My name is Kara Zor El. 24 years ago my planet Krypton was in serious peril. My cousin Kal El was sent to a planet called Earth for his own safety and protection. You may know his story. The story you don't know is that I was sent to protect him. Things didn't exactly go according to my mother’s plan. Krypton's destruction sent a shockwave that knocked my pod off course and into the Phantom Zone. A region in space where time doesn't pass. I slept there for 24 years until somehow I got here. When I arrived I was still a 13 year old girl but in that same time my cousin, Kal El, had already grown up and revealed himself to the world as Superman. The most powerful man in the universe. My cousin wanted me to have the same safe, human type childhood he did. So he placed me with my adoptive family the Danvers. Scientists who once helped him understand his own super abilities. They had a daughter, Alex, and despite being born on different planets we knew our lives would never be the same again. My cousin didn't need my protection. I didn't have a mission anymore. But even though I had all the same powers he did I decided the best thing I could do was to fit in. After all, Earth didn't need another hero.
I work at Catco Worldwide Media, an online and print empire. Built by my boss Cat Grant. The most powerful woman in National City. At least for the next few days...
Kara tries to be patient as she stands in the crowded elevator of Catco Worldwide Media. She does, she can hear the thunderous heartbeats of the people around her and she manages to drown it out with the noise of the whirling of the belt that lifts the cart. She manages to ignore it until the door slips open and she walks out onto the floor collecting the folders for Miss Grant. A formidable woman on a good day. Kara could hear she wasn't in the building yet, people were too relaxed. Her foot taps impatiently as she waits for the door to slide open, and as she walks through the bullpen of Catco, Kara can see the morning hustle, people getting morning coffee discussing their evenings and she can hear the noise of the news on the television above the screen.
She narrowly avoids spilling coffee over the short man who is quick to her side when she walks into the main section of desks.
"Did you see this?" Winn says shoving the tablet close to her face and she gives a tight smile to the guy from marketing looking at Winn oddly. He's a good guy, she thinks he's just- "There was an armoured car robbery last night near here. No witnesses except for this homeless guy, who swears the perp had horns!" Winn says, excitedly following as Kara picks up papers for Ms Grant. As they walk across the bullpen Winn hisses. "On his head!"
Kara lets out a breathless chuckle cautiously eyeing fellow employees, "I'm telling you they are out there." Winn whispers excitedly. "Aliens"
"Winn..." Kara tries to dissuade with a gentle shake of her head and she really hopes Paul in Sport can't hear her. "There is no such thing as Aliens."
"Uh you might feel differently if you read this website," Winn's tone is sure and confident but Kara can hear the way his heart races as she moves across the room trying to prepare for her morning.
"You write for that website," Kara deadpans knowing full well, that is what Winn does with most of his evenings.
"I-I contribute..."Winn's defence is loose at best. His stuttering heart makes Kara look up with a slightly crinkled brow. "I- Hey Um. I was wondering if you- I don't know- wanted to go see a movie or something tonight?"
It makes Kara look up in shock at the question. Because never had she thought Winn would be interested in her. Well, she had been fairly sure he was gay from the way he spoke about Superman, but the way he looks at her with so much hope and promise makes her stomach drop. She can’t, she has plans, plans that she’d looked forward to all month.
"I'm- I can't," Kara says with a small smile. She feels guilty, she does. She just has other plans... "I'm sorry."
"I have a date," Kara grins excitedly. It's not a lie, it's 100% the truth. The twist in her gut tells her that she’s going to have to lie to him. To get him off her trail.
"A date?" Winn's tone and heart rate tell her he thinks she's lying. Lying to get out of spending time with him. And she isn’t lying, Kara Danvers doesn’t lie. Until- "Really?"
"Mhmm," Kara hums with enthusiasm as she sits at her desk. Still not lying.
"A date. That’s- Date.. That's great…” Winn does not think it’s great, she can hear it in his voice. “Um, Dating is fun. Who- Who is that with?"
"Oh an online date," there's the lie Kara thinks as she waves him off, shuffling papers to not look him in the eye. "Says we are 82% compatible." Not technically a lie or at least Kara hopes the percentage is higher. "So, that should be good."
"You- You know you can't quantify your emotions based on an algorithm," Winn's tone is dejected. Kara feels really guilty and she knows she shouldn't have been as nice to him as she had been, but she needed him not to question why she broke a phone or a keyboard every other week.
"Winn, you're IT. Isn't your whole life based on an algorithm?" Kara asks incredulously, her face scrunched up at the implication, because on Krypton that’s how most mates were found.
"Yeah so, if there was an algorithm for love, don't you think I would know about it?" Winn asks, looking more and more irritated and she feels guilty, she really does. She just hates that she has to lie to him to get him off her scent. "Just like you know when it's going to hit you, Kara. It's gonna be all wapow!"
Oh Kara, knows. Kara’s only ever had it once. And it was nothing as small as wapow, it was like getting struck by the sun. The only thing that pulls her from her goofy smile is the sound of her boss. The formidable woman she is.
Ugh, this elevator is a human petri dish. It’s like standing in coach.
“She’s here,” Kara says to Winn and collects the items she needs for Miss Grant.
“How’d you do that?” Winn asks as the elevator dings open. As soon as it does, Cat steps out her hand raised expectantly for coffee.
“Good morning Miss Grant.”
“The only reason I bought this building is because it had a private elevator, that way I don’t have to get soaked in cheap cologne every morning getting to my office. Find out who used it, have them reprimanded…”
Kara's day got progressively worse. First Miss Grant is well, Miss Grant. She had glowered at her about the Tribune and the mere notion of saving people's hoods. That, if Superman was here she wouldn't need to get rid of it and it made Kara grit her teeth hard so that she didn't burst about how they had the same powers. It had gotten worse when she had met Jimmy- no, James- Olsen, and he had compared her to her cousin and all she wanted was for the day to be over. To go on this date, and then collapse in her bed with a carton of chocolate ice cream to forget the day ever happened. But instead, she's standing in front of her mirror as she tries to find something, anything to wear, that can make her look appropriate for this date in... Forty five minutes. Kara wants to crawl into a hole and die but she's been looking forward to it all month. So instead she looks for something, anything that isn't a sack. She's desperate for this to go well, to get through the date with minimal hiccups on her part. It can't be worse than the last one where she had spilt red wine down her front or not known which one was the fish fork. It has to go well, she knows it does.
A firm knock pulls Kara from her thoughts, making her look up and run to the door.
“I have a conference in Geneva, and I need to be on a plane in two hours.”
“And I have a blind date in half an hour and I need your help to pick out what to wear. I win.”
"Why do you do this to me?” her sister sighs dramatically as she brushes past Kara to walk into the apartment. Alex’s teasing smile over her shoulder makes Kara deflate, she only needs to get dressed and get to the address she had been texted that morning.
“Cuz I’m your sister and you love me.” Kara says as she shuts the door.
“So, how was the dragon lady today?” Alex asks as Kara follows her into her bedroom. Kara sags at the words. She didn't do anything, again.
"I don't know, I just, I feel like I'm not living up to my potential," Kara huffs as she flops on the couch while Alex looks over her options. "You know, I went to work for Cat Grant because I thought working in a media company, working for a powerful woman who actually shapes the way people think, would be the way that I could make a difference. But instead, I just fetch layouts and get coffee."
Kara hates how easy it is to compare herself to him. His ability to just pick up the mantle of Earth's hero. While she was here, fetching coffee and layouts. Kara wasn't even that interesting, she didn't understand people like Alex thought she was.
"You always wanted to be normal, right?" Alex asks, turning to look down at her slumped position. "So having a crappy boss and absolutely nothing to wear. This is what normal looks like."
"I'm not normal!" Kara bursts, standing and moving to the bedroom where Alex looks up with an arched brow. "I have the same powers he does, I can lift a bus, stop bullets. Alex, I can fly, at least I think I can. I haven't done it in years."
Alex's look of bewilderment on her face makes Kara deflate as Alex moves towards her, two options in her hand. "Kara, you've got a good job. You're cute. And thanks to your alien DNA you can't get pimples. Life is not so bad." Her tone borders on patronising, but Kara's learnt over the many years that this is her sister's tough love. One she's cherished for a long time. "But if you really want to help someone, you will pick between one of these two so I can get on my plane."
Kara contains her smile in a pout as she picks the pink option, but Alex is already shoving the blue top in her arms.
"Good choice, when in doubt blue is your colour," Alex grins and it makes the smile break out over Kara's face. "Alright, text me every detail from your date, and I will call you when I'm back from Geneva," Alex says, embracing Kara tightly and a soft, "I love you," falling from her lips as they embrace.
And as Kara whispers the warm, "I love you" back, she hates the fact she's been lying to her sister for years. Kara just didn't know how to bring it up. Alex had gone through a lot of changes because of Kara. First, she was an alien, second, she was weird at school because she was an alien, hence unaccustomed to the way things were done on Earth. Plus, she had to go through twelfth grade as a thirteen year old which was awkward at the best of times, let alone the fact she was from a different galaxy.
Kara dresses quickly before walking uptown, checking her phone repeatedly as she walks, google telling her the way uptown even though she's known where it is since they arranged it that morning. She finds the restaurant, tucked away in a quiet corner. The small neon sign makes a grin fill her face as she steps inside giving the name, and she blushes when the hostess looks her up and down. Her blue shirt is tucked away underneath the tan leather jacket she has put on after begrudgingly listening to her sister. She's led to a quiet booth table near the back, and Kara's heart stops at the sight of her. It's how she saw her when they first met. And Kara can recall exactly how it went like it was yesterday.
It had started with a trip to Metropolis. Miss Grant had called Kara into her office on a normal mundane Tuesday. Winn had shot her a sympathetic look when Kara had picked up her notepad with a defeated sigh. Kara had strode into Cat's office with her head held high. Ready for the berating on the weather, or her diary planning no doubt.
"I need you to book the jet for tomorrow," Miss Grant had said, without even looking up from her laptop as she typed quickly away.
"Of course, Miss Grant," Kara had said dutifully with a nod as she scribbled down the order. "Where are you going?"
"We," Cat had said with pursed lips. "We are going to Metropolis, to the Met Sci Expedition."
Kara's brain had tried to keep up. First the 'we', which wasn't unheard of for Kara to go with Cat on business trips but it wasn't common. Then, this expedition that Kara had never heard of.
"Met Sci?" Kara began to ask, but Cat sighed heavily with an eye roll, efficiently cutting her off.
"The Metropolis Science Experimentation Exhibit," Cat explained in full. "Honestly, Keira, you would think you hadn't worked at a media empire for nearly two years."
"I'm sorry, Miss Grant," Kara quickly apologised. "It's just we rarely cover Metropolis, I would have thought the Daily Plan-"
"Yes, well, Perry White and his reporters will be covering Lex Luthor's latest unveiling of tech at their launch on the same day," Cat dismissed, almost gleefully.
"I don't understand," Kara had admitted with a furrowed brow. Cat stood up and walked around her desk with a smirk that told Kara that Cat knew exactly what she was doing.
"I want to go to the Met Sci, because it's one of the biggest technology exhibition in the world. And who isn't going to be there?" Cat asked with a light quirk of her brow.
"Lex Luthor?" Kara hates when Cat gets like this. It made her feel two years old again, with the Scholars leering over her for the answers.
"Exactly, Keira. And who is going to be there?" Cat asked. Now Kara really was stumped. How was she supposed to know? Kara's millimetre of a shrug had Cat continuing, "His sister, Lena Luthor."
"I didn't know-"
"No, the black sheep of the family," Cat dismissed her thought quickly with a light wave. "But what I'm going to go find out, is why the black sheep is going to launch the latest technological advances for LuthorCorp at the biggest exhibition in the country, while the CEO is having a press conference in downtown Metropolis?"
Kara's brow furrows because Cat is very good. Kara has known that for a long time. Cat is a formidable woman who is an excellent journalist some would say: the best. So it made Kara's stomach drop slightly at the thought of this scoop she was going to be involved in.
"If you're going for the story, why do I need to be there Miss Grant?" Kara asked with a reluctant fidget of her glasses. It's not that Kara didn't want to go to Metropolis, she could just spend the days not running around and actually getting the things Cat wanted done, done. Rather than cramming them in around lunch orders and coffee runs.
Cat had sighed, leaning against her desk and whipping of her glasses in exasperation, "Why? Do you have somewhere better to be Keira?"
Kara blushed looking away, "Of course not," Kara said in a practiced manner. She didn't, not really. And the thought of an all expense trip to Metropolis wasn't so bad, Kara tried to reassure herself. She just had to sit on a five hour flight with her boss to Metropolis.
"Good," Cat quipped. "Now I need the plane ready for tomorrow morning. The Exhibition is on Thursday but I want a day to background research excreta."
Kara nodded solemnly, before asking if there was anything else. When Cat had simply waved her off, Kara trudged from the room. Once out of the office, she told Winn who seemed fairly optimistic about the whole trip. Kara wasn't convinced.
When she had gone home that evening, she had shamelessly googled Lena Luthor and found her to be the head of the Research and Design team at LuthorCorp, graduated from MIT at the age of 21, and with three PhD's in a mix of astrophysics, bioengineering and every other engineering Kara's ever heard of on Earth. But as her eyes began to skim over the articles on 'The Man of Tomorrow', Kara's stomach began to drop at the shady doings of the Luthor family.
The plane with Cat is quieter at 7am than Kara imagined. She had travelled with Cat before, but she's surprised when she turns up half an hour early to find Cat already sitting there working on the plane, a steaming cup of coffee beside her. "Yes, I can be self sufficient, Kiera." Is all that is said between them until they land in Metropolis five hours later. The hotel isn't anything special from Kara's end, a simple queen size bedroom. A bar, and restaurant downstairs. But more importantly, it was the hotel that was hosting the Exhibition, and she had gotten the last room available other than Cat who was twenty floors above her in a suite. After unpacking and finding something to eat, she waited until Miss Grant appeared phone and notepad in hand.
"Come on Keira," Cat smirked as Kara followed dutifully into the large conference centre. There were a lot of speakers, and part of Kara regretted not bringing Alex with her. Because she knows her geeky sister would have found this really interesting. And not that Kara didn't find it interesting, it was just, Krypton had discovered most of these advances a Millenia ago. It's something Kara will never remember when Lena Luthor stepped onto the stage, in a purple wrap dress and red Louboutin heels. Her hair poker straight. She gave a presentation on the research the company was doing into finding a smaller faster mental connection for paraplegics and their computing systems.
Kara had never been so enamoured. It wasn't the way her porcelain skin flushed when she spoke about a particularly exciting phase, or the small flash of white teeth Kara could see as she discussed the transition systems. It wasn't even the slight purse of stark red lips at the pauses that made Kara entranced, it was the vibrancy in those green eyes as she spoke about the topic. Her passion for it all. Even down to discussing the technical wiring within the chip. Even when she opened the floor to questions, those eyes danced over the crowd expectantly. She had been born to do this.
"Cat Grant, Catco Worldwide Media. Lena, how do you explain your presence of being on this stage, when your CEO couldn't be bothered to get in his car for a twenty minute drive through the city? After all, this technology is groundbreaking."
Kara could see the faint narrow of green eyes, before a sculpted brow arched. But then, it was gone in an instant, and the welcoming smile Lena Luthor had had on her face for the conference returned.
"As you're probably aware, my brother is looking into some of the company's other technological advances today. Giving a press conference in Unity Square is just as important," Lena answered smoothly.
It's a dismissal if Kara's ever heard one. Green eyes move on, and Kara looks to Cat who sits with pursed lips. "They're hiding something, Keira, and I'm going to find out what," Cat had said, a familiar fire in those blue eyes, that made Kara want to hide somewhere. As soon as the last questions had been answered, Cat was shuffling Kara out of her seat.
"Miss Grant," Kara tried to hiss, trying to dissuade her in some way, as she followed her boss around the back of the stage. Kara rushed to keep up, "Miss Grant we can't-"
"Oh, hush, Keira," Cat waved off, as she moved backstage.
Kara tries not to stutter at the sight of Lena Luthor stepping off the backstage unclipping the mic from her dress. Green eyes narrowed at the sight of Cat approaching. "Miss Grant," Kara's stomach flipped slightly at the sound of the faint lilt.
"Miss Luthor," Cat's voice matched the caution Kara could hear in the younger Luthor's voice. "I wanted to ask some questions regarding your brother's absence."
"Well you'll need to take them up with my brother," Lena dismissed quickly as she took the phone from the assistant.
"You say that as if your opinion on the matter is less important than his," Cat snipped her jaw raised in a challenge. It made Lena turn her eyes darting over Cat's features.
"I say that because you're clearly fishing for something Miss Grant, something I don't have the answers to," Lena's lip curled in an equally daring sneer, and Kara couldn't help herself. She just couldn't keep her mouth shut.
"If there's nothing to hide, then there's no need to defend him," Kara had said unconsciously, looking down at her notebook.
"And who are you exactly?" It was the arched brow and the flicker of those intense green eyes. The way they had roamed over her body and face, the way they had looked into her soul, that had left Kara stuttering.
The same way she was stuttering now, looking at Lena as she sat down at the tall table, opposite her.
"Hi," Kara gushes, moving to fidget with her absent glasses.
"Hi," Lena says, barely hiding her own smile and it makes Kara's heart stutter. "I missed you," Lena says reaching across the table, taking Kara's hand. And Kara can feel her heart stuttering as the tingling sensation racing up her arm as a pale hand takes her own.
"I missed you too," Kara admits with a blush. "I've never been here before," she says looking around the crowded bar, and Lena's smile is breathtaking.
"I thought I might treat you," Lena says as she looks down, her fingers tangling in Kara’s.
"You don't have to do things like that," Kara protests lightly. She enjoys her time with Lena, even when they just lay in her hotel room watching trashy films.
"I like to, it reminds me of all the things we could have," Lena says her eyes glossing over, and Kara knows it's how she gets when she recalls Lex and all the things he’s put her through.
"That time’s gone now, Lena, you can start fresh," Kara reassures, and green eyes look back up into her own. A small smile that shows the briefest of dimples makes Kara grin.
"Do you remember when we first met? Lena asks softly and Kara nods with a grin.
"You gave Cat a run for her money," Kara chuckles.
"After that," Lena says with a tentative purse of her lips, and Kara stutters because she can like it was yesterday.
She had spent the day listening to Miss Grant dig around the scientific exhibition, looking for any holes in Lena Luthor's story about Lex. Mutterings off a conspiracy and 'I can smell the story, Keira!', Kara had deduced that Miss Grant had some other leads she wasn't telling Kara. But it had led to a day of trailing after her boss, as well as trying to organise the fundraiser for next week from her phone, and all she really wanted was a drink, a drink that would do nothing to her system.
Either way, the silence in her hotel room was deafening, and even Desperate Housewives couldn't drown out the silence etching at Kara's skin. It was one of the reasons she struggled being away from Alex. Not being able to just call her to come over, and hold her while the panic of the Phantom Zone subsided. The bar wasn't busy when she walked in, with a handful of businessmen and women in a corner.
"Can I get a club soda?" Kara asked the barman, who had quickly handed her her order, and Kara sat contemplating. She was here to help Cat. She knew that, but she could just be doing it from the comfort of her office, with Winn and Noonans, rather than the crappy coffee the hotel had served her. It made her sigh as she looked up at the news, the headline taunting her: Superman saves another innocent life.
It made her sigh again, into the glass, as she thought about her life. She was alone, single, and worked in a crappy job barely helping people. It was what she had always wanted to do, to help. But nothing seemed to work. She was a nobody. Just perceived to be another human that didn't do any good in the world. It made her think of all the good someone like Lena Luthor was doing. How she was trying to cure people and make life better. She was pretty sure Lex Luthor wasn't as good, even if the interview this afternoon with Lena hadn't given that impression.
"Scotch, Balvennie," A lilted voice made Kara turn around on her seat. Sitting two stools up, was Lena Luthor. She looked different. She'd traded in the wrap dress for black jeans, booted heels, and her hair was soft and cascading around her shoulders. Kara turned back, looking at her drink and the news. There was a gentle scoff, next to her, that she hated. "I hope you aren't following me for an interview, Ms Danvers," Lena's voice is daring and Kara looks up into those green eyes and shakes her head.
"I'm not a reporter, Ms Luthor."
"Well, you could have fooled me," Lena's tone was light as she spoke, even if her eyes remained daring.
"I'm just Miss Grant's assistant," Kara defended lightly with a shrug. "Miss Grant doesn't even listen to me anyway."
"Well, Cat Grant is missing the mark if she isn't listening to you Ms Danvers," Lena chuckled as she sipped the scotch.
"It's Kara," She corrected before asking, "You listen to your assistant?" Kara asked incredulously, and Lena smirked as she looked down into her glass.
"I don't get much of a choice," Lena mused. "Jess is very skilled at helping me organise my life. It's rare that I get evenings to myself before 9pm, so I'm happy to confide in her, let her help me with the organisation. So I do, I suppose."
"It must be nice, getting to change the world for the better every day," Kara whispered looking down into her own glass, because she's jealous of Lena's ability to make the world a better place. Lena scoffed next to her, however, and the younger Luthor shook her head.
"I make my business money, Ms Danvers," Lena said as she sipped her scotch.
"Kara," Kara quickly corrects her again, and the corner of Lena's eyes crinkle.
"Kara, I wish I was all heroic but the truth is I just make what the company thinks will sell."
"What would you make?" Kara wondered, and she's surprised at the shocked expression on Lena's face, when she looks up from her drink. "What?" Kara asked at the look, but Lena's shaking her head out of her stupor.
"It's just no ones really asked me that, not in a long time," Lena admitted in a whisper. Kara's patient, sipping quietly on her club soda, as Lena thought. And then she's being asked about quantum physics and nanotechnology. Kara was enamoured with Lena's passion, suddenly the stoic shielded Luthor was gone, and Lena was laughing at Kara's wonderment as she asked about side effects and other principles. "You should make it," Kara had said firmly, and it had been enough to shrink Lena's smile into a polite purse of lips.
"I can't, it's not the direction of the company," she admitted solemnly.
"But you want to change the world," Kara had protested. "You have stock in the company, isn't that one of the perks of being a head of department?"
"It doesn't work that way I'm afraid," Lena said looking into the fresh glass of scotch she had silently ordered.
"It should." Blue eyes had firmly connected with green ones, and then Lena was smiling brightly again at Kara's naivety.
"What about you? You don't always want to be Cat Grant's assistant do you?" Lena had asked, and at the time Kara hadn't seen it for the diversion it was.
"No, I want to change the world, help it. My mother was a judge I suppose, before she died. I've always wanted to help people ever since."
"I'm sorry," Lena had whispered. "My mother also died, then the Luthors adopted me. I wasn't always set on this path."
"The Danvers adopted me when I was 13, they were both scientists like my father but I wanted to do something different, help people differently."
"I think you'll be amazing at whatever you do, Kara," Lena had said softly. Her green eyes opened, full of a hope that Kara had never seen. Green eyes she could get lost in for days.
"I think you could too, Lena," Kara whispered and Lena had smiled warmly. "I don't know about you but I could really get something to eat."
"I- Of course, I shouldn't keep you," Lena dismissed quickly, but then Kara was frowning as she turned in the bar stool.
"You know, there is a really great diner around the corner," Kara had said and Lena's eyes narrowed in a challenge. "You eat human food right? Burgers? Donuts?"
"I mean, I am human," Lena had chuckled before following Kara from the bar.
It was cold when they walked out from the hotel, and Kara had led Lena down the street until they were outside a diner that Kara had found online. Once inside, Kara was looking over the menu hungrily. Her stomach protesting loudly.
"I think my mother would kill me if she knew I was about to do this," Lena admitted with a glint in her eyes.
They ate a lot. Kara had two cheeseburgers with fries and a shake, and Lena is laughing at how ridiculous it is. It's a simple statement that had Kara rooted to the spot.
"I don't think I've had a cheeseburger since boarding school," Lena mused thoughtfully as she examined the plate in front of her.
Kara's jaw dropped comically, and she proceeded to instruct Lena on the best food combinations. The fries in the chocolate shake, or turning the burger upside down to stop the contents falling out. Either way, they resulted in a mess, and stumbling out the diner two hours later Karas felt better than she has in weeks. Listening to Lena was a breath of fresh air that she hadn't expected. They had more in common than Kara could have ever imagined. When talking about boarding school, Lena had let it slip she liked N*Sync in 8th grade, and suddenly it was something else for them to discuss as they walked back to the hotel.
"Thank you for entertaining me tonight, Kara," Lena had muttered with a small tentative smile.
But Kara had grinned happily back at her. "I had a great time. It's a shame you’re not in National City because I could have taken you to Noonans or Sergios Pizza Palace," Kara had gushed excitedly.
Lena chuckled as she brushed the raven hair from her face, "Well, I might be in National City the week after."
Kara can still feel the strain on her cheeks from that moment.
Even as she sits in the restaurant, staring across the table at Lena's loving gaze.
"Who would have thought we'd get here?" Lena's voice is soft as she reaches across the table, taking Kara's hand in her own.
Kara looks down as she lets their fingers dance together, and she's never felt happier. Looking up into those green eyes, Kara feels like she could get lost in them forever. She can remember Lena coming to National City for the first time, and the second, and then Kara going to Metropolis for third. She had managed to convince Alex it was for Miss Grant, and part of it was. A hand delivered invite to Perry White for the gala for the acquisition of the Daily Herald, a small offshoot of the Daily Planet that had left him spluttering in her wake. Kara could still remember the empowerment she had felt in its wake and Miss Grants smug, “ It's the small victories Kiera ”.
But looking into the warm gaze of Lena in this moment, all the struggle they had faced to get to this point, she had never felt happier. It had taken for their third meeting for Lena to truly trust Kara. The small chewing of a lower lip had melted Kara's resolve and it was the first time she had felt that fluttering in her belly that Lena might have liked her. Liked her slightly more than a friend. It was their fifth meeting in National City when Lena invited Kara back to her hotel. It had been filled with back alleyway driving and slipping in the backdoor of the hotel, but Kara hadn't cared because an hour later she was with Lena, the raven haired woman writing beneath her, the gasps she pulled from smudged red lips enough to forget the hiding. It came the third time Lena wanted her to come back to the hotel. Kara can still recall the way she timidly asked it, earning the pained look in Lena's eyes.
"I'm not ashamed of you, Kara," Lena had whispered. "I could never be ashamed of you!"
"Then why am I skulking around like some... Some mistress?" Kara had asked, her voice slightly raised.
"Because Lex can't know about you," Lena had whispered, her voice small and her hands fidgeting as she was trying to keep her emotions in check.
"W-What?" Kara had been dumbfounded. It wasn't that she didn't trust Miss Grant's journalism skills, but that Lena had so feverently denied Lex was a bad guy.
"If he knows about you Kara, he'll play with our relationship like it's a game," Lena whispered. "I don't want anyone knowing about you so I can protect you."
Kara should have said then, It's ok Lena, I'm Kryptonian like Superman . But she hadn't. She had wrapped Lena in the tightest hug she could muster without breaking her. They had held each other close that night, and all resolve about telling Lena her secret had melted for both their safeties.
But Lex is gone now , Kara reminded herself as Lena looked lovingly up at her. The last few months had been the longest they had gone without seeing each other. After Lex had tried to turn the sun red, Lena had taken over LuthorCorp and had spent every waking minute trying to fix the wrongs of her brother. As well as testifying against him. It had resulted in little time for even sleeping. But Kara had been patient, trying to be there for her in every way she could, even if it was just lying on the phone as Lena fell into a fitful sleep. A part of Kara hated it, she could have literally flown to Lena in National City, but all it would take is for Lex to get a sniff of her existence and their cover would be blown. Even Alex didn't know about Lena. The thought of telling her sister she was dating Lena Luthor after everything with Lex would send her sister into a meltdown, Kara's sure of it.
"You're the most important thing to me, Kara you know that don't you?" Lena whispers, those green eyes looking up at her with the love and devotion Kara knows is there. It's why the night is so important, tonight was the night Kara was going to tell her the truth, she wanted this life with Lena, without the pain of secrets or hiding between them.
"I know, I love you so much Lena," Kara whispers, duking her head closer. And Lena smiles brightly.
"It's why I wanted to come here tonight really," Lena admits, her voice shaking slightly and it makes Kara's brow furrows in confusion, Lena's heart rate is higher than normal and it makes worry bubble in her throat. "I wanted to have a normal date night, without any sneaking around, no more hiding."
"Lena, you know I never minded-"
"I know, but it's important to me, Kara. I never thought I would have what we have and you are everything to me-"
"Hey turn it up!" A stranger calls, silencing Lena. It makes them both turn to look up at the television above the bar.
"National City Airlines flight 237 bound for Geneva is experiencing some loss of altitude. The pilot seems to be circling back to the city after apparent engine failure again-"
"Did he say Geneva?" Kara calls looking up wide eyed. Alex is on that plane , one of the most important people in her life is on that plane. Kara looks wide eyed to Lena before turning, "Alex. Alex is on that plane."
But Kara doesn't hear Lena's calls as she runs from the restaurant, and as she staggers on to the sidewalk she stares wide eyed up at the sky. She can see Alex's plane, she can see the fire coming out of the engine and she can't watch her sister perish to the ground.
Whipping off her glasses, she runs, shedding her jacket as she does and tries to leap. It's been so long since she's flown, her muscles protest but she digs deep and jumps. The wind whips at her face as she flies, no soars through the sky. She laughs at how it sends her heart soaring as well, looking at the plane slowly falling. Narrowing her eyes, she can see Alex moving through the plane trying to calm down the other passengers.
Pushing herself through the air Kara finds herself at a wing, trying to pull it upwards; it makes her look up, and she comes eye to eye with her sisters. What was fear and panic, turns to shock and surprise and Kara bashfully looks away. Slowly she makes her way under the plane. Lifting it the best she can, as her unused muscles scream at her. As it begins to lift with a heavy creak of aluminium, the sight of the National City Bridge comes into view.
"Oh come on!" Kara can't contain the curses as she grips the frame beneath the casing of the plane. She turns with a yell against her protesting body and the high
pitched screech, as the plane drags across tarmac. Kara's eyes are screwed shut as she does what she can. Desperate to save everyone on board. The water envelopes her as she kicks upwards she flops onto the plane. She can hear the panicked hearts, but she can also hear the clapping and cheers. She crawls onto the wing, standing in amazement.
She had done it. She had saved them; she had saved Alex.
Her heart is beating strong in her ears. Kara can't stop the grin spreading over her face as she feels the bright spot lights blink down at her. But she doesn't stay; she leaps off the plane, soaring into the sky with a large whoop. She had done it. She had saved Alex. She was like Kal, she could save people. She could do this. She could be a hero. She loops around the city, feeling the wind in her hair and when she lands in her apartment she turns on the television as soon as she's in. Squealing slightly at the headlines. She had done it, she had done what He did. She had saved people. She had carried a plane for Pete’s sake.
"Please tell me it wasn't you."
Kara spins quickly to find Lena standing in the entrance of her apartment. Her lips are drawn in a tight purse as her arms are folded tightly across her chest. She had been so wrapped up in her excitement that she hadn’t seen Lena. Lena, who she had left at the restaurant. But Kara can see the pain riddled over her face and it rootes Kara to the spot.
"Tell me I didn't just watch you fly a plane across National City Bay?" Lena's voice is slow in the way Kara knows she uses when she's furious, her eyes are narrowed and her lips pulled into a tight line.
"I can explain," Kara is quick to deflate, the thrill of her save slowly diminishing.
"What have you done?" Kara looks past Lena to find Alex walking in, looking in equally furious.
"You've exposed yourself to the world," Alex hisses walking to her sister. "You're out there now."
"I had to save you," Kara protests. "I have these powers, I was not just going to let you die," Kara shouts, but she can see Lena shaking her head and Kara pales when Alex eyes land on Lena. Her eyes are widening as she looks back to her sister.
"Why is Lena Luthor in your apartment, Kara?" Alex growls, her nostrils flaring in rage.
"She was just leaving," Lena spits before turning promptly on her heels.
"Lena. Lena wait!" Kara calls, but the click of heels is deafening until she reaches for her but Lena spins her finger in Kara's face.
"You don't get to ask anything of me," Lena's lip curls and Kara shrinks at the anger she's never seen Lena have. "Do you even know why I came to National City this week?"
"You have that press release-"
"To announce the new L-Corp and move the business. That's the company line, Kara. Do you know why I'm here? Why I'm here for you?" Lena's shouting and Kara can't stop the tears because Lena's crying. Lena, who has only cried after her brother was arrested. "I was here to ask you to marry me Kara. I didn't expect you to turn around and tell me about the secret you've kept our entire relationship."
"Relationship?" Alex's voice makes Kara turn and she wants her sister to stop talking. "What is going on, Kara?"
"I can explain, I can explain to both of you," Kara tries but Lena's already shaking her head.
"I don't need anymore explanations from you," Lena whispers.
Kara doesn't look down at the small box that's shoved into her hand before the woman she loves turns and walks from the apartment. Heels clicking are like nails in Kara's coffin.
"You have a lot of explaining to do," Alex's voice breaks through, but all Kara can do is look down at the small velvet box in her hand.
Kara moves slowly as her mind reels. Lena hated her. Hated her for keeping her secret from her. She sets the box down slowly with a dull thud on the kitchen counter. Lena wanted to marry her. Be with her forever. But she had left. Left without so much as a glance back. "Kara," Alex's voice prompts again, but Kara's already curling into herself. Her arms holding herself as she slowly feels herself falling apart at the implication of what she's done.
"I uh, think I'm going to take a shower and go to bed," Kara mutters slowly. "Get all this plane soot out my... Out my hair."
But Kara doesn't hear her sister as she walks from the living room. Instead she shuts the door to the small bathroom and slides down the door. Tears fall quick and silent as they streak down her face at the memory of Lena walking out the apartment, without a glance. Salty tears mix with the spray of the water as she thinks about how terrible her instinctual response was. Alex was right, she had exposed herself to the world. There was no going back but she could do good, she could make a change in the world like Clark could.
Alex would get over it.
Lena… Lena was going to hate her.
Kara tried to bury the thoughts of her walking from the apartment. They had fought before, small bickering of Kara being kept a secret or spending too much time in public. However, it had always been resolved in an hour or two. But Lena hadn’t looked like that before. Hadn’t looked heartbroken and destroyed like that before. Kara wishes she had told her before, wishes she had ignored Alex’s pestering on keeping it from people closest to her and just told Lena. It would have avoided all this pain. All the heartache that she could now feel, that was making her feel sick as she shut the water off, and moved lying in her bed. She didn’t sleep, her nerves jumping as she thought of tomorrow and what it could bring. She had tried to phone Lena, its automatic voicemail coming through. She had texted, and not received a reply. She could see the small ‘read’ and that only made it worse.
Walking into Catco the following morning had her in a jumble of nerves as she walked in. Kara takes a deep breath as she steps from the elevator, coffee and bagels in her hands as she tries to cope with not hearing from Lena. It had been silent for the whole evening, and she hopes, prays, she can just get Lena to talk to her.
Today Cat Grant introduces the Nationals CIties newest female superhero, Supergirl.
Kara’s eyes bulge at the sight of herself standing on the plane wing, but what's worse is the name. Girl. Girl? When was the last time she had been called a girl?
She doesn’t stop at her desk to drop her bag, or sneakily heat the cooling coffee in her hand. Instead she strides quickly into Cat’s office, stuttering as she does. She didn’t save a plane to be called a girl.
“Supergirl?” Kara asks heatedly. “We can’t name her that.” She states as she drops her bag, standing irritated in front of Cat’s desk.
Cat spins with an arched brow, saying slowly, “ We. Didn’t.”
“Right,” Kara amends bashfully. “Sorry, it’s just uh, I- I just don’t want to minimise the importance of this,” Kara makes up on the spot. “Ah, shouldn’t she be called Superwoman?”
Cat doesn’t look up, merely going back to her files. “I’m sorry, darling, I just can’t hear you over the colour of your cheap pants.”
“Uh, if we call her Supergirl, something less than what she is, doesn’t that make us guilty of being anti feminist?” Kara asks, as she paces in front of Cat’s desk. She might have made a mistake in revealing herself, but if she was going to do it she wanted a name befitting it. “Didn’t you say she was a hero?”
Cat looks up with a roll of her eyes, “I’m the hero. I stuck a label on the side of this girl. I branded her. She will forever be linked to Catco. To the Tribune. To me.” Kara doesn’t question the arrogance in Cat’s statement as Cat looks up at her with a piercing gaze. “And what do you think is so bad about girl?”
Cat’s challenge is clear, and Kara can feel her argument deflating as she watches her boss push away from the desk, slowly standing up. "I'm a girl." She says as she moves around the desk, Kara grits her teeth as the words keep coming. Her argument is all but gone." And your boss. And powerful. And rich and hot and smart." Cat finishes settling in front of Kara and Kara should have known better. "So if you perceive Supergirl to be anything less than excellent, isn't the real problem you ?"
Cat let's the words hang like a life line, and when she reaches up to correct Kara's shirt colour Kara knows what's about to come next. "And if you're so smart Keira, could please give me one reason why I shouldn't fire you?"
"I printed it and it's an even higher resolution than you hoped for!" James bursts in and Kara's never felt so relieved.
"James, you are interrupting a very craftily worded termination," Cat seethes as she moves back to her chair.
"Kara wanted to surprise you, but she has a teller friend who works at west National city bank," James says and Kara pales, looking up at him, but Cat is thankfully oblivious as she raises her hands in question. "The bank that got robbed?" James adds, raising his eyebrows in a pointed way.
"Right!" Kara blurts out. "Right, I-Yes, I have a friend there, and it took me a while to park my car in the street and it's a one way street and-"
James clears his throat, before looking sceptically down at her as Kara fails to lie in every definition of the word. "You tell it so much better."
"Kara convinced her source to allow us to use a photograph that she captured from the plane," James grins, as he hands the photo to Cat. Kara's eyes widen as she looks down at the photo, but it's still blurry and she hopes it's enough to dissuade Cat.
"Well, congratulations Keira, you've bought yourself another day. But it's still not enough. I want a good, clean image of Supergirl. No pixelation, nothing," Cat glowers at James.
"Keira, send an email out to all the teams to make this their number one priority, do you understand?" Cat growls and Kara's nodding fast, before she turns quickly when she's shooed pointedly out the room. She doesn't, however, send the email as she watches James running off. She needs help, she needs to talk to someone. Walking into the bullpen, she grips the back of Winn's chair and she feels the man stiffening.
"Winn, I need to talk to you on the roof."
She doesn't hear the stuttering of Winn because she's already on her phone, trying to call Lena, trying to talk to her. To get her to understand. She's pacing when Lena's voicemail continues to go. As a last ditch attempt, she phones the office.
"Miss Luthor's office, how can I help you?" Jess's voice comes through. A voice she'd only heard a handful of times in their two year relationship.
"Jess, it's uh, it's Kara Danvers here," Kara introduces lamely because she doesn't even know if Jess knows who she is to Lena.
"From Cat Grant's office, correct?" Jess asks, almost too politely.
"Uh, yeah. I was wondering if you could put me through to L- Miss Luthor, it's about a meeting Miss Grant wanted me to set up," Kara curses herself as she tries to lie.
"I know the meeting, Miss Luthor will be at Catco at 11am. I know it was last minute to squeeze her in." Jess says, and Kara's practically fainting because Lena's coming to Catco. To talk to Cat. Kara didn't need to know. She hangs up just as Winn steps onto the roof.
"Kara, can we make this quick? I don't like being up this high," He pleads, but Kara's pacing because Lena's coming to Catco. And she needs help. Alex wasn't listening and Lena hated her.
"Ok, um. Winn I'm going to tell you something about me that only thre- four people in my life know. Can I trust you?" Kara asks, and she hopes she can because she has nowhere else to turn to.
"Yeah- Yeah of course," Winn says as his brow furrows while Kara keeps pacing.
"Good I- I um- I just really want someone to be excited for me. I um... how do I even?" Kara thinks before trying to explain. "There's something about me that for most of my life I've run from. But last night, I embraced who I am. And I don't want to stop-"
"Oh my god!" Winn bursts. "You're a lesbian."
Kara's brow furrows as Winn looks on in relief. "Oh Kara, that's why you're not into me? This-This is great news!"
Kara rolls her eyes because she hates Earth's misconceptions. "I'm not gay. I'm- I mean I'm bi. But that's not it. I'm Her ."
Winn's look of sheer bewilderment only adds to her frustration.
"The woman who saved the plane," She bursts with such relief, but Winn's grin turns slowly to a confused scowl, and it makes anger bubble up inside her.
"Ok," He says with a minute shake of his head. "Ok- yeah, sure."
Kara rolls her eyes, turning to the edge of the building as she walks over. If he didn't believe her, she would show him.
"Kara, what're you doing? Hey Kara, get back from there!" Kara turns as she stands at the edge of the ledge, slightly enjoying his panicked tone. "Get away from the ledge you're going to get hurt!"
Kara only grins as she falls from the ledge, relief overtaking her as she soars through the sky before landing on the H of the heliport. Winn's look of shock and surprise is priceless, his jaw dropped and stuttering, "Y-You’re her."
Kara's grin is full and hopeful as she thinks about what it could mean. How she could help people. The walk back to their desk is filled with Winn's questions, "How fast can you fly? When did you get here? Why haven't you said anything before? Can I meet your cousin?"
Kara quirked her brow at that one, and Winn (at least) was blushing as they walked back into the bullpen. The excitement and giddiness of the information out there, she manages to pencil in two of the appointments for Miss Grant when a familiar click of heels makes her lookup.
Lena barely flinches as she strides through Catco.
Multiple people stop to turn and look at her as she walks through. The looks of confusion passing through multiple people before whispering begins. She doesn't stop at Kara's desk. Kara can't help the soft fall of Lena's name from her lips, but Lena doesn't acknowledge her. So Kara does the only logical thing that an assistant would do, she follows her, pad and pen in hand.
"Lena," Cat greets, before her gaze lands on Kara.
"I'm sorry Miss Grant she just flew in here," Kara practically winces at her own words, and the glower from Lena's green eyes makes her look away.
"It's alright Keira, Lena and I have much to discuss," Cat says with a simple wave of her hand. "You can go."
"You don't need notes-"
"And shut the door when you leave," Cat adds and Kara backs out, her teeth grinding against one another as she does.
Her brain goes through all the possibilities as to why Lena was here.
A routine chat? Those never happen. Lena doesn’t ever talk to the press. An interview? Lena wouldn’t come to the offices of the press unless something was wrong. And Kara pales when she realises the only thing that is wrong, is that she had outed herself to Lena. She had lied to Lena, and hurt her more than she had ever imagined. Kara drops into her chair with a groan, and Winn looks over his shoulder with a questioning frown.
"Why is Lena Luthor here?" Winn asks with a hiss, as he watches the exchange inside the room. Kara finds herself glancing up, trying not to make it obvious that she is listening in.
"So you got my message?" Cat questions filled with faux humour. Kara can hear the taunting lilt in her voice.
"What do you want, Cat?" Lena's tone is unwavering, daring her to continue.
Kara focuses on her laptop as she listens, making herself look engrossed in Cat's emails. There's a scuffle of paper, and Kara hears the faint uptick of Lena's heartbeat.
"Where did you get this?" Lena asks her voice expressing the glare Kara can't see.
"One of my junior reporters gave it to me this morning. I've since taken it off their hands. My question is, what are we going to do about it?"
“ We ?" Lena's question is a hiss, and Kara can practically hear the worrying of Lena's jaw.
"As much as I would love to push a story like this, you can see I have some more front page stories to get on with," Cat taunts, and Kara glances up to see Lena look out the window to the city.
"What do you want to make it go away?" Lena asks after a silence, her voice is smaller than Kara had ever heard it in a business setting. It makes Kara's brow furrow because it's an admittance, what had Lena been doing that Cat had caught her doing? It makes Kara want to strain to see if she can see the paper Cat has handed her, but it's Winn coming to her desk that alters her attention as he crouches beside her desk.
"So, uh, I was thinking if you're going to make a thing of this, you'll need a suit," Winn suggests with wide hopeful eyes and Kara snorts.
"Come to my apartment tonight, we can see what you can come up with," Kara grins excitedly. The worry of niggle dancing in her mind. But when Lena leaves fifteen minutes later, she carries an A4 envelope and the clicking of her heels stop in front of Kara, the Kryptonian looking up wide eyed.
"Lena, please?" Kara whispers softly, but all she can see is the pain, the pain she caused her. "I want to talk to you."
"Can you set up an invite for Miss Grant to L-Corps Gala, Miss Danvers? I assume it’s not outside your skillset," Lena says, her features schooled as her brow arches in question, making Kara swallows thickly.
"Of course, Miss Luthor."
When Kara gets home that night, she tries once again, calling Lena. Her attempt is met with the usual dial tone before the voicemail. Alex is ignoring her calls as well, and Kara doesn't know what else to do. She's alone, she needs to talk to someone that understands, that knows her.
"Hey Honey!" Eliza's warm voice fills her ears and Kara feels the tears well in her eyes as she blinks them back.
"Hey, Eliza," Kara greets, trying to hide the croak of emotions in her voice. Kara can’t help it, her mouth running away from her before she can control it. “I’ve been dating Lena Luthor for two years and now she hates me because I didn’t tell her and Alex hates me because I revealed myself and didn’t tell her about Lena and everything’s a mess.”
It’s in a rushed blurt that renders her adoptive mother silent for several long moments before Eliza recovers and it’s everything Kara wanted. Because Eliza’s there soothing her and calming her down.
"She'll come around you know," Eliza whispers and it makes Kara pause, how can Eliza know which ‘She’ she's talking about, because at that moment she doesn't think her sister or her girlfriend will come around.
"I just- I don't want to take it back," Kara says, looking down as she picks at the wood of her table.
"You know what your cousin went through Kara, I can't tell you it'll all be ok. This is a journey for you to go on," Eliza's motherly tone resonates in Kara's chest as she nods to herself.
She can do this, she can do this with or without Lena. She just couldn't do it without Alex.
"Alex'll come around, Kara, you know she's just doing her over protective sister act."
It fills Kara's heart with a glimmer of hope, and she's thankful Winn knocks on her apartment door so she doesn't spill the pain of trying to explain herself to Lena.
Ending the call with Eliza, she opens the door to have a sewing machine dumped in her arms, along with six rolls of blue and red fabric.
"God that's heavy," Winn complains as he steps into her apartment. He pauses as he drops the rolls of fabric, "You have a nice place."
"Thanks," Kara blushes as he says it, only Alex and Eliza had ever been in here. It's just Kara didn't have many friends and Lena couldn't risk her safety if she was to come here. "I was going to order take out if you want some?"
Winn turns with a bright smile, and one word has Kara realising she has made the best decision telling Winn. "Potstickers?"
It's late and the music is blaring when Kara tentatively steps out in the first iteration of her suit. "I'm not flying around saving people in this thing," Kara protests. "I wouldn't even wear it to the beach." Kara unconsciously covers her bare stomach.
"Where's my cape?"
"Capes are lame, you can tell your cousin I said so," Winn shrugs off, half of his noodles hanging from his mouth. He swallows before adding. "Actually never do that."
"Come on, Winn! I'm supposed to be a superhero, not a model," Kara groans, turning and pacing. She gets halfway down to her room...
Lena would have designed her a cool suit, her brain taunts. She's not ungrateful for Winn's help, but she misses her girlfriend. She misses having Lena in her arms.
"What're you wearing?" Kara spins around, and Winn's takeout box falls to the floor. Lena's standing in her doorway. She looks exactly how she did that morning. And, after shutting Kara's door closed, she stands looking expectantly at her in her pristine pencil skirt and red lips.
"Kara, Lena Luthor is in your apartment," Winn whispers, backing up to Kara.
Lena's green eyes fall upon him and her eyes narrow, her brow pinching as she regards him for a moment.
"She is, and who're you exactly?" Lena's lilted voice is unwavering and daring him to continue.
"I'm- I'm Winn," He stammers as an introduction. "Winn Schott."
Lena's gaze falls back on Kara who's trying to work out what to say.
"Winn and I work together," Kara manages. "What- uh- What are you doing here?" Kara asks, fidgeting with her arms as she tries to stay strong, preparing for the impending argument.
Lena's brow arches, her lips pursing, "You work together ?"
Kara curses herself because of course, Lena would see that as Kara didn't trust her but she trusted Winn.
Kara's silenced by the minuscule rise of Lena's palm, and she can see the raven haired woman blinking back tears in her eyes. It makes ice form in Kara's stomach as she looks to Winn whose jaw is practically on the floor.
"Winn, do you think we could maybe pick this up in the morning?" Kara asks, and Winn's looking up at her with a wide eyed confused gaze.
"B-But Kara, that's-"
"I know!" Kara snaps, because Lena isn't Lionel and she isn't Lillian. She certainly isn't Lex and Kara's thought that for a long time because Lena wasn't really a Luthor. "Please," Kara adds softly hoping her friend gets the hint. Winn looks at her critically for a long moment before slowly nodding. He stands casting a long look over his shoulder as he walks past and Kara grits her teeth. He doesn't get to judge her, his past wasn't perfect either when it came to family.
The apartment door clicks shut with a deafening click.
Kara looks into watery green eyes, and she can feel her own tears begin to form as Lena looks away from her. Kara clears her throat as she shuffles unconsciously. "Lena I-"
"Can you change before we do this?" Lena asks quickly, and Kara's brow furrows before looking down at herself and paling. She moves quickly, unconsciously superspeeding into her joggers and a sweater. Returning to the living room, Lena hasn't moved, she continues to try to school her features from Kara but she can see through it. It's not the blinking back of tears but the way the vein in her temple throbbing.
"Thank you for coming here," Kara whispers as she looks down, unable to look at the pain on Lena's face any longer. She knows it's terrible, she knows she shouldn't have lied to her, that she should have told her everything when Lena had opened up to her about her life, her childhood, how Lex truly was as a child. "I know you don't have to trust me after everything, I'm-"
It's said so softly that Kara looks up to see Lena looking at the floor, tears falling now. "I thought we trusted each other."
"We do," rushes out of Kara before she's pierced by Lena's pained gaze. "I do trust you, Lena."
"Then why the fuck does the IT guy know before your own partner , Kara?"
Kara’s wincing at the anguish in Lena's tone and it makes the torment within her rise up. She should have told Lena, she should have told her a long time ago. Lena was her family like Alex, like Eliza and Jeremiah. Lena's justified in every moment, she was supposed to know everything about Kara, but Kara wasn't supposed to tell anyone. Right enough, Kara was supposed to keep her identity a secret and she had failed at that but she couldn't let Alex die. Not when she had the means to save her.
"I-I just had to tell someone. Alex wasn't talking to me and you... You wouldn't answer my calls, my texts. You wouldn't even look at me." She started explaining.
"Because you lied to me for nearly three years," Lena spits out, moving across the room as she shakes her head in disbelief. "What did you expect Kara, that I would just get over the fact that I had been in a relationship with a Kryptonian for three years?"
"I didn't lie," Kara protests automatically as she turns as Lena walks to the window of her apartment, her hands fidgeting. "I just-"
"Withheld the truth?" Lena argues with fire now in her eyes. "Do you even understand how stupid you've made me feel?"
"I never meant to hurt you, Lena." Kara can't stop the pleading that leaks into her voice as the tears spill down onto her cheeks.
"Why? Why didn't you trust me enough to tell me?" Lena asks, her voice shaking and Kara looks up into those wide green eyes. Her heartbreaking further when Lena asks, "Is-Is it because of him?"
"What?" Kara croaks, she can't stop it, can't stop the way she runs to Lena holding her hands and looking into the green eyes that are filled with so much pain and anguish. "N-No, Lena, God no!"
"It's never been about him," it's the truth. And the truth is that there was just never the right time to tell Lena. "You were so worried that he would find out about human Kara Danvers that if it became something else, I didn't want you to worry about it. I didn't want you to worry more because you took the brunt of all of this."
Kara squeezes Lena's hands softly and she looks up at her with a familiar crinkle. It's the way her green eyes widen in understanding before sighing heavily.
"You shouldn't have lied to me Kara."
"I didn't mean to, I swear, Lena you have to believe me," Kara whispers.
Her chest feeling like it was about to burst as watches her. "Alex, Eliza, I wasn't allowed to tell anyone. It was for everyone's safety but Kal, he got to be Kal, he got to be Superman while I hid away and didn't help anyone. I couldn't let Alex die Lena," Kara's voice cracks as she looks down at their joined hands.
It's the gentle squeeze of Lena's hands that has her looking back up into the gaze she could get lost in for hours. "You helped me, Kara."
"I-" Kara chokes back the sob as they stand there. "I love you so much Lena, please, please don't walk away."
The pain that radiates through her is worse than anything she's ever felt. She's never faced this, the possibility that she couldn't have Lena. It makes her throat close and her chest tighten at the close reality of Lena leaving her. Leaving her, and never looking back.
"I'm so angry at you, Kara."
The words force her to look at Lena. Lena who is watching her with thinned lips and tear stained cheeks. Kara can hear the tremble in Lena's voice as she continues.
"I'm so angry that you weren't honest. That you didn't trust me enough to keep your secret. I feel like I barely know you now."
"I'm still me, Lena," Kara stresses but Lena's already shaking her head.
"But I don't know this you," Lena sighs, gesturing to Kara as she turns away. She paces, rubbing the back of her neck as she does. "I don't know anything about you, the Kryptonian you."
Kara steels herself. She shouldn't. She knows Alex will kill her, but she doesn't care. She doesn't want Lena to leave, and she'd do anything in her power to stop the woman she loves the most from turning around and walking out the apartment.
"Ask me. Ask me whatever it is you want to know," Kara says as she stands with her palms out at her side. She's open and bare for Lena to see. The woman narrows her eyes for a moment and Kara can see the challenge.
"What's your real name?"
"Kara Zor-El," Kara answers immediately. "I came to Earth 11 years ago, and I was placed with the Danvers."
"Do you have the same powers as him?"
"I... I think so," Kara admits, looking uncertainly down at herself. "It's been so long since I used them."
There’s a silence that falls between them and Kara can hear Lena’s heart hammering in her chest, the soft rise and fall of her chest as she thinks.
"Why?" Lena's voice is softening when she asks, and Kara sighs, moving to sit on her small sofa.
"Alex, well... The Danvers really didn't want me being exposed. I had a mission to protect Kal, but he didn't need me. We decided that I should just try to fit in the best I could," Kara says as she fidgets. While she was speaking, Lena had moved slowly over, perching on Kara's couch.
"Wait, that doesn't add up," Lena says as her brows knit together. "You arrived here 11 years ago, he was here long before that. What happened?"
And so it continues, Kara tells her everything till they are well into the early hours of the morning. Her powers, her life on Krypton, her years with the Danvers and growing up on Earth as an outsider. Kara knows Lena's heard a lot of it before, but she tells it all. Her life growing up on Krypton, the names of her mother and father, her aunt, her teachings.
Lena sits taking it all in, asking questions about Kara's life and what happened to her planet. Her eyes are wide in wonder as Kara explains her experiences of calculus and Lena bursts out in laughter, making Kara look up wide eyed.
"Are you telling me," Lena begins, her eyebrows high on her forehead. "That you've known about quantum physics for the past two years, and yet have let me explain it to you like an idiot?"
Kara blushes, looking pointedly away.
"You were so enthusiastic!"
"I must have sounded like an idiot," Lena groans, leaning back into the couch.
Kara chuckles before shaking her head, enjoying the slight relaxation between them, "You were always pretty accurate."
"Really?" Lena asks in surprise, and Kara's there tentatively taking her hand. Lena lets her, the small crinkle forming between her brows.
"You're a genius Lena, and one of the most accomplished women I have ever met. It's one of the reasons I love you so much."
"I love you too," Lena whispers, squeezing Kara's hand tightly.
There's a pause as Lena is thinking, and it fills Kara with a faint sense of dread as Lena then whispers, "No more secrets."
It's a relief that washes over her. Relief that Lena isn’t going to leave, isn’t going to walk away from their relationship. Relief that they can build anew with no barrier, no pathetic excuses. “No more secrets,” Kara grins. Her smile splits her face as she looks into Lena’s warm gaze. But then a small doubtful niggle of trust slips from the back of her mind and Kara can feel her smile falter.
“What?” Lena asks, the small head tilt and crinkle are back.
“Why were you at Cat’s office today?”
Lena sighs before standing up, and for a second Kara panics thinking she’s about to leave to walk out the door when she lifts an envelope from her bag. “She called me out of the blue. I almost didn’t pick up but, after the last couple of days, I thought,” Lena shakes her head as she thinks. “I thought she had somehow worked out it might be you.”
She hands Kara the envelope, and Kara frowns while opening it. Inside is a photo of her and Lena at the restaurant. A gleaming smile on both their faces. Kara looks it over for several moments, the hand she hadn’t been holding was under the table, a small velvet box in Lena’s hand. Lena was going to propose and Kara would have said yes. Dropping the photos on the couch, Kara stands up before striding to the small drawer where she had hidden the box, opening and removing it. “I ruined your plans,” Kara grumbles before turning to Lena who is rolling her eyes.
“You didn’t ruin-”
“Lena Luthor,” Kara says, kneeling down. Her stomach is flipping at the shocked look on Lena’s face. “I know we haven’t done things the normal way, and we have some obstacles but-”
“Kara stop,” Lena chuckles, crouching to her height. She takes Kara's hands before looking into blue eyes. “I love you, and if the last two days have taught me anything, it’s that we need to learn everything about each other.”
“You are the love of my life,” Lena says resolutely, placing her other hand on Kara’s cheek. “But I think we should wait, I know this was my idea but I love you, Kara, and I want to make a life for us. Together, with no secrets.”
Kara's heart swells around twenty sizes at the words coming out of Lenas mouth. "I was going to propose the other night and tell you how I'd relocated LuthorCorp. Now L-Corp. Tell you all these plans I had made and the apartment across tow-"
Kara silences Lena with a kiss that knocks her off balance, tumbling them both back onto the hardwood floor. Kara catches herself, her hand going through the flooring and Lena pulls away with a laugh at Kara's wide eyed expression.
"How have you kept this from me for two years?" Lena asks, the corner of her eyes crinkling as her smile is full and unrestrained. The kind that Kara finds she's the only one that can give it.
Kara matches her smile, and as she closes the gap between them, she mutters; "With great difficulty."
Winn appears just shy of eight am. A scowl on his face as Kara opens the door bleary eyed.
She hadn't forgotten about Winn, but after her evening with Lena he had gone to the back of her mind when Lena had uttered the words,"Show me how strong you are, Supergirl?"
Kara had carried her off to the bedroom without any subsequent thoughts.
Winn looks as pissed as he can be as before he trudges into her apartment.
"Sorry about last night," Kara says quietly as he lifts the fabric of the discarded suit Lena had promptly vetoed. A soft but firm, "You're not flying around in that. These abs are for my appreciation only."
"You have to explain this one to me Kara," Winn huffs as he leans against the counter while she makes coffee. "Lena Luthor turns up at your apartment and happens to A, know where you live. B, has a key, and C, you don't panic?"
Kara doesn't look up, she doesn't have to because as he finishes, Lena’s padding in, bare footed and dressed in Kara's Midvale high hoodie. "You must be Winn?" Lena says as she holds her hand out to shake. "Lena Luthor.”
Winn almost faints when Kara tells him over morning coffee that she’s been seeing Lena in secret since the Exhibition two years ago. He asks a lot of questions, mostly about Lena’s integrity, and if it wasn’t for the way Lena took his questions and answered them the best she could, she would have told him to leave. It makes her blood boil until Lena’s hand is on her arm, warm green eyes looking up at her telling her it’s ok . Eventually, content to know that Lena isn’t going to kill Kara in her sleep he deflates, but Lena isn’t done.
“So, Kara’s suit.”
They hadn’t talked about it, and Kara pales when Winn’s chest puffs out. “I made the suit-”
“You’re not flying round in that,” Lena argues, her arched brow daring Winn to counter her but he shuts down. Instead, he hands her a sketch, and Lena scowls down at it.
“What's with the mini skirt?”
“She’s Supergirl,” Winn argues, gesturing to Kara who looks between them.
“So she has to dress like a 12 year old school girl?” Lena says, her brow furrowed even deeper as she looks at Kara for her input.
“I’d quite like pants,” Kara says, fidgeting slightly with her glasses. Winn scowls and Lena looks at him daring to argue. He pouts before shrugging with a huff.
“Fine, you can have pants,” he sighs heavily.
“Have you looked at the polycarbonate composite materials for the suit?” Lena asks, and before Kara can interject Lena and Winn are discussing the carbon polymer for the suit which would make it robust and flexible. There’s something oddly satisfying Kara finds, as she sits watching the two of them work on her suit. Her pride at Lena’s enthusiasm as she begins crafting the suit and explaining to Winn why the polymer was better than the kevlar. While Winn began hacking into the NCPD radios. Before Kara realised it, she was standing in a suit, with a wide grin and Lena and Winns proud smiles before she flies from the apartment. It starts with a car chase that has her eating dirt, both Lena and Winn bickering about aerodynamics. As soon as her cape is added, Kara stops a bank robbery and is elated. It’s a whole new high that she’s addicted to, and not even Cat Grant threatening her job could stop her. It is so euphoric as she flies to the fire.
She doesn’t even notice the dart until it’s buried in her neck and she’s falling into the ground.
She wakes in an unfamiliar place. Bound. Cuffs on her wrists. But then Alex is there, soothing her. And it adds to the confusion going on between them. Even when she’s uncuffed and listening to Alex’s pathetic excuses, she feels the anger bubble up within her. She can barely look at her sister. She wants to explode at her when a familiar click of heels makes her turn to find Lena standing in the DEO.
“This is a private facility,” Hank growls at her, but Lena only arches a challenging brow.
“And Kara is a citizen of National City, being held here against her will,” Lena states, daring them to object. The members of the DEO and Alex glance between one another, and before they can interject Lena looks at the blonde with a softened gaze. “Come on, Kara, let’s go home.”
Kara doesn't get a chance to argue because Lena's walking promptly from the facility, and she can barely send the apologetic look to Alex as she follows. When she returns to her apartment, she tries to ignore Lena's anger. To ignore the fuming rant that is coming from the older woman.
"She lied to you, Kara, can't you see how bad this is?"
"I lied to you as well," Kara counters back, as she pulls a sweater over her head. "I lied to Alex, about you!"
"That was for protection," Lena argues heatedly, green eyes wide at the fact Kara was defending Alex.
"Maybe this was too," Kara admits while deflating slightly as she walks back into the living room in her pj's. "I don't know, Alex... Alex'll have her reasons."
"Kara, I realise that our relationship and relationships around us have been tainted but to keep you safe, even more so now that I know who you really are-"
"And maybe that's why Alex didn't tell me."
"They put you in Kryptonite handcuffs Kara, Alex let them do that!"
"I didn't know," they turn to find Alex walking into the apartment. "I didn't know that they were going after Kara."
She's there, tears in her eyes as Alex looks up at her and Kara tries to contain the hurt at the lies that have been passed between them.
"Lena could you..." Kara gestures towards the door. Lena prickles slightly before deflating, a small reassuring smile tugging at the corner of her lips before she moves to the door.
"Call me if you need anything," is all she says before slipping out the door. Kara doesn't miss Alex's glare at her, or the raised brow from Lena daring her sister to argue with her. As soon as the door clicks shut they stand watching one another.
"Lena Luthor huh?" Alex begins tentatively and Kara purses her lips. "I can't even guess how-"
"The DEO?" Kara bursts. "You lied to me about the plane, Geneva-"
"I didn't lie about Geneva or the plane," Alex counters, with a sharp shake of her head. "I didn't tell you about the DEO because I was sworn to secrecy."
"They hunt Aliens, Alex, like me," Kara argues, gesturing to herself and she can't contain the anger any longer. "I know I can't be angry about the secrets because I've kept them myself but this? I'm your sister!"
"And Lena Luthor! You kept that quiet for what? Six months? A year?"
"Two years!" Alex shouts moving closer. "You kept your relationship a secret for two years , Jesus christ Kara!"
"It was to protect me," Kara tries to explain meekly.
"Protect you?" Alex's anger deflates as her eyes narrow. "From who? Lex Luthor?"
When Kara doesn't meet her sister's eyes, she can feel Alex's eyes widen on her, then the pacing begins. She can hear the mutters of 'This is ridiculous' and 'how could you be so stupid.'
"I love her, Alex." Kara sighs, scuffing her toe on the ground. It's the truth, and it's odd saying to someone who isn't Lena. She looks up to see Alex's jaw open and is trying to formulate words but no sound comes out.
"I- I didn't even know you were dating her," Alex squeaks out eventually. "And did you have to pick a Luthor?"
Alex's question doesn't stop the bubble of laughter coming up her chest, and soon they’re laughing together at the question. Eventually, Alex steps closer, looking deep into Kara's eyes as she so often did when Kara was hurting.
"You really love her, huh?"
And Kara nods a tentative smile tugging at Kara's mouth before Alex shakes her head with a sigh. "As long as we agree, no more secrets."
"No more secrets."
The first time Lena and Alex are in the same room is after Kara defeats Vartrox. Alex had insisted on a sister night, which since it was held in Kara's apartment, meant Lena was here with herself and Alex, sitting to watch Drag Race on a Saturday night.
"I'm uh, gonna go get some wine," Kara says as soon the commercial comes on, and as she walks to the small kitchen she can feel Alex and Lena gauging each other.
"So," Alex begins, and Kara glances back in time to see Lena arch a brow. "I read your paper on the quantifiable mechanics of nanobot technology."
Kara internally groans as they very quickly descended into nerd talk. As a precaution, she had invited Winn who is now equally immersed in the discussion of the moral hypothesis of using it for medical applications. "You know, the idea of having the three of you over wasn't to monopolise Lena's brain," Kara protests as she sits down, handing Lena a refilled glass.
"Why not?" Winn scoffs. "Lena's brain is the best in the country. I mean she single handedly applied genome mapping to cancer cells making the diagnosis of cancer from 12% to 75. That's huge, Kara."
"And she has great taste in scotch," Alex adds with a smirk.
"And she's my girlfriend!" Kara counters with a narrow eyed gaze, earning her a warm chuckle from Lena.
"It's alright, love, I won't excite them with the fusion device I've been designing to combat muscular sclerosis."
The room erupts in protests, and Kara's never felt so happy. She's sitting with her sister and best friend, and with no restraints on them. Relaxed in her home with the woman she loves watching her back with love filled eyes, and Kara's never felt happier. She might be a new hero, but she has a family that loves and supports her. A family where there are no secrets between them. Not now. Not ever.