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Originally intended by the author to be a prediction of how events would follow from the end of Supergirl’s fourth season, Reckonings by LetItFlow0992 is an AU angst/drama short story set after the first episode of Season 5. Left feeling betrayed and undervalued by the knowledge that Kara has been hiding her identity as Supergirl, a vulnerable Lena Luthor is manipulated by Leviathan to deliver the heroine into their clutches. When the trap organised between them is sprung however, Lena discovers too late that her impressions of Kara are wrong and struggles with the torn, powerful guilt in the aftermath.

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On the other side of things, the heroes are divided. Kara blames herself, feeling she has let Lena down. Shattered and bereft, miserable and heartbroken, she lashes out in grief at everyone around her. But despite the appearance that she wants Lena back, she is emotionally incapable of doing it. The DEO is in chaos over the whole thing, split on how to treat Lena’s brutal betrayal. Alex is forced to deal with her own demons in the process as the situation has led her to believe she has made some wrong choices of her own in the past in regards to Kara and Lena. Through knowing the both of them and coming to understand what she really should have done for them, she decides to step forward and goes to find Lena, hoping to set her and Kara on a path of reconciliation.

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Reckonings contains the following tropes:

  • Adult Fear: Alex is brought to a breaking point when it appears she may be losing Kara, one way or another.
  • An Aesop:
    • Never assume that because a loved one is keeping secrets from you doesn’t mean they don’t care about you.
    • Elder siblings have to learn to let go of their younger siblings and accept new people will come into their lives
  • Anger Born of Worry: When she is informed by Winn that Lena has surrendered to the authorities, Kara returns to the DEO in a livid, boiling rage, afraid that she and Lena would never be together again.
  • "Awkward Silence" Entrance: More tense than awkward, the opening scene of Chapter 3 features Alex entering Lena’s office to confront her. The two meet, Lena regarding her with cold suspicion and private fear and Alex answering back with an emotionless but piercing stare.
    • Subverted when Lena goes to apologise to Kara. She manages to speak to her at the door but, after being let in, things go gravely quiet.
  • Beautiful Dreamer: Kara watches Lena go to sleep at the end of Chapter Three. Lena reveals she watched Kara the same way at the beginning of the next chapter after she awoke.
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  • Belated Love Epiphany: Before they meet again in Chapter 3’s final scenes, Lena and Kara both worry that they have acknowledged their true feelings too late.
  • Berserk Button:
    • Kara does not take it too well when James campaigns to have Lena arrested. She is similarly furious again when she learns Lena is trying to surrender herself to the authorities.
    • Alex has two. She flies into an appalled rage upon finding out Lena deliberately hurt Kara and she does not like it when someone undermines her authority, such as with James in Chapter 2 and Winn in Chapter 5.
  • Big Bad Duumvirate: Lena and the Leviathan woman in Chapter One.
  • Big Damn Kiss: After Kara fumbles adorkably in trying to tell Lena all the reasons why she never told her the truth, Lena remembers why she connected with her so easily and lunges forward to kiss her.
  • Book-Ends: The story begins with Lena inviting Kara to a friendly lunchdate that turns out to be a trap. In the final scene, they go on a real lunchdate as lovers.
  • The Cameo: Wonder Woman appears as the head of Themyscira Industries, wanting to engage Lena in a renewal of a business deal. It’s also implied Diana knows whatLena did to Kara.
  • Conflicting Loyalty: Lena, between her wanting vengeance and her desperation to keep Kara safe from physical harm in Chapter One.
  • The Corruptible: To Leviathan, this is everyone else in the world.
  • The Dog Bites Back: Upon facing the devastating reality that she lost Lena, Kara bitterly arrives at the conclusion she should have told her friend the truth a long time ago, which causes her to remember the times Alex had told her not to and instigates her to be furious with her sister.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Leviathan claims that they do not take the life of an enemy or innocent. Subverted in the fourth chapter when they strongly imply they will not stop any of the associates they have dealings with from killing.
  • False Innocence Trick: Lena uses this to lure Supergirl into a trap by portraying herself as a victim about to be abducted by Leviathan.
  • Food Porn: The surprise breakfast Lena cooks for Kara as a way of further making amends with her.
    • The lunch Jess orders for Lena in Chapter Three.
  • Freudian Excuse: The main reason Alex never wanted Kara to confess she was Supergirl to Lena was that she had gotten so used to being Kara’s primary confidant that she feared Lena would completely replace her.
  • Gone Horribly Right: Lena wanted to pay Kara back for the perceived betrayal of her as she felt her friend did not value her enough, only for her to discover in the aftermath of her revenge, Kara valued her more than she realised and so is hurt by Lena’s actions more deeply than intended.
  • The Ghost: the al Ghul family.
  • Heel–Face Door-Slam: James clearly wants to do this to Lena. The DEO temporarily sided with him until they learn Kara wishes otherwise.
  • Heroic BSoD:
    • Kara is consumed with guilt throughout Chapter 2 and some of 3, lamenting that she should have been entirely truthful with Lena and is shattered to the core that she has lost her as a result.
    • Lena letting the consequences of her mistakes completely overrule her judgement in Chapter 4.
    • Subverted with Alex. Though she is affected by Lena’s betrayal to the point that she almost never really fights back against Kara’s demands, she nonetheless soldiers on to set things right for her sister.
  • I Hate Past Me: During her return to L Corp in Chapter 2, Lena is about to enter the elevator when she hallucinates the hard, determined person she had been twenty four hours prior and is further shattered emotionally as it strikes her just how heartless and cold she was then.
  • Improperly Paranoid: Subverted in the last sequence of Chapter 2 with Lena. She returns to her normal life after spending the night in hiding, led by the supposition the DEO is not even looking for her. Because she does not know why, she is in fear that it’s all a ruse and they’re just trying to get her out in the open.
  • Insecure Love Interest: Although Lena loves what comes about from the Relationship Upgrade in Chapter 3, when she and Kara learn Leviathan’s true goals, she feels that she does not deserve Kara’s affections and attempts to turn herself in.
  • Inside Job: Leviathan determine that this is the best way to damage Supergirl.
  • Internal Reveal: At the end of Chapter Two, when Jess informs her that Ms Danvers wants to see her, Lena immediately assumes it’s Kara, unaware Alex has been looking for her.
  • "It" Is Dehumanizing: The mercenary commander sent by Leviathan to capture Supergirl reports the success of his mission in this way.
    Mercenary: Inform the superiors. Target procured.
    • Subverted with Lena throughout the first three chapters. From her perspective, she never refers to Supergirl as Kara until Alex starts explaining everything to her.
  • It's All My Fault:
    • Alex comes to hate herself for always convincing Kara not to tell Lena the truth
    • While openly hating Alex, Kara also blames herself for Lena’s fall from grace.
    • Lena in Chapter Four, when she knows just how much Leviathan had really played her for a fool.
  • Jaw Drop: The reaction of many a customer at Noonan’s when Kara and Lena kiss passionately. Subverted with one unnamed cameraman.
  • Kick the Dog: The woman from Leviathan’s parting words to Lena after their final meeting.
    The Woman: Ms Luthor, I thought it may interest you to know Supergirl has not told anyone else you know the truth. Not even her beloved sister.
    Lena [feigning indifference]: So?
    The Woman: So, she is giving you time and space to get over your anger towards her, thinking, maybe believing, the two of you can work things out. The mark of a good friend. Imagine how she’ll feel after all this. She’ll never forgive you. She’ll even hate you. But then again, that is what you want. To have her feel the same pain and betrayal she put you through.
  • Let's Wait a While: Believing they came close to doing it after reconciling so soon in Chapter 3, Lena and Kara agree not to have sex until they’ve built their relationship up further in the story’s penultimate scene.
  • Love-Interest Traitor: Lena, at the beginning.
  • Love Redeems: One of the main factors that causes Lena to want to reconcile with Kara is the revelation that they both have not answered to their mutual feelings for each other.
  • Love Revelation Epiphany: Lena comes to know she has hidden feelings for Kara once Alex tells her of the strong possibility Kara’s in love with her.
  • Lured into a Trap: The main plot point of Chapter One.
  • Moment Killer:
    • A dark-natured one in Chapter Four. Lena and Kara are interrupted from starting another makeout session when the phone rings. Kara puts it on loudspeaker, planning for her and Lena to continue but they both halt again in horror when the caller addresses her as Supergirl. Leviathan is back.
    • In the final chapter, Lena and Kara are about to share another kiss in Interrogation Room Five when Alex starts stammering in shock upon knowing just how far their relationship has progressed already.
    • And then, when they’re back at the loft, their time together is continually interrupted by Kara’s responsibilities as Supergirl.
  • Must Make Amends:
    • In Chapter 2, Alex seeks Lena out to finally clear the air between them, wanting the latter to know why it was so important to her that she be kept out of Kara’s life.
    • Following on from there, Lena takes up her own gauntlet, determining to set things right with Kara.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: A major if not the primary arc for Lena, once she realises she overreacted to Kara hiding things from her and took her revenge too far.
    • At the end of Chapter One and the beginning of Chapter Two, Alex finally understands what keeping Kara from telling Lena the truth was costing all three of them.
  • My Sister Is Off-Limits!: It turns out that this is one of Alex’s reasons and an important part of her not wanting Kara to tell Lena the truth, because she fears that if their relationship developed beyond a certain point, then her sisterly bond with Kara would grow redundant.
  • Mythology Gag: The Wonder Woman cameo is one to the failed television series reboot from 2011.
    • The al Ghul’s company is called L.O.S. Inc.
  • No Name Given: The representative and the woman from Leviathan. It is noted as the way the organisation operates.
    • The al Ghul’s emissary
  • Personal Horror:
    • Although it was already displayed in a way from Lena’s viewpoint in Chapter One, readers get a full-on perspective from Kara as she relives her capture and torture in Chapter Three.
    • Lena has a bit of this herself as she tries to understand the way Supergirl reacted to her betrayal.
  • Psychological Horror: Their plans to discredit Supergirl having failed, Leviathan decides to use Lena to attack her in this way.
  • Reality Ensues: After escaping from Alex, Lena starts thinking of where she could go. The problem there is she is too well known a figure to simply hide.
  • Right for the Wrong Reasons: In the events leading up to the main story, Alex suspects that the reason for the friction between Kara and Lena was that Kara had told Lena she was Supergirl. Lena knows the truth but Kara never told her.
  • Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: After recovering from her ordeal in the first chapter, Kara bursts in on a DEO meeting when she overheard them discussing about hunting Lena down and demands that they don’t do it, threatening to go so far as to commit perjury if it means keeping Lena out of prison.
  • Shipper on Deck: Nia Nal and Jess both see through the shroud of friendship and recognise what Kara and Lena really mean to each other.
  • Shipper with an Agenda: Justified for Alex. She had always had reservations about truly letting Lena deeper into Kara’s life, but in Chapter 2, she starts to see it as a much lesser evil when she is faced with the fact that the consequences of keeping them apart that way is costing her her relationship with her sister.
  • Shout-Out: In Chapter Two, when James is giving her an impression he’ll go rogue if it means he’ll be able to get to Lena, Alex threatens to have him restrained, telling him she can’t afford to have him turning all Javert.
  • Stage Whisper: The chief mercenary explains to Kara the torture he and his team are about to inflict on her in this way, implied by the action to be getting a rise out of Lena.
  • Suddenly SHOUTING!: James in Chapter Two when he can’t understand why Kara won’t have Lena arrested or why the others are readily accepting of her wishes.
  • This Is Unforgivable!:
    • Alex’s initial reaction to Lena’s betrayal of Kara until she realises she’s also partly to blame.
    • Throughout Chapters Two and Three, Kara finds it difficult to forgive Alex for holding her back.
    • Out of all the heroic characters, James is the only one refusing to forgive Lena for the events of Chapter One.
  • Torture Cellar: The L Corp basement is temporarily converted into one by Leviathan in Chapter One.
  • Unishment:
    • Lena bars Kara from the kitchen
    • Kara jokes about her and Lena having no makeout sessions for three days.
  • Unwitting Pawn: Lena discovers she was this to Leviathan when she overheard their true purpose in traumatising Kara.
  • Villain Protagonist: Lena in Chapters One, Two and the beginning of 3.
  • Villainous BSoD: Lena goes through this a heavy bout of this when it hits her she went too far in taking her pain out on Kara.
  • Wham Line: When Alex penitently asks Lena to forgive Kara in Chapter 3, she states that Kara may have already forgiven her for her actions. Perplexed and guiltridden, Lena asks her why.
    Alex: It’s because when someone has found the right person, there is nothing they won’t do for the one they’re in love with.
  • What the Hell, Hero?:
    • Alex does this to Lena twice, the first in light of her betrayal in Chapter One and the second after she surrenders to the DEO in Chapter Five.
    • James blows up at Alex for her acceptance of Kara’s wish that Lena does not get taken into custody. He does it to her again when she voiced her belief Kara forgave Lena close to the end of the story.
  • Alex tries to chide Winn for disobeying her orders in the final chapter, but it fails when he sticks to his guns.
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