Tag! was hardly Kara’s first foray into app dating; it was really unavoidable. Outside of her L-Corp workdays, she’d spent a fair amount of time matching and chatting with virtual strangers and had even made dates with a handful. Rarely had it gone anywhere significant. A few had remained casual friends, but nothing had really sparked into anything long-term, and she was fine with that. She hadn’t found anyone she felt so invested in that letting go of the romantic possibility was difficult.
That had been her goal when signing up for Tag!, too, to make friends. She would be happy with that. She had support here. Lois, Clark, Lena, and Alex may not have been from their world, but they’d been supportive and extremely kind, especially in light of their own Kara’s recent disappearance. But she needed people of her own here. So far, she’d befriended Atreus (who had excellent taste in pastries) and Agnes (who was sweet but, uh, intense). She wanted to broaden that circle, especially as it became clear she wasn’t leaving Vallo anytime soon.
She hadn’t expected to stumble across Darcy. Science, dogs, coffee — all wins in her book, and to top it off, she was insanely pretty. But Kara knew herself. She had a tendency to dive in headfirst and get ahead of herself romantically. So, while they had hit it off, she was making a conscious effort to keep her expectations low. Today was going to be fun, an adventure. That was the plan and she thought she’d found a pretty good one.
Blizzard World wasn’t native to Vallo, from what she’d read, but it gave off a mix of Disneyland vibes mixed with just about any other theme park you could think of. She loved roller coasters, and there would be plenty of games to play, food to eat, and time to talk waiting in lines. (Not too long, though; she’d made the smart decision and gotten express passes to skip the longest lines.)
She was waiting for Darcy at the entrance, a bit off to the side so she wasn’t blocking anyone’s path, in a nerdy red t-shirt, jeans, and flats. She reached back to tighten her ponytail one last time, then raised her eyes to scan the crowd again and landed on a familiar face. She stepped out a bit and raised a hand to catch her eye as she approached.
“Darcy, hey,” she greeted her, flashing her a bright smile. “Ready to adventure?”
Boy was she. Darcy had Asgardian Romantic Drama on the brain again, with Fandral and Thor and whatever was happening there. But she’d had this to look forward to, and gods only knew she needed the break from worrying about her friends. So issues were left behind in her RV, possibly with a sulking Thor, and she’d been off.
After having to reassure said beefy Asgardian that she didn’t need Stormbreaker, and she didn’t need an “escort”. Or weapons. Or to figure out what Kara’s weaknesses were.
It was a good thing Darcy knew he meant well, at least, before waving him off. She had to dig down to the deep recesses of her wardrobe to find more summer clothes - look, she was a creature of habit that wore a hoodie everywhere, okay - and was delighted her flowy tank top complimented Kara well. She matched Kara’s grin with her own, shoving hands in her pockets so she didn’t do something embarrassing like reach out for a fist bump.
“Sup, hey. I’m so ready, and so pumped for the adventure of funnel cake as large as my head.” She fell into the dork pretty quickly anyway, with a little flourish bow to the entrance. “Shall we?”
“You read my mind,” Kara agreed with a chuckle at that little flourish. Already, she was adorable. “Junk food first it is. Funnel cake, followed by deep-fried…anything?” Her stomach could take just about anything, so she’d let Darcy make the call on that. She was always a fan of a deep-fried Snickers bar, personally.
Without further ado, she led them to the gates, handing over their admittance tickets to get in. The place was packed with people, unsurprisingly, given the season. Amusement parks were always a big hit during the summer, no matter what world or planet you were on, apparently. The smell of carnival food smacked you right in the face, and she could see plenty of vendor stalls in either direction as they stopped in front of the giant directory inside the entrance.
She picked up a glossy copy of the map and opened it for Darcy to look at with her. “Which way first? It looks like we have The Lost Vikings to the left and Warcraft to the right.” She figured the food would be basically the same no matter which way they went — it just depended on which area they wanted to explore more.
Darcy made a noise of agreement at deep-fried anything. At this point, she was more than happy to just stuff her face and worry about consequences later. But she’d also been smart enough to throw a little travel pack of tums in her mini backpack and Darcy had very little shame as far as eating in front of a date went.
She also had very little shame in getting up close to look at the map. And half getting distracted because Kara smelled good? That-- okay, so it had admittedly been a long time since she’d even been on a date/adventure. She wasn’t about to let herself get into the you smell so good distraction phase so quickly, stamp it down, Lewis.
Internal dialogue aside, Darcy snickered down at the map and pointed a little ahead of their area. “Okay, but there’s Booty Bay straight ahead. And Snaxxramas. We have pirate puns and promises of snacks, and the word “booty”. It may be part of our civic duty to check it out before we double back.”
Having Darcy getting up close and personal like that made Kara’s heart race a little faster. Dating hadn’t been a thing for her in a long time, and having someone close to her was a little overwhelming. In a good way! She smelled good, and with her red sun emitter turned off (something she hadn’t done in public for a very long time), everything was sharper and stronger, too. It was pretty easy to tell that she wasn’t the only one getting distracted here.
Time to take a breath and get a freaking grip. She didn’t want to spiral down that rabbit hole too quickly. They had time and plenty of it.
“Well, if it’s our civic duty, then we have no choice,” she chuckled. She folded the map back up, going one square smaller to slide it into her back pocket. “Onward?” She offered a hand with a tentative smile. No expectation to take it, and maybe it was a little forward, but — well, there were a lot of people crowded in here. “So we don’t get separated?”
Darcy threaded her fingers through Kara’s with little to no hesitation, though she did pop a little teasing smirk in the direction of her date. “And just cause hand-holding is nice. But I’ll warn you that I get sweaty hands when I’m nervous so I will not hold it against you if you’re like, Darcy, what the fuck, ew.” Not that she’d expected that kind of blunt response from Kara, but Darcy couldn’t say she knew her well enough just yet. Call it gut instinct.
That same gut instinct is what pulled her towards Booty Bay and Snaxxramas, her stomach leading the charge as they weaved through people comfortably, fingers entwined. More than a few times they’d had to stop abruptly and dodge other tourists, which resulted in a few bumps and nudges, all of which had Darcy grinning rather than embarrassed.
When they reached the crossing, Darcy stopped for real and held up a finger. “Okay, I don’t have any official superpowers, but if I did, it’d be detecting fried goods. And--” That finger pointed to the left. “That way. And not because I saw it on the map earlier, just trust me.”
“I don’t mind sweaty hands,” Kara assured her with an amused grin. She didn’t sweat, personally, no matter how much she pushed herself physically. One of the many bonuses that came with being a Kryptonian living under a yellow sun. “And agreed on the hand-holding.” She wasn’t shy about holding hands even platonically. She had always been super touchy-feely and liked the feeling of closeness.
She let Darcy lead her on, pausing when she was stopped and stifling a chuckle at her declaration of a fried-goods-detecting superpower. “Sounds like I’ll have to trust you, oh wise one,” she teased. She lifted her chin to take a whiff for herself. “And as someone who does have a few superpowers, I think you’re right. I’m so ready to stuff my face with whatever it is that smells that good. Hoping it’s the funnel cake.”
“Okay see, now you’re just showing off.” Darcy teased, but it was with a grin and one that didn’t falter or show any signs of being less than genuine. If there was anyone used to being around supers, it was Darcy Lewis. It also put her in the prime position to not be awkward about it, and able to go toe-to-toe.
It was easier to go toe-to-toe when the person in question was as pretty as Kara was, that was for fucking sure.
When they reached Booty Bay, it was bustling with people who had a similar idea as their own. There were a few lines, a few groups huddled, and Darcy internally made a game-plan. “Okay, I got this. Wish me luck.” Her eyes darted around and put the math together before she brought their joined hands up to give Kara’s a good-luck kiss before briefly parting to vanish into the crowd.
She returned in record time, giant plate carrying a head-sized funnel cake on it, powdered sugar sprinkled onto every visible surface. She beamed proudly, like she was showing off a newborn. “It is I, your savior. Hold your applause.”
The cloud of sweet-smelling treats mixed they walked into upon entering Booty Bay made Kara’s mouth nearly start watering. She was a voracious eater thanks to Kryptonian metabolism. She tried to keep it mostly healthy, but she needed an insane amount of carbs and sugar to keep from feeling hungry, so the weakness for junk food was kind of a given. And here, she was absolutely surrounded by it and eager to dive right in.
Her eyebrows raised when Darcy kissed her hand (butterflies like crazy, Rao) and disappeared with a confidence that was actually super hot and appealing. She stood frozen for a moment before deciding to use the time to grab something to drink, too. The powdered sugar funnel cakes practically drowned in always made her thirsty.
She returned only a few seconds before Darcy (with a little help from a burst of super speed) with one absurdly large blue raspberry slushie and two straws tucked behind her ear. But her eyes went wide as saucers when she saw the size of the funnel cake she’d bought. She could eat that herself in one sitting, easy, but by human standards, wow. That was obscenely huge.
She brought her free hand to chest, fluttering her eyelashes dramatically. “My hero,” she declared with a chuckle. “I spotted a little open table back that way.” She nodded to their left. “Let’s grab it before anyone else notices and get eating?”
Oh, the looks Darcy was giving that giant slushie could rival the ones she gave Kara when the blonde wasn’t looking. Whew. If she shifted to hold the funnel cake precariously in one hand, she could get some more hand-holding in, and Darcy took that opportunity, despite the risks.
She had a teasing grin on her face when she looked over. “Good plan, because I think if I’m not sitting down to eat this, it’s going to be an even bigger mess or we’ll have to resort to Lady and the Tramp types of situations and that could be fun roleplay but maybe not in public.” She was bordering on rambling, but that didn’t seem to kill her steam going forward.
“Definitely in private then, right?” Kara bantered right back, giving Darcy’s hand a quick squeeze when it slipped back into hers. She hadn’t expected her to want to give up a hand while holding that monster funnel cake, but she wasn’t going to argue. Instead, she winked playfully and led the way back to the tiny table.
And tiny was exactly the word for it, just a two-seater wooden picnic bench. It was even a little low, and Kara suspected it was made for kids, but it was there and they were staking their claim here and now. If actual kids needed it, well, she would deal with that when the time came.
Darcy’s hand was dropped for the time being, albeit reluctantly. There would be plenty of time for more after they’d gorged themselves on this beauty. With an exaggerated flourish, she plopped the giant slushie down on the table between them and pulled the equally long straws out from behind her ear, offering one to Darcy. “I hope you don’t care about sharing drinks. I thought two might be a little excessive, but I can go grab another one if you want this one to yourself.”
The way Darcy sat herself in, close to Kara - it was hopefully obvious she had no real complaint about sharing that space. Other than the fact that her thighs were-- well, not small. But she was already flushed a little pink from the banter and the sharing and the fact that funnel cake was in their very near future.
She could put on an air of total confidence, however, as Darcy’s chin went up with a smug grin as she very slowly slid the straw into the drink. “We’re sharing funnel cake so it only seems appropriate to share a giant slushie, right?” Her knee bumped Kara’s gently and she slid the funnel cake onto the table and started pulling at it with a happy little hum. “Besides, if we’re sharing, that just means I’m less likely to look like a dumbass giving myself a brain freeze.”
Darcy held up a glorious deep-fried-powdered-sugar offering for Kara to take.
Darcy’s cues weren’t the subtlest, so it didn’t take Kara more than a second or two to understand that sharing was more than okay. Not just when it came to drinks and food but space too; she hadn’t expected to get quite this snuggly, despite already having gotten some hand-holding action, but she wasn’t complaining.
“Just don’t slurp it down too fast,” she teased, unwrapping her straw to slide into the cup next. “I hear that it prevents brain freeze pretty much every time.” She eagerly accepted the piece of cake offered to her and took a big bite. Instantly, a satisfied hum left her, completely involuntarily. That much sugar melting in her mouth really was like some kind of magic.
“So,” she said, after taking a quick sip of slushie, “can I ask you something totally not date-related?”
“Okay but--” Darcy countered with a powdered sugar covered finger pointed right at Kara. “What if I do, and still end up looking like a dumbass with a brain freeze.” Because if Darcy was anything, it was bad at taking advice when she was being actively stubborn. Kara, at least, got the benefit of Darcy pointing that stubborn streak elsewhere usually (and the fact that she was on her best date behavior).
One wince and a very light brain-freeze later and it was clear she wasn’t wrong. But she powered through and flashed Kara a bright smile, determined to show off her resilience. “You can ask me anything, totally not date-related or otherwise. What’s up?”
Darcy’s inevitable brain freeze was brief but apparent, and Kara had to smile around another bit of funnel cake. She’d tried to warn her, but apparently, she didn’t like being told what to do. She could appreciate that. A little bit of a stubborn streak was something she’d always found stupidly attractive. And she wasn’t innocent of getting that way herself on occasion.
“Not to sound like a weird lurker, but - Agnes. I’ve seen you chime in on some of her posts. Is she from your world? Because she’s…a trip. I don’t really know what to make of her.” She hadn’t seen much of Agnes since that first night she’d gone out with her, literally her second night in Vallo. The saucy gossip train wasn’t really her thing, and Agnes herself was just a lot to take in. She was a little curious if she was always like this or if this was just her way of striking out on her own.
Darcy blew out a breath. Okay, maybe she shouldn’t have said anything. But even then, the question was fair, since Agnes was such a force and clearly had barreled right through Vallo without most of them really knowing what to expect.
The hesitancy to answer was probably clear in her voice and on her expressive face. “Yeahhh, she’s from my world. It’s uh- not really my story to tell?” It wasn’t, and she didn’t really want to bring down the date going into a heavier topic. “Mostly just-- I don’t super trust her personally, but she should be largely harmless outside of some gossip?” Should be. The same could be said for Loki sometimes, too.
Okay, that was a beyond fair way to answer. Kara knew it was a weird, not-really-date-appropriate question, but she couldn’t help wondering. Given the amount of gossip Agnes was spilling, she didn’t super trust her either. The one night they had gone out for drinks, she’d tried to pry information out of her almost immediately. Kara was trusting in general but not that trusting. She was still working on it being an open secret that Kryptonians were super-powered thanks to her AU!self.
She could tell by the look on Darcy’s face that she didn’t really want to discuss this, which was understandable. She smiled apologetically, a little red in the face, and reached out to give her hand a squeeze. “Sorry, that was a weird one. Please don’t hold it against me? Back to normal date questions, I promise.” She took another quick sip of slushie before shifting the subject. “All-time favorite movie?”
Darcy had an easy grin on her face in response, and she shrugged it off. If there was anything she was good at, it was going with the flow and being cool about things. Kara asking questions? Barely a bother. NOT a bother, in really any way. “Seriously, I do not mind in the freaking least. Except now I think we might have beef.”
She had no actual beef, just a piece of funnel cake held out for Kara to take. And a squinty grin on her face as she thought over that question. “Lord of the Rings? Parasite? Alien? Oh my god there is seriously no way I can pick one movie.” As they had made a pretty clear dent in both the drink and the funnel cake, she tilted her head over to the water and pathway that seemed to wrap around the entire lake. “Want to walk around and I’ll come up with a top ten list to compare against yours? Just don’t tell me if Fight Club is on it, my heart can’t take it.”
Kara took the offered piece of funnel cake and grinned back, relieved that they were able to easily move past her moment of awkwardness. She liked this too, sharing food; she loved food, and there was a certain level of intimacy in sharing that made this feel even bigger, made her more excited. It helped that Darcy was insanely pretty and that squinty grin was adorable. It was hard not to lean in and kiss her right then and there.
“Top ten it is,” she agreed. She grabbed the slushie in one hand and rose, offering her free hand to Darcy to help her to her feet. A walk while they gorged themselves on an insane amount of sugar was probably the healthiest choice and gave them a chance to see this place in all its glory. “And don’t worry, Fight Club’s nowhere near my top ten. Lord of the Rings is up there, though. Is The Notebook acceptable? Because I know it’s kinda cheesy, but I have a soft spot for romances. And Rachel McAdams.”
“I’ll allow The Notebook if you let me have To All the Boys I Loved Before,” Darcy answered with a grin. It was easy to fall into a rhythm with Kara, to the point where Darcy didn’t even really give a crap about the actual amusement park.
That was apparently much easier to accomplish when one’s company was so great. And had Lord of the Rings in their top ten. Darcy filed that information away into the Keeper file immediately and with a grin.
“Top ten on that one, huh? Very millennial of you,” Kara teased with a smile. She raised an eyebrow playfully but gave an exaggerated acquiescent nod. Like there was any way to really refuse Darcy’s face even if she truly wanted to. “Alright I’ll allow it. I mean, it’s no Notebook, but you’re valid.”