Helena was jealous. She could tell herself that she was just paying Barbara back in kind for all the spying, manipulating Lifetime Movie bullshit, or that she was making sure that Barbara was okay on one of her rare sojourns outside of the Clocktower, but the truth was that ever since Dinah had gotten off her spectacular ass and asked Barbara out, Helena had been torn between wishing she was the one to invite Babs to dinner and wishing Dinah had asked her. She didn't have a preference between blondes and redheads. Under the hair, they tasted about the same.
She was also sneaky. And Barbara was sappy. She'd let Helena overhear her password, and given her Kiddie Table access to the Delphi systems, so Helena let herself into the administrator role and looked up Barbara's surveillance. As she might've guessed, Barbara had backdoors into everything. She made it look so laborious, typing away at her mechanical keyboard, but Helena could figure most of it out. She could turn Barbara's cell into a microphone and listen in, hear Dinah's voice coming in loud and clear.
"So that was me and boys. I found out about girls a few years later. I had this friend, Annette, who slept over at my place all the time. We used to turn up the stereo real loud and go at it like crazy. My mother never noticed how many cucumbers we went through whenever she was visiting…"
"Oh, God," Barbara replied. She sounded slightly tipsy, like there was a leaden heft of wine off-balance in her belly. "Vegetables?"
"I was fifteen… it's not like I had a magic wand or anything…"
"You had your hands, didn't you? You didn't—you didn't lose them…"
The program capturing the audio was a small window showing off their soundwaves in jagged spikes. Behind the window was Barbara's desktop, an abstract and high-contrast view of the Gotham skyline. Programs were arranged in four neat and tidy groups of icons, sorted by function. It was easy for Helena to find one that tied into the cell phone metadata and looked through traffic cameras; a bigger window, showing her the street outside Dinah's apartment.
Barbara was in her wheelchair. Sweater, slacks, her glasses trickling down her sculpted face as she looked at Dinah with the slightly cracked poise of a drunk. Dinah hadn't let Barbara off so easy with her fashion choices. She wore a candy apple red bandage dress, its swaths circling down her breasts and along her belly, her hips, before ending in tailed hems that trailed off her thighs, as if they needed to garner more attention.
And they were both gorgeous, even on a traffic camera's crappy resolution. Dinah was the archetypal blonde bombshell, her legs flashing with taut fitness in every step she took, while Barbara was all buttoned down smartness and barely repressed sensuality, like a beautiful woman wearing nothing but a shower robe over bare, wet flesh.
There was an electric feeling between them. Helena could see it, she could hear it in their breathing over the cell phone. They didn't want the night to end. They didn't even want to stop looking at each other. So they pulled at the moment they were sharing, stretching it out longer and longer until the tension was nearly unbearable.
Maybe Barbara, in her fastidious calculation, figured that if Dinah had asked her out, she should ask Dinah in, and she did by reaching out from her wheelchair and touching Dinah on her long, bare leg, the heel of her hand on the front of Dinah's broadly muscled thigh, long tapered fingers wrapping around the muscle until the tips touched the stocking in back of Dinah's thigh, some spot that made Dinah swoon and close her eyes and let Helena hear a sharp intake of breath over the speakers.
Dinah blew out air as Barbara took her hand away. "Control freak… you even have to know just where to touch me… I don't have a ramp, I should have a fucking ramp—" She had the muttering cadence of someone who had consumed her own share of liquor. "Hell w'th it…"
Her arm muscles strained against her shoulder straps as she picked up Barbara's wheelchair and lugged it up the few steps of her stoop onto the little porch area outside the front door. She unlocked it, holding the door open for Barbara, her fingers white-knuckled on the edge of the door as if she were afraid it would snap shut if she didn't clutch it in a death grip. Barbara rolled inside, her chair rattling over the sill. When they were inside, Dinah closed the door behind them. Her apartment was on the first floor. Helena could hear the click of Dinah's heels—of course she wore heels—and the whisper-stroke of Barbara's wheels as they moved to her door.
"How can you know I'm sensitive there?" Dinah asked, keys rattling as she unlocked her door. Helena could only hear them, though she saw the lights come on through Dinah's windows.
Helena turned up the volume until she wasn't just hearing them talk, she was feeling the words vibrating into her. Barbara's voice: "Everyone on the same floor when you bring a guy home knows where you're sensitive."
A joint cracked. Despite Dinah's pristine physical conditioning, her fighting left her with aches, pains. Helena could just picture her, rolling her shoulders as she recovered from taking off her pumps. "Jealous?"
Barbara wheeled in front of a window, her silhouette blocking some of the light. Helena could see the low-maintenance chop of her short haircut, the loops of her eyeglasses breaking up the symmetry of her profile. "Not anymore. And you're not such a saint yourself."
"I'm an angel. Ask any of those guys." Dinah's voice was breathy, soft to the touch. She never spoke that way to Helena.
"An angel wouldn't wear fishnets all this time." Barbara's voice was downright husky. Helena could hear footsteps, see Barbara's head through the curtains as it moved to track Dinah's body. She could only imagine how ardently Barbara was looking at Dinah. Her date. Her suitor. "Then have her hem cut to her panties when we finally go on a date."
"They're not all the way to my panties." Dinah giggly, relaxed, laughing to flirt more than to be amused. "You should know, you looked at them every..." And her voice stilled, pausing before her words went high with fear. "Oh, God, the legs aren't a sore subject, are they?"
"Don't feel sore," Barbara said, her voice strained, but jovial. Like she was walking a tightrope between putting Dinah at ease and overcompensating, making things awkward instead of loose. Helena knew looseness didn't come easily to Barbara. "Don't feel anything. Relax. I'm over it. My gams were never my best feature."
"I wouldn't put it that way." Dinah's voice had recovered. Helena could hear a refrigerator door being pumped open. Nightcap? Ice cream? Leftovers from one of Dinah's foodie obsessions that she could microwave before she took the stomach route to Barbara's heart? "More like it's hard for anything to compete with your boobs."
A rattle and squeak as she forced an uncooperative vegetable drawer open. Helena thought of cucumbers.
Barbara's silhouette rested elbows on legs, propped up her chin on her joined fists. A girlishly flirtatious gesture. Like a teenager talking to her crush. "My boobs, huh?" But her voice was husky again, giving it a sultry undertone. She was bantering lightly, like the two of them always did, but God only knew what she was thinking of.
A snap. A fizz. Maybe a beer being opened. Maybe soda. From the refrigerator. Or sparkling water, to put off the hangover in the morning.
"Yeah," Dinah replied, purring voice on just the same level. "Right under that naughty librarian sweater."
"So now I'm naughty," Barbara asked, but it wasn't a question. There was beckoning in her voice—Helena could just see her crooking her fingers, making Dinah come as usual…
"Yup." Bare feet padding across tile floor. Closer and closer to Barbara and her voice. "You're a naughty fucking girl."
Glug of liquid going into mouth, a gulping swallow, clinking thud as the can was set down.
A rustling of fabric, a soft gasp from Barbara—Helena saw Dinah sitting in her lap, pulling her legs up, their shadows almost joined in the burning window. "Then why are you lying across my lap?"
"Better give me a reason."
"I'll give you four."
Helena couldn't see their lower bodies below the window sill, but she could hear a wet noise and another sharp intake of breath. "Oh fuck," Dinah mewled, more disbelief than pleasure. She repeated herself. "Oh fuck…" Still disbelieving, but with more pleasure.
"That's one," Barbara said, sounding immensely pleased with herself. Aroused as well. Her voice went in Helena's ears and then pooled in her groin.
"Make it five. I want five."
Dinah's voice was pleading. Barbara's became mocking. As brusque as she could be over the comms, there was an air of sadism now that made Helena slick. She'd known Barbara had a taste for making it hurt when someone loved her. Like they had to prove themselves.
"No, you don't. You need five. That's why you're begging for it."
Breathing was coming faster. Hotter and faster and both of them. "Please, Babs. Please give me five."
"Why should I?" Barbara didn't sound like she was teasing. Barbara sounded like a merciless god, accustomed to bloody sacrifice.
"Because it's your pussy. This is your pussy and you want to treat it right."
"If it's my pussy—" Barbara began, and Dinah moaned from something she was doing. Threw her head back in a spray of hair. Helena could see strands of it lashing the curtain, making it ripple. "-why is it squeezing so hard to keep me out?"
Dinah's voice, her superpower, was pulled as taut as a rope beginning to fray. "Not keep you out-keep you in-I'm yours-wanna be yours forever…"
"So this pussy is mine?" Barbara phrased it like a question, but her voice was demanding. Dinah's reply had a wet undertone, a moan from deep within her perfect body.
"And this month is mine…"
"Mmmmmm," Dinah moaned, but muffled, like her mouth was full of something. Helena heard a sucking sound, a pop like wet lips coming off of a lollipop. Or a finger. A long, slender finger that had just been inside her cunt…
"Is this ass mine too?" Barbara asked. She sounded pristine and precise, a college professor delivering a lecture, her voice only getting more official as she kept giving Dinah more fingers, as Dinah's shadow writhed and flexed behind the obscuring curtain. Helena could see the point of an erect nipple at the end of her silhouetted breast, could only think that her dress was gone, out of the way.
"Yes! Oh shit, Babs—"
"I think this thumb is yours, Blondie. I think it's going into you..." Barbara's voice low and dangerous. How a bat would sound to an insect. "You have until the count of three to come."
"Fucking control freak," Dinah said, no anger in her voice, just an irritated affection, like Barbara was mothering her over the comms, making her play nice."
"On the count of three I'm taking my hand away."
"Fuck, no, leave it in!"
Helena narrowed her eyes until they were nearly closed, poring over the screen, the image, the curtains wafting gently in stark contrast to the heated tremors Helena could see in the joined silhouettes beyond. "One… two…"
"Shit, shit, shit—" Dinah gasped, her voice trembling like Helena had never heard it do before.
"Are you coming for me?" Barbara's voice sweet, understanding, like she always was when she got her way. "Are you being a good girl and fucking coming?"
A long, loud exhale that could only be orgasmic. It flared through the speakers, filling every decibel the phone was picking up. Then it was gone, and those stiff, locked figures were loose and warm and soft, like two liquids poured into the same glass. Dinah's voice came slowly. Like smoke after a fire.
"Goddamn, Babs, you know I am. I always do what you say."
Helena could hear Barbara's smile too. She could just picture it. Not a nice smile. One that was pure sin. "And people say sex changes things."
"I don't know if it counts as sex when you do it like that." Dinah still sounded short of breath. A woman who could go twelve rounds with the Bat himself. "It's more like a fucking drug."
"Uh-uh." Helena saw Barbara's hand move down Dinah's back, not sexual, but intimate. What Dinah had worked so hard for. "Addicts kick the habit. You're stuck with me."
"Yeah. You and Helena."
Helena's eyes shot open, like they had just looked at her. She jolted up, becoming painfully aware of how wet her panties were, how hot and harsh they felt against her aching cunt, a torture device where she was so tender—but she held herself still and the torture died down enough to feel good. The more she watched, the better she felt…
"What?" Barbara asked. "You like the naughty librarian but have something against the hot teacher?"
"Hot teacher?" Helena actually muttered aloud, before slapping a hand over her mouth like they might hear her.
"She doesn't fist me as much as you do," Dinah replied.
"Wear this dress around her," Barbara suggested, her voice warm—but the sex wasn't quite gone from it.
"Are you saying that as a control freak…"
"As a voyeur, maybe. Helena is best when she's out of control."
Helena bit her lip. She wondered if they'd ever watched. If they'd ever listened. She didn't think Dinah would. Not pure, sweet, JLA Dinah. But Barbara… Barbara sounded like she spoke from experience.
"I get it," Dinah said. "Part-time control freak, full-time voyeur."
"I'm just the one with eyes. You're the one who wears fishnets," Barbara said.
"Not right now."
"Thanks for the reminder. Open your legs again. I want to see that pussy of mine."
"All yours, Babs. All for you."
Helena watched as Dinah stood up now, her statuesque leanness filling the window, and she straddled Barbara's wheelchair. Barbara's head ducked down until they were one shadow, not two.
Helena turned the volume up one last time, then reached down under her waistband.