To say Kara is drained would be an understatement. Between being stuck in the Phantom Zone for apparently months, rolling right into all the issues Nyxly decided to cause, and dealing with Andrea at work, Kara feels like she’s barely had a moment to breathe.
And now that she has, Kara realizes she has a lot to process. Whether it be her past ignored traumas, her new traumas, or untangling her own emotions from Nyxly’s overflow, there was a lot going on. But finding a therapist for a superhero with a secret identity is difficult, so Kara begins slowly trying to untangle her emotions. Sometimes this means long late night talks with Alex. Other times it means suddenly excusing herself from the communal space in the Tower so she can find a spot to cry. Sometimes though, these moments of revelation come from unexpected places.
“The closest look to love I’ve ever seen on his face was how he’d look at Lillian whenever she’d praise or agree with him,” Lena plopped down onto Kara’s couch, tucking her feet underneath her and taking a sip from her wine glass.
“Not nearly as weird, but it was definitely off-putting to see it on Nxyly’s face. It was unnerving enough to see her happy, let alone in love.”
The two had settled in at Kara’s for the evening, ordering Chinese take out and throwing on a movie both of them were ignoring.
Lena hummed in agreement, “I wonder what it was that really connected them? I mean, obviously both would be using the other for their own personal gain. Nyxly was targeting people who were close to Supergirl in one way or another. And Lex certainly has a close connection to you Supers and would honestly be a perfect choice for someone gunning to kill you.”
“Lex did say he felt like he had finally found his equal who wasn’t a blood relative. I guess ‘fifth dimensional imp’ is excluded from his definition of alien. Maybe they did truly find love in their own horrible, twisted ways.”
Both women shuddered and Kara tossed a few pieces of popcorn into her mouth, “Y’know, I am happy to no longer have whatever connection I had with Nyxly. It was weird suddenly being overcome with someone else’s emotion. Like, at first I just thought that I was getting frustrated because Andrea was getting on my case or because I felt like we kept hitting brick walls with Nyxly. But then Jeremy from Photo was talking to me in the break room about the divorce he’s currently going through and I just suddenly got hit with this feeling of ‘Rao why won’t he just shut up?’ which is just so not me. But I guess it was just Nyxly’s emotions bleeding over to me.”
Kara takes a drink from her own glass of wine, catching Lena in the corner of her eye giving Kara a curious look. As she set her glass on the coffee table, Kara turned on the couch to fully face Lena.
Lena, who looked so soft in sweatpants and a sweater with her hair in a messy bun. Lena, who had been working through so much with her magic under the pressure of Nyxly and the Superfriends. Lena, who always offered to pick up the tab on their lunches and dinners. Lena, who despite everything they had been through was still here. Lena, who had jumped in front of a blast of magic-enhanced Kryptonite and cast a protective ward around herself and Kara to save Kara’s life.
“It was any and all emotions that transferred, just seemingly random. Is that correct?” Lena asked, snapping Kara out of her reverie.
“That seems like what it was,” Kara narrowed her eyes at Lena, almost as if she could see the wheels turning behind her eyes if she used her X-ray vision, “What’s going on in that big brain of yours?”
“They always seemed to be rather… strong emotions, would you say?”
“Um, yeah… I guess I’d say so.”
Lena began to fiddle with the stem of her wine glass, eyes dropping away from Kara, “Do you think that Nyxly’s feelings for my brother ever bled over?”
Kara’s thoughts came to a grinding halt.
“What are you implying, Lena?”
She didn’t immediately respond, stilling the glass between her fingers as if debating to speak before taking a drink instead. Kara could hear the uptick in her heartbeat, listening to Lena trying to slow it with longer, steadier breaths.
“If we believe these to be strong moments of emotion, such as frustration and happiness, then it would be reasonable to assume that you would have felt some moment of love from Nyxly.”
“I-I mean yeah I’d think so.”
Lena gets a shy, almost scared look on her face, “I know that we’ve gotten back to good terms, great terms even. But these past few weeks I feel like we’ve been spending more time one-on-one with each other. I’ve noticed you lingering more and more around me, always reassuring me and turning to me for help.”
The gears click for Kara a moment before Lena finishes her thought.
“I can’t help but wonder-”
Kara shifts over on the couch so that her legs are pressed up against Lena’s. She takes the wine glass from her hands and sets it on the coffee table before taking Lena’s hands in her own.
“Lena, I am not friends with you because of that weird emotional connection with Nyxly. I have been on your side since the moment you came to National City. Despite the bumps and… rough patches we’ve had along the way, to put it mildly, I’ve been your friend because of you and no one else. Nothing else,” Kara drops one of Lena’s hands to curl a finger under her chin and lifts it so Kara can look Lena in the eye, “You are good and powerful and smart and beautiful. You’ve been the one to help us when every other avenue has failed us. You have saved me time and time again and that battle was no different. I’m already vulnerable to magic; combined with Lex’s Kryptonite I’m certain I would have died if I had been hit by that blast. All the love I feel for you is from my own heart, not from Nyxly’s.”
All Kara can hear is the rapid thump thump thump of Lena’s heart and the echo of her own admission.
“...You love me?”
Now Kara begins to nervously fiddle with Lena’s hands, “Y-yeah.”
Lena’s eyes flit between Kara’s for a moment before she pulls her hands out of Kara’s grasp, eliciting a “No, wait- Lena” before Lena takes Kara’s face in her hands and pulls her in for a kiss.
Even with Lena’s heartbeat thundering in her ears, Kara’s senses focus solely on the kiss. It takes a moment for Kara’s brain to fully realize what’s going on but once she does her hands reach out for Lena’s waist and she leans into the kiss. She pulls away slightly for a breath, having been mid-sentence when Lena initiated, but returned with an absolute reverence. Kara pinned Lena to the couch as Lena’s hands moved from Kara’s cheeks to tangling in Kara’s hair. Lena’s lips were cool and soft against Kara’s, parting slightly at the gentle prod of Kara’s tongue so the blonde could deepen the kiss.
The two were gasping for air a few minutes later and Kara rested her forehead against Lena’s.
“We should probably talk about this, shouldn’t we?” Lena whispered, as if her voice would break whatever was between them.
After a long discussion about feelings and boundaries and comfort, the two decided that they would keep things to themselves for now. Kelly and Alex had just gotten engaged and adopted Esme so Kara had some reservations about possibly stealing the light from her sister as she feels like she has done many times before. Lena still had concerns about her being considered a member of the Superfriends (“You literally have magic Lena. You have powers and you’re our friend. You’re a Superfriend!” “I don’t think it works that easily.” “Nope. It totally does.”). So they decided that this could be a thing, just between them. They wouldn’t lie if anyone asked, but they weren’t going to start making out in the Tower for all to see.
Okay, so maybe they did make out in the Tower. But only when no one else was around.
The two fell into a steady rhythm of food dates, movie nights with Kelly, Alex, and Esme, and game nights with the rest of the Superfriends. They would fall into “their spot” next to each during Tower meetings and Lena would always give Kara a reassuring look over after any fight, resisting the urge to make Kara just stop and stand still so I can look over you properly. Alex had given them a long, confused look the first time that happened, but hadn’t brought it up since.
Things were good. Things had settled for them. After a few months of secretly dating no one had asked about it. Not even when they started showing up at the Tower together more often than not. Not when Brainy would return to the lab with Nia to find the two intently looking over Lena’s spell book with messy hair and slightly smudged lipstick. Not even when Alex stopped by Kara’s and discovered a pair of shorts that she was 99% sure did not belong to her sister.
It wasn’t necessarily a secret and they were happy to have one thing that was theirs and theirs alone, even if it was just for a few months.
The weather and the relationship did start heating up, however. They were never able to get too far along though due to all manner of interruptions.
So there was some level of relief when Eliza invited Alex and Kara to Midvale for a long weekend.
“Alex, you best bring that lovely fiancé of yours and that beautiful little girl. It’s criminal that I haven’t gotten to meet my granddaughter yet!”
“Wouldn’t miss it for the world,” Kelly chimed in from behind Alex’s shoulder.
“And Kara, why don’t you bring Lena along? Lord knows that girl could use some sun.”
Lena just scoffed as Kara laughed.
And so that’s how they found themselves in Midvale on a sunny Saturday afternoon. Alex was chasing Esme around the backyard as Lena sat on a nearby lounge chair, chatting with Eliza and Kelly while half reading her book.
They had gotten in the night before with Eliza handing off the master bedroom to Alex, Kelly, and Esme and claiming the guest bedroom for herself, leaving Kara and Lena with the girls’ childhood bedroom. They had been too tired from the day for the proper grand tour, so that would just have to wait until the morning.
Kara closed the bedroom door behind her, “You can take my bed if you wa-”
Lena’s warm body pinning her against her childhood bedroom door was enough to cut her off, let alone the hungry kiss Lena gave her. Her hands snuck up under Kara’s shirt, gently scratching at her sides as she hummed into the kiss.
“What I want is for you to be next to me.”
With a gentle pull and the shedding of clothes and despite best efforts, both were passed out a few minutes later, curled around each other as they made the most of the twin sized bed they shared.
And now Kara had spent the past hour playing with Esme and stealing glances from Lena.
Lena, who looked so breathtaking in a simple sheer black top and floral skirt that hit just past her knees. Lena, who looked so soft with no footwear but a large brimmed hat giving her face plenty of shade. Lena, who was probably remembering both everything Eliza and Kelly said as well as everything she was reading. Lena, who simply made Kara’s day better by smiling in her direction.
She smiled at the wonderful sight of everyone in the backyard before her as she pushed open the screen door while carrying a tray of lemonade. The heat had definitely gotten the best of everyone so Kara had offered to whip up a pitcher since everyone else was mostly preoccupied.
Kara had her eyes trained on her mother, sister-in-law, and girlfriend, watching as Lena talked about quantum physics and gesticulating wildly with the hand holding her book. Her other hand rested on the leg facing Kara, seemingly scratching at her thigh. The movement drew Kara’s eyes to it and- oh.
Kara watched as Lena pulled up the hem of skirt, allowing it to fall off the edge of the lounge chair, exposing pale skin for Lena to absentmindedly scratch at.
All Kara could think about at that moment was how much she wanted to place her hands on Lena’s bare thighs and pull them close around her. Think about trailing kisses up and marking that pale skin with lipstick and hickies. Think about how attractive it would be for Lena to push Kara to her knees and pull her skirt up and off to the side just as she did now, knowing there would be nothing underneath.
It seems though Kara did a little too much thinking and not enough watching where she was walking.
In the few steps that Kara was distracted, her foot collided with a stay rock meant to frame in the landscaping, sending Kara, the tray, and its contents forward and into the air before landing with a thud, a clatter, and a groan.
“Oh my god, Kara! Are you okay?”
“Jesus Kara, be careful.”
“You okay honey?”
“Aunt Kara! Why’d you do that?”
A little dazed, Kara pushed herself up off the ground to her knees and looked up to see everyone staring at her with faces of concern. Well, mostly concern. Lena seemed equally amused as she was concerned having slid her legs off the lounger as if she had stopped herself from going to help Kara. Her left hand was covering her mouth with her book, from surprise or amusement Kara wasn’t sure, and her right hand was still pinning her skirt hem to display the offending thigh.
“Y-yeah, I’m all good. I got lost in my thoughts,” Kara nervously rubbed the back of her head, looking at the broken tray and glasses, “I’m sorry Eliza, I didn’t mean to break everything.”
“You’re fine Kara, it’s not the first time you’ve accidentally broken a glass.”
Kara blushed from embarrassment but laughed along with everyone else. It certainly wasn’t the first time Kara had made a fool of herself in front of everyone, but the fact that it was Lena’s thigh that had distracted her made Kara feel a little more embarrassed about the whole thing.
She began to collect the broken wood chunks and pieces of glasses when a shadow appeared over her. Looking up she found Lena standing behind her, fiddling with her fingers and biting her lip.
“Need some help?”
Kara waved her away, “I won’t get hurt picking up glass and you’re not even wearing shoes.”
“Kara, let me help.”
She huffed in response, pausing before telling Lena she can get started on making a new pitcher of lemonade and that she would be in to help once she cleans up everything. There’s the soft sound of Lena crossing the grass and walking across the wooden porch before closing the screen door behind her. The noise of the yard kicked back up as Esme ran over to Eliza and climbed into her lap as Alex settled down next to Kelly. Kara smiled as she listened in on their chatter, Esme telling Eliza all about her favorite stuffed animals and Eliza responding with all the right questions to keep Esme talking.
With all the broken pieces stacked up in her arms, Kara made her way into the house and to the kitchen.
As Kara rounded the corner into the kitchen’s doorway, she paused. Lena was rifling through various cabinets, pulling out a mix match of cups and managed to find an old and forgotten plastic pitcher for the lemonade. There wasn’t anything particular about the view that was astronomical, but perhaps that’s why it made Kara pause. It was so simple and soft and domestic, it made Kara’s heart melt and forget about the shards of broken wood and glass she was holding.
Lena glanced over her shoulder, having heard the approaching footsteps come to a halt, and paused her search efforts to pull the trash can over to Kara.
Kara just hummed in response before dropping the broken pieces into the trash bag, “By you? Always.”
“I honestly wasn’t expecting that much of a response, but you always do surprise me.” Lena moved the trash can out of the way with her foot, taking Kara’s cheek in her hand and pulling her into a kiss.
“So you did do that on purpose,” Kara mumbled against Lena’s lips, wrapping her arms around Lena’s waist before gently walking her back across the kitchen and lifting her up onto the counter. Kara snaked her hands up under Lena’s skirt, settling them on the thighs that got them in this predicament in the first place.
“What can I say?” Lena pulled away from the kiss, sliding her hand from Kara’s cheek to her hair, “I am a Luthor after all,” and then roughly pulled her back in for the kiss.
Both of the women became so absorbed in each other that they didn’t hear the screen door close and the footsteps down the hall. They didn’t hear anything aside from each other until Alex spoke up from behind them.
“Well… that does explain some things.”