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The Pros and Cons of Dating a Superhero

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Pros of being mistaken for the girlfriend of a superhero: being recognized in coffeeshops, camera crews taking great photos of her profile, and getting fifty new Instagram followers every time a tabloid put her on the front page. There are a few unexpected perks to becoming the subject of gossip. But that was where the positives ended. Cons of being mistaken for the girlfriend of a superhero: getting milkshakes thrown at her from said superhero’s bitter fans, being disqualified from making first picks in the fantasy league, and spending several weekends at the bar getting turned down by guys who thought she was taken. But the worst had to be spending her Tuesday morning tied to a support column while a cowled weirdo planned to take out the city’s power grid.

 

“And once I’ve destroyed the grid, my machine will be the only source of energy in the city! I’ll make millions and there is nothing you can do to stop me,” Current Master monologued. He was one of the strangest of the new villains to crop up since the end of cold season, immediately obsessed with Charm City’s heroes and in constant need of validation. He paced around Emily, waving his hands with each word. He turned to her expectantly as he finished. He looked nervous.

“It’s…good,” Emily started, wincing. She tutted as Current Master groaned, rushing to defend herself. “No, it is. It’s fine. It just needs a little workshopping.”

“This is my big debut! Everything has to be perfect for when Green Fury arrives. How else am I supposed to become her nemesis?” Current Master whined, leaning against the ceiling to floor windows dramatically. He did everything dramatically, even his outfit looked like it was stolen from a high school production of Phantom. It was incredibly annoying, and just a little pitiable.

Emily shook her head, putting the pep in her voice that Jackie said made her sound like a first-grade teacher. She didn’t like the constant kidnapping that came with her name and Fury’s being so solidly linked in the papers, but she did feel bad for all the upstarts who acted so nervous every time they tried to use her against the superhero. Not so bad that she didn’t put the call in to be rescued right away, but still a little bad.  “No one becomes a nemesis overnight. Do you think the Joker was on Batman’s radar from the first bomb he set off? It took at least a few times of dangling the Commissioner over a vat of acid before that hero-villain relationship really took off.”

Current Master let out a tiny gasp, hand held delicately to his chest. “Do you really think I could be the Fury’s Joker?”

“Anything’s possible. You just need to fix your big speech.” Emily looked up from the masked villain and to her right, catching sight of something distinctly green and quick flying toward the window. She smiled, relaxing back against the beam. “Really give it some punch.”

On cue, Fury came bursting through the window, tackling Current Master to the opposite wall. Glass sprayed inward, narrowly missing Emily by a scant foot or so. Fury had Current Master pinned by his shoulder, superior strength proving more than the man could struggle against.

“Green Fury,” Current Master squeaked out, prompting Emily to twist around to see better. “I have EMP devices all over the city and I-”

Fury didn’t give him a chance to continue, bringing up a hand. From her angle all Emily saw was the glow of green light and all she heard was a choked off noise from Current Master. It was over before it began. That came as no surprise; the man had professed to not having powers not long after he snatched Emily off the street and few ordinary folk stood any chance against a super.

There was the sound of creaking and then of footsteps before Fury walked into Emily’s sight. Fury smiled, hands on her hips as she surveyed the rope keeping Emily tied to the post. “Got yourself into it again, huh Emily?”

“Second time this month,” Emily answered, a little groan of frustration leaking into her tone. She pulled against her bindings, not hard but enough to bring tension to them. “It’s not as bad as the last time.”

“The mole guys?” Fury came closer and felt around the ropes, looking for the knot.

“Yeah. Turns out I’m allergic to mole-people hair! I turned very blotchy.”

“Well, no blotchy skin now.” Fury encircled her arms around Emily, pulling at the rope. It came away with a snap. “In fact, you look perfect.”

Emily stumbled forward; the ropes had been tight enough to make her limbs a little numb. She crashed into Fury, barely able to stop herself from a face plant into the woman’s chest. “Whoops. But thank you. For saving me and the super compliment. I hate to cut this short but I’m pretty sure I’m late for a staff meeting.”

Fury laughed, adjusting her hold to wrap an arm around Emily’s waist. “Let me save you the stairs and fly you back to the ground.”

Emily wasn’t given the chance to respond. One moment she was staring up at Fury and the next it was all a blur of blue skies. When they landed, she realized she was chest to chest with Fury, hypersensitive of the other woman’s breathing. Emily watched Fury’s collar bone, trying to catch her own breath. She was exhilarated, barely able to think. She told herself it was from the flight. Vaguely, she heard the click of camera shutters and the chatter of reporters above the rush in her ears.  She stumbled when Fury started to let her go, prompting the other woman to grab her tight again.

“Or I could fly you back to the office. Easily done.” Fury’s hands made a slow trail from Emily’s waist to her biceps. “Don’t want you falling on anyone else, right?”

“Right,” Emily found herself saying. The touch was distracting. She shook her head a second later. “No, I mean. I’m great! It’s just the flying. Got my knees a little weak, but I’m fine. Really.”

Emily took a deliberate step back. Her legs remained steady and she flashed Fury a smile. Another step and Fury let her go. Emily dipped into mock curtsey to show she had her balance back.

“Right. Stay out of trouble, okay?” Fury nodded to the press gathering around and took off with a wave.

The reporters hounded Emily for an interview, but she’d learned to brush them off by then. She slipped away down the street. She knew that wouldn’t bother enough to follow, not while Current Master was still inside the building to be interviewed. By the time Emily turned the corner she could already hear the chatter change from her rescue to Fury’s dramatic thwarting of a new villain, heralded by the thump of Fury bringing Current Master to ground level.

 

 

 

It took little time for Emily to make it to the office. She stopped at a coffee shop before, but she figured after a few hours tied up that she totally deserved an extra shot of raspberry syrup in her frappe. She was still a little surprised to see the news was already running a story about Current Master on the lobby TV. But she wasn’t even a bit shocked to see the story had switched to her and Fury by the time she made it to her floor.

The byline read: Fury and Lady Friend Get Flirty For The Cameras. Emily rolled her eyes and grabbed her files from her desk. She shot an annoyed look at Ron, who met her gaze from where he was hunched over Teddy’s computer.

“The media always make such a big deal out of it,” she complained, shuffling her papers. She added another eyeroll for good measure.

“Hmm? About what?” Ron asked, distracted. He and Teddy both smiled at something on the desktop.

“About me and Fury of course! Making such a big deal over nothing. She just saved me while doing her heroic duty to the city.”

“Well, it’s a slow news day. Keeping up with Fury’s love life is just about all there is to talk about until there's another good crisis in Metropolis.” Ron shrugged and then pointed at something on the screen.

“Yeah. There hasn’t been a good metahuman take over in weeks. Even President Luthor is keeping it quiet after his last defeat by Superman,” Teddy added. “You getting all flustered over Fury makes for a good fluff piece to fill out time until the weat-That’s way too big, Teddy.”

“I don’t get flustered,” Emily argued, tossing her hair back. “And what are you two looking at?”

“Tattoo designs.” Teddy smiled, clicking on his keyboard. “I’m thinking that a good one on my bicep might test well with the 20-35 female demographic.”

“And I think he’ll back out of it before he enters a tattoo parlor, but I’m sticking around for the planning process to show what a supportive friend I am.” Ron clapped Teddy on the shoulder before looking back up at Emily. “You do get flustered. It’s right there on film. We all know the camera doesn’t lie about anything other than other than a little extra weight.”

“I did not,” Emily turned to look at the TV mounted on the wall. The footage from earlier played still, showing her and Fury standing close. The Emily on TV smiled when Fury quipped about her falling. There was a certain rosiness to her cheeks, Emily could admit to that, but she knew it was about the flying. “That look is all about the flying. And my new blush from Dior heroine makeup line. It’s Stargirl Sunrise!”

“Oh, that’s fun,” Ron started, “but no. Cameras don’t lie, Emily. They do not lie. Besides, this is old news. You acted the same way when she saved you from those mole-people. Except you were wearing that blush a little thick that day.”

“I was allergic!” Emily stomped her foot, grabbing her papers and walking away in a huff.

 

 

It took over a week before she found herself in peril again. She picked up dinner after a late night at the office and ended up in the back of a van with her baked ziti left splattered on the sidewalk. The low-level henchmen didn’t bother to tie her up properly, only going so far as to put a bag over her head and holding her arms awkwardly. It was simple enough to get the button Fury gave her from her keyring and press it. At least the henchmen didn’t bother to spill their master plans and Fury arrived much quicker than the last time.

“Didn’t I tell you to stay out of trouble?” Fury teased once the bag was pulled from Emily’s head. Around them were the unconscious or tied up bodies of the men, strewn out from the open doors of the van onto the street.

Emily took a deep breath once the bag was away, laughing. “Would you believe I tried?”

“Mm, not too hard.” Fury put Emily’s hair back into shape, smoothing a few locks behind an ear. “What did they want from you this time?”

“Not sure,” Emily started, finding a need to clear her throat. She wasn’t sure why it suddenly felt dry. It must have been the dropped Italian soda coming back to haunt her. “They weren’t in a talking mood. Lucky for them since I’m not the best company when I’m hungry and they made me lose out on a Groupon’s worth of take out.”

“Ouch. Can’t have that. Tell you what, let me drop these losers off at the police station and I’ll show you this Thai place close by.” Fury hoisted one of the guys over her shoulder as she spoke. She shrugged like it wasn’t a big deal to her. “If you want.”

“Sure,” Emily said after a moment, putting a hand on her stomach awkwardly. She wondered if the growling was loud enough for Fury to hear. She couldn’t understand why she felt so self-conscious about it.

“Great,” Fury said. “I haven’t had time to eat either. So.”

They stood there smiling at each other for a few moments, though it was all made awkward by the groaning criminals that still surrounded them. Fury adjusted her fireman’s hold on her chosen underling, making a face before she took off into the air. One by one, Fury picked off the men while Emily idly waited. It didn’t take long before the street was clean, and Fury was back with an arm outstretched.

“Come on, it’s close enough to walk.” Fury lead them both a few streets away to a restaurant tucked between a lawyer’s office and a dry cleaners. The place was tiny, a handful of booths and the counter in the front room. They were immediately shown to the only table by the front window. The food came quick and was surprisingly good.

The conversation was too. It was the first time they had the chance to talk one-on-one in ordinary circumstances. Fury told a dozen stories about the crises she'd helped to handle and countries she’d flown to while chasing down bad guys. She promised to take Emily to see Brazil someday, in an offhanded way that reminded her of Dan offering a weekend getaway. They talked about reality shows and fantasy leagues and the pop songs playing over the restaurant speakers. It was nice, Emily admitted to herself, to just sit and gossip instead of worrying about supervillains or over-invested coworkers.

It was nice, right up until it wasn’t.

“You should have seen it, Emily,” Fury sat back as she finished her story, smile wide on her face. “That lair might have made by a villain, but it was beautiful. Poison Ivy knows how to plant a garden. I’ve never seen flowers grow like that.”

“Like what?” Emily pressed, leaning forward on the table. She pushed her Pad See Ew to the side to make room for her elbows. “What kind of flowers?”

“Oh man. I don’t know all the names but roses for sure. Big ones, in every color you could imagine. Daisies, I think, and orchids. And those one flowers, the ones with the pointy bits and curled up petals? I don’t know what they are.”

“The red ones? Spider lilies! I remember seeing them at the flower shows my dad used to take me to. Those were the days, everything looked so pretty and smelled amazing,” Emily gushed and sighed happily. “He used to take me every spring before I went to college. There was nothing like seeing the rows and rows of blooming tulips and little rosebuds. And the anemone dahlias, those were my favorites. I mean, I’m sure it was nothing like what you’re talking about.”

“Maybe. I wouldn’t know. I’ve never been to a flower show. You sound like you miss it.”

“I do.”

“I’m sure they have some in Charm City,” Fury offered, putting a hand on top of Emily’s on the table. “It shouldn’t be to hard to find one and get tickets. If they do tickets.”

“Sounds like you want to go together,” Emily pointed out as a strange feeling grew in her stomach. She stared down at their hands.

“Yeah. Sounds like fun. You could show me what an anemone dahlia is.” Fury laughed.

“I didn’t think you were that into flowers. Marveling at Ivy’s garden notwithstanding.”

“You’re into it.” Fury said with a shrug. “You talk about your dad a lot. I know this stuff is up your alley. Going with you should make it fun.”

“Just the two of us?” Emily could barely speak under the warmth of Fury’s smile.

“Yeah. Me and you and a lot of pollen.”

Emily withdrew her hand from under Fury’s. Her skin was too tight for her body, the strange feeling in her stomach made her want to run until it burned out of her. It was like she had too much energy for her nerves to contain. She fought against it, stiffening. “Maybe,” Emily said, and it sounded more like she meant never. She didn’t look directly at Fury as she stood to leave. “I’ve got to get home. There’s an early meeting tomorrow.”

“Oh. Okay,” Fury looked confused. “Hey, don’t worry about the check. I’ve got it this time.”

Emily wanted to argue but the ‘this time’ echoed between her ears and she wanted to leave more. “Thanks. Bye, Fury.”

She power-walked home and watched trashy tv until she could breathe again. She spent too much time swiping through a dating app. She made idle chatter with several guys until she started to feel stupid for how she panicked on Fury. Emily let herself linger on the few women in her matched list and pretended it didn’t mean anything.

 

Then the week flew by and Emily was out with a guy she had matched from her swiping spree. He talked about tv programs and office games and his semester abroad in France. He even mentioned that she should go, all the places she should see, and that maybe they could see them together. It was nice. Emily ended the night early, a strange feeling back in her stomach. But it was a bad one, not the exhilaration she got from sitting with Fury.

As nice as the man was, she knew she had a better time with Fury. She tried to tell herself she didn’t understand what that meant.

 

Three days later found Emily yet again playing the hostage, being held on an overpass with a ray gun pressed into her back. Current Master was back at it, irate over his sentencing and swearing vengeance on Fury for taking away his moment of glory. He played volatile for the cameras parked beneath them, threatening to shoot anyone that came too close. She knew she should call Fury. The device was in her pocket and she knew she could get to it easily while Current Master ranted. But she froze and tried to tell herself it was fear that stilled her hands.

“-and when I finally see Fury’s stupid face, I’m going to shoot her. Right in that stupid face!” Current Master howled.  He pulled the gun back for a moment to wave it wildly, letting off a shot into the air that seemed to impress the crowd gathered below.

Emily swore she saw one of the news reporters cheer. She groaned, hand tilted back while she looked up at the sky. “This is so getting livestreamed.”

“That’s the point!” Current Master said, sounding triumphant. He brought the gun back to its place against Emily’s shoulder blade. “I’ll become infamous. The man who slew Green Fury!”

There was a long pause and Emily could feel Current Master stiffen behind her. A quick scan of the skies told her no green fire was incoming, so she looked down to the crowd. She was nearly blinded by the flash of several cameras.  “Are you posing?” Emily asked, incredulous.

“This is my time to shine,” Current Master argued. “If only Fury would hurry up and get here!”

Emily had only a few seconds to feel guilty about that and to feel awkward about feeling so guilty. She didn’t have any time to sort through the why of her guilt before the overpass shook from the arrival of another. Current Master whirled her around and pointed the gun on the newcomer instead.

“Olympian?” Emily and Current Master asked together, voices overlapping. She sounded confused. He sounded terrified.

“I’ve come for the lady,” Olympian said loudly, posing dramatically and smiling for the cameras. He dropped his voice as he walked forward, smile turning into a sly grin. “I saw the stream. Great opportunity for publicity.”

“I didn’t set this up for you! This is my chance to get back at Fury!” Current Master huffed, pulling Emily back against him tighter.

“Ugh. Dude.” Olympian rolled his eyes. “Fury’s getting all the good press lately and she’s not even here. Maybe I want to save the girl once in a while, okay?”

“What? No.” The gun rose to the level of Olympian’s chest. “Go away!”

There was moment where Emily was blinded again by the laser from the ray gun. She shut her eyes against the light, waiting for the smell of burned flesh and sounds of pain. She got the latter. But it was from Current Master, a nasally shout before Emily felt his hands shove her away. Then she felt nothing but air. She opened her eyes to see the sky spinning around her and closed them tight again. Emily opened her mouth to scream.

The noise died in her throat as her quick descent slowed. She was held tight in someone’s arms, saved before she could become a smear on the road below. Emily opened her eyes again slowly, heart pounding in her chest with nervous fear and a strange sense of hope. It wasn’t green that met her gaze, but a wall of solid chest.

“Never fear, dear Emily,” Olympian boasted, voice booming now that he was closer to the cameras. He beamed under the sudden cheer that rose from the crowd, attention drawn to them rather than the woman he saved. “You’re safe with me.”

“What?” That was all Emily could gasp out as she tried to wrap her head around her near death fall. Her stomach still swooped somewhere up in the clouds and she had a hard time getting her thoughts to catch up. Olympian set her on her feet, but her knees were weak, and she nearly collapsed the second she was on the ground. She was quickly snatched back up by Olympian, his arm folding under her knees to hold her like a bride. For a moment Emily imagined they looked like a cover from one of her mother’s old romance novels and it brought fire to her face. The titter of the crowd meant they made the connection too.

“Olympian, it’s the Charm City Daily Report. You seem very cozy with the victim, well known to be a close connection to your ex, Green Fury. Care to comment?”

“What can I say?” Olympian hoisted Emily up higher, wagging his eyebrows for the camera. “Fury’s old ‘flames’ have to stick together. She always did know how to find the prettiest face in the crowd.”

Everyone laughed as Olympian finished the comment with a wink, though Emily couldn’t imagine why. She smacked his chest and started to wiggle, wanting nothing more than to just get back to the office. “Let me down. Please.”

“Of course.” Olympian deposited Emily onto the ground. Her legs held now that she'd had time to adjust, but he kept a grasp on her hand. He kissed the back of it in a smooth motion that had the crowd crowing in delight. “Until trouble finds you again.”

“I don’t want more trouble!” Emily tried to say. Her voice was drowned out by the uproar of the crowd as Olympian took off again, leaving Emily to be pushed aside as camera crews tried to capture his retreat. She rolled her eyes again, using the lack of attention to back away from the crowd and start towards downtown. It was a long way back to work.

 

A far too long walk and a taxi ride later put Emily back in the Wayne building just in time to catch the news running a story about the debacle. Shots of Current Master holding her hostage and Olympian grabbing her out of the air were playing on all the lobby tv sets. By the time she was up on the right floor, she could see the news switched to Olympian’s little exchange with her, already using the encounter as bizarre proof Emily had broken Fury’s heart. Half the office watched it on their computer screens.

Emily sighed, trying to ignore the looks that followed her to her desk. She couldn’t ignore the people following her quite so well. Several co-workers from the floor were suddenly crowding her, all wearing matching unhappy faces. They pushed a young woman at the front closer when Emily tried to back away.

“Did you and Fury, well. You know?” It was Marcy from accounting, her eyes a little too wide behind her thick glasses. She looked upset, like someone had kicked a dog right in front of her.

“I don’t know,” Emily said shortly, looking away from that sad gaze. The looks of the other three behind Marcy weren’t much better. Her chest felt too tight to deal with the onslaught. “What?”

“It’s just- now everyone’s saying you and Olympian are the new thing.” Marcy glanced back to her companions for support. They all nodded along and some glared at Emily like she was the cause of Marcy’s pain. “Did you and Fury break up?”

“We didn’t. Fury and I are friends. That’s it!” Emily felt like screaming when Marcy’s face fell. No one else had a right to be upset about it. There was nothing to even be upset about. They’d always just been friends, nothing more.

David from advertising spoke up next, expression far more dour than Marcy’s. “Why are you out there with her ex? That’s a low thing to do. Especially to someone who’s saved you so many times.”

There was a murmur of agreement from the little gathering and a few whispers from others in the office. All eyes were on them. Even meek Marcy nodded along with David’s outburst.

Emily’s blood boiled in her veins. “You’re blaming me for this. For getting kidnapped by a villain and needing rescue.”

“You’re being blamed for breaking Fury’s heart. It’s all over the gossip blogs. The whole city agrees,” David said, sounding unduly smug.

“All of you need to lay off the internet,” Emily seethed, turning and stomping her way into the lab. She tried to ignore the group’s aborted attempt to follow her and the chatter from the people that watched. She didn’t look up from the floor until she was safely behind the lab doors.

“Not cool. Very not cool. Green Fury is totally a better hero than the Olympian. Major downgrade, Emily.” Wendy said as she rushed up to Emily’s side with arms crossed. She gave Emily the stink eye, stomped her foot once, then tossed her head back. With a snooty noise, Wendy flounced out the door before Emily could respond.

Emily whirled around, holding her arms out wide. She zeroed in on Teddy and Ron, both trying to act too busy assembling a dummy to talk. She didn’t care about their obvious attempt to stay out of it. “Can you believe her? No, actually can you believe everyone in this ridiculous city? I get rescued one measly time by a different hero and suddenly I’m the bad guy! I’m not dating the Olympian. I’m so not into that pretty boy stupid act.”

“We know,” chorused Teddy and Ron.

Emily paused, frowning at the two of them. “You know?”

“It’s very clear from your body language that you were not into his, as my grandmother would say, shenanigans,” Ron said, coming back around the dummy. “The tabloids are just itching for a good story for Charm City.”

“The Gotham Inquirer just published blurry photos of Wonder Woman standing a few feet from Batman and it is raising hell on the forums. The local papers had to get something to compete with that. They can turn your story in a cheating scandal. And those are almost as juicy as a new celebrity couple.” Teddy stayed half hidden, leaning over the dummy’s shoulder to talk.

“There was no cheating!” Emily rolled her eyes, running a hand through her hair.

“Good,” Teddy said, turning serious. “Because, FYI, I would never forgive you if you broke Fury’s heart. Unless you also happened to give me her number after, so I could help comfort her in her time of need.”

“I’m not giving you her numb-” Emily started.

“Teddy!” Ron interrupted. His hand landed on his chest, face appropriately scandalized. “Emily has maintained that they were not an item. And you know better anyway if they were. You can’t date a friend’s ex. I have seen every episode of Sex and the City and that is against the girl code.”

“But I’m not a girl,” Teddy pointed out, jabbing a finger towards an unimpressed Ron.

“You are her friend and it does concern another girl.”

“But-”

“Guys!” Emily raised her voice to get their attention. She crossed her arms over her chest, giving them her best look of disapproval. “There is not a code to break. I was not dating Fury. I’m not-”

Emily paused, voice hitching. She moved her hands to her hips and shifted uncomfortably. She took a deep breath. She lowered her voice again. “I am not into Fury. And just because I didn’t call Fury to save me from the idiot of the week doesn’t mean anything. We are friends. Just friends.”

“Right. If I was just friends with Fury like that…” Teddy trailed off, looking wistfully toward the ceiling.

“You have every right to say that and I will not question you to your face. Maybe on the Charm City gossip lovers Facebook page, but never to your face,” Ron said diplomatically. “But I do got to ask, Emily. Are you sure you are really friends? You didn’t call her. And we all know what you think about hiding your problems from a friend.”

Emily uncrossed her arms then crossed them again. “That is beside the point.” She looked to Teddy for help, but he just shrugged and gestured to Ron. “Oh, why don’t you go back to being too afraid to get a tattoo?”

“I’ll do it eventually!” Teddy pouted, slumping against the dummy.

“Emily,” Ron gasped, shaking his head. “You can’t take your feelings about this Fury mess out on your friends. That’s just not fair."

 Emily struggled to think of a comeback, so she gathered herself up and turned for the door.

“It doesn’t mean anything!” she shouted as she left, getting in the last word but not feeling any better for it.

 

Emily worked late that night, head so stuck on the tabloids that it took her twice as long to get anything done. She gave up when the cleaning staff made an appearance, making the long trek home with her mind still far away. She took the wrong street as a result, adding an extra twenty minutes to her walk.

“Figures,” she muttered under her breath, groaning as she starts to turn around. Her groan was answered with another, a louder one that was followed by the tell-tale sound of flesh hitting flesh. She crept toward the alley the noise came from, hand reaching into her pocket. She stilled as she found Fury’s signalling device there, hesitating as she stared blankly at the entrance to the dark alleyway.

For a moment, she was caught between feelings. Did she want to see Fury with her mood already so low? Emily couldn’t pinpoint why the thought of meeting Fury again seemed so awkward, but she just knew it would be. She pulled her hand away, instead reaching for her purse and her phone. Maybe if she called the cops it would be easier. Do the thing she would have done long before Fury flew into her life.

Her hesitation paid off when the alleyway lit up with a familiar green and the devil herself walked around the wall. Emily froze again as Fury found her gaze and smiled. Emily pointed to where the commotion came from, fumbling with her purse.

“So. That was you?”

“Yeah,” Fury said, dusting off her hands and looking behind her. She held up a wallet after a few quiet moments passed. “Just caught up with a mugger.  Saw it happen on my way home and you know how it is.”

“Yeah,” Emily echoed, shifting her weight back on her heels. “Hard at work then?”

“Well, probably finishing up for the night. Unless someone launches a freeze ray before dawn.” Fury shrugged, and Emily laughed, a strangely forced sound even though there was no joke at hand. “So. How have you been?”

“Good,” Emily lied. Her voice sounded stilted to her own ears.

“Right. And Olympian?” Fury smiled teasingly. “I saw the papers.”

“Oh! We’re not- you know how those tabloids are.”

“I know. But I bet he’s eating it up. This is the kind of publicity he loves.” Fury rolled her eyes, hand falling to her hip. “I’d be willing to bet you another Thai dinner that he tries to find you in the next few days and make another headline. He’s not going to like being one-upped by new WonderBat photos.”

“I can handle him. And it wouldn’t be so bad right?” Emily watched the confusion fall over Fury’s face. Her heart started to pound in her chest, a feeling of wrong washing over her.  The airy attempt to set another date made her stomach tie up in knots. “It’d keep the story off us. No more Fury’s girlfriend! Be great for us both.”

“I mean, it’s just tabloids,” Fury said with eyebrows raised.

“Just tabloids were what you thought was keeping you out of the Justice League. It’ll be good! You’ll finally be out of the headlines for things that never existed. The whole romance angle was stupid anyway. No one falls in love with someone just because that person saved them. Not in real life.”

Emily watched as Fury frowned, hand slipping from her hip to lie limp at her side. The frown came with silence and it rubbed Emily’s nerves raw. Words bubbled up in her throat, needing to keep the conversation going to keep that quiet stare from putting her at edge.

“It’s not like we’re anything, you know?” Emily babbled. “It’s not fair to either of us that people think we’re together when we’re not. We’re not like that. It makes things a little awkward anyway. Right? We don’t mean anything.”

Something tightened in Fury’s face, a move so subtle Emily barely caught it. It was a little like disappointment and a little like someone trying to cover up a sudden stomach pain. Fury was back to smiling within seconds, holding up the wallet again. “I have to go take care of this. You have a good night, Emily.”

The dismissal felt sudden and strangely final. It was all Emily could do to lift her hand in a wave before Fury was a blur in the sky. She couldn’t get that look on Fury’s face out of her head.

 

 

She thought about it all the way into the next morning, up until a routine coffee break was interrupted by a breaking news bulletin. Fury was spotted in another city, fighting another city’s resident supervillain. The newscaster panicked that Fury had abandoned Charm City. They blamed Emily and the supposed love triangle the papers were selling. Wendy blamed Emily. Half the office blamed Emily.

Emily blamed Emily.

That was why she spent her time after work sat alone in her apartment, a bottle of schnapps clutched to her chest. The brand was cheap enough that the cherry tasted more like medicine than fruit and the concoction burned all the way down. It sat heavy in her stomach, making a pit of fire and dread.

She pushed Fury away. Deep down she knew why. It was the same reason she stopped being friends with Jennifer from her Economics 204 course back in her college days. She got so caught up with public perception and her own ignorance about her feelings that she destroyed her chance before she could muster up the courage for an opening line. She'd made a promise to herself after graduation. The next time she got that flutter in her stomach, she’d approach with confidence and not let fear keep her frozen in place. But there hadn’t been any girl like Jennifer since then and so many boys caught her eye that she forgot what that nervous energy felt like.

Even when she remembered, Emily wanted to forget it. A crush on a superhero could only spell trouble. Fury’s name was already connected with her own in the news and it brought enough mayhem into her life. Making anything more of it was just asking for trouble. At least that’s what she’d told herself, burying that flutter until she could convince herself that she just wanted a new friend.

It was much harder to lie to herself when she was heartbroken and drunk.

That, ultimately, was her excuse for grabbing Fury’s device out of her purse and pressing the button. She’d thought of it after the first few drinks, letting the taste of cherry cough syrup override her nerves. Then as the minutes ticked by with no response, she started drinking again.  She curled up on her couch, taking swigs from the bottle while she waited and wondered if Fury even cared enough to show up. Emily hoped she would, desperately so. But it was hard to tell if that was the drink or her deep-seated need to be liked talking. It was easier to keep pressing the bottle to her lips than to think about it.

And she did just that, over and over until suddenly Fury was right there in her open window.

“What’s wrong?” Fury asked, eyes darting around the room. Her face was strained, like she’d run a marathon to get there. Her hair was windswept, and Emily could see a fine sheen of sweat on her exposed skin. She looked amazing.

That only made Emily more miserable. She groaned, taking another drink to fortify herself. “Everything.”

Fury stepped into the room, frowning as she walked the perimeter and checked the door to the bedroom. She made her way to the couch, back straight and muscles still tight. She looked on edge. “You called me. What’s the problem? Is someone in the house?”

Emily blinked up at Fury, surprised by the worry she heard in that tone. She frowned, trying to focus on the words instead of the sound. “I’m alone. I don’t live with anyone. I told you that? I think I told you that.”

“No.” Fury shook her head. “Emily, you called me. I gave you that in case there was trouble. So what’s the trouble?”

“I’m the trouble,” Emily answered, feeling tears prickle at her eyes. She dropped her gaze to her carpet and lifted the bottle again.

Fury stopped Emily, taking the bottle away and setting it on the coffee table. She waited until Emily looked back up to her before she continues. “Having you been drinking? Is that why you called?”

“All I had was the schnapps. It’s not even good schnapps.” Emily was vaguely aware that wasn’t a real answer, but it was the first thing to pop out of her mouth. It felt important to say, somehow.

All it did was make Fury sigh, though some of the tension left her stance. “I thought you were in trouble.”

“And you came all the way here?” Emily felt strangely moved to realize it. “I wouldn’t have come. I thought you hated me now.”

“I don’t hate you, Emily,” Fury said, crouching down to be at eye-level with Emily.

“You left Charm City. You’re going to be a hero for somewhere else,” Emily whispered.

“What?” Fury rocked back on her heels, eyebrows shooting up toward her hairline. “What? No. I’m not leaving Charm City.”

“I saw you on the news. You were in a bigger city, fighting a bigger villain-”

“That was a favor,” Fury cut Emily off, shaking her head. “I got a call from Arrow and he needed some help because of this drug kingpin and- Look, Emily. I am not leaving Charm City.”

“You’re not? Really?”

“No. I’m not. This is my home. I’m not going anywhere.”

Emily smiled, sucking in a grateful breath. “I thought I’d driven you away.”

“You didn’t,” Fury said, confusion on her face.

“I thought you were mad because I was going to let all the headlines say I was dating Olympian instead of you,” Emily pressed.

“That doesn’t matter. You’re allowed to date or fake date whoever you want.” Fury didn’t look very happy to say it. Her lips were pressed in a thin line.

Emily shook her head, feeling her stomach sink at the sight. “But I don’t want to fake date Olympian.”

“Well take it from me. You don’t want to ‘real’ date him either.”

“I want to fake date you.” Emily leaned forward on the couch, finding a decorative pillow to clutch to her chest.

“What?” Fury reeled back again, face blank.

“Maybe real date. I don’t know. I didn’t want to think about it because if I think too much I get upset and think about how I screwed things up with Jennifer, and. And what if you don’t have a Jennifer?”

“A Jennifer?”

“Girls!” Emily cried, burying her face into the pillow. “You might not even like girls.”

 “I had a girlfriend before I dated Olympian.” Fury said slowly, meeting Emily’s gaze when Emily looked back up. Fury’s expression was shell-shocked, like she couldn’t quite keep up with the conversation.

“Oh. That’s cool,” Emily said, rubbing her eyes. “But that doesn’t mean you want to keep fake dating me. Not after the Thai place.”

“Let me get this straight. You want to keep the tabloids thinking we’re an item. Why?”

Emily reached out a hand to touch Fury’s cheek. It ended up more a harsh poke than a sweet gesture and that brought the tears back to Emily’s eyes. “I liked having dinner with you. It was better than any date I’ve had since I came here.”

“Emily.” Fury was both alarmed and stunned. “What are you trying to say?”

“I think I like you. A lot.”

“Emily,” Fury tried again. There was something shining in her eyes, like someone had offered her a lifeline.

“And I think I’m drunk.” Emily tried to stand up and ended up tumbling back on the couch.

“Oh, Emily.” Fury sighed. When she caught Emily’s gaze again, the light was gone. She just looked bitter. Bitter and disappointed.

There was a heave and a grunt before Emily saw the world spin. She was suddenly looking up at the ceiling and before her mind could catch up she was laid on something soft. She tilted her head and saw Fury walking out of the room. She crawled her way to the side of the bed she realized she was in. By the time she made it there, Fury was back with a glass of water.

“Drink,” Fury demanded, helping Emily sit up.

Emily drained the cup obediently. She let Fury help her lay down again, doing nothing more but blink owlishly when Fury covered her with a throw blanket. Once horizontal again she felt sluggish, barely able to keep her eyes open without effort. “What’s happening?”

“You’re going to sleep this off,” Fury said brusquely.

“But-”

“No. Sleep. Now.” Fury walked toward the door, running a hand through her hair. “We’ll talk about this later.”

Emily couldn’t find the energy to argue. The door shut with a loud click and Emily rolled over enough to stare at the dark ceiling. A lump sat in her throat and tears overflowed at the corners of her vision. She was just starting to work up a good cry when she began to fade out.

 

She woke with tracks on her face.

It took her a few moments to remember why she was crying the night before and why she wore her work clothes to bed. Emily sunk back down into the mattress as the memories flooded back, covering her face with her hands and groaning. She made a mess of everything. Drunk calling a crush was always the wrong answer, Emily knew that first hand from a few truly disastrous nights after one of her exes broke things off with her.  She ruined things, she could feel it in her bones. Fury saw Emily at her most pathetic and was probably too freaked out to bother coming back again.

“You blew it,” Emily whispered to herself, rubbing her palms over her eyes. She gave herself a few moments to be miserable on the bed before the taste of last night’s liquor of choice became too much for her.

Emily rolled out of bed, picking at her wrinkled blouse as she made her way over to the bathroom. Staring at herself in the mirror over the sink made her stomach turn. She looked terrible, mascara stains on her cheeks from crying and eyeshadow smeared toward her forehead. It was no wonder Fury left. Emily busied herself with washing off the evidence of last night’s mistakes, avoiding her own gaze when she ran a comb through her hair. She had a mouthful of toothpaste foam when she first heard something crash in the kitchen.

Her heart rate spiked. That’s just what she needed, a burglar to top off the worst weekend of her life. Emily quickly spat in the sink, setting down the brush and sneaking back into her bedroom. There wasn’t much for her to use as a weapon; after the loss of her last apartment she was still trying to build back up her décor. But she found a lamp to carry with her through the living room and into the kitchen, raising it above her head as she stepped up to the doorway.

She rushed into the room in hopes she’d catch the criminal by surprise, yelping as she brandished her makeshift weapon. There was another crash and then her hands were trapped by someone else’s. Emily couldn’t force the lamp down any lower, but not because of the steel grip on her wrists.

Fury stood there, staring back at Emily with wide eyes. She took the lamp from Emily’s suddenly lax grip, putting it down beside the collection of bowls lining the countertop. The bowls were filled with food: bacon, eggs and seasoned apples. A pan was overturned on the floor with sausages spilled out on the linoleum. Fury watched Emily drink it in, face growing redder by the second. She released Emily, kneeling to start cleaning up the greasy mess.

“You kind of ruined the surprise. No one’s ever thanked me for breakfast by trying to bash my head in before.” Fury’s quip was directed at the sausages in her hand, voice a little strained.

“Breakfast?” Emily asked, mind trying to catch up from the bolt of fear she had earlier. She brought her hands back to her chest, watching Fury work for a moment before she knelt to join her.

“I got it.” Fury waved her off, grabbing a dish towel to wipe up the grease. Fury threw the food in the trash can and picked up the pan. She didn’t immediately get up, staying crouched and holding it with both hands. “I made breakfast. I thought you might want something greasy to help with the hangover.”

“I don’t have one. 'Wayne’s Happy Hangover pills, reduces the morning after effects by eighty-nine percent.' Bruce Wayne really pushed the development on them. Apparently, he was feeling the effects of all those late-night Gotham soirees.” Emily gestured for the pan, frowning when Fury hesitated. She pulled it from Fury’s hands, rising off the floor to set the pan on the counter.

“Oh.” Fury stood after a moment, twisting the towel between her hands.

Emily took that from her too, tossing it toward the sink. “I can’t believe you stayed around to make me breakfast.” Emily watched Fury’s eyes go wide and rushed to continue. “From what I remember, I acted pretty weird last night.”

The comment was meant to assure Fury, but seemed to have the opposite effect. Fury’s expression fell, turning to stone. “About that…Look, I’m not going to hold it against you. People say a lot of things they don’t mean when they’re drunk.”

Emily felt her heart start to shatter.

“I like our friendship, Emily,” Fury continued, sighing heavily. “I’m not going to lose it just because you drunk and said somethings you don’t mean.”

“You think I didn’t mean it?” Emily’s voice was faint.

“Emily, you were rambling about fake dating and someone named Jennifer. It was the schnapps talking, not you. I was the one being stupid enough to get my hopes up. I’m not going to hold that against you.”

“I got your hopes up?” The heart shards tightened back together. A glimmer of hope sat high in Emily’s chest.

“I thought asking you out for dinner made things pretty obvious, but-” Fury cut herself off and shrugged. “I’m a grown woman. I can handle it.”

“You like me. Not as a friend. You like me.” Emily couldn’t contain the surprise in her voice.

Fury’s smile was painful to look at, no humor and all self-depreciation. “Come on. Of course, I do.”

Emily looked from the food laid out on the counter to the self-conscious way Fury was holding herself. She thought about the night before and about the night they got dinner, the way Fury insisted on taking care of her. “I’ve been really stupid.”

It was all the warning Emily gave before she moved into Fury’s space. Emily put her hand on top Fury’s shoulder, taking a breath before sealing her mouth over the other woman’s. She felt more than heard Fury’s gasp, almost smiling at the shock she registered there. She pulled back after a moment, leaving the kiss chaste. There was no need to press the matter. Emily was sure her intent was clear. She just needed to be sure it was reciprocated.

“I mean it.” Emily watched the hope spring back into Fury’s face. She smiled, moving her hand to cup Fury’s cheek. “I like you. A lot.”

Fury’s smile was slow and warm, stretching wide across her face. She wrapped her arms around Emily’s waist, pulling them close together. She nodded once, quickly, before planting a kiss on Emily cheek. “Okay. Me too. I like you too.”

The next kiss landed on the bridge of Emily’s nose, and the next on her chin. Fury sighed contently, pressing the next on Emily’s lips. It was chaste, more a teasing brush than a full kiss. Fury quickly rectified that, pulling back only a hair’s breadth before kissing Emily again. And then again. And again. Each time she pressed a little harder, letting the motion linger a little longer. She pulled Emily’s bottom lip between her own, making Emily gasp and grab onto her tightly.

“What are you doing today?” Fury asked as she pulled back, hands moving lower down Emily’s waist.

“Nothing,” Emily assured her, pressing against Fury’s wandering hands.

“Good.” Fury pushed Emily back to the bedroom, a smirk crossing her face.

Emily answered with a kiss, letting Fury take the lead.

 

Fury walked them backwards, taking slow steps to the middle of the room. Once she stood near the bed, she stopped Emily and moved a few steps on her own. Then she reached down and unbuckled the belt from around her waist. Emily watched it drop to the floor, then the flutter of Fury's gloves as they fell around her. The zipper came next, provided a slow reveal of skin that made Emily's stomach clench.

Fury pushed the fabric down her arms with a roll of her shoulders. She sped up, pushing her uniform off her hips and tugging the legs of it away from her ankles in record time. The movement wasn't smooth nor particularly sexy. Neither was the sight of Fury's underwear. Both her bra and high-cut briefs were plain, made for function under stress rather than seduction.

Emily was glad for it. She could barely imagine anything more attractive than what she saw in front of her: Fury's near naked form, confident and without a care in the middle of her bedroom. She was certain that if Fury were trying harder, if she were gussied up and putting on a display, Emily would be too overwhelmed to do anything. She took a step toward Fury, intent on helping with the last of those pesky coverings.

But Fury smiled slyly and shook her head, reaching back to unbuckle and throw away her bra. The briefs soon followed. Only then did Fury beckon Emily forward with a jerk of her chin.

She lifted a hand, landing first on Fury's bicep and skating inwards to the collar bone. The skin beneath her fingertips wasn't smooth. There was a litany of scars that Emily imagined were from battle. Some were so fine that her eyes couldn’t spot them, only her hands could search them out. She leaned forward, cast her eyes up to look for Fury's approval, and pressed her lips to a puckered scar that sat just at the curve of the breast. The sigh that spilled from Fury emboldened her. She shifted minutely down, lightly kissing down the swell. Emily got in only a bare brush against tightening flesh, before Fury pulled her away.

Fury kissed her harshly, a graze of teeth and tongue, before she moved to the buttons of Emily's top. Fury made quick work of getting Emily undressed, so quickly that the thought crossed Emily's mind that maybe there was a speed component to Fury's powers she'd never considered. As soon as Emily was bare, Fury pushed her back onto the bed and stared down at the prize laid out on the comforter.

Emily shuddered under her watchful eye, feeling heat roll over her at the lust she saw in Fury's gaze. How had she never seen it before? It was so obvious it was near palpable in the air. Fury looked like she wanted to devour her and every cell in Emily's body screamed 'yes.' Emily held out her hand, sitting up and reaching for the curve of a hip.

Fury didn't allow it. She gently pushed Emily's hand away and then pressed Emily back down onto the bed. Fury followed, catching herself on her elbows so she hovered inches above Emily's face. The kiss that came was sweeter than Emily thought the moment would warrant and was painfully short. Fury broke it to inch down Emily's body, letting her lips trail down until they caught at Emily's nipples.

Emily arched into Fury's mouth, a sigh caught in her lungs. She felt Fury's smile on her skin, before there was graze of teeth so light that it tickled. It was good, but not as good as the hands that ran up her thighs. One came up to grasp tight to her hip but the other moved center, fingertips teasing along dark curls. A stretch of Fury's wrist and those fingertips were nudged between her folds, petting along the sides of her clit. Emily gasped, hips fighting against Fury's hold.

"Harder," Emily pleaded, hand slipping behind Fury's head. She threaded her fingers through Fury's hair, tugging a little when she reached the end of the strands. The moan that poured out from Fury reverberated against Emily's nipple, making her tug again.

Fury switched breasts, complying not with words but with a sudden pressure against Emily's clit. The hand on Emily's hip slipped down to join the other, a fingertip dipping in. Fury pumped slowly, letting Emily have time to adjust and writhe in countermotion to the shallow thrusts. Another finger joined the first, spreading and curling against wet walls. The pressure on Emily’s clit grew, a rough swirling clockwise and a pad of a fingertip catching against the hood.

“Fury, please,” Emily begged. Her voice was already wrecked, taut with anticipation and frayed by the growing tension in her groin. It broke into a half-choked sob as Fury pulled away from her breasts and fingers stilled.

“Beatriz,” Fury demanded, her hands flexing just enough to make Emily startle.

“What?” Emily couldn’t breathe, let alone grasp what Fury said.

“Beatriz. Not Fury.” She looked at Emily with fire in her eyes.

Emily nodded, a jerky motion as she tried to suck in air. She didn’t get to test the name on her lips before Fury crashed down on her again. The kiss stole what air Emily had left, so deep and messy that she almost missed the third finger that pressed against her. She couldn’t, however, miss the thrust. It brought a broken moan from her, making her hips jump to catch the retreating digits.

“Beatriz,” Emily said, trying to think beyond the fog rolling in her mind. “It’s your name. Your real name.”

Beatriz smiled against Emily’s lips. “Yes. So please, call me by my name.”

Her stomach quivered strangely and suddenly Emily felt full, like her heart was swelling up in her chest. Emily didn’t feel like the night was a one-night stand, not after everything that had been said, but the reveal of identity threw things into a new perspective. It was real. It was more than some silly fling or flirtation. The name was a secret to be kept long term, a sign of the faith Beatriz had in her.

Emily surged forward, kissing Beatriz and grabbing her around the waist. She pushed them both over, knowing from Beatriz's muffled laugh that she was only being humored, and stared at the woman she had pinned. She reached down to tuck a strand of Beatriz’s hair away, capturing the moment in her mind to obsess over for days to come.

“Beatriz,” Emily tasted the name and smiled. “You’re beautiful, Beatriz.”

For a moment they stared at each other, drinking in naked flesh and tender smiles. The urge in Emily settled into a gentle warmth, quelled by the heartbeat she felt when she placed a palm on Beatriz’s chest.

She kissed Beatriz once more before she slipped down the bed to be at level with Beatriz’s pelvis. She heard Beatriz’s sharp intake of breath and felt the way the muscles tense as Emily trailed her hands up Beatriz's thighs. "Okay?" Emily asked, glancing up.

"Yeah," Beatriz sighed, legs falling open.

Emily took the invitation for what it is, propping herself up on an elbow. Her exploration started out carefully, a brush of her fingertips over thighs and groin and neatly trimmed hair. But she grew bold as Beatriz’s stomach quivered with every quickened breath, lust winning out over desire to stretch things out. The first press of her fingertip to Beatriz’s clit earned her a gasp, the second a drawn-out sigh. Emily moved her fingers in a light clockwork motion, watching earnestly as Beatriz’s hips twitched.

It quickly became addicting, watching Beatriz’s body try to adjust to every slight movement of Emily’s hand. When she exchanged her fingertips for her thumb, ramping up the pressure and letting her freed fingers find an opening, Beatriz’s muscle locked up.

“Like that,” Beatriz said, voice bitten out. She watched Emily with smoldering eyes, lip caught in between her teeth.

“Yeah?” Emily asked, glancing up and then back to the tempting sight. She pumped her fingers in the same manner Beatriz had done, taking the gush of moisture as a sign to add another. She was rewarded with a moan from Beatriz, the noise making her own core heat up.

“Tell me how you like it. Keep talking,” Emily asked coyly.

“Fuck,” Beatriz choked, head falling back on the pillows. Her hips jumped against the fingers scissoring within her. “This. You. Just more. You’re kind of killing me here.”

Emily laughed, pulling her hand away thoughtfully. “Wouldn’t want to do that.”

Beatriz raised back up on the elbows, frown on her face. She opened her mouth to say something, but she was cut off by the sight of Emily licking carefully at her fingertips. “Fuck.”

Emily smiled impishly, sucking lightly on her index finger. She made sure Beatriz’s eyes were locked with her own while she moved back down Beatrizs body, fingertips pulling folds apart, and pressed her mouth to Beatriz’s clit.

Beatriz started to curse again in earnest, hips refusing to stay still. “You’re really trying to kill me. Fuck, Emily. Do you know how good you look like this?”

Emily would have laughed it she didn’t have such an important task at hand. She kitten-licked against Beatriz’s clit, adjusting to the musky taste as she moved a hand underneath her to started fingering Beatriz again. She kept her gaze on Beatriz, watching the woman try vainly to keep her eyes open.

“Have you done this before?” Beatriz ground out, head tossing back before she tilted forward again to stare.

Emily pulled her mouth away, redoubling efforts with her fingertips. “With my mouth? No. But I am a girl. I know what to do, even if I’m usually using a vibrator.”

Beatriz groaned, watching Emily smack her lips. She licked her own in mimicry. “I’d pay to see that. I can’t imagine how good you look. I want to see it.”

“Maybe you’ll get to,” Emily said as she leaned back in, sucking on the little nub until Beatriz’s groans turned hoarse. She lost herself to the taste and smell, moving against Beatriz’s shaking body and humming as she felt Beatriz’s muscles grow tense.

That was all that Beatriz needed; her orgasm came with a punched-out shout and a low moan to follow. She relaxed against the mattress, little gasps falling from her mouth as Emily cleaned her up. She waited until Emily had pulled back to suck on her fingers, before sitting up and fumbling with Emily’s bedside drawer.

“What are you doing?” Emily asked, sliding in the opposite direction to grab tissues from the other bedside table. She tossed a few at the trashcan in the corner as she wiped spit and come from her hands.

“Making the night last a little longer,” Beatriz answered, grabbing Emily’s arm before she could fully turn back around. “Up on your knees.”

Emily followed the directions curiously, sitting up on her knees and letting Beatriz maneuver her toward the end of the bed. She felt Beatriz slide in behind her, thighs touching the back of thighs. An arm was slung around Emily’s waist, pulling her back until they’re pressed together again. Emily smiled, leaning her weight back into Beatriz’s hold. “Have we skipped to the cuddling?”

“And leave you high and dry? I owe you more than that.” Beatriz promised, voice dark and dripping. “Do you see your mirror over there?”

Emily zeroed in on the full-length mirror standing in the corner, realizing Beatriz had angled them both so that Emily was on full display in the reflection. She stared at herself for a few seconds, taking in red lips and flushed chest. She bit her lip watching the Emily in the mirror respond.

“What are we doing?”

“Just keep watching.” Beatriz kissed Emily’s temple, their eyes meeting in the mirror.

Emily’s gaze broke from Beatriz’s as knees forced her own apart, the body behind her arching just enough to force Emily’s to as well. Then Beatriz’s hand came down from Emily’s waist to press against her clit, rubbing a few times in a lazy manner.

“Keep watching,” Beatriz demanded again, hand disappearing despite Emily’s groaned protest. It reappeared with a vibrator that had been stolen from Emily’s drawer. “Sorry. You mentioned it and now I want so bad to see it. Let me?”

Emily nodded quickly, spreading her legs further. “Please.”

Beatriz didn’t waste time, pressing the toy against Emily’s clit and turning it to its lowest setting. She moved it minutely, following every roll of Emily’s hips. “You look amazing. Emily, fuck baby. You’re so hot like this. Look at you.”

Emily whimpered, watching obediently through the reflection in the mirror. Beatriz turned up the settings, her other arm wrapping around Emily’s thigh, so she could press in a finger. Emily leaned back farther to wrap an arm around Beatriz for stability. The move made her back arch further, putting her heaving breasts on display.

“Oh, damn. You’re taking it so good,” Beatriz crooned into Emily’s ear, pressing kisses into her hair. The vibrator was turned up higher and Beatriz moaned as Emily began to shake. “You’ve already waited so long. Come on, Emily, let me see it.”

“Beatriz,” Emily moaned, digging her nails into Beatriz’s side. The coil in her stomach was nearly painful, and she thrashed down against the toy.

Beatriz bent her head, latching on with teeth to Emily’s neck. The small jolt of pain sent Emily over the edge, a wordless shout filling the air. Beatriz took Emily’s weight as the other woman sagged against her, switching the toy off with a flick of her thumb and tossing it further down the bed to deal with later.

Beatriz pulled them both back to lie on the bed, arranging them so they could lie side by side. She ran a hand over Emily’s hair as she came down from the high, the entire time smirking. “Enjoy yourself?” Beatriz asked as soon as Emily’s breathing evened out.

Emily laughed, pinching Beatriz’s side. “Obviously. Otherwise I think I would still be able to feel my toes. Who knew you were such a talker?”

Beatriz shrugged. “Turns out when I’m not being asked to talk about supervillains, I’ve got a bit of a mouth on me.”

“A good mouth,” Emily said, leaning forward to kiss Beatriz. “A hot mouth. Feel free to talk to me like that anytime, Beatriz.”

“Later, I promise.” Beatriz grinned. “For now, we kind of left your breakfast sitting out. I should probably go find you something warm to eat.”

“Don’t worry about it. We’ll order something later,” Emily snuggled into Beatrizs side, content and warm enough to nap.

Beatriz twirled a strand of Emily’s hair around her finger. “Maybe I could take you out instead,” she said casually.

“Mmm. That Thai place? I actually did like it, you know.”

“Can we call it a date?” Beatriz’s voice was still casual but forcibly so.

Emily pulled back to meet Beatriz’s eye, bringing both hands up to cup the woman’s face. “Only way I would agree to it is if it’s a date.” She watched the tension flow from Beatriz’s face and a warmth grow in her eyes.

Then she leaned in to seal it with a kiss.

 

Cons of being the actual girlfriend of a superhero: threat of constant annihilation from villains, being kidnapped at least three times a week, and getting awkward looks whenever said superhero’s ex saw her in the middle of a mole men battle. There were many, many terrifying things about being seen on the arm of someone so powerful. But those negatives didn’t add up or matter too much. Pros of being the actual girlfriend of a superhero: date night on top of the Charm City bridge, ‘just because’ bracelets made from villain-fight rubble melted down by magic fire, and late nights helping said superhero out of a tight costume. But the best was waking up on an early Tuesday morning, fingers tangled in the green hair splaying across her pillow and knowing the next day, it would happen again.