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Just a Little Genetic Mutation

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Kara flew above National City. It had been quiet since they’d taken down Myriad. Well, quiet in terms of near death experiences for the whole world anyway. Being a superhero was still busy without the world almost ending experiences. She had fires to put out and crashes to pick apart for survivors and a million other things to do. So not fighting against an entire army of aliens who had a thing for mind control, well that counted as quiet.

She was thankful, really, because between her mother being in the pod that had crash landed right after Alex had brought her back from space and discovering that Astra was actually alive, she needed quiet. Her mother needed to adjust to being super powered and Kara was the best one to teach her. And then there was Astra whose near death experience had caused a pretty extensive case of amnesia that was starting to heal, but Kara sat with her as much as she could trying to spark her memory by telling her stories from back on Krypton.

Sometimes between all that, honestly, rescuing kittens from trees seemed like a break. She wouldn’t give up her mom or aunt for the world, but she was being pulled in fifteen different directions instead of the usual five or so. So yeah, no imminent world dangers was great, she didn’t need to be pulled in a sixteenth direction.

“Hey Kar,” Alex said, crackling in on Kara’s earpiece.

“Yeah, Alex?”

“We’re going on a raid, there should only be a few gamma level threats so we should be fine, but keep an ear open would you?”

“Of course.” Gamma level aliens, hostile but only could be diffused easily enough. The highest Kara had heard in the month since Myriad was a beta level and really that had been more of a misunderstanding than anything. Kara figured any alien that wanted to cause real problems was laying low since the DEO was still on high alert after everything.

Kara tilted her head towards some police sirens. They were chasing a guy who’d blown through a red light and then run when the police had tried to pull him over. Well, that she could get behind. She shot off towards the chase and within ten minutes the man was in the back of a squad car and no one was hurt.

She was about to leap back into the air when she heard Alex call out. “Kara!”

Well. Seemed like the gamma level had turned into something more immediate. She took off and directed herself towards Alex’s voice. She flew fast enough to break the sound barrier and then some. Alex could take care of herself, sure, but she still wanted to protect her sister.

Kara found Alex and the rest of the DEO team in a warehouse on the outskirts of town. There was no one struggling. There weren’t even aliens to be seen, really. But there was one large computer interface that looked like Myriad, flashing with foreign script across the screens. Kara didn’t recognize it, but she was definitely wary as she took a step forward.

“You know what this is?” Alex asked from beside her. “We’ve been over every inch but we have no idea.”

“No, no idea. I don’t know this language.” She looked it over again and her eyes stopped on the standard galactic notation for time. And it was counting down. That couldn’t be good. “It’s counting down to something. We’ve got two hours to disable it.”

Alex’s eyes widened. “I’ll send the chopper for Winn.”

“Get Aunt Astra and J’onn too. Just because I haven’t seen this before doesn’t mean one of them hasn’t.”

J’onn touched down beside Kara in all his Martian glory. “She called me right after she called for you.” He looked over the computer and shook his head. “I’ve seen it before, but it’s not a language I know. You are right about the countdown, however. We need a containment team in case we can’t figure out how disarm it.”

“Do you think it’s a bomb?” Kara asked. If it was she could just fly it into space again, not that Alex would like that idea at all.

“I don’t see anything that registers as an ordinance, but better safe than sorry.” He turned and started barking out orders to the agents around them.

Kara walked forward some more and felt for weaknesses in the structure of the machine. If she could pry the thing open she could fry the wiring with her heat vision. It would be a last ditch effort because honestly frying the wiring might make everything worse, but it might work. She’d taken down bombs by just ripping out the wiring, though Alex had screamed during training drills that that wasn’t the way to do it, it had worked when at the last second.

Alex stepped beside Kara again, frowning at her. “What are you doing?”

“Seeing if there’s a panel I can remove for a last ditch ripping of wires.” Kara smiled but she knew it wasn’t exactly as bright or convincing as normal. She had just wanted it to stay quiet for a little longer. But she was Supergirl, quiet didn’t happen for long it seemed and here was a computer that could end the world for all they knew.

“How many times do I have to tell you--”

“That that isn’t the way to do it, I know,” Kara interrupted. “But last ditch effort? It’s worked before and you know it.”

Alex ran a hand down her face. “Fine. Astra’s on her way, so is Alura. They said they both knew languages the other didn’t. Let’s hope that this is one of the days where Astra’s memory is behaving.”

Kara nodded, hoping the same thing. She felt the edge of a panel, just a micron separation in the metal panels.She thanked Rao for super senses and then pried her fingernails into the opening. A second later it was clanging to the floor and wiring so advanced she hadn’t seen anything like it since leaving Krypton. She swallowed. So ripping probably wasn’t going to work. There could be a hundred built in redundancies and a learning AI connected to all this. Ripping wouldn’t do anything like it would in regular human wiring. She could probably still do enough damage to kill the machine, but it would take more time and if the operating system was as advanced as the wiring, she might not be fast enough before it sent off the command to do whatever it was that this thing was supposed to do.

Kara looked up at the ground shaking to see her mother in a crater and Astra standing beside her on flat ground. They needed to work on her landings more it seemed. They had only started working on flying last week though, so the fact that she had gotten her quickly enough was a good thing. Kara glanced at the machine and shook herself. There would be time for those considerations later though.

“Do you know the language?” Kara asked Astra who was already staring at the screen with a crease between her eyebrows.

Astra whipped around to J’onn. “Scan the system for a ship. It will be hiding somewhere cloaked but there will be some heat signature somewhere. I wouldn’t put them any closer than the gas giants. But they’ll be out there.” Her face was serious and stance stiff like Kara imagined she had stood when commanding Krypton’s army.

“Who are we looking for?” J’onn ask, motioning a cadet over.

“The Ixenia.” Astra turned back to the computer. “Krypton never had dealings with them, they tended to stick to societies less advanced than ours. We still studied their tactics in training, however. They try to paint themselves as the saviors when really they are the ones who cause the problem to begin with.”

“So it is a bomb,” J’onn said.

Astra shook her head. “No, it’s...something else.”

Alura stepped beside her sister. “There’s something that roughly translates to DNA on this screen. I would say they’ve rigged up some sort of program to alter DNA of something, crops, animals, bacteria, people, anything really.”

“Nothing quickly lethal, though. They’ll show up like heroes and use that foothold to take over the planet slowly and without conflict. Then they’ll have another world to mine for resources while keeping their own pristine. By intergalactic standards we couldn’t ever declare war on them because outwardly no one could prove that they were behind whatever disasters and panic they caused, but everyone knew they were anyway.” Astra touched the screen, flashing though some options faster than Kara could register the characters.

Alura stepped beside her sister again, resting her hand on Astra’s shoulder. Without most of the memories Astra had accepted her sister with open arms once she remembered just who she was, which hadn’t taken long. Kara wondered if it would all fall apart when Astra remembered. Or maybe she already had and just hadn’t said it. As much as Alura had damned Astra, she had also saved her in a twisted way. She was still alive while her planet had died. Kara knew that was a curse and a blessing, but being alive...well. She didn’t want to change that. Mostly. She figured her aunt might be of the same mind. Maybe.

Alura conversed with Astra in rapid Kryptonian, pressing some options on the screen on her own. Kara listened in and caught a few words, but even years after growing up sometimes her mother and aunt shortened their thoughts in a way that only a twin would understand. She didn’t know what sex and gender had to do with all of this, but that did not sound good. What if they rendered humans completely sterile? She couldn’t imagine the chaos. Or maybe she could. Visions of fire and Krypton in its last few hours popped up behind her eyelids. A species fighting for survival...it would be catastrophic. People would die.

Astra cursed loudly as the screen flashed red. She pounded on the screen again, but nothing showed up. She turned to J’onn. “We can’t disable it from here. The main controls have to be on their ship and this is just an auxiliary control for setup and maintenance and the like.” She winced and held her head, squinting one eye, but remained standing tall. She had to be getting another memory, Kara recognized the behavior. In this situation, that memory couldn't have been a good one.

“Winn is two minutes out in the chopper. He might be able to help out.” J’onn crossed his arms and looked at the screens with a scowl. “For now I’ll look for that ship. Any tips on how to throw them out of our galaxy in a hurry.”

Alura and Astra looked at each other for a second before nodding. “You have Kara’s old pod, yes?” Alura asked.

J’onn nodded. “Yes, Agent Danvers restored it. Before her rather ill thought out plan to rescue Kara anyway.”

“But the communicator still works?” Alura asked.

Kara nodded. “It does. Just about everything else needs some minor repairs, but the communicator was saved from damage.” Which Alex had been relieved about since there were components in that communicator that Earth had no way or replicating just yet. For the rest she looked at Kara with puppy dog eyes and Kara had promised a weekend to help bend out the dents and structural damage that Alex had caused crashing to Earth yet again.

Alura hopped up into the air gently, wobbling just a bit in the air, but she held. “I’m going to call the Intergalactic Union. Hopefully my old contacts there are still in office after all these years. This machine is proof that the Ixenia are behind whatever is about to happen. Paired with the fact that they are sitting waiting in our system, it should be enough for the Union to at least impose some sanctions on them, if not more. It won’t scare them off their tactics for long, but it should be enough to at least end whatever they’re planning here.”

“Trade sanctions would hit them where it would hurt the most,” Astra added. “It’s not ideal, but it's’ what we have at present.”

Kara felt like flying out to space again and giving the Ixenia a piece of her mind about literally attacking planets like this, but Alex would probably kill her if she tried something like that again.

“Go,” J’onn waved her off. “Let me know the results.”

Alura nodded and was off in a flash.

Kara perked up at the sound of a helicopter’s blades changing their rhythm. The helicopter with Winn in it was landing now. A minute later her friend complete with two guys with cases full of the highest tech hacking equipment the government had came walking in. He went right to Kara’s side, already looking at the computer and the panel that Kara had ripped off. He swallowed hard looking at all of it.

“You know at least with Myriad I knew some of the Kryptonese that you had taught me. I don’t even have that here and I have to do it in less than two hours You know how insane that is right?”

Kara smiled at her friend, patting him gently on the shoulder. She wasn’t about to tell him that it was closer to an hour and a half now. That was definitely not what he needed right now. “I know you can do it, Winn.”

He swallowed but nodded. “Right, right, sure, just learn a new language and stop this thing from altering the DNA of god knows what. Sure. Can do.” He awkwardly finger-gunned at her. Kara decided that she’d let that unironic use of finger guns go. This was a time of stress after all and everyone had different ways to cope.

Winn knelt down by the panel and the men that had come in with him sat the containers they were holding all around him. Kara watched him for a few seconds, but there was really nothing she could do but watch and listen to him mumble under his breath. So she stepped away to give him some room to work and hoped and hoped that this wasn’t the beginning of the end of yet another world that she called home. Her stomach roiled and clenched and her heart was beating a million miles an hour, but she walked away from the one hope they had right now, as calm as she could manage.

She went and stood beside her aunt. “Any chance you could help him with the coding language?”

Astra shook her head. “Programming never was my strong suit. Even if I do know Ixenaian, coding is always completely different from the spoken language. Rao knows the humans have so many different coding languages it’s a miracle that they can keep track of them all. Why does Java do one set of tasks yet you need Javascript for another?”

Kara cocked an eyebrow at her aunt. “I didn’t even know you knew that much about human technology.”

Astra shrugged it off, looking at Winn and frowning hard. “Nights are very long when you sleep and are plagued by memories coming back to you.” Her hand found Kara’s. “I don’t regret remembering you again, but there are some things that I wish would have stayed forgotten.”

Kara squeezed Astra’s hand hard. She knew that feeling. For a few weeks after landing on Earth she had known that Krypton had exploded, but she hadn’t remembered it. She’d blocked everything out. Her subconscious, though, it remembered and it had showed her every night in her dreams, at first just bits and terrifying pieces until it worked up to showing her everything and then twisted it into even more of a nightmare.

“And the memory you just had.”

Astra’s eyes met Kara’s and they were haunted. She’d seen her aunt look like this only in glimpses that Astra never thought Kara saw back on Krypton. When they had met again on Earth all of that had been hardened over with determination. Now she had to learn how to cope all over again.

“Another time, another place, another war.”

Kara just nodded and didn’t push any further.

They watched the seconds tick by into minutes as Winn worked. J’onn and Alex were barking orders at those back at command. Susan was scanning the skies for signs of the Ixenian ship but had yet to find anything. Kara hoped that her mother had gotten in contact with someone. Earth’s technologies were slow. The Union’s technology would be light years ahead and would find them in a few seconds no matter where they were. She wasn’t sure what the knowledge of knowing exactly where the Ixenians were would do. Earth had no army of spaceships to go out and drive them off, but it still felt like crucial knowledge. She just held onto Astra’s hand and let the knowledge wash over her that even with all her superpowers, there wasn’t much she could do here. Acknowledging that...well she was a superhero. It didn’t come easy. It might never come easy.

Her mother flew back, landing in the same crater, but she only made it a little deeper this time. She was learning quickly at least. Kara had taken forever to learn, but then again she had had to teach herself from scratch. She looked up at Kara and Astra and smiled.

“So it seems that not only is Rasha still alive, but she's done well for herself. She's vice chancellor of the Union now. And as such she was very eager to hear tell of actual evidence of the Ixenians’ transgressions. They're sending out a fleet to escort them out of the system and take the computer back for evidence. They'll be here within the hour.”

Winn slumped back. “Oh thank god because I was making exactly zero progress.” He looked back at them. “That does mean I can stop right?”

Alura nodded. “They will have the means to shut the machine off. A hacker of their owner perhaps. Then you can learn a few tips for foreign coding languages.”

Winn lit up at that. “That would be so awesome.”

Kara smiled at her friend and shook her head, an irrepressible nerd even now.

“Apparently their ship is anchored in the core of the gas giant you call Jupiter,” Alura continued.

J’onn hummed. “Explains why we haven't been able to find them.”

Alex stopped. “Wait, how are they just hovering in the middle of a gas giant that's literally one giant storm? How are they not being ripped to pieces.”

“The forces that are exerted on a ship while in warp drive are much more than that than any planet could hope to create,” Astra replied.

Alex mulled that over for a few seconds before nodding. “Makes sense I suppose.” She turned to J’onn. “What are the orders now?”

“Have everyone stay in standby. I won't trust this until they're clear of our system.”

“Roger that.”

Kara relaxed just the tiniest bit. Here on Earth things like the European Union didn't have a great amount of power, but the Intergalactic Union did. On joining each member had to agree that the Union was sovereign in all things galactic. Planets could govern how they wanted on their own planets, but outside of their own atmosphere they played by Union rules. The Union had the forces to back those rules up, too. She remembered Astra being approached when Kara was younger to serve as a general in their army, shortly before Astra's promotion to General in the Kryptonian army. Astra had considered it. To serve for them was an honor, but the terms of her service wouldn’t have kept her away from hike even more than she already was, so she had respectfully declined. A million other beings were waiting to take her place though and so the Union had accepted without question and moved on.

The computer buzzed to life behind them. Kara whipped her head around to look at it. What in the world was going on?

“Uh, guys,” Winn said, staring at his computer screen. “Whatever it's doing it's running a program, a big one.” he started to type frantically on his computer. “No way I can stop it, I'm not far enough in for that.”

There was still at least twenty minutes until the Union arrived. Kara looked at all the exposed wires and took a step closer. Rao knew what was going to happen but if it was powering up, countdown be damned, then it was time to try and stop it by force.

“I think this command means override. And then what follows are numbers that look like the ones on the screen. Was that the countdown?” Winn kept typing, fingers flying almost at super speed.

“Someone got impatient,” Astra deadpanned.

“Do you think they got wind about the Union coming?” Alura asked.

“I would think that would be the only reason to change their plans.”

The screens lit up bright green and a pulse of energy shot up towards the roof. Oh no, Kara definitely should have been quicker on grabbing the wires. Who knew what that pulse had been.

“Uh guys, there's a new program running.”

Astra walked behind Winn and took a look at the screen. Her eyes scanned the lines of code for a few seconds before she lost all color. She turned to J'onn.

“Get all of your agents out of here. There was a self-destruct built in and they've activated it. You have less than a minute to get clear.”

Winn shut his computer and packed it away in a second, grabbing the fear he'd come in with and booking it towards the door like a jack rabbit.

“Sound the alarm,” J'onn told Alex.

“Code red we've got a bogey going off in t-minus fifty seconds.”

The call rang out from Everyone that heard it, echoing up and down the halls with the sound of pounding boots on concrete as everyone ran. Kara watched them, scanning the building for stragglers but these were none.

“How big will it be?” Kara asked.

“When they get to their trucks we all take two of them and fly at least a mile. I don't know how big their charge is or what it's made out of, so I can only guess that's a safe distance.”

Kara nodded and launched into the air with little effort. “Will you be OK with grabbing two trucks, Mom?”

“I think in this case I have no choice but to be OK. I'll manage. The trucks may not be sound afterwards, perhaps.”

Well between truck damage and death she knew the DEO agents would take the truck damage so they would do. “Sounds fine to me.”

She shot off with her aunt and mother behind her. The agents were just shutting the doors on their trucks and starting to gun it. They had maybe thirty seconds left before the bomb.went off. A thirty second mile with two cars, Kara would be fine. She picked up her two trucks and flew off. If she made it farther than a mile that definitely wouldn't hurt.

She heard the agents below her gasp then relax again once they realized what was happening. She flew and flew, counting the seconds, listening to Astra and Alura behind her. Twenty seconds. Ten. She hit the mile mark. Five.

The warehouse went up in a silent ball of flames, taking out two warehouses around it, but going no further. Kara sighed in relief and set the trucks down on the nearest back alley. They had made it out in one piece.

“Well, there went all the evidence against them.” Alura sighed, gently placing the trucks down. The suspensions groaned but held nicely. “They have to have a contact in the Union then that tipped them off to destroy what they set up here.”

Kara squinted for a second. She knocked on top of the second truck she'd carried. “Hey Winn?”

Winn opened the door and peeked up at her. He looked a bit green from the sudden flight but otherwise fine. “Did you download a copy of their software?”

He nodded. “It's always the first thing I do.” he motioned towards the case at his feet. “This baby has programs to crack coding that work best with a married copy.”

Kara looked at her mother. “Then we still have proof. And Winn can upload it everywhere. Destroying a warehouse will go under the radar, but they can't destroy a whole planet without the Union coming after them anyway.”

“It's not quite as strong for evidence of their crimes, but it will do.” Alura nodded.

Winn pulled his laptop out. “OK then, uploading it literally everywhere then. Once the Union has it I can scrub it out too to make sure no one has alien coding secrets or whatever.” He shrugged.

Kara scrubbed a hand through her hair. Yeah. Definitely not a quiet day anymore in National City.

“Did we ever figure out what they beam was before it blew up?” she asked.

Winn shook his head. “No, I think it had a specific trajectory but it was up towards space so I don't know why it would do that.”

Kara looked up at the sky and let her super senses extend out. She didn't see anything wrong with the atmosphere. Even as she looked farther up nothing seemed amiss. Why launch the beam into space if it was supposed to alter everyone's DNA? She strained herself until she was looking at outer space, seeing the satellites and then she stopped. Every single satellite was the same green that the computer had glowed. And they were getting brighter and brighter as she watched.

“The satellites!” she exclaimed.

Everyone looked towards the sky, but the humans could see nothing. Astra on the other hand cursed.

“Of course, they hover around every blasted inch of the planet. One beam could cover the whole thing if they engineered it right.”

Kara watched as it finally flashed almost white and then suddenly barreled towards them. Whatever it was and whatever it was going to do, it would happen soon. She was at a loss for what to do. She couldn’t fight a literally all encompassing beam of energy. She couldn't evacuate people. She couldn't shield them. All she could do was stand there and watch.

Thirty seconds later it hit them all in a flash of green. Kara braced herself to feel something, anything, but she felt nothing. She looked at her mother and aunt to see they were still standing as well, looking around confused. She was about to let out a sigh of relief that it hadn't done anything to them when Alex dropped to her knees and started to scream in pain. Everyone else wasn't far behind.

And from there everything devolved into chaos.

Chapter Text

Astra flinched at all the screaming. So much screaming. She took deep breaths in and out, trying to keep her heartbeat under control. Memories of war assaulted her. There had been screaming then too. She hoped that in some of her forgotten memories there were skills to cope with these flashbacks. She was barely holding it together as it was.

And now. This.

She looked to her niece, who was rushing from human to human trying to help them. None of them could tell her what was wrong though. They just screamed and screamed, driving Astra mad. Astra blinked, looking for Alura, but she didn’t see her standing anywhere, trying to help. Alura would be helping, it was just who she was. So where was she?

Pain lanced through her lower abdomen, but it was a phantom pain. It wasn’t actually hers. She had learned to tell the difference years ago. She looked down at the ground where Alura had been a minute before and there was her sister, kneeling on the ground, grabbing her stomach, but she wasn’t screaming.

Astra sprinted over and dropped to the ground beside her sister. She cupped Alura’s face and pulled Alura’s gaze towards her. “Sister, what’s wrong?”

“I have a feeling I know--” Alura groaned loudly, “what this hell device was meant to do.”

“What?” She reached out and stroked her sister’s hair like she had done a thousand times as a child.

“It altered the breeding mechanisms of the human population to something like the biology of Kryptonians.”

“Alphas, betas, and omegas?” Astra’s eyes widened. She remembered little of her time on Earth before she had woken up again, but she knew that the humans would not to do well with such a huge shift. They wouldn’t know how to deal with heats and ruts and everything else.

Alura nodded.

“But then why is it affecting you? It’s not affecting Kara or I.”

“Remember just before our eighteen rotation where mother took me off planet for a vacation to Manolon Reus for two weeks?”

Astra nodded. She had been insanely jealous. Alura had always gotten preferentially treatment, though, so it hadn’t be a surprise.

“It wasn’t a vacation. Mother knew I was going to choose the judicial guild on graduation, but they have a standing law that only alphas and betas can join. Apparently omegas were too emotional.”

“Have they met an alpha?” Astra scrunched her face. Joining the military had been...unusual for an omega to say the least, but it wasn’t like any other guild would want a genetic aberration. She had taken her chances, and they had worked out in the long run. But alphas, they still rubbed her the wrong way for a myriad of reasons. She remembered some of them, but she knew she didn’t remember them all. She couldn’t explain the small spike of instinctual fear she had when thinking about alphas and that worried her.

Alura snorted and shook her head. “Alphas wrote most of the laws, so, I suppose they have.” She grimaced again and doubled over. “Point of the matter is, I had a procedure that changed my hormonal imprint over from omega to a very weak beta.”

“And since no one has to register their status until eighteen the guild never knew anything was ever different.” Astra sat back on her knees. It was a clever plan really. And it would have been expensive. Which explained why Alura was whisked away without Astra knowing what was going on. Her parents wouldn’t have wanted to invest the money into her. It was such an old hurt she barely even felt it. The sting came from Alura keeping it a secret for all this time.

Alura, of course, as always could almost read her mind. “I didn’t tell you at first because mother asked me not to and I didn’t want to go against her wishes. Then I worried that you would be angry at me for doing so. We both were omegas and I know growing up that was a comfort to us both having someone to depend on. You never noticed anything different, really, most people didn’t. I was a very weak beta to the point where someone had to get almost right up against my scent gland to tell the difference. Mostly it just got rid of my heats.”

Alura shuddered once more and then collapsed to the ground, sighing in relief. Whatever it had done to her had finished apparently.

“And now?” Astra asked.

“I believe whatever the beam was it altered what fix the doctors implemented on me.”

Astra looked at her sister’s neck. “May I?”

Alura nodded and tilted her head to the side, exposing her neck more fully. Astra leaned in and nestled her nose right under her sister’s ear. She took a deep breath in slowly through her nose. Omega. Nothing but the scent of an omega. A strong one, potent, but omega nonetheless.

“Yes, sister, it seems you are back to being an omega again.”

“Rao help me,” Alura sighed out. “Having my first heat for decades in what will be the chaos of humans dealing with their firsts will not be optimal.”

Astra snorted. “No, I don’t think it will.”

Alura pulled herself into a sitting position gingerly. “I believe that short circuited my powers for a bit. I feel like I did on Krypton.”

And Astra knew exactly what she meant. On Krypton they had felt normal, she supposed what a human felt like on Earth was similar. But here in Earth with the yellow sun there was always a spark within them glowing, lighting them up from the inside making them feel warm. The sickliness of Kryptonite snuffed that light out and made it feel like they would never be warm again. Just losing their powers through a blowout, though, felt more like having a cold. Their body had gotten so used to being sun warmed it felt like they had chills without it even though that was supposed to be normal.

“Perhaps you'll only need a few hours in the sun to recover. You were not affected for that long otherwise.” Astra reached for her sister’s hand and squeezed.

Alura glanced over at the humans who were still writhing on the ground. They weren't screaming anymore though, just moaning and groaning in pain. “How much longer do you think they will be like this.” Her eyes flicked to Kara. “Kara will be distraught beyond reason if it doesn't end soon.”

“Well, their entire genetic code is rewriting itself plus their bodies have to grow to accommodate the changes. I do not think it's going to be a very fast process. I assume what was done to you wasn't so much genetic in nature?”

Alura tilted her head to the side, unsure. “I think it might have been a slight DNA alteration to make it permanent, but yes, most of it was through other means.”

“And how long did that take under optimal conditions?”

“I was under for five hours or so.” Alura winced as she said there words. “It will be a long day, won't it sister.”

Astra looked up into the sky. “Oh yes, especially if the humans couldn't get themselves to safety while driving or flying.” She looked over at Kara. Her niece would want to help those people. Kara could actually save someone from a crash. She couldn't save them from this. No, they would come later if it could be arranged at all.

“Go, I'll watch over our colleagues.”

Astra nodded at her sister and then strode off to get Kara. If she extended her hearing she could already detect a few accidents that would need tending to. It was going to be a long day indeed.

 

--

 

The humans had taken almost twelve hours before they came out of it. Astra and Kara had been busy the whole time of course, pulling people out of wrecks and crashes and from other dangerous situations. Shutting down human society cold it seemed led to a massive amount of damage. And that was only in National City. She couldn't imagine what it looked like elsewhere in towns and cities that didn't have Supergirl to save them. She knew that Kara was actively not thinking about it. She would go crazy if she did.

After another twelve hours of cleaning up messes past when the humans could actually help themselves Astra walked into the DEO and stopped dead. Alphas. So many alphas. She shouldn't be surprised. This was a paramilitary operation. And yet her body froze anyway and fear skittered across her nerves. Too many. Too much.

“Astra, are you OK?” a voice asked.

Astra took a moment to process that Alex was standing in front of her. Alex. Alex was safe. She would be fine if she stayed near Alex. She took a deep breath and smelled alpha and Alex in the same breath. There was another zing of fear but it faded. Alex was still Alex alpha or no. And, Astra noted on some primal level, she smelled good, so very, very good.

She shook herself, clearing her mind and just focused on Alex. “I would say the better question would be how are you? I imagine it wasn’t pleasant to…” Astra searched for a suitable word, it wasn’t exactly like she could say ‘grew a penis’ at point blank. Humans were so very prudish about sexual relations. “transform in just a violent manner,” she concluded.

Alex shifted from foot to foot, winced and then stopped. “Uh, yeah, not exactly the most fun I’ve had at the office.” She cleared her throat. “I’m just glad you and Kara were ok. I guess your powers protected you?”

“No, they didn’t actually.” Astra found her sister across the compound talking to Lucy Lane yet again. “It actually affect Alura, but for Kara and I there was nothing for it to change.”

Alex blinked at that statement. “Wait do you mean you have--” Alex cut herself off and just gestured at her lower regions.

Astra shook her head. “No, not at all, well, Kara yes, but I do not.” She looked at Alex. “The DEO has no real clue what happened to you, do they?”

“I mean we know it messed with our genitalia, not much more to know than that, is there?”

Astra reached out and cupped Alex’s face. She almost jumped at the zing of electricity that coursed through her system at the contact. Alex, however, did jump and then growled, baring her teeth. Astra’s omega quivered just a bit, but overall she just smirked. Oh her alpha was adorable.

Wait. Her alpha? No, not at all. She clenched her free hand hard enough to dig the nails into her palm. She had to get ahold of herself. The last thing this world needed from her was for her to go senseless omega on them. She needed to keep herself together and explain just what was happening to every single human that had gotten hit with that beam.

“Oh, no, Alex, it’s more than that. Or do you normally growl at people at a bit of a shock?”

Alex blushed a deep pink. “Uh, no, not usually, but that just sort of happened and I don’t know why. No one does. We’ve had the lab crew on it since we all woke up but they haven’t exactly come up with anything more than the obvious. I haven’t had time to get in there myself and whip them into shape.”

“Well, no need for that. I know what happened to all of you. Alura actually figured it out, really.”

“What is going on then? And how did Alura know from just a green glowing beam?”

“Because it affected her too, that’s how, but for that, Alex, what has Kara told you about Kryptonian reproduction outside of the Codex?”

Alex’s brow scrunched. “Not much, really, just that Clark was the first natural birth in over a thousand years and that everyone else really ignored most sexuality that extended beyond kissing their partners. And you said she had a dick earlier, but I’m her sister and trust me I have not seen anything at all like that on her, alien physiology or no.”

“Well, I would hope as her sister you never had. Kryptonian female alphas clits morph into a penis when aroused.” Astra cocked an eyebrow.

“Alpha? Morphing? What?”

Astra sighed. She never imagined herself teaching the equivalent to a Kryptonian health class, and yet here she was. What strange things crash landing to Earth had brought her. Then again maybe she had taught a health class before and just didn’t remember it. It was possible, though something told her that such a memory would have been branded in her mind.

“Gather your troops. If I’m going to explain this, I might as well explain it to you all. I’m sure J’onn will need to get the information to the relevant parties anyway so the public can be informed.”

“Alright then.” She turned on her heel and marched towards the command center, gait a bit awkward. She most definitely wasn’t used to walking with something between her legs, Astra could see it plain as day. Oh, the fallout from this explanation was going to be like facing a war tribunal, perhaps worse.

Astra sighed and followed Alex.

--

 

All of the DEO’s officers roiled a few steps below the command center. Astra stood at the half rail that kept anyone from falling off, Alex a step behind her. She had put herself in the spotlight willingly, but now, up here in front of a group that smelled strongly of alpha she was nervous. Alex moved a hand onto Astra’s back, steadying. Yes, she could do this. Alex was there. She would make sure that Astra was safe. And if not she would distract everyone so Asra could fly off on her own. No matter what she would be safe in the end with Alex.

She took a deep breath and started to speak. “Kryptonian physiology is slightly different from human physiology, I assume most of you are well aware. What mainly differs is how we reproduce. Krypton had six what would probably be called genders on Earth. They were male alpha, male beta, or male omega, or the female version of each alpha, beta and omega. Betas for all intents and purposes were basically as humans are now, males have male reproductive organs and vice versa. Alpha and omega were where the dimorphism arose. Alpha females had their clits engorge when arose into what was at its basis, a penis, completely able to get anyone pregnant, while males were much the same. Alphas go through cycles of what is called rut. This is basically when their body spikes the hormones related to breeding and the alpha will seek out anyone to have sex, especially omegas. Ruts of course can be ridden out alone, but it does take a substantial amount of will. Most alphas if they weren’t in a relationship would just pay for companionship during their ruts to avoid the pain. In omegas males still had penises, but they were much smaller than those of their alpha and beta cousins. Instead mostly their bodies evolved a uterus that works much the same as a females, but instead of access through the vagina the opening is within their anus. Omega females again, were much the same as beta females, with the exception that all omegas go through what are called heats. During heats omegas let off a startling amount of pheromones to try and attract and alpha to breed them by knotting them. Knots were around the base of alpha penises that would swell during the act of sex and once pushed into the sexual partner would lock them both together and keep the alphas come sealed in once they ejaculated. Omegas are much more fertile during heats so if an alpha does knot them they will most likely get pregnant. Thus most omegas chose to ride out their heats alone even if its more painful to do it that way.”

“What does this have to do with what’s happening to us?” An agent in the back shouted over the crowd.

Astra turned her gaze towards the man. He flinched back from her glare and then growled a bit. Wonderful an alpha. She didn’t back down. She may be an omega but she had learned the art of dominance in the military when she’d needed to bring those in her command to heel. The man looked at her for a long few seconds before snarling louder and looking away.

“I was getting to that part, Agent, if you would keep your mouth shut we would have already been over it.” She paused another moment and went on. “My sister and I were born omegas. When we reached the age of majority Alura underwent a procedure to alter her so she was a beta, not an omega for future career reasons. Today when that beam hit us, Alura reverted back to an omega. That is how we know how and why what’s happening to you. We already know exactly what it is being alpha/beta/omega oriented. Now that more time has passed, we can confirm we’re right because you all now smell like alphas for the most part, a few betas now and then, and no omegas from what I can tell. It wasn’t exactly hard to deduce as you can see. The Ixenaians programmed the beam to switch your reproduction system of the entire species to one that would cause the most panic from the breeding system that you all were used to.”

“How will it cause chaos,” another agent, closer to the front asked.

“Alphas will destroy anything in their way of an omega when they’re in rut. Omegas will find themselves the first alpha on the street and fuck them until she’s pregnant. Alphas can pick up a random girl off the street, omega or not and justify having their way with the other person because they ignored their rut too long and now physically will do anything for something to fuck. If this isn’t addressed you will have a huge spike in unwanted pregnancies, a surge in STDs, people getting raped, and property damage. Humans know none of the techniques that made it possible for Krypton to function as a high society. They will go straight into the beat and not look for a way out and the fallout will be massive.”

The body of agents sat quiet. None knew what to say. If they said anything, if they believed it, it meant believing that the coming months were going to be absolute hell. No one really wanted to believe that, not then not ever.

“I can give you any information you need to ride out a heat.” She looked over at Kara who nodded at her. “And Kara can tell you about riding out a rut. Betas thankfully only need to stay out of the way of alphas and omegas and everything will be fine. They also will make up the majority of the population so, at least there will be a smaller number of people to patrol and help. Any other questions about how we came to this decision or the basic functions of alphas, betas, or omegas?”

Every single hand in the audience went up. Astra closed her eyes. This was going to be very, very exhausting. But she opened her eyes back up and called on the first person anyway. They needed to know everything she could possibly tell them about what it was like to live in a alpha/beta/omega society or how to handle a heat or anything of the like, so she had to answer as much as she could for as long as they needed her. These would be the people who were issuing the information to the rest of the world. She had to make sure it was thorough and memorable as possible.

She rubbed her temples. Some days she wondered, not very hard, and not for longer than a split second, just silly little considerations that everyone had, she wondered if coming over to this side had done her any favors.

But Kara squeezed her hand and such considerations were gone to a million questions and the comfort of family by her side.

Chapter Text

Lucy sat in her office, trying and trying to find a comfortable position. God, before it hadn’t been such a struggle. Sit and then that was it. She missed that.  It had been all of a day and a half, but god she missed it. She missed being normal. She envied those people who ended up as betas. Nothing had changed for them, their reproductive system worked the same way as before, the only difference was that their had a more acute sense of smell, had scent glands on their necks, and now had the ability to produce alpha and omega children, that was it.

The words on the paperwork in front of her blurred. Everyone would expect her to be an alpha, of course, the major in the army, commanding in her presence. She liked being a major, yes, but when she joined the army it was because she wanted acceptance. She wanted to be normal, not some military brat who moved every few years to god knew where, whose sister hated her, and whose mother was dead. She just wanted to be daddy’s girl, but the only way to do that had been to follow in his footsteps.

Now that was all out the window with her broken ties to her father and her command of the DEO. She had found another family here, one that was accepting of everything she was, and maybe if she had had longer to adjust to that normalcy this blow wouldn’t have hit as hard, but she hadn’t had long enough. Now everything was flipped upside down and all she wanted to be was not an alpha.

A knock sounded on her door and she straightened. Her crisis could wait. She was still a commanding officer and she still had men to take care of. Taking care of those she viewed as her family was something that her and this new alpha part of her could agree on at least.

“Come in,” she called, setting the pen she’d been holding to little effect down on her desk to give whoever was knocking her full attention.

Alura opened the door and walked in quietly. She closed it behind her and strode confidently to the guest chairs Lucy kept in front of her desk and sat down.

“Alura, what can I do for you?” Lucy felt herself relax. Alura’s landing had caused some major headaches for her, but she had gained a woman who could keep up with her word for word on law and policy and suggest solutions that Lucy would never have thought of on her own. She had been an invaluable asset gained, but in a few short weeks Lucy felt like she had gained a friend too.

“I just needed a place away from chaos of the main floor for a while. Controlling my senses before all this was a work in progress, but the added chaos of alpha and beta scents is making it more difficult than normal. Your office is always quiet.”

Lucy pushed herself up out of her desk chair and circled around to the empty chair beside Alura. She squeeze Alura’s shoulder on her way past, enjoying the the other woman’s warmth against her fingers.  

“You know you’re welcome here at any time you need to get away.”

Alura smiled, warm but small and restrained, nothing like the bright smiles of Kara and Astra. Lucy recognized the kind of mask developed for a courtroom and never really shed even after the case was done, not completely anyway.

“Of course, that’s why I came.”

They sat in silence for a few minutes, Alura closing her eyes and basking in the silence that the lead lining and heavy duty soundproofing brought her. Lucy focused on the other woman, otherworldly in her beauty, how good she smelled, the color of the robes from Krypton that she couldn’t yet part with, anything to keep her from thinking about her own predicament.

“Have you finished filling out the paperwork to send off to your other government agencies?” Alura asked after a bit.

Lucy shook her head. “No, I’m trying I just--” She didn’t have the words to complete the sentence.

“It must be difficult to try and find a way to distance yourself enough from all this to put down just the pure facts that everyone needs.”

Lucy breathed out a sigh of relief, sitting forward until her elbows were on her knees and her hands were over her face. Alura got her even without words, thank god. All those classes on logic and reason and law and yet her brain still couldn’t sort everything that had happened in the last few days all into neat boxes so she could construct her argument. There always was a point at which people just couldn’t take anymore and Lucy, it seemed at found hers.

“Yeah, yeah it is. There’s just a lot of think about right now, too much for me even after the hell that was law school. And basic training for that matter.”

Alura reached out and gently pulled one of Lucy’s hands from her face. She held it gently, still afraid that she was going to break anything that she touched, but wanting to comfort. “If you need help with that I can write a draft for your approval. I’m sure there are many more things you have to do for the DEO that don’t involve dealing with this new alpha/beta/omega crisis. Time to process is just as important as everything else, Lucy.”

Lucy lifted up just enough to smile at Alura. “Yeah, I think, yeah, that would be good.” She relaxed back into the chair and sighed. “There are some requisitions I need to sort out that will probably be twice as hard to push through now with all this so everything has to be in perfect order.”

“Then I’ll get the tablet that Alex has given me for research purposes and type out a draft for you while you do that.”

Lucy squeezed Alura’s hand. “Thank you, Alura, you’re a lifesaver.”

“Well, I wouldn’t go that far, I don’t think you were in any real danger.”

Lucy laughed and once she started she couldn’t quite stop. It was just one of those things after so long being serious. Her body needed the release. And so she laughed until she cried and Alura looked very put out at being laughed at.

“Sorry,” Lucy managed once she could pull herself together. “It’s an idiom, Alura. So no I wasn’t in any real danger, but it just means that you’re helping me out a lot.”

“Ah.” Alura’s lip still jutted out just a bit, and oh that was where Kara got that expression. On Kara it was adorable, on Alura, well, Lucy had trouble breathing.

“Sorry, just been high stress, sometimes you laugh at anything.” She shrugged. “But I’m going to start those requisition forms if you want to grab your tablet.” She stood from her guest chair and walked back around her desk again.

Alura stood herself and nodded, walking off at a normal pace. Her super speed hadn’t yet come under enough control that she trusted herself zipping around. Lucy didn’t mind. It meant less papers were scattered in the backdraft. She almost collapsed onto her chair. God, this was going to be a long week, a longer month, and she didn’t even want to think about the year as a whole.

She pulled the rec forms forward and decided to think about numbers instead.

 

--

 

Lucy braced herself as the phone rang. The president was calling them. She wanted the details of what had happened to them first hand. J’onn was standing beside her, Alura on her other side, and Alex beside J’onn. Between the four of them Lucy thought that they could answer all the questions that the president had. Alura knew everything there was to know about the dynamics, Alex had all the reports from the scientists, J’onn knew of a few others species who had the same breeding system but slightly different manifestations. Lucy didn't know what she brought to the party other than being the other co-director. She had no extra knowledge from what the others had told her. But here she was anyway.

J’onn hit the speaker button. “Madame president, always nice to see your name on the caller ID.”

President Marsdin laughed. “I know you'd have to be sarcastic for that to make any sense, Hank. We never talk over coffee about the weather.”

The corners of J’onn’s mouth twitched up. “Well, it is California, there isn't much to talk about with the weather.”

“No I suppose not.” the was a pause and then an audible sigh. “Hank, what the hell is going on. How am I supposed to explain to the American public why some women grew penises and some men's shrunk. My sides are telling me those men can now physically have children. Are they serious?”

“I'm afraid they are. The alien threat you were briefed about, the Ixenians, as you know their battle strategy is to cause maximum chaos. They changed our DNA to alter how humans breed. Fortunately for us Kryptonians had a similar reproductive system so they are educating us on the ins and outs, and there are also a few aliens who have settled in Earth who have some additional knowledge.”

Paper rustled in the background. “And your scientists?”

“We're already on it ma’am,” Alex said, speaking up. “We've isolated the genes that they've changed. It's a good portion of the genome, a little over a fourth, since both genes involved in coding our reproductive system, senses, and glands were changed. We now have a better sense of smell, as well as produce a wider range of pheromones.”

Yeah, that they definitely could. Too many people in a room now was enough to send Lucy into sensory overload. She was going to have to talk to Alura or Kara to get some tips on managing it. She didn't know how she was going to go out into the city with millions of people. Maybe she would just put Vick's under her nose.

“Any word on whether they can alter it back?”

“No, not yet. But the sort of technology to make sure that we aren't going to screw up everything even more is going to be slow to develop. Every time we changed something we're going to have to test it exhaustively to make sure we aren't killing ourselves by doing it.”

“And since your species does not have the technology for such a wide ranging beam, the change would be slow even when if was implanted. It might be the next generation before it takes effect,” Alura chimed in.

“I don't recognize your voice. Who are you exactly?” The president asked.

“That's Alura In-Ze ma'am, the Kryptonian we've been speaking with for information regarding our current state,” Lucy said, glancing over at Alura.

“Ah, I remember the report about her. Supergirl’s mother.”

“Yes, that would be me.” Alura nodded at the phone like the president could see her.

“And what is your view of the situation? How do you think we'll fair?”

Alura glanced at Lucy, unsure. Lucy nodded silently. Being honest here wouldn't hurt. They all knew deep down that this was not going to go well for the world.

“I think that even with a quick broadcast with all the information that people would need to know about their altered states, it will not go well. Humans are prudish. They won't just believe that they'll be taken over by a primal need to mate. There will be a large portion that ignore all advice. And those who do will be in danger of being raped or killed in the chaos. On the lighter side of things you'll have people who get pregnant without meaning to who will not want the children. And if it's an omega mating with an alpha, there could be multiple children from one pregnancy. Your government is either going to have to force the states into relaxing abortion restrictions of face a generation of children that are not wanted. You need a Supreme Court ruling with stronger language than that of Roe vs Wade that makes sure no state can slowly chip away at the right for an abortion. But I know there is no way to get such a thing in the time we have before the first heats and ruts start. Judicial matters do not work that quickly.”

Another heavier sigh came across the phone. “That's what I expected. That and somehow this is going to turn into some sort of one gender is better than the other. That will most likely happen after the first wave of trouble, though.”

Lucky had an idea. “If you want, Madame President, Alura and I could draft up some preliminary protection laws for each gender and submit them to your staff.”

Alura nodded. “We had such laws on Krypton, so I will know fair places to start.”

“That most assuredly can't hurt. Get them to my people as soon as you can. If I have any other questions I'll have my staff call you.”

“Thank you Madame President,” J’onn said.

“Thank me when this has quieted down, Hank. Have a good evening.” the line clicked off a second later.

J’onn rubbed a hand over his face. “Both of you get started as soon as possible on those laws. God knows that having something on its way through congress already when things start to go bad will not hurt at all.”

“Yes sir,” Lucy said, turning to Alura.

“And Alex get to changing genes in cells as soon as possible. We need to know if there’s any hope at all of reversing everything.”

“Even if there isn’t do you think we should say anything while everything is so chaotic?” Alex asked.

J’onn shook his head. “No, not while everyone is up in arms. They’ll need hope. But we need to know where to divert our resources, if we need to pull any other labs in on this across the country. If it isn’t possible then we can turn our attention elsewhere.”

Alex nodded. “Makes sense. I’ll get right on it.”

J’onn waved them off. “Go, another twelve hours and then you’re all getting at least a few hours in the bunkroom. I can’t have my best agents and one of my few experts on alpha/beta/omega dynamics losing their edge.”

They all nodded and filed out of the room obediently.

 

--

 

Lucy stifled a yawn and read over the draft she was writing about employers having to provide birth control to all omegas, both male and female. She bit her lip debating on whether to add female betas as well. The right could be forced to see the necessity of universal birth control after the first wave of heats and ruts, but betas wouldn’t be privy to that, really, unless they were the nearest person to an alpha in rut. It was better to have a law that covered most of the problem, since omegas could have and almost always did have more than one baby at a time while betas usually only had one, but a little change and she could cover the entire problem. She dropped her head into her hands and groaned.

“Are you having any more luck?” Lucy asked Alura without looking up.

Lucy felt a warm hand on her shoulder, rubbing small circles. She relaxed into the touch. Hours and hours of staring at her computer screen had been mind numbing, but Alura had been at her side through the whole thing, a comforting warm presence by her shoulder. Lucy just wanted to wrap her arms around Alura and bury her face in the other woman’s neck and--

She shook herself out of that thought. She’d had a couple of those slip ups. Lucy understood that was her alpha starting to come through, but she still wasn’t exactly comfortable with it. She’d always had great impulse control and it felt like she was losing a part of herself every time she slipped like that. It was a side of herself she didn’t know, and nearing thirty she did not like that one bit. She was supposed to know who she was by now, damn it.

“I don’t know what luck has to do with it, but I’m making progress, yes.”

Lucy’s brow scrunched a bit. How was Alura making progress? A bill on discrimination in the workplace that covered all genders and prevented anyones’ status from being used to coerce them into sex or anything else along the same lines would be tricky to word and even trickier to make sure that it would get approval from the Republicans. Those old windbags were going to have a field day with all of this. She could already hear them spouting off at the mouth about how they needed to let the people figure it out themselves and not let big government dictate everything for them. Snakes, all of them.

“Let me see?” Lucy held a hand out for Alura’s tablet.

Alura handed it over readily. “It’s only about halfway done, I believe. There are a few more important things I need to cover to make sure there are no loopholes.”

Lucy skimmed it quickly. Her eyes got a little wider with every word. Holy shit this was beautifully crafted. Alura wasn’t that familiar with American politics, how in the world had she managed something like this just on a knowledge of their laws and little else.

“Wow, Alura, is this a beautiful piece of legislation. How did you know what to put in to draw people from both sides of the aisle?” She looked up at the other woman and her breath caught at the pleased smile that Alura wore.

“Kryptonian and American politics have their parallels. Reading all the federal regulations on the books also helped me gain an insight into what sort of bills pass in differently controlled political eras. It was easy enough from there.”

“Wait, you’ve read the entire US legal code? When did you have time?” Lucy felt like she had to pick up her jaw off the floor. It had taken her three years of studying her ass off and classes and internships and just plain experience in the field before she had known enough to be competent. It had taken even longer to be actually good.

Alura looked away, smile fading quickly. Lucy had to stop herself from doing anything she could think of to get the smile back. She couldn’t quite stop herself, though, from reaching out and resting a hand on Alura’s forearm.

“I haven’t been sleeping well. Law is dry enough that after a while it lulls me to sleep.” She curled into herself just a bit.

“What’s been wrong?” Lucy asked. If it was something she could fix she would do it in a heartbeat. This was her omega. Of course she would.

“The Phantom Zone stays with you long after you leave it, Lucy.” Alura looked back her and her eyes were haunted.

Lucy couldn’t drive the memories of the Phantom Zone from Alura’s head. All she could do was squeeze Alura’s forearm and offer what comfort she could.

“I know nothing about the Phantom Zone other than it’s a timeless hellhole, but I do know about things staying with you for a long time after you leave them. Being in combat is like that.”

Alura nodded slowly. “Astra was always haunted when she came back from her tours on worlds in upheaval. I suppose it is much the same. It stays with me even when I don’t want it to.”

“PTSD is a bitch.” It had taken a few years of counseling for her to be able to truly cope. She was mostly fine now, but she had her bad nights. Alura, well, she didn’t have counseling to go to, and it was all still so fresh. Lucy wondered how the woman wasn’t ripping apart at the seams. Maybe she should look into some options for Alura just so she could talk to someone.

“That is it.” Alura moved a hand on top of Lucy’s and held it for a long, long moment. “But as of now my sleeplessness has benefitted us in some way,” she finally says.

“Yes, but if you need to we have red sun lamps and medicine that will make you sleep without dreams.”

Alura nodded. “I’ll keep that in mind.” She gently took her tablet from Lucy’s other hand. “I think I need another half an hour on this one to wrap everything up then I came move on to trying to hash out a law for alphas forcing themselves on others.”

Lucy saw it for what it was. Alura wanted to get back to work and forget the horrors her mind held. She could respect that. She gave Alura’s hand one last squeeze before turning to her own work once more.

 

--

 

J’onn came in a couple hours later. “Twelve hours are up, to the bunk room with both of you.”

Lucy stood and stretched. Her back cracked all the way up and she grunted. God she hated sitting around all day, even if it was necessary. She hit save on her document and then closed her computer. Alura finished off the paragraph she was on before doing the same. J’onn nodded once before stepping from the room.

“I’ll send someone to wake you in four hours. Make the most of it.”

Lucy wanted to groan at the short amount of sleep, but being in the military had taught her that any amount of sleep was a good amount of sleep. She walked toward the door.

“Come on, I’ll show you the good bunk room.” Lucy smiled over her shoulder at Alura.

“Is the normal one not adequate?” Alura asked, flowing Lucy out.

“It is, but this one is better, smaller, you get more privacy and it has its own bathroom so there isn’t sharing the locker room going on. We save it as a treat for the higher ups and agents who really need a boost in morale or, whatever really.”

Lucy led her down a few halls and up a flight of stairs before they stood outside one of the many innocuous grey doors in the DEO. She opened the room and stepped inside. Lucy looked around for a second before smiling.

“Room’s empty, so it’ll just be us at least for the first bit.”

Alura stepped into a room with six sets of bunkbeds, three against each wall. Lucy walked over and collapsed on the closest one. She could fall asleep right then and there, but didn’t. She should at least take off her boots if nothing else. Washing her face and brushing her teeth would be the best, but she wasn’t sure she had the energy for that. Maybe one of the two, not both. Teeth probably would be best.

She pushed herself up from the bed again and walked over to the bathroom. It had two showers and a double vanity and a toilet sealed off in its own room. Lucy opened one of the drawers to find a pack of cheap plastic toothbrushes, like they kept in the locker room for agents unexpectedly pulling a long shift. She grabbed a little packet of toothpaste and set to work.

Alura walked in a minute later, and looked around. “Do they keep towels in here as well?”

Lucy nodded and gestured at the cabinets under the sink with her leg.

“Ah, thank you.”

Lucy spit out the toothpaste and stood again. “Welcome.” It’s so domestic and normal that it throws Lucy off after a day of the world being turned on its head. How did life keep turning like this? How did the sun rise and set when those it shown on were in the middle of chaos? She’d never had an answer for that, but now. Now it bothered her even more. This was bigger than anything else that had affected her, or even the planet, before. Even hours later her brain was still trying to absorb the news.

She shook herself and bent down, rinsing out her mouth and heading back into the bunk room while Alura headed into the shower. Lucy sat down and took off her boots and socks. She looked back at the bathroom. Her pants were so fucking restrictive now she really wanted to take them off to be comfortable while she slept, but honestly, she didn’t want to see herself with a dick straining against her panties, and she certainly didn’t want Alura to see her like that. She had tried not to think about it when she’d had to go to the bathroom earlier, but staring at it like that, totally different thing. She couldn’t avoid it.

So pants to sleep in was the way to go. Maybe tomorrow she’d try to borrow a pair of pants from one of the guys. Surely they would have more room in the crotch so she wasn’t suffocating. And then she was going to have to buy boxers as soon as J’onn let her have a day off. Panties definitely weren’t going to work anymore. She almost pouted at that, she had some damn cute underwear. But that was a ridiculous worry, so she laid down instead and stared up at the bunk above her.

Lucy shut her eyes and tried to drift off. Her brain was too active, though. She thought of laws they needed to map out, of the redesigns the DEO would have to do to operate with a changed staff, of just how many days she had before the dick in her pants actually became something she’d used. She didn’t want to find out, not really, even if a small part of her was curious what it was like to fuck people instead of being fucked.

She flopped onto her side and groaned. Even when she got time off she couldn’t catch a real break. She dug her fist into her eyes, rubbing and yawning. She was tired, if only she could actually stop thinking. Damn her mind, it was good for so much, but it was pain in the ass sometimes too.

Alura emerged from the bathroom, hair damp and only in the tank top and loose pants that Kara had lent her mother. Lucy opens her eyes in time to take the sight in and the alpha inside her purrs in appreciation. She bit the inside of her lip and looked away. No, she was not going to think about how hot Alura looked right that second. That was not what a co-director of the DEO was supposed to be doing right now. She needed to distract herself.

“How long do you think it will be before the first people start going into heat and rut?” she asked.

Alura climbed onto the top bunk above Lucy, foregoing the power of flight for a four foot elevation. She peeked at Lucy over the side after she had settled.

“I would think the hormones would need a chance to build up in your system first. I don’t know how long that will take, but from what I remember from my health classes the hormones of most stay pretty much level until about three days before a heat or rut and then they start increasing at a rapid rate until full heat or rut is finally triggered. For all of you since your bodies weren’t at normal levels to begin with, I’ll say longer than three days but probably no more than a week really.”

Lucy swallowed. It had already been two days and change since they had been changed. She could lose control over herself as soon as tomorrow. That was a startling reality.

“Will there be any warning that we’re going into heat soon?”

“It varied from person to person, but the most common indicator was people felt hot for a few hours before they really began a heat in earnest. For alphas they tend to get a bit more aggressive near their ruts. There are more early warnings, of course, some omegas start to produce copious amounts of lubrication or suddenly find everyone more attractive. Alphas voices change get deeper, erections are set off more easily, things of that sort.”

“So if you aren’t paying attention you could miss the signs.” Lucy’s hands are clenched by her side, fingernails digging painfully into her palms.

“You could, but after a few heats or ruts most people can recognize the signs and can get themselves to a safe space in time.”

“But this first time?”

Alura looked away. “I predict it will strike quite a few people unaware even with the warnings and information the government is going to issue.”

Suddenly Lucy was tired mentally and physically. She figured on the worst case scenario, was planning for it, but to hear that it was the most likely scenario, that was not comforting.

“Do you think it would be better to keep the agents here at base or send them home?”

“If they have a partner, they should definitely be sent home, but the those without one, might be better to keep them here. If they are locked down they can’t go looking for omegas in the wrong place at the wrong time.”

“And the few omegas on staff?”

“They would have to be locked somewhere air tight for them to be safe here. In fact it would really be best if everyone was locked in their own cell so the alphas don’t hurt each other fighting and don’t go looking for the omegas they know are there somewhere.”

Lucy thought about that for a second. The number of DEO agents and the number of cells definitely weren’t going to match. Right now they were at half capacity as far as prisoners went. That definitely wasn’t enough if everyone stayed. How many of their agents were in relationships and therefore should actually go home? That would reduce the disparity, but Lucy still didn’t think it was enough.

“And if we wouldn’t have enough space to do that?”

Alura looked grim, frowning, the shadows in the darkened room deepening on her face.“Then their homes might be the safest places for them, but not for others. I have no doubt your agents are disciplined, but they aren’t prepared for this.”

“Great. Just great. We’ll keep as many here as possible, but we’ll have to make cuts somewhere.”

“The younger they are the more they’ll be affected. I would start from your youngest agents and work your way up.”

Lucy nodded. “Makes sense.” A thought had her barking out a laugh.

“What?” Alura asked, brow furrowing just like Kara’s did when she was confused or frustrated.

“Just thinking about where we would put you, Astra, and Kara in the age rankings. Biologically you’re all younger, but the amount of time you’ve physically been alive is rather large.”

Alura huffed out a breath. “That is ridiculous. It’s biological age that matters the most, and I believe you knew that. But I think Kara, Astra, and I should be left out of the cells anyway. We are the ones most prepared to ride it out without consequences. Astra and Kara will probably have triggered sympathetic heat and rut, but those won’t be as strong as they would be following their natural body’s cycle.”

Worry stabbed through Lucy. “But what about you? It’s been years for you if you were altered to be a beta at eighteen.”

“My heats started at fifteen and I had them every three months for three years. I’ve had practice, I will be fine. Perhaps not in the best shape, but I know how to handle myself. Remember, I did transform into a beta and no one questioned it. If they had known I was going through a heat I couldn’t have done that nearly as easily.”

Lucy calmed down a bit at that. “So you and Kara would be fine riding it out together?”

Alura nodded. “Obviously alphas and omegas who are related to each other aren’t affected by the pheromones.”

“Good, well, at least you both will be safe.” Lucy gripped the bars of the bed behind her, fingers having a hard time uncurling to get around the bar. She felt the sting of the bar hitting her palm. She’d punctured the skin then with her nails. Ouch. She thought of what she would most likely do. She would give the space in the cells to her men and she would go home. And then who knew if she could resist bursting out of her apartment to do god knows what. She shivered. This was a true nightmare.

“Kara could lock you into your own apartment so you were safe as well,” Alura said, looking down at Lucy, her hair hanging down around her face now that she had shifted a bit more of the bed.

“Maybe. It’s something at least.” She would take what she could get. She knew that her training could bust her out of a locked apartment given enough time, but she didn’t know if she could do that during a rut. She could only hope that she couldn’t.

Alura floated gently off the bed and down to Lucy’s level. “Don’t worry so much, Lucy. Sleep. We can continue figuring out the problems in the morning. For now the important thing to know is that we will keep as many people safe as we can. That’s all we really can do, really.” She reached out and took Lucy’s hand and squeezed.

Lucy looked up at the floating woman and the impulse shot through her to hug Alura. She debated on it for half a second before she pulled the woman in and wrapped her free arm around Alura for a long second before letting go. She gulped at the lingering scent of Alura around her. God the woman smelled far too good.

“Thank you,” she said, clearing her throat. “You’re right. Sleep should be our first priority right now. We can’t be sharp without it and we don’t know when we’re going to get to sleep again.”

Alura nodded, squeezed Lucy’s hand one last time, and then floated back up to her bunk. “Goodnight then, Lucy.”

“Night Alura.” Lucy stared at the bunk above her for a long time before her eyes finally shut and she slipped into sleep.

Chapter Text

Three days after the beam hit them Cat gets a call, a restricted number on her personal cell phone. Normally she wouldn’t even give calls like the the time of day. To be quite honest half the time she blocked the number and reported it to the police. It was probably just another phone scam yet again. But this time she felt like she needed to pick it up.

“Hello?” Cat asked in her sharpest tone.

“Cat, glad to see you’re maintaining your edge,” a voice said.

Cat thought for a moment. She’d heard the voice before. It was someone of influence. Ah, the President. She pulled the phone away from her face just to make sure it was actually on and she wasn’t dreaming all of this. God knew a lot of strange things had been happening to her recently, all since that beam had enveloped everyone in a green glow and then they’d spent the better part of a day curled up in pain. No one still has the clear story on that. The government had said it was working towards an explanation and not to panic.

If Cat had to guess, and when she guessed she was always right of course, they had finally figured out what was going on and wants Cat to spread whatever news they had found out. Cat would do it in a heartbeat. Not only was it the right thing to do, but it did benefit her too. The numbers of hits to her website would drive ad revenue through the roof.

“Madam President, good to hear from you,” Cat said smoothly. “I wondered for a bit if they had taken you to a bunker to be locked down until all this was over.”

“Mmm, well, for a while there it was uncertain whether the secret service was going to force me into a back of a van against my will supposedly for my own safety. They managed to refrain, thankfully.”

Cat snorted. “Good for them.” She paused for half a second just to separate the two thoughts. “I know you can’t just be calling to tell me the president is not in a bunker. What is really going on?”

“No, small talk is pleasant but not something we have the time for right at this moment. Check your inbox there will be an email there that details all that we have found out about the beam and what it has done to everyone. I need you to get the word out as fast as possible, the consequences of the transformation are about to manifest themselves and we need the people to take preventative measures.”

Cat immediately reached for her mouse, clicking until she was in her email and reading over the document that the president had sent her. She scowled at her screen. If all this was right, well, it sounded like a bad science fiction book really, not something that she would ever read or that should ever rationally happen. She pinched at the bridge of her nose, trying to stave off the migraine she felt coming on.

“Are you sure this is all accurate? You have to admit it sounds a bit hard to believe.”

The president hummed. “It does, but I assure you it really is what is happening. Tell me, Cat, over the past few days what have you noticed?”

“Well I can smell everyone now, which thrills me so greatly, knowing exactly what the unwashed masses smell like.”

“What do the smells tell you about each person?”

Cat thought about it for a few seconds, considering. She hadn’t really thought about it other than cringing at the fact that she could smell people, their real scent, not just perfume or cologne or god forbid, B.O. Thinking about it now, though, there were some commonalities.

“Some people smell...quite frankly the only word I have for it is aggressive. It’s what I imagine a go-getter would smell like. There are also people who smell like nothing really, or something so unremarkable you forget about it the second you stop smelling it. Then there are people who smell like...home I suppose, baby powder, and cinnamon at Thanksgiving and all those sappy things.” Her lip curled at the thought.

“And do you know what you smell like?”

“I most assuredly should smell like the French perfume that is specifically crafted for me. If I don’t there are some explanations that need to be had.”

There was a long silence. The president was waiting her out. Wonderful, she was wasting the time of the leader of the free world. She was sure Olivia Marsden had other things to do than leading her to an answer. Damn her conscious. If she were truly a soulless businesswoman she could just sit here until the President was called away for something truly urgent. She thought that it wouldn’t take long, really, not in times like these, but.

She sighed. “When I come home and inhale what I can smell is Carter who still smells like a child and nothing more and hot buttered rum and fresh laundry.”

“And based on what you’re reading, what exactly does that tell you.”

“That it’s easy to tell alpha, beta, and omega apart by scent alone, that children won’t smell like anything until they hit a certain age, and that I’m an omega.” Wonderful, as if it wasn’t already hard enough for a woman to make it in the business world, the board was going to have a field day when they found out about her being an omega. She had a feeling that one of them would twist that around to say she was too weak to be a head of a company. What a nightmare because if one of her idiot board members could think of that, it wouldn’t take much for anyone else to draw those lines. Another way of discrimination. Wonderful, just what the world needed at this very moment.

“Yes, exactly. Things may be unbelievable, yes, but reading them combined with what you’ve experienced you know it’s true.”

“You’re right.” The words felt like acid tearing up her throat. She hated admitting anyone else was right. Well, really only in certain instances where she didn’t want to admit the truth, and this was most definitely one of them. “I’ll put together a broadcast to go out by this afternoon. I assume you’re making an announcement sometime soon to let the nation know that you’ve figured it all out and I’m just a secondary news provider that’s helping to spread information?”

“Indeed. We’re on live in thirty minutes.”

“Then I have a deadline to meet.”

“Yes, you do. I look forward to reading what you have to say.”

“Thank you, Madam President.”

“Good luck, Cat, I believe we all need it.”

“And so we do.” She pulled the phone from her face and hung up.

Cat looked up at Kara’s desk and sighed. Of course she wasn’t there. She hadn’t been there much of the last three days. Not like Cat didn’t understand why. Supergirl was needed everywhere in the face of rising panic not knowing just what had happened to them three days ago. Mostly life had gone on, but there had been some smaller riots and looting in the face of the unknown. It was like Myriad all over again, really, nothing had gone horribly wrong in the aftermath, but it had kept Kara busy for days and days afterwards.

“Kiera!” She decided to shout just to see if Kara was anywhere in the building. If she was, she’d come running. If she wasn’t then Cat would have a definitive answer at least.

“Miss Grant, you called?” Kara popped out of seemingly nowhere, hair askew and a smudge of soot on her cheek. Lord above the girl was so bad at keeping secrets.

“I did. I need you to get the writing team together and I need the production crew to prep the set downstairs. I’ve just been contacted by the president personally and she wants the news of what’s happened to us spread as far and wide as possible. Since we’re an international media company I think we can handle that, don’t you?” She gave Kara her signature glare, but the woman didn’t need the hint, of course she didn’t after this long working for her.

“Ok then I’ll call Mandy and Bill and get everything started on that, Miss Grant. Is there anything else you need right now?”

Cat waved the girl off and Kara walked back to her desk, already dialing on her cell. Cat turned back to her screen and read the document in detail. The world was now made up of alpha, betas, and omegas who each had their own function in the reproduction of society. That she’d gotten from her quick glance through. Scent was the easiest way to tell what classification everyone was without getting a bit invasive. Alphas tended to be stronger than omegas and betas. This all made sense, but where was the really important news? If the president had wanted her to broadcast as soon as possible there had to be something more important than just these basic facts.

She kept reading until she reached the section titled “mating cycles” and then just stopped. Alphas and omegas went to mating frenzies where if they weren’t careful they lost themselves. And if the predictions of the eggheads at the White House were right those cycles were supposed to start today now that the hormones had built up in their systems. It would be akin to a child hitting puberty for the first time, really. The adults on the planet were already of sexual maturity and their new reproductive systems were just catching up with that, and therefore they would go into heat and rut all around the same time. Everybody would go into cycle the same time for a great while, until the natural cycle variations split them up enough that it would be more of continuum. They had no idea how long that would take for that to happen of course. Everyone would have to stay inside for the next week at least in order to cut down on assault and rape.

Cat reached for her top drawer and pulled out a bottle of painkillers and her Lexapro. Her heart was beating fast in her chest. She had faced down disasters the scope of which most people couldn’t imagine, but this, this truly did terrify her. Not being in complete control of herself? It was her worst nightmare. Pair that with the possibility of being assaulted and her anxiety did backflips while screaming.

This was definitely what the President wanted her to emphasize. People needed to get supplies for a week in, hospitals needed to rewrite their schedules to put all betas on shift for a week, school needed to be cancelled, a million other things needed to be done in less than twenty-four hours. God knew if they said people would start today they may already be too late for some people.

She scrolled the bottom of the section and read over the signs of the onset of a heat or rut and then stood. She strode out to Kara’s desk. Her assistant was on the phone with someone, smiling up at Cat and trying to hurry the other person off the phone now that Cat was in front of her. Cat did her a favor and took the receiver from her hand and slammed it down.

“You can apologize for that later, but I need everyone in my office now not later. We need to be on the air as soon as possible. I don’t care if they’re on a lunch break or if they have a meeting scheduled. They need to be here now or they can consider themselves fired.”

Kara looked up at Cat, a bit of fear in her eyes. “Is whatever happening that bad?”

Cat looked over Kara for a long second. She had a feeling Kara knew exactly how bad it was. No doubt that shadowy organization Agent Scully and Kara worked with were somehow associated with the beam. She leaned forward like she was telling Kara something confidential and took a deep breath. Kara smelled like an alpha, like ozone and the lingering scent of rain, aggressive and yet soothing, a storm in woman form, but she didn’t smell as...new. Cat didn’t have any other way to describe it. It was almost as if Kara had been an alpha longer than the three days.

That thought held her up for just a second.  Where exactly had the government gotten the information on being alpha/beta/omega so quickly? She didn’t think scientists would actually be able to generate that information so quickly. God knew most science research moved slower than National City traffic on a holiday weekend. They would have had to have someone who already was something like what humans were now to have such a comprehensive grasp on what was going on. Was Kara that person? Because she smelled alpha and as far as Cat knew from the reports alpha women had grown penises, but she had seen Kara in some tight clothing and there was no way she was packing. She definitely wasn’t today, either, she was in skinny jeans tight enough to make Cat actually stumble a bit over her words. Her assistant was entirely too attractive.

That wasn’t the point, though, the point was that she smelled like an alpha but didn’t have a dick. Maybe Kryptonians were different in that way, but the same in every other way such that Kara could actually advise them on what needed to be done. Kara wouldn’t ever tell her if it was true though. No, she’d panic and look like an adorable deer in the headlights and sputter an excuse about how she wasn’t Supergirl once more.

Ugh, if only Cat could go back in time and tell herself she was an idiot for trying to fire the girl. She had good reasons of course, but Cat had thought about it after that little twin debacle. People who had high pressure jobs needed to get away from their jobs at some point to keep from breaking. CatCo was that for Kara, she just hadn’t seen it until afterwards. Maybe if she had seen it, Kara would have told her by now.

Instead she just met Kara’s eyes, only a few seconds having passed, and told her, “I think you know just how serious it is, Kara.”

And if anything got the girl to move urgently it was the use of her real name. “Yes, Miss Grant I’ll round everyone up right now and get the production team setting up as soon as humanly possible.”

Cat nodded. “Good.” And then she walked back into her office. A migraine was pounding away full force behind her eyes now. This was not the day for that. She would just ignore it, but god it would be a long day for more than one reason.

 

--

 

Cat sat in front of the camera, calm and collected as always on the outside, with her heart beating triple time in her chest. She’d always felt this way when she was going on air, even when it was an everyday thing. It was the addicting part of being on the air, this thrill. Some days she missed it, but the thrill of outwitting businessmen who thought they knew it all was much headier honestly.

For now, as the director counted down until live, this little jaunt back on air was to get attention. She hadn’t been on the air as a host in years. If this wasn’t a shock to the system to get people talking about the things she said, nothing would be. If anything else her competitors would speculate why this had driven her back on the air and would link back to the broadcast. She didn’t care how the people accessed it as long as they did as quickly as possible, and for that they needed shock factor of some sort.

The on the air light flipped on and Cat took a deep breath before launching into her talk.

“Good morning, National City. A few minutes ago the White House held a press conference addressing just what the beam from three days ago did to us. All major news outlets have been emailed a copy of what they went over today, and at the end of this broadcast the full text will be available to all on catco.com, but for now here are the highlights.”

She watched on a side screen as a window appeared beside her shoulder ready to list off what she said. “The beam altered our DNA, mostly centered around our reproductive pathways. This shifted us from the so called gender binary we are familiar with to something called, alpha, beta, and omega. Some of you might be familiar with the terms since they’ve been associated with wolf pack hierarchies for years. Alphas, be they male or female will have penises and all the requisite parts that go with them. This means that both male and female alphas can father children but not bear them. Omegas both male and female have shifted so that they can bear children, often multiple children at a time. And betas are for all intents and purposes much like we were before, males father children and female betas have them.”

And that was the end of the easy information. She had a feeling though, that that information would still be repeated into the ground until everyone really had accepted what had happened. This next part, oh it wouldn’t just be repeated, it would be argued about and would be the source of legislation and who knew what else for perhaps years to come.

“As a consequence of these new genders, humans will not go through mating cycles, named ruts for alphas and heats for omegas. Betas will not have either, though they can be slightly affected if a rutting alpha or in heat omega is near them. During these ruts and heats a person will experience an overwhelming need to have sex with someone. If a person is not careful it will not matter who, or if that other person is willing, it will only matter that it is someone to have sex with. Since the whole of humanity was turned at the same time the theory is that these heats and ruts will start today through any time in the next four days. These phenomenon last about a week at a time for each and will occur every three months. At this time it is recommended that everyone return to their homes if they are an alpha or an omega and lock themselves in to ride out these cycles. Emergency personnel should only be staffed by betas as to avoid assault.”

Cat could sense the tension in her staff. Most of the production crew knew she was going to make an announcement about the beam, but they hadn’t known exactly what. It had been a nightmare to get her writing team together and started on drafts for the website and radio shows and other CatCo news networks. She could write her own broadcast, but after hers ended there needed to be more, an endless barrage until everyone heard and everyone took it seriously. The fact that there were consequences to that beam that were more wide reaching than ‘some people just have dicks now’ was scary, the fact that it was the loss of control was more terrifying still.

“At this time it is unknown if current birth control will work for those individuals who choose to ride out their cycles with willing partners. It’s advised that other protection be used while scientists figure out this problem. Omegas are particularly susceptible to pregnancy when in heat, so this is very important.”

Cat looked down for a fleeting second before looking back up at the camera. “I know what I just told you was not comforting news. Yes, right now we are forever changed as a species with a breeding system that we don’t fully understand. Yes there are consequences that we will have to face as a result of the beam, but they are not consequences that we cannot handle. We will learn, we will grow, we will adapt like we have done for thousands of years. So go home, be safe, and at the end of all this we will rise above. Thank you ladies and gentlemen for your attention and stay tuned to CatCo News for more updates as we get them.”

A second later the on air sign flashed off and Cat sat back, drained. Kara bustled up to her, holding a Noonan’s cup. Cat had never been more grateful to see a cup of coffee in her life. She reached out and took it as soon as Kara got within arm’s length and took the first sip. She could already feel some of her migraine lifting just from the placebo effect alone.

“Wow, Miss Grant, that ending. I think it really brought everyone a lot of hope.” Kara smiled brightly as always.

Cat looked up at the girl, lit up like the sun that she got her powers from. And for a long second she ached, oh god did she ache to have this woman as her own. It didn’t help that Kara was standing close enough that Cat could smell her. Ozone and rain shouldn’t smell inviting, but somehow it did on Kara. Perhaps she made everything sweeter.

She pinched her own leg hard. Now wasn’t the time for these thoughts. Never was the time for these thoughts, though they had been happening more and more in the last year since Kara had become Supergirl. But she wouldn’t do that to Kara. Kara had more power than the whole world, but here where Cat held dominion, she held more power than Kara. Oh they were more balanced than they had been a year ago, but still. It wasn’t fair to Kara so she wouldn’t.

“Thank you, Kiera, but the day definitely isn’t over yet. We’ve got all the other networks to broadcast on, we’ve got newspaper stories to write and edit by print deadline, we’ve got online articles to publish. We aren’t done giving them information and hope yet.” She pushed back her chair and stood up.

“Of course, Miss Grant, right away, I’ll start setting up meetings with the heads of the networks.”

“See that you do.” Cat stepped around the woman and headed back up to her office. She needed two minutes of peace in her office before the first of the meetings started. She needed to gather herself and then she would be read to face the day again. The high of a broadcast was always a bitch to come off of, but she had learned to deal years ago. She would be fine. They all would be. They had to.

 

--

 

Cat sat at her desk, time nearing midnight, trying to get the last bit of work done. She had already arranged to have CatCo headed by her vice president of broadcasting, Amanda, for the week since Amanda was a beta. Everyone had been told that they would be working remotely for the week. Anything that couldn’t be done at home just wouldn’t be done this week. Everyone else but Cat and Kara had been sent home long ago. Cat had tried to send Kara home too, but she had refused. Knowing that Kara was Supergirl and could take care of herself, Cat hadn’t fought that hard to make her go. It was nice to have someone else in the office.

She sat back after she sent the second to last email she needed to reply to before she went home and sighed. The day had been long, so much had happened, so much news to cover in such a short span of time. It was a miracle that everyone had made it through sane. Her head had pounded the whole day, trying to make her go crazy, but she’d ignored it like she ignored every minor inconvenience in her life. She was starting to get hot too. Cat idly wondered if the maintenance crew had shut off the AC when leaving since no one would be back for at least a week. If that was true, she would be better off just opening the door to her balcony to let the cooler night air in that trying to mess with her thermostat.

She pushed herself up and then almost collapsed again. Her knees didn’t want to support her weight. Cat clenched her fists against her desk top and willed her legs to work like they were supposed to. She had probably just been sitting for too long, that was all.

Cat walked over to the balcony door and propped it open. She felt the cool air on her skin and sighed, leaning against the doorframe and soaking it in for a second. It felt wonderful, really. National City air never really smelled fresh, but at least it could cool her down.

She walked back to her desk and sat down, pulling up the last email of the night and typing a reply. She switched back to the document the President had sent her earlier to pull a specific piece of information, skimming over a few lines before something caught her eye. “The onset of heat is most often signaled by an increase in body temperature coupled with an increase in personal lubrication.” Cat squinted at the line. She was hot, sure, but she felt nothing abnormal otherwise. She was probably fine.

She continued to work, pulling facts and figures for the email before sending it off. Then she moved on to finishing touches on the website, making sure the printer was still able to run the morning paper, the last edition they would print until after everyone came off of heat leave. It was printing as she made sure it could go out, which gave her comfort. Everything would be fine. Her empire would still be standing after all this. And if she could navigate a multi-national company through this disaster, then everyone else should be fine. Should be. God she hoped they would be. She hoped that they had gotten enough information out in time.

Cat sighed and pushed herself back from her desk. There was nothing more to be done now but to go home and ride out her heat alone. She stood up again, feeling her clothes rub against her skin and flinching. She had been comfortable in them all day, but now she wanted them off. She shed her jacket and immediately felt a bit better. She toyed with the top button on her button up for a second before undoing it. The relief was less, but still there. She was still hot though, hot and irritated. She felt as if she could feel every single fiber of her clothing. If anything it reminded her of back in college when she had gotten high out of her mind and she felt everything so much more acutely. That had been pleasurable, though, and this was not.

She walked towards the balcony again, but she could barely feel the cool air anymore. Everything was just hot. She could feel a dampness along her hairline. Her knees felt weak again. All she wanted to do was strip naked and lay on her bed with the AC on. Maybe with her best vibrator to keep her company. Cat licked her lips as she managed to stumble to the balcony railing. Yes, that sounded good.

She stared out at National City for a moment, brain a bit fuzzy, before it slammed into her like a freight train.

“Kara!” she called, voice going higher in her panic.

Kara was by her side in a second, hand on Cat’s arm comfortingly. “What is it Miss Grant?”

“Kara, I think I’m going into heat.” Cat resisted pressing forward into Kara. If she had smelled good before, well now she smelled like cocaine to someone on a bender.

“Oh. Oh!” Kara flailed around for just a second before she grabbed her cell phone from her pocket. “I’ll call your driver.”

“Alpha,” Cat breathed out, trying not to take in too much air through her nose. She could feel her thinking stopping as she stood beside Kara, inhaling her scent. “He’s an alpha.”

“Oh, Ra-God, that won’t do then. Um, I just, let me think.”

Cat’s hand shot out to grip Kara’s arm in a vice grip. “Kara, I need you to fly me home.”

“Miss Grant, I can’t fly you home, that’s impossi--”

Cat cut Kara off again. “Listen to me, Kara, I am literally here losing brain cells as I speak because my body thinks that it will die without a good orgasm. I’ve known you were Supergirl since I first accused you of doing so and the little stunt with your body double fooled me for about a week at most until I realized that there was probably an alien out there who could shapeshift. If you really wanted to keep the secret you would have used them a few more times to throw off the scent, because you’re still mysteriously absent every single time Supergirl is on the news. Even Lois could have figured this out by now.”

At that Kara snorted a bit. Cat noted that in the back of her mind. She was most certainly going to ask about that later when she wasn’t half out of her mind.

“I’m asking you to fly me home because there is no one else on this god forsaken planet that I actually trust right now to get me home.” She met Kara’s eyes. “I’m completely and utterly terrified that if I get in the car with another driver, alpha or beta, male or female, I’ll fuck the living daylights out of them, or they’ll manipulate me into being fucked. I’m sure a lot of people are feeling that way right now, but right now I’m the one with Supergirl in front of her, asking her to help her home, no one else. Now will you give up this silly pretense and help me?”

Kara blinked once. Twice. Three times before she sighed and took off her glasses. “I owe Alex fifty bucks after all of this.” A quick spin and she was in her Supergirl outfit.

Cat looked at the other woman and her brain stopped functioning. It shouldn’t be that hot to have just spun around and changed an outfit, but right about now, everything that Kara did was mind-meltingly hot. She felt the heat pheromones leave her in a cloud and she took a step forward.

She stepped up to Kara and poked her in the chest right in the middle of her house crest. “And why, praytell, do you owe Agent Scully money?”

“Because she said you weren’t fooled and were just hiding it.”

Cat’s finger trailed up, tracing the red lines gently. She was close enough that she could heart Kara’s heartbeat speed up. Mmm, so she did affect the other woman. “You have a smart sister.” She met Kara’s eyes. “I was too rash trying to fire you. I understand now, everyone needs to feel normal somehow. This is your normal, isn’t it?”

Kara visibly relaxed. “It is. Being around you, working at CatCo, it keeps me grounded.”

Cat let her finger fall. This was wrong, standing so close to Kara, breathing her in, looking at her with heat-bright eyes, and enveloping her in a cloud of pheromones. The girl may be Supergirl, but Cat knew she wasn’t fighting fair.

“So, are Kryptonians naturally like this, alpha/beta/omega, I mean.” Her brow scrunched. “We really need a way to shorten that for compact columns, ABO, perhaps?”

“We are, it was because of my mother that we figured it out. She was hit by the beam and it reverted some procedure she had had to make her into a beta.”

Cat latched onto that fact and managed to step back from Kara. “I thought your mother was dead. You said she sent you to Earth and stayed behind.”

Kara nodded. “I thought she had. She crash landed in a pod like the one I arrived in not long after Myriad.”

Cat’s chin tilted up just slightly in acknowledgement. “I see. It must be good to have her back.”

Kara nodded slowly once more. “It’s...been nice, but it’s been rough too.” She shrugged. “We’re working it out.”

“Parents are never easy.”

Kara hummed an agreement and then silence stretched between them for a moment. Cat knew she should prod Kara into taking her back to her apartment, but she was curious, and part of her didn’t want this conversation to be over. If it was over then she would no longer smell Kara, and god, she didn’t want that. Not yet, she would have to soon, but not yet.

“So, when do Kryptonians reach maturity? How long have you been an alpha?” Cat’s eyes flicked to Kara’s skirt, a hungry glint sparking at the thought of what was underneath.

“Depends, alphas reach maturity a bit later than omegas, and betas are the first to really reach maturity development wise, somewhere between fourteen and sixteen. Omegas usually are around sixteen to eighteen, and alphas usually are done by twenty, though most usually are done by nineteen or so. So, yeah, um, I’ve been a full-fledged alpha for a while.”

Oh, Cat, thought, she imagined Supergirl was rather...full-fledged indeed. She took another step forward but her knees gave out. Kara, of course, kept her from hitting the ground. Cat looked up into Kara’s eyes and found them blown wide. Tension wracked her whole frame. Had she been like this long, or had stopping Cat’s fall triggered it.

“But I’ve noticed that you don’t have a penis, is that a difference between human alphas and you?”

“Sort of,” Kara said, voice deeper, verging towards a growl. “Kryptonian female alphas only grow a penis when it’s needed to service the heat of an omega or during our ruts. The other times we have normal female anatomy.” Kara stood up from the crouch she’d caught Cat in and their bodies brushed together. Cat’s eyes widened at the distinct feeling of a hardon brushing her stomach.

“So, you’re very happy to see me right now, then?”

Kara’s lips pulled back from her teeth for half a second before she reigned herself in. “I’m going into a sympathetic rut. I’m not supposed to have my next rut for a month and a half, but being here with you, smelling you go into heat, kind of took that off the rails.”

“I bet you say that to all the omega girls,” Cat deadpanned. She was going into heat, but damn it if she wasn’t going to be snarky until she couldn’t anymore.

“No, just you, only you. Mine.” The last word was almost a snarl. Kara closed her eyes and took a deep breath in. She hefted Cat into her arms. “I need to get you home. Now. Before we do something stupid in the heat of the moment.”

Yes, Kara was right. She should fly Cat to her penthouse and leave her for the duration of her heat. But Cat was so gone on Kara practically shouting mine, that she wasn’t thinking straight. She needed this woman as soon as they landed on Cat’s private balcony.

They lifted off into the air, Cat tucked up into Kara’s arms neatly, head nestled into Kara’s neck. God, the smell of Kara was so much more intense here. She felt dizzy, drunk, high, euphoric, breathing all that in. She was so wet and getting wetter just sitting here breathing Kara’s scent in. Hers, hers, hers, Kara needed to be hers. She needed her to stay. She would be miserable without her. She needed Kara to fuck her, to knot her. Hell, she didn’t really understand what knotting was, she’d read the President’s report on it, but that was all conceptual really. She wouldn’t feel as if she knew it until she was knotted. All she really knew right now was that she needed to be knotted because that’s what her instincts were screaming.

Kara touched down a minute later and she set Cat back down gently. She stepped back, clearly about to hop into the sky once more, but Cat wasn’t about to have that.

“Kara, about doing something stupid in the heat of the moment?”

Kara stopped to wait for Cat to finish her thought.

Cat took a deep breath, trying to figure out the words to make Kara stay even though it was a stupid, stupid idea. “You. Are. Mine.” The words came unbidden to her, but from the way they hit Kara, Cat knew they had been the right ones.

In a second she was in Kara’s arms again, striding towards the door to her bedroom. Kara stopped right before reaching for the handle, trembling all over. “Cat, are you sure. Because if you don’t tell me to go right now, it’s not going to matter if you change your mind.”

Cat reached up and cupped Kara’s face. “I’m sure, Kara.” The words were spoken in a soft tone, but they had steel underneath them. She was sure in this moment that she wanted Kara. She’d wanted her for a long time, really, but now she could have Kara. And god, she might feel guilty in the morning, but she wouldn’t regret it.

“Thank Rao.” Kara opened the door and stepped inside.

Chapter Text

Alex felt like she was ripping out of her skin. God damn, Kara had not made it seem like such a fucking big deal, but sitting here, on her couch, about ready to go insane, it was a Big. Fucking. Deal. She whipped off her shirt and then her bra. That helped a bit, but if there was a potato peeler anywhere near her she was about to start just peeling her skin off. She grimaced at the gruesome image that made, but damn, she deserved some slack at this point.

She took a breath in through her nose and she let it out slowly through her mouth. After a few minutes she was marginally calmer, but only slightly. Calm enough that she stood from the couch and shucked her pants and underwear and made her way to her bedroom on shaky legs. Her balls slapped her legs and her penis swung awkwardly. God, she hated having this thing. There was a reason she was only attracted to women, fucking damn it. She wanted to punch something. She wanted to scream. She wanted to fuck something until it was begging her to stop and then blowing a load inside of it.

Alex shook herself. No, no she did not want that. What she wanted was to lay down and grab a bottle of lube and figure out how to give a handjob to herself. It couldn’t be that hard. Dudes got off so easily, and she had figured out how to masturbate with female genitalia, she could figure out how to jack off now. Hopefully being an alpha didn’t magically change how penises got off. If it did hopefully her instincts would guide her. No matter what it would be easy. Biologically it was the only thing that made sense.

She flopped forward on her bed and groaned. The sheets felt rough against her skin. They were the softest sheets she owned, but they still felt like they were made from rough twine. Ugh, this next week was going to be absolutely miserable.

Alex flipped onto her back, groped around for the handle to her nightstand drawer, felt around for a minute, coming across every vibrator she owned before she found the lube she was looking for. Thank god. She squirted some onto her hand and slicked it onto her dick.

“Fuck!” she shouted. Oh god, was it supposed to feel that good just putting on lube? She didn’t think so, because she’d almost come right then and there like some sort of teenage boy.

Then again...she sort of was a teenage boy in terms of actually playing with her dick. She hadn’t really done it before, and everything was new and felt great and she hadn’t built up any control. Add to that fact that she was in rut, and Alex thought that her stomach would be sticky with her own come soon. God, it would look better leaking out of someone, though.

Alex clenched the fist that wasn’t wrapped around her dick. She liked being out of control sometimes, that’s what she had loved about drinking until she passed out, but god, this was not the fun kind of out of control. Drunk Alex never hurt anyone but herself half the time. But this Alex, oh she had the potential to hurt people and the government training to make it a bad sort of hurt. Which was why it was a damn good thing she was locked in her apartment.

She pumped her hand up and down experimentally. Fuck. Oh fuck. Oh god, this was not going to be rocket science, obviously. Maybe once she’d come once she’d actually feel a little more human and a little less violent and out of control. She hoped. Dear god, she hoped.

Her moved her hand in a steady rhythm, moaning and the feeling of heat building up quickly in her lower stomach. Jesus fucking Christ, no wonder guys jacked off like twice a day. This felt fucking great. She panted out a groan and her hips started to fuck into her hand without her conscious effort. Her mind was blank save for the pleasure coursing through her. Close. So close already. Kara had warned her that she would have to come until she passed out to feel any real relief, but this would take the edge off. She could handle everything if the edge was taken off. Just a little more.

Unbidden, an image of Astra standing at the end of Alex’s bed surfaced. She was stark naked and god, she was so wet Alex could see it from where she lay. She was ready to be fucked by Alex. Astra crawled onto the bed, slowly, stretching out lazily like she was a cat. Alex watched, wanting to speed her up, wanting Astra to get where she was going. Please, please, her mind begged. Somewhere she registered that it was a fantasy, that she could make this fake Astra go faster if she really wanted, but she didn’t. Astra moved as slowly as before, all the while the heat inside of Alex grew and grew.

“Please,” Alex whispered, begging the air around her.

Astra’s responding smirk sent a zing through Alex. She arched like she was shocked. Oh god, oh fucking god. She was. So. Close.

Alex knew that her eyes would be desperate by now, begging Astra to do something, anything. Astra’s smirk softened into a smile and she reached Alex’s side. Her hand came to rest over Alex’s and Alex groaned, tightening her hand around her length.

“Fuck, oh god, fucking fuck.” She felt the bottom of her shaft swelling. Fuck she was going to knot right here, right now, her first time. From what Kara had told her, knotting from masturbating wasn’t super common. During rut, it usually happened a time or two when an alpha was particularly worked up, usually in the middle of their rut, but outside of that, if they weren’t fucking someone, knots weren’t really a thing. Just how fucking worked up was she.

In her fantasy Astra leaned over, mouth brushing Alex’s ear, long hair dragging against Alex’s over-sensitive skin. “So desperate to come you couldn’t wait for me. Tsk, tsk, Alexandra.”

Alex screamed as her knot finally finished swelling. The tension inside her was unbearable. She needed to come. She would die if she didn’t come.

“You should come, Alexandra. The sooner you come now the sooner you can come in me.”

She whited out as her body finally finally released. Her brain couldn’t take the image of fucking into Astra until she came. Her omega. If Astra wanted her, she wanted Astra to be hers. It was like there was some sort of magnet in her brain that was attracted to Astra like she was magnetic north. She would always be drawn to her, even if Astra didn’t want her back. It would hurt like a motherfucker when she opened her eyes again and Astra wasn’t here.

But for now, her brain was mercilessly blank in the face of a mind-numbing orgasm.

 

--

 

She woke up a few minutes later, covered in her own come. Alex felt marginally more herself at least. She sat up and scrunched her nose. Ugh, come was so sticky. Alex pushed herself off the bed and into the bathroom to wash up for at least a little bit. She’d come so hard her body was satisfied for now. She had no idea how long it would last, but she was going to try to eat something just in case she didn’t surface again for god knew how long.

Alex was just wetting a washcloth in the sink when there was a faint sound of a knock on her door. She listened carefully. Hopefully they would just go away. What idiot was even knocking on her door in the middle of the advisory to stay home. Maybe it was someone who’d smelled her hormones and wanted to be fucked. She hoped not. Alex had no idea what she would do if it was.

The knock came again. Fuck. Alex was probably going to have to at least look out the peephole and see if it was someone she knew or what. She could decide if she was going to ignore them from there.

She dropped the washcloth and grabbed her robe from the back of the bathroom door and padded silently through her apartment. She drew in a breath through her nose when she drew even to the door, but she couldn’t really catch a scent yet. Diffusion hadn’t had long enough to act, apparently. She bit the inside of her lip and pressed her eye to peephole.

She pulled in a sharp breath and unlocked the door quickly. “Astra,” she whispered when the door opened, and fantasy made real stood before her.

Astra quickly took a step back. “Alexandra, I was checking to see if you were fine after you stormed off from patrol duty, but I see what was wrong now.” She took another step back. “I-I’ll go, I’m sorry.”

Alex gripped the doorframe so hard she heard the wood creaking. This was not what she needed. She had just come harder than she ever had before from a fantasy of Astra. She was in the middle of her rut. And to add insult to injury Astra was here, checking on her, caring about her, and god above smelling like a feast after three days of starving.

Really, the irony of it all was the reason she had stormed off from helping the DEO make sure everyone was in their homes with the supplies they needed, was because of Astra. Or really, more accurately, because that idiot McCallan had to run his mouth to his buddy Smithton about how he thought that ‘Astra would be a good fuck because she could go all night long.’ Alex had seen red. She had to leave or else she would have marched over the McCallan and ripped his damn throat out.  Somewhere in her mind she knew that McCallan and his never ending sex talk since the beam had hit them all was only because his masculinity was hurt when he turned up a beta, but she didn’t care. Fucking men and their fragile masculinity. Didn’t the fucker see that Astra was hers ?

Alex swallowed hard. “Yeah, that might be best,” she said around clenched teeth. She could hold herself back for now, but if Astra stuck around any longer she didn’t trust herself. And if Astra started into heat when Alex was near, all bets were off.

Astra nodded and a second later she was gone.

Alex slumped against her doorframe for half a second, just gathering the strength to actually stand up straight again and shut the door. Any of her neighbors could have come out and seen her standing there, barely half-dressed, looking like she’d just been fucked into oblivion, with an erection tenting the front of her robe, but she didn’t care. It took everything she had not to go find Astra. She knew where Astra lived now. When Alura had landed Astra had asked for the DEO to rent an apartment that had just come on the market in the building beside Kara’s, just across the alley. Close enough that Astra could come and go as she pleased, close enough that Kara was able to help out, but she had her own space. And since Astra had her own space, if Alex burst in and took Astra right then and there, well, at least both of their sisters wouldn’t be there.

Instead, though, Alex stood up shakily and managed to shut the door. So much for food. She had to go back to her bedroom right this fucking instant and fuck herself into oblivion to keep herself from getting up again and running across town.

Her omega. Her omega! HER Omega!

Her brain pounded with the thought. Her heart beat in time with the syllables. She was drowning within herself. She felt like the alpha was taking over. She felt like nothing of her true self was left. God, it would be easier to give in. When she had given in to stress and went on a bender in grad school, that had been easier in its way. The alpha inside her wouldn’t harm Alex herself, that would be counterintuitive. It wouldn’t kill any omegas either for the same reason. Other alphas, well that was another matter. But would it really be so bad to just let it take over?

God! Yes! Yes it would! She couldn’t even begin to think like that. If she started to think like that she would be lost to the haze of her rut and she would wake up having done horrible things. She could live with herself now, working with the DEO. It left little time for self-pity and even less time for moping around. But if she woke up having raped or killed someone, she’d quit right then and there and the path of self-destruction she’d go down would make the one in grad school look like kid stuff. And honestly, she’d probably deserve it.

So, no, she wouldn’t give in. She would collapse on her bed again. She would fuck herself until she couldn’t come anymore and passed out. Then in a week she would go back to work and she would be able to live with herself. Maybe after all of this she could actually explore whatever attraction she had to Astra, because if she was going to keep being drawn like this to Astra every three months of her life, maybe there was a reason, and maybe it would be a way to head off her doing something stupid. Who knew, maybe it would be a trainwreck and that would stop all that magnetism they had going on. It was worth a fucking shot.

She fell onto her bed face first. Her face landed in a pillow and that was just fine for her. Alex screamed as loud as she could before flipping over, shedding the robe with her movements, and set to work once more.

 

--

 

Alex woke up what seemed like days later. She had no real sense of time anymore. She’d come and come until she passed out twice. Somewhere in there she’d made some food. Another time she’d taken a shower. Maybe a day? Maybe two? Possibly three? She could check her phone, but that would take effort, and right now she felt like she was dying. She reached out a feeble arm until it landed on her night stand. Alex scrabbled around until her fingers hit one of the water bottles she’d put there and she latched onto it. She pulled it to her, unscrewed the cap, and then drank it all in one go.

Another few minutes of laying on her bed and she began to feel a bit better. She probably needed more water and more food if just water made her feel better. Alex pushed herself up with a groan and managed to stand up. Her legs felt like lead. Fuck this rut shit, she would definitely like to never go through this again. How did Kryptonians do this every three months and remain a productive society? She’d like to fucking know so she could emulate them.

She walked out into her kitchen and then froze. Something wasn’t right. She couldn’t figure it out. Her brain was too foggy. She didn’t even remember where her gun was. If it was an actual threat, if some dumbass betas had gotten the smart idea to break into people’s homes while they were incapacitated with their heats and ruts or some other shit, then she was going to be slightly helpless. Or well, as helpless as a trained government black-ops level operative was, anyway.

Alex sucked in a deep breath and blinked and blinked again. It smelled like...Astra? But that couldn’t be right. Astra had already seen her in the middle of her rut. She wouldn’t come back around. She knew better.

She walked a few steps forward until she could see out of the hallway and into her open plan kitchen/living room combo. Someone was at the stove, making food. It smelled like breakfast, bacon and eggs, maybe pancakes. Who the hell broke into someone else’s apartment and made breakfast? Did someone run out of food during their heat and just happen to let themselves into her apartment? Had she locked the door after Astra had come? She had no idea.

Alex emerged from the hallway and padded forward on quiet feet. If it wasn’t someone she knew she wanted to get a feel for how athletic they were to see if she could take them out in her current state. Because if they were crazy enough to break in and make breakfast, she needed to make sure she could deal with them before confronting. She didn’t need a knife to her stomach right now.

“Oh, Brave One, you’re finally up,” Astra said quietly, not turning around.

Alex stopped. She was a lot closer than she normally got before Astra noticed her. Wait.

“Astra? What the fuck are you doing here?”

Astra turned around, plating some scrambled eggs beside bacon and a short stack of pancakes. “Making breakfast, what does it look like?”

Alex took another deep breath in. “You’re in heat?!”

“Mhm, a sympathetic heat, I think, not very strong, but definitely enough.”

Alex reached out to take the offered plate from Astra on instinct. “Does it dull your powers?”

“A bit, yes, nothing like Kryptonite, but more like sensory overload. We can still fly and are invulnerable, but the senses are dulled and strength is lower. Possibly so we can focus on our mate alone and not worry about hurting them.”

Alex nodded, filing that away for later. “Astra, why are you here? You saw how I was however long ago. You know I’m not in control, especially around you.”

Astra grabbed her own plate and sat down next to Alex on the bar stools that lined the kitchen island. She turned her storm green gaze on Alex. “Because when I went back to my apartment after that, all I could think about was you dragging me back into this apartment and having your way with me. And then I thought about how you’ve been acting around me the past few days before your rut, and how wonderful you smelled to me, and how you would breathe more deeply around me, I realized that it was most likely mutual. So I came here on a rather heat-addled whim. Do you feel the same Alex? Because I am not so far gone that I can’t leave.”

Alex’s hand shot out and grabbed Astra’s upper arm. “No,” she snarled. “You stay.”

Astra’s lips twitched up in a smirk. “Then I’ll stay.”

Alex looked at her hand then back at Astra before dropping it. “Uh, well, good.” She turned to her eggs and poked at them for a minute. She had not idea what had just happened. She wasn’t sure it wasn’t a dream. Maybe if she ate she would get back some brainpower to figure it out.

She hoped anyway.

She ate quickly, scarfing everything up like she hadn’t eaten in days. Which honestly could be the case. She really didn’t taste the food much, but she didn’t think that anything Astra made would taste bad. Unless she cooked like Kara. Alex shivered. She had no idea why her sister couldn’t grasp cooking, it was really just applied science, but Kara had never been able to get the hang of it.

All she knew that by the end of the meal, Astra was still there with her, finishing up at a much more reasonable pace. Alex stood and took her dishes to the sink, debating on starting them right then, but she shook her head. Fuck dishes until she could really think with her head and not her dick.

It twitched as if summoned by that thought. She bit down on a groan. God, already? She felt a little more human after the food she wanted to enjoy that feeling for a little while, but no of course not. Why call it a rut when really what it was, was biological torture.

Alex was so distracted by her own musing she didn’t her Astra coming up behind her, putting her own plate in the sink and pressing up against Alex. She slipped her arms around Alex’s waist and set her chin on Alex’s shoulder.

“You smell like you’re going into another flare.” Her words were soft, caressing Alex’s ear.

Alex swallowed hard as she went from semi-erect to rock hard in half a second. “I might be,” she replied, barely keeping her voice steady.

Astra hummed in delight. “Wonderful.”

A wave of potent pheromones washed over Alex. Oh god. Oh fucking god, Astra was definitely in heat and Alex was losing her brain power even faster than before. Astra just smelled so good. She needed to fuck her. Had to fuck her. There was no going back now. Astra was too close and smelled too good for there to be a way back.

“I-is there anything that you don’t like sexually?” Alex asked, holding herself so still so she didn’t snap and take Astra up against the kitchen island. She needed to know before she let go. Just because her brain was in her pants right now didn’t mean that she was going to do anything that Astra didn’t want.

“Just don’t put a mating mark on me, and we’ll be fine.” Astra’s hands started to slide down. “And you, Alexandra?”

“Not a big fan of nipple clamps, but I think we won’t have a problem with that right now.”

Astra chuckled at that. “No, I don’t believe we will. Is your bedroom back through the hall?”

“Second door on the right,” Alex said, breathing starting to pick up. Astra’s hand was just so close to where she needed it to be.

A second later Alex was on her back on her bed. She blinked for a second trying to reconcile the change in position. She looked up to find Astra at the end of the bed, staring down at her with hungry eyes. Alex’s alpha was snarling at being manhandled like that, but Alex ignored it. God, that was so fucking hot. She felt beads of precum starting to leak from the tip of her cock.

Astra played with the hem of her shirt for a moment before grabbing onto it and inching it up her body. Alex watched, mesmerized as inch after inch of rock hard abs were revealed to her. God, the amount of time she could spend just licking those muscles was infinite. The shirt went up and up until Alex could see the bottom of Astra’s breasts and fucking Jesus she wasn’t wearing a bra. Astra smirked the second she realized Alex had seen she was bare beneath her t-shirt and slowed down the inching up of her shirt.

Alex groaned. Evil, evil woman. She wanted to get up and force Astra to just discard the shirt, but she stayed on the bed, looking. Honestly, this was what she imagined sex with Astra to be like, and she wasn’t about to interrupt that.

Finally, finally, Astra pulled off the shirt and threw it across the room. She slid her hands over her body, cupping her breasts for a long second before sliding her hands lower to the waistband of her shorts. Alex’s breath hitched. If Astra wasn’t wearing a bra, what were the odds that she wasn’t wearing any panties? Astra sensed her excitement and toyed with the waistband a second longer before she slid them down her legs slowly, but quicker than she’d taken off her shirt. It seemed like someone was getting just as impatient as Alex.

And god, Alex was right, Astra was wearing nothing under her shorts either. She stood, gloriously naked in front of Alex for a second before she moved forward and climbed on top of Alex. Her hand found Alex’s cheek and her thumb grazed over Alex’s cheekbone. They stared at each other for an electric moment before Alex couldn’t take anymore. She lunged up to kiss Astra.

Their lips met with a crash of noses and teeth, but Alex didn’t even fucking care. She was kissing Astra. Kissing. Astra. While Astra was naked on top of her. Hell, while they were both naked because she hadn’t exactly put on anything before she’d walked out to the kitchen. She hadn’t even thought of it the entire time she was eating with Astra, she was so addled from her rut, but god damn she was thinking about it now. Astra’s skin was soft against hers and her muscles were like steel underneath and if that wasn’t turning Alex on more she’d be damned.

Kissing was nice, but more would be better. She locked her arms around Astra, tracing the other woman’s back muscles, leaving scratch marks she was sure lasted all of half a second. Maybe, though, it would be possible to mark Astra during her heat. A surge of arousal made its way through her body at that thought. She wanted to mark Astra. God, she wanted to mark her permanently, but that was just her stupid alpha saying that. It was too early for a mating bite and she knew it even with Astra having drawn the line there earlier.

Alex grabbed Astra’s ass and groaned. It was firm and just large enough and Alex couldn’t wait to have Astra on her hands and knees while she fucked into her, ass slapping against her lower stomach. Fuck, fuck, fuck, she needed that now.

She flipped Astra onto her back and pulled back from their kiss. Astra looked up at her with a smile, reaching up to cup Alex’s breasts.

“Ready for the main event already, Alexandra.”

Alex’s lips twitched up in a snarl at that. Of fucking course she was. She finally had Astra in her bed. From how Astra smelled, all arousal and pheromones begging Alex to fuck her, Astra was ready for the main event too, even if she was teasing Alex. She ground down, her cock slipping along Astra’s slit. Astra’s eyes rolled back and she moaned loudly. Alex smirked at the reaction, leaning down to kiss Astra, tasting her moans and sighs as she continued to thrust lightly.

She pulled back after a few minutes. “I don’t know, Astra, you seem more desperate to be fucked than I am to do the fucking right now.” Her alpha was happy, watching from the primal depths of her mind.

“Only because you don’t play fair, Agent Danvers,” Astra panted out.

“Oh, but haven’t you heard that idiom that says that all’s fair in love and war. I think it applies here, don’t you?” She jogged her hips again just slightly and Astra shuddered.

“I think it’s a bit of both, so yes, it applies. Rao knows most of the time your idioms don’t.”

“Oh, and that idiom in Kryptonese that literally translates to he’s like Rao’s nipple actually makes sense. How does that even mean that a guy isn’t trustworthy?”

Astra waved it off. “It makes sense it its own way.”

“Sure it does.” Alex drew back, separating their bodies for just a moment, but Astra cried out at the sudden absence. Alex hushed her softly. “I’m not going anywhere.”

She shifted until she was in a better position. More leverage for fucking, not as awkward an angle for thrusting. Oh yeah, like this she could fucking into Astra for a good long time. She grabbed Astra’s legs and pushed them further apart. Astra drew in a breath sharply, watching every move Alex made.

Alex reached down and ran her fingers through Astra’s slit. God, she was so wet and hot and unbelievable. She was more than ready to be fucked, but Alex played around for a bit more just to be sure. She slipped her fingers up to Astra’s clit and stroked lightly until Astra was squirming, trying to press closer, trying to get that little bit closer, that little more pressure, because honestly, it looked like if Alex gave her anything more, Astra would come. Alex’s ego swelled. Astra was this desperate for her , not for anyone else.

Her fingers slipped down to Astra’s entrance and pushed in. Astra’s hips bucked, trying to impale herself on Alex’s fingers, but Alex wasn’t having it. She withdrew slightly, sitting back a bit so her could hold Astra’s hips down with her free hand. Only when she thought Astra was really secure did she slip fully into her again. Astra’s walls gripped her hard, pulling her in, beckoning her to stay inside, to hit every single place that made Astra scream. She scissored her fingers and watched Astra arch like a woman possessed. Her cock hardened even further. Alex wasn’t even sure that it was possible before, but apparently it had been.

She fucked Astra hard, drawing her fingers up on every stroke to hit the spongy spot on Astra’s front wall that had her screaming. It was nice to know that the g-spot was still the same on a Kryptonian because Alex wanted to make sure she could make Astra scream loud enough that the neighbors five apartments down heard. And oh, Astra was almost there, cursing and whimpering, trying to meet Alex’s thrusts even though her hips were pinned to the bed.

“More, Rao, Alexandra, more. Please.” Astra’s eyes opened to meet Alex’s, green eyes glazed over and pupils blown.

Alex added another finger, now three pumping in and out of Astra. Astra moaned her approval, but Alex knew the satisfaction wouldn’t last for long. Astra needed something bigger and more filling for her heat to die down in its demands. Of course, Alex had exactly what Astra needed. And Jesus, was her dick ready to fucking go. She let up on Astra’s hips so she could wrap a hand around her length and stroke it a few times. She cursed long and loud. Her hand felt better than it had the entire time she’d been in rut. The difference could only before because she had Astra in front of her. And if she didn’t want to come in her own hand again she was going to have to do something soon.

She withdrew her fingers from Astra and before Astra could even register the loss, Alex lined herself up and slammed forward, fucking into Astra all in one go. Astra’s scream was loud and long before her vocal chords just gave up and stopped making sound all together. Alex had broken the other woman, and god above, she loved it.

And fucking Christ, she loved being inside Astra even more. She had felt tight around her fingers, but this? Oh this was even better. She was gripping onto Alex’s cock like it was a lifeline. Her walls were fluttering hard and Alex wondered just how close Astra was to coming. She reached down once more and stroked Astra’s clit, once, twice, and then the other woman’s body actually floated up off the bed, bowing until Alex thought that even a Kryptonian would break in half. Oh, fuck. Alex’s hand curled in the sheets hard, just to keep herself from coming at that.

She pushed Astra back down to the bed gently, letting the other woman have a second to recover before Alex pulled out of her and then plunged back in. Fucking shit, oh god, every single curse she knew wouldn’t cover how good it was to actually move inside Astra. She pulled out again, trying to keep a slow, hard rhythm, but she knew that wasn’t going to last long. She wanted to fuck Astra hard and fast until her knot popped and then she wanted to fuck that into Astra and come and come until Astra was swelled with it.

Astra gripped onto Alex, hard, nails digging into Alex’s skin, egging her on. So Alex pushed herself harder and faster, forcing Astra down into the bed like some sort of jackhammer. From the moans Astra was letting out, Astra didn’t seem to mind the treatment. Alex was glad, because she wasn’t sure that she could stop now that she had started. The feelings that were coursing through her were electric. Every single nerve was alive, screaming out its pleasure, chanting only one thing, Astra, Astra, Astra. She was drowning in the other woman, up to the hilt in warm wetness, encompassed in her scent, surrounded by her soft skin.

Where her rut before had only been torture, this was bliss, pure and simple. This was why Kryptonians put up with these damn cycles. With a partner, it was everything .

She felt her knot swelling and groaned. She didn’t want this to end so soon, but she also wanted to come so bad it was like a wildfire roaring inside her. She still had days left on her rut, probably, and Astra definitely did. There would be time to do this again, maybe take a little longer, savor the pleasure more, but this was the first time. Of course it would be hard and fast and rough. Neither of them were really complaining that much as they panted together, clutching at one another, hurtling towards another climax.

Astra felt Alex’s half formed knot pressing at her entrance. “Yes, oh Rao, yes, Alex, please.”

“Yeah?” Alex asked, just to be sure.

“Yes! Please!” She ground down on Alex, trying to force the knot in herself.

Well, it was damn hard to say no to that.  She snapped her hips even harder, inching her knot it a bit at a time with every hard thrust. Alex felt her eyes roll back in her head. It was just so much pleasure at once she could barely keep going. She was going to come as soon as her knot was finally locked inside Astra, there was no way around it. It was a Christmas miracle that she hadn’t blown her load yet, really.

One more hard thrust, two, then three, and finally on the fourth Alex felt Astra’s opening give just that little bit more she needed and Alex was in. She felt Astra clamping down on her again and Astra trembled as she came hard. Alex watched her for half a second, pushing in as much as her knot would allow before she came, screaming out Astra’s name loud enough it tore at her vocal chords. She came, and came, and came, more than she ever thought possible, Astra coming with her the whole time, until they both finally collapsed to the bed as one.

They lay together, catching their breaths until Alex pushed herself up just enough to look Astra in the face. She couldn’t move much more than that, her body felt weaker than it had when she had woken up earlier. Her body had really given it all to that fuck, for sure.

“So, we stay knotted for like an hour, right?”

Astra nodded weakly. “We do. Most people just sleep it off.”

Honestly that seemed like a good idea to Alex, her eyes were already drooping closed. “Then we wake up and do this all over again?”

“Indeed.”

Alex dropped back down, laying on top of Astra like a dead weight. “Sounds great to me. Are you ok if I stay like this?”

“I’d prefer it really, having someone on top of you keeps the heat surges farther apart. Something about feeling safe, Kryptonian scientists determined.”

Alex grunted, drifting off for a minute before she thought of something and sat up again, startling Astra. “We didn’t use a condom.”

Astra squinted at her. “No?”

“Astra, you could get pregnant.”

Astra shook her head. “No, I can’t. I wasn’t the favored twin, Alex, and we were aberrations. The council determined that one of us shouldn’t have kids, through the Codex or otherwise. It will be fine.”

A growl rose in Alex’s chest. “You know, I really don’t like your parents.”

Astra laughed, reaching out and smoothing the lines that the snarl left on Alex’s face. “They wouldn’t have liked you either, Alexandra, my Brave One, and believe me when I say that that is a good thing.” She tugged Alex down again. “Sleep, Alex, you will need it. We have a long few days ahead of us.”

Alex let herself be pulled down and snuggled further down into Astra’s embrace. “Your parents are still idiots,” she said just to have the last word on the subject.

Astra just hummed her agreement, already half asleep. Alex huffed and closed her eyes. She was asleep within seconds.

 

Chapter Text

Alura walked the nearly empty halls of the DEO on quiet feet. It was eerie, really, the DEO was always a bustling place. It wasn't like aliens limited themselves to one time of day to appear. But now, with most of the agents either at home or locked away in the DEO cells, it was silent anywhere besides the control room. J’onn was there, along with the skeleton crew of betas to keep everything running, and no one really ventured much outside that room.

Except for Lucy, foolish enough to still be here even though there wasn't a cell for her and her rut could start at any minute. Alura could probably say the same of herself, but she had the experience to know when her heat was starting and could fly herself home in an instant. Lucy didn't have the benefit of either of those two things. So Alura may have been checking up on her periodically. Of course she didn't act like it when she walked into Lucy's office, she'd ask a question or just set up her laptop and work quietly in the same room, but that's what it really was. Alura wondered if she would notice Lucy going into rut before she did. The odds weren't very high in Lucy's favor.

She walked into Lucy's office, setting down a plate filled with hot food. As it turned out most of the kitchen staff at the DEO were actually betas and since they didn't have to feed the entire base, were using the time to get creative instead. Alura didn't mind, tasting different Earth dishes was interesting. So many different cuisines. On Krypton, a lot of things had been fairly standard, for tradition’s sake, but also because they had been so advanced for so long that the cultural differences that were brought about by a stationary population unable to travel easily, were mostly eliminated. Of course they had had food from other planets, but it was nothing like the variety found on Earth even then.

“Oh my god is that creme brulee?” Lucy's eyes widened, looking at the small cups that Alura still held.

Alura looked down at them, and squinted. She hadn't actually asked what they were called, but they had been positioned where the desserts usually were, and Lucy liked sweets so she had gotten some for her. She hadn't really seen the appeal. The topping smelled burnt to her and she didn't know how that would taste good, but she would try anything once.

“I'm not sure,” she said, setting one down in front of Lucy.

Lucy grabbed one of the spoons Alura had brought as well before gleefully tapping the crust on top. It cracked quietly and Lucy nodded.

“Definitely creme brulee. It's an egg custard based dessert with caramelized sugar on top. They take a blowtorch to it, that's why it's like it is.”

Alura nodded thoughtfully, tugging her plate of food that smelled rich and decadent. The chef had told her she’s been experimenting with French food that day and had used more butter than she ever had before, but it had been worth it. Alura for her part had nodded like she understood and smiled, adding another question to her list of those to look up on the internet.

Lucy ate a spoonful of her dessert. Alura couldn't help but watch the way her lips wrapped around the spoon. She sighed internally. She was self-aware enough to know that she was very, very attracted to Lucy. Even if she didn't smell like the wildflowers the grew on Krypton during her early years before going extinct like all other plant life had known her planet eventually had, Lucy was a beautiful woman. A beautiful woman, intelligent, fierce, similar to Alura herself yet completely opposite. It was hard not to be drawn to the woman. And maybe if she hadn't just crash landed onto a foreign world, grieving her own that had died weeks ago in her point of view, with Lucy navigating a crisis of her own, then maybe Alura would have pursued her. Zor-El, Rao bless him, wouldn't have wanted her to hold back on his account and so she could have done so without guilt.

But she had just landed and there was a human crisis so when Lucy went into rut and that sent Alura into a sympathetic heat, she would not offer to help Lucy ride it out. No, she would return to Kara's home and let them deal with it in their own way. They would be better for it.

“How is it,” Alura asked, just to distract herself from her own thoughts.

“God, I love creme brulee, it’s probably one of my favorite desserts. They did really well today.” She ate another spoonful. “Is it bad that I’m looking forward to three months from now solely for the food that the cooks will make us when they have more free time.”

Alura snorted lightly. “I suppose not. There are worse things to look forward to.”

Lucy’s eyes flicked down to Alura’s large plate of food and she shot Alura a teasing look. “As if you haven’t enjoyed it too.”

Alura felt herself blushing, but she leaned forward and took a bite of the food as if she was unaffected. The trick to being a good adjudicator was to show no fear and to never let the other party know their argument had thrown off your entire case. It was amazing how much interacting with Lucy mirror a case in front of a High Judge. Perhaps it was because the woman was a lawyer herself.

“Yes, well, their efforts should be appreciated of course. They are putting in a great amount more work this week on each dish.”

Lucy laughed long and loud. “God, you’re such a lawyer.”

“And so are you.” Alura was a little confused as to why her being an adjudicator had anything to do with what she’d just. Perhaps it was because she had redirected? Probably from the context.

“You got me there.” Lucy set down the little bowl the creme brulee was in, still half full, and pulled the plate Alura had brought her in front of her. “Everyone I’ve ever been in a relationship has hated the lawyer speak, but sometimes it just happens. You train your whole life to speak and act in a certain way, you can’t just unlearn it.”

Alura’s brow furrowed. “Why didn’t they just construct a better question or present a new argument?”

“They weren’t lawyers.” She shrugged. “Not everyone wants to fight for every answer they want. And I mean it wasn’t every answer, but every time things got tough it was like a switch just went off inside my brain and that’s what happened.”

“Well, I certainly don’t see anything wrong with it.”

Lucy shook her head. “Maybe we’re a better match than any of my other partners.” She rolled her eyes. “God knows Amanda Baxter back in undergrad was a horrible match for me, but god damn she had legs for days and I was eighteen and stupid.” She looked far away for a moment and Alura could only imagine she was seeing this Amanda through the lense of memories. Alura’s mouth turned down at the corners and jealousy shot through her before she shook it off.

“I imagine it’s hard finding your match on Earth,” Alura said, diplomatically instead.

“It is, but definitely better than the option of my father picking anyone for me. I don’t need another man like him in my life. Trying to live up to his expectations was hard enough.” She looked off into the distance again, this time with a much sadder look on her face. “I don’t regret breaking from all that, though. I am happier. It’s just--”

“You wish it hadn’t been necessary and that your father could have accepted you as you were without all of the molding yourself in his image.”

Lucy blinked for a second. “Uh, yeah, that.” She cleared her throat. “Was Kryptonian society more blunt that Earth’s?”

Alura thought about that for a minute. “Slightly, but in a very roundabout way. People were apt to say what they were thinking, but it was in a very polite way.” She tilted her head to the side for half a second, in something like a shrug. “I suppose I am more blunt because of my position on Krypton, it did not lend to beating around the bush, as you say.”

“Hmm, I see.” She ate a bite of her food and sighed. “No put I’m really asking J’onn if the kitchen staff can get bonuses for this food.”

Alura laughed and whatever tension was in the room before was broken. “Somehow I don’t think he’ll agree, though perhaps maybe a few extra days off for everyone wouldn’t be remiss.”

“I’m sure they’ll take it.”

“Who wouldn’t? It’s more time to spend with family. And in this mess, figuring out all of the logistics will take time.”

Lucy nodded slowly. She ran her hand through her hair. “Yeah, that it definitely will.” She fidgeted a bit before looking back at Alura. “It’s been five days, Alura, how much longer do you think it will be? Honestly, I’m getting tired of waiting for the rug to be pulled out from under me. I just want it over with. I want to know what I’m dealing with.”

Alura looked at the other woman, her body language was uncomfortable. More uncomfortable than most humans were when discussing sex in an open setting. Everyone at the base hadn’t been thrilled to discuss the fact that for a week they would be sex driven beings and nothing more, they had curled in on themselves, but they hadn’t radiated the air that they would literally rather be shot in the leg than be there. Oh yes, they would rather be anywhere else, but a lot of them had listened to everything that was being said and behind the fear of the unknown, there was a spark of excitement, sometimes tiny as it was, but it was there. She did not see that with Lucy and she wondered why.

She looked Lucy up and down carefully. Lucy was still looking away, waiting for Alura’s answer. Perhaps Lucy didn’t think she should be an alpha. That would certainly explain things. But why would she think that? She was domineering in her professional life, she was stubborn, she was so very strong for a human, she was most of the stereotypes that an alpha was. Granted, those stereotypes were just that, but still, they did have a bit of truth to them at the heart.

“I don’t know, Lucy. There were tests on Krypton, but I was not a biologist or a medical professional. I’m not even sure they would translate from Kryptonian to human. Everyone is different. We are approaching the end of the most likely window, so with every hour your likelihood goes up.”

Lucy considered that for a moment. “Is there any way that if you were near your rut to trigger it early, more on your own terms?”

“Well, most mates on Krypton synced up their mating schedules by sleeping with each other during their partner’s heat or rut to trigger a sympathetic response. Sympathetic heats or ruts will delay the onset of a person’s natural cycle by a week or two. Do that enough and you are synced with your partner. It usually only took three or four times to do so. So I suppose if you were to have sex with someone else that might trigger it. A higher probability if the other person was in heat, but even if it was a beta, this close, even that might be enough.”

“Would masturbation work?” There was hopeful glint in her eyes.

Alura shook her eyes. “No, it has to do with pheromones triggering the response in your own body. Masturbation won’t do anything for that.”

“Well, fuck,” Lucy sighed. “There goes that idea. I’m not sleeping with someone I’m in charge of, and besides J’onn that eliminates everyone here, and most people I know for that matter. I wouldn’t sleep with James again if you paid me. Our time is done and over and we need to move on for sure. So unless you want to sleep with me, I guess I’m just going to wait it out.” She pushed her plate away, only half eaten. Well then, she was very worried about all of this.

“I would, if not for…” Alura trailed off and shook her head. “Too many crises does not make a good bedfellow.”

Lucy blinked and that for a long second, like she was trying to determine if she heard Alura right. “Wait, you would sleep with me if this hadn’t happened?”

Alura nodded. “Of course, you’re attractive physically, emotionally, and mentally. Why would I not sleep with you?”

Lucy’s mouth dropped open and she shook herself. “Uh, I mean, yeah, same, you’re gorgeous and whip smart and pretty much everything I’ve ever imagined I’d want in a realistic woman, but like. Me? Really?”

“Is it really that hard to believe?” Alura bit the inside of her lip. She had the irrational urge to stand up and walk over to Lucy and show her just how honest she was being. But that would be foolish and impulsive, and she wasn’t the impulsive twin. Usually.

“A little bit, yeah.” She looked away from Alura again. “I mean, I know I’m good looking, but that isn’t the be all end all.”

Alura waited patiently until Lucy looked at her again. “Lucy Lane, you, as you are, are more than enough for anyone who has an ounce of sense.”

Lucy swallowed audibly. “Right, um, thank Alura, but I think I’m going to get some more work done. I’ll see you later.”

Alura stood automatically at the dismissal, all those Kryptonian manners drilled into her even now, but she didn’t walk out the door. She wasn't the impulsive twin now, but Rao above, her and Astra had been terrors when they were younger. Something in her remembered what it was like to make a rational decision every now and again, and now it was time. Rao bless it all she may regret this, but she liked to argue to win, and Lucy...in a way Lucy needed this, to be told and shown that she was more.

Alura stepped around the desk, standing over Lucy. Lucy didn’t speak up to send her away again, but she didn’t look at Alura either. Alura reached out and cupped Lucy’s face, swiveling the wheeled chair gently so that the other woman was facing her. Lucy looked up at her then, pale green eyes wide, questioning, fearful, hopeful. Alura bent down slowly, slowly enough that Lucy could turn, could roll away, could reject her, but she didn’t.

Their lips met and Alura felt the burst of pleasure rocket through her like it was a sign from Rao himself. She forced herself to break away after a few seconds, though. She stood up, looking down at Lucy, waiting for the other woman to react.

Lucy’s eyes opened slowly, blown wide, and hazed over. She wasn’t all there and Alura inhaled sharply at the look on her face. A person looking dazed was not supposed to be this attractive, and yet it was.

She paused and inhaled again, more carefully this time. Oh. Oh my. Lucy’s scent had shifted in the last few seconds. It was subtle now, but it was there. The kiss had actually set off Lucy’s rut. She wondered if it was just a coincidence, or if it really had been the kiss itself. If it was, Alura had never heard anything like this happening, but it was definitely flattering to think it was all real.

Lucy reached out slowly and grabbed Alura’s hand. “You can’t just kiss a girl like that and expect not to do it again, Alura.”

“You want me to?” Alura asked, voice just a touch awed.

“God yes, I do. Every single part of me wants you to do that again. Please.”

Alura leaned down again, nothing slow about her descent this time. Lucy rose up to meet her. Their teeths knocked against each other, but Lucy moaned at the slight bit of pain, and Alura herself only registered that it should have hurt, but didn’t. Kissing while under the influence of the yellow sun was going to be a new experience, it seemed.

Lucy kissed her, putting every little bit of spunk and spark she had into the kiss. Alura felt herself acquiescing to the pressure. She had always taken charge in the courtroom, but in lovemaking she had always preferred to take a slight backseat, never fully pliant, but not dominating either. If the hum in the back of Lucy’s throat was any indication, the other woman didn’t mind at all.

They pulled away at the natural end of the kiss, but neither of them moved very far. Alura went to shift her body into a more comfortable position, but the ground wasn’t under her feet any more. She looked down to find her feet were a few inches above the floor. She hadn’t even noticed, but if she was here now, she might as well continue to use the power to make things easier. She floated into a better position before stopping, looking at Lucy with a sheepish smile when she was done.

“Apparently I was too wrapped up to notice flying.”

Lucy laughed softly. “I’ll take that one as a compliment.”

“As you should.” She reached out and tucked a piece of stray hair behind Lucy’s ear. How the other woman managed to style her hair into buns that only slipped at the eleventh hour was beyond her. Her hair was much more prone to doing whatever it wanted, restraints be damned.

“Alura, I think I might be in the first stages of rut now. I feel...not weird, but I feel something.”

Alura nodded. “You’re in rut. Your scent shifted after our first kiss.”

“How long before I’m out of my mind?” There was a slight tremor in her voice, but Alura suspected if she weren’t Kryptonian she wouldn’t have noticed it.

“A few hours before the more serious side effects kick in. Until then I would finish eating and sleep. During heats and ruts there are few breaks for either. They are rather physically taxing.”

Lucy nodded. “Ok. Right.” She turned just enough to pull her plate closer. She picked up the piece of baguette that had been included with the meal and played with it for a second. “Alura?”

“Yes?”

“Is spending a rut with someone more pleasant than alone? It sounded rather...well, it sounded sort of horrible the way you described it.”

“With someone it is…” Alura trailed off looking for the right word, “transcendent. Alone it’s not horrible, but it’s not something you look forward to.”

“Alura?”

Alura hummed.

“Will you--will you spend my rut with me?” Lucy met Alura’s eyes even as she stumbled over her words.

Alura knew she should say no. Lucy had only just gone into rut, so she was still of sound mind to make the choice, but the consequences after spending a rut together would be something she couldn’t predict. She didn’t want their relationship to sour just because she was impulsive here and now.

But Lucy’s eyes were begging her. She was afraid of what was to come, and Alura was offering her a way out. Alura couldn’t say no. Not when she wanted it too.

“Yes, Lucy, I will.”

Lucy visibly relaxed. “Good, good. Um, thank you.”

“Believe me Lucy, it is no hardship on me.” In fact she could feel the tingles at the bottom of her spine that were always the first sign of her heat coming on. She hadn’t felt it for years, but it was such a singular feeling that she remembered it even now. Once she was fully in heat, even a weaker sympathetic one, she would be just as thankful as Lucy to have a partner. That it was a woman she was coming to care for, that was most certainly a large plus.

Lucy just nodded and went back to eating her fill. Alura sat back and watched her for a few moments before she glanced off into space, thinking. They would need supplies wherever they went. They wouldn’t be moving around much. She could fly them to Lucy’s apartment, but somehow Alura thought that Lucy wouldn’t have stocked up on any groceries. She didn’t think the other woman had left base for longer than a few hours for days and days now.

“Where were you thinking of riding out your rut?” Alura asked.

“I was just going to lock myself into the bunk room I showed you a few days ago. No one is in there now, and it’s secluded enough no one is going to disturb me. Or us now I guess.”

“And what about food? Water we can obviously just get from the bathroom faucet, but food is important. We can’t go a week without eating something.”

Lucy pursed her lips. “Do you think getting the kitchen workers to leave something for us once a day right outside the door would work?”

“Provided they don't linger, I think it should work well enough. Though, they might want to stick to finger foods for us, as much as both of us are enjoying their more fanciful fare, we won’t really have the energy to do much more than grab a handful of food at a time.”

“Ok, I’ll set everything up for that.” She pushed her nearly empty plate back and stood, gathering up the rest of the plates and cups that Alura had brought. “I’ll just go talk to them right now.”

“And then you’re going to lay down.” Alura’s voice was hard and brooked no argument. It was the same voice she’d used on unruly lawyers in her courtroom and criminals who were out of line.

Lucy just scowled at her. “I have things to do still, Alura. I can put off coming back to the room for an hour or two, you said it wouldn’t be bad for a while.”

“You need to sleep. I am being serious about this. Your body will thank you later. You don’t know what it’s like, going through a rut, but I know what it’s like to go through a heat and you need to rest as much as possible or else after it is all over you feel as if you’ve hit the ground at terminal velocity.”

Lucy huffed and walked towards the door. “Fine, I’ll be back in a little while. But if I have to go, so do you.”

“I was already planning on it.” She stood and held the door for Lucy as she walked out of the office. “I will see you soon. If I don’t, it won’t be that hard for me to drag you back to the room myself.”

“But you can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink. Just because I’m in the room doesn’t mean I’ll be sleeping.”

Alura looked over Lucy for a quick second, deciding on what track of argument would work the best. “No, but I find cuddling with another person to be very restful. Sleep usually comes more easily when doing so.”

Lucy’s eyes widened just slightly and Alura knew she’d chosen right. There was no disgusted scoff, but there was consideration in her eyes. Wonderful. Cuddling with Lucy before the blaze of heat ripped through her and clouded her mind wouldn’t be a hardship.

“Fine, I’ll be there right after I arrange everything.”

Alura nodded. “Good.” And then she walked down the hall, back to the bunk room they’d be sharing for the next few days.

 

--

 

Alura woke up what she guessed was about four hours after she’d fallen asleep. She was hot, and not just because Lucy was pressed into her from behind. For a short woman she was remarkably good at being the big spoon. She had held Alura just right, not too tight or too loose. But their sleep was about to come to an end. Her brain felt full of cotton, she was sweating through the simple t-shirt and shorts she had put on to sleep, and she was soaking wet between her thighs. She was most assuredly into the thick of it now.

From the erection pressing into her backside, so was Lucy, but she wasn’t awake yet. Alura listened to Lucy’s steady heartbeat and slow even breathing. It had taken Lucy so long to reach her rut, apparently the trend was continuing for just how long it took her to reach a full rut as well. Alura wanted to wake her, and almost did, before she remembered herself. Lucy needed the sleep. Just because she was ready for sex was no excuse wake Lucy. The time would come.

Her body throbbed. Apparently, though, it would not come soon enough for her. There were ways to hold off on waking Lucy, however, and she intended to use them. She tried to pull out of Lucy’s arms, but Lucy just pulled Alura closer. Alura frowned. She could break Lucy’s hold, of course, but that would probably wake the woman. Alura sighed quietly. Well, quite obviously she wasn’t getting out of bed.

Perhaps if she was quiet she could still take care of herself without waking Lucy. Lucy could sleep longer and Alura could get the relief she needed more and more by the moment. It wasn’t ideal, but it would have to do.

She slipped a hand down her body, toying with the waistband of her shorts. Strange thing, elastic, Krypton hadn’t had a substance like it, but it most assuredly was useful. Trying to lift a Kryptonian night dress or untie a robe would have woken Lucy up, but she could just slip her hand into her shorts now and have her way with herself.

She inhaled sharply as her fingers met her own wetness. She was already so, so worked up. Perhaps because she hadn’t had a heat in years this would be more than just a sympathetic heat. It was possible since her hormones had been essentially reset like every other human. It wouldn’t really change what was about to happen, but it would make it much more intense. Maybe that wouldn’t bode well for the aftereffects of this heat. They might get too attached, but then again she was already committed to this. There was no turning back.

Alura found her clit quickly, swiping over it and almost sobbing out her relief. She was silent, though, she had had to train herself to be silent as a teenager. No noise meant that no one could find her in the middle of her heat and make sure she registered as an omega when the time came. Now, it meant she wouldn’t wake Lucy. She supposed that was a decent enough side effect, even though later in her life on Krypton it had led to some hard conversations with Zor-El. He’d understood. Somewhat.

She set a quick pace. She needed a quick, hard orgasm and she would hopefully be fine enough for long enough that Lucy would wake up. Subconsciously she was hoping that Lucy would wake up right after Alura had come, smelling the surge of hormones, and flipping Alura over and taking her. God, Lucy’s cock inside her would feel wonderful. She hadn’t ever had a heat with an alpha. She had slept with Zor-El, of course, but that had been long after she’d made the change to beta. The urgency to be fucked and filled hadn’t been there.

But it certainly was now. She pressed down on her clit and had to still her bucking hips. Oh Rao, blessed be his light she was already so close to coming. Perhaps one orgasm wouldn’t be enough to quiet her while waiting. Maybe she would need two. She felt herself getting more worked up, not less. She was charging into her heat, core first, on a wet and slippery slide that she didn’t want to get off.

Alura started drawing hard circles around her clit. It wasn’t the easiest task in the confines of her shorts, but she managed. Her imagination provided enough fodder of Lucy fucking her, of her fucking Lucy, of her swallowing Lucy to the root and taking every drop of come the woman gave her, that she felt herself tightening, felt herself ready to tip over the edge, when a hand grabbed her wrist and yanked Alura’s hand out of her pants.

She cried out, forlorn at the loss of her orgasm. She needed to come so badly it was all she could think of.

Then she was flat on her back and Lucy was hovering above her, pupils blown and wild. She looked like a feral animal, like an alpha that had lost themselves to the rut. Lucy had had none of the practice to pull herself back from the edge, and she had just woken up to an omega in heat masturbating. It was no wonder she was already gone. Alura felt her omega thrill at the thought. She trusted Lucy. Lucy wouldn’t hurt her, but like this? Like this she would fuck her so hard she would feel it for weeks, Kryptonian super healing or no.

“Mine!” Lucy snarled.

Alura kept her body loose and relaxed, but reached up to cup Lucy’s face. “Yours.” Saying anything else would be a mistake, and for this heat, she was Lucy’s. She may not be after this, but for now. For now was all that mattered at the moment anyway.

Lucy lunged down and kissed Alura. This one was all teeth and nothing like the ones they’d shared in Lucy’s office. This one was all about domination and need. Alura let herself be ravaged, letting her omega rule her. She had forgotten how good sinking into the submission could be. Oh, Rao, she felt alive like this, every nerve ending firing, directed towards the single cause of making her feel pleasure.

She felt Lucy’s erection pressing into her stomach and whimpered. She needed it. Needed to be knotted and filled. Rao, on this planet she could have children naturally. She would swell with Lucy’s children. They would make beautiful children.

Oh, she was right to be concerned about this heat causing problems for them down the line. She was already getting attached, imagining children. She wondered if Lucy was having similar thoughts. They had barely known each other for a month, but here they were. They needed to get to know one another first before all of this became serious. And maybe it would. But for right now, Lucy needed to fuck her.

“Lucy,” Alura whined.

Lucy pulled back from the kiss, looking down at Alura for just a second before glancing down at Alura’s cloth covered center. Her lip raised into a sneer and she grabbed the sides of Alura’s shorts and ripped them clean in half. Alura’s eyes widened and another gush of wetness coated the inside of her now bare thighs. She didn’t even know that humans were strong enough to do that, but apparently, they were. Or at least Lucy was during her rut.

Lucy pushed off her own shorts in a hurry, not bothering with either of their shirts. She positioned herself above Alura, but paused before sinking down. Alura saw a war taking place on her face before Lucy moved slightly away for a second. Alura whimpered, unable to help herself. She’d been so close to getting relief. But Lucy didn’t come back.

Instead, she fiddled with the nightstand beside the bed, ripping open something, sending small items flying through the air. Alura looked over, but she had no idea what was going on and had no will to really think about it. She heard the quieter ripping of a plastic package and looked up to see Lucy rolling something on her cock. She tilted her head, trying to understand for a long second before it clicked. It was a condom.

Part of her sighed in relief that even taken by her alpha Lucy had remembered. They didn’t need to get pregnant right now, or perhaps ever, and Lucy had thought all of that through. Her omega was displeased at the condom, but pleased at what it meant. Lucy might actually want this to last longer than one heat. She was reading into it, and she knew it, but she was so rational and logical all the time, her heat took that away from her for the most part.

Lucy moved forward again, and Alura grabbed onto her forearms, pulling her forward even more. The resulting smile on Lucy’s face was positively sinful. Alura’s body arched up into Lucy, begging without words. Lucy wasted no more time, leaning on one hand so she could guide her cock into Alura.

Alura moaned at the feeling of Lucy pushing in. Rao, this was what she was made for. Oh, yes, this was what she was made for, to be fucked by Lucy like this. Lucy pushed in and in until she bottomed out in Alura. She held there for a second, letting them both adjust, before she pulled out and shoved all the way back in, hard, fast, brutal, and just what Alura wanted.

“Yes!” Alura screamed. She wasn’t sure if she’d spoken in English or Kryptonese, but it seemed that Lucy got the meaning anyway. She kept thrusting, smiling down at Alura, the expression soft now. She leaned down and kissed Alura gently even as she was pistoning in and out of the other woman. Alura saw more of Lucy in her eyes now and less of the alpha. Oh the alpha was there, definitely, but Lucy seemed more in control now that they were fucking. Alura didn’t mind that in the slightest either. She wanted Lucy to enjoy this, and she knew for the other woman that meant control.

Alura felt herself tightening again. It wasn’t going to take long. She had already almost come from touching herself. With Lucy fucking her exactly like she wanted, there was no way this wasn’t going to end in a hard and fast orgasm. She wondered if she would come before Lucy even had a chance to pop her knot. It was definitely possible. Rao, her own orgasm would probably cause Lucy’s knot to pop and then Lucy would fuck her to yet another orgasm and she’d fuck her knot into Alura and she would come and scream and thrash and be lost to her own ecstasy.

“Lucy, I’m going to--” She didn’t even get the whole sentence out. Her imagination of events to come and tipped her so far over the edge she was screaming, still feeling Lucy fuck her hard and fast. She grabbed onto Lucy’s shoulders, holding on for dear life. Her back arched, her toes curled, there were dark spots on her vision.

And the whole time Lucy looked down at her, eyes still soft.

Alura slumped back to the bed, panting, shuddering as Lucy continued to move. She didn’t know how she was going to come again. She had just come harder than she could ever remember. She knew logically that a body didn’t break apart during an orgasm, but she most certainly felt like she had.

She could feel herself building up again, though, even though her mind thought it wasn’t possibly, her body had no qualms. Alura dug her nails into Lucy’s back, unable to help herself. She jerked her hands down on a particularly hard thrust, and Lucy moaned loudly. So it seemed that that turned Lucy on. Alura smiled wickedly and did it again. Lucy moaned again, higher pitched this time. She fucked Alura harder still and Alura marveled over the force. How in the world could the human pound into her this hard? Not that she was complaining, she was merely curious.

Lucy canted her hips just so and Alura was coming again, unexpectedly. She hadn’t been there until she was. Her eyes snapped shut and her back arched once more, harder than before. Her nails scratched down Lucy’s back again and when she finally opened her eyes again, the alpha was there again, blocking Lucy out.

Just when Alura had fallen to the bed again, Lucy pulled out. Alura shuddered at the feeling of being empty. She was almost satisfied. Almost. She would need to be knotted before she really felt that bone deep tiredness that couldn’t be denied after a good fuck. Alura looked down at Lucy’s cock, seeing the beginning of a knot forming, but not one that had popped yet. So it seemed she was still good to go, but it would be a bit longer before Alura really got what she wanted.

Lucy scooped Alura up and flipped her over so she was on her stomach. Her hips were pulled back roughly and a second later, Lucy was entering her from behind. Her omega cried out happily at being taken like this. The way Lucy was hitting her walls, Alura wasn’t complaining either. Oh Rao, she was going to come again. She wondered idly if there was an upper limit to the amount of times she could come before completely giving out. If there was, she was sure that Lucy was going to take her there.

She felt one of Lucy’s arms snake around her waist and a second later Lucy’s fingers were on her clit, rubbing, driving Alura even higher. She gripped the sheets, needing to ground herself, but she knew like this there was no way she could truly ground herself. She would be flying in the purely metaphorical sense soon. She had told Lucy that being with another person during a heat or rut was transcendent. She had just been repeating what other people had told her, or as close to the real translation as possible, but she hadn’t quite known it would be like this. It was transcendent. She felt larger than the universe and smaller than an atom all at the same time. She was everywhere and nowhere, but no matter where she was Lucy was with her.

“Lucy!” Alura cried out, coming again, shuddering, collapsing to the bed, changing the angle of Lucy’s thrusts once more, sending new sensations through her. She almost thought it was too much, but she didn’t say anything at all. How could she when it all felt this good? Lucy’s fingers were still on her clit, still rubbing, still driving her to infinite heights. And Lucy hadn’t come once. She wondered how Lucy as a new alpha had the restraint, but she wasn’t of a mind to think on it in any meaningful manner.

Alura drew in a stuttering breath as Lucy’s fingers hit just the right place and suddenly she was higher than before. She arched again and pressed herself back. Lucy’s knot was there, pressing against her as she pushed back. Alura needed it more than she needed air. She felt like she was losing herself to her omega. She wanted to be in control for this last orgasm, but she was slipping. No matter what she would feel so good that she would remember this feeling for years to come. What was the harm in letting her omega have the reigns? She pressed back again and Lucy’s knot slipped in just a bit, then she was gone.

It was almost like taking a step back. She could gain control is she really wanted, but she didn’t want to. Her omega had it handled. She reached back and grabbed Lucy’s hips and thrust her forward. Lucy growled, grabbed Alura’s hands and pinned them to the bed. She purred at the action as Lucy pressed forward, pushing and pushing her knot in as she held Alura down.

It was a sweet eternity, but then Lucy’s knot popped in and Alura screamed again. Rao, she was so full. This was exactly what she needed. Now if only Lucy would come inside her, she would be content. Damn the condom that would prevent her from feeling Lucy spill her seed. But also bless it in turn. Maybe one day it wouldn’t be necessary.

Lucy started to thrust inside her gently. Rao bless it, hopefully one day soon.

“Lucy, please, come inside me, please,” Alura pleaded. As soon as she felt Lucy come she knew she would come hard enough to truly white out this time.

Lucy snarled again and Alura could practically feel the tension rocketing through the other woman. She sped up just enough inside Alura and Alura had the smart idea to squeeze down on Lucy. Lucy cried out, sharp and high and perfect, and Alura could feel Lucy’s cock twitching inside her. The wave of her final orgasm crashed over her and everything did indeed go white for a long, long moment.

When she came to what might be seconds or minutes later, Alura was so very tired. Lucy was slumped on top of her and she felt safe. She could just go to sleep right there and then, and she planned on doing just that until she turned her head and felt her neck twinge. She scowled and raised a hand slowly to her neck. She pulled her hand back and saw blood on her finger tips.

She drew in a sharp breath, but this time in suprise and fear instead of pleasure. Oh, Rao, above, this was not good. This was not good at all.

Alura turned her head enough to see Lucy resting on her back, already snoring softly. She looked at the other woman’s mouth and sure enough there was blood on the other woman’s lips. Oh this was more than not good.

Lucy, in her uncontrolled state, had marked Alura.

 

Chapter Text

Kara blinked awake just as the sun hits her. She groaned quietly. She wasn’t ready to be awake, that was for sure. On Earth she had infinite power, so long as she recharged in the sun enough. But now? Now she was even tired and sore, but she still felt her rut coursing through her and she smelled Cat’s heat still as well. It wasn’t as strong, though, and Kara guessed that they had at most one round left before they would be free of their cycles for another few months.

Behind her Cat stretched, squinting her closed eyes against the light. “Kara, tell the sun it needs to stop. Surely you can do that with all your powers.”

Kara snorted. “No, I don’t think I can do that even with all of my powers.” She flipped around so she was on her side, cradling Cat against her so the other woman wasn’t in the path of the light anymore.

“Close enough. Gold star there, Supergirl.” Cat said, snuggling closer.

Kara looked down at the woman in her arms and even after six days she still couldn’t believe it. She was really in bed with Cat. At the start of this she would have never imagined it would happen. Cat had always held her attention, even before Kara had ever met her. She had watched Cat’s TV show religiously when she’d first arrived. She had loved the woman’s charisma. Of course, that hadn’t prepared her to see Cat in real life. Working for her had shown Kara that she was even grander in real life, snarkier, of course, and at times meaner, but her presence was enough to silence a room. And she could see the softness beneath the claws. Watching a show also couldn’t tell her just how wonderful Cat smelled.

Kara tilted her head until her nose was buried in Cat’s hair. She inhaled softly and felt a shiver go through her. Even before all of this Cat had smelled like home. Her scent was floral and foreign, at least to Earth. It reminded Kara of the High Council botanical gardens on Krypton. It had had species of plants from all over the universe, encased in a huge geodesic dome that protected everything from the harsh weather of Krypton in its final years. Kara had gone there often with her parents, to learn with her father, or with her mother when she needed to relax after a day at court. To have Cat sitting beside her, reminding her always of those pleasant memories of home, it was addictive.

“I’m getting hot again,” Cat huffed. “Don’t get me wrong the orgasms are great, but I could deal without seven days of them in a row. I’m so sore I’m going to need you to book at least five massages after this just to get everything straightened out.”

Kara kissed the top of Cat’s head and pulled back. “I can do that. I’ll also tell your yoga instructor to keep the workouts more on the healing side to help you recover.”

“Good.” Cat nosed her way up under Kara’s chin and started to kiss Kara’s neck. “Be gentle this time?”

Kara sucked in a breath at the feeling of Cat’s lips against her. Rao, she wasn’t ever going to get used to that feeling. “Of course.” She felt her clit swelling again, extending and thickening to resemble a cock. It felt a little red and raw and she was glad that Cat wanted it gently. A hard fuck was a beautiful thing, but not after six days of hard fucking. Maybe she would break out her polka dot ice pack after this and just lay with it on her groin.

Cat’s hand found Kara and stroked slowly and gently. Kara’s breath stuttered and she let Cat have her way with her. Six days together had given them more than enough time to get to know each other intimately. Cat knew just how to twist her hand so Kara threw her head back. With Kara’s neck now completely open, Cat nipped and licked with abandon. Kara’s alpha sat, wondering if the omega would mark them, happy to sit back and submit if that were the case. Kara herself knew it was not, but she didn’t care as long as she could enjoy this without a fight. Cat kissing her and giving her a hand job was the stuff of her dreams not too long ago. She wanted to belong to Cat, to be dominated by her every now and again and then taking the control back others. So this, this was perfect.

“Cat,” Kara breathed out.

Cat hummed, sucking a mark on Kara’s neck that would only be there for a second before healing. She still liked to leave them, though, if the amount of times Kara had noticed her doing just that was any indication. Kara didn’t mind, not at all, it meant Cat wanted to claim her.

Kara was pushed onto her back and Cat climbed on top of her. Kara groaned as Cat straddled her thigh and pressed her wetness against Kara’s skin. Cat sighed in relief against Kara’s neck as she started to move in short strokes. Kara pressed up against her just a bit and Cat groaned. Her hand didn’t stop on Kara’s clit once, though, and Kara felt herself nearing the edge quickly at Cat’s gentle, expert touch.

“If you come you better be sure you can be hard again in a minute flat, because I’m going to need you inside me. So think hard about that, Keira.”

Kara wasn’t thinking about much, though. With an omega in heat around her, though, she wouldn’t go limp until she’d knotted Cat again. So she really didn’t have to think about it at all. Which was a good thing because Cat’s demands were not making it any easier to contain herself. Dirty talk had never really turned her on before, neither had demands, but this was Cat, so those rules were apparently something that could be broken for this woman.

“Come with me,” Kara said.

“I’m holding you to what I said earlier.” Her hands clenched on Kara’s arms. “Almost there.”

Kara’s hands found Cat’s hips and she tugged her down on her thigh. Cat’s hips bucked hard in her hands and Kara let her move freely while keeping her up right. Cat’s grip tightened on Kara’s clit and she gasped, one right move away from coming all over.

“Don’t you dare go over without me. You were the one that asked for us to come together. It would just be rude to break your word.”

Kara’s fingers flexed, drawing a gasp from Cat. Kara was thankful for the modulated strength that her rut brought. She didn’t want to hurt Cat just because she was lost in her own pleasure. She held herself right at the edge, feeling Cat’s strokes quicken slowly from lazy circles to more moderate thrusting, body too exhausted to go any faster than that. Cat scrunched her eyes shut, sunlight hitting her naked body, reflecting off her hair, and arched in that way she always did right before she came. Kara thanked Rao that Cat was at the edge too and started to let go.

“Kara!” Cat called right before Kara herself came, feeling her own come coating her stomach and hands and most likely the sheets as well. There was just so much come when an alpha was in rut. She was sure they had ruined at least a few sets of Cat’s sheets with just how much come had come out of her and absorbed into them.

Cat collapsed onto Kara’s chest for a few long moments, catching her breath. “That was a good warm up, but I’m certainly going to need more than that,” she said, voice steady again.

“You can take anything else you want, Cat.”

“As much as I love riding you, I think it’s your turn to do the work, dear.” Cat rolled off of Kara onto her side of the bed again. She pulled on Kara’s arm until Kara sat up and looked over at Cat. Her legs were already spread and she was looking at Kara expectantly.

“Is there something you want?” Kara cocked an eyebrow and tried not to laugh.

“You know damn well what I want Kara Zor-El. I didn’t get that IUD for nothing. I want you to fuck me and knot me and come until I’m full enough to satisfy the hormones coursing through me, and then I want this to be over so I can actually get a good night's sleep and enjoy laying with you for longer than five minutes without going into another cycle.”

Kara pushed herself up onto her knees and moved over to where Cat was laying. “Romantic.”

“Did you expect anything else?” Cat snarked right back.

“No, not really.” She bent down and kissed Cat gently, mindful of kiss bruised lips.

Cat pulled back and sighed. “And I want to kiss you and kiss you without it going anywhere but kissing.”

“I’ll make sure you have a night off soon and I can give you that.” Kara held her breath for a second. They hadn’t really discussed where this was going after their cycles ended. Kara got the feeling from Cat that this wasn’t a one time thing, it seemed like it was just the straw that broke the camel’s back, the thing that brought them together for good, but she could be wrong.

“Good, I’m sure you’ll make it into some sort of movie marathon where we just make out like teenagers. Just remember, I like the classics and kettle corn the best.”

Kara kissed Cat again, smiling. “I was actually thinking of a real date with dinner, you were the one to bring up a movie night.”

Cat curled her lips, but didn’t say anything else on the subject. “You’ll have to be transferred to a new department before that. It’s long overdue anyway. Anywhere you want to go, you can Kara. You have all the skills.” Cat’s hand found Kara’s cheek. “You’re an amazing woman. I just didn’t want to let you go. Now, I suppose, I don’t have to, even if I have to have a new assistant.”

Kara blinked stupidly for a second. A promotion. Holy cow a promotion. It was everything she’d been working for, for years now. But at the same time she wondered if she really deser--

“And before you think that this is just favoritism, I already had the paperwork drafted up. I was going to give it to you the day the beam hit, but then things got turned upside down and that got pushed back. I needed my A team with me to cover all the news that was incoming.”

Kara melted on the inside. “Cat.”

“Yes, yes mushy gooey stuff. If you haven’t noticed, Supergirl, you have one of the best looking women in the world under you and you aren’t doing anything about it.”

Kara shifted so she was pressing at Cat’s entrance. “Who says I’m not doing anything about it?”

“Mmm, the fact that you aren’t inside me yet.”

Kara pressed in then, slowly and carefully. Cat’s walls gripped her hard and Kara felt at home. Rao, being in Cat was what she imagined paradise felt like. Already she felt her knot starting to swell. This far into their cycles it wouldn’t take long.

“Well what about now?” Kara asked, forcing the words through her gritted teeth.

“Almost satisfactory,” Cat panted back.

“Well, if it’s only almost, I can stop,” Kara teased, pushing until she hit Cat’s cervix.

“Don’t you dare. Just move, please, Kara. Fuck me.” Cat squirmed, trying to force Kara to thrust into her.

Kara pulled out gently and then pushed back in. She kept her pace consistent, firm enough to have Cat gasping, but with none of the brutal force of their fucking before. She angled her hips in just that way that drove Cat wild. With one arm supporting her weight one of her hands drifted down Cat’s body, stopping for a minute to trace hard nipples, and cause Cat to break out in goosebumps as she traced the soft definition of Cat’s stomach, before she found Cat’s clit.

“Oh,” Cat sighed out.

Kara’s eyes rolled back as Cat’s walls gripped her again. Her knot swelled fast now, not wasting any time. She increased the pace of her fingers on Cat’s clit. Getting a knot in was always easier right after someone had orgasmed. They were warm and loose and high on endorphins so the slight pain would feel like just a twinge at most.

“God, so full, Kara, please, more.” Cat was practically melting into the bed, neck bared to Kara, as she luxuriated in the pleasure coursing through her.

Kara thrust a bit harder and was rewarded with Cat growing tighter. She groaned and continued thrusting. Oh Rao, she was going to come before she could get her knot in. Cat was going to be so full of come that her small body would be plump with it. Kara’s alpha preened at the image and Kara herself shuddered. She was infinitely glad that Cat had an IUD and that she could come as much as she wanted in the other woman without consequences. It made the rut so much more satisfying.

“Fuck!” Cat screamed, coming after one particularly good thrust.

Kara was right behind her, coming in Cat, continuing to fuck Cat at that consistent pace to bring them both through their orgasms. She bit her lip as the last gush came out of her, huffing out a tired breath. Everything was screaming at her to continue but she just needed a minute to gather herself. Looking down at Cat who was still caught in the last throws of her orgasm wasn’t a bad sight to linger on anyway.

When Cat finally still Kara thrust forward again, slowly, even more gently. Her knot pressed up against Cat and Cat squirmed. She couldn’t quite decide whether she was squirming towards it or away from it, but Kara took the decision from her. She pushed on and on, stuffing Cat full of her. Cat whimpered and whined and the noises alone were enough to almost send Kara over the edge. She knew knotting was intense for her, but she wondered just how intense it was for omegas. Her school books had always said it was a memorable experience, but that was all. She hadn’t been old enough for the classes that explained everything in more depth. She imagined though, it was more intense than even what an alpha experienced, and that had to be heaven on Earth if it was, because Kara felt as if she touched heaven when she knotted, but never quite entered it.

Here with Cat, though? She might be in heaven now. Her knot popped and Cat moaned, a quiet, broken, worshipful sound. Kara’s breath froze in her lungs as she pushed forward as much as she could before she pulled back as far as she could. It wasn’t much, maybe an inch of movement in total, but it was enough  to make her hold onto the sheets and curse in all twenty languages she knew, and it was enough to have Cat speechless for once.

“Oh Cat, oh fuck,” Kara gritted out from behind clenched teeth. Too much pleasure, not enough, she was caught in an in-between. She didn’t regret it, it was overwhelming, but it was firing impulses across her skin that had her seeing Rao himself every time she blinked. She thanked him over and over in her mind for the fact that he gave her Cat. Cat was hers. There was no changing that now.

“Please,” was the only word that Cat could get out.

Kara felt herself splitting from the inside, muscles clenching deep in her abdomen, preparing for the inevitable. Her mouth opened, her head snapped back, and she exploded in Cat, coming and coming and coming, until she thought nothing was left in her. Then Cat came, rippling around Kara’s cock and setting off Kara all over again. On and on they plunged until Kara’s mind could take no more pleasure and the passed out right then and there on top of Cat, in the midst of coming for what had to be the ninth time.

 

--

 

When Kara woke again, it was much later in the day, late afternoon really, and she could feel the empty feeling of after rut. So they had really ended. Thank Rao. She wanted to spend the next heat the same way with Cat, and she was excited, but having a three month break from nonstop sex would be fine by her.

She pushed herself up. Cat was on the other side of the bed snoring lightly. Kara smiled down at her. Cat no doubt would deny the fact that she snored, but Kara found it adorable. Her stomach grumbled as she was admiring Cat, though. She was starving. Now that her powers were back in full now that her rut had left her, she needed fuel to supply them and she needed to replace the calories she’d burned. She’d be amazed if she had any body fat left after this week. So as much as she didn’t want to, she had to get up and scrounge up something.

Kara pushed herself up from the bed gently, careful not to wake Cat and she padded into the kitchen. She pawed around in the cabinets and fridge and came up with enough to make a huge breakfast, which was fortunate because breakfast was about the only thing she could cook. One of the brightest young minds on Krypton, but yet she couldn’t manage to figure out the arcane art of cooking. Though she did make a mean turkey with her laser vision. Well, Eliza was the one who actually prepared everything, she just lasered it. She rolled her eyes and waved the technicality off.

She went about prepping breakfast, and when everything was almost done she put on the coffee. She had a feeling that Cat would wake up to the scent and find her way out to the kitchen on her own. If there was anything that could summon Cat Grant it was coffee. Perhaps also witty sarcasm, but that didn’t have a smell that permeated a house like coffee.

Sure enough five minutes later, Cat came shuffling into the kitchen Kara’s cape wrapped around her, eyes half closed. Kara handed her a latte and went back to plating her food. Cat sipped at her drink quietly for a minute, still waking up. Rao, the woman was far too adorable. She set a plate of food in front of Cat and went to sit on the barstool beside Cat. Kara had to control just how fast she ate. She wanted to vacuum all the food down in half a second, but she had a feeling that Cat wouldn’t take kindly to that. Kara huffed quietly. Stupid table manners. Didn’t they know she was a starving Kryptonian.

“I need you to call the car service and see if anyone is back on duty as of yet,” Cat said as she finished her cup of coffee.

“You want to go in tomorrow?” Kara asked. She really didn’t expect anything less from Cat.

“No, I want to go in tonight. We’ve taken a week off Kara, I need to make sure that my empire is still standing and we need to get ahead on the coverage of the aftermath. We need to let people know the resources available to them for everything from the morning after pill to abortion clinics, to rape hotlines. We need to consult experts to see if normal emergency contraceptives will even work for a situation like this. There’s information that the people need and we’re going to be the ones to provide it.”

Cat had that fire in her eyes that Kara knew meant longer hours, but hours well spent for the final product. Cat being passionate about an issue always made it have that extra pop, above and beyond regular news coverage. This would be all worth it. People needed the information, she was right.

“Ok. I’ll call the company when we’re done eating. If they have no one I can fly us in at least.”

“Good.” Cat nodded and tucked into her meal with visual enthusiasm.

 

--

 

Kara had been in CatCo when it was empty many a time, but never had it felt as empty as it did now, walking in after a week of the building being empty. The skeleton beta crew had kept the publications going, but had done so for the most part at home. Cat probably wouldn't be happy with what they did, but she would understand in her own way. Carrying an entire empire on so few backs was too much. Collaboration was everything to CatCo.

“Well, obviously the janitors will be working overtime to get this place cleaned up. I can already feel my throat closing up from all the dust.” Cat's lip was curled.

“I'll leave them a memo. I'm sure someone won't mind some overtime after all this.”

Cat hummed and keyed in the code to her private elevator. It dinged and opened up. Cat gestured for Kara to follow her and soon they were on their way up to the fortieth floor.

“Do any of your spook friends have inside information on possible changes in legislation? I'm assuming there will be some changes. There will have to be or else we'll have a population explosion that none of our current infrastructure can handle.”

“I can get in touch with them. They were working with my mother and aunt to draft some necessary legislation.”

Cat's eyes found Kara's. “Perhaps I could meet your family? I think it would be a good idea to show just where the government is getting their information and that it is all right, not just guesses made in the heat of the moment.”

Kara blushed at the thought of Cat meeting her Mother. She had this feeling that Alura would cross examine Cat like a criminal, to which Cat would of course respond to by going full on shark reporter. It wouldn't be pretty. But maybe after they had it out they would get along. They did have no nonsense personalities in common. Well, somewhat on Cat's part. She did have a flare for the dramatic, but her work ethic was no nonsense at least. Her Aunt would probably just give Cat the shovel talk of her life and then be fine. Kara could already feel the embarrassment flaring at thought.

But no matter what, she did want Cat to meet them. Cat was hers now. They weren't mated, but Kara had a bone deep feeling that they would be one day. Who wouldn't want their family to accept the person they loved?

Now, however, wasn't the right time. “Um, maybe not for an interview. No one outside the government even knows my family is alive. And my aunt has more than a few enemies out there that don't need to know she came back. You could interview me as Supergirl instead, though, and any questions I didn't know the answer to I could relay back to them. I'm already a public figure that's mostly trusted. It would eliminate the worry that people wouldn't trust the source, for the most part.”

Cat looked Kara over with a glint in her eyes. “You're right. I'll draft up some questions today after I make sure Rome isn't burning. And Kara?”

“Yes Cat?”

“Think about what department you want to end up in after this.” Cat reached up and cupped Kara's face. “I have a feeling I know what you'll pick.”

Kara's mind instantly jumped to where she wanted to go, to where she really always wanted to be, to where this woman in front of her had inspired her to go years and years ago. But she wanted to be completely sure before she committed. The art department wouldn't be a bad fit for her either. All that painting and creativity would come in handy, and she could channel it towards something outside of the paintings of her past life. It would be good for her. Still, though, it wasn't her dream.

Cat noticed her look of certainty. “It seems like you do as well. Find your replacement, then, and come talk to me after you've trained them to be more competent than a monkey with a typewriter.”

Kara frowned, thinking of Cat’s next assistant. No one would be good enough for her, Cat would never think so, and Kara wouldn't either. She knew she needed to move on to a bigger and better job, but taking care of Cat soothed her. She liked knowing where the other woman was at all times. And Rao, above as much as her alpha hated it, she liked being given direction by Cat. Being Supergirl provided all the hard choices she needed to make. At work, Cat made all the choices and she just had to plan whatever Cat was thinking. It wasn't all that hard with a contact list full of people and a smile.

Being a reporter...well that was going to take a little more thought and decision making. She could handle it, she thought. She had handled everything that was thrown at her before, including her planet dying, but a new challenge was a new challenge.

Kara looked at Cat. She wouldn't be alone though. Cat would help her, she always had. Just because she would be working on a different floor wouldn't change that.

And with that, Kara relaxed. “Hey, none of your assistants before me was that bad.”

Cat leveled Kara with a flat stare. “Really, even the one who was so nervous he threw up his first day on my brand new custom made designer shoes? Or the one who asked me how to spell Grant. Or the one who didn't believe in cell phones. Or--”

Kara held up a hand. “Alright, I get it, but I meant the ones who actually lasted more than a day.”

Cat hmphed at that. “You never met them.”

This time it was Kara's turn to level Cat with a stare. “I didn't have to. I know you, Cat. They didn't know an assistant’s job would need fighter pilot steady nerves. Who can blame them.”

“I most certainly can. But you do Kara, and you know exactly what it takes to last, so find someone who doesn't have the vision to become a pilot, but has the nerve. Just...no alphas.”

Kara growled involuntarily. She blinked, blushing a second later. “Uh, sorry about that.”

Cat just smirked and finally sat behind her desk, frowning for half a second at the slightly dusty surface before smirking at Kara again. “No need to apologize, Supergirl. There won't be any omega cubicle buddies for you either.”

White hot want surged through Kara. Cat wanted her the same way she wanted Cat. Thank Rao above. Every single time she got the affirmation she would feel relief, even if it was years from now. Cat was just...everything. Kara knew that she was above and beyond most people for some things, but really, being with her would be dangerous, Cat would always be worrying, she had issues that definitely hadn't been dealt with surrounding the death of her planet. For Cat to take that on. She took in a deep breath.

“I wouldn't dream of it.”

“Good.” Cat waves her hand dismissing Kara. “I'm sure there's some work you can find to do.”

Kara nodded and went to her desk. She looked back at Cat just as soon as she sat, though. Yes, she had issues, but if she wasn't putting Cat up on that pedestal that she did a little too frequently sometimes, Cat had her own problems. She drank too much, though less now since she'd replaced Cat's ice bucket with a bucket of m&ms, and she had all of that baggage surrounding Adam, and the tendency to distance other people. But they had come together somehow. And it would be work to keep them together, but Kara was more than willing to do that work. They would have to talk about it, for sure, but for now it was the first day back at work and Cat was right. She did have so many things to do to get things up and running smoothly once more.

She pulled up the HR file of candidates they kept on hand to fill the assistant job whenever it intermittently emptied and she set to work.

 

--

 

A few days later most everyone was back at work. CatCo was bustling again, and finally Kara was bringing in the first round of people to interview to replace her. It felt nice to be in a building that was bustling again. With super hearing an empty building sounded every eerier than she bet it sounded to anyone human. And with the added distractions of interviews, she could almost forget that Earth had just undergone a crisis. Was still undergoing a crisis, really. But life had to go on some way even now.

She'd narrowed down the candidate pool to three different candidates. Kara was almost one hundred percent sure that she wanted Eve Tessmacher, but she needed a few back ups just in case her resume over sold her, or, and this was really the big reason because Kara had called a few of Eve’s references and had only gotten praise, she needed those backups in case Eve was an alpha. Kara knew she shouldn't be this possessive, but she couldn't talk herself out of it. It would get better the longer she and Cat were together and even better if they exchanged mating bites, but she needed to control herself now. They were going for a stealthy relationship after all. Growling at any alpha that came within five feet of Cat wasn't stealthy.

Besides, she didn’t think Cat would want an alpha assistant anyway. She would want someone she could trust if she suddenly went into a heat at work. Not that her assistant would probably attack her, but the risk was there, especially during the first few ruts where everyone learned to control themselves. So yes, alphas were off the table for multiple reasons.

Well, she’d see today during the interviews she’d scheduled and if the three she had today didn’t work out she would keep searching. Kara glanced down at the clock on her desk. It was almost eleven and Eve had her interview scheduled then. Security had her visitor badge all ready to go so there would be no delay there. If Eve didn’t show up at least a few minutes early, working with Cat wasn’t exactly going to work for her. Kara was early to everything and still by Cat’s standards was right on time.

Kara looked up and scanned the floor and then slipped her glasses down her nose a bit to look at the elevators. Ah. There she was in car four with a group of other people. She would be there soon then. She looked back at her notes and supplies and nodded. Everything was ready to go.

She heard the elevator door ding and waited a few seconds before looking up. Eve was headed right towards her desk. Kara stood and smiled. She walked around her desk and met Eve, shaking her hand when offered.

“Hi, you must be Eve Tessmacher. I’m Kara Danvers.”

“Hello Kara, nice to meet you in person.” Eve smiled pleasantly.

“Have a seat.” Kara took her own seat and looked over the woman. She had a pleasant smile on her face and showed no sign of nerves. That was good. Cat ate people who were nervous for breakfast on a stressful workday. “So, I read over your resume and I think you would be a great fit, but I have a few questions to ask obviously.” Kara smiled and inhaled quietly. If the woman was an alpha there was no need to continue this interview much past a few questions. It would be waste of both of their time. But Kara smelled the blank nothingness of beta. Eve smelled like old paper, rich, but forgettable, something that faded into the background. It was fitting for working here, though.

Eve smiled back at her. “Well, I’m here to answer your questions. Working for Miss Grant is an amazing opportunity so I’m prepared.”

Kara nodded at that. Prepared was good. You always had to have at least three back up plans as Cat’s assistant. “So, how do you think you deal with pressure?”

And then the interview was off and running. Kara liked every single one of Eve’s answers. She seemed exactly like the kind of woman that her application had made her out to be, calm, capable, intelligent, and able to think on her feet. She had a chance of making it for more than a week. Good to know her instincts had been right.

“Well, I think after all this, you’d be a perfect fit for the job. Are there any questions you have for me?” Kara asked after about half an hour of back and forth between them.

“Yes, first, just how closely do you work with Cat?”

Kara blinked at that. Not sure how to answer. “Well, you are her personal assistant, so fairly close. Some days more than others, of course, it just depends on what needs done. She’s a great mentor in her own way in the time you do spend together. She has a sharp tongue, but it’s for a reason. Most of the time.”

Eve nodded. “I got the impression that she’s harsh but mostly fair, of course. I realize it may seem a little silly to ask, but I’m just wondering if I should warn my partner about the potential of me smelling like Cat when I come home. He wouldn’t much like that.” She shrugged. “Being an alpha is taking him some getting used to, but he wasn’t overly possessive before so I think he’ll manage?”

Kara inhaled, trying to smell Cat on herself, but she didn’t. “I smell like Cat?” she asked.

Eve nodded. “You must have gotten used to it from all the time you spend with her, but you very much smell of two scents, I figure the one coming from her office is hers of course and then the other must be your own.”

Oh Rao bless it, if she had gone around smelling of Cat that was the least subtle thing ever. And she hadn’t even noticed it. What in the world were they going to do?

Well right now she just had to play it cool. “Oh, um, maybe then. The last few days have been long days and I've been by her side a lot more as we've been covering all the news we can about the ABO outbreak. It might not be so bad later when things have settled down. I don't know. This is all so new, you know?” Kara tried to look honest even as she was lying through her teeth. Eve was a stranger. She could lie to strangers. It was people she was close with that she had a hard time keeping secrets.

Eve nodded. “I do know. I saw the broadcast from CatCo right before everyone heats and ruts started. It was very informative, especially with the supplementary articles published later. I knew more of what to expect physically with my boyfriend. Now though, it's been rougher figuring out everything else past that.”

Kara nodded. She had noticed. Now it was time to figure out social implications since the first physical repercussions had passed. She was figuring out social implications and she had been an alpha most of her life. It was different now that humans knew. Her eyes flicked to Cat’s office. And difficult now too. She could only imagine what social changes they were on the crest of, but they hadn't gone over the edge yet.

“I have a few other questions too if you don't mind,” Eve continued.

Kara nodded glad to drop the subject.

 

--

 

Twenty minutes later Eve had the job and a start date two days later after she'd completed her HR paperwork and gotten everything squared away. Kara would train her for a week before moving on to her new job, while still helping out for a few weeks when the going was rough. She thought everything, Eve included, would make the transition easier for Cat. Kara could probably stick around and train Eve more, but if she was already smelling like Cat, and people had noticed she needed to get out sooner rather than later.

Which meant she had to tell Cat what job she wanted. Which really she'd already decided on long ago. So it wasn't really an issue of deciding, but she still hadn't told Cat yet. She didn't really know why, but something was holding her back. Maybe she just didn't want to let go of being Cat’s assistant just yet. It was possible.

She stood up. Cat wasn't busy right now, or well, wasn't in a meeting or a phone call anyway. She should talk to Cat right now. She sighed and walked into Cat's office.

“Miss Grant?” Kara asked. She was glad the Miss Grant was still instinctual even after she had shouted Cat’s name while coming for a week.

“Yes Kara?” Cat asked, not looking away from her computer screen.

“I know where I want to go after this.”

That got Cat’s attention. She looked up at Kara expectantly.

“I want to be a reporter.” Kara held her breath, waiting for what Cat would say.

Cat opened a drawer and pulled out a manilla envelope and handed it to Kara. Kara took it and opened it. Inside was her resume with ‘reporter’ scrawled across it with red pen. She looked up at Cat with a question in her eyes.

“I wrote that right after I hired you. I knew from the very beginning where you belonged. I'm glad you realized it as well.” Cat glanced past her to where Eve had been sitting earlier. “I take it that one passed muster?”

Kara nodded and bit her lip. She needed to tell Cat about Eve and the smell thing. She did. She couldn't put it off. That would only make it worse. Still, though, the urge to shuffle her feet and just accept Cat’s praise, because that's what it was, praise because only the best worked as her reporters, and then leave the room and pretend it never happened. That wasn't who Kara was though.

“She did. I think I can train her for a week and then I can just help while in my new position.”

“So eager to get started?” There was a small grin on Cat’s face.

Kara looked away from her and felt her face heat up. Rao bless it she really wished she didn't blush the second she was stressed or embarrassed. “Yeah, I am,” she said. It wasn't a lie. “But I think sooner is better for both of us.” She took a deep breath and looked at Cat. “While I was interviewing Eve she asked me if I spent so much time with you that when she took my place she would smell like you. Of course you can smell like someone after spending time with them, but it's something you really have to concentrate on. I think when we were together we might have scent bonded. It's temporary, it's only meant to tie people together who unexpectedly mate, a kind of biological redundancy so couples stay together to raise the kids. Even if people don't know that, they're going to get the wrong conclusion from the fact we smell obviously of each other. Well the right conclusion really. Most people won't think anything of it, but the board…” Kara trailed off.

Cat blinked calmly with that expression that actually terrified Kara. Cat was a passionate woman, her lashing out wasn't anything new, but when she was at her most cunning and cut throat she was always quiet right before.

“Kara,” she said, voice even, “you turned in your two weeks notice a week ago. Do you understand?” She opened her desk drawer and drew out another envelope, this one sealed with wax. “You have an interview tomorrow at The Star. You haven't said anything because you don't want to jinx it. This is your letter of reference. Give it to the editor in chief and he'll hire you as a junior reporter. You'll train the new one and go.”

Kara felt like the world was falling out from under her, but she took the envelope.

“I understand.”

Chapter Text

Astra for the first time since she had landed on Earth actually felt ill. Then again, she supposed anyone would feel ill after getting poisoned by an Uiloian warrior. They were bred to have deadly stinging tails, much like a scorpion here on Earth, except much more deadly. Except to humans oddly enough, because the poison was almost the same structure as one of the vitamins they needed to live and their bodies could metabolize it readily. Strange world, this one.

“How are you feeling?” Alex asked, coming into the room, in her lab coat and scrubs with a clipboard.

Astra smiled at the other woman. It had been two weeks since their heat and nothing had changed, but everything had changed too. Alex was most assuredly hers. They were together more often than they were apart and Astra was enjoying learning more and more about the woman.

Right now, though, she wasn't enjoying herself, she just felt like she was going to throw up. The sun lamps were helping, before they had gotten back to the DEO she had felt like she was dying, because of course the Uiloian coward had attacked at night when there was no sun to help her heal. Her powers kept her alive, but that was about all they had managed to do.

“Like a Cendarian is living in my stomach.”

Alex blinked. “I take it that that's not a good thing.”

“They kill their prey by expanding in their stomach until it burst and the acid eats their organs.”

“Pleasant. How's the muscle weakness?”

Astra took a second to assess herself. “Not as bad, I don't feel as if my limbs are made out of lead anymore.”

“Then you're improving at least. Good.” She looked relieved. “I want to pull a round of blood work just to make sure that the poison is leaving your system.”

“Kryptonite needle?” Astra shivered at the thought of needles and didn't quite know why. It must be a memory she didn't remember that was causing her subconscious reaction. Whatever it was she wasn't in a hurry to remember with a reaction like that.

“I thought instead I would just put you under the red sun lamps. No kryptonite.” She grimaced and looked slightly guilty.

Astra wondered what in the world Alex had to be guilty about. She wasn't about to ask, though. “That sounds more amiable.”

Alex fiddled with the lamps above Astra's bed for a second before the light changed from sun bright to Rao’s dim glow. Astra felt fine for a second, then two, before the powerlessness hit her like a rocket and she groaned. She knew the lamps had been doing a lot, but she thought she had healed enough that she wouldn't feel like she was going to die on the spot. Well, maybe not die, she wasn't that bad again, but still. She was allowed to be dramatic inside her own head.

Alex picked up a needle and a rubber band. She tied the band around Astra's arm and probed for a vein for half a second before sticking the needle in. She connected a vial to the end of the needle and a second later blood was flowing into it. Astra watched just to have something to do other than feel miserable. Krypton hadn't ever drawn blood like this, their technology had advanced past that to nanobots that could be ingested with a swallow, and could test and cure most common things. Anything more complicated had to be treated by real doctors of course, but it was still light-years different than Earth.

Alex stuck in a second vial and when it filled extracted the needle and held a cotton ball on top of the prick. With her free hand she flipped the lights back to yellow sun and Astra drew in a sharp, relieved breath. Oh, she wasn't about to complain about how she felt while under the lights any time soon. She would take intolerably nauseous over deathly ill any day.

“I'll run a battery of normal tests on top of the poison analysis just to make sure everything is OK after that. Your body should be self-correcting anyway, but we need to know to keep checking to make sure just in case something is currently wrong.”

Astra nodded. “Reasonable.” She looked at the vials in Alex’s hand. “Do you have another labmate that you would trust to run the tests?”

“Why?”

“I want you to sit for a little while, and I have a feeling those tests take a fair amount of time. By then I might be asleep again.” Quite frankly being cooped up in a hospital room didn't appeal to her. She wanted company, any would do, but Alex was the preferred option.

“Well, I can hand them off to Beth for a bit. If you fall asleep I'm going to go make sure everything is good though.”

“OK.” Astra nodded and laid back. She was tired but she could stay awake for a little bit to talk to Alex.

“Be right back.” Alex left the room in a swirl of her lab coat.

Astra closed her eyes in the interim. She forgot just how long it took to recover from a real injury. She didn't remember recovering from the stab in the chest they all said she had sustained, the one that they thought had killed her for good. She supposed it took a while to heal completely. Though the running thought was that Astra's pod had flown close enough to the sun that it had almost instantly regenerated her. She wasn't sure if she believed that, she did have amnesia after all, and wouldn't she have healed from that if she had been near the sun?

Alex walked back in the room. “OK, tests will be done in a few hours hopefully.”

Astra opened her eyes and patted the bed beside her. “I'm sure you've been on your feet all day. Have a seat.”

Alex’s eyes flicked to the chair beside the bed for all of half a second before she shrugged imperceptibly and sat where Astra had indicated. “We reinforced the cell of the  Uiloian. Turns out the stinger on that guy can pierce our bullet proof glass. Who knew. It has to be harder than diamond to do that.”

Astra nodded. “Their tails are meant to withstand anything short of a nuclear blast. Even concentrated laser fire is hit or miss, depends on who you hit.” She flopped back against her pillow. The fatigue was really starting to hit now, but she wouldn't fall asleep just yet. “How has your day been other than hovering over me every chance you get.”

Alex blushed at that and looked away. Astra didn't let her pull away, though. She grabbed one of Alex’s hands and interlaced their fingers. She sighed, content. She hadn't believed Lara when she had said that she had just known that Jor-El was meant for her, they had just met at the time and knew nothing of each other, but now she thought there might be something to it. She still wanted to get to know Alex more before she committed fully, she was much more pragmatic than Laura had ever been. She sighed, missing her friend for half a second before focusing on the present again.

“It was OK, I guess.” Alex swallowed, looking down at their joined hands and blushing harder. Oh, now wasn't that adorable. It made Astra want to kiss her. “Mostly I've just been working on unraveling if there's any way for us to revert our DNA back to normal.”

Astra held back a frown. It would be good if Alex could find a way to revert them back to their established breeding system. The world as far as she knew was half a second from imploding into complete anarchy because of the change. People were holding their breath to see just how many people got pregnant, if their birth control had worked, if they developed infections, if someone would catch their rapist, and a thousand other things. Changing back now wouldn't negate those things now, but it would prevent it from happening again.

Still. She wanted just one more heat with Alex. Even better if their heat and tut truly lined up, not just a sympathetic heat to a full on rut. That had been nice, but she knew that a full heat would be even more and Rao, did she want it.

She shook herself a bit. Now was not the time to think of sex. She didn't even know if she and Alex were even spending her next rut together. They hadn't even talked about it. And on top of that she was injured and thinking about a heat with Alex was turning her on in a way that she couldn't deal with right now.

“And how is progress on that?” Astra asked instead, hoping her hesitation wasn't noticed.

“Well, all I managed to do today was target a patch of genes that when I tried to morph them back into the right configuration caused a cascade of mutations that ultimately killed the cell. So not well.” She ran a hand through her hair.

“What's the next step?” Astra asked.

“Either I move on from that cluster or I try to target less of them.”

“What do those genes control?”

“Reproductive systems. I figure we can live with having different pheromones and a better sense of smell, but we need to address the heats and ruts right now. Hell, if I could make it so that people's fertility didn't raise during heats and ruts that would be a step in the right direction. We're already at a overpopulation problem, we really, really don't need to make it worse.”

Astra frowned. She was right. And if they didn't get everything under control soon, lawmakers would come up with some creative solutions. She shivered. She had no doubt that some idiot politician would get it in their heads to have a select number of omegas, and it would be omegas on this masculine obsessed planet, undergo sterilization. And those omegas, would probably be people of color. She had read too much of the recent news to think anything different.

“I would target less, then. Those seem like the most important grouping at the moment. Some progress is better than no progress.”

Alex nodded and sighed. She leaned back into Astra carefully. “Sometimes it's hard to remember that. It was hard in my grad school research, it's harder now that the world literally depends on this being successful. But you're right.” She turned her head and nuzzled into Astra’s neck.

“You don't talk about your grad school experience much, Brave One.” With Alex warm and pressed up against her she was getting even more tired. She was interested in what Alex would say, though. She may not remember everything from before she had returned to Earth, but she remembered every time she had interacted with Alex. She thought anyway. The point was she couldn't remember Alex talking about her grad school years, as anything more than a passing mention that she had been.

“It's because it wasn't a good time in my life,” Alex said quietly. “I always had to be so perfect at home, and then I got to grad school and being perfect was an asset and my advisor loved me because I could get so much shit done. And it worked well for a while until my fourth year and I had become responsible for so much in the lab on top of research and teaching I just...couldn't take it. I snapped, went on a downward depressive spiral that amounted to me going out and drinking and partying every night just to feel better about my life. It didn't help, but I kept doing it, hoping it would. Everything after that got worse of course.”

Astra hugged Alex to her. She didn't know what to say, but physical affection usually wasn't a bad alternative. “I'm sorry.”

Alex shook her head. “It was a bad time, but it's how I ended up at the DEO so I really can't regret it too much.”

“How did you get hired by a government agency out of all that?” She knew from the news that a lot of government employees were sub-par, or mostly just Congress was bringing down the whole lot of them, but she didn't think that anyone would hire someone who obviously had an alcohol problem.

“One night, probably the lowest out of them all, I ended up in the drunk tank at a local police station and J’onn found me there. He basically told me that I needed a purpose and he had one for me that could help people. Only condition was that I cleaned up my act, which with DEO training wasn't that hard. For months I literally barely had the energy to do anything other than come home and eat and go to sleep.”

“I see. You like it here.”

Alex nodded. “I do. The black ops agent thing was what was missing from becoming a bio-engineer. I need a physical outlet. But I also need to use my brain, which splitting my time between planning tactical missions and the labs is the right balance. Plus it helps keep Kara safe, and as much as I resent my mom for placing that all on me as a teenager, I could never resent taking care of her. She's my sister.”

“I understand.” And she did. Alura had been her whole world while growing up. She had been the only one who had really understood being a genetic aberration on a planet that didn't have them. Even later in life when they had grown up and led separate fulfilling careers they had remained close. Until...but there was no reason to rehash that now. She had been angry for so long but now. Well, she was just so thankful to have Alura back that past conflicts mattered little. It had also helped that the night she had remembered Alura throwing her to the dogs at Fort Rozz, Alura had showed remorse. She still couldn't condone Astra's actions but she knew she should have listened. Past that it had been time to let sleeping dogs lie.

“I don't regret anything about ending up here. Besides, I wouldn't have stabbed the hellgrammite with his own barb and caught your attention otherwise.”

Astra laughed at that for a long few moments. “You're right about that.” She turned and kissed the side of Alex’s head. “Brave One.”

Alex hummed. “General.” She sounded tired, and Astra had no doubt that she was. When Alex was at work she worked herself to the bone, throwing her all into everything. Astra loved that about her, but wished she would temper it at least somewhat. She didn't like to see the other woman exhausted.

“Nap with me for a bit?” Astra asked.

“Twenty minutes.”

“Thirty.”

“Fine.”

Astra smiled and settled into a more comfortable position. She waited until Alex’s breathing evened out and then followed her into sleep easily.

 

--

 

When Astra woke again, she had the feeling that it was several hours later. By the way she felt, much better than before, maybe several hours was an underestimate. She stretched and sat up. She was still a but woozy, but nothing like before. Now she felt as if she tried to stand she wouldn't fall over in half a second.

She pushed her legs over the side of the bed and stood just to test her balance. After a few seconds of standing still she took a few steps forward out of the range of the sunlamps. She felt a bit worse outside of their healing rays, but not by much. Excellent. She was a little tired of seeing the same four walls. A little walk wouldn't hurt. Alex's lab was just down the hall. If she got tired she could sit down there for a bit before walking back.

She set out down the hall at a slow pace, not pushing herself. Alex came into view behind the glass walls of her lab and Astra smiled at the frown on her face. It was an expression she believed humans would seem cute. Astra wondered just what was confusing the woman.

She opened the door and walked in but Alex didn't stir. She was very focused then. Astra didn't want to disturb that concentration so she just took a seat, waiting for Alex to come out of it. She looked around Alex's lab for a bit, just for something to do. Earth science labs were slightly similar to the ones on Krypton, except much less high tech. The feel was the same though, chemical laced air, instruments everywhere, protective lab gear. She had a feeling that the lab at the DEO was ahead of most Earth labs. Then again that wasn't much of a reach considering the alien tech Astra saw scattered around the room.

Alex stood up as a printer spit out a piece of paper. She looked at it for a long second before crumbling it up.

“That can't be right. I don't understand what's going on,” she mumbled to herself.

“What isn't right?” Astra asked.

Alex jumped and turned. “Astra, why are you out of bed?”

“I'm feeling much better. Not one hundred percent, but much better. I decided that stretching my legs wouldn't be a terrible option, but I didn't want to push myself so I came here.”

Alex nodded distractedly, looking from the paper to Astra again. “Oh,  I suppose that wasn't a bad idea. You have been sitting around for a couple days. Not that your muscles would atrophy like a humans, but not giving your body anything else to heal might be a good idea.”

“Indeed. But what is confounding you today, Brave One?”

Alex looked like a deer in the headlights and Astra wondered just what could make her look like that. She faced down death on a daily basis and barely blinked, but this, whatever it was, had her balking. It had to be either something terrible or something so shocking she couldn't believe it. But what could that be? Alex worked in a job that broadened her horizons, so something so unbelievable shouldn't exist in theory.

“If you tell me perhaps I could help. I wasn't the science prodigy that Kara was, but I held my own.”

Alex swallowed audibly, and handed over the printout she was holding. “It's your test results. In the battery of tests we ran we did a regular blood work panel. It's standard to run pregnancy tests on females just in case their problems stem from pregnancy and its complications. I had to modify the test a bit for Kara, but our physiologies are similar enough all I had to do was up the concentration limit it looked for. Turns out you guys have a stable hGC level all the time, even in males. It was part of why you lived so long even on Krypton, or at least that's my theory. It just spikes to about four times the regular level when you're pregnant, or so the Alura AI told me later. I just adjusted until Kara didn't register as pregnant even when injured originally, but I fixed it so now it should only register when you're actually pregnant.”

Astra blinked stupidly up at Alex. There was no way that she was getting at was true. She had been sterilized when she was five years old. She remembered the procedure. She remembered when her parents had actually told her the truth of what they had done to her. She remembered the screaming and crying on the day she turned eighteen. She had wanted children even then. It had broken her heart into pieces. She had hoped when she arrived on Earth that maybe whatever they had done would be fixed, but years had passed with Non without a child. She had been sure it was permanent.

She looked down at the paper, looked for the line abbreviated hGC and then scanned sideways. Positive, there all in capital letters. Her hand dropped unconsciously to her stomach. Could it really be true? It had been two weeks. That was long enough to tell with a blood test, and only a blood test, she knew. What if it was a false positive, she knew that was a possibility.

“How many times have you run the test,” she asked, feeling as if she was a million miles away, perhaps back on Krypton even.

“Five, its come back positive every time,” Alex said, collapsing into the chair beside Astra.

“How is this possible. I never got pregnant with Non.”

“I don't know. Maybe he was shooting blanks? Maybe flying that close to the sun healed whatever they did to you along with your stab wound.” Alex shivered on the last words.

Astra reached out and held Alex's hand. All was forgiven for that. She would have done the same thing in her position. But her forgiving Alex and Alex forgiving herself were two different things.

She set the paper down. “I'm really pregnant.”

“As far as any blood test can tell, yes.” Alex withdrew her hand from Astra's. “Astra I'm sorry. This is all my fault.”

Astra was off in her own little world. She couldn't believe it. But if Alex had run the tests find times it had to be true. Unless.

She reached out and grabbed Alex's chin gently and turned the other woman to face her. “No, it is not your fault. It takes two people to make a baby, and I believed I couldn't get pregnant. If I had told you that I could, you would have acted differently. I'm sure you would have come up with the Kryptonian version of a morning after pill as well. None of this is on you.”

“I could have worn a condom anyway,” Alex said in a quiet voice.

“I wanted your knot, Alex. I wanted to be filled by you. I wouldn't change anything.” She shifted her hand so she was cupping Alex's cheek. “Oh Brave One, you don't like my parents, but I must admit I'm not very fond of your mother. Why do you feel you must fall on your sword for every little infraction? Not all of it can be your own nature.”

Alex looked away and didn’t say anything.

Astra just sighed and brushed her thumb against Alex’s cheek. “Could the poison from the Uiloian have skewed the test results?”

Alex shook her head slightly, careful not to dislodge Astra’s hand. “No, I did the check for the poison first. There’s only slight amounts left in your system. And its more akin to a vitamin than a hormone. It shouldn’t skew the test at all, but I did filter it out on the later tests just in case. It’s still positive. The only way we’re going to know for sure after that is if in a few days when you’re completely better your results are negative again.”

Astra clenched her free hand. She didn’t want her results to be negative. Having a child after all these years was finally within reach. She wanted the child so badly Rao only knew the fire that burned inside her. It wasn’t ideal, of course, but she would take a child now if it meant having one at all. She would have liked for her and Alex to be closer, to actually be mates, because honestly, that’s where she saw this heading sooner rather than later, but that wasn’t the hand that Rao had dealt them.

“And if they’re still positive?” Astra asked.

Alex took in a slow, deep breath. “I may have helped create them, but you’re the one carrying them Astra. Only you can decide.”

Astra smiled up at Alex, wondering just how many women were not going to get the same choice in this aftermath. She was sure Alura and Lucy and other liberal lawmakers around the globe were struggling to come up with options for these women, but the fact of the matter is, there were conservative countries that would allow no freedom to choose. They would either end up in back alleys, risking death, or they would have a child they didn’t want. For some it would be a stranger's child who would have no bearing on any choice, and for some it would be a lover who wouldn’t allow them to even risk an alleyway. And here she was, with Alex, distressed and obviously without a clue what to do, but still putting the the choice in Astra’s hands.

“I want to keep them.” Her words were firm. She would not go back on this. If Rao had finally seen fit to give her a child she was not going to waste that gift. “And I would like you to be in their life, but I understand if you aren’t ready for this responsibility.”

Alex met Astra’s eyes. “I want to be. I do. I just don’t know if I am.”

Astra pulled Alex’s face to hers and kissed her gently. “We have nine months to figure it all out, Brave One. Something tells me that you’ll be by my side when the time comes.”

Alex tucked her face into Astra’s neck and inhaled audibly, relaxing once she had taken a breath of Astra’s scent. “I hope so. But Astra, I run from my problems. I run from everything. Maybe not physically, but mentally.”

“But you run to family to protect them. No matter what.”

Alex placed a hesitant hand on Astra’s stomach. “I never imagined I would be a mom. I always worried that I would mess my kid up. I didn’t want to be--” Her voice broke. “I didn’t want to be my mom. Too much pressure, never satisfied, always frowning. I couldn’t do that to a kid.”

Astra’s grip tightened on the other woman, holding Alex to her as if it could solve all of her problems. “I don’t think you will be like that. We will mess up, yes, but there will be the both of us to balance one another out. There will be Kara and Alura as doting aunts. There will be the J’onn and Lucy, and the rest of the DEO looking out for them. What we cannot provide might be found elsewhere. That is not a shortcoming on our part. No one can be everything, not even you Alexandra Danvers. You can still be the most important thing in their life, in my life. You already are.”

She felt tears hit her neck. “Ok. I’ll, um, yeah I’ll try.”

“And I’ll be with you every step of the way. There will be no hard feelings if you cannot. I understand. I would rather you be happy more than anything else.”

Alex nodded and a few more tears hit Astra’s neck. They stayed curled up together on the lab seats for a long time before Alex pulled back and dried her eyes.

“We need to tell Lucy. She needs to send word to the president. They have to authorize that emergency funding for pregnancy tests now. If you’ve tested positive there will be others.” Alex stood, back to Agent Danvers once more.

“Alright then.” She stood, feeling a bit tired and woozy now. “After that I think I had better return to my room for another nap. I’m feeling fatigued again.”

“Or I can bring Lucy to you.” Alex took Astra’s hand and practically dragged her back to bed. “You’re sick and, and, and yeah, you need rest.”

Astra looked at the woman in front of her, dragging her down the hallway and smiled. A protective alpha already. She had been before, of course, but now the behavior made Astra feel like floating.

“Yes, I am very much and, and, and yeah.” Astra couldn’t help but tease. It would take getting used to, all of this, but humor would help.

Alex turned and scowled over her shoulder at Astra. “Don’t make me strap you to the bed so you stay there.”

Astra rolled her eyes. “I’m positively shaking in fear.”

Alex deposited Astra on her bed and went to get Lucy. The harsh edge of reality was that she would be fine, but many others would not. Kara would help, she always did, and she helped Kara out on occasion, but was that really enough? With a world in crisis was it selfish to just want to stay in the shadows and enjoy her growing family? She settled her hand over her stomach. She didn’t know. She didn’t think anyone had the answers right now, either.

 

Chapter Text

Lucy looked around. No one was near her so she peeked around the corner. Alura wasn't there. She sighed audibly and relaxed. Darting around corners and avoiding her own office was not what she wanted to be to be doing at this point in her life, but here she was, three weeks after her rut had ended, doing exactly that. At first it had been easy to avoid Alura, there had been so much to in the immediate aftermath of everyone coming out of their cycles. Then she had managed to start assigning Alura to different tasks, mostly arbitration and law based things that the president needed help from someone who knew the ABO system and had legal knowledge.

Now, though, after all that Alura had gotten it into her head that they needed to talk. And Lucy didn't think they needed to talk at all. She had gone full FUBAR on the situation. She hadn't been able to control herself. She hadn't even known that she had wanted to do that, to bite Alura, until it was already done and she was waking up with the taste of blood in her mouth. Alura had explained to her what it meant on the lull between rounds, but the significance really hadn't hit her until the fog of her rut was passed. She had tied herself to Alura without permission, without discussing it beforehand, without anything so much as even a hint of consent. She was a monster, or at least that was how she felt.

So no, she really didn't want to talk to Alura. She didn't want to have to address that she had screwed up. Somehow it was just another thing on a long list of screw ups she'd committed in her life, while everyone else thought she was the perfect woman. How could the perfect woman to something like this? How could the perfect woman not even know what she wanted?

She shook herself. This was something to be debated at home, alone, in the middle of the night staring up at her ceiling, not here in the middle of work where there was so much to do. There was still fallout, there were pregnancy tests to administer to the betas on staff and to Alura. The alphas had to be advised to take their mates to already overbooked doctors, there was sorting out family leave when everyone needed to be gone at around the same time, and that was just for the DEO itself, let alone what they were doing to try and help the generate populace. So there was no time for her own little pity party. She would go down to records to get the files she needed, because government and its stupid need to keep all black-ops level files on paper only meant she couldn't just search for it on her computer, and then she would go back to the little closet she'd made into a makeshift office and she'd work until it was late enough that she was sure Alura was gone and then she would go home, eat dinner, and not sleep for the third night in a row.

She turned into the least used stairwell in the DEO, back in a corner, simply there for fire regulations, and descended to records. She didn't know why records rooms always had to be in the basement, but the DEO didn't break the stereotype. She hit the bottom of the stairs and inhaled musty air. It was noticeably cooler down here, even the best insulation couldn't quite keep out the chill of being this far below the ground. Lucy shivered but walked on.

She opened the door of the records room, expecting to see Dorene, the semi-retired DEO agent that kept the room in order. Lord knew DEO agents weren't very concerned with organization so long as they got the alien they were after, they just sort of dumped finished cases down here like fallen leaves. Slobs.

But Dorene wasn't sitting at her desk. Instead Alura was sitting there, flipping through a file calmly as if she had nothing else to do. Lucy froze. She knew that there was no point in trying to back out of the room and hope Alura hadn't noticed her because she hadn't looked up from her reading. No, that wouldn't happen. Alura had probably known it was her coming down the stairs. Damn Kryptonian hearing. She sighed heavily and stepped into the room, shutting the door behind her.

“I remembered your penchant for gathering your own research materials and decided that staying here would be a decent way to catch you. For a human against super senses you manage to do very, very well. I didn't want to quite stalk you either, so waiting here was the compromise I came to.” Alura finally looked up from her file. “You've been avoiding me ever since I said we should discuss the mating bite. I do believe you should know, Lucy, that as a lawyer I never give up that easily. We'll talk about this whether you want to or not. Like it or not we are bound together, and that means we have to talk. Would you like to make it easier on the both of us and have a seat? I'm not going to hold you here if you aren't ready, but I will keep seeking you out until you are.”

Lucy looked at the chair in front of Dorene’s desk and then back at the door behind her. God damn it, stupid clever Kryptonian who paid attention to everything and cared enough to remember. Just because her heart beat a bit faster at that detail didn't mean that she wasn't still irritated.

Still, though, she sat down in the chair. “Alright,” she said, a bit of an edge in her voice. She couldn't help it. She knew Alura was right, but damn she hated being in the wrong.

Alura’s hand came up to the right side of her neck, where the mostly healed bite rested. “I'm sure by now you've read everything about making bites that you could get your hands on. Kara told me you discussed it a few days after we parted. You are aware of what it means.”

Lucy nodded.

“Has anyone told you what happens if only one half of a pair is bitten?”

“No one has really explicitly said anything, no. I just assumed it was the same thing.”

Alura shook her head. “No a bite between two mates is a permanent gesture. It can be broken but only at an extremely great cost. One of the bonded pair usually ends up near death, though usually they do not actually die, it can happen.”

Lucy felt her stomach drop into her shoes. Great, just fucking great.

“But if only one person is marked, it's usually the omega, and this is for a reason biologically speaking. The bond the alpha feels to the omega from the bite will keep the alpha by the omega’s side while she's pregnant. After the birth of the child the mark fades. It's assumed that the child will be enough to keep the alpha around, at least in the life of the child, and for the most part it's true.”

“So this will go away?” Lucy felt the first slivers of relief coursing in.

“In about nine months, if the other end of the bond isn't sealed, yes.”

At the confirmation Lucy felt herself go boneless. She had fucked up but it wasn't irreversible. Oh thank god. She didn't know what she had done in a past life to deserve this big a break, but she was thankful. Alura didn't have to be stuck with her the rest of her life.

“Nine months even if you don't want to pregnant?” She had been careful with the condoms if nothing else. Provided none of them broke with all the activity that wouldn't happen. God that was the last thing she needed. She wondered if Alura had gotten a pregnancy test yet. Probably, but it wasn't like Lucy had been around to ask lately. She was probably screwing this all up more by avoiding Alura, but damn it she'd had a reason.

“Even then, it's a fail safe, not an if-then.”

Lucy nodded. “Alright then. Um. I guess I should say I'm sorry. Didn't mean to bite you, it just sort of happened, but that isn't an excuse. I should have known about the urge beforehand and controlled myself.”

Alura shook her head. “It happens, Lucy. I do not blame you. It was your first rut. You will know to control the urge in the future. We would be in a different situation had I bitten you as well, but this is mendable.” She looked down at the desk for a second before looking back up again. “I take it you do not wish to be bound to me?”

Lucy felt her stomach drop yet again. She could feel just a fraction of disappointment coming from Alura. She didn't want to be the cause of Alura's disappointment. And if she was being honest, part of her didn't mind the idea of being bound to Alura, but it was too soon and it wasn't voluntary on both of their parts. If things had been different…

“It's not that, Alura. We haven't talked about it. You didn't consent. I felt like...I honestly felt like one of those alphas who just finds the nearest omega, damn if they wanted to be fucked or not. I just...I didn't want to force myself on you for the rest of our lives.”

Alura's face softened. “Oh, Lucy.” She stood up and came around the desk to sit at Lucy's side. “You are not like them. This is not ideal, no, but I wanted everything else that happened between us. This,” she traced her mark, “is a consequence of how much we both wanted it. You can tell yourself it could have been different, and it could have, but it wasn't. If we had ended up mated, it would have been inopportune, but not wholly unwelcome. We would have made it work. We had just been talking, kissing, bonding right before. If your rut hadn't started right then, if it had been another couple months off, what do you think would have happened?”

Lucy stared at the other woman for a long moment, just a little speechless. “Um, I probably would have asked you out.”

Alura hummed her agreement. “Yes. Or I would have. Because there is something there between us and you feel it too. This mark is not out of the blue so much as it seems. Two months from now if it had happened that way we might have decided to bond then permanently. Or we might not, but the fact remains that this would not have felt nearly as strong if there wasn't this thing between us.”

Lucy was quiet. She didn't really know what to say. The words Alura was saying made sense but she couldn't really reconcile them right now. Maybe later, but definitely not now.

“So, um, what do you want to do about this?”

Alura considered it for a moment. “I want to let the mark fade in its own time.”

Lucy bit the inside of her lip until she tasted blood. She knew it. She had ruined everything even if Alura said she hadn't.

She was so focused on her own thoughts that she almost didn't hear that Alura said next.

“Because I know it will be important to you to start from a clean slate when, and I do mean when, we choose to bond. In the meantime while we wait for everything to fade, we can get to know one another.”

Lucy blinked at that. Alura was so sure and damn if she hadn't hit the nail on the head about her needing to start from a clean slate. Just because she was the one who felt most of the bond as the person who'd done the biting, didn't mean that she wouldn't worry about Alura being affected in some way too. She wouldn't trust anything to do with marking again until they were both free and clear.

But honestly above all she was more floored that Alura didn't actually want to break the bond for real. Lucy had no idea what she would be feeling if she was the omega that had been bitten unexpectedly, but she had a feeling she wouldn't be sitting here talking about another chance. She would probably be planning on how to dispose of a body. Depending on who had bitten her anyway. If it had all been reversed and Alura had been the alpha...that was different. She just didn't know how different other than she wouldn't be planning Alura's death.

“Uh, I think I can live with that. I mean, I think that sounds good. Um, I mean--” she was definitely messing this up but she couldn't exactly stop her mouth. She wondered if this was what Kara felt like every day, because if it was, she wondered how the other woman hadn't gotten a hold on it by now because this felt terrible.

Alura placed a finger over Lucy's mouth, stilling her lips. “I apologize, but I wasn't sure words would actually silence you. But I'm glad that idea seems amiable to you.” She smiled wide and Lucy felt her heart stop for a second. Wow, Alura was beautiful. “Now, after conversing with Kara and consuming some popular media, I believe two people who would like to get to know each other in a romantic sense go on dates?”

Lucy nodded, short and sharp like she was still in the army. There was just too much going on she was falling back on habits drilled into her for years. “Yeah, they do. Do you want to go out?”

“I would like that. Dinner seems to be a common first date, but we eat together quite often and that was not a date. How in the world do you differentiate if you're romantically interested or not? This seems like a very inefficient system.”

“Well, that's what communication skills are for. You ask people out and then it's a date. It's sort of just understood. Mostly. Sometimes things get lost in the mix.” She shrugged. “Usually that's when you're asking someone of the same sex out though when the wires really get crossed. I mean, I know you guys had arranged marriages and that must have made things simpler, but surely you all got a bit mixed up sometimes too.”

Alura shook her head. “We had two different words for a meal that would lead to intimate relations and one that was just for friends. Before people were bonded there was no need to remain celibate so dating was expected for the younger generation. It was known it wouldn't be permanent, but it forged connections for later in life.”

Lucy stared at Alura for half a second before shaking her head. “Most utilitarian view of dating that I've ever heard, but considering what I know of Kryptonian culture, it makes perfect sense.”

“So this meal we'll have is a jevao not a byshao.”   Alura's mouth moved fluidly over her mother tongue and a shiver went through Lucy. No Earth language sounded even close and damn if it wasn't at least a little attractive.

“A jevao,” Lucy said, hesitating on the word, knowing she wasn't quite getting it right. There was some sort of resonance that she didn't think a human tongue could quite match, but she was trying her best.

Alura's eyes lit up just a little bit, but it was enough. Suddenly Lucy could see exactly what Alura had looked like when she was fresh faced and just starting into adulthood and wow. “Yes, that's very close. I think with practice you might just have a possible accent.”

The corner of Lucy’s mouth twitched up. “Well, you'll just have to keep teaching me then, won't you?”

“I would love nothing more. So much of my home has been lost, but Kryptonese has not, not yet, not if more people learn.”

Lucy reached out and took Alura's hand. “Not yet.”

Alura squeezed her hand. “So, Friday night is a good date night, yes?”

Lucy nodded. “Friday night. I'll swing by Kara's place at eight to pick you up.”

Alura tilted her head, confused. “Why would you need to do that? I can fly.”

“Yes, but it's a custom, didn't you see that in whatever you watched?”

“Hmm, I suppose,” Alura said after thinking a moment.

“Exactly, so Friday at eight.” Lucy stood. “But until then I really do need a file from down here I wasn't just coming down here to hide or anything.”

Alura laughed. “Just is the key word, I think.”

Lucy snorted but didn't say anything. Alura was right after all.

 

--

 

Lucy took a deep breath. It was Friday at seven forty-five and she'd already been a block away from Kara's apartment for ten minutes now. She was just too nervous not to be almost thirty minutes early. Lucy desperately hoped that Alura wasn't actually actively listening for her because finding her pacing outside a coffee shop for twenty minutes probably wouldn't send a good message. She didn't want to seem like the nervous mess that she was. Then again she had already avoided Alura for almost a month so maybe that was long past. She rolled her eyes. Screw it.

She set out for Kara's apartment. If she was a little early so be it. She had a feeling that Alura wouldn't mind. It would be fine. They had both already slept together. For multiple days. And by the end they were basically a mess. So what was there really to worry about now. As long as she was healed things would work out. That's all the Alura wanted, to get to know her, and honestly she wanted to get to know Alura too. It wasn't that hard. She had dated before. She knew what to do.

Just right now it seemed a little more...well, just more.

She walked up the stairs to Kara's apartment but definitely didn't have to knock on her door. Alura was already standing there with the door open, smiling.

“Hello,” she said. “You're early.”

Lucy swallowed. Hopefully she didn't know the half of it. “Yeah, sorry, military habit.”

“Astra is the same, I figured you would be a bit early.” She took half a step back and rustled around for a second before stepping out with a small clutch and a set of keys. She locked up and turned to Lucy. “So, where are we going?”

At that Lucy actually smiled. “I have a surprise in store for later, but for now there's an all you can eat pizza buffet a few blocks over that I figured that we could try.” She rubbed the back of her neck. “Kara keeps talking about how you keep stealing her pizza leftovers so I figured you liked it.”

Alura's eyes lit up. “Pizza has to be this planet's best invention. It is wonderful.”

“And here I thought you would be like Kara and Astra and love potstickers the most.”

“They are good, but they are not as good as pizza.”

“I'll remember that. Come on, this is going to be wonderland for you.” She turned and walked down the hall, emerging into the still warm air of National City. Alura fell into step with Lucy as they started to walk towards the pizza place. Lucy glanced down at Alura's hand. It was there. They were on a date. She could probably hold it. If Alura didn't like it she could always pull away. She bit her lip and went for it.

Alura's hand was soft and warm. She remembered that about the other woman. All of her skin had been so, so soft. Lucy had never wanted to leave being cocooned in her soft embrace.

She shook herself. This was hand holding. She had to get a hold of herself.

It took them about ten minutes, but Alura had smelled the restaurant two blocks over and had dragged Lucy faster than she had really wanted to go. Which really just proved that no one in their right mind should get between a Kryptonian and their favorite food. Lucy, while a little bit out of breath, found it adorable at the same time that she was thankful she was standing behind Alura when they walked into the restaurant.

“I think I want Hawaiian first.” Alura licked her lips.

“Oh you're one of those people,” Lucy teased. “Pineapple doesn't belong on pizza.”

Alura turned towards her, confused. “Then why do people put it there if it doesn't belong?”

Lucy snorted. “Because some people like weird, weird things, Alura. It's sort of an ongoing cultural debate, of which I'm all for not putting pineapple on pizza. In desserts, parfaits, fruit salad, sure, but not pizza.” She scrunched her nose.

Alura looked at her with a concerned frown. “But it's so good. How could you not like it?” A look of realization crossed her face. “It's because you're, what did Alex say, a hater?”

Lucy couldn't help it, she snorted so loud some of the people at the front tables turned to look at her. “If there is anyone you shouldn't learn your slang from, it is Alex Danvers.”

“Did I use the phrase wrong?”

“No, you used it right, don't worry, but still, Alex's slang is mostly cursing. A lot. And the other part is her trying to be hip with internet slang. Which she then uses to her own amusement to make unsuspecting aliens say funny things.”

Alura scowled. “I'll just have to teach her child something interesting when the time comes.”

“Oh totally. I'll help.” Lucy grinned. The possibilities were endless.

The hostess came and sat them down, conveniently right by the buffet. She didn't trust a hungry Kryptonian to remember not to super speed back and forth when hungry. As it was Alura was drooling, just looking at the options. If her plate didn't have ten pieces on it when she came back Lucy would be damned. There was this little light in her chest that flared when Alura looked at her with pleading eyes and then back towards the buffet, clearly not wanting to be rude, but wanting pizza with the intensity of a few burning suns. Lucy nodded and Alura was off after half a second.

They had gotten off on the wrong foot. Lucy had marked her without her permission. But here they were even still. She wondered how many people would start dating the people they accidentally hooked up with during their heats and ruts. A darker thought crossed her mind too, how many people wouldn't want to see those people ever again? The initial numbers were in. The rape count had skyrocketed like they knew it would. Measures were being forced through Congress to deal with the aftermath. But Lucy knew how many out there hasn't reported anything. They were alone and suffering and certainly not on dates with those people. How many people would think of heats and ruts were a time of fear because of this?

She looked after Alura. They would help. Together they would do what they could. Even when the president stopped calling on the DEO to provide help with modifying their laws they would help because it was the right thing to do and damn if they didn't have a good platform to help from. Working with Alura, well, Lucy could see exactly where Kara got her heroism from.

“Are you going to get some?” Alura asked, back at the table with not just ten slices, but Lucy was pretty sure she counted twelve. It seems Alura was one surprise after another. How had she even managed to fit all of them?

“Yeah.” She laughed. “I was just watching you construct that monstrosity.” Lucy gestured at Alura’s pizza pile.

“What, I wanted to try one of each. I've never had barbeque chicken pizza.”

Lucy scrunched her nose. “Ok, I think you found the one thing that belongs on pizza less than pineapple.”

Alura rolled her eyes. “It's just bread and sauce. Is there really a right combination on how to do that?”

Lucy stepped out from beside the table. “Just ask someone from New York that question and you'll get a rather harsh yes. Same thing with people from Chicago. And Italy. So yes. And also no. Humans are complicated.”

“Now that I have learned.”

Lucy snorted and went off in search of her own pizza. She got herself a socially acceptable amount of pizza and made her way back to Alura. The other woman had made her way through half her plate already, yet looked prim and proper sitting there munching away. Lucy was mystified as to how she did it. She has to be breaking some law of physics.

She sat down and picked up a piece. “So, how was the barbeque chicken?”

Alura smiled at her serenely. “I was saving that for when you came back since you sounded so enthused about it.”

“You didn't.”

Alura picked up a slice covered in dark red sauce. “I did.” She took a big bite and chewed. She swallowed and spoke again. “Not bad. I prefer the macaroni and cheese one, however.”

“How are we even on a date together. Your pizza choices make no sense.”

Alura gestured at Lucy's plate. “And yours are boring.”

“They're classic.”

Alura hummed skeptically and took another bite.

“How will I ever kiss you again knowing you ate that?” Lucy teased.

Alura smirked. “I'm sure you'll manage. There's a kiss at the end of a first date, yes?”

Lucy felt her cheeks heat. “Usually. Depends on how it goes.”

“And how is it going so far?”

“A lot better than some of my dates have, not at great level yet, but I think we'll get there. Your pizza tastes notwithstanding.”

Alura’s eyes twinkled. “I believe we'll make it there as well.” She sat forward. “Though you can't just leave me there on the subject of your bad dates. I assume they are very interesting stories.”

Lucy groaned and sat back in her chair. “Yes. You would have to ask about that wouldn't you.”

“I'm a lawyer. It's instinct to probe at weak spots. You can't tell me you wouldn't do the same.”

“You're right but still.” Lucy sighed heavily and shook her head. Honestly she didn't mind telling a few stories. They really were funny and she had enough that she could avoid the ones that were embarrassing for her and not just the guy or girl. “So at West Point there's like no free time, or at least it seems like it considering there are times when you aren't even allowed to talk in your own dorm rooms, but I did still manage to catch the eye of another cadet. He was a bit of a goofball, got picked on a lot by the drill sergeants, but he was funny so when he asked me out i said yes.One of our few days off he took me out to a local diner. The date was ok until the one of the waitresses who was around out she came over and just hauled off and slapped him. No explanation from her, just slapped him and walked off. Needless to say I was confused until he turned to me and said ‘I might have deserved that. I forgot to break up with her.’ Needless to say there wasn't a second date.”

Alura blinked once and then shook her head. “Even with Kryptonian culture as it was I can still see a man doing that when he was younger. As much as is different between us, there is so much the same.”

Lucy laughed. “Good to know men are still sort of useless no matter what planet they're on.”

“Oh no, not on all planets. On Plantu the men are the workhorses of society. Their society held childbearing in such regard that was all they were required to do, and were worshipped for that. Anything they wanted they got. Later in their history they took control of the government and basically made it so that it would never be different.”

“Wow, that sounds like the one instance where reverse sexism is actually a thing. Weird.”

Alura hummed. “Indeed. For a man to step out on his wife was unheard of, but women seemed to do it on a regular basis and they would always cite having more children as the reason. We were allies with them, but only grudgingly. They had a supply of a crucial mineral to manufacturing of our spacecraft. Otherwise I don't think we would have allied ourselves with a society so very different.”

Lucy chewed the bite in her mouth a bit longer than needed, considering her next question. “You've said that Krypton was a fair amount like Earth, and I've learned a lot about your customs hearing you talk about different ABO conventions, plus hearing Kara talk sometimes, but I really don't think I know that much about your home world. What was it like? If you don't mind telling me. I know it might be hard.” Since Alura in her time had only just lost Krypton a few months before that wasn't really an understatement.

Alura thought for a long moment, finishing off her pizza. She stood and went with her empty plate for more and Lucy didn't stop her. She was obviously thinking about telling Lucy, probably sorting through her memories for one that didn't hurt. She didn't know if there would be any. How would she do the same after losing everything she ever knew. Something as simple as an all you can eat pizza buffet would be foreign anywhere else. It would be something she would never see again. And inevitably that would be what she would think of if she told anyone about it.

Alura returned and sat down with another pile of pizza slices. Lucy had to wonder where Kryptonians put it, physically they weren't any bigger than humans. Maybe they had that hole in their stomach that all beleaguered mothers of teenage boys complained about.

“My favorite thing on Krypton from birth until I left was the festival of Yuda. Yuda was Rao’s consort, though that didn't mean much for modern Krypton. Remembering her was more an homage to our history than actual worship anymore. But her festival was still grand. It was held in the equivalent of what would be Earth’ s winter. Originally the purpose was to draw Rao back to us via his lady love, but it was more than that by the time I was growing up. It was a celebration of life, of making it through another year. It was joyous in a wholly different way than any festival of Rao. His were always more worshipful. The festival of Yuda was...free. There were carnivals and games and a million other things to do and ten times that amount to eat. When I was younger I would take the money my parents gave me and find all the sweets I could. My favorites were these little cakes that you could only get at that time of year. They used some fruit that was only ripe on those few weeks. Most years I ate so many I was I'll afterward. My mother would roll her eyes at me and Astra would try to get me to eat something savory to try and counteract the sugar. I'm sure if you ask her about it she'll still roll her eyes.” Alura looked at the table for a second. “If she remembers that is. But that was my favorite time of year for all those reasons and more.”

Lucy felt herself melting a little at Alura’s excited rambling about the holiday. If only she could recreate those cakes for her. Though maybe she could work with Kara to try and get something close. She bit the inside of her lip. It would take a while and it might not even be possible, but if it was, it would be worth it.

She sat back a bit. This was their first date and yet she was already thinking like this. Then again….her eyes flicked down to Alura’s neck. The mark she had left was covered, but it did prove a point. This wasn't going to follow the normal progression of things. It may not be a bad thing, but things would have to progress for her to really tell. In the meantime she might as well enjoy it.

“And your favorite time of the year?” Alura asked.

Lucy smiled. “Christmas. I really like winter in general, but Christmas is my favorite part. When I was growing up it was the only time of year that my dad was almost guaranteed to be home. Then there was presents of course, but honestly I liked having my family together more. We used to go out caroling and I would bake cookies with my mom and we would drink hot chocolate by the fire, and my dad would dress up and pretend to be santa. It was just. It was great and cozy, and I miss the magic that Christmas had as a kid sometimes. I still love it. I love taking time to pick out gifts that are personal for the person. I always pick up a kid in need’s wishlist and go above and beyond because I know it will make their year. I make my own cookies because Christmas cookies are the best. There's just something about it that I love even now.”

“That is in December yes, two months from now give or take?”

Lucy nodded.

“I guess I will see then what you're talking about then. Perhaps we can make cookies together?” Alura’s eyes were hopeful.

“I'd like that.”

--

 

They finished up their meals and walked out into the night once more. Alura turned to Lucy.

“What next?” Alura asked.

Lucy smiled. “I know a good place for dessert, but it's sort of in the middle of nowhere. Do you feel confident enough to fly there?” She already knew that Alura had gained confidence enough in her abilities. She had asked Kara before she had come up with her plan. But it never hurt to ask.

“Provided it isn't on the other side of the world I can get us there.”

Lucy smiled. “Good, they have chocolate pecan pie to die for and homemade vanilla ice cream on top.” It also happened to be on a cliffside on an island off the coast where the bioluminescent phytoplankton were thick enough that the crashing waves glowed. It was dark enough out there you could see the stars, and she may have paid off a bus boy to set up a telescope out there for them. Alura had so many stories and memories out amongst the stars and she wanted to hear all of them. She figured this would provide an even better opening than dinner.

Plus who could say no to chocolate pecan pie.

She walked them into a back alley that didn't get much use. Alura scooped her up easily and shot up into the air. Lucy gasped at the feeling. Kara had offered to take her flying before but she hadn't taken her up on it. She hadn't had the time really. Not because she was scared of heights or anything because if she was right now she would have a problem. National City was disappearing below them at a rapid rate, blurring into just a smear of lights. It was beautiful really and she simultaneously regretted not taking up Kara on her offer before and being grateful that her first flight was with Alura because this was...she was pressed up against Alura, warm even as the air chilled around them. Alura was her own space heater. Lucy looked at Alura whose face was only a few inches from hers. Alura had an adorably concentrated look on her face as she slowed them down thousands of feet above the Earth’s surface.

“Where to?” Alura asked.

Lucy glanced at her phone and adjusted until it was facing the right direction then pointed. “That way. I'll tell you when to start slowing down again.”

Alura nodded and looked at Lucy for a long moment. “Can I kiss you now?”

Lucy swallowed. She had just been thinking about the same thing. Here above her adopted city in a place that felt more like home than her hometown, watching the city go about it's business, watching Alura from the closest they'd been in weeks, it was perfect.

“Yes,” Lucy breathed.

Alura closed the distance between them. The angle was a little off, but it was just as perfect as Lucy had thought it would be. As much as she had wanted this thing with Alura, she hadn't really, really been certain it would work out until now, until this. Until Alura kissed her so gently her heart broke and then mended again instantly. She wished that everyone could have this. She wished everyone felt this way in the aftermath of their heats. But they couldn't. So she and Alura would just have to fight for them to feel normal again. And god damn like this they would make a great team. Congress wouldn't know what hit them.

They pulled apart after a long minute and both of them let out a sigh. Lucy rested her head on Alura’s shoulder.

“I'm not even sure I need dessert now.” Lucy closed her eyes. She was almost boneless now. She knew one kiss wouldn't fix all their problems, but in that moment it felt like it.

“Well, that was sweet, yes, but I wouldn't mind actual dessert too,” Alura said, blushing.

Lucy laughed. “Kryptonian metabolisms.” She shook her head. “You know they way, I'll never say no to something sweet.”

“Oh really?” Alura dived in and kissed her for a long moment before pulling back and taking off.

Lucy blinked stupidly for a moment before she laughed once and put her head back on Alura’s shoulder. How exactly she was going to keep up with a Kryptonian’s appetites she didn't know, but she would find a way.