When the sunlight is shining
and flowers are blooming
when leaves fall from the trees
and a blanket of snow
puts the world into a state
of calm and bliss-
know that I
am thinking of
you, no matter what.
The weather in Midvale was largely uninspiring, it was somewhat mild and often sunny. Usually Alex lamented the lack of any drastically changing seasons but she was considering having a change of heart because the sun’s glow made the object of her affection appear ethereal.
Indeed Alex was suddenly glad to see very few rainy days as she stared across the quad watching the sunlight glint off of thick, perfect hair—
“You stare any harder and you’re likely to incinerate her.” Alex starts nearly falling off the bench she’d been sitting on, slamming her notebook shut conspicuously.
“Vasquez! Don’t do that .” Alex attempted to order over the racing of her heart. Not many people would dare to sneak up on Alex Danvers and even fewer would succeed but her best friend does not fall into either category.
Not that Vasquez had even been trying to sneak.
“Why don’t you just go talk to her, damn Danvers.” Alex shoots her friend an unamused look.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about but if I did I would say that I do talk to her...frequently.”
“I mean about something other than class work or sports practice.”
“Fuck off Vasquez, that’s not all we talk about we’re friends we talk about lots of other stuff too.”
“Excellent. Well if you’re such good friends you should have no problem telling her you want into her pants.” Vasquez says completely unfazed by Alex’s outburst and endlessly amused by the fish out of water impression her friend is doing as she helplessly sputters in lieu of a response.
“Oh, man you should see your face. Relax I know it’s not like that and I’m sure she’d also love to hear how badly you wanna U-haul with her and spend all night whispering sweet nothings in her ear and raising a bunch of dogs.”
“I hate you so very much, you're the worst.”
“See you wasted that hate because now nothing you say will be as effective after I do this—" before Alex can even begin to question what her friend is up to Vasquez raises her voice to be heard across the quad, “Hey, Sawyer.”
Vasquez beats a hasty retreat tossing a quick ‘you’re welcome’ over her shoulder to a frozen Alex.
A frozen Alex who doesn’t hear it because Maggie moves like poetry in motion.
Her head turns seeking out the source of the call and when her eyes land on a now solitary Alex, she doesn’t hesitate to jog over.
The hair Alex was admiring earlier bounces slightly as it flows over her well-sculpted shoulders on display in the sleeveless tee Maggie is sporting. Her legs are encased in tight black jeans but Alex can see the muscles flexing through the material with every stride.
Maggie comes to a stop in front of Alex, her soft, perfect lips moving and wait, shit—
“Danvers. Uh Hey, Danvers? Are you alright? you look a little flushed.”
“What? Yes, no sorry I’m good Vasquez was just……” It’s then that Alex notices Vasquez is no longer next to her and she wants nothing more than to sink into the floor.
Maggie quirks an eyebrow and it’s all Alex can do not to bite her lip. The realization has Alex shooting up off of the bench rapidly mumbling something at a speed that would put Kara to shame.
Maggie can just make out the words ‘forgot’ ‘math’ and ‘fuck’ before Alex flees like the hounds of hell are chasing her.
She doesn’t notice Maggie’s lingering stare, eyebrows furrowed in confusion but enjoying the view nonetheless as Alex careens out of sight.
Alex moves on auto-pilot. She smiles at teachers and exchanges pleasantries with passers-by and registers exactly none of it. She makes a beeline for the south staircase where she knows no one will bother her if she ducks behind the makeshift storage of the underhang.
She collapses against the wall and tries to breathe, tries to focus. But her heart’s still trying to beat its way out of her chest and her breathing is shallow. She’s in worse condition at the moment than after dozens of suicide sets at practice.
It’s ridiculous. Completely and utterly.
Alex grabs her notebook and starts writing, pouring her frustrations out onto the page.
I feel blindsided
and the way
you make my
Caught off guard
and alone, struggling to
what my heart
is trying to say.
The bell signifying homeroom startles her and the pen jerks across the page from where it’d been resting when she stopped writing to try and process, well what she had written. She traces the dark streak marring clean white lines as if in a trance.
The second bell alerting her that she is now late has her scrambling up and towards the classroom cursing the entire way.
Alex is confused when her homeroom teacher, Mrs. Santangelo, smiles at her as she slips quietly into her seat.
She had been mentally scrolling through a list of possible excuses but apparently, she had greeted said teacher in the hallway in the course of her fleeing and the determined look on her face must have been misconstrued as her heading to handle something more important than a girl induced mini breakdown.
Yay overbearing mothers who insisted that overachieving was the bare minimum of acceptability Alex thought sarcastically. At least being involved in an abundance of extracurriculars came in handy for something other than college applications and sleepless nights.
Alex mentally reviews her schedule for the day and silently cheers because she has AP Calc first thing, one of the few classes she doesn’t share with Maggie.
The morning block passes in a blur as Alex buries herself in numbers and facts, a fitting distraction from words and emotion.
It works just fine until AP Literature, right before lunch and her first class of the day’s cycle with Maggie.
Concentrating is a challenge because Maggie’s seat in this class is next to Alex. It’s not the proximity so much as the knowledge that if she glances over it’s hardly subtle. Knowing that she shouldn’t be looking makes it that much harder not to.
Maggie is slumped over the desk with her head pillowed on her slightly bent right arm while her left is sprawled out over the surface, hand hanging carelessly over the top.
Alex figures, if the late night texts were any indication, that Maggie’s exhausted from a long night of procrastinated assignments.
Alex startles more than Maggie when a sharp, “Miss Sawyer.” rings out from the front of the classroom. Maggie apologizes with a lazy grin that has Alex biting the inside of her cheek as she tries in vain to keep a visible flush off of her face.
Maggie stretches and Alex can see the definition of those damn arm muscles from the corner of her eye. Seriously that shirt has got to be against some part of the dress code Alex’s internal voice whines.
Alex all but shoves her nose into her notebook determined to take notes but she ends up drifting, scratching words into the margins unrelated but perhaps worthy of the Shakespeare they’re learning.
And works of art may get admired by thousands,
stared at and replicated and loved universally,
surviving Time’s tests and letting their inspiration
flit through the generations,
but they all tend to pale in comparison
when it comes to you.
Lunch finally rolls around and Alex has managed some semblance of calm as she and Maggie stroll to the cafeteria. They sit at their usual table in the back and are soon swarmed by their motley group of friends.
Technically Alex was popular, a representative of student government, president of multiple clubs, co-captain of the field hockey team, pitcher for the softball team and top of her class. She had been well on her way to high school royalty before Kara crashed into her life.
Alex spares a glance at the ‘popular’ kid’s table and easily spots Maxwell Lord with his arm slung possessively around Vicky’s shoulders. She misses Vicky but she doesn’t regret not following her once best friend as she clawed her way up the social ladder. Vicky’s new friends really weren’t the kind of people Alex wanted to be associated with anyway and as much as it still hurt, Vicky now fell into that category too.
She turns her attention back to her own lunch table her heart warming at their oddball little group. Kara had a habit of picking up strays and their lunch table had no rhyme or reason to it if you weren't familiar with the Danvers sisters.
Alex knew better than anyone people were more complex than the stereotypical one-dimensional labels high school may try to saddle them with but their group was certainly eclectic to say the least.
She watches as James and Kara wrestle over the last of the fries while Winn tries to dodge the flailing limbs and Lucy cheers them on. Well, James is trying to wrestle but he may as well be wrestling a giant boulder for all the good it’s doing him.
Alex watches with a huge grin as Maggie snags the remaining fries while James and Kara are distracted. Alex has to give Kara a warning and really one day Kara would catch Maggie in a non-public place and melt her face off if Maggie kept stealing food from the Kryptonian.
And Alex wouldn’t be there to save her.
She shakes her head fondly at her now pouting sister and slides the rest of her pizza over elbowing Maggie in the side as she does so.
Alex raises a slight eyebrow when she sees Lena slide her own food over as well.
“You owe me pizza now Sawyer.”
“Put it on my tab, Danvers.”
“At this point, you could buy me an entire restaurant, might be cheaper.”
“Yeah, Yeah how 'bout tonight? I’ll bring some over and we can do the English assignment together. Maybe a movie if we finish early?”
Before Alex can find her words Kara squeals and declares a group movie night and Alex doesn’t know whether kiss her sister or kill her.
It’s days like today,
when everything’s normal,
and we joke and laugh
and we live like we’re supposed to-
these days of nothingness
make me adore you even more.
Ancient Civilizations is her, their first class after lunch. This time it’s Vasquez who sits next to her which is less than ideal because Maggie sits in front of her in this class. Alex at least attempts to keep her eyes off of Maggie’s back if for no other reason than to avoid Vasquez’s commentary.
Today, they’re discussing the Trojan War and Alex pictures Helen of Troy with Maggie’s features.
The face that launched a thousand ships, Alex would gladly go to war with all the ferocity of her namesake she muses, for Maggie’s attention there is little she wouldn’t do.
Alex zones out hand propping up her chin her vision consumed by the back of Maggie’s head and her mind thousands of years in the past.
A swift kick from her left side courtesy of Vasquez brings Alex back to present where she’s being asked the same question for the third time.
She does her best to focus but Maggie throws her hair up into a messy bun and Alex’s gaze keeps getting drawn to the exposed curve of her neck.
Alex leaves class with a new favorite poem and a bruise on her shin.
Greek lore tells of earth’s
who save gods and beautiful women
and towns of helpless, grateful people.
Their morals strong their muscles stronger.
They are the people we wish we could be
Yet the fatal flaw of these fantastic men
are the keys to their own demise.
Whilst I sit here and write of great heroes,
I think of what my fatal flaw could be.
Is it too much anger?
Too much love?
Or is my fatal flaw simply
If paying attention in AP Lit is a challenge then paying attention in AP Psych is fucking impossible because in AP Psych Maggie sits behind her .
Alex inevitably spends the entire class trying so hard to act nonchalant that the teacher pulls her aside at least three times a week to ask if everything is okay with her.
The class passes by with excruciating slowness and the teacher could have been teaching it in Norwegian for all that Alex absorbs. Her back muscles protest the rigidity she’s been holding herself with for the past forty minutes.
When the bell rings Alex bolts from her desk without a word disappearing into the crowded hallway without even hearing Maggie’s confused call after her.
We are the emotions we feel,
which means that I am the
physical embodiment of
unguided love and adoration
Alex doesn’t know what’s made today so..intense but she feels like she’s losing her goddamn mind.
Alex Danvers does not skip class and Alex Danvers certainly doesn’t skip science classes but her lab partner is Maggie which normally she’s pretty damn happy about but for whatever reason Alex just could not handle that today.
She uses the cover of the between class rush to get herself to the least populated stairwell and follows it all the way up to the non-existent fifth floor. The only door on this particular landing is the large, bolted, alarmed exit to the roof.
What Alex knows that the rest of the school doesn’t is that the bolt is not functional nor the alarm set. With one last check over her shoulder, Alex slips through the door and onto the roof.
She tosses her bag near the door and wanders over to ledge sitting with her back against it to keep out of sight. The smell of sea air immediately calms her and the chorus of crashing waves and screeching gulls help her center her thoughts.
Alex’s favorite thing about her hometown is its proximity to the beach. No matter where you ventured in town the ocean makes its presence known.
Alex pulls out her notebook tracing over the words she’s spilled out from the depths of her soul and with the slight tang of salt water on her tongue she admits what she's been so steadfastly avoiding.
She’s had a giant gay crush on Maggie since probably the first moment the girl swaggered through the front doors on her first day of school mid-semester freshman year. Alex accepted that quite some time ago.
But now it seemed somewhere in between growing closer as friends her crush has morphed into a case of full blown love. Of the most unfortunate variety...unrequited.
Well, she acknowledged it now what the hell is she supposed to do about it.
Alex is brought out of her musings by the buzzing of her phone. Her heart stops for a minute thinking it’s Maggie wondering why she isn’t in class but it’s just Kara’s food Instagram. She must’ve left early for a snack since her last period was a free.
Alex opens the app, staring at the artfully arranged taco and snorting because what Kara’s hundreds of followers don’t know is Kara’s consumed at least ten of those to even be able to take the picture without inhaling that one too.
Alex idly scrolls through some of the pictures chuckling at her sister’s antics. She’s about to close out of the app when her eyes catch sight of her sister’s bio, right above the link to her personal Instagram, it’s just one sentence.
Just a girl in love with food.
And Alex gets an idea.
It could be just the thing to help take the edge off and get this little bit of crazy out of her system. Short of talking about it which she has no intention of doing thankyouverymuch an anonymous Instagram account could be the perfect way to get this off of her chest with zero consequences.
The more Alex thinks about it the more of a brilliant foolproof plan it seems like.
So Alex logs into her VPN account and takes a few more security measures she learned from Winn because like hell is she taking any chance on anyone ever finding out this yet to exist Instagram account belongs to her.
She sets up a fake email account before opening up the app and selecting sign up.
Alex is pondering possible usernames when her phone goes off again this time it’s the group chat. It buzzes a dozen more times in quick succession and Alex rolls her eyes when she opens it to find a lively debate about tonight’s movie options.
Lucy, Kara and Winn are vetoing any talk of horror movies coming from Maggie. James is pulling for a plain old comedy while Vasquez and Lucy vote for an action movie. Lena is siding with whatever Kara says which makes Alex roll her eyes again.
She doesn’t even know why they bother when they always end up watching musicals or Disney movies because the rest of them made a pact to always hold strong against Kara’s rom-com obsession and those were the only other genres that would keep some semblance of peace.
They're arguing the merits of Grease vs. High School Musical, which seriously why are these her friends, when inspiration strikes.
It is a well-known fact that Alex hates both saccharine love ballads and most forms of text speak which is why this username would be the perfect extra layer to masking her identity.
Just a girl in love.
She hesitates over the profile picture wracking her brain for something inconspicuous to use. A particularly loud seagull screeches and Alex facepalms.
The ocean, that should’ve been a no-brainer. Alex stands taking her time zooming in and out trying to find the perfect shot that doesn’t include any easily identifiable buildings.
It’s a gorgeous view from this height and Alex finally manages to get a breathtaking shot of the shore-line and horizon.
Once that’s finished she uploads the poem she’d just written and releases a breath she hadn’t realized she was holding.
I want to travel the world
because I have the insane idea
that seeing new people
and new places
will make me
And when I’m done,
and home once again
I want to
hold you in my arms
for the rest of time.
Because your embrace
is where I know
who I am,
who I’ve been,
and the person I
want to be.
Alex goes through her notebook transferring her other poems from today out to single pages for the aesthetic and uploading those too.
She follows a few other poetry blogs but leaves it at that for now because following anyone she knows is a sure fire way to get discovered and she has a personal Instagram for her other interests anyway.
She leaves the roof with a grin feeling more settled than she has in days.
Alex meets up with Maggie outside and is surprised when Maggie doesn’t question her absence, just silently hands her the missed homework.
They decide to head straight over to Alex’s in order to get as much work out of the way as possible because even on school nights movie sessions never stop at just one.
After texting Kara to see if she needs a ride and picking her up from the taco stand where she’s still eating, the trio makes their way to chez Danvers.
Alex declines Kara’s offer to sprawl out in the den, dragging Maggie up to her room instead.
They make quick work of the English assignment and Alex even manages to not only get Maggie to finish tonight’s homework but get a head start on some future projects.
Alex relents about half an hour before everyone is supposed to show up when Maggie claims for the umpteenth time her brain is going to explode if she does one more math problem.
Kara’s downstairs preparing enough food to feed an army (which is barely enough to feed a Kryptonian let alone the addition of seven teenagers) so Maggie goes ahead and calls their pizza order in as well.
Before long the house is full of rambunctious teens and Alex can scarcely believe that a few years ago her world consisted of her parents and her best friend and that was pretty much it.
Losing her father had been a devastating blow that she’s still grieving from but she’s not quite sure where she would be without this crazy little family she’s found herself a part of.
Everyone grabs various food items to carry into the den while Kara fires up the entertainment system.
Alex isn’t ready to shoot all of her progress to hell so soon so she makes sure to snag the single arm chair for herself to avoid a repeat of the last movie night where she’d spent several blissful tortuous hours curled up into Maggie’s side.
The opening strains of Grease filter through the speakers and Alex can’t quite keep the secretive smile off her face.
She spends more time watching Maggie than the movie.
Sometimes you’re the most
beautiful when you think
nobody’s watching, and you
just smile at the world.
And when you smile at me,
the world stops moving,
and people stop being
and the only thing that
exists is your smile.
They make it through Grease and Girltrash:All Night Long before most of the group takes their leave with excuses of class tomorrow. Kara pouts and Lena ends up staying for High School Musical and a night crashing in Kara’s bed.
Alex begs off the last movie leaving Kara and Lena snuggled on the couch, as much as two people can snuggle when one of them is bouncing around singing along with the television.
Maggie lingers, the last of their friends besides Lena to leave. She helps Alex clean up the mess and put away the sparse leftovers. Alex tastes blood in mouth from biting her tongue to keep from inviting Maggie to spend the night. She would ordinarily and she wonders a bit guiltily if that’s what Maggie’s waiting for.
But the acceptance of her feelings for Maggie is too raw, too exposed. Sleeping beside Maggie tonight like it’s just another day, just another sleepover between friends is more than Alex can bear.
So she bids Maggie goodnight and they both stare at each other just a little too long. The air heavy with words unspoken but both too deep in their own thoughts to notice.
Alone in her own room Alex pulls out an untouched leather journal. She cradles it to her chest and for the first time, she doesn’t cry.
Her mother gave it to her on her last birthday. It was the last gift her father ever bought her and he hadn’t been around to give it to her when she turned sixteen. Alex couldn’t bring herself to write in it leaving it in the corner of her drawer to gather dust.
Tonight she opens it up and picks up a pen.
It’s your voice
I miss the most.
The deep, humble sounds,
the well thought-out
The way you tell a joke
or enter a philosophical debate
that’d go on for hours.
I miss your voice.
This time the tears do come, not violent gut-wrenching sobs. Only quite trickling tears, a mourning never truly finished. A missing piece, a life half-lived, gone but not forgotten. Grieving but not forgetting to live.
She doesn’t bother to wipe away the tears as she turns the page to a clean sheet. She writes and she smiles the action pulling at the salt tracks long since dried on her face.
“You would’ve really liked her, dad.” She speaks aloud to the empty room, placing her book on the nightstand and turning off the light.
She’ll post the poems in the morning.
Both of them.
Alex surrenders to slumber, blissfully unaware of what she’s unwittingly set in motion.
And tonight, when God
hangs up the moon
and coaxes the stars
to come out and shine.
Tonight, when that star falls from heaven
and thousands close their eyes
to wish upon the moment of fleeting magic-
know that I’ll be wishing for us.
The next few days pass and Alex continues to add poetry to the Instagram. She may have deemed it a brilliant idea but she’s still a little surprised just how much it’s helping.
Being around Maggie is getting easier again. It’s still painful but she’s not nearly as afraid of losing their friendship to her wildly rampaging emotions.
Alex loves in silence, being friends is better than nothing at all. Never bet something you aren’t afraid to lose and Alex is terrified of losing Maggie.
The truth may prevail but right now it isn’t worth the gamble.
And if telling you how I feel
will lead to the end of our friendship,
then I won’t tell you
that you’re the person
with whom I want
to share my forever.
Having an outlet takes a weight off her shoulders she hadn’t realized was quite so heavy.
And then reality crashes down on her.
The second she walks into the building she knows something huge has happened. People are clustered around in little groups staring at their phones. The air is practically buzzing it’s like ‘the gossip’ has physically manifested and is crackling in midair.
There’s an ungodly amount of giggling and - Alex squints, a girl from her AP Lit course just honest to god swooned like she was Scarlet freakin’ O’Hara or something.
Alex decides then and there she does not even wanna know and vows to carry on with her day as if the rest of the school wasn’t a hotbed for some new juicy new tidbit that was really no one else’s business anyway.
Her conviction lasts all of twelve seconds before Kara bounds over to her gushing and clutching her phone.
James had picked her up early this morning to handle something with the school newspaper though Alex wasn’t entirely convinced there were no ulterior motives judging by his hearteyes which were almost as bad as Lena’s.
“Ohmygod Alex, have you seen it?”
“If I say yes will you leave me alone without showing me whatever it is?”
“Not even you can be that cynical when you read these.” Kara says shoving her phone at Alex who rolls her eyes and resigns herself to the fact that she’s going to figure what the sudden influx of googly-eyes is about whether she wants to or not.
Kara continues chattering on in the background, “Oh Alex, it’s just sooo romantic.” but all Alex hears is white noise.
Her eyes are glued to screen staring in disbelief at the poem she uploaded minutes before stepping foot on school grounds.
If tomorrow we woke
and the whole world
if sand turned to stone,
and water to fire,
and the sky turned
an odd shade of green-
the one thing that
is the way you
make me want to
“Kara what is this?” She thanks Rao Kara is too caught up in the starry-eyed intrigue of it all to notice Alex’s voice crack. And damn does she need to pull herself together if she’s going to feign believable ignorance about this because no way in hell is she going to let it come to light that these are hers.
Nuh-uh no way. She would not survive the shame and embarrassment. They would never let her live it down. She would need to change her name and move to Yemen. Okay focus.
“It’s this Instagram of love poems I found, they’re so sweet! I was looking for something to cheer Lena up the other day but I found this instead.”
“Kara, if you found the Instagram. Why does the entire school know about it?”
“Well I mean look at the username I mean it’s a sign or something.”
Alex tried to take deep breaths through her nose, “How is that relevant or a sign?”
“Well, we watched Grease last week. Plus look did you even read it? There wasn’t really anything for me to use for Lena but I had to share them they were just too good not to.”
“Kara we watch Grease practically every week that’s not a sign it’s a coincidence. And last time I checked you didn’t know the entire school. Who did you send this to?”
“Our friends. And then Lucy shared it with the soccer and swim teams and Vasquez sent it to the field hockey, softball and basketball teams, James to football, the school paper and photography club, Winn to chess, the a.v. club and the theater kids and I’m sure Maggie and Lena sent it to some people too and well you know how it is all those people sent to more people and well it’s just so romantic, everyone is talking about it.”
All Alex could do was gape at her sister.
“C’mon Alex, admit that it’s cute.”
“I’m not going to admit anything Kara you know I hate this stuff. Look I gotta get to homeroom. I’ll see you at lunch.”
Alex hurries to homeroom and pulls out her phone noticing for the first time several e-mails with the links to her freaking Instagram.
Mrs. Santangelo wanders over with a student council question and Alex is grateful for the distraction.
She catches sight of Maggie walking by in the hallway and it causes Alex to flounder mid-sentence to the confusion of her teacher.
When the conversation finally ends, Alex just bangs her head pathetically against her desk. Quietly whimpering Why me?
I know that I’m capable
of intelligent thought,
ideas that challenge me, and
make me search for answers.
Yet, every time you walk by,
all I think is
goddamn, I think I love you.
The morning passes in a blur of Alex working on maintaining her neutral facade and before she knows it she’s seated next to Maggie in AP Lit.
“Hey, Danvers can you believe everyone going all gaga over some stupid poetry?”
Alex barely manages not to stiffen at the unexpected words. “Haha yea it’s sooo dumb. Have you uh- have you read them?”
“Nah, but it’s all anyone’s talking about makes me wanna puke.” Alex tries to ignore the stabbing pain in her gut.
Alex hopes the smile on her face isn’t as awkwardly uncomfortable as it feels. “Ughh me too, it’s just sickening, really.”
“See I knew we were friends for a reason, Danvers.” Maggie said with her signature dimpled grin.
Alex is saved from having to respond by the arrival of the teacher and all she can think is damn you could stab me for real and as long as you smiled I’d be fine with your dimples being the last thing I see.
Not all sadness is ugly.
Heartache can be beautiful.
How do I know?
I am tragically in love with you.
“You guys will never believe this!” Winn exclaims dropping heavily onto the lunch table’s bench. “The mystery poet goes to Midvale.”
Alex considers it a miracle that she doesn’t choke on her drink. James beats her to opening her mouth which in retrospect she’s grateful for when he asks, “How do you know that, man.”
“Yeah,” Lucy chimes in, “Did you hack the account?”
“No, but only because I signed legal documentation stating that I wouldn’t ‘hack’ anymore, in order to stay out of juvie and I would prefer my record get sealed so I can erase it once I turn eighteen thank you very much. Annnyyyyywho the profile picture, it’s Swan Beach.” Winn shares.
This time it’s Maggie voicing her skepticism, “Okay but no offense there are thousands of beaches around the world it could be literally any beach anywhere.”
“But it’s got the ‘Swan Rock’ formation.”
“Well that might narrow it down but it still technically doesn’t prove anything.” Maggie argues.
“See I thought people might say that so do you see this here?” Winn held out his phone with an enlarged version of the profile picture up.
“The dot?” Vasquez asks, unimpressed.
“Yup except it’s not a dot, it’s the life guard flag with wait for it, our school’s graftied swan!” Winn crows triumphantly holding up another image that’s blurry and clearly zoomed in but still recognizable.
Alex curses under her breath seriously why was she friends with such nerds.
“Well, that still doesn’t prove they go here .”
“I suppose not alone, however I did some calculations and concluded that the only place in Midvale this exact picture angle could have been taken was from the roof of this very building.”
As Winn continued along his tangent explaining the complex mathematics he used to calculate how the picture had to have been taken from the school rooftop, Maggie’s hand inches closer and closer to Kara’s lunch.
Kara notices at the last second snatching the cookie Maggie was going for out of reach.
“Alex!!!” Kara screeches with a completely scandalized look on her face. The entire table turns to Kara and Alex raises an eyebrow looking from a fuming Kara to an ‘innocent’ looking Maggie.
“Tell your—your—your Maggie that if she doesn’t want to lose a hand she should keep them away from MY food.” Kara huffs.
Maggie just grins while making a who me? gesture as Alex closes her eyes and pinches the bridge of her nose.
Why is this happening to me?
Today someone called you
and I really love
the sound of that.
Alex was really hoping this whole thing would blow over but in the few days since Kara inadvertently outed her account she’s gained hundreds of followers.
And now thanks to Winn declaring the ‘mystery poet’ attended Midvale High the whole thing didn’t just not blow over it blew UP.
The hallways were rife with speculation there were factions that believed the author was a boy and using the tagline to throw people off and another convinced it was actually the principal.
Half the girls wanted to know why their boyfriends never wrote them any poetry, nearly every guy was convinced the poetry was about him and those unadhering to the gender binary appreciated the lack of gender specification in most of the poems.
What they all have in common is a desperate need to know who is behind the flowery words.
Alex is living with a near constant headache.
A headache that gets significantly worse when Winn shuffles over to their table half-way through lunch with a clipboard.
“Heeeey guys.” he greets sheepishly.
“Where have you been?” Alex really can’t help the suspicious tone when the look on his face is that guilty.
“Oh, ya know around. So hey here’s a fun idea how about you all find your names on this list and write down a sentence of your choosing? That sounds fun doesn’t it?”
He’s met with a full table of blank stares and raised eyebrows.
“Okay fine look Siobhan—
“Wait a minute, Siobhan Smythe? Head cheerleader wannabe? Royal bitch Siobhan Smythe?” Lucy asks incredulously.
“I mean should we really be judging people?” Winn hedges.
“She stole Kara’s article and editor’s position last year, and she shoved you into a locker once.” Lena points and there is no mistaking her icy tone.
“That’s not all she shoved him into anymore.” Kara mutters under her breath, face red and a more than a bit disgusted.
It seems like a mutual table decision to leave the muttered comment ‘unheard’.
“Just tell us what’s up with the clipboard Winn.” Alex demands.
“Well, it’s just everyone is dying to know who the ‘mysterious poet’ but no one’s been able to figure it out so, Siobhan thought—"
“Like Siobhan actually had an original thought or she stole the idea from someone else?” Vasquez cuts in.
“Siobhan thought,” Winn continued ignoring the interruption, “that we could figure it out by printing out a full roster of the students and comparing handwriting samples.”
“And is that why Siobhan’s been sitting over there at the 'popular' table enjoying her lunch while you run around collecting samples?” Maggie asks not unkindly.
Winn sighs. “Look guys I really wanna know too okay so could you all just write a sentence? Please it can be anything.”
Kara pulls Winn gently down by the arm, “We’ll do it but you have to eat something. Deal?”
“Deal.” Winn agrees readily with a grin.
Alex is the last to get the clipboard and she laughs out loud at her friends who all managed to contribute some truly original and inventive ways to tell Siobhan and her gang to go fuck themselves.
Alex doesn’t pick up her pen right away wracking her brain to make sure she doesn’t replicate any of the font seen in the poetry pictures.
She’s pretty certain she stuck mostly to script for the aesthetic so now she should definitely print. She picks up the pen when she realizes her usual handwriting when she isn’t trying is actually perfect because it’s nearly illegible chicken scratch.
Alex gets teased that she was destined to become a doctor based off her handwriting alone and it takes considerable effort to write neatly. Which is why she’s capable of writing in several different fonts to begin with.
Still the fact that people are trying this hard to discover who’s behind the poetry Instagram is alarming her a little. The smart, logical thing to do would be to just quit posting for awhile, abandon the account.
She doesn’t have to stop writing obviously, just take a break from uploading to the world.
It’s the most reasonable course of action and yet….
Aristotle once said
“Law is reason
free from passion.”
If that is true,
you are passion
free of reason
and I’m the
caught in the
Valentine’s Day rolls around and it’s to Alex’s immense horror that she arrives at school only to find it completely decorated with printouts of her poetry. On doors and lockers and bulletin boards. In the gym, in the classrooms and the labs.
It’s so much worse than the usual explosion of tacky red and pink hearts, the way the words she pulled from the very depths of her soul are being used like ornamentation.
She walks up to her locker ripping down the sheet of paper taped on it crumpling it in her hand.
One day soon,
the world will know
And all romances
in the future
will be based on and compared
Forget the thirteen year old girl
And a three day courtship-
ours is forever,
ours is epic in
every sense of the word.
Throughout the day no matter where she goes Alex can’t escape the hallways plastered with the brightly colored paper all bearing words she’s written.
Couples are exchanging the poems like cards and Alex is more than a little disconcerted. It's honestly kind of disturbing.
She’s never been a particular fan of the manufactured holiday. It always rang false to her, if you loved someone you should show them every day in little ways. Not wait until a pre-approved date in order to put on a performance of affection.
Alex shudders and tries to console herself with thoughts of all the discounted chocolate that would be on sale tomorrow.
God seldom makes
anyone perfect. Most of us have
faults, big or small,
Inside or out,
that define our
God rarely makes
us mere mortals
but with you,
he came pretty
She runs into Kara who is giddy and clutching a piece of paper tightly to her chest. Kara hands it over to her gushing about romance and love and all the stuff that Alex patently hates.
As far as anyone knows since no one is actually aware she’s inadvertently responsible for this whole mess.
“Alex look what someone left inside my locker! And no, I can tell by the look on your face they did not break in they slipped in through the top.”
Alex obligingly makes a show of reading the poem ignoring how weird it is that she technically wrote it only to have someone try and woo her sister with it.
It’s your eyes and how
they smile the loudest,
and the way you say my name.
How your heart is bigger
than the moon
and you kind soul shines
brighter than the sun.
it’s the way being
by your side
makes me forget
that heartache exists.
Alex realizes what poem it is and has to ignore the way her heart clenches at some of her most personalized work being passed around like hallmark cards.
She shakes off the feeling and concentrates on the paper in her hand. Her eyes narrow there’s something different about this note than the one that was on her locker.
Alex glances around, she doesn’t know who is responsible for plastering the walls with her poetry but the stock of this paper is different from most of what lines the walls. It’s heavier, more expensive with a slight scent of rich perfume lingering on it and as Alex reads the poem again there is no doubt in her mind that Lena was responsible for placing this particular poem in her sister’s locker.
Alex does her best not to roll her eyes at the conclusion and leaves Kara to float around on her bubble. She may hate Valentine’s Day but that’s no reason to ruin Kara’s fun.
Alex looks for Maggie but can’t find her anywhere. The day passes by and Alex’s frustration only builds after hearing so many people whispering her words into other’s ears.
It becomes obvious by lunchtime that Maggie isn’t going to show up at school today.
Alex is grumpier than usual blaming it on the stupid holiday. For every ounce of ecstatic unwavering adoration Kara has for the holiday Alex has a matching amount of thunderous disdain.
Her friends know when not push so they mostly leave her alone but she musters up a small smile when Lucy hands over some chocolate and slings an arm around her shoulders, keeping it there for the remainder of lunch.
It’s hard to pay attention
in a world
where I don’t have
you next to me.
That being said,
This is hell
and you are my
Alex is on her way to class when she picks up Vicky’s voice down the corridor, her ears still trained to pick up the sound out of habit from so many years of friendship.
She hears Vicky ask Max why he can’t write her poetry like ‘the mystery poet’. In a time before Maggie that might have made Alex’s stomach flip. She’s long since made peace with the fact that she had a crush on her childhood best friend before she even realized she was gay.
That seems like a lifetime ago now anyway
Max’s snide remark about poetry not befitting real men has her rolling her eyes so far back into her head she’s worried they may get stuck in the back of her sockets.
She’s about to move along, really not wanting to hear any more of his asinine comments but the next thing out of his mouth has her stopping dead in her tracks because hell fucking no.
Apparently, Maxwell fucking Lord has somehow got it into his head that the poetry is about him .
Alex cannot even understand how he can support the weight of his own ego or what unfathomable occurrence led him to believe he was God’s gift to women.
Alex feels nauseous.
She does an about face and makes a beeline for the bathroom. She heads for a stall, locking it behind her and pulls out her phone.
She hasn’t so much as opened the app anywhere that wasn’t behind the closed door of her bedroom since Kara accidently made it famous.
Usually, she wouldn’t risk updating it at school but no way in hell is she is letting Max Lord exist one more single solitary fucking second under the illusion that her damn poetry could ever even remotely be about him.
Alex changes her username to 21stCenturySappho and tweaks the bio while she’s at so that it now reads—
Just a girl in love(with a girl)
It takes a considerable amount of willpower to not tack on ‘and none for Maxwell Lord, bye.’
She posts a short poem then and there for good measure.
Once upon a time,
a girl fell in love
with a muse, whose
touch revealed all of the
Maggie is back the next day and Alex spots her striding through the front doors and is instantly transported back to Maggie’s first day some time ago.
The Maggie that arrived that fateful day was guarded and tough. There was an underlying hurt that was there if you knew what to look for but Maggie was extremely good at hiding it. She kept mostly to herself at the beginning and came around slowly but Alex noticed her, all of her, right away.
If Alex were a different person she might call it love at first sight.
I wonder how much of it
and how much was fate?
Our first day together,
the moment we met-
was it coincidence,
I believe there’s
no such thing
You are my fate.
We are our destiny.
The aftermath of Valentine’s Day can hardly be avoided and Maggie finds herself horrified at the cheesy explosion of the stupid poetry everyone’s still obsessed with.
Someone had the nerve to actually tape one to her locker and Maggie rips it off viciously. She’s already started to crush the paper in her hand but finds herself inexplicably drawn to it.
She brushes it off as idle curiosity. If no one in this damn school is going to shut up about it, she may as well see for herself why.
You put thoughts into my head
and words into the ink
that captures my voice.
We can talk for days on end
and never run out of things to say.
There are a million things I want
you to know and need to tell you
in all the moments of this life we share
you render me speechless.
Maggie does end up crumpling the poem up and throwing it angrily in the trash.The words tug at her heartstrings as she imagines a certain someone whispering them softly to her.
She shoves that thought all the way the fuck down furious with herself.
Maggie promised herself after Eliza she would never let this happen again but she’d gone and fallen for yet another friend and now it feels like the stupid poetry is mocking her.
There’s one hung up next to her desk in Ap Lit too because of course that’s just her fucking life.
It seems she literally cannot escape the damn things still scattered everywhere in the school. Maggie ends up reading that one too and there’s something about it nagging her.
It feels familiar and not just in a wishful thinking kind of way. She absentmindedly pulls it off the wall and tucks it into her notebook. Still pondering the elusive notion niggling in the back of her brain.
History may have formed
who I am -
atoms made from
and genes passed down
since the beginning
I am my history
but you are
my guiding light.
Everything else is my
You are my
She finds another on her seat in AP Psych and spends the entire class reading it over and over again without realizing the passage of time.
And over time I will forget many things,
I will forget names.
I will forget faces.
I will forget moments I shared with the world.
But I will never forget you,
as long as I am here.
As long as my heart beats,
you live on.
And you are beautiful.
Later that night Maggie sits alone in her room scrolling through 21stCenturySappho’s page for the first time.
She lingers on the most recently posted poem and in that moment she knows unequivocally that Alex is ‘the mystery poet.’
And my name on your lips,
or when you laugh uncontrollably-
it sounds like sunshine
and makes me feel like
I’m worth the world.
Maggie wants to be a detective. Alex is her friend, her closest friend. She’s been in every single one of Alex’s English classes since she transferred to Midvale. She’s seen the countless poems doodled in the margins of Alex’s notebooks.
So how the hell had she missed this.
Maggie sighs, burying her face in her pillow maybe because she hadn’t wanted to see it.
Maggie’s been in love with Alex pretty much since the moment she first laid eyes on her. Back when Eliza’s betrayal was a giant gaping bloody wound and her parents did the unthinkable by throwing out their own child because of who she loved.
Maggie swore she would never love again. Never give anyone the power to hurt her that way and then Alex Danvers walked into her line of sight.
Maggie tried to keep a low profile but she found herself adopted into the Danvers’ sisters ragtag little family. They barely had four whole parents to put together between the eight of them but they had each other's backs in a way Maggie had never experienced.
They helped Maggie heal, the way they all helped each other heal from all the shitty hands life had dealt each of them.
The closer Maggie got with Alex the harder she worked to suppress her feelings for fear of losing her newfound family.
And then the poems started and Maggie realizes she must have known but didn’t want to face the fact that the girl she’s been crushing on for ages, the girl she’s grown to love was in love with someone else.
Maggie continues scrolling and pauses when a poem catches her eye.
She vows then and there to pay closer attention to Alex and figure out who she’s writing about. She just wants Alex to be happy so maybe if she figures out who the poems are about she can give them a little push.
What scares me is how
selfless these feelings are.
I would move mountains
to make you smile,
and I would give my heart
to ensure your continued happiness.
The radio is blasting as Vasquez is driving them to the mall after school on a Friday and Maggie watches Alex scribbling away in one of her notebooks. Lucy teases her about doing homework right away on a Friday because that’s what Sunday nights are for but Maggie notices a new poem appear during the time Alex disappears for a bathroom run.
I’m trying to recall that moment,
the moment when every
poem, every quote, every love song
became about you.
I can’t remember.
Maybe they’ve always
been about you,
maybe I wasn’t
listening hard enough.
Maybe I wasn’t listening
The next weekend they all spend the day on the beach.
Alex, Lucy and Vasquez charge into the water with their surfboards the second their feet hit sand. Kara and James opt to stay on the beach tossing around a football.
Winn and Lena huddle underneath an umbrella trying not to burn and Maggie and Winn try to avoid getting sand in their gameboys while Lena reads a book.
They spend the day relaxing, laughing and consuming a truly alarming amount of food. When night falls they light a bonfire and roast marshmallows. A flask appears and no one comments on the fact that it’s monogrammed SL. They tell stories and pick out constellations and fall asleep in a heap right there on the sand and blankets outside Alex and Kara’s house.
Hours after Maggie has returned home the next day a new poem, short and sweet is posted.
You are the sound of
the ocean meeting the shore-
constant , melodic, calm,
and something I always
long to hear.
Maggie is starting to get frustrated, the poems are beautiful but annoyingly vague. It makes sense of course but the lack of any leads is infuriating. She lies awake staring at the ceiling it’s almost two am when her phone buzzes. She raises an eyebrow when she sees it's a notification from 21stCenturySappho’s Instagram. She reads the poem and can’t help but snort at the poetic irony.
And on the nights I lay awake
I think about life, and I think
about the world and it’s people,
and about the infinite stars in the
never ending skies, and I
think about you a lot more
then I should.
Maggie is passed out cold at the lunch table sleep having eluded her for the past two weeks. It’s driving her crazy that she can’t seem to figure who Alex is interested in. Sometimes she almost thinks it might be…. but she shoves that thought away wishful thinking never did anyone any good and hope hurts too much.
It’s better to just set your expectations low and you never have to worry about reality falling short.
A gentle nudge to her shoulder rouses Maggie from her deep sleep. She blinks blearily up at Alex’s concerned face.
“You looked like you needed the sleep but lunch is almost over Mags, you should eat something.” Maggie’s heart stutters at the nickname and she belatedly realizes that Alex’s hand is gently combing through her hair. She smiles slowly and tries not to pout when Alex removes her hand.
She stretches and shakes out her muscles reaching for her untouched sandwich, “Thanks, I’ve been having a lot of trouble sleeping lately she says in between bites.”
Alex keeps peering at her with the cute little brow furrow she gets when she’s worried and Maggie is saved from doing something stupid like kissing her by the shrill ringing of the bell ending lunch.
When Maggie opens up Instagram later that night she ends up dropping her phone.
She scrambles to pick it up heart threatening to wildly beat out of chest because there’s a new poem and Maggie has never quite believed in coincidences but the alternative is even more fantastical in Maggie’s mind.
They say that when you can’t sleep
It’s because somebody’s dreaming of you.
I apologize, because I know that
I’m the cause of all your sleepless nights.
Maggie doesn’t quite dare to believe that Alex might actually be writing about her . The idea seems absurd to Maggie but that poem is haunting her.
Maggie slides into their usual lunch table next to Alex still lost in thought. A few minutes later she looks up confused to find she and Alex are alone. Maggie double checks her watch and looks back up at the empty table.
“Uh where is everybody?”
“Took you long enough to notice, Sawyer.” Alex snorts.
"Lucy and Vasquez went home sick, Kara and James had an editor’s thing and the principal requested Winn to fix something with the P.A. systems and Lena tagged along in case he needed help.
“Huh, guess it’s just you and me then Danvers.” Maggie smiles but it doesn’t quite reach her eyes.
Of course, Alex notices.
“Hey, you alright?”
“Yeah, it’s just you ever wonder what we’re doing here? Like there’s this whole great big universe out there and we’re.... just here all tiny and inconsequential.”
“You are pretty small.” Alex teases but sobers when Maggie shoots her an unamused look. “What’s got you feeling existential in the middle of the day.”
“I don’t know sometimes it all just feels so…”
“Pointless? Insignificant? Trivial?”
“Yea I guess.” Maggie shrugs.
“Hey I feel like that half the time what with Kara being...Kara.” Alex shares a small smile with Maggie. “Sometimes I think about the fact that the rarest gas on earth was so abundant on her planet it was named after it.”
Maggie tilts her head in confusion.
“This universe is filled with so many interesting ultimately meaningless things.” Alex shrugs. They spend the rest of the lunch period discussing the most random space facts they can think of.
After the bell rings, Alex slips her hand into Maggie’s as they walk to class. “The universe is full of some not so meaningless things too.” She says with a gentle squeeze.
I am nothing.
I am a microcosm,
a petty individual
in the end,
Human ego has allowed people to believe
that in a universe as vast
and as enigmatic as our own--
people think that they matter.
I have accepted
that I am nothing.
but when I look into your
magnetic brown eyes-
I feel like
I am everything.
Maggie stares at her laptop and her heart melts. She’s beginning to more than just suspect that maybe just maybe Alex is writing about her.
It’s still pretty impossible for Maggie to believe that the girl she likes might actually like her back but for the first time she truly starts hope.
It’s just she can’t put herself out there again not after what happened last time. Alex isn’t like that she knows but some traumas run too deep.
So Maggie hatches a plan.
She starts off subtle. When Alex asks her a science question after going off on a long impressive tangent she just grins and says “Sorry Danvers you rendered me speechless for a minute there.” before answering Alex’s original question before she could examine Maggie’s statement too closely.
When Alex crashes into her during a field hockey scrimmage she just smirks up and says “I feel blindsided by you, Danvers.”
They sit in Alex’s room homework finished and movie long since forgotten, just talking and sharing. During a lull in conversation Maggie smiles and tells Alex “It’s awesome that we can talk for days on end and never run out of things to say.”
Alex goes over their strategy in the dugout before dismissing everyone, Maggie doesn’t move and Alex calls over her shoulder to her “Sawyer you paying attention?” “Sorry maybe I wasn’t listening hard enough.”
They’re hanging out at lunch and Maggie throws subtle out the window. Alex laughs at one of her cheesy dinosaur jokes and Maggie beams before reverently informing her “I would move mountains to make you smile.”
Alex tilts her head trying to puzzle out what’s happening but her attention is drawn away by Kara and James in a seemingly eternal scuffle for food.
I guess it crosses my mind,
whether or not you read these words,
and if you do, whether you recognize
yourself within them.
If you do manage to find
your reflection here,
please do me just one favor-
let me know if you understand
just how much I adore you.
Something is slightly different but Alex can’t put her finger on what.
It’s driving her crazy and sleep eludes her as she tries to figure it out. It’s like being in a constant state of wondering if she left the oven on or locked the front door.
She stares at her ceiling for hours on end night after night in vain, seeking the answers just out of reach but inevitably drifts off thinking of Maggie.
When it’s late,
and I can barely
keep my eyes open,
and I can’t form
my scrambled mind
It hits her like a bolt of lightning half-way through Ancient Civ and she experiences one of her most embarrassing moments to date when she just straight up falls out of her chair in the middle of class.
She waves off the concern and questioning glances in a complete and utter state of shock because Maggie has been quoting her .
As in her poems.
Maggie reads her poems.
Maggie reads her poems.
What the fuck.
The first time Maggie mentioned them she said they were stupid and made her wanna puke but all Alex can think about is the soft look in her eyes when she said she would move mountains to make her smile.
I look for you
in the strangers
that pass me by.
I look for you in
and the way
their story can
be read from the
sway of their hips.
I look for you constantly
and I guess I’ll only
when I know you’re
searching for me, too.
They’ve been dancing around this thing for weeks. Maggie’s quotes are getting bolder and they spend increasing amounts of time in each other’s personal space.
It feels as if they’re both standing on the edge of a precipice too scared jump but unwilling to take a step back either.
They’re both so terrified of losing each other that neither knows how to make that first move towards something more.
Your eyes may be dark
but all I see in them
is the sun shining
with all its force.
And the soft touch of your smiles
leaves my heart needing more,
And Lord help me when
I hear your laugh,
you are so much,
even if you don’t know it.
You are everything.
And maybe one of these days
I’ll be brave, and
I’ll look you in the eye
and tell you that I love you
more than I’ve ever loved another being.
One day, I’ll tell you how much I love you,
even if it means saying goodbye
to the way things used to be.
Alex posts the fused poem and swears she’ll work up the courage sooner rather than later.
Maggie beats her too it. She storms up to Alex locker phone in her white-knuckled grip and tears shimmering in her eyes but not falling.
“Did you mean it?”
Alex can only nod and Maggie grabs her hand guiding her through the hallways and outside heedless of the morning bell.
They approach the practice fields Maggie leading, their hands still clasped but Alex following willingly.
Maggie takes a chance and pulls Alex behind the bleachers. She spins Alex around pushing her gently against the frame bringing their bodies close together.
Alex gently tucks a lock of hair behind Maggie’s ear and Maggie leans in closer, stopping with just her breath ghosting Alex’s lips, giving her ample time to pull away.
She doesn’t so Maggie closes the distance and Alex melts into the kiss.
They get lost in the heady swirl of emotions, Maggie’s hand slip behind Alex’s neck and Alex’s move to settle by Maggie’s ribs.
They kiss for minutes or maybe hours before Alex pulls back barely able to voice a “wow.”
Maggie’s eyes remained closed and she has a slightly dazed smile on her face so it takes a moment before she realizes Alex is no longer within touching distance.
She opens her eyes to find Alex rummaging through her backpack.
“What’re you— “ the question dies on her lips when she sees Alex emerge triumphantly with a leatherbound notebook.
Maggie can’t help the laugh that bubbles up.
“Really, you need to write poetry right this second Danvers?”
“Hush, Sawyer. It’ll only take a minute.” Maggie watches fondly as Alex scratches a few sentences onto the paper before hastily pulling out her phone and snapping a picture.
Less than a minute later the book has been returned to her bag, the phone put away and Alex has moved right back into Maggie’s arms.
Alex lightly traces her fingers over the curve of Maggie’s cheek, before moving to run her fingers through Maggie’s hair. Maggie is hypnotized and Alex leans closer looking into Maggie’s eyes.
“They were all about you, you know.” is all she says before drawing Maggie into another earth-shattering kiss.
You were the best muse
I ever had.
It was all about you,
every last damn word.