DISCLAIMER: Battlestar Galactica is the property of Glen A. Larson, Sci-Fi Channel, R & D TV, Sky and NBC Universal.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
SPOILERS: Up to and including Season 3, Torn.
SEQUEL: To Tent City Rendezvous

Coming Home
By Geekgrrllurking


Starbuck stared into the mirror, the reflection of someone she didn't even know anymore. The knife clutched between her teeth, as she grabbed her long hair. Time for you to get a grip Kara. The old man has given you a wake up call. Time to get back into the mix.

She took the knife and started hacking away the long blonde locks, slicing off the pain, and anger, the poison churning inside. It was time to try to move away from what that frakking Cylon Leoben cultivated.

She needed to focus on the good things. She had tried not to think about the time before the Cylons landing on New Caprica. She couldn't think about her time with Laura, in Tent City. She couldn't deal with seeing her, especially now that she was all frakked up. Well, more frakked up.

Long strands of blonde dropped into the sink before her. Kara barely even noticed. But somewhere under all the hair was the former Viper pilot, former CAG, Captain Thrace. Her hair was starting to take shape again.

She found her uniform with her meager items from storage, pressed the dark blue cloth, crisp seam on the pants, bright shine on the shoes, just like basic training. There was a little girl and her mom that she owed a visit and most definitely an apology to. Just one more person to see after that.

Kara could still smell Kacey's shampoo on her shoulder where the youngster had clung on with her wee stuffed bunny. At least she thought it was a bunny. Smiling Kara leaned back into her seat as the transport tilted and moved in for final approach for landing on Colonial One.

Starbuck didn't think the President would have much time for her now. She flashed back to warm skin and tea in the school teacher's tent on New Caprica. Starbuck had heard that Laura had been slated to be assassinated, and a cold shudder passed through her at the thought.

Once the bastard Cylon had pulled her into detention and started its demented frakking with her head, she eventually stopped dwelling on the good things in her life. Stopped thinking and feeling for the people she loved and left behind outside. Only thoughts of how to kill that frakker Leoben filled her head, and then he'd be back, just like that. And she had thought her relationship with Lee was complicated.

Truth be told, if she had been a bit more messed up she would have killed herself. She had thought about it several times in fact. But one thing had kept her from doing it. Every day, even though she tried not to, one last thought ran through her head just before she fell asleep. What did Laura do today?

Kara started as the door to the transport clanged opened. She headed out of the shuttle and down the ramp. A young aide stood at the bottom as the passengers filed out of the ship, anxiously looking at the ship's manifest and scanning the crowd. Finally seeing her, he raised his hand, waving to catch her attention.

"Captain Thrace, excuse me ma'm, but I've been directed to escort you." The young man weaved through the small group leaving the shuttle. Kara smiled and took pity on him.

"Escort me where?" she demanded.

"The President has asked to see you as soon as you arrived." He shoved his wire rimmed glasses back up his nose. Starbuck nodded and followed the thin man. Not a patch on Billy really are you…

Laura sat in the big chair behind her desk watching people enter and leave her general office space. Her report on how the Cylon detainees were adjusting to life in the fleet again sat half read on her desk. Saul and Kara were worrying her in particular, despite Adama's assurance that he had handled the situation.

Starbuck. Flashes of soft kisses and strong hands filled her head. Shaking the memories from her mind, she removed her glasses and sighed. Soon old girl, patience.

She had feared the worst for Kara. She had dropped off the face of the planet and almost all thought she had been killed. All except herself and Kara's husband Sam Anders. Laura laughed a humourless laugh. I swore I'd never be the other woman again…

Laura looked up just then to see the dark blue uniform, short blonde hair and sparkling blue eyes standing larger than life in front of her.

"Captain Thrace to see you Madam President." Harrison announced formally from behind Starbuck.

"Thank you, that'll be all for now Harrison." Roslin slid her chair back and stood. With that the aide moved off. Starbuck and Roslin shared a small smile until he was gone.

Starbuck couldn't help herself. She walked around the desk and stopped beside Laura, close but not quite touching. Laura put a gentle hand along Starbuck's cheek, then slid it up into the short blonde hair, and pulled them together into a much needed hug.

It was as if a crack formed in the ice wall Starbuck's heart had been encased in. She held Laura and finally felt home. Kara felt something let go inside, and she started to cry. Laura just held her closer.

"It's ok Kara, I've got you. Just let it out." They stayed like that for what felt like forever. Laura finally pulled back a bit. "Come with me, I need to talk with you somewhere…more private." Kara nodded into the warm shoulder, stepped back and followed Laura.

Down behind the office was a small hallway that took them to Laura's private quarters. Once inside Laura locked the door and turned to look at the tall blond officer before her. It certainly was a different look than what she had found in her cot those so many months ago. Less sad and shaggy, more crisp military. It looked good on the younger woman.

"Laura I…I don't know what to say." Kara started awkwardly.

"You don't need to say anything Kara, I'm just so happy to see you. Alive. All reports were that you had died in that damn detention center. Even Saul hadn't heard anything about you. Anders never gave up on you." Starbuck ducked her head at the mention of him, Laura noticed. "And I never gave up on you either…" Laura admitted softly. "Every night before I fell asleep, I thought of you and prayed you were ok…" Laura trailed a hand into the spiky blonde hair before her.

Kara looked up at that, her bright eyes sparkling at the confession. Ah, that's a look I remember well…Laura's heart skipped a beat. Kara moved back towards the President, this time moving in for a kiss.

Their lips met half way, both eager. Neither knew what the future would hold but for this brief shining moment, they were together. They both had finally come home.

The End

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