"I Messed Up..."

August 25, 2016:

Supergirl runs into her cousin and finds advice and support for her plans for the immediate future

The Skies Above Centenial Park, Metropolis

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions: Red Robin

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

It's another beautiful day in Metropolis. The sun is shining, and the air is just starting to turn from summer towards the chill of fall. Throughout the City of Tomorrow, citizens are going about their business or happily enjoying the last gasp of summer. But above in the sky, just out of the range of human vision, one of Metropolis' guardians is just floating in place, definitely not enjoying much of anything. Instead, Supergirl simply looks down from her position in the cloud, arms slightly crossed, and an apprehensive look on her face as she seems to be lost in thought.

Superman is doing a relatively standard patrol when his extended vision catches sight of Kara up in the clouds. He's been relatively absent himself until recently - a hero's work is never done. Curious, he tilts his trajectory upwards until he's flying to hover across from her, "Fancy meeting you here," he says with a relatively cheerful smile, "You look a bit puzzled. Something on your mind?" he asks.

Supergirl is really out of it, because she doesn't even notice her cousin's approach until he's there and speaking to her. But once he's there, the thoughtful look on Kara's face changes to one of joy. Kara flies forward quickly, wrapping her arms around Superman in a big hug. It's not the normal, enthusiastic hug that she usually greet him with, though. Instead, it's like she's clinging to him for support or stability. Kara closes her eyes, and the smile fades to tightened lips, with the top lip trembling a bit. "Oh, Kal…." Kara swallows hard, then takes a deep breath. "Kal, I messed up. Really, really badly."

Superman accepts the hug, patting his cousin on the back and giving her a good, proper Kansas hug. When she says she got in trouble, he places his arms on her biceps, pulling her back to face him, "Well, first step to fixing that's always admitting it. Whatever it is, I'm sure we can figure something out. Tell me about it," he says.

Kara does back away, nodding and taking a deep breath to get ahold of herself. "It's Robin. Tim. I…I really messed things up with him." She takes another deep breath, focusing. "YOu know that he and I tried dating again a couple months ago. And, it was all going so wonderful. We were happy. And then I…I started getting too busy as Supergirl." Kara looks down, like she's examining the floor from 5000 feet up. "I started pushing back dates. I thought that Tim is going to understand and I'll make it all up to him. I took him for granted." There's a flush in Kara's cheeks as she admits that. "And…he moved on." Kara looks back up at Kal, getting a strange sense of calm now as she continues. "I didn't know it. I showed up in Gotham without calling first, thinking I could patch things up. I bungled them up instead. Then, yesterday, I went to go meet him, to tell him how sorry I was about everything. How I let Supergirl be more important than Kara and Tim. And…." She shakes her head, shuddering a bit. "Kal, it was like talking to Batman. He was so cold. Talking about how love is foolish and wasted effort. I did that to him. I turned Tim into Bruce." She swallows hard again, still keeping her composure. "How could I have been so terrible to him?"

Superman almost laughs, but catches himself. He'd expected something bordering on a natural disaster - a villain unleashed, a countdown to Armageddon, a trip down the evil highway after exposure to the wrong kind of Kryptonite. But he supposes, when you're young, romantic matters can, indeed, seem like life and death.

He shakes his head, "I don't think you turned Tim into Bruce. Perhaps he's just angry and expressing himself passively. It may be there are other things going on that don't relate to your relationship that have him in a bad state of mind," he says. "All you can do is let him know that you're there and you're open, if and when he's ready to talk genuinely about it," he says.

"I understand. I'm going through a reconcilement myself at the moment. I neglected Lois for too long. It's a matter of trust. And it isn't all on you - he has to be willing to reach back."

And suddenly, things don't seem so dire. Kal has that effect, thankfully. Kara listens and nods and finally smiles a bit. "I know. It takes two to tango, like they say here." She's still smiling, but it's a more thoughtful smile now. "But, I still need to try and fix it. That's what I've been doing up here; trying to figure out a way to set things right. And…I have an idea." Kara looks at Kal with her bright blue eyes. "I don't know what you're going to think of it, though. I don't want you to be disappointed in me or think I'm just running away from my problems."

Superman shakes his head, "I'm not going to be disappointed with you. And it sounds like, whatever you're thinking of, you're thinking of it as a solution, not an escape. I want you to face your problems, yes, but not every problem needs a direct approach. Sometimes you have to come at it from the side or even around the back. That's something, interestingly enough, I learned from Bruce. He believes in results first and, while we don't always see eye to eye, that's usually the case - in the abstract."

"Okay," Kara says with a nod. Another deep breath, and then, "Would it be okay if….I took a break from being Supergirl?" She lets the question hang there, before adding on. "Not forever. And not if, like, Darkseid invades. But that I put the costume away and didn't automatically rush off to stop every avalanche or mugging or anything else wrong with the world. I mean, part of me, a big part, feels guilty for even asking you, because you already do so much and I don't want to shift the things I do back onto your shoulders. But, there's something off with me. Like I've lost my balance or center. Or maybe, I never really had any balance and gravity is just catching up to me after I've been spinning my arms to stay upright. Does that make sense to you?"

Superman considers for a moment, "If that's something you feel like you need to do, then of course," he says. "Do I believe we have a responsibility to use our powers to help others? Yes, of course I do. Do I truly think, knowing you as I do, that you would turn a blind eye if you were truly needed? No, I don't. So, to me, what you're asking is a chance to feel…human. And I know we're not humans, but we feel an awful lot like humans, emotionally. I know I do," he says.

"You're just asking for a chance to not be on call. Fatigue is a real thing - you're not going to be the best Supergirl you can be if you're exhausted, emotionally or physically. Do what you need to do. I've got your back."

There's a huge sigh of relief from Kara as Kal gives his initial blessings to the idea. "It's going to be a little bit more than just hanging up the costume for a bit," she says. "There are other things that I think I need to do. Issues I need to face in my own way. Part of the plan is going to be Kara Kent moving to Gotham for a while." She holds up a hand to hopefully forestall any protest. "I know what I'd be getting into. I know the rules there. But it's something that I have to do. Not for whatever relationship I might be able to salvage with Tim. Or, at least, not totally for that reason. I need to do it for me. Sort of…." Kara tries to think of an analogy that Kal would get, and then smiles a bit. "Sort of like in Empire Strikes Back, where Luke has to go into the Dark Side cave. I just need to face it on my own terms."

"I've thought about this for hours now," she continues. "I can withdraw for the semester from Metropolis University without any problems. The apartment's been paid up through the end of the year, so I won't lose it. And, I won't be leaving you completely alone here. My friend, Caitlyn, from the League. She can live in the apartment while I'm gone. And she can help you out here, so you won't be down another set of hands. Maybe it'll be good for her too, stepping up to bat while I sit on the bench. That's the right metaphor, right?"

Superman considers, "I know Caitlin. She's a good hand, although you have capabilities she doesn't," he says. "But I'm not particularly concerned about that."

"I was always more of a Return of the Jedi man myself," he says. "The heroes pulling themselves together and working as a team to finally get the victory they've been working towards," he says. "But I understand one may be a necessary step to the other. But Luke had Yoda to help him. Who's going to help you? Bruce?"

Kara can’t help but laugh at that image. Or at the possible outcomes flashing in her mind. "That's the plan," she teases. "I'm going to return to Metropolis with a new black costume and speaking an octave lower." She smiles like Kara should normally smile, happy and carefree, before shaking her head a bit. "I don't know. I haven't discussed it with him. Or anyone. I think it's more going to be like 'I'm here. If you need me, let me know. Otherwise, I'm not going to do anything inside Gotham other than living here'." This part of the plan has some uncertainty, and she looks at Kal for advice. "Should I tell him? Batman, I mean. And before I do all this? Tim…I'll tell him after the fact. I want him to see that I'm willing to make sacrifices on my end; it's not all on him to adapt to Supergirl's life. Whether or not if it's as friends or…something more."

Superman raises an eyebrow, "Should you tell Batman that he's going to have a Kryptonian in his city? I would say that would be a resounding yes. He doesn't react particularly well to surprises. Not only that, but if you're looking for insight into Tim, no one knows him as well as Bruce does. He may not be the warm and fuzzy type, but he does want what's best for his kids," he says.

"But if he finds out you're there without being told ahead of time - and he will, inevitably, because that's who he is - then I'm going to get a hot earful about it."

Kara nods. "Right. No making your life more difficult than I already do." She smiles, flies back in for another hug and a quick kiss on Kal's cheek. "Thank you. For understanding. FOr accepting. Just…for everything. I really can't ever thank you enough."

Superman smiles and shakes his head, "The best thanks is living well. Take care of yourself. If you need me, you know where to find me. And if you don't, Bruce certainly will," he smirks.

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