1. Kalinda likes Donna, she really does. She is funny and smart, and she feels there is a real connection, or at least there could be, given time. She told her things she didn't tell anyone, she shared a few of her secrets (not all, of course), she even put down some of her defenses.
She admires how Donna is a people's person, how she can connect with anybody, how good she is at her job. She tells her she should go work for the private sector, but she loves what she is doing and Kalinda admires her even more for that.
She likes how she makes her feel comfortable, too comfortable sometimes. Like that time Kalinda was otherwise occupied when her phone ringed and Donna somehow managed to answer it. She did it just because she could, to show her that the world won't crack if she'll let go every now and then, if she'll let someone in. Kalinda was baffled, but Donna just laughed and encouraged her to go on with her doings, which she did. (Luckily, it was Alicia, who wouldn't read too much into it, yet somehow, Alicia was the last one Kalinda wanted it to be)
She wouldn't exactly say she fell for her, but she certainly likes her. A lot.
But it is not enough when Donna asks for more, she doesn't say anything, doesn’t make requests, but Kalinda can feel it. In the way she want Kalinda to stay a little longer in the mornings, in how she make plans for a weekend together, in her talks about a future.
All that turns on Kalinda's alarm system and all she can see are a million flashing warning signs in her head. She was never good at being domestic, all her instincts tell her to run, now, before it is too late.
So she does, not without sorrow, but she does.
Too bad, she really did like her.
2. With Lana it's a game, it always has been, and it can never be something more. They are too much alike in too many ways. Always trying to get the upper hand, alternating between top and bottom, winner and loser, giver and taker, never staying in the same spot too long.
She is a very good source of information, but it never been solely about that. She is exciting and unexpected, she is bold and full of surprises. Above all, she knows the rules of the game and she is fun to play with.
Kalinda likes the chase, the exhilarating feeling that goes with it, the game of cat and mouse. With Lana, she doesn't have to pretend, she can just be.
She goes to her when she needs something; Lana makes her work for it. You go to dinner with me, I'll tell you what you want. Kalinda doesn't mind, she would've go either way, but she tries to bargain some more, to get that upper hand. That's just the way it is, and they both know it.
They go to dinner, Kalinda gets her info, they finish the night in Lana's bed, nothing to complain about.
Lana's been trying to convince her to work for her for years, it's part of the ritual, but she refuses every time. It'll ruin the game, part of Lana's charm is the fact that she sees her only once in a while.
No, it could never be serious with Lana, and Kalinda doesn't have a problem with that.
3. She meets Dean at the firm, but he isn't a client, which is good, cause she never dates a client. He isn't a part of the legal world also, which is strange, cause she can't remember the last time she was with someone who wasn’t a cop or a lawyer or an investigator. He is refreshing in every way possible, and Kalinda truly enjoys being with him.
Alicia is back with Peter, Kalinda really can't understand why, but she seems happy enough so she doesn't push it, thinking Alicia deserves a little happiness in her life. Alicia says they decided to give it another go, for the kids, for the love they still have for each other.
They are even talking about a ceremony to renew their vows. It was Eli's idea (of course), and surprisingly enough Alicia went with it. She is so excited when she talks about it, her eyes are shining and she really does believe that Peter has change and that this will symbolize their new start together.
Kalinda can only smile when she sees her like this, even when she mentions that she wants Kalinda to bring Dean too. They grew closer together, she tells her things now, not just commenting on what Alicia says, so she knows about him, but she hasn't seen him yet, somehow it just didn't feel right to Kalinda. (Plus she'd have to share her Alicia time, she'd rather have a drink with Alicia and then go out with Dean than do these things at the same time).
But it's Alicia's day, and she never was very good at saying no to her (and just wave it off isn't an option in this case) so she keeps Dean around for the big day.
It is not like she suffers or anything. He's kind and sweet and he brings her flowers (which she can't decides if it's a good thing or bad) he's not too pushy and he gives her space when she needs it and he's a nice distraction in the long nights.
When Alicia calls in the middle of the night, crying, she doesn't hesitate before leaving Dean and going to her. Turns out Peter screwed up once again, he had a short affair while they were separate, one he failed to mention before they agreed on giving their marriage another chance. Alicia can't blame him for the act itself (she, after all, had her thing with Will), but the fact he didn't tell her (again) is too much.
Kalinda's sitting there, holding Alicia and trying to comfort her. Thinking how stupid one must be to have Alicia (twice) and give that up for someone else. She offers to go stab him in the guts, but Alicia says she'd rather have her here, so she stays until Alicia falls asleep in her arms.
The next day she breaks up with Dean, he wasn't right for her anyway.
4. Mike is all Alicia's doing. She told her she couldn't commit to a long lasting relationship if her life depended on it, Kalinda frowned and told her she could if she wanted to, Alicia raised a challenging eyebrow, and that was it.
Mike comes into the picture just in time, he is a ex-cop and reminds her a little of Burton. He's tough and street-wise, everything Dean wasn't, and Kalinda find herself captivated by him. It has been a long time since she's been with someone she could best describe as strong, and there is something alluring in that.
She takes him with her to some of her more dangerous works, not that she needs the protection, but it is nice to have someone by her side. And she doesn’t need to worry about him, he can take care of himself.
She makes it a point to introduce him to Alicia, if only to show her that she is serious. Alicia politely (of course) questions him about his plans regarding Kalinda (interrogating him seems like the right word to Kalinda), encouraging him to take their relationship to the next level (not that he needs any encouragements) and all with a playful smile, twinkle in her eyes when she looks at Kalinda. Kalinda knows what she is doing, and she isn't going to let her win, she won't run away from this.
She doesn't, she stays with Mike even after Alicia got a chance to execute her wicked plan. He wants more, and she gives it to him, letting him near, not all the way, but close enough. She doesn't back off, doesn’t look for excuses to bolt, she is even ready to meet his sister.
Maybe she shouldn't, because his sister is charming and smart and playful, and beautiful with her pale skin and dark hair and Kalinda hasn't been with a woman for far too long, and somewhere during the night she finds she is more interested In her than in her brother.
When she tells that to Alicia she just smirks at her, triumph all over her face. "I can be committed", Kalinda insists.
"Uh ha", Alicia nods, "I know you can", and she says it in such a way it is clear that she believe in everything but that.
"Stop rolling your eyes", Kalinda scolds.
"I didn't", Alicia tells her.
"You did it with your voice", Kalinda says and Alicia laughs at that.
Yeah, Kalinda thinks, she can, but it has to be someone special.
1. In the end, it had to be Alicia. There wasn't really any other option.
The buildup was slow, and not without obstacles. They've both been hurt in the process, and they both came out stronger.
When Kalinda's apartment needed to be disinfested, she wanted to go to hotel for a couple of days, but Alicia was having none of that, she has an empty house and Kalinda is coming to stay at her place.
The emotional connection was already there, it has been present since the start, and became even more profound after all they've been through together. They spend more time together (on and off work) than they do with anybody else. And Kalinda can honestly say that no one knows her as much as Alicia does, and on her part, Kalinda is always the first one Alicia turns to in a time of trouble or when she needs an advice.
As for the physical connection, it was always a matter of time before it'll happen. Time and opportunity, the mutual attraction was there.
Well, the stars were aligning in their favour that night, and everything seemed to fall into place. Alicia was finally emotionally ready to take the risk, and Kalinda was ready to let her. They were to spend the weekend alone together in Alicia's apartment, there wasn't much else that could have happened.
Time and opportunity.
It was a whole day until one of them made a move, first trying to pretend they were working. Only when evening came and Kalinda dropped some paper that they both bent to pick up, bumping their heads in the process, only then Alicia finally gave in and kissed her. They spent the night in her bed, and the whole day afterward too.
They've been together ever since, though they never stopped to acknowledge that togetherness or to define it. It isn't like anything Kalinda ever experienced, everything with Alicia is new and different, even if she's done it a hundred times before. Alicia isn't asking anything from her, and all she wants is to give her more.
They are taking their time, there is no rush, they want to enjoy each and every step of the way, to savor every moment, to memorize each experience.
The time comes when Alicia does ask something from her.
"I want you to move in with me", she softly whispers, "You don't have to decide right now" she adds, "I just want you to think about it".
Kalinda doesn't need to think about it, she surprises Alicia with a quiet but determined "Yes", there were times she might have surprised herself too, but nothing surprises her anymore regarding Alicia.
Alicia is shocked but she covers it well with faked mockery "Kalinda Sharma, it seems that you are able to commit after all".
Now it's Kalinda turn to wear a triumph face "Told you", and she barely resists the urge to stick her tongue out to Alicia.
"Oh, yeah", Alicia tease, but she can feel from the change of tone that she is serious and that it is important to her "And how long does it going to last?".
Kalinda understands her worry, even if she tries to mask it with laughter, after all, she isn't known to be the most domestic person in the world, but words aren't the answer here, so she simply says: "Forever", and seals it with a kiss.
And she knows it is true, she will stay with Alicia as long as she lets her to.