Kara’s had a long day. Though her body remains ready to defend National City, her soul is weary and her shoulders slump under the responsibility that rests on them.
It’s on days like this that Kara wants nothing more than to be in Lena’s arms, to sit with her and laugh with her and love her more than humanly possible. She remembers life before Lena, and she doesn’t miss it. It’s not that she hated it, not at all, she loves her friends and her family and their support. But Lena touches her in a way she never thought possible, in a way they never could. Lena soothes the ache in her bones, she calms her and she loves her and she fills her with a contentment so intense, Kara doesn’t think she’ll ever be able to survive without Lena in her life.
But even with all that love, she’s come to the realisation that loving Lena Luthor isn’t easy. It’s not the family name, nor the long hours that come along with being a twenty five year old CEO and genius. Sometimes Kara just wishes they could have a regular relationship, not this secretive one they’ve kept from the world. She wishes they could go on coffee dates or stroll hand in hand down the beach promenade without the thoroughfare of paparazzi and strangers that come with Lena’s celebrity. She curated Supergirl for a reason: Kara likes normalcy, she likes freedom, and sometimes, on the hardest of days, it’s not just that loving Lena Luthor isn’t easy.
On the long days, loving Lena can be hard.
She’s lands with a small thud on Lena’s balcony, like she’s done countless times before. She stopped knocking long ago. Now, she lets herself in and Lena doesn’t even turn around from the work she’s doing. Kara knows better than to disturb Lena when she’s on a roll.
She walks to the mini bar and pours them both a whiskey. After downing them both, she refills them and places one of them on Lena’s desk. And then, unable to wait any longer, Kara leans down behind Lena, and kisses her neck. Lena hums lightly, and Kara feels calmness flush through her through contact alone.
“Kara,” Lena says, “I’m still working.”
“But I’ve missed you,” she replies. “The thought of you is the only thing that got me through today.”
Lena turns her chair around to face her girlfriend and Kara sits in her lap. She smells like the fancy perfume Jess had not-subtly hinted that Kara buy Lena for her birthday. Kara can also smell the whiskey on her breath, and the vanilla body wash that’s seeped into her skin. Sitting like this, having Lena assault her every scent, makes Kara feel like she’s where she’s supposed to be.
Lena runs her fingers through Kara’s hair, and Kara plays with the collar of Lena’s shirt and it’s in these little moments that Kara feels herself building a home within Lena. She’s not sure when she realised that Lena was her home now, but it still catches her off guard. She had spent so much time investing in the safety and happiness of the world around her, she never thought she’d get those things for herself. She knew that sacrifice came with the job when she first put on her suit. But now, having tasted the happiness that Lena brings her, having felt the safety of Lena’s embrace, Kara doesn’t know if she can be so selfless anymore.
“I missed you,” Kara repeats, pressing a kiss against Lena’s temple.
“I missed you too, baby.”
“Run away with me,” Kara breathes. “Let’s just, get out of here. No saving the world, no LCorp, just us.”
“Kara, what’s wrong?”
Kara stands, and takes Lena’s face in her hands. Lena rests her hand atop Kara’s.
“I’m sick of this. I’m sick of giving everything to National City and having nothing left to give to you.”
“I just want to be able to go on a date with my girlfriend without a security detail and without anybody noticing us and I wanna go to the movies at night instead of meeting in your office after fighting a goddamn crime syndicate.”
“You’re not happy with me?”
“No, sweetie, I’ve never been more happy than I am with you. But I want more. I want to be a normal couple who do normal things.”
“We’re not normal , Kara. We can never be normal.”
“I’m just… I’m sick of this. We can’t be seen together, we can’t do anything!”
“What happened, Kara? Why are you saying this?”
“I’m just frustrated!” she almost yells. “I feel so trapped all the time. Trapped by the DEO and having to save everyone all the time. Trapped by-” she cuts herself off. She can’t say it. She can’t go there.
She doesn’t have to.
“Trapped by me,” Lena says.
“You knew what you were signing up for, what you were getting yourself into.”
“And I’d do it a million times over, Lena. All I want to do is be with you.”
“But clearly this isn’t enough.” I’m not enough.
“This is everything. You are everything. And we deserve more than being responsible for National City’s safety. We never put ourselves first, we don’t get to do anything selfish.”
Lena rubs her temples. “Loving you was my selfish act, Kara.”
Kara sighs and sits on the couch. Lena sips her whiskey. The air between them is tense and Kara knows she needs to diffuse the situation. As angry as she is, she can see the hurt in Lena’s eyes, she can feel the sadness in her stare.
“You’re right,” she concedes. “I’m just… I’m tired, that’s all.”
Kara stands up again, and crosses the room to Lena. She kisses the top of her head, and holds back the frustrating tears that threaten to fall.
“I’m gonna go home and sleep. I’ll speak to you tomorrow.” She walks to the door. Lena doesn’t look at her, she keeps her eyes trained firmly on the artwork that sits opposite her desk.
“Hey, Lena?” Kara says. Lena doesn’t turn around. “I love you.” She says.
She sees Lena’s resolve fade, even from the back. Her shoulders sag slightly and her grip on the edge of the table loosens. She doesn’t look at her, but Kara hears her reply, “I love you, too.”
She steps onto the balcony and into the cool night air. And as she flies away, all she can hear is the soft sobs of Lena Luthor and the faint beating of a hurting heart.
Kara wakes up alone for the first time in months and it doesn’t feel good.
Usually, she’d be at Lena’s apartment or Lena would be at hers and they’d have rushed cups of coffee and toast with sugar free jam (Lena) and enough Nutella to kill a grown man (Kara). They’d have quickies in the shower and hold hands until they get to the bottom floor and exit the elevator. They leave early enough to avoid nosey neighbours and they always leave a tip for Lena’s tight-lipped doormen.
But this morning Kara drinks her coffee alone and her stomach is too anxious to eat anything at all. She showers in silence and she can barely look at her own reflection. And she checks and checks and rechecks her phone, waiting for a sign from Lena, waiting for something that tells her that everything will be alright, that she didn’t push her too far away.
The message comes at midday, right as Kara finishes training with Alex.
Lena: City Beach Pier. 5 mins. X
Kara tells Alex that she’s clocking out and flies down to the pier. She checks her messages, but there’s nothing else from Lena. She hovers above the pier looking for the entourage that usually accompanies Lena but there’s nobody out of the ordinary. It’s as a pier should be at midday on a Wednesday, filled with retirees and tourists and young mothers with bright eyed children.
Kara doesn’t know what she’s doing here, without Lena and with no further instruction. She closes her eyes and she focuses her senses and she tries to find something that can help her.
She smells vanilla, and that damn perfume.
And then, she hears a familiar heartbeat she committed to memory long ago.
She sits on a thick cement railing and looks over the water. She wears acid wash jeans and a loose fitting t-shirt, a baseball cap pulled down and sunglasses.
Kara thinks the look suits Lena, almost as much as the corporate get up she usually wears. She doesn’t sit down next to her. Instead, she sits facing the opposite direction, their backs just touching. Kara ignores the ogling of passersby whose Wednesdays have been infinitely improved by a Supergirl sighting.
“I brought lunch,” Lena says, sliding a takeaway container and a milkshake back to Kara.
“You’re the best, I’m starving.”
They sit in silence for a few minutes as Kara demolishes the burger and fries lena brought her.
“I’m sorry for yesterday,” Kara says. “I was tired and cranky and I just burst.”
“I know, it’s fine. You’re only human.” Kara can hear the smirk in Lena’s voice.
“I didn’t mean to make you feel bad. You’re the greatest thing that’s happened to me, Lena. I love you and I’m never gonna stop loving you. I just… sometimes I want this. I wanna sit on the pier with my girlfriend and hold hands and eat lunch and having nothing but us matter.”
“I know how you feel,” Lena replies. “I get it. Our lives are complicated, and they always will be. I just…. I hope that it’ll be enough for you. I hope I’ll be enough.”
“You’re more than enough; you’re absolutely everything.”
Kara takes a sip of her milkshake and smiles.
“Maybe,” Lena says, “maybe we can do this more often. We can both go incognito and we can act normal, even if it’s just for a couple of hours.”
“I love you, Lena.” She hasn’t heard Lena say it back since last night, and she needs to hear it. She needs to know.
Lena’s hand finds Kara’s and she leans back, her head resting on Kara’s shoulder.
“I love you, too.”
They sit, both ignoring the possibility of a photo being snapped them together.
For a moment, it’s just the two of them, the sea breeze in their hair and the sun on their faces. They sit and they talk and they laugh and they’re happy.
It’s days like this that make their love worth all of the hardships and complications.
And Kara knows that loving Lena Luthor is the easiest thing in the world.