James Dittiger
Samantha Highfill
May 06, 2015 AT 09:30 PM EDT

Bates Motel‘s Norma Bates is a strange woman. A breathtakingly beautiful woman, but strange. Her relationship with her youngest son is a bit too close for comfort at times… and then there’s the fact that she has both committed murder and covered up her son’s murders. 

And yet, even with all that baggage, Norma doesn’t really struggle when it comes to finding a man. Being a strong, gorgeous woman means that generally, finding someone who’s attracted to her isn’t that difficult. But really caring about someone? That’s something she reserves for Sheriff Alex Romero. 

The chemistry between Vera Farmiga and Nestor Carbonell has been there from day one, but it was just subtle enough that the two of them didn’t really become a conversation piece until the show wanted them to be one. Heck, it’s taken three full seasons for them to even get close to a first kiss. But there’s a lot to be said for the “slow burn” approach of this relationship.

For one thing, he’s a cop, while she’s the overly protective mother of a killer. So it makes sense that their first inclination toward each other wouldn’t be romantic. But as things started happening and the lines between good/bad and legal/illegal started to blur, each found a confidant in the other. In a town full of secrets and sketchy individuals, it’s imperative to have someone you can trust.

That trust then started to develop into something more. Yes, Norma and Romero often find themselves on opposite sides of an argument, but the real beauty with these two is that they can fight—really fight—and not have it affect things. They’re both messed-up individuals, and somehow, they’ve found solace in each other. At this point, they’re already a couple of sorts, even if they don’t realize it.

Bottom line: With Norman slipping further and further from Norma, she’s going to need somewhere to turn. And after years of flirty exchanges and knowing glances, it’s time that these two put their mouths … where the other one’s mouth is. Get it? They need to kiss.

In the meantime, you should really be ‘shipping them—because their relationship is a bit of light in a show full of dark. Literally, this is a show about an innocent young man’s descent into serial murderdom. So at this point, Normero is sort of a necessity. Plus, with Norman’s murderous tendencies, it’d probably be good for Norma to have a protective cop as a boyfriend. (And his natural eyeliner doesn’t hurt either.)

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