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you make me a hopeless romantic

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Kara thinks the best parts of her weeks are Thursday nights when she goes to the bar down the block from her work to meet up with her sister and friends. Kara owns a bookstore, which means she usually spends crazy long hours at work, but she figures closing early once every week to make time for her friends and family sounds like a pretty good idea.

It’s late in autumn now and is getting colder, so Kara rushes as fast as she can to the bar and whips open the door. She looks around and sees her friends in the far corner, most of them already with drinks in her hands.

As she’s making her way over to their booth, Alex spots her and mockingly claps her hands. “Nice of you to join us.” She’s seated next to her wife, Kelly, who smiles at Kara. Kara always jokes that Kelly is too nice to be with such a bully like Alex.

Kara rolls her eyes at that, removing her coat and beanie, happy she’s wearing a warm sweater. She can still feel a little bit of chill from the autumn air. “It’s literally 7:05. I’m only five minutes late.”

Across from them is Nia and Brainy, and Winn sits on a chair at the end. He lifts his half empty drink to show Kara. “Five minutes is enough time for us to almost have a whole drink without you,” he states, Nia and Brainy nodding in agreement.

“Well,” Kara says, grabbing another chair from a nearby table to set next to Winn’s. “I’m hungry, so first, I eat.” At that, she reaches over to steal some nachos off of Winn’s plate to stuff into her mouth.

“Hey!,” Winn exclaims, just as Alex said “real attractive.”

Kara just shrugs, smirking, oblivious to the sour cream sitting at the corner of her mouth.

Kara’s hungry, so it’s not her fault that she seems to tune out the conversation going on around her, eating more of the nachos that Winn gave up trying to keep for himself.

Just as she’s reaching for some of Nia’s fries on her plate, she hears Brainy say, “I think she’s looking at Winn surprisingly.”

Winn just sputters at that, offended. “Why is that surprising!?”

“Well, it’s just that she’s really pretty,” is Nia’s response which seems to offend Winn even more.

“Pretty girls like me… sometimes,” Winn mutters, trying to peek over at the bar, most likely to look at the girl who is apparently staring at him.

Kara’s eyes follow and she freezes. “Pretty” seems like an understatement.

The woman at the bar has beautiful dark hair resting softly over her shoulders. She’s wearing black pants and a white button down, looking as if she’s just come from work, as well. Her face, though. Her face is what makes Kara feel like she lost the ability to speak. Bright green eyes that can be seen across the room, lips lightly stained red as if her lipstick from the day is wearing off, and the cutest nose Kara has ever seen.

The woman must feel multiple eyes on her, because when Kara makes eye contact with her, she looks away slowly, and Kara sees a light blush on her cheeks.

Winn is the luckiest guy in the world if someone like that is interested in him.

“I say you go talk to her,” Nia says, reaching over to give Winn’s shoulder a shove.

“Are you crazy?” Winn replies, shaking his head. “She’s way out of my league.”

“Yeah exactly,” says Nia, rolling her eyes as if it’s obvious. “When does this ever happen?”

Kelly laughs at that, shaking her head fondly. “Leave him alone,” she says, reaching over to pat Winn’s hand.

Alex sits up straight, smirking, as if getting a great idea. As if she’s up to something. “Kara still needs to go get a drink. Maybe she can go to the bar and talk to her; try to figure out what her deal is.”

At this, Kara sits up straight, shaking her head. This girl is way too pretty, and Kara is way too much of a sucker for pretty girls. She couldn’t possibly think straight in her presence. “No way!” she starts, crossing her arms. “I’ll look like a total weirdo!”

“Oh, come on,” Alex starts, a flicker of something in her eyes, as if she knows something that no one else does. “Do it for your good pal Winn.”

Winn looks over at her with wide eyes, as if he’s just as scared as he is to be in the presence of someone so gorgeous, but Alex is right. She can do this for a friend. “Fine,” she starts, standing and smoothing out her clothes. “I’ll be back.”

She doesn’t wait for a response before making her way over to the bar, a few feet from where the girl is sitting.

As if feeling someone nearby, the woman looks up just as Kara looks over at her, both of them looking away quickly.

The bartender comes by and Kara orders a pumpkin flavored beer on the menu, a special for the autumn, she assumes. She’s always loved pumpkin flavored things. Something about it is just comforting.

As she’s waiting for the bartender to bring back her drink, she takes a seat, and smoothes her sweaty hands on her pants.

She’s not nervous. She’s not.

She clears her throat and the woman looks over again, smiling softly at the small smile Kara sends her way.

She’s pushing some hair behind her ear just as Kara works up the courage to finally speak.

“Hi,” is what she comes up with, before realizing she should probably say some more. “Oh, I’m Kara.”

The woman lets out a soft chuckle at this. “Hi, Kara,” she replies and of course her voice is soft and as pretty as she is. “I’m Lena.”

“Lena,” Kara smiles, reaching over to hold out her hand for the woman to shake. “Nice to meet you.”

Lena’s hand reaches over to shake Kara’s softly. “Lovely to meet you, as well.”

As Kara’s trying to think of something else to say, the bartender brings over her beer and Kara grabs it, grateful to have something to do with her hands.

Luckily Lena replies before Kara has to think of something to say to not make a fool of herself. “Great minds, huh?” she says, and that’s when Kara looks over and sees that Lena has the same beer. “It’s delicious.”

Kara perks up at that. “Is it?” she exclaims. “I love anything pumpkin flavored so I figured this would be a perfect choice.”

“Well,” Lena says, gesturing to the beer. “Try it out, I hope it doesn’t disappoint.”

And Kara thinks she would do literally anything this woman asked her to, so she takes a sip and smiles the biggest smile. “Mm, this is totally delicious.”

Lena is laughing at that now, and Kara thinks it might be the best sound she’s ever heard. “Isn’t it?” she starts, and Kara is absolutely not distracting by the way her eyes glisten even in the crappy bar lighting. “I’m also a sucker for pumpkin flavored things. Every morning before work I stop by the bakery and grab a pumpkin muffin. I’m sure if I want to maintain any sort of figure I should either stop doing that or join a gym.”

“I think you look perfect,” Kara replies before she can think, and at the woman’s blush and small surprised smile, Kara blushes just as hard, clearing her throat. Realizing she has to change the subject to avoid any more embarrassment, Kara says, “So, what is it you do for work to require such a treat every morning?”

“Oh,” Lena replies, “I teach chemistry at a high school.”

Her eyes light up in a way that shows Kara just how much she enjoys her job. “That’s awesome!” she replies, moving over a chair in her excitement, leaving just one between the two of them now. “That was one of my favorite subjects growing up.”

“Oh yeah?” Lena asks, perking up again at Kara’s excitement. “Do you work in the science field?”

Kara chuckles at that, shaking her head. “Not quite. I actually own a library down the block.” She points over her shoulder as if pointing to the library and Lena’s eyes follow. It’s then that Kara realizes her friends are probably looking over at her now, wondering what’s going on. It’s also then that Kara realizes she’s supposed to be finding out if this woman is interested in Winn, not making small talk.

“That’s amazing,” Lena replies, seemingly happy at Kara’s profession. “I’m a huge reader, myself.”

Of course she is, Kara thinks. Kara didn’t think she could be any more perfect than she already was. “You’ll have to come by some day! My friends over there come to visit quite often, too.” She points to the small booth, wondering if Lena is interested in her group in the corner. But Lena just looks over, nodding, and then immediately back at Kara.

“I would love that,” she replies, resting her elbow on the bar, chin moving to rest on her palm. “I can always use some more books.”

Kara, seeming just as distracted and uninterested in her friends right now as Lena is, angles her body more towards Lena. It’s just easier for conversation, that’s all. “Okay, Lena I have a very important question for you,” Kara asks in a mock serious tone.

Lena lets out a small smile at the change in Kara’s demeanor, and sits up straight again, nodding her head. “Anything.”

“What is your favorite genre of book? This is very important, and there is absolutely a wrong answer” she asks, and Lena lets out a laugh at that, and Kara is definitely totally screwed.

Lena leans forward and Kara thinks she can smell her faint aroma of vanilla from her hair. “I’m afraid to say now,” she whispers. At Kara’s expectant expression, Lena sighs and says. “Sci-Fi.”

Kara leans back and looks up, clutching her chest almost as if she’s in pain. “Nooo,” she drags out, loving how Lena laughs even more at this. Kara thinks making Lena laugh like that might be her new life goal. “I knew you were too good to be true, Lena. It was only a matter of time before I found a flaw.”

“Wow,” Lena says, laughter dying down but a small smile remaining on her lips, head moving back to rest on her palm. “I’m so sorry to disappoint. What is the best genre, Miss Book Professional.”

Kara moves over one more chair at this, now sitting directly next to Lena and lowering her voice to a whisper. “I want to say it’s something cool or different to make me seem mysterious, but I’m just a sucker for a good romance.”

Lena fake gasps at that, reaching up to cover her own mouth in shock. “A true hopeless romantic, huh?”

“You can’t tell anyone,” Kara says in mock seriousness. “Promise me, Lena.” Lena’s eyes track over the details of Kara’s face as she does the puppy dog look that Alex says always lets her get her way, and Lena just blushes, looking away with a small chuckle.

“You, Kara,” says Lena, making her eyes back over to Kara again, “are very refreshing.”

Kara smiles at that, and as a moment of silence passes realizes she’s still supposed to be finding out if Lena is into Winn and her stomach drops. It’s not that she doesn’t want Winn to be happy. She’s just having a great time with Lena.

As she looks over at her group, she finds them all sneaking glances over at her in interest. Looking over at her sister, she sees Alex pull out her phone and point to Kara as if telling her to check her own phone.

It’s then that Kara realizes she’s been distracted and not even paying attention to the vibrations of her phone. She sees a text from Alex from a few minutes ago that simply reads, "Nevermind, she’s totally gay."

She looks back over at Alex in shock, her sister winking at her as if this was her plan all along. Her friends, including Winn, all trying to hold back laughter. They were totally all in on this together.

Kara realizes she’s totally been set up, but as she looks back at Lena to find her glancing shyly at her, she realizes she does not care at all.

She spends the next couple of hours talking to Lena, both of them too distracted to even realize her friends have left, empty beer bottles long forgotten on the bar in front of them.

After Kara told her another embarrassing story, (she realizes the embarrassment is worth seeing Lena smile), Lena looks over to the empty booth where her friends once were.

“I think your friends left you,” is all she says, looking back at Kara, grinning.

Kara laughs at that. “Ha. Yeah, I think they, uh, planned to get me to talk to you tonight,” she starts, blushing softly, looking down at her hands embarrassed. “And since we have been, you know, talking, they figured they might as well abandon me here.”

Lena’s looking over at Kara curiously. “They wanted you to come talk to me?”

Kara reaches up to fiddle with her glasses, chuckling softly. “They told me you were looking at my friend Winn all night and wanted me to check if you were into him.”

Lena lets out a disbelieving laugh at this, eyebrows raising. “They thought I was into Winn,” she asks, then continues. “You thought I was into Winn?”

Kara fiddles with the sleeve of her soft sweater, not looking up to make eye contact, too embarrassed. “I mean, I didn’t really see you looking at him like they said they did,” she says, then adds quietly. “But, the thought of you being into Winn kind of killed me.”

“Kara,” Lena smiles softly, reaching over to rest her hand on top of Kara’s to stop her fiddling. “I’m going to be totally honest with you. I didn’t even notice anyone in this bar until you walked in.”

Kara looks up surprised at that, eyes wide behind her glasses. “Oh,” she says, feeling her blush deepen. “Really?” Lena nods and suddenly a thought occurs to her. “Oh god, you totally saw me stuffing my face with nachos, didn’t you?”

Lena smirks at this, nodding her head and biting her lip to hold back laughter. “I did.”

At Kara’s embarrassed groan she continues, “It was cute,” she says softly, reaching up to tuck a strand of her dark hair behind her ear. “I was kind of hoping you’d come talk to me,” she adds, looking up at Kara from beneath her lashes.

And, oh, Kara realizes. Lena might really, actually feel the same way. She thinks she might be dreaming.

“I think my sister had a feeling, but knew I would be too shy to come talk to someone like you, so she tried to help us out,” Kara says, laughing lightly.

“Someone like me?” Lena asks, and Kara looks over at Lena, as if it’s obvious.

“Well, yeah,” Kara starts, “you’re the most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen.”

“Kara…” Lena says softly, moving to cover her face with her hands, embarrassed, and so so cute.

This causes Kara to laugh, reaching out to grab Lena’s hands softly to pull them away from her face. She doesn’t let her hands go, and Lena’s eyes land on hers, before moving down to Kara’s lips.

“You really are a hopeless romantic, huh,” Lena says softly, and Kara gasps, offended.

“Don't use that against me, Miss Sci-Fi lover,” Kara starts, oblivious to the absolute smitten look Lena is giving her. “I don’t think I’ll ever tell you any more secrets! In fact-”

She doesn’t get to finish that thought. She is absolutely not complaining because Lena gently rests her hand on the back of her neck, and pulls her forward and is kissing her. She’s kissing her with the softest lips that Kara has ever experienced. She wouldn’t mind if Lena interrupted her every day like this.

The kiss tastes like pumpkin from their beers, and Kara is absolutely not complaining.

She’ll forever cherish that her last first kiss tasted like autumn and home.