A self apart
by Te
July 26, 2003

Disclaimers: Not mine, but I have nothing but love.

Spoilers: Vague ones through season one.

Summary: Diana is not a child.

Ratings Note: R.

Author's Note: For the Superhero Roulette challenge.
Thanks Livia and Bex! Title from Rita Mae Brown.

Acknowledgments: Much love to Branwyn, who was
here when no one else was.

Feedback: Adored. leytelj@gmail.com


Diana knows they think she's naive, that there's something
inherently limiting about living one's life surrounded by
women, and only women. They forget her age, and her
strength, and her education.

Somehow, none of these things matter against the fact
that she'd never exchanged words with a man until
leaving Themyscira. They treat her with 'kid gloves,' and
joke, and tease, and even Flash -- a man with far more
bravery than sense -- is far more likely to try his wiles
on the utterly uninterested (and violent) Shayera than on

And it's not as though she particularly *wants* Flash's
attentions -- Diana has played stones with little girls
more mature than him -- but... but.

They are all of them aliens, orphans, and strangers, and
so they try to make themselves into the families none of
them can count on anymore, but still Diana is often alone.
Even when they are all present.

"Are you all right?" Superman always finds a way to ask,
to touch her when he thinks she's feeling low, but
Superman is... strangely young. Not immature so much
as innocent, and in truth Diana wants to protect him
more than anything else.

Green Lantern keeps himself to himself, and even though
he no longer views her as an amateur intruding on his
territory, he is still deeply untouchable.

J'onn's loneliness is, at times, a palpable ache, and Diana
wants to tell him that she understands, but there is
something in those deep-set eyes that warns her away.
J'onn wears his essential alien-ness like a cloak, even
though he could easily make himself into something
more familiar. J'onn doesn't want to be any farther away
from his people than he already is.

Flash is, again, terribly young, and while Diana doesn't
feel the need to smack him as often as Shayera seems to,
the temptation is there.

Batman intrigues her, walking easily among those
stronger and faster than he'll ever be, without a single
doubt in his ability to hold his own. He is, she feels, a
true hero in that, but he is the least approachable of any
of them. Only Superman seems to feel bridges can be
built between Batman and the rest of them, and only
Superman has the patience to keep trying. It's almost
laughable, really.

If it were up to her, she'd sit beside Batman and make
him tell her everything about his life and his world. He
seems to know so *much*, and seems so impatient with
ignorance in general, but... he will never be a teacher.
Diana isn't sure whether the ability is in him or not, but
the desire is definitely not.

Right now, he is in his chosen (home?) city, and though
Diana has no real idea what he might be doing, she is
absolutely sure the man is alone. And that he prefers it that

Which leaves Shayera, and it's *irritating*, truly frustrating,
that she's left with the only other woman in their group.
Diana knows what it must look like to the rest of them that
she keeps going back to her, that she seems so willing and
even eager to befriend her.

The look in Flash's eyes suggests lurid fantasies, and as for
the rest... they must think she's lonely for her sisters, that
it could only *be* a woman that would make Diana reach

As if she is so bigoted.

Hera, if Aresia weren't already dead, Diana would beat her
*bloody* for the image she has given the world about


She cannot always walk the world in search of understanding
and companionship, and Shayera is the closest thing she
has to possibility. Adult, practical right down to her
flat-soled boots, and even if not particularly friendly,
certainly *willing* to be questioned and bothered between
missions and training.

She lets Diana call her 'sister,' and even though it's clear that
she doesn't really see herself as such, it's comforting.
Shayera, at least, understands the need for it.

Shayera, who goes out drinking with Flash and talks
weaponry with Green Lantern and honestly enjoys breaking
things into their component parts with that mace of hers --
a predilection that would undoubtedly endear her to the
Flash if the boy ever chose to look beyond her physical

She... tolerates Diana more than honestly likes her, she
thinks, and that *is* depressing, but from everything the
woman has said about Thanagar, it's honestly unsurprising.

Diana doesn't doubt Shayera was a wonderful police officer
on her world, but her anger, her violence and
destructiveness, don't really seem like anything a hero
ought to be proud of, or even acknowledge.

Still, she follows the rules of this world, and of every other
they visit, and clearly isn't a *bad* person, but... but.

Diana likes to imagine a day in Shayera's company. They
would goggle together at the amount of food the Flash
would consume at breakfast, they would train together
until they were both spent and sweating, and they would
shower and change and go down to the world and enjoy

Shayera wouldn't give her any strange looks when she
complained about the ridiculousness of the 'women's'
shops with their paints and their frills and the utter lack of

They would eat lunch, and perhaps put a stop to some
(relatively) minor crime or disaster.

They would enjoy each other's company. Diana would
make her laugh, and Shayera would call her sister, and
they would be friends.

She would like that, quite a lot.

But it doesn't seem like anything that could happen. Diana
knows what it means that Shayera talks about men, and
sex with men whenever Diana tries to get closer. She
thinks Diana wants more from her than she would be
willing to give, and while Diana *does* find her attractive
(what would it be to touch those wings? To feel them
brush her skin?), she has never been the sort to intrude
where she was not wanted.

On Themyscira, many of the Amazons had lovers among
themselves, and Diana's friends were very often more
than that, but there were many women who lived long,
happy lives quite satisfied to be alone.

Diana herself hadn't taken a lover since long before her
team-mates (except, perhaps, for J'onn) had been born.

She is not so desperate for touch to long for a woman
who, inexplicably, would prefer to limit her love affairs to

Though Diana suspects that Shayera could do with a
lesson or two in the pleasure between women.


She smiles to herself and stretches out on her bed, letting
herself drift away for just a few moments from all the
metal and raw, personality-free functionality of her
rooms. She would like to find someone who could help
her decorate, to soften the place into something more
like... no.

It probably wouldn't be a good idea to make the rooms
too much like her old ones in the palace. Diana doesn't
particularly want to become another Justice League
depressive, even though she probably already is one.

Still, a tapestry there, a few paintings over there, a
woman *there*. Here. All soft curves and hard muscle
and willing happiness.

It's been a long time.

And... beyond her personal morality and far beyond the
realities of her situation here, she wants to see Shayera's
hair spread on a pillow. Wants to tip that hard, beaky
mask off her face and see if what's beneath is equally
sharp. Wants to peel her out of her uniform once, just
once, and count her scars.

In a perfect world, Shayera would offer a story for each
one, but Diana would be satisfied if she only offered a

A gasp when she traced them with her tongue.

Diana's favorite lovers have always been the ones who
had a sense of humor about the whole thing, who were
more likely to giggle than groan, and whose kisses were
always messy because of the constant smiles.

She doesn't think Shayera would be like that at all. She
thinks... she imagines Shayera rising above her,
straddling her hips and holding her down and Diana
gives up on propriety and slips a hand under her own
uniform, down to her sex and oh, Shayera, Shayera would
be like Athena herself.

Didn't the goddess have a fondness for birds? And while
it was true that a hawk was more likely to endear itself to
Diana's namesake, she has no use for confirmed virgins
right now.

Mm, no, right now she needs, if not an Aphrodite (though
that *would* be nice), then at least someone who
accepts her womanhood, who revels in it and would enjoy
Diana's own.

All right, no, right now she needs *Shayera*, and damn
all her careful politesse and cautious dearth of
propositions *anyway*. She wants to stop Shayera's
protests with a kiss and shove a thigh between the
woman's own and *show* her.

"You don't need a man," she would say, and give her a
necklace of bites.

"Let me show you why," she'd say, and counter every scar
with a rake of her nails.

"I'm not naive," she would whisper, and slip deep inside
where Shayera was hottest and wettest and most *alive*,
and she would, she would...

Diana rolls over onto her knees and gives up on subtlety,
shoving two fingers inside and tossing her head back and
working her hips into just the right position, just the way it
would be if Shayera was under her, if she was inside her
and watching and making *love* to her, and Diana wants
to be beautiful for that.

Wants to toss her hair and offer her breasts and offer
every slick drop of her pleasure.

"Taste this," she would say, and Shayera would always
know how much she was desired. How much she was
needed, in those moments just before Diana's orgasm, if
at no other time.

Diana thrusts faster and closes her eyes, plunges her
free hand into her hair and imagines it thicker, coarser,
*redder*. Bites her lip and thinks of Shayera's snarl.
Spreads her legs and imagines surrender and growls
her pleasure to the sky.



She rolls onto her back and slips her fingers into her
mouth, tasting only herself and perhaps the slightest tang
of the sea around the home she'd never see again. The
beat of her heart fades in her ears, replaced by the tick of
the clock and the hum of mostly-hidden machinery.

Somewhere, there is a woman for her, one who'll share
this moment with her and cover the sounds of solitude
with panting breaths and laughter. But...

At times like these Diana is very tired of waiting for her.

At times like these, Diana wants to drag Shayera close
and show her just how naive she isn't, and damn the

But for now, her body is languid and warm with lingering
satisfaction, and Diana hasn't been young for many,
many years.

She can be patient.

For now.