Author's note: Thank you for the feedback! I've been so busy I haven't had time to reply to reviews- but I truly appreciate them. This update probably came sooner than you guys expected, I hope it's a good 'sooner'. Plus it's longer so I hope that's also something.
This might have some errors (the consequence of too much work and reading legislation until you're practically breathing every schedule) but if you've stuck through the errors this long, you're probably immune to it by now. Still, if you spot any glaring ones, please let me know- I never read back a chapter in fear of spotting them, so pointing them out really helps.
Clark Kent was an attractive man.
Don't get her wrong, Diana obviously had noticed this before. But she'd never really given herself time to pounder on it. After all the league did comprise of people who were considered to be appealing, so it's not odd that she'd never really taken much stock in it.
But now she was beginning to wonder why it had never occurred to her that Superman was... for a better word- super, in just about every expect. Toned to perfection, amazing hair that literally felt like silk between her fingers, those sensual lips, those deep piercing-piercing-
Her train of thought abruptly stopped as she realised that those deep piercing blue eyes were focused solely on her.
"Diana, have you heard a thing I said in the last 5 minutes?"Clark asked with a raised eyebrow.
"Of course," Diana lied, dropping her eyes to her notes to try and strengthen her statement. But as soon as she saw what she'd been scribbling, sketching actually, for the past half an hour she was somewhat horrified.
"What do you have there?" Clark asked, snatching the notebook out of her hand, before she could protest. His eyebrows rose comically as one side of his mouth hiked in amusement. "Well... at least if the superhero thing ever goes bust you'll have a career as an artist to fall back on." He tipped his head to the side as if trying to view the image in every angle. "But I think he has my nose."
She tried to snatch the book back but Clark held it just out of reach, chuckling at her antics.
"Give it back you insufferable man," she demanded.
"Insufferable?" he scoffed. "Is that anyway to talk to your future sperm donor?" he asked cheekily.
Diana felt her cheeks inflame. It was all Selina's fault, her and her talks of babies. That's the only reason she could fathom why she'd subconsciously sketched an image of a baby. As to why it resembled a Kryptonian hero she knew? Well, she also had no idea.
"Who said anything about you being the sperm donor?' she asked, relishing how his cocky grin momentarily slipped off his face. "Maybe I have another man in mind...now see those lips there," she paused to point her finger on the sketch. "They resemble Steve's."
Clark gave her a long withering look, until Diana felt a bit uncomfortable under his scrutiny.
"You're a horrid liar, Princess," he eventually accused, a smile curving his lips.
"Believe what you want then," Diana said dismissively.
"You know what I think?" he asked and she didn't fail to notice the slight husky tilt to his voice.
"What?' Diana asked, wondering why she suddenly felt a bit breathless.
Clark leaned over her, dropping the notebook on the coffee table as he cornered her in her seat. "I think not only are you a terrible liar," he began, edging forward his face now inches from her own. "But you're also a sore loser."
Trying to think had suddenly become difficult. She knew what she wanted to say but the words refused to be woven into coherent sentences. "Loser?" she managed, running on false bravado.
He smirked, and with that glint in his eyes, she knew the power was rapidly shifting. She was indeed losing and he was-
Involuntarily her breath suddenly hitched. "Your hand is on my thigh," she pointed out, only instead of sounding as assertive as she wished she felt her voice come out as a slightly squeaky question.
"Is there some law forbidding one friend from rubbing the leg of another?" he asked echoing her earlier words.
"Are you trying to seduce me, Mr Kent?" she asked, eyes narrowed even as she felt herself inching forward, their lips were now brushing lightly against each other. Because if he was, then it wouldn't be a drawn out seduction.
"Is it working?" he asked.
Diana never could lie to herself. They both probably knew the whole 'tutoring thing' had just been a ruse for both of them to end up alone together. And as much as she enjoyed thought provoking conversations with Kal, she honestly had no desire to converse.
"Yes," she practically hissed, drawing his head the last inch closer, her fingers weaving into his hair as their lips finally collided. Honestly, she should get the name of his conditioner.
"This isn't exactly how I thought this evening would pan out." Clark said as he drew back after the kiss, both of them trying to catch their breaths.
Diana gave him an incredulous look, "You're telling me you honestly thought they'd be actual work?"
"Well no...I thought we'd at least get to the pasta first, I make great pasta by the way."
"Sounds delicious." She murmured distractedly as her hands travelled down his back.
"You want me to stop? So we can-"
"Stop and die, Kent."
"Okay so no pasta then."
Clark was in trouble.
Literally and figuratively.
Yet oddly enough he wasn't as bothered as he probably should have been. It had never occurred to him that he might fall in love with his best friend. Sure he loved Diana but he'd never considered being in love with her until this whole 'friends with benefits' thing started.
Diana was an amazing woman. It probably didn't hurt that she was a complete knockout, but that wasn't what had drawn him to her. She had this way of looking at the world with the eyes of one who was wise yet also possessed an endearing childlike perception. She had compassion, was thoughtful and loyal to a fault.
How the hell did you get so lucky, Kent? He wondered wryly as he knocked once more on the bathroom door. "Diana?" he called out, remembering the literal trouble he also found himself in.
"Leave me to my immortal shame!" Diana called back.
"What?" he asked, although he'd heard her perfectly. Super hearing and all.
"What's the point of amplified senses if you can't use them." She muttered.
"I heard that!" He called back.
Running a hand through his bed mused hair, Clark tried to think of a different approach. There was always the option of just removing the door but then who knew what he'd walk into? Diana could be pretty scary when she wanted.
"Can you at least tell me what I did wrong?" he asked in a placating tone.
"Then why have you locked yourself in the bathroom?"
She paused, before she replied. "The door isn't locked, Kal."
And sure enough when he tried it, it swung open. He felt silly then as he smiled sheepishly at her. Diana didn't look impressed, sitting on the edge of the tub in nothing but his shirt. "Mind telling me what's wrong?' he asked.
When he woke up this morning he was certain everything was finally falling into place.
"Maybe this wasn't such a good idea," she said slowly, toeing the rug on the floor and avoiding his eyes.
There was no confusion about what she was alluding to.
"Is this because you lost, because nobody was keeping score," he told her. 3-2, Diana. He was so freaking close!
She harrumphed. "Last night doesn't count, it was mutual."
"You kissed me." He reminded her.
Real smooth Kent, that's bound to assure her how magnanimous you are.
Sighing he opened his mouth to try and smooth that over, but Diana spoke before he could say anything.
"I have to go," she announced, standing up and striding purposively pass him and back to the bedroom.
"You're leaving now?" he asked, incredulous as he followed her. He'd planned to serve her breakfast in bed, and then have the conversation they badly needed. "I mean you're off duty and the embassy only opens after 9am."
I should know, I spent almost a week memorising your schedule.
But Diana already had one leg hanging out the window. Her clothes wrapped in a ball in her arms. She'd give even Flash a run for his money with how quickly she'd managed that. "I need to water my plants," she said.
He bulked, "What?" he asked, affronted.
First Diana hides in the bathroom now she's leaving with one of the lamest excuses he'd ever heard?! She might as well have told him, she'd call him later. That at least had dignity in it.
"I kept forgetting so they really need to be watered," she continued. "Uhm, I'll see you or something." And before he could say anything else she was gone.
Clark sat on his bed, completely baffled. "Had Diana just ditched me for flora?" he wondered aloud.
In just one morning, within the span of twenty minutes, one of the most sensible women he'd ever known had just gone crazy. How else could he explain Diana's bizarre actions? It was almost like she woke up and inhaled a lungful of crazy, and added a dash of impulsiveness just for kicks.
He ran a hand over his face, trying to make sense of the last 20 minutes and coming out blank."Admit it Kent, there's no other reason," he told himself. "Diana officially booty-called you."
Make that 4-2, Diana.
She was a horrible human being. No, she was worse than that, much worse. Even now hours after the whole incident with Kal, Diana's guilt still threatened to overwhelm her. She hadn't planned to leave like she had. But what was she supposed to do when she woke up and Kal was looking at her as if he was about to promise her forever and a day?
Did he not know how desperately she wanted that? With him and no one else.
Well that escape probably made him believe otherwise, but she'd panicked. Which was completely unlike her. How was she supposed to know that the first time she truly fell in love, she'd turn into a coward?
Diana groaned, covering her eyes with her hand.
"I know I'm not the most exciting person to have rotations with, but you could at least try and pretend..." Bruce drawled, eyes on some gadget in his hands.
She'd forgotten about him. Which in another time would have been inconceivable. She'd wanted them to work so badly back then.
"No, it's not you...just have a lot on my mind," Diana said ruefully. Clark had been right, she was off duty, but she'd felt so restless she'd practically begged Donna to take her rotation. The Black Canary hadn't needed much convincing.
"Superman?" Bruce asked, glancing up at her.
Diana fidgeted. Was it appropriate to talk about Kal with Bruce? Or was that somehow taboo and would just make everyone feel awkward?
"You don't have to tell me if you're uncomfortable," Bruce said with a shrug as he turned back to his gadget.
"I think...no I know I'm in love with him," Diana blurted. How many times do get Batman offering to lend you his ear? In fact if she wasn't so anxious about her dilemma she'd ask him if he was feeling well.
"Well, that isn't much of a surprise..."
Diana arched an eyebrow, "How so?"
"I always knew you'd end up together," he stated with indifference. "It was inevitable."
Diana frowned, turning in her seat to regard him, "Is that's why you went out of your way to destroy our relationship?" she asked without any bite, simply curious. Now that she wasn't in love with him anymore, Batman wasn't so imposing. She didn't have to handle him with kid gloves.
"Couldn't we have just talked about you and Kent and not have let it get awkward?" he asked mildly.
"Was just curious," Diana shrugged.
He was silent, staring at her for a moment before turning back to his gizmo. "I did care about you, Diana," he finally uttered.
She smiled. "ditto." And she was so happy when she realised she hadn't misused the term.
"Hey , crazy kids. I've come to relieve you."
They both turned to Hal's voice. Diana blinked in surprise when her eyes landed on Selina, who had her arm slung casually around Hal. She flashed Diana a grin.
"I didn't know you were working for the league, Catwoman," Bruce said evenly.
"She doesn't, she was helping me with something," Hal beamed, with the ignorance of someone who hadn't seen the lions when he fell into the den.
"Green Lantern, needed my expert skills... and when he added dinner into the mix-" Selina paused to shrug innocently. "What was a girl to do?"
"You had her steal something for you?" Bruce asked Hal and there was a definite hike in his voice.
"Now that's just insulting," Selina accused. "I have other skills besides that."
Bruce snorted, "Like picking locks?"
"You know what, Batman?" she began, with an evil smirk. "Maybe I should give you a demonstration instead." And then she turned to Hal, grabbed his face and locked her lips with his.
Diana didn't know whether to be shocked or to laugh. From the corner of her eye she saw Batman visibly tense.
Selina drew out the kisser longer than necessary, before she tore her lips away from the stunned Green Lantern. "Well, look at the time," she said airily. "Green Lantern, I think I should be off. It was a pleassuuurre working with you. We should definitely hook up again." She gave Diana a wave before she sauntered off.
There was a tense silence after Selina left. Which unsurprisingly Hal was the first to break. "Wow, now that... is a kiss," he said grinning madly, before his eyes landed on Batman. There must have been something in the other man's set jaw that sent warning bells in his head, because he threw Diana frantic eyes. "I mean I've had better kisses, well I haven't but...oh man..."
"Come one guys, it's for a good cause!" Flash whined as he searched the disinterested faces around him. His eyes landed on Clark. "Come on Supes, if you're in then everyone else will agree," he pleaded.
"Because we're all a bunch of mindless drones," Shayera deadpanned.
"What?" Wally paled. "No, of course not, I didn't mean it like that, honestly-"
Feeling sorry for him, Clark decided to step in, "It's okay Flash, I actually think it's a great idea," he said.
"Not the best, but it could be interesting," Hal piped in.
Batman snorted. "A costume party?" he asked coolly. "We're always in costume, what would be interesting about that?"
Hal gaped. "It was one kiss!" he exclaimed. "And she kissed me!"
A hush fell on the league members after Hal's outburst, almost as if everyone was holding their breath in anticipation.
"Who kissed who?" Clark asked, glancing around him.
There was an exchange of looks among the others. Obviously he'd missed something. He glanced at Diana for help, but she was studying her agenda list with the utmost concentration. Or she was still just avoiding him.
"Catwoman kissed Green here, and Bats destroyed one of the satellites," Flash said, cutting Bruce off.
Clark chuckled, "What?"
"I told you it was the remote controller I had in my hand, it was faulty and I was trying to fix it," Batman bit out, giving Flash the Dark Knight look.
You know the look, the one that says unless some act of God intervenes in the next second, you're in big trouble.
It was not surprising that Flash abruptly took back his statement, suffering from a sudden bout of amnesia. "You're right, I wasn't even on duty when this alleged incident happened," he was saying quickly. "And for the record, Hal is the one spreading the rumour."
"What a way to throw me under the bus, buddy," Hal said sarcastically as Wally threw him an apologetic look.
Bruce cleared his throat, "This costume party, were exactly will it be taking place?" he asked, smartly changing the subject.
"Diana's digs!" Wally practically sang. Whether it was the excitement over the event or he was just plain happy the heat was off him was up for debate.
Diana looked up startled. "What?" she asked. It was evident from her expression that not only had she not known about this charity event, but also that it would be at the Embassy.
With a sudden shift in the air, The Flash was standing besides the Amazon Princess, a pleading look on his face. "Please, Diana it's either you or Gotham," he said the last part with dread, "Not that anything is wrong with Gotham of course!" he added, throwing a nervous smile at Bruce.
Clark watched as Diana shrugged in defeat. For a moment their eyes caught each other, before she glanced away. He'd have to find a way to corner her somehow, find out why she was suddenly avoiding him like the plague.
"Wednesday evening at the Embassy it is then!" Flash exclaimed excitedly.
"Isn't that tomorrow?" Cyborg asked.
Wally nodded, "Better get busy then?"