When Kara lands on Lena’s balcony, her only plan is to exchange a few words of pleasantries and check in on Lena because of the nasty concussion she suffered. She’s already checked in as Kara, of course, and she knows that Lena’s fine—but as far as Lena knows, Supergirl hasn’t shown up since the night of the explosion. Maintaining a two friendships with one person is hard.
Her plan is not to stop dead at the sight of roses on Lena’s desk.
It starts off so well, really—she lands, taps the glass lightly, hands on her hips and trying to keep her smile contained to a professional level when Lena swivels around in her chair and beams at her. She’s mid-greeting when she sees it—a red and pink arrangement, sitting in an expensive white vase that matches the desk.
“Supergirl?” Lena prompts, sounding a little befuddled as she stands there, holding the door, waiting for Kara to step in.
“I-yes? Oh!” She scurries through the threshold sheepishly, finding her footing in the middle of Lena’s office and trying to shuffle her sudden queasiness away.
“Is something wrong?” Lena asks, a small laugh trailing in the cadences of her voice, and when Kara turns around she thinks she’ll never get tired of seeing that little puzzled frown-smile.
“No! No, nothing’s wrong, I just—your flowers—“ she gestures awkwardly before snapping her arm back and coughing into her fist. “They’re—they’re lovely.”
Lena glances at the bouquet, brows still furrowed cutely, before laughing and leaning against the front of her desk and crossing her arms.
“Thank you. They were delivered this morning—it seems I’ve got a secret admirer,” she says, smiling almost fondly at the vase and something twists in Kara’s stomach.
“Well, of course, I mean, you’re—you’re, um,” Kara stutters, because it’s one of those situations where she’s about to say something and then realizes she probably shouldn’t in the middle of saying it. Lena raises a brow at Kara’s hand gesturing vaguely at her entire person and the superhero retracts it rapidly, again.
“I’m?” Lena prods, and she’s doing that thing where she raises one brow and gives a smirk in a kind of smugly expectant but teasing gesture and Kara just tries not to choke.
“Well, I mean, you’re—you’re very beautiful and—and incredibly intelligent, of course you’d be getting, um,” Kara nearly trips trying to nonchalantly lean on something that’s not there. “Valentines day gifts.”
Both of Lena’s brows are raised now, and she gives a slow nod like she does when she’s pleasantly taken aback and Rao when did Kara become an expert on Lena Luthor’s expressions?
“Well,” she says breathlessly, laughing and glancing down at her feet before looking up with a fond smile. “Thank you, Supergirl.”
Kara nods and nearly jabs herself in the eye pushing up glasses that aren’t there, scratching the back of her head instead in an attempt to pass it off. When she looks up, Lena’s just—smiling at the flowers again, in that gentle sort of way that she only does when she’s really happy.
“This is a little embarrassing to admit, but it’s the first Valentines I’ve gotten.”
“What?” Kara’s entire chest cavity feels like it’s lurching forward out of surprise and indignation. “You’re kidding!”
Lena laughs at that, a little bashfully. “Nope. Well, not anything in earnest. I wasn’t a particularly attractive kid,” she says, smirking good-naturedly. “And after coming to adulthood, flowers were just pleasantries from business partners, nothing so sentimental. Apparently I’m too intimidating to have admirers.”
Her grin says that Kara should join in on a laugh at her slightly self-deprecating, but charming joke, but Kara is too horrified. “You can’t be serious. That’s your first real Valentines?”
She doesn’t mean to point so angrily at the bouquet, but, she can’t help it. Lena Luthor deserves a roomful of flowers. Lena Luthor deserves many, many Valentines from suitors that can only hope that she’ll like their gift—she deserves better than for some dime-a-dozen cliché bouquet to be her first ever Valentines.
(The flowers are lovely and expensive, of course. But pink and red roses, really? Talk about a lack of creativity.)
Kara regrets everything that’s come out of her mouth because Lena shifts a little bit uncomfortably at that, smile hardening a little. “Yes,” she laughs, as if trying to diffuse the awkwardness. “I suppose it’s a bit meager compared to what you’d be getting every year,” she teases.
“What? Oh, no—I meant, I was expecting your office to be full of flowers, I mean—the only Valentines I get is from my si—my, uh, family, I mean.”
Kara’s pretty sure she’s about to break her personal record for hottest mess of a sentence.
“Now that,” Lena says, mirth returning. “I find hard to believe. The Girl of Steel must have an army of admirers, no?”
Kara crosses her arms, shuffling her feet. “Well—I mean, I wouldn’t know? It’s not like I have a P.O. box or anything.”
Lena raises a brow. “Have you ever thought about investing in one?”
Kara blanches at the thought. “I feel like it might be a bit more trouble than it’s worth.”
That gets a full-bellied laugh out of Lena, and Kara feels all tingly in the ends of her fingers.
“Probably true,” she says, smiling, before standing straight and clasping her hands together a little apologetically. “I’m sorry, I don’t mean to chase you out, but I do have a meeting in a few minutes,” she says. “Was there something you needed?”
“Huh? Oh!” Kara tries to square her shoulders to regain some semblance of professionalism. “Yes! I just wanted to check in with you after the other night. I heard you had a concussion?”
Lena smirks, seeming amused for some reason. “Yes, I did—I made sure I stayed up for the full twenty-four hours after, and the doctor cleared me for work.”
Kara nods, trying to look relieved at information she already has. “I’m glad, Miss Luthor. I’ll leave you to your work, then,” she says. “Let me know if you need anything.”
Lena just beams again as she walks her towards the balcony door. “I’ll be sure to do that. Thank you for checking in.”
Kara shakes her head as she steps out into the sun. “Anytime.”
And she pauses, because Lena, standing in the doorway, leaning her hip against the chrome doorframe, the sunlight lighting on her pale skin and green eyes, looks just so…… stunning. This is not the image of a woman who should get some impersonal, unimaginative bouquet for her first Valentines. This brilliant, beautiful, wonderfully kind woman deserves a deeply thoughtful and heartfelt gift—
And Kara is going to give it to her.
“Have a happy Valentines day, Supergirl,” Lena says, giving her a tinkling wave.
Kara nods. “You too, Miss Luthor.”
And she will, if Kara has anything to say about it.
There’s just a bit of a kink in her plan. A creative, personalized gift requires someone to actually know the recipient very well. And Kara and Lena are friends, good friends, but Kara realizes that she really doesn’t know much about Lena except for a few random details.
It makes her feel a little bit dejected and, well, like a bad friend, really. Because the overflow of flowers in Kara’s office was just so lovely. Kara doesn’t know how Lena found out that yellow is her favourite colour and ordered a beautiful, ginormous arrangement of yellow and white—and there Kara is, knowing nothing but that Lena likes plumerias.
(and seeing as plumerias made up a lot of the assortment in her office, she can’t recycle that idea.)
She could try to look it up, seeing as Lena is a celebrity, but she doesn’t know how much she trusts the public with opinions on the Luthors and what if it’s wrong? Then she’d make a fool out of herself and ruin Lena’s Valentines day.
She can’t visit Jess, either. Though the intrepid assistant would probably know a fair deal, she’s also loyal to a fault—there’s no way Kara can prod without Lena hearing about it, and that’s just embarrassing.
Nope, she’s just going to have to use the good old-fashioned method of getting a mutual friend to extract information for her. Like a middle schooler.
Except that she and Lena don’t have any mutual friends except for herself, and herself.
“What’s with the long face?” Alex asks, sidling up next to her chair and leaning over.
“I’m not making any face,” Kara grumbles back, clicking idly. Alex pokes her quickly in the crinkle, laughing silently at the squawk she gets before squinting at the screen.
“Are you looking at flower catalogues on the DEO server?”
“Yeah, why?” Kara perks up a little in concern. “Is that not allowed?”
Alex tilts her head with a grimace in a kind of ‘eh’ motion. “Not technically, but I can already hear J’onn lecturing you.”
Kara whines a little before closing all her windows and logging out. She doesn’t like J’onn’s lectures—he never shouts, but the amount of shame he can invoke with one disappointed look is truly astounding.
Alex chuckles before ruffling her hair.
“Why were you looking at flowers, anyway? I thought you didn’t like Mon-El?”
Kara scowls at the mention of him. “I still don’t, and they’re not for him, they’re for Lena.”
Alex straightens up and crosses her arms, eyebrows shooting up. “Lena?”
“Yeah,” Kara says defensively, sitting up straight in her chair. “She sent me a literal roomful of flowers, so I thought I’d return the favour. Is there a problem with that?”
Alex sighs, and loosens up a little bit, brows furrowing. “No, there isn’t. I’m just surprised. You’ve never been interested in sending anyone a Valentines except for when you were pining over James last year.”
“Well,” Kara grumbles. “Now I am. Because Lena deserves a nice, thoughtful gift after everything that’s happened.” She sighs and slumps over the keyboard. “Except that I don’t actually know what she likes.”
Alex turns and leans back on the edge of the desk, looking down at Kara sympathetically.
“Why don’t you just ask her?”
“Well, that’s the plan, but,” she groans. “I can’t decide which me is going to ask her.”
Alex furrows her brows, smiling a little bemusedly.
“Why do you have to ask her as a particular you?”
“Because if I just ask her what she likes and then gift it to her as the same person, it ruins the surprise! She’ll see it coming!” Kara says, frustrated. “Duh, Alex.”
“Riight. Of course, it’s obvious, how clueless of me,” her sister deadpans, and Kara squints up at her.
“You’re being sarcastic.”
Alex rolls her eyes. “Look, Kara, I might not know her well, but from what I can tell she adores you. I’m sure that whatever it is that you get her, she’ll love it because it’s from you.”
“Okay, the whole me thing is not the point!” Kara jumps up from her slouch, gesturing wildly at herself. “She’s never had a real valentines gift before today, and it was just a normal, cliché bouquet! You’ve seen her, she deserves better than that—she deserves her favourite chocolate wrapped in something cute and creative, and a really original assortment of flowers, and—oh Rao, those are just variations on normal cliché valentines gifts!” Kara buries her face in her palms, pushing her glasses up with her fingertips. “And she’s super rich so there’s nothing I can afford that would impress her anyway! I need to think outside of the box, and by the end of the day, Rao what do I even ask her—“
“Okay, Kara, breathe,” Alex places a hand on her shoulder and massages. “It’s like, only one pm. You’ll think of something.”
Kara looks up at her gratefully. “You think so?”
Alex nods, with no sarcasm this time. Kara grins at her affectionately, before dropping it like a hot potato when she sees Maggie walking towards them behind Alex.
“I better head out before she catches me talking about Lena,” Kara grumbles, rising from her seat. “Or else she’ll tell me to stay out of it again!” She flashes a poisonously cheerful smile at Maggie before twirling around and heading off in the opposite direction.
Maggie comes to stand by Alex a little hesitantly as she watches Kara stalk off. Alex gives her a yikes kind of look and she points loosely.
“Is she mad at me? Because I feel like she’s mad at me.”
Alex sighs. “I think she’s a little mad at everyone right now. You know, after the whole Lena thing.”
Maggie runs a hand through her hair. “It’s because I told her to—“
“Stay out of it, yeah.” Alex sucks in her lips and nods slightly. “You know, to be fair, that was kind of harsh.”
Maggie groans. “Yeah, I know, I wish I hadn’t said it.” She rubs her neck ruefully, shifting her weight. “I was just worried about her. She’s so trusting and I didn’t want her to get in too deep and get hurt.”
Alex snorts. “Me too.”
Maggie makes a hopeful sort of grimace, pocketing her hands. “D’you think she’ll let me apologize if I give her some space?”
Alex smiles, nodding. “I always tell her off for forgiving too easy, but this time I’m glad that she does.”
The detective just sighs again with a wry sort of smile before breaking into a grin and holding out her hand.
“Well then, Agent Danvers, ready for our Valentines Day date?”
Alex’s brows shoot up again. “Wait, I thought we were going out to dinner later.”
Maggie grabs onto her hand impatiently.
“Yes, in a swanky, low-key restaurant. Valentines night is for enjoying each other. Valentines day is for showing off to everyone else just how much we’re enjoying each other,” she says, smirking and pulling Alex in for a kiss in plain view of all the other agents—playfully but slowly so as to give her the chance to pull away.
Alex glances around nervously before leaning in with an infectious giggle.
They pull away like mismatched magnets and stand to attention when J’onn calls to them from across the room. He crosses his arms and stares them down sternly.
“Take it outside, agent.”
Alex straightens up, hands behind her back, and nods nervously. “Yes, sir.”
They book it out of there as fast as they can while still being qualified as walking, breaking into a giggling jog near the front doors. Neither of them see J’onn’s mouth curl ever so slightly into a small, affectionate smile after they leave.
The second time Kara lands on Lena’s balcony that day, it’s inching towards two pm and Lena is in the middle of a call. Lena sees the superhero and her eyes widen for a moment before she holds up a finger, and Kara waves her hand assuagingly and smiles as Lena goes back to pacing. She looks beautiful even when she’s stressed—or maybe more beautiful in a particularly idiosyncratic way. Her dark hair cascades over her shoulder, the CEO having opted for a natural look today (Kara wonders what prompts Lena to straighten or not straighten the stubborn ringlets that frame her face). Her posture is ramrod straight, heels clacking on her floor with devastating poise, head held high like some renaissance carving.
Kara tries to tame her smile from goofy to calm while she waits, clasping her hands behind her back and enjoying the late winter breeze. There’s something that bubbles up in her chest when she looks at Lena, kind of like when she watches a sun set particularly red or when she wakes up after a nap in the sun and the world is just slightly bluer.
“—Thank you, Mr. Talbot. I’ll speak to you soon.”
Kara catches onto the tail end of the conversation—Lena slips her phone onto her desk and pushes the door open—Kara will never get tired of the bright smile that lights up Lena’s normally impassively (perfectly) sculpted face.
“Supergirl,” Lena breathes, inviting her in with a wave of her hand. “Two visits in one day?” She crosses her arms with a teasing smile. “Should I be worried?”
“No—no, of course not,” Kara laughs, trying to stand as confidently as she can. She glances over to see the bouquet still there and renews her determination. “I was just flying by and I thought I’d check in.”
Lena raises a brow, laughing a little. “Well, as you can see, no harm has befallen me in the three hours since you last checked in.” She gestures at herself and Kara thinks that her outfit is—incredibly handsome today? She’s wearing a crisp white button-up tucked into black jeans; the way her sleeves are rolled up to her mid-forearm is quite dashing, really, what with her hair cascading freely over the shoulder.
“Huh?” Kara realizes she’s been staring while lost in her thoughts and feels her cheeks burning up. “I’m sorry, I just, um—“
What is it about Lena Luthor that renders her so inarticulate? Yes, she’s known for her clumsiness and rambling, but only as Kara Danvers because, well, what else does one do to seem harmless? And it’s hard not to ramble or stutter when she’s angry but knows she can’t speak her mind.
But now, here as Supergirl, the closest thing she can get to who she would have become if Krypton hadn’t been destroyed, she still fumbles.
Lena swoops in to her rescue.
“I assume this isn’t a purely social visit…?”
“Ah. Well, actually it is!” Kara shifts her feel, relishing in the feel of her cape tugging on her shoulders as it swishes around her feet. “I just realized that, you know, we hardly speak unless someone’s life is in danger.”
She wants to slap herself. She’s Supergirl. Lena is a very successful and busy CEO. Why in Rao’s sweet light would they ever talk outside of an incident?
Lena gives her that same (cute) curious look she does whenever Kara slips up, in either identity.
“I suppose we don’t,” she laughs. “I mean, I don’t imagine your schedule leaves much room for social visits.” She walks over to the couch, smiling with an unspoken invitation. “Do you get a bit of a lull on Valentines Day?”
Kara walks over and sits down next to Lena, her posture a little more confident than Kara Danvers’ would, and feels a little odd sitting in such a casual setting while in her Supergirl uniform.
(Lena somehow makes it feel oddly comfortable in a very new way.)
“Actually,” she starts, frowning at the floor. “There’s a disturbingly sharp uptick in the amount of couples about to kill each other,” she says, breaking into a grin when Lena laughs.
“Ah, yes, romance can be so…” Lena waves her hand vaguely.
Lena closes her eyes and grins widely. “I was going for something closer to inspiring. But that—“ she looks up at Kara with a lopsided smile. “That is apt.”
“So, what about you?”
Lena blinks. “What about me?”
“Well, you—“ Kara tries. “You said you had an admirer earlier. Any developments?”
“Oh, that,” Lena smiles but there’s a bit of a disappointed edge to it. “Turns out it was from a business associate. The card just got lost somewhere. So,” she says, crossing her legs. (she’s wearing dark brown oxfords today. Kara’s been thinking she looked a little shorter. It’s cute.) “Still got nothing on the Valentines front.”
(so this really is going to be her first Valentines. No pressure or anything.)
Kara grins and leaps for the perfect opening.
“Well, if you were to get a gift, what would you like?”
She wills her grin not to twitch or falter under Lena’s suspicious look.
“What, like, flowers?”
“That’s not an answer,” Kara laughs. “I mean like… what kinds of things do you like? I know your favourite flowers are plumerias, but what do you prefer in terms of chocolate? I’ve always been a milk chocolate person myself, but—“
“Wait, wait,” Lena holds out a hand, frowning before she cants her head a bit and squints at Kara. “How do you know what my favourite flowers are?”
“Uh.” Kara swallows. “Kara Danvers told me?”
Lena’s eyes narrow just a touch more, the corner of her mouth curling up.
“That’s not an answer.”
Kara makes a small grimace-smile of defeat, chuckling under her breath.
“Touché. Yes, Kara told me. Not that I pried, or anything, it was just kind of, offhandedly.”
“Mm.” Lena hums, gnawing on her lower lip pensively before looking up at Kara with a tentative frown. “You and Kara are quite close.”
“I… I guess?” Kara shrugs (regretting it a little because she’s sitting on her cape).
“I was wondering if you two…?” Lena makes a vague circular motion with her hand. “Not that it’s my business or anything—“
“Oh!” Kara nearly chokes on her own spit when she realizes what Lena’s asking. “No! No, never, of course not, with Kara?” She scoffs. “I mean, we can hardly stand each other.”
Lena furrows her brows, a little taken aback. “Really? But you two seem so close? I mean, I don’t know anyone else who has a direct line to you.”
“Well, pfft, that’s, that’s because, we have a—um—work relationship, you know? I get her exclusive quotes from me, and she does a few favours for me sometimes, you know how it is,” she rolls her eyes a touch too ostentatiously. “Rao, we disagree on everything, we have nothing in common—most days we can’t even stand to be in the same room!”
Kara can hear Alex laughing her ass off at her somewhere in the back of her mind.
“Well, that’s…” Lena smiles politely. “Surprising.”
“Well, that’s just how it is,” Kara grins, wringing her hands. “We’re not dating. We would never date—I mean, I’m actually here asking you stuff for her!”
The laughing Alex breaks into hysterics.
Lena looks legitimately shocked—she’s a bit too refined to drop her jaw all the way like Kara does, but her mouth does open the tiniest bit and her eyes go wide, head pulling back just a little.
“You’re… asking me what chocolates I want,” she says, raised brows furrowing. “For Kara?”
“Yes?” Kara catches herself clenching her teeth nervously at the end. “I mean, yes! She, uh, wanted to thank you for the flowers, and, you know, I owe her a favour.”
“So—“ Lena blinks like she’s trying to get her thoughts into order, hand hovering between them. “Kara asked you to ask me what kind of chocolate I like?”
“Huh?” Kara blinks. “Oh nonononono! She doesn’t know about this—I thought I’d surprise her, because, I, um.” Think, Kara Zor-El. “Missed her birthday last week.”
Lena’s face falls and Kara wonders if she should get foot powder for her mouth.
“It was her birthday last week?”
“She probably forgot to tell you because she was busy!” She’s sweating now, great. “She wasn’t even going to celebrate it, you know, she just had a small last-minute thing with her sister, it wasn’t a big deal.”
Lena’s smile is small and kind of sad and Kara kind of hates herself.
“I’ll have to surprise her with a belated present, then,” she says, grinning up at Kara and it’s a little bit brighter than it was a second ago. “So, what do you want to know?”
Lena purses her lips over a laugh. “You said you had questions for Kara. I can’t send my favourite Super away empty-handed, can I?”
Kara fixes her with an exasperated look. “I am the only Super you know.”
And Lena does this nonchalant shrug that’s a little teasing and a lot charming and Kara laughs for the billionth time that day.
This time it’s Winn that squints over her shoulder. He rolls his chair over from his usual station across the briefing room to Kara’s seat, face contorted in confusion and shock.
“Are you—Kara, are you reading Sylvia Plath?”
“Yes,” she grumbles at him absently, flipping through the pages with superspeed.
“Why?” He asks, drawing his ‘w’ out with uncertainty.
“Because Lena said that she’s her favourite poet,” Kara sighs. “Although she really wasn’t kidding when she said I wouldn’t find anything romantic. This is all about being depressed and wanting to die. It’s so sad. Beautifully written, but so sad.” She puts the book down and lets out another deep sigh. “It’s heartbreaking to think that Lena related to all this when she was a kid.”
Winn deflates a little in his seat. “Well. You know. It can be cathartic to read your feelings put to words in a pretty way.”
There’s a strange note in his voice and she looks over to find him fiddling with the arm of his chair, pouting. Sorrow floods her entire being like a belated disaster, mourning for something she’s never witnessed—the thought of Lena and Winn, alone, so uncertain of their ability to go on, clanks around her chest like a heavy bell.
Kara’s never questioned that she would live to see another day—it was the only mission left to her form her parents, after all, when Kal grew up and didn’t need her and there was nothing left but a family to learn to love. She never thought about ending it all, so bound by her duty to the last memory of her parents.
(Though, lately, she’s been forced to unpack what all of that has meant to her. Sometimes she feels cold dark seeping into her bones as if she’s back in the Phantom Zone again and she shoves the thought back deep in her mind with the rest of its ilk.)
Winn grins up at her again, a master of switching out his emotions as well. “If you’re going for romantic, why not just stick with some classic Shakespeare?”
Kara groans. “It’s just so—unoriginal, you know? This is her first Valentines. I want to make it special.”
“Wow,” Winn chuckles. “I didn’t know you had such a huge crush on Lena.”
Kara gives him a full-body scoff, rolling her eyes and shaking her head. “I don’t have a crush on Lena, what are you talking about?”
He pokes her right in the crinkle with his pen. Kara squawks, yet again, rubbing her brow as she slumps into her chair.
“I have a crush on Lena.”
She pouts at him. “Not helping.”
“Alright, alright.” He spins in his chair for a moment, frowning up at the ceiling thoughtfully, twirling the pen in his hands.
“Well, hey, if you’re going for original, why not something no one else on earth has heard before?” He says, idly spinning around. “You know, like alien Shakespeare.”
Kara slams her hand down on the table, leaving a dent. All the agents look up at the loud boom, and she teeters nervously.
“Sorry, sorry guys, didn’t mean to do, um,” she waves at the handprint in the metal desk. “That. Sorry!” She turns to Winn and whisper-shouts, “Winn, you’re a genius! Thank you!”
Kara crushes him into a quick hug before leaping out of the briefing room, leaving him massaging his shoulder with a pained pout.
“Hey, Winn—“ James stops short at his scowl. “Hey, you okay, man?”
“Yeah,” he grumbles. “Just caught a case of overenthusiastic alien.”
It’s nearly ten pm by the time she’s got everything together, because she has a brilliant idea to hand-make the chocolates but it’s only after the third batch that she’s burnt that she realizes that heat vision and chocolate do not go well together.
Jess looks up sharply from her desk, face so perfectly impassive that Kara can’t tell how she’s burning this feeling of guilt and shame into her.
“You’re late,” she states, shuffling her laptop into her bag.
“I—I’m sorry,” she says, really sorry even though she has no clue how Jess knew she was coming. “I got caught up in a few things. I didn’t miss her, did I?”
Jess packs her things for a moment, saying nothing, until she finally decides that Kara’s had enough of the Stare of Shame, or something.
“She’s waiting for you.”
“Oh thank Rao,” she mutters under her breath.
“You can go in,” Jess continues, shrugging on her coat and slinging her bag over her shoulder. “But, Miss Danvers.”
Kara turns from her scurry to Lena’s door.
“Yes?” She asks, fiddling with her glasses.
“Try to call ahead the next time that you get caught up in things.”
And with that she heads off to the elevator and Kara muffles a small squeal in her fist. Jess said “next time”—that’s as good as an approval as she’s going to get.
The way Lena looks up at her when she finally opens the door—so surprised, and so relieved—is worse than Jess’s shame stare.
“Kara,” she breathes, putting her pen down as a smile slowly lights up her face.
“Lena.” Kara just lets the grin bloom across her face, unrestrained—her hand shakes a little around the box, the other one trying not to crush the bouquet behind her back when Lena gets up and crosses around her desk to meet her halfway just as excitedly.
“I was beginning to think you weren’t coming,” she says softly, glancing down at her wringing hands. Kara chuckles nervously.
“I’m so sorry—I should have texted you, or something.”
“No, no,” Lena holds up a hand, frowning. “I shouldn’t have assumed you were coming in the first place, really, it’s just that Supergirl—“
“Came over here asking questions on my behalf and gave you the impression that I was preparing a Valentines Day gift for you, presumably to give to you today,” Kara spells out, tilting her head and laughing a little. “I’m sorry I’m late. I dreamt a little too big and, well, ended up working until the last minute.”
“Oh, Kara, you didn’t have to go to so much trouble—“
“But I wanted to,” she says, shaking her head. “You are—you are so incredible, and when I heard that you’d never gotten a non-work related Valentines before, I just—“ Kara fumbles a little. “Not that this is like, a pity gift or anything! I just, I wanted to make this special because you’re so special and—“
“Kara.” Lena laughs breathlessly, eyes glittering in the bright lights of her office. “I’m beyond touched.”
“Well,” Kara inhales deeply. “Good. No, I mean—you should probably reserve your judgement for after you open the presents,” she rambles, trying to clamp her mouth around a nervous giggle as she hands Lena the box first.
She sees Lena’s brow crinkle as the lid opens, jumping to explain.
“Okay, so I know the book isn’t actually very romantic, and it’s a little out of context, but it was the only other shape I could think of other than hearts or flowers.”
Lena picks up one of the small dark chocolates shaped like bell jars.
“Did you make these yourself?”
Kara shrugs. “I kind of had to, I mean, I wasn’t going to find a bell jar baking mold anywhere.”
“I’m sure there are some novelty stores online,” Lena says, smiling in absent wonder as she turns the piece over in her hand.
“Really? Aw.” Kara huffs, then shakes her head. “Anyway, not important. Try one.”
Lena gives her a fond glance before taking a delicate little bite off the top of the bell jar, her eyebrows rising after a moment.
“Oh my god,” she says behind her hand. “These are amazing.”
“Yes!” Kara allows herself a small fist pump, before sheepishly tucking her arm behind her back to join her other one when Lena laughs.
“I didn’t take you for a culinary genius, Miss Danvers, but I stand corrected.”
“Weeell.” Kara purses her lips and rocks on her heels a little. “Just remind me to throw out the three batches I burnt before the next time you come over.”
The way Lena’s nose crinkles when she honest-to-Rao giggles has Kara nearly hopping with glee.
“Ready for your next present?”
Lena closes the box and places it on her desk hurriedly before turning back to Kara, making a facetious show of smoothing out her shirt as if readying herself for something terribly significant. Kara grins and half-heartedly rolls her eyes before shimmying for her big reveal.
“Ta-da!” She pushes the bouquet towards Lena. “Flowers for my lady.”
Lena takes in a quiet gasp, clasping her hands around the flowers almost reverently.
“Kara, did you—did you make these too?”
Kara giggles, nodding. “And let me tell you, it was a lot simpler than the chocolates.”
Lena traces a hand over the petals of the paper plumerias, each coloured and folded with special care.
“Oh my god, they’re so soft, what did you use—oh my god,” Lena gasps again, turning the bouquet a little to examine the underside of the flowers. “You even folded proper stems for them—Kara, how long did this take you?”
“Long enough to make you wait,” Kara says, pushing up her glasses. “It was worth it, though. I mean, I’ve always hated how you have to flowers out so soon, so I thought, hey! If it’s paper then you can keep them forever. If you want to, of course,” she adds quickly.
“I love them,” Lena whispers. She runs her fingertip along a petal before noticing another detail on the underside. “Is this—is this writing?”
Kara gnaws on her lip nervously at Lena’s squinting. “Shoot, did I make it too small?”
“No, no, I—“ she laughs again. “I don’t know which petal to start on.”
“Here—“ Kara leans in and points. “I marked the first line with a small yellow dot.”
Lena mumurs a thanks and goes on to read the words, twirling the flower slowly.
“I hope that, to you, I will become
A perfect piece of memory like a sunset,
And will remain without regrets like a picture
that reminds you of our precious green days.”
The translated Kryptonian poetry sound a little odd, a little stilted, but somehow the way Lena whispers them makes it work. She pushes the flower back gently before slowly tugging out another.
“To me, you became the one ray of sunshine
That lit up my lonely hours gone by,
And became the promise of eternity
That glitters like a jewel upon your small white palm.”
Lena looks up at Kara. “Did you write this?”
Kara laughs before shaking her head. “No, I wish. My way with words doesn’t apply outside of journalistic writing, unfortunately.” She takes one of Lena’s hands and pushes the flower in to pull out another. “It’s a poem I loved as a child. There’s a verse on every flower.”
Kara reads this one.
“To me, you remain in my small heart
As a soft voyage song.
I want to become the countless stars
That glisten in your pretty eyes and shine forever.”
Kara looks back up at Lena and thinks to herself, what pretty eyes indeed.
“Just to make sure I’m reading all of this right,” Lena says, her voice gentle around the fragile air between them. “Would it be alright if I kissed you now?”
“Yes please,” Kara says in a rushed laugh, letting Lena place the bouquet behind her before pulling in close.
When their lips actually touch it’s like butterflies have started a mosh pit just underneath her ribcage, egged on by the hummingbird pace of her heart—she places her palms on Lena’s sides, lost in the moment until Lena tries to wrap her arms around Kara’s neck only to get her finger caught in the bit of red cape sticking out of the back of her collar.
Kara pulls away, reaching back frantically to shove it back in because how could she be so stupid?
“Lena, I’m so sorry, I can explain—this isn’t how I wanted you to—“
The words catch in her throat as Lena crosses her arms with a severe stare, walking over imperiously until she’s right in Kara’s space. Kara closes her eyes as Lena reaches for the bit of cape still sticking out, expecting quiet anger, dismay, disappointment—
Only to feel Lena carefully stuffing the Kryptonian fabric back in and smoothing her collar over it.
“There,” she says, sounding pleased with herself. “All better.”
Kara opens her eyes to a very amused smirk.
Lena’s smirk grows wider, with a smug but not unkind edge of someone who’s come out on top of a practical joke. “You don’t have to be so embarrassed, Kara. I understand you were in a rush.”
Kara blinks rapidly, processing. “You. You know?” The implications finally load in. “You know! And all that time, when I was here earlier—you were teasing me! You accused me of dating myself! Lena, this isn’t funny!”
Lena clearly seems to beg to disagree, holding onto Kara’s shoulders just to keep herself from keeling over, laughing so hard it only comes out as near-silent wheezes.
“Leeenaaa,” Kara whines, reluctantly holding the woman up so she doesn’t just literally fall to the floor laughing.
“I’m sorry, I’m sorry,” Lena gasps, clutching at her stomach. “I didn’t say anything because I wasn’t supposed to know, but god I couldn’t pass up watching you try to keep it up—“ She bursts into another session of guffaws and Kara turns up her pout from five to eight.
After a moment she notches it up to a full nine, and that finally gets Lena to stop.
“Okay, okay,” Lena bites down another grin waiting to lunge into a laugh and cups Kara’s face, trying on a pout of her own. “I’m sorry. Forgive me?”
Kara lasts about two seconds before she groans and rolls her eyes, feigning martyred reluctance as she pecks Lena again on the lips.
“You’re lucky you’re cute,” she grumbles. Lena smiles as she pulls Kara in for a firm kiss, smile drooping from mischievous to affectionate.
“Thank you, Kara,” Lena murmurs, laying a hand over Kara’s heart and tucking her face into the crook of her neck. Kara can smell the telltale tang of tears, though none fall on her shirt. “No one has… ever made me feel this special.”
Kara wraps her arms around Lena, pulling her in close and pressing a kiss into her dark hair.
“Well, forget about all of them,” she says, rubbing her back. “You are ten times more special than I, or anyone other than you could ever make you feel.”
When she pulls away, Kara sees the lines of poetry that she’s memorized by heart finally paired with an image, finally made whole beyond the boundaries of language.