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Sweet Girl

Chapter Text

"Do I even want to know what it is you've managed to muddle up this time." The words are out of Ava's mouth before she realizes it's not the captain she's talking to but Amaya.

Amaya wants to roll her eyes but doesn't. She can see the look go from annoyance, to worry, to indifference within seconds.

"Where is Captain Lance," Ava asks not seeing her in the background.

"She's." Amaya pauses, thinking of the best way to word their current predicament. "She's around."

"Okay, well then why is she not the one contacting me," Ava asked aggravated. She didn't have time for these idiots.

"Well that's the thing, Sara got hurt during our last mission." It took Amaya a second to realize Ava was no longer on the screen in front of her. "Rude," she muttered to herself. She spun around quickly at Ava's voice.

"What happened," Ava asked already leaving the captain's office, making her way to the medbay.

Amaya followed behind at a loss for words. She had expected Ava to lecture them about being reckless and being ill equipped at keeping their captain safe, she had not expected her to make an appearance. Amaya shrugged, maybe it was better for her to see firsthand what was going on.

"She's not in here." Ava pointed out turning to face Amaya. The room was empty except for Ray.

"You didn't really give me a chance to explain," Amaya said, doing her best to be patient with the agent. This was for Sara, she reminded herself.

"I'm giving you a chance now, so explain." Ava was once again becoming irritated. She hated displaying emotions, especially in front of the legends, she wanted them to take her seriously, to fear her, and she couldn't do that if she showed them how worried she'd been about their captain.

"Sara is fine now, but she's not exactly." Amaya stalls searching for the right word. "She's not the person she was."

"She's actually half the person she used to be." Ray interrupted. Feeling really proud of his description of the whole situation.

"Will you two idiots stop talking in riddles and just tell me what's going on," Ava snapped. She could not make heads or tails of what the pair was trying to tell her.

"Sara stop," Zari chased after Sara interrupting the three adults with Nate close behind her. Mick took his time making it to the medbay. Once there he leaned against the door and took a long swig of his beer. He'd been getting quite the entertainment watching Zari and Nate trying to convince grouchy, tired Sara to nap.

"No Zari, I'm not tired and I don't need a nap," Sara yelled hiding behind Ava.

Ava opened and closed her mouth a couple times not knowing what to say. She knew the legends always managed to get themselves into trouble but this was a new level, even for them. "Does someone want to explain why there is a miniature Sara running around," she asked, her eyes searching the remainder of the team member's.

"Since Jax left we haven't really had anyone to keep up with maintenance of the ship, Ray tries but there are somethings that Jax was especially good at," Nate began to explain.

Ava wanted to ask how this had anything to do with Sara being half her normal size and looking like she was five, had anything to do with the ship's maintenance.

"When Sara got hurt during the mission we brought her back so Gideon could heal her." Amaya picked up the story.

Though it was killing her, Ava waited patiently for them to continue.

It was Ray who did so. "As you know Gideon has the ability to regenerate and heal any tissue, well when Sara was shot she had some internal damage that Gideon had to clean and regenerate."

Ava tried very hard not to think about the fact that Sara had been shot. She gave the legends a hard time but she'd grown quite fond of the team, especially their captain. She'd known there was no going back after she'd disobeyed direct orders to save Sara from the other dimension. "So I'm guessing." She points to young Sara, "That Gideon's regeneration went a bit too far."

The group nodded. "We didn't know it to be a problem until we came to check on her and she was swimming in her clothes."

"Okay," she sighed. "I'll get Gary and a team to come and look at Gideon. Hopefully she can reverse this," she motions at young Sara, really looking at her for the first time. She had the same fire in her eyes as adult Sara. She'd need more information once she was done talking to Gary. She got on her communicator and explained the situation to Gary.

"There is another thing," Amaya interrupted before Ava could release her line with Gary. "Sara can't stay here, not while she's like this." She pointed at young Sara.

"Stop talking about me like I'm not here," Sara whined. "I'm perfectly fine, I can take care of myself." She yelled at the group.

It took everything in all of them not to laugh. Sara's voice was high pitched and no one could take her seriously. The death glare she gave them made it all the more comical.

"I don't know what you want me to do with her," Ava asked. They couldn't possibly think she'd take her.

"We have to deal with this anachronism." As if to prove Amaya's point a time quake occurred shaking the ship and landing Sara's unstable body on her butt.

"I don't have time," Ava began but was quickly interrupted by Gary. She'd forgotten she had him on the line still. After hearing his words she'd have wished she'd disconnected a long time ago.

"Well you do have time off that Director Bennett has been ordering you to take for weeks that you keep putting off."

Ava swears under her breath. She hated that she'd told Gary about that. She had so much time saved up that the Director had been reminding her to use it up once or twice a day. She sighed, she could do this, for Sara, she reminded herself. "Alright fine, but you have to figure something out quickly."

"This outta be good," Mick grinned finishing off his beer and leaving to get another.

"Don't worry Agent Sharpe, we'll figure something out, besides Gideon has assured us that the effects are temporary." Ray smiled, he was positive things would work out, they always did.

"I don't want to go," Sara tells them, though she's sure no one will listen.

"Sara," Amaya takes a knee in front of her. "I know you're in there and I can't imagine how frustrating this is, but it's for the best. This will keep you safe and most importantly, it will keep us safe. We can't be worried about you out in the field. You might be a badass ninja assassin, but you are only five at the moment." Amaya knew Sara's main priority would be the team and so she'd used that to her advantage.

"Fine," she sighed, not at all happy with the whole situation.

"Sara why don't we go to the fabrication room and make you some clothes, doubt you'll want to wear those to bed." Zari extended her hand out to Sara.

Sara glared at her and slapped the hand away. "I may only be three feet tall, but remember I still know 30 or so ways of killing you, right now." Sara threatened and walked out of the room.

Zari swallowed and looked at the rest of the team fearfully. She had no doubt that if Sara wanted to, she'd have her laid out before she could reach her totem.

With Sara out of earshot, Amaya turned to prep Ava. "As you can see Sara is still in there. She has all her memories and mannerisms."

Ava groaned at this. Things could never be simple, clearly she was asking for too much.

"While adult Sara is in there, so is five year old Sara. Her emotions get the better of her, she can't control how she feels, she has tantrums, and she gets tired like any child would, though good luck trying to get her to nap." Amaya watches Ava and she feels for the woman. Adult Sara could be a handful, little Sara was going to be so much worse.

"Your team owes me big for this." Ava finally says, having heard all she needed. She met up with Zari and Sara in the fabrication room. "You almost ready," she asked.

Sara nodded dejectedly. She'd tried to talk Zari into letting her stay but her efforts had failed. It seemed not even Zari, the loophole finder, would help her find a way to stay on the Waverider.

"Let's go then," Ava extended her hand out to Sara. Sara was about to push it away when Ava spoke up. "Look I have to stop by the office and put in for my leave, they can't know you're you, so if anyone asks you're my niece."

"That's a stupid cover," Sara was hating this more and more.

"Stupid as it may be, it's better than nothing." Ava opened a portal to the bureau once again extending her hand out to Sara. She was pleased when Sara took it without a fight.

Ava and Sara made their way to her office hand in hand. "Gary," Ava called out to him. "Is the team ready to go," she asked. The sooner they left the sooner they could have Sara back to normal and back on the ship.

"We'll be leaving shortly and the car is ready, keys are on your desk." He looked down at Sara. "Hello little one," he smiled down at her.

Sara let go of Ava's hand and grabbed a hold of Gary's tie bringing him down to her level. "Gary, I know you know who I am, call me little one again and I will break your jaw." She pushed him away from her taking Ava's hand once again. She felt proud when she heard Ava chuckle at the threat.

Gary cleared his throat, tugged to loosen the tie from around his neck and looked at Ava fearfully. "Could she do that," he asked in a whisper.

"I wouldn't doubt it. Get Gideon fixed Gary," she instructed, guiding Sara to her office.

"You really need to stop threatening Gary, he still sees a psychiatrist from the last time he was on the ship with you," Ava tells her. The poor man had a good heart and despite all his faults he was a decent agent.

"But he's so easy. I can't help that the bureau hired a bunch of softies." Sara replies letting go of Ava's hand once they're in her office.

Ava gives her a pointed look.

"Not all softies, obviously." She corrected winking at Ava.

"Agent Sharpe, Agent Green tells me you are finally going to take some time off." Director Bennet entered her officer after a short knock.

She wondered why he even bothered to knock if he was going to enter without waiting to be told to do so. "Yes sir, my sister asked that I watch my niece for a few days while she and her husband tend to some business."

"Well hello there," Director Bennet turned to Sara. "Aren't you the cutest little thing."

Sara couldn't believe she had to put up with this garbage. She made eye contact with Ava. She smiled sweetly at Ava when she gave her a pleading look not to knock him out. She turned on her full smile and directed it towards the director. "Thank you, Auntie Aves says after we leave her she's going to take me to get some ice cream and we're going to the zoo tomorrer , and watch princess movies." She purposely mispronounced words and elevated her excitement for ice cream.

"Well sounds like you'll have a fantastic time. Your auntie works too much so you make sure she relaxes some okay," he asked feeling proud of himself for successfully getting Ava out of the office and his interaction with her niece.

"Yes Sir," Sara smiled and gave him a mock salute. She rolled her eyes when he turned away from her and faced Ava.

"Enjoy your time off Agent Sharpe, dealing with the legends is no easy task, you've more than earned this time off." With that he left.

Ava tries and fails at holding back her laughter. The look on Sara's face is priceless.

Sara wants to be angry that Ava is laughing at her but she can't bring herself to be too mad, after all this is the first time she's truly heard Ava laugh and she decides she doesn't mind the sound at all. "If you're done," she says after a minute, "I'd like to leave, this place makes me itch."

Ava clears her throat remembering where she was and who she was with. "Right, sorry." She stands up and grabs her keys.

"Let's go." She's half tempted to call her little one but she knows better than to push Sara too much. Being stuck in the body of a five year old couldn't be easy, especially for someone that could kill a person a hundred different ways before they knew what was happening.

"You have got to be shitting me," Sara says as she looks in the back seat of Ava's SUV. She knew she would not be able to sit up front, she had accepted that but this, no, this was too much. "I'm not sitting in that." She pointed at the booster seat.

"Sara, don't make this difficult. It's the law." Ava could feel a headache coming on. This was going to be the worst vacation she'd ever taken. She was going to kill Gary.

"I don't want to." Sara crossed her arms and stomped her foot.

"Sara please," she pleaded. "Can you not fight me on this. You can get seriously hurt if we get in an accident."

"Awe Aves are you worried about me," Sara teased.

Ava wanted to make a snarky remark but she knew that if she did, there was no talking Sara into that booster seat so instead, she asked her nicely. "Sara please."

Sara sighed and climbed into the back of the SUV. "I buckle myself." She said in a way of compromise.

"Deal," Ava said, happy with the cooperation. She'd take what she could.

"So Aves, can we get some ice cream. Pleeeease," she drug out the word in hopes of convincing Ava.

"Not tonight Sara, it's getting pretty late. How about we grab a pizza instead." She waited for the argument but was pleased when none came.

"Okay, tomorrow," she asked hopeful.

"Maybe." Ava wasn't sure she wanted to give Sara any sugar, she was high energy as it was.

"So that's a no," Sara pouted.

Ava regarded her in the rearview mirror and smiled. Young Sara was adorable. She was sure those words would never leave her mouth. "No, it's a maybe."

"So it's a maybe yes, not a maybe no." Sara clarified smiling mischievously.

"You're impossible," Ava chuckled. The next few days were definitely going to be interesting.

Chapter Text

“Sara don’t be stubborn just take the bed please.” Ava argued for the third time. She was trying to be patient but Sara was frustrating her to no end.

“No, I’ll take the couch, I’m fine. You don’t have to treat me like a child,” Sara yelled, stomping her foot.

Ava wanted to laugh so badly but she knew that would only make the situation worse. She was trying so hard to take Sara seriously but she just couldn’t. Not when she was only three feet tall and had the high pitched voice of a five year old.

“I don’t need the bed,” Sara continued her argument. “I’m young, the couch won’t hurt my back.”

This time Ava did laugh. While it was ridiculous, Sara had actually made a valid argument. It was strange to look at Sara, see a five year old but actually talk to the adult version of her.

“Sara don’t cry.” She knelt down to be at Sara’s level. She knew while grown up Sara was still there, the emotions of five year old Sara often won out. She assumed the no napping bit didn’t help in the least.

“I can’t help it,” Sara cried. “You hurt my feelings,” she whined, her bottom lip trembling.

Ava tried her best not to roll her eyes. She reminded herself that young Sara was in control, adult Sara didn’t have much say in the emotions department. “I’m sorry I hurt your feelings sweet girl, I wasn’t laughing at you,” she told her gently placing her hands on her shoulders. The term of endearment surprised her. She never thought one would be used towards a legend. This whole situation had to be getting to her. That was the only excuse she could make.

“You weren’t,” Sara asked, wiping at her cheeks.

“No, I was laughing, because you were right. The couch would be awful on my old back.” Ava’s couch was quite comfortable but she never liked to spend more than a few hours on it.

“Cause you’re old,” Sara teased.

“Hey now, don’t get carried away,” she chastised. She was amazed at how quickly Sara put her head down and apologized. This whole situation was quite an adjustment. “Why don’t you brush your teeth while I get you a blanket and pillow.”

Sara nodded and ran off in the direction of the bathroom.

Ava shook her head. She really hoped Gary and the Legends found a solution to this quickly. While little Sara was adorable she wasn’t sure how much more she could handle. In the last two hours alone she’d had to deal with two melt downs and as many tantrums.

“Goodnight Ava,” Sara whispered, kissing Ava on the cheek while being tucked in.

Ava paused in her actions and smiled. She had not expected the sweet gesture and chalked it up to it being routine for five year old Sara. “Goodnight Sara, I know you’re frustrated and I can’t imagine all that you’re feeling right now but we will figure this out okay.” Ava assured her.

Sara nodded with tears in her eyes. “I know Aves, thanks for putting up with me, I know I’ve been a handful,” she said apologetically. She’d known she’d given Ava a hard time earlier. She reminded herself to go easy on her the following day. After all, Ava was doing her and the team a favor by taking her in.

Ava thought to their earlier adventure. She’d made the mistake of stopping at a grocery store for drinks, snacks and essentials she’d need while Sara was staying with her. Sara had made it a point to say the most inappropriate things, use foul language, and ask sex related questions anytime an adult was within earshot. Ava couldn’t remember a time she’d been more embarrassed. After she begged her to stop, Sara had taken pity on her and taken it easy while at the register. Instead of her crude comments she took to flirting with the cashier. The cashier, a woman in her late twenties, was over the moon. She gushed over the attention young Sara gave her. Ava had known adult Sara had major game but to see young Sara in action disturbed her greatly. Sara had found the whole experience down right hilarious. She spent the entire ride to Ava’s reenacting all of Ava’s appalled expressions along with the expressions of the customers that had been within hearing distance. Ava shook her head, looking back on it now, it was quite comical, but she wasn’t going to tell young Sara that, no, she didn’t need any encouragement. She smiled and pushed a strand of hair out of Sara’s face. “Nonsense, you’re perfect.”

Sara smiled brightly and hugged Ava once again, she hadn’t been expecting Ava to be so sweet and understanding.

Once Sara was settled down in her makeshift bed, Ava watched her for a few to make sure she was alright before turning the living room lights off. She left the hallway light on as she passed to her bedroom. She was sure adult Sara wasn’t afraid of the dark but she had no idea what bothered the young one. A few hours later Ava groaned rolling over in her bed in an attempt to get away from the person tugging at her shirtsleeve.

“Ava.”

It took a minute for Ava to remember who the voice belonged to and why she was currently in her apartment. She sat up wiping the sleep from her eyes. “Sara, what’s wrong,” she asked turning to face her.

Sara cried wiping at her tearstained cheeks. “I had a bad dream,” she whimpered.

Ava reached out to her. Her heart broke to see Sara like this. She had fear written all over her face. “Come here sweetie.” This time she didn’t mind the endearment so much. She wanted so badly to comfort Sara, to take the fear away.

Sara sniffled before moving across the bed to climb into Ava’s lap.

“Wanna tell me what the dream was about,” she asked.

Sara shook her head in the negative.

Ava felt Sara’s tears soak through her shirt. She tightened her hold wishing there was something she could do.

“Can I stay here,” Sara asked not wanting Ava to let her go. Having woken up alone in the dark living room that felt larger than usual had frightened her more than the dream itself.

“Of course you can sweetheart.” Ava laid down bringing Sara with her. “You’re safe now.” She reassured the tiny blonde. She hated that little Sara was having adult Sara nightmares.

“Ava, they said I shouldn’t be here, you won’t let them get me right,” Sara asked after several minutes of silence, her face still tucked away in Ava’s neck.

“No, no, I won’t let anyone get you. Now go to sleep.”

Ava lay awake the next morning arms still wrapped around Sara. She wondered how often the adult had nightmares. She’d read Sara’s file several times. She had her story memorized. She’d known there was trauma there but she’d never thought about how it affected the blonde mentally. She always appeared so strong, so put together, so frustratingly upbeat. She had to give her credit, she never showed weakness. It was that last thought that had her debating whether she should get out of bed before Sara woke up or wait. On the one hand, adult Sara could wake and feel embarrassed that she’d come to her in a moment of fear, on the other, young Sara could wake up alone and feel that she’d broken her promise to stay with her and keep her safe from “them”, whoever they were. The decision was taken out of her hand as Sara stirred. She closed her eyes, held her breath and waited to see which Sara she was going to get.

Sara wiggled out of Ava’s hold and sat up looking down at her. She brought her face down so that she was only inches away from Ava’s. “Ava,” she whispered loudly. “Are you awake,” she asked.

Ava smiled. Young Sara it was. “Yeah I’m awake.” She whispered just as loudly.

“Can we have pancakes.” Her dad always made her pancakes as a child and she was craving them now. She didn’t want the oatmeal she normally had for breakfast.

“I think we can make that happen.”

Sara let out a’ yay’, and jumped off the bed.

Ava sighed. “Guess that’s my cue to get up.” She looked at the clock on her nightstand and was surprised that it was almost nine. She hadn’t expected to sleep in. It was a welcomed change. By the time she’d made it to the kitchen Sara had the pantry door open and she was jumping up and down trying to look at the higher shelves in search of the pancake mix. “Sara, I’ll get it, don’t climb on the shelves.” She moved quickly to pull Sara away. “Why don’t you go put something on TV while I make breakfast.”

Sara pouted. “But I want to help.”

“Alright fine,” Ava said after giving it some thought. “You can help with the mixing, I do the cooking. I can’t have you burning yourself and your team thinking I did it on purpose.”

Sara scoffed. “My team would never think that.” She defended them.

Ava stared at her while raising an eyebrow, as in to say, ‘really’.

“Okay maybe.” Sara conceded. “But I’d tell them it wasn’t your fault.”

The duo set out to make pancakes. Sara was tasked with mixing the ingredients while Ava got the pan warm.

“Hey Aves.” Sara smiled up at her. “You have something on your nose.”

Ava stopped and touched her nose. “I do, where, how did I get anything on my face.” She hadn’t touched the mix except to pour it in the bowl that Sara was supposed to be mixing.

“There.” Sara touched her face, putting mix on it. She giggled to herself, proud that she’d tricked Ava.

Ava was not impressed. “You little,” she stopped mid-sentence at Sara’s worried look. Ava rethought her actions. Her first instinct had been to get mad, adult Sara knew better, but the Sara that was looking at her frightened that she’d be in trouble didn’t. She’d done it out of fun, so Ava smiled instead. “I’ll show you something on your face.” With that, she dipped her finger in the mix and drew a line across Sara’s face. “Uh Sara,” she said while pointing to her forehead. “You have something on you face.”

Sara giggled and wiped at the mix. “You’re silly Aves.”

The rest of the pancake making went without incident. At one point Sara had wanted to start a food fight, which Ava had put an immediate stop to. She was not going to clean up that kind of mess. Sara had been disappointed but had quickly moved on.

“These are really good, thanks Aves,” Sara said between bites, Ava had not allowed her to dowse them in syrup as she’d wanted to, but it turned out they didn’t need it.

“You’re welcome Sara. I was thinking, did you really want to go to the zoo or were you just saying that to Director Bennett. Because if you want, I think it’s the perfect day for the zoo.” She didn’t have to wait long for Sara’s response. She squealed, dropped her fork and gave her a tight hug.

“Yay, I love the zoo and all the aminals.” She’s so excited she doesn’t even realize she’s mispronounced the word and so Ava says nothing. She was beginning to enjoy young Sara quite a bit. With something to look forward to, Sara inhaled the rest of her food, dropped her plate in the sink and ran off to change.

Ava followed her actions soon after. She didn’t want to keep Sara waiting too long. If she thought adult Sara could be impatient, she had nothing on her younger self.

“Aves,” she whined. “Hurry up before all the animals go to sleep.”

“I’m coming, I’m coming, jeez.” Ava came out a minute later dressed and in a tight pair of jeans, a T-shirt and a thin green jacket.

“You look good Aves, much better than the suit.” Sara looked her up and down in appreciation.

Ava felt uncomfortable. She knew it was adult Sara talking but it felt so weird hearing it in young Sara’s voice. “Well I can’t exactly where this to work.”

Sara thought about it for a second and nodded muttering, that’s true, that’s true. “Okay let’s go.”

Ava sighed in relief glad that Sara wasn’t going out of her way to make her uncomfortable. The drive to the zoo wasn’t long and most of it was spent with Sara chatting away about all the animals she wanted to see and about her trips with her dad when she was younger.

“Ava.” Sara tugged at her jacket sleeve. “I can’t see.”

They were at the lion exhibit and Sara was trying hard to look over the barrier. She was about to climb on top of it when Ava pulled her away and picked her up instead. She did not want Sara to become a snack for the lions. She settled her on her hip and moved closer to the barrier. “Better,” she asked.

Sara nodded excitedly, finally able to see the pair of lions. It became routine after the second time Sara had complained that she couldn’t see. They’d walk to an exhibit and Ava would pick Sara up so she could get a better look. Sara would cheer every time they reached a new exhibit. She was especially thrilled when they reached the birds.

“Canaries.” Ava read after having picked her up once again.

“They’re my favorite,” Sara told her, looking at the birds.

“I figured as much,” Ava commented.

“When I was younger,” she spoke softly so outside ears couldn’t hear. “My dad got me a canary. When the gambit sank and I was floating on a broken piece of wood thinking I was going to die, a canary flew and landed on the board. It gave me hope. So when I joined the league and they had me choose a new name, that’s what I chose. Ta-er al-Safer.” She spoke her Arabic name.

Ava hadn’t known the origin of her name, her file had given her Sara’s league name but never the reason behind it. She felt honored that Sara had felt comfortable enough to share that with her. She cleared her throat not wanting to show how much her sharing had meant to her. “Want a picture with your namesake,” she asked.

Sara’s eyes grew wide as if she’d never thought to do that. “Yes, you too,” she said animatedly.

Ava didn’t want to take a picture but she couldn’t say no to the freckled face looking at her with those big blue pleading eyes. “Sure, why not.” She conceded. She positioned them so that the birds could be seen clearly. “Smile,” she told Sara and took a selfie. She smiled looking at the picture, showing it to Sara.

Sara nodded saying she liked it and asked for Ava to send it to her.

Ava promised to send it to her. “You good here, I recall someone asking for ice cream yesterday.” She set Sara down when she wiggled out her hold. “I take that as a yes then,” she clarified. “Okay, okay, let’s go.” She laughed and let Sara pull her away from the birds. The duo found an ice cream stand not far from the bird exhibit. Ava was paying when she heard Sara yell. She turned in time to see Sara picking herself up off the ground ready to hit a boy that appeared to be a couple years older than her. Ava cringed, she was sure if Sara punched him she’d break his nose or jaw. She was amazed when Sara put her fist down telling him he wasn’t worth it. She made her way to Sara quickly. “Sara, what happened,” she asked.

“This asshole pushed me,” she said pointing to the boy.

“Excuse me,” a woman gasped as she wrapped an arm around the boy’s shoulders. “You watch your mouth young lady.” She gave Sara a repulsed look.

Sara stood up straighter ready to put the woman in her place when she felt a hand on her shoulder. The person the hand belonged to gave her shoulder a gentle squeeze before stepping in front of her. “You tell your son to stop being a bully or next time I won’t stop her from rearranging his face. As a matter of fact if I so much see you near her I’ll rearrange yours too.”

The woman gasped flabbergasted. “How dare you,” she asked, horrified that anyone would talk to her in such a way.

Ava paid her no mind. “You okay.” She knelt down in front of Sara placing a hand on each of her shoulders.

Sara nodded, a single tear escaping. It had taken everything in her not to beat the boy to a pulp. She could feel the blood lust rearing its ugly head. To make matters worse, frustration was getting the better of her and try as she may she could not hold back the tears. “I’m okay.”

“How dare you talk to me like that,” the woman asked putting her hand on Ava’s shoulder.

“Hold that thought.” Ava smiled sweetly at Sara before standing up and very quickly grabbing the hand on her shoulder and twisting it. “Touch me or come near us again and I will break both your arms. Do we understand each other,” she asked putting pressure on her wrist.

The woman nodded in pain. “Let’s go Timmy.” She took a hold of her son and led him away.

Sara smiled and stuck her tongue out at the boy when he turned his head to look at her. He complained to his mother who only tugged on his arm and lead him away.

“Sara,” Ava said taking a knee in front of her once again. “I’m really proud of you for not punching his teeth in. I know how badly you wanted to, trust me, I wanted to kick both of their asses.” She smiled at Sara wiping the tears from her face. “Come here.” She opened her arms allowing Sara to come in for a hug.

Sara hugged her tightly.

“So what do you say about that ice cream,” she asked.

Sara nodded but did not release her hold on Ava.

Figuring she wasn’t ready to let go, Ava picked her up and walked back to the ice cream stand. Ordering Sara another ice cream and one for herself.

Chapter Text

“Okay fine, but, I want to play in the bath,” Sara said when Ava told her she had to take one after a day at the zoo.

Ava thought about it, mentally listing the pros and cons of bath versus shower. “I don’t see the problem with that.” She couldn’t help but smile as Sara fist pumps the air and runs for the bathroom.

Ava started the bath and used some of her body wash to create bubbles. She hadn’t had time for a bubble bath in years and so she didn’t have the necessary products for one. She figured young Sara didn’t care about skin care and just wanted to pop the bubbles.

“Ava stay, I don’t have anything to play with, please stay and entertain me,” she asked sweetly when Ava tried to leave. Sara stripped out of her clothes and got in the tub wasting no time in popping bubbles.

“Alright, but after I make a call to see how the team is doing and on two conditions.” She waits to make sure she has Sara’s full attention before she continues. “You don’t splash me with water and second.” She doesn’t get to finish as Sara interrupts.

“Second, I don’t tease you for how uncomfortable you’re acting with seeing naked five year old me. Got it.” Sara had seen her look away as she’d started taking her clothes off. She didn’t see the big deal in undressing in front of her.

“I was going to say early bedtime but that works too.” She smiled at the glare Sara directed her way. “I’ll be right back, try not to drown.” She left the room to talk to Gary. She hoped more for Sara’s sake than her own that they’d figured something out. Their lack of communication had told her they hadn’t. The more time she spent with young Sara the more she realized she didn’t mind either version. It was becoming noticeable that being trapped in a five year olds body was taking its toll on Sara. She wasn’t used to having to rely on others for minuscule things that she’d normally handle herself. Her frustration was bringing her to tears more quickly. She’d been a lot quieter and moodier after the incident with the boy at the zoo. She’d refused to let go of Ava and had not been as enthused about the rest of the animals. “Gary,” she said through her communicator. “Have you found anything,” she asked before he could get a word in.

“Sorry Agent Sharpe, nothing as of yet. Everything seems operational. We’re trying to reach out to Mr. Jefferson but according to his mother he won’t be available for a few days. Gideon believes that Sara’s condition shouldn’t last more than two days.” He held his breath waiting for her to yell at him and is surprised when she sighs.

“Excuse me if I don’t take Gideon at her word since she caused this whole mess. Keep me posted.” She disconnected before he could respond.

Ava returned to find Sara drawing on her bathroom wall with soap suds. She observed her, making note of the scars that covered her tiny back, once again being reminded that Sara had endured so much. She cleared her throat to let Sara know she was back. “What are you drawing,” she asked taking a seat on the closed toilet lid.

Sara shrugged running her hand across her soapy artwork. “Nothing. I was just bored. Tell me a joke.”

“A joke,” Ava clarified scrunching up her nose.

Sara nodded.

“Ok, um, why can’t you hear when a pterodactyl goes to the bathroom,” she asked.

Sara thought about it for a minute. “Because they’re extinct.”

Ava shook her head. “Nope, because the p is silent.” Ava kept her face straight as she waited for Sara’s reaction.

“That is the worst joke ever.” Sara burst out laughing splashing Ava in the process. She immediately realized what she’d done and stopped her laughter. “Sorry Ava it was an accident.”

Ava wanted to be upset but found that she couldn’t bring herself to be mad. Not when Sara was laughing and being carefree. She would rather this Sara than the melancholy one she’d carried out of the zoo. “I know it was.” She assured her she wasn’t in trouble. “If my joke was so terrible you tell me one.”

“Okay I have a really good one, what happens when an agent gets in bed,” she smiled mischievously.

“Sara.” Ava rolled her eyes. “Seriously,” she asked. She couldn’t believe five year old Sara was being a pervert.

“Sara nothing, do you know the answer or not,” she asked.

“No, what’s the answer.”

“They become an undercover agent.” Sara giggled at her own joke. “What did you think I was going to say, jeez you perv.” Sara teased.

Ava laughed. “You’re ridiculous.” She shook her head. She’d really thought Sara was going to take that in a whole other direction. “Did you wash your hair,” she asked wanting to change the subject before Sara could do any more teasing.

Sara nodded still smiling. “Your shampoo smells amazing. I’m ready to get out now. She stood up and allowed Ava to pick her up, take her out of the tub and wrap a towel around her. “Thanks Aves.” She did not want to try climbing out herself and risk falling and breaking something. She didn’t want Gideon trying to fix her and accidentally making her a toddler instead.

While Sara went into Ava’s bedroom to change, Ava herself grabbed a quick shower. She didn’t feel comfortable leaving Sara unattended for too long.

“Feel better,” Sara asked when Ava entered the living room.

“Much, should you be watching that.” She gestured towards the television. She wasn’t sure what show it was but there seemed to be nudity and torture.

Sara rolled her eyes. She wanted to make a comment about how she wasn’t really five but she didn’t feel like arguing with Ava. She enjoyed the peace between them far too much. She grabbed the remote and searched, until she found something “family” friendly. She settled on Friends. There was no going wrong with that. “Better,” she asked. She was pleased when Ava nodded and settled beside her. “I’m honestly surprised you have Netflix.”

“Can I tell you a secret,” she whispered.

Sara sat up eagerly listening.

“Before I was too busy chasing after your team, I actually had time to watch television.” She smiled and winked at Sara.

“Oh you’ve got jokes.” She laughed, giving Ava a small shove.

“You’re tired,” Ava commented after dinner. She’d been watching Sara nod off beside her for the past thirty minutes.

Sara nodded. “Guess five year old me can’t hang with the big kids.” She laughed. The events of the day had worn her out. No wonder parents made their kids nap.

“You can sleep in the bed if you’d like.” Ava offered. She didn’t want to bring up the nightmares.

“Nah, I’ll be okay.” Sara adjusted her pillow.

Ava got up, turned off the television and tucked Sara in. “Goodnight Sara.” She leaned down and kissed her forehead. “Sweet dreams.”

Sara smiled. She loved this side of Ava. The sweet unguarded one that she was only now allowed to see. “Night Aves. Thanks for today. I had a really good time.” Her eyes were closed before Ava was out of the room.

Ava took the opportunity of an early bed time and went to bed. It wasn’t often that she got to sleep in her own bed and at a decent hour. Her sleep didn’t last long as a whimpering woke her. She opened her eyes searching the room for any sign of Sara, when she didn’t find her she removed the covers and rushed to the living room. She found Sara curled up on the couch rocking in pain. She immediately moved to her and picked her up. “What’s wrong Sara,” she asked worriedly.

“Hurts.” She curled into Ava for comfort. “I tried to not make noise, it just,” she hiccupped. “I hurt so much.”

It tore Ava up to see her in so much pain. She stood up taking Sara with her to her bedroom where her Time Courier was. She opened a portal to the Waverider’s medbay. “Gideon,” she called out. “Gideon, something is wrong with Sara.” She held Sara close as another round of pain hit her.

Amaya came in followed by Zari. “What’s wrong,” Amaya asked. She looked at the pair in their pajamas and then made eye contact with Zari. She didn’t think Agent Sharpe owned anything other than the suits.

“I don’t know, I woke up and she was like this.” Ava was frantic. She hated feeling helpless.

“Agent Sharpe, place her on the chair so that I can scan her,” Gideon instructed.

Ava moved to the chair and attempted to put Sara down but Sara would not have it. She wailed and wrapped her arms around Ava even tighter. “Sara, I know you’re hurting but we need for Gideon to check you out. I promise I’ll be right here the whole time.” To everyone’s surprise she allowed Ava to put her down. Ava took a step back and allowed Gideon to scan her.

“Ouie,” Sara cried. “Hurts.” She looked to Ava pleading for her to make it stop.

Ava fought hard not to let the tears in her eyes fall. She couldn’t bear to see Sara like this. As soon as Gideon’s scan was complete she scooped Sara up in her arms. She sat down in the chair cradling Sara’s body close to hers. “I’ve got you sweet girl. I’ve got you.” She kissed the top of her head completely forgetting who was in the room, a bigger part of her not caring who saw her at that moment. “Gideon,” she called out once Sara calmed down a bit.

“It seems that Captain Lance is going through the process of becoming an adult once again. This normally occurs at a slow and steady rate allowing the body time to adjust. Captain Lance’s growth is accelerated, which is why she’s experiencing so much pain.”

Ava nodded. “Can’t you give her something for the pain. Make the process easier on her,” she asked.

“I’m sorry Agent Sharpe. That would only slow down her recovery. It is best to allow her to go through the process naturally.”

Ava didn’t like that answer one bit. Seeing that there was nothing to be done on the Waverider she stood up, thanked Gideon and opened a portal back into her bedroom. “I’ll keep you posted,” she told the two women who stood with their mouths slightly open.

“What just happened,” Zari asked. “Was that the real Agent Sharpe,” she asked.

“I assure you it was. It would appear that your plan to have Agent Sharpe watch Captain Lance worked. It has certainly built a stronger bond between the two of them.”

“Gideon make sure you never tell Sara or Ava that’s why we worked with Gary to get Ava to watch her.” Amaya had hoped something positive would come out of the mishap of Sara’s de-aging. “She’ll be okay though right Gideon.” She was worried about her friend. She’d never seen her in so much pain.

“The pain will only last a few hours as her body adjusts.” Gideon assured.

***

Ava put Sara in one of her pajama pants and shirts. Sara swam in them but she didn’t seem to care as she lay in bed being held securely in Ava’s arms. Ava continuously reassured her that the pain would pass and that she was there with her, often placing kisses to her head and stroking her hair. Eventually Sara’s cries lessened to tiny sniffles and the occasional whimper, her hold on Ava would tighten and then relax. Ava rocked her till she was sure she’d stay asleep before feeling closing her own eyes. Ava was slowly waking up when she remembered the night before. She remembered Sara being in so much pain. Her eyes snapped open as she realized the body next to hers was not that of a little girl’s. She tensed immediately.

“Does this mean you’re gonna start treating me differently because I’m not five anymore,” Sara asked from beside her, her voice hoarse from the crying she’d done the night before. She looked up at Ava. “Because I don’t want you to.”

Ava had been expecting adult Sara back. Instead she was looking at teenage Sara. Regardless if she was an adult or not she knew that this Sara would need her less and had a better control of her emotions. She wouldn’t have a reason to act how she’d been acting with little Sara, not without her actions being questioned. “I,” she was at a loss for words.

“Please don’t shut me out,” Sara pleaded. “I like the Ava that was around with young me. The one who wasn’t afraid to laugh and give out a hug or two. The one who held me when I was scared and threatened to break a woman’s arms because her son pushed me.”

Ava sighed. Sara was right. She knew she was. “I’m sorry Sara. I just, it was so easy to be all those things with the younger you.”

“Why do they have to be difficult now,” she asked. She knew showing emotion was hard for Ava, especially when directed towards her. They had a rocky start to their friendship but she didn’t want to go back to being cold to each other, not after having experienced affectionate Ava. “I don’t want to go back to how we were. I like warm and open Ava. The Ava that calls me sweet girl when I can’t help but cry and gives me kisses on my head to comfort me.”

“You do,” Ava had thought for sure that Sara would tease her for how she’d been with her five year old self.

She nodded. “Yes very much.”

Ava nodded and started to relax. “It’s still dark out, let’s get a few more hours of sleep. I think we interrupted the growing process.”

“What do you mean.” Sara looked down at herself.

“I’m pretty sure you’re a teenager.” She held back her laugh as long as she could, her efforts were futile as she burst out laughing.

Sara glared at her for a second then smiled. Glad that things were back to normal. “Ugh, I need a drink,” she groaned and lay back down.

“Come here sweet girl.” She opened her arms to her allowing her to cuddle. Once Sara was settled she planted a kiss on the top of her head. “Shouldn’t be too much longer now.”

Sara sighed and nodded. She wasn’t her grown self yet but she was a step closer.

Chapter Text

Ava woke to an empty bed. She looked around for Sara but didn’t find her. She frowned, for a second she wondered if she’d imagined their conversation the night before.

“Hey sleepy head,” Sara said sticking her head in the doorway. I came to make sure you were still alive. Breakfast is ready.” She gave Ava a big smile before exiting the room.

Ava hadn’t noticed the aroma of food until now. She took a long sniff and smiled. Sara had cooked bacon. She got up and joined Sara. “You made breakfast,” she asked in awe. She hadn’t had anyone make breakfast for her. Not in a long time.

Sara just shrugged. “French toast is one of the few things I’m decent at. Sit.” She pulled a chair out for Ava and put a glass of juice in front of her. Once she was seated she brought over the plates of toast and bacon.

“Sara you’re not just decent at this. It’s delicious.” She hummed taking another bite.

Sara blushed and groaned internally. She was a teen with a crush. She preferred her five year old body over this. She’d rather have a tantrum than blush uncontrollably.

Ava smiled having noticed the blush but said nothing.

“This is going to be a long day.” She muttered hoping her blushing was no longer visible.

“It won’t be so bad.” Ava tried to reassure her. She reached across the table giving her hand a small squeeze.

Sara withdrew her hand quickly. “Stop that. You’re not helping. You’re not the one stuck in the body of a hormonal teenager.”

Ava withdrew her hand feeling guilty. She hadn’t thought her action through. She had no idea how to handle teen Sara, had no idea what Sara was going through as a teenager. She’d finally gotten used to the five year old. “Sorry Sara. I guess this will be an adjustment for both of us.”

Sara nodded but said nothing. She was worried she’d say something to further embarrass herself.

“What do you say we go out today,” Ava asked in hopes of cheering Sara up. “We can do whatever you want.”

Sara thought about it for a minute before nodding. “Ever been skating,” she asked. She used to go a lot as a teen.

“I have.” She said. She rolled her eyes at Sara’s shocked face. “You know before I became an agent with the Time Bureau I had a life.”

“Is it my fault that you were always uptight with us,” Sara asked. Until recently she hadn’t known the agent to do anything other than work. “I thought you lived and breathed the Time Bureau.”

“You and your team literally broke time. I was lucky to get a few hours off.” Ava defended. “I lived at work, can you blame me for being less than pleased to see you and your team,” Ava asked.

“Well, when you put it like that.” Sara had known they’d made a mess of things but she’d never stopped long enough to think about why Ava disliked her team so much. “Sorry about that by the way.”

Ava shrugged. “I would be doing some boring government job if not for your team of.” She paused not wanting to finish the sentence and anger Sara, she wanted things to be different and that couldn’t happen if she continued to insult her team.

“Idiots.” Sara finished for her. “You can say it, I won’t get mad.” Sara laughed. “We can be a chainsaw, it’s a fact.”

“But you get the job done, no matter what.” Ava admired that. “And you never leave anyone behind.” Another thing she admired about the legends.

“We weren’t going to leave you behind, even if you were trying to shut us down.” That damn blush was coming back. Sara wanted to crawl under the table and eat her breakfast there.

“Thank you by the way, I wasn’t exactly nice to you,” she said apologetically.

Sara shrugged it off. She wasn’t one to hold a grudge. “It’s in the past. Anyways, we got off topic, can we go to dinner after and the most important part, can we get ice cream.”

“It’s your day, we do whatever you want.” She pretended not to notice the developing blush. Teenage Sara was so easily flustered. She was trying hard not to embarrass her but it seemed any attention she gave Sara resulted in her cheeks turning red.

They spent the first half of the day relaxing with Sara introducing Ava to shows she’d missed out on the past few years.

***

“Ava, I had no idea you could skate so well.” Sara had been amazed how gracefully Ava had moved across the rink. She moved with such speed and ease. If she hadn’t known any better she’d have thought she was a dancer.

Ava smiled, it had felt really good to be out in the rink again. It had been so long since she’d gone out to enjoy herself. “I used to go a lot when I was younger, I spent most of my Saturday nights at the skating rink. It felt good to just relax, thank you.”

Sara beamed and turned away to avoid eye contact. Ava was making things really hard for her, not intentionally, but still. She was being sweet, and relaxed and just all out adorable. Being stuck in a teen’s body was so becoming more and more difficult with each passing minute she spent with Ava. “Stop that.”

“Stop what,” Ava asked not realizing she’d done anything.

“Stop being all cute and smiley and shit. You’re really not helping this.” She pointed to her warm cheeks. It wasn’t until Ava talked that she realized what she’d said.

“You think I’m cute,” Ava asked with a teasing smile.

Sara groaned. “Kill me now, I’m over being a teenager, once was enough.” She rested her head against the dashboard of the vehicle.

“Look on the bright side, you can sit up front and you don’t need a booster seat.” She changed the subject not wanting to embarrass her further.

“Thank god for that. That was so embarrassing.”

“You were five and it was the law, you didn’t really have a choice. So no need to be embarrassed, and you’ll be happy to know I already threatened Gary’s life if he so much as thinks about the booster seat he installed.” Ava felt proud.

Sara was grinning at the thought of Ava threatening Gary. “You threatened Gary for me,” Sara asked feeling touched.

“Well, I figured he’d be less traumatized if I threatened him.”

Sara laughed. She didn’t think Ava was less threatening than her. She was sure if Ava wanted to be she could be just as scary if not worse.

***

“Scoot over Sara and take a picture with me before the food gets here.” Ava moved to sit beside Sara. She wanted to remember her time with young Sara.

Sara moved to give Ava room. She smiled brightly and beamed at the camera. Once the photo was done Ava decided to stay where she was and Sara didn’t seem to mind. It was halfway through dinner that Sara noticed the looks they were getting from the table sitting across from them.

“Pay no attention to them Sara.” Ava put a hand on Sara’s fist. She’d overheard the table across from them talking about her being a teenage mother, but had chosen to ignore them, but teenage Sara couldn’t.

“What are they staring at,” she asked. She’d seen them chatting and eyeballing their table for quite some time.

Ava sighed. “It’s because I’m a ‘teen mom’.” She rolled her eyes and air quoting teen mom, she was far from being a mom.

“That’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard, and so what if you were, I’m sure you were a great mom.” Sara defended.

“Thank you Sara, but really it’s no big deal.” Ava continued eating choosing to enjoy her time instead.

Sara had had enough, she could not sit back and watch as these morons looked on at them and judged them. She stood up and faced them. “What, what are you so interested about at our table that you can’t stop staring.”

“Sara.” Ava hissed, she looked up at her and tugged at her shirtsleeve. “Please sit, they don’t bother me, it really doesn’t matter.”

Sara looked down at Ava. “It matters to me.” She turned her attention to the table across from them sending them the deadliest glare she could muster. “For your information, she’s done a fantastic job, she raised me on her own, I’m two years ahead in school and have scholarships to any school of my choosing, so why don’t you stick your nose up your asses where the sun don’t shine.” She sat down with both hands balled into fists.

Ava was impressed that Sara had come up with a whole life story in just seconds. “Sara, it really is okay.” She covered Sara’s hand with her own. “I appreciate you standing up for me, I really do but it’s not necessary. It’s not the first time someone has judged me or talked behind my back.” She was used to the looks and the words exchanged behind her back. She knew not many people liked her and over time she’d learned to ignore it. It used to hurt, but now she’d just become numb to it.

“Well it pisses me off. You don’t deserve anyone’s shit.” She vented. “I’m sorry I was such a jerk to you.” Sara regretted all the hard times she’d given Ava, she hated that she’d agreed with Gideon when she’d called her a bitch, what she hated most of all was that she could never take any of it back. All she could do was make up for it, and she vowed to start right then and there.

No one had stood up for her like that, no one outside of her family. She was touched that Sara would cause a scene for her. Ava smiled and squeezed her hand. “Sara, like you said, it’s in the past. Let’s finish dinner so we can get some ice cream.” She wrapped her arm around Sara’s shoulders and pulled her into her side. “Thank you my sweet girl. You are the greatest teen daughter I’ve never had.” She smiled and kissed her forehead.

Sara’s cheek were instantly warm, she put her head on Ava’s shoulder hoping to hide the pesky rosy cheeks. She was going to miss these times with Ava. Getting turned into a five year old wasn’t such a bad thing after all. She’d gotten to know a side of Ava she was sure very few people knew existed.

When it was time to pay, the waitress told them that their tab had been paid for. “I don’t understand.” Ava wasn’t sure why anyone would pay for their meal, especially not when her “daughter” yelled at a table not far from theirs.

“Two of our regulars, sweet older couple,” she explained. “They heard your daughter go off and they were really impressed that she would defend her mom like that. So they asked me to add your bill to theirs. They said you’ve done a wonderful job and that you should be very proud.”

Ava thanked her, once she left she turned to Sara. “Sara, know that you’ve made me the happiest mom in the world. I’m so proud of you kid.” She winked, holding back her laughter.

Sara rolled her eyes. “Whatever mom. Let’s go.” She pushed her out of the booth.

***

“Goodnight Sara,” Ava kissed her forehead. She hadn’t thought about it, she’d done it out of what was now habit. She didn’t miss the immediate blush.

“Damn it Ava,” Sara complained covering her face. “You did that on purpose.”

Ava chuckled. “I honestly didn’t. But I think it’s adorable when you blush.” She grabbed Sara’s hands and pulled them away from her face. “Thank you for sticking up for me today. That meant a lot.”

“You’re so not helping.” Sara muttered. “But you’re welcome.”

She patted Sara’s arm and stood to leave. Teenage Sara was so easily embarrassed she didn’t want to push her too much. The Ava from a few days ago may have really enjoyed the thought of teasing her to no end.

A few hours later Ava felt the bed beside her dip. “You okay,” she asked not opening her eyes..

Sara shook her head even though Ava couldn’t see her. “It wants me back. The pit.”

Ava opened her arms giving her permission to move in closer. Once Sara was within arm’s reach she pulled her close. “The pit can’t have you.” She kissed the top of her head and stroked her hair.

Sara wondered how she’d ever be able to sleep without Ava around. Nightmares had been a common occurrence since the Gambit. They only got worse after she had come back from the dead. When she was on the Waverider and had a nightmare it pretty much meant she was up for the remainder of the day. She often used that time to train. With Ava she was actually able to go back to sleep and not feel the pit calling her soul back. She woke up not long after with the familiar pain though this time not as bad. She let out a small cry of pain and tightened her hold on Ava. Ava didn’t wake but instinctively held her tighter. Sara tried hard not to make a sound, tried to keep her body relaxed but the task was becoming harder, the pain was intensifying with each passing minute. “Aves,” she cried out to the blonde.

“Sara.” Ava was immediately worried. The look of pain on Sara’s face told her everything she needed to know. She sat up, putting a couple pillows against the headboard and leaned against it. She pulled Sara into her lap and cradled her just as she had before. “I’ve got you.”

Sara tucks her head in Ava’s neck drawing comfort from the hand rubbing her back. “It hurts,” she whispered, her tears connecting with Ava’s skin.

“I know it does sweet girl, buts it’s almost over,” she murmured against her forehead, kissing it. “Just a little bit longer, you can do this, you’re the strongest person I know.”

Sara nodded, curling further into her. She’d trained her body to ignore so much pain, she hated that she couldn’t do that now. She focused on the hand on her back, the heartbeat under her head and started to take slow deep breathes, slowly willing herself to ignore the pain. It didn’t take the pain away completely but it helped lessen it. They fell asleep leaning against the headboard, it wasn’t until hours later that they woke up, knowing they’d both be sore from the position they’d slept in.

“Morning Ava,” Sara said, her breath tickling Ava’s neck.

“You’re back,” she replied.

Sara nodded. “I’m back.” She didn’t move from her position. “Can we stay like this a little while longer. I’m going to miss this.” She couldn’t believe what she was asking. A few days ago she’d been dreading leaving the Waverider, but now she was glad she’d been forced to. She was going to miss her time with Ava.

“As long as you want sweet girl.” Ava had been worried adult Sara would run for the door the minute she was back. She felt guilty for even having the thought. That wasn’t Sara. Not the one she’d finally had a chance to get to know. If she were honest with herself she was going to miss this too. She was more than happy to grant Sara’s request to stay in their current position.

Sara hummed against her neck. “I like when you call me that. It doesn’t make me feel like the monster I feel I am most of the time.” Sara knew she could never really make up for the lives she’d taken, she knew she wasn’t that person anymore but she had frequent visits from self-doubt, especially after her nightmares.

“Sara you are far from a monster. You’ve been through hell and back, yet you still choose to fight. To be good. To be a hero. Sometimes you can be a pain in the ass but you are no monster. Don’t ever think that.” She couldn’t believe that the upbeat, sarcastic and badass captain thought so darkly of herself.

“Thanks Aves.” Sara exhaled, relaxing into her.

***

A few days had passed and Ava had not heard a peep out of the members of the Waverider. She and Sara had spent the day relaxing before they’d both had to go back to reality. Sara had returned just in time to fix a level ten anachronism. She’d wanted to contact her so badly but hadn’t known how to without seeming desperate. She figured if Sara wanted to, she’d reach out. She wondered, not for the first time if she’d misread the connection she’d formed with Sara. She hated those moments of doubt. She knew what they’d formed was real, she only wished she was brave enough to contact her. She sighed and turned off the television setting the controller on the table. It was getting late, she’d attempt to sleep even though she knew it would not come easy. It had been difficult falling asleep the past few nights, on the nights she did sleep she’d wake up hours later in search of Sara only to remember that she’d gone back on the Waverider. She’d just closed her eyes when she heard her name being called and the edge of her bed dipping.

“Aves.” Sara’s voice was hesitant.

Ava hadn’t expected Sara to come to her. “Can’t sleep,” she asked. She could see it in her eyes. She seemed rundown. Exhausted.

Sara shook her head in the negative. “I was wondering if I could.” She felt embarrassed to ask. It had taken her hours to convince herself to come back, after all, she wasn’t a kid anymore, she was a grown woman who knew how to fight against anything.

Ava pulled the covers back inviting her in.

Sara didn’t need any further encouragement. She slipped her shoes off and got in beside her. “I’ve been debating whether or not I should come by. I’ve made it to the city a couple times but I always got scared and left, I guess the lack of sleep gave me the final nudge.”

Ava groaned, they really were a pair. “I’ve been debating checking in with you but I wasn’t really sure how, not with my history with your team.”

Sara chuckled. “We really are terrible at communication aren’t we.”

“That we are.”

Sara scooted closer to Ava and moved her arm so that she could slip in beside her. “Is this okay,” she asked.

“More than okay.” Ava wrapped her arm around Sara. “I’m glad you’re here.” Things felt right once again.

“I’ve missed you.” Sara got up on her elbow and looked down at her. She leaned down giving her a quick kiss. “Thanks Aves, for everything.”

Ava cleared her throat. “Was that a thank you kiss then,” she asked.

“It doesn’t have to be just that.” She smiled, winked and gave her another quick kiss.

Ava rolled her eyes but smiled. This was one of the things she liked about Sara, she always managed to make a situation less awkward and less stressful. “Kiss me sweet woman.”

Sara’s face lit up. She was really glad she’d gotten over her fear and returned to Ava’s. “Yes Ma’am.”