CHAPTER 2

"Meeting me was either the best thing that ever happened to you or the worst. You decide."

A couple nights later, Bombshell sat perched on the roof's ledge with her eyes focused on the street below. LT had managed to work his magic and uncover where Anderson had disappeared to. He had been spotted at a nearby warehouse – apparently his new hideout – and was planning his next move. Bombshell was all too willing to pay him a visit, but she held back. She had no idea what Anderson was up to yet and she didn't want to make the mistake of moving in on him too soon.

For now, she just watched.

Hopefully with a bit more information on the man, she could stop him for good.

Just then Anderson emerged from the building flanked by two large goons and headed to a parked SUV out front, similar to the one from the bank robbery. Bombshell scowled and dropped down to a lower ledge to get a better view, making sure she was light on her feet as she landed on the steel grate of the fire escape.

Anderson wore a sharp white suit with his greasy hair slicked back. He was off to somewhere fancy and clearly didn't care that he was a wanted man judging by the flashy way he dressed.

That angered Bombshell even more; innocent people were still reeling from the robbery and a large amount of money remained unaccounted for. Anderson just took took took from this city without any remorse. Bombshell couldn't stand criminals that took advantage of people, but the cocky ones like Anderson were the absolute worst.

She couldn't wait to take down the bastard!

Bombshell watched as the chauffer quickly rounded the SUV and opened the door for the mobster then they were off.

She kept to the shadows as she followed the car several blocks. She gave herself a big pat on the back for actually fitting in a nap after work this time for she was able to replenish her energy and keep up while she used the full capacity of her speed.

When the SUV stopped outside a familiar club, Bombshell skidded to a stop. She had only been there once before, but she knew the place a lot better than she wanted.

Still, she kept her eyes focused. She didn't have time for a walk down memory lane, at least not while she was on the clock.

What are you up to, Anderson?

From the roof across the street, she watched as Anderson and his entourage approached the bouncer. Without hesitation, the hulking man waved Anderson and the others through.

Impressive, considering the long line of people waiting to get in.

Bombshell wanted to get a closer look, but she didn't think she could charm her way in this time around. At least, not with her current outfit beneath her uniform but she was sure she could find another way instead.

She took several steps back to get a running start then catapulted herself over the street below to land on the adjacent rooftop. She tucked and rolled, gravel crunching beneath her as she distributed her weight properly to avoid an injury.

As she got to her feet, she brushed herself off and made her way over to the foggy glass of the skylight to peer through. It was difficult to see anything properly in the low light, but she could just barely make out the white suit amongst the crowd.

Anderson was the only one who still dressed like a mobster from the 80's so he was easy to spot in the sea of dancers.

Unfortunately, he wasn't the only one that caught Bombshell's eye.

Bombshell moved closer, nose nearly pressed against the glass as Anderson spoke to a familiar woman dressed in a shimmery red gown. He reached to touch her hair and the woman subtly titled away as they continued to talk. Bombshell was just too far away to make out any expressions and cursed the dirty glass. She so badly wished she could add supersonic hearing to the list of her abilities, dying to know what they were talking about, but she wasn't that lucky.

As Bombshell watched the exchange from above, something that felt a lot like worry began to bloom within her. She didn't like the look of things, any conversation with Anderson that lasted more than 10 seconds was too much. She needed to get in there before Anderson tried to push his luck with the woman in red.

Bombshell ran towards the edge of the roof and scaled down its side until she was in the alleyway. She pressed herself against the bricks, hiding in the darkness from those that were still waiting to get into the club while she looked for a way in.

She reached for the compartment of her utility belt and pulled out a small square-shaped sticker and placed it behind her ear before lifting her wrist. She flipped up the cover there and tapped at the touch screen until her hair shifted brunette. One of the many awesome inventions LT created for her when slipping into a disguise. Her blonde hair done up in a French braid had become something of an identifier which wasn't exactly helpful when trying to go somewhere unnoticed.

It wasn't like she was the only blonde in the world, but she didn't want to take any chances tonight, especially with where she was going and who was around.

She tapped at her wrist again before moving to undo the French braid. Her dark blue and black suit dissolved in pixels until she was dressed in street clothes; got to love nano-tech! She pulled the mask from her eyes and stuffed it in her bra. Not the best place for it, but neither was her back pocket.

She can't count how many times she nearly lost it from trying to keep it there. She adjusted her low-cut blouse and rolled up the cuffs of her skinny jeans, wishing she had dressed a little more club-appropriate.

Slowly, Bombshell rounded the corner until she came to a locked door. With a hard twist of the handle, the lock broke free and Bombshell entered the club with ease. Inside, she found that the door led to a hallway near the bathrooms and if she followed the music she would end up on the dancefloor.

At least, that's what she could tell from memory. The last time she had been there, she was a lot less sober.

As the door closed behind Bombshell, her senses were immersed in familiarity and her eyes drifted to the opposite wall. They lingered there as she remembered how she once was pressed up against with Santana's hands tangled in her hair. She tried her hardest to fight the memories begging to cloud her vision, but it was a losing battle.

She reached out her hand to hold herself up as her knees began to wobble, but as soon as she made contact with the wall it was like it shot a direct link to her memories. The dam broke and everything was unleashed and washed over her.

Bombshell couldn't tell if it was a Super thing to have such intense memories, but it was very distracting and so not helpful. She could almost feel Santana's lips on her neck and the kisses she pressed into her jaw. She could hear the raspy whispers against her ear. She could smell her perfume. She could even taste Santana's tequila-soaked tongue.

It was overwhelming in the best and worst of ways, but Bombshell needed to get it together and focus. She pushed away from the wall and took a deep breath as a new wave of determination hit.

It was dark and clouded with haze as she walked through the hall, eyes peeled for Anderson and also someone else. Suddenly a body collided into hers and Brittany turned to the offender with a hand out to steady them on instinct.

"Sorry." The woman muttered, a flash of shoulder length blonde hair whipping by.

"It's okay." Bombshell smiled and turned to walk away, not wanting to linger.

But the blonde looked up at Bombshell, hazel eyes darting back and forth.

"Do I know you?" She asked, causing Bombshell turn back.

"Don't think so." Bombshell shrugged, although the longer she looked the more she seemed to recognize the woman.

The blonde continued to stare too before shaking her head.

"Sorry, must have you confused with someone else," She said before hurrying out the door Bombshell had just come from.

What a weird-

Suddenly something clicked; maybe the woman didn't recognize her but Bombshell sure did. Detective Quinn Fabray, in street clothes no less. LT's intel didn't extend to the police department though, that's why she always arrived on scene first, so why was someone from the LPD here of all places? Surely, not just for a good time and quality entertainment?

Although judging by the amount of alcohol wafting off the Detective, she might've just been here for a few drinks.

Bombshell didn't really care what Fabray's motive was and focused back on the task at hand. Weaving her way through the crowd of dancers, Bombshell hoped the woman in red who was talking to Anderson earlier was gone.

As she stepped into the swirling lightshow, she found that Anderson was now back with his entourage and no lady in red in sight. There was a sigh of relief before Bombshell moved to settle at a table near his.

"Something to drink, cutie?" A scantly dressed woman asked through a smirk.

"Not just yet," Bombshell smiled back politely, "Thank you though."

"Sure thing. Just wave me down if you change your mind." The woman winked, letting her hips sway as she sauntered to the next table.

Bombshell turned to face the stage, but her ear stayed tuned to Anderson's conversation. The music was loud and drowned out most of the words, but she got the gist.

You're nuts, how will you ever pull this off?

I'm driven. This city will be mine soon enough.

You barely made it out of one job.

I'll have better help. And we won't need to worry about Fabray anymore, she's a joke. Nothing's standing in my way.

And Bombshell? What about her?

Bombshell smirked at Anderson's hesitation, she wished she could see the look on his face. The blonde was sure he was quaking in his ridiculous snake-skin loafers.

I can handle her myself.

Bombshell nearly laughed out upon hearing that; this guy could barely shoot straight! What makes him think he could ever stand a chance against her? That wasn't her being overly confident, it was just facts!

She rolled her eyes at the mobster's confidence.

Enough business, we're here for a show.

Just then the music slowed as the announcer returned to the stage, "May I present: Santana Lopez."

The crowd erupted in applause and Bombshell's eyes darted to the stage as Santana walked out in the same shimmery red gown she had spotted her in before. It gleamed in the spotlights and Bombshell's mouth grew dry for the second time as Santana greeted the audience.

The seductive smirk, the tight fitting gown, the husky voice all had her entranced.

It wasn't a secret that she thought Santana was beautiful, a blind man could see that, but seeing her on stage in her element was something she rarely ever got to see.

Santana was a natural. She moved across the stage while she spoke to the crowd as if they were all old friends. The sultry voice she used was different from her regular voice that Bombshell had been use to, but she loved it regardless. It was like a wave of relief washing over her at the sound of every word, it was amazing.

She could watch Santana all night.

But as Santana began to sing, Bombshell forced herself to stand.

She couldn't be here.

Regardless of how bad she wanted to stay, this was Santana's place and she hadn't been invited. In a way, she felt like it was an invasion of privacy or something and Bombshell didn't want that. If she were to see another one of Santana's shows, she'd want to be there to enjoy as Brittany not Bombshell.

So Bombshell needed to go. She fought hard against the relaxing relief settling in her bones and pushed herself to stand, but just as she was about to head for the exit she heard something that made her blood boil.

The things I'd do to her.

Bombshell's jaw tightened upon hearing Anderson's words. It took everything in her not to swing on him right then and there. Maybe even drag him out of the club by his ear and teach him a lesson or two about respecting women.

Yeah, I'd pay big money for that.

Believe me, I've tried. She plays hard to get.

I'm up for the challenge.

Ha! She would eat you up and spit you out.

Like you could do any better?

After the show, just watch.

The men laughed and Bombshell cringed, digging her nails into the wooden table before her. She felt the wood splintering and quickly pulled away. She knew men were gross, especially Anderson, and they often said super inappropriate things but the fact that they were talking about Santana made it a million times worse.

She could feel her rage building and knew it was only a matter of time before she did something reckless. Or worse, blew her cover. She felt the tingling in her eyes and squeezed them shut, willing the glow to dissipate.

The glowing was something new that started happening since moving to Lima, but no matter how many tests LT ran on her he still had no idea what it was. LT had suggested that maybe Bombshell's powers were still developing and this was one of them. So far she couldn't tell that the glow did anything in particular except nearly blow her cover any time she got angry.

Thankfully, anger wasn't a typical emotion for her but on the rare occasion – for example, Anderson being gross about Santana – it sometimes got the better of her.

But, not this time.

Instead, she took a calming deep breath and cast Santana one last look before walking away.

/

Bombshell ended up waiting outside for Santana just incase Anderson tried giving her any trouble after her shift. He had hinted at something before, but Bombshell didn't think he'd be dumb enough to actually try it.

Still, she waited incase she were wrong.

She peeled the sticker from the back of her ear, shifting back to blonde hair while she waited.

Without her disguise, Brittany tried working on an excuse as to why she was there in the first place. Santana was already too suspicious for her liking, but Brittany couldn't return home without making sure Anderson wasn't going to be a bother. She decided to say that she was at a friend's house nearby and would offer to walk home together. Santana would probably tease her about not having friends but Brittany was prepared for that response too.

"Don't worry about the kind of friends I have. My sex life is none-ya-business."

Brittany smiled proudly; the fastest way to shut Santana up was to talk about sex. She could just picture her face now!

The girl was a huge flirt and talked a big game – which Brittany had totally experienced first hand – but when it came down to Brittany dishing it back, Santana struggle. It was hilarious to watch her get so flustered. All Brittany had to do was make a dirty comment about her fingers and it was a wrap for Santana. She would try to recover but the flirty banter never quite reached what it once was and that always gave Brittany just the slightest ego boost.

Santana still had her moments though; however rare, they were still very effective in turning Brittany into a blushing mess too.

In the meantime Brittany walked down the street and stopped at a food truck for a midnight snack. Once Brittany had acquired a couple tacos, she made her way back to the alley and sat on an upturned milk crate, counting the minutes until Santana's shift was over while she ate.

Midway through her second one, her senses heightened when she heard a rustling from a nearby dumpster.

She wasn't alone in the alleyway.

She quickly stood, abandoning the rest of her last taco, and reached for the mask tucked in her bra then tapped at her watch. Soon pixels covered her body from head to two, like puzzle pieces sliding into place, dressing her in the dark blue and black uniform from before.

Once Bombshell secured the mask over her eyes, she took a step towards the sound.

A rat scurried out from under the dumpster and Bombshell scrunched her nose in disgust, but then it was followed by a low groan. She followed the sound to find Detective Fabray holding herself up against the wall, heaving the contents of her stomach against the bricks.

"Gross." Bombshell deadpanned but took a step closer. Caring for the drunk wasn't exactly in her job description, but she was still a decent human and felt bad for the other blonde being alone. She reached out a hand, "You alright there?"

Fabray narrowed her eyes on her, wiping at her mouth with the back of her hand, "Great, now you're here."

Bombshell frowned and dropped the offered hand to her side as she picked up on the slight slur of the girl's words, "Are you drunk?" She didn't know why she asked, her deductive skills were awesome and had already brought her to the conclusion that yes the Detective was wasted.

"Drunk on justice!" Fabray grumbled as she pushed to stand tall and raise a fist in the air.

Bombshell quired her brow at the display. Fabray saw and let her fist fall to her side.

"Don't look at me like that," She ordered, body swaying just a touch.

Both of Bombshell's brows rose, "Like what?"

"Like I'm an embarrassment." The words fell from Fabray's lips in disgust and the tension in Bombshell's shoulders eased. "You're always showing up and making us look...stupid."

Bombshell stiffened at the last word. It was never her intention to demoralize anyone – except maybe Anderson – but she supposed she could understand where the Detective was coming from. All this time she thought she was just being a helpful hand, stepping in whenever necessary, but who deemed it so?

That was the thing about Supers, they acted on their own instincts. Some were a little more invasive than others, but Bombshell didn't think she fell into that category.

"For once, I'd like to take care of something on my own without you swooping in." Fabray added and it was like the last blow for Bombshell. She tried to be more understanding although the words cut her a little deeper than she liked. She had claimed this city as her own to watch over and protect, but the Detective made it sound like she wasn't wanted here.

"You should probably head home." Bombshell said, not wanting to take a drunk person's words personally and reached for the blonde again, "Come on, let's get you a ca-"

"Get off me, I'm not leaving until Anderson is arrested!" Fabray snapped loudly, causing Bombshell to attempt to quiet the woman.

"What are you doing?" Bombshell snapped and looked around to make sure no one had overhead the outburst.

"Don't try to shut me up or are you on his payroll too?" Fabray growled again.

Bombshell feigned offence, "That's rude."

"Wouldn't be surprised," Fabry shrugged, "Now get out of my way."

"It's not happening tonight, especially at your current state." Bombshell replied and pulled away from Fabray, "You really should just go home and sleep this off before you go ruining your career."

"What career? I'm a joke. Didn't you hear?" Fabray scowled, "The whole force is a joke and that's all thanks to that bastard. I'm sick of it! Here, hold my badge. Doesn't mean shit anyway."

Suddenly Fabray tried to push her badge into Bombshell's hands before bristling pass her to head back inside. Her jaw was set and there was a kind of determination in her eyes that had Bombshell scrambling to hold the girl back. Fabray struggled against Bombshell's grip, but Bombshell could barely feel it as she stood her ground.

"I can't let you go in there, Detective." Bombshell said sternly, "You think you're a joke now? You'll be an even bigger one if you go in there like this."

Fabray pulled once more on Bombshell's grip before taking a swing at the masked blonde, "Back off!"

Bombshell ducked out of the way just in time and stared back at Fabray swaying about with her fists held up.

"Quit it," Bombshell sighed tiredly, "I don't want to fight you."

Fabray swung again but her senses were drowned in alcohol. Her movements were sloppy and miscalculated so Bombshell was able to duck and dodge with ease. The evading only added to Fabray's anger.

"If you would just put your pettiness aside for two seconds, you'd see that we might actually be of use to each other. We want the same things." Bombshell managed to say between blocking the Detective's swings, "We both want justice. We both want to protect this city. We both want to take Anderson down for good."

The sound of the back door opening distracted her for a moment as she saw Anderson and his men exit. With her attention elsewhere, Fabray was able to land a jab at Bombshell's jaw.

She barely flinched, but there was a slight twinge of pain as she scowled at the drunken blonde. She rubbed at her jaw and swallowed back the urge to put the Detective on her ass for that cheap shot. Instead, she fisted the collar of the girl's shirt and shoved her against the wall.

"I'm really trying to be patient here, but you're making it very hard with all this unnecessary punching." Bombshell said and chanced a glance in Anderson's direction. All she could see was him sliding into an SUV and taking off.

At least he wasn't sticking around to hassle Santana.

"How did you know he was going to be here?" Bombshell asked, turning back to the Detective.

Fabray tried to swat at Bombshell's hand but the masked blonde only tightened her grip, "Answer me."

Fabray just shrugged, "I was here first, been here for awhile."

"I can tell that much."

"I was waiting on a friend." Fabray clarified, "She didn't show."

Bombshell's shoulders eased, "Oh. Stood up? Lame."

Bombshell loosened her grip and took a step back.

"No, it's not like that. I thought she might – nevermind." Fabray replied then paused for a long moment, "I just want to be taken seriously, but it's impossible. Not while he's around."

The Detective slumped in defeat and averted her eyes to the ground.

Bombshell remembered the words she overheard Vincent say about the girl and frowned.

"I'm sorry." Fabray muttered and gestured to Bombshell's face, "For the punching and the…you know. I'm just really tired of feeling so useless. That man is a criminal but I can't do anything about it. My hands are tied because I'm fairly certain he's got half the LPD on his payroll, if not more. What's the point?"

Bombshell pursed her lips at the apology but Fabray's other comment was interesting, "On payroll, huh? That would explain how he was able to escape the McKinley Bank robbery virtually undetected. You might be on to something, Fabray."

"Doesn't matter." Fabray shook her head, already sounding a lot less drunk. She slid against the bricks until she was crouched, "Who knows how far his reach goes. The Captain is probably in on it, I always got a vibe from her, but there's nothing I can do."

"Maybe not," Bombshell said already trying to fit the pieces together, "But maybe I can."

"Of course, because you live above the law." The Detective scoffed, "You save the day…yet again."

"The pity party is getting kind of old and the rudeness is kind of starting to hurt," Bombshell grumbled and pulled Fabray to her feet. With her hands on the girl's shoulders she stared back, "If you're serious about taking him down then maybe we could work together?"

Fabray's brow rose, "You'd want to do that?"

Bombshell shrugged casually, "I figure between you and I, we can-"

Before Bombshell could finish, the door opened for a second time and out came Santana pulling her long coat tighter around her waist. Bombshell felt her heart bottom out and moved to push against Fabray so they were both hidden by the dumpster. Successfully out of view, Bombshell peeked over the edge of the dumpster lid.

"What is it?" Fabray whispered, trying to push Bombshell aside to see.

"Shh!" Bombshell hushed.

She watched as Santana pulled out a pack of cigarettes and began to leave the alleyway, too busy with lighting up that she didn't even notice the blondes.

"That little liar," Bombshell whispered, "She told me she quit."

"You know her?" Fabray asked causing Bombshell to flinch.

Shit. Shit. Shit.

"What? No?" Bombshell lied, but she could feel the Detective's eyes burning holes into the side of her face. Bombshell sent her a glare, "Stop staring at me. It's rude."

Fabray squinted and slowly moved her gaze to settle on Santana.

Once the brunette was out of sight, Bombshell felt some relief and turned back to Fabray.

"How do you know her?"

"I don't."

"Are you sure?"

"Let's get back on topic," Bombshell said feeling like she was under a microscope, "Meeting me was either the best thing that ever happened to you or the worst. You decide."

Then before Fabray could pester her even more, Bombshell let go and turned to leave.

"Wait." Fabray called out, "How do I contact you?"

Bombshell just smirked, "Leave that to me."

Then she was gone in a flash, leaving Fabray alone in the alleyway.

/

Brittany made it home well before Santana did and arranged herself on the couch with a throw blanket haphazardly covering her waist and a cold bowl of popcorn abandoned on the coffee table. She had gotten pretty good at making it look like she had been in their living room all night instead of what she had actually been up to. But as she lounged on the couch, her eyes got heavier and heavier as she tried to watch tv. It was so late in the night that the only thing on were infomercials, but ironically those were Brittany's favorite.

When she heard the jingle of keys in the door, Brittany closed her eyes and pretended to be asleep. Not that it was that much of a struggle.

Santana entered quietly and hung her keys on the hook before she shrugged out of her coat and set her bag down. Brittany knew her routine as if it were her own and what came next was always her favorite part.

Knowing that she even had a favorite part rose some questions, but Brittany would unpack that a little later. Maybe. Probably not. For now, she just let herself enjoy something for once. She walked around with a heavy burden all the time and that wasn't an easy thing to do, so if she had to pretend to be asleep just to get a taste of normalcy she would.

"Hey Britt, wake up." Santana whispered, cold fingers running delicately along Brittany's hairline before smoothing against blonde hair.

It took everything in her not to lean into the touch, always the hardest thing to do when it came to this part. A tiny glimpse of the gentleness within Santana and Brittany soaked it all in. There was something so intimate about the gesture that made Brittany wonder if there was something else there, something more meaningful than just a touch. That was probably just wishful thinking.

At least, she hoped it was. She didn't need Santana stoking the little fire that begged to grow within her.

Brittany willed her eyes to stay closed and keep still, relishing in the feel of Santana's fingertips on her skin for just a little while longer. Santana repeated the move once, twice and then…

Brittany blinked her eyes slowly, being as authentic as she could as she woke up.

"Oh hey." Brittany said groggily and gave Santana a tired grin, "How was work?"

"It was fine." Santana smiled back and withdrew her hand as she stood up fully, "You know, you can quit trying to wait up for me."

"Where's the fun in that?" Brittany yawned as she sat up, that one wasn't fake.

"At least you'd get some sleep." Santana smirked as she plucked a piece of popcorn from the bowl and popped it in her mouth, "Doubt the couch is as comfortable as your own bed."

"And miss out on hearing you sing in the shower? Never. It's the best part of my day." Brittany joked and moved to turn the tv off, almost missing the look Santana gave her.

"You listen to that?" She asked then something shifted in her as she said, "That's kind of weird, Britt."

Brittany thought about saying something witty, but she remembered where tracking Anderson had led her tonight and the lengths she would've gone to make sure he didn't bother her. Then she felt her heart begin to race at remembering the words she overheard the men say regarding Santana too, but she pushed down those feelings. When her anger took control, that's when she'd begin to glow and she did not want to do that in front of Santana.

Instead, she remembered seeing the girl on stage.

Brittany thought about how beautiful she looked in that gown and how her singing rattled something deep within her. Then she remembered having to force herself to leave and how hard it was to walk away, because that was Santana's place and she wasn't invited.

She hadn't been for a long time.

"Well, it's the closest I get to a real show." Brittany's words came tumbling out before she could stop them. She pressed her lips together, hoping nothing else was going to slip out. She waited for a dismissive reply or maybe even some snark, but Santana stayed silent.

That wasn't a good sign. Brittany felt the need to apologize but Santana spoke instead.

"I don't really like singing in front of people," Santana admitted a moment later.

Brittany quirked a brow and turned to look at her, but Santana had turned towards her bedroom.

"You're a performer, you sing in front of people all the time." Brittany pointed out, hoping Santana would stop walking away.

"Just because I do it doesn't meant I like it," Santana paused and chuckled dryly, "It's not that I have stage fright or something embarrassing."

"So if you don't like it, why do you do it?" Brittany asked. She knew her question was a bit more invasive than Santana was use to, but she was curious and apparently unable to keep the word vomit down tonight.

"Pays the bills," Santana shrugged but Brittany could tell that wasn't what she wanted to say.

"And you've never invited me back because…" The words tumbled out on their own again, but Brittany had given up on trying to censor herself. It was something that she'd been aching to ask for years now so she'd risk Santana giving her the silent treatment for a few days if she was able to get some answers.

Santana bit at the corner of her lip and stared at Brittany like she was considering being truthful or giving her some thoughtless excuse. Brittany remained anxious for her to chose as Santana looked away.

"The thing about singing in front of people is that it exposes you in a way. You have to let yourself feel something, welcome in the emotions behind the lyrics and really let yourself feel so it's believable. It's a performance after all. If not, you lose the audience and you don't get paid." Santana explained, "When I'm on stage I can't see who's out there and I like to keep it that way."

Brittany's heart sank with Santana's words, but she fought to keep the frown from forming.

"If I can't see them then I don't feel so exposed," Santana paused as her voice softened, "You know?"

Brittany nodded as Santana pause to look at Brittany again, encouraging her to continue.

"If I knew you were there in the crowd it's too personal," Santana continued with the shake of her head, "And I don't do personal."

Brittany tensed at Santana's statement.

What was so special about her? If she was in the crowd Santana wouldn't be able to see her anyway so what did it matter if she were there? Like tonight! She was there and Santana had no idea so what difference did it make?

But the real question was how could it be personal when Santana remained so guarded?

Nothing made sense to Brittany.

She could tell this conversation was taking a turn in a direction that would have Santana avoiding her for days. Brittany experienced something similar back when she tried asking about Santana's childhood once when they first started to get to know each other. Well, it was mostly Brittany trying to get to know Santana. Honestly, she just wanted to get a little more backstory to make sure she wasn't shacked up with some weird. She probably should've done that before signing a lease but she was kind of desperate for a place.

All she remembered from that time was how Santana had shut down completely, walls going up around her a mile high, and she didn't resurface for a whole week. Eventually, Santana came around but they never discussed anything which became a trend whenever something set Santana off. She'd avoid Brittany for a couple days then randomly bring home dinner from Brittany's favorite take out place and leave it at that, an unspoken apology. Not the healthiest way to deal with confrontation – if you could even call it that – but Brittany learned to accept that Santana wasn't very skilled in the communication department.

"So that's why you never sing Happy Birthday to me…" Brittany joked, trying to lighten the mood.

When a smile reluctantly made it's way to Santana's lips, Brittany grinned in triumph.

"That's exactly why." Santana nodded and started to head towards her bedroom again, but then she paused and turned back around.

There was something like wonderment in darkened eyes and Santana's lips parted as if she were gong to say something. Brittany felt like she was shrinking beneath the gaze, anticipating what was to come.

Then in a tone that verged on flirtatious, "But maybe one day I'll consider it."

Brittany's brows rose and a grin spread, "Really?"

"If you ask nicely," Santana smirked then turned and called over her shoulder, "Night, Britt."

Santana disappeared into her bedroom, the door closing behind her.

Brittany just stood there watching, trying to piece together what happened because that sounded a lot like flirting. Brittany didn't mind it of course, but the flirty banter was a lot when she knew nothing would ever come of it.

The thought made her shoulders slump and she sulked all the way to her room.

/

The next morning, Brittany was miraculously at work. She probably had about three hours of sleep in total before her alarm went off and she had to roll herself out of bed. She barely had her eyes open as she got dressed and made her way down to the café for her opening shift.

Brittany had always been a bit of a morning person growing up, but that had changed ever since she picked up a new nightly hobby. Now she was just thankful for the free endless supply of coffee, one of the few perks that came with working at the Lima Bean.

She was maybe two hours into her shift when a familiar blonde strolled in dressed in a crisp uniform with a phone pressed to her ear. Detective Fabray talked adamantly about prints and traces, before pausing as she approached the counter.

"Good morning," Brittany greeted cheerfully, "What can I get for you?"

"You look so familiar. Do I know you from somewhere?" Fabray tilted her head to the side analyzing Brittany.

Brittany tried to keep her cool, "Well…you do come in almost every day and I'm usually the one to greet you?"

"Huh. I guess so," Fabray rolled the thought over before glancing up at the menu, "Just a strong skinny latte, extra hot. Thanks."

"Sure thing," Brittany answered, trying not to falter under the analytical gaze, "Any sugar?"

"No." Fabray bristled then rolled her eyes at whatever was being said on the phone, "I said hold on." Then she focused back on Brittany, "What do I owe you?"

Brittany typed in the order and told her the price. Fabray nodded then paid before she moved to stand to the side, continuing with her conversation. Brittany strained to listen as she wrote the blonde's order on the cup, but the bell above the front door chimed signaling a new customer.

"Hey Britt!" A familiar voice called out and Brittany looked up to find Santana waltzing in.

Brittany's greeting got stuck in her throat as her eyes landed on Santana.

She was dressed in a tight pencil skirt with a pretty blouse tucked in at the waist and it took everything in Brittany to keep her eyes focused on Santana's face instead. With each click of her heels tapping against the linoleum, Santana commanded her attention. Her roommate seemed to be carrying on with the same good mood from last night and Brittany smiled in response.

"Hey Santana!" Brittany pointed out, regaining her voice. She gripped the handle of the group head and knocked it lightly against the knock box, the compact puck of extracted grounds falling out easily, "You're up early."

"Yeah, I have a meeting that apparently can't wait until noon." Santana told her with a cutely scrunched nose, "It's gross."

"Hence the business attire," Brittany commented, her eyes accidentally dipping to the couple of buttons left undone on Santana's blouse. They rested on the exposed V of Santana's cleavage and a very inappropriate thought crossed her mind.

Santana cleared her throat and Brittany's gaze snapped up to meet hers. Brittany felt her cheeks flush at being caught, but who could blame her? They were right there!

"Cute top," Brittany complimented, trying to recover smoothly, "I'm sure you'll close many deals or – you know – whatever it is you do at these meetings with that outfit. You look very…fashionable."

Santana chuckled, "Thanks Britt."

"So anyway," Brittany quickly added before she could further embarrass herself, "What would you like?"

Santana blessed Brittany with another beautiful smile as she asked, "Can I get my usual?"

"Of course." Brittany nodded while she wiped out the portafilter then teased, "Regular milk or are you on the almond band wagon again? Not gonna shame you if you were...it is a somewhat healthier alternative."

Santana rolled her eyes through a playful smirk, "Regular."

"Okay." Brittany winked and began to grind the beans. With Santana there pulling her attention away with such a low-cut top and basically just being her coupled with the sound of the grinder, it was hard to focus on the Detective's phone call. She could see the other blonde's lips moving and the deepening crease between her brows: whatever was being said was important and Brittany needed to know.

Thankfully the disturbance only lasted a few seconds before Brittany set off to tamp and slide the group heads into place. She glanced over at Santana to find she was busy on her phone so she kept her eyes steady on Fabray as she moved on autopilot. With the press of a button, the espresso started to drop and she was able to hear the call a lot clearer.

At least, what Fabray was saying anyway.

A what? Who is this source?

Brittany's interest piqued and she inched closer to get a better listen while she filled the milk jug.

How reputable are they? I want to know everything! This can't get into the wrong hands.

It sounded like Fabray was on to something and Brittany wondered if it could be related to Anderson. It had to judging by Fabray's vendetta against the man.

"You are not being very subtle." Santana whispered.

Brittany stilled and glanced to the brunette who began to smirk without looking up from her phone.

"What?" Brittany breathed out.

"Your leering, it's not subtle. You should just talk to her," Santana shrugged as she looked up from her phone and did a once over of the Detective before looking to Brittany, "I didn't think uptight blondes were your type. Is it the uniform?"

"I'm not…I wasn't-" Brittany scoffed, her cheeks feeling suddenly warm for the second time thanks to Santana, "I wasn't leering. Besides, how would you know my type?"

"I've got a hunch and blondie over there ain't it," Santana said easily.

"Oh? And who is? Please, enlighten me." Brittany challenged as she slid the steam wand into the milk jug, pausing to hear Santana's answer.

Santana held her gaze for a moment then looked away to check her watch, "Hmm, maybe later. Seems I'm running late."

"How convenient." Brittany laughed, the sound gaining Fabray's attention.

"Is this going to take much longer? Jesus." Fabray suddenly snapped with her phone pressed to her chest, glaring at Brittany.

"Calm down, Barbie." Santana bit back causing the other blonde to whirl on her.

"Excuse me?" Fabray

Brittany braced herself for an agreement, but Fabray seemed to shrink back from the brunette which Brittany thought was odd. There was a flash of something in the Detective's eyes but Brittany couldn't decipher what it was. It didn't last long though and soon the two death-stared at each other, tensed shoulders and eyes narrowed in challenge.

Did they know each other?

Brittany shook her head, getting snappy at others was a trait Santana was known for so this wasn't anything out of the ordinary. Although, Brittany didn't think she had ever seen Santana take on an officer of the law before. That was definitely new.

Before Santana could get herself into trouble, Brittany slid the drink forward.

"Sorry for the wait," Brittany apologized and glanced to Santana who was still glaring at the Detective.

Fabray accepted the drink without giving Brittany a second look, her eyes still glued to Santana.

Brittany gulped and tried to pull Santana's attention away by calling out her name, "Santana?"

Reluctantly, the brunette looked away already seeming to soften as her eyes landed on Brittany. The blonde tried to figure out what the in her eyes meant but again, she was unsure, while Fabray turned to leave.

"Here you go." Brittany said and held the drink to Santana.

She accepted it with a smile before casting one last glance in Fabray's direction as the blonde left, "Yeah. She's definitely not your type, Britt."

Brittany forced a chuckle, Santana had no idea how right she was.

"Thanks for the coffee," She smiled, "I'll see you later."

"Sure. Have fun at your meeting." Brittany called out as she watched Santana leave. She sighed in relief and looked around at the empty café before lifting her watch an inch from her mouth.

"Did you trace the number?" She asked LT.

"Yes. Collecting data now," The automated voice responded.

"Sweet. Let's set up a meeting, sounds like she had an interesting phone call," Brittany said and lowered her wrist before setting off to make herself a third coffee of the day. From the corner of her eye, she saw a flash of dark hair outside the windows. Her eyes lingered on the spot quizzically before she got distracted by a new set of customers entering the café.

/

Outside, Santana watched Brittany's lips move. Santana deepened with concern as read the words leaving her roommate's lips.

"Who are you?" Santana breathed out before she lifted her phone to her ear. She waited for the call to connect and dodged out of view before Brittany could spot her.

"You're late, Lopez." Was the only greeting she received when the call finally connected.

"Well good morning to you too."

"People who run late don't get pleasant greetings." The voice bristled which made Santana roll her eyes in a huff.

"You should be grateful that I'm even calling in the first place."

"What is it?"

"I'm not coming in," She said down the line without any room for argument. Her eyes steady on sidewalk ahead of her as her thoughts raced, "Something has just come up."


A/N - Thank you for all the reviews last chapter! Very happy y'all are into this.