptoed forward, quietly shutting the door behind her. She set the box of donuts down on the counter and leaned forward to peer around the divider Kara had set up to block her bed from the living room.

Lena had indeed spent the night; she was sound asleep, propped up against the headboard of Kara’s bed in a position that made Alex’s neck hurt just from looking at it. Kara, on the other hand, had more of her body on top of Lena than she did the actual mattress. Her head was tucked under Lena’s chin, face obscured by a long wave of blonde hair, her arms wrapped tightly around Lena’s middle.

Alex found herself smiling again at the sight of the two of them wrapped around each other. They reminded her so much of when her and Kelly had first started dating, finding any excuse to be near each other, sleeping practically on top of one another. She shook her head and crossed her arms over her chest.

“Kara.” Her voice was barely above a whisper, not wanting to wake Lena, knowing her sister would hear her regardless. Sure enough, Kara’s head slowly lifted off of Lena’s chest and she sleepily turned to look at Alex.

“Alex?” She frowned, sleep still muddling her brain for a few seconds. Then her eyes flew wide opened and her face immediately turned a light shade of pink. “Alex!” She said a little louder, before turning to look at Lena, afraid she had woken her.

“Sleep well?” Alex teased, unable to hide the smile still on her face.

Kara’s face went from pink to red as she disentangled herself from Lena, careful not to wake her. “What are you doing here?” She whispered loudly at her sister, quickly making her way out to the kitchen where Alex was standing, bare feet padding against the hardwood floor.

Alex pointed to the box of donuts, raising an eyebrow. “Do you not remember? We made plans the other night to have breakfast together today.”

A look of guilt immediately crossed Kara’s face. “Oh my god, I’m so sorry, I completely forgot!” She waved her hands around helplessly as she looked around the apartment. “Lena came over last night for a movie night and she fell asleep and I didn’t want to make her go all the way home so I let her spend the night and I-”

“Kara!” Alex interrupted her with a laugh. “Breathe! It’s okay, I promise. I don’t care that she’s here. I know that she’s important to you, so that makes her important to me.”

Kara’s hands dropped back down to her sides and her shoulders drooped with relief. “Sorry, I don’t know why I went all panicky there.” She laughed nervously.

Alex shrugged as she walked back towards the counter, opening the box of donuts. Kara was at the counter in an instant, with a donut in each hand before Alex even got the chance to reach for one. Kara glanced back at Lena still sleeping in her bed before turning back around and focusing her attention at her donut.

Alex waited until Kara took a huge first bite before asking, “So you’ve really got it bad for her, huh?”

Kara’s face turned red once again, coughing loudly as she tried not to choke on her donut. “Alex!” She managed to sputter between coughs.

“What?” Alex shrugged innocently. “It’s a valid question!”

Kara simply glared at her sister, but she knew by the way Alex was looking at her that she wouldn’t be able to lie herself out of this one. Another quick glance over her shoulder told her that Lena was still asleep and she turned back to face Alex with a sigh. “Yes.” She admitted. “I have it bad for Lena. Happy now?”

Alex simply smiled at her. “Why didn’t you tell me?” She asked. “This is the kind of thing we tell each other!” She motioned back and forth between them, donut still in hand.

Kara set one of her donuts down and began to nervously pick at the other. “Honestly, I didn’t even realize it myself until...well, until after Crisis.”

“Ah.” Alex nodded in understanding. “That would do it.” There was a moment of silence. “But even after that? It’s been almost a month now since Crisis ended.”

Kara looked guilty again. “I know, I’m sorry. We usually talk about everything like this, but...it was different this time.”

“How so?” Alex was genuinely curious. She knew Kara had to have her reasons for not telling her sooner about her relationship with Lena, but part of her felt slightly upset about the fact that she had been left in the dark. She might’ve been okay with it if Kara had at least told her ahead of time instead of simply telling her along with everyone else in the bar, especially with some people that Kara barely knew.

“It’s…” Kara looked distressed. “Alex, it’s Lena.” Her voice lowered into a whisper. “We’ve been through so much shit lately, I just...needed some time to make sure that everything was okay and that it was going to stay okay before I admitted to anything.”

Alex nodded. “Okay. That’s fair, I get that. You were afraid of coming out with it and then having it backfire on you.”

Kara didn’t say anything, just stared at her donut and nodded.

“Okay.” Alex said again. “And everything is okay now? It’s going to stay okay?”

A smile crept over Kara’s face as she continued to stare at her donut. “Yeah…” She nodded, finally looking up at Alex. “Yeah, it’s okay now. We’re okay.” Her head nodded in Lena’s direction.

“Good.” Alex said softly. Her hand crept across the table to grab Kara’s who frowned in confusion at her. “Do you love her?”

Kara inhaled sharply, her whole body stiffening. “That...that’s um...I don’t...She…” Kara stumbled over word after word, trying to process Alex’s question. Did she love Lena? Yes, absolutely. But she knew that wasn’t what Alex was asking. Was she in love with Lena? She thought back to the way she felt whenever Lena kissed her cheek. To the way that Lena simply holding her had assuaged her anxieties over her nightmare. To the way her heart clenched and skipped a beat whenever Lena smiled at her. To the way she felt when she knew Lena had died during Crisis and the horrifying thought that she might never see her again.

“Fuck.”

She hadn’t even realized she had spoken the word aloud until Alex laughed and withdrew her hand. “I’ll take that as a yes.” Her older sister smirked at her. “Does she know?

“No!” Kara immediately shouted, her eyes going wide, slamming a hand over her mouth in horror. Behind the divider, Lena stirred in bed but she continued to sleep. “No!” Kara repeated, her voice a whisper this time. “She doesn’t know Alex, it’s...not the right time for that, it is way not the right time for that, I mean we only just-” She cut herself off, clearing her throat. “No. She does not know that.”

Alex couldn’t help but to grin at her sister. She hadn’t seen her act this way over anyone, not over James and certainly not over Mon-El. Whatever she had with Lena right now, it seemed to surpass any past relationship she had had. “Okay,” she smiled, ignoring the way Kara was glowering at her, and opting to keep her observation to herself for now. “Okay.”

Chapter Text

“And you’re sure you want to spend your birthday evening...here?” Nia gestured to the pulsing nightclub in front of them.

“Yes!” Kara said excitedly, clapping her hands together for effect. She glanced around at the women surrounding her, all giving her dubious glances. “Oh come on guys!” She insisted, looking around desperately. “I know this isn’t our usual kind of hangout, but I’ve never been to a place like this before and I want to give it a try!”

“Yeah, but Kara…” Alex spoke up from where she was standing next to Kelly, hand in hand. “This is very, and I do mean very,” she stressed the word. “Not you.”

“That’s the point!” Kara insisted. “I lived through the literal end of the world, every world! You can’t blame me for wanting to branch out and try new things, can you?” Her eyes darted around, finally landing on Lena. “Can you?”

Lena couldn’t help but to chuckle, shaking her head and walking forward. She took Kara’s hand in her own and smiled adoringly up at her. “No, of course not darling.” She raised an eyebrow and looked around at everyone else, daring them to object. “Isn’t that right?”

Her eyes briefly met Alex’s who looked at her with an amused grin, a knowing glint in her eye. “Right, Lena.” She smirked then, walking forward still holding Kelly’s hand. “Whatever you say.”

“I still don’t understand why we just can’t go to Al’s.” Nia protested. “I mean, you can’t even get drunk here!”

Kara shrugged nonchalantly, very much aware of the fact that Lena was still holding her hand. “We go to Al’s all the time! I want to try something different.”

“Nia, c’mon! First round on me!” Alex motioned to Nia who eventually gave in and followed her and Kelly into the nightclub.

Kara and Lena followed close behind. The moment Kara stepped into the main area of the club, her senses were overloaded. The air was thick with the scent of sweat and alcohol, the music pulsing so loudly she could feel it in her chest. The last time she had been in a club like this was when she had been exposed to red kryptonite, and her memories from that experience were still a little fuzzy to her.

“Do you dance, Kara?” Lena’s voice cut through the loud music and shouting people. “I’ve never seen you in an environment like this, so it’s one of the few things I don’t actually know about you.”

Kara laughed awkwardly, reaching a hand up to adjust her glasses. “Not well.” She admitted.

Lena laughed and to Kara’s horror began to drag her out onto the dance floor. “Don’t worry, neither do I.”

**

“Yesss!” Alex crowed, swaying on her feet as she slammed her empty beer glass onto the table in front of her. “You stood no chance against me, Nia Nal!”

Nia grinned back at Alex, her words slurring a little as she spoke. “Hey as long as you’re paying, I’ll lose as many chugging contests as you like.”

As Alex and Nia began to playfully banter, Kara felt rather than saw Lena come up behind her. “Hey.” Lena’s voice was husky, a sure sign she had been drinking.

Kara swiveled in her seat, smiling as her eyes fell onto Lena. “Hi.”

“Come with me.” Lena held out her hand to Kara. “I have a birthday surprise for you.”

Kara frowned. “Here?”

Lena shook her head. “No, not here.” She seemed to tire of waiting for Kara because she reached down and took her by the hand, pulling her to her feet. “This way.”

Kara allowed herself to be dragged away from Alex, Kelly, and Nia, who all seemed too preoccupied to notice she was leaving. Lena led her through the crowded dance floor, further and further away from their table until they emerged on the other side. Still, Lena continued walking until they reached a dark corner where a couple of stray chairs had been piled into a corner. Lena motioned to one of the chairs. “Sit.”

Kara looked at Lena in confusion, not quite sure what was happening, but she sat down in the chair anyway. The moment she did, Lena dropped her hand and before Kara’s brain fully processed what was happening, Lena was on her lap, straddling her.

Kara inhaled sharply, her body immediately tensing. Lena must’ve noticed because she tilted her head ever so slightly. “Is this okay?”

“What are you doing?” Kara said slowly. Her hands itched to reach out and grab Lena by the hips but she held herself back, instead gripping the seat of the chair beneath her.

“This is your birthday surprise.” Lena said as if it were obvious. “Is that okay?”

“I…” Every fiber of Kara’s body was screaming at her to say no, this wasn’t okay. This was a line in their friendship that they shouldn’t be crossing, not to mention that Lena was drunk and probably not thinking clearly. But instead she found herself nodding. “Yes.” She whispered. “Yeah, this is okay.”

Lena grinned down at her, hands going to rest on top of Kara’s shoulders as she lifted herself slightly up off of Kara’s lap and began to move her hips back and forth to the music.

Kara’s mind was racing. She wasn’t sure where to look. At Lena’s face? Her hips? Was Kara supposed to be doing something or was she just supposed to remain sitting there? And perhaps most importantly, why in the world was her best friend giving her a lap dance?

“You’re overthinking this.” Lena suddenly purred into Kara’s ear. She had leaned forward, still moving her hips to the music. “Just relax darling.” Her breath ghosted over Kara’s ear causing her to slam her eyes shut and shiver.

Relax? Kara almost laughed at the word. As if she could possibly relax right now. She wanted so badly to enjoy this moment but she knew the minute she allowed herself to do so that she would most likely do something that she would end up regretting. So she kept her eyes shut and just focused on what she was feeling, trying to disconnect it from Lena in her mind. If she didn’t associate what was happening right now with Lena, then there was a possibility she could enjoy this moment without overthinking it.

She felt Lena settle her whole weight onto her lap, but she didn’t stop her movements. Kara tried to focus on her breathing. Just stay calm, she thought. There’s no need to freak out.

Kara quickly managed to get her breathing to a somewhat normal rate when she suddenly realized that Lena was now the one breathing rapidly, her hips moving faster than the music called for. Kara’s eyes slowly opened, her mouth slightly falling as she took in the woman on her lap and what she was now doing. Lena was no longer simply giving Kara a lap dance. Kara felt Lena’s hands tighten on her shoulders, and her own hands tightened on the seat of the chair beneath her, careful not to break it.

A low moan escaped Lena’s lips, her eyes closed, and Kara’s heart went into overdrive as she fully processed what was happening. Lena had, at some point, started grinding herself against Kara’s thigh, hips slowly moving faster as she desperately tried to get more friction from where she was seated on Kara.

Kara was in awe. Part of her couldn’t believe that this was happening, that Lena was currently getting herself off on Kara’s thigh, but the quiet, delicious noises that Lena was making along with the pressure that was building between Kara’s own legs as she watched Lena, she knew without a doubt that this was happening. The only thing she didn’t know was why. Lena must’ve been drunker than she thought.

She suddenly realized that Lena’s eyes were open and looking at her. Her movements slowed, but didn’t stop as she asked once again “Is this okay?” Her words came out in a breathy moan and Kara just nodded, dumbfounded.

At Kara’s approval, Lena’s eyes fluttered shut again and her hips began to pick up pace, no longer having any sort of rhythm. Kara swallowed hard, and flexed the muscles in her thigh underneath Lena, trying to give Lena something more to work off of.

Lena suddenly let out a short gasp, head falling forward to rest on Kara’s shoulder. “Fuck.” She groaned into Kara’s ear, hip movements becoming erratic as she felt the pressure building between her legs. Kara flexed her thigh once more and Lena’s fingernails dug into Kara’s shoulders as her orgasm finally hit her, body shuddering. “Oh fuck, fuck, fuck.”

Kara brought one hand up to rest on Lena’s back, mostly to steady her as Lena rode out her orgasm. Lena finally stilled on Kara’s lap, but kept her head resting on her shoulder as she tried to catch her breath.

Kara was so turned on, it was almost painful. She was still trying to process what had just happened when she heard a voice call her name out and it was as if she had been splashed with a bucket of cold water. “Shit.” She whispered, suddenly panicked as she heard Alex call her name out again.

Lena lifted her head off of Kara’s shoulder. “What’s wrong?”

Kara’s face burned as she met Lena’s eyes, thankful it was too dark for Lena to notice. “Alex is looking for me.”

Lena’s eyes suddenly widened. “Oh my god...she didn’t…” Lena glanced over her shoulder in a panic of her own. “They didn’t see-”

“No!” Kara quickly reassured her as Lena turned back around. “She didn’t see...anything, she didn’t see anything.”

“Thank god.” Lena laughed nervously, tucking her hair behind her ear. “That would have been mortifying.” She slowly lifted herself up off of Kara’s lap, smoothing her shirt as she stood up. “I’m gonna run to the restroom really quick, okay?”

Kara nodded, slowly rising into a standing position. “Right, okay. I’m just gonna, um. I’ll just tell them we were back out on the dance floor.”

Lena gave Kara a dazzling smile and laughed again. “That’s probably a good idea. Now go find your sister, I’ll meet you back at the table.”

Before Kara had the chance to do or say anything, Lena darted forward and pressed a quick, half kiss to Kara’s mouth before turning and finding her way through the crowd to the bathroom. Kara slowly brought her hand up to her mouth in a daze. The half of her mouth that Lena had kissed was tingling, and combined with the scent of Lena still lingering on her, Kara’s head was spinning. As she turned to make her way towards Alex and the rest of her friends, a single thought wormed its way into her mind and stayed there; she needed to ask Lena what the hell was going on.

**

It had been almost a week since Kara’s birthday at the club and she still hadn’t been able to come up with the courage to ask Lena about what had happened. She hated to admit that she was scared about the idea of approaching Lena with the subject, but she had run out of excuses. It wasn’t something she wanted to bring up over a text message or a phone call, but on the other hand it wasn’t as if she hadn’t seen Lena all week; on the contrary, Lena had spent 3 nights this past week at Kara’s place and they had spent practically all of Sunday together doing nothing. So Kara was forced to face the truth.

She was terrified to bring the subject up to Lena. Terrified that Lena would laugh and say she was overreacting. Tell her that she was reading too much into things, terrified that this casually affectionate side of Lena that she hadn’t seen much of before would slip away if she brought up the subject.

But on the other hand, she was burning to know why Lena was acting the way she was. She knew she herself was acting strangely; she had tried to bring up the subject several times only to quickly clam up and begin talking about something else entirely. Lena had noticed her nervousness on more than one occasion, asking her if something was bothering her. Kara would always put on a fake smile and deny anything being wrong, but she thought Lena was starting to suspect something.

Which was why Kara was currently sitting on her couch, watching Lena, seated at the island, frown at some LCorp documents on the countertop beneath her. “I can feel you staring at me.” Lena sounded amused. “You have heat vision, remember?”

Kara blushed, caught in the act. “Sorry. I’m just...thinking.”

Lena looked up from her papers. “You’ve been doing that a lot lately.” She mused. “Is everything okay?”

Kara swallowed hard, gathering the rest of her resolve before it all faded. “Everything’s fine, I just...have a question. N-not even a question, really, more of a general wondering?” She scrunched up her face, cringing as the words came out of her mouth.

Lena sat up straight, turning her attention away from her work to focus solely on Kara. “What is it?”

Kara internally cursed. She hadn’t really thought this far ahead. She could feel her face getting red as she struggled to find the words and Lena grew increasingly concerned. “Kara, what’s going on?” She asked. “You know you can talk to me about anything, right?”

“You’ve been acting...different lately.” Kara said slowly. “I guess I just want to know why.”

Lena frowned. “I have? I’m sorry, I didn’t even realize. What have I been doing that’s been bothering you so much?”

“It’s not bothering me!” Kara quickly corrected her. “It’s just...confusing me. I don’t really know what to make of it.” She admitted.

“Make of what?” Lena was looking genuinely confused. Kara was baffled, unsure of how Lena didn’t realize just how different she had been acting lately.

“You’ve been overtly...affectionate lately.” Kara was unable to meet Lena’s eyes as she spoke. “With the pet names, the hand-holding, the sleeping over, the cute texts. I don’t mind, I just want to know...why?”

Lena let out a confused laugh. “Because Kara, that is what people do when they are dating.” She said it as if it were obvious.

Kara physically jolted, head snapping up to look at Lena. “When they’re what?!” She squawked.

Lena’s brow furrowed. “When they’re dating.” She repeated slowly, sounding a tad hesitant. “Why do you sound so shocked?”

Kara stared at Lena. “I...you...dat…” A million thoughts were racing through her mind. “Why, why would you think that we are dating?” She finally stammered.

An indescribable look crossed over Lena’s face. “Are you serious?” She let out a short laugh of disbelief. “Because Kara, when we were at the bar after Crisis and you introduced me to the people from Earth-1, you-” Lena’s words suddenly died in her throat, her face going pale. “Oh my God.”

“Lena?” Kara asked, not sure what was happening.

“Oh my god.” Lena repeated. She looked at Kara, eyes wide in horror. “You...I’m such a fool, I cannot believe this. I cannot believe I actually thought that that was what you had meant!” She stood up abruptly, knocking the stool back as she did so. “I’ve made a complete idiot of myself, again.” She began shoveling all of her papers into a pile, grabbing the nearest folder and shoving them all haphazardly into it, not caring about organization.

“Lena, wait!” Kara stood up and was at the island opposite Lena in an instant. “Believe what, what did I say?” She desperately tried to make eye contact with Lena. “Lena?!”

“You called me your girlfriend!” Lena slammed the folder back down onto the table with a smack. Kara’s heart stopped when she saw the other woman’s eyes filled with tears. “You introduced me as your girlfriend, for fucks sake Kara, what the fuck was I supposed to think?!”

“Oh my god.” It was Kara’s turn to feel like a fool. She tried to say more, but she was stunned into silence. Lena’s actions over the past few weeks all suddenly made sense now. She looked up at Lena, trying desperately to come up with something to say.

“That’s it?” Lena said, an edge of anger in her voice. “I, once again, have humiliated myself when it comes to you, and you have nothing to say?!” She was shaking now, but Kara wasn’t certain if it was from anger or sadness. Her eyes were still blurred with tears. “Unbelievable.” She turned and began to walk out of Kara’s apartment.

“Lena, wait-” Kara started after her.

“No.” Lena spun around, her word driving a knife into Kara’s heart, freezing her in place. “Your silence was enough.” Her voice was shaking now. “Do not follow me. Please.” Her voice cracked on the final word and she all but ran out the door, desperate to make it out of the apartment complex before she burst into tears.

She made it two blocks before she finally broke down, stopping in the middle of the sidewalk, bringing a hand up to her face. A rush of air flew past her, a familiar presence appearing in front of her.

“Lena-”

“Damn it Kara, what did I tell you!” Lena looked up at her through her tears, not catching onto the fact that Kara was shedding her own. “I don’t want to see you right now, can’t you understand that!” She was on the verge of shouting. “Why can’t you just leave me alone?!”

“I didn’t know it was an option!” Kara shouted.

Lena blinked, confused. “What? What are you talking about?”

“Dating you!” Kara cried out. “I didn’t know it was an option.” Her voice was softer this time. Her hands itched to reach out and take Lena’s hands but she knew that would be crossing the line right now. “I didn’t know...I didn’t think. I was just so happy to have you back in my life as my best friend, I didn’t want to cross a line, to make you uncomfortable, to lose you again. But now I think I did anyway.”

“What are you saying?” Lena said quietly.

“I’m saying,” Kara took a step closer. “If I had known that dating you, that being with you, being your girlfriend-if I had known that was an option, I would’ve taken it. Oh Lena I would’ve taken that option in a heartbeat.” She braved reaching out to grab Lena’s hands, relieved when she didn’t pull away. “On every earth, in every universe, I would always take that option, always choose to be with you, because I love you, Lena.” Tears started to fall freely down Kara’s face. “I’ve always loved you, I was just too stupid to know it and then I was too stupid to do anything about it, but I’m done being stupid, so I’m telling you now.”

Kara’s voice had dropped down to a whisper. Lena was holding onto her hands like they were her lifeline, unable to speak or say anything. “I’m in love with you, Lena Luthor. And there’s nothing in any universe that I want more than to be with you. For real this time. If it’s still an option.” Kara’s heart was pounding in her chest. She couldn’t read the expression on Lena’s face, and it worried her more than anything. She feared her admission of her feelings had come too late.

After several moments of excruciating silence from Lena, the other woman took a shaky breath, once again beginning to cry. Kara’s heart sank. But then Lena gave Kara a small smile, squeezing both of her hands as hard as she could without hurting herself. “It’s still an option.” She whispered.

Kara let out a sob of relief as she pulled Lena closer to her, their lips crashing together. Lena’s lips tasted of salty tears and lipstick and she was still crying, but Kara didn’t care. The kiss was messy, Lena frantically grabbing at Kara’s hips and waist, trying to pull her closer, Kara taking great care to hold back her strength so she didn’t hurt Lena. Lena’s lips were soft, moving insistently against Kara’s whose entire body was buzzing. Lena nipped gently at Kara’s lower lip, causing her to shudder before Lena slowly pulled away, lipstick smudged, and slightly out of breath.

“I love you.” Kara whispered again, unable to help herself. “And you don’t have to say it back if you don’t feel the same way-” She was cut off by Lena pressing another hard kiss to her mouth, as if to say “shut up”.

When Lena pulled away, eyes still shining with tears, but with a genuine smile on her face, she shook her head and cupped Kara’s cheek with her hand. “Oh Kara Zor-El, how could you not realize that I’m in love with you too?”

Chapter Text

“So let me get this straight.” Alex squinted at Kara and Lena in confusion. “You guys weren’t actually dating before?”

“No.” Kara answered.

“Even though everyone, and I mean literally everyone,” Alex stressed the word “thought you two were?”

Kara blushed slightly, ducking her head, a sight that Lena thought was painfully adorable. “That’s right.”

“But you are now?” Alex turned to gaze at Lena.

“Yes!” Kara beamed excitedly before quickly turning to Lena. “I mean...we are actually dating now, right?”

Lena rolled her eyes affectionately. “Yes dear, we are actually dating.”

Alex stared back and forth between the two women trying to process everything before frowning and turning to face Kara. “So wait, if you guys weren’t together after Crisis, why did you introduce Lena as your girlfriend?”

Kara blushed even harder, face turning a deep red. “It’s...I...people say that in a platonic sense, you know!” She tried to defend herself.

Alex gaped at her sister. “Yeah, when you’re like, fifty-six, not twenty-six!”

“Thank you!” Lena threw her hands up into the air. “That’s what I said to her as well!”

“Oh Kara,” Alex shook her head, grinning at her sister, trying not to laugh. “How on earth did you miss the fact that Lena was being your girlfriend for three weeks? I mean you guys spent how many nights together?” She squinted, turning to face Lena. “Help me out here.”

Lena crossed her arms in bemusement. “I lost track after four.”

“Christ.” Alex rolled her eyes.

Kara, to her credit, was still blushing horribly. “Babe, you’re not helping.”

“Oh and the pet names!” Alex jumped to the next thing. “I swear to god, every other word out of Lena’s mouth was ‘darling’ this and ‘darling’ that. Did that not make you think something was up?”

It was Lena’s turn to frown. “It wasn’t every other word.”

“You did kind of say it alot.” Kara admitted, looking over at Lena.

Lena arched an eyebrow at Kara. “You realize saying that just makes it look worse on you for not noticing, right?”

Kara gaped at Lena for a second before turning back to Alex. “It wasn’t every other word.” She said quickly, laughing nervously.

Alex laughed, shaking her head in disbelief. “Whatever, as long as you two are happy.”

Kara’s face broke out into a smile as she turned to look at Lena, reaching out to take her hand. Lena quickly took Kara’s hand into her own and gave it a squeeze, smiling back as her heart stuttered in her chest. “We are.” Kara said, not looking at Alex.

Lena didn’t say anything, just nodded in agreement as she brought their entwined hands up to her lips to gently kiss Kara’s knuckles, who blushed furiously.

“Gross.” Alex rolled her eyes at the action, though her tone was still teasing. “Anyway, I’m gonna head out. I need to call Kelly.”

“Oh.” Kara frowned at her sister. “Is everything okay?”

“Yeah,” Alex nodded as she headed for the door. “I just have this weird urge to make sure that we’re actually dating and I’m not just assuming that we are. Normal shit, you know?”

Alex didn’t receive an answer as she ducked out of Kara’s apartment laughing, narrowly dodging the throw pillow Kara threw in her direction.