When Carmilla kissed Elle, she would feel anything from flying, blazing sparks to a gentle and humming warmth. It was like the difference between an inferno or a hearth, though it varied from day to day as to what Carmilla would feel when she kissed Elle. Sometimes it burned, sometimes it didn't. When Carmilla kissed Elle, she could hear a heartbeat that sped up every single time their lips collided. Hint, hint, it was never her own. She could smell all of Elle, her hair, her skin, her clothing (or lack thereof on some nights), and the delicious, thick scent of the blood than ran so powerfully through her veins. When Carmilla kissed Elle, she could taste promise and potential, excitement and reluctance, love and lust. When Carmilla kissed Elle, she could taste all of the sweetness of a new day rising up over the horizon. It really was a Heaven on Earth and Carmilla had nothing to criticize or complain about when she kissed Elle. Or at least, she had almost nothing... If there was one thing Carmilla would've changed about Elle's kiss, it would've been the everlasting and bitter taste of fear that would mar what otherwise would've been a perfect kiss. It didn't matter how many times they'd done it before, every time Carmilla's lips touched Elle anywhere, and no matter the context, whether it be a deep and passionate kiss or a gentle peck on the lips, there was always that one element of fear, and it broke Carmilla's heart.

When Carmilla kissed Laura, she would feel the passionate blaze of an inferno somehow mixing in perfectly with the warm and steady glow of a hearth fire. As impossible as such a thing sounded, Carmilla had no better word to describe it than as such. When she kissed Laura, she could feel determination and ferocity mixing perfectly with gentleness and adoration. There was no paradox in that, somehow, the two were able to coexist. Strangest of all, though, even though there was nothing but fire within Laura's kiss, it never burned Carmilla. It only ever warmed or illuminated. Maybe it felt hotter on some days than others, but it never burned or scorched. When Carmilla kissed Laura, she could hear a heartbeat, strong and steady. Sometimes it would speed up in response to Carmilla's lips, but it always quieted back down into that familiar and blessed rhythm eventually. Carmilla could smell all of Laura, her hair, her skin, her clothing (or lack thereof on some nights), and the delicious, thick scent of the blood than ran so powerfully through her veins. When Carmilla kissed Laura, she could taste so much of a future. So much that would happen. She could taste certainty, fortitude, determination and desire. It really was a Heaven on Earth and Carmilla had nothing to criticize or complain about when she kissed Laura.

And that was where the difference was. Where Elle's kiss had been full of fear and uncertainty from beginning to end, Laura's had held none of that, just confidence, love and determination. Where Elle's kiss had been promise and potential, Laura's had been certainty and success. Where Elle's kisses, though sweet and beautiful in their own way, had been tumultuous and full of hope for a future, Laura's had been sweeter still, steady even through the most chaotic of times and full of assurance of a future. And that was where the difference was. While Elle had only ever had a mere hope for a future, Laura had managed to push her fears aside in the name of her own desires and she didn't just hope for a future, she actively worked towards it, making it an assured future, and not just a hoped for future. Where Elle was everything passive and patient, Laura was the bullheaded idiot that broke barriers and did whatever necessary to achieve an end goal. When Carmilla kissed Elle, it had been a gentle, innocent sweetness mixed with a hopeful expectance. When Carmilla kissed Laura, it was a strong, self-assured confidence mixed with a determined plan. And that was where the difference between these two kisses, these two girls, these two great loves of Carmilla was.

AN: Semi-based off my "Hot Chocolate" fanfic where it's more Laura/Elle comparisons in Carmilla's head. This time, though, it's more about their differences than their possible similarities. It's Carmilla noting that while she'd loved both of them and received love in return from both of them, there were still enough differences between the two to make it clear why Carmilla chose Laura over Elle. They both might've been great kissers, but it was Laura who was going to pursue it through the end while Elle would only wait and cower back. Elle was love, but only in a passive sense. Laura was love, but in a more active sense, and that was where the difference between them was.

SLIGHT DISCLAIMER, HOWEVER. Although I understand the fandom is supposed to see Laura as Carmilla's better lover just because, unlike Elle, Laura was not held back by fear, I still sympathize with Elle because you can't deny that fear is one heck of a dream-crusher, and you really can't totally give Laura a free pass. She wasn't perfect either. Neither of Carmilla's lovers were. They were both only flawed humans, and I understand that the difference is in whether or not they were able to overcome their flaws, but I do still find fascination with Elle's character because it honestly reminds me of every queer person who feels pressured to come out/accept their identity instead of being allowed to find it on their own times and terms. IDK, that's just food for thought. It wasn't anyone's fault that Laura had been out and proud from the get-go while Elle was still very much in denial. But that was where the difference between them was.