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How Will I Know (if you really love me?)

Chapter Text

Kara sat there on the metal chair on her girlfriend's penthouse balcony. The heat from the day left the metal warm to the touch, and honestly, it was the first warm touch she had experienced in a while.


Things were….not great at the moment.


Glancing at her watch, Kara signed sadly, shoulders slumping in defeat. Lena used to normally come home around 6:15, and if she didn't show up around that time, give or take an hour, Kara now knew not to expect her girlfriend home till the early hours of the morning. Sadly, it was almost midnight.


Kara stood up and walked to the concrete barrier outlining the balcony. She briefly wondered if Lena would notice if she didn't sleep here tonight. Not like Lena would make it to their bed to find out. The only time she would see the other woman was in the mornings for maybe a few minutes before she was left all alone. Again. And again.  And again. 


These countless nights had ended with Kara's hope slowly dying down with every minute that passed. She would go to bed at midnight, staying up waiting for her love to come home, but then the pull of sleep would make her eventually give up waiting, and she'd sluggishly, sadly, tuck herself into bed.




She'd wake up at 7.a.m most mornings, to the smell of coffee brewing and Lena's side of the bed untouched from the night before. Walking out of their bedroom and into the kitchen, Kara would find her lover. Often in clothing from the day before, crumbled and askew, Lena would be resting her hip on the side of the kitchen island, sipping her coffee whispering words of praise into the dark liquid. Kara's eyes would fall to the couch, and notice that it had been her girlfriend's bed for the night, and she had to bite back the frown she felt bubbling up to the surface. 


Instead, she would greet her sleep-deprived girlfriend, tucking Lena's inky black hair behind her ear as she swooped in for a good morning kiss.  Lena would hum happily, wrapping her arms around the blonde woman in front of her, nuzzling into Kara's neck, pressing soft kisses to the warm skin. They'd say good morning, give each other chaste kisses, and in less than fifteen minutes Lena would be dressed and already out the door. Promises of coming home early slipping past Lena's lips as the door closed. Leaving Kara alone.




These lonely nights were starting to take its toll. The insufficient mornings started to do more harm than good. And Kara was left there, heart aching, smile gone, shoulders hunched over, and tears stinging in her eyes. 


Kara was trying to be strong. Her girlfriend has a stressful job, and time was never on Lena's side. Being a CEO, while the money was great, the strain it caused over her relationships both platonic and romantic, was devastating. Lena was lonely for most of her career, her life really. And then Kara came around, and she stuck like glue. Their friendship had taken off easily.  And after two years their relationship blossomed into something more, and it was beautiful. 


So Kara was being strong. She would be Lena's rock, her strong oak tree with thick roots that grew for miles deep underground. She was going to be there. Whether or not Lena had the time, Kara was going to be there. 


It was getting harder though.

Finally this morning, about eight months into it, and without meaning to, Kara cracked. She woke up around 7 a.m to the smell of freshly brewed coffee and nearly ran out of bed to see her lover. And as usual, with a mug of coffee in her hand and bags under her eyes, Lena stood there in the kitchen, leaning up against the kitchen island.


"Too tired to make it to bed again?" Kara asked quietly, running her hands up and down the brunette's sides.


"Yes. This buyout is killing me, I swear." Lena replied, her voice still thick with sleep.


After a moment Kara spoke again " I missed you last night." Her whisper was so soft, that Lena was sure she wouldn't have heard it if she was two inches farther from the blonde.


"I know, I'm sorry darling. I missed you too. It's just this Spheerical Industries buyout is proving to be twenty times harder than Lord’s." Lena sighed, nuzzling further into the blonde's neck.


"I can tell. Lord’s take over was about six months long, this one is already eight months and you aren't even at the halfway point." Kara grumbled, hugging the brunette closer, enjoying the short time they had together before they inevitably had to part.


Lena sighed, removing herself from the blonde's embrace, "I'll try to come home earlier tonight, alright darling?"


"So you've said every night for the past eight months.' Kara thought bitterly.


Lena spared a glance at her watch, groaning loudly. "Fuck, I'm already late." Lena quickly set her coffee mug down, already unbuttoning her blouse with nimble fingertips as she bolted out of the kitchen.


Kara reached out swiftly, her hand grabbing the brunette's arm lightly, Lena snapped her head up. Green eyes staring at the blonde curiously.


"Kara?" Lena asked with a confused head tilt.


" I-I just-," Kara bit her lip, her blue eyes meeting questioning green. " I miss you, Lena," Kara said softly, her voice suddenly wavering.


Kara dropped her hand just as fast as she put it up, dropping her head to hide misty eyes.


'Don't get emotional. She's a CEO, she gets busy, the least you can do is be there for her when times are tough-'


"Kara…" Lena said softly, 


"I'm sorry, it's nothing, don't worry about me. I know you're trying-"


Kara found herself engulfed tightly in Lena's arms, letting out a shaky breath, Kara hugged the younger woman, pulling her closer to her chest. 


"I'm so sorry Kara, please don't cry darling." Lena said quickly, pressing her lips to her lover's neck and jaw as she spoke." I'm sorry, I know I haven't been home, I haven't been making time for you as I should. I know it's not an excuse,  but work is so crazy, and I can't believe I made you feel this way-"


"It's okay baby, I'm fin-"


"Don't," Lena said sternly, moving back to look at the blonde's face. "Look at me, Kara."


Trying furiously to blink back tears the blonde glanced up at her girlfriend. 


"Don't dismiss your feelings like that. If you are hurting or you are sad, you tell me. You especially tell me if you are hurting or sad and it's because of me. That's how we make this work, alright sweetheart? I can't-" Lena sucked in a deep breath, exhaling shakily. " I can't lose you, Kara. " 


"You won't lose me," Kara whispered sadly. "I love you, Lena, I'm here as long as you want me here."


"Forever." Lena quickly replied, pressing her lips against Kara's for a sweet kiss, "I  want you here forever. "


Kara gave the CEO a small smile, and ducked down for another kiss, her heart warming the longer their lips stayed pressed together. "Then I'm here forever." 


"I love you, Kara" Lena whispered back. 


"I love you, too." 

Kara's eyes started to get teary at the memory of this morning, and she allowed herself one moment, just one, to cry. Hot tears flowed freely down her cheeks, and as soon as they reached her chin, Kara was wiping them away, steeling herself up again. 


'You can't be sad when she needs you to be okay. You can't get emotional because she can't make time for you. She's the CEO of a major company, she doesn't have a lot of time to begin with.' 


Kara sighed again, hanging her head in defeat. This was starting to be harder than she expected. 


The blonde walked back inside the penthouse, gently sliding the glass door behind her. She walked to the dining room table, swallowing down the knot that formed in her throat, blinking away a new wave of fresh tears as she started to clean up the dinner she had prepared for the brunette. She quickly started putting the placemats away and lifted the various bowls and plates and placed them back into the cabinets. Kara grabbed the pan of food that was resting on the table, staring at it sadly as it reminded untouched, and slid the pan into the refrigerator. Finally, walking back over to the table Kara was about to blow out the candles that she had lit when she stopped abruptly.


The sound of the door opening and closing behind her caused her to freeze, her heart hammering harshly inside her chest.


"Kara?" Lena called out.


The blonde remained still.


After a moment filled with the sounds of heels hitting the ground and the door locking behind the brunette,  Lena called out again. "Kar-oh! You scared me, darling. Why didn't you say anything when I called out?" Lena chuckled as she approached the blonde from behind. The brunette started to hug the blonde but stiffened as she peaked her head over Kara's shoulder, staring at the two lit candles on the tabletop.


"Wh-what's this?" Lena stammered. 


"I made you dinner," Kara replied softly, bending over slightly to blow out the candles. "It's in the fridge if you want some." And as her final statement, Kara turned around in the brunette's arms and placed a small kiss on her forehead, before slipping out of her grasp entirely, and walked toward their bedroom, leaving the brunette alone.


Kara took one quick look at the clock on her nightstand and swallowed thickly as she read the bright red numbers on the screen.


11:44 p.m.


Sitting down heavily on her side of the bed Kara hung her head. Hot tears stung in her eyes as she slammed them shut, trying to keep the tears at bay.


'Don't you dare cry. At least she's here now and not at 3 a.m. Go back and kiss her and hug her and tell her you love her. Stop sitting here all by yourself, feeling sad. And for the love of God, don't fucking cry.'


The bed shifted next to the blonde just as a rogue tear slipped down her cheek. Before Kara could wipe it away, a hand came up to slowly cup her cheek, the pad of Lena's thumb rubbing the streak of water away.


"Kara, look at me please," Lena whispered softly.


Kara was still for a moment before raising her head, meeting Lena's gaze. The brunette's eyes were bloodshot. Her cheeks were tinged pink and slightly blotchy, and as Kara looked closer she spotted fresh tear tracks running all the way down to Lena's neck.


And finally, Kara shattered.


Unable to stop the flow of tears rushing down her face she stared at the brunette beside her. 




"Say it, Kara." Lena urged her, her voice not above a whisper. "Say it."


"I miss you!" Kara started to sob. " I miss you so much! And I'm so fucking sad!  It's been months! Months since I've seen you for more than a half-hour! I go to bed alone, I wake up alone, I'm waiting for you to show up, but you never show! When you bought Lord's company you made time for me, you-we, we had dates twice a week! Every Wednesday and Saturday was date night! Our night! And that lasted for six months, but I was fine with it! I was! I still am! Because you are a busy person, your job isn't easy and you can't trust people to do the things you do, not when your brother and mother are still alive to make your life hell." 


Kara slumped the longer she spoke, resting her head in Lena's hand that still cradled her face. "And so I get it, I really do! You can't trust other people with things like this, especially when other people’s jobs are at stake, and I understand that completely. "  


Kara let out a ragged breath. "But I miss you so much, baby. When you started the process of buying out Spheerical Industries, I assumed it was gonna be like last time, yeah I wasn't living with you then but we still had two days, just for us. So I waited for you every night, and you started getting home later and later and now I don't even get to see you anymore except for when you are running out the door…"


Kara started to cry harder as she took in the broken expression of the woman she loved. "But it doesn't matter anymore, baby, it doesn't matter. Because you're here now," Kara lifted a shaky hand to grab at the sobbing woman beside her. "You're here now. And that's all I need." Kara cried.


Soon the two women were holding each other as they cried. The brunette whispering sweet nothings into the blonde's ear, trying to calm her down as heart wrenching sobs tore through her body. They stayed like that for a while, after Kara's cries had died down to soft sniffles. And they held each other.


They made love that night. At first, they started to desperately cling to each other, trying to eliminate all space between them. Trying to get closer. But it ended with soft and sweet caresses. Gentle bites and wet kisses, wiping tears from each other's faces as they came down from their highs.


"Kara?" Lena asked as she glanced up at the blonde from her resting place on her shoulder, her voice raspy from overuse.


"Yeah, baby?" Kara murmured gently.


"We're okay right?" Lena's voice was suddenly small.


"We're okay." Kara echoed, tightening her hold on the brunette, causing the brunette to settle her head back down into the juncture of Kara's neck and shoulder. 


"I'll do better- I'll be better Kara. I promise. I need you." Lena whimpered, "I love you so much."


"We'll both be better Lena." Kara cooed. "I love you, baby. I love you so so much. We'll be okay."

And for a week or two, they were better.


Until they weren't.